Cape Town. History in Photos

Last updated: Apr 20, 2016

Orange Street, Cape Town in 1870.

Sea Point in 1890
De Waal Park in 1898

The beach that used to be in Woodstock. This photo was taken in 1899

The naval base of Simon's Town in 1900.
Welgemeend is one of the oldest surviving houses in Cape Town and was built in Gardens in 1700. This photo was taken in 1901.
The lime kilns in Mowbray in 1910, with Table Mountain in the background.
The Old Pier was completed in 1910 and became a popular spot for Capetonians. This picture was taken in 1911.
The USS Huntington arrives to a very desolate foreshore in 1948. The foreshore was built in 1945, but due to the economic climate after the war, it took a while to be properly utilized.
The view from Blouberg in 1950

Kloof Road en-route to Glen Beach in 1953
The first Cape Argus took place in 1978, with 525 people taking place.

Quentin Mouton approaching the 'pongos' in his Harvard
The 'pongos' hitting the deck as the Harvard flies just overhead.

Cape Town has seen many changes since it was inhabited by the native Khoi and was first visited by Bartholomew Dias in 1488. The town was a Dutch trading post under Jan Van Riebeeck, and then came under British rule in 1814. Since then it has seen a lot of change and become a unique town with its own unique mix of culture.

We have compiled a series of historical photos, showing the growth of this town. It's amazing to see how things have changed and developed into the town we know affectionately as the Mother City. Enjoy this journey back in history.

These images appeared in a local forum and what follows is the response of the pilot in question.


These pictures were taken 2nd October 64. I was the pilot. The pictures are original and not 'touched up'.

The 'Pongos' (Army types) were on a route march from Langebaan by the sea to Saldanha. The previous night in the pub one of them had said: "julle dink julle kan laag vlieg maar julle sal my nooit laat le nie"(You think you can fly low, but you will never make me hit the deck).

I went to look for them on the beach in the morning and was alone for the one picture. I was pulling up to avoid them.

In the afternoon I had a formation with me and you can see the other a/c behind me (piloted by van Zyl, Kempen and Perold)

A friend by the name of Leon Schnetler (one of the pongos) took the pics.

The guy that said "jy sal my nie laat le nie" said afterwards that he was saying to himself as I approached: "ek sal nie le nie, ek sal nie le nie"( I won't go down, I won't go down) and when I had passed he found himself flat on the ground.


Quentin Mouton (23000hrs, everything up to B747-400, presently Chief pilot MANGO Airlines and still actively flying B737-800 at 68)

All photos are courtesy of Etienne Du Plessis. To view his collection go to