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Cradock celebrates its 200th birthday

21 January 2014
ONE of the Eastern Cape's oldest towns celebrates its 200th anniversary today.

At least 1000 residents from the Inxuba Yethemba Municipality, non-government organisations, business people and schools will parade through the streets of Cradock to mark the town's double century.

Cradock is the third oldest town in the province.

"It's going to be a whole year of celebration," said businesswoman Lisa Kerr, whose family has for decades owned and managed the historic Tuishuise tourist area.

"In addition to the annual writers' festival, there is going to be a Vodacom rugby clash on March 29 between the Free State and EP Kings," she said.

Today's parade will be led by Chris Hani district mayor Moxolisi Koyo and Cradock mayor Nyamka Goniwe, widow of the late struggle hero Matthew Goniwe.

He and other members of the Cradock Four are among the many heroes and icons from the Karoo town that was also home to world-renowned South African author, anti-war campaigner and intellectual Olive Schreiner.

According to the history books, the original inhabitants of the region were the Khoi before Xhosa farmers arrived from the north-east.

During colonial times, lieutenant-governor and military leader Andries Stockenstrom established the area as a magisterial seat.

It was officially named after the governor of the Cape, Sir John Cradock, on January 21 1814. It was a centre for ostrich feathers in the early 1900s.- Herald Reporter

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