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The Migrations of the Koranas to the Eastward, in the basins of the Orange and Caledon rivers.


During this early period the formidable character of the Koranas was augmented by the accession to their ranks of a powerful ally in the person of a fugitive or outlaw from the Cape Colony named Jan Bloem, variously described as a German and a fugitive Dutchman. Little more is known of the origin of this man than that he was of the same name as his father, Jan Bloem, who was a German by birth, and who with his son lived successively in four parts of the Colony. This son, Jan, left or fled from the Colony with Piet Pienaar, who was afterwards murdered by the Africaanders. His avowed object in leaving the Colony was to tend some cattle belonging to Piet Pienaar on the Great river. Some time after removing thither, hearing of the multitude of cattle possessed by the Bachoana and the Koranas, and the defenceless state of these people, he resolved to make an attack upon them in order to carry off their herds, and so become rich in a single expedition.

By some means or other he prevailed on many Hottentots to accompany him on this plundering expedition. He and his people killed many of the inhabitants against whom they went, and captured a great number of their cattle ; indeed the number was so great that a thousand are said to have fallen to the share of Pienaar, which no doubt was the largest. When Pienaar transported his ill-gotten property to the Colony, Jan Bloem remained behind and continued to make plundering expeditions against the Koranas.

His first attempt was attended with a shocking event, for besides those who fell by means of his firearms, which greatly terrified the Koranas, many of the defenceless women and children ran for refuge from their murderers into the Great river, where they perished. After crossing the river, the first place where he formed his kraal was near the strong spring or fountain which now supplies the town of Bloemfontein with water, and hence its name, which it retained after he had abandoned that part of the country. He afterwards went higher up the 'Gij 'Gariep, and took up his residence near the mouth of the Kolong river. There he commenced his ravages by attacking the Bachoana, many of whom were slain, and much cattle taken. He found means to prevail upon many Bushmen and Koranas to join his standard, which they did probably to save their own lives.

He received much assistance from Jacob and Karl Kruger, two Boers who fled from the Colony for some crime of which they had been guilty. These supplied him with additional muskets, ammunition, and people, and shared in the plunder which he obtained. He then established himself at another fountain, which subsequently had the name of Jan Bloem's fontein bestowed upon it, situated between Ongeluk Fontein — the Fountain of Misfortune — and T'Goay'pa, afterwards called Blink-klip, the shining rock or stone. This place he made for a long time his headquarters. He was then elected by a clan of the Taaibosches called the Springboks, their chief, or captain, and from among them he took the greater number of his wives, by whom he had seven sons besides daughters. He continued carrying on his cattle raids to a considerable distance into the interior, living on the plunder of every kraal he could surprise. He died from the effects of poison shortly after his repulse by the Bangwaketse, and was buried at Taung, about 1799, when his son, Jan Bloem the younger, succeeded to the chieftainship of the Springboks.

It was this man who led the Koranas in one or two of the most furious attacks which they made on Lithako. Under his command, and with the firearms he had acquired, they obtained victory after victory, plundering all the tribes within their reach, and spreading dismay through a wide extent of country. At length he determined to attack the Bangwaketse, a tribe of Bachoana which their fellow-countrymen had learnt to look upon as invincible, and whose warlike chief, Makaba, had spread his fame throughout all the surrounding nations. The Koranas and Bloem were warned of the hazards they would run, but nothing daunted, the expedition started with the full assurance of an easy victory and an abundance of spoil ; but in this they were disappointed. They met with nothing but discomfiture and defeat, and here it was that a check was put to the iniquitous career of their reckless leader.

The Bangwaketse made a timely discovery of the danger which threatened them, and the energetic Makaba proved himself a warrior worthy of their steel. Both he and his people manifested considerable military skill and courage in the resistance they made against the attacks of Bloem. They raised high walls across the passes between the mountains, leaving small openings in them like gates, which could easily be closed at the approach of an enemy. Many lay in ambush, while others were stationed on the tops of the mountains, and rolled down great stones upon their assailants. So effectual was the resistance which they made that he did not capture a single beast from the Bangwaketse, though he took thousands from the Batlapin and others.

The chief of the Springboks died shortly after this repulse, in consequence, it is said, of drinking from a fountain, the water of which was supposed to have been poisoned by the Bangwaketse ; and when dying he declared his belief in this being the cause of his death. He could neither read nor write, and not- withstanding the many atrocities which he committed, and the scenes of rapine and bloodshed in which he seemed to take such delight, he presented one of those strange contradictions of character sometimes met with, by pretending to have considerable respect for religion, and by an occasional indulgence in devotional exercises.

In this disastrous expedition the Koranas lost many of their people, among whom was 'Kuri'ke, the father of 'Hanube, chief of the clan residing at 'Tshopo. 'Hanube was about twenty years old at the time of his father's death. This lesson appears to have been sufficient for them, and there is no record of any second attempt being made on the herds of the Bangwaketse by the Koranas for a long series of years.

Molehabangwe, the great chief of the Batlapin, informed Messrs. Truter and Somerville that a few years before their visit, in 1801, he and his people had been attacked by Bloem and his party, armed with muskets, that their habitations had been burnt and destroyed, and most of their women and children cruelly murdered, some sacrificed in the flames, and the greater part of their cattle captured. They were compelled to succumb, though those who attacked them were fewer in number, owing to the inferiority of their arms. Muntch, the son of Intshe, the Ostrich, was engaged in this combat, and was nearly surrounded. He fled, and was closely pursued by the Koranas, but although their arrows flew thickly round him he managed to escape. He also, like his father, sought refuge among the Bushmen for a short time.

