History of Grand Bassam Ivory Coast

History of Grand Bassam Ivory Coast - Cote dIvoire

1483 The earliest recorded French voyage to West Africa took place in 1483

1842 - Charles-Philippe de Kerhallet (1809-1863) was a lieutenant which, on February 10th, 1842, under the reign of Louis-Philippe Ier, signed a treaty with Attékéblé, a African trader who is presented in the form of a sovereign of Large-Bassam. This locality included the current economic metropolis of Ivory Coast, Abidjan.

By this treaty, France establishes its protectorate on the lagoon of Large-Bassam, and, in exchange of the hiring of a fort on the lagoon, it is committed paying the sovereign and with his heirs a “habit” to 4000 francs per annum until 1915.

1943 Construction of Fort Nemours.

1878 The trading post at Grand-Bassam in Côte d'Ivoire was left in the care of a shipper from Marseille, Arthur Verdier, who in 1878 was named resident of the Establishment of Côte d'Ivoire.

1893-1896 Capital of Côte d'Ivoire

1889 Britain recognized French sovereignty in the area. That same year, France named Treich-Laplène titular governor of the territory.

1893 Ivory Coast was made a French colony, and then Captain Binger was appointed governor.

Historical Map of Ivory Coast

Yellow Fever in Grand Bassam

1896 the French capital was moved to Bingerville1960 Independence from France

1910 Fort Nemours was destroyed.

1915. Lighthouse or Phare - Inactive, though still listed. Approx. 24 m (79 ft) masonry tower with lantern and gallery, centered on a 1-story masonry keeper's house. Lighthouse painted white, at least originally; most of the paint is missing in the photo at right.A 2007 photo is at right, Huelse has a historic postcard view, and the lighthouse is centered in a Google satellite view. The history of this substantial lighthouse is obscure. The light is missing from most post-World War II light lists, and apparently it was deactivated in 1951. Grand-Bassam, a town about 40 km (25 mi) east of Port Bouët at the eastern end of the Lagune d'Ébrié, was briefly the French colonial capital (1893-96). The lighthouse marked a lagoon entrance which has since silted up, so there is no modern harbor. Located in Ancien Bassam, the original French settlement, on the barrier island separating the ocean from the Lagune Ouladine at Grand Bassam. Site open, tower closed. ARLHS ICO-013; Admiralty D3137.5; NGA 24843.  Reference Page

3 Juillet 2012, le quartier de France de Grand-Bassam, considéré comme le cœur historique de la ville, est classé au patrimoine mondial de l'UNESCO.


Kerhallet will be the first European to be approached what was not whereas a village. Strong Nemours, the extremely durable first of the Coast with that of Assinie, is built there in 1843, after the unloading of the lieutenant Fleuriot de Langle, which was to lead to a treaty between France and king de Krinjabo, Amon Ndoufou. At that time, the skirmishes with the English were frequent, and the means did not make it possible to exploit the interior of the country. It is inside these forts that the first commercial counters will be installed the years which followed.

Founded in the middle of the XIXe century by the admiral Mequet, the city is, of 1893 to 1899, the principal French administrative center. In 1899, the center is transferred to Bingerville, following an epidemic of yellow fever: on 60 Europeans present in the city, 45 will die about it. Of new epidemics will also take place between 1900 and 1903.

The jetée La city remains an important port until in the years 1930, before passing the relay to Abidjan, then in full rise.

The town of Large-Bassam accommodated since 1893 the center of underwater telegraphy connecting the “territory of the Ivory Coast” to Conakry, “territory of Guinea” on the one hand, and with Cotonou, “territory of Dahomey” which was the only connection open on outside, other. The station of underwater cables, also called the “house with the thousand feet”, was located after the exit of the bridge which crossed the lagoon, on the left along the lagoon and second street on the line, and faced a school of sisters. It is in the station of cables, built originally by the Germans, that would have been held the first mass. This “house of the cables”, of a surface of 400 m2, comprised a raised ground floor where were the operations departments and a stage where the head of center and his family placed. The post office was installed there in 1945.

The city is registered on July 1st, 2012 with the World heritage of UNESCO .


View Grand-Bassam Map of Historical Buildings in a larger map

Photos History of Grand Bassam Ivory Coast

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