President Miss P. A. Reid
Vice-Presidents Prof. A. F. Hattersley
M. J. C. Daly, Esq.
A. C. Mitchell, Esq.
Trustees A. C. Mitchell, Esq.
Or. R. E. Stevenson
M. J. C. Daly, Esq.
Treasurers Messrs. Dix, Boyes and Co.
Auditors Messrs. R. Thornton-Dibb and Son
Secretary and Chief Librarian Miss U. E. M. Judd, B.A., F.L.A.
(resigned June, 1974)
Chief Librarian Mr. Anthony S. C. Hooper, B.Sc.
M.S. in L.S., A.I.Tnfi. Sci. (appointed
October, 1974)
Elected Members Miss P. A. Reid (Chairman)
M. J. C. Daly, Esq. (Vice-Chairman)
Dr. J. Clark
P. K. Moxley, Esq.
Mr. D. D. Croudace
Dr. F. C. Friedlander
Mr. R. Owen
Mr. D. H. Patrick
Mrs. S. Evelyn-Wright
Mr. W. G. Anderson
Professor C. de B. Webb
Dr. J. Clark
Miss U. E. M. Judd
Miss J. Farrer
Natalia 4 (1974) Copyright © Natal Society Foundation 2010
SA ISSN 0085 3674
City Printing Works, Bank Street, Pietermaritzburg
Farewell - Fynn - King - Tsaacs - Cane - Ogle
Halstead - Ross 8
Captain Alien F. Gardiner: A Memoir by his wife,
written for his grandson AlIen 28
Discovering the Natal Flora - A. W. Bayer 42
Natal Land and Colonization Company in colonial
times - A. J. Christopher 49
The Origins of the Natal Society: Chapter 3,
1847-1849 - U. E. M. Judd 55
J. Clark, C. de B. Webb 61
U. E. M.Judd 68
J. Farrer . 72
U. E. M. Judd 74
The editorial committee I ~ deeply indebted to the
Secretary of the Natal Branch of the Historical Asso­
ciation, Mr. J. Sellers, for his assistance in assembling
material for this issue.
A year of commemoration and assessment
DURING the past year attention has been focussed on the planting of the
English language and English traditions in this country. In Grahamstown the
1820 Settler Monument (a great cultural and conference centre dedicated to the
enrichment of the lives of all who share this country) was opened in July to the
accompaniment of a superb programme of activities, including a challenging, at
times conscience-searing, conference on the role of the English-speaking South
African. Here ill Natal, exhibitions and a variety of festive and cultural activities
were staged in May to commemorate the arrival in 1824 of Captain Farewell's
company of traders and hunters, whose coming marked the beginning of a
continuous white presence in Natal.
We, in this issue, offer a series of biographical sketches of some of the leading
figures among the white pioneers in Natal. As promised in Natalia No. 3, we also
publish a memoir of Captain Alien F. Gardiner, the first Christian missionary
to the Zulu. Written for a grandson by Gardiner's widow, Elizabeth, the memoir
is published here for the first time. To preserve the "flavour' of the original, it is
reproduced with minimal editorial interference.
The Albany Connection: Natal alld the Eastern Cape 150 years ago
The almost simultaneous commemoration of the 1820 Albany settlement in
the Eastern Cape, and the planting, four years later, of a white trading post at
Port Natal is a nice coincidence, for the links between the two were close.
When Farewell arrived in Natal in 1824, his financial backing came very
largely from the Cape Town merchant, J. R. Thompson, whose interest in the
venture derived from a trading expedition he had made up the east coast to
Delagoa Bay in 1822 on board the Orange Grove, a ship owned by an immigrant,
Henry Nourse, who had come to Cape Town in 1820. Thus even in the prelim­
inaries to white pioneering in Natal, the immigration of 1820 made a contri­
With the years, the contribution was to grow. Of the five companions who
remained behind with Farewell at the Bay at the end of 1824, two (Henry Ogle
and Thomas Halstead) were youths who had first set foot on southern African
soil four years previously as 1820 settlers, and these youngsters, were joined, in
time, by other Albany men. Names such as Coli is, Cawood, Biggar, King, Stubbs
and Hulley, which feature prominently in the records of the early settlement at
the Bay, are all to be found in the lists of immigrants who arrived in South Africa
under the 1820 scheme.
Some of these men sojourned briefly, then drifted away; others remained to
earn fame in Natal. Such (to mention two who do not feature in the biographical
articles published in this issue) were Robert Biggar who died bravely, if rashly,
in 1838, after the native force under his command had been trapped by the Zulu,
and Richard ('Dick') King, who in 1838 covered 140 miles on foot in four days
6 Editorial
in an attempt to save the emigrant Boers from the impis of Dingane, and then,
having tried to save the Trekkers from the Zulu, set out four years later to save
the British from the Trekkers by a heroic ten-day ride from Durban to Grahams­
Albany (to make a leap forward to space age analogies) was the Cape Canav­
eral and Houston Control of Natal pioneering combined into onc-the launching
place for expeditions, and the chief intelligence centre about the fate of those
expeditions and their activities, While ships making their way to and from Natal
used Port Elizabeth as a place of call, it was in Grahamstown that the over­
landers fitted out their expeditions from 1829 onwards. Moreover, it was the
Graham's Town Journal that carried news of the hunters and traders of Natal,
and it was to the authorities in Grahamstown that the early Natalians sent their
missions and their appeals for aid, when the need arose.
But while the links between Albany and Natal were close, there were also
striking differences between these two pioneer English-language communities.
The immigrants who landed on the shores of Algoa Bay in 1820 were in­
tending settlers come to plant a new society. Farewell and his companions, by
contrast, were men bent on hunting and fortune from the ivory trade; and for
many years, those who followed them to Natal were cast in the same mould.
Thus, although from 1824 onwards there was continuous white occupation at
the Bay, it remained, until the coming of the Trekkers in 1837, occupation by a
fluctuating band of free and easy adventurers, more intent on excitement and
gain than on taming the wilderness and carving out patrimonies to pass on to
their sons.
And those were not the only differences. Whereas the Albany community was
to be numbered in thousands, and included from the start men, women and
children, the white community in Natal numbered no more than two or three
dozen souls throughout the pre-Trekker period - at moments far fewer than
that; and except for a brief eighteen-month spell when Elizabeth Farewell
joined her husband, it remained, until the coming of missionary families in tht
mid-thirties, an exclusively male society. Ten years after the arrival of the 1820
settlers, the soil of the eastern districts had been broken, and farmhouses, byres,
mills, schools, shops and churches were appearing across the face of the country­
side; ten years after the arrival of Farewell, the best that Port Natal could boast
was scratch agriculture in small clearings in the bu"h, and a scatter of flimsy
shelters, adequate for the needs of birds of passage, but holding no promise of
permanence. When Captain Gardiner came to the Bay in March 1835, he found
With the exception of Mr. Collis's house, constructed of reeds and mud.
there was not a single dwelling of European fashion in the whole settlement .. ;
and to a stranger, unacquainted with the localities, the whole had a most wild
and deserted appearance ... every ... hut carefully concealed among the
woods with so much ingenuity ... that in threading the narrow and winding
avenues leading to some of these jungle fastnesses, I ... often fancied J was
approaching the dismal abode of some desperate buccaneer.
There were other differences, too - differences not of character but of
circumstance. For while both communities faced formidable black neighbours,
and while both were established on land to which tho<e neighbours laid claim,
7 Editorial
there were, behind these broad similarities, important inequalities of advantage.
The Zuurveld onto which the 1820 settlers had come to take up their allotments
was country from which a number of Xhosa chiefdoms had been expelled by
force of white arms only eight years previously. As seen from the Kaffrarian side
of the frontier, the 1820 settlers were thus a symbol of Xhosa dispossession­
a society of occupation entrenched on disputed soil. By contrast, the land on
which the Natal traders and hunters established themselves was land cleared of
its inhabitants by force of black arms. Between 1820 and 1823, Zulu assegaais
and the armies of Shaka had achieved in Natal, on a far more extended and
disruptive scale, what muzzleloaders and British regulars had achieved in the
Zuurveld in 1812. Thus, when Farewell and his companions arrived at the Bay
in 1824, they came not as the civilian auxiliaries of conquering white armies, but
as petitioners to black victors - suppliants who were given leave to settle as
traders at a near-deserted bay in the marchlands of a greatly enlarged Zulu
kingdom. In this respect, they possessed an initial advantage: they were accept­
able to, indeed welcomed by, the indigenous society onto whose borderlands
they had moved.
In all other respects, however, the Port Natal settlement remained a far more
fragile and hazardous enterprise than its Albany counterpart. The settlers of
1820 had arrived in South Africa as officially sponsored immigrants, and became
the frontiersmen of a functioning colonial society, with agencies of law, ad­
ministration and defence to control and support them. Buttressing Albany to
the east, however unsteadily at times, was a defined frontier, flanked by a
buffer-zone in the form of a theoretically uninhabited Neutral Belt; and inter­
posing itself between the settlers and the Xhosa chiefdoms was the authority and
power of the British presence at the Cape. The Port Natal pioneers enjoyed none
of these assets. They were transfrontiersmen, and remained so for years. Living
beyond the controlling and sllccouring agencies of administration and defence,
they could hope for no interposing power between themselves and the impis of
the Zulu kingdom. To a degree that was never true of Albany, the survival of
their settlement hung upon a single thread - the tolerance of the Zulu king.
And that was a thread that could be snapped by a single blundering move on the
part of one of their company.
There was thus a precariousness about the white presence at Port Natal that
left the future of south east Africa in the balance for more than a decade.
With insignificant and fluctuating numbers, and without government aid to
sustain and support it, the Natal settlement depended upon the quality of the
direct relations maintained between a band of white adventurers on the one
hand, and the governing authorities of the Zulu kingdom on the other. And in
that - the quality of the direct relatiom that were maintained - lies the real
interest, as against the simple romance, of white pioneering in Natal.
C. de B. WEBB
O ~ @
, '-' ~ ,
Francis Farewell
By 1828, an overland route between the Cape Colony and Natal was beginning
to provide an alternative to the arduous and frequently disastrous sea voyage. It
was this virtually unknown trail that was chosen by a small party of travellers
who set out from the Cape for Port Natal in September 1829. Leader of the
venture was Lieutenant Francis George Farewell, returning, after a short stay in
the Colony, to the trading settlement at Natal. He waS accompanied by Walker
(a naturalist), Thackwray (an 1820 settler) and a number of native servants. John
Cane, also on his way back to the Port, joined Farewell's group, and the expedi­
tion proceeded without mishap until the area ofthe Umzimvubu river was reached.
Here, Farewell decided to visit Nqeto, chief of the Qwabe, who had fled
southwards from the Zulu kingdom after rebelling against Shaka's successor,
Dingane. With Lynx the interpreter, Thackwray, Walker and some servants,
Farewell went to Nqeto's kraal, leaving John Cane to guard the wagons.
The chief 'received them with apparent kindness, ordering a beeve to be
slaughtered for their use, and gave them various other tokens of friendship.
Scarcely, however, had night-shade fallen, before his mien altered ... for both
words and actions then assumed an air of hostility ... Messrs. Thackwray and
Walker now became considerably uneasy, but Mr. Farewell was still unwilling
to believe that their host would venture to do them any personal injury. Their
fears being somewhat quieted, and the natives being retired, they laid down to
sleep, and all remained tranquil until dawn of day the following morning. Their
tent was then suddenly surrounded, and all three horribly massacred, together
with five of their native servants .. .' 1
John Cane was fortunate to escape a similar end. The Qwabe went on the
rampage, plundering the travellers' wagons and causing widespread alarm among
other tribes in the area.
A variety of reasons for Nqeto's treacherous behaviour is given by Henry
Francis Fynn and Nathaniel Isaacs; the chiefhimselflater swore that the murders
had been committed without his knowledge by some of his warriors. The
question of motive has, with time, diminished in significance, leaving the stark
fact that this violent deed deprived Natal of her 'prime mover', the man upon
whose energy and tenacity of purpose the settlement was founded.
That such an untimely and savage death awaited him in a strange land was no
doubt far from Francis Farewell's mind as he embarked on a promising career
in the British navy at the age of sixteen. Until he took this important step in 1807,
his life had been in no way remarkable. As the second son of the Reverend
Samuel Farewell of Wincanton, Somerset, he had received an average grammar
school education, and he might have settled for a quiet, clerical occupation had
Lieutenant Francis George Farewell, R.N. (1793-1829), a founder of the first European
settlement at Port Natal.
9 Francis Farewell
not the war with the French, with its prospect of excitement and adventure for a
young man, enticed him away from his books.
His name first appears in the Admiralty Records on November 4th, 1807, as
First Class Volunteer in the Amp/lion. If it was excitement he wanted, he certainly
found just that during his four years of service with this vessel, under the com­
mand of Sir William Hoste. In February 1808, the Amphion was one of a convoy
of sixty sail which joined the Fleet near Lisbon. She narrowly escaped disaster
when, in a severe storm, the main top gallant mast was struck by lightning, and
fire broke out on board. In May of the same year the vessel was (;Llising off
Toulon, where she was involved in a heavy engagement with the shore batteries,
as well as with an enemy frigate. Alter capturing a prize worth £20000 in
October, the Amphion added to her credit 38 French merchantmen, sinking six
others. She prowled the enemy coastline, taking ships, convoys of supplies, and
destroying batteries and castles on shore in onc victory after another, until by
November 1809 she had sunk and captured over two hundred French vessels.
With the AlIlpiJion. Farewell took part in the fallllLls Battle of Lissa. when his
ship successfully captured two frigates, and for a time Hoste placed him in
charge of the Island of Lipa, a st!':.Ltegic point ill the Adriatic. He was learning,
in a hard school, to develop the courage, resourcefulness and endurance which
were to stand him in good stead in his later role as pioneer of Natal.
He did not emerge from all this action entirely unscathed. being wounded in
operations. but he remai IlCe! apparcnlly lIndeterred and when the
Amphion, finally exhausted after her glorious deed;. was rut out of commission
in 1811, he was transferred, with promotion, to the Tlzisbe and then to the
Bacchante. Farewell continued to survive this dangerous existence, moving up
the navalladder through the rank of Master's Mate to that of Lieutenant in 1815.
Then came the end of the Napoleonic Wars. It was an older and possibly
somewhat bitter Farewell who, like hundreds of his counl rymen, was turned
adrift on half-pay. Fo: the next few years his wandcr:ngj took him to India,
Mauritius and the Seychelles. None of the mercantile tLmsactions into which he
entered during this period was very successfuL and it was not until 1820 that his
life took a new and definite direction.
In this year he was 'managing owner' of a vessel of 261 tons, the Frances
Charlotte, which was engaged in trading pursuits from her home port of Bengal.
Fortune brought Farewe:l to the Cape of Good Hope, and here he lingered. No
doubt he was influenced in this to stay by Miss Elizabeth Catherina
Schmidt, the step-daughter of a Cape Town merchant, 10han Lodewyk Petersen.
They were married by special licence on August 17th, 1822.
Shortly after this auspicious event, three vessels left the Colony to carry out a
Government survey expedition along the south-eastern coast: they were the
Lel'en, commanded by Captain WilIiam Owen, the Barracouta and the Cockburn.
Several important areas were charted during this voyage, including Cape St.
Lucia. Another vessel from Cape Town, the Orange Grove, had meanwhile
commenced explorations on her own - mainly to ascertain trading possibil­
ities-and she met up with the Government expedition. Malaria took a heavy toll
among the crews of the four ships, and in April 1823 they returned to the Cape.
The travellers' fascinating stories and the cargo of ivory and ambergris brought
back on the Orange Grore, stirred up a great deal of interest, particularly among
the merchant community. As much intrigued as anyone else was Francis Fare­
well, who was on the lookout for new opportunities. During his months at the
10 Francis Farewell
Cape, Farewell had used his fast-dwindling capital to charter the Salisbury, a
brig commanded by lames Saunders King, and the two men had become firm
friends on trading trips to West Indian ports.
With the financial support of John R. Thompsol1, Farewell and King joined
forces in preparing for an expedition up the coast. Farewell was convinced that
the source of the ivory which fOl'lld its way to the Portuguese traders at Delagoa
Bay was the domain of Shaka. King or the Zulus. and the object of the journey
was to establish a trade link with this powerful ruler. After chartering the
Salisbury and the Jlllia. FarewelL ThoTlmSOll and King left Cape Town in June
At St. Lucia Bay, where they intended to go ashore and make contact with the
Zulus in the interior, misfortune struck in the shape of bad weather, which
prevented a sllccessful landing. Both Farewell and Thompson were nearly
drowned when the boats overturned in the surf. The Salisbury and the lufia.
forced to put to left behind sevcl'al sailors who had managed to swim to the
beach. It was five weeKs before the wind abated suflkiel1tly to enable the vessels
to pick up the stranded men, and by that time the notion of landing at S1. Lucia
had been abandoned.
Characteristically, Farewell was not to be daunted in his purpose, and after
replenishing supplies at Algoa Bay, the expedition set out again, seeking a more
suitable port. After they had sailed along the coast for some time, the weather
once more turned agai']st them. In th(: face of a gale they took refuge at the Bay
of Natal, risking thf sandbar across the entrance channel and arriving safely
within the harholl". It was a chance bnding that was to have momentous
During their short stay, while King charted the Bay and communication was
made with the local natives, the significance of the port gradually dawned upon
Farewell. Although there were few inhahitants in the immediate vicinity, the
Zulus were not far away and might be to trade at Natal instead of
Delagoa. The idea of forming a trading settlement was born, and on the ex­
pedition's return to Cape Town ill December 1823. Farewell lost no time in
furthering his new plans.
Before he had been a month in Cape Town, he had so represented
the great advantages to be derived from a trade in ivory by way of the
port ... that he induced his father-in-law, Mr. Petersen, and another
Dutch gentleman of the name of Hoffman to joi 11 him in partnership.
It was not long before Henry Francis Fynn allowed himself to be persuaded
by Farewell's assurance that 'immense profits would be derived from the specu­
lation'. Preparations went forward rapidly: the Antelope and the lufia were
chartered. a great variety of articles for native trade and gifts for Shaka were
purchased. and several volunteers joined in the project, inspired by Farewell's
enthusiasm. Government sanction was necessary, and Farewell approached Lord
Charles Somerset. Governor of the Colony, hoping for his support:
Towards the conclusion of my last voyage, we found a port, where a
small vessel can lie perfectly secure; I am therefore to venture another
trial, hoping that by making some stay there we may get the natives to
bring their produce to exchange for our goods; which in time might
lead to important advantages. My intentions are to keep a vessel lying
11 Frands Farewell
constantly in port, and to have a small party on shore to communicate
with the natives, and carry on the trade.
Somerset's reply was brief. He gave permission for the 'commercial under­
taking' but emphasised that no territorial possessions were to be annexed
without his consent.
Farewell sent Fynn on ahead with the Julia to Natal, while he wrestled with
the remaining business - and his co-partners - in Cape Town. Eventually he
followed in the Antelope with, among others, Petersen, and Josias Hoffman and
his son. They landed at Natal in July 1824, some six weeks after the Julia. Fynn
was not there to welcome them - he had already gone ill search of Shaka.
Farewell sent messengers after him and while awaiting Fynn's return, the
Antelope's party offloaded her cargo and made camp.
The native i n h a b i t a n t ~ of the area intrigued Farewell. These people were
remnants of the Tuli people, who had been scattered by Shaka's warriors,
dispossessed of land and cattle, and reduced to a meagre existence on the south­
western shores of the Bay. In this 'most wretched set of beings', as he described
them, Farewell saw for the first time the drastic consequences of disobedience to
the Zulu king.
He was soon to meet Shaka himself for Fynn hastelled back to the Port, and
a few days later Farewell, Petersen and Fynn, with an interpreter and three
Hottentots, set off for the ro;'al residence. Escorting the small group was Shaka's
chief induna, Mbikwa:lO, with a hundred of his men who carried the king's
presents. This unusual caravan proceeded slowly through the bushy country ­
halting on the way for Farewell to searrh (unsuccessfully) for gold in the Umgeni
River - and accompanied by the imprecations of Mr. Petersen, who was over
sixty, bad-tempered and corpulent and found the terrain too much for him. He
accused his son-in-law of intending to kill him by bringing him to this barbarous
place, but the prospect of the ivory ahead encouraged him to persevere.
Farewell's first visit to the king was brief, but memorable. He had chosen
Shaka's presents wisely in Cape Town - woollen blankets, a quantity of brass
and copper, pigeons, cats, dogs, a pig, and a full-dress military coat decorated
with gold lace. Shaka was more than satisfied, and presented Farewell with some
elephant tusks before the latter's return to the Bay.
By now, Farewell was increasingly confident of success, and could see his
dream of a trading settlement slowly becoming a reality. He returned to the royal
capital in August, and a deed was drawn up ceding about three thousand five
hundred square miles of land at Port Natal to 'F. G. Farewell and Company'.
On August 27th, the British flag was hoisted at the Bay with much ceremony,
marking the acquisition of the territory, and Farewell immediately wrote ot
Somerset. Despite his ellthusiastic description of Natal as ideal for settlement
and commerce, however, the grant was never ratified.
When the Julia left the Bay on September 7th, 1824, she carried not only
Farewell's letter to Somerset but nine of the party as well. Later this vessel made
a return trip to Natal, and took a further eleven of the original group of ad­
venturers back with her. (They should have shared Farewell's optimism and
remained at the Bay, inhospitable as it was, for during this journey the Jufia sank
with all on board.)
Reduced to a skeleton, the settlement still clung to the shores of the Port.
Without financial resources or Government backing little could be achieved. The
12 Francis Farewell
small group of men continued hunting and trading in the vicinity, with Shaka's
permission. Farewell made regular visits to the king, taking pains to please him,
and supplying him with medicines and other items. He realised that the defence­
less establishment at the Bay depended for its survival on the capricioLls whim
of the Zulu monarch, and he was under 110 illusions as to Shaka's character.
'History perhaps does Ilot furnish an instance of a more despotic and cruel
monster ...' wrote Farewell. But the 'monster' was fairly wdl-clisposed to the
subjects of 'UmGeorge' (as Shab called the King of England), and it was
largely due to Farewell's efforts that the settlers held a strangely privileged
position, regarded by the Zulus as being uncler their ruler's protection.
The year 1825 bmught ullcY.pected additional strength to the settlement when.
in September, lames Sannclers King arrived in the Mary, bringing with him Na­
thaniel lsaac and the b,)y John Ross. Though the Mary encountered heavy seas
at the bay and was l\)[ally wrecked. ail nn board were saved, and Farewell returned
Crom one of his trips to the interior I'or a jOyOllS reunion with his friend King.
The two immediately started to plan a new partn,.:rship, and in order to raise the
necessary capital, King retllrned to the Cape in April 1826. With him he took a
letter froiil farel\el), addressed to himself, \\hich poillted Ollt Natal's possibil­
ities and \vhich it was hoped w()uld assist King ill obtaining fi.nancial assistance.
Nathaniel Isaacs, who remained at the Port, watched the activities of the
settlement with avid inter;;st. He wa, amazed at the 'singular appearance' of
Farewell's house, whieh ":,as not unlike an ordinary barn made of wattle, and
plastered with clay, without windows, and with only one door composed of
reeds. It had a thatched roof. but otherwise was not remarbble either for the
elegance of its structure, or the capacity of its interior'. This was in fact only a
tempora!'y dwelling; work was beginning on a more permanent building, to be
called Fort Farewell. 'To the house, which is to consist of one floor ... will be
attached a ,.;tore. A mud fort had been commenced. at each angle designed to
mount three 12-poulld carronades ... In front of the Fort, a square piece of
ground had been fenced in, intended for a garden ...'
King arrived hack at Natal in October 1826, accompal1i::d by Elizabeth
Farewell. who was determined to join her husband at this settlement Wllich had
divided them for so long. She must hav(; been of stern stuff to withstand the
primitive conditions which greeted her.
At about this time the other settkrs began to notice a deterioration in the
friendship between Farewell and King, for what Isaac calls 'pecuniary' reasons.
The truth behind this regrettable dispute remains vague, but the quarrel grew
Ollt of all proportion, destroying the harmony that had existed previously at the
Port, and ending in such enmity that when King lay dying, in September 1828,
Farewell would not visit him. Even at the outset, the ill-feeling caused a clash of
interests and a rift in the group which hindered progress.
Work continued. however, on the Fort, and also on the building ofa schooner,
the Elizabeth and Susan. which was launched in March 1828. A month later she
left for the Cape, with Farewell and his wife, James King, and Nathaniel Is.aacs
on board. The vessel's first voyage was highly unsuccessful. for two Zulu
emissaries, sent by Shaka to take his greetings to King George, were subjected to
numerous indignities by Government officials at Algoa Bay, who thought the
Zulus might be spies. This unfortunate occurrence undid all the efforts of Fare­
well and the others to retain the friendship of Shaka, and from then onwards the
Zulu king's attitude towards the settlers altered considerably. The failure of the
13 Francis Farewell
mission v. as a per:;onal blow to King, who shortly after this rcturn to Natal fell
ill and never recovered.
His death was followed within a few months by tile murder of Shaka. and the
succession to the Zulu throne of Dingane. In the midst of these unsettling events,
Farewell left Natal once more on the Elizabeth and Susan. It was her last voyage:
at Algoa Bay the ship was impounded by the authorities, becallse she was not
offici,tlly registered.
The unexpected fate - caused by unjustifiably severe officialdom - of the
vessel which had taken so much time and effort to construct would have made a
lesser man than Farewell give up in despair. He, however, travelled to Cape
Town. arriving in time for the birth of his son, and after a short sojourn in the
Colony, determined on orening up an overland comrnllnication with Natal.
still convinced that there was a future in the Port, he again went through the
process of finding the capital to back this new venture, and set out with Thack­
wray and Walker in September 1~ 2 9 on the journey that was to end so tragically
a few weeks later at Nqeto':; kra'll.
Thnugh Fort Farewell crumbled silllvly into ruin. and its builder died without
seeing his hopes come to fruition. the ",ay had been paved for Natal's future.
Farewell is to be remembered for his 'resistless spirit of oppositio]}' in the face of
heavy odds -- lack of means, an indifferent a,ld uncooperative government, and
a primitive territory fraught with danger. Often difficult and autocratic, which
earned him criticism, his optimism was boundless. Even Nathaniel lsaacs, who
never forgave him for his treatment of King, mourned the loss of the man whose
efforts had opened II r Natal. and who was 'resolute to a fault'.
I. Isaacs, N., Travels and Adventures ill Eastern Africa, p. 170.
2. Fynn, H. F., The Diary of Henry Frallcis FYl1n, p. 56.
3. Chase, J. C., The Natal Papers, p. 16, F. G. Farewell to Lord Charles Somerset, 1.5.1824.
Extract in Local History Museum collection.
Annals of Natal. Vol. I. 1495-1845. Pietermaritzburg, 1888.
The Natal Papers, Grahamstown, 1843.
The Diary of Henry Francis Fynn, ed. J. Stuart and D. McK.
Malcolm. Pietermaritzburg, 1969
Francis George Farewell and the earliest Natal setllers. Afric:I11Cl
Notes and News, Vol. XIV pp. 315-320.
Travels and Adventures in Eastern A/rica. Cape Town, 1970.
Andrew Smith al/d Natal(Van Riebeeck Society). Cape Town. 1955.
The Cradle Da)'s of Natal. London, etc., 1930.
Henry Francis Fynn
OF ALL the whites who were trading from the settlement at Port Natal in the
1820s and 1830s, Henry Fynn is, to posterity, probably the best known. His
repute today rests mainly on the adventure-book quality of his association with
the Zulu king Shaka, and on the fact that this, in many ways the most fascinating
period of his life, is also the best documented.
But it is often overlooked that
of the forty-three years he lived in southern Africa, Fynn was resident only
nineteen in Natal, and that for the greater part of his life after leaving England
at the age of 15 he was based in the Cape colony. It is generally forgotten, too,
that after his ten years of trading in Natal and the Zulu and Mpondo countries,
he was for twenty-six years an official in the service of first the Cape and then
the Natal colonial administrations. The romance of his 'pioneering' life in the
kingdom of Shaka and Faku has tended to focus interest primarily on the earlier
part of his career, but his years as a frontier official among the Thembu and
Mpondo, and later as a magistrate in Natal, are equally deserving of attention.
For the present-day student of southern African history, perhaps the most
significant aspect of Fynn's career is to be seen in the transformation of the
young immigrant trader, who had thoroughly adapted himself to life in the auto­
nomous Zulu and Mpondo states, into a colonial official responsible for enforcing
a system of laws that was intended above all to maintain the status of white
men as against black. Two portrayals of Fynn by contemporaries serve to high­
light the nature of this transformation. The first is Nathanial Isaacs's well-known
pen-sketch of him as he looked in 1825 on his return to Port Natal from an eight­
month trading trip among the Mpondos.
Beneath the crownless straw hat and
tattered blanket that were his only covering was the determined yet versatile youth
of22 who, in travelling where very few white men had yet been, had depended for
his life not only on his physical endurance but also on his ability to allay the fears
and suspicions of hostile local communities. The second reveals Fynn, the white
Natalian of some thirty years later, as he was in a moment of anger. On this
occasion, as an acquaintance watched in approval, he accosted an African who
had failed to salute him, and, on receiving what he regarded as an impertinent
answer, proceeded to sjambok the man to his knees.
The figure of the bullying
white baas is a stereotype in the history of southern Africa, yet it would be an
oversimplification to regard the Fynn exposed in this ugly little incident entirely
in this light. Far more intimately than most other whites of his time, he had
come to know the native peoples of the eastern littoral, from the Zulu kingdom
in the north to the frontier chiefdoms of the Xhosa in the south, and even if his
knowledge brought him little understanding of the problems which these
peoples were facing in the mid-nineteenth century from white expansionism, it
brought at least a broad sympathy for them that he seems to have acquired early
in his experiences and to have retained throughout his later career. 4
The main outlines of Fynn's life are well enough known. He was born on 29th

