APARTHEID South Africa. Racial segregation signboard.
This type of reversible signboard began to vanish circa 1980. It was placed outside and above train windows, slotted into a track which displayed the sign tilted slightly off the vertical (top side out). White train passengers were obliged by South African Railways & Harbours (SARH) and South African Apartheid Law, at the time, to travel 1st class and pay a 1st class fare. So called "Non-Whites", likewise, were obliged by law to travel either 2nd or 3rd class and pay the corresponding fare. A 3rd class ticket for the same journey cost about 10% of a 1st class ticket, however the carriages had hard fibreglass seats along the length of the carriages and were invariably congested. Interestingly the same carriage cars were used for 1st and 2nd class passengers and they had forward/backward facing padded seats covered in dark blue vinyl. During Apartheid, as a rule, Whites went 1st class, Coloureds 2nd class and Blacks 3rd class. Coloureds included everyone neither white nor black, i.e. all shades of brown. This Apartheid Signboard was found on 16 January 2012 in an Antiques & Collectables Shop on Long Street, Cape Town, South Africa. It is for sale at ZAR 3500 = $ 436 = € 342 = £ 284. I think it should go to a museum as it is a significant piece of history.