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Kathleen Sheldon

ruler of the Itsekiri kingdom of Warri in the western Niger delta, an area in the center of trade in slaves, palm oil, rubber, and other items. Also called “Queen Dola,” she was the daughter of King Erejuwa and his wife Emaye. Emaye had two daughters with Erejuwa, Uwala and Idolorusan, who was known as “Iye.” After Erejuwa’s death, Emaye remarried his son (from a prior marriage) and successor, Akengbuwa, and had three more children, including her sons Omateye and Ejo. Omateye was the recognized heir, though he was in a rivalry with an older half-brother, Agbagba. Fearing that her brother might need a refuge, Iye and her sister Uwala founded the town of Batere. Difficulties arose following the death of Akengbuwa in 1848 as it was closely followed by the deaths of Omateye and Ejo in what some considered suspicious circumstances For three years there is no record ...