Henry F. Fynn (I 803-61), perhaps the greatest of the early Natal settlers. He lived long
enough to see Durban firmly established as a port.
15 Henry Francis Fynn
March 1803, probably in London, and in 1818 he went to the Cape to join his
father, who seems at one time to havc traded in the East, and was then keeping
an inn in Cape Town. At the end of that year the young Fynn made his way to
the government agricultural station in the eastern frontier region of the colony
where Somerset East was soon afterwards laid out. He arrived during a period of
commotion. In 1818 the rival Ngqika and Ndlambe sections of the Xhosa had
fought it out at the battle of Amalinde, and in 1819 the victorious Ndlambe
launched an unsuccessful attack on Grahamstown. The following year saw the
settlement in the eastern Cape of several thousand British immigrants. Occurring
as they did at an impressionable period of his life, these events must have left
their mark on Fynn, but unfortunately there is virlllally no indication of how
he responded to the conditiogs of life 011 the frontier.
In 1822 Fynn left the eastern Cape and walked from Grahamstown to Cape
Town, a distance of some 500 miles. It was to be the forerunner of many long
journeys on foot latcr in his life. By his own account he seems to have had
difficulty in finding a job ill Cape TOWIJ and was tempted to return to England,
but at this crucial juncture he was offered, and accepted, a position as super­
cargo on a vessel that was about to set off on a trading venture to Delagoa Bay.
For six months Fynn and his companions traded for ivory among the Tsonga
and other local peoples of southern Mocambique, and here he had what seems
to have been his first experience of living for extended periods among native
African communities.
The knowledge of local conditions which Fynn gained on this voyage was a
major factor in his being invited, whcn he returned to Cape Town at the end of
1823, to join Lieutenant F. G. Farewell's projected expedition to Port Natal.
Fynn was to go as trading manager in return for a share of the profits. Hope of
financial reward was no doubt an important incentive in his decision to join,
but it is worth recording that he had other motives as well. 'Travelling and new
scenes were to me a greater object than any pecuniary advantage,' he wrote,
and however true this was, it is fortunate for historians that on this expedition,
which saw the establishment of the first regular contracts between the whites and
Shaka's newly created Zulu kingdom, there was someone with a lively curiosity
about the people and places he visited, and the idealism to set down something
of his observations in writing.
Fynn landed at Port Natal with the advance party uf the expedition in May
1824. A fact that has 110t been sufficiently stressed ill accounts of this venture is
that it does not seem to have been intended as a deliberate colonizing expedition.
Fynn for one had been given to believe that it would be over within six months.
In the event he stayed for ten years. His activities during this period are des­
cribed in his published diary and there is no need to chronicle them here, but a
point that needs emphasis is the importance of the role that he played in gaining
Shaka's tolerance of the presence of the white traders. The Zulu monarch seems
to have been attracted to his perso;1ality, and to have enjoyed his company and
conversation much as he enjoyed the wagon-loads of gifts which Fynn and the
other traders were careful to present to their patron. Altother measure of Fynn's
ability to make rapport with the African peoples whom he at this
time is that he was able to win the trust of many of the refugees who sought
shelter in southern Natal from the raids and persecutions ofShaka and Dingane.
Ultimately several thousand of people regrouped themselves as clients of the
white traders. Fynn named his own following the Izinkumbi, or locusts, and
16 Henry Francis Fynn
under that name some of their descendants still jive in southern Natal. The
veneration felt for him by his adherents survived through his long absence at
the Cape, and lasted until after his death.
After the breakdown of relations between Dingane and the Port Natal
traders, Fynn returned to the eastern Cape, though the exact reasons for his
departure, which took place in September 1834, are not known. On tht outbreak
of war on the Cape frontier ill December 1834, he joined Sir Benjamin
O'Urban's headquarters staff as interpreter. Three months later he was back
in his old trading haunts when D'Urban sent him on a diplomatic mission
to Faku to ensure the chief's neutrality in the war. Though he remained among
the Mpondo for a year, virtually nothing is known of his activities during
this period.
In January l837,in terms of one of the treaties that followed the end of the war,
Fynn was appointed diplomatic agent to the Thembu chief Maphasa on the
upper Kei. He rtl11ained in this post for eleven years. Again, little is known
about his career at this time. though research into the official records of the Cape
Colony and into the Fynn Paper:> now held by the Natal Archives would
certainly thrO\\/ light Oil it. One intriguing question to which an answer might be
found is why in 1845 the Cape Governor, Sir Peregrine Mailland, passed over
Fynn for appointment to the post of diplomatic agent in Natal, the position
which went to Theophilus Shepstone. Aged 42 at the time, Fynn was fourteen
years older than Shepstone and, with twenty-six years of frontier experience
behind him, including ten spent in Natal, must have appeared an obvious
Fynn's post among the Thembu fell away in 1848 when Sir Harry Smith
scrapped the frontier treaty system. Once again he was sent among the Mpondo,
this time as Resident Agent to Faku. This period of his life is slightly better
known than the preceding one: 7 all that can be said here is that he did not make
a success of hi:; oiflce. By inciting a Mpondo attack on some suspected Bhaca
cattle thieves, Fynl1 was resronsihle for sparking off a series of incidents which
eventually involved not only the local chiefdoms but a number of Wesleyan
missionaries and the Capc and Natal Governments. By the time affairs had been
smoothed out, Fynn's long-standing reputation among the Mpondo was in
tatters. In 1852 his post was abolished, and after an absence of eighteen
years he returned to Natal, which si nee 1843 had been a British colony.
He joined the government service as a magistrate, and was stationed first
in Pietermaritzburg and then in what later became Umzinto. Ill-health for­
ced his retirement in 1860, and on 20th September 186 I he died in Durban
at the age of 58.
One hundred and thirteen years after his death, Mbuyazi weTheku, as he was
called in Zulu, still awaits a biographer. In assessing his career, white historians
have so far tended to see him as one of a band of courageous 'pioneers' who
cleared the way for the coming of civilization to Natal. Black historians of the
future may well see him as one of a band of alien intruders who opened the way
for the destruction of the established Zulu order. Perhaps the fairest comment
that can be made at t h i ~ stage is that in accommodating as he did to life in an
African society, at least for part of his early career, Fynn showed a pragmatism
and courage, even perhaps a humility, that have been all too rare in the history
of European immigrant peoples in southern Africa. His failure to exhibit a
similar flexibility in his later career is a measure not simply of his own weak­
17 Henry Francis Fynn
nesses but of the strength of forces which, throughout his life, were operating
to convince the white colonist in southern Africa that he was master in the land
that he had occupied.
I. See H. F. Fynn, The Diary of Henry Froncis Fynn, edited by James Stuart and D. McK.
Malcolm, Pietermaritzburg, 1950; N. Isaacs, Travels and Adventures in Eastern Africa, 1st
ed. 1836, Cape Town, 1970.
1. See Isaacsp. 18; also Fynn, p. 117.
3. Stuart Papers (Killie Campbe.Jl Africana Library), File 58, notebook 33, pp. 2-3 statement
ofWilliam Lcathcm, 23.5.1910.
4. See his own statement, Diary, p. xv; and J. W. Colcnso, Ten Weeks in Natal, Cambridge,
1855, p. 216.
5. Diary, p. 56.
6. See for instance Stuart Papers, File 65, item 4, pp. 85-7, statement of WilIiam Bazley,
7. See J. B. Wright, Buslzman Raiders of the Drakensberg 1840-1870, Pietermaritzburg, 1971,
ch. 6; and also unpublished thesis by D. G. L. Cragg, 'The relations of the amaMpondo
and the colonial authorities (1830-1886) with special reference to the role of the Wesleyan
missionaries', Ph.D .. Oxford, 1959.
lames Saunders King
Du RING the Napoleonic wars James Saunders King served as a midshipman
in the British navy in American waters and, thereafter, in the British merchant
navy passed himself off as a lieutenant. He came to the Cape at the end of the
year 1820 on board the Salisbury which transported an independent group of
settlers to the colony. By 1822 he had obtained command of this ship which
plied between Cape Town and Algoa Bay. On one occasion he sailed with F. G.
Farewell up the east coast of southern Africa to St. Lucia. Shortly afterwards
the ship was forced by contrary winds into the lagoon at Port Natal where he
promptly took the opportunity to make a detailed survey of the Bay. For his
trouble he thought himself entitled to a lieutenant's commission in the British
Navy, but the authorities did not agree with his contention. The incident brought
renewed notice of the Bay of Natal and it was this which caused Farewell to
consider the possibilities of trade with the Zulu through the port. With Nathaniel
Isaacs, King sailed for Port Natal from Cape Town in the Mary. h!.lt bad
luck dogged the two men and they were wrecked on the bar at the pan. King
determined to settle where he found himself and he became a firm favourite with
the Zulu chief Shaka. In April 1826 King left Natal on the sloop Hehcon but
returned six months later only to engage in a serious financial quarrel with
Farewell. In February 1828, Shaka sent King on a mission to negotiate an
alliance between the Zulu and British government bllt Ilothing came of this plan.
King returned to Natal in a state of great depression and, contracting dysentery
at Port Natal, died there in September 1828. He lies buried in the Lieutenant
King Park on the Bluff near Durban. He had an impractical nature and although
he contributed to the foundation of the white settlement in Natal, he remains one
of the more obscure figures in that venture. Perhaps his greatest contribution was
a diary which was much used by Nathaniel Tsaacs in his Tral'e/s and Adventures
in lIastern Ajfrica.
N athaniel Isaacs
TEN YEARS before the annexation of Natal by the British Government in 1843,
the principal merchants and prominent citizens of Cape Town were signatories
to what has come to be known as the Merchants' Memoria!. It was a petition to
the king 'to take measure5 for the occupation of Port Natal and the depopulated
country in its vicinity'. For corroboration of its statements concerning the
desirability of this measure, the text of the memorial referred to Sir G. Lowry
Cole, the late Governor of the Cape, and to 'the various documents on the
subject transmitted to England by the Colonial Government, particularly to
that which has been received from Mr. N. Isaacs.' It was sent to the Secretary of
State in London by the Governor of the Cape, Sir Benjamin D'Urban, with his
recommendation. After the lapse of nine months it was politely refused.
The reference is to Nathaniellsaacs who had spent several years in Natal and
Zululand at a time when the sight of a white man was still a source of wonder to
the inhabitants. a 'monster from the sea'. He had explored the land and kept
notes of his observations of its nature, its climate, its resources for commerce
and agriculture and its people. He had been deeply impressed with the desir­
ability of Natal as a country for colonisation, and was eager to persuade the
British Government to extend its protection and authority over it. This prop­
osition he had lost no opportunity of propagating in public and in private,
through official and unofficial channels, and in the columns of the S.A. Com­
mercial Advertiser. He had determined to return to Natal and settle there if it
should become British.
His observations of the country, together with his remarkable personal
adventures, were the substance of two volumes published in London in 1836,
entitled Travels and Adventures in Eastern Africa, descriptive of the Zoolus, their
manners, customs. etc. etc. With a sketch of Natal. 1
Isaacs arrived at the Cape from St. Helena in 1825, then a youth of seventeen.
He was born in Canterbury, England, of an Anglo-Jewish family. His first
cousin, Saul Solomon, is famous as the Liberal leader for 30 years in the Cape
House of Assembly. Isaacs's father died when Nathaniel was still a small child,
and it was agreed by the family that he should join his maternal uncle, Saul
Solomon, the principal shipper and merchant on the then flourishing island of
St. Helena, and he trained there for a commercial career. His journey was,
however, delayed for some years, entry permits being withheld whilst Napoleon
was a prisoner on the island. But in 1822 he departed from England and was
kindly received in the home of his uncle Sau!. Nathaniel refers with affection to
his good uncle, but he found that office work bored him; or, in his own rather
stilted style: 'the insipidity and monotony of the counting-house became
insupportable'. In short, he longed for adventure; and in the event he got it in
good measure.
He made friends with Lieutenant James Saunders King, R.N., master of the
20 NathanielIsaacs
brig Mary, who took him, with his uncle's consent, to the Cape. Here King
learned that his friend Lieutenant Farewell was lost in east Africa, and decided
to go in search of him. Young Isaacs delightedly accepted the captain's invitation
to join the expedition. The Mary reached Port Natal in October, 1825, but was
wrecked in the Bay. All but one member of the crew survived the shipwreck;
but they found themselves in an untamed land with no means of returning to
civilisation. The sparse popUlation, remnants of Shaka's conquests and mass­
acres, was friendly, and Isaacs was soon in touch with the other white men in the
country: among them Henry Francis Fynn, Lieutenant Farewell, his ship's
carpenter, John Cane, and Henry Ogle.
The crew of the Mary recovered tools and some of the timbers from the wreck
and with the addition of what they felled locally, succeeded in building, in the
course of nearly three years, a new vessel in which they returned safely to the
Cape Colony. Isaacs and King hunted and fished and cultivated the soil with the
aid of natives whom they taught to use pick and hoe. Isaacs determined to
visit Shaka with whom Farewell and Fynn had already established friendly
relations. He trekked 130 miles inland with Thomas Halstead, a ship's boy
about his own age. They were civilly received. Isaacs has left a lively account of
that warrior monarch and of his unpredictable, oftcn brutal methods of govern­
Shaka declared friendship for 'his white people', as he styled them, but it was
quite clear that their lives and safety depended on his caprice. One incident
particularly roused the king's wrath; and Isaacs was in imminent danger of a
violent death. Finally Shaka decreed that all the whites must assemble and form
a company to engage in one of his campaigns. Though this adjunct to the Zulu
army was a body of less than a dozen men, they were armed with muskets the
fire from which was sufficient to create panic in the enemy's ranks and ensure
Isaacs who received an assegai wound was able to plead successfully for the
lives of the defeated enemies who would all have been slaughtered. Shaka
honoured him, made him a chief and granted him by deed (a fantastic document)
a vast tract of country, which Isaacs and King designed to develop; and Isaacs
tells how they surveyed their estate and, selecting a conspicuous mound, planted
thereon a Union Jack. King died of disease, and Shaka's assassination in 1828
put an end to Isaacs's plans. He travelled to the coast where he met an old
friend, an American sea captain, and embarked with him on a voyage of explor­
ation of the islands in the Mocambique Channel, assessing and recording the
commercial possibilities of each.
Back at the Cape and St. Helena, he recovered his impaired health and pursued
his propaganda for British annexation of Natal. On his return to Natal he
became acquainted with Dingane who confirmed Shaka's grant of land to him.
But subsequently Dingane's ill-will towards the whites was kindled, partly by
the malice of Hlambamanzi, the king's rascally interpeter, and Isaacs and his
partner, Fynn, withdrew from Zululand, Isaacs returning to England. Here he
joined as a partner C. G. Redman who owned ships trading with Sierra Leone.
He still nourished the hope of settling in Natal, and made over to Redman
Shaka's grant of land. Until 1844 they were both publicly urging the annexation.
Isaacs took up residence in Sierra Leone representing the firm. In 1844,
apparently abandoning his hopes, he realised all his assets and launched out on
his own account. He bought the little island of Matacong off the west coast,
21 Nathaniellsaacs
part of the colony but outside the jurisdiction of the cLlstoms. Taking advantage
of this anomaly. he built wharves and stores and carried on a flourishing
shipping trade with England.
He was in good standing with the authorities ulltil 1854 when he incurred the
displeasure or the new governor, Captain Arthur Kennedy, who accused him of
slave-trading. He got early knowledge of the charge and left Matacong for
Liverpool. Governor Kennedy. about this lime was appointed to New South
Wales. He set sail, carrying with him the papers relating to the charge against
lsaacs. His ship was wrecked and the papers lost. Consequently the English
courts refused to proceed with the case. Isaacs retired to Liverpool in 1868. He
died at Egremollt in Cheshire in 1872.
Matacong went to his heirs, but was in 1882 declared to be French territory
and the then owners were excluded by the French authorities. Nathaniel Isaacs,
says Graham MacKeurtan in his Cradle Days of Natal
... must rank along with Farewell. Fynn and King as a founder. His
book is a vivid, detailed and accurate record of the birth of a great
r-ettlement. and he deserves the acclamation of every inttrested histor­
ian. He was hardy. bold, keen in perception and resourceful in action.
He came to Port Natal a mere boy; he departed almost a stripling; but
he left a vivid impress on its nascent years. The only trace of him today
is the name of 'Cape NathanieI' opposite the Bluff Point on a few faded
maps. As time goes on, however, he will come into his own.
I. Republished in two volumes with biographical sketch and notes by L. Herrman, Van
Riebeeck Society, Cape Town, 1936 and 1937. Republished in a single quarto volume, with
notes and an extended biography, ed. by L. Herrman and P. R. Kirby, Struik, Cape Town,
2. MacKeurtan, G., Cradle Days oj'Natal, London, etc., 1930, pp. 157-8.
John Cane
AN EARLY death was the fate of many Europeans who were pioneers of Natal
and John Cane was among those who came to a violent end. Little is known of
his origins except that he came from Britain to South Africa during the time of
the Napoleonic wars. Like many sailors on the trading route between England
and the Far East, Cane saw the advantages of settling in South Africa and on a
trip to Batavia in 1813 he decided to make this country his home. He first
laboured as an assistant to a Cape Town wine merchant and then, moving to the
eastern parts of the colony, became a carpenter to the famous Landdrost J. G.
Cuyler. It was in this fashion that he heard of the trading venture of Francis
George Farewell to Natal and beyond, and became a carpenter in the service of
that entrepreneur. Cane thus became one o f t h ~ first whites to settle in Natal and,
like the rest, came into close contact with the Zulu king, Shaka.
In 1828 Shaka sent Cane on an errand to the Cape to obtain macassar oil
among other assignments. It is said that this early journey overland to the Cape
inspired A. G. Bain and J. B. Biddulph to undertake their journey to Natal in
1829. Cane's mission to the Cape proved to be a failure, as did a diplomatic
mission sent by Dingane to the Cape in 1830, which he also accompanied. Cane's
failure to report to the Zulu king on his return to the Bay was a factor in the
worsening relations between the Zulu and the whites at the Bay. Later Cane
took part in Dingane's forays against the Swazi chief Sobhuza.
In June 1836 Dingane stopped trade between the Bay and Zululand, and Cane
took the initiative in opposing him in the plan. The whites at the Bay organised
themselves and their black followers into a militia under the command of Robert
Biggar, and Cane was one of the 'captains'. In the fighting that followed the Zulu
massacre of the Trekkers, Cane and Robert Biggar led a force of fifteen whites
and some eight hundred black followers against Dingane's impis. The rashness
of this almost irresponsible collection of fighters led to a great number of
casualties and Cane was one of those who were killed in the battle of Ndonda­
kusaka on the 17th of April] 838. Here was a stormy petrel of early Natal whose
life was recklessly expended for little advantage.
Henry Ogle
H. F. FYNN'S diary describes Ogle as a 'mechanic'-one of three who arrived
on the Julia in May l. This party organised by Francis Farewell consisted of some
HottentN servants and Cl crew of about 20. The mechanics were to build a
'factory' in readiness for the later arrival of Farewell and other members of the
party. At t h i ~ , time Ogle was 20 years old and one of the only three Englishmen
in the party. the others being Fynn and Cane. Ogle had come to the Cape as an
1820 settler of the Mouncy party.
Fynn tells the story of the first night's camp in the rain, when in spite of a
smoky fire, they were attacked by 'wolves" and Ogle had to fight to recover from
the enemy al! but one leg of his leather trousers with a Dutch 60 dollar note in
the pocket; thereafter he helped to beguile the tedium of the long night with his
They built a l2-foot 'factory' of wattle and daub where the Durban Post Office
now stands. Ogle's and Cane's huts being close by.
After the July 1824 attempt on the life of Shaka and Fynn's share in his
recovery. Fynn urged the llewly arrived Farewell to visit Shaka to congratulate
him on his recovery. Ogle was one of the party who visited the royal capital near
the Mhlatuzi. They perslILtded Shaka to grant them the land called 'Bubolango'
about the port, extending LOO miles inland and 25 miles along the coast. A copy
of this grant, signed on 71h August 1824. can be seen in the Local History
Museum in Durban.
Gradually Ogle and lhe others built up protected refugee areas on the Bluff
and around the Bay -- from being empty territory it had by 1827 an estimated
population of 4000.
When Gardinerarrived in 1835, Ogle lIrgedhim to start the Berca mission over­
looking the Bay. He was a member of the first Christian congregation at the
Port. Together with Gardiller, James Collis. F. J. Berkin and John Cane he was
elected to the first town committee of what was named D'Urban, but as they
kept no records we do !lot know the extent of their work. Ogle was also a
signatory of the petition of 30 residents of the Port, to request the British to
annex the area between the Umzimkulu and Tugela Rivers as 'Victoria Colony'.
Ogle accompanied Gardiner on the interesting journey to the Cape in 1835,
together with Dick King. George Cyrus. John Wyngart and their servants. As
the route along the coast was cut off beyond Faku's country by the generally
disturbed conditions resulting from the frontier war of 1834-5, Gardiner's party
initially tried unsuccessfully to cross the Drakensberg. After traversing the area
now known as U nderberg and then striking southwards they returned to the
Mpondo country of Faku. and finding that the hostilities had ceased followed
the recognised route.
Back at the Port. Ogle was a signatory to the welcome address to Piet Retief,
approving of Trekker settlement in Natal.
24 Henry Ogle
After the murder of the Retief party in February 1838, Ogle accompanied
Cane's Locusts on a commando expedition of 2000 Durban natives to march
against Dingane. Instead they raided a minor chief to retrieve stolen cattle and
there was no fighting. Later in the year Ogle refused to participate in Alexander
Biggars' second commando expedition though he had been created 'captain'
over a contingent of 700 friendly Tuli warriors of Chief Umnini on the Bluff.
Without his leadership they defected before the disastrous battle which resulted.
Tmmediately afterwards Dingane's impis attacked the Port in April 1838,
occupied it and for nine days spread destruction while the settlers sought refuge on
ships or on Salisbury Island in the Bay. When the Comet Icft for Delagoa Bay
on the 11th May, only eight or nine men remained to build lip the settlement
again. One of them was Henry Ogle. Soon they were reinforced by groups or
refugee Trekkers who under Kare1 Landman established three laagcrs around
the Bay.
When a small British force under Major Charters briefly occupied Natal in
1838-9 to endeavour to restore peace between the T rekkers and Dingane, and
perhaps prevent the formation of a separate Trekker government, Captain
Jervis who was left in charge succeeded, through Ogle, in opening negotiations
with Dingane. An agreement was reached that the Tugela was to be the recog­
nised boundary between the Zulu and the Trekkers, but the arrangement was
never effective because of the Battle of Blood River and the subsequent with­
drawal of the British force. Ogle would have met thc young Theophilus Shep­
stone who was a member of the expedition.
The rest of Ogle's life was quieter and less eventful. He was destined to become
the oldest white settler in Natal- the only one of the original settlers to make a
permanent home in Natal. Hc died on February 20th, 1860, the anniversary of
the day on which he first set foot on Natal soil.
FYNN, H. E, The Diary of Henry Francis Fynn, ed. by lames Stuart and D.
McK. Malcolm. Pietermaritzburg, 1969.
LUGG, H. C., Historical Natal and Zululand. Pietermaritzburg, 1949.
SHIELDS, C., Young South Africa.
RUSSELL, R., Natal. The Land and its Story. Pietcrmaritzburg, 1911.
BROOKES, E. H. and
WEBB, C. de B., A History of Natal. Pietermaritzburg, 1965.
Thomas J-Jalstead
I N AN era when boy" became men at an early age, Thomas Halstead was pre­
eminent in Natal. He was the son of Richard Halstead of the 1820 settler Hay­
hurst party, and Thomas came to Natal with F. G. Farewell when he was yet in
his early 'teens. Hunting buffalo for skins and elephants for their tusks, Halstead
roamed the length and breadth or Natal and Zululand. and he was coincidentally
on the beach at Port Natal when the also youthful Nathaniel Isaacs was ship­
wrecked there. Isaacs's first impression was that Halstead was a dullard, but
events did not bear OLlt this estimation and it would appear that Halstead had
more commonsense than Isaacs was willing to credit him with. With Isaacs and
John Cane. Halstead took part in Shaka's expedition against the rebellious
followers of Chief Beje. Halstead was on a very good footing with the Zulus.
and Dingane came to trLlst him possibly more than any of the other Europeans
in Natal at the tim8.
In O:tober 1837 Halstead was again on hand when Piet Retief arrived at the
coast, and he and the Voortrekker became finn friends. After Retief's visit to
Dingane, Halstead was engaged as interpreter to go with the Trekkers to
Sikonyela, from whom stolen cattle had to be retrieved. Halstead apparently
also acted on behalf of Dingane who wished to see that the agreement with the
Trekkers was fully carried out. In due course Halstead reported to Dingane what
had transpired, but Halstead nevertheless remained under some suspicion. It
1V0uld appear that Halstead received prior information as to the intentions of
Dingane in regard to the Trekker posse, but it seems as if Retief did not credit
Halstead's tale. When the blolV against the Trekkers fell, Halstead tried to
remonstrate with Dingane, but his protestations were in vain, and he perished
with the others. At the time of his death Halstead was not yet in his thirties but
his role in the unfolding story of Natal was notwithstanding a significant one.
John Ross
HIS REAL name, he said, was Charles Rawden Maclean and he had run away
to sea at the age of 12. He arrived in Nat,:\ with Lieutenant J. S. King's party as
an apprentice on the ISO ton brig Marl' Oil 30th September 1825. This was an
eventful introduction for, on crossing the notorious bar, the ship was wrecked
off Point Fynn (the Point, Durban) fortunately without loss of life. King, lsaacs,
Ross. H utton the master of the Mar)'. M orton the mate, and 13 <.:rew memb.:rs
had to swim forth.:ir Jives. Ross was saved by a Newfoundland dog with which he
had made friends on the ship. This canine hero afterwards lost his life i'l a tussle
with leopards on the Bluff.
Nathaniel lsaacs in his Tral'els awl Adl'entli/,cs in Eastcrn Africa has most to
say about this young pioneer. He aCCOllJlts for the popular name thus: being a
sailor the lad was called Jack (or by Isaacs, John) and Ross because of his ginger
hair. He was courageous, cheerful and shrewd. He was born on 22nd November
J8J2. As Isaacs had also run away (from pen-pushing in his uncle's St. Helena
office) the boys had something ill commoll and were the youngest members of
the party.
Ross's greatest contribution to the pioneer history of Natal was his spectac­
ular walk to Oelagoa Bay and back to fetch medical supplies for the Port Natal
adventurers. Isaacs accompanied him as far as Shaka's kraal. So impressed was
the Chief with this proof of courage aild determination, that a group of 10
warriors was detailed to conduct him there, via Tsonga territory east of the
Lebombo mountains, through trackless and often marshy country teeming with
zebra and rhinoceros. After J8 days on foot. they n:ached the kraal of Makasane,
a Tsonga chief. Here more guides were supplied to negotiate the Maputa river
which enters Delagoa Bay after collecting its waters from the Pongola, Ngwavu­
ma and Usutu. They crossed 011 Tsonga rafts built of half-charred tree trunks
lashed together, and baled out the seeping water as they went.
At Delagoa Bay the governor suspected Ross of being a spy for Shaka­
nevertheless he was not unkindly treated and was given permission to buy
supplies. Most of these he got free from the captain of a French slaver in the Bay.
Graham Mackeurtan has suggested that this captain was the 'infamous Dorval
of Mauritius' who from 1825 carried on slave trade with Delagoa Bay.
John stayed no longer than three days for he was distressed by the slave trade
and fearful lest some of his fine Zulu bodyguard might be captured. It took ten
men to carry the load he had acquired. On the return journey they followed the
coast and met King on the bank of the Tugela where he had camped during a
surveying trip. Ross got back to the Port after an absence of three weeks (April
- May 1827) and a journey of approximately 500 kilometres. That the Tugela
bridge on the national road should have been named for him is most appropriate,
It is known that after five years at the Port he went back to sea, served in
eight ships and obtained his Master's Certificate ill 1833. Later news of Ross
John Ross (or Charles Rawden MacJean), apprent ice to the naval officer James Saunders
King who brought him from Cape Town in lR25. This more than life-size statue by
Mary Stainbank, situated on the Victoria Embankment outside John Ross House,
commemorates his arduous and dangerous journey.
27 John Ross
comes from a Natal Mercury article which mentions a series of articles appearing
in the Nautical Magazine from 1852 until 1861 under the name Charles Rawden
Maclean. By this time he was 49 years old and here we lose track of him.
FYNN, H. F., The Diary of Henry Franci!, Fynn, cd. by lames Stuart and D.
McK. Malcolm. Pietermaritzburg, 1969.
ISAACS, N., Tral'els and Adventures in Eastern Africa. Cape Town, 1970.
MACKEURTAN, G., The Cradle Days of Natal, London, etc. 1930.
Natal Mercury, 11th December 1957.
Captain Alien F. Gardiner
Unpublished Manuscript: A Memoir by his w(le, written for his grandson.
Some years have now passed, since you expressed a wish that I should write
some personal recollections of the Grandfather whose names you bear. Again
and again have I made the attempt, when my narrative has resolved itself into
a record of travelling adventure during the years when we were all together, a
small family party, roaming over the world; interesting enough for me to write
but too long for you to read, and after all comprising only six of the 15 in which
we were united, or of the 57 to which his life extended.
I am now again attempting to give you a sketch of his life and character as I
knew him and hope to add in another book. long extracts from the private
letters, which his own children <:Ol1sidered ought to have been published in the
memoir which was presented to the world in 1853. That this was not done, was
merely due to the necessity of reducing the book to a a saleable size and price.
Your Grandfather was of mature age bt:rore I became acquainted with him,
and his impetuous youth had been toned down and his naturally hasty temper
held under restraint. He was about 5 feet 10 inches in height. strongly built
(he used to say he had not an ounce of superfluous flesh on his frame) but being
muscular he did not look thin. His hair was very soft and curled all over his
head I do not think he llsed a hairbrush, but constantly rubbed his head with
a wet sponge. Some young men thought his appearance more that of a soldier
than a sailor. because of his firm step and upright carriage. The expression of his
face in repose was stern, but there was a glance of the eye and a ready smile which
betokened latent f"un. ano his children were never afraid of" him. The stories
which he told for their amusement were endless and when asked what they were
to do in Africa he romanced so freely, that my matter of fact mind was startled
and afraid that they would be disappointed at the reality of things - But my
fears were groundless, they listened entranced, but impossible projects did them
no more harm than fairy tales.
He retained to the last a deep interest in his profession. and if war had broken
out during our wanderings, would have returned home without loss of time to
place his services at the disposal of the Government. But as nothing occurred to
prevent him from employing his time as he chose, his leave of absence was
renewed from year to year, and of course his half pay was received in due course.
So all the qualities which so eminently fitted him for an explorer, were
dedicated to the service of God, as a pioneer of missions: viz. his knowledge of
men, his experience of travel. his undaunted courage, his patient perseverance,
his disregard of hardship, his readiness at every sort of contrivance, his inde­
pendence of all the conventionalities of life while readily resuming all social
customs on his return to civilized life. His father-in-law Mr. Reade (who could
hardly conceive of a man being comfortable in any dwelling less substantial than
a brick house, and who therefore rebuilt most of the cottages on his estate of
29 Gardiner: A Memoir by his wife
brick) used to say 01' him 'Look at Alien, hl: goes to unheard or places, lives in
a Zulu hut, then comes home. changes his coaL and looks as if nothing had
On our !irst voyage he was much occupied in preparation for Ollr future life
in the wilds, making interminable lists of things to be procured at Cape Town in
the way of stores and furniture which included glazed windows for a projected
house, doors for the same, ,ciso tiles ror the floor, which he thought more: suitable
than planks, a few chairs alld tables, saucepans and kettles, casks of meal, sago,
rice, sugar, salt, olive oil etc. We had afterwards to send for fine flour and cheese
which had been omitted, not from forgetfulness, but because they con­
sidered useless or unwholesome! He had provided and brought from England a
complete dinner and tea set of Britannia metal-- plain low bedsteads and
mattresses we had with us, etc.
Another occupation he had, which was drawing out illustrated plans for
setting the natives to work, at making rope of the wild hemr of the coulltry and
houses with mud walls, erc.
Then he had provided a store of Scotch Tartan. to be made into what he
called kilts, a short kind or petticoat reaching rrom the waist to the knee for the
black men's wear, numbers of which were made up on the voyage by the wife
and sister of the Rev. Owen. missionary from the C. M.S. who accom­
panied us. (These three remained our dear friends as long as they lived). I and
little Julia also cmployed our needles in the same way. That dear little girl was
several years older than her brothers and sisters and OLIr one sorrow on the
voyage and subsequent journey, \\as that of observing her declining health.
After a healthy childhood. she had measles at school, and never recovered tone.
Her Grandmother, Mrs. Reade, would have liked to keep her in England, but
it was fondly hoped that the sea voyage might restore her to health, moreover
she was keen for a life of adventure, and her father wished to have all his child­
ren about him. We took advice for her at Cape Town, again at Genadenthal
where there was an English physician, also at Graham's Town, but nothing did
her any good, and she gradually faded away from sheer distaste for food, and
died before we reached Natal. She wa" a very happy child, and wrote the most
lively accounts of everything that happened. In the last few weeks of her life, her
natural sweetness and charm were enhanced by Divine grace and she learned to
love and trust her Saviour with her whole heart. The day after we landed at Natal
her dear little body was committeed to the grave at Berea.
On your Grandfather's former visit to Natal and Zululand, he had much
conversation ,vith each of the few settlers who were living there for many years
before the colony was formed. He learned from them that the Zulu refugees who
peopled the country were fond of attaching themselves to some one white man
as their chief. Any who \Vcre entrusted with a gun wherewith to shoot elephants.
willingly brought the ivory to the owner of the gun contenting themselves with
the flesh for food anc1 the importance which was given by the possession of such
a weapon.
Having ascertained that no would be raised to himself in like manner
posing as a chief. and adopting as his clan any volunteers, he was sanguine in his
hope of being able to govern them for their good and to teach them the truths of
Christianity. His people were to be caJled the 'Clomanthleen' (or the Clothed)
as no one was to be allowed to go naked. So you will perceive that his plans
were far reaching, and might well be engrossing.
30 Gardiner: A Memoir by his wife
Our landing at Cape Town, our removal to Rondebosch, the children's
delight in the common and the flowers, our trips to Wynberg and Constantia, aJl
these must be omitted. But 1 must just say that the first missionary meeting
connected with the Church of England ever held at Cape Town took place on
that occasion, the Governor taking the chair, officers and clergy on the platform
and your Grandfather the chief speaker. The same thing happened afterwards at
Graham's Town only without the Governor.
The colony being originally Dutch. and the majority of the colonists being
still Dutch, in some measure explains though it does not excuse this backward­
ness of the Church of England. The first Missionary Stations within the colony
were Moravians: then came the London Missionary Society, then the Wesleyans,
then the French Protestants. A party of American missionaries arrived at Natal
just in time to have a conference with your Grandfather when he was leaving
in 1835 and when we arrived in 1837, we found them fully established and very
excellent missionaries they proved to be. The Moravians win favour with every
one, even with those who do not really desire the conversion of the natives to
Christianity. And for these two reasons, first they never interfered in politics,
which some others were supposed to do, and next they taught their converts a trade.
To return.
After settling us at Rondebosch, your Grandfather went in daily to Cape Town
to make necessary purchases and arrangements. In process of time the stores
were all purchased and sent on board the brig Skerne, which was chartered for
the purpose, and was to pick us up at Port Elizabeth, Algoa Bay.
Your grandfather's former journeys in the colony had been made on horseback,
but he was well acquainted with the African wagon, and considered it well
adapted to the country. So he had one built for our journey from Cape Town to
Port Elizabeth, with a view to its subsequent use at Natal. But he added a
double tilt, the better to protect us from the sun, and had each of the four seats
slung on springs, to make up as far as might be, for the impossibility of putting
the wagon itself on springs; the inequality of the roads, and the absence of
bridges forming insuperable impediments. Ten horses were required to draw this
ponderous vehicle. But the colonial wagon drivers were equal to the occasion,
and we traversed the colony successfully; spending the nights in general at the
farm houses. and sharing the family meals; at moderate charges. The horses
were hired from farm to farm. We stayed at the Moravian mission station at
Genadenthal for Easter, and enjoyed the few days rest and converse much. We
crossed the Hottentot Holland range of mountains by the Franchehoek pass on
this occasion and by Sir Lowry Coles pass another time. the scenery there was
magnificent, but the general impression of our route was that of fertility and
space rather than of special beauty.
We made a little stay at Graham's Town and again at Port Elizabeth whence
we sailed for Natal, hovered about the Port till a high tide enabled us to cross
the bar, were met by a wagon on shore and conveyed at once to Berea. There we
staid in a house built by your Grandfather two years before, while he matured
his plans. Very soon his former servants found him out, and introduced others.
The names I recollect are Umpondombani Umkonto Nombamba, Sinda and
Jurdi, also Konda. Altogether about 40 families agreed to accept your Grand­
father as their chief and to follow him to a place which he was to select; there
to build their houses and to sow their corn. He wished to be some few miles
from Natal, so as to give the freer scope for his efforts for the people's good and
and Captain Smyley says that the two captains who
accompanied him cried like children at the sight.
A gale came up suddenly, and it was with difficulty
they were able to get back to the John Davison,
having secpred what they could of the relics of the

