Vereeniging
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Vereeniging () is a city located in the south of
Gauteng province Gauteng ( ; tn, Gauteng; Northern and Southern Sotho: ''Gauteng''; zu, eGoli; Tsonga: ''Gauteng/eXilungwini;'' Ndebele, xh, iRhawuti; nr, I-Gauteng; ve, Gauteng) is one of the nine provinces of South Africa South Africa is divided into ...
,
South Africa South Africa, officially the Republic of South Africa (RSA), is the southernmost country in Africa. With over 60 million people, it is the world's 23rd-most populous nation and covers an area of . South Africa has three capital cities ...

South Africa
, situated where the
Klip River The Klip River is the main river draining the portion of Johannesburg Johannesburg (, also ; ; and xh, eGoli ), informally known as Jozi, Joburg, or "The City of Gold", is the largest city in , classified as a , and is . According to , t ...
empties into the northern loop of the
Vaal River The Vaal River ( ; Khoemana ǃOrakobab or ''Khoemana'', also known as Korana, ǃOra, or Griqua, is a Moribund language, moribund Khoe languages, Khoe language of South Africa. Names "Khoemana" (from ''khoe'' 'person' + ''mana'' 'language') i ...

Vaal River
. It is also one of the constituent parts of the
Vaal Triangle The Vaal Triangle is a triangular area formed by Vereeniging, Vanderbijlpark and Sasolburg about 60km south of Johannesburg Johannesburg ( , also ; ; Zulu language, Zulu and xh, eGoli), informally known as Jozi, Joburg, or "The City ...

Vaal Triangle
region and was formerly situated in the
Transvaal province The Province of the Transvaal ( af, Provinsie Transvaal), commonly referred to as the Transvaal (; ), was a province of South Africa South Africa, officially the Republic of South Africa (RSA), is the southernmost country in Africa. With ...
. The name ''Vereeniging'' is derived from the
Dutch Dutch commonly refers to: * Something of, from, or related to the Netherlands * Dutch people () * Dutch language () *Dutch language , spoken in Belgium (also referred as ''flemish'') Dutch may also refer to:" Castle * Dutch Castle Places * ...
word meaning "union".


Geographical information

Vereeniging is situated in the southern part of Gauteng Province, and forms the southern portion of the Pretoria-Witwatersrand-Vereeninging (PWV) conurbation, and its neighbors are
Vanderbijlpark Vanderbijlpark is an industrial city with approximately 75 000 inhabitants, and 95 000 inhabitants in the metropole, situated on the Vaal River in the south of Gauteng province, South Africa. The city is named after Hendrik van der Bijl, an elec ...
(to the west), Three Rivers (east), Meyerton (north) and
Sasolburg Sasolburg is a large industrial city within the Metsimaholo Local Municipality Metsimaholo Local Municipality is an administrative area in the Fezile Dabi District of the Free State in South Africa South Africa, officially the Republic ...
(south). The city is currently one of the most important industrial manufacturing centres in South Africa, with its chief products being iron, steel, pipes, bricks, tiles and processed lime. The predominant language in Vereeniging is
Afrikaans Alaric speaking Afrikaans. Afrikaans (, ) is a West Germanic language spoken in South Africa South Africa, officially the Republic of South Africa (RSA), is the southernmost country in Africa. With over Demographics of South Africa, 5 ...
, followed closely by
English English usually refers to: * English language English is a West Germanic languages, West Germanic language first spoken in History of Anglo-Saxon England, early medieval England, which has eventually become the World language, leading lan ...

English
and
Sesotho Sotho () or Sesotho () is a Southern Bantu languages, Southern Bantu language of the Sotho-Tswana languages, Sotho-Tswana (S.30) group, spoken primarily by the Basotho people, Basotho in Lesotho, where it is the national language, national an ...
.


History

In 1879, George William Stow was commissioned by the
Orange Free State The Orange Free State ( nl, Oranje Vrijstaat, af, Oranje-Vrystaat, abbreviated as OVS) was an independent Boer Boers () ( af , Boere) refers to the descendants of the proto-Afrikaans-speaking colonists of the eastern Cape frontier in ...
government to look for coal deposits in the Bethlehem district With no deposits found he moved northwards to ''Maccauvlei'' on the Vaal River and then crossed the river to the
TransvaalTransvaal is a historical geographic term associated with land north of (''i.e.'', beyond) the Vaal River in South Africa. A number of states and administrative divisions have carried the name Transvaal. * South African Republic (1856–1902; af, Z ...
side. On the farm ''Leeuwkuil'', he found a
coal Coal is a black or brownish-black , formed as called . Coal is mostly with variable amounts of other , chiefly , , , and . Coal is formed when dead decays into and is converted into coal by the heat and pressure of deep burial over mill ...

