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Bloemfontein
(Sotho) Mangaung
Bloemfontein at night
Nickname(s): The city of roses
Bloemfontein is located in South Africa
Bloemfontein
Coordinates: 29°06′S 26°13′E / 29.1°S 26.217°E / -29.1; 26.217
Country South Africa South Africa
Province Free State
District municipality Motheo
Local municipality Mangaung
Officially founded 1846
Elevation 1,395 m (4,577 ft)
Population
 - Total 369,568
Time zone SAST (UTC+2)


Bloemfontein (pronounced /ˈblʊmfɒnteɪn/, Dutch for "spring of Bloem (bloom)", "flower spring" or "fountain of flowers") is the capital city of the Free State Province of South Africa as well as one of the nation's three capitals, the judicial capital. The city's Sesotho name is Mangaung, meaning "place of cheetahs" and became part of the Mangaung Local Municipality in 2000. Bloemfontein is popularly and poetically known as "the city of roses", owing to the abundance of these flowers and the annual rose festival held there.[1][2]

The city is situated on dry grassland at 29°06′S 26°13′E / 29.1°S 26.217°E / -29.1; 26.217, at an altitude of 1,395 metres above sea level. The city is home to 369,568 residents, while the Mangaung Local Municipality has a population of 645,455. Bloemfontein is served by Bloemfontein airport.

Contents

History

Bloemfontein, circa 1900.

Though historically a predominantly Afrikaner settlement, Bloemfontein was officially founded in 1846 as a fort by British army major Henry Douglas Warden as a British outpost in the Transoranje region, at that stage occupied by various groups of peoples including Cape Colony Trek Boers, Griqua and Basotho.

Although modern day Bloemfontein has a reputation for its flowers in an otherwise arid region, the origin of the city's name is unclear. Popular legends include an ox named "Bloem" owned by one of the pioneer farmers that was taken by a lion near a fountain on his property, while another story names Jan Blom (1775–1858), a Korana KhoiKhoi leader who inhabited the area.[3] Bloemfontein literally means fountain of flowers or flower spring in Dutch. (See Discussion page for more details).

With colonial policy shifts the region changed into the Orange River Sovereignty (1848–1854) and eventually the Orange Free State Republic (1854–1902). From 1902–1910 it served as the capital of the Orange River Colony and since that time as the provincial capital of the Orange Free State (now Free State). In 1910 it became the Judicial Capital of South Africa.

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Founding and early days

Warden originally chose the site largely because of its close proximity to the main route to Winburg, the spacious open country, and the absence of horse sickness. Bloemfontein was the original farm of Johannes Nicolaas Brits born 21 February 1790 owner and first inhabitant of Bloemfontein. Johann as he was known sold the farm to Maj Warden.

1854–1898

The old Raadsaal in Bloemfontein, with the statue of Christiaan de Wet

As the capital of the Orange Free State Republic the growth and maturing of the Republic resulted in the growth of the town. Numerous public buildings that remain in use today were constructed. This was largely facilitated by the excellent governance of the Republic (which acquired the term model republic) and the compensation from the British for the loss of the diamond rich Griqualand area.

A railway line was built in 1890 connecting Bloemfontein to Cape Town.

The writer J. R. R. Tolkien was born in the city on 3 January 1892, though his family left South Africa following the death of his father, Arthur Tolkien, while Tolkien was still a child (1896). He recorded that his earliest memories were of "a hot country."

Second Anglo-Boer War/South African War

In 1899, the city was the site of the Bloemfontein Conference, which failed to prevent the outbreak of the Second Boer War. The conference was a final attempt to avert a war between Britain and the south African Republic. With its failure the stage was set for war, which broke out on 11 October 1899.

The rail line from Cape Town provided a centrally located railway station, and proved critical to the British in occupying the city later.

