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When in Perdekop it's compulsory to go horse riding, but don't leave before you visit Roodedraai Museum – one of South Africa's largest collections of Anglo-Boer War memorabilia.
The small town of Perdekop, meaning 'horse hill' in Afrikaans, is 1889 metres above sea level and owes its name to an environmental oddity that occurred in the days when horse sickness prevailed. The hill was the only high-lying place that was free of the dreaded horse sickness. Farmers would bring their horses to the hill when the disease broke out in the lower lying areas of the region. To this day, horse outrides and horse riding are done in the nearby hills.
The most fascinating point of interest in the area – on a dirt road between Perdekop and Volksrust near Klip River - is Oom Gert Van Der Westhuizen's private Roodedraai Museum. The former teacher has reconstructed an old school building into a historic village, complete with a general store, school house, post office and restaurant. His most prized possession is a letter penned by Sir Winston Churchill, but on the shelves of this private museum you will find thousands of artifacts dating back to before the Anglo-Boer War. Gert is a passionate historian who has also written a book about the said war within the Traansvaal region, which is now known as Mpumalanga.
Among his many historical objects you will find a stone where Dingaan’s impis sharpened their spears, medicine bottles and other artifacts dug up from the British concentration camps, as well as weapons and military uniforms displayed alongside Singer sewing machines and antique books. Gert owns one of the largest collections of Anglo-Boer War memorabilia in the country and over the years his collection has grown as he visits auctions and many visitors donate some of their treasures to add to his extensive displays. It’s an educational trip that marvels both children and adults.
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