During this period another outlying branch of the Batlapin was attacked and despoiled by some of the Korana clans. The Mutsheng, at that time, occupied a tract of country near the Langeberg, three days' journey to the south-west of Lithako. They possessed a considerable number of cattle until they were attacked by the Koranas on this occasion, who deprived them at one stroke of all their means of subsistence, and obliged them to live on roots, wild berries, gum, locusts, white ants, and other insects. They occasionally caught a koodoo, but the toil was great, the chase before they could capture it sometimes occupying two or three days. Sitlori, who gave this information, was twelve years old when Kok, the old Griqua captain, first came in their neighbourhood. He then lived far down the Great river, and had come up to the Langeberg on a hunting expedition. He visited Sitlori's father's hut, and noticing their great poverty, invited some of the members of the family to go with him to assist in herding his sheep, a fact which would seem to indicate that Kok's retainers at the time could not have been very numerous.

It is authoritatively asserted that since the early days of the Korana occupation of the portion of the country we are now speaking of, a great alteration has taken place in its water supply. Then, the Kuruman is declared to have been a great river, which sometimes rose and continued high so long that women who happened to be on the other side at the time of its rise frequently lost all hope of being able to recross it, and in their despair married other men. It is also asserted that great quantities of reeds grew in it. Much water is said to have come down from the Malopo, which formed a junction near the Korana village, as well as down another river called Misari. The Koranas stated that the Batlaru dried up the rivers by witchcraft.

The Korana clans which penetrated farthest to the north were portions of the Taaibosches and the Scorpions. So successful had they been in their forays that they were obliged, in 1820, to separate themselves into three divisions, the most numerous of these residing at Mobati with their chief. This place and Malapitze were their two great centres in those days, while minor clans were spread all over the country through which they had passed. The restless members of the tribe gathered along this frontier, and strengthened the clans which had taken up their position there. It was here that they could indulge in their national proclivities for raiding and feasting with least risk to themselves and the almost certainty of success. They were at this period at the height of their fame ; the Griqua power and territorial assumptions had scarcely germed, much less developed sufficiently to overshadow, as it subsequently did, many of their clans. But it was not this growth of Griqua power alone which contributed to and hastened their decadence. Virulent disease shortly afterwards decimated them, and committed greater havoc in their villages than either the muskets or assagais of their enemies.

In 1820 parties of Koranas had established themselves along the eastern border of the Kalahari, as far north as a place called Mutshuana, on the Kuruman river. The people of this place were under one of their own captains, called Hanno 'Kano, “no cattle.” A second kraal, a short distance from the above, was under another captain, called 'Tky, possessing also the sobriquet of Moriakotu, or Korana medicine. The people under these captains were once as numerous as the Batlapin themselves, but the measles came among them and proved so fatal that they were reduced to a very small number. Thirty-four men, who were nearly all the males that survived this terrible visitation, went against the Batlou, Tamahas, and Tonnans, by invitation of the Batlapin, between 1806 and 1808. The Batlaru or Lahize's people joined also in the expedition with the Batlapin. When the battle was at its height, the Batlapin and Batlaru fled, leaving the Koranas nearly surrounded by the enemy. Thirty of them were cut off, and only four escaped. One of the latter managed to do so before his party was completely surrounded, the others remained together, defending themselves to the last.

There was also in these parts another considerable kraal at 'Tshopo, to which allusion has already been made. Besides these, kraals were spread along the Vaal river between the Maquassies' spruit and the embouchure of the Kolong, as well as between the latter and the junction of the 'Gij 'Gariep with the Great river. At Modderfontein, kraals of Koranas and Bushmen were living in apparent friendship, although in close proximity to one another ; the name of the captain of the former was Ilapaim and of the latter 'Caricoup.

Near the banks of the river another Korana horde was met with, near a spot named t'Jokohama, under a captain called Slaparm, who in 1801 offered himself as a guide to Mr. Borcherds' party as far as Jonker's-fontein. Between this last place and the Karee mountains these travellers met no more Koranas, but several hordes of Bushmen, some of whom, as their sugar was consumed, supplied them with beautiful honey. The travellers thus gained their confidence and some of them followed the waggons, a fact which showed that even at that time, when they were most maligned, a fair reward would secure the willing services of these wild huntsmen.

The foregoing shows that by 1801 the clans of the Middle Veld had entirely evacuated their old camping grounds, and were now spread over an immense extent of country, from the t'Keys drift, where several hordes and kraals of Koranas were found, to the eastern border of the Kalahari, north of the Kuruman river.

As the race thus extended, the subdivision of their clans continued to increase, but in the present day the names of many of them appear to be lost, and the following is the most extensive list which could be obtained from reliable sources. Some of the old Korana authorities assert that the ancient name of the Great Koranas was a word signifying the Toovenaars, or the Wizards or Sorcerers, and that all the other clans or offshoots sprang from them ; that afterwards the eldest branch of these Toovenaars or Great Koranas, or rather that of the paramount chief, obtained the name of the Taaibosches or 'Gou'naap's Koranas, from the sobriquet of one of their great chiefs, although they still remained and considered themselves Toovenaars.

The next in rank to them came the Links stem, those of the left stem, or those standing to the left. These people had also a chief named Links ; the name therefore might mean those of the stem of Links. If asked, however, to what part of the Korana tribe he belongs, a Links Korana will always call himself a Toovenaar, proving that he does not consider his branch as completely severed from the parent stock.

The same may be said of the next great branch, called the 'Gaap and 'Twua-'kne or Katse people. This last title is said to have been given on account of these people having pursued a hartebeest across a ford called the Kat ford on the 'Taba-'Taepoep, or Kat river.

The next powerful branch of the old stock was the Springboks, so called on account of their being numerous like that animal.

5. The Scorpions. The reason for this name and those which follow has not been given.

6. The 'Kow-'kais, 'Kow-'cu'ga, or the Zeekoes, i.e. the Hippopotami.

7. The Zee-koes dragers, the Bearers of Sea-cows or Hippopotami.

8. The Regt-Staanders, those who stand for the right. These people have obtained the name of the Goliaths, from one of their chiefs.

