Our story starts way back, in 1891 Mr. Jacobus Johannes Louw bought the farm Springboklaagte.
In 1891 Mr. Jacobus Johannes Louw bought the farm Springboklaagte, as well as the property now known as 21A Viljoen Street. He wanted to build his dream house here. The house was only finished in 1896. He wanted to build a unique house to meet his requirement of a big family of 12 children, himself and his spouse. Mr. Louw never went overseas to see Victorian or colonial styles, so he had to make use of a well known local designer.
During the Boer-war, Mr. Louw was sent to India as a prisoner of war, and in his absence, the British invaded Middelburg. The house was occupied by British troops and was used as a hospital. It was later also used for military purposes as officer’s mess, and to serve as annex for the house of General Jan Smuts, on the property next door, which was bought in 1907. This was in force until General Jan Smuts moved to Doringlaagte, now known as Irene.
The next owner was Mr. and Mrs. le Roux who sold the house to Mr. and Mrs. Hammond. The the 5th owner of “The Gables”, is Mrs. Heleen Gouws a qualified interior designer in Middelburg. In 1988 Mr. Hammond subdivided the premises and sold it, which let that the stables and wagon house on the northern side, and the small living quarters known as the cottage on the southern side fall into the sold part. Dimitri Tsafendas, who killed Dr Hendrik Verwoerd, the mastermind behind Apartheid lived in The Gables, while attending Middelburg Primary School. It used to be a boarding house during those years.