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
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
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
Indeed, some of the earliest stories about the proto-mythical Chwezi rulers emerged out of the hills and caves of the Uganda-Congo border, where I took these images a few years ago. 4/8
As @jamesjaycarney and I show in our forthcoming book, Catholic dissenters throughout the colonial period consistently challenged the legitimacy of Tooro’s claims: concerns that were given their fullest expression in the desired secession of the Rwenzururu kingdom. 6/8
This image was taken on the eve of Independence. It’s of Omukama Kyebambe III’s son, Rukirabasaija Sir George David Matthew Kamurasi Rukidi III, with British governor, Sir Frederick Crawford. 7/8
To view and freely download additional photographs of the Tooro monarchy (and colonial Uganda), see:… These are excellent images that one can use for research and teaching. 8/8

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More from @JonathonLEarle

21 Feb
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
Read 17 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

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