Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Moorddrift Monument

Moorddrift Monument
This photograph of the Moorddrift monument was taken on Sunday, 22 July 2012, on my return trip from Alldays. The monument is located beside the N1 national road, 16 km south of the town Potgietersrus (now renamed to Mokopane)
Take note: The brass plaque on the structure has been stolen.. (it wasn't me!)

Moorddrift Monument - Older Photograph
A much earlier photograph of the monument.
Sourced from an online pdf document, which can be downloaded here (567kb).
(The document titled, “Moorddrift and the siege of Makapan’s Cave” contains several other interesting photographs and facts.)

The inscription on the plaque is in Afrikaans (L) and Ndebele (R), the languages of the two respective groups involved in the incident.
Afrikaans Text

Gedurende September 1854 het soldate van die Ndebele-Opperhoof, Makapan,‘n trekgeselskap by ‘n drif deur die Nylrivier alhier uitgewis. Dit was een van drie aanvalle gedurende daardie tydperk waartydens minstens 28 Afrikaner pioniers gedood is. Hierdie sterftes het direk aanleiding gegee tot die Slag van Makapansgat van 25 Oktober tot 21 November 1854. Hier is aanvanklik gedurende 1898, toe die spoorlyn aangelê is,‘n gedenkteken van Owerheidsweë deur die Z.A.R. opgerig. Die Potgietersrust Dingaansfeeskommissie en die Piet Potgieter Voortrekkerkommando het gedurende 1937 die huidige monument, wat deur Gerhard Moerdyk ontwerp is, opgerig. Die bouklip, Vrystaatse sandsteen, is dieselfde as wat vir die spoorbrug oor die Nylrivier hier naby gebruik is en is deur die Spoorweë geskenk. Twee reuse kameeldoringbome langs die monument was die rede dat die Boere nie gedurende die Tweede Vryheidsoorlog die spoorlyn tussen Potgietersrus en Naboomspruit opgeblaas het nie, op voorwaarde dat die Engelse nie die bome uitkap nie. Dit was teen hierdie Kameeldoringbome wat die ses kinders van die trekgeselskap doodgeslaan is en en was dus van groot sentimentele waarde.

English Translation

During September 1854, soldiers of the Ndebele Chief, Makapan, massacred a family of Trekboers here at a drift running through the Nile River (Nylsrivier). It was one of three attacks during that time when at least 28 Afrikaner pioneers were murdered. These murders sparked off the siege of Makapan’s Cave from 25 October to 21 November 1854. A memorial was initially erected here during 1898 by the authorities of the Z.A.R. when the railway line was laid. The Potgietersrus Dingaans festival committee and the Piet Potgieter Voortrekker Commando erected the current monument, which was designed by Gerhard Moerdyk, during 1937. The building stone, Free State sandstone, is the same that was used for the railway bridge crossing the Nile River here nearby. It was donated by the Railways. Two huge Camelthorn trees next to the monument was the reason why the Boers never blew up the railway line between Potgietersrus and Naboomspruit during the Second Anglo-Boer War, on condition that the British not chop out the trees. It was against these Camelthorn trees that the six children of the Trekboer families were beaten to death, and was thus of great sentimental value.

Related Post: The Makapaanspoort Murders


Anonymous said... .....Click here to refresh this blog

I hope you had a nice break away from urban K4's in PTA and JHB. Nothing like the bush, hey. Plaque missing, nothing is sacred. In the meantime while you were away thinking about days long gone by in the quite bush, Rome is still burning back home in PTA and Joey's. Back to reality, we all need a little time out and dream of the good old days, I say. Welcome home.

Now for reality news while you were away.

Aphane Matsatsela said... .....Click here to refresh this blog

Langa, kekana and all chiefs around Mgombane (Mokopane) are the ones who should tell the truth about eDongeni (Makapan's cave)their only fear is Paramount position.

I am their king and they are your kings.


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