Talk:Bloemfontein

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Please keep out school rivalry[edit]

This is an encyclopedia not a grafitti wall. Im not inclined to like the last sentence concerning most famous schools (Grey and Eunice) but am letting it stand. But really Oranje the best girls school is just likely to enlist "mooi skoone ..." comments. Also removing schools is not kosher

While on the subject a table of Schools might be better. Paul Hjul 18:11, 20 June 2006 (UTC)


Grey College is the 3rd oldest school in South Africa and the oldest school outside of Cape Town (following SACS and Bishops). It has produced legendary old boys and upholds very strong traditions.Grey College was founded by Sir George Grey on 13 October 1855 and the school's grounds contain some beautiful buildings designed by Sir Herbert Baker. For more info, go to [Grey College http://www.gc.co.za]


Please re-read earlier post particularly the bit "Im not inclined to like" - Giving a condenced school history in the discussion thread is silly. If you look at the history of the page you'll see the particular school rivalry problem that existed on the page. Paul Hjul 18:18, 5 July 2006 (UTC)


What is all this big fuss about Grey College, Eunice, Oranje? Surely this page should be more about Bloemfontein? In any event, is rivalry not just a negative word for competiton? Paul, it also seems that you are only opinionated contributor here. The reference to Grey College above was a nice enough teaser to make me more interested to look at their website. Put both your feet back on the ground mate (and while there, check your spelling).

Its actually not worth going into this mate: You appear (based on checking the history of this talk page) to be the same person who made the original remarks.


born: Tolkien : the Lord of the ring

     Aldous Von Tana architect Orange State member Domus Academy

Historically Afrikaaner[edit]

"Though historically a predominantly Afrikaner settlement, Bloemfontein was officially founded in 1846" ...

IIRC Bloemfonteins cities population is generally regarded as having been predominantly English up until the 20th centuary - in spite of being the capital of the OFS Republic the trade and commerce factor weighing very heavily into the equation. Checking this is on my overrunning "todo list", but in any event Afrikaaner with respect to language is problematic considering that it really only emerged as a seperate language in the 20th centuary - seperating language and culture seems like a route, although it will lengthen the section.

Bloemfontein Conference[edit]

The conference demonstrated the unsatisable arrogance of both Kruger and Milner (needs citations is historically contestable)

I've removed the comment and instead opened it up here as I believe it is more appropriate for the Talk page. I agree that this remark needs a citation or needs to be removed.

Paul Hjul 08:03, 18 December 2006 (UTC)

Paul, fair enough it was my comment that the above claim was contestable. In his book, "Goodbye Dolly Gray" (1959) Ch. "Outbreak of War", Rayne Kruger gives an overview of the Bloemfontein Conference and doesn't make any suggestions about President Kruger's arrogance, nor Milner's; though he does make several comments regarding Milner refusing to shake the President's hand.

J.C. Smuts [Jnr], in Jan Chritian Smuts(1954), ch. X11 'Dark Clouds', suggests Milner was 'the most dangerous man'...[Britian] could possibly have exported to South Africa. Manfred Nathan, Paul Kruger: His Life and Times,(1941) pp.430-435 suggests Kruger offered concessions, but concludes 'Milner showed at the outset he would make no concession.'(p. 435.) Those are the South African writers...

Byron Farwell, The Great Boer War,(1976) sid 'Kruger tried to bargain but Milner was obdurate' p.34. Thomas Pakenham, The Boer War, (1979) Ch. 6 puts the blame on Milner, and in Ch.42 said, 'Milner...had tried to precipitate war'. They are British historians...

The Australian historian Craig Wilcox, Australia's Boer War (2002), says that '[t]he Uitlanders were indeeed suffering, but not from Boer tyranny' (p.18) and Kruger offered concessions and that after the conference the Australian press thought a war was remote(p.19).

Kruger according to the various sources offered concessions; therfore to say he was arrogrant at the Conference is a sweeping statement unsupported by historians. On the other hand, Milner doesn't seems to have displayed arrogrance other than refusing to shake Kruger's hand - however, all the historical evidence suggests Milner had a plan - Milner maak a plan to bring about a war.

As an Aussie uitlander an outsider looking in from afar, it is vital that the article on Bloemfontein should be accurate. Tonyob 09:47, 18 December 2006 (UTC)

Hence I agree that citations are needed - actually there is sufficient material to warrant a seperate article dealing with the Conference and various views.

