The AEHN provides a unique opportunity to strengthening African economic history by providing primary data sets. The data is free to use but the principal investigator must be cited.
The African Commodity Trade Database (ACTD) aims to stimulate and deepen research on African and global economic history. The database provides export and import series at product level for more than two and a half centuries of African trade (1737-2010). The ACTD consists of three main parts which are continuously updated as we retrieve additional sources. Currently data for the eighteenth, nineteenth and early twentieth century is available below. The data from the ACTD is freely available as long as reference is made to: Frankema, E., Williamson, J., & Woltjer, P. (2015). An economic rationale for the african scramble: The commercial transition and the commodity price boom of 1845-1885 (No. w21213). National Bureau of Economic Research.
Part I – Quantities and official prices, 1737-1808: ACTD_1737t1808_volumes_v1_0
Part II – Values and quantities, 1808-1939: ACTD_1808t1939_database_v1_1
– British Customs Records, 1697-1808, unprocessed: ACTD_1697t1808_raw_data
– Terms of trade for West Africa, 1808-1939: ACTD_1808t1939_terms_of_trade_WA
– Market prices African commodities, 1730-1808
– Coastal prices African commodities French colonies, 1885-1939
– Values and quantities African trade, 1945-2010
The data was collected by the Rural Environment History Group at the Wageningen University. For comments and suggestions please send an email to Pieter Woltjer ([email protected]).
Annual Colonial reports for the following countries are made available online by the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Other reports include Kenya, Northern Rhodesia, Nyasaland, Gambia, Nigeria, Basutoland, Swaziland, Uganda
Moradi, A. and S. Mylavarapu (2008). Men under Arms in Colonial Africa: East African Forces.
Leys, N. M. and T. A. Joyce (1913). Note on a Series of Physical Measurements from East Africa. Journal of the Royal Anthropological Institute of Great Britain and Ireland 43(1): 195-267
Source: Fourie, J. And Von Fintel, D. (2010) ‘The dynamics of inequality in a newly settled, pre-industrial society’, Cliometrica 4(3): 229-267
Source: Frankema, E. and Jerven, M. (2014). ‘Writing History Backwards and Sideways: Towards a Consensus on African Population, 1850-present‘ Economic History Review 67, S1, 907-931
Note: The population estimates in the data set are best guesses based on projections and best guesses, and do not represent actual population counts. For a description of the methods used to reach the annual population totals please see Frankema, E. and Jerven, M. (2014). ‘Writing History Backwards and Sideways: Towards a Consensus on African Population, 1850-present’ Economic History Review 67, S1, 907-931. The authors welcome comments and suggestions for improvements of the database.