Our Heritage in pictures
By the mid-1800s, one of the more important chiefs of the area was named, Mogale (or Mohale), and the mountains became known as Magaliesberg, or Mogale's mountain. "Mogale" means "sharp" or "clever" person, but is also the common word for a warrior or Tswana soldier. Similarly, the mountain range to the north, near Sun City, Pilanesberg, was named after the local Bakgatla chiefs, who were called Pilane.
In 1822 Shaka sent his most trusted commander, Mzilikazi, to conquer the Sotho tribes of the region. After accomplishing this task, Mzilikazi decided to break away from Shaka and found his own nation, the Matabele. As he feared an attack from Shaka if he returned home he settled in the Magaliesberg regions. On 17 January 1837, after some Voortrekkers had been attacked and killed by Mzilikazi's impis they counter-attacked and, under the leadership of Hendrik Potgieter and Gerrit Maritz, and with the help of local Sotho-Tswana chiefdoms, drove the Matabeles north across the Limpopo River. Because the re-conquest of the region was a cooperative venture of the Boers and the Sotho-Tswana against the Matabele, the Boers and Sotho-Tswana had friendly relations at the beginning of white settlement. These friendly relations are reflected in the name of the main Boer town, Rustenburg, or "resting town," because it seemed to them that they would not have to engage in any more fighting against African communities.
The Boers initially settled south of the Magaliesberg in the highveld leaving the bushveld north of the Magaliesberg mostly to their Sotho-Tswana friends and allies; according to Ms. Sarah Heckford's memoir, "A Lady Trader in the Transvaal," the Boers would move into the bushveld to visit their Sotho-Tswana neighbors during the winter. According to oral testimony by Tswana headmen recorded around the turn of the 20th century, many individual Boers formed close friendships with prominent individual Tswana headmen and chiefs, especially for the purpose of forming hunting parties to gather ivory and other products from further north. Subsequently the Boers began settling in the valleys of the Magaliesberg Range and in the bushveld north of the Magaliesberg, and turned the region into some of the most productive farmland in South Africa, while displacing their former allies, confining them to locations and reserves. The name, Magaliesburg has been bastardised. It is know to the tribe as “Dithaba tsa Mogale” and with enormous caves, it is by far known to be the only mountain to have life form around. Source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Magaliesberg
King Mogale Mogale
Kgosi Mogale wa Mogale was born between 1789 and 1799 at Wolhuterskop, between the BaPo Ba Mogale and BaKwena BaMogopa wars, which saw the death of his father. Raised by his grandparents, he grew to be a fine young man, heir to the throne of the BaPo Ba Mogale kingdom.
When Mzlikazi invaded in 1827, Mogale Mogale was in the process of founding his own military group. He was arrested by the Matabele and the story goes that he was forced to pierce his ears as a form of humiliation. After some years in captivity, he was rescued by a party of BaPo Ba Mogale and hid in the mountains until, in 1837, he settled in Magaliesberg and was inaugurated King. He had a vision to see his people rise, reconstruct, become unified and develop their kingdom to its former glory. He formed a good relationship with the Boers when he pursued Gozane, Ndebele’s Headman, and slayed him and took his men prisoners, but, in 1847, he was suspected of gunrunning and conspiracy and was forced to flee to ThabaNchu, Basotholand, leaving all his possessions behind, including 1000 head of cattle.
He remained there for almost 15 years, in the company of other kings of the Batswana who had fled, under the protection of Kgosi Moshoeshoe. In 1858, Kgosi Mogale Mogale participated in the Senekal war. In 1862/3 he invited his people to join him and purchased their sacred lands at the foot of Wolhuterskop from Orsmond, for 499 head of cattle. This is where many of his descendants live to this day. However, he had been declared a criminal, wanted dead or alive by Veldkornet Gert Kruger, and so returned to Basotholand where he remained between 1865 and 1868, and fought in the Battle of Siqiti. He was resolved to restore his kingdom and managed to reach consensus with the then President of the Zuid Afrikansche Republiek.
The remaining years of his life he spent in Wolhuterskop with his people, and in 1869 Kgosi Mogale Mogale passed away at the age of 70.In BaPo Ba Mogale’s history, Kgosi Mogale Mogale dominates their geneaology of kings. He rose to be a Black Star and Black Iron Pot of the BaPo Ba Mogale nation, beloved by his people and remembered for his bravery, diplomacy and leadership. Mogale was a King of the Batswana and regarded as the first black freedom fighter. Today descendants of his kingdom are about 40,000 Bapo who live in a village called Bapong near Brits led by Kgosi Bob Edward Mogale.
The Bapo (totem) elephant was adopted by the tribe based on its bravery, strength and forwardness character. “Mogale” means “bravery” and his attitude was seen as symbolic to the character of the elephant.
Known to the tribe, as Mmanthalle, it is the small mountain enclave that was used for farming by the tribe in those historical ages. Today journalists have coined it the name “Koppie” which is short for Wonderkop (farm Wonderkop 452JQ) a farm that is a subvillage of the community where the small mountain resides. Wonderkop was known to the tribe as “Maretlwane” which was also bastardized by whites and called “Marikana”.
Gotsube Le Thoto and Tlhogokgolo Mountains
The Bapo tribe would ascend these mountains in times of drought to pray for rain. The Kgosi will lead this ritual. The mountain is said to have the souls of the tribe’s ancestors and previous chiefs.