74- :."..., .... __ Ih::t

"'<.1 --:­
... 'JdA>;'4:



dead. They then returned with all speed to Monte
Video, to carry the terrible news. Then came the
English war-ship Dido, unaware that the sad discovery
had been made. The coast was eagerly scanned for
any sign of life, and cannons fired amid the solitudes,
as signals of coming relief. At last, on a boat being
Facsimile of portion of Gardiner's manuscript found on the beach. From Jesse Page's
life of Gardiner.
Engraving: 'The Death of Captain Alien Gardiner' (from an original drawing by Lancelot Speed)
From: Captain Alien Gardiner, Sailor and Saint. Africa - Brazil - Patagonia' by Jesse Page: London: S. W. Partridge & Co., 8 and 9, Paternoster Row
31 Gardiner: A Memoir by his wife
judged it well to be between Natal and the Zulu boundary, Vvith the hope of
perpetuating the influence which he had previously acquired over the Zulu king.
All this came to pass. We started with two wagons and a tent, our Leader
riding ahead, and we following, sometimes to the sound of his bugle. We
outspanned the first night on the bank of the Umsl utie, and the next day reached
the selected spot on a hill ahove the Umtongata. One incident I must mention
because it is characteristic of the position. Our wagon driver came to me, saying
'What are we to do, madam? Master is blowing the horn, but there is no road.'
So I got out, looked about mc, got in again, and said 'Consult Mr. Cane'. He
was the owner of the other \\agon, and accllstomed to the country. Very soon,
he and his wagon and oxen \\ erc rloughing their Vvay through the brushwood,
and we followed in their track.
Our establishment consisted of a Dutchman as cook, a colonial born English­
man as wagon driver and interpreter, a young English nursery maid who had
come with us from England, divers black boys to look after the cattle and obey
orders and SOOI1 two young black maids to be trained as housemaids and
laulldresscs. Thomas Verity the interpreter was a respectable youth who with
several others had beet< sent by Government into Kafir land to kam the language
colloquially. When recalled he earned his living as a wagon driver till we re­
quired him ill the double capacity.
We lived for a month in tent and wagon. Eventually several houses were got
up of various kinds, the first built by natives in thei r own style but with divers
alterations directed by yom grandfather, then a wooden one by an English
carpenter, a granary raised on poles to keep the contents from the rats - also
other small erections for ~ ; t o r e s or visitors - for we had visitors: now and then
a missionary going to Natal or returning, once or twice a passing traveller, who
asked for some bread for hi', next days journey. or some Zulu with a message
from Dingarn.
Without waiting for these buildings. it was necessary for your Grandfather to
visit Dingarn, and of course he was accompanied by the interpreters. Fancy our
loneliness! But we had no tangible fears, no wild beasts, or wild men came to
scare us, two or three women would come peeping into the tent to look at the
white woman but the men kept their distance.
My two children gave me constant employment. Luckily they liked their
lessons, and appreciated all my efforts for their amusement.
As soon as the travellers returned your Grandfather adopted a system for
instructing the men, which was to assemble them every morning, and through
the interpreter teach some one Christian fact or doctrine, recapitulating on
certain days and asking questions. They were manifestly interested, but we were
not advanced enough to take the women in hand. They were the cultivators of
the soil, and were very patient and industrious. The study of the language was
also steadily attended to. Long vocabularies were written at Verity's dictation
but as he was quite illiterate he could not dissect it sentence, though he could
give phrase for phrase. He could tell you what to say for which is the way or
where are you going, but could not tell which word stood for where or way or
going. Then in his anxiety to have the true Zulu idiom your G. F. invented
another plan, he would have one or two boys with the interpreter, and desire
each in turn to say something which we wrote down and Verity translated. Many
of the African languages are cognate, and the one Verity had mastered was not
Zulu, but sufficiently near for practical purposes.
32 Gardiner: A Memoir by his wife
The natives worked willingly at buildings and fences ~ and were well satisfied
with the coloured blankets they received as pay, in addition to an occasional ox
which was slaughtered for their benefit. But there was a howl of dismay when it
was announced that in future only two or three men were needed for work, and
they would be paid according to a fixed scale. No, their chief must not pay them;
they would work for him willingly, but they would like him to give them food
and occasional presents, at his pleasure. However, they had to be talked over,
as this comfortable free and easy method of share and share alike was too
expensive for a continuance.
(Meantime your Grandfather wrote to influential friends in England, and
money was freely subscribed to help him, which all had to be giVe;) back, as we
had left Africa for ever, before we heard anything about the effort which was
made on his behalf.)
Our friend Mr. Owen with his wife and sister staid some days with us on their
way to Zululand which was a great pleasure ~ wc received them again when
Dingarn's savage conduct led to their leaving the coulltry. But for some time
everything promised fair.
Still, knowing Dingarn to be a capricious despot your Grandfather thought
it well to make our little establishment into a tiny fortress, by throwing up
earthworks all round with a trench outside and placing two small cannon in
position, so as to keep off (for a time) an enemy who had no firearms. Another
of his contrivances was the kitchen chimney. Our settlement being on the summit
of a hill, he caused an excavation to be made which resulted in three earth walls,
the fourth was made of planks and a door, the chimney was in the highest wall
and there was a sloping roof.
Our food was porridge, milk, Indian corn cakes, occasional vegetables, and
meat whenever we slaughtered an ox. To make our meat last longer, an experi­
ment was tried which answered perfectly, viz. to cut some meat into slices and
dry it in the sun. This was in imitation of what the sailors of the South American
squadron called 'jerked beef" and the Chilenos 'Charqui'- It made very good
We lived in this way for several months and your Grandfather was even talking
of making a picnic expedition for us all, by way of variety, when the disastrous
news reached us which changed the whole aspect of affairs. Knowing ourselves
to be so unprotected it might be surprising that neither the servants nor I
apprehended danger. I suppose our confidence in our Leader was one thing, and
for myself, I had been brought up with the belief that it was right to encounter
such risks in missionary work, and to trust that the same merciful protection
might be granted to us, as was experienced by the missionaries in New Zealand.
We were said to be in the heart of the hunting country, but the wild beasts
kept their distance. We once saw a family of elephants crossing a neighbouring
hill. Another time a hippopotamus was taking his bath in the sea, when we
arrived there with wagon, oxen and attendants for a <;imilar purpose. Not that
anyone was literally to bathe in the sea, the thought of alligators and sharks was
too dreadful but we brought a big tub, looked out for a sheltered place, had it
filled by a black attendant and then the children were duly dipped. One night a
hyena was heard to howl and another time it was supposed that a panther had
scared the cattle for they all managed to leap from the cattlefold and it took the
boys half the day to recover them.
Among our visitors were two of the emigrant Boers. They had been to see
Gardiner: A Memoir by his wife 33
Dingarn and to negotiate with him for his sanction to their occupying a tract
of land which lay between the Quathlamba and the Indian ocean, south of the
Tugela, which he had made his own boundary. (This was the identical tract
which Dingarn had 2 years before offered to your Grandfather and which he had
in vain endeavoured to persuade our Government to colonize). These Boers
said the king had been most friendly, but that they were to come again with a
larger number of men and that then the agreement should be formally notified.
Little did they or we know what that meant.
They came again, a party of 60, were received as before. Zulu dances were
exhibited. The Boers were invited to dance in return and executed a sham fight,
were to have a final interview in the morning, and when scated another Zulu dance
was announced, during which the guests were surrounded and at a given signal
Some boys who were in attendance fled with the terrible news to the encamp­
ment, and by this timely warning, further slaughter was prevented. The Zulu
army was in hot pursuit but found them prepared. Dingarn sent contradictory
messages to your Grandfather, one was to the effect that he had killed the Boers,
because they were coming to kIll him, and that he should shortly march to Natal
and recall his runaways; then another message, that he was fighting with the
Dutch only, and not with the English.
We staid at Hambanarti as our place was named, till the American missionaries
as well as the Owens, had left Zululand, calling on us by the way, and signifying
that as Dingarn had involved himself in a war with the Dutch, it was no longer
safe for white men to remain in his country. It was evident that his professions of
friendship were not to be relied on. The next thing we heard was that the English
at Natal had armed their retainers and marched to the assistance of the Boers.
We then in our turn retired to Berea and from thence to Natal, where we
encamped and found ourselves in good company, all the missionary families
being there. There was a brig in the bay called the Mary, and when she was ready
for sea we all went in her to the Colony: Mr. Lindley one of the Americans
alone remaining in the hopes of being allowed to minister to the Boers. Every
one took it for granted that the Dutch would subdue the Zulu and settle down
as lords of the land.
Your Grandfather felt that the ground was swept away from under him ­
that the Dutch would never tolerate such an establishment as his, in their very
midst or in their immediate neighbourhood. For he knew well that the migration
of the Boers from the colony and their dis-satisfaction with the British Govern­
ment proceeded from two causes - first that the British insisted on freeing the
Hottentots whom the Boers had enslaved and second, that the British were
opposed to the system of reprisals which had hitherto found favour with the
farmers: for as was to be expected the Kafirs would occasionally make a raid
upon the neighbouring farmers and drive away their cattle. Then from time to
time the farmers would band themselves together in what they called a 'com­
mando', and with their retainers march into Kafir land, and in their turn drive
off some cattle, shooting anyone who opposed them.
You may well imagine how inexpressibly painful it waS for him to give up his
cherished plans, and leave the people in whom he took so deep an interest, and
some of whom had attached themselves so warmly to him. But it was not possible
for him to rest without an object, nor could he imagine it possible to begin the
work again under Dutch sway. He heard also that several of his people had
34 Gardiner: A Memoir by his w!le
joined the iocal army so hastily got up and fallen in an encounter with the Zulus.
Under thcse circumstances his elastic mind reverted (as you know) to his old
interest in the Indians of South America, particularly the Araucanians who
maintained their independence on the frontiers of Chili, and !lext to them, the
Indians of the Pampas who still waged war as occasion favoured them against
the various Spanish Republics, which had sprung from the Spanish Colonies.
(One cannot !lame this fact. without contrasting these Republics with the great
nation which had its origin in a British Colony).
We left Port Natal on March 26, 1838, arrived at Port Elizabeth in four days,
once more traversed the colony from Algoa Bay to Table Bay took ship there,
and were at Rio Janeiro 011 June 22 -- your Grandfather ransacking his memory
for Spanish words all the voyage, and teaching them to me. He could not get
hold of a Spanish book till we reached the continent, and then they were often
translated from English and printed in London. so that he distrusted the
He was well ;'1l'4uaillted \I ilh Rio Janeiro considering it one of the finest
harbours in the world. only to be compared in size and scenery, with Trincoma­
lee in Ceylon. the Bay of Naples, and Sydney Harbour in New South Wales. He
pointed out the Sugar Loaf. tllc Corcovado and at the head of the harbour the
range of the Organ mountains.
We put up at Pharoux' French Hotel and felt ourselves IJ1 luxury. It took
several days to get our luggage through the clIstoms house before which time
our passage was secured to Buenos Ayres where we arrived on July 27, 1838.
Your Grandfather got much information at Rio from an American mission­
ary, Mc Dempster I think, and from Mr. Dafrugas a Guernsey man who
represented the firm of Boardman & Co. to whom wc had a letter of credit. At
Buenos Ayres in the same way from M r. Lyne, or as he was called there Don
Ricardo, also from Mr. Armstrong the clergyman with whom we became fast
friends. From all these sources 11e satisfled himself that his best hopc of getting
at the (so called) Indians "as 011 the southern frontier ofChili beyond the Biobio
but that there \\as a chance or his being able to visit a tribe who lived among the
mountains at a moderate distance from Mendoza. So to Mendoza we went, with
the double object of i mJ')['ovi ng ourselves in Spanish, and of ascertaining the
whereabouts and conditioll of these people if possible. The same difficulty
existed there as on the east coast, viz. war to the knife, between Spaniard and
fndian: a cessation of hostilities from time (0 time but no peace or friei1dliness.
So we staid there till the winter was over, and the pass open for crossing the
Cordillera into Chili, during which detention, all the Spanish Bibles, Testaments
and Tracts wc had with us, were given away and gladly received though not one
was parted with, without the power of reading on the part of the recipient being
tested. A handsome letter of thanks also was received from the schoolmaster for
the books given to his pupils, which was the more gratifying as he was a Priest.
I must mention a few particulars about these journeys, though f am trying to
avoid getting into a long Ilarrative. The Pampas were traversed in a Galera,
bought for the purpose. large enollgh to give us sleeping accommodation if
desired but we generally found it best to have our own mattresses and bedding
taken into the Post hOllse which always furnished catres, viz. Iow bedsteads
formed of a framework of wood connected by strips of hide. We had a Courier
whose business was to precede us to each post house, and order horses for the
next stage. We had chocolate for breakfast made Spanish fashion in a proper
35 Gardiner: A Memoir by his wife
chocolatera and Paraguay herb, alias 'Mate', made tea fashion for tea, bread
and milk were always to be had, butter and condiments we did without. Every
evening we had a fowl stewed, and ate it cold the next day. The courier and the
peones as the postilions were called, were most picturesque objects, with their
flowing ponchos and fringed botinas and wide hats or pointed caps. We had five
horses, each of which was hooked by his rider to the poles o1'thc carriage. Thus
far we followed the customs of the country. Crossing the mountains wanted mon:
contrivance, and your Grandfather's ingenuity found scope for exercise. The
usual way of carrying a child was for a man to place him on a pillow in front of
him as he sat on his horse. This was not to be permitted, so panniers were made.
each being a sort of long box made of a framework 0(' wood covered with hides
and lined with some of the wagon cushions whieh your Grandfather's prudence
had brought from Africa. All our baggage had to be restowed in hide trunks of
the country the proper size for conveyance on pack saddles. The panniers
answered perfectly and with a few small books and toys the children were quite
happy, and able to change their posture whenever they liked.
Another contrivance of his did not find so much favour, though it answered
the purpose for the time being. By it the panniers were converted into palanquins
one for the children and one for me. But this was only required whiie traversing
the snow at the top of the pass. It was very early in the season, and the snow still
lay for a few miles ~ which made that portion of the route impassable for
animals - an agreement had therefore been made for another set of mules to
meet us on the other side and men to carry the things across. So few men came,
that the luggage had to be fetched in relays and we spent the night in a Rest
house on the Cumbre. These rest houses are very strongly built, a solid mass of
brick raises the floor some 8 or 10 feet above the ground, the roof is arched inside
and sharply sloped outside, evidently calculated to encourage the snow to fall off,
but able to support an accumulation if necessary. It was the 12th October \\hen
we left Mendoza, and we arrived at Santiago on the 23rd, having actually
travelled nine days for we rested two Sundays, onc before beginning the actual
ascent, the other after we had once more descended into the plain. J must admit,
that a great part of the journey was too sublime for me, the vastness and grandeur
were overpowering, some sign of the presence of man or beast would have been
a relief. After we had passed the Cumbre, the views were much more varied and
beautiful and I was able to appreciate them.
We stayed ten days at Santiago, and had a good deal of conversation with Mr.
Caldcleugh, a gentleman who was engaged in some mining business and who
happened to be at the same hotel with ourselves. We left Santiago on the 3rd of
November and got to Concepcion on the 23rd. In the course of the following
month your Grandfather made two reconnoitering journeys and was much
pleased with his intercourse with the chiefs particularly Corbalan, but as he could
not get permission to reside among them for more than a few weeks we went
thence by sea to Valdivia where a similar experience awaited him. He took us
inland as far as Arique by boat, and beyond that to Quindulca on horseback
where he left us for a few days. But all was in vain. As a visitor he might go
where he liked but as a resident, nowhere. He ascertained that a knowledge of
the Chilidugu language might have been a passport to him, but thought himself
too old to begin upon that. Also he could not make up his mind to go sllch a
slow way to work as to live within the confines of Chili and visit the people
across the border till they got used to him and ceased to regard him as a stranger.
36 Gardiner: A Memoir by his wife
Probably if he had done so, the Romish missionaries would have interfered ­
for there came a time when a friar was heard to boast that he had sent him away
from one place, and intended to prevent him from going to another.
Anyway we left Valdivia and got to Valparaiso on the 2nd of March, after
making most pertinacious researches in every direction as you may read in his
book "The Indians of Chile". I should not have been sorry if he had then taken
up Bible and Tract distribution - so many people could read, and there were
so few books, and he so much regretted that the Bible Society had no agent in
the whole continent. But he did not look at this in the same light and considered
his own life as dedicated to God's work among those of the heathen nations to
whom He was yet an unknown God.
So it was soon decided that we were to make for New Guinea, and we pro­
ceeded by way of Sydney, Timor and Amboyna and Ternate, in an ineffectual
endeavour to reach that country. A year was thus occupied, which gave us full
experience of life in the tropics and then we found ourselves back in South
Wherever he was, your Grandfather was the same man, keeping his main
object steadily before him, bent upon losing no time but getting on from place
to place as fast as circumstances allowed getting information on all hands, from
every one with whom he got acquainted.
It is right to say though you would assume it, that he was all along a most
diligent student of scripture and abounded in prayer. We had our daily prayer,
and on Sundays our morning and evening services, whether there was anyone
to join with us or not. Then when any plan was in abeyance or any fresh project
to be entered upon, he would call me aside to kneel beside him while he implored
the Divine blessing and guidance. Sometimes I was afraid of the discourses being
rather too long for the children's attention, but of course did not hint that to
them and they always behaved perfectly which I think quite in accordance with
child nature. Children are keen sighted and in any rank (as far as my experience
goes) will behave in the way they feel is expected of them. If they know that you
think the church service too long for them or that they cannot be expected to sit
still at prayers they gladly indulge their natural restlessness. But there is much
heroism about them, if you encourage self command instead of teaching self
So much for my theories.
It was about this time that a plan was started for adding to the children's stores
of knowledge in an original and interesting way, th us: The father and children
were to commence a correspondence. Each was to ask a question and to answer
one. The letters were to be placed in an amateur letterbag, labelled Postoffice,
generally placed stealthily and discovered triumphantly. Many of the youthful
questions showed observing minds readily interested in general knowledge. We
had also various games - one was called only Describing things, and began '1
have thought of something'. Another was called Earth, air and water. But their
great delight was in pet animals or birds. Of these we had a succession - dogs,
cats, parrots and goats, afterwards in England - dormice, squirrel, pigeons and
once a kestrel hawk.
I must give some incidents of our experiences in the east, before going back to
the western hemisphere.
The islands are very picturesque, and except at the monsoons, the water is so
smooth as to make sailing about very pleasant, for which reason you are not
37 Gardiner: A Memoir by his wife
allowed to drive nails into the deck in order to fix your boxes in their places. An
earthquake had just destroyed the Town at Ternate when we arrived. The
Government house and the jail were among those which were levelled to the
ground, but we had no difficulty in engaging one made of palm branches. The
Dutch allow of no gold or silver coins to be used in these islands - all payments
have to be made in copper. It took 3 men to bring £5 worth of copper coins from
the Bank. Bread is not generally to be procured. Rice is the staff of life - varied
with poultry, sago, fruit and vegetables also much curry. Malay is the language
of trade and travel, taught by law in the schools - many of the islands having a
special language of their own, into which certain Dutch missionaries have found
it expedient to translate portions of the Scripture. There are few if any hotels,
but you easily get a house with a few necessary articles of furniture, such as
bedsteads, chairs and tables. As we were only to stay two days at Manado in
Celebes, preparatory to ascending to an elevated plain the Resident, as the Chief
Magistrate is called, kindly invited us. As everybody naps in the hottest part of
the day, the arrangements for meals are peculiar sometimes the principal meals
are at 10 in the morning and 10 at night. At one place they were at midday and
midnight. [n the interim you can have coffee or fruit or Tamarind water. We
made the acquaintance of some excellent German missionaries in Celebes. They
came I think from Berlin, went to Rotterdam and were engaged by the missionary
society of that place. From motives of economy they are supposed not to marry
- and if they do, the wife is ignored by the society. Two of our friends had
married Malays, the third had fallen in love with a Dutch lady at Rotterdam and
it was agreed between them that she should go in another ship to Java which she
did, and there they were married. We had to travel in palanquins, the children
looking picturesque in theirs with their two parrots. When their bearers put them
down to rest, they were offered coffee berries, and drank water out of a leaf,
which gave them an opportunity to air their few words of Malay.
The Dutch are cautious in the extreme. Every missionary has to reside a year
at Java before going to his post, that the government may be assured he has no
evil intention and is not the emissary of any government. At Java we met Mr.
Medhurst and family, he was on his way to China, and I cannot remember, how
it came about, that he had to spend a year of probation at Java, but there he was,
utilising the time by opening a school for Chinese boys. At that time Chinese
women were not allowed to leave their country, but there were large numbers of
Chinese emigrants then as now, and they married Malays. All these boys spoke
their mother tongue and Mr. Medhurst taught them to read in 3 Languages,
Chinese Malay and English. We spent a day with them and inspected the school,
Mr. Medhurst asking which of the three languages we would hear them read in.
We said English, and if they miscalled a word they were at once asked for the
Malay and Chinese equivalent to show that they understood what they were
But I must stop my narrative or I shall never have done, only adding this
We went to Timor first because there was no ship from Sydney bound to
Amboyna or Ternate. It appeared that the only communication with New
Guinea was carried on from Ternate. But no one could go as a passenger with­
out a permit from the authorities at Java. So your Grandfather sent a Petition
to that effect but got no answer. Eventually he went in person and applied for
the answer which proved to be.
38 Gardiner: A Memoir by his wile
. None but burghers can go to the places you name'. We all suffered more or
less from the fever and agues of the country, but recovered health and strength
on the subseq uent voyages.
Among the curiosities wc saw were many kinds of Palm trees- sago included
- a forest tree as large as an Elm which bore almonds, and had white-ant
galleries aJl up the trun k and along one of the branches, parrots of brilliant hue
at every house and on board every ship, crowned pigeons about the size of
turkeys, bread fruit trees with leaves often two feet long, some which I measured
were no less than 4 feet in length, tables chairs and couches all made ofbamboo,
neat and convenient. but not luxurious.
From Java we took ship to Cape Town thence as before by way of St. Helena
[0 Rio Janeiro and then by Cape Horn to Valparaiso in order that your G.F.
might go {Irq to the Planchon Pass in the Cordillera and then to the island of
Chiloe wher.: we spent quite a long time from May till October 1841. Unable to
effect anything there wc to Valparaiso, and as SOOI1 as occasion served to
the Falkla,ld Islands. I am not sure on which occasion of Ollr detention at
Valraraiso it was that we took. a hOllse in the Almendrale. It was utterly without
furniture so it \vas to get bedsteads and chairs and tables of course
of the plainest description a side table was contrived thus two piles of
hrick supporting two long planks covered with red calico hookcases in like
manner of plank slung with rope, and eacll shelf covered with red calico­
the deal tables also covered Everything had to be in seaman's phrase
shipshape. Each of us had a corner or a shelf or a box in which to put away his
A ship came into harbour which had been to the Falkland Islands. A call was
at ollce made on the Captain, who in answer to the inquiry 'Can I rent a house
for my family if I go there: said 'Impossible, very few houses there all poor
and all occupied'. The next thing was to draw out a plan of a house which
could easily be taken to pieces and rebuilt. This was taken to a carpenter, and
the house erected ill his yard, was our abode at Port Louis East Falkland for
twelve months.
We took goats with us when we left Valparaiso for the sake of their milk, and
they became the children's pets, and when we landed followed them like dogs.
The population was very limited then. Lieut. Tyssen R.N. of the Ketch
Sparrow was in command. He was away when we landed and Lieut. Cox R.N.
or the Sparrow was acting for him lent us a boat's crew to build our house, and
presented us with bread till he was ordered off. A few months later Lieut. Moody
of the Engineers came as Lieut. Governor with half a dozen sappers and miners,
three of them married, making a large increase to the number of inhabitants.
The governor's duty (as there was no chaplain) was to read the Church service
at Goven1ment House on Sunday morning. So we always attended that. But
your Grandfather had a little evening meeting for the sailors who belonged to
one or two sealing schooners in the house of a brown woman called Antonina.
It was long before there was any chance of getting across to the continent to
visit the Patagonians. In despair your Grandfather chartered a wornout sealing
schooner called the Montgomery for the trip, leaving us at Port Louis. He came
back quite happy and sanguine having had agreeable interviews with a Pata­
gonian Chief called Wissale, and received his sanction to bring us to live on the
coast. So he left his tent under the chief's charge, and if he could have engaged
39 Gardiner: A Memoir hy his w(('e
some whaler or passing ship to cOllvey us, we ::;hould have gone at once. He did
not like a second time to take the crazy Montgomery. Our stay was much
enlivened by the society of Captains Ross and Crozier of H. IV! .S. Discovery ships
Erebus and Terror, who wintered there. The Carysfort. Captain Lord George
Paulet, and the Pllilomel Captain Sulivan made a divLTsion for shorter
Letters at last came from England which convinced your GrandfatlH:r, that
even if we were what he called 'holding the ground' in Patagonia it would be
hopeless to expect the CJvI.S. to send a missionary to prosecute the work, as they
were retrenching on all hands.
This decided him to return to England, and as the chiklrcll had very much
improved in health and were of an age to profit by advantages in education
unattainable in OLlr wandering life it came 10 pass th:)! his suhsequent
were made alone.
As he often returned sooner than wc had been lcd to expect him, alld as when
once he turned his steps homeward, his course was to(1 rapid and too direct for
