On 19th-century Kkooki: Independent Kingdom or Buganda County? By the mid-1800s, Kkooki was arguably Uganda’s most cosmopolitan kingdom. By the late 1700s, Kkooki’s kibiito kings severed their royal ties with Bunyoro, (Photo: Kamuswaga, 1897) 1/17 Image
the land of their origin. According to the Kkooki intellectual and historian, E.M.K. Mulira, Kkooki’s third king, Mujwiga, sent emissaries to Kabaka Jjunju to secure their dissociation from Bunyoro. 2/17
‘Kamswaga King of Koki with some of his attendants.' Uganda Photographs, c. 1897 – 1903 EEPA-1998-002-0032 Eliot Elisofon Photographic Archives National Museum of African Art Smithsonian Institution 3/17 ImageImage
'Koki-The King's house & enclosure.' Uganda Photographs, c. 1897 – 1903 EEPA-1998-002-0031 Eliot Elisofon Photographic Archives National Museum of African Art Smithsonian Institution 4/17 ImageImage
Throughout the 1800s, Kkooki statebuilders developed their economy by creating diplomatic relations with Ankole, Bunyoro, and Buganda. 5/17
Through Kkook passed numerous Rwandan labourers and Zanzibar traders and coastal porters by the 1840s. Kabaka Muteesa I ordered a raid on Kooki in 1875 that changed the course of the kingdom: 4,000 cows were taken, and many women and children were forced into servitude. 6/17
Kkooki’s persistent claims of autonomy from Buganda caused numerous challenges for Buganda’s regents. Unearthed documents in the archives show that the colonial government, and Kaggwa, Mugwanya, 7/17
and Kisingiri took active measures to replace Kooki chiefs with Muganda administrators (see image). What we also see is that the colonial government and the government of Buganda orchestrated a detailed mapping excavation of the region. 8/17 Image
What you see here is the map of that expedition. 9/17 Image
Have a close look at these two letters. If I am reading them correcting, I notice 2 things: 1. Buganda’s regents kept referring to the Kamuswanga as a chief of Buganda; not the king of Kkooki (“Saza lye Koki” & “okumulonda okulira dala Esaza eryo”). This is deliberate! 10/17
11/17 Image
12/17 Image
2. Buganda’s regents are officially mediating royal successions in Kkooki! This was a first. The proverbial writing was now clearly on the wall for all to see! 13/17
E.M.K. Mulira authored a couple of histories of Kkooki. His father was Rwamahwa Nasanaeri Ndawula
Kiwomamagaaya, the paternal grandson of Omukama Ndaula I. These are available online through Cambridge University: 14/17
Mulira, E. M. The Kingdom of Kooki during the 19th century. 1972.

Mulira, E. M. Notes on research on Kooki. c. 1972. [Manuscript].

Mulira, E. M. In Search of My Origin: Being an Attempt to Trace the Origin of the Hamite Rulers of Uganda. [c 1972 (?)]. [Manuscript].


• • •

Missing some Tweet in this thread? You can try to force a refresh

Keep Current with Jonathon L. Earle

Jonathon L. Earle Profile picture

Stay in touch and get notified when new unrolls are available from this author!

Read all threads

This Thread may be Removed Anytime!


Twitter may remove this content at anytime! Save it as PDF for later use!

Try unrolling a thread yourself!

how to unroll video
  1. Follow @ThreadReaderApp to mention us!

  2. From a Twitter thread mention us with a keyword "unroll"
@threadreaderapp unroll

Practice here first or read more on our help page!

