Wednesday, August 15, 2012

David Livingstone's Ana Trees

About 16 kilometers from Makopane (Potgietersrus) in the Waterberg Biosphere Reserve in Limpopo Province stands a group of Ana trees (Faidherbia albida) that are generally referred to as ‘David Livingstone’s Ana trees’.

Situated in an area of great archaeological and paleontological interest, these magnificent trees that stand some 20 metres high are unique, as they are the only specimens to be found in the Waterberg area.

This magnificent part of the bushveld is steeped in history as it was here that in 1852, the Voortrekker leaders Hendrik Potgieter and Andries Pretorius reconciled as well as being the area where sadly, some 1500 of Chief Makapan’s people died of starvation, when Piet Potgieter and his men laid siege to the cave in which Makapan’s men were hiding after the massacre at Moordrift.

In 1847 the well known explorer and missionary David Livingstone, accompanied by his wife Mary Moffat, undertook a journey from his mission station at Kalobeng in Botswana via Rustenberg and on towards Makopane (Potgietersrus). It was here, under the large group of Ana trees that they set up camp and rested for a while before continuing on their journey along the Mogalakwena river.

In 1949, these beautiful trees were proclaimed a natural monument and a national heritage monument was erected there to commemorate Dr Livingstone’s stay there.

Visit the Waterberg Biosphere Reserve when you are in this lovely area and follow the fascinating Waterberg Meander to view this national heritage site, and rest a while in the shade of these historic trees that offered shelter to Dr livingstone and his wife as well as to the Voortrekkers.
Sophiatown Tree Before 
Sophiatown Tree After

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