Alfred Milner becomes High Commissioner and Governor of the Cape Province

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Wednesday, 21 April 1897

Sir Alfred Milner became High Commissioner for South Africa and Governor of the Cape Province in 1897. His efforts to gain political rights for the "Uitlanders" (foreigners who flocked to the gold-fields in the Transvaal) heightened growing tension between Britain and the South African Republic (Transvaal). With his rigid attitude he played a prominent role in events leading up to the Second South African War (Anglo-Boer War 2). He assisted in negotiating a peace treaty that ended the South African War. After the war he became the British governor of the Orange Free State (Orange River Colony) and the Transvaal Colony and was tasked with reconstructing South Africa. To that effect he introduced a policy of reconstruction dubbed "reconstruction under arms".

References:
• Potgieter, D.J. et al. (eds)(1970). Standard Encyclopaedia of Southern Africa, Cape Town: NASOU.
• Muller, C.F.J. (ed)(1981). Five Hundred years: a history of South Africa; 3rd rev. ed., Pretoria: Academica,p. 362.

Last updated : 16-Apr-2014

This article was produced for South African History Online on 16-Mar-2011