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Arthington Africa Monrovia: The Historical Hub of Liberia History of Arthington, Africa's First Settlement in Liberia Ever wondered what it was like to live in one of the oldest cities in West Africa? Monrovia, the capital city of Liberia, has been around since the early 1800s and was named after US President James Monroe.
With its historical architecture, cultural landmarks, and coastal location, Monrovia serves as the perfect introduction to this region of the continent.
As you stroll down Broad Street, lined with shops, restaurants, and government buildings, you’ll feel transported back in time.
Many of the structures were built in the late 1800s and early 1900s in styles ranging from Neoclassical to Art Deco.
Stop by the Masonic Temple, Liberia’s first Masonic building, or check out the historic Ducor InterContinental Hotel, once a hotspot for celebrities and dignitaries.
Nature lovers will enjoy a visit to the serene Providence Island.
Located just off the coast, it’s home to scenic beaches, hiking trails, and native wildlife.
You may even spot dolphins swimming by! After exploring the city, grab some traditional Liberian fare like fufu, jollof rice, and palm butter soup while listening to highlife music.
With so much history and culture in one city, Monrovia deserves a spot at the top of your bucket list.
This West African gem has stories to share if you’re willing to listen.
Why not book your trip today? Adventure awaits in the heart of Liberia.
Monrovia: How Arthington Gave Birth to Liberia's Capital Arthington: Liberia's First Settlement In 1822, the American Colonization Society established Arthington as the first settlement for freed American slaves in what is now Liberia.
Located on Cape Mesurado, Arthington was meant to be a place where former slaves could live freely.
The early years were difficult, as the settlers faced disease, harsh conditions, and conflict with local tribes.
However, after a few years, the settlement started to thrive.
By the 1830s, Arthington had become a bustling port town and center of trade.
It officially became the capital city of Liberia in 1847 under the name Monrovia, after U.
S.
President James Monroe.
Today, Monrovia is a sprawling city and remains the capital of Liberia.
When visiting, you can still see remnants of the original Arthington settlement, including: - The oldest church, Providence Island Baptist Church, built in 1821.
- The original grave sites and memorials to early settlers.
- Several historic government buildings like the Temple of Justice.
- The old port facilities along the Mesurado River.
Monrovia may be a far cry from the small Arthington settlement, but its history is forever tied to those first freed slaves who made it their home.
Walking the streets, you can feel the resilience and determination that allowed Arthington to become the foundation for Liberia.
That indomitable spirit lives on today in Monrovia, Liberia’s historical hub.
Notable Landmarks in Arthington and Monrovia Monrovia, Liberia’s capital city, was founded in 1822 by the American Colonization Society and named after James Monroe, the fifth president of the United States.
The settlement was established to relocate freed American slaves.
Under the guidance of Dr.
Elijah Johnson, the first group of 86 immigrants arrived in Monrovia in 1822.
They were later joined by other groups, including a group of 30 immigrants from the Caribbean island of Barbados.
These early settlers braved harsh conditions including tropical diseases, food shortages, and conflict with indigenous groups.
The Birth of Liberia’s Capital In 1824, the settlement was named Monrovia after James Monroe, and it became the capital of the colony.
The city started to grow rapidly in the mid-1800s.
By 1867, Monrovia had more than 1,000 citizens, a system of streets, and public buildings.
Today, Monrovia is Liberia’s largest city with close to 1 million residents.
It remains an important center of trade, commerce, and finance in West Africa.
Monrovia also has a rich history and culture, with many preserved 19th-century buildings, museums, markets and places of worship.
Some top attractions are the Liberian National Museum, Monrovia City Hall, and Providence Island.
Monrovia’s eventful history is a reminder of the deep connection between Liberia and the United States.
The city’s name and establishment were part of early efforts to find freedom and opportunity for black Americans in Africa.
Nearly two centuries later, that historical significance still shapes Monrovia’s identity.
Famous Residents Who Called Arthington Home Monrovia, the capital city of Liberia, is home to many notable landmarks that showcase its rich history.
Two of the most well-known are Arthington and the Monrovia City Hall.
Arthington Arthington is a historic mansion in Monrovia that was built in the late 1800s.
It was originally the residence of wealthy merchant Thomas Faulkner, but today serves as the Liberian president's official residence.
The two-story mansion is an excellent example of the architectural style popular during that era, featuring a wrap-around porch, ornate railings and spires.
Monrovia City Hall The Monrovia City Hall is a striking historic building located in downtown Monrovia that now houses government administrative offices.
Constructed in the 1950s, the three-story building has a modernist design with Art Deco elements like geometrical shapes and decorative reliefs.
In front of the building stands a tall flagpole where the Liberian flag is raised and lowered each day.
The City Hall is an iconic symbol of Monrovia and remains an important center of political and civic life.
Other notable landmarks in Monrovia include: - The Capitol Building, where Liberia's legislature meets.
It was built in the 1950s in a neoclassical style with white marble and columns.
- The Masonic Temple, a historic masonic building with an ornate facade.
It now houses shops, restaurants and a hotel.
- The Monrovia Cathedral, where many important religious and state events are held.
The cathedral was constructed in the 1960s in a modernist style with distinct arches and spires.
- The Ducor Hotel, Monrovia's first luxury hotel opened in the 1960s.
Though now abandoned, the hotel remains an iconic landmark with its unique modernist architecture.
Plans are underway to restore and reopen the hotel.
Monrovia’s architectural and cultural landmarks provide a glimpse into the fascinating history of Liberia's capital city.
A stroll through the streets of Monrovia reveals its diverse architectural styles and the many changes the city has undergone over the past centuries.
Visiting Historic Arthington and Monrovia Today Arthington was home to many famous Liberians who played important roles in the country's history.
Edward Wilmot Blyden Edward Wilmot Blyden, born in the Virgin Islands, was an educator, writer, diplomat, and politician in Liberia.
He served as Liberia's Secretary of State and Minister of the Interior in the 1870s and 1880s.
Blyden is regarded as an important figure in the development of Pan-Africanism and his writings influenced leaders like Marcus Garvey.
Bai T.
Moore Bai T.
Moore was a famous Liberian writer and educator.
His historical fiction works focused on traditional Liberian culture and addressed social issues.
Moore co-founded the Bai T.
Moore College of Arts, Sciences and Education.
He received Liberia's highest honor, the Order of the African Redemption, for his contributions to Liberian arts and literature.
E.
Reginald Townsend E.
Reginald Townsend was a prominent Liberian journalist, editor and politician.
He founded and edited several important Liberian newspapers, including the Liberian Star and the Liberian Age.
Townsend also served in the House of Representatives and Senate.
He was an outspoken advocate for free speech and government reform.
Gabriel L.
Dennis Gabriel L.
Dennis was a Liberian poet, educator and diplomat.
He served as Foreign Minister of Liberia in the 1950s.
Dennis wrote Liberia's national anthem, "All Hail, Liberia, Hail!".
He founded the College of West Africa, which later became the University of Liberia.
Dennis received the Order of the African Redemption for his contributions to Liberia.
Arthington was home to visionaries, leaders, and pioneers who shaped Liberia's political, cultural, and intellectual development.
Their impact on Liberia's history lives on today through their enduring contributions and legacies.

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