On 13 March 1900, following the Battle of Paardeberg, British forces captured the city and built a concentration camp nearby to house Boer women and children. The National Women's Memorial, on the outskirts of the city, pays homage to the 26,370 women and children as well as 1,421 old men[4] (including 14,154 black people, though some sources feel that the records are unsatisfactory, and that this number could be as high as 20,000[5]) who died in these camps in various parts of the country.[6]

Recent history

Until 1994, the city was the sole judicial capital of South Africa. It remains the seat for the Supreme Court Of Appeal (formerly the Appellate Division of the Supreme Court) and is therefore generally regarded as the judicial capital. It is also an administrative centre with many private hospitals and educational institutions.

Government

Bloemfontein forms part of the Manguang Local Municipality and the Motheo District Municipality.

Geography and climate

Bloemfontein
Climate chart (explanation)
J F M A M J J A S O N D
 
 
83
 
31
15
 
 
111
 
29
15
 
 
72
 
27
12
 
 
56
 
23
8
 
 
17
 
20
3
 
 
12
 
17
-2
 
 
8
 
17
-2
 
 
15
 
20
1
 
 
24
 
24
5
 
 
43
 
26
9
 
 
58
 
28
12
 
 
60
 
30
14
average max. and min. temperatures in °C
precipitation totals in mm
source: SAWS[7]

Bloemfontein is located in central South Africa on the southern edge of the Highveld at an elevation of 1,400 metres (4,600 ft), bordering on the semi-arid region of the Karoo. The area is generally flat with occasional hills (koppies in Afrikaans) and the general vegetation is Highveld grassland. Bloemfontein experiences a continental climate, with hot summer days (Jan: max:32°C min:19°C; frequent afternoon thunderstorms) and cooler, dry winters, often with frosts (July: max:14°C min:-3°C). Snow is uncommon but as recently as August 2006 it snowed in the city, with snowfalls occurring again at the airport on 26 July 2007.

Climate data for Bloemfontein
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Record high °C (°F) 39
(102)
39
(102)
35
(95)
33
(91)
30
(86)
25
(77)
24
(75)
29
(84)
34
(93)
35
(95)
37
(99)
38
(100)
39
(102)
Average high °C (°F) 31
(88)
29
(84)
27
(81)
23
(73)
20
(68)
17
(63)
17
(63)
20
(68)
24
(75)
26
(79)
28
(82)
30
(86)
24
(75)
Average low °C (°F) 15
(59)
15
(59)
12
(54)
8
(46)
3
(37)
-2
(28)
-2
(28)
1
(34)
5
(41)
9
(48)
12
(54)
14
(57)
8
(46)
Record low °C (°F) 6
(43)
4
(39)
1
(34)
-3
(27)
-9
(16)
-9
(16)
-10
(14)
-10
(14)
-7
(19)
-3
(27)
0
(32)
3
(37)
-10
(14)
Precipitation mm (inches) 83
(3.27)
111
(4.37)
72
(2.83)
56
(2.2)
17
(0.67)
12
(0.47)
8
(0.31)
15
(0.59)
24
(0.94)
43
(1.69)
58
(2.28)
60
(2.36)
559
(22.01)
Avg. precipitation days 11 11 11 9 4 3 2 3 4 7 9 10 84
Source: South African Weather Service[7] 7 March 2010

Suburbs

Replica Eiffel Tower in an industrial area next to Batho

Bloemfontein suburbs include Heidedal to the east and southeast, Bainsvlei, Woodland Hills Wildlife Estate, Bayswater, Brandwag, Ehrlichpark, Fauna, Fichardtpark, Fleurdal, Gardeniapark, Generaal De Wet, Hospitaalpark, Kiepersol, Langenhoven Park, Lourierpark, Park West, Pellissier, Uitsig, Universitas, Westdene, Wilgehof and Willows to the south of the city. To the north of Bloemfontein, you will find Langenhovenpark, Arboretum, Bayswater, Dan Pienaar, Helicon Heights, Heuwelsig, Hillsboro, Hillside, Hilton, Naval Hill, Navalsig, Noordhoek, Pentagon Park, Panorama Park,Waverley. The predominantly black suburbs are; Rocklands, Phahameng, Phelindaba, Bloemanda, Bochabela and the most historic Batho where the Maphikela House (where the African national Congress - ANC started) is situated.

