Apartheid Timeline

  • Act of Union

    Act of Union
    South Africa became a unified state within the British Empire. It combined four British colonies as separate provinces within the new state.
  • SANNC founded

    SANNC founded
    The Native National Congress is founded, later renamed the African National Congress (ANC). Its vision was to unite Africans and to secure their right to vote.
  • ANCYL Manifesto

    ANCYL Manifesto
    Youth League Manifesto urged new militant African leaders to wage a more vigorous campaign against racial discrimination.
  • NP wins the general election

    NP wins the general election
    Daniel Malan takes power promising to introduce a policy of apartheid (separateness) against discrimination.
  • Prohibition of Mixed Marriages and Immorality Acts

    Prohibition of Mixed Marriages and Immorality Acts
    No mixed race marriages allowed.
  • ANC adopts programme of action

    ANC adopts programme of action
    It emphasized the rights of African people to self-determination and laid out plans for strikes, boycott, and civil disobedience.
  • Stock Limitation Act

    Stock Limitation Act
    Gave the right for removal or slaughter of cattle belonging to an african.
  • Group areas Act

    Group areas Act
    Black africans were moved into bantus and were given no properties rights.
  • May Day Strike

    May Day Strike
    The ANC, SACP, ACPO co-ordinate a May Day strike. And ended with 18 dead and 30 wounded by police hands.
  • National Day of Protest

    National Day of Protest
    The ANC called for a general strike and a day of mourning in protest at the May day murders.Supported by African colored people organization and South African Indian congress.
  • Population Registration Act

    Population Registration Act
    Only whites could vote and everyone was classified as a race and your right would change depending based on what race.
  • The Suppression of Communism Act

    The Suppression of Communism Act
    Banned the South African Communist Party and allowed the government to take action against any group or individual intending to bring about.
  • Seperate Representation Act

    Seperate Representation Act
    To enforce racial segregation, and was part of a deliberate process to remove all non-white people from the voters' roll and revoke the Cape Qualified Franchise system.
  • The Pass Laws

    The Pass Laws
    Blacks had to carry a reference book with them to travel and was a criminal offense to not have it
  • Defiance Campaign

    Defiance Campaign
    The largest scale non-violent resistance ever seen in South Africa. More than 8,000 people across towns in South Africa went to jail for defying apartheid laws.
  • The Public Safety Act

    The Public Safety Act
    Was made to be able to create state of emergencies and increased penalties for protesters.
  • The Criminal Law Amendment Act

    The Criminal Law Amendment Act
    Which said that anyone even speaking out against the regime would be guilty of ‘incitement’
  • Bantu Education Act

    Bantu Education Act
    Young black children were given inferior education compared to other races at the time.
  • The Reservation of Separate Amenities Act

    The Reservation of Separate Amenities Act
    Public facilities where separated for whites and colored and they were not same white area had better everything compared to the colored.
  • Native Resettlement Act

    Native Resettlement Act
    Removed blacks forcefully and where moved to designated to certain areas
  • Congress of the people

    Congress of the people
    was held over two days in a field in Kliptown just outside Johannesburg 7 000 people from all over the country attended from a wide range of anti-apartheid groups.
  • Adoption of Freedom Charter

    Adoption of Freedom Charter
    United people of all racial origins in a common struggle to end apartheid and to establish a non-racial democratic state. It formed the basis of the country’s democratic Constitution of 1996.
  • The Women's March

    The Women's March
    20,000 ANC women marched to the Prime Minister’s office to deliver a petition calling for the abolition of the pass laws The anti-pass campaign ultimately failed and, by the 1960s, millions of black women were forced to carry passes.
  • The Treason Trial

    The Treason Trial
    The police arrested 156 Congress Alliance leaders and charged them with treason under the Suppression of Communism Act. The Freedom Charter was used as evidence of the Alliance’s communist intentions and their plot to overthrow the government.
  • PAC Separates from ANC

    PAC Separates from ANC
    A group of radicalized activists split away from the ANC to form the PAC.
  • Promotion of Bantu Self-Government Act

    Promotion of Bantu Self-Government Act
    Stripped Blacks from being part of the government.
  • Poqo Formed

    Poqo Formed
    In the PAC, Leballo set up a militant wing called poqo (pure), which launched a campaign of terrorism against individuals
  • Umkhonto we Sizwe

    Umkhonto we Sizwe
    In the ANC, Mandela set up a miitant wing called Umkhonto we Sizwe (Spear of the Nation) which launched a campaign sabotage against property.
  • Winds of Change Speech

    Winds of Change Speech
    British Prime Minister Harold Macmillan delivered his “Winds of Change” speech, suggesting that Black nationalism was a force that had to be acknowledged and accepted.
  • Sharpeville Massacre

    Sharpeville Massacre
    During a PAC demonstration against pass books in Sharpeville, the police opened fire, killing 69 black protestors.
  • ANC and PAC outlawed

    ANC and PAC outlawed
    After their part in the Sharpville protests they were outlawed
  • Resolution 1598

    Resolution 1598
    UN Resolution 1598 condemns apartheid.
  • South Africa declares itself a republic

    South Africa declares itself a republic
    South africa declares itself a republic but is removed from the commonwealth
  • Resolution 1761

    Resolution 1761
    UN Resolution 1761 encourages members "separately or collectively, in conformity with the charter" to break trade and diplomatic relations with South Africa.
  • The Rivonia Trial and Mandela's "I Am Prepared to Die" speech

    The Rivonia Trial and Mandela's "I Am Prepared to Die" speech
    Ten leaders of the African National Congress were tried for 221 acts of sabotage designed to overthrow the apartheid system. Nelson Mandela renounced his chance to be cross-examined in favor of a speech from the dock in which he condemned the court and the laws he was charged with breaking as being illegitimate.
  • Mandela and others receive life sentence

    Mandela and others receive life sentence
    Mandela and the other leader of the MK were given life sentences and sent to Robben Island
  • Formation of the African Resistance Movement (ARM) Bombing of Johannesburg Station by Frederick John Harris

    Formation of the African Resistance  Movement  (ARM)  Bombing of  Johannesburg  Station by  Frederick John  Harris
    The African Resistance Movement (ARM) was a group made up largely by white students who had been part of the National Union of South African Students (NUSAS).