Western Cape

[caption id="attachment_16437" align="aligncenter" width="270"] Grave of Daniel Du Plessis[/caption] This album has images of some of the older graves in the Riversdal Cemetery in the Western Cape. Names such as Du Plessis, Smalberger, Siebert, Saayman amongst others may be found.

    [caption id="attachment_16248" align="aligncenter" width="300"] Lord Milner Hotel[/caption] With thanks to the Lord Milner Hotel. Matjiesfontein was founded in 1884 by the Scottish railway man, James Douglas Logan. The village established itself as a fashionable Victorian health spa, and is now well known for its splendid historical buildings...

[caption id="attachment_16126" align="aligncenter" width="413"] Prince Albert - St John's The Baptist , Anglican Church[/caption] Prince Albert, the Karro town at the western side of the Swartberg Mountains, was founded in 1762, on the farm Queekvalleij. Originally named Albertsberg, its name was changed in 1845 to Prince Albert.

Beaufort West in the northern limits of the Western Cape is an interesting town, that still retains some of the old world charm, and lies within sight of the Great Karoo National Park.

  [caption id="attachment_15950" align="aligncenter" width="551"] Swartberg Pass winding down towards Prince Albert[/caption]   North of the Cango valley is the Swartberg Pass. Prior to the building of this pass there were only two unreliable passes through the Swartberg,connecting the Little Karoo and Big Karoo, that were often impassable.

  This lower road through the Swartberg between Prince Albert and Oudsthorn was pioneered by P.J. Meiring who farmed in the pass . The first road was built in 1857 by A.G.De Smit and the 16 km pass opened in 1858. The road crossed the river 21 times which made it impassable during wet conditions. An upgraded tar road with causeways, shortening the road but now with 30 river crossings.

Cecil John Rhodes (1853 - 1902), a controversial individual in South Africa, was born in England, and came out to Natal, before moving up to the newly discovered diamond fields. In his short life he managed to accumulate significant wealth, and enter into politics, becoming the Prime Minister of the Cape Province. He also went on to found Rhodesia (now Zimbabwe).