Original Research

A historical-archaeological investigation of an Anglo-Boer War British outpost in the Kruger National Park

Anton C. Van Vollenhoven, Anton J. Pelser, Jan W. Van den Bos
Koedoe | Vol 41, No 2 | a256 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/koedoe.v41i2.256 | © 1998 Anton C. Van Vollenhoven, Anton J. Pelser, Jan W. Van den Bos | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 01 August 1998 | Published: 01 August 1998

About the author(s)

Anton C. Van Vollenhoven,, South Africa
Anton J. Pelser,, South Africa
Jan W. Van den Bos,, South Africa

Full Text:



During the Anglo-Boer War (1899-1902) a voluntary British military unit called Steinaecker's Horse, operated in the Lowveld and Swaziland. The commander of the unit, colonel Ludwig von Steinaecker, was an important historical figure in this area. The unit established a number of outposts in an area today known as the Kruger National Park. One of these outposts was archaeologically investigated in order to recover any remains that may be associated with this unit and to form some idea of their lifestyle. Although no historical information on this particular outpost was found, the archaeological excavations revealed some interesting evidence. The disturbance of the site and the number of visible cultural material, indicated that it was used in recent times. The large refuse middens show that a reasonably large number of people occupied the site. Most of the artifacts found can be linked to the diet and articles of everyday use of the inhabitants. The conclusion is that the site was probably occupied by both a garrison of the Steinaecker's Horse military unit and some troops of the Native Police unit. Based on the distribution of different types of artifacts on the site a social differ- entiation between the members of these two units is assumed.


historical archaeology; Anglo-Boer War; Kruger National Park; Steinaecker's Horse; Native Police; social differentiation.


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