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Information on Hogsback, Eastern Cape, South Africa

Conference Venues South Africa brings you information on Hogsback situated in the Eastern Cape Province of South Africa including information on Facilities and Recreation, Climate, Founding, History Suburbs, Town Planning and Geography.

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Hogsback is a village in the Eastern Cape Province in the Amatola Mountains. The area is known for indigenous waterfalls, trout fishing and forests. The large gardens in the surrounding area also include exotic plants from all parts of the earth, and it is a popular destination and tourist attraction among both South African and International tourists.

There are two theories as how the village received its name.. Some believe that it is due to the fact that one of the three peaks that overlook the village, when seen from a certain angle, resembles a Hog's Back. Some think it was named for Captain Hogg, Commander of Fort Michell. Hogsback is located approximately 30 km from Alice. Overall, it is in the central-southern area of South Africa, in the center of the Eastern Cape province, and is approximately half way in between the village of Cathcart and the town of Alice.

Nearby towns include Fort Hare and Alice to the south, Cathcart, Whittlesea and the Waterdown dam to the north, Keiskammahoek to the east and Seymour to the west. However, travel west and east of the town is limited because there  is little infrastructure to these sides.


Hogsback History

The earliest known written reference to 'Hogsback' was found in the journal of the painter Thomas Baines, who passed the 'Hogs Back' while on his travels deeper inside South Africa in 1848. Besides the 'Hogsback', the highest peak in the area is the 1 954 m Gaika's Kop.

The nearby Xhosa tribes called the surrounding area Qabimbola (meaning 'red clay on the face') as the surrounding clay was used for face painting. Gaika's Kop was one of the Xhosa strongholds. British troops were later stationed here and a number of forts were built to guard the border with the Xhosa. One of these forts was Fort Michell, named after Colonel Michell/Michel of the Warwickshire regiment, who was at one point in charge of troops in the area. The name has since changed to Fort Mitchell. Mitchell's Pass was also named after him. The outline of Fort Michell, and the first road from Fort Hare can still be seen.

The conflict between the British and Xhosa continued further north and a small settlement began to grow. Some of the first inhabitants of Hogsback were Summerton, Odendaal and Booysens. Thomas Summerton, a gardener from Oxford, has a legacy that survives in the local gardens and his attempts to re-create the English countryside. This can be seen in apple orchards, avenues lined with hazelnut, berry fruits and the flowering plants that have spread throughout the surrounding area. European flowers, bushes and trees include rhododendrons, azaleas, fruits and berries. He named his farm Cherrie Orchard and also built a furrow - Summerton's furrow - to carry water from a stream on Tor Doone.

In the 1880s, Mr. Collins built a small hotel, called the Hogsback Hydro, of which later became the Hosback Inn. Hunterstoun, the private estate of Mr David Hunter, in 1910. Mr Hunter was the honorary secretary and treasurer of the Lovedale Institution and the Victoria College near Alice. Forestry began in 1883 with a survey to determine the best areas for planting. The Hogsback pass was opened in 1932. Hobbiton-on-Hogsback was started in 1946 as a holiday camp for children who could not afford to go on holidays and with the aid of several organisations and private donations, had grown to an outdoor education facility for underprivileged children. There was also a shop, the Handy Log Cabin, situated in the grounds of Arminel.

At the turn of the century, local farmers and townsfolk started to build holiday homes here and its charms became more widely known. The cottages were mostly of wattle and daub with thatched roofs. A rule was also made in regard to the size of the plots, namely that each one had to be at least two morgen.

Towns and Suburbs of the Eastern Cape province of South Africa

Addo , Aliwal North , Bathurst , Beachview , Beacon Bay , Bluewater Bay , Cape St Francis , Cintsa , Coffee Bay , Cradock , East London , Gonubie , Graaff Reinet , Grahamstown , Haga Haga , Hogsback , Humewood , Humerail , Jansenville , Jeffreys Bay , Kei Mouth , Kenton-on-Sea , King Williams Town , Kirkwood , Nahoon , Mthatha , Paterson , Port Elizabeth , Port Alfred , Port St Johns , Qolora Mouth , Quigney , Rhodes , Richmond Hill , St Francis Bay , Storms River , Stutterheim , Summerstrand , Sunland , Swartkops , Tsitsikamma , Uitenhage , Walmer

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