This dissertation reports on investigations carried out on two Early Farming Community (AD 250-1000) sites in the eastern Lowveld of South Africa, more specifically the Kruger National Park. During the past 50 years, much has been learnt about the farming societies of the first millennium. Large-scale research in KwaZulu-Natal and, in earlier years, certain parts of the Lowveld and the interior of South Africa, has led to initial formative studies on the spread and movement of Early Farming Communities (EFC) into southern Africa. The archaeological work undertaken in KwaZulu-Natal led to the creation of strong culture-historical sequences based on ceramic assemblages subjected to radiocarbon dating. It was therefore possible to extrapolate the movement of communities in the region. However, such understandings of EFC communities, their movement and socio-political organisation did not expand beyond this region. Throughout the 1970s and most of the 1980s, an archaeological reconnaissance project that was conducted in the Kruger National Park (KNP) led the formulation of culture-historical sequences of the Farming Communities of the region by Andrie Meyer, whose research was intended to serve as a foundation for further research in the area. However, EFC archaeological research in the KNP region was neglected over the years as the focus of research shifted to heritage and later farming societies. This project aims to connect EFC research conducted in regions such as Kwa-Zulu Natal with EFC sites located in the KNP region. Further research is being conducted at two sites, TSH1 and SK17, which were initially identified by Meyer. Typological and compositional studies were conducted on the ceramic material found at the sites and new radiocarbon dates were obtained for these sites. This research made it possible to identify the ceramic sequences at said sites, and consequently to situate the sites within the larger EFC South African chronology.
Key words: Early Farming Communities (EFC), Kruger National Park, Lowveld, ceramics, South Africa, first millennium, compositional analysis, SK17, TSH1