The Dutch in South Africa
The history of South Africa generally includes the story of the Dutch and how they “helped” South Africa. The Dutch came to South Africa to build a rest stop for the Dutch East India Company ships. The Dutch needed to get around the Cape to points in eastern locations. The Dutch came to Cape Town South Africa in 1652 and the Dark Continent would never be the same. The Dutch moved native Africans off their own lands, began wars and skirmishes, enslaved many native Africans and shifted the entire country's economic situation.
The Dutch East India Company trade vessels first began using the Cape as a refreshment outpost in 1652. The outpost supplied ships on their way to Asia with fruit vegetables and meat so the sailors could recuperate. In the beginning the Dutch traded with the local Africans peacefully. Independent settlers known as burgher’s numbers increased with the arrival of new settlers from Holland. Many of the Dutch settlers complained that the land available was insufficient to meet their agricultural demands so they raided land along the Valley to farm. The new farmers were ordered to sell their products only to the Dutch and not with the local Africans. This resulted in many conflicts with the local Africans who lost grazing pastures as settlers began to occupy their land. The Dutch shifted the entire country's economic situation with their desires to expand, giving little regard to the native Africans who had lived there for thousands of years. By the end of the 18th century almost all of the native Africans had been absorbed into the settler economy as servants, pushed into poor pasture lands and desert areas, or exterminated.
Most native Africans did not want to work for the Dutch so the Dutch simply took their lands and left them unable to care for themselves. The Boers were racist and believed that they were superior to the Africans in every way. The Khoikhoi were pushed into working for the Dutch to survive. The Dutch attempted to negotiate to get cattle and labor from the South Africans but when negotiations broke down slavery was implemented. The Dutch found that the indigenous Africans who had been in the region for a thousand years were an unwilling labor force. From 1710 on the adult slave population outnumbered the adult colonial population by as much as 3 to 1. Between 1658 and 1808 an estimated 63,000 slaves were imported into the Cape Slavery reshaped all of South Africa and its effects are still felt today. The Dutch believed that they were “doing God's work and civilizing the Africans” according to South African history online.