any letter to precede him, our life became Cl sort of parable, we were at alJ times
looking out for him, and never slIrprised at his appearance. if he came ever so
LlIlexpectedIy .
Finding that it was only loo true, that there was LW L'hanL:e of getting the
CM.S. to attempt a mission to Patagonia, be determined to wail awhile, and
his way of waiting was to take a tour in Spanish South America with Bibles and
For this purpose he left England on Sept. i.( 1843 (we had together landed at
SI. lves in February of the same year). He returned to England and landed at
Falmouth on April 12, 1844 --- having heen to Buenos Ayres, Cordova Santiago
del estero, and TucLlman a tour or considerably over 2000 miles. He succeeded
also in interesting Mr. Lafonc a Merchant of Monte Video and Liverpool, and
Mr. Birch the English Chaplain at Monte Video in a scheme for projected
mission to Patagonia. This was, that associations should be formed in connection
with the CM.S. at Monte Video, at Buenos Ayres and at Valparaiso, each
engaging to raise annually a specified sum for the support of a missionary in
Patagonia. With this assllred help he counted on inducing the CM.S. to take it
up and to authorize him to collect what more was required in England in their
name. Mr. Birch was to ,ee Mr. Lodge the Chaplain at Buenos Ayres. Mr.
Lafone readily guaranteed the right amount from Monte Video and your
Grandfather wrote to Mr. W. Armstrong at Valparaiso.
However the CM.S. Committee did not see the way to do their part And
after pertinacious and ineffectual attempts to induce some other Society the
Moravians in particular to do so, the Patagonian Missionary Society was formed
at Brighton in 1844 transferred to C1iftol1 in 1850 and finally to London
under the name of the South American Missionary Society early in January 1866.
Considering all things, it is surprising to realise th<lt no more than three years
had passed between your Grandfather's first visit to Patagonia in 1842, and his
attempt to form a station there in March 1845. Yet this time was long enough
to effect a total change in Wissale's character and demeanor and the station had to
be abandoned.
Possibly it might havc been wiser to havc made the attempt with more
deliberation and preparation though at the cost of further delay - And this \vas
the view taken by some members of the Committee -- But they all honored the
40 Gardiner: A Memoir by his wife
zeal of the Promoter, and were overborne by his impetuosity. Besides he
engaged to go out himself, and to stay with the one missionary Mr. Hunt, who
was ready to go, till a companion could be sent to join him. As it was, they left
England December 12, 1844, and landed at Greenock on their return June 19,
The disappointment was profound.
Some members of Committee were even for dissolving the Society, and
returning the money which had been subscribed.
At your Grandfather's earnest entreaty this was not done, the money was
reserved. Once more he recommenced his researches taking with him Fcderico
Gonzales, a young Spaniard, who was to have gone to the assistance of Mr.
Hunt in Patagonia.
Together they sailed on Sept. 23 of the same year to Monte Video, and finding
it impracticable from the state of the country politically, to ascend the Parana,
embarked Jan. 21, 1846, for Valparaiso, and subsequently sailed thence to
Cobija in Bolivia.
After a most arduous journey an arrangement was effected in accordance with
which Mr. Gonzales was left at Potosi to wait the arrival of a fellow laborer,
Mr. Roblis, when together they went to the selected spot on the frontier, where
they were studying the language of the neighbouring Indians tili they were
unsettled by political disturbances and recalled by the Committee.
Meantime your Grandfather after a longer absence than usual landed at
Southampton on February 8, 1847 and not contented with having started a
mission on the confines of Bolivia, which he fondly hoped would extend to the
Gran Chaco, (now, 1892, approached by our missionaries from Paraguay) he
at once formed schemes for a mission to Tierra del Fuego, which led to his
embarking at Cardiff January 5, 1848 with a little pioneering party of 5 men,
taking with them 3 boats, one of which was decked, with stores for eight months,
the intention being to take up their abode at Staten Island and from thence visit
Tierra del Fuego at short intervals till they could establish friendly relations with
the islanders and go to reside amongst them.
It soon appeared that their resources were not sufficient for such a stormy
latitude and the attempt was abandoned.
The party went on in the same ship to Payta in Peru where the men were
discharged and your Grandfather proceeded to England by the isthmus of
Panama landing at Southampton on the 4th of August 1848.
The funds of the Society were now exhausted and it required an amazing
amount of perseveri ng energy to travel over England and Scotland giving lectures
and holding meeting in the endeavor by one man's boundless enthusiasm to
kindle interest enough in others to raise the necessary funds. At last one good
old lady the late Miss Cook of Cheltenham gave £600 in a lump sum and on
Sept. 7, 1850 the party of seven left England on their fatal mission. I always
think the most wonderful thing in that wonderful story of heroic endurance is
that there should have been such entire agreement not one man to murmur or
As the narrative is given in full elsewhere, I do not go into it here ....
Transcribed and edited by C. de B. WEBB
41 Gardiner: A Memoir by his wife
The final paragraph is probably a reference to John W. Marsh, A Memoir ofAlien F. Gardiner
London, 1857.
The following are suggested for further reading:
ANON., 'They helped to build South Africa', Natal Mercury, 15.4.1970.
BIRD, JOHN, The Annals of Natal 1495-1845, Pietermaritzburg, 1888.
BROOKES, E. H. and
WEBB, C. de B., A History of Natal, Pietermaritzburg, 1965.
CLARK, JOHN, 'A grave on thc Berea', Natal Witness, 16.5.1964.
CORY, G. E. (ed.), Diary of the Rev. Francis Owen, Van Riebeeck Society, No. 7,
Cape Town, 1962.
GARDINER, A. F., Narrative of a Journey to the Zoolu Country, London, 1836.
GEYSER, Dr. 0., 'Alien F. Gardiner', Die Voorligter, January, 1968.
'JUDEX', 'Alien Gardiner en die Voortrekkers in Natal', Die Huisgenoot,
December, 1960.
KOTZE, D. J., 'Die eerste Amerikaanse sendelinge onder die Zoeloes', Archives
Year Book, C (pe Town, 1958.
KOTZE, D. J., 'Gardiner, Alien Francis', Dictionary of South African Biography,
Vo!. n, Cape Town, 1972.
KOTZE, D. J., Letters of the American Missionaries 1835-1838, van Riebeeck
Society No. 31, Cape Town, 1950.
MALAN, B. D. 'The last days of Captain Alien F. Gardiner R.N.', Africana Notes
and News, June 1952.
COLM, D. McK. (ells.) Diary of Henry Francis Fynn, Pietermaritzburg, 1950.
WEBB, C. de B. (ed.), 'Capt. Alien F. Gardiner's Natal Journal for 1838', Natalia No. 3,
WILSON, H. C., The Two Scapegoats, Pietermaritzburg, 1914.
Discovering the Natal Flora
THE EIGHTEENTH century. thanks largely to the great Linnaeus. had seen the
development of a satisfactory system of description. naming and classifying the
flowering plants, so that with the opening lip of trade: rOlltes, the settlement of
colonies and the development of interest in the new lands of North and South
America, Africa. Australia and the Far East, the stage was set for the exploration
of the vast. and hitherto unknown, floras of the tropics and the whole southern
hemisphc.e. The Ilincteenth century thus became, botanically, the era of the
g,'C:1t plant explorers and collectors. A great flood of dried, pressed plant
specimens flowed into Europe. Thus arose the great herbaria. such as those of
Kew, the British Museum, Edinburgh, Brussels. Paris. Hamburg. Berlin, Dublin.
Leyden. Geneva and Vienna. The contributions which the settlement of Natal
made to this accumulation of material v. as by no m e a l l ~ inconsiderable and the
collection of the Natal flora must be considered as onc of the great achievements
of the Natal settlers.
The first plant collector to visit Natal \"as J. F. Drege. Drege and his brother
C. F. Drege had established themselves as apothecaries at Port Elizabeth.
Hearing that Dr. Andre\\ Smith, celebr:lted army surgeon and scientist, was
about to conduct an expedition to Natal, they applied for and obtained per­
mission to accompany the exredition as lwtanists. They equipped themselves
with an ox-waggon and left Grahamsto\\1l in January. 1832. The late Professor
Percival Kirby was able to establish the route of the expedition from Drege's
note-books which still survive in the possession of descendants of the Drege
family in Port Elizabeth. The route follo\\ed was close to that or the present
main road as far as Umtata, reached the coast south of Port St. Johns and then
followed the coast route to what was then referred to as the Bay of Natal. Whilst
Smith proceeded to Dingaae's kraal in Zululand, the Drege brothers remained
at the Bay. It is apparent that C. F. Drege undertook the day to day management
of their expedition. leaving his brother to concentrate upon his plant collections.
The expedition arrived at the Bay at the end of February and left on its return on
April 18th, arriving back at Grahamstown on June 29th. During this short period
Drege amassed a huge collection of plants. He did not go beyond the Umgeni
River. nor did he get far inland. From the fact that he gathered Encephalartos nata­
lensis it is likely he got as far inland as Shongweni. Among the plants he collected
at the Bay was the large tree Trichiliadregeana, commonly known as the Umkhuhlu,
thunder tree or Natal mahogany. It is interesting to record that he gave as the habi­
tat of the common ruderal grass Elusine indica, 'a coffee plantation at Port Natal'.!
Drege's collection was sent to Professor Meyer at Hamburg. After another
eight years of collecting in South Africa during which he gathered about 200 000
specimens, Drege returned to Hamburg where he was engaged in botanical
activities for the remainder of a fairly long life.
43 Discovering the Natal Flora
The Trinity College Herbarium, Dublin, possesses a collection of plants made
by Miss Owen and said to have been gathered at Port Natal and in the 'Zooloo'
country. Miss Owen was the sister of Rev. Francis Owen who in 1837-1838
spent about four months near Dingane's kraal in a vain endeavour to establish a
mission station. He and his family were forced to return to the Bay after the
murder of Piet Retief and his followers in February, 1838. Miss Owen may have
collected some plants at the Bay, but it is extremely doubtful whether she could
have collected any plants under the unsettled conditions in which the Owens
lived in Zululand. It is likely that her collection of 'Zooloo Country' plants was
made at a later date when Owen was in Matabeleland at the kraal of the fugitive
Zulu chief Mzilikazi.
The first resident Natal botanical collector was Or. Gueinzius, who arrived at
Port Natal in 1835. He took up residence in a part of the bush which was later
to be referred to as Oelegorgue's Bush, and engaged in the collection of plants,
reptiles, birds and insects. Later he moved to Posselfs Mission in New Germany.
where he lived as a recluse in an old wood and iron shed. Under the floor, which
was broken through in places, he kept two tame pythons, which were allowed to
come and go as they pleased fending for themselves in the surrounding bush.
He sometimes took groups of for walks, naming plants and animals
for them. The boys, however, doubtless 011 account of the pythons, were some­
what scared of the 'tall, thin man with a long beard'. The pythons are said to have
saved him from being disturbed by unnecessary visitors or robbers. He was an
extremely active collector and many Natal plants bear his name.
In 1842, F. C. C. Krauss arrived in Natal aboard the S.S. Mazeppa. At this
time the Voortrekkers under Andries Pretorius, who had established a camp at
Congella, were besieging Captain H. Smith in the Old Fort. Krauss apparently
joined Gueinzius (as also perhaps did the French naturalist Delegorgue) in
Stella Bush, for Col. Cloete reported to the Governor at the Cape that after the
Voortrekkers had withdrawn to Pietermaritzburg, he sent Dr. Gueinzius and
others to convey to Pretorius a message setting out the conditions under which
the Voortrekkers could continue to reside in Natal. Since in the same year, 1842.
Gueinzius and Krauss collected jointly on Table Mountain near Pietermaritzburg
it would appear that one of the men whom Cloete sent was F. C. C. Krauss, who,
like Gueinzius, would be regarded as a German neutral and not concerned with
the differences between the British troops and the Voortrekkers.
As the type locality of Delegorgue's pigeon is 'the forest at Port Natal' it may
be that this bird was first collected in what is to-day referred to as Pigeon Valley,
near Howard College. ft would perhaps be an appropriate tribute to the pioneer
naturalists of Natal to revive the former name of Delegorgue's Bush.
In 1846, Krauss published the first account of the vegetation of Natal in which
he recognised three botanical regions, the coast belt, the midlands and the moun­
tains. As the only mountains he visited were Table Mountain and other flat-topped
hills, probably in the Botha's Hill area, his concept of the mountain region may
have been very different from that of to-day. In the I 840s travel in the Drakens­
berg area of Natal was still a venturesome undertaking as the fastnesses sheltered
Bushman bands, and Mpande's imp is were apt to roam the area on cattle raids.
44 Discovering the Natal Flora
Dr. WiIliam Stanger arrived in 1844 to assume office as Colonial geologist,
being promoted to surveyor-general in 1845. Before his arrival he had achieved
fame as an explorer. After graduating M.D. at Edinburgh he visited Australia
as a ship's doctor, and because of his knowledge of and interest in natural
history he was, in 1841, appointed as member of an ill-fated expedition to
explore the River Niger. As the expedition ascended the river by boat the
members were struck down by fever, leaving Stanger and a seaman as the only
survivors. Stanger managed to save the expeditIon's boats and to bring them
back to the coast, but his health is said to have been permanently affected.
Stanger became an active collector of Natal plants, his specimens being sent
to Kew Herbarium. Among plants named after him is the monotypic cycad
genus Stangeria, a grassvcId plant which is gradually becoming wiped out as a
result of veld fires and overgrazing. Stanger's name is also commemorated in
the north coast township of Stanger and in the name of a Durban street. He died
in Durban in 1854. To relieve the fatigue b;'ought on when he rode from Pieter­
maritzburg to Durban on a hot day, he submitted 'to the application of the wet
sheet'. The next day 'inflammation of the lungs took place which carried him off
in a week'. 1
The Natal Agricultural and Horticultural Society was established in 1848.
The main object was the experimental introduction of crop and horticultural
plants, for which purposc the Lieutenant-Governor granted a site for the estab­
lishment of a garden. The present Durban Botanic Gardens occupies most of
this site. The various curators of this garden made notable contributions to
gaining knowledge of the flora of Natal, since many became keen piant collectors
and the herbarium, which was later established in a corner of the gardens, became
a centre for botanical studies.
One of the early curators of this garden was Mark J. McKen, who arrived in
1850. He had received a horticultural training at Kew and had worked in a sugar
estate in Jamaica before coming to Natal, bringing a large collection of living
plants for the garden. Twenty kinds had not previously been introduced into
Natal. McKen occupied the curator's post until his death in 1871. except for the
period 1854-1860 when he served as manager of Chiappini's sugar estate at
Tongaat. During this period he assisted with the first successful commercial
production of cane sugar from Morewood's mill at Compensation.
In addition to the collection of herbarium specimens, McKen made contacts
with nurserymen and others in the United Kingdom and elsewhere as a result of
which he was able to exchange and distribute Natal plants of horticultural
interest. His journal containing details of this very considerable activity is still
preserved at the Natal Herbarium. It is likely that McKen influenced J. Sander­
son, W. T. Gerrard, Mrs. Katherine Saunders, R. W. Plant and J. Medley Wood
to become interested in collecting Natal plants. His own collections, as also those
of the persons just named, were sent to Kew. McKen's name is permanently
commemorated in the names of a number of Natal plants, notably in that of
Cyrtanthus mackenii, the Ifafa lily.
John Sanderson arrived in Natal in the same vessel as McKen in 1850. He had
45 Discovering the Natal Flora
written for several Glasgow newspapers before becoming an emigrant. In Natal
he contributed to Jeremiah CuIlingworth's newspaper, later establishing his own
Natal Colonist. Sanderson became interested in plant collecting, his interest
doubtless arising from his association with McKen. His newspaper published a
number of articles on the Natal flora, including a series on the ferns written by
the Rev. John Buchanan. Sanderson was apparently inclined to be somewhat
cantankerous, being described by Lieutenant-Governor Keate as 'seldom
agreeing with anyone about any thing'.
In his disagreement with Keate,
Sanderson seems to have had the last word. His paper in 1872 reporting the
departure of the Lieutenant-Governor from Natal Oil R.M.S. Natal stated th3t
'the event passed off quietly without the sI ightest show of regret being manifested'.
Robert W. Plant arrived in Natal in 1852. He had been trained in horticulture
at Kew and brought with him tea plants which he established on his farm at
Umhlali. He collected chiefly seeds, bulbs and other propagules, which he sent
for cultivation at Kew. For this purpose he travelled fairly widely. In 1852 he
published in Hooker's Journal of Botany an account of a collecting excursion to
Lake St. Lucia. This is apparently the earliest botanical paper published in a
scientific journal by a resident Natalian. For this excursion Plant sent ahead an
ox-wagon, following a few days later on a riding ox accompanied by a pack-ox
and native servants. His plans went awry when the wagon failed to appear at the
intended meeting place, which was, apparently, somewhere near the present-day
Empangeni. It is clear from his comparison of St. Lucia with Durban Bay that
he actually reached Richards Bay and not St. Lucia. This conclusion is confirmed
by his failure to mention any crossing of the Mfolozi River, though he mentions
smaller rivers south and west of Richards Bay. He decided to return by an
inland route, during which he met with many misadventures, having to hide
from Mpande's impis which were raiding in the area, being forced to kill his
oxen for food and having periodically to abandon his plant collections. He
claimed to have got near the source of the Tugela River, but this is also
doubtful in view of his failure to mention the Drakensberg mountains. He did,
however, arrive back with a collection of plants which the Director of the Kew
Gardens acknowledged in publishing Plant's paper.
Plant also visited Madagascar, East Africa and the Seychelles, returning to
Natal as he thought the prospects in Natal were better. Finally he undertook a
lengthy expedition through Zululand to Portuguese East Africa. During the
course of this expedition he was stricken with fever, and on his return died at a
native kraal near Lake St. Lucia. His loyal servants returned to Umhlali with
his possessions and collections to report the tragedy.
Mrs. Plant continued to
farm at Umhlali and in 1872 tea from plants grown on her farm was exhibited
in London.
In 1854, the Rev. E. Armitage published a small booklet entitled 'Lecture on
the Botany of Natal', in which he compared the flora of Natal with that of the
Cape. He was in Natal only a few months and it is likely that he obtained most
of his information about the Natal flora from McKen and Sanderson.
William T. Gerrard was apparently a very keen collector, especially of trees,
as he is commemorated in the names of more Natal plants than any other
46 Discovering the Natal Flora
collector, except possibly McKen and Medley Wood. He arrived in Natal in
1856, remaining for eight years. He and McKen collected together in the Tugela
Basin and Zululand. In 1864 he left for Madagascar, where he continued
collecting until his death from blackwater fever in 1872.
Dr. P. C. Sutherland was appointed surveyor-general in succession to Stanger.
Like Stanger, he too had made a name for himself as an explorer. As a student
he had visited the west coast of Africa and had twice accompanied whaling
expeditions to Greenland as medical officer. In 1850 he became a member of
Captain Penny's expedition in search of Sir John Franklin.
He was the author
of a two-volume account of the expedition. His activities as plant collector to
the expedition had brought him into contact with Kew Herbarium, a contact he
maintained after his arrival in Natal. In the course of his duties he travelled to
all parts of Natal and his plant collection was, therefore, from a wide area. His
name is commemorated in the well-known Drakensberg tree Greyia sutherlandii.
Sutherland had considerable influence in encouraging the cultivation of plants,
being a committee member of several bodies interested in such activities and also
of the Executive Council. He was probably responsible for the encouragement
of the planting of trees at magistracies, police and railway stations, hospitals and
schools. In 1884 he persuaded the Executive Council to assume responsibility
for a herbarium which had been established by the Natal Botanic Society. This
is now the well-known Natal Herbarium which is still housed where it began at
the corner of St. Thomas' and Botanic Gardens roads in Durban. On his
retirement in 1887 Sutherland was elected a member ofthe Legislative Assembly,
serving as a member until his death in 1900, having devoted forty-six years of
his life in service to Natal.
Other Natalians who contributed collections of Natal plants to overseas
herbaria include Mrs. Katherine Saunders, who was also an accomplished
botanical artist, her son Sir Charles Saunders, Mrs. Rathbone, Rev. W. Hewit­
son, Mr. and Mrs. George Fannin, W. Keit, Dr. W. B. Grant, T. Williamson,
Captain Garden, W. Collins, Miss Wheelwright, Dr. and Miss Armstrong, Rev.
John Buchanan, W. Tyson and J. Thode. Travelling collectors included Thomas
Cooper, Thomas Baines, Frank Oates, A. Rehmann, F. Bachmann and R.
Schlecter. The names of nearly all are commemorated in some names of our flora.
By far the most active and most important of Natal's botanical pioneers was
John Medley Wood. He was born at Mansfield in Nottinghamshire in 1827. He
showed an early interest in botany, but upon leaving school decided to go to sea,
making several voyages to Australasia and other places in the Pacifice Ocean.
His father, J. R. Wood, who had arrived in Natal in 1847 and had set up practice
as accountant and attorney in Durban, was responsible for persuading his son
to give up the sea and to settle in Natal. Copies of the letters of father to son are
in the Killie Campbell Library, Durban.
Medley Wood arrived in Durban in 1852. He purchased a farm, Otterspool,
near the mouth of the Umhloti River, where he experimented with various
crops such as arrowroot, castor oil and citrus. He also fitted out an ox-wagon
with which he undertook trading trips to Zululand, in the course of which he
had a number of exciting adventures. Having decided that the climate at Otters­
47 Discovering the Natal Flora
pool did not suit his heatlh, in 1872 he purchased another farm and a store site
at Inanda, where he resided until 1882. In 1879 he obtained a valuable contract
to carry the military mails as far as Stanger.
Soon after Medley Wood's arrival in Natal, McKen had married his sister,
and there is little doubt that this relationship with McKen was important in
determining Wood's botanical work. His botanical career, however, only
started in earnest in 1875, when Wood commenced correspondence, which was
eventually to become voluminous, with botanists at Kew and elsewhere. By
1877 he published his first book, a small popular book on Natal ferns. He had by
this time become the prime mover in the formation of a Natal Botanic Society
and in the establishment of a herbarium. By 1882 he had become so engrossed
in botanical activities that he was persuaded to accept appointment as Curator
of the Durban Botanic Gardens, the post haviag become vacant upon the
retirement of W. Keit who had succeeded McKen. Wood accepted the appoint­
ment llll condition that he could develop a herbarium. He remailled in charge of
the Herbarium until his death in 1915, the work of the Botanical Gardens
devolving upon J. S. Wylie.
It was Wood's custom to undertake al1l1llal collecting trips to varioLls parts of
Natal, during which he amassed an enormOllS collection of Natal plants. When
in 1884 Sutherland persuaded the Executive Council to assume control of the
Herbarium it contained about 3000 sheets. When Wood died in 1915 it contain­
ed over 45 000, mostly of his own collections. He distributed duplicates of his
collections generously to other herbaria and especially to Kew. [n addition to
the voluminous currespol1dence which he maintained with other botanists, he
issued lengthy annual reports 011 progress at the Herbarium and in the Botanic
Gardens, and information pamphlets 011 various botanical and agricultural
subjects. Larger publicatiol1s include a fiura of Natal, several check-lists of Natal
plants and a six volume illustrated work ill which 600 species were illustrated
and described. The illustrations were chiefly the work of his assistant Miss
Franks, though W. Haygarth and Miss Lauth had contributed illustrations to
some of the earlier voluIlles. Medley Wood was consulted on all kinds of bot­
anical and horticultural matters and he made the Herbarium the centre of
botanical work in Natal and a port of call for all travelling or visiting botanists
who passed through Natal. In 1912 the University of the Cape of Good Hope
conferred upon him the degree of D.Sc. Honoris Causa, the first award of this
kind to a Natalian.
Medley Wood stated in writing that once when he visited the Durban Point
customs shed to clear some parcels of plants, he was shown an unclaimed packet
of sugar cane sticks on which the label had been destroyed, except for the three
letters U BA. The cllstoms officer suggested that Wood might as well take the
packet as the sticks would only die in the shed. This Wood did. In due course
some of the sticks produced healthy plants and this was the first establishment of
what became known as Uba cane in Natal. It proved to be the cane best adapted
to Natal conditions, soon replacing all other varieties. The discovery of this cane
probably contributed as much as a ny other factor to the prosperolls development
of Natal's early sugar industry.
Wood could well be proud of his association with Natal and of his contri­
48 Discovering the Natal Flora
bution to the study of its flora. In his old age he expressed pride in the fact that
after his arrival in Natal he never left the Colony except once, when he crossed
the border at Van Reenen during a collecting expedition. No one worked harder
or did more for Natal botany and Wood well deserved the sobriqnet given him
by Professor J. W. Bews of 'Father of Natal Botany'.
I. Athenaeum, June 7th, 1854. Quoted in Holden, History of the Colony ofNatal. pp. 159-160.
2. Hattersley, A. F., The Natalians.
3. Account in the Old Durban Museum.
4. Hattersiey, A. F., The British Settlement of Natal.
5. Ibid.,
HATTERSLEY, A. F. The Natalians. Shuter and Shooter, Pietermaritzburg, 1940.
HATTERSLEY, A. F. The British Settlement of Natal, Camb. Univ. Press, 1950.
HOLDEN, W., History of the Co/any of Nata/, London, 1855.
The Natal Land and Colonization Company
in Colonial Times
LAND speculation began in Natal in the early 1840s and speculators soon
amassed large holdings which they were, in the event, unable to dispose of at a
suitable profit!. In 1860 a group of London financiers and Cape merchants
founded the Natal Land and Colonization Company. The object of the company
was to promote emigration to Natal by utilising British finance to develop the
Jand of Natal. A number of speculators, financiers and colonists were brought
together through the agency of Adolph Coqui to pursue this object. It was their
intention to sell land to immigrants on reasonable terms and so lead to the
speedy colonization of Natal, which would be to the benefit of the company and
its members.
In August 1861 the company was brought into being in Natal with a pool of
nearly a quarter of a million acres. The interested parties took out shares in the
company to the value of the land transferred to its ownership. The initial
optimism of bringing capital and manpower from England to the land of Natal
proved to be no more founded on reality than earlier schemes had been, as
comparatively little was accomplished with regard to emigration for several
years. It was only in 1865 that the terms of the colonization plans were published
in England, but the onset of the major economic depression at the end of the
American Civil War efTectively prevented their implementation. 2
The company had a major advantage over its rivals in that capital from Lon­
don continued to flow into Natal and it was thus able to increase its holdings
during the depression. Additional land came from bankrupts and subsidiary
companies such as the Natal Investment Company and the Natal Cotton
Plantation Company. The expansion period, however, ceased in 1874 when all
the subsidiaries' holdings were consolidated with those of the company.
Thereafter the area of company land declined (Fig. 1). Initially the company
held much of its land in the midlands of Natal, whereas the coastal properties
in 1870 accounted for only 12,7 per cent of the total (Fig. 2).
Little of the company's land was used initially - only 12,8 per cent of the
total was leased for grazing purposes. However, five small experimental farms
for the cultivation of sugar and other tropical crops had been established in the
coastal belt. Otherwise the lands of the company and its subsidiaries lay waste
and remained in African occupation. The low degree of use was the subject of
settler concern by the mid 1870s when the first official enquiries into the effect
of so much idle land were made.
Settlers' pressure on the company was to
continue in varying degree until the First World War.
The company possessed much good agricultural and pastoral land, and indeed
claimed with some justification that it possessed land superior to that of the
0 0 0
·0 0
0 0 0
~ N 0



