The origin of towns in the Eastern Cape midlands

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The origin of towns in the Eastern Cape midlands

Contributing Authors: DW Myburgh
Publication: Contree : journal of South African urban and regional history, no.4, p.25-30
Date: July 1978


IN this study the Eastern Cape Midlands are defined as that “,rea including most of the upper and middle sections in the drainage basins of the Sundays and Great Fish rivers, the southern boundary being taken as the Klein Winterberg and Suurberg ranges. This region consists of the magisterial districts of Murraysburg, Aberdeen, Graaff-Reinet, Jansenville, Middelburg, Somerset East, Pearston, Bedford, Cradock, Maraisburg and Molteno (figure 1). The area is of considerable
interest in a study of urb”,n origin in South Africa since it incorporates some of the oldest inland towns in the country, Graaff-Reinet, for example, dating as far back as 1786, and it reveals some factors that were important in pioneer township formation, Furthermore, although there are som~ complicating relief features, it is a fairly homogeneous area in terms of climate, vegetation and natural resources, and therefore one in which central-place relationships can be studied with a minimum of disrupting influences.

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