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The Dutch former Colonies

(Cape colony), (Kaapstad/Capetown) (1652 - 1806) finally British

South Africa

Arrival of the Dutch Painting of an account of the arrival of Jan van Riebeeck, by Charles Bell.

Shortly thereafter, the Dutch East India Company (in the Dutch of the day: Vereenigde Oostindische Compagnie, or VOC) decided to establish a permanent settlement. The VOC, one of the major European trading houses sailing the spice route to the East, had no intention of colonising the area, instead wanting only to establish a secure base camp where passing ships could shelter, and where hungry sailors could stock up on fresh supplies of meat, fruit, and vegetables. To this end, a small VOC expedition under the command of Jan van Riebeeck reached Table Bay on 6 April, 1651.

While the new settlement traded out of necessity with the neighbouring Khoikhoi, it wasn't a friendly relationship, and the company authorities made deliberate attempts to restrict contact. Partly as a consequence, VOC employees found themselves faced with a labour shortage. To remedy this, they released a small number of Dutch from their contracts and permitted them to establish farms, with which they would supply the VOC settlement from their harvests. This arrangement proved highly successful, producing abundant supplies of fruit, vegetables, wheat, and wine; they also later raised livestock. The small initial group of free burghers, as these farmers were known, steadily increased in number and began to expand their farms further north and east into the territory of the Khoikhoi.

The majority of burghers had Dutch ancestry and belonged to the Calvinist Reformed Church of the Netherlands, but there were also numerous Germans as well as some Scandinavians. In 1688 the Dutch and the Germans were joined by French Huguenots, also Calvinists, who were fleeing religious persecution in France under King Louis XIV.

In addition to establishing the free burgher system, van Riebeeck and the VOC also began to import large numbers of slaves, primarily from Madagascar and Indonesia. These slaves often married Dutch settlers, and their descendants became known as the Cape Coloureds and the Cape Malays. A significant number of the offspring from the White and slave unions were absorbed into the local proto-Afrikaans speaking White population. With this additional labour, the areas occupied by the VOC expanded further to the north and east, with inevitable clashes with the Khoikhoi. The newcomers drove the Khoikhoi from their traditional lands, decimated them with introduced diseases, and destroyed them with superior weapons when they fought back, which they did in a number of major wars and with guerilla resistance movements that continued into the 19th century. Most survivors were left with no option but to work for the Europeans in an exploitative arrangement that differed little from slavery.[citation needed] Over time, the Khoisan, their European overseers, and the imported slaves mixed, with the offspring of these unions forming the basis for today's Coloured population.

The best-known Khoikhoi groups included the Griqua, who had originally lived on the western coast between St Helena Bay and the Cederberg Range. In the late 18th century, they managed to acquire guns and horses and began trekking north-east. En route, other groups of Khoisan, Coloureds, and even white adventurers joined them, and they rapidly gained a reputation as a formidable military force. Ultimately, the Griquas reached the Highveld around present-day Kimberley, where they carved out territory that came to be known as Griqualandalina.

 
In March 1647, with the shipwreck of the Dutch ship Nieuwe Haarlem, began the Dutch settlement in the zone, the shipwreck victims, built a small fort named "Sand Fort of the Cape of Good Hope". They stayed for nearly one year at the Cape, finally they were rescued by a fleet of 12 ships under the command of W.G. de Jong, on one of these ships was also Jan van Riebeeck. After their return in Holland a part of the shipwrecked tryed to persuade the Dutch East India Company to open a trading center at the Cape. In 1652, a Dutch expedition of 90 Calvinist settlers, under the command of Jan Van Riebeeck, founded the first permanent settlement near the Cape of Good Hope. They arrived, on 6 April 1652, on board of five ships, the Reijer, the Oliphant, the Goede Hoop, the Walvisch end the Dromedaris in the bay of today's Cape Town. A square wooden fort with four bastions was quickly built, on the left bank of the Salt River where is now the Central Post Office, and later were built also two redoubts near the shore, they were named Kyckuit and Duinhoop. In 1666 (the first stone was laid on 2 Janaury 1666), the fort was replaced by a new stone fort named castle of "Goede Hoop" a massive pentagonal fortress with a moat and bastions at each corner, the bastions were named: Nassau, Leerdam, Oranje, Katzenellenbogen and Buren. Like Prof. Ch. R. Boxer wrote in his book "The Dutch seaborne Empire": "the Cape developed into a colony which was something unique, save for the short-lived New Netherland, in the possesion of the Dutch East and West India Companies. It had a healthy, subtropical and partly fertile interland, which was virtually unoccupied.....White colonisation was as feasible here as it had been in New Netherland, with the additional advantage that there was no rival European nation close at hand." On 3 June 1652, the first child was born. The developement of a community of free burghers was the main secret of the success of the settlement. From the beginning were also started the first trades with the Hottentots that resided in the zone, but the relationships with these tribes were often problematic. In 1655, was launched the first coast vessel made of Cape timber. In 1657, two groups of farmers settled about three miles from the castle, at Groenevelt (or Dutch Garden) and Rodenbosch. In 1658, the population of the whole Cape Colony consisted of 162 persons slaves included. In 1659, wine was pressed for the first time from Cape grapes. During the first years the natives were the most persistent problem of the colony, they frequently stole the cattle, and to solve the problem was decided to built a strong fence around the farms to protect the cattle, these defences were extended from Blauwberg across the bay to Salt River, and then through Groote Schuur to the hill of Wynberg, three watch-houses were also built; the whole settlement, in this way, was protected from Hottentot incursion. Saldanha Bay, Dassen Island and Robben Island were developed as outpost of trade and stock raising. In 1660, a Dutch ship with 150 Slaves from Angola arrived at the Cape, later in the same year another ship arrived with more slaves, the number of slaves in the settlement rose to 187. A school was opened to teach Dutch and religion to the children of the White settlers, Mulattos and Hottentots also.

