Museum mines all facets of digging for diamonds
THE discovery of diamonds and mining changed the history of SA, but many people are unaware of diamonds’ origins or how they are excavated and make their way on to ring fingers all over the world.
To uncover these mysteries, Shimansky jewellers has opened the Cape Town Diamond Museum. Don’t expect a dull tour of a dusty museum. Through pictures, artifacts, models, video and sound, the museum takes you on a trip through time and process.
Located in the V&A Waterfront’s Clock Tower, the museum even offers an authentic experience of a 1920s mine shaft.
Patrons don mining gear and are given a shovel and lamp for their walk through a dimly- lit shaft. Recordings of fanagalo – a pidgin language used as a lingua franca in mines – ring out in the background.
Owner and founder of the museum Yair Shimansky says: “I have been to the mines in Kimberley many times, but not everyone has that opportunity. This is a tribute to diamonds and South Africa played a major role in them. Understanding their whole journey helps you appreciate them more.”
The Cape Town Diamond Museum is open seven days a week. For information visit www.capetowndiamondmuseum.or g or call (021) 421 2488 for bookings.