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Bosman’s Crossing is richly endowed in the history of Stellenbosch - South Africa’s oldest town.

Towering over Bosman’s Crossing, Papegaaiberg got its name from a 14th century Dutch custom for marksmen to shoot at a wooden “parrot” covered in metal sheeting on a long wooden post.  It is believed that the flat land near Bosman’s Crossing was chosen for this sport with muskets firing towards the hillock, appropriately called Papegaaiberg.  

According to research the bridge across the Plankenbrug River at the entrance to Bosman’s Crossing was the first public works project undertaken in the area in 1691. A sturdy and secure bridge was needed at the western entrance to the town, which became known at the time as “De Steenenbrug”.

Bosman’s Crossing was first known as Bosman’s Siding when in 1881 the owner of the property, Daniel Bosman, asked for a single railway track link-up with the Stellenbosch station in order to load his casks of spirits more easily on railway trucks.. This was also used to load brandy from the many distilleries established along the Plankenbrug River.

It was in 1889 that the town’s young and old gathered at Bosman’s Crossing to meet Sir Donald Currie, donor of the well-known Rugby Currie Cup.

The KWV Co-operative purchased the site soon after its establishment in 1918. It was the KWV’s Stellenbosch headquarters until 1995 when it stopped the production of mainly brandy.

  Until the 1960’s the entrance to Stellenbosch from Cape Town was through Bosman’s Crossing by way of Dorp Street running from across the Plankenbrug River, through the KWV distillery and across the railway line in to the town’s historic core. Although this route was later altered, the site was time-honoured in popular parlance as Bosman’s Crossing.
 

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