Introduction to the
Ancestors and Frontiers Galleries
Points of interest
The history of the Northern Cape reaches back to the beginnings of humanity.
The earliest humans, hominins belonging to the genus Homo, arose in Africa about 2.5 million years ago.
The earliest humans are represented by fossils from Africa of the genus Homo, dating from about 2.5 million years ago. They were probably the makers
Genetic evidence shows that Homo sapiens (“wise man”)arose somewhere in the savannas of Africa about 200 thousand years ago.
New tool-making techniques, and other changes, introduced what archaeologists term the ‘Later Stone Age’ in Southern Africa.
Southern Africa has a rich heritage of rock art in the form of engravings and paintings.
The change from hunting and gathering to food-producing was a revolutionary step in human history.
Colonial records show that when Khoikhoi lost their animals they lived by hunting and gathering.
There is evidence of settled farmers along the coast of KwaZulu Nat al from at least AD 250.
San hunter-gatherers responded in various ways to the appearance of herders and agriculturists in southern Africa in the last 2000 years.
The settlement was destined to expand, and it was not long before there was conflict between the Dutch and local Khoikhoi
In the nineteenth century the tradition of slave raiding, to satisfy labour demands, spread with the advancement of the Trekboers.
Freed slaves had limited options. They either remained in the colony as a landless laboring class, or they could leave to settle beyond the colonial
The Khoisan comprised of indigenous San hunter-gatherers (including the tscharm in the Karoo) and Khoikhoi herders.
SeTswana-speaking communities lived in large towns in the north-eastern part of the Northern Cape.
“Bastard Hottentots” was one of the terms applied to people of mixed Khoisan, slave and European descent in the frontier zone.
Trekboers (the name means “moving farmers”) were mainly Dutch colonists who gradually penetrated inland.
Various groups of Xhosa were driven from the Eastern Cape through conflict in the late eighteenth century.
A late-1860s settlement scheme south of modern Kimberley, for British “Albania Settlers”