Museums, Art Galleries and Botanical Gardens

ID #2724

Knysna Museum, Knysna, Garden Route, Western Cape.

And other buildings of historical interest in Knysna, of which there are several:

o    Millwood House: Local History. It is typical of many of the houses that were built during the 1880’s in the mining village of Millwood. Gold was discovered in 1876. When gold yields dropped the house was transported piece by piece to Knysna.  It is now a national monument.  Many interesting relics adorn the walls and unique photographs and pictures depict Knysna’s romantic history – the forests, the sailing ships and gold.
o    Parkes Cottage: History of Millwood Goldfield and George Rex. Victorian-style cottage was erected on Millwood Goldfield around 1890. It was brought into Knysna and re-erected on the square alongside Templeman’s Store. It served as the offices of GW Brent-Steytler, Law Agent.  Later it was moved to Rawson Street where Hendrik Barnard and his family lived in it for many years. Before it was moved to Queen Street, it was used as the headquarters of the SA Legion in Knysna.  The roof is of corrugated iron, and the walls and floors are made of yellowwood.
o    Parkes Shop: History of the Timber Industry. It was built for the workmen of Geo Parkes and Sons’ workmen.  The sign above the door reads “Geo. Parkes and Sons (Pty) Ltd, Timber and General Merchants”.  The floor is mainly yellowwood and the big counter is made from Oregon pine and yellowwood. 
o    Old Gaol: It includes Old Gaol Complex Gift Shop, the Angling Museum, the Maritime Museum, the Knysna Art Gallery and the Nestle Underwater Centre. It was the first building erected in Knysna by the Colonial Government. It was built to house convicts en-route to the construction camp on the Prince Alfred’s Pass.  The four erven on which it was built were purchased from John Sutherland in 1858.  Plans were drawn up by the Civil Engineers Department and it was built by convicts with stone quarried from the hillside.  The foundation stone was laid by the Civil Commissioner on February 19 1859.  The bell was used as a fire alarm. In an effort to keep the public off the Post Office verandah, a double peal of the bell was rung before the delivery of letters commenced.  In 1965 the planning of a new jail started. In 1986, a notice for a new prison appeared in the government gazette.  In 1991, the Old Gaol was declared a national monument and in 1992, ownership was transferred to Knysna Municipality.

Knysna is on the N2 east of George, which is at the intersection of the N2 with the N12. BIKnymus

Contct:            +27 (44) 382 5066 extension 220 telephone

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Last update: 2014-03-24 21:51
Author: Alan McIver
Revision: 1.3

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