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TanzaniaA Political Economy$
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Andrew Coulson

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780199679966

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2013

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199679966.001.0001

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The German Conquest

The German Conquest

(p.51) 5 The German Conquest

Andrew Coulson

Oxford University Press

The Germans faced over fifty revolts against their rule. Bwana Heri surrendered because of hunger, not defeat, just when he had united most of the inland tribes to fight the Germans. In 1891, Mkwawa ambushed a column of Germans at Lugalo near the Ruaha Gorge and he continued fighting until 1898. The biggest revolt, the Maji Maji rebellion, 1905-8, also ended with famine, not least because the Germans destroyed sources of food. These years were accompanied by diseases and pests which attacked people, cattle, or crops, and lead to famines in the 1890s, around 1908, and again during the First World War when between 1914 and 1920 a German army remained undefeated, living off the land. By 1920, the people were worse off than in 1850—with less food, fewer skills and fewer cattle. Large areas became depopulated allowing the tsetse fly, which attacks both humans and cattle, to return.

Keywords:   Bwana Heri, Mkwawa, Maji Maji rebellion, tsetse fly, famines

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