Personal flag of Nana Olomu

Personal flag of Itsekri chief Nana Olomu (1852-1916). A green wool bunting flag with a linen hoist with a rope attached. The flag is machine sewn with hand-sewn applied lettering — in red wool 'NANNA', below in white cotton 'ALLUMA'S SON'. The seam which runs across the white lettering is also hand-sewn.

It is said to have been acquired during the 1897 Benin expedition by F. W. Kennedy.

The title of 'Governor of Benin River' was given to Nana Olomu by the British in 1884. He exerted immense political power through a network of armed traders in palm oil working along the upper reaches of the river and he built a town in the mangrove swamps defended by flintlock guns and brass cannon. Partly through the machinations of a rival chief - Dogho, relations deteriorated with the acting Consul-General Ralph Moor In 1894. Following an attack on the cutter of HMS 'Alecto', which was inspecting Nana's fortifications, a British naval expedition captured his town of Ebrohimi. He fled to Lagos Colony, but was tried and exiled to the Gold Coast from 1894-1906. After his return to Nigeria he lived at the town of Koko.

Object Details

ID: AAA0455
Collection: Flags
Type: Flag
Display location: Not on display
Creator: Itsekri People
Events: Benin Expedition, 1897
Date made: 1884-1894; 1884-94
People: Olomu, Nana; Kennedy, Francis William
Credit: National Maritime Museum, Greenwich, London
Measurements: Overall: 1950 mm x 4360 mm;Flag: 77 in x 175 in

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