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TODAY IN KIMBERLEY’S HISTORY 1 JANUARY

1 January 1877, An African, Seebok, killed by Adonis Springbok, over a dog purchase. 
1 January 1879, Charles Warren’s military force returns to Kimberley having quelled the popular uprising.
1 January  1895, Cecil Rhodes proclaimed a privy councilor to Queen Victoria.
1 January  1913, The Cape Police II become part of the new South African Police.
1 January  1937, Saturday Evening News launched.
1 January  1942, L/Cpl Harry Austin Proctor wins the Military Medal at Bardia.
1 January  1946, Accident on the Sydney-on-Vaal pont kills two, Dr Jacob Bayer and seven-year-old Waldo Snyman.
1 January  1956, EE Bebington appointed Town Clerk.

Pictured are a pont crossing the Vaal River, the one with a tree in the foreground in 1885, and the other with a house on the far bank, in 1899.

DID YOU KNOW

When the sun rose on New Year’s Day 1877, little did one Seebok know that it would be his last on this earth. The ill-fated Seebok, an African, walked down to the slaughter poles belonging to the butcher named Anderson, to buy a dog from Adonis Springbok, an employee of the butcher.

The discussion of the terms of sale became rather heated with Seebok disagreeing quite vehemently with Springbok. “High words ensued”, and Springbok rushed the unfortunate Seebok, hitting him with an iron pole on his neck and head. Seebok fell to the ground unconscious and was again struck on the head with the iron pole. Another of Anderson’s employees, Hans March, joined in the attack and “administered severe blows” upon the body of Seebok using a large stone.

Privates Shaw and Baker of the Kimberley police arrested Adonis Springbok and he was remanded until 4 January when he appeared before a judge and jury on a charge of murder. The case was again remanded until 8 February when Springbok was charged with wilful murder.

Adonis Springbok was found not guilty of murder, but guilty of culpable homicide and sentenced to ten years imprisonment with hard labour. There is no mention of Hans March receiving any punishment for his part in the Seebok’s death. Justice certainly moved rapidly in the Kimberley of old.

Note: Abbatoirs were unknown at the time, and there were many such “slaughter poles” where domesticated animals were killed, and then hung. These establishments were normally quite a distance from residential areas.

Today in Kimberley's HIstory 01 January - Pond Over Vaal River - 1885Today in Kimberley's HIstory 01 January - Pond Over Vaal River-1899

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