Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Unusual monuments

At the end of August I took a road trip to Johannesburg and on my travels discovered two slightly unusual monuments.  Discovered by the way, as there were Geocaches hidden close to both.
The first one was a monument just outside of Middelburg in the Eastern Cape.  The stone monument has a picture of a chair on it and the sign says "Stoel Monument" (Chair Monument).  So what is the story behind the Stoel Monument?  There's a long and a short so I will keep to the short.  During the Anglo Boer War Commandant J. C. Lotter was well known for his daring hit and run tactics employed against the British forces.  Lotter and most of his commando were caught near Graaff-Reinet.  Lotter stood accused of "murder, marauding and disgraceful conduct of a cruel nature" and was charged with human rights violations and war crimes.  He was found guilty and sent to Middleburg where he was sentenced to death.  At the spot where the monument stands is where he was tied to a chair and shot.  Get it? Tied to a chair and shot = chair monument to remember him.   

The second unusual monument I got to visit on the trip was the Bles Bridges Monument outside Bloemhof in North West Province.  Bles Bridges was a much beloved and very popular Afrikaans singer who died in 2000 in a car accident on this spot just outside Bloemhof.  The local business chamber decided to put up a monument to remember him by and there you have it, a monument that looks like a grave stone with a guitar on it. 

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