0 0
0 0
0 0
'-0 0 0
0 0
0 0 0
..... 1ft

N ....
Land and Colonization Company 51
Natal land and
Company and
r J ~ : : : ~ Other European
:::::::::" holdings
o Miles
I i' i " i '.
o Kms
0 Durban
G Greytown
L Ladysmith
N Newcastle
W Weenen
P Pietermaritzburg
Map of land holdings of the Company. (Fig. 2)
52 Land and Colonization Company
Crown. However, it demanded high prices. These ranged from IOs. 6d. per acre
in the interior counties, 22s. 6d. per acre in the midlands to 60s. per acre in the
coastal counties. Such prices were high when it is considered that in 1870 ninety
per cent of all rural land sales in the colony were for prices below 45. per acre.
However, prosperity returned to the colony in the 1870s and land values rose
rapidly. A system of generous deferred payments and free grants of 50 acres to
persons undertaking to purchase a further 450 acres led to rapid sales of the
most desirable lands.
Thus by 1880 the company was beginning to achieve its aims. Rents from
town properties, and Africans on farms brought in an income of £10 000 per
annum. Grazing leases were such that nearly half the company's lands were
leased and Africans paid a hut rent. It was inevitably in the north of the colony
that most leasing occurred, and these lands were most rapidly depleted. The
coastal properties brought in considerable rentals from Indians and Africans and
settler opinion a ppeared to think the company had lost interest in selling the lands.
In the period 1879-1882 eleven properties, almost entirely on the coast or
adjacent to the main roads were divided into small properties for sale at prices
from £2 to £10 per acre. Some schemes included townships, such as Frere, but
most did not. In all 617 small lots covering 55 000 acres were laid out. The
average size was only 89 acres compared with an average size of farm of 1948
acres in 1880. The schemes could not be regarded as sllccessful. One complete
settlement scheme of 6 000 acres was sold to a single purchaser but of the
remaining 49 000 acres only 5 500 acres had been sold by 1890, mostly in the
one settlement of predominately large units (average size 500 acres). Even in
1900 the area sold was only 11 000 acres and in 1910 24 000 acres, or approxi­
mately half after thirty years. Blocks of plots were often sold to single purchasers
to provide more realistic holdings.
The settlements were intended to coincide with a renewed drive for immigrants
by the government. Certainly a greater number of persons were coming to
South Africa in the 1880s compared with the 1870s (1870s 41 000 persons
emigrated from the United Kingdom to South Africa; 1880s 87 000). However,
comparatively few came to Natal as the European population of the colony only
numbered 46 788 in 1891. S) The settlements were based on small plots and so
ran into some of the same problems as the Byrne settlers had experienced in the
1850s. In this respect the government settlement schemes planned at the same
time as those of the company were more realistic as the average size of plot
was 370 acres. Nearly all the government lots were disposed of at prices ranging
from 7s. 6d. to 10s. per acre almost immediately after the schemes had been
published. Thc company, as a commercial concern, needed to make a profit.
Some of the government schemes made a loss but were regarded as profitable in
social terms as settling more Europcans on the land. The high prices charged by
the company for its rural properties deterred purchasers. Even a temporary
reduction of coastal properties by lOs. per acre brought no response. Essentially
the company had to wait until the general level of land values had risen, to
dispose of its holdings profitably. The coastal properties were the last to be sold,
so that the coastal proportion of the company's holdings increased to 33,9 per
cent by 1910.
53 Land and Colonization Company
African tenants provided a third (£5 600) of the company's income in 1890.
The figure rose to £6900 by 1900. The settlers' idea that the company, un­
willing to sell its lands at a reasonable price. was engaged in 'Kaffir farming'
appeared to have some grounds. The company's substantial holdings (in 1900
the company still possessed 402 000 acres) were increasingly looked upon as a
source of land for European By 1900 the Crown Lands of the
colony were virtually exhausted so that tlH:re was no land available for the
expected influx of settlers after the South African War of 1899-1902. Pressure
increased upon the company to sell its lands. Eventually the Natal Government
decided to tax ullused land as a means of raising revenue and forcing the
company to sell. T he Income and Land Tax Acts of 1908 marked the virtual
end of the company as a major landowner.
The Act provided ["or absentee taxes which in 1909 meant that the company
had to pay £5059 in taxation. Although the company's influential associates
in London managed to have the Act repealed, the company decided to sell its
remaining rural lands as rapidly as possible. III 1910 alone it sold 48000 acres,
mostly to the Government for closer settlement schemes. Sales were based on
valuation rather than the prices claimed by the company. The company directors
decided to concentrate their attention upon the more profitable and leS& politi­
cally dangerolls urban properties.
The Natal Land and Colonization Company had a profound influence upon
the development of the colony of Natal. It provided an inflow of much-needed
capital after several attempts at development had been unsuccessful and con­
sequently boosted the economy. The company's experiments with crop product­
ion on the coastal belt particularly benefitted the sugar industry through setting
a standard to which others might aspire. The beneficial effects of the company's
operations are not easily measured and as such were largely disregarded by
The detrimental effects of the company's operations in colonial times have
been more widely noted. The company, in pricing its land so highly, effectively
prevented its settlement. Although the prices demanded were reasonable by
Australian or even American standards, they were excessively high in the
southern African context. Thus. instead of selling land and promoting colonial
development, company land formed a barrier of waste. The concentration of
company holdings between Durban and Pietermaritzburg was particularly
significant. The railway, when it was constructed, had to traverse tracts of
unused land which could bring it no profit. Economic development for the
colony as a whole was retarded by this state of affairs. Railway construction,
usually the key to colonial development, was thus delayed both on the Durban­
Pietermaritzburg section and also along the north coast, where another major
block of company land existed. The company was also willing to sell land to
Africans and Indians in small blocks. The African and Indian tenants bought
portions of the company's holdings and thus created the problem of 'black
spots' which were the subject of controversy in the 1960s. This was a departure
from usual colonial practice when few Africans were able to purchase land for
economic reasons.
54 Land and Colonization Company
The company represented a stage in the colony's development, and was
typical of a host of companies formed to develop land in many parts of the
world in the nineteenth century. Its peculiarity was the length of time that it held
its land, owing to the slow rate of the colony's development; and it therefore
was not as profitable an undertaking as many of its contemporaries. The Natal
Land and Colonization Company thus played an important and anomalous role
in the development and lack of development in Natal before Union.
1. Christopher, A. J., 'Colonial Land Policy in Natal', Annals 0/ the Association o/Americall
Geographers, Vol. 61(1971), pp.560-575.
2. Natal Land and Colonization Company, Plan of Assisted Emigration and Land Settlement,
London: Jarrold and Sons, 1865.
3. Figures have been calculated from the statistical records of the Company and from the
Deeds Office, Pietermaritzburg.
4. Natal, Report on Crown Lands and European Immigration, 1876.
1. Christopher, A. J., 'Natal- The nineteenth century English emigrant's Utopia? An
appraisal of emigration literature,' Historia, Vol. 18 (1973), pp. 112-124.
The Origins of the Natal Society
1847 - 1849
THE COMMITTEE was to run into depressing setbacks. To begin with, the
periodicals were difficult to order and very slow to arrive. There was no paid
librarian, and the subscribers, as will always happen when there is little control,
took works without having them properly entered and then kept them long
overdue. The Reading Room leaked. All these disasters were building up for the
1847 opened cheerfully enough, with a ray of hope for working men's classes·
The Natal Witness reported that the Committee of the Library had lent the
Reading Room for a class of English youths. 1 The boys, ten in number, were
meeting for scripture classes conducted by the Rev. Mr. Richards. The editorial
went on hopefully:
When this class is well attended and in full operation, it will be time
for proposing the establishment of a miniature Mechanics Institution
for the Tradesmen, who are at present destitute of every kind of
rational recreation or improvement. Many of them would no doubt
prefer attending a series of useful lectures, or historical readings, to
monotonous solitude, or the injurious sociality of the canteen.
At the general meeting held on 16th July 1847
the troubles referred to began
to emerge. The meeting was held at the Court house, and Henry Cloete took the
chair. The acting Secretary, David Dale Buchanan, read the report. The period­
icals approved at the June] 846 General Meeting had been ordered, but only the
issues for January and February had been received. Buchanan spoke of the
'tedio us delay', and referred gratefully to the books lent by Henry Cloete and
E. Landsberg, without which it would have been impossible to keep up interest
in the library. He goes on to say glumly:
Your Committee recommends, however, that these books be now
returned; as the dampness of the room during the rainy season, and
the circulation they have already had, together with the possibility of
loss - the librarian not being always in attendance - renders this
course advisable"
More cheerfully he reports that although some subscribers had departed from
the colony, newcomers had joined, so the list had not been very considerably
56 Natal Society History
diminished; also that funds were adequate to keep up the periodicals subscript­
ions. However, no books had been bought with the exception of Mrs. Fry's
'Listener' in two volumes (moral essays that had appeared in 1830
). This was in
accordance with current policy, that available funds should be used to purchase
periodicals and towards rental of the library room, rather than put to the
purchase of books or for the salary of a librarian. The library room in 1847 was
clearly a disaster. Buchanan says:­
The room formerly used as the library having been found so excess­
ively damp as to be unwholesome for readers, and also destructive to
the books, an apartment far more centrally situated has been hired
from Messrs. Minne and Hansmeyer in their house in Church Street,
at the same rate of rent.
Finally, he refers to the lack ofa librarian, and the hazards of this arrangement
can be seen all too clearly.
As the present state of the Society's funds do not justify any expend­
iture being incurred for a salaried librarian, the Committee has adopted
the economical plan of making the Library accessible to subscribers at
all times. Mr. Jackson, however, still continues to attend regularly two
evenings in the week, gratuitollsly, to exchange books that may be sent
by subscribers.
Affairs generally had clearly led to a falling off of enthusiasm, and according to
an editorial published on the same day as the report,
the literati of Pieter­
maritzburg had failed to attend the meeting. It might be courteous, the editorial
says, to ascribe this to the rain that started to fall about the hour fixed for
commencing the business; the smallness of the meeting was bitterly deplored.
and the hope expressed that new colonists would bring fresh enthusiasm.
1848 (the year of revolutions in Europe) proved a slightly better year for the
library. The annual general meeting was held in the Court house on 6 June.
Henry Cloete took the chair and the indefatigable Hursthouse reported, as
Secretary. 6 The periodicals had been steadily received and there had even been
£15 over to spend on new books. But, he said, the prospects for the following
year were discouraging; assuming the same number of subscribers, which was
doubtful, revenue would be insufficient, so either the subscription rates had to
be increased, or the list of periodicals reduced. The Committee recommended
the latter course which would also allow for the appointment of a librarian at
£9 per year - 'a very necessary appointment'. The meeting approved these
suggestions, and then elected the following to the new Committee; the Rev. J.
Richards, Theo Shepstone, L. Cloete, Arthur Walker, William Hursthouse, and
J. D. Marquard. CL. Cloete' was Pieter Lourens G. Clocte, the eldest son of
Henry Clocte.
) In conclusion, Richards and Henry Cloete tried to whip up
some enthusiasm.
The Rev. Richards observed that as this was the only institution
possessed by our small community, calculated to give and invigorate
intellectual life, he would urge on the meeting, and the subscribers gene­
rally the absolute necessity for giving it their utmost support. The
Chairman concurred in the Reverend gentleman's observations and
57 Natal Society History
followed them up by some of the same tenor; remarking also, that upon
the Treasurer's statement being read, he was pleased to find that the affairs
of the Society were not in so discouraging a state as might be inferred
from the tone of the Secretary's report. He trusted also that Mr.
Richards' suggestion would be acted upon, as the mere laying a found­
ation of such an institution would be worth accomplishing, even though
its ultimate prosperity might have to become the work of posterity.
The Librarian was evidently appointed quickly. A notice dated 14 June 1848
by William Hursthouse announced that the Reading Room would henceforth be
open daily (excepting SLllldays and holidays) from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m., at which
time the Librarian would attend to issue and receive books. 9 The notice added
that the periodicals for January had been received, and as it was now mid June,
this reveals one of the worst problems that the Committee was up against­
the slowness of the post in those days.
Hursthouse died ill 1849 and the next two notices that have been traced were
signed by J. D. Marquard as Secretary pro tern. The first dated 13 August 1849,
gave notice that the Government had granted the use of the east wing of the
Public School building as a Reading Room, and that the books and periodicals
had already been removed there. 10 Marquard had now taken up his post as
government schoolmaster, and this move was evidently through his influence.
The second notice called members tl) the annual general meeting on 14 Sept­
ember 1849, and added:
It is hoped that Friends of Reading will not fail to attend, as
Improvements will be suggested should the attendance and sub­
scriptions warrant them. 11
The 1849 annual general meeting was as usual fully reported in the Natal
Witness. 12 This meeting should have been held in June, but was delayed to 14
September because of several setbacks; during the year, the Society had lost
several of its most influential and active members. Henry Cloete's son, P. L. G.
Cloete, had left the district, as had the Chairman, the Rev. J. Richards. To add
to this loss, as already mentioned, William Hursthouse, the Secretary, had died.
Hursthouse was severely mourned.
The strong interest felt by this gentleman in the success of the
Society rendered him one of its most diligent and active supporters. He
was unwearied in his exertions for its welfare, and but for his zealous
advocacy, it is probable your Committee would have been induced,
from the insignificant funds at their disposal, to resign their respon­
sibilities and p r o p o ~ e to you the dissolution of the Society. Mr. Hurst­
hOllse, however, always pointed to the cheering side; and the institution,
of which he was one of the founders, still exists to lament the loss of
one of its warmest and most efficient supporters.
Marquard, the acting Secretary went on to report yet another loss by death: that
of His Honor Martin West, the Lieutenant-Governor of Natal and patron
of the Society. West died in August 1849 and was to be succeeded eventually by
Benjamin C. Pine. It had been a distressing year for the Committee.
58 Natal Society History
The business of the past year was now outlined by Marquard. In accordance
with the resolution taken at the previous annual general meeting, some of the
periodicals had been discontinued. The remaining ones still formed a good list
They were:­
The Edinburgh Review Tail's Magazine
The Quarterly Review Douglas ierro/d's Magazine
The Westminster Review Chambers's Journal
The North British Review Punch
The British Review Literary Gazette
B/ackwood's Magazine Athenaeum
Fraser'sMagazine Mechanics'Magazine
Co/burn's Magazine ll/ustrated London News
Dublin Magazine Spectator
Co/bllrn's United Senice lvlagazine The Foreign Quarterly Review
Fincliilg that these were not received regularly from overseas, Hursthouse had
made enquiries and that a more rcgul a r supply might be obtained
['rom Mr. Robertsoil of Cape Town. Application lutd been made to him and a
more pUllctual supply could flOW be exnected. Refereilct: was made to the re­
moval of the Library to the present more suitable and comfortable reading
room at the Governmcnt school. The £ 15 which was to have been spent on
books as approved at the previous annu:l! general meeting had been refunded
by the former agent, and disappointed as the Committee were, they were also
thankfLiI as the sum enabled them to remain solvent. Desired support had been
lacking dl1l'ing the year. and a regretful reference was made to irregularities
beyond the Committee's power to check. (These no doubt occurred through
irregular oversight of the library.) The Committee apparently felt that the
number of periodicals should again be reduced, to allow for the purchase of
some books . Marquard went on to say that as the Librarian was now only being
paid £4 per year, a saving of £5 would accrue, and also there would be a com­
plete saving on rental , of £9 per year. This would justify the spending of some
money on books. The Committee admitted its failure to enforce fines fixed for
detention of periodicals and wished to ask the meeting about the way it should
be done.
In conclusion, Gentlemen, your Committee regret that they have 110t
met you with a more encouraging report; but they trust that due allow­
ance will be made for the disadvantages under which they had to labour
resulting from the casualties that have occurred, and other equally
unavoidable causes. However, they hope that the public of Natal will
show that literature is not above their wants, by efficiently interesting
themselves in the advancement of our yet infant although important
institution. 13
In the business which followed, two resolutions were taken. The first was
proposed by Captain Gordon and seconded by Marquard. Captain S. B.
Gordon was attached to the 45th Regiment, and was later to become acting
Secretary to the governmcnt when Pine sllspended Moodie in 1851. Captain
Gordon now proposed:­
59 Natal Society History
That the books purchased are not to be sold on any account, but are to
form the basis of a permancnt library; and Curther that it is distinctly
to be that no subscriber has any title to any of the works
procured, except merely as far as regards the perusal of them. And
further, in the 1.;\<;l1t o[the di:isolutioll of this Reading Society, it should
be distinctly understood that the books, whether purchased or given as
donations by individuals, shall notwithstanding be considered as public
property, and shall be handed over to the Government for the public
The other proposal was moved by David Dale Buchanan and seconded by
Donald Moodie:­
That institution be henceforth styled - 'the Pietermaritzburg
Public Li brary".
In these two proposals. both carried unanimoLlsly, a change of emphasis is
seen. In the past. the members had been content with periodicals and a few
donated books. Now there is a growil'g feeling that books are to be collected by
purchase and formed into a permancr!t library. Also the 'Reading Society' has
now become the Public Library, again <;!.Iggcsting an emphasis on hooks mthcr
than on periodical literc,tillT We Cl;; clearly sec the way in which the sub­
scribers were gropi ng.
The 1849 anmnl general meeting concluded with the election of the Committee
for the coming yea:', The following were electcd: the Rev. James Grcen, Mar­
quard, Shepstone, Moodie. Buchanan and Stanger. The Rev. Mr. Green, onc
of the protagonists in the great Colenso controversy, had arrived in Natal in
February 1849 as Coio1lial chaplain.
A Natal Witness ed itorial
tells a little bit more abollt thl: meeting just out­
lined,'and says, not unkindly,
Upon the whole, this institution has slIstained its usefulness tolerably
well, cOllsidering the difficulties it has had to contend with ...
Tt mentions that the Rev. hmes Green was in the chair, and he threw out the
suggestion that as hunting expeditions were frequent,
it might not be amiss to obtain specimens of natural history that might
form the nucleus of a museum. Tilis idea might be carried further. As
duplicate specimens would be constantly accumulating, the Committee
would have a capital for enriching their collection by interchange with
kindred institutions in distant lands. In addition to books, specimens
in Natural History, and Geology, opportunities might offer for pro­
curing philosophical instruments, so that facilities for lecturing would
be so available as to contribute to the diffusion of the taste for literary
and scientific pursuih in the colony. 1"
So here is the first mention of a museum, a project which was to become the aim
of the Natal Society and which proved so extraordinarily difficult to realize. 111
carrying the idea further than Green. the c:ditor (David Dale Buchanan) was
striving as he had also done in 1846, to bring dignity, worth and development to
60 Natal Society History
the little Society, which he no doubt felt was paddling along quietly while it
could be achieving so much more.
Lettel s of complaint about the library written to the Natal Witness are nothing
new. A letter appeared just after the 1849 annual general meeting, signed by
'a well-wisher of the library'. 1 6 The writer complains that more periodicals
are to be discontinued and says people will not subscribe if more and more are
stopped. He adds;
The practice of some one or other of the subscribers of last year
taking periodicals out of the room, and keeping them for an unlimited
period, was so much complained of, that it will not be an easy task to
get many, who formerly subscribed, to do so again.
The Committee had amply shown that it was well aware of these problems, but
in every age there is a library member who is dissatisfied with majority opinion
and who takes the opportunity to complain about the service.
U. E. M. JUDD,
1. Natal Witness, 22.1.1847.
2. Natal Witness, 23.7.1847.
3. Hattersley, A. F. Portrait of a city, p. 28.
4. Natal Witness, loco cif.
5: Natal Witness, 19.5.1848.
6. Natal Witness, 16.6.1848.
7. Natal Witness, 28.9.1849.
8. Natal Witness, 16.6.1848.
9. Ibid.
10. Natal Witness, 17.8.1849.
11. Ibid.
12. Natal Witness, 28.9.1849.
13. Ibid.
14. Natal Witness, 28.9.1849.
15. Ibid.
16. Ibid.
Punch or the London Charivari
Among the periodicals provided for subscribers of
the early Natal Library was Punch (see Miss U. E. M.
Judd's article in this issue). Copies of this magazine were
in great demand among the settlers who keenly enjoyed
both pictures and articles. Apart from the political and
other information to be found in its pages, the Punch
cartoons supplied vignettes of English social life that
were pored over by men and women who felt exiled and
yearned for contact with their former environment. We
have selected a few representative cartoons for the period
A John Bull type complains to Lord John Russell of the increase in income tax from
3%to 5%. (1848)

