The Slagtersnek rebels are tried in the Uithenhage landdros court

The Slagtersnek MonumentThe Slagtersnek Monument

Date: 15 December, 1815

Frederik Bezuidenhout owned a farm east of the Cape Colony. After reports surfaced that he was allegedly mistreating one of his Khoikhoi laborers, he was summoned to appear in a magistrate's court. After failing to make an appearance, an attempt was made to arrest him. Bezuidenhout fled to a nearby cave where he was later discovered and shot. The fact that he was shot by a Coloured soldier was said to be part of the reason that Bezuidenhout's brother, Hans, wanted to take revenge for his brother's death.

Hans and his neighbor Hendrik Prinsloo planned an uprising against the British colonial government as they believed that the British favored Black and Coloured farmers over Afrikaner farmers. Burghers (farmers) in the surrounding areas were pressurized into joining this rebellion as Hans was said to have threatened them with death. On 18 November, this rebel group met with the forces of the military commander at Slagtersnek. Twenty rebels surrendered, but Hans refused to do so. He died while resisting arrest.

Those involved in the rebellion were tried in Uitenhage landdros court on 15 December 1815. One of the rebels was reprieved by Lord Charles Somerset but the others, Cornelis Faber (43), Stefanus Cornelis Botma (43), his brother Abraham Carel Botma (29), Hendrik Frederik Prinsloo (32) and Theunis de Klerk, were sentenced to death. The remaining rebels were acquitted or banished.

The execution of these rebels is as being a sore point with many Afrikaners and was cited as one of the reasons for the Great Trek. A monument in memory of the rebels was erected in 1919.

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