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noticeThe following articles were originally published in the Amathole Museum's newsletter, Imvubu. Strict adherence to copyright refers. Full reference needs to be made to any of the text in these articles.

Wood and Iron Buildings

© Victor, S. 2009. Imvubu 21: 2, 2.

A recent visit to the home of Ms. Maureen Zeelie, of Louisa Street, has alerted me to the few remaining wood and iron structures left in King William's Town. Ms. Zeelie lives in one of two corrugated iron cottages situated on the same plot.

Read more: Wood and Iron Buildings

Breidbach: Entertainment in the 1960's & 70's

 © Brecht, R, 2009. Imvubu, 21: 3, 4-5. 

Breidbach was  originally established in 1857 as a settlement for members of the British German Legion. The article explores the humorous and not so humorous social and sport events that occurred in Breidbach during the decades under discussion.

Read more: Breidbach: Entertainment in the 1960's & 70's

'A Farewell to Arms'*: Unearthing 'Buried Treasure'.

© Victor, S. 2010. Imvubu 22: 4, 2 - 3. A revised and more detailed edition of the article was subsequently published under the same title in SAMAB, 33: 86 - 91.

In November 2009 construction workers stumbled upon a large amount of historic weapons while digging foundation trenches for new classrooms at Lovedale Public F.E.T. College in King William's Town. The College halted construction in accordance with the National Heritage Resources Act (1999). The area was cordoned off and police from the Eastern Cape explosives unit were sent to investigate whether there was any live ammunition present in the cache. The local and national media quickly caught wind of the story and it was widely reported.

Read more: 'A Farewell to Arms'*: Unearthing 'Buried Treasure'.


 © Mpondo, M. 2011. Imvubu 22: 2, 5.

Until about the end of the nineteenth century the impundulu, lightning bird, was associated with lightning. Some Xhosas believed that when lightning struck it was caused by impundulu setting its own fat on fire, others believed it was caused by its discharging a stream of faeces. Others again believed it was caused by its rushing through the air to deposit an egg in the ground. The egg then moved underground until it reached water in a river where it hatched. To prevent this from happening herbalists dug round the place where lightning had struck in order to remove the egg. Informants are agreed that this bird has red shanks. Some say its feathers are black, others say it is a white bird with red wings. When it flaps these wings it causes thunder.

Read more: Impundulu

Soccer at Lovedale

© Victor, S. 2011. Imvubu 22: 2, 3,6.

With soccer fever running high, it is apt to investigate the beautiful game's historic roots in our province. The Amathole Museum was therefore thrilled to find photographs of early 20th century soccer teams, associated with Lovedale Mission Station, in its collection.

Read more: Soccer at Lovedale

Rugby Fever at the Batfair Grounds: Zwelitsha vs Ginsberg

© Mpondo, M. 2011. Imvubu 22: 4, 4-5.

Gone are the days when scores of people flocked to the Batfair Grounds in Zwelitsha to witness some great rugby matches in action. There was fierce rivalry between teams from Ginsberg and Zwelitsha. Players of real class emerged from such fixtures.

Read more: Rugby Fever at the Batfair Grounds: Zwelitsha vs Ginsberg

SEK Mqhayi

© Mpondo, M. 2011. Imvubu 22: 5, 6 - 7.

Samuel Edward Krune Mqhayi was born on 1 December 1875 at Gqumashe village on the banks of the Tyhume river. He was given the biblical name Samuel, as he was seen as a gift from God. His schoolmaster, Rev. Makhiwane was an author and took a personal interest in the young Mqhayi. Tradition has it that Mqhayi was an avid listener to fireside tales told of long ago (amabali). He would even relate such stories to his peers with all the humour in the world. He was gifted. He had a good command of the Xhosa language; his writings filled with humour; his praise-singing littered with emotion, morality and spiritual upliftment. He was a special one. He showed a natural talent for oratory from early on. All his promises proved to be true as he later became one of the household names in the history of the whole continent.

Read more: SEK Mqhayi

Teething beads now new fashion trend

© Victor, S. 2011. Imvubu 22: 4, 2 - 3.

Isn't it interesting how fashion often reinvents itself? During a recent visit to Cape Town I noticed the sudden popularity of necklaces and bracelets made of pendant seeds shaped in the form of a tear-drop. The same grey-white or brown beads have been sold in Eastern Cape trading stores for many years, but are currently all the rage in bead circles and are sold at craft markets, bead shops, boutiques and national clothing stores, albeit often in dyed and dolled-up format.

Read more: Teething beads now new fashion trend

Jock of the Bushveld

© Victor, S. 2011. Imvubu 22: 5, 1,9.

South Africa's first feature-length, 3-D animated movie, 'Jock of the Bushveld', opened at local cinemas on Friday, 29 July. The film is based on its namesake and a South African literary classic, 'Jock of the Bushveld', which was penned by Sir Percy Fitzpatrick, a famous 'son' of King William's Town.

Read more: Jock of the Bushveld