9. The Oo-'kena or Scar-june.

10. The Gomtena.

All these appear to be the nearest branches of the main stem, those which follow are probably more distant, as the connecting link has not been preserved.

11. The Hooge-Staanders, those who stand high.

12. The Papieren, i.e. the Papers.

13. The 'Cabus'que, the Stabbers.

14. The Kaross Dragers, the Carriers or Wearers of Karosses.

15. The Naauwe Wangen, the Narrow-cheeks.

16. The Boek brieven, the Book-letters.

17. The Snyers, the Cutters, or Tailors.

18. The Hoogten, the Heights.

19. The Koker-boomen, the Quiver-trees, from the species of aloe from which the Bushmen make their quivers.

20. The Spinnekop Zoekers, the Searchers for Spiders.

21. The 'Kannis-geis, and

22. The Ratten, or the Rats.

In the titles of the foregoing clans we at once perceive that the contact of the Koranas with Dutch speaking people is clearly made manifest, but in 1812-13 personal names, or those of individuals, still remained of pure Kora origin, as the following examples will show.

'Ka-een-de-hare, meaning lively sunshine.

'Koo-'rhe, meaning a white stone.

Moo-'que, meaning to see a thing right.

'Che-be-a, meaning ?

'Keis-se-'cha, meaning foremost.

'Te-oon-havel, meaning an unsuccessful hunt.

Moo-'kha, meaning sharp sight.

From the above we find the effect which their intercourse with Dutch-speaking Bastaards, alias Griquas, and such colonial outlaws as took refuge among their clans, had upon their tribal nomenclature, while with regard to the names of the great mass of the people it had exercised little or no influence at all. This is interesting, as it so well illustrates how such additions and variations in names become a powerful evidence and proof of contact between races speaking different languages, and thus frequently afford means of unravelling the true history of a nation, even in times far removed from the present. The Griquas will be found to afford another instance of the case in point, but as their connection was of a closer character, and of long duration, the impress of the Dutch influence is more marked and decided.

In the same manner, should we meet a Kaffir priding himself in the name of Klaas, Piet, or Jantje, we should imagine that either he or his friends who gave him the cognomen had been in the service of the Dutch ; whereas if he were known as Tom, Dick, John, or Jim, we should say that he must have been at one time under an influence decidedly English. This is a fact which it will be well to bear in mind when treating of some of the other South African races.


Frequent intermarriages took place between the Koranas and Batlapin during the period of the ascendancy of the former, not only among the commoner people, but some even of the Batlapin chiefs selected their wives from among the daughters of the Korana captains. These intimate relations gave rise to the introduction of a number of words of mixed origin into the vocabularies of both people, which was the more noticeable in proper names, whether of individuals or of localities. This partial blending among the border clans may have been encouraged by the less formidable and victimised Bachoana from motives of policy, while on the side of the Korana any efforts at conciliation were deemed almost supererogatory. It was however during this period of Korana exaltation that the race of their paramount chiefs, both from their matrimonial alliances and the extent of their conquests, rose to the highest pinnacle of their greatness, and that the influence of their people, the Toovenaars and their branches, extended over a greater expanse of country than at any other time.

From the accompanying genealogy it will be seen that it can scarcely be doubted but that these Taaibosches were in reality the lineal descendants and representatives of their ancient chief Kora. Their early history at the Cape has already been detailed. Their career in the Middle Veld is lost in oblivion, but was doubtless filled up with internecine feuds and petty cattle raids upon their neighbours' kraals, such as have been described ; and it was only after their passage of the 'Gariep that they once more emerged from the obscurity in which they had been enveloped for several generations.

After the treacherous attack of the Barolong chief upon them, and their rapid and victorious advance into the Bachoana country, they appear to have fixed their headquarters on the Ma'kaab river, at a place called Malapeetze or Malapitze (the Quagga's placenta) by the Batlapin, and Ma-kholoyank or Taaibosch's kraal by the Koranas. It appears to have been from this centre that the tribe threw off, from time to time, so many offshoots, which the increase of population or the development of rival assumptions rendered imperative and inevitable. It was from this point also that all their great expeditions against the peace and property of the interior tribes emanated.

By 1812-13 the number of inhabitants at the great kraal of the Taaibosches, owing to subdivisions of the tribe and the fatal visitations of measles before alluded to, had commenced declining considerably. The kraal was then composed of some fifty-six huts, and contained about three hundred inhabitants. They, however, possessed two thousand cows at this, and as many more at two outstations. They were then living, like their forefathers, almost entirely on their cattle, more especially on their milk ; so that such a state of affairs, although they were then small in numbers, was to them a Korana paradise, they having little else to do than to milk their cows. Many of them at this time had become possessed of firearms and horses, which, notwithstanding their diminished numbers in men, rendered some of their clans even more dangerous and formidable than they were before to their Bachoana and Basutu neighbours. Their old national indolence stuck to them, and even at this date they obtained their assagais and skin karosses from the Batlapin.

These Koranas were formerly under the government of two brothers, who, not agreeing, separated, one removing and taking possession of the old Barolong station at Taung. Here, forgetting the lessons of the past, one of the sons of old Taaibosch determined, although strongly advised against so hazardous an attempt, to make another raid against the Bangwaketse ; but, upon reaching their destination, he and his party fell into an ambuscade and were slain to a man.

With disaster and repulse the bitterness of their mutual feuds increased. At a later period the advance of the formidable Mantatee horde spread terror amongst them and scattered many of the smaller clans ; others took to flight until the storm was over, and then returned to their former camping-grounds. Among these were such petty captains as 'Chu'deep and Ban'tze, 'Chuboo and 'Keideboo'kei, living on the banks of the Vaal or'Gij-'Gariep a little below the junction of Maquassie's Spruit.