-::,:;:­ .-
The need for many unemployed people to emigrate was becoming evident in 1849.
(f l[oL'l.o tOLD Fr.LLa....,.; "'1'.: '.'E Or. ... 1) TO • • 1'.: Y ou n ••E."
Social reformers in 1850 warmly welcomed the repeal of the Window Tax.
A ;.
.. ""

>..f',\, ' \

(-.-...,. :;' /
f. , ... :;."-- •.'!
" . 0_­
Lord John Russell introduced plans in 1850 for representative government in the colonies. Note that Natal is not mentioned because it came under the
government of the Cape of Good Hope.
- ----
._--===; .
.... __ ___ r'- T_t;:-_
7 - ..• ·
" I,.
... --­

) ­
. i
- ',

..... J:•

A shaggy Father Thames gathers rubbish from the bed of the polluted river. Dead fish float around him. (1850)


-7 - ­
" .
." I
' -- " 't\
c....n '"'-: .;;'!.l;....
'-"\,..- '- -/--
A lively sketch of a London bus that must have made the Londoners sigh for home. The 'awful occurrence' was a box of leeches accidentally dropped
among the ladies. (1850)
The high mortality from cholera in the big cities had its effect in causing people to
emigrate. (1849)
A grim footnote on the life of the working mother in London. (1849)
.-\ \

