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President M.J.e. Daly

Vice-Presidents Dr F.e. Friedlander
S.N. Roberts
Prof. e. de B. Webb
Trustees M.J.e. Daly
Miss P. A. Reid
S.N. Roberts
Fellow of the Natal Society Miss P.A. Reid
Treasurers Messrs Aiken & Peat
Auditors Messrs Thomton-Dibb,
Van der Leeuw and Partners
Director Mrs S. S. WaUis
Secretary P.e.G. McKenzie


Elected Members M.J.C. Daly (Chailman)

S.N. Roberts (Vice-Chairman)
W. G. Anderson
Prof. A. M. Barrett
T.B. Frost
J.M. Deane
Prof. W. R. Guest
Prof. e. de B. Webb
G.J.M. Smith
Ms P. A. Stabbins
City Council Representatives CUr 1. Balfour
CUr G.D. de Beer
CUr R.L. Gillooly (died January 1991)
ClIr Mrs J. Rosenberg


Editor T. B. Frost
Dr W.H. Bizley
M.H. Comrie
IM. Deane
G.A. Dominy
Miss J. Farrer
Prof. W. R. Guest
Mrs S.P.M. Spencer
Dr Sylvia Vietzen
D.J. Buckley (Hon. Secretary)
Natalia 21 (1991) Copyright © Natal Society Foundation 2010
Cover Picture
The first four professed Augustinidn sisters of Estcourt with Bishop lolivet
and Frs. Murray and Le Bras
(Photograph: Prof. .I.B. Brain)

SA ISSN 0085 3674

Published by Natal Society Library. P.O. Box 415, Pietennaritzburg 3200, South Africa

Typeset by the University of Natal Press

Prillted by The Natal Willless Priming alld Puhlishillg CO/llpallY (Pty) Lld


EDITORIAL. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5


The Early Chinese Mariners, Natal and the Future
David Willers . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 7

Colenso Letters
Brenda Nicholls 17

The Tradition of Hindu Firewalking in Natal
Alleyn Diesel .. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 31

The Influence of the Geology of Durban on the
Supply of Water from Wells to Early Settlers
T.E. Francis . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 40


The Centenary of the Augustinian Sisters in Natal

Joy B. Brain . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 54

Neville James . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 66

John McGregor Niven . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 68

Mhlabunzima Joseph Maphumulo . . . . . . . . . . . . 71


Moray Comrie . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 73

BOOK REVIEWS AND NOTICES ................. 85



INDEX: NATALlA NOS. 1-20 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

D.J. Buckley and M.P. Moher/y 96


With this issue Natalia enters its third decade. It is no reflection on the merit of
the articles in Natalia 21, however, to suggest that perhaps one of its greatest
values will prove to be the Index to the previous twenty volumes. A decade ago
we engaged in a similar exercise for the ten issues which had appeared at that
time. With the wondrous aid of the computer, that Index has now been enlarged
and updated. Even the most cursory perusal of it will reveal how extraordi­
narily wide has been the range of material covered by this journal. The
foundations of the Index were laid by David Buckley of the Natal Society. The
update has been most generously done as a labour of love by Margery Moberly,
until last year a member of its Editorial Board, and still a very good friend of
Natalia. Future researchers will be much in their debt.
The 1991 Natal Society Lecture by the Editor of the Natal Witness, David
Willers, took most of his hearers into the quite unknown field of the voyages of
Cheng Ho, the Columbus of ancient China, to the shores of eastern Africa in
the early fifteenth century. We are glad to be able to make it more widely
available in these pages.
For its previously unpublished piece, Natalia returns, for the third time in
twenty years, to the corpus of Colenso material, in this instance letters from the
Colenso daughters on the death of their famous father and the subsequent
disastrous fire at Bishopstowe (the latter theme not unfamiliar to a Natal
ravaged by fires in 1991). For the meticulous transcription and editing of these
documents we are grateful indeed to Miss Brenda Nicholls of Rhodes
University who, after a lifetime of study of the Colensos, is undoubtedly better
placed than anyone else to perform such a service.
Any suggestion that Natalia might be regarded as a purely historical journal
is countered by the nature of two of the three articles which we publish this
year: the influence of the geology of Durban on the supply of water from wells
to the early settlers, written by Dr Tim Francis of the Durban City Engineer's
Department, and the tradition of Hindu Firewalking in Natal, written by Ms
AlIeyn Diesel of the Department of Religious Studies at the University of Natal
in Pietermaritzburg. We are grateful to them for their contributions, as we are
to Professor Joy Brain, who retires at the end of 1991 as Head of the
Department of History at the University of Durban-Westville, and who has
written the history of the Augustinian sisters and the sanatoria which they
founded and ran in Natal as the latest offering to Natalia from her ongoing
research into Catholics and Indians.
In its Obituaries Natalia notes ~ith sadness the passing of Justice Neville
James, a distinguished former Chief Justice of Natal. The piece is written by
Michael Daly who, were he not President of the Natal Society and a successful
professional man in Pietermaritzburg, could undoubtedly have been an obitu­
ary writer for the Times in London. The sudden passing of Professor Jack