Sports

Stadia

The Free State Stadium and the surrounding sports complex is the main sports venue in the city and province. The venue will be the hosting stadium of the 2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa matches played in Bloemfontein. There are several other sports venues however in the city, including facilities belonging to the university, schools and sports clubs.

Football

Bloemfontein is joint home (together with nearby Botshabelo) to Premier Soccer League team Bloemfontein Celtic. Some of the matches of the 2010 FIFA World Cup will be played at the Free State Stadium.

Rugby

Bloemfontein's Free State Stadium is home to two rugby union teams; the Central Cheetahs franchise who compete in the Super 14 and the Free State Cheetahs who play in the domestic Currie Cup. The Free State Cheetahs won the Currie Cup in 2005 against the Blue Bulls, they drew the final with the Blue Bulls in 2006 and retained the Currie Cup title in 2007 by winning the Golden Lions resulting in the Free State Cheetahs to be Currie Cup champions until at least 2008.

Cricket

The Eagles cricket team representing the Free State and Northern Cape in various series is located at OUTsurance Oval, part of the Free State Stadium complex. Bloemfontein features as a regular venue for touring international and local cricket teams.[citation needed]

Soaring

One of the most active soaring communities in South Africa and the world is using the New Tempe Airport north of Bloemfontein.

Motor Sports

Bloemfontein has a motocross track run by the Bloemfontein Off Road Club, as well as a go-kart circuit (M&F Raceway), which is run by Bloemfontein Kart Club.

Education

Bloemfontein offers many institutions of learning, from pre-schools to Universities and colleges. Classes are taught in different schools in different languages, some schools even teaching all classes in two languages. These languages are mostly Afrikaans, English or Sesotho.

Primary education

Secondary education

Tertiary education

There is a Further Education and Training College called Motheo FET College which comprises three main campuses(Thaba N'chu, Hillside view and Bloemfontein)and the satellite campuses in Zastron,Philippolis and Botshabelo.

The largest tertiary institutions in Bloemfontein are the of University of the Free State and the Central University of Technology.

Recreational

Part of the Sculpture Garden at Oliewenhuis Art Museum

Visitors to Bloemfontein have the unique opportunity to interact with Cheetah, Lion, Leopard, Tiger as well as other animals that have been rescued at the Cheetah Experience in the suburb of Bainsvlei, only 5mins from the centre of Bloemfontein. Touching of animals is allowed and coming face to face with these creatures outside of a zoo environment is a once in a lifetime experience not to be missed.

One can also enjoy a day or a sleep over at the Bloemfontein Zoo. Zoo Snoozes are only one of the activities arranged by Friends of the Bloemfontein Zoo.

Boyden Observatory, a unique astronomy research and educational centre outside the city, offers public open evenings on certain nights during the year, arranged by the Friends of Boyden Observatory. Groups can also visit the observatory for exclusive evenings on appointment.

Atop Naval Hill is the Franklin Game Reserve. It was named after John Franklin, South African Senator, attorney and Mayor of Bloemfontein in the 1930s.

Media

Newspapers

Radio

  • OFM
  • Lesedi FM
  • Motheo FM
  • Med FM

Famous people

Many famous persons are associated with Bloemfontein; these include:

Religion

Bloemfontein has a large and diverse Christian population. The city houses several churches and denominations:

