Pniel, Northern Cape
Establishment and early history
The Pniel Mission was established in 1845 by the Revd Winter, after exploratory expeditions from the Berlin Missionary (BMS) station at Bethanie. The missionaries had negotiated setting up a station with the Korana leader Jan Bloem jnr.
Winter withdrew owing to ill health and was replaced by the Revd Ludwick Zerwick from Bethanie and Brother Nikolaas Meyfarth.
The Orange Free State claimed sovereignty over Pniel, and President Johannes Brand appointed a landrost to presive over it. A school, a courthose and a prison were built, and the Free State Volksraad passed legislation to regulate the activities on alluvial diggings.
In 1847 an outstation was established at an old Wesleyan mission site at Platberg near the modern Warrenton, with the Revd Winter (now recovered) in charge. By 1850, however, Winter had retired yet again and was replaced by August Schmidt and F. W. Salzman.
Prominent individuals associated with the mission
- Carl Wuras - missionary at Bethanie who directed the work at Pniel.
- Richard Miles - Tswana catechist, probably at Pniel in the late 1860s/early 1870s..
- Sol Plaatje - the Tswana author and first secretary of the African National Congress.
- Schoeman, K. 1985. Die huis van die armes: die Berlynse Sendinggenootskap in die OVS, 1833-1869, pp 67-76
- Martin Meredith (2008-09-01). Diamonds, Gold, and War: The British, the Boers, and the Making of South Africa. PublicAffairs. p. 23. ISBN 978-1-58648-641-9.
- Richard Miles: Motswana preacher "to the native tribes beyond the border,