Niven, for whose Obituary we are grateful to Professor Robert Muir, Dean of
the Faculty of Education at the University of Natal in Pietermaritzburg, came
as a profound shock to his many friends, and not least to two members of the
Editorial Board who were colleagues at the Natal College of Education and
who had been at tea with him shortly before he was found dead on the floor of
his office. Chief Mhlabunzima Maphumulo was highly esteemed in the black
community, if the crowd which attended his funeral is any yardstick. His
assassination, disquieting as it was, was rendered doubly so in as much as it has
given rise to allegations, unproven at the time of writing, of involvement by
agencies of the state in instigating it and other incidents of violence. Natal is
the poorer for the passing of these of its most distinguished sons.
In the place of Ms Moberly, the Editorial Board has been joined by Dr Sylvia
Vietzen, Headmistress of Pietermaritzburg Girls' High School. Like Graham
Dominy, whose service began last year, she is a past contributor to Natalia and
their willing giving of their time and talents, busy schedules notwithstanding,
is much appreciated. June Farrer has been replaced as Minutes Secretary by
David Buckley.
The regular features of the journal, Notes and Queries, Book Reviews and
Notices, Select List of Recent Natal publications and Register of Research on
Natal appear as usual. We are grateful to the many who have contributed to
them, and trust that our readers will continue to find Natalia interesting fare.


The Natal Society Annual Lecture

Tuesday, 26 March 1991

The Early Chinese Mariners,

Natal and the Future
This is not a tale that aspires to any great scholarship, but rather the drawing
together of a few threads that have interested me. Natal comes into it, but not
only Natal; so do the Portuguese and so does the naval diplomacy of Cheng Ho,
the 'Columbus' of the Ming Chinese, whose ships visited southern Africa in
the first decades of the fifteenth century, fifty years and more before the
Portuguese discoverers. apparently rounding the Cape before Diaz.
The story of the seven Chinese sea voyages in the early 1400s, with Africa as
an objective, when the Indian Ocean became a virtual Chinese lake. gives us a
glimpse of an epic golden period before the European depredations and wars
which gave rise to centuries of colonialism. the last vestiges of which are only
now finally being erased with the end of apartheid.
It was not always peaceful in olden times in Africa of course; competition
for food and land and to get away from tropical raiders must have been behind
the original migrations of African people southwards from the equatorial rain
forests more than two thousand years ago. These migrations gradually moved
across the savanna until they reached what is today southern Africa.
The Matola tradition tells us that early iron age people were settled in Natal
near the coast by the third century AD as far south as modern Scottburgh. They
were pastoral and agricultural folk. trading peacefully with stone age hunter
gatherers. otherwise known as Bushmen or San people who lived in the
The early iron age came to an end, stylistically speaking, around AD900.
Then the late iron age commenced, and in Natal the coastal-dwelling Africans
began to penetrate the grasslands, sometimes supplementing the defences of
their villages with stone walls, choosing their environment more carefully,
practising slash and burn agriculture and moving around quite a bit, possibly
living in summer and winter grazing camps. The economy was typically
agro-pastoral, and from 1400 onwards the late iron age people of Natal were
culturally, linguistically and physically the direct ancestors of today's black
population. Their lives were essentially similar to the Nguni of the last century,
but they shared broad links culturally and linguistically with other black
southern African communities including those further north with whom the
Ming Chinese mariners had their first recorded contact in 1415.
So to that extent, and because Natal as a concept didn't exist, it is enough to
think of coastal east and southern Africa as part of the same seamless web with
common traditions and a similar language base; and in beaching on the coast at
Malindi before moving south, the Chinese had touched a nerve in a shared
world where news of these contacts would have reached the periphery by word
of mouth.
8 Early Chillese Mariners

