7 facts about Nkrumah you probably didn't know about

Kwame Nkrumah is a celebrated figure in Ghanaian history, renowned for his role in leading the country to independence and becoming its first Prime Minister and President.

Dr. Kwame Nkrumah

While many Ghanaians are familiar with his significant contributions to the nation's political landscape, here are some lesser-known facts about Kwame Nkrumah that may surprise you:

Nkrumah studied in the United States for nearly a decade, from 1935 to 1945. He attended Lincoln University in Pennsylvania, where he earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Economics and Sociology.

He also earned a Bachelor of Theology from the same institution. Additionally, he pursued further studies at the University of Pennsylvania, where he obtained a Master of Science in Education and a Master of Arts in Philosophy.


While in the United States, Nkrumah was significantly influenced by the ideas of Marcus Garvey, the Jamaican political leader and staunch proponent of black nationalism.

Garvey's vision of a united Africa and his advocacy for Pan-Africanism profoundly shaped Nkrumah's political ideology and aspirations for African unity.


Before becoming deeply involved in politics, Nkrumah worked as a school teacher in Ghana (then the Gold Coast). He taught at Roman Catholic primary schools in Elmina and Axim.

His early career in education helped him develop a strong connection with ordinary Ghanaians and an understanding of the importance of education in national development.

Nkrumah was a fervent advocate for the political and economic unity of Africa. He played a pivotal role in the formation of the Organization of African Unity (OAU) in 1963, which later evolved into the African Union (AU).

His vision for a united Africa remains a significant part of his legacy and continues to inspire efforts towards continental integration.


Nkrumah was also an accomplished author and philosopher. He wrote several influential books, including "Africa Must Unite," "Neo-Colonialism: The Last Stage of Imperialism," and "Consciencism: Philosophy and Ideology for Decolonization." His writings reflect his deep commitment to African liberation, social justice, and his vision for a socialist Africa.

After being overthrown in a military coup in 1966, Nkrumah lived in exile in Guinea. He was invited by President Ahmed Sékou Touré, who made him an honorary co-president.


Nkrumah continued to work on his writings and Pan-African projects during his years in exile. He passed away in 1972 in Bucharest, Romania, while undergoing medical treatment.

Nkrumah received numerous honorary degrees and international accolades for his contributions to African independence and his efforts in promoting Pan-Africanism.

Some of the institutions that awarded him honorary degrees include Lincoln University, Moscow State University, and Cairo University.


These lesser-known aspects of Kwame Nkrumah's life and career provide a deeper understanding of the man behind Ghana's independence.

His enduring legacy continues to influence not only Ghanaian politics but also the broader African continent's quest for unity and self-determination.


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