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Trip Planner Africa  /  South Africa  /  Northern Cape  /  De Aar

De Aar

Historic Sites
De Aar is a town in the Northern Cape, South Africa. It has a population of around 42,000 inhabitants.It is the second-most important railway junction in the country, situated on the line between Cape Town and Kimberley. The junction was of particular strategic importance to the British during the Second Boer War. De Aar is also a primary commercial distribution centre for a large area of the central Great Karoo. Major production activities of the area include wool production and livestock farming. The area is also popular for hunting, although the region is rather arid. De Aar is also affectionately known as "Die SES" deriving its nickname from the six farms that have surrounded De Aar since the 1900.HistoryDe Aar was originally established on the Farm "De Aar." The name means "the artery," a reference to its underground water supply. The Cape Government Railways were founded in 1872, and the route that the government chose for the line to connect the Kimberley diamond fields to Cape Town on the coast, ran directly through De Aar. Because of its central location, the government also selected the location for a junction between this first railway line, and the other Cape railway networks further east, in 1881. In 1899 two brothers who ran a trading store and hotel at the junction, Isaac and Wulf Friedlander, purchased the farm of De Aar. Following the Anglo Boer War, the Friedlander brothers surveyed the land for the establishment of a town. The municipality was created a year later and the towns first mayor, Dr Harry Baker, was elected in 1907.
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