The relationship between the Ashanti kingdom and the British at the Gold Coast was fraught, with the Ashanti looking to expand its territory and protect trade connections on the coast, whilst the British looked to gain a significant foothold in the region. British influence at the coast rapidly increased, with local chiefs making treaties and agreeing to British authority. A Treaty with the coastal Fante people (and a few other groups), known as the 1844 Bond, laid the foundations of a protectorate and eventual British colony.
Trade with the coast diminished and the Ashanti, who had lost their relatively peace-loving Asantehene Kwaka Dua I, came under the more bellicose rule of Kofi Karihari. Angered by the loss of slave trade and the sale of Elmina Fort by the Dutch to the British (who refused to pay the annual tribute to the Ashanti that the Dutch had) Kofi Karihari marched his warriors south. The Second Ashanti War (1873-74), however, was a decisive defeat for the Ashanti - the resultant peace treaty required them to renounce any claim they might have to territory in the south and to keep the road to Kumasi, the Ashanti capital, open for trade. The Ashanti confederation declined as subject groups broke away and defected to British protection.
In 1896 the British marched north once again and took Kumasi and forced the Ashanti to accept a protectorate. Following a last rebellion in 1900, the Ashanti queen Yaa Asantewa was captured and sent into exile, and the territory formally annexed into the Gold Coast on 25 September 1901.