settlers in Cape Town established control over the southern tip of
South Africa in the 1700s by driving out the Khoikhoi (also known
as Hottentots) and San (Bushmen), two peaceful tribes of lower Africa.
The Dutch settlers continued to enlarge their territory, which led
to clashes with the Xhosa tribe in the late 1700s.
British Empire was given control of the colony in 1809 by way of the
Treaty of Vienna. To escape British control, white Afrikaners (mainly
descendants of the first Dutch settlers) migrated northward in what
is called the Great Trek, coming into contact with the Zulu tribes,
who were coming from the east.
series of wars broke out, ending in the defeat of the Zulus at Blood
River in 1877.
1878, the British also fought the Zulus and defeated them. The British
and the white Afrikaners then fought in the South African War (also
known as the Boer War), which lasted from 1899 until 1902 with the
defeat of the Afrikaners. Eight years later, the British and Boer
lands were united to form the present-day South Africa.
the early 1900s, legislation was passed restricting the rights of
nonwhites. The laws of apartheid - or separation of races - reached
their peak under the Afrikaner National Party, which came to power
responded by forming the Communist-backed African National Congress,
which was dedicated to ending apartheid. Continued violence, diplomatic
isolation and economic boycotts forced the white government to make
some concessions in the 1980s, but the apartheid laws were not scrapped
until 1991, when blacks were allowed to vote in the country's first
Mandela was then elected president on a platform of addressing South
Africa's huge disparity of wealth.
relevance of the Boer War
reason for the short history trip was to bring some points about the
historic and cinematic importance of the Boer War.
Mohandas K. Gandhi (1869-1948) known as Mahatma, serves with the
British medical corps as a stretcher-bearer.
2. Sir Robert Baden-Powell (1857-1941), founder of the Boy Scouts,
serves at the successful defense of Mafeking.
3. Sir Arthur Conan Doyle (1859-1930), British physician, novelist,
and detective-story writer, creator of Sherlock Holmes and Tarzan,
runs a field hospital, and on his return to England writes 'The
Great Boer War' (1900) and 'The War in South Africa: Its Causes
and Conduct' (1902), justifying England's participation. For these
works he is knighted in 1902.
4. A young Winston Churchill (1874-1965) is all over this war. He
is captured, escapes, and makes a triumphal reentry into Natal.
He is present at several major battles, is one of the first to enter
Ladysmith when the seige is lifted, and is also one of the first
to enter the enemy's capitol, Pretoria, at its capture. He writes
two books on the war ('London to Ladysmith: Via Pretoria' and 'Ian
Hamilton's March') and his exploits get him elected to Parliment.
5. Rudyard Kipling (1865-1936), poet and writer, works on an army
6. Mary Kingsley (1862-1900), the African explorer, works in Cape
Town as a nurse caring for Boer prisoners of war. She contracts
typhoid fever and dies at the age of 38.
Some of the very first newreels ever produced were of the Boer War
8 . The earliest film in the Australian film archive is a short
film in 1900 showing Australian troops parading and loading on the
ships to go to the Boer War.