Start Dutch inventions dating 17th century

Dutch inventions dating 17th century

RICHMOND, VA—The Dutch East India Company established a small settlement at what is now Cape Town in 1652.

In 1795, England took control of the colony for the first time, a move made permanent in 1806.

English settlers in substantial numbers first entered South African in 1820s as part of a government program to relieve poverty at home.

Meanwhile, back in Cape Town, a slave society continued to develop—almost two-thirds of Cape Town residents in 1795 were slaves.

Also significant for South Africa’s subsequent history is the fact that the white colonial settlement had sharp “gradations of status and wealth,” as historian Leonard Thompson puts it.

Native Africans were recruited to work in the mines at low pay, segregated from whites and separated from women, and subjected to body parts searches to prevent any theft of diamonds.

Ongoing conflict between the English and the Afrikaners in the region led to the South African War (Boer War) at the end of the turn of the 20th century, which I will not detail here.

Second, the point is not to condemn the present Dutch nation for the sins of the past, as if these were unique world historical events.