By 1400, Natal was already fairly well populated with villages along the
coast made up of hemispherical huts of thatch and poles; presenting clusters of
human settlement on the green hillsides visually the same as the Natal
countryside of the nineteenth century; and Chinese ships sailing along this
coast would have looked at a landscape little different to that witnessed by the
early British settlers.
But the peaceful character of Natal was not destined to last forever. It
changed with the arrival of the Europeans, albeit over two or three centuries,
when the competition for resources grew fiercer, (conflict over grazing lands
being a typical aggravation, e.g. the decline of the Delagoa Bay ivory trade and
the rise in the trade in cattle) and the politics of southern Africa became
charged with patterns of oppression and counter oppression, occupation and
disoccupation, by both black and white, that last to this day.
Now that the European era is symbolically coming to an end, it would be
tempting, although simplistic to conclude that southern African history can
pick up as it were, where it was before the Portuguese ships, with sails like
knives, visited the continent.
But even if it cannot, it could mark a philosophic return nonetheless to that
gentler age when the only pre-European contact southern Africa had expe­
rienced was with the early Chinese whose extraordinarily peaceful seaborne
embassy in Africa left abiding memories, instilling in African coastal commu­
nities a sense of trust towards foreign elements which contrasted strongly with
the brutalities of the Portuguese as they sailed up the African coast pillaging
and looting in their primary effort to drive a dagger through the soft underbelly
of the Muslim world, whose Turkish leaders had, through their closure of
Constantinople, so recently and effectively blockaded the overland spice routes
to the East that had been followed since Marco Polo's time.
Today it might be argued that the inevitable African majority rule that will
follow F. W. de Klerk's policy changes must result in the 'disembarkation' of
the European presence that began not only when Vasco da Gama mapped
Natal, but when Bartholomew Diaz was claimed by the Europeans to be the
first man to sail around the Cape in 1488.
In fact modern scholarship suggests he was not.
Thanks to the new accessibility of Chinese archives after decades of having
been closed to Western scholars, it now appears we can go beyond all the
speculation about Arabs, Phoenicians and the like (which gave rise among
others to fanciful stories about the origin of the Brandberg White Lady) and
state with some certainty that the first non Africans to clap eyes on the famed
Table Mountain were the crew of a junk of the Chinese Imperial fleet who
doubled the Cape of Good Hope, not later than the seventh Ming expedition of
1431-3 to Africa, under the command of Admiral Cheng Ho, Grand Eunuch to
his Imperial Majesty, Emperor of the Great Ming, Yung Lo.
Recent scholarship by Dr Joseph Needham, sometime master of Gonville
and Caius college, Cambridge, and one of the most respected sinologists in the
world, suggests that the Chinese rounded the Cape, picked up an ostrich egg on
the way back for good measure and confirmed the only Chinese-produced and
accurate map of the east and west coasts of South Africa then in existence. This
was 57 years before the European discovery of the Cape and could have been
even earlier, perhaps during the four voyages made by Admiral Ho between
1409 and 1425.
His research suggests that that lone junk could have been driven down to the
Cape and beyond by a storm, the Aghullas ferociousness with which we are all
Early Chil1ese Maril1ers 9

