Niger Event Timeline


First Europeans


Portuguese settlers become the first Europeans to live in Nigeria. Other Europeans follow.

New Ruler

1800 - 1809

The Muslim Fulani empire rules the region.

Gets Controlled, And new system


Britain takes control of Nigeria, creating a system of indirect rule through local kings and chiefs.



Britain unites the northern and southern regions, forming the Colony of Nigeria.

New Books


Nigerian Chinua Achebe's “Things Fall Apart” is published.

Gains Independence


Nigeria gains independence from Britain and joins the United Nations. A new constitution and government are adopted.

Military Takes Control


The military takes control of the government.

Secedes and Proclaims, Leads to civil war

1967 - 1970

The eastern region of Nigeria secedes and proclaims itself the Republic of Biafra. This leads to a civil war that kills about 1 million people.

Oil Price Boost

1970 - 1979

An oil boom occurs. A great surge in world oil prices boosts Nigeria's economy.

Gains Control Back From Military, Then Taken Back Again

1979 - 1983

An oil boom occurs. A great surge in world oil prices boosts Nigeria's economy.

First African Honored with the Noble Prize in literature


Wole Soyinka is the first African to be honored with the Nobel Prize for literature.

Wins Gold Medal In Olympics for Soccer in Atlanta, Georgia


Nigeria wins the gold medal in soccer in the 1996 Olympics in Atlanta, Georgia.

Military Rules end, And now vote for president


Military rule ends. Nigerians vote in free presidential elections.

New President


Olusegun Obasanjo is elected president, marking the first civilian transfer of power in Nigeria's history. Still, election observers express concern over irregularities in voting.

50 Year of independence, also TWO DEADLY car bombing.


Nigeria celebrates 50 years of independence. Two deadly car bombings in Abuja, the capital, disrupt the festivities.

New president causes riots, claiming fraud, but nothing happens


President Goodluck Jonathan wins reelection, capturing 59% of the vote. Some supporters of rival candidates riot, claiming fraud, but the election is largely praised for being free and fair.