Come on! We have to supply the community with food!
From Families to Villages
We can help!
Help me build up these sand dunes to control the flooding river!
Villages Grow Into Larger Cities
These new Iron tools make it so much easier to farm. We have so much food!
I don't have to farm anymore!!
The earliest communities in West Africa settled just south of the Sahara to farm. These communities were made of extended families of about 20 family members. Farming was about the only thing to do for work. There was no focus on other crafts and trades.
The Rise of Kingdoms and Empires
It costs 1/3 ounce of gold to pass through here.
Early farming communities joined together into larger villages to get needed help like controlling a flooding river or help mining. They also built walls for needed protection.
Villages developed into towns and cities because of the growth of ironworking and trade. The new iron tools made by the process of smelting made it so much easier to farm. This created a surplus of crops and made it so less people had to focus on farming. More people got to focus on their craft and trade instead of only farming. Cities built on rivers became bustling trade cites.
Rulers of cities became very wealthy by collecting taxes on goods that passed in and out of the area. With their wealth, they could afford to raise large armies that could capture more land. The ruler could then become more wealthy by collecting taxes from the land he captured as well as making the conquered people pay a tribute to say that they accept the king's authority.