Het Posthuys in Muizenberg, Western Cape
The Het Posthuys in Muizenberg, is considered the second oldest building in the Cape, second only to The Castle. Built in the late 1600’s, the actual origins and history of this building are still a subject of debate, it is also one of the oldest buildings in South Africa.
Het Posthuys, or ‘the post house’ in English, is a must see for anyone interested in South Africa’s colonial history. This building was constructed by the Dutch East India Company as a toll-house to levy a tax on farmers passing by to sell their produce to ships lying in Simon’s Bay. It seems to have a varied career as a police station, stables a naval storage facility, and later an ale and eating house, a brothel and a private residence, until it was restored during 1982 and 1983 with funds from the Anglo American Corporation.
This site provided good views over the bay while at the same time being a sheltered position. Therefore, it should come as no surprise that in 1662 when, due to the imminent outbreak of war between the Netherlands and England in 1665 the site was chosen for the erection of a watch post to guard False Bay in case of attack. There is a debate on whether the structure currently standing is part of that original structure.
The Museum today is one of the notable structures along Muizenberg's Historical Mile and consists of a small stone cottage and outbuildings. It features exhibits of early photographs of the Muizenberg area during the early 1900's and some material on the Battle of Muizenberg and a diorama. In addition, the museum has a two-stuiwer coin, which was minted in Holland in 1680, and a flintlock musket. Both treasures were discovered by archaeologists were excavated the area.
Things to see and do
- Photographs of Early Muizenberg
- Artwork of the Old Post House
- Memorabilia of Early Colonial Muizenberg
- Video shown on the history of the Post House
- Main Stone Building & Out Buildings
Donations are welcomed. Prices are subject to change, please confirm directly with the Museum.
Generally open Monday to Friday between 10h00 and 14h00 or by appointment. However, as the Museum is run by volunteers it is best to call ahead to confirm if they are open.
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