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Nelson Mandela Key Dates

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June 12, 2013
  • July 18, 1918 Born Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela, the youngest son of Gadla Henry Mphakanyiswa and Nosekeni Fanny, in Transkei, South Africa, in the village of Mvezo.
  • 1934 Attends Clarkebury Boarding Institute in the district of Engcobo.
  • 1943 Becomes a member of the African National Congress.
  • 1944 Marries Evelyn Mase (4 children 3 of whom are deceased).
  • 1958 Marries Winnie Madikizela (2 children).
  • 1998 Marries Graca Machel.
  • 1961 Disguised as a gardener and cook, becomes an underground revolutionary with other ANC leaders at Liliesleaf Farm in Rivonia, an affluent suburb of Johannesburg.
  • 1962 Arrested and sentenced to five years in prison for inciting people to strike and for leaving the country without a passport.
  • 1964 Sentence extended to life imprisonment for sabotage during Rivonia Trial.
  • 1969 While in prison, prevented from attending eldest son’s funeral.
  • 1990 Freed from Victor Verster prison after 27 years as a political prisoner.
  • 1993 Wins the Nobel Peace Prize along with Frederik Willem de Klerk, former state president of South Africa.
  • 1994 Elected and sworn in as South Africa’s first black president.
  • 1999 Chooses not to seek a second term as president.
  • 2004 Leaves the public eye.
  • 2010 Last public appearance at the World Cup closing ceremony in South Africa.
  • 2012 Receives treatment for lung infection and surgery to remove gallstones.
  • 2013 Treated 10 days for pneumonia.
  • June 8, 2013 Hospitalized for recurring lung infection.

Evelyn Mase (1944-1956)

Winnie Madikizela-Mandela (1958-1996)

Graca Machel (1998-Present)


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