- ----T'
/- -- - .-

B L()u.\J It 1 S ,\1 -.\:\ .\ 1\11': HI C' . \. 1\ c U STO .\l.
'Punch' artists extracted a good deal of humour from the new fashion in ladies' costume of a form of Turkish trousers introduced by an American lady,
Mrs . Amelia Bloomer, in 1851.
Notes and Queries
May 1974: An important month for uackward -looking people
To COMMEMORATE the establishment in Natal 150 years ago of the first
European settlement various celebrations and events were arranged, mainly in
Pietermaritzburg and Durban.
Two important occasions were the opening by the State President Mr. J. J.
FoucM of the new 'Natalia' building, Pietermaritzburg headquarters of the
Natal Provincial Administration, and the formal taking into use of the new
wing of the Natal Museum, a ceremony performed by the Administrator of
Natal, Mr. Ben Havemann. At both ceremonies the speakers made reference to
the development of Natal since 1824.
In Durban Mrs. Daphne Strutt, curator of the Local History M Llseum, in
conjunction with Miss J. Duggan, Librarian of the KiIlie C a m p b ~ l l Africana
Collection, and Or. B. J. T. Leverton of the Natal Archives, presented an
exhibition of original documents and pictures that captured something of the
life of Natal people between 1824 and 1850. The Provincial Library Services
(Mr. C. J. Fourie) arranged book displays of many of the precious volumes
which deal with Natal history. The University of Natal library also put some of
its treasures on exhibition. The Natal Education Department organised an
historical projects competition throughout tne schools of the province and made
a representative selection of the scholars' work which was exhibited in the
display hall on the ground floor of the 'Natalia' building. For days parents and
friends crowded the hall to see the handiwork of the young people.
In Durban, in addition to the floodlighting of the decorated City Hall, there
was the ceremony of naming the town gardens 'Farewell Square' in honour of
Lieutenant F. G. Farewell.
For those interested in music there was the Pietermaritzburg premiere of the
oratorio May the Land Worship the Lord, a work composed and arranged by Or.
H. Haape, Mr. Stevcl1s Grove, and Mr. John Knuyt.
One of the publications marking the 150th anniversary was the book Pioneers
of Vryheid: the Nieuwe Republiek and its Staatscourant edited by Dr. J. A.
Pringle and Dr. B. J. T. Leverton and published by the Natal Museum. It
consists of all the existing copies of this extremely scarce newspaper, published
of course in Nederlands, accompanied by an English translation of the material.
The various items of news throw a fresh light on the affairs of the Nieuwe
Lighting up 150 years
Neon 14 is a special commemorative number of the magazine regularly issued
by the Natal Education Department. It appeared in May in time for the public
ceremonies in Pietermaritzburg, Durban, and elsewhere and was favourably
received. Entitled 'Natal 1824-1974' it consists of about 70 pages including a
strong paperback cover carrying a brilliant reproduction of Capt. R. J. Garden's
62 Notes and Queries
1852 watercolour of Otto's Bluff. Basically it is a mini-!listory in pictures of
Natal's social and economic progress roads, bridges, DLlrban harbour,
railways, etc., etc., - together with many photographs of early settlers, distin­
guished visitors, writers, historians and others. Included am{)ng the black and
white pictmes are political cartoons, sketches, and about 15 colour pictures.
Text has been kept to a minimul1l- for exam pie, the Byrne emigration·scheme
is condensed into 120 words and the account of Durban's early history amounts
to 286 words. The editoi's are Dr. J. Clark and Dr. B. J. T. Leverton who spent
many mOliths tracing pidures, copying them, and then selecting the most
meaningful ones. The publication of this useful and interesting work was
I1nanced by the Natal Provincial Admi Since the bulk of the issue has
gone to the schools, it is not easy to come by a spare copy. Application should
be made to the Director of Education.
Another commemoration issue is the special Natal number of the magazine
Lallfern published in Pretoria by the Foundation for Education, Arts. Science
and Technology. wdl-produced magazine is aimed at the Republic's
educational institutions but has much in it of interest to the general reader.
Illustrations are invariably excellent. The special May issue deals with the first
party to arrive in 1824 and the later wave of emigration from 1849 onwards.
Mrs. D. Strutt, of the Local History Museum, Durban, has an article on
costume illustrated by sketches of the kind of clothing worn by men and women
about 1824. Colonial architecture of the period is represented by Mr. Brian
Kearney's article on the 'Natal Veranda', accompanied by many examples in
sketches and photographs. The Killie Campbell Africana Library and Museum,
the Voortrekker Museum, the Durban Local History Museum, the Natal
Museum and other guardian institutions have their place here together with
many excellent illustrations. The history of the Natal Society (1851) is given by
Miss U. E. M. Judd, and the story of Macrorie House, now renovated, is told
by Dr. Ruth Gordon. Mid-Victorian settlements at New Germany, Marburg.
and New Guelderland are also deait with by well-informed writers. Mrs. Brian
Spencer, a specialist on the settler period, has written an article on many of the
Byrne settlers with an extensive selection of photographs of people involved, as
well as pictures of ships, etc., connected with the emigration. Miss R. Gadsden
and Mrs. Wood of lhe Durban Local History Museum have abo captured the
feeling of the time in their settler-articles. Dr. B. J. T. Leverton of the Natal
has written on the Durban harbour and the first railway from the
Point to the town-centre (here again with some very good illustrations). He
has also contributed biographical material on some of the Natal Parliamen­
tarians and personalities. Mr. G. A. Chadwick has written on Voortrekker
Pietermaritzburg. A colour portfolio of pictures by early Natal artists (An­
gas, Wood, Garden and others) adds impact to this issue. Altogether, Mr. V.
e. Wood, the editor of Lantern. and his staff, have produced a worthwhile
publication which will hold an important place in schools, universities and
other places of learning for many years. The general reader will also find much
to study and enjoy.
Natal's oldest artistic tradition
The rock paintings of this province are an eloquent reminder that Natal's
63 Notes and Queries
history did not begin in 1824, important as that date may be. While our sprawl­
ing gallery of artistic treasures is rightly recogniso:d as a splendid featufl: of the
Natal heritage, the full extl'llt of its spread and richness remains unknown. The
paintings of the Drakensberg foothills have become widely known through the
work of Willcox, vil1llicombe, Pager, Lewis-Williams and other:;, but it is not
generally appreciated that rock art dating back to the Late Stone Age is widely
distributed in other parts of Natal.
Dr. Tim Maggs, archaeologist at the Natal Museum, Pietermaritzburg, and
Mr. John Wright of the History Department, University of Natal, Pietermaritz­
burg, are at present engaged in a survey of the paintings in the basin formed by
the middle Thukela and the lower reaches of its tributaries, the Buffalo, Sundays,
Mooi and Bushmans. The warm, bush-covered valleys and hill-slopes of this
spectacularly broken terrain are thought to have provided ,t fJ.vourable habitat
for 'Bushman' hunter-gatherer communities of the Late Stone Age, whose
artists left paintings ill many of the tl umerous small overhangs formed in the
bands of sandstone krailses cilaraeteristic of the region. Between 30 and 40
painted sites are kncl\vl1 to exist, and it is certain that othcrs remain to be
The purpose of the survey is to n:l'lJrU (l) the location of the sites; (2) ~ i S many
of the paintings as possible by ll1L:ans of colour photography; and (3) the details
of each individual figure in a statistical form suitable for computerization. In
this way it is hoped that a bank of information v.'ill be obtained which will
enable comparisons to be made with similarly recorded rock art in other
regions of southern Africa at a greater level of detail than has hitherto been
possible. Ultimately such region-by-region analysis should yield significant
information about the living patterns of the hunter-gatherer peoples who at one
time lived over most of the sub-continent. The records of the survey will be
housed in the Natal Museum branch of the Archaeological Data Recording
Centre, which has its headqliarters at the South African Museum in Cape Town.
Iron Age man in the Thukela basin
The Thukela basin has figured prominently in the news as a future centre 01'
large-scale urban and ind ustrial growth, but while the planners spell out thei r
visions of material progress for this region it is worth recalling that the valleys
of the Thukela and its tributaries were for ten or fiftecn centuries before the
intrusion of European-descended peoples the home of settled African com­
munities who were well acquainted with the techniques of industial production,
even if in rudimentary form. Material remains left by these 'Iron Age' peoples,
some of whom were certainly ancestral to the present-day Zulu-speaking
population of Natal and Zululand, are still plentiful in the area.
It is partly the existence nf this wealth of evidence that has led 0:-. Tim Maggs,
archaeologist at the Natal Museum in Pietermaritzburg, to begin work in the
Thukela basin O!1 a preliminary survey of the environmental background and of
general patterns of Iron Age settlement and exploitation. Problems that emerge
from the survey will be investigated at a later stage in a programme of' fieldwork
and excavation of selected sites. An incentive to Or. Maggs's work is the threat
posed to the survival or archaeologically valuable sites by the proposed con­
struction of the Estcourt-OFS freeway, which will cut through an area of dense
Iron Age settlement. He is also keeping an eye on potentially unwelcome (from
64 Notes and Queries
an archaeologist's point of view) developments in the Thukela-Vaal water
conservation scheme.
In April last year Dr. Maggs directed a rescue operation at an Iron Age site
near Muden that had been exposed by donga erosion. The site yielded a rich
assemblage of 'NC 3' pottery and associated cultural and faunal remains. A
number of charcoal samples were sent to the CSIR laboratories in Pretoria for
radiocarbon dating. The results are awaited with interest, especially in view of
the fact that of the 50 or 60 Iron Age radiocarbon age determinations so far pub­
lished for sites in South Africa, only two are from Natal.
Readers living in the Thukela basin, or indeed anywhere else in Natal, who
know of the existence of Iron Age remains, sllch as stone ruins, pottery, and
evidence of iron smelting, are asked to get in touch with Dr. Maggs at the Natal
More news from the Natal Museum: Dr. Oliver Davies's report of the
excavation which he conducted in 1972 at the Moor Park Iron Age site near
Estcourt is about to appear in the Annals of the Natal Museum. A later number
will carry the report of his work at the Late Stone Age site in Shongweni Cave.
Memorials to the Zulu past
For some time past the National Monuments Council has been sponsoring a
programme of excavations and restoration at Mgungundhlovu, the royal
capital of Dingane. This year the project took a leap forward when Mr. John
Parkington of the Department of Archaeology, University of Cape Town,
brought a team of trained and carefully supervised workers to the site. While
some digging was done at well-selected points, the major achievement of the
expedition was a detailed survey of the site.
The information yielded by this survey should make it possible for the
responsible authorities to draw up an intelligent programme of properly staged
operations for the future. We sincerely hope that this will be done. The annals
of archaeological 'enterprise' abound with spine-chilling tales of the desecration
of sites, not only by treasure-hunters and over-enthusiastic amateurs, but also
by inexpert experts who have proceeded with misplaced confidence in the
efficiency of their own methods.
In the case of Mgungundhlovu, we cannot allow this to happen. It is al­
together too important a site. From it we can hope to get answers to an assem­
blage of crucial questions about life at the royal umuzi, and about cross-cultural
influences in the early years of association between black and white in Natal.
Better, by far, that some of these questions should remain unanswered for the
time being than that they should be made unanswerable by over hasty and over
extensive interference with the site.
Nor is that all. If we are to proceed without doing damage, our interests as
scientists and historians must be modified, where necessary, to meet the inter­
ests of the Zulu people. Lying in the heart of the Emakoseni valley - the birth
place of the Zulu nation, and the burial place of the chiefly forefathers of the
Zulu kings - Mgungundhlovu is one of the great memorials to the Zulu past.
It would be a terrible commentary on the phase of history inaugurated by the
arrival of the white pioneers if 'science' were to pursue a relentless course at
Mgungundhlovu without regard for the interests and wishes of the people whose
forefathers lived there.
65 Notes and Queries
Another project concerning Zulu habitational sites is being conducted by
Professor C. de B. Webb of the University of Natal, Pietermaritzburg. By
locating royal and chiefly homesteads, Professor Webb is hoping to elicit
information about preferred living conditions and environmental influences in
the history of traditional Zulu society. Farmers and local historians in many
parts of Natal must know of old kraal-sites. Please assist the project by passing
on such information to Professor Webb, clo Department of History and Political
Science, Natal University, Pietermaritzburg.
Tracking down a big game hunter
From J. N. Bannister, President of the Leyland Historical Society, Lancashire,
England, we have received the following note:
In the parish church of St. Andrew, Leyland, there is a marble plaque with
the following inscription: 'Sacred to the memory of a patron of this Benefice,
William Charles Baldwin, the Writer of African Hunting, the first European
from the East Coast to reach the Victoria Falls on the Zambezi River, August
4th 1860. Resolute, not reckless, he was one who never turned his back, but
rode straight forward. Born March 3rd 1826 - Died November 17th 1903.
No man shall order me, I will be my own master. JESUS! MASTER!
W. C. Baldwin was buried in the family grave at St. Andrew's. The epitaph
on the gravestone is very appropriate: 'Like Nimrod, A Mighty Hunter
Before the Lord.'
In Baldwin's book, there is the following entry, dated 1852: 'In the course of
a few weeks I was able, by the advice of my physician to go up to Pieter
Maritzburg for a change of air, where Mr. Collins, the postmaster, and a
passenger of mine, most kindly took me into his house, treated me with the
utmost attention, and forestalled my every want. It is to Mrs. Collins's
nursing and care, and all the little delicacies, so grateful and refreshing to a
sick man, which a woman's forethought can alone supply, that I am indebted
for my eventual recovery after a long illness.'
Mr. Bannister, who is gathering material on Baldwin, wonders whether
anyone has information about the Mr. and Mrs. CoIl ins mentioned in the above
extract, or about any other aspects of Baldwin's experiences in Natal. Cor­
respondence should be addressed to Mr. Bannister at 15 MaIden Street, Leyland,
Preston PR5ITJ, Lancashire, England.
Do you know a national monument?
The National Monuments Council has issued a nation-wide appeal for
information about buildings and sites which may qualify as national monuments.
While the Council has no wish to discourage replies to its own appeal, it is
understandably a little worried at the prospect of being 'inundated by well­
meaning reports on matters of purely local or minor interest'. Suggestions
should relate to buildings and sites the preservation of which is deemed to be
of national importance. The information requested by the Council is set out
under the following heads:
(a) Situation of the building or site.
66 Notes and Queries
(b) Name and address of owner (if known).
(c) Reasons for preservation.
(d) In the case of buildings, kindly furnish the following details:
(i) Condition of main building: good/average/poor;
(ii) Conditions of the outbuildings: good/average/poor;
(iii) Is/are the building/s in an area zoned for non-white occupation?
(iv) As far as you know, was the building ever owned or occupied by an
important historical personage?
(v) Is it in use now, and for what purpose?
(e) Photographs of the site and/or building/s will be welcome.
Reports and recommendations should be addressed to the Secretary, National
Monuments Council, P.O. Box 4637, Cape Town.
Maps of Natal and Zululand 1824 - 1910
The list of maps published in Natalia No. 2 has provoked some interesting
The City Librarian of Kimberley reports that the Public Library has copies
of the maps which accompanied James Vetch's 1859 reports and recommend­
ations for the improvement of the harbour at Port Natal. One wonders how,
and why, such documents found their way to landlocked Kimberley, whose
history started a full twelve years after the publication of Vetch's findings.
Professor Colin Gardner of the Department of English, University of Natal,
Pietermaritzburg, has brought to our attention a 55cm x 88 cm coloured map
printed by John Singleton and Sons of Durban, and entitled 'Bird's-Eye Map
of War District Natal: To Accompany the Official Railway Guide'. The main
map shows Ladysmith, Colenso and Spion Kop, while insets show: (a) Laing's
Nek, Newcastle, Dundee; (b) Lines of communication between the war district
and Durban and Pietermaritzburg; (c) Boer positions from Colenso at the site of
the 14th and 66th batteries of artillery. Does anyone have further information
about this map, and about the Official Railway Guide which it accompanied?
Official publications (British Blue Books, Natal Sessional Papers, Railway
Guides and similar documents) are known to contain maps on a variety of
subjects; but the full range of material available in these sources is waiting to be
explored. A comprehensive Natal list would be more than interesting; it would
be an invaluable aid to scholars working in many fields.
Natal art before 1910
In previous issues we published appeals from Mrs. J. A. Verbeek for infor­
mation about early Natal artists. So vigorously has Mrs. Verbeek's project
progressed that the University Library, Pietermaritzburg, has now issued, for
private circulation, a finding-aid of 53 typed pages under the title Natal Art
Before Union. In her 'Introduction' to the volume Mrs. Verbeek writes:
For some years I have been compiling a catalogue of Natal Art before 1910.
It is to be housed in the Library of the University of Natal, Pietermaritzburg,
and the entries are on cards which give details of the individual paintings
which have been traced. The catalogue is not complete, and it is intended to
67 Notes and Queries
grow in size as more paintings are discovered in a continuing process of
investigation ...
The documentation of Natal Art was initially undertaken in a totally non­
selective manner. It soon became apparent that lack of selection would
involve a work of considerable proportion, and two limitations were imposed.
First, only drawings and paintings were listed ... Second, since the catalogue
was intended, in part, to be of use as a tracing tool for those interested in
viewing tht originals, it was decided to list only those works which had been
traced to the location ofthe original. Thus, although I am aware of painters and
pictures other than those entered in the catalogue, permanent entries will
only be made when the original is traced ...
The full catalogue itself cannot be reproduced economically ... The full cat­
alogue also contains some information on the ownership of paintings which
it is not possible to disclose freely. Partly for these reasons, partly because it
was desired that the information be available to a wider readership than
could be obtained through individuals using the catalogue in the Library, and
partly because I hope that a wider knowledge of what has been listed will result
in a feed-back of additional information to me (so resulting in an extension
of the catalogue) it was decided to produce, for private circulation, the
extracts from the catalogue which are contained in the following pages. The
information given about individual paintings is not as complete as that
contained in the catalogue itself, but it is hoped that what is given is sufficient
to be of some benefit to those who are not able to use the catalogue in person ...
The format of the entries which are now published is as follows: the names of
the artists are given in alphabetical order, together with Christian names,
titles, and dates of birth and death where these are known. These headings are
followed by a very brief biographical note, and references to published works,
which give more detailed information, or to other sources of information
which I have used. Then follows a list of books or publications which it may
be interesting to consult. Finally, in italic print, is a list of the works of the
artist which have been traced and entered in the catalogue, together with a
statement of the medium in which they were executed ...
We congratulate Mrs. Verbeek and the University Library, Pietermartizburg,
on this achievement.
Compiled by J. CLARK
C. de B. WEBB
Register of Societies and Institutions
THE PURPOSE of this register is to list for general information the numerous
organisations that are engaged in preservation, conservation and research,
and in the promotion of scientific, artistic and creative endeavour in Natal.
The organisations listed are asked to check the accuracy and adequacy of the
information given, and to supply the editor with amendments.
Organisations and institutions that have not been listed are invited to furnish
information for inclusion in the next issue.
1. Ancient Africa Club. Secretary: Mrs. N. Ogilvie, 21 Burger Street,
2. Botanic Gardens, Swartkop Road, Pietcrmaritzburg.
3. Botanical Research Unit. Botanic Gardens Road, Durban. Botanic Station
(Natal Herbarium), and Regional Office for Natal of the Botanical Research
Institute, Department of Agricultural Technical Services, Pretoria. The
Natal unit is active in research and the naming of indigenous plants.
4. Campbell Collections ofthe University ofNatal. 220 Marriott Road, Durban.
These are the Killie Campbell Africana Library, the Mashu Museum of
Ethnology and the WiIliam Campbell Furniture Museum. The Africana
Library serves as a repository for family papers and other historical
documents, which may be housed there on loan or donated. The collections
