In 1881 the railway line from Port Elizabeth ended on the farm Carlton. With the diversion of the railway line to Colesberg in 1883/4 a station was built on part of the farm Hartebeeshoek of Mr Barend Kruger. The station was named Naauwpoort after the adjacent farm. In 1963 the name was changed to Noupoort.
Cities and towns
Derived from the Nama word ‘U-gieb’, meaning ‘the great, brackish spring’, Okiep was, until production ceased in 1918, the world’s richest copper mine. Okiep is the oldest mining town in South Africa where copper was first discovered and mined in 1855.
Eight kilometres north of Springbok, it echoes copper’s boom years. Nine-hundred defenders, mostly Cape Copper Company employees, built nine blockhouses and repulsed General Jan Smuts’s forces’ concerted efforts to take the town. Today, on a hillock, only the remnants of stone walls remain.
Farmers, realising the value of irrigating the area, bought 12 000ha of land from Edwells in 1916. In the same year, 63 plots were surveyed and taken up. A 10km canal serving 70 families was built by Japie Lutz and, today, citrus, lucerne, beans and other crops are grown at Onseepkans. The village itself is a mission station run by the Roman Catholic Father of Pofadder.
Orania offers an example of the ‘traditional’ Afrikaner way of life and also demonstrates the ingenuity of a marginalized community with advanced irrigation techniques, implemented in close cooperation with pioneers in Israel, the only fully organic vineyards in Southern Africa and a sophisticated dairy farm and the cultivation and export of Pecan nuts.
Founded by the London Missionary Society in 1814. A sanctuary for Khoisan driven out of Namibia, the village was named after the one that gave refuge to Christians in Macedonia in biblical times. Abandoned in 1872 because of drought, the Roman Catholic Church reopened the mission in 1878.
The first plots surveyed were sold in 1917. Pofadder has several old buildings, one being the Roman Catholic Church. Built by the mission, it runs a blockmaking enterprise, a chicken farm and a dairy, giving employment to the poor. There are many day walks and, in spring, a wonderworld of plants carpets the veld.
Established as a small-vessel harbour and railway junction in 1854 for the copper-mining industry, Port Nolloth’s narrow, shallow entrance makes it unsuitable for ore carriers. It is, instead, a centre for the small-scale diamond recovery and crayfishing industries, and the only resort on the Diamond Coast.
Established in 1843 when the presbytery of Graaff-Reinet formed a new congregation for that area. A portion of the farm Driefontein was bought and erven were sold on 19 April 1845 during a communion gathering. The town was named after the Duke of Richmond from Kent, father-in-law of the Governor of the Cape at that time, Sir Peregrine Maitland.
Eksteenfontein, the settlement in the Richtersveld was named after Ds Peter Eksteen who served the first church congregation in 1945. The town is mostly populated by a group of people originally known as ‘Bo-Sluis Basters’ who settled there in the 1940’s as a result of the apartheid’s separatism policies of the day.
Set in a narrow valley bisecting the granite domes of the Klein Koperberge (small copper mountains), is the principal town of Namakwa, Springbok. Shortened from Springbokfontein in 1911, it owes its existence to copper-mining undertaken after 1850 and a ready supply of water.
In the late 1870s, rich copper deposits at Okiep saw most Springbok residents following their dreams to drought-stricken claims. Many returned.
The British fort built on the hillock in the centre of town during the Anglo-Boer War was destroyed by dynamite planted by a commando led by General Jan Smuts.
On the verge of a large pan filled with salty water during the rainy years, Strydenburg (the town of strife) received its doleful name after incessant squabbling over - of all things - the town’s name! Strydenburg was laid out by the Dutch Reformed Church on the farm Roodepan in 1892.
This pricipal Town of the Green Kalahari is 820km north of Cape Town and 875km west of Johannesburg.
By uniting Christian Schröder’s 1871 mission station, Olyfenhoutsdrift and the Upington police station, the town of Upington, named after the first Attorney General of the Cape, Sir Thomas Upington, was formed.