The Kimberley Africana Library has one of the finest collections of Africana in the world. It specialises in the history of Kimberley and the Northern Cape and houses about 14000 books, 640 manuscripts and 12000 photographs.
Included in the collection are early printed editions of indigenous African languages, such as San, Tswana, Zulu and Xhosa, and there are early books related to diamond mining and records dating back to the first diamond rush in the 1870s.
Newspapers from the 1870s convey much of the lifestyle and culture of yesteryear, as do books by early European travellers in the region. Books and maps from the South African War (the Anglo-Boer War) also catalogue the period.
This Africana Library’s intriguing collection of photographs covers early diamond discoveries, the South African War, the social history of the inhabitants of southern Africa, the siege of Kimberley, and Northern Cape architecture. Prints can be ordered.
The collection also comprises material on archaeology and geology, and has many thousands of items celebrating the region.