Randburg is a truly South African town. Even its name is intricately tied to the history of our country’s currency – the Rand. From British colonialism to independence, gold, mining, and now the democratic age of urban revival, Randburg has a rich, fascinating history intimately woven into Johannesburg’s tapestry as a whole and the changes the city faced during its periods of development.
The Early Days
In its early days, the land that is now known as Randburg was nothing more than open veld roamed by tribesmen. Most of its documented history only begins in the 1800s. The story began when Boer pioneers settled four farms: Klipfontein, Driefontein, Olievenhoutspoort and Boskop, which were later subdivided among the farmers’ heirs. One of the sections was named Bordeaux by a Frenchman, Charles Rocher, who grew up in a town of the same name. With the discovery of gold, Randburg joined the rest of Johannesburg in an investment boom as the English saw it as a prime time to invest. They were also attracted to the hunting opportunities in the lush valleys of Randburg at the time.
A Name Is Chosen
Between 1928 and 1934, Randburg saw another inrush of people as a result of the Great Depression, and a major drought led to many platteland farmers settling in the town. By the 1950s, there were fewer than 9000 people in Randburg, but ten years later, it grew to 13 townships. In 1959, the town became a municipality, and its name was chosen in a competition for which the prize was £100. Some of the suggestions included Mooirand and Randstad, all inspired by the South African currency introduced in the same year as a replacement to the pound sterling.
If you’ve noticed the windmill in Milner Street, you should know that it dates back to Randburg’s early days when it was on the brink of development. Daniel Brink, the son of a woman who owned one of the initial farms, is known as one of the first true ‘Randburgers’. He started farming in Driefontein in 1906 and erected this windmill in 1924. It was fashionable at the time, as it is now, to buy land in Johannesburg North, except back then it cost just R50! Electricity was introduced in 1955, which was exciting for trade and commerce, and in 1975 the first Magistrate’s Court was established. The district headquarters for the SA Police was given its very own building in 1978. Over the past three decades, this flourishing town has continued developing and attracting investors.
Now with multiple service industries, a township business boom and growing retail sector, the opportunities are endless, and Randburg remains a preferred place to live among career professionals.If you are interested in living and working in Randburg, Live Easy has an impressive selection of affordable dream apartments.
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