coal
deposits twelve feet thick. But the Orange Free State government believed that it was too far away and there was a lack of transport so turned down the idea of mining. Stow settled in
Kimberley Kimberly or Kimberley may refer to: Places and historical events Australia * Kimberley (Western Australia) ** Roman Catholic Diocese of Kimberley * Kimberley Warm Springs, Tasmania * Kimberley, Tasmania a small town * County of Kimberley, a ca ...
in order to find a job where he met Samuel Marks who realized after hearing the formers story, the opportunity for coal at the Kimberley diamond fields for energy generation. Marks formed the ''De Zuid Afrikaanshe en Oranje Vrystaatsche Kolen and Mineralen Vereeniging'' (South African and Orange Free State Coal and Mineral Association) and sent Stow to purchase the farms where the coal was found. On the 25 November 1880 he purchased the farm ''Leeuwkuil'' for £5,000 and 12,000 acres. Marks' agent J.G. Fraser would purchase the farm ''Klipplaatdrift'' of 6,000 acres from Karl August Pistorius in October 1881 for £15,500. This was opposite the farm ''Maccauvlei''. From 1881, coal was taken by ox-wagon to Kimberley and by 1882 there was so much development that there was a need to survey a village on the two farms and the ''
Volksraad The ''Volksraad'' (English: "People's Council") was the parliament of the former South African Republic (ZAR), it existed from 1840 to 1877, and from 1881 to 1902 in part of what is now South Africa. The body ceased to exist after the British Empir ...

Volksraad
'' agreed naming it after the company's shortened name Vereeniging.


Second Boer War

The city is the location where the
Treaty of Vereeniging The Treaty of Vereeniging was a peace treaty, signed on 31 May 1902, that ended the Second Boer War between the South African Republic and the Orange Free State, on the one side, and the United Kingdom on the other. This settlement provided for ...
ending the
Second Boer War The Second Boer War ( af, Tweede Vryheidsoorlog, lit. "Second Freedom War", 11 October 189931 May 1902), also known as the Boer War, the Anglo–Boer War, or the South African War, was a conflict fought between the British Empire The Br ...
(1899–1902) was negotiated by the delegates of the
South African Republic The South African Republic ( nl, Zuid-Afrikaansche Republiek; the ZAR; also known as the Transvaal Republic, af, Suid-Afrikaanse Republiek) was an independent republic A republic () is a form of government A government is the ...
,
Orange Free State The Orange Free State ( nl, Oranje Vrijstaat, af, Oranje-Vrystaat, abbreviated as OVS) was an independent Boer Boers () ( af , Boere) refers to the descendants of the proto-Afrikaans-speaking colonists of the eastern Cape frontier in ...
and the
British Empire The British Empire was composed of the dominions, Crown colony, colonies, protectorates, League of Nations mandate, mandates, and other Dependent territory, territories ruled or administered by the United Kingdom and its predecessor states. ...

British Empire
. During this conflict, a
concentration camp Internment is the imprisonment of people, commonly in large groups, without charges or intent to file charges. The term is especially used for the confinement "of enemy citizens in wartime or of terrorism Terrorism is, in the broadest ...
was set up by the British military in the area. The concentration camp at Vereeniging was set up in September 1900, and by October 1901 housed 185 men, 330 women, and 452 children. Conditions at the camp were very poor: drinking water was brought by cart from a fountain (there was no direct water supply although it was situated next to the Vaal River) and there were only 24 latrines. Most inmates lived in bell-tents but there was a dispensary and a school. The Concentration camp was situated where the Mittal Steel plant (Vaal Works) is situated. Today, the Maccauvlei Golf Course is on the opposite side of the Vaal River to where the concentration camp was and a Garden of Remembrance is situated at Maccauvlei. All the British Soldiers killed in and around Vereeniging during the war were re-buried on this site.


Apartheid

Vereeniging was one of the first municipalities in South Africa to provide better housing for Africans. Near Vereeniging is the predominantly black community of Sharpeville, Gauteng, the site of the Sharpeville massacre in 1960.


Trade and industry

The city's motto is ''Per Pacem ad Industriam'' (Through peace to industry). It is currently one of the most important industrial manufacturing centres in South Africa, with its chief products being iron, steel, pipes, bricks, tiles and processed Lime (mineral), lime. Several
coal Coal is a black or brownish-black , formed as called . Coal is mostly with variable amounts of other , chiefly , , , and . Coal is formed when dead decays into and is converted into coal by the heat and pressure of deep burial over mill ...

coal
mines are also still situated in the area, with reserves being estimated at four billion tons. Other mines nearby extract fire-clay, silica and building stone. Vereeniging also has several Eskom thermal power plants that supply electricity to the nearby goldmines. Vereeniging has been mentioned jokingly as the city in South Africa which has the most vehicle dealerships per square metre.


