Lat: 6.451502777777800, Long: 3.394805555555600
Historical Background and Urbanism
The influence of colonial residential architecture of Portuguese origin was probably felt at Porto Novo, in Benin, and in Lagos, a coastal city in the neighbouring Nigeria, and in other towns in the vicinity during the 17th and 18th centuries. In the following century, this influence was consolidated by the construction undertakings of the Brazilian community of African roots which settled there in the post-slavery period. This community continued the tradition of construction of residential models of Portuguese origin, modernizing them and endowing them with urban characteristics of the same origin. These styles can be found, for example, on a map of the central area of Lagos of 1887, where we can see the typical centre of a district which, from the layout of its streets, seems to organize the whole surrounding area. This district, of linear shape and consisting essentially of two parallel streets and a square that connects the two (similarly to the small linear cities of Portuguese origin), is the urban sector that the document calls “Portuguese town”, located relatively near the coast. Naming both streets and the mentioned square, Cunha says: “Brazilian architecture quickly conquered Lagos. The Brazilian Quarter, centred around Campos Square, Bamgboshe Street and Tokunboh Street, was completely built in this style. Some rich traders, like João Ângelo Campos and Joaquim Devodê Branco, among others, built beautiful houses. Such was the prestige of this new style that the rich saro trader Josiah Henry Doherty ordered the construction of a magnificent mansion built for himself on the corner of Bamgboshe Street with Campos Square” (Lagos Standard, 31.3.1897).