The Boer Forts

Before the outbreak of the Second Anglo-Boer War, the ZAR government commissioned Major Albrecht to built a series of military forts on the hills surrounding Pretoria, in order to protect the city. The design of military fortifications had chaned by that time. Against high-powered artillery, traditional stone and mortar walls did not offer sufficient protection anymore. Accordingly, the new forts were built according to the latest Austrian designs in military engineering. The outside walls were surrounded by large earth embankments, and gun positions had thick earth and concrete covers to protect against falling artillery shells and high explosives. Despite enormous cost, these forts never saw any action. Early in the war the long range heavy artillery Long Toms were removed and sent to the front. By the time that Pretoria was reached by the invading British force, there were no guns left for its defence, and it had already been decided to hand over the city intact in order to prevent street fighting and unecessary destruction of private property.

Fort Schanskop, next to the Voortrekker museum, has been restored to its original state after many years of neglect.

Fort Schanskop, outside Pretoria