The Oukloof Legacy
“Nobody knows the history of why we were put here. The reason why there is nothing about us in the museum or the tourism centre is because we are nothing in their eyes. We are almost like chaff that covers the wheat grain. When the wind blows, it blows the chaff away leaving the grain behind. Thats how the Ouklowers were blown away. The chaff is gone, and they have the grain.”
– Gertruida Swarts
– Anna Matala
– Maria Appollis
– Petrus Manuel
Our vision starts with the vision of the Ouklowers – the surviving members of the Oukloof community forcibly removed from their homes in 1965. Their determination to have their story recorded and to break the silence about the history of Oukloof here in Riebeek Kasteel in the Riebeek Valley inspired us in 2018 to help make that a reality.
Story of Oukloof
Oukloof was a coloured settlement established as a Dutch Reformed Mission Station in 1921 in Riebeek Kasteel when a prominent white farmer George J Euvrard Snr donated a portion of his land for the purpose of building a coloured residential area. This was not an act of philanthropy but rather a move to appease growing racial sentiments from white residents who wanted separate living areas for the coloured people in the valley.