Today, 126 years ago, Kimberley linked by rail to Barkley West

File photo of a railway line. Photo:

The railway line from Kimberley finally reached Fourteen Streams, in Barkley West on 1 December 1890.

The railway connected Kimberley with cheaper sources of grain and other products, as well as coal supplies, so that one of its local impacts was to undercut (mainly African) trade in fresh produce and firewood in Kimberley’s surroundings.

The railway line had initially been commissioned by the Cape Government and eventually stretched to Vryburg.

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Work on connecting Kimberley by rail to the cities along the Cape Colony’s coastline began in 1872 under the management of the Cape Government Railways.

The railway line from Cape Town to Kimberley was completed in 1885, subsequently accelerating the transport of both passengers and goods.

The railway reticulation eventually would link Kimberley with Port Elizabeth, Johannesburg, Durban and Bloemfontein.

Source: South African History Online

Compiled by Moeketsi Mogotsi/Courant News