Molokwane Iron Age Village

Where the Mighty Bakwena Tribe Once Lived

Molokwane Settlement

One of the two largest iron-age heritage sites in Southern Africa, Molokwane is the biggest settlement documented on the Highveld. The stonewalled village situated on the eastern edge of the Magaliesburg hills was occupied by 17th century chiefdoms (ancestors of the modern Tswana people). The ruins found west of present-day Rustenburg show evidence thatit was home to more than 12 000 members of the mighty Bakwena tribe.

The prosperous Molokwane community cultivated sorghum, beans and gourds, as well as maize, with cattle herding at the centre of their culture.In its totality, it was the largest and most compact of the stone-walled agro-towns (about the same size as Cape Town at that time). The site was apparently first occupied around AD 1650 and built up by the Bakwena over the next 170 years, until it was abandoned in 1820.

Credit: The N4 Book – The Road to Maputo & The N3 Book

West of Rustenburg N4