Notwithstanding their discomfiture and their subsequent troubles, upon the advance of the Matabili into the old country of the Bakuena between the Magaliesberg and the Limpopo, the enormous herds of cattle in their possession proved too great a temptation to the acquisitiveness of these restless marauders ; they therefore made one or two daring attempts to seize some of the much coveted booty at the most exposed outstations of the Great Elephant, as Moselekatze delighted to be called. On a few occasions they were successful, but on two or three others they were suddenly overtaken in their retreat, their bivouac, when they were most confident of success, was surprised and stormed in the dead of night, and the ruthless Matabili assagais weltered in Korana blood until scarcely one escaped to tell the terrible tale.

Taung was then occupied by the Great Koranas under their chief Jan Taaibosch, afterwards generally called Jan Kaptein. He was still a great chief, and his people lived in the country to the left of the Malalarene or Kolong. It was with his permission that several large kraals of Batlapin belonging to Mothibi settled in portions of the same country. Some ten or twelve miles lower down the Barolong, after abandoning Maquassie, had located themselves in the neighbourhood of Great Platberg. Lower down the 'Gij 'Gariep or Vaal there were many petty Korana chiefs of the clans called the Ratten, Zeekoes, Scorpions, and also the Springboks, of which last Jan Bloem the younger was captain. The Bushman chief 'Kousop, and afterwards his son Scheel Kobus, lived on the southern side of the Vaal river, while their acknowledged territories extended far to the right of the Riet and Modder rivers in the south.

Such then was the position of the various tribes who were the immediate neighbours of the great clan of the Taaibosches, when a complication of circumstances, such as a long series of severe droughts, the increasing turbulence of the country, the threatened attacks of the Matabili on the one hand and the Bergenaars on the other, tended to accelerate a general migration towards the more mountainous parts of the country in the east, although some vague expressions were beginning to be used, styling it Moshesh's country. Few Basutus were living in it, principally in consequence of the devastating wars occasioned by Moselekatze, Sikoniela, the Amazulu, and others. In the midst of this, not only Moroko with his Barolong left the Platberg, accompanied by his missionary, the Rev. Mr.Archbell, and stationed themselves at Thaba Nchu, but even the Korana chief Jan Taaibosch migrated in the same direction.

This, however, was not so much in consequence of the causes above mentioned, as from the continuous feuds which were ever raging, except when some common danger threatened the entire tribe, among the rival clans of which it was composed. On this occasion a quarrel had arisen between the paramount chief and the Goliaths, or as they boastfully styled themselves the Hooge- Staanders, or those who stood high, under the captain Goliath Ysterbek, his cousin. The rivalry was at length carried to such extremes that a civil war broke out between them, when in a battle which ensued the paramount chief Jan Taaibosch was defeated, and his clansmen were put to flight. In his retreat he evacuated Taung with the greater part of his followers, and moved with them in the direction of the present Koranaberg, settling first at Umpukani, afterwards at Merumetsu, leaving the captain Rijt Taaibosch behind him to look after that portion of the clan that did not remove. It was after this that Rijt Taaibosch assumed the title of Korana chief of Mamusa.

Moshesh, in those days, was only too satisfied to see other tribes, even under their own chiefs and government, flocking into the country and forming a kind of cordon around the thinly populated and circumscribed tract which could then with any show of reality be styled the territories of the chief of the mountain ; and as he well knew that they would form an outer shield against the depredations of the Bergenaars on the one side and the more dreaded attacks of the Matabili on the other, they were welcome to fix themselves in any position of comparative danger they chose to occupy.

If we refer for a moment to the foregoing account of the migrations of these Koranas to the northward, we shall observe that after the first few years of their intrusion, no further notice is taken of the Bushmen : they had either become absorbed by some of the invading clans, or had been nearly annihilated by others. The attention of these northern Koranas had been more immediately bestowed upon the acquisition of cattle, and of course upon those races possessing them. We shall find, however, that along the eastern line of migration the case was different, and that the work of extermination was being carried on with cruel and stem activity.

Even among those whose movements we have now been discussing, there were three different modes of treatment which the Bushmen received at their hands. Thus the one, such as the Katse people, fraternised and intermarried with them after their first wars had ended ; others again, such as the t'Keys, although living distinct, still kept up a kind of friendly alliance with them ; but, by far the greater portion, especially among the richer clans, there was a deep-rooted and never-dying animosity evinced against them.

Leonard Jagers was a fit representative of one of this class, and with his evidence we will close this section of our subject. From it, however, we shall see that the old hunter race was still unconquered, and that although the war of races had become intensified and hereditary, as is but too clearly shown by the tone of bitterness which runs through Jagers' descriptions, still true to the traditions of their nation, the descendants of the ancient cave dwellers remained resolute and undaunted to the last. Harassed and driven from one part of their ancient hunting-grounds to another, they seemed as if, finding that they could not drive the intruders back again, a wild and uncontrollable spirit of revenge was taking possession of them, while the greater portion of their enemies appeared to have formed the determination to extirpate them from the face of the earth.

When I was a boy, said the old Toovenaar, I was herding the cattle of the Goliaths, and whilst in the veld the Bushmen of the mountains gathered themselves together. They were the men who fought with the short bow and little arrows, and not like the Bushmen of the Langeberg, who carried a long bow for hunting or for war.

The Koranas do not always go out with their cattle, but drive them to the field in the morning, and at noon send their youths to look after them. At this time when they sent, the cattle could not be found, more than half had been seized and carried off by the Bushmen. This was from the banks of the 'Gumaap,N or Great Riet river, a confluent of the 'Gij 'Gariep ; thence the Bushmen drove them off to the mountains, where a spitzkop rose above the others. On the top of this high mountain the Bushmen drove the cattle. Here they commenced slaughtering, and feasting on the carcasses. And when the cattle were missed the people (Koranas) took up the spoor, and following it got upon the trail of the Bushmen, and traced them to the mountain. Then the Koranas got together their fighting men. In those days the Koranas had guns, and some had horses, and they got together horsemen and footmen and went towards the mountain.

