- North West
Bloemhof, North West
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Bloemhof is an agricultural centre with tall maize silos, a creamery and factories producing salt and malt.
Bloemhof Dam, upstream from the town, has created a lake popular for fishing, boating and swimming. On the shore is a caravan park.
The town of Bloemhof possibly owes its existence to the luck of John Barclay, who survived the famous Birkenhead shipwreck of 1852 to buy a farm on the veld. The place became known for the flower garden, or bloemhof, laid out by his daughter, which made a colourful contrast to the bleak surroundings.
For some years, Barclay ferried animals and vehicles across the Vaal River on a pontoon knowns as the North Star.
Diamonds were discovered in the area in the 1870s and Barclay's farm became the centre of a town. Remains of the old diggings can still be seen.
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