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WA Campbell hut museum in Skukuza

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WA Campbell hut museum in Skukuza

Unread postby DinkyBird » Sun May 29, 2005 8:44 pm

It is hut number S1 and is the oldest in Skukuza camp. It has been restored to its original state and serves as a museum.

W.A. Campbell was one of the first members of the Parks Board and he donated this hut in 1929. One can view original artefacts of that time in the hut.

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Unread postby DinkyBird » Mon May 30, 2005 7:54 pm

Next to the WA Campbell hut museum is an original red Pegasus petrol pump. Also next to the museum is the smallest hut in Kruger. It was used as a broom closet.

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Unread postby Krokodile » Tue May 31, 2005 9:13 pm

I visited this very interesting (and very small!) museum when I was at Skukuza last week. The small hut is, in fact, a bathroom, complete with built in basin and bath (no plugs, just used like large bowls, I guess). I took some pics which I will post when I've sorted them out a bit (also, Image Shack just isn't playing ball at the moment).

Skukuza is so interesting for things like this. Didn't get time to see the dog graveyard or visit the library, but I did eat dinner at the train station, which was fab too.

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Unread postby Jakkalsbessie » Thu Nov 24, 2005 12:17 pm

Don't know how many of you are interested in KNP history but found this nice piece on the Campbell Hut in the KPT:

Campbell Hut... Earliest Accommodation in the Park

The first motorist entered the Kruger National Park in 1927. Visitors paid £1 entrance fee and that year the Park realised a full £3. There were no huts, only a thorn bush enclosure, built by the ranger, where visitors could camp.

In 1927, WAC Campbell, a founder member of the National Parks Board, donated £150 for the construction of a show hut, which has been preserved and can still be viewed in Skukuza today.

Campbell was from Mount Edgecomb in Natal and an earlier owner of the farm Mala Mala, bordering the Park. The hut was built according to a design proposed by Paul Selby, an American building engineer, who had also served on the Parks Board.

According to the museum information, his design entailed the use of a semicircular mould into which scrap metal and cables were placed vertically. The ends protruding at the top were gathered to form the nock of the conical roof that was supported by a single pole.

Concrete was then poured into the mould. The huts had concrete floors and were all thatched. Dr U de V Pienaar noted in his "Neem uit die Verlede" that the hut had a ventilation opening between the wall and roof and there were no windows. The door featured a single hole through which people could scan the area for any unwanted visitors before venturing outside.

At the time there were no fences around the camps. However, visitors complained about the dark interior, mosquitoes entering through the open area and people peeping inside through the door opening. In 1931, builders added windows to all the huts. The original beds, still seen today, were built by the staff in 1930, as there were no funds to buy furniture.

The beds were strung with wildebeest riempies. Sabi Bridge, as Skukuza was earlier known, was established as a rest camp in 1929 and known as "The Reserve". By December 1929, there were two six-metre and ten four-metre Campbell huts, but no facilities and the camp was still unfenced.

The name changed to Skukuza, meaning "he who sweeps clean" after the first warden of Kruger, James Stevenson-Hamilton in 1932. During this time the camp was developed to cater for a growing number of visitors.

Huts, bathrooms, a shop and dining hall were all added, as well as petrol pumps and a breakdown service. In 1935 the available accommodation in Skukuza could house 250 people in the huts and 600 people in tents.
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Unread postby Loams » Sun Nov 27, 2005 1:13 am

The petrol pump is still right next to the hut. Pretty impressive history in Kruger itself. I always try to go past the historical sites when I am there.
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Re: WA Campbell hut museum in Skukuza

Unread postby Grantmissy » Mon Feb 17, 2014 10:39 am

I have visited this museum hut again last July. I think some of us 2010’s people might have struggled a bit with the amenities of the 1930’s :) . Those beds with just the wildebeest riempies as base looks a bit uncomfortable unless a person brought two mattresses from home, also chamber pots as there is no plumbing inside the hut that I have seen :doh: . Not sure how an adult person could have bathed in that tiny bath tub :hmz: – maybe the person just stood in the tub and another person threw a bucket of water over him/her like a shower :| . This little museum hut is well worth a visit even if it is just to make a person appreciate a shower after the visit with a choice of hot or cold water or in-between :P and a sparkling white wc from which clean water appear just by pressing a lever :P .
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Re: WA Campbell hut museum in Skukuza

Unread postby hilda » Fri May 09, 2014 1:13 pm

I wonder if anybody has some pictures of the WA Campbell hut museum in Skukuza? Unfortunately those put up earlier on by krokodile and DinkyBird do not show anymore. :(
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