Notes: Leonard Jagers stated that the Koranas and others call this river, below the junction of the Modder and Riet, the 'Gumaap, or Great Reed river, 'Gumaap signifying Reed or Reeds. The name is far more appropriate than that put down in English maps, viz. the Modder or Mud, as there is not a single bank of mud to be found between the junction and its mouth.

In the night they saw the fires of the Bushmen, and heard the noise of the feasting. Those that had horses left them at the foot of the mountain, and in the stillness of the night they climbed up the sides and concealed themselves in the rocks around the edge of the flat top until the day began to dawn. Then the Bushmen were aroused by the Koranas firing upon them. There was a large camp of the Bushmen, and they had lived upon the top of the mountain for a long time with their wives and their children, and it was a great town.

When the firing began, the Bushmen arose and tried to drive the Koranas back, and they fought and fought, but it did not help them. And when they would have fled, they found they were surrounded, and there were slain that day a great number, and few escaped. The women and children were killed together, and but few men escaped. The Koranas found that all their cattle were stabbed and shot to death, and none remained for them to recover. On that day no Korana was injured or slain, but the Bushmen fell in great numbers.

After this there were two other wars ; and the Bushmen caught two young Koranas in the field and murdered them. When it was discovered, the Koranas followed after them, and overtook and surrounded them. On that day a Korana was slain ; he was a man of great size, and a Bushman ran and shot him in his side, and he fell dead, for the poison was so strong that he remained on the spot. After this there was yet another war. The Bushmen seized the cattle and the Koranas followed after them ; and again another Korana was shot. The arrow struck him on the cheek, and he died there from the poison upon the arrow as soon as he was shot.

In those days the land was full of quaggas, and the Koranas when they saw them were alarmed and hastened to the plains, for they knew that the Bushmen must be amongst them ; and they hunted the Bushmen and destroyed them when they came upon them, for they were a wild and perverse race that could not be tamed.

The Bushmen used disguises, and sometimes they appeared as wild bucks and sometimes as birds ; they fastened the heads of bucks upon their shoulders, and covered themselves with the skins of the ostrich. They walked as if the ostrich were walking, and they carried their bows and arrows ready with them. When the Koranas went out into the field, if they were alone, the Bushmen would waylay them. And if a Korana did not return home in the evening they knew that the Bushmen had killed him and that they would find him dead in the morning.

Three Koranas, armed with guns, rode out into the plains to look for the horses of the kraal, and when they had found them, one turned to drive them back to the kraal and the other two continued in the plain to hunt quaggas. A Bushman who was concealed, seeing that one Korana was returning alone with the horses, hastened to hide himself in the path. The Korana that was with them, when he saw the horses were turned out of the path and that a Bushman was before him, was seized with a deadly fear, and when he saw the Bushman he turned his horse and fled as hard as he could ride, with the gun in his hand. When the Bushman saw that the Korana had turned and fled, he quickly caught a grey riding horse that was a swift runner, and mounted upon him and pursued the Korana ; and they both rode as hard as they could, and the Bushman overtook the Korana, for the grey riding horse was the swiftest one of the kraal. The Bushman seized hold of the gun of the Korana, and they rode and struggled together, and the Bushman wrenched the gun from the hand of the Korana, and such was the fear of the Korana that he forgot to put his finger on the trigger of his gun to shoot the Bushman.

When the Korana found that the Bushman had taken his gun from him, he threw himself from his horse and ran towards the mountain, hoping to hide himself among the rocks away from the Bushman ; but the Bushman threw himself also from his horse. The Korana dodged round a bush to escape the Bushman, and the Korana was on one side of the bush and the Bushman on the other. He shot the Korana with his own gun, and the ball went through his head. When the Korana's two friends returned from following the quaggas they found him dead, and the Bushman had escaped with the gun.

But a short time after, the Bushman, rendered presumptuous and daring by the possession of the gun, went to steal the horses of a BoerN by night, and the great dogs of the Boer attacked him and tore him to pieces, and in the morning his body was found torn to pieces and the gun by the side of it.

Notes: This is the first mention made by a native of the intrusion of Boer squatters into the old hunting grounds of the Bushmen north of the 'Nu-'Gariep or Orange river.

In those days the Bushmen were very vicious, and the Koranas had to hunt them down as they would any other wild animal, that there might be some quiet in the land. They were like wild animals which nothing could tame. Thus it was, continued Jagers, when I was a young man, and I but just escaped from the hands of a Bushman myself. One of the horses having strayed, I went in search of it, and saw it near the side of a neighbouring hill. When I was getting near it, I saw the head of a Bushman rise suddenly above the long grass, right in the path I had to go. It was but for a moment that I caught sight of him, and I at once saw that he was one of the small kind that wore their arrows sticking out from a fillet round their heads, and who are all wild and untamable.

I knew at once that he intended to waylay me as I approached the horse, and would shoot me as soon as I got nearer ; and also that if I allowed him to think I had caught sight of him I should have no chance of escape, for they are swift runners. They run like a horse, and in broken rocky ground no horse has a chance of overtaking them. They bound along, and when once among the rocks are like the klipspringers or baboons ; they spring from rock to rock without fear of falling. Therefore to turn and run away at once I knew would never do, as he would certainly overtake me. I therefore went on a few paces before I hesitated ; I then stopped, and felt my pouch, and then looked on the ground as if I had dropped something, then went a short distance back and looked about on the ground as if I were still searching for something I had lost. Then I went a few steps towards the Bushman again, then I retreated again on the road a little farther than before. I continued this a number of times, each time getting farther away. This I did, so that I should not alarm the Bushman with the idea that I had seen him and wished to escape from him, but that he might think that I had merely lost something and was looking for it, and when I had found it I should again return by the same path for the horse ; thus he would lie quiet in the same place, and not follow me.

