4 Annotations

Pedro   Link to this

Africa House.

Offices of the Guinny Company?

Originally the offices of the Royal African Company, a trading Company formally established by Act of Parliament, 23 George II. The Company seems to have been formed as early as 1588, and before coming to Leadenhall Street, they had their offices in Warnford Court, in Broad Street Ward (L. and P. Chas. II.1672, D.S. XII. p.87). From: 'Africa House', A Dictionary of London (1918). URL: http://www.british-history.ac.uk/report.asp?com.... Date accessed: 24 November 2006.

Michael Robinson   Link to this

Offices of the "Company of Royal Adventurers of England Trading into Africa" commony called The Royal Africa Company"


Founded 1660 as the "Company of Royal Adventurers into Africa," and refounded in 1663, by Prince Rupert and James, Duke of York, the company was granted monopoly trading rights in western Africa for 1,000 years. Apparently this company's activities were initially restricted to Gambia because of the need to negociate with the pre-existing rights of the Guinea and East India Companies. The charter of 1663 for the first time explicitly mentioned the slave trade among the Company's interests, in 1662 it undertook to supply 3,000 slaves annually to the West indian colonies. Gold was the main trade with slaves being a quarter of the total annual revenues.

The Company's first decicive act was to dispatch a naval expedition to Africa under Sir Robert Holmes, which established a fort on James Island in the Gambia (1661) It was this that lead to it becoming embroiled in conflict with the Dutch.

Pedro   Link to this

"The Company's first decicive act was to dispatch a naval expedition to Africa under Sir Robert Holmes,"

For the first expedition of Holmes see...

http://www.pepysdiary.com/encyclopedia/930/

Taken as a summary from Ollard's biography it differs from Michael's source above in the following way...

"The mouth of the Gambia River was protected by an island called Dog Island, and within three days of arrival Holmes renamed it as Charles Island and decided that it was a suitable place to build a fort. He also took the fort of St Andreas located up the river near Jillifri from the Dutch, on the pretext that they had fired on a frigate and would not let her water at the Island. The island was renamed as James Island, and would provide matter for much diplomatic negotiation over the next decade. (Twelve years later Holmes was to say that "it was a little fort with two men and a dog in it", one of the earliest instances of the phrase.)"

Terry Foreman   Link to this

L&M say that although Pepys usually refers to Africa House as being in Broad Street, in hearth-tax returns of the 1660s and on maps of 1677 it was clearly located in Warnford Court, north out of Throgmorton Street (which Pepys ignores) up or up and across from where Draper Hall is at the top of this 1674 map. http://www.motco.com/map/81002/SeriesSearchPlat...

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