Vredefort is a small farming town in the Free State province of South Africa that used to farm with cattle, peanuts, sorghum, sunflowers and maize. It is home to at least 50,000 residents.

Nederduitse Gereformeerde Church, Church Street, Vredefort
Nederduitse Gereformeerde Church, Church Street, Vredefort
Vredefort is located in Free State (South African province)
Vredefort is located in South Africa
Coordinates: 27°01′S 27°23′E / 27.017°S 27.383°E / -27.017; 27.383Coordinates: 27°01′S 27°23′E / 27.017°S 27.383°E / -27.017; 27.383
CountrySouth Africa
ProvinceFree State
DistrictFezile Dabi
 • Total21.4 km2 (8.3 sq mi)
 • Total14,619
 • Density680/km2 (1,800/sq mi)
Racial makeup (2011)
 • Black African92.4%
 • Coloured2.1%
 • Indian/Asian0.3%
 • White5.0%
 • Other0.3%
First languages (2011)
 • Sotho68.9%
 • Xhosa15.7%
 • Afrikaans7.7%
 • Zulu1.6%
 • Other6.0%
Time zoneUTC+2 (SAST)
Postal code (street)
PO box
Area code056

The town was established in 1876 on a farm called Visgat, on the Vredefort crater, the largest and oldest visible bolide impact crater in the world (with a diameter of 300 kilometres (190 mi)). It was this approximately 10-kilometre (6.2 mi) wide bolide that led to the preservation of the gold-bearing reefs of the Free State some 2.02 billion years ago. The town's name, which translates to "peace fort" in Afrikaans and Dutch, was derived from the peaceful conclusion to a threatened war between the Transvaal and the Orange Free State. The British built a concentration camp here during the Second Boer War to house Boer women and children.

The Vredefort Dome (Crater) is currently the largest and one of the oldest known meteor impact site in the world.[3] It is South Africa's seventh World Heritage Site and its status is largely due to the efforts of research scientists from Wits University.[4]

Notable residentsEdit

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ "Chronological order of town establishment in South Africa based on Floyd (1960:20-26)" (PDF). pp. xlv–lii.
  2. ^ a b c d Sum of the Main Places Vredefort and Mokwallo from Census 2011.
  3. ^ Earth Impact Database
  4. ^ Information The Vredefort Dome Homepage

External linksEdit