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interior, a boost in the trading activities between the companies and the Africans, and consequently to the opening up of the interior markets, and a gradual economic development of the Cross River Basin and the entrenchment of colonial rule in the area. This paper also views trade as a factor in colonizing the peoples of Africa. In the case of the Cross River Basin, the planting of commercial companies from Calabar on the coast to the interior following the Cross River simply showed the subtle manner in which Europeans acquired lands and territories in the African continent, and how after the pacification, other agencies of colonialism such as the
planting of Christian missions, churches, schools, hospitals, courts of equity and transportation aided colonial rule and the entrenchment of western civilization in the region. The sources and methodology adopted for this paper are based on archival, secondary, and oral sources.