More from @JonathonLEarle

22 Feb
The Tooro monarchy, whose palace we see here, emerged during the 1820s. Olimi I, a Nyoro prince, set about establishing a separate kingdom. Colonial administrators supported the move, which they believed would undermine Bunyoro’s weakening economy & political sovereignty. 1/8 Image
In this picture, we see Rukirabasaija Daudi Kasagama Kyebambe III in 1897. He secured separate status from Bunyoro. He then extended Tooro’s authority throughout the Rwenzori region. 2/8 Image
At the ideological heart of the movement of creating Tooro were Protestant loyalties w/ the metropole, in addition to claims over the control of the Amabere ga Nyina Mwiru, whose breast milk had nourished the emergence of eastern Africa’s largest & most consequential empire. 3/8
Read 8 tweets
20 Feb
Iron has a very long history in Uganda, as it does in the larger Great Lakes region. For a long time, historians argued that iron smelting-smithing developed first among Bantu statebuilders, offering them an advantage in clearing land, producing food, and organizing war. 1/19
‘Iron Smelting’. Uganda Photographs, c. 1897 – 1903 EEPA 1998-002-0016 Eliot Elisofon Photographic Archives National Museum of African Art Smithsonian Institution. 2/19
Much of the existing evidence, though, now shows that Nilo-Saharan communities most likely developed iron-smithing first; later borrowed by Bantu speakers. Archaeological evidence suggests that iron use became common in the interlacustrine region around 500 BCE. 3/19
Read 19 tweets
19 Feb
More on canoes. Hamu Mukasa had a life-long interest in boats. He maintained numerous photographs of them in his private library. Here, we see a few beautiful images from his collection, likely taken between the First & Second World Wars (I think the late 1920s?).
We can see how the government sought to regulate, trace, and tax boat production through the creation of boating licences (notice the numbers on the sides of the boats).
Read 4 tweets
18 Feb
It is my pleasure to begin a short series on Uganda’s precolonial history. Unless indicated otherwise, the images in these posts are used with the kind permission of the Eliot Elisofon Photographic Archives @si_africanart (citations provided). 1/12 ImageImage
Image 1 (above). No caption. Uganda Photographs, c. 1897 – 1903 EEPA 1998-002-0154 Eliot Elisofon Photographic Archives National Museum of African Art Smithsonian Institution 2/12
The creation & change of canoes in Great Lakes history offer insight into power, mobility, & spiritual authority. As D. Schoenbrun has shown, shrines devoted to canoes began to develop by 1000 CE; & the words used to describe varying canoes had changed by the 12th C. 3/12
Read 12 tweets
18 Feb
.@UgandaStudies wishes to launch a regular digital forum to allow writers/scholars (aspiring/established) to share & receive supportive feedback. The following are welcome: academic scholarship (including articles, PhD and book chapters, or material from larger projects), 1/4
journalistic writing, audio-visual work, or content from those aspiring to write the next great Ugandan novel. In other words, the initiative is NOT limited to the often marginalizing boundaries of the academy. We especially wish to open this forum for writers in Uganda. 2/4
The only requirement is that one must have around 30-minutes of material to present. If you are interested, please DM me, or any of the following @muhoozi @moseskhisa @Mwine_Kyarimpa @GeraldBareebe @KKrystal @kbrucelockhart. 3/4
Read 5 tweets
17 Feb
Uganda has long been called, "The Pearl of Africa." But where did the term originate? A closer examination of the international press shows that Winston Churchill did NOT coin the phrase; he plagiarized it. The term's history is far more complicated—and interesting! 1/7
The nomenclature, "Pearl of Africa," was first used in the German press by 1890: "Perle Afrikas." In the Berlin press, the term was used in the context of Zanzibar as a way to illustrate British and German competition over the region. 2/7
The phrase is then reworked into English. In this 1890 letter, penned by Henry Morton Stanley to the Editor of the Times, we see one of the first occasions when the term was used in the English language (& the connection with German). 3/7
Read 7 tweets

Did Thread Reader help you today?

Support us! We are indie developers!

This site is made by just two indie developers on a laptop doing marketing, support and development! Read more about the story.

Become a Premium Member ($3/month or $30/year) and get exclusive features!

Become Premium

Too expensive? Make a small donation by buying us coffee ($5) or help with server cost ($10)

Donate via Paypal Become our Patreon

Thank you for your support!

Follow Us on Twitter!