familiar. It conjures up an extraordinarily vivid picture; the slatted sails furled,

the nine masts bare, the great ship, because they were great - some I 500
tons as opposed to the tiny 300 ton Portuguese caravels - heaving and rolling
in the spume-tossed sea with, in the distance, the flat cloud-covered brow of
old Tafelberg. Until at last, far out in the Atlantic off the shores of the south
western coast of Africa they were able to bring the great craft about, probably
with difficulty (although ships of Cheng Ho's fleet were able to sail much
closer to the wind than modern junks), and work their way back, perhaps with
the help of a following north westerly wind. After such an epic encounter with
the elements they would doubtless have made a landfall to make good their
craft, perhaps to reconnoitre the terrain and obtain fresh water and food,
although most of the Imperial junks grew their own vegetables on board and
had their own livestock for slaughter. The Chinese knew all about scurvy and
even cultivated limes at sea. What must the local Hottentots have made of such
a leviathan off the coast, the Emperor's crimson dragon banner
the wind! The mind boggles.
Given such a long journey down the east coast of Africa by a single ship of
the fleet, with the main Imperial presence at anchor at various times off what is
today Mozambique, it seems likely that others of Cheng Ho's complement
would have touched the Natal coast somewhere on this and previous expedi­
tions, where their contact with the locals, given what we know of Cheng Ho,
would have been peaceful and entirely in keeping with the Confucian ethic.
Certainly current scholarship is confident enough of this likelihood to have
included precise route maps showing a landfall in Natal close to where Vasco
da Gama landed. The difficulty has always been one of deciphering the
Chinese texts and the vagueness of their description of the coast south of
Sofala in Mozambique, but the premise is that landfalls were made somewhere
along this coast. Longer routes, such as the voyage to the Cape, have been
easier to establish by virtue of the navigational details provided.
The details of specific contacts with any indigenous Natalians are relatively
unimportant; what is important is that the Chinese between 1405 and 1433
were making contact with these Indian Ocean and African people united
locally from Great Zimbabwe down to Natal by common languages, skills and
traditions; iron age migrants who were commonly established when the
Chinese made their first African landfalls at Malindi and Mombasa, and later
Sofala, of which more later. The point about the Natal Africans with their
shared kinshi ps with cousins not far to the north is that their very presence in
this part of the world ensured that what we know as South Africa today cannot
be immune from the diplomatic impact of the early Chinese expeditions. The
coastal people of Natal were distant hosts to those Chinese, and. the saIt from
their table falls through the centuries to our own time.
Theirs was the relatively serene lifestyle described earlier, and it was
matched by life in China itself where the Ming period during the early decades
of the fifteenth century saw a dramatic flowering of the arts, the consolidation
of the Middle Kingdom and the most amazing feat of scholarship the world has
ever witnessed: the compilation of the Yung Lo Encyclopaedia. Between 1403
and 1407 some 2000 scholars compiled 22000 chapters in over II 000
volumes. Only three copies were made and the last of these was largely
destroyed by British troops during the sack of the Summer Palace in 1860. It
was during this amazing period, with a scientific, intellectual and tolerant
political revival in China that Admiral Cheng Ho turned the Indian Ocean
into his Chinese backwater for thirty years until 1433 when the era of
10 Early Chinese Mariners