Community Service Organizations

  • Round Table 25 Bloemfontein Round Table is a non-political, non-racial association of young men between the ages of 18 and 40, embracing representatives of nearly every profession and occupation. Its objects are the encouragement of high ethical standards, the promotion of social inter-action and fellowship among young professional and business men and the quickening of individual interest in everything affecting the public welfare.
  • Round Table 158 Bloemfontein The first Round Table was formed in Norwich, England in 1927. The founder, Louis Marchesi, was a young member of Norwich Rotary Club who felt a need existed for a club where the young business men of the town could gather on a regular basis. At their meetings they could exchange ideas, learn from the experiences of their colleagues and play a collective part in the civic life of Norwich. From a very early stage it was agreed that Round Table would be a non-religious, non-political club and this has continued to this day.
  • Child Welfare Bloemfontein Child Welfare Bloemfontein & Childline Free State is a non-profit organisation that was founded in 1914 by a group of volunteers who identified a need for welfare services among the community. In 2004, Child Welfare Bloemfontein celebrated its 90th birthday. Over the past 90 years, many community programmes have been successfully implemented.
  • Arrive Alive South Africa Official Road Safety Website Our vision was " To develop an effective road safety information portal that will enhance awareness of road safety and save lives", the web site is currently owned by Adv. Johan Jonck & was developed by a local Bloemfontein web site company Chillies.co.za & this partnership achieved massive milestones has now been endorsed by the RTMC & Department of Roads South Africa as the only Official Road Safety web site for South Africa.
  • [1] FREEMASONS - The Masonic Centre, Bloemfontein, was built during the 1970’s when all the Masonic Lodges in Bloemfontein, sold their individual properties. The Centre was erected to facilitate all Masonic activities in Bloemfontein and surrounding areas. All four Constitutions that is active in South Africa, gather at the Centre. The Lodges that has ownership of the Centre is Lodge Unie (est. 1864); the Rising Star Lodge (est. 1865); Thistle Lodge (est.1903); Emerald Lodge (est. 1905); Lodge Dagbreek (est. 1932) & Lodge Oranje (est. 1964). Various side degrees are catered for at the Centre which includes the Mark, Ark, the Royal Arch & Rose Croix. Bloemfontein has a rich Masonic history especially in the Anglo Boer War (1899-1902), with members such as Lord Kitchener, Rudyard Kipling and Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, visiting Lodges in Bloemfontein.

References

  1. ^ Bloemfontein: Did you know?
  2. ^ Bloemfontein: General Information
  3. ^ Bridget Hilton-Barber (2001). Weekends with Legends. New Africa Books. pp. 98. ISBN 086486471X. http://books.google.com/books?id=te1461s33IwC. 
  4. ^ Arthur Clive Martin (1957). The Concentration Camps, 1900–1902: Facts, Figures and Fables. H. Timmins. pp. 31. http://books.google.com/books?id=lKkwAAAAIAAJ&pgis=1. 
  5. ^ Black Concentration Camps
  6. ^ Concentration Camps during Anglo-Boer War
  7. ^ a b "Climate data for Bloemfontein". South African Weather Service. http://old.weathersa.co.za/Climat/Climstats/BloemfonteinStats.jsp. Retrieved 7 March 2010. 
  8. ^ Jrr_tolkien#Childhood
  9. ^ http://www.mornevanwyk.co.za

External links

  • Bloemfontein The official Mangaung Local Municipality website

Coordinates: 29°06′S 26°13′E / 29.1°S 26.217°E / -29.1; 26.217


Travel guide

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From Wikitravel

Bloemfontein (Fountain of flowers), [1], is the judicial capital of South Africa. It is also the capital of the Free State Province.

Understand

Bloemfontein was founded in 1846 and today has a population of around half a million people.

J. R. R. Tolkien, author of The Lord of the Rings was born in Bloemfontein in 1892. In 1923, the African National Congress (ANC) political party was founded in Bloemfontein.

Today Bloemfontein is a compact city surrounded by sprawling suburbs. Happily the city centre is safe to walk around during the day, however much of the city's activities are focused on the Waterfront and Mimosa malls, and on the large sporting complex. Second Street, north of the Waterfront mall, has the majority of the city's bars and restaurants.

Get in

By plane

Bloemfontein Airport [2] is just outside the city and a number of flights to major South African cities take off from here, operated by South African Airways [3] and SA Airlink [4]. and Mango airlines [5] fly to Cape Town

See Air travel in South Africa for more information.

By train

Bloemfontein is a major rail junction in the middle of South Africa. From here, Spoornet [6] operates regular trains to all points of the country : south to Cape Town, Port Elizabeth, East London and Mthatha, west to Kimberley, north to Johannesburg and east to Durban and Pietermaritzburg.

The train station is in the city centre, on the corner of Maitland and Harvey streets.

For train ticket bookings, phone 086 000 8888 (from within SA) or +27 (0)11 774 4555 (from outside SA).

By car

The N1, N6 and N8 national highways meet in Bloemfontein, making it easily reachable from any part of the country.

