They began establishing ports along the Mediterranean in 1200 .They built the cities of Constantine and Annaba in the east of present-day Algeria, but aside from teaching the Berbers how to raise crops, for the most part they kept their distance from them.The Algerian war for independence broke out in 1954, when the National Liberation Army (ALN)—the military arm of the National Liberation Front (FLN)—staged guerrilla attacks on French military and communication posts and called on all Muslims to join their struggle. In 1959 De Gaulle, who was now president of France, issued a promise of independence to the colony, but the next year proceeded to send troops to restore order.Over the next four years the French sent almost half a million troops to Algeria. In 1961 leaders of the FLN met with the French government, and the following year, Algeria finally won its independence. He was head of the government and of the FLN, the country's sole political party.Throughout the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, the French continued to expand their influence and land holdings, and by 1914 they had extended their domain to include large tracts of land that were formerly wilderness or the property of Berber tribes.
The French responded by tightening control and further restricting the rights of the Algerians.
At about the same time, the French began immigrating in large numbers to Algeria, in an attempt by the French government to replace Algerian culture with their own.
By 1881 there were 300,000 Europeans (half of them French) in an area of 2.5 million Arabs.
Four years later they declared Algeria a colony, beginning a 132-year reign.
In 1840 Abd al-Qadir, an Algerian freedom fighter, led the Arabs in an insurgence against their colonizers, which ended in defeat in 1847.