Declaration of Freedom Square

 National Heritage Site declaration: 21 September 2018

The granting of land by Chief Tyali for establishing a place of learning for Africans as early as the 1800s was unprecedented on the sub-continent. During this period South Africa was still in the throes of colonial expansion and British annexation of parts of the Eastern Cape during the Frontier Wars. Chief Tyali’s donation of land to Scottish missionaries came between these Frontier Wars, the primary purpose of which was land dispossession. Given the prevailing circumstances, this would have been unpopular with many African chiefs at the time. Yet it is precisely this unconventionality that made Chief Tyali a visionary leader. In addition to education, part of the reasoning in granting the land was an attempt to gain knowledge into the workings of the colonial system.

To access the gazette notice, records of issued permits and decisions, and other technical information please visit the site record in the inventory of the national estate, accessible via SAHRIS