The N1 northbound from Bloemfontein towards Gauteng is a toll road.

Distances

By bus

A number of bus services offer connections to major South African cities.

  • Greyhound, +27 (0)83 915-9000, [7].  edit
  • Intercape Mainliner, +27 (0)21 380-4400, [8].  edit
  • Translux, [9].  edit
  • SA Roadlink, +27 (0)11 333-2223, [10].  edit

Get around

By Car

As with most of South Africa, it is best to hire a car.

  • Avis, Bloemfontein Airport, +27 (0)51 433-2331, [11]. Open 6AM to 8PM weekdays, 8AM to 4PM on Saturdays.  edit
  • Tempest Car Hire, Bloemfontein Airport, +27 (0)51 433-2146, [12]. Open 6:30AM to 6:30PM weekdays, 8AM to 2PM on Saturdays.  edit
  • Hertz, Bloemfontein Airport, +27 (0)51 400-2100, [13]. Open 6:30AM to 7:30PM weekdays, 7:30AM to 5PM on Saturdays.  edit
  • First Car Rental, Bloemfontein Airport, +27 (0)51 430-0390, [14]. Open 7:00AM to 8:00PM weekdays, 8:00AM to 4PM on Saturdays.  edit
  • Anglo Boer War Museum, Monument Road, +27 (0)51 447-3447, [15]. For a history on the war 1899 to 1902  edit
  • Boyden Observatory, +27 (0)84 429-9080 (), [16]. Explore the southern skies under dark and clear Free State conditions  edit
  • Choet Visser Rugby Museum, +27 (0)51 436-4124. By appointment only.  edit
  • Fire Station Museum, Erlich Park Fire Station, Church Street, +27 (0)51 405-8730 (), [17]. By appointment. 17 vintage fire engines as well as a number of cars, bikes steam engines and even ox wagons.  edit
  • National Botanical Garden, Rayton Road,off Dan Pienaar Drive, +27 (0)51 436 361 (), [18]. 8AM to 6PM daily. R10 entrance fee.  edit
  • National Museum, 36 Aliwal Street, +27 (0)51 447-9609 (), [19]. Open 8AM to 5PM Monday to Friday, 10AM to 5PM on Saturday and 12PM to 5:30PM on Sundays.. Home to the Florisbad skull. R5 entrance fee.  edit
  • Naval Hill and Franklin Game Reserve. The reserve has various wild animals and is located in the centre of the city.  edit
  • Oliewenhuis Art Museum, 16 Harry Smith Street, +27 (0)51 447-9609 (), [20]. Open 8AM to 5PM Monday to Friday and 10AM to 5PM on Saturday. Free entrance.  edit
  • Women's Memorial.  edit
  • Presidency Museum, Pres. Brand Street, +27 (0)51 448-0949. Open 10AM to 12:15PM and 1PM to 4PM Tuesday to Friday. This former residence of presidents of the Orange Free Stare Republic has been restored to what it would have been at the turn of the century.  edit
  • Queens Fort Military Museum, 116 Church Street, +27 (0)51 447-5478 (). Open 10AM to 12:15PM and 1PM to 4PM Monday to Friday. Exhibitions on the two Boer wars and the apartheid struggle.  edit
  • SA Armour Museum, (West of town, follow Nelson Mandela (R64) west towards the N1, you'll see a sign), [21]. The SA Armour Museum, on the grounds of Tempe Military Base, exhibits various items dealing specifically with military armour. The SA Armour Museum consists of an indoor-, outdoor-, and reference library area.  edit
  • First Car Rental (First Car Rental : Affordable car hire in South Africa), Bloemfontein Airport, +27 (0)51 433-2146, [22]. 07:00am-5:00pm. First Car Rental offers great car hire deals in the Free State and the rest of South Africa. Our locations in the Free State include Bloemfontein airport and Bloemfontein downtown.  edit
  • Go to the Waterfront
  • Play a round of golf
  • Visit one of the numerous game reserves in the area and go sightseeing / hunting
  • Take a walk through the tree-lined President Brand Street and visit the various museums
  • Take a drive through the northern suburbs and see the lush gardens
  • Visit the City Zoo

Buy

The ongoing expansion of the Waterfront mall means that Bloemfontein now has two branches of each of the standard South African chain stores (the other branches being in the Mimosa Mall 2km up the road). There is a craft market near the Waterfront mall on the first Saturday of the month. Many shops close Saturday afternoons.

