I chose to write about Nelson Mandela because he was someone who truly changed the world. He never gave up on his cause—even while in prison. Nelson Mandela was a great man and leader.
I hope you enjoy this spotlight on this remarkable leader who has changed the course of history.
Thank you for allowing me to share his story with you.
I took these notes from a book I recently read on his life. The reference is below.
Baila Berman Pirchesky
1918—Rolihahla Mandela was born in Mueso, South Africa. The name “Rohihahla” means “troublemaker” in the Xhosa language. Mandela was born into a noble family of the Thembu. They are one of the several Xhosa speaking peoples. Mandela’s great –grandfather was king of the Thembu.
Rohlihahla lived in the village of Qunu with his mother and sisters. Christian missionaries also live in Qunu. Henry Mandela, Rohlihahla’s father, befriended of some of the missionaries, who note that the 7-year old was a bright boy, and he became the first of his family to get a formal education. On the first day of school, one of the teachers gave all the students English names. Rolihahla’s name became “Nelson” He like the name and it stuck.
When Nelson was 9 years old, his father passed away. Soon after that, Nelson’s mother told Nelson that he could no longer stay in Qunu. Nelson went to a village called “Mqhekezweni.” It was the home of Chief Jongintaba, ruler of the Thembu. He had been friends with Nelson’s father, Henry, and adopted and raised Nelson, as if he was his own son.
Nelson continued his studies in the village’s one-room school house. He learned English, history, geography and more. He did chores and shared a room with the Chief’s only so, Justice, and the two became like brothers. Mandela learned more about Western ways. He dressed in Western styles, and attended Christian church. Nelson thrived in his new surroundings.
His becoming a man brought the realization that South Africa was filled with racism. In college in 1940 Nelson Mandela was expelled from the University of Font Hare for refusing to accept a student government position. In 1944, he founded the African National Congress (ANC) Youth League.
He also married Evelyn Mose, his first wife, in October 1944. Later in his life Nelson Mandela married Winnie Madikizela-Mandela, who also came from the Transkei area, and they met in Johannesburg, where she was the city's first black social worker. Mandela's third wife was Graça Machel (née Simbine), whom he married on his 80th birthday in 1998. Mandela had six children, 17 grandchildren, and many great-grandchildren.
In 1942, he helped to organize the Defiance Campaign and was arrested during it. In 1961, he went into hiding as he organized the military organization, Umkhonto we Sizwe. In 1964, Mandela was tried and found guilty of sabotage and sentenced to life in prison. He wrote his memoirs in 1975 while in prison. In 1990 he was released from prison. On February 11th, Apartheid officially ended. In 1994 Mandela was sworn into office as South Africa’s first black President. In 1999 he stepped down from the Presidency after one term. At the age of 95, Nelson Mandela passed from the world on December 5th, 2013 and was laid to rest.
80,000 People and 90 World Leaders Attended Nelson Mandela's Funeral, which was one of the largest in history.
Source Reference from which notes were taken:
A Real Life Story: Nelson Mandela—South African Revolutionary.
By: Beatrice Gormley
Please take a moment to see some videos of this Legendary man who endured so much for Freedom. May Mandela's Legacy continue to live on and inspire the world to Love, Tolerance and Global Adoption of Human Rights