Platberg on the Caledon Bastaards: raiders and traders or pious converts of the wesleyan missionary society

Shelona Klatzow will present the Department of Archaeology seminar with a talk entitled, "Platberg on the Caledon Bastaards: raiders and traders or pious converts of the Wesleyan missionary society."

Abstract: My research focuses on the Platberg Bastaards, under the leadership of Captain Carolus Baatjes, who resided at the Wesleyan mission station of Platberg on the Caledon from 1833 to 1865.  As new arrivals in Transorangia from the Cape colony, the Bastaards came equipped with wagons, horses, guns and ammunition.  They showed great skill in adapting to the volatile frontier world in the way that they negotiated the move from colonial farm workers, servants, slaves or disposed Bastaards in the colony to successful traders, raiders and farmers in the Caledon River Valley.  As new inhabitants of the Wesleyan mission station they had to negotiate their way through the aspirations of the missionaries for Christian converts, balanced with their own traditional way of life and belief systems.  Using historical texts combined with the archaeological investigation of the village, I hope to get a more holistic picture of the Bastaards of Platberg.

Bio:  I completed my Masters at Wits in 2000, which focused on the interaction between the  inhabitants of De Hoop rockshelter and Sotho farmers in the Caledon River Valley.  The excavated archaeological sequence is comparatively short, with dates of 3620 + 60BP (Pta-6785) and 2850 +60BP (Pta-6787) and subsequently a late eighteenth century and nineteenth century occupation.  Hunter-gatherer items found in context with farmer and European items included ground and polished bone points, ostrich eggshell fragments, and a post-classic Wilton lithic assemblage. I am currently a PhD student at UCT.


Mon, 17 Sep 2018 - 13:00

Teaching Studio, Room 3.10, Department of Archaeology, Beattie Building