Lake Otjikoto. History and mystery, by Siegfried Agenbag
Siegfried Agenbag has compiled data and facts on the history, fauna, flora and the historical technical infrastructure nearby, and on the rumours, mystery and secrets about the dark and bottomless waters of Lake Otjikoto.
Steam engine and cannons of Lake Otjikoto
Both the steam engine and the pumps were built by M. Neuhaus and Company in Luckenwalde, Germany, in 1907. The pumps were used to pump water from Lake Otjikoto to Tsumeb. The pipeline built in 1907 is stili being used today, though in the opposite direction, namely to carry drinking-water from the boreholes near Tsumeb to the houses at Otjikoto. When Germany declared war on England in 1914, Namibia was a German colony. The Union of South Africa, still part of the British Empire at the time, was instructed to take German South West Africa. The German Schutztruppe, totally outnumbered by the South Africans, resisted for one year, but was gradually driven back to the north until they were forced to capitulate on the farm Khorab between Otavi and Tsumeb. In all, the Germans had at their disposal 28 German cannons and 2 British 13-pounders captured from the Union troops during the battle at Sandfontein. The Germans were not prepared to turn their guns and munitions over to the Union troops; everything was taken to Lake Otjikoto on ox-waggons and dumped into the murky depths. One of the captured British cannons, however, remained stuck on a reef in the lake and was recovered by South African divers in 1916; it was later used against von Paul von Lettow-Vorbeck in German East Africa. The South African divers also succeeded in retrieving the following from the lake in 1916: 5 cannons, 3 machine-guns, 10 ammunition waggons (limbers), 225 time fuses, 85 725 rounds of Mauser ammunition, 1 522 copper cordite cartridges, and 4 684 shells. On 13 July 1970, two divers from Windhoek, Messrs de Bruyn and van der Merwe, dived in the lake and discovered something at a depth of 40 m that they believed to be a cannon. When the object was raised to the surface on 16 August the same year with the assistance of army personnel, however, it proved to be not a cannon, but an ammunition waggon. This limber was taken to Windhoek under the supervision of C.G. Coetzee of the State Museum. In October 1977, members of the Windhoek Underwater Club dived at the place at which the limber had been discovered in 1970 and discovered another "cannon" that eventually proved to be an ammunition waggon. This limber bears the inscription Krupp Essen A/R Nr. 3. It was also taken to Windhoek. Two well-known divers, Boetie Scheun and Jorn Kempke, succeeded in retrieving yet another limber with the assistance of two divers from Tsumeb, Phillipus Opperman and Tulio van der Merwe-Parreira. The inscription on this limber reads FRIEDR. KRUPP. ESSEN Rhnl. Nr. I. The Essen factory of the Krupp company had built this ammunition waggon; Essen is situated in the Rheinland. The attempts to uncover the secrets still held by Lake Otjikoto, however, did not come to an end. Three divers from Tsumeb, Phillipus Opperman, Tulio van der Merwe-Parreira and Rob de Koning, continued their search for further cannons. On 13 May 1983, Tulio van der Merwe-Parreira lost an arm when one of the cannons slipped on a float and his arm was caught in the steel cable holding the cannon. For this reason, one of the captured cannons was named after him, namely "Tulio". [...]
This is an excerpt from Lake Otjikoto. History and Mystery, by Siegfried Agenbag.
Subtitle: History and Mystery
Author: Siegfried Agenbag
Publisher: Namibia Scientific Society
4th edition. Windhoek, Namibia 2004
ISBN 9991640223 / ISBN 99916-40-22-3
ISBN 9783936858549 / ISBN 978-3-936858-54-9
Softcover, 21 x 29 cm, 19 pages, 16 photos, text: English / German
Agenbag, Siegfried im Namibiana-Buchangebot
The local history, rumours, mystery and secrets of Lake Otjikoto near Tsumeb in Namibia.
Die Ortsgeschichte, Gerüchte und Geheimnisse um den Otjikotosee bei Tsumeb im Nord-Westen Namibias.
Murder at Angra Pequeña is the true story of an incident that happened in 1863 in South West Africa.
This book commemorates the 100th Anniversary of the beginning of the First World War in Namibia August 1914 - July 1915.
Fllls the much neglected area of both the German and Namibian medallic history
Expelled from a beloved Country is the life story of German Settlers in Southern Namibia between Colonial War and World War I.
For Valour is the story and history of Southern Africa's heroes whose deeds of gallantry awarded them the Victoria Cross.
Taken Captive by Birds is a collection of Marguerite Poland’s discovery of birds in young years and the role they have played in her life.