Ghana was Africa's first recorded civilization. The inhabitants of Ghana were primarily traders and farmers. Ghana's capital, Kumbi Saleh, under Muslim influence strengthened Ghana economically, but Ghanas greatest power was reached under the Sisse dynasty. However, the invasion of Muslims, Almoravids, brought the great Ghana Empire down.
Africa's second greatest kingdom was the Mali. The Mali or Melle kingdom rose after the decline of the Ghana kingdom. Mali flourished under the leadership of the great Mansa-Musa, Keita Dynasty. Mansa-Musa's greatest contribution to Mali was the pilgrimmage to Mecca in 1324. The pilgrimage was a time to show off Mali's great wealth. The Songhay later conquered Mali.
Africa's third great kingdom was Songhay. Under the leadership, Aki Mohammed, Songhay reach its greatest power. Aki Mohammed's greatest contribution to Shonghay was education. "At the University of Sankore black and white youths studied in grammar, geography, law, literature, and surgery" Due to internal battles in the Songhay tribe, the Moors and the Spanish conquered and overthrow the Songhay.