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Almada, André Alvares d', fl. 1594, et al. / Brief treatise on the rivers of Guinea
Part I (1984)

Chapter 6. Which discusses the other features of the Gambia River. [translated text],   pp. 52-59 and 60


Page 57

57.


beaching-places for their canoes, since the land on each side of the
river is high here and there are no beaches to land the canoes on.
If they had canoes they would do much harm to (passing) boats, since
all the blacks on the South and ESst side are evil and treacherous,
as already mentioned. The river has three fords or 'passest. Going
upstream, the first is at Malor, the second is Fluos' Pass - described
above -, the third is at Janguemangue, near the trading place for gold.
11,       The Mandingas aake large quantities of salt, which they bring to
the upper part of this river to sell. Here it is very valuable, since
there is no (locally-made) sal t above 60 leagues up-river: salt can be
made only as far up the river as the sea water reaches. The Mandingas
carry the salt up-stream. in canoes. The depot for salt is at a village called-
Culaoula, one league from the port of Casan. This is where the blacks
store it, before sending it through the interior as far as the Grand
Fulo, and by sea as far as it can go.
12.       The tide goes 150 leagues up the river, and a ship (at anchor)
swings round with the rising and the falling tide. When the rains come,
at the end of June, ships oannot stay in the port of the gold trade:
the water rises so high that they are unable to lie there, because their
ropes cannot hold them. Sixty leagues on, at the port of Casan, such
is the force of the flood-water that in August ships no longer turn
with the incoming tide.
13.       'Winter' begins in these parts at the end of April or beginning
of
Mlay. The blacks work in their rice-fields from May on. The rice-fields
remain uiAger water for more than three months, since the rising of the
river floods all the lalas between June and November. From the flooded
laulas the blacks recover their rice-plants, and transplant them into
drier lalas where they soon give their crop.


 


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