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Tuesday, April 16, 1946

The 21 ¼ carat diamond that would come to be known as the Eureka Diamond was discovered by a young boy and his little sister as they played in their family farm along the Vaal River. The children often picked up rocks from the river to play with. A man named Schalk van Niekerk visited the farm, and, suspecting the rock might be a diamond, offered to buy it from the children. Their mother decided to give it to him instead. Van Niekerk got the diamond verified and sold it for £ 500. The diamond made its way to Britain where it was displayed until 1967.

This article was produced for South African History Online on 12-Apr-2013

This Day in History Extra Dates
  • Friday, April 16, 2004
    A set of shell beads estimated to be 75 000 years old and found in Blombos cave in SA, is believed to be the oldest known jewellery. The newly discovered beads were made from the shells of a type of mollusc.
    References:

  • Friday, April 16, 1999
    Abdelaziz Bouteflika, favoured by the powerful military is elected president of Algeria. His opponents, who withdraw to protest voter fraud, call the election a sham.
    References:
    • Wallis, F. (2000). Nuusdagboek: feite en fratse oor 1000 jaar, Kaapstad: Human & Rousseau
    •  https://www.news24.com

  • Thursday, April 16, 1998
    Louise Mollet-Prinsloo (50) dies in a hospital in Nelspruit, two weeks after she shot herself in her guesthouse in Witrivier, Mpumalanga. 
    References:
    • Wallis, F. (2000). Nuusdagboek: feite en fratse oor 1000 jaar, Kaapstad: Human & Rousseau

  • Tuesday, April 16, 1991
    Minister of Law and Order Adriaan Vlok announces a ban on the carrying of pangas, bush knives and axes in "conflict situations" but refuses to include traditional weapons – shields, sticks and knobkieries.
    References:
    • Meer, F. (ed)(1993). The Codesa file. Durban: Madiba Publishers, p. 318

  • Monday, April 16, 1990
    Nelson Mandela thanks the world in the Wembley Stadium, London, for support during his imprisonment.
    References:
    • Wallis, F. (2000). Nuusdagboek: feite en fratse oor 1000 jaar, Kaapstad: Human & Rousseau
    •  https://www.andibradley.com/

  • Saturday, April 16, 1988
    The military commander of the Palestine Liberation Organisation (PLO), Khalil al-Wazir, is assassinated in Tunisia.  Israeli gunmen are blamed. 
    References:
    • Wallis, F. (2000). Nuusdagboek: feite en fratse oor 1000 jaar, Kaapstad: Human & Rousseau
    •  https://africanhistory.about.com/

  • Thursday, April 16, 1964
    Nationalist leader Joshua Nkomo is placed under restriction in Southern Rhodesia.
    References:
    • Pretoria News, 16 April 2004, Today in History

  • Wednesday, April 16, 1969
    At a summit meeting in Lusaka (14-16 April) the leaders of East and Central African States on 16 April 1969 agree to issue the Lusaka Manifesto. It states the belief that all men are equal, and have equal rights to human dignity and respect, regardless of colour, race, religion or sex, and condemns apartheid in SA.
    References:

  • Thursday, April 16, 1981
    The government seizes the passport of Bishop Desmond Tutu, the Anglican General Secretary of the South African Council of Churches, apparently because of his speeches made in the United States in March 1981.
    References:
    • Kalley, J.A.; Schoeman, E. & Andor, L.E. (eds)(1999). Southern African Political History: a chronology of key political events from independence to mid-1997, Westport: Greenwood
    •  https://topics.nytimes.com/

  • Wednesday, April 16, 1958
    John Coulter, SA composer, is born.
    References:
    • Wallis, F. (2000). Nuusdagboek: feite en fratse oor 1000 jaar, Kaapstad: Human & Rousseau

  • Wednesday, April 16, 1958
    The last general election of the Union of South Africa is held.   The National Party under J.G. Strydom wins 103 seats.
    References:
    • Wallis, F. (2000). Nuusdagboek: feite en fratse oor 1000 jaar, Kaapstad: Human & Rousseau

