Welcome to the Department of History
The Stellenbosch Gymnasium was established in 1866. By 1881 it became known as Stellenbosch College and College School, and later Victoria College by 1887. Its name finally changed to Stellenbosch University in 1918.
From 1880, History as a subject was initially taught by a professor in Modern Languages (Dutch, French and German), Prof Nicolaas Mansveldt. In 1904 the Department of History was established as an independent entity. Since then, its student body has grown exponentially under the leadership of a variety of professors who also served as chairpersons: Prof E. C. Godée Molsbergen (1904-1910), Prof W. Blommaert (1910-1926), Prof S. F. N. Gie (1918-1926), Prof H. B. Thom (1931-1953), Prof J. A. Wiid (1926-1958), Prof P. J. van der Merwe (1938-1977), Prof D. J. Kotzé (1956-1985), Prof D. J. van Zyl (1966-1996), Prof P. H. Kapp (1986-1999) and Prof A. M. Grundlingh (2000-2015). The current chairperson is Dr. A. Ehlers.
History is a subject of many dimensions, but its central thrust is to explain change over time. How we deal with change, in our personal life or in wider society, depends on how well we are informed. This department aims to provide students with the necessary intellectual skills to understand processes of change and historical debate.
We are a dynamic teaching and research-intensive department which takes a keen interest in all that was, and is...