Paterson, Eastern Cape

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Dutch Reformed Church in Paterson
Dutch Reformed Church in Paterson
Paterson is located in Eastern Cape
Paterson is located in South Africa
Coordinates: 33°26′22″S 25°58′07″E / 33.4394°S 25.9685°E / -33.4394; 25.9685Coordinates: 33°26′22″S 25°58′07″E / 33.4394°S 25.9685°E / -33.4394; 25.9685
CountrySouth Africa
ProvinceEastern Cape
DistrictSarah Baartman
MunicipalitySundays River Valley
 • Total4.3 km2 (1.7 sq mi)
 • Total5,582
 • Density1,300/km2 (3,400/sq mi)
Racial makeup (2011)
 • Black African77.0%
 • Coloured20.4%
 • Indian/Asian0.3%
 • White1.5%
 • Other0.8%
First languages (2011)
 • Xhosa66.7%
 • Afrikaans23.2%
 • English5.9%
 • Sign language1.8%
 • Other2.3%
Time zoneUTC+2 (SAST)
Postal code (street)
PO box
Area code042

Paterson is a settlement in Sarah Baartman District Municipality in the Eastern Cape province of South Africa. The town is located some 80 kilometres (50 miles) north-west of Alexandria and 21 kilometres (13 miles) north of Nanaga in the Eastern Cape.[2]

Paterson village[edit]

The village was laid out in 1879 at Sand Flats railway station, which had been reached by the Midland System of the Cape Government Railways on 1 April 1876.[2][3][4][5]

The new town was named after John Paterson (1822–1880), member of Parliament and founder of the Eastern Province Herald and of the Grey Institute for Boys, who established the town.[2][5]

Railway station[edit]

The first Paterson to become a railwayman was James, who joined the Cape Government Railways as a clerk at Port Elizabeth in 1882. After rising to many senior posts in the Operating department, South African Railways General Manager Sir William Hoy appointed him in June 1913 as Divisional Superintendent at Kimberley, where he retired in 1920.[5]

Four generations and 180 cumulative years of Paterson railway service later, the fourth generation (and sixth member) of the Paterson family joined what was by then SA Transport Services in Johannesburg. During 1962, Sandflats railway station was eventually also named "Paterson".[5]


  1. ^ a b c d Sum of the Main Places Paterson and KwaZenzele Census 2011.
  2. ^ a b c "Dictionary of Southern African Place Names (Public Domain)". Human Science Research Council. p. 359.
  3. ^ Statement Showing, in Chronological Order, the Date of Opening and the Mileage of Each Section of Railway, Statement No. 19, p. 181, ref. no. 200954-13
  4. ^ Soul of A Railway - System 3 – Part 9: The Midland Main Line - Part 1: Port Elizabeth to Paterson - Caption 10 (Accessed on 5 February 2017)
  5. ^ a b c d Soul of A Railway - System 3 – Part 10: The Midland Main Line - Part 2: Paterson to Alicedale - Caption 2 (Accessed on 15 February 2017)