  • Saturday, April 16, 1955
    Cornelis Christiaan Nepgen, Dutch Reformed missionary in the Transkei, retires after thirty-five years of service.  He wrote 'Die sosiale Gewete van die Afrikaanssprekendes' (The social conscience of the Afrikaans speaking people) in 1938, in which the character traits of Afrikaners are described and analysed.
    References:
    • Wallis, F. (2000). Nuusdagboek: feite en fratse oor 1000 jaar, Kaapstad: Human & Rousseau Swart: Kultuuralmanak

  • Sunday, April 16, 1950
    Seretse Khama, rightful heir to the Ngwato chieftaincy in Bechuanaland (Botswana), is reunited with his British wife in England.
  • Tuesday, April 16, 1946
    The Eureka diamond is sold in London for £5 700.
    References:
    • Wallis, F. (2000). Nuusdagboek: feite en fratse oor 1000 jaar, Kaapstad: Human & Rousseau

  • Monday, April 16, 1883
    After the abolition of the triumvirate, Paul Kruger is elected president of the Zuid-Afrikaansche Republiek for the first time.
    References:
    • Wallis, F. (2000). Nuusdagboek: feite en fratse oor 1000 jaar, Kaapstad: Human & Rousseau
    •  https://www.andibradley.com/

  • Monday, April 16, 1906
    Bambata Rebellion: General mobilisation of Natal militia, with an appeal to the neighbouring states for assistance. To this, Transvaal rapidly responded, equipping and paying for its units.
    References:

  • Monday, April 16, 1877
    Gen. Johannes Jacobus Pienaar, administrator of Transvaal, is born in Ladybrand, OFS.
    References:
    • Wallis, F. (2000). Nuusdagboek: feite en fratse oor 1000 jaar, Kaapstad: Human & Rousseau

  • Friday, April 16, 1745
    Adriaan van Jaarsveld, frontier commandant and leader of the burghers who drove Landdros Maynier away in 1795, is born.   Van Jaarsveld dies while imprisoned in the Castle.
    References:
    • Wallis, F. (2000). Nuusdagboek: feite en fratse oor 1000 jaar, Kaapstad: Human & Rousseau
    •  Potgieter, D.J. et al. (eds)(1970). Standard Encyclopaedia of Southern Africa, Cape Town: NASOU, v. 11, p. 150

  • Sunday, April 16, 1950
    Seretse Khama succeeded his father, Kgosi (King) Khama III known as Khama the Good, ruler of the Bangwanto people. Subsequent to his father’s death Khama was considered the rightful heir to the Ngwato chieftaincy in Botswana (then known as Bechuanaland) and became a chief of the Bangwanto tribe. Seretse acquired his education in South Africa and he graduated from Fort Hare University College with a B.A. degree. Determined to further his studies in law he left for England. It is here that he first met his wife Ruth William. William was a WAAF ambulance driver during World War II and worked as a clerk at Lloyds in 1947. The two married in September 1948. Their marriage was prohibited in Botswana and escalated into a political turmoil. This was in terms of the Prohibition of Mixed Marriages Act, Act No 55 of 1949 enacted by the apartheid government. The Act forbade marriages between Whites and other races; it was the case for Khama’s marriage. Back at Khama’s home his furious uncle, Tshekedi ordered him to come home and was eager to prevent their marriage. To make matters worse Khama was on the verge of losing his chieftaincy. Upon his arrival he was able to persuade his people that he was eligible to carry on with the chieftaincy and they even approved of his marriage. The family recognized him as Kgosi (King) and Ruth, as his wife, was accepted and warmly welcomed. This was done at a meeting of Elders held by the Bangwanto people.  
    References:
    • SAHO, President Seretse Khama, from South African History Online, [online], Available at www.sahistory.org.za [Accessed: 28 March 2014]
    • Evans, B.A., Sir Seretse Khama, from the African History, [online], Available at africanhistory.about.com [Accessed: 28 March 2014]