Cape Town in History

Historical Events

  • 1652-04-07 Dutch establish settlement at Cape Town, South Africa
  • 1806-01-08 Battle of Blaauwberg: British forces attack French vassal, the Batavian Republic near Cape Town, modern day South Africa
  • 1829-10-01 South African College is founded in Cape Town, South Africa; later to separate into the University of Cape Town and the South African College Schools.

Event of interestEvent of Interest

1836-06-01 Charles Darwin returns to Cape Town in South Africa

Naturalist Charles Darwin
Naturalist
Charles Darwin
  • 1889-03-25 1st Test Cricket match played at Newlands, Cape Town v England
  • 1892-03-19 3 brothers Hearne play in same Test Cricket England v South Africa (Cape Town)
  • 1894-10-01 First meeting of The Owl Club of Cape Town.
  • 1946-07-03 The Cape Passive Resistance Council is formed at a mass meeting in Cape Town, attended by 1,500 people
  • 1958-01-03 Lindsay Kline takes a hat-trick v South Africa at Cape Town
  • 1970-01-22 Test debut of Barry Richards, South Africa v Australia, Cape Town
  • 1970-08-13 Pamphlet bombs which scatter revolutionary African National Congress propaganda leaflets explode in Cape Town, Johannesburg, Durban and Port Elizabeth, South Africa
  • 1976-06-24 A Principal's office in Hlengisi Primary, Nyanga, outside Cape Town, South Africa, is burnt down; part of the broader resistance against the oppressive new Bantu Education policy of Afrikaans as a teaching medium in their schools
  • 1976-08-11 Race riot in Cape Town, South Africa; 17 die
  • 1977-08-10 About 100 white sympathisers joined evicted black squatters in a protest against the demolition of shanty dwellings outside Cape Town, South Africa
  • 1983-08-20 The South African anti-apartheid umbrella organization, United Democratic Front (UDF) is launched at Rocklands Community Centre in Cape Town, South Afrca
  • 1988-07-07 Five prominent anti-apartheid activists are released in Cape Town, South Africa after being detained for up to two years under the Internal Security Act
  • 1993-07-25 The St James' Church massacre in Kenilworth, Cape Town by Azanian Peoples' Liberation Army

Event of interestEvent of Interest

1996-06-23 Archbishop Tutu retires as Archbishop of Cape Town and head of the Anglican Church in South Africa

Anglican Archbishop and Activist Desmond Tutu
Anglican Archbishop and Activist
Desmond Tutu
  • 1997-03-07 Athens, Buenos Aires, Cape Town, Rome & Stockholm are finalists for 2004 Olympics site

Event of interestEvent of Interest

1998-08-11 Palestine Liberation Organisation and Palestinian National Authority president, Yasser Arafat, arrives in Cape Town on his first state visit to South Africa at the invitation of President Nelson Mandela

Palestinian Leader Yasser Arafat
Palestinian Leader
Yasser Arafat
Anti-apartheid activist and South African President Nelson Mandela
Anti-apartheid activist and South African President
Nelson Mandela
  • 2001-12-04 Marike de Klerk, ex-wife of former President F.W. de Klerk is murdered at her home in Cape Town
  • 2013-03-15 24 people die after a double decker bus veers of a pass in Cape Town, South Africa
  • 2014-12-11 World's 1st penis transplant procedure by a team from Stellenbosch University and Tygerberg Hospital in Cape Town, South Africa
  • 2018-03-24 Australian batsman Cameron Bancroft is caught on camera rubbing match ball with an object during 3rd Cricket Test in Cape Town, resulting in an infamous ball tampering scandal

Famous Birthdays

  • 1619-04-21 Jan van Riebeeck, Dutch colonial administrator and founder of Cape Colony (Cape Town), born in Culemborg (d. 1677)
  • 1883-02-21 Mick Commaille, South African cricketer and soccer rep, born in Cape Town, South Africa (d. 1956)
  • 1894-08-22 Cecil Kellaway, South African-born American actor (Guess Who's Coming to Dinner), born in Cape Town (d. 1973)
  • 1894-08-23 James La Guma, South African political activist and trade unionist, born in Cape Town (d. 1961)
  • 1896-10-27 Edith Haisman, the oldest survivor of Titanic, born in Cape Town, South Africa (d. 1997)
  • 1901-12-26 Victor Hely-Hutchinson, British composer (Carol Symphony), born in Cape Town, Cape Colony (d. 1947)
  • 1905-03-27 John Fleming (Jack) Brock, South African nutritional scientist, physician and a professor in the Department of Medicine at the University of Cape Town, born in Port Elizabeth, South Africa (d. 1983)
  • 1909-04-05 Gerald Bond, South African cricketer (one Test South Africa v England 1938, 0 & 0-16), born in Cape Town (d. 1965)
  • 1914-01-20 Wensley Pithey, South-African actor (Oliver!, The Saint, Little Women), born in Cape Town, South Africa (d. 1993)
  • 1919-04-03 Duke of Grafton, 11th Duke of Grafton, born in Cape Town (d. 2011)
  • 1925-02-20 Alex La Guma, novelist (A Walk in the Night), born in Cape Town, South Africa
  • 1934-11-09 Ronald Harwood, South African playwright (Dresser), born in Cape Town, South Africa
  • 1937-03-09 Grahame Chevalier, South African cricketer (one Test for South Africa 1970, 0 & 0*, 5-100), born in Cape Town, South Africa (d. 2017)
  • 1940-02-09 J.M. Coetzee, South African novelist, born in Cape Town, South Africa
  • 1942-04-19 Edwin "Eddie" Kramer, Suth African recording producer and engineer (the Beatles, David Bowie, Kiss, Led Zeppelin, Rolling Stones), born in Cape Town, South Africa
  • 1951-10-12 Sally Little, South African/American golfer (PGA 1980, du Maurier 1988), born in Cape Town, South Africa
  • 1959-09-11 David Laurence Frost, PGA golfer (1988 Southern Open), born in Cape Town, South Africa
  • 1963-01-03 Ashley Chinner, golfer (1992 CGIA Canadian Tour), born in Cape Town, South Africa
  • 1965-02-15 Craig Matthews, South African cricket pace bowler (South African Test), born in Cape Town, South Africa
  • 1969-06-24 Thabo Mngomeni, Cape Town, South African football player
  • 1974-02-23 Herschelle Gibbs, South African cricketer (South African Test batsman 1996), born in Cape Town, South Africa

Famous Weddings


HeartWedding of Interest

2013-12-29 YouTube star Casey Neistat (32) weds Candice Pool in Cape Town, South Africa

YouTube Star and Filmmaker Casey Neistat
YouTube Star and Filmmaker
Casey Neistat

Famous Deaths

  • 1677-01-18 Jan van Riebeeck, Dutch founder of Cape Colony (Cape Town), dies at 57
  • 1983-07-03 John Fleming (Jack) Brock, South African nutritional scientist, physician and a professor in the Department of Medicine at the University of Cape Town, dies at 78