District Six Museum

The District Six Museum houses an impressive collection of historical materials including photographs, paintings, artefacts, physical remains like street signs

Western Cape Tourist AttractionsThe District Six Museum

When the apartheid government swooped on District Six, Cape Town in 1965, forcibly removing its occupants and declaring the area a "whites-only" zone, the rich fabric of an impoverished but vibrant community was torn to shreds. Over 60 000 people were wrenched from their homes, livelihoods, community centres and societal networks, and relocated to the bleak plains of the Cape Flats, several kilometres away...

Where? 25A Buitenkant Street, Cape Town Central, Cape Town

When? Telephone +27(0)21 461-8745

On the web? http://www.districtsix.co.za

Overnight? See City Bowl accommodation, in Cape Town

District Six in Cape Town and Sophiatown in Johannesburg, both sites of diverse and vibrant subcultures, posed similar threats to the apartheid government, which was intent on enforcing "separate development" for different ethnic groups. Sophiatown was razed to the ground in 1957 to make way for the "white area" of Triomf (meaning "triumph" in Afrikaans). In an effort to preserve the memories of District Six and create a monument to the thousands of people around the country forcibly relocated under apartheid, the District Six Museum Foundation was established in 1989. In 1994, the District Six Museum came into being.

The museum came into being as a vehicle for advocating social justice, as a space for reflection and contemplation, and as an institution for challenging the distortions and half-truths which propped up the history of Cape Town and South Africa. "The Museum is committed to telling the stories of forced removals, and assisting in the reconstitution of the community of District Six and Cape Town by drawing on a heritage of non-racialism, non-sexism, anti-class discrimination and the encouragement of debate".

The District Six Museum is a heritage project in itself. Part of its mission is to provide the space for former inhabitants of District Six to share and explore their memories and develop new interpretations of both the past and the present. The museum also functions as a forum where debate and policy development is initiated.

The District Six Museum houses an impressive collection of historical materials including photographs, paintings, artefacts, physical remains like street signs, books and studies as well as audio-visual recordings of District Six, most which were donated by its former residents.

The museum has formed several partnerships with dispossessed communities, both in South Africa and around the world. It is a founder member of the International Coalition of Historical Site Museums of Conscience. The museum, the Stepping Stones Childrenís Centre and Ons Plek, a shelter for girls, are all housed together in a building belonging to the Central Methodist Mission in Cape Town. The museum is geared for individuals as well as group and school tours, and is open from 9am to 4pm Mondays to Saturdays. There is also a bookshop and coffee shop, and the museumís Memorial Hall is available for hire for conferences or other gatherings.

Popular Attractions near to District Six Museum

Greenmarket Square

You cannot visit Cape Town and not visit one of its oldest markets, set on a cobbled square between Short and long Market Streets. This is where Capetonians have been buying their clothing, jewellery, sandals, crafts and nick-nacks for years...

More info and contact details: Greenmarket Square

South African Museum

The oldest museum in sub-Saharan Africa, the South African Museum (SAM) has been adding to their collections for nearly 200 years and was established in 1825. Collections here range from fossils to insects and fish found as recently...

More info and contact details: South African Museum

Did you know?

A memorial to the forced removal of 60 000 residents of various races from District Six, a former inner-city residential area during apartheid. The floor of the museum is covered with a map of the district littered with handwritten labels from former residents showing the location of their houses. Many of the staff are former residents who have hearbreaking stories to share.

©Unauthorised use of the
photos is strictly prohibited.

SA-Venues.com has been assisting travellers with their South African holiday plans since 1999, and is the largest online travel guide for South Africa available in both English and German.

SA-Venues.com © All Rights Reserved. Find and book hotels and accommodation in South Africa. Sitemap