When Jan Van Riebeeck laid down his office in May 1662, there were 39 free farmers, of whom 15 were married. Free labourers employed on the farms amounted to 54. The whole farming community was of some 130 persons, besides the servants and the official of the VOC. After the departure of Jan van Riebeeck, began, in the colony, a period of confusion: during the first ten years 4 governors were appointed and after this brusted the war with France. During the government of Wagenaer, on 2 Janaury 1666 was laid the foundation stones of the Castle of Goode Hoop, which was completed in 1674 during the government of Isbrand Goske. In 1672, the white population was less than 600 souls, of whom only 64 were male free-burghers. On 9 April 1678 was laid the first stone of the Dutch Reformed church of Cape Town, this building was completed 25 years later. In 1679, the colony had 289 Europeans of whom 142 were free-burghers and 191 slaves, as in Ceylon, the free-burghers in Kaapstad (Cape Town) were in most cases tavern-keeping or to a lesser extent craftsmen and shopkeeper. In this year a new governor was appointed, he was the Mauritius born Simon van der Stel, he in the first year of his government, founded Stellenbosch, the second oldest town in South Africa, and during the twenty years of his government, promoted the immigration of new families from The Netherlands, built a new hospital and highly developed the colony. In 1688 a group of about 200 French Huguenots arrived, they settled in Stellenbosch, Drakenstein, Paarl and Franshhoek; developing farming and in particular vineyards. In 1691, the population of Kaapstad or "De Kaap" consisted of 1000 Europeans and 400 Slaves. In 1695, there were, in the colony, still only 340 free-burghers. In February 1699, Simon van der Stel handed over the government to his son William Adrian, during his administration he had several problems with the French Huguenot settlers. During the administration of Maurice de Chavonnes (1714-1724), to prevent Hottentots raid, a series of small outposts were built at strategic points in Tulbagh, Klapmuts, Groenekloof and Saldanha Baai.

In 1717, there were, in the colony, more than 5.000 souls, of whom 2.500 were Europeans (in most cases farmers and breeders) and 2.500 were slaves.

In 1720, were settled the Breede and Oliphant's valleys. Jan de la Fontaine, became governor in 1724 and he was in control of the Cape Colony until 1739, except for an interval of three years, when was governor Gysbert Noodt. La Fontaine, was a quietly efficient governor, in 1730, the Little Karoo valley was reached; in 1734, he started to colonize Mossel Baai area. The first governor born in the Cape was appointed in 1739, he was Henry Swellengrebel, his name has been preserved in the town of Swellendam, which was founded during his government. During the government of Ryk Tulbagh (1751-1771), was reached the Orange River. In these years, the French astronomer Abbé de la Caille made, at Kaapstad, a chart and a catalogue of the sky of the Southern hemisfere. During the Tulbagh successor, Joachim van Plettemberg (1771-1785), the exploration of the Orange River valley was completed. Van Plettemberg was a capable and energetic governor. In 1780, there were 11.000-12.000 free-burghers whose at least 3.000 lived in Kaapstad. The Boers in the late 18th century regarded South Africa as their fatherland. In 1785, a new governor was appointed, he was van de Graaff, during his administration was founded the town of Graaff-Reinet. Kaapstad was now a town of 4.300 settlers without counting blacks and sailors. Stellenbosch was the foremost of the farming settlements In 1794, the Dutch East India Company went bankrupt and in 1795 the English seized the colony, the Dutch surrender in 1795 is knew as capitulation of Rustemburg. In 1795, the town of Kaapstad had 14.021 inhabitants, 4.357 were Europeans. In 1795, the Slaves in the whole colony were 16.839, the White were nearly 16.000. In 1802, at the Amiens's treaty, the Netherlands (now Batava Republic) recover the colony. Jacob de Mist was appointed as new Dutch governor, he after three years of government, gave up the command to John Willians Janssens, he on 18 Janaury 1806, at Blauwberg, surrendered the colony to the British.

 

 

Cabo-de-Bona-Esperanca-1682

Kaapstad Tafelbaai Baai Fals 1724

Kaapstad Tafelbaai Baai Fals 1724

Mosselbaai

Mosselbaai-1753

oostkust-van-Afrika-1753

Robben  eiland, island

Robben-eiland-in-de-Tafelbaai-1753

Tafelberg

Tafelberg-1724

kaapstad fort

kaapstad fort

kaapstad fort

kaapstad fort

kaapstad fort

kaapstad fort

Riebeek

Riebeek

Riebeek

Riebeek

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