Hartbeespoort Accommodation Options
Hartbeespoort Accommodation, Hartbeespoort Dam (also referred to as Harties) is an arc type dam situated in the North West Province of South. It is based on a valley to the south of the Magaliesberg mountain range and north of the Witwatersberg mountain range, about 35 kilometers west of Pretoria. The name of the dam means ‘pass of the hartebeest‘ (a species of antelope) in Afrikaans. This ‘poort‘ inside the Magaliesberg was ‘n popular place for hunters, where they cornered and shot the hartebeest. The dam was originally intended for irrigation, that is presently its primary use, as well as for industrial and domestic use. The dam’s hazard potential is rated high.
The city of Hartbeespoort is situated near the dam wall and the towns of Ifafi, Melodie, Kosmos, Meerhof and Pecanwood Estate is found alongside its banks.
Hartbeespoort was once referred to as Schoemansville, after General Hendrik Schoeman.
The structure of the dam formally began in August 1916. Initially work was delayed pending a court judgement with a specific Mr and General Hendrik Schoeman.
Marshevin in regards to the expropriation of their properties. The question was later fixed but discontent remained following a hastily passed law to facilitate the expropriation. In his book “Agter die Magalies”, Bertus de Beer claims that the government acted in huge handed approach to resolve several of issues surrounding the construction of the dam. Mother-nature caused further delays because of flooding. Throughout 1915, the wall of the Geldenhuysdam further up the river broke and a delay was also caused by the flooding of the site.
The disruption caused by the First World War and the difficulties brought on by the Rebellion of a group of Afrikaners, brought further delays to the building. Then the first business was liquidated due to financial losses caused by the floods and setbacks. In 1921 we find that an additional company appointed an engineer, F and took on the task. W. Scott that handled the task with renewed energy. Eventually in April 1923, after all the setbacks and political upheaval the project was eventually completed. In September of that same year the road over the wall of the Dam and through the tunnel was opened to traffic. The dam first overflowed in March 1925.
In 1906, the government requested a public inquiry in to the feasibility of building an irrigation dam in the Hartbeespoort of the Magaliesberg. The engineer of the inquiry that was led by the Department of Irrigation submitted a favourable are accountable to the government and the Hartebeestpoort Act. 32 of 1914 was accepted by Parliament. As early as 1909 there were test holes drilled in the bottom of the river to ascertain whether the rock formation was ideal for building such a big dam. The size of the catchment area was determined, the water flow was calculated and estimates made of the potential irrigable land. Downstream states to the prevailing water stream was established.
The dam was built on the farm Hartebeestpoort, once owned by the Boer General Hendrik Schoeman (1840–1901). The farm and surrounding property was obtained by the State, largely through the facilitation of his son, Johan Schoeman (1887–1967), in about 1912. The achievement of the dam made the agricultural land north of the Magaliesberg far more precious, especially land close to canals and the Krokodil River. Because of this, various farms of the Bakwena individuals of the Tswana ethnic group who lived in the area for several generations were appropriated or lost by various means and white farmers were settled within their place.