The Village Museum in Stellenbosch, no.2

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The Village Museum in Stellenbosch consists of four houses: The Schreuder House, The Bletterman House, and the two buildings in this post.

Model of Stellenbosch Village Museum (
Model of Stellenbosch Village Museum (

Christiaan Ludolph Neethling emigrated from Germany to the Cape in 1741 and worked as the Secretary to the Council of Justice at the Cape. In 1782 he built a modest home which has been considerably extended by subsequent owners to today’s Grosvenor House . The house is furnished in the style of 1800-30 when Willem Herold was the owner. (It seems Herold was employed by the Dutch East India Company as a ‘sick-comforter’.) The Collins Family of Bath were the owners in 1876 who named the building ‘Grosvenor House’.

Grosvenor House, Stellenbosch
Grosvenor House, Stellenbosch

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While there were some interesting pieces, like the upright piano, I thought the furnishings were rather sparse and unimaginatively arranged – I couldn’t imagine anyone living in the house as it is presented. What a pity.

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Outside there is a large garden laid out for enjoyment and with a productive and useful fruit and vegetable area.

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By 1817 Stellenbosch was still a very modest town

Stellenbosch in 1817 (
Stellenbosch in 1817 (
Stellenbosch 1881
Stellenbosch 1881

O M Bergh House  (the final building in The Village Museum) is named after Olof Marthinus Bergh who bought the property in 1836 when he was Deputy Sheriff of Stellenbosch. The house is furnished as a mid-Victorian home of 1840-70. I think there is a garden, but we were not made aware of it when we visited.

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The washing arrangements were interesting! There was the usual basin and jug in the bedroom, but also an early bathroom, with shower and tub.

That was all interesting but hard work and it was time for refreshment!

You may be interested in
The Stellenbosch Blog
The owners of Grosvenor House
A visit to Stellenbosch – interesting post with nice photographs

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