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Ou Tronk

Ou Tronk ( The Old Jail)

Die ou tronk.1 - CopyThe Old Jailhouse in Riversdale is probably one of the oldest historical buildings in town.It was originally built in 1838 by the 2 Barry's" from Swellendam and it was used as a trading store.In 1860 the site was bought by the state and converted into a jailhouse.During this time it was used as the Police office ,Courthouse and Jail.The warden also lived on the premises.

Die ou tronk.1 - Copy 2There has only been one execution on this site.In 1899 Gilbert Hay of Heidelberg bludgeoned his mother with a hammer ,ultimately killing her,for liquor money.He received the death penalty.At this stage in time Swellendam was the head district magistrate and the gallows had to be driven on a wagon of oxen to Riversdale.After they served their purpose they were transported back to Swellendam.There is currently a replica of these gallows in the jailhouse.On the 31st of March the jail was shut down and sold  in 1984 to Mattheus Koen.

Monday to Friday: 8h00-17h00 And Saturday : 8h00-13h00.