Himeville Museum, Himeville, Drakensberg, KwaZulu-Natal
The Himeville Museum, in the town of the same name in the Drakensberg region of KwaZulu-Natal, is one of the best rural museums in South Africa. Himeville was established in the 1880s and the museum is housed in a fort that was built in 1896 by the Border Mounted Rifles who were sent to the area after the Le Fleur Rebellion in 1895. After the Anglo-Boer War it was taken over by the Natal Mounted Police and used as a prison until 1972 when it was turned into a museum.
The history of the area goes all the way back to when the San people roamed the area and there are displays of fossils and stone-age artifacts as well as a comprehensive display on the Bushmen, the early settlers as well as African beadwork and crafts. There is also an open-air exhibition of the agricultural history of the town which displays farming implements and old machinery and a blacksmith’s forge.
The themed exhibition rooms cover the Anglo-Boer War and the two world wars and commemorate the life and times of the inhabitants of the Bulwer, Underberg and Himeville communities. There are extensive archives and the curator is very knowledgable.
The museum is definitely worth a visit for those of you who would like to know more about the rich history of the area.
Getting there: Located on the corner of Arbuckle and Clayton streets.
Tel: +27 (0)33 702 1184
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