  • Fishpaste restaurant and bar, 31 President Steyn ave, Westdene, +27 (0)51 430-2662. The place to go. Excellent food in an interesting atmosphere.  edit
  • Mexican Restaurant, 19A Second Avenue Westdene, 051 4304526. There isn't much that is Mexican about this place, except for the big Aztec statue that overlooks the dining area. Seafood and Steakhouse. One of the city's more upmarket steakhouses. Fantastic food and service in a beautiful restaurant with a selective bar .Winner of numerous awards for food and service.Come and enjoy!  edit
  • Cape Town Fish Market, Graaff Reinet Street, off Dan Pienaar (Preller Square mall), 051 436 6148, [24]. Branch of the popular CTFM chain. Worth the trip into the northern suburbs. (29° 5'17.03S,26°12'46.03E) edit
This guide uses the following price ranges for a standard double room:
Budget Under R500
Mid-range R500 to R1000
Splurge Over R1000
  • Bains Caravan Park, 31 Kimberley Rd, +27 (0)51 451-1115. R190.  edit
  • Bains Game Lodge, (Follow Nelson Mandela Drive for 2km outside the city, entrance gates on the right), +27 (0)51 451-1928 (), [25]. Serviced Chalets.  edit
  • Hobbit House, (Just of 2nd Avenue on President Steyn Avenue), +27 (0)51 447 0663 (), [26]. A opulent boutique hotel, a good choice if you are with your intended. From R500 per room inc. breakfast.  edit
  • Bloemfontein Spa, Raytonweg, Lilyvale, +27(51)4361567, [27]. From R410.  edit
  • Florentia Guest House, 2c Louis Botha St, Waverley, +27 (0)51 436-7847 (), [29]. Safe parking and accommodation From R265pps. (-29.0988889,026.2233333) edit
  • Like A Rock, 6 Blink-Vosperdstr. Pellissier (N1 Jagersfontein offrit into Pellissier drive), 0514210559. checkin: 14.00; checkout: 10.00. German Speaking Management, http://www.safarinow.com/go/LikeaRock, 550 up.  edit
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1911 encyclopedia

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From LoveToKnow 1911

BLOEMFONTEIN, capital of the Orange Free State, in 29° 8' S., 26° 18' E. It is situated on the open veld, surrounded by a few low kopjes, 4518 ft. above the sea, 105 m. by rail E. by S. of Kimberley, 750 N.E. by E. of Cape Town, 450 N. by E. of Port Elizabeth, and 257 S.W. of Johannesburg.

Bloemfontein is a very pleasant town, regularly laid out with streets running at right angles and a large central market square. Many of the houses are surrounded by large wooded gardens. Through the town runs the Bloemspruit. After a disastrous flood in 1904 the course of this spring was straightened and six stone bridges placed across it. There are several fine public buildings, mostly built of red brick and a fine-grained white stone quarried in the neighbourhood. The Raadzaal, a building in the Renaissance style, faces Market Square. Formerly the meeting-place of the Orange Free State Raad, it is now the seat of the provincial council. In front of the old Raadzaal (used as law courts) is a statue of President Brand. In Douglas Street is an unpretentious building used in turn as a church, a raadzaal, a court-house and a museum. In it was signed (1854) the convention which recognized the independence of the Free State Boers (see Orange Free State: History). Among the churches the most important, architecturally, are the Dutch Reformed, a building with two spires, and the Anglican cathedral, which has a fine interior. The chief educational establishment is Grey University College, built 1906-1908 at a cost of £125,000. It stands in grounds of 300 acres, a mile and a half from the town. In the town is the original Grey College, founded in 1856 by Sir George Grey, when governor of Cape Colony. The post and telegraph office in Market Square is one of the finest buildings in the town. The public library is housed in a handsome building in Warden Street. Opposite it is the new national museum.

