The organised expansion and permanent settlement of people in Boesmanland in correlation with accessible water sources : 1760–C.1960

Klopper, Helene F. (2020-03)

Thesis (MA)--Stellenbosch University, 2020.

Thesis

ENGLISH ABSTRACT: The purpose of this study was to examine the permanent expansion and settlement of humans in Boesmanland through research of available literature and archival sources on water. Despite nutrient rich vegetation for the rearing of small livestock, a lack of surface water made the permanent utilisation of the area for agricultural purposes impossible. With the relatively low annual rainfall, perennial subsistence was not possible until the invention and acquisition of the technology to tap into the underground aquifers arrived in the mid-nineteenth century. However, this did not prevent humans from moving through the area. Transhumant pastoralist groups such as the Khoikhoi lived in the area for thousands of years. The Khoikhoi thus moved through Boesmanland for thousands of years in small groups but could not permanently settle in fixed locations for long periods of time due to a need to find water and food sources elsewhere. It was only when the colonial authorities began selling of Crown land and serious prospecting for water took place that private ownership of farms started in c.1760. In 1760 the first farms in Boesmanland were allocated near the Kammies Mountains. This marks the beginning of permanent human settlement in Boesmanland. After this date, wells were dug and later boreholes drilled to develop farms. Farmers spent a huge amount of time, labour and money on digging wells and later drilling boreholes on their farms. The amount of money spent on water prospecting often exceeding the original purchase price of the farm because without reliable, permanent water sources, the farm was useless for stock farming. By 1960 the technology to drill boreholes was available to farmers of the area, making continuous settling in fixed geographic areas the norm. The low-technology windmill accompanied the high-technology drill machine and borehole. Oral interviews offer insight into boormanne and windpump technicians. The town of Springbok provided an example how small infrastructure like water tanks and pumps were installed at the start of the twentieth century. The case study of Carnarvon, in turn, showed the development of a typical Boesmanland town.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: Die doel van hierdie studie was om die uitbreiding en vestiging van mense in Boesmanland volgens beskikbare waterbronne te ondersoek. Ten spyte van hoë kwaliteit weiding vir die doel van kleinvee boerdery, het 'n gebrek aan oppervlakwater die permanente benutting van die gebied vir landbou doeleindes onmoontlik gemaak. Met die relatief lae jaarlikse reënval was permanente boerdery nie moontlik, totdat die tegnologie om ondergrondse waterbronne te benut beskikbaar geword het nie. Dit het nie verhoed dat mense vroeër deur die gebied beweeg nie. Jagter-versamelaarsgroepe het duisende jare lank in die omgewing gewoon. Die Khoikhoi het dus vir duisende jare deur Boesmanland beweeg in klein groepies, maar kon nie permanent in vaste plekke vestig vir lang tye as gevolg van die behoefte om water en voedselbronne elders te vind nie. Dit was eers toe die koloniale owerhede begin om Kroongrond te verkoop en daar ernstig geprospekteer word vir water wat permanente vestiging plaasgevind het. In 1760 is die eerste plase in Boesmanland naby die Kammiesberge toegeken. Dit is die begin van uitbreiding en permanente menslike vestiging in Boesmanland. Na hierdie datum is putte gegrawe en later boorgate geboor om plase te ontwikkel. Boere het 'n groot hoeveelheid tyd, arbeid en geld spandeer aan die grawe van putte en later boorgate op hul plase. Die hoeveelheid geld wat aan waterprospektering bestee was, het dikwels die oorspronklike koopprys van die plaas oorskry. Die rede hiervoor was, sonder betroubare, permanente waterbronne, was die plase nutteloos. Teen 1960 was die tegnologie om boorgate te boor beskikbaar vir boere van die gebied, wat dit die norm gemaak het om voortdurend te vestig in vaste geografiese gebiede. Met die bekendstelling van boormasjiene en boorgate het die nederige, maar noemenswaardige windpomp gekom. ‘n Onderhoud met Leon Swanepoel het insig gegee aan boormanne en windpomptegnici. Die dorp Springbok het 'n voorbeeld gegee van die proses om klein infrastruktuur soos watertenks en pompe aan die begin van die twintigste eeu te installeer. Die gevallestudie van Carnarvon het op sy beurt die ontwikkeling van 'n tipiese Boesmanlandse dorp gewys.

Please refer to this item in SUNScholar by using the following persistent URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10019.1/108154
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