Accra

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Accra

(əkrä`, ăk`rə), city (1984 pop. 867,459), capital of Ghana, a port on the Gulf of Guinea. It is Ghana's largest city and its administrative, communications, and economic center. The chief manufactures are processed food, beverages, timber and plywood, textiles, clothing, chemicals, and printed materials. A transportation hub, Accra is linked by road and rail with KumasiKumasi
, city (1984 pop. 376,246), capital of the Ashanti Region, central Ghana. The second largest city in Ghana, it is a commercial and transportation center in a cocoa-producing region, and it has a large central market. Kumasi was founded c.
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, in the interior, and with TemaTema
, city (1984 pop. 99,608), SE Ghana, on the Gulf of Guinea. With the opening of an artificial harbor in 1961, Tema developed from a small fishing village to become Ghana's leading seaport and an industrial center.
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, a major seaport. The site of present-day Accra was originally comprised of several small villages of a Ga kingdom. It developed into a sizable town around British and Dutch forts built in the 17th cent. In 1877, Accra replaced Cape CoastCape Coast,
town (1984 pop. 57,224), capital of Central Region, S Ghana, on the Gulf of Guinea. Known locally as Gna or Oegna, the town is an export port and fishing center. The town originated as an Ashanti trading center. It grew up around European forts built in the 17th cent.
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 as the capital of the British Gold Coast colony. After the completion (1923) of a railroad to the mining and agricultural hinterland, Accra rapidly became the economic center of Ghana. Riots in the city (1948), against high retail prices and European control, led to the rise of Kwame NkrumahNkrumah, Kwame
, 1909–72, African political leader, prime minister (1957–60) and president (1960–66) of Ghana. The son of a goldsmith, he was educated at mission schools in the Gold Coast (now Ghana) and became a teacher.
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 as a popular leader and marked an important early step in Ghana's road to independence (1957). It is the site of the national museum, the national theater, the Ghana Academy of Arts and Sciences, the Univ. of Ghana, and Ghana's central library. Also of note is Osu Castle or Fort Christianborg, built by the Danes in the 17th cent. On Accra's outskirts are Achimota School (1927), the country's leading secondary school, and, in Legon, the Univ. of Ghana (1948).

Accra

 

capital of the Republic of Ghana, center of the district of Accra. Located on the Gulf of Guinea on a plain broken by individual hills. Population 521,900 in 1966, compared to 70,000 in 1939.

The city is the political, financial, commercial, industrial, and cultural center of Ghana. Accra’s importance as a port (for the transshipment of freight to roadways) declined sharply after the construction of the modern port in the city of Tema. It is the starting point for railroads and highways, and it has an international airport. Accra is an important center for the industrial power region of Akosombo-Tema. There are metalworking, textile, lumber-processing, food (fruit and fish-canning, etc.) and building-material industrial enterprises; there is also an electrical-equipment plant. Gold and silver wares are handcrafted in Accra. It is a diamond and cocoa bean market.

Accra, initially a settlement of one of the tribes of the Ga nation, was founded no earlier than the 16th century. Around 1600 it became the capital of a federation of Ga tribes. With the appearance of European merchants on the Guinean shore, it was transformed into an important trade center; the Ga, Akim, Akwapim, and Ashanti tribes fought for the possession of Accra over a long period. In 1850 it was incorporated into the English colony of the Gold Coast. It was the seat of colonial authority from 1876 until 1957, when it became the capital of the independent state of Ghana.

The Dutch fort Crèvecoeur (now Ussher, established 1605), the Danish fort Christiansborg (1657–59), and the British fort James (1673) have survived in Accra. The densely populated old coastal areas with their complex labyrinths of streets, and the well-built, comfortable sections with multistory buildings on Independence Avenue (which cuts across Accra from southwest to northeast), where the offices of local and foreign banks and commercial firms are located, are the most notable parts of the city. Government institutions and ministries are in the cantonments, to the northeast. One- and two-story houses predominate. The national museum, founded in 1957, houses collections of African ceramics and artifacts made of wood and bone. The university was founded in Legon in 1948. There are botanical gardens. The Academy of Sciences was established in Accra in 1961.

N. A. SMIRNOV

Accra

the capital of Ghana, a port on the Gulf of Guinea: built on the site of three 17th-century trading fortresses founded by the English, Dutch, and Danish. Pop.: 1 970 000 (2005 est.)
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