The Town Of Belfast
On June 30th, 1890 President Kruger declared the farm Tweefontein “situate in the district of Lydenburg”, and being the property of R. C. O’Neil as a town with the name ‘Belfast’ (Ireland) and that said portion of Tweefontein shall be an urban area.
The Farm Tweefontein measured 3,750 morgen. The erven 120 x 240 ft were surveyed by Peter MacDonald Of these erven 313 were reserved by the Government for its own use, while the remaining 575 were the property of the owner.
Here to we find the president aiming to protect wild life by the proclamation dated April the 28th 1898, which stated that it was prohibited ‘to kill or hunt, shoot or track game or to capture, disperse or otherwise disturb game in the area.
The erection of the Burger Monument in 1886 had all ready made this a meeting place for the whole of the Eastern Transvaal even though it was only used for Festivals and other national gatherings.
The need for a place of worship between the distant town of Lydenburg and Middleburg was proved by the fact that immediately after the proclamation of the township this former part of the Lydenburg community set about collecting funds for the building of a church. And so it came about that already in 1894 the temporary church and school of N. H. G. Kerk was founded.
In the same year in which Belfast had been declared a township a serious beginning was made with the Dellagoe Bay railway the line was completed as far as Belfast in August 1894.Shortly after the opening of the main railway line a branch line was built to exploit the extensive coalfields surrounding Belfast. Sammy Marks who had acquired all the coal mining rights parallel to the main railway line started mining.
At one stage a certain Mc Laughlin was the manager when there were about fifty families on the mine living mostly in tin shanties.
These people, who were mostly English speaking, characteristically had many and varied sporting activities and certainly had their influence on the development of the village.
The first people to settle in Belfast were Jan Oosthuizen and Hendrik van Eedveldt; they were followed by Alf Robinson, Ocket Coetzee and R. C. O’Neil.
In 1897 the office of Justice of the Peace was established and the first person to fill this post was a certain Andreas Coetzee. He occupied this post till August, 1900, and then the British occupied the town
About a year after the foundry of Belfast Richard O’Neil opened a shop in town.
By the close of the nineties four shops had been established one being Store Brothers were the Hotel is to day.
After the Anglo Boer war in 1902 Belfast was declared a Municipality and the first council was constituted