When I thought that by these means I had got far enough from him to have a good start, I stooped down and fastened the veldschoens tightly on my feet, and tightened my girdle firmly round my waist. I was then young, and could run as fast as any young man of my tribe, but I knew that when I once started I should have to run for my life, for a Bushman who wore arrows round his head would not spare me if I were overtaken. When I rose up I sprang forward at once, and ran with all my might in the direction of the Korana camp. The Bushman, as soon as he saw that I fled, sprang up and came down after me like the wind, and I ran as fast as I could get my feet to the ground, and exerted all my strength, but I found that the Bushman was gaining upon me and that it would be hard for me to escape. The Bushman still pressed me and gained upon me, and I felt that he intended to come close before he shot at me, to make sure that his arrow would strike me and there should be no fear of missing his aim. I began to feel faint, but still I ran, for I knew that my life depended upon my swiftness ; and the Bushman was still gaining upon me, and getting nearer and nearer, but still I ran.

Just as I felt hope was getting less, the men of the camp, who were on the look-out, saw me, and saw that the Bushman was following closely after me, and they rushed forward with their guns in their hands to meet me as I came on. They shouted, and ran towards me, and the women and children when they heard the alarm came streaming out of the camp, crying out and shrieking as they ran towards me. But the Bushman still pressed me closely, evidently determined to overtake me and kill me before they could help me. But when I saw my friends, I sprang forward towards them with all the strength I had; but he followed me, and it was not until they were close to me that he left off pursuing me. Then he turned and fled, and soon left the Koranas that followed far behind, for they had no horses near at hand, and he ran faster than a horse, and thus, he escaped.

After that, continued the Toovenaar, they hunted the Bushmen and shot them that there might be peace in the land, for the wild beasts and the Bushmen were alike, they could not be tamed. And the Koranas cleared the land, and then there was quiet.

Here we have a vivid and graphic picture of the treatment a large portion of the Bushmen received at the hands of the northern Koranas after their intrusion into the Bushman territories of the Vaal. The evidence of this one man would have been the evidence of hundreds had it been obtainable. The quiet he speaks of was the quiet of annihilation. It was the peace of death !

The Migrations of the Koranas to the Eastward, in the basins of the Orange and Caledon rivers.

When the Korana hordes first crossed the 'Gariep and 'Nu-'Gariep, almost all their migrations were in a northerly direction, especially along the valley of the 'Gij 'Gariep to the mouth of the Kolong, thence along the valley of the latter river to its sources and that portion of it called the Malalarene. Up to a comparatively recent period they appear never to have made an effort to penetrate to any distance eastward of this line, and even as late as 1820 Mr. Campbell assures us that no Koranas lived higher up the 'Nu 'Gariep than 'Kon'nah, and there were none on the banks of the 'Gij 'Gariep higher than about four days' journey above its junction with the Kolong ; while to the northward they extended as far as Mo-ba-ti. In a westerly direction they were not found far beyond the falls of the Great river, near the point where some of the early Korana clans first struck it, or about halfway between the junction of the 'Gij and 'Nu 'Gariep and Namaqualand. As a rule the Koranas were not desirous of leaving the banks of the Great river.

We shall find, however, that they made exceptions, not only, as we have seen, in their expeditions and their settlements to the north ; but at a subsequent period also, after the great wars of Matiwane and the Matabili, when so many branches of the Basutu tribes had been broken up and dispersed, or had fled for refuge towards the mountainous district along the great Maluti range in the east.

It was shortly after this time that the Koranas commenced to extend their marauding inroads in that direction. The expeditions and ravages of the savage banditti, called the Bergenaars, whose bands were joined by several of the Korana clans, especially by a considerable number of the Katse people and the Zeekoes, doubtless gave an impetus to this movement, which continued until they had not only established themselves at Makwatling, the present Koranaberg, but even attempted on several occasions to seize the cattle of the Bakuena, who then held the noted stronghold of Thaba Bosigo, under Moshesh. Much of this portion of their history is so involved with that of other tribes with which they came in contact, such as the Griquas, the Leghoya, and Basutu, that, in order to avoid useless repetition, we shall defer detailing such exploits until treating of the several tribes connected therewith.

With regard, however, to the earliest of these eastern expeditions, we are told that in 1820 there was perhaps no part of Southern Africa less known than that situated between the junction of the Riet and Modder rivers and the high ridges of the Drakensberg towards the Indian ocean. Any information therefore throwing light upon such darkness as this little explored region presented at that time, must needs be interesting. That the entire country had been occupied by Bushman tribes from time immemorial cannot be doubted, the evidence upon this point is too strong to admit of refutation. It seems equally certain that in the year just mentioned (1820) the Koranas had pushed so far to the eastward that they had formed a settlement on the banks of the Gum-Gariep, now called Vet river, which runs into the 'Gij-'Gariep, or Likwa, as one portion of it was called by the early emigrant Basutu.

Here the Links stam had their kraals, and they were then the farthest to the eastward of any of their race. The largest kraal was under a chief named 'Harina. It contained seven or eight hundred Koranas and a great number of Bushmen who could speak the Korana language. Mr. Campbell, who visited them, states that Korana men frequently married Bushwomen, but 'Harina assured him that he could not remember a single instance of a Korana woman marrying a Bushman.

The Bushmen occupying this river valley were said to be more civilised than that part of the nation which inhabited the more western parts of Africa, for at this time they possessed an abundance of cattle and were inclined to live at peace with their neighbours. This improvement in their condition we shall discover as we proceed was mainly, if not entirely, attributable to the friendly intercourse that had existed for a considerable time between themselves and the Leghoya, the only tribe which ever intruded itself into Bushman territory that from the very commencement of their intercourse attempted to establish just and friendly relations between themselves and the aborigines. The wisdom of the experiment was proved, for they not only gained the goodwill of the Bushmen by such treatment, but also good neighbours who under their friendly influence became more civilised and adopted a more improved state of existence than any of their race had previously attained. The Leghoya themselves then lived near the junction of the Vet river with the Vaal, and spread thence about two days' journey farther to the eastward.