maritime expansion came to an end with the drawing in of the Ming empire
after the reverses in Annam in 1427 caused the occupying Chinese forces to
withdraw and the northern frontier to shrink to the line of the Great Wall. The
great ships of Cheng Ho's fleet were destroyed and no junk with more than two
masts was henceforth permitted to sail off China,
But for three decades, and fifty years before the arrival of the Portuguese,
east and southern Africa knew an extraordinary window of diplomacy (though
from about the eighth or ninth centuries Islamic traders were regularly visiting
the east coast). The principal power in the Indian ocean was China and when
China left the region the Portuguese sailed into a classic power vacuum, but
one still marked by the footprints of Cheng Ho.
When the Portuguese arrived, people still remembered the Ming Chinese,
whose Indian Ocean story had begun with the appointment of Admiral Ho as
commander of the Chinese fleet by Emperor Yung Lo, who wished to revert
back to a state-controlled overseas trading system similar to that practised in
the period of the Two Sungs.
Cheng Ho, a physically and intellectually impressive man well over six feet
tall, was chosen to be admiral not only because of his extraordinary native
talents as an ambassador and mariner, but also because he was a eunuch, and
would as such not pose a threat to the Emperor by threatening usurpation. He
could, in other words be trusted with a powerful fleet.
Cheng Ho, born in Yunnan about 1371 of Mongol Muslim parents, (Ho
himself remained a Muslim all his life) had already made his name during the
campaigns in defence of the Great Wall against the Mongols during the 1390s
and in the Civil War of 1398 to 1402 against Yung Lo's nephew, Hui Ti, who
had been appointed Emperor by his Grandfather Hung Wu, founder of the
Ming dynasty. The war started in the first place because Hui Ti had been ill
advised by his court elders against his uncle, Yung Lo, of which more later.
We've already got a picture in our minds of the pastoral simplicity of the
Africans along the Natal coast and farther north. They would shortly be
meeting the emmisaries of a country, China under the Mings which, by 1404
was the most technically advanced in the world. A greater contrast cannot be
imagined. It is as though benevolent explorers from outer space had set foot on
another planet which, although not neccessarily backward, was technologically
out of step by a millenium or so.
Although it is fashionable to say that China was civilized when the rest of
Europe was still in skins, and the invention of gunpowder is frequently
advanced as an example of the disparity in knowledge, we are often not aware
of just how developed the Chinese were. A good example of the advanced state
of Chinese technology can be gauged by the fact that by the ninth century
already the Chinese had invented a manufacturing process allowing for the
reduction of zinc oxide and the consolidation of small particles of zinc. Pure
zinc does not occur in nature and can be obtained only by gasifying one of the
zinc ores and then condensing the gases in a separate container. The processes
can have an application in gold mining and Chinese zinc technology only
became known in the West as late as the eighteenth century. This is advanced
chemistry known by the Chinese nine hundred years before the Europeans.
Cheng Ho was instructed to build a fleet suitable for long-range ocean-going
voyages. He drew liberally on the vast technical expertise and wealth at his
disposal, and began construction of the first order for 250 ships on the
Yangtze river near Nankin. The nucleus of the fleet consisted of 62 junks, the
likes of which had never before been seen. They were so big that contemporary
Early Chinese Mariners 11