are accessible on application to the Africana Librarian at the above address.
5. Colenso Historical Society. R. E. Stevenson Museum, Colenso.
6. Durban Local History Museum. Old Court House, Aliwal Street, Durban.
7. Durban Museum and Art Gallery. City Hall, Durban.
8. Durban Municipal Library. Houses a valuable collection of Africana and an
extensive collection of official records.
9. Durban Old House Museum. 31 St. Andrews Street, Durban. A settler
homestead, housing a valuable historical collection.
10. Durban Symphony Orchestra. City Hall, Durban.
11. Durban- Westville Historical Society. Department of History, University of
Durban-Westville, Pte. Bag 4001, Durban. The Society organises historical
excursions, holds seminars and symposia and contributes to the History
Department's efforts to build up its Tndiana collection.
12. Federation of Women's Institutes of Natal, Zululand, East Griqualand and
the Transkeian Territories. Fraser's Building, Longmarket Street, Pieter­
maritzburg. The Federation has been responsible for organising the
69 Societies and Institutions
compilation of 'Area Annals', recording the history of country districts in
Natal, East Griqualand and Zululand. Copies are being housed in: Govern­
ment Archives, Natal Depot, Pietermaritzburg; Natal Society Library,
Pietermaritzburg; University of Natal Library, Pietermaritzburg; Killie
Campbell Africana Library, Durban; Local History Museum, Durban.
13. Grey town Historical Society. The Hon. Secretary, Mr. Ernest Dominy,
Curator Grey town, Museum, P.O. Grey town.
14. Historical Association, Pietermaritzburg Branch. The Hon. Secretary, Mr. J.
M. Sellers, 9 Vere Road, Pietermaritzburg. The Association is an affiliate
of the British Historical Association, and serves as a forum for the reading
of papers and the presentation of talks by local and overseas speakers.
15. Historical Association of S.A. (Natal Branch). Secretary: Mr. J. Coetzer,
c/o 4 Nicolai Crescent, Glenmore, Durban, 400l. The Association offers a
home to all who are interested in history. Publications: "Historia" and
"Historia Junior".
J6. Ladysmith Historical Society. Chairman: Mr. G. F. N. Tatham; Hon.
Secretary: Mrs. Tatham; P.O. Box 380, Ladysmith. Conducts tours of the
local battlefields and has as one of its objectives the publication of maps,
diaries and other record" relating to the history of the area. In co-operation
with the Ladysmith Town Council, the Society also maintains a museum in
part of the old Market Hall.
17. Maritzburg Philatelic Society. Secretary: Mr. J. S. Dominy, 5 Primula Road,
18. Mountain Club ofSouth Africa. Natal headquarters: P.O. Box 4535, Durban·
Articles on Natal appear in the annual Journal of the Mountain Club.
Other recent publications relating to the Club: "The Drakensberg of Natal",
by D. P. Liebenberg. Published by T. V. Bulpin, Cape Town. "Barrier of
Spears", by R. O. Pearse. Published by Howard Timmins, Cape Town.
19. Natal Depot, South African Government Archives. Private Bag 9012,
Pietermaritz Street, Pietermaritzburg. In addition to official papers from the
colonial period, the Archives houses a valuable collection of newspapers,
private papers and published works.
20. Natal Development Board. Private Bag 9037, Pietermaritzburg.
2l. Natal Museum. Loop Street, Pietermaritzburg. Houses scientific and
historical collections.
22. Natal Parks, Game and Fish Preservation Board. P.O. Box 662, Pietermaritz­
burg 3200. In addition to maintaining a number of game and nature reserves,
much scientific research is conducted under the auspices of the Board.
23. Natal Performing Arts Council. 480 Berea Road, Durban, and P.O. Box 86,
Mayville, Natal.
24. Natal Society Library P.O. Box 415, Longmarket Street, Pietermaritzburg.
The Reference and Copyright department houses a large and valuable
collection of Nataliana, including newspapers, journals, etc.
70 Societies and Institutions
25. Natal Town and Regional Planning Commission. Private Bag 9038, Pieter­
maritzburg. Has published a number of reports on the economic resources
and potential of Natal.
26. National Monuments Council. Natal representative: Mr. G. A. Chadwick,
4 Nicolai Crescent, Glenmore, Durban, 4001. The Council's main function
is to preserve the heritage of South Africa in respect of: (a) geological
features; (b) biological associations; (c) archaelogical phenomena; (d)
historical sites; (e) important buildings; (J) relics.
27. Newcastle Historical Society. The Hon. Secretary, Mrs. D. Russell, 5
Majuba Street, Newcastle.
28. Numismatic Society. Secretary: Mr. P. R. Muller, 12 Burrows Street,
29. Pietermaritzburg Philharmonic Society. City Hall, Pietermaritzburg.
30. Pinetown Historical Society. The Hon. Secretary, Mr. A. Atkinson, P.O.
Box 49, Pinetown. Active in collecting and preserving.
31. Queensburgh Historical Society. The Hon. Secretary, Miss W. Jones. P.O.
Box 31, Queensburgh.
32. Simon van der Stel Foundation. Regional Secretary: Mr. A. S. B. Hum­
pbreys, 356 Prince Alfred Street (P.O. Box 1194) Pietermaritzburg. The
aim of the Foundation is the preservation, by purchase or other means,
of buildings, historical objects and sites of historical value, architectural
merit or great beauty. The restoration of Macrorie House, Loop Street,
Pietermaritzburg, has been undertaken by the Foundation.
33. South African Archaeological Society. The Hon. Secretary Natal Branch,
Dr. D. E. van Dijk, clo Zoology Department, University of Natal, Pieter­
maritzburg. Arranges talks and expeditions.
34. South African Association for Marine Biological Research. Centenary
Aquarium, Durban. The Oceanographic Research Institute, which is
attached to the aquarium building, is part of the S.A.M.B.R.
35. South African Institute ofRace Relations, Natal regional offices: 8 Guildhall
Arcade, Durban.
36. S.A. Military History Society. Private Bag X431O, Durban, 4000. Durban
Branch Secretary: Miss Tania Johnston.
37. South African National Society. Natal Headquarters: clo Local History
Museum, Old Court House, Aliwal Street, Durban, 4001. The Society was
founded in Cape Town in 1905 for the preservation of objects of historical
interest and natural beauty.
38. South African War Graves Board. 153 Blackwood Street, Arcadia, Pretoria.
Amongst other activities, the Board is responsible for the repair and
maintenance of graves other than those connected with the First and Second
World Wars.
39. Tatham Art Gallery. City Hall, Pietermaritzburg.
71 Societies and Institutions
40. University of Natal. Pietermaritzburg and Durban. Many of the academic
departments of the University are engaged in research relating to the
natural and human resources of Natal, its environmental conditions and
its history. In addition to the academic departments, there are the following
research institutes; Meyrick Bennett Children's Centre (Durban); Oceano­
graphic Research Institute (Durban); Paint Industries Research Institute
(Durban); Institute of Parasitology (Durban); Institute of Social Research
(Durban); Sugar Milling Research Institute (Durban); Wattle Research
Institute (Pietermaritzburg). The various libraries of the University have
large holdings of works relevant to Natal subjects.
41. Wilderness Leadership School. P.O. Box 36, Bellair, 4006.
42. The Wildlife Society of Southern Africa. Natal Branch, P.O. Box 2985,
Durban, 4000.
43. Zululand Historical Museum. Nongqai Fort, Eshowe.
Compiled by U. E. M. JUDO
Register of Research on Natal
THE FOLLOWING does not pretend to be complete. It has been compiled from
the Human Sciences Research Council Research Bulletin and from individual
It is a supplementary list to the 'Register' published in Natalia 3. Persons
knowing of research work that has not been listed are asked to furnish infor­
mation for inclusion in the next issue. For this purpose a slip is provided.
Economic Natal farm units
Anr lysis of sugar-cane farms in the Natal mid­
Tradisionele Zulu kralewerk
Kongruensie in Zoeloe
Die Werkwoord in Zoeloe
The Nominated sub-contractor 111 the building
The Veterinary ethical drug market
DURBAN'S Toll Gate
The Control of Indian education
The Inanda Seminary
Indian vernacular languages
History Teaching in Natal Indian schools
Temples in Natal
Indian landownership in Natal
Indian agricultural development
Metropolitan housing development
Urban residential patterns
M. B. van Heerden
G. F. Ortmann
H. S. Schoeman
J. C. Landsberg
D. R. Lange
D. M. Taylor
P. J. Pullinger
D. M. L. Wiggins
S. Manohar
S. R. Maharaj
K. Moodley
R. Ramdass
J. J. C. Greyling
J. J. C. Greyling
J. F. Adam
T. M. Wills
73 Research
Communications between Durban and Pieter­
maritzburg, 1865 till 1880
The Natal Parliament, 1856 to 1910
The Pathmajuranni Andhra Institute of Clair­
Public opinion in Natal and the Non-whites,
Die Rol van die Afrikaner in Natal, 1838-1973
MEDICINE and missions in South Africa
Imperial garrison of Natal, 1839-1914
The establishment of a theatrical tradition in col­
onial Natal
Politieke part ye in Natal
Natal period 1919 to 1924
A Study of socio-political attitudes among Whites
in Durban
Ethnic attitudes of Indian high school children in
Family planning among Coloureds
Jndierbehuising in Durban
Die Gebruik van tabak deur Indiers in Natal
Die Opvoedkundige status van die Indiers in Natal
Sosio-ekonomiese ondersoek na die Indierbevolk­
ing in Natal
East Griqualand pioneer, 1840-1915 - biography
Land for township development
Storage of water on the Zululand coastal plains
A Survey of the Upper Umgeni River catchment
ZULULAND and the Zulu people
G. A. S. Cox
B. J. T. Leverton
B. Naidoo
A. S. van Wyk
A. S. van Wyk
R. D. Aitken
R. G. Crossley
D. L. Schauffer
L. Pretorius
B. L. Reid
L. Schlemmer
U. Pillay
S. Lonsdale
(Mej.) M. A. Ferns
C. F. van der Merwe
J. J. Malan
W. P. Mostert
(Mrs.) M. Rainier
R. J. Davies and
J. Adam
W. James
R. T. McCarthy
A. Bozas
Compiled by J. FARRER
Natal Society Library
Select List of Recent Natal Publications
BEHR, A. L., Editor. The Handicapped child: proceedings of a national con­
ference held in Durban, Oct. 1968. Durban, Univ. of Durban-Westville, 1971.
BRABY'S Dundee directory, 1973. Durban, Braby, 1973.
BRABY'S Ladysmith directory, 1974. Durban, Braby, 1974.
BRABY'S Natal directory, 1973; including Zululand, East Griqualand and
Pondoland. Durban, Braby, 1973.
BRABY'S Natal North Coast and Zululand directory, 1973. Durban, Braby, 1973.
BRABY'S Newcastle directory, 1973. Durban, Braby, 1973 ..
BRABY'S Pietermaritzburg directory, 1974. Durban, Braby, 1974.
BRABY'S Pinetown directory, 1974 (including) Gillitts, Hillcrest, Kloof, New
Germany and Westville. Durban, Braby, 1974.
BRABY'S Southern Natal and East Griqualand directory, 1973. Durban, Braby,
BRABY'S Vryheid directory, 1973. Durban, Braby, 1973.
BROOKES, Edgar H. White rule in South Africa, 1830-1910. Pietermaritzburg,
Univ. of Natal Press, 1974.
BRYANT, A. T., Compiler. An Abridged English-Zulu word-book. 11th ed.
Mariannhill, Mariannhill mission press, 1971.
BUTHELEZI, ChiefGatsha D. White and black nationalism, ethnicity and the
future of the homelands. (Durban), S.A. Institute of Race Relations, 1974.
CHILD, Daphne. Charles Smythe; pioneer, Premier and Administrator of Natal.
Cape Town, Struik, 1973.
CHOTAI, Sukhraj. An Historical account of the Arya Pratinidhi Sabha, South
Africa. Durban (21 Carlisle St.), Veda Niketan, 1973.
CLAMMER, David. The Zulu war. Cape Town, PurneIl, c.1973.
COPE, A. Trevor. A select bibliography relating to the Zulu people of Natal and
Zululand. Durban, Univ. of Natal, 1974.
COWDEN, Jeanne. For the love of an eagle. Cape Town, Buren, 1973.
COWLEY, Cecil. Schwikkard of Natal and the old Transvaal. Cape Town,
Struik, 1974.
DAWES, H. Edmund. "Durban calling" - the formative years and beyond.
Durban, Town Clerk's Dept., 1973.
75 Recent publications
DURBAN. City Engineer's dept. Report on the planning of Old Line Suburbs.
Durban, the Dept., 1973.
ing with special reference to tropical and sub-tropical plants, edited by S.
Candy. 2nd ed. Durban, the Society, 1972.
DURBAN-WESTVILLE. University. Rental survey: Springfield, by W. W. Anderson
and J. Mason. Durban, the University, 1972.
DURBAN-WESTVILLE. Unil'ersity. Socio-economic study of Chatsworth by A. S.
du Toit and M. D. Maharaj. Durban, the University, 1973.
ESTCOURT directory, 1974. Durban, Braby, 1974.
GREYTOWN directory, 1974. Durban, Braby, 1974.
EVANS, Stanley. Maps and notes of the field operations connected with the Zulu
war of 1879. P.O. Box 9188, Johannesburg; the Author; 1973.
(Note: not published for general sale.)
FEILDEN, Eliza Whigham. My African home; or, bush life in Natal when a
young colony (1852-7). Durban, Griggs, 1973. (Reprint)
GANESH, Bal. Stories about my people. Durban, Ratna Publishers, 1974.
GOMM, K. C. An Investigation into the reading habits and interests of children
of Athlone primary school, Pietermaritzburg. Pietermaritzburg, the School,
GORDON, Charles. Now for the good news. Durban, Sunday Tribune, 1973.
HATHORN, Peter. Joseph Henderson; being a record of some episodes in the life
of founder of a family in Natal, and of his wife and children. Pietermaritzburg,
the Author, 1973.
(Note: abridged version of Henderson heritage by Peter Hathorn and Amy
HOWICK directory, 1974. Durban, Braby, 1974.
JONES, Len. South African, Mocambique and Rhodesian spear-fishing guide.
3rd ed. Durban, the Author, (1973 ?).
KEARNEY, Brian. Architecture in Natal from 1824to 1893. Cape Town, Balkema,
KRAUSS, Ferdinand. Travel journal/Cape to Zululand: observations by a
collector and naturalist, 1838-40; edited by o. H. Spohr. Cape Town, Balkema,
KWEEK appeIs winsgewend. Durban, Topboere-publikasie, 1974.
LADYSMlTH HISTORICAL SOCIETY. Ladysmith. Diary of the siege of Ladysmith:
unpublished letters from the siege, and an extract from Lt. Col. B. W. Martin's
memoirs ... Ladysmith, the Society, (1973 ?).
LADYSMlTH HISTORICAL SOCIETY. Ladysmith. The Smiths of Ladysmith. Lady­
smith, the Society, 1972.
(Note: reprinted from Blackwood's Magazine, April 1939.)
Recent publications
LAWRIE'S Durban directory, 1974. Durban, Lawrie, 1974.
LEYERTON, Basil J. T., and Pringle, John. The Pioneers of Vryheid: the Nieuwe
Republiek and its Staats Courant. Pietermaritzburg, Natal Museum, 1974.
LLOYD, A. The Zulu war, 1879. London, Hart-Davis, 1973.
MIDGLEY, John F. Petticoat in Mafeking: the letters of Ada Cock ... Kom­
metjie, the Author, 1974.
MOBIL OIL SOUTHERN AFRICA (PTY) LTD. The Drakensberg: Cathedral Peak to
Champagne Castle. Cape Town, Bulpin, 1973.
MUSIL, C. F. Water plants of Natal-a guide to the important species. Durban,
The Wild Life Society of South Africa, 1973.
NATAL. Parks, game and fish preservation board. The Kenneth Stainbank
nature reserve. Pietermaritzburg, 1973.
NATAL. Town and regional planning commission. Medium density housing: the
proceedings of a working conference. Pietermaritzburg, the Commission, 1973.
NATAL. Tov.'n and regional planning commission. Pictermaritzburg - Durban
region; regional guide plan. Pietermaritzburg, the Commission, 1973.
NATAL. University. Dept. of economics. A Poverty datum line study among
Africans in Durban, by P. N, Pillay. Durban, the University, 1973.
NATAL PERFORMING ARTS COUNCIL. 10: 1963-1973. Durban, the Council, 1973.
NUTTALL, Neville. Life in the country: a fisherman's philosophy. Johannesburg,
The Star, (1973 ?).
OSBORN, Robert Farquhar. This man of purpose; a biography of Sir James
Liege Hulett. Natal, North Coast Sales Promotions, 1973.
PATON, Alan. Apartheid and the Archbishop; the life and times of Geoffrey
Clayton ... Cape Town, Philip, 1973.
PEARSE, R. O. Barrier of spears; drama of the Drakensberg. Cape Town,
Timmins, 1973.
PEARSE, R. O. and others, Editors. LangaIibalele and the Natal Carbineers; the
story of the Langalibalele Rebellion, 1873. Ladysmith Historical Society, 1973.
PHILATELIC SOCIETY OF NATAL. National philatelic exhibition, Durban May 28­
June 2 1973: diamond jubilee exhibition. Durban, the Society, 1973.
PIETERMARITZBURG. City council. Pietermaritzburg; a town planning report for
the borough. Pietermaritzburg, Thorrington-Smith, Rosenberg and McCrystal,
PINETOWN. Municipality. Pinetown area transportation study. Durban, De Leeuw,
Cather, 1973.
PINBTOWN. Municipality. Pinetown: prosperous, progressive. Pietermaritzburg,
Swan publishing co., 1973.
POL, M. T. de St. Captured thoughts. Durban, the Author, (1974).
77 Recent publications
PRICE, Merle, Compiler. What shrubs shall I grow for floral arrangements'!
Pietermaritzburg, Life Line, 1973.
RAVEN, D. S. The Role of classical studies in the 1970's: inaugural lecture.
Pietermaritzburg, Univ. of Natal, 1973.
REINHARDT, MoUy. The July handicap. Cape Town, Don Nelson, 1973.
RUSSELL, Robert. Natal: the land and its story. Durban, Griggs, 1972.
(Note: new ed. with index included.)
SAMUELSON, Robert C. A. Long, long ago. New ed. Durban, Griggs, 1974.
SAVORY, Phyllis. Bantu folk tales from Southern Africa. Cape Town, Timmins,
SCHLEMMER, Lawrence. Privilege, prejudice and parties; a study of patterns of
political motivation among white voters in Durban. Johannesburg, S.A. Inst.
of Race Relations, 1973.
SCHLEMMER, Lawrence. Social research in a divided society; problems and
challenges. Pietermaritzburg, Univ. of Natal, 1973.
SCHOLTZ, P. Transmitters of life; inaugural lecture ... Pietermaritzburg, Univ.
of Natal, 1973.
SCHULZ, Joyce Wrinch. Durban. Cape Town, Pumell, 1973.
SHAW, C. Scott. Looking back with laughter; the saga of a South African
student, soldier and skypilot in Korea. Pietermaritzburg, Shuter and Shooter,
SIMPSON, K. W., and Sweeney, G. M. J. The Land surveyor and the law. Pieter­
maritzburg, Univ. of Natal, 1973.
SKOTNES, Cecil, and Gray, Stephen. The Assassination of Shaka. Johannesburg,
McGraw Hill, 1974.
SMITH, R. Tavener- Coal in Natal; inaugural lecture. Pietermaritzburg, Univ. of
Natal press. 1973.
SMITH, T. W. F. Retail and wholesale trade in Zululand. Durban, Unlv. of
Natal, 1972.
STUART, Huntly, My friend the Zulu: a series of twelve talks ... Johannesburg,
S.A.B.C., (1973 '1).
SUMNER, M. E. Man and the soil: inaugural lecture. Pietermaritzburg, Univ. of
Natal, 1973.
TONDER, A. J. van. Herfs van die hart. Durban, die Skrywer, 1974.
VERMEULEN, H. J., Samesteller. Sewentiger G. S. Nienaber. Pietermaritzburg,
Univ. of Natal, 1973.
VIETZEN, Sylvia. A History of education for European girls in Natal with
particular reference to the establishment of some leading schools, 1837-1902.
Pietermaritzburg, Univ. of Natal press, 1973.
78 Recent publications
VILAKAZI, Benedict Wallet. Zulu horizons, (poems) rendered into English verse
by Florence Louie Friedman. Johannesburg, Witwatersrand Univ. press, 1973.
VILLIERS, Andre de. In the land of the Book. Pietermaritzburg, Shuter &
Shooter, 1974.
VILLlERS, Andre de. Where the master trod. Pietermaritzburg, Shuter & Shooter,
branch. Proposals for the Pietermaritzburg green belt. The Society, 1973.
WILLCOX, A. R. Rock paintings of the Drakensberg, Natal and Griqualand
East. Second enlarged edition. Cape Town, Struik, 1973.
WOOLLEY, Richard. Shaka, King of the Zulu; the herd boy who founded a
nation. London, Longmans, 1973.
Compiled by U. E. M. JUDO
No/Nr 2: Memorials of the British Settlers of South Africa,
compiled by Robert Godlonton. Grahamstown.
1844. (Reprint/Herdruk 1971) ISBN 0 86968 002 I R3,OO
No/Nr 3: Zamempraak tllsschen Klaas Waarzegger en Jan
Twyfelaar, by L. H. Meurant. Cradock, 1861.
(Reprint/Herdruk 1973) ISBN 086968006 4 .. R3,OO
No/Nr 4: The South African Journal, No. I and No. n, edited
by Thomas Pringle and John Fairbairn. Cape Town
1824. (Reprint/Herdruk 1974) ISBN 0 86968 007 2
and 0 86968 008 0 .. R7,OO
per set
No/Nr 2: African Kalendar for MDCCCIl. Under the
sanction of Government. Compiled by H. H.
Smith. Cape Town, 1802. (ReprintjHerdrllk 1972)
ISBN 0 86968 003 X .. R3,OO
No/Nr 3: Almanak voor de Kaap de Goede Hoop voor het
Schrikkel-jaar MDCCCIV. Kaapstad, 1804 (Re­
print/Herdruk 1973) ISBN 0 86968 004 8 ., R3,OO
Friends of the Library receive 25 %discount
Vriende van die Biblioteek ontvang 25 %afslag
Order from: The Publications Officer, South African Library,
Queen Victoria Street, Cape Town 8001.
Bestel van: Die Pllblikasies-beampte, Suide-Afrikaanse Biblioteek,
Koningin Victoriastraat, Kaapstad 8001.
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k::1f We proudly announce publication of our facsimile reprint of the
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Millais, in a limited, numbered edition of 750 copies. Size: 15!" x
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We offer another specialised service
MENT organised by librarians for
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ROAD TO ULUNDI. Crealock. A unique record of the Zulu War of
1879, consisting of 67 watercolour drawings by Lord Chelms­
ford's military secretary. An eye witness rendering of the drama
and humour of this campaign.
Lithographed, 36 pages in full colour, 12 pages in two­
colour plus an introduction by R. A. Brown. 43cm x
29cm. Limited numbered edition of 1 000 copies.
Supplied in a protective carton. R19,50
NATAL, 1837-1902. Sylvia Vietzen. In tracing the growth of
girls' schools from 1837-1902, the author sheds much light on
contemporary social attitudes and thougnt; she also shows the
origins of some of the strengths and weaknesses of the present
education system of this Province.
Only 100 copies printed. R10,50
mSTORY OF NATAL. Brookes & Webb. Definitive, detailed and
full of interest. Illustrated. R3,30
ZULU TRANSFORMATIONS. Vilakazi. A study by a Zulu of the
impact of Western thought and life styles on Christian and
Pagan Zulus and the differences in their response. Required
reading for anyone wanting a deeper understanding of Black
thought and custom. R2,25
Wright. Illustrated account of the Bushman hunter-gatherers,
of their contacts with the Bantu, their conflict with white
immigrants and their ultimate destruction. R7,50
work was printed and published in Durban in 1907 and was
long thought to be out of print. Recently a number of copies of
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P.O. Box 375, Pietermaritzburg 3201
Antiquariaat Konig
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The only major encyclopaedia devoted entirely to Southern Africa,
with special concentration on the Republic of South Africa.
The first ten volumes of the set of twelve volumes are now available.
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Captain AlIen F. Gardiner's Natal Journal for 1838 9
Sir Theophilus Shepstone and his local critics 13
Town and regional planning in Natal - R. A. Pistorius 27
A note on the centenary of a famous Natal School-
Speech by His Honour th" Administrator of Natal at
the opening of the Hall of Natal History at the Natal
Museum on 8th November 1972 . 36
Neville Nuttall . 32
History of the wattle industry in Natal - S. P. Sherry 40
The origins of the Natal Society; Chapter 2, 1845-1846
- U R M h ~ ~
Natal mission stations - R. A. Brown
R. A. Brown, 1. Clark and C. de B. Webb 52
C. de B. Webb . 59
R. A. Brown. 62
R. A. Brown, J. Clark 64
U. R M. Judd 68
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