A report on an archaeological watching brief implemented for the excavation of a new grave in the Erasmus family graveyard, Erasmuskasteel on a portion of the farm Waterkloof 378 JR in Pretoria, Gauteng


Archaetnos cc was requested by ARMSCOR, on behalf of the Erasmus family, after consultation with SAHRA’S BGG Unit, to conduct an Archaeological Watching Brief during the excavation of a new grave for the burial of a recently deceased member of the Erasmus family. This grave was dug in the ARMSCOR Heritage Enclave at the well-known Erasmuskasteel in Pretoria, on the premises of the Erasmus family graveyard. The graves located in last mentioned cemetery were relocated here in 1987 from their original location on the same farm.

The watching brief was necessitated by the discovery recently of Iron Age skeletal remains in a newly dug grave of another member of the Erasmus family during June 2010. Archaetnos was also involved in this investigation and the recommendations put forward in the resultant report included a watching brief. ARMSCOR, on behalf of the family, therefore requested Anton Pelser from Archaetnos to conduct said watching brief.

No further human skeletal remains or grave pits, or any other archaeological material, were recovered during the excavation of the new grave pit. The burial can therefore proceed without any problems. This report discusses the results of the watching brief, provides more historical and archaeological background on the Erasmuskasteel and surrounds and also discusses the methodology followed. More recommendations are put forward at the end of this report as well.

Report by

A.J. Pelser