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  Board games were very popular with West Africans and one of the most common are the mancala board games.It is known by many names in west Africa such as Warri,Oware, Ichisolo,Gebeta,and Ayo.Here is one of the earliest accounts given by Richard Jobson (fl. 1620–1623)  an English explorer. His noted work is The Golden Trade in which he describes his voyages to Ethiopia and the Gambia River during 1620–1621. It is also the earliest known European work to mention the game of Mancala.



" Their chief pastime is a kind of game, with a piece of wood cut into several great holes, and about thirty pebbles; which, by a peculiar way of counting,pass between two, till one has got them all. At this some are very dextrous; But they neither,fish,fowl,nor hunt, though they have great plenty of all these sorts of game, and the two last at their very doors.




source : A New General Collection of Voyages and Travels, by Thomas Astley, Vol.1,Book 2,Chapter 12,Sect 1, p 265, 1745

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