Sheikh Zayed bin Khalifa Al Nahyan 1840 to 1909 was the grandfather of Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan, initiator of the United Arab Emirates.
He was born in the UAE of Abu Dhabi, in what was then named Trucial Oman, sometime around 1840. He been much of his early life with the Bedouin of Abu Dhabi.
He was prepared Ruler of Abu Dhabi after the removal of his cousin, Sheikh Said bin Tahnun, in 1855. He governed for 54 years, until his death in 1909.
Early in his directive, Zayed guided Abu Dhabi done a series of battles with the Emirate of Sharjah. In 1868, he killed the Ruler of Sharjah, Sheikh Khalid bin Sultan, in single fight. The killing of Khalid got an end to the fights. The result of these fights left Abu Dhabi the most important Sheikhdom in the Persian Gulf region.
Zayed also led Abu Dhabi in a long war with Qatar in the 1880s that safeguarded the western border of Abu Dhabi. He combined with Omani forces to drive the Saudi force from the Buraimi area in 1870. This left the strongholds defensive the Buraimi Oasis in permanent control of Abu Dhabi and enforced the Saudis to abandon their strategies on Oman. Abu Dhabi’s impact and control over this area gradually grew later.
He was a strong leader and all tribes laterally his Emirates treated him with respect. The borders of the Emirate were stretched three times, to reach near Qatar in the west and to touch the Rub’ Al Khali in the south.
He was also a pearl lunging fleet holder and a mercantile that helped other people around Emirates economically and helped as a wise father.
In 1892, Zayed signed a treaty with the United Kingdom which successfully conceded control of Abu Dhabi’s global commercial dealings to the British.
Throughout tactical marriages he had many sons. The eldest of whom was named Khalifa, and had parental heritage from the Manasir people.
In 1895, Zayed saw in Al Zorah an perfect base for providing Bani Qitab forces loyal to him in battles with the Northern Sheikhs and practical to the British Resident for permission to move materials there by sea. The Resident gave consent but Zayed faced hostility in his plan from other Sheikhs and was powerless to complete the movement.
In 1897, a section of the Sudan people under Sultan bin Nasser Al Suwaidi demanded permission to resolve Al Zorah with the support of Zayed himself a Suwaidi on his mother’s side and married to one of Sultan’s daughters and this was decided by the Resident.
Part of the arrangement, the Ruler of Ajman built a fort at one of the channels linking Al Zorah with the mainland (it was at the time an island) and the Ruler of Sharjah, in 1890, attracted to the Resident to check this establishment of a non-Al Qasimi grip in the middle of his territory.