Botswana will join the World to celebrate International Museum Day next week on 28th May. The day will be commemorated the world over, under the theme “Museums and Memory; Objects tell a story.” In Botswana, the day will be celebrated in Shoshong, under the adapted theme “Museums and Memory, celebrating old Shoshong”.
According to curator Abel Mabuse, this year marks the 122nd anniversary of the dramatic abandonment of what used to be one of the most prosperous trading towns during the nineteenth century. Making a presentation on the topic, “Remembering old Shoshong”, Mabuse revealed that Shoshong was an African town established by the Bangwato during the eighteenth century. The occupation of the sites under Kgosi Mathiba around 1790 helped shape the course of the history of parts of Northern Botswana.
Located between Lephephe and Shoshong, the establishment of Shoshong influenced trade, political organisation and assisted in the consolidation of the Bangwato chieftainship.
This attracted travellers, traders and missionaries who traversed northwards to popular destinations, such as Lake Ngami, Zambia and Zimbabwe.
Today the old town of Shoshong is identifiable through debris of pottery, metal objects, porcelain, remains of house foundations and graves that mark the presence of a bustling town made up of over thirty thousand people.
Minister Kitso Mokaila is amongst some of the dignitaries expected to grace the event.