Lutea Guest House Potgietersrus Mokopane
123 Rabe Street, Potgietersrus Mokopane
Limpopo Province, South Africa
GPS: 24 11' 30.75"S, 29 00' 50.84"E
Cell: 072 071 5499   Fax: 0865058005
Free Wireless ADSL Internet at Lutea Guest House
Activities, Attractions and History of Mokopane Potgietersrus
Stunning bushveld environment and a multi-cultural community and history give Mokopane a unique character. The town and immediate surroundings boast fascinating ancient caves, the Big Five, San rock art, curios. The area is rich in minerals, platinum, diamonds and granite. Mokopane also offers a wonderful selection of outdoor activities ranging from hiking, camping and 4x4 trails, to birding, angling and game viewing.
Potgietersrus Museum
Just two hours from Gauteng, the town acts as the perfect getaway destination and the ideal stopover for travellers en route to Botswana, Zimbabwe and the Kruger National Park. The town is named after the Ndebele chief Mokopane (also known as Makapan) and was previously known as Potgietersrus after the Voortrekker leader Piet Potgieter who was fatally wounded during the campaign against Makapan in 1854. One of the most notable archaeological and historical sites in the country is found at Makapanís Valley, 15 km north of the town. The sediments, fossils, bones and artefacts found in the caves in the valley preserve a unique record of hominid habitation and evolution dating back 3,3 million years. The valley which has stood at the frontier of palaeontological and archaeological research for much of the twentieth century has been declared a National Heritage Site.
Visits to the fascinating Makapans Valley must be arranged in advance by contacting the Mogalakwena Bushveld Community Tourism Association. The Arend Dieperink Museum contains a valuable cultural historical collection of Sotho and Voortrekker artefacts and is housed in a graceful stone building originally built as a school. The museum portrays the history of the town and surroundings from the time of the ape-men at Makapanís Cave, right through to the Anglo Boer War and recent times. Mampoer and fresh bread are available on request. There are various game and nature reserves in the area. The Game Breeding Centre of the National Zoological Gardens of Pretoria features exotic and indigenous animals and offers the perfect family outing. Guided tours and game drives are available in the reserve that hosts black rhinoceros as well as a large variety of other game species.
The Percy Fyfe Nature Reserve situated approximately midway between Polokwane and Mokopane is a breeding station for protected species like roan, tsessebe and Addo buffalo. Camping and hiking is permitted in the reserve. The Doorndraaidam Nature Reserve provides opportunity for angling, water-sports, hiking, camping, bird-watching and off-roading. Hiking, 4x4 trails and camping can also be enjoyed at Thabaphaswa, Ďthe black and white mountainí, where the Mashashane Dancers frequently perform. The Skeurkrans Trails are equally popular.
How the Town got its Name - History of Potgietersrus Mokopane

The two Voortrekker leaders, AH Potgieter and AWJ Pretorius had different political views, and inward struggle occured.

A peace treaty were signed at Rustenburg in 1852. To Commemorate this a new town would be laid out. AH Potgieter asked the House of Assembly to give the new town in Makapanspoort the name of Vredenburg. In 1858 the name was officially changed to Pieter Potgietersrust to comemorate the Voortrekker leader Piet Potgieter who died at the Makapans Cave.

In 1904 the name of the Town was Shortened to Potgietersrust. Mrs Anna Catharina van der Merwe was the first town clerk and the first town council was established in 1904.

In 1 April 1923. The Town became independent from the Waterberg District. Further deveolopment took place and in 1935 it became a fully fledged Town Council. In 1954 the name Potgietersrust changed to Potgietersrus. The town and the council then had the same name.

In 1994 a new government ruled the country. The name of the municipality was changed in 1999 to Mogalakwene Municipality, named after the river that runs through the town. The name of the town was changed in 2002 to Mokopane, named after Chief Mokopane whose group of followers died at the Makapansgat caves.

Piet Potgieter

Piet Potgieter was born on 24 December 1822. His Mother was Elizabeth Helena, and his father Andries Hendrik Potgieter (Voortrekker Leader). He married Elsje Aletta van Heerden in Potchefstroom.

They had 4 daughters and 3 sons. The youngest son, Pieter Johannes, was born on 19 January 1855, after Piet Potgieter died. Piet Potgieter had his farm at Middelfontein 16km from Nylstroom.

During September 1854 the murders took place at Moordrift, A commando went out after Makapan (mokopane) and Piet Potgieter and MW Pretorius were in charge of their own Boer Group.

While the people of Makapan were besieged at the Makapans Caves, on 6 November, Piet Potgieter was shot and fell behind the stone walls. Paul Kruger a close friend, jumped after Piet Potgieter and carried him out while there was still heavy shooting.

Piet Potgieter was buried at his Farm Middelfontein, near Nylstroom.

Piet Potgieter was reburied on 30 May 1964 at Potgietersrus. His grave is situated in Ruiter Road on the Municipal grounds, opposite the Post Office.


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