African Americans in Ghana

African-Americans in Ghana
Total population
1,000 - 3,000
Regions with significant populations
Accra, United States
American English
Related ethnic groups
Americo-Liberian, Sierra Leone Creole, African Americans, Tabom People

The history of African Americans in Ghana goes back to individuals such as American civil rights activist and writer W. E. B. Du Bois, who settled in Ghana in the last years of his life and is buried in the capital Accra. Since then, other African Americans who are descended from slaves imported from areas within the present-day jurisdiction of Ghana and neighboring states have applied for permanent resident status in Ghana. As of 2015, the number of African-American residents has been estimated at around 3,000 people, a large portion of whom live in Accra.


As journalist Lydia Polgreen reported in a New York Times article, the fact that Ghanaian slave exports to the Americas was so important between the 16th and 19th centuries has made Ghana currently try to attract the descendants of enslaved Africans from the Americas to return to settle there and make the country their new home – although not all are of Ghanaian descent. As reported by Valerie Papaya Mann, president of the African American Association of Ghana, thousands of African Americans now live in Ghana for at least part of the year. To encourage migration, or at least visits by African Americans, Ghana decided, in 2005, to offer them a special visa and allow them Ghanaian passports.[1][2][3][4][5][1]


Organizations have been established to support Afro-American residents in Ghana, including the African-American Association of Ghana.


American International School of Accra and Lincoln Community School are in Accra.

Notable people

  • W. E. B. Du Bois, American civil rights activist and co-founder of the NAACP, received Ghanaian citizenship before his death
  • Robert Lee, dentist and activist for historic development of former slave castles
  • Charles Odamtten Easmon, the first Ghanaian to qualify as a surgeon specialist, partially descended from African Americans

See also


  1. 1 2 Polgreen, Lydia (December 27, 2005). "Ghana's Uneasy Embrace of Slavery's Diaspora". The New York Times. Retrieved August 28, 2012.
  2. Essien, Kwame, "The Atlantic Diaspora: African American Communities in Ghana, 1980 to 2005". Paper presented at the annual meeting of the Association for the Study of African American Life and History, Atlanta Hilton, Charlotte, NC, December 15, 2013.
  3. "Marketing Ghana As A Mecca For The African-American Tourist", GhanaWeb, June 10, 2004.
  4. "Ghana and The Right to Abode For African Americans", ChickenBones.
  5. "Ghana's New Money", Time magazine, August 21, 2006
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