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Encyclopedia > West Africa Campaign (World War I)
West Africa Campaign (World War I)
Part of African theatre of World War I
Date August 3, 1914 – February, 1915
Location Kamerun, Togoland
Result Treaty of Versailles
Combatants
Great Britain, France, Belgium Germany

The West Africa Campaign of World War I consisted of two small and fairly short military operations to capture the German colonies in West Africa: Togoland and Kamerun. Combatants United Kingdom ‎South Africa ‎ France ‎Belgium ‎Portugal German Empire The African Theater of World War I comprises geographically distinct campaigns around the German colonies scattered in Africa: the German colonies of Cameroon, Togo, South-West Africa, and German East Africa. ... The Republic of Cameroon is a unitary republic of central Africa. ... Togoland was a German protectorate in West Africa. ... The Palace of Versailles, where the treaty was signed. ... Combatants Allied Powers: Russian Empire France British Empire Italy United States Central Powers: Austria-Hungary German Empire Ottoman Empire Bulgaria Commanders Nikolay II Aleksey Brusilov Georges Clemenceau Joseph Joffre Ferdinand Foch Robert Nivelle Herbert H. Asquith D. Lloyd George Sir Douglas Haig Sir John Jellicoe Victor Emmanuel III Luigi Cadorna...  Western Africa (UN subregion)  Maghreb[1] West Africa or Western Africa is the westernmost region of the African continent. ... Togoland was a German protectorate in West Africa. ... The Republic of Cameroon is a unitary republic of central Africa. ...

Contents

Overview

Great Britain, with near total command of the world's oceans, had the power and resources to conquer the German colonies when the Great War started.


The two German colonies in West Africa were recent, and not well defended. They were also surrounded on all sides by African colonies that belonged to enemy great powers: Great Britain and France.


Togoland

This small colony was almost immediately conquered by a military force from the British Gold Coast (modern-day Ghana) and a small force from French Dahomey (modern-day Benin). Fighting was over by August 27. John Keegan identifies the two military forces as the West African Rifles and the Tirailleurs senegalais (Keegan, "World War I", pg. 206). August 27 is the 239th day of the year in the Gregorian Calendar (240th in leap years), with 126 days remaining. ...


Kamerun

Kamerun (modern-day Cameroon as well as a part of modern-day Nigeria) had a garrison of about 1,000 German soldiers supported by about 3,000 African soldiers. This tiny force was in charge of defending a territory the size of Texas. The British attacked out of Nigeria following three different routes east into Kamerun. However, all three columns were defeated by a combination of terrain, rough trails, and ambushes by the Germans. The French attacked south from Chad and captured Kusseri. Early in September, a Belgian-French force (mostly from the Belgian Congo) captured Limbe on the coast. With the aid of four British and French cruisers acting as mobile artillery, this force then captured the colonial capital of Douala on September 27, 1914. Official language(s) English (de facto) See also languages of Texas Capital Austin Largest city Houston Area  Ranked 2nd  - Total 261,797 sq mi (261,797 km²)  - Width 773 miles (1,244 km)  - Length 790 miles (1,270 km)  - % water 2. ... The shore at Limbe Limbe (also spelled Limbé) is a city in western Cameroon. ... This article or section does not cite its references or sources. ... September 27 is the 270th day of the year (271st in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... 1914 (MCMXIV) was a common year starting on Thursday (see link for calendar). ...


The only major center of German resistance was now Yaounda (modern-day Yaounde). The Belgian-French troops followed the German-built railroad inland, beating off German counter-attacks along the way. By November, Yaounde was captured. Most of the surviving German soldiers retreated into Spanish Guinea (modern-day Equatorial Guinea which was neutral territory. The last German fort in Kamerun surrendered in February, 1916 (Keegan "World War I", pg. 207). Categories: Africa geography stubs | Capitals in Africa | Cities in Cameroon ...


Reference

  • Togoland and the Cameroons 1914-1916 by Brigadier-General F. J. Moberly (1931, HMSO, official history)
Theatres of World War I
European (Balkans – Western Front – Eastern Front – Italian Front) – Middle Eastern (Caucasus – Mesopotamia – Sinai and Palestine – Gallipoli – Aden – Persia) – African (South-West Africa – West Africa – East Africa) – Asian and Pacific (German Samoa and New Guinea – Tsingtao) – Other (Atlantic Ocean – Mediterranean – Naval – Aerial)
World War I Portal

 
 

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