Beaufort West

The wild history of the Koup and the Nuweveld

The Koup region of the Karoo takes its name from the Khoi word “ghoup,” which means “caul fat.” This is the stringy, lacy fat found around organs such as the stomach of sheep or game. It is widely used throughout the Karoo for wrapping pieces of liver, sometimes with interesting fillings, for roasting on a […]

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Tough Trip To The Karoo

After several locust plagues and a severe drought, Maj-Gen Dundas, in 1801, sent a commission into the Karoo to investigate the situation.  Among them was William Somerville who recorded the trip in his journals, which have recently been published by the Van Riebeeck Society.  A train of six large bullock wagons was readied for the […]

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Tracking hares in the Karoo

William Burchell mentioned that the Karoo “plains abounded with hares.” This observation was made at Dwaalpoort, near the Sak River, 35km east of Fraserburg, on August 30, 1811. Generally, however, few people mention these creatures, states CJ Skead in Historical Mammal Incidence in the Cape Province, yet they must have been plentiful on the dry […]

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Victor Dubowitz, pioneer in pedriatic medicine

Another Beaufort West shopkeeper’s son, who distinguished himself in medicine, was Victor Dubowitz. He pioneered major developments in pediatric neurology and made meaningful clinical and research contributions in the fields of neonatal neurology and neuromuscular disorders in children.  In 1965 he described a rare and difficult to diagnose, genetic disorder, which was named Dubowitz Syndrome […]

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Wings Over The Karoo

After WWI, small air transport businesses were established in several South African centres. Among these companies were South African Aerial Transport Company and South African Aerial Navigation Company, which operated on the Witwatersrand, Natal, and in the Eastern and Western Cape. Aerial Stunts, an air taxi company, offered joy rides over Durban. Aviation Limited which […]

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