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The Transvaal was one of the provinces of South Africa from 1910 until 1994. The province no longer exists, and its territory now forms all, or part of, the provinces of Gauteng, North West, Limpopo and Mpumalanga.



Main article: South African Republic

The Transvaal was colonized by Boer settlers who exited the British-dominated Cape Colony in the 1830's and 1840's in the Great Trek. They easily overcame the native peoples and established several republics outside British control. In the 1850's, the British came to an understanding with the Boer republics, granting independence to the South African Republic (ZAR) in what is now the Transvaal. Britain annexed the ZAR again in 1877, supposedly for its own protection, but it regained its independence in 1881 after the First Boer War. Beginning in 1885, the discovery of a tremendous lode of gold in the Witwatersrand led to the immigration of many foreigners (uitlanders) to the Transvaal. Increasing fear of British designs on the region (fears encouraged by the Jameson Raid) led the Boers to make a pre-emptive strike in 1899. The Second Boer War resulted in the incorporation of the Transvaal into the British Empire in 1900. Ten years later, the Boer republics joined with the Cape Colony to form the Union of South Africa.

In 1961, the union ceased to be part of the British Commonwealth and became the Republic of South Africa. The PWV (Pretoria-Wiwatersrand-Pretoria-Witwatersrand-Vereeniging) area in the Transvaal (now Gauteng Province) became the South Africa's economic powerhouse, a position it still holds today.

In 1994, after South-Africa's first all-race elections, the former provinces and homelands were restructured, and a separate Transvaal province no longer exists. Parts of the old Transvaal now belong to the new Gauteng, North West, Limpopo and Mpumalanga provinces.


The Transvaal province lay between Vaal River in the south, and the Limpopo River in the north, roughly between 22 1/2 and 27 1/2 S, and 25 and 32 E. To its south it bordered with the Orange Free State and Natal provinces, to its west were the Cape Province and the Bechuanaland Protectorate (later Botswana), to its north Rhodesia (later Zimbabwe), and to its east Portuguese East Africa (later Mozambique) and Swaziland. Except on the south-west, these borders were mostly well defined natural features.

Several Bantustans were entirely inside the Transvaal: Venda, KwaNdebele, Gazankulu, KaNgwane and Lebowa. Parts of Bophuthatswana were also in the Transvaal, with other parts in Cape Province and Orange Free State.


Cities in the Transvaal:

See Also

External links

cs:Transvaal de:Transvaal it:Transvaal nl:Transvaal no:Transvaal pl:Transwal sv:Transvaal


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