The Links Koranas had no intercourse with any tribes as far north as the Tamahas, but they exchanged skins with the Bachoana and Leghoya for Kaffir corn and tobacco.

From their accounts, up to a very short time before 1820, the greater part, if not the entire country between the Leghoya settlements and the ridge of the great mountain barrier of the Drakensberg was “unoccupied,” that is, it must still have been in the possession of its original owners, the Bushmen, and not in that of the stronger and intruding races.

Shortly after this period, urged probably by the growing dread of the Mantatee hordes to the north of the Vaal, a number of other Korana clans pressed into this portion of the country, and the very first victims of their restless lawlessness were these more advanced Bushmen. Different writers have put upon record the atrocities which were committed upon them, nor did their oppressors cease from harrying them until entire kraals were annihilated and the survivors were deprived of the last hoof of cattle which belonged to them, and which under the more just and generous mode of treatment they had experienced at the hands of the friendly Leghoya, they had learnt to accumulate.

The following instances will sufficiently explain the remorseless conduct to which they were subjected by these grasping intruders. In August 1825 some Koranas living upon the 'Nu 'Gariep, about twenty miles from Ramah, made attacks upon two Bushmen kraals, one situated about eighteen miles from them, between their own place and Paardeberg, the other near the deserted mission station of Hephzibah, between Tooverberg and the 'Nu 'Gariep.

At the first the marauders killed several men and captured twenty-three head of cattle, thirteen goats, five sheep, and eighteen children. At Hephzibah the same band of plunderers killed many of the people and took away one child and all their small flocks of cattle, sheep, and goats. The Bushmen of these kraals were the remains of the people who had once lived at the mission station of Hephzibah. Mr. Sass states that when he first commenced his mission in 1814, at the suggestion of the Rev. A. Faure, at Philippolis, the Koranas had been engaged from time immemorial in the most rancorous hostilities with the Bushmen, and it was a long time before they could be persuaded to look at a Bushman without attempting to murder him, so deep was the inveterate hatred between the two races.

In 1825 'Krieger, chief of a large Korana kraal, with his people attacked two Bushman kraals in the neighbourhood of the 'Koma, about halfway between Philippolis and the 'Gij 'Gariep, when they committed a number of cruel murders and robberies, killing and driving away the men, and seizing the women and children who survived the attack as prisoners.

As their numbers increased, so these Koranas extended the field of their ravages. As the vultures, high circling in the air, detect carrion from afar, and come flocking from all quarters to their horrid banquet, so it was with these inveterate marauders, whom Dr. Casalis not inaptly styled "the Bedouins of South Africa." They rapidly gathered along the borders whenever the irresistible temptation of plunder was made known to them. The loot seized from the unhappy Bushmen was soon insufficient to satisfy their desire for cattle ; the sleek and numerous herds of the pacific Leghoya presented too strong an allurement for them to withstand.

A series of cruel depredations was commenced upon them, which soon extended also to the herds of the emigrant Basutu. They even launched into a number of expeditions into territories remote from themselves ; thus we are informed by J. Montgomery, an authority in matters of native history, that two of their noted captains, 'Karapan and Witte Voet, started upon what they termed a hunting expedition ; and having reached the borders of the Matabili country, and wishing to make their trip a paying one, captured, near one of Moselekatze's outstations, a large herd of cattle belonging to him, and beat a retreat with as great rapidity as possible. Moselekatze in hot haste sent a large commando in pursuit, with orders to overtake the marauders at all hazards and recover the cattle which had been seized.

The Koranas, expecting the avengers would be upon their trail, continued their flight, and overtook, on the way, a party of poor Basutu migrating from the north to join Moshesh, who had established himself among the mountains of what is now British Basutoland. With these unfortunates, the cunning and treacherous Koranas, in order to deceive them and their pursuers, whom they supposed were now close upon their heels, left some of their plunder. The Matabili, overtaking the unsuspecting Basutu, and finding a portion of the stolen cattle in their possession, butchered in cold blood some ten to twelve hundred of these wretched victims to the baseness of the Koranas, and returned in triumph with the recaptured cattle and the spoils of the annihilated tribe to the great place of their master.

In the opposite direction these cattle raids were extended as far as the kraals of some of the Abatembu, who were gradually pushing their way towards the Orange river, in which a number of these Kaffirs were killed and a considerable quantity of cattle captured.

From the time of their advancing towards the east, they were almost always at war with their neighbours. No tribe in their vicinity enjoyed a moment's repose, and after they were furnished with firearms and mounted on good horses, they pillaged all the tribes around them in succession, until their chiefs inspired their neighbours with such terror that they spoke of them as wolves. They even reduced some of the fragmentary Bachoana and Basutu tribes to a state of vassalage, obliging them to become herdsmen and servants.

In 1836 the most notorious and formidable of these marauding leaders were Piet Witte-Voet, Sarles, and Voortouw. It was during this period that the Koranas spread themselves over the widest extent of Bushman territory which they ever possessed. Their power as a tribe was then at its height ; the possession of guns for a time made them more daring, but as the Griquas on the one hand and the Basutu on the other increased in strength, their decline of fortune commenced, and it continued ever dwindling until they sank into the insignificant position they have attained in the present day.

As the influence of Moshesh began to extend and make itself felt by his weaker neighbours, the robber-chiefs of these untamable clans established their strongholds on the tops of precipitous and almost inaccessible mountains. Their headquarters were at that time on the rugged yet terraced sides of a magnificent mountain which forms a landmark in the scenery of the Conquered Territory, some eighteen or twenty miles from the old station of Beersheba, called Boteta, the Rolling Mountain, or the Elandsberg, whose rising rocks, step after step, were like the successive ramparts of an enormous, and what would in the hands of resolute men have been an impregnable, mountain fortress. An industrious people would soon have converted the fertile valleys of this mountain into a beautiful place of residence, but the pillaging Koranas only saw in it a rock citadel, whence they could conveniently spy out and pounce upon their unsuspecting victims, and like the vultures which frequented it, they built their shelters on its loftiest ridges.