accounts of their size have been disbelieved by modern scholars until the
discovery in 1962 of a rudder post of one of these ships buried on a beach near
Nankin. It is twel ve metres long and is capable of steering a vessel of 160
metres long. The 62 flagships were 134 metres in length and 55 metres in
beam, with four decks, a hull divided into watertight bulkheads and buoyancy
chambers and nine masts. They were as big as modern cargo ships. Their sails
were technologically speaking brand new, being made from bamboo slats,
which allowed these huge craft to sail against the wind, something traditional
junks then and since have al ways found difficult. In fact the technology was
very similar to the multi-masted computer-controlled ships which are under
construction on an experimental basis in Europe today; their sails are also
rigid, being made from slatted alloys, and arranged in a fixed fashion junk rig
sty le.
The money for this immense exercise, equivalent to the Chinese of putting a
man on the moon for the Americans today, came from history's first known
privatization exercise when Yung Lo sold off the imperial hunting grounds to
farmers and landlords. In this way he was able to avoid financing the fleet by
raising taxes which could have been an unpopular move. In a sense he was
little different from a shipping magnate of today, an Aristotle Onassis of old
Each ship had a crew of 500 men and displaced 1 500 tons, and the smaller
junks that accompanied this nucleus were in themsel ves marvels of construc­
tion. As I've already mentioned, food was grown on board and livestock bred
and slaughtered. Under sail the fleet could maintain a speed of six or seven
knots, and were so finely balanced that oars were only necessary in absolute
windstill conditions. Compasses and stellar navigation ensured that they were
never lost, except when exploring completely unknown territory, and unlike
the Portuguese the Chinese had the courage to strike out of sight of land for
weeks at a time. In fact one suggested route for the Cape voyage shows a more
or less direct trip from Galle on the tip of India, skirting Madagascar, but
probably visiting Mauritius.
Cheng Ho was not exactly entering uncharted seas. The Ming Chinese had a
shrewd idea of what lay beyond the horizon because of earlier Chinese Mongol
voyages which were also remarkable in themselves and although it is not
recorded, could easily have explored the African coastline a century before
Cheng Ho. For example Ibn Batutah, [he great Arab traveller, described 13
junks of the Chinese Mongol navy anchored off Calicut midway up the West
coast of India in 1330, manned by a thousand men. The route from Calicut to
Malindi on the East African coast was already well known to Arab sailors by
then. and it takes little imagination to contemplate that a Mongol fleet could
have made the crossing at some time.
Be that as it may, the early voyages starting in 1404 saw Cheng Ho visit
South East Asia, Ceylon, India, Persia, the eastern coast of Africa as far south
as Zanzibar and Arabia. Champa. Java, Malacca and various Indian Ocean
islands were also visited during the third voyage from 1409 to 1411 (30 000
troops, 48 big junks), During these voyages Cheng Ho traded for precious
foreign goods including rhinoceros horn and gold with the only currency then
permitted in China to be used to pay for imports, namely silk, brocades and
porcelain. Porcelain was prized everywhere and details are recorded of
porcelain being used as a medium of barter in places as far apart as East Africa
and Borneo. This is one of the reasons why so much early Ming porcelain has
been discovered in the Indian Ocean basin including the Zimbabwe ruins. It
12 Early Chinese Mariners

was simply used as an alternative currency. Indeed porcelain, much of it of

good quality, remained a major item of trade around the Cape until the
nineteenth century.
In 1415 a singular event occurred when the Sultan of Malindi, the ruler of
the Zinz empire centered around what is today Mombasa, sent an embassy to
China with the fourth fleet with various gifts including a magnificent giraffe
and what are thought to have been a zebra and an oryx. So touched was
Emperor Yung Lo that the ambassadors were escorted all the way home on the
fifth voyage of Cheng Ho of 14l7-19, which is believed to have been the
voyage which saw the Chinese fleet move farther south to Sofala and beyond,
very possibly to Natal. As one Chinese author put it:

How different the Ming expeditions were from those of the Portuguese.
Instead of pillaging the coastline, slaving, seeking to establish colonies
and monopolize international trade, the Chinese fleets were engaged on
an elaborate series of diplomatic missions, exchanging gifts with distant
kings from whom they were content to accept formal overlordship of the
son of Heaven. There was neither intolerance of other religious beliefs
nor the search for one's personal fortune in the discovery of Eldorado.

A stele dated February 15, 1409, in Chinese, Persian and Tamil was set up
by Cheng Ho at Galle in southern India (from where one of the ships was
thought to have set off for the Cape). It reads in part:

His Imperial Majesty, Emperor of the Great Ming, has despatched the
Grand Eunuchs Cheng Ho, Wang Ching Lien and others to set forth his
utterances before the Lord Buddha, the world-honoured one ... Of late
we have despatched missions to announce our Mandate to foreign
nations, and during their journeys over the oceans they have been
favoured with the blessing of thy beneficient protection. They have
escaped disaster or misfortune, journeying in safety to and fro, ever
guided by thy great virtue.

