The Museum commemorates the 25,000 South African volunteers, men and women of all races and religions who fell during the two great wars and during the Korean war.
On the 15th July 1916, the brigade, comprising 121 officers and 3032 men, received orders to take the wood "at all costs". For 5 nights and 6 days, the South Africans fought against various units of the 4 th German Army Corps. Outnumbered, and being fought against from 3 sides they were almost decimated but managed to hold on and fight back, sometimes resulting to hand to hand fighting, until most of the woods had been captured. When they were relieved on the 20th July, only 142 men came out of the woods unscathed, eventually 780 men from the South African Brigade assembled.