08/10/2019 - 15:53



Wednesday, August 28, 2019


Approved as Grade 1 Site


Ratelgat, Farm Luiperskop 1697, Vanrhynsdorp District, has an inalienable link to the history of the Griqua nation and, by this association, is probably the most important site and strongest tangible symbol of this people who have, through their tenacity and never-say-die attitude, were the first frontiersmen, and resisted the forces of radical displacement, colonialism, apartheid and the many natural and other unnatural iniquities to maintain their identity and to forge their dynamic culture so that it survives until today.

The Griqua had a strong relationship with Ratelgat as a cultural landscape since the first vision of the Kneg in 1915 until his last visit in 1941, with many visits and spiritual retreats afterwards. The intervention of the Kneg and his followers on the natural landscape were directly linked to his many agricultural initiatives on the farm; many which failed but were designed to keep his followers busy. One initiative, i.e. the wild tobacco (Jan Twak), was very successful, however. These initiatives took place over the whole area of the Kneg’s Ratelgat, i.e. portions 1 and 2 of Luiperskop 211.

In 1992 a monument was erected within the sacred precinct (gewyde gebied) at Ratelgat to celebrate the memory of Die Kneg, his prophecies and his role in the cultural, social and spiritual psyche of the modern Griqua. This immediate area is also where the dwelling of Die Kneg was situated. The monument was consecrated by Paramount Chief A A S le Fleur II in 1997.

Paramount Chief Andrew Abraham Stockenstrom le Fleur II was buried at Ratelgat on 8 August 2004, after his death in July. His grave is situated in the sacred area near the monument. Elsewhere on the farm, graves of the followers of and leadership under Die Kneg can be found, their associated memories celebrated and kept alive by the Volkmond (oral history) of the Griqua. 6

Ratelgat should not the only site that speaks to the Griqua people and holds a significant connection to that of the Farm Ratelgat, but indeed the first of a series of associated potential heritage resources, the exposure of the Farm Ratelgat together with the connecting associated sites will ensure that the memory of the Griqua be preserved as a most important part the Griqua collective national identity.
Community or pattern of history
Rare, endangered or uncommon
Community valued aesthetics
Social, cultural, spiritual, symbolic, aesthetic, educational
Assoc with person or group



Search form