The freedom tree 

The relationship between people and plants has always been profoundly important and plants affect every aspect of our lives. The amaMfengu fled from Zululand during the time of King Shaka (1818-1828) and settled in the Eastern Cape in Hintsa's land.  

Monkey rope for your jelly

Robust canopy climber or small scrambling tree; Bark is greyish; young branchlets with thick rusty hairs, becoming hairless with lenticels; tendrils velvety. Leaves are almost circular to kidney-shaped, slightly 3-lobed, dark green above, dense with brownish rusty soft hairs below. Flowers are small in dense axillary heads, yellowish green, densely furry with rusty hairs when in bud (October-January). Fruit almost spherical, fleshy, becoming red and finally purplish black (January-April).

Surreal 360 million year old spiky armoured fishes 

RAfricanaspis is a genus of armour plated (placoderm) fish, only known from the Late Devonian (360 million year old) Waterloo Farm lagerstatten of South Africa. It was first named in 1997 on the basis of isolated plates representing only three of the trunk armour platrs, of a single species (Africanaspis doryssa).

What did the men die for?

In few days time the national and provincial governments as well as other institutions of governments will host events to mark the 100th anniversary of SS Mendi. Few sources managed to carry the memory of the tragic sinking of SS Mendi with over 800 men as much as Samuel Edward Krune Mqhayi’s poem “Ukutshona kukaMendi” does. Mqhayi begins his poem with calmness that conceals the shock of death of 607 Black South African men who sailed to Europe to assist Allied Forces in their struggle against Central Powers; Read More..

280 million-year-old fossil reveals origins of chimaeroid fishes

High-definition CT scans of the fossilized skull of a 280 million-year-old fish reveal the origin of chimaeras, a group of cartilaginous fish related to sharks. Analysis of the brain case of Dwykaselachus oosthuizeni, a shark-like fossil from South Africa, shows telltale structures of the brain, major cranial nerves, nostrils and inner ear belonging to modern-day chimaeras. Read More..

Grahamstown in the Great War

Albany Museum opened a new exhibition entitled “A glimpse of Grahamstown in the Great War”  on Friday, 11th December. The First World War, or the ‘Great War’ as it became known, was one of the bloodiest wars in history. It was fought between the Allies (based on the Triple Entente of the United KingdomFrance and the Russian Empire, and towards the end of the war, America) and the Central Powers of Germany and Austria-Hungary supported by the Ottoman Empire (Turkey) and Bulgaria. Between 1914 and 1918, the war drew in countries from all over the world on both sides and mobilized more soldiers in more fields of battle than ever before.  The war caused the disappearance of four Empires, paved the way for major political changes and led directly to the Second World War. Casualties amounted to 17 million people and left tens of millions of other lives broken all over the world. Read More..

The Freshwater Invertebrates Department will hold a series of events as part of the Albany Museum's 160th birthday celebrations. All the talks will be at the Albany Museum Rennie Wing from 4-5pm. Read More..

Albany hosts museums

About 30 delegates from nine museums across the Eastern Cape packed the Albany Museum's Rennie Wing Hall for the 33rd session of the annual South African Museums Association (SAMA) Regional Conference this week. The them for this year's conference is 'The Relevance of Museums Today.

Albany Museum staff attended and presented papers at the South African Museums Association (SAMA) Conference (26th to 29th October in Durban). The Conference was hosted by SAMA KZN.

One of the striking exhibitions at Albany museum, Natural Science is Xhosa Plants. It’s a unique exhibition because it lands itself on a very important matter regarding heritage in South Africa; TRANSFORMATION. Yes Xhosa Plants exhibition speaks about transformation.

Albany Museum, through its Busy Bees project, ventured into other new grounds when it organised a three-day workshop on community healing and dialogue. Read More ...
 New breed of heritage practitioners
Luvuyo Mayi, renowned for his passion of fossils under the guidance of Dr Billy de Klerk, and Khululwa Gxekwa, a volunteer at Albany Museum, joined over 40 graduates who sang and danced in jubilation after completing the heritage course at Rhodes University recently. Read More ...
MEC calls for nominations for Museums' Management Committees
The Honourable MEC for Sport, Recreation, Arts and Culture (DSRAC) in the Province of the Eastern Cape, Mrs Xoliswa Tom has issued an invitation for the nominations for the membership of the Management Committees in museums.

