The historical archaeological investigation of a midden found at Brynterion Estate, Pretoria


The refuse midden found during construction activities at the Bryntirion Estate was excavated during July 2007. The contractor needs to be commended for reporting the find as this lead to the collection of valuable historical information.

The culture artefacts from the midden mostly date to the late 19th and early 20th century. More recent artefacts were also found, but these seem to be from the recent use of the midden.

It seems as if the midden was started during the Anglo Boer War (1899-1902). The midden probably is linked to a refugee camp which was established on the site by the British in 1902. The families of Boers who supported the British were housed in this camp.

The information obtained assist in the reconstruction of one of the most important periods in the history of South Africa. The detailed analysis of cultural material will contribute to the understanding of the circumstances and way of life in this and similar camps during the War.

Report by

Anton C. van Vollenhoven BA, BA (Hons), DTO, NDM, MA (UP), MA (US), DPhil (UP) Anton J. Pelser BA (Unisa), BA (Hons), MA (UWits)