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Nelson Mandela: A Resource Guide

A resource guide for researchers interested in exploring Special Collections rich collection of Nelson Mandela resources.

Archival material on Nelson Mandela

On this page, you will find a selection of posters, handwritten cards and political ephemera on Nelson Mandela, hand-picked from our archival collections. More material on Nelson Mandela in archival collections can be identified by searching the database of archival finding aids AtoM@UCT.

Finding Aids on Mandela

Posters

Release Mandela now! We salute you comrade. Release Mandela Campaign, [198-?]. A campaign demanding the release of all political prisoners was launched in South Africa and abroad in 1982. The Release Nelson Mandela campaign which called for economic and other sanctions against South Africa became the symbol of the international Anti-Apartheid Movement which gained support around the world. [BPL 595]

Nelson Mandela: his life in the struggle, 1988. London: International Defence and Aid Fund for Southern Africa. Portable exhibition of photographs. 14 posters depicting his childhood, early years, defiance, armed struggle, underground, treason trial, capture, Robben Island [BAP 322.42 MAND]

Nelson Mandela: Mandela the people's leader. African National Congress, [199-?]. A campaign poster for the first South African democratic elections. [BPM 472]

Mandela 70th Birthday poster, 1988. Mandela Birthday Committee, Salt River, Cape Town.

70th Mandela Birthday poster

Welcome home, Nelson Mandela, 1990. Sached Trust,Johannesburg.[BPS 045]

The quote on the poster is from the final paragraph of his speech as The First Accused at the Rivonia Trial which took place in Pretoria from 9 October 1963 - 12 June 1964. The Rivonia Trial led to the imprisonment of Nelson Mandela and others on convictions of sabotage for which they were sentenced to life. Mandela's Rivonia Trial Speech on News24

Release Mandela Campaign Calendar, 1990. UCT Special Collections African Studies Library. Published by S.l. : Release Mandela campaign.

Release Mandela Campaign 1990 Calendar

Election poster, 1994. African National Congress

Nelson Mandela, a tribute from South African sport to a man for all sports, 2009. Havana Media. [BPM 184]

Photographs and Images

Digital Collections website
Explore photographs related to Nelson Mandela from various collections in this digital repository.

Photo Gallery | The Honorary Degree Ceremony of Nelson Mandela

Nelson Mandela signing the register before the graduation ceremony at which the University of Cape Town conferred an honorary doctorate on him, 30 November 1990

Nelson Mandela during the graduation ceremony at which the University of Cape Town conferred an honorary doctorate on him, 30 November 1990, together with the Vice-Chancellor Prof Stuart Saunders.

General view of the stage and audience at the specially arranged graduation ceremony on the rugby fields of the campus of the University of Cape Town at which the university conferred an honorary doctorate on Nelson Mandela, 30 November 1990

Pamphlet | Citation and Speech for the Honorary Graduation of Nelson Rolihlhla Mandela

Handwritten card | HW van der Merwe Papers (BC1148)

Front cover of birthday card written by Nelson Mandela in 1989

Front cover: Greeting card written by Nelson Mandela in 1989

Greeting cards written by Nelson Mandela, 1989

Prof HW van der Merwe was head of the Centre for Intergroup Studies at the University of Cape Town and a pioneer of conflict resolution in South Africa. He and his wife Marietjie forged a supportive friendship with both Nelson and Winnie Mandela in the 1980s and were allowed to visit them. Van der Merwe was known as “HW” by his friends and Nelson Mandela called him “Harvey”. The original letters from both Mandelas in the HW van der Merwe Papers are kept in Special Collections of UCT Libraries.

These greeting cards written by Nelson Mandela to Marietjie van der Merwe from the Victor Verster Prison (with postal address Pollsmoor Maximum Security Prison) show his appreciation of the support and assistance given to his family by the Van der Merwes and his affection for Marietjie.

Based on sources in BC1148 HW van der Merwe Papers, Special Collections, UCT Libraries and HW van der Merwe’s memoirs Peacemaking in South Africa: A Life in Conflict Resolution (2000).    

Inside the Greeting card written by Nelson Mandela in 1989

Inside: Greeting card written by Nelson Mandela in 1989

Greeting cards written by Nelson Mandela, 1989

Prof HW van der Merwe was head of the Centre for Intergroup Studies at the University of Cape Town and a pioneer of conflict resolution in South Africa. He and his wife Marietjie forged a supportive friendship with both Nelson and Winnie Mandela in the 1980s and were allowed to visit them. Van der Merwe was known as “HW” by his friends and Nelson Mandela called him “Harvey”. The original letters from both Mandelas in the HW van der Merwe Papers are kept in Special Collections of UCT Libraries.

These greeting cards written by Nelson Mandela to Marietjie van der Merwe from the Victor Verster Prison (with postal address Pollsmoor Maximum Security Prison) show his appreciation of the support and assistance given to his family by the Van der Merwes and his affection for Marietjie.

Based on sources in BC1148 HW van der Merwe Papers, Special Collections, UCT Libraries and HW van der Merwe’s memoirs Peacemaking in South Africa: A Life in Conflict Resolution (2000).    

Envelope, front: Greeting card written by Nelson Mandela in 1989

Greeting cards written by Nelson Mandela, 1989

Prof HW van der Merwe was head of the Centre for Intergroup Studies at the University of Cape Town and a pioneer of conflict resolution in South Africa. He and his wife Marietjie forged a supportive friendship with both Nelson and Winnie Mandela in the 1980s and were allowed to visit them. Van der Merwe was known as “HW” by his friends and Nelson Mandela called him “Harvey”. The original letters from both Mandelas in the HW van der Merwe Papers are kept in Special Collections of UCT Libraries.

These greeting cards written by Nelson Mandela to Marietjie van der Merwe from the Victor Verster Prison (with postal address Pollsmoor Maximum Security Prison) show his appreciation of the support and assistance given to his family by the Van der Merwes and his affection for Marietjie.

Based on sources in BC1148 HW van der Merwe Papers, Special Collections, UCT Libraries and HW van der Merwe’s memoirs Peacemaking in South Africa: A Life in Conflict Resolution (2000).    

Envelope, back: Greeting card written by Nelson Mandela in 1989

Envelope, back: Greeting card written by Nelson Mandela in 1989

Greeting cards written by Nelson Mandela, 1989

Prof HW van der Merwe was head of the Centre for Intergroup Studies at the University of Cape Town and a pioneer of conflict resolution in South Africa. He and his wife Marietjie forged a supportive friendship with both Nelson and Winnie Mandela in the 1980s and were allowed to visit them. Van der Merwe was known as “HW” by his friends and Nelson Mandela called him “Harvey”. The original letters from both Mandelas in the HW van der Merwe Papers are kept in Special Collections of UCT Libraries.

These greeting cards written by Nelson Mandela to Marietjie van der Merwe from the Victor Verster Prison (with postal address Pollsmoor Maximum Security Prison) show his appreciation of the support and assistance given to his family by the Van der Merwes and his affection for Marietjie.

Based on sources in BC1148 HW van der Merwe Papers, Special Collections, UCT Libraries and HW van der Merwe’s memoirs Peacemaking in South Africa: A Life in Conflict Resolution (2000).