Nelson Mandela Timeline

Meredith Sides, 3rd Period, Ms. Bailey

1. Rolihlahla Mandela was born on July 18,1918 in Mvezo, Transkei, South Africa. His father was chief of the Thembu people. Rolihlahla translates into "troublemaker". At the age of 7, Mandela changes his name to a more English name, as suggested by his teacher. (picture not actually Nelson)

2. In 1938 Mandela attends the University of Fort Hare ( an all black institution). He is kicked out 2 years later for leading a student protest.

3. In 1944 Nelson has his first marriage with Evelyn Ntoko Mase. They have 4 children together but later divorce in 1957 because of the strain his political movements put on their relationship.

4. In 1944 Mandela joins the ANC and helped found its youth league.

5. In 1950, Nelson becomes President of the ANC Youth League.

6. In 1952, Nelson and Oliver Tambo set up the country's first black law firm. Mandela feared a ban by the apartheid government.

7. In 1956, Mandela was arrested for treason with 150 others. The trial lasted four and a half years and ended with him being acquitted.

8. In 1958, Mandela married his second wife, Winnie Madikizela. They have two children together.

9. In 1960, the Sharpeville Massacre: Police opened fire on the peaceful black protesters in the town of Sharpeville, killing 69 people. As confusion and panic swept across the country, the apartheid government banned the ANC. They were forced to go underground and wear disguises to avoid detection. Mandela decided that it was time for a more extreme approach than just accepting what's going on.

10. In 1861, the Umkhonto we Sizwe is formed after the ANC was banned. Even though Mandela was strictly a non-violent protester, he co-founded it. The militant Umkho we Sizwe was also known as MK, a new armed wing of the ANC. While on trial (several years later) his states his reasons for leaving his party's original idea. He says,"“[I]t would be wrong and unrealistic for African leaders to continue preaching peace and nonviolence at a time when the government met our peaceful demands with force. It was only when all else had failed, when all channels of peaceful protest had been barred to us, that the decision was made to embark on violent forms of political struggle.”

11. In March 1861, Mandela and the others convicted are found not guilty and released.

12. 1961, Mandela plans a strike against the South African government. When they attempted to strike, the police had filled the town with armored cars and the protest, even though thought to be successful, was considered a flop by the press. He left the country and searched for world support. Mandela was convinced that, as he said on British television: "We are closing a chapter on this question of non-violent protest".

13. August1962, whilejourneying back to South Africa, Mandela is arrested again and is sentence 5 years in prison.

14. July 1963, while still serving Mandela still serving his sentence, the police raided one of ANC's headquarters and found plans of government sabotage. The government charged Mr. Mandela and 8 others with sabotage and conspiracy to overthrow the government. This is known as the Rivonia trial. At the end of this massive trial, Mandela gave his most famous speech,“I have fought against white domination, and I have fought against black domination. I have cherished the ideal of a democratic and free society in which all persons live together in harmony and with equal opportunities. It is an ideal which I hope to live for and to achieve. But if needs be, it is an ideal for which I am prepared to die.”

15. June 1964, Mandela and the others are convicted and sentenced life in prison. They are taken to Robben Island Prison, seven miles off the coast of Cape Town.

16. June, 1976. Tens of thousands of students take to the streets of Soweto to oppose the use of Afrikaans as the language of instruction in black schools. The police fire on the protesters, triggering months of violence that will leave more than 570 people dead. This uprising is considered a turning point in the history of black resistance to apartheid.

17. March 1982. Mandela and 4 other ANC leaders are transported to another prison. The new prison is called Pollsmoor Prison.

18.February 1985. South Africa's president, P W Botha, offers freedom to Mandela. if he abandons violence. Mandela refuses and states that the government must dismantle apartheid.

19. December 1988. Mandela is transferred to another prison, Victor Verster Prison Farm.

20. July 1989. Mandela informally meets with Mr. Botha at the Presidential office in Cape Town. It is the first publicly recognized meeting with a government official outside of prison, and leads to hinting of his release.

21. February 1990. The ban on the ANC is lifted and Mandela is released from prison. Mandela jumped right into he work that he left almost four decades earlier.

22. In August 1990, the ANC announces the suspension of their guerrilla campaign against apartheid.

23. April 1992, Mandela and his wife Winnie announce their separation. Mr. Mandela says that even though his love for Winnie "remains undiminished", the separation is permanent.

24. October 1993. Nelson and de Klerk share the Nobel Peace Prize.

25. April 1994. Mandela wins majority in the presidential election and becomes the first black president of South Africa.

26. May 1994. Mandela is sworn in as President of South Africa.

27. March 1996. Judge grants Nelson Mandela's petition for a divorce from his wife, Winnie.

28. July 1998. On his 80th birthday, Mandela marries Graca Machel, the 52 year old widow of former president of Mozambique, Samora Machel.

29. June 1999. Thabo Mbeki is inaugurated as the new South African president, succeeding Nelson Mandela.

30. 2002, Mandela becomes a vocal advocate of AIDS awareness and treatment programs in a culture where the outbreak of it was pushed aside and ignored.

31. June 2004. Mandela announces that he will severely reduce his public activities so that he can spend his later years resting and writing. Almost 86, he can barely walk unattended and has become more and more frail.

32. 2005. AIDS claimed the life of his son Makgatho, and is believed to affect more people in South Africa than any other country.

33. 2009. The United Nations claimed July 18 as Nelson Mandela International day, in recognition of his contributions to democracy, liberty, peace and human rights all around the world.

34. December 2012. Mandela is hospitalized for about 19 days. He was being treated for pneumonia and having operations for gallstones. Mr. Mandela also developed tuberculosis during his 27 years in prison and has suffered lung problems.

35. December 2013. Mandela is announced dead at age 95 from a recurring lung infection.

Nelson Mandela will always be remembered for being one of the world's greatest leaders. His contribution to the human race helped many others become free and be given back the rights that they were born with.

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