Suburbs and municipality

In the census of 2001 the population of Vereeniging was recorded as 73,283. Vereeniging consists of 29 suburbs, of which 7 forms part of Three Rivers: * Arcon Park & -Proper * Bedworth Park * Dickensonville * Duncanville * Falcon Ridge * Fisheagle Estate (Three Rivers) * Homer * Kubali (Three Rivers) * Leeuhof * Peacehaven & -Proper * Powerville * Randwater * Risiville (Three Rivers) * Roodt's Gardens * Roshnee * Sharpeville * Sonland Park * Spider Valley * Springcol * Steel Park * Three Rivers (Three Rivers) * Three Rivers Proper (Three Rivers) * Three Rivers East (Three Rivers) * Uitvlugt * Unitas Park * Vereeniging Central * Vischgat * Waldrift * Zuikerbosch * Zuikerbosch Estate (Three Rivers) Since 1999, Vereeniging has been part of the Emfuleni Local Municipality, along with
Vanderbijlpark Vanderbijlpark is an industrial city with approximately 75 000 inhabitants, and 95 000 inhabitants in the metropole, situated on the Vaal River in the south of Gauteng province, South Africa. The city is named after Hendrik van der Bijl, an elec ...
and the smaller Three Rivers.
Map of Three Rivers


Healthcare

Various health services are available in Vereeniging. The majority of these services are located in or near the major medical centres. These include: * Vereeniging Medi-Clinic * Midvaal Private Hospital * Kopanong Hospital * Sebokeng Hospital * Nkanyezi Private Hospital * Johan Heyns Hospital


Education

* Vereeniging Gimnasium (Afrikaans medium - Amalgamation of Hoërskool Vereeniging and Hoër Tegniese Skool Vereeniging) * Handhawer Laerskool ( Afrikaans and English medium) (http://www.handhawer.co.za) * Selborne Primary School (English medium) * General Smuts High School (English medium) * Arcon Park Primary School (English medium) * Unitaspark Laerskool (Afrikaans and English medium) * Vryheidsmonument Laerskool (Afrikaans medium) * Overvaal Hoërskool (Afrikaans medium) * Sonland Park Primary School (English medium) * Milton Primary School (English medium) * Three Rivers Primary School (English medium) * Riverside High School (English medium) * Hoërskool Drie Riviere (Afrikaans and English medium) * 3 Rivers Christian Academy (English medium - ACE) * Suikerbos Laerskool (Afrikaans and English medium) * Rust-ter-Vaal Primary School (English medium) * Rust-ter-Vaal Secondary School (English medium) * Phoenix High School (English medium) * Roshnee Islamic School (English medium) * Word of Life School (English medium - CIE) * Krugerlaan School (Afrikaans and English medium - LSEN School) *


Tertiary institutions

Campuses of: * University of South Africa * Damelin College * CTU Training Solutions * Sedibeng College * It is also close to the North-West University's Vaal Triangle Campus, and the Vaal University of Technology in
Vanderbijlpark Vanderbijlpark is an industrial city with approximately 75 000 inhabitants, and 95 000 inhabitants in the metropole, situated on the Vaal River in the south of Gauteng province, South Africa. The city is named after Hendrik van der Bijl, an elec ...
.


Notable residents

* Gerald Raymond Bosch, played Fly-Half for List of South Africa national rugby union players, The Springboks 1974 -1976 * Bles Bridges, an Afrikaans country singer, stayed in Vereeniging until his death in 2000. * Frederik Willem de Klerk, F.W. de Klerk was first elected to the South African parliament in 1969 as the member for Vereeniging. * Francois Pienaar, Springboks rugby player * Charl Schwartzel (the 2011 US Masters champion), Morné Morkel and Albie Morkel attended Vereeniging High. * Leon Schuster, actor, comedian, filmmaker, presenter and singer * Deon Dreyer, a cave diver who perished in Bushman's Hole in 1994, was raised in Vereeniging.


Crime

The latest crime statistics for Vereeniging Police Precinct was issued by the South African Police Service (SAPS) in September 2010. The SAPS crime reportVereeniging 2010 Crime Statistics
/ref> showed the following information:


Flooding 2011

In December 2010 and January 2011 the southern part of Gauteng and Mpumulanga experienced a higher than normal rainfall. This resulted in the need to release more water from the nearby Vaal dam. As a consequence, parts of Vereeniging, Three Rivers and the rest of the towns downstream were flooded. Three Rivers Proper Floods.JPG, Flooding along Sugarbush Drive, Three Rivers Proper Brandmuller Avenue.JPG, Brandmuller Avenue in Three Rivers Proper


Coat of arms

Vereeniging established a municipality in 1912. By 1931, the town council had assumed a
emblem
depicting bridge across a river, and two clasped hands. The town council obtained a coat of arms from the College of Arms in October 1955, registered it with the Transvaal Provincial Administration in October 1957Transvaal ''Official Gazette'' 2664 (23 October 1957). and with the Bureau of Heraldry in June 1987.National Archives of South Africa : Data of the Bureau of Heraldry
/ref> The arms were : ''Sable, on a fess wavy Or a barrulet wavy Tenne, the fess between in chief a thunderbolt between two picks, Or, and in base a steel pipe palewise proper between two cogwheels, also Or''. In layman's terms, the design is a black shield displaying, from top to bottom, a golden heraldic thunderbolt between two picks, a wavy orange stripe edged in gold, and an upright golden pipe between two cogwheels. The crest was a dove of peace perched on two clasped hands; the supporters were a lion and a zebra standing on a grassy base strewn with veld flowers; and the motto was ''Per pacem ad industriam''.


References


External links


Emfuleni MunicipalityVaal Triangle Info
{{Authority control Vereeniging, Gauteng Populated places in the Emfuleni Local Municipality Second Boer War concentration camps Populated places established in 1892