A Short History of Kenya
The Republic of Kenya is located on the eastern coast of the African continent (map). It is approximately 225,000 square miles (580,000 square kilometers), with a population of 38 million people (2008). The official languages are English & Swahili, and Nairobi is its capital city. Primary exports include coffee and tea.
The area was inhabited from at least 2000 BCE, with its first residents being tribal groups. Arab traders settled in the coastal areas around the 8th century. They developed trade during this time between the Arab world and India, primarily in ivory and slaves.
The Portuguese were the first Europeans to explore the region, "discovering" it in 1498 while seeking new trade routes. They occupied Mombasa, one of the coastal cities, in 1505. The next 200 years were marked by fighting between the Arabs and Portuguese, with the Arabs eventually prevailing, only to cede control to the militarily superior British in the late...