Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela

South African president and activist

Rolihlahla Mandela

  • Rolihlahla Mandela was born on July 18, 1918.
  • Born into the royal family Xhosa-speaking Thembu tribe in the South African village of Mvezo.
  • When Mandela was 9 years old, his father died of lung cancer, causing mandalas life to change dramatically.
  • After the death of his father, Mandela was adopted by the regent chief of the Thembu tribe ( ).

Early Life

  • “Hearing the elders’ stories of his ancestors’ valor during the wars of resistance, he dreamed also of making his own contribution to the freedom struggle of his people” (“Biography of Nelson Mandela”).
  • He went to a primary school, where his teacher gave him the name, Nelson.
  • Because of his dream of making a contribution to the struggle, Nelson got involved in the African National Congress, (ANC) ( ).


  • Nelson Mandela became interested in politics and became a part of the ANC. During a protest he was rested with another 155 people. Sentenced because treason.
  • “Mandela was arrested in a countrywide police swoop on 5 December 1955, which led to the 1956 Treason Trial” (“Biography of Nelson Mandela”).
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  • Nelson Mandela was arrested in 1962.
  • After the treason trial, Nelson was sentenced to jail for 27 years.
  • During this time his mother and eldest son died.
  • He was not allowed to go to their funeral.
  • He was allowed one visitor for every 6 months.
Nelson Mandela: Mini Biography


  • After jail Mandela continued to fight with the ANC.
  • Mandela fought discrimination in Africa.
  • Mandela lead protest and became president of the ANC.
  • In 1994 Nelson Mandela was elected as the first democratic, black, elected president of South Africa.
  • "He continued to work with the Nelson Mandela Children’s Fund he set up in 1995 and established the Nelson Mandela Foundation and The Mandela Rhodes Foundation" (“Biography of Nelson Mandela”).