My point here is simply that the inclusion in brackets to indicate a problem with the article viz. a missing citation is problematic as the matter is better suited to the talk pages. Paul Hjul 11:05, 18 December 2006 (UTC)

Im inclined to put a foot note at the end of that remark saying "While no common consensus amongst historians exist as to the apportionment of fault, accusations of insatisable arrogance have been laid against both Milner (cite critics of Milner) and Kruger.(cite critics of Kruger)"

I think that modern scholarship has cast a pretty good light on the motivations of Milner, Kruger, etc. See especially in this regard JS Marais - The Fall of Kruger's Republic, Oxford (1961) . I don't think that accusations of arrogance are really necessary — it's pretty well established that Milner had largely settled on war by this point. I certainly agree that the Bloemfontein Conference page needs work though, such a crucial event needs much better coverage — I'll try and work on it in the New Year.
Xdamrtalk 05:39, 28 December 2006 (UTC)

Naming of Bloemfontein[edit]

It might indeed be very interesting to thoroughly research the origins of the name of Bloemfontein. Is it really true that the name was invented by the British? Are there no examples of towns or places named after local people? What about Kokstad, Griekwastad, Magaliesberg, Silkaatsnek, Makapansgat, Boesmanland, Griekwaland, Namakwaland, Outeniquaberge, Kafferrivier...? —The preceding unsigned comment was added by 83.84.28.248 (talk) 15:11, 3 March 2007 (UTC).

Is it not true that Bloemfontein means Fountain of Flowers? W2ch00 21:22, 1 June 2007 (UTC)
No, it means Fountain of Flower or Fountain of a flower(I don't no what correct English is, but it's one flower) 80.126.25.66 (talk) 13:41, 24 March 2008 (UTC)

According to a booklet i have with me, called: Gidskaart van ons Wêreld in een Land (dated 1985), has the following on the name: The first "White" person to establish his home here was a voortekker called Brits. In the field in front of his home he found a fountain, where flowers where blooming, so he called his farm Bloemfontein. On this same site the old Presidents house was later build (first completed in 1886). It is now a museum. On the same place where just north runs the Bloemfonteinspruit, you can see this fountain, marked with concrete plaque, the water still comes out of the ground there. Perhaps the name means blooming not flower like suggested by your arguments.Flagman (talk) 10:50, 3 December 2009 (UTC)

Languages[edit]

What is the language of the majority in Bloemfontein? It would be great if someone could put some info about the languages of the city to the article. Thanks--213.186.255.199 22:50, 31 July 2007 (UTC)

That's harder then it sounds. You could look at the municipality, but that would be more like a county rather than city limits. If you mean city you also need to make sure what part of the city? During apartheid 'Bloemfontein' was only the white settlement of 'Bloemfontein'. Today the black townships can even still be considered geographically separate, while some could refer to them as suburbs. This isn't as simple as America where you have had 'incorporated communities' for a long time. Times have changed in South Africa, including the classification of a city. Bezuidenhout (talk) 13:37, 5 July 2010 (UTC)
I looked at the Census 2001 data. There's basically three areas you can look at:
  • the Census-defined "Main Place" Bloemfontein, which is essentially the former "white" Bloemfontein. It has a population of 112,000 and the language breakdown is 68.7% Afrikaans, 12.2% Sesotho, 8.8% English, 4.5% Setswana, and 3.5% isiXhosa.
  • the above grouped together with the Main Places Mangaung Part 1, Opkoms, Peter Swart, Rodenbeck and Sonskyn. They together make up what I would call "Bloemfontein"; the divisions are artificial and based on the former racially-based local authority boundaries. This area has a total population of 366,000, and the language breakdown is 36.7% Sesotho, 26.4% Afrikaans, 18.0% Setswana, 13.9% isiXhosa, and 2.9% English.
  • the Mangaung Local Municipality, which includes all of the above along with Thaba Nchu and Botshabelo and surrounding rural areas. The municipality has a total population of 645,000 and the language breakdown is 49.6% Sesotho, 18.6% Setswana, 16.1% Afrikaans, 12.0% isiXhosa, and 1.8% English.
I'm thinking about how best this information could be included in the article. htonl (talk) 14:50, 5 July 2010 (UTC)
To be honest I belive we should mention about the first two (not the third since that information has its place on Mangaung). I think we should mention both and address that the first only respresents the former 'whites only' section. Bezuidenhout (talk) 17:11, 5 July 2010 (UTC)

images repeated[edit]

there are two images of the Parliament building in Bloemfontein. that's unnecessary, one should be removed. (Sunsetterxxx (talk) 03:59, 30 May 2008 (UTC))

