Polokwane (Pietersburg)

Established on the farm Sterkloop (‘strong creek? in 1884, it was named after Commandant• General Piet Joubert, Acting State President of the ZAR. The current name Polokwane means the place of peace.

The capital of the Limpopo Province, it also serves as the commercial and administrative center for some of the finest cattle ranches in South Africa. Despite the town’s location on the Tropic of Capricorn, the climate is invigorating because it stands on a plateau 1 280m above sea level.

On 31 July 1886 landrost Dietlof Mare wrote his first official letter from the magistrate’s office in Polokwane (Pietersburg). Today this date is celebrated as the founding date of Polokwane (Pietersburg). On 23 April 1992 Polokwane (Pietersburg) received city status.

The Polokwane (Pietersburg) district has one of the greatest varieties of minerals in the country; platinum; diamonds; chrome; asbestos; mica; gold; copper and silica. The silicon smelters in Polokwane (Pietersburg) are the largest of its kind in the world. There are many industries but one of the largest is SA Breweries who have erected a brewery, which is one of the largest, and most modern in the country.

Towards the end of the Anglo-Boer War Polokwane (Pietersburg) was the seat of the Transvaal Government for a while. Paper money and stamps were printed here during this period. The town has two museums. The first houses the work of pioneer photographer Hugh Exton, including 22 000 glass negatives and many pictures of great historical interest. The second museum is Irish House, a magnificent example of Victorian style architecture, where the exhibits cover the cultural history of the town and neighborhood.

One street is named Compensation: residential stands were allocated here to people who had lost everything when the Bavenda put Schoemansdal in the Soutpansberg to the torch in 1867.

Municipal Area: 190km2

Location: 275km from Pretoria, 50km from Mokopane (Potgietersrus)

Educational Facilities: 68 pre-primary schools; 29 primary schools; 15 high schools; 3

Technical Colleges, 1 Technikon, 1 University

Main Places of Interest: Game Reserve, Bird Park, Irish House Museum, Bakone Malapa open-air museum, and art museum

Joint Administration: Seshego

Temp: 20° c – 27° C: Altitude: 1312m: Rainfall: 400- 600mm! annum

Agricultural     Activities: Grain, Potatoes, meat, game, roses, grapes, deciduous fruit, vegetables, cassava.

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