Malawi History

From FamilySearch Wiki
Jump to: navigation, search
Malawi Wiki Topics
Flag of Malawi.svg.png
Beginning Research
Record Types
Malawi Background
Local Research Resources
Malawi
History

History

The part of Africa now known as Malawi was settled by migrating Bantu groups around the 10th century. Centuries later in 1891 the area was colonised by the British. In 1953 Malawi, then known as Nyasaland, a protectorate of the United Kingdom, became a protectorate within the semi-independent Federation of Rhodesia and Nyasaland. The Federation was dissolved in 1963. In 1964 the protectorate over Nyasaland was ended and Nyasaland became an independent country under Queen Elizabeth II with the new name Malawi. Two years later it became a republic.

Upon gaining independence it became a totalitarian one-party state under the presidency of Hastings Banda, who remained president until 1994. Malawi has a democratic, multi-party government headed by an elected president. Malawi's foreign policy is pro-Western and includes positive diplomatic relations with most countries and participation in several international organisations.

Malawi has a low life expectancy and high infant mortality. There is a diverse population of native peoples, Asians and Europeans, with several languages spoken and an array of religious beliefs. Although there was periodic regional conflict fuelled in part by ethnic divisions in the past, by 2008 it had diminished considerably and the concept of a Malawian nationality had reemerged.
[1]

Timeline

1859 - David Livingstone reached Lake Malawi and identified the Shire Highlands south of the lake as an area suitable for European settlement
1891 - The area was colonised by the British
1953 - Malawi, then known as Nyasaland, a protectorate of the United Kingdom, became a protectorate within the semi-independent Federation of Rhodesia and Nyasaland
1963 - Federation of Rhodesia and Nyasaland was dissolved
1964 - The protectorate over Nyasaland was ended and Nyasaland became an independent country under Queen Elizabeth II with the new name Malawi. Two years later it became a republic

References