Harare the "Sunshine City"
Harare is Zimbabwe’s seat of government and its commercial and industrial center. The city of Harare developed from the settlement of Fort Salisbury (later Salisbury) established by the Pioneer Column, a group of mercenaries from the British South Africa Company, and named in honor of the UK Prime Minister Lord Salisbury. In 1897, Britain recognized the fort as a colonial municipality, following significant developments such as the construction of a railway linking it to the port of Beira, Mozambique. After becoming a trading and mining hub, the city also served as the capital of the Rhodesia Colony (which included Northern and Southern Rhodesia), and later on as the capital of Federation of Rhodesia and Nyasaland (which included Zambia, Zimbabwe, and Malawi), Southern Rhodesia, and Central African Federation. During the colonial period, white settlers controlled the city’s economic, social, and political institutions and denied black residents their civil rights; Africans were segregated in downtown areas. The racial inequity triggered strikes and major anti-colonial uprisings, leading to Southern Rhodesia independence as the new Republic of Zimbabwe. On the second anniversary of Zimbabwe’s independence, the government renamed the capital “Harare” in honor of the Shona speaking people who lived in a nearby settlement before British rule and Harare continued to serve as a political, economic, and cultural hub.