Family Tree Tuesday – Nelson Mandela
On March 29, 1961 Nelson Mandela was acquitted of treason charges after a four year trial, known as the Treason Trial. Actively involved in the anti-apartheid movement in South Africa, Mandela was arrested again in 1962 and imprisoned for 27 years. During his imprisonment, Mandela built his reputation as one of the most significant leaders in South Africa. He was finally released from prison on February 11, 1990.
After his release, Nelson Mandela continued to negotiate with then president F.W. de Klerk to end the apartheid in South Africa. In 1993, both Mandela and de Klerk were awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for “the peaceful termination of the apartheid regime and laying the foundations for a new democratic South Africa.” In 1994, Mandela became the first president of South Africa to be elected in a fully represented democratic election.
Mandela was born in Mvezo, a small village in South Africa. His father was Chief Galda Henry Mphakanyiswa of the Tembu tribe. After a dispute with the colonial authorities, his father was stripped of his title as chief, however he continued to serve on the Privy Council. His father had four wives; Mandela’s mother, Nosekeni, was his third. Mandela would receive his surname from his paternal grandfather, Mandela. His great-grandfather, Ngubengcuka, was once the king of the Tembu people.
Since his retirement, Mandela has been a strong advocate in the fight against AIDS. Sadly, in 2005, his son, Makgatho Mandela, with his first wife, Evelyn Mase, died of AIDS. After Makgatho’s death, his son Mandla Mandela became the chief of the Mvezo Traditional Council.
Check out Nelson Mandel’s family tree!