The sixteen (16) state-aided museums include Albany Museum in Grahamstown. Museums are non-profit institutions in the service of the public. Public inspired members of the community who have interests in museums and heritage are encouraged to seek nomination. Interested candidates should have one or more of this working knowledge or academic background: finance, legal, history and community development. Age, gender and demographic realities of the province will be taken into consideration.

Those appointed will serve for three years. Among their duties will be to:
o Hold and care for museum collections, including buildings, in trust for the nation.
o Overseeing financial and policy matters.
o Promoting and protecting the interest of the museums.

Interested parties should send their nominations to Albany Museum before 05 February 2010.

Further information and nomination forms can be obtained from the Albany Museum, or the Directorate of Museums and Heritage, Department of Sport, Recreation, Arts and Culture, Wilton Mkwayi Building, 5 Eales Street, King William’s Town, 5601, or phone (043) 604 4001 and fax (043) 642 2058.

Museum offer scarce skills opportunities

Albany Museum is hunting for five interns in the fields of Archaeology, Ichthyology, Entomology, Palaeontology and Cultural History. Unemployed university graduates and Postgraduate who are under 35 years of age with Honours or Masters Degrees are mostly encouraged to apply for these understudy programmes. The closing date is January 21, 2010. These scarce skills internships are for one year only (12 months). Successful applicants will receive R5 000 monthly stipend.

Many of these vacancies take up to ten years to fill. Very few students also show interest in these field.

Enquiries must be directed to the attention of Ms S Mavuya at 043 - 604 4155 / 8 (telephone).

Advertisements have been issued to the media recently. Interested candidates need to fill in the government employment application Z83 form obtainable from any public office. Completed application forms, accompanied by a curriculum vitae and certified copies of qualifications must be sent to the head office of the Department of Sports, Recreation, Arts, and Culture at:

The Director: Human Resource Management, Department of Sport, Recreation, Arts and Culture, Private Bag X 0020, Bhisho, 5605.

Alternatively, these can be hand delivered to the Department of Sport, Recreation' Arts and Culture, No.5 Eales Street, Wilton Zimasile M kwayi Complex, Office
15, King William's T own.

Mandela Luthuli Legacy Reflected

Making Peace is an exhibition detailing the legacies of both Chief Albert Luthuli and former State President Nelson Mandela. The exhibition itself is hosted by Albany Museum together with the Nelson Mandela Museum in Umthatha. It is part of the tourism and heritage month. It is a travelling exhibition which was initially launched by Mr Bill Clinton, the former President of the United States of America. The exhibition explores the relationship between the two Noble Prize winners, ANC stalwarts and former Presidents through pictures and text.

The official opening is at Albany History Museum on 21 September 2009 at 17h30.

Museum honour women directors

Women's Day, 09 August 2009, marks the 15th year anniversary, 15 years of democracy, and 15 years of dedicated service to the museum by two outstanding women. The Museum is proud to have had Ms M. Glanville 1882 to 1888, and Dr Lita Webley, 1999 - 2008 as the only women directors in the history of the Museum spanning over 154 years.

67 Minutes for Mandela

The Museum is calling on everyone to kindly donate items, e.g. Toys, Clothes, writing material, blankets, garden tools, etc. … for two needy farm schools children and parents:Manleys Flats and Wilson's Party

The Museum will spend 67 minutes on each school on the 24 July 2009 in honour of our former State President Nelson Mandela's MANDELA DAY.

Please kindly deposit all items in our Education Department by Wednesday 22nd July @ 16H45

For further details, please contact:
Mrs Marijke Lewis or Nozipho Madinda at: 046 - 622 2312

Subpages (1): Paulus Janse