A report on the investigation of graves on the farm Bosmanspruit 459 JS (Emadamini), impacted on by the optimum colliery opencast operations (Kwagga section), Mpumalanga Province


Archaetnos cc was requested by Mr. Mike Nkosi of Zenzele Funerals Witbank, on behalf of Optimum Colliery, to assist with the investigation and exhumation of a number of graves, located on one site situated within the Kwagga Section of the Colliery. The site is located on a portion of the farm Bosmanspruit 459 JS, near Arnot Power Station, Mpumalanga. The graves are threatened by the expansion of opencast coalmining operations. Although the graves are younger than 60 years of age, and therefore not regarded as heritage or archaeological in nature, the undertakers requested us to assist with the excavations, identification and documentation of all the graves and the possible remains contained in them.

In total 6 graves were investigated. Family members (descendants) identified the graves, and gave consent for the exhumation and relocation of the graves. The family members were all present during the exhumation process. All the graves were relocated to the Phumulong Mhluzi Local cemetery. Each individual burial is discussed in Appendix 2 (Burial Forms), while a summarized discussion is also given.

We believe that the investigation, exhumation and relocation of the graves from the site were conducted successfully and that the proposed development in this section can continue, taking into consideration a number of recommendations put forward at the end of the report.

Report by

A. J.Pelser & Dr. A.C. van Vollenhoven(L.AKAD.SA.)