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More than 1200 volunteered to settle in the new colony of Freetown, which was established by British abolitionists.In 1800, the British also transported 550 Maroons, militant escaped slaves from Jamaica, to Sierra Leone.By contrast, the Oku are principally of Yoruba descent.They also have more traditional African culture, and widely practise formal polygamy and, to a decreasing but still significant extent, female genital mutilation.The Liberated Africans included people from the Yoruba, Igbo, Efik, Fante, and other ethnicities of West Africa.
From their mix of peoples, the Creoles developed what is now the native Krio language (a mixture of English, indigenous West African languages, and other European languages).The Americo-Liberians and the Creoles are the only recognised ethnic group of African-American, Liberated African, and West Indian descent in West Africa. The only Sierra Leonean ethnic group whose culture is similar (in terms of its integration of Western culture) are the Sherbro, who had developed close connections with Europeans and English traders from the early years of contact.The Creoles as a class developed close relationships with the British colonial power; they became educated in British institutions and advanced to prominent leadership positions in Sierra Leone under British colonialism.Most of the first group died due to disease and warfare with indigenous peoples. In 1792, they were joined by 1200 Black Loyalists from Nova Scotia; these were African Americans and their descendants.Many of the adults had left rebel owners and fought for the British in the Revolutionary War.