Carnarvon, Northern Cape
|District||Pixley ka Seme|
|• Total||108.75 km2 (41.99 sq mi)|
|Elevation||1,309 m (4,295 ft)|
|• Density||61/km2 (160/sq mi)|
|Racial makeup (2011)|
|• Black African||4.8%|
|First languages (2011)|
|Postal code (street)||8925|
Carnarvon is a small town in the Northern Cape Province of South Africa. Originally established in 1860 as the village of Harmsfontein, it was located within the territory of Schietfontein, the only water source in the area and the site of the Rhenish mission station founded in 1847 by the missionary, Rev. Christian Wilhelm Alheit. Some of the original mission buildings are still in use. The name was changed in 1874 in honour of the British Colonial Secretary, Lord Carnarvon (1831–1890), whose son, also Lord Carnarvon, was the famous Egyptologist.
The main agricultural activity is sheep farming.
A site near Carnarvon has been chosen for the construction from 2009 of MeerKAT, an array of 50 or more 12m diameter radio dishes, a pilot project for the massive Square Kilometre Array telescope. The African portion of the Square Kilometre Array will also be located outside Carnarvon.
The modern public library meets the needs of all readers and the local high school is capable of preparing pupils to virtually follow any career path. With a hostel, the school offers accommodation to pupils whose families do not live close to town.
In 1875, the NG Church was established and the first pastor was Rev. WP de Villiers, pastor of NG Beaufort West. For 30 Years Rev. de Villiers was head of the NG Church. As there were no schools, the pastor, when his duties allowed, and his wife started a teaching school.
The first church was built using stone. At a total cost of £ 12,000 the first church was inaugurated in February 1882. But interestingly enough the cornerstone reads: "Deze steen werd gelegd in de naam van die Vader, Zoon en Heilige Geest. 23 September 1880.", stating 23 September 1880 as the inaugurated date.
The adult professing NG Church membership was 830 in 1979, 660 in 1999, 468 in 2000, 406 in 2007 and 375 in 2012.
According to World Gazetteer Carnarvon's population has declined slightly between 1996 and 2007 from 5933 to 5760.
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