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Ladysmith,town, part and seat of Emnambithi-Ladysmith local municipality, KwaZulu-Natal prov., E South Africa. The town has railroad yards and food-processing, textile, and tire factories. It is the distribution center for the surrounding agricultural and coal-mining region. Ladysmith was founded in 1851 by BoersBoer
[Du.,=farmer], inhabitant of South Africa of Dutch or French Huguenot descent. Boers are also known as Afrikaners. They first settled (1652) near the Cape of Good Hope in what was formerly Cape Province.
..... Click the link for more information. (Afrikaners) who had been persuaded by British governor Sir Harry Smith to remain in Natal rather than join the TrekTrek, Great
, the journey by Afrikaner farmers (Boers) who left the Cape Colony to escape British domination and eventually founded Natal, Transvaal, and the Orange Free State. Trek is an Afrikaans term, originally meaning a journey by ox wagon.
..... Click the link for more information. to other areas. The town, named for Smith's wife, grew after a railroad to Durban was opened in 1886. During the South African WarSouth African War
or Boer War,
1899–1902, war of the South African Republic (Transvaal) and the Orange Free State against Great Britain. Background
..... Click the link for more information. , Sir George White's British forces at Ladysmith were under siege by Boers from Nov., 1899, to Feb., 1900, when British reinforcements arrived. Nearby battlefields associated with the siege include Wagon Hill, Nicholson's Nek, and Spion Kop.
a city in the east of the Republic of South Africa, in Natal Province, on the Klip River. Population, 33,000 (1969). Ladysmith is a railroad junction and a trade center. It has a cotton-cloth factory. Coal is mined nearby.
a city in E South Africa: besieged by Boers for four months (1899--1900) during the Boer War. Pop.: 41 427 (2001)