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Location: Eastern Witwatersrand, Central Transvaal (View location on map)

Minerals Worked: Coal

Principal Mines: Great Eastern and Clydesdale Collieries

Background History:

Three portions of "uitval grond" left over from the farms Geduld, Brakpan and Rietfontein were surveyed in 1838 and named "The Springs" after underground springs that were located on the farm. When coal was discovered in the vicinity in 1887 a village was established and six years later a colliery was set up to supply coal to the Transvaal Railways. The later coal mines established at Witbank were the cause of the gradual decline and closure of the mine in Springs.

In 1895, two years after the sinking of the first colliery in the neighbourhood of Springs, during the time that the thirst to find new deposits of gold on the Rand was raging, that a mining interest approached the owner of Geduld farm, Mr. A.J. Kraft, for options to buy his land. However, the subsequent gold mining activities only commenced in 1903.

The gold mining operations brought an increase in the number of workers to the area and so in 1904 a new town layout was planned for the community at Springs. Conversely, no planning for the housing of black miners and Indian traders took place and consequently informal settlements began to grow. Protests and petitions finally bore fruit for the Asian community in 1924, and Akerton was proclaimed. It was to be many years later and only due to the policies of the government at the time, that the town of Kwa Thema was established in 1952.

The advent of electricity, combined with the opening of more gold mines, made the 1930's a time of rapid growth for the municipality. At one time it had eight important gold mines around the area and was considered the largest gold producing area in the world. However gold is no longer essential to the economy of the town since it has attracted many large manufacturing companies and industries such as food canning, bicycles and engineering

The Postcards

As far as we are aware the following  are the only known coal mining related cards to have been issued for this area.   

"Thumbnail" Images   (Note 1) Card Title or Description Card  Ref. No.
pc25.JPG (91483 bytes) Springs, The Great Eastern Colliery. PC25
pc114.jpg (90885 bytes) Springs - Great Eastern Coal Mine. PC114
Clydesdale Collieries - Springs. PC189


1) For further information and enlarged views of each postcard click on any one of the above images.

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