was born to the Ga
royal family of Teiko Tsuru We at Kinka, he was (originally known
as Nii Quarshie Tawiah) succeeded to the stool in 1862, shortly
before colonisation of the Gold Coast. He was descended in a direct
line from Ayi Kushi, the first Gá king in recorded history.
Tackie Tawiah lived and reigned for sometime under the Dutch flag.
To the Gá-Dangme still enthralled by the extraordinary
military exploits of Nii Tackie Kome I, the hallowed name and
prestige of the deceased leader attached to his grandson. King
Tackie Tawiah succeeded to his predecessors' role as senior military
leader of all the Gá, Dangme and Akan states of South-eastern
Tackie Tawiah's personal qualities won the admiration of many;
he had a remarkable sense of statesmanship, generosity and fairness.
He considered the welfare of his people the paramount virtue,
and worked relentlessly to that end, and showed unflagging determination
in adversity. His fearlessly, bravery and outspokenness inspired
the youth, while his countless victories brought glory and respect
to the nation.
Nii Tackie Tawiah led a delegation of Gá fishermen to Dahomey
who successfully transfered skills at managing surf boats to the
As king Tackie Tawiah's fame rested on two principal achievements:
his leadership of the peoples of South-Eastern Ghana and opposition
to the diktat of the colonial administration. Shortly after his
enstoolment Tackie Tawiah had to retire to a village on the outskirts
of Accra following a riot in the royal quarter of Kinka. He re-emerged
to lead the Gá-Dangme into battle against the Anlo Ewe
in the Anula Ta
(Anlo war) of 1866, marking the beginning of a succession of Gá-Dangme
campaigns in the Lower Volta.
The new British representative, Governor Blackall declared both
Tackie Tawiah and Manche Kojo Ababio of Jamestown outlaws, effectively
setting the stage for the King's life-long struggles against the
colonialists. In the words of the King: "When this country
[Kinka] was taken by the White man I was absent from town and
I heard that their flag was up. I was then at Awoonah..."
The British later changed their policy towards the two political
leaders who returned to Accra in 1869.
Prior to becoming king, Tackie Tawiah was a successful merchant;
his trading activities not only took him beyond the borders of
the Gold Coast, he also travelled extensively across the Gold
Coast itself and the hinterland, developing a network of contacts
and friends. He cultivated the friendship of many of the Brazilians
settlers in Accra. The Brazilians arrived in Accra during the
reign of Nii Tackie Kome, and were quickly incorporated into the
Gá polity; they were attached to the household of Mantse
Ankrah and absorbed into the Otublohum quarter.
The knowledge and skills of the Brazilians were harnessed by King
Tackie Tawiah to the development of the town. Stone architecture,
warehousing, smithery and other crafts and trades were added to
the range of Gá-Dangme traditional skills. The affluence
of Accra attracted numerous peoples from the hinterland and other
places who joined with the original Gá-dangme in developing
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