Title: Swakopmund 120 Years
Subtitle: The official Yearbook 2012
Authors: Konny von Schmettau; Peter Brüggemann
Publisher: Hippos Verlag
Swakopmund, Namibia 2012
ISBN 9789994573394 / ISBN 978-99945-73-39-4
Softcover, 15 x 21 cm, 112 pages, throughout colour and b/w photos, text: English, in parts German
Swakopmund's official Yearbook 2012 not only gives an insight to important events during the past 120 years, it also introduces the people of today, who give our town its unmistakeable character. It also gives them a forum. Starting from the beginnings of the town through to todays modern development, this is the introduction to the complex co-existence of our multifaceted town. „A book from Swakopmunders for Swakopmunders." In the south-west of Africa there was once upon a time a coast that was so depressing that not even the courageous seamen ever tried to throw an anchor. That is where the waves of the cold Benguela current break on the hot sandy beach in the age-old struggle between the sea and the desert. The coast was wrapped in dense fog. Anyone who got stranded with his boat was inevitable doomed. In good rainy years, when the river flows, nomads passed the Swakop River, but a permanent settlement did not seem possible. The history of Swakopmund starts with the German Schutztruppen officer, Curt von François, who was send by the German government to look for a possible landing stage in this area. On the 4th August 1892, the "SMS Hyäne" anchored near the Swakop River mouth and set two beacons by which the coast could be approached from the sea. In September 1892 they started to raise the first buildings at the coast near one of the beacons. The first flagpole was raised and then three small buildings, two for the soldiers and the workers and one as a store. Some wells were also dug for men and livestock and the first plots were staked, so laying the foundation for what once would be Swakopmund.