What an extraordinary thing to pay homage in this way, one religion to

another, all those years ago. What depth and maturity of understanding of other
people's cultures this shows. And so we have a picture in our minds of the
Chinese arriving in Africa, bearing gifts, behaving courteously and being well
In the new year 1498, Vasco da Gama forged on from Natal to Malindi,
arriving at the exact spot visited by Cheng Ho fifty years before. Everywhere
the Portuguese heard puzzling tales of earlier visits by strange ships with many
masts, crewed by people with strange clothes speaking in a language totally
After Malindi an Arab pilot guided da Gama on to India where he made a
landfall at Calicut in May 1498. He sailed for Portugal laden with spices and
returned by the same route in 1502 (a year after Bartholomew Diaz drowned in
a storm off the coast of South Africa) to pillage African and Indian ports,
ostensibly in revenge for the ill-treatment of Portuguese traders, but in reality
because the Portuguese national resources were so run down they had nothing
worth trading with. Without manufactured goods to exchange for the desired
spices and silks, in contrast to the beautiful goods the Chinese imperial envoys
were able so freely to distribute, the Portuguese were obliged to seize by force
what they wanted.
Early Chinese Mariners 13

Terror was fundamental to their authority; however it was justified as

righteous contlict with the heathen. No quarter was given in combat and
treatment of prisoners was ruthless. The conquistadores pursued scope
for personal riches, a potent drive to acquire an adequate return for the
enduring dangers of battle and voyage that the distant authorities in
Lisbon were unable to control.

Vasco da Gama has a reputation as a cruel man. The landscape was blasted
by his cannon; a favourite trick of the Portuguese captains was to fire the
severed limbs of captured Africans into villages along the coast as an
inducement to subservient behaviour. To those areas brought under Christian
rule the Portuguese transplanted the awful symbol of their rejection of other
creeds and beliefs: the Holy Inquisition. What a juxtaposition this tyrannical
behaviour was with that of the Chinese Admirals who made a positive point of
discoursing about the religious beliefs of the people of the southern countries
without foresaking the basic teachings of the Chinese sages.
It is difficult to convey the gravity of the closure of the land spice routes in
the fifteenth century to a modern audience that thinks of pepper as something
to put on one's Avocado Ritz. But to the meat-loving Europeans it was a crisis
equi valent to, say, the cutting off of petrol today, and in a sense the Americans
are doing in the Gulf only what Vasco da Gama set out to do five hundred years
ago. And in the same way that the UN allies have triggered off Islamic
fundamental perceptions of a colonial Western occupation of the heartland of
the Islamic world that must needs be brief, so the arrival and now symbolic
departure, given tangible shape through capital divestment, of the Europeans in
Africa, is the end of a precise chapter which leaves the Africans to get on with
lives otherwise interrupted by this interregnum. As modern European scholars
are increasingly wont to say about Africa, we came, we saw, we conquered and
now we're buzzing off!
The Chinese chapter in Africa marked the end of a willingness by the Mings
to interact with the wider world; for centuries, ever since Cheng Ho's last
voyage, China was closed, and out of step with the world. The northern frontier
retreated to the Great Wall after military reverses which made it very difficult
for travellers from w~stern latitudes to reach China overland. In China itself
the Grand Canal and other inland waterworks were completed and absorbed
shipbuilding capacity, and the era of Chinese maritime reconaissance came to
an end after only thirty years. It is only comparatively recently that China is
again reaching out, and it seems to me entirely logical that we should pick up
the threads of the Chinese rediscovery of Africa today from the hem of those
last years of the Ming experience in the Indian ocean.
Why did the Chinese decide to undertake their naval expeditions in the first
place? Was it to ward off Mongol invasion by sea? Or to develop sea trade
routes now that land trade routes had dwindled? Or to import drugs and other
precious items including gold? Or to puff up the Emperor and show people
what a fine fellow he was? The economic reasons we know were connected
with Yung Lo's intention to reassert Chinese authority in the southern ocean
after the Mongols and to return to the state-controlled trading system of the
Two Sungs. But we also know now that another primary motive was to search
out the Yung Lo's emperor's nephew Hui Ti, who disappeared after his uncle
had sacked Nankin and defeated his armies.
For years people believed Hui Ti, the only Ming emperor not to have a tomb,
to have lived a secret life as a monk. In fact 40 years after the fall of Nankin a
14 Early Chinese Mariners

