Lomé (1904), the way to the Governor's Palace. No Copyright
Lomé (1904), the way to the Governor's Palace

Political Development of the former German Colonies since 1920

This post is also available in: French German Italian Spanish Dutch Portuguese (Portugal)

Written by Dietrich Köster

COLONIES IN AFRICA

GERMAN EAST AFRICA, takeover in 1884/85
Tanganyika Territory
1920 to the United Kingdom –
1961 Independent State of Tanganyika/1962 Republic of Tanganyika –
April 1964 part of the United Republic of Tanganyika and Zanzibar/
November 1964 United Republic of Tanzania
Ruanda-Urundi
1920 to Belgium –
1962 Republic of Rwanda (northern part) and
1962 Kingdom of Burundi/1966 Republic of Burundi (southern part)
respectively
Kionga Triangle
1920 reassigned to Portugal (Portuguese East Africa) –
1975 part of the People’s Republic of Mozambique/1990 Republic of Mozambique

GERMAN SOUTH WEST AFRICA, takeover in 1884
1920 Union of South Africa/1961 Republic of South Africa –
1990 Republic of Namibia

CAMEROON, takeover in 1884
Western Cameroon
1920 to the United Kingdom –
1960 part of the Independent State of Nigeria/1963 part of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (northern part) and
1960 part of the Independent State of Nigeria –
1961 part of the Federal Republic of Cameroon/1972 part of the United Republic of Cameroon, 1984 part of the Republic of Cameroon (southern part) respectively
Eastern Cameroon
1920 to France –
1960 Republic of Cameroon – 1961 part of the Federal Republic of Cameroun/1972 part of the United Republic of Cameroon, 1984 part of the Republic of Cameroon
Neukamerun (New Cameroon) was attached to Cameroon in 1911.
1920 Neukamerun was reintegrated as part of the neighbouring colonies of French Equatorial Africa (AEF): Chad (1960 Republic of Chad), Ubangi-Shari (1960 Central African Republic/1976 Central African Empire/1979 Central African Republic), Middle Congo (1960 Republic of the Congo/1970 People’s Republic of the Congo/1992 Republic of the Congo) and Gabon (1960 Gabonese Republic) respectively

TOGO, takeover in 1884
Western part of Togo
1920 – to the United Kingdom
1957 part of the Independent State of Ghana, 1960 of the Republic of Ghana
Eastern part of Togo
1920 to France –
1960 Togolese Republic

COLONIES IN THE PACIFIC AREA

GERMAN NEW GUINEA
a) Emperor William Land, Bismarck Archipelago, German Solomon Islands, takeover in 1884/85
1920 to Australia –
1975 part of the Independent State of Papua New Guinea (PNG)
b) Marshall Islands (part of German Micronesia north of the equator), takeover in 1885
1920 to Japan –
1947 under United States administration as part of the United Nations Trust Territory of the Pacific Islands (TTPI) –
1990 Republic of the Marshall Islands (RMI)
c) Nauru (German-Micronesia south of the equator), takeover in 1888
1920 to Australia, New Zealand and the United Kingdom/exercise of the administration by Australia –
1968 Republic of Nauru
d) German-Micronesia north of the equator without the Marshall Islands, takeover in 1899
1920 to Japan –
1947 under United States administration as part of the United Nations Trust Territory of the Pacific Islands (TTPI)
aa) 1990 United States Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands
bb) 1994 Republic of Palau (Belau/Palau Islands)
cc) 1990 Federated States of Micronesia (FSM/Caroline Islands)

GERMAN KIAOCHOW TERRITORY, takeover in 1897/98
1920 to Japan –
1922 back to China –
since 1949 part of the People’s Republic of China (PRC)

GERMAN-SAMOA, takeover in 1899/1900
1920 to New Zealand –
1962 Independent State of Western Samoa/1997 Independent State of Samoa

NOTES:
German-Micronesia includes the Mariana Islands except Guam, the Palau Islands, the Caroline Islands, the Marshall Islands and Nauru.
With the exception of the German Kiaochow Territory and the Kionga Triangle all German overseas possessions became mandates of the League of Nations in 1920.
Togo and Cameroon became Class B mandates with France and the United Kingdom as mandate holder respectively.
Tanganyika and Ruanda-Urundi became Class B mandates with the United Kingdom and Belgium as mandate power respectively.
German South West Africa, German-Micronesia north of the equator and German Samoa were placed as Class C mandates under the authority of the Union of South Africa, Japan and New Zealand respectively.
Nauru as Micronesia south of the equator became a Class C mandate of Australia, New Zealand and the United Kingdom as joint mandate powers.
The rest of German New Guinea (Emperor William Land, Bismarck Archipelago and the German Solomon Islands) was converted into a Class C mandate administered by Australia.
In 1947 these mandates became United Nations Trust Territories until attainment of independence. In the same year solely Japan’s mandate was replaced by a United States administered United Nations Trust Territory of the Pacific Islands (TTPI). 
No provision is made for an independence of the Northern Mariana Islands. Since 1990 these islands are linked in Political Union with the United States as the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands.
The transfer of the German overseas possessions was established under the terms of the Treaty of Versailles of 28 June 1919, which went into effect on 10 January 1920.

Copyright March 2004 by Dietrich Köster, D-53115 Bonn

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