Bloemfontein - Oceanic climate.[edit]

Hi All

I studied climatology. And I can assure you that Bloemfontein does not have an oceanic climate. Exactly the oposite,Bloemfontein has a Continental Climate. The drakensberg obstructs the flow of moist air into central interior. Bloem has an very low humidity. Ask anybody who lives there about their dry skin. Sinusitus etc. all a direct consequence of low humidity. Another key aspect of Bloemfonteins Continental climate is the severe extremes our temp. achieves. You can easily get a minus 5-10 in winter and a 35-40 in summer. In a Place with a "oceanic climate" the ocean which does not change temperature as easily as soil stabalises the temp. So you will see that the climate ranges for Durban for instance is much, much smaller.

Excuse my english. I am a "boerseun".

Kind Regards Johan Swart —Preceding unsigned comment added by 196.207.32.37 (talk) 14:43, 4 August 2008 (UTC)

Hi All

I went ahead and changed the above mentioned line. I trust there wont be objections.

Kind regards —Preceding unsigned comment added by 196.207.32.37 (talk) 14:52, 4 August 2008 (UTC)

Etymology in lead[edit]

I have hidden the following part of the lead:

Although Bloemfontein has a reputation for its flowers in an otherwise arid region, the city's name is alleged by some[according to whom?] to refer to Jan Bloem (1775-1858), a Korana Griqua leader whose people inhabited (and still inhabit) parts of the Free State and Northern Cape.[citation needed]

(see note under naming above).Flagman (talk) 11:04, 3 December 2009 (UTC) This contains an unsourced and speculative weasel word. Who alleges this? Has this been published in reliable sources? If this is to be included, it needs to be verifiable. As it stands, it's not. Aecis·(away) talk 10:54, 18 August 2008 (UTC)

I reverted your edit because the alternative derivation of the name was not referenced either, making your edit POV. A better solution might have been to reword, tag for reference, or even better, find a reference. In any event, I've now added a reference that covers all the name alternatives. Socrates2008 (Talk) 11:12, 18 August 2008 (UTC)
Which alternative derivation are you talking about? The "reputation for its flowers in an otherwise arid region"? I removed that as well, as you may notice. And how exactly would it have been pov? And which pov? Rewording unsourced weasel words doesn't do anything about the lack of sourcing. The claims had been tagged for reference, but tags do not rule out removal. Aecis·(away) talk 12:25, 18 August 2008 (UTC)
What I mean is that all the origins of the name were unreferenced, yet you deleted only Jan Bloem for being unreferenced, leaving the flower origins (in the previous paragraph), although it was similary unreferenced. As it turns out, the weasel words did not make the assertion about Jan Bloem incorrect. So correcting the grammar and adding a reference is preferable to deletion here. Socrates2008 (Talk) 14:11, 18 August 2008 (UTC)
You mean the bit about Bloemfontein being "popularly and poetically known as the city of roses"? You're right, that was just as unreferenced and just as unsourced as the paragraph that I did remove. I didn't notice that bit. Has got nothing to do with pov. Aecis·(away) talk 15:37, 18 August 2008 (UTC)

Suburbs[edit]

Can somebody please explain the difference between a "suburb" and a "predominantly black suburb"? KongOlavKonfekt (talk) 16:17, 2 September 2010 (UTC)

A "suburb" is a former white-designated area, while a "pred. black suburb" is practically a township, or a now decayed part of a city centre. Bezuidenhout (talk) 19:32, 2 September 2010 (UTC)

Military base[edit]

Hi. See no mention of the military base. Is it not mentioned for a reason? Gbawden (talk) 12:34, 3 July 2012 (UTC)

Springbok Park?[edit]

Is Chevrolet Park, Bloemfontein the same location as the Springbok Park detailed on this image? Best Regards. DynamoDegsy (talk)

Yes, Chevrolet Park (previously know as OUTsurance Oval and Goodyear Park) used to be known as Springbok Park..., [1] --NJR_ZA (talk) 11:17, 16 April 2013 (UTC)