Potchefstroom (pŏch´əfstrōm, –strōōm), city, now part and seat of Tlokwe local municipality, North West prov. (in what formerly was part of Transvaal), NE South Africa. Located in a fertile farming region, Potchefstroom is the center of one of the world's richest gold-mining districts. Uranium is also mined. The town has malt factories and timber and metal industries.
The oldest European town in what was the Transvaal, Potchefstroom was founded in 1838 and served as capital of the Transvaal until 1860. The fort where British forces were defeated during the Transvaal rebellion of 1880–81 is now a national monument. The British captured Potchefstroom during the South African War of 1899 to 1902. The city's main growth dates from 1933, when gold was discovered nearby. A campus of North-West Univ. is there.
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