Bloemfontein possesses few manufactures, but is the trading centre of the province. Having a dry healthy climate, it is a favourite residential town and a resort for invalids, being recommended especially for pulmonary disease. The mean maximum temperature is 76.7° Fahr., the mean minimum 45.8°; the mean annual rainfall about 24 in. There is an excellent water-supply, obtained partly from Bloemspruit, but principally from the Modder river at Sanna's Post, 22 m. to the east, and from reservoirs at Moches Dam and Magdepoort.

The population in 1904 was 33,883, of whom, including the garrison of 34 8 7, 1 5,5 01 were white, compared with a white population of 2077 in 1890. The coloured inhabitants are mostly Bechuana and Basuto. Most of the whites are of British origin, and English is the common language of all, including the Dutch. The spruit or spring which gives its name to the town was called after one of the emigrant farmers, Jan Bloem. The town dates from 1846, in which year Major H. D. Warden, then British resident north of the Orange, selected the site as the seat of his administration. When in 1854 independence was conferred on the country the town was chosen by the Boers as the seat of government. It became noted for the intelligence of its citizens, and for the educational advantages it offered at the time when education among the Boers was thought of very lightly. In 1892 the railway connecting it with Cape Town and Johannesburg was completed. During the Anglo-Boer War of 1899-1902 it was occupied by the British under Lord Roberts without resistance (13th of March 5900), fourteen days after the surrender of General Cronje at Paardeberg. In Market Square on the 28th of the following May the annexation of the Orange Free State to the British dominions was proclaimed. In 1907 the first session of the first parliament elected under the constitution granting the colony self-government was held in Bloemfontein. In 1910 when the colony became a province of the Union of South Africa under its old designation of Orange Free State, Bloemfontein was chosen as the seat of the Supreme Court of South Africa. Its growth as a business centre after the close of the war in 1902 was very marked. The rateable value increased from f 709,000 in 1901 to £2,400,000 in 1905.


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Wiktionary

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

Definition from Wiktionary, a free dictionary

Contents

English

Etymology

Afrikaans: Bloem or blom: flower + fontein fountain.

Proper noun

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Wikipedia has an article on:

Wikipedia

Bloemfontein

  1. A major city in South Africa.

Translations


Simple English

Bloemfontein
Nickname(s): The City of Roses
Coordinates: 29°60′0″S 26°13′0″E / 30°S 26.216667°E / -30; 26.216667 latm>=60 (dms format) in {{Coord}}
Country South Africa
Province Free State
Founded 1846
Municipality 1880
Became Capital 1910
Elevation Expression error: Unrecognised punctuation character "," m (4,577 ft)
Population (2005)
 - City 369,568
 Urban 645,455
Time zone SAST (UTC+2)

Bloemfontein is one of the three capital cites of South Africa. It is the judicial capital of South Africa, as the Supreme Court is located there. In Afrikaans and Dutch, Bloemfontein means "Spring of Bloem (Bloom}". It is also known as the city of roses. There are a lot of flowers in Bloemfontein.

Contents

History

Bloemfontein was founded by Major H. Douglas Warden in 1846. It was created as both a fort and a place to live. It became the center of government of the British-controlled Orange River Sovereignty (1848–54) and of the Orange Free State (later known as just Free State).

Bloemfontein became the judicial capital of South Africa in 1910. It is a place where the government works. It has a lot of hospitals and schools.

Geography

Bloemfontein is located in central South Africa. It is dry in this part of South Africa. There are a few hills around Bloemfontein. Grass mostly grows around Bloemfontein. The summers are hot, and the winters are cool, but it snowed in August 2006.

Economy

Much of the economy of the city is based on canned fruit, glass products, furniture, plastics, and railway engineering. The city saw a large economic growth in the mid-20th century because of the Free State goldfields located 160 km (100 mi) northeast of the city. The Orange River project also helped the city grow economically. It is a major source both of hydroelectricity and of water for irrigation and human uses.

Sports

The most popular sports in Bloemfontein are football, rugby, and cricket. In 2010, Bloemfontein will host some FIFA World Cup matches, at Free State Stadium.

Famous people from Bloemfontein


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