Failed Islamic States in Senegambia

David Robinson

Warning to Muslims in Saint-Louis

Warning to Muslims in Saint-Louis
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A letter written by al-hajj Umar in 1855 to the Muslim inhabitants, and particular the traders, living in Saint-Louis, the capital of French operations in the area located at the mouth of the Senegal River. The French were beginning to expand up the river and to threaten Umarian operations. Consequently Umar warns the Muslim merchants, who had worked closely with the French, not to associate with them, and questions their Muslim identity if they do.

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Warning to Muslims in Saint-Louis
Warning to Muslims in Saint-Louis
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Description: A letter written by al-hajj Umar in 1855 to the Muslim inhabitants, and particular the traders, living in Saint-Louis, the capital of French operations in the area located at the mouth of the Senegal River. The French were beginning to expand up the river and to threaten Umarian operations. Consequently Umar warns the Muslim merchants, who had worked closely with the French, not to associate with them, and questions their Muslim identity if they do.
Date: 1855
Date Range: 1850-1859
Location: Senegal River valley, Senegal
Format: Text/jpeg
Language: Arabic
Rights Management: For educational use only.
Contributing Institution: Archives Nationales de la France; David Robinson; MATRIX: The Center for Humane Arts, Letters, and Social Sciences Online at Michigan State University
Digitizer: MATRIX
Source: Archives Nationales de la France, Section Outre-Mer (ANFOM), SENEGAL I 41B (Aix-en-Provence, France). The Umarian letter was contained in a letter of 11 March 1855 written by Governor Faidherbe in Saint-Louis to the Ministere de la Marine et des Colonies in Paris. When David Robinson checked these files in 1993, the original letter had disappeared. What I give here is a photocopy I made on an earlier research trip. The letter has been published, especially in French translation, many times. The Arabic original and an English translation are in John Hanson and David Robinson, After the Jihad: the Reign of Ahmad al-Kabir in the Western Sudan, and that is the source for the document here.

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