%%z Staats Model School, C/o Nana Sita and Lilian Ngoyi Streets, Pretoria City Centre, Tshwane

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(Input giskey if applicable)
Date of origin
Previous names
Teachers' College or Staats Model School / Transvaal Education Media Service / Education Library 
Corner of Nana Sita (formerly Skinner) and Lilian Ngoyi (formerly Van der Walt) Streets
331 Lilian Ngoyi (formerly Van der Walt) Street
Magisterial district
South Africa
GPS coordinates
25°45'00.55" S    28°11'36.89" E
Planning authority name
City of Tshwane Metropolitan Municipality
Department of Public Works, ZAR
Project architect/Designer
Sytze Wierda
Commissioning owner
Current owner
Department of Education
Current occupant
Education Library
Previous uses
School, Prison
Current use
Education Library
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[edit] Significance

This sandstone and redbrick 19th century Eclectic Wilhelmiens building is the oldest school in Pretoria. It was declared a National Monument on 8 April 1960. The building has connections with the second Angelo-Boer war where prisoners were held captive. Winston Churchill, later Sir Churchill, prime minister of England was among these prisoners. The building is the forerunner of important schools in Pretoria such as Pretoria Boys High and Clapham High School.

The School, designed in a mode of the Flemish Renaissance Revival often employed for industrial use in the Netherlands, is a prime example of the utilitarian architecture of the ZAR Public Works Department under the contrill of SW Wierda.

[edit] Current known heritage status

Protected as a Provincial Heritage Resource under the NHRA (25 of 1999)

Also sunject to Section 34 of the NHRA (25 of 1999) as a structure older than 60 years.

[edit] Known interested and affected parties

[edit] History

As a result of the rapidly growing Republic of Zuid-Afrika there was a shortage of schools, specifically in Pretoria. Two schools where built, the “Opleidings” and “Voorbereidings” schools. By 1887 the schools where merged to form one school but in 1892 they where separated once again; the “Opleidings” school to become a gymnasium and the “Voorbereidings” school then became the Staats Model School. (Kotze H, 1985)

The Staats Model was commissioned in 1895 to provide a ‘model’ for education in the ZAR where education was privately arranged . The Staats Model School school existed from 1893-1898 (290 pupils attending the school at that time) when it was closed for safety reasons due to the outbreak of the South African War (also known as Angelo-Boer War) in October 1899. Shortly after the war broke out the school was converted into a prison for British officers captured by the Boer commandos. (Ploeger, J. 1963). Around 129 officers and 36 soldiers were held captive at the Staats Model School, among them Winston Churchill, later Sir Churchill, Prime Minister of England. (Andrews, TE. 1999).

25-year-old Winston Churchill escaped on 12 December 1899 after he had been held captive for a month. He did so by climbing over a two-meter high boundary fence. He then made his way to the railway, swimming through the Apies River, where he hid on a train heading for the eastern Transvaal. Other attempts to escape where made by prisoners by digging tunnels under the floor which failed because the tunnels was filled with water before it was finish. (Ploeger, J. 1963).

In 1902 the school was reopened but there was not enough interest for the lectures to continue. Since then the building was always associated with education. (Kotze H, 1985). Since 1951 it housed the Transvaal Education Media services and from 1994 the library became part of Gauteng’s Department of Education library. The National Film library was moved there during 2001 and is now officially part of the Education Library. (Heydenrych, H. 1999)

The school was the forerunner of the Pretoria High School for Boys and Clapham High School. Jacob Hendrik Pierneef, famous artist, attended the Staats Model School where he was excellent at drawing and painting. During the Anglo Boer War he left for the Netherlands and received further training there. (Everard Read Gallery, 2010).

[edit] Description of site and/or structures and/or interior spaces

The Staats Model School is an example of 19th century Eclectic Wilhelmiens architecture. The sandstone and red clay brick used together creates a holistic whole. The single storey re-d clay brick structure is roofed with corrugated iron; gables are decorated with Neo-Classical sandstone finials. The decoration of the ventilation windows built on the roof emphasize them. 

Eclectic Wilhelmiens architecture in this building is the polychromatic use of building material: through the use of red clay bricks as the contents of the wall and the use of sandstone used to emphasize the entrance window and rounding of the gable.

Typical for teh ZAR PWD, the façade is composed in five parts: the central 'corpse avant' reduced to a gable with arged opeing leading to the main entrance. TEH addition of a veranda show local variance applied to this imported European archtiectural style.  The use of these prefab materials (steel railings and column of the veranda) was influenced by the industrial revolution. (Kotze H, 1985).

Inside the walls are plastered and painted. Ceilings and floors are constructed of timber. There is no alteration made to the building structurally although some curtain walls inside was removed. The building is in good condition except for some weathering of the clay bricks on the gable.

[edit] Links

Everard Read Gallery, 2010, JACOB HENDRIK PIERNEEF (1886 – 1957), visited on 28/08/2010, http://jacobushendrikpierneef.everard-read.co.za/home.asp?m=1

[edit] Sources

Kotze H, 1985, The Staats Model School, Department of Architecture Archive, University of Pretoria.
Ploeger, J. 1963, Uit die geskiedenis van die Staatsmodelschool. Stigting Simon van der Stel Bullitin. October, 1963, pp. 28-33
Andrews, TE. 1999, No shots fired: Pretoria’s precipitation in the second Angelo-Boer War, 1899-1902. Tom E Andrews Emagameni.

Heydenrych, H. 1999. Discover Pretoria. JL van Schaik, pp. 77- 80 and p. 83.
Prinsloo, W. s.a. Die staats model skool en sy betekenis in die Zuid-Afrikaanse Republiek. s.n.
Education library pamphlet, Staats Model School, telephone number: +27 12 322 7685

[edit] Photos

Staats model school entrance to upload.jpg

Staats Model School 1896-1897 to upload.png
Coat hooks.JPG
Gutter Detail.JPG

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