After the goldrush, coal addiction


Given South Africa’s exceptional mineral resource base, it is instructive to examine what we have made of this endowment, in particular gold.

Gold mining started towards the end of the 19th century, and was initially focused in the Barberton area. Things changed with the discovery of gold on the Witwatersrand, and Johannesburg grew rapidly on the back of these discoveries, as well as on the backs of a migrant labour force.

Apart from the break in production during the South African War (1899 to 1902), production rose steadily to peak in 1940, with a small drop-off coincident with World War II.



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