Episode 15 – The first Khoe-Dutch war of 1659-60, van Riebeeck lays out a mini-frontier and horses in the Cape.


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By Desmond Latham. Discovered by Player FM and our community — copyright is owned by the publisher, not Player FM, and audio is streamed directly from their servers. Hit the Subscribe button to track updates in Player FM, or paste the feed URL into other podcast apps.
This is episode 15 and we’re looking at the first Khoe-Dutch war of 1659-1660. Up to now the relationship between the Dutch and the various Khoe tribes on the Cape Flats has been rife and filled with chaos. Things as you’ll hear, are not going to improve or settle down. By January 1659, Doman one of the Khoe translators we heard about last week had become disillusioned about Dutch aims in the Cape. He’d seen the VOC in action after a trip to the Far East, to the Dutch capital Batavia and was impressed by their organizational capacity and power. But now, back home, he was aware that the KHoe people were no longer able to fully control their futures. And he was angry with Jan van Riebeeck for taking three Khoe chiefs hostage as the Dutch tried to force the Khoe to bring their escape slaves back. And worse, the Europeans had begun to show signs of settling in for the long haul – after all the first tranche of free burghers had just been given their 28 hectare plots around modern day Rondebosch and between the Liesbeeck and Salt Rivers which was prime Khoe grazing land. Now it was out of bounds to people who had seen generations use the same land. A census in December 1658 had revealed that the company was farming over 300 hectares of Cape Peninsular land. Stock thefts begin to take place in earnest in January 1659 – and the freeburghers were the victims to a large extent. They had started farming as we’ve heard in 1657 and the Khoe focused on their small herds as there was not much that the Dutch could do in their little isolated farms. The Khoekhoe for their part said the land was their mother and the Dutch were raping their land.

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