Van Rooyen, D (2007), Victoria West case study. Unpublished report, Centre for Development Studies, University of the Free State, Bloemfontein.
BACKGROUND – BRIEF HISTORY
The town of Victoria West was founded in 1843, when the Dutch Reformed Church bought a portion of the farm Zeekoegat from the estate of Mr. J.H. Claassens. The history of the Dutch Reformed Church, consecrated in 1850, is set out in a display in the Victoria West Museum consisting of documents, photographs, old maps, Bibles, items of the first Communion Service and the church’s first organ. The church was declared a National Monument in 1992 (Victoria West Tourism, 2006: 1).
The town was named after Queen Victoria, but to avoid confusion with an Eastern Cape district of the same name, the “West” was added at a later stage (Victoria West Museum, 2004). This town marks the beginning of the Diamond Way, lying on the main route from Cape Town to Kimberley. In 1866 diamond fever sparked with the discovery of the gem at Hopetown and then Kimberley.