The Boer Trek Causes And Effects The Boer Trek Causes And Effects The Boer Trek Causes And Effects REASONS AND EFFECTS OF THE BOERS TREK THE BOER TREK CAUSES AND EFFECTS


TREK simply means a movement of people from one place to another in large groups.

BOER TREK was the migration of the Boers from the Cape of Good Hope to other interior parts of South Africa in order to find new settlement areas.

The historical background of the Boers movement can be traced back with the arrival of British towards the end of 18th century, who established their administration at the cape colony. With presence of British, everything at the cape changed into negative to Boers.

The migration took place from 1830s to 1840s where the Boers moved in groups of families at different times to different parts of interior South Africa, in a movement that later became known as the BOERS TREK or GREAT TREK.

The Boer Trek Causes And Effects



1. Introduction of British government

British established their settlements at the Cape of Good Hope early in 19th century. Here, both Boers and natives were under British domination.

The Boer did not want to be under the British government, that’s why they decided to move out from the Cape of Good Hope, to interior where they could establish their independent states.

2. Abolition of slavery and slave trade

The other fundamental change that British rule brought about was the ending of the slave trade and then the total banning of slavery.

The British abolished slavery and slave trade in 1833 which was established by the Boers. Nevertheless, many of the original Dutch settlers were extremely unhappy about the emancipation of slaves.

3. Introduction of English language as an official language

The coming of the British led to introduction of English language as an official language in 1822 that was to be spoken by all people at the cape. This made the Boers to become discontent hence Boer Trek.


4. Shortage of land at the cape

The coming of the British at the cape led to increase of population. The Cape of Good Hope became overpopulated. This led to shortage of land hence Boers decided to move to interior in search of the new land for agricultural undertakings.

5. To transform the Composition of the local white population

The British encouraged the immigration of British settlers of South Africa with the aim of transforming the Composition of the local white population.

6. British Introduced land privatization

This put limitation on the amount of land that one could own. This violated the Boers practice of owning large farms.


1. Establishment of Boer Republics

The movement of the Boer from the cape to interior led to the establishment of two Boer Republics which were Transvaal Republic and Orange Free State.

2. Occurrence of Afro-Boer Wars

The movement of the Boers to the interior led to conflicts between the Boers and Africans. This was due to the fact that Boers confiscated natives’ lands. A good example of those conflicts was the Zulu war with the Boers in 1837.

3. It accelerated Mfecane movements on the interior Southern Africa

This is due to the fact that their penetration increased shortage of land in the hinterland.

4. The Boers had in the interim developed their own culture and language

In the interior areas where they settled.

The Dutch Settlement At The Cape

5. Discovery of Minerals

The Boer Trek also led to discovery of minerals in the interior parts of South Africa. The minerals discovered in the interior were: Diamond discovered at Kimberley in 1867 Gold discovered at Witwatersrand in 1880’s.

6. The Boers lost touch with their homeland

Their movement to the interior of South Africa developed a new language and culture known as Afrikaans and referred to themselves as Afrikaners.

7. The British regarded the Boers as rebellious

The British colonial government felt responsible for the cruel treatment to these Boers and hence influenced Boers to move to the interior part of South Africa.

8. The Boers forcefully took African resources

The Boers by force took the African properties such as land and livestock in the interior of South Africa.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here