West Nicholson is a village on the Bulawayo - Beitbridge Highway. The village was originally built around a gold mine. It is now a center for cattle ranching. It is in the Gwanda District. The Silalabuhwa Dam, on the Insiza River, north of the river, supplied water for irrigation schemes in the area.


Lat/long: 21°4′S, 29°22′E.


Nicholson (gold) Mine was opened in 1900. Copper was worked in the area in 1905, but the volume was insufficient to sustain operations. Asbestos was also found.
In 1905, a rail branch reached West Nicholson from Bulawayo.
In the 1980's, canneries were operational there, mainly beef, but also fruit and vegetables.


The 1969 Rhodesian Census put the population as 1 830 African, 82 European, 17 Coloureds, Total = 1 930.

See J Z Moyo High School.

Other Information

Gwanda Bus Disaster

Further Reading




  1. Katherine Sayce (Ed), [Tabex, Encyclopedia Zimbabwe], Tabex, Encyclopedia Zimbabwe, (Quest Publishing, Harare, 1987), Retrieved: 9 August 2019
  2. R. Kent Rasmussen (ed), [Historical Dictionary of Zimbabwe/Rhodesia] (The Scarecrow Press, London, 1979) Retrieved 9 August 2019"
  3. Mary Akers (ed.), [Encyclopaedia Rhodesia] (The College Press, Salisbury, 1973) Retrieved 9 August 2019"