Boer War Forts
About Boer War Forts
During the Anglo Boer War (1899-1902) Uniondale was protected five British forts, of which four are still visible today.
The first Boer invasion into Uniondale was led by 21 year old Commandant Gideon Scheepers on 21st January 1901, while the 10th Hussars were out on patrol some 40km’s away.
The Boers took over without any resistance. They freed all white prisoners and jailed the magistrate and jailer, together with an English church minister, who was to be executed because he would neither swear allegiance to the Boers, nor declare his neutrality. Fortunately for him it was a Sunday and Boers avoided bloodshed on the Sabbath. The following morning, the British troops returned and the Boers left.
The second Boer invasion a few months later in August 1901 was far more intense and resulted in a number of deaths on both sides. Thereafter a number of serious skirmishes took place around the district involving as many as 400 Boers and 350 British.
The best known fort is the one directly above the town which was restored by the author Daleen Mathee during her 7 year stay in Uniondale.
See very interesting report by Boer War enthusiast Richard Tomlinson after his visit to Uniondale in September 2013, which describes the forts and gives GPS co-ordinates of their locations.