monk did emerge and claim to be the deposed emperor; he was imprisoned in
comfort for a year and then died. But Dr Needham has produced evidence
showing that Hui Ti may have fled Nankin by ship and disappeared into the
vastness of the Indian Ocean. Trade with the Arabs and Persians had already
taught the Chinese much geography as we have seen, and the adoption of the
compass by the Chinese long before the Europeans enhanced their navigational
skills, so Hui Ti could well have had a junk equipped with Arab guide and
competent crew. Since we know the political motive for Cheng Ho's voyages
was in part to 'search for his traces' and because we know the frightened
twenty year old boy was prepared to go to the ends of the earth to escape death
at the hands of his usurping uncle, although in truth he probably had little to
fear; and since both modern technology in the form of ships, charts and
navigation knowledge of the coasts of Africa as far as Sofala, gateway to Great
Zimbabwe was available to his advisors, there was no reason why he should
not have eventually fetched up at the southernmost points of the compass,
including those visited in southern Africa by Cheng Ho.
A few words about Hui Ti are necessary to allow our imagination to fill out
the human gaps.
Our story really begins in 1369 when the first of the great Mings, Hongwou,
became emperor a year after the Mongols were driven from China. Hongwou
had fought a brilliant campaign with the trusted General Suta at his side,
igniting in the Chinese people a form of early nationalism and driving a spike
into Mongol morale, already sapped after the death of the greatest Khan of all,
Kublai. The great palace at Xanadu had rapidly decayed, although Hongwou
refused to permit its destruction by the victorious Imperial troops. But it was
symptomatic nonetheless of the temporariness of the Mongol occupation of
China that its walls, without attention, were soon eroded by the relentless icy
blast of the winds from the northern plain.
Hongwou was an inspired leader of his people after the barren corruption,
degeneration and Lama lawlessness of the Mongol Yuan dynasty. The Yuans
had promoted military rule as the centrepiece of their system of government
and for more than a century the Chinese people lived under what amounted to
martial law. Hongwou was determined to restore civil government. He
downgraded the status of the army, which had exalted the military class, and
although he would continue to need his troops to maintain order, Hongwou
would not make his army the sole prop of his power and basis of his authority.
This was why he and indeed his ultimate successor the Yung Lo emperor dealt
only through the kind of men that every nation throws up from time to time,
men of the highest integrity and ability, like General Suta on land and Admiral
Cheng Ho later at sea.
Above all the Emperor was keenly aware that, at bottom, he was dealing
with a nation of shopkeepers who desired only peace in order to return the
country to prosperity. To retain the affection of his subjects he was to introduce
impartial justice and fair taxation and restore standards of education, neglected
during the Mongol occupation. He was the first ruler ever to introduce modern
state care for the elderly .
• he new Ming emperor decided to isolate his country from external
influence even more than the Mongols had done. His motive was principally
economic but also partly political. The Mongol government had stopped
Chinese merchants from travelling abroad to trade. The ban was later extended
to dealing with foreigners who visited China. When Hongwou took over from
the Mongols he converted this system into one in which foreign trade would be
Early Chinese Mariners 15

permitted only with countries acknowledging China's sovereignty. In other

words, tributary trade. Gradually, as the years passed a general philosophy was
formulated that granting trade to Barbarians was a favour and that trade should
be engaged in only when it could be used to manipulate foreigners in order to
control them.
Although Hongwou was not to know this, it was this perception