This was the point from which they made so many of their excursions upon the Basutu and other surrounding tribes. They were said to be the only people inhabiting a large extent of country at the time the French mission at Beersheba was founded on the banks of the Caledon. The country was then stated to be uninhabited, that is, merely in the occupation of wild game and tribes of the Bushman race, whose sole means of subsistence was the chase. Hence their presence was always ignored, although there is overwhelming evidence that the country was then, and for a long period afterwards, thickly populated by them. But in this case, as in every other, with the honourable exception of the Leghoya, the true aborigines of the country were never for a moment taken into consideration when an eligible spring or fountain was required by the intruders of the stronger races into their territories.

The founding of this mission marked the date of a terrible act of vengeance on the part of the Basutu, which convinced the Koranas that their reign was over and that their mountain stronghold could no longer be a secure retreat to shield them after their depredations.

An emigrant Xosa Kaffir, named Jalusa, had established himself on one of the outlying branches of the 'Koesberg, and shortly afterwards began to intercept travellers, lay violent hands upon them, and enrich himself with their booty. Complaints of these outrages were made to Moshesh, who was then beginning to assert his authority over a broad expanse of the surrounding country, and he determined in a summary manner to put an end to the outrages of the stranger. Suddenly, when they least expected it, the guilty horde was surrounded by some thousands of men, commanded by two of the sons of Moshesh, and was cut to pieces. The smoke of the burning villages was seen from Beersheba. Some of the fugitives who escaped from the slaughter fled towards the mission station, where they were found by the missionary Rolland a prey to hunger and despair, and thus their lives were saved.

The Koranas, surprised at the daring blow that had been just struck by Moshesh at so short a distance from their own abode, and seeing the assurance of the inhabitants of Beersheba, upon whom they had been accustomed to levy a species of blackmail, increase from day to day, quitted that portion of the country altogether.

We have already seen that after the domestic feuds of the Taaibosches, the main branch of the Toovenaars separated, and that the chief Jan Taaibosch and his retainers fell back towards Koranaberg, the Thaba Mekuatling of the Basutu ; first however pitching their huts at Umpukani, or as it was more commonly called Tlotlolane, near Thaba Cheu. Tlotlolane was a hill of considerable magnitude, in the form of a tongue, the summit of the crest being towards the west and the inclination towards the east. In 1836, when M. Arbousset visited the locality, two European houses, belonging to the missionaries, were standing near the top of the hill, and to the right of them a kraal of about two hundred and fifty Korana huts, while some of the detached hills in the neighbourhood were inhabited by a few Bachoana.

Gert Taaibosch, son of Jan, gradually migrated towards the eastward, and occupied a piece of country between Sikoniela and Moshesh. These chiefs endeavoured to drive him out without success. It was after he had established himself in this territory that he encountered the Bataung chief Molitsane in a state of abject poverty. He was then upon a hunting expedition towards the Orange river, when the Korana captain engaged his services to look after his cattle in the country he had taken possession of, during the frequent absences which his own wandering predatory habits induced.

These Koranas, however, never rose again to any great power, and their descendants are now to be found scattered among the Bataung, the Basutu, and over portions of the Free State.

Some of the fragments of these Korana clans fraternised with the Bushmen, and became mixed up with their raids in the State. These were the Ratten, Scorpions, Zeekoes, and others, and were either killed or dispersed on the death of Scheel Kobus, the last Bushman captain of the Vaal. Others fled, and the survivors of the Springboks, the Scorpions, the Hooge Staanders, the Katse, and the Papieren now live low down the 'Gariep or Great river.

A myth current among the Koranas of the Links stam, and which Mr. Campbell was fortunate enough to obtain from their chief 'Hari'na in 1820, concerning the origin of their race, will serve as a fitting conclusion to this necessarily imperfect memoir concerning them. He stated that from what they had learnt from their forefathers they believed that there were at first only two men in the world, a Korana and a Bushman, that a woman came out of the ground whom the Korana married, and that from this connexion the country was peopled. The Korana employed the Bushman to kill game. One day this Bushman came to a large cave where the Korana kept his calves, for there were no cattle kraals in those days, when he shot one of the calves with an arrow, and skinned it and brought it to the Korana as if it had been game.

On tasting the flesh, the Korana was surprised, and inquired where the other obtained it. The Bushman only replied that he had shot it. The next time the Bushman went to search for game, the Korana, suspecting all was not fair, followed him secretly, and saw him go to the cave and shoot another calf, and thus his roguery was detected. The artifice of the Bushman led to a disagreement between them. A little before sunset one evening they agreed to a separation, and also a division of the cattle, which had been before considered their mutual property. The Korana inquired of the Bushman which of the cattle he would choose for his share, who replied those which had sparkling eyes, not reflecting that their lustre arose from the evening rays of the sun. The Korana chose the dark-eyed cattle, but put off making a division until the sun went down. On examining the herd the Bushman could find none with shining eyes, and supposed they had strayed ; he therefore went in search of them. After an unsuccessful search he returned with his body severely scratched by thorns. In the meanwhile the Korana, having smeared his face and legs with butter, which he had obtained by accident from the milk, looked so well that the Bushman was ashamed to remain longer with him, and went away without the cattle to subsist entirely on game, leaving his share to the Korana.

Although this myth does not point out how the poor Bushman obtained a wife, it seems to indicate, if the myth be at all ancient, that the Hottentot race must have been in early times occupying territory where Bushmen alone were found from a period so remote that the ancestors of these Koranas believed that no other men existed on the earth except the Bushmen and themselves. This therefore would point to a period long prior to their having been driven southward by the fathers of the Bachoana tribes.

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