Samori Ture (also Samory Touré or Samori ibn Lafiya Ture, c. 1830 - 1900) was the
founder of the Wassoulou Empire, an Islamic state that resisted French rule in West Africa from 1882 to his capture in 1898.
He is the grandfather of Sékou Touré, the first President of Guinea after the French occupation (1959).
Samori Touré was born about 1830 in Sanankaro, a
village southeast of Kankan in present-day Guinea, Samori Ture chose the path of confrontation, using warfare and diplomacy,
to deal with the French colonial incursion into West Africa and established himself as the leading African opponent of European imperialism.
Revolutionary and efficient at that time, Samori's organization of the state was a pyramid structure with him at the apex, which
allowed him to exercise rigid and effective control as never seen before in the Western Sudan. Between 1852 and 1882, Samori
Ture created the Mandinka Empire. In 1881, Samori extended the empire to the east as far as Sikasso (in Mali); to the west,
up to the Futa Djallon Empire (close to the middle of modern Guinea); to the north, from Kankan to Bamako (in Mali); to the south,
up to the borders of present-day Sierra Leone and Liberia. In 1898, Samori, forced to fight a total war against innumerable odds,
was captured and exiled to Gabon, where he died two years later.