KMDT GIDEON SCHEEPERS SHOOTING RANGE
33º29'35.16" S 22º14'49.59" E elev 420m
Background on Kmdt Gideon Scheepers
The story and history of Kmdt Gideon Scheepers and his campaign during the Anglo-Boer War have references. The 21-year-old senior officer and his “Commando” consisted of many young orphan boys and a few Boers. His mission was to recruit fighters for the campaign in the Free State, and while he was at it, to destroy strategic buildings and free Boer POWs as far as possible. He was well known for executing traitors from his own side without trial. They were soon notorious for their operational successes and him for his conduct as a senior officer in the Boer army. For these reasons, he quickly became the number #1 most wanted Boer Fighter by the British. The young boys knew that it would be better to serve in Scheepers’s Commando than to die in the concentration or POW camps. Scheepers gave them safe refuge and taught them marksmanship, cavalry skills and battle handling until they were combat-ready. He operated in the areas of Langkloof, Uniondale, Willowmore, Oudtshoorn and the Klein Karoo. It was a complete coincidence that the actual location where the range is today is so closely associated with this man’s actual operational movements. We rather believe it to be a blessing in disguise that the actual area of the shooting range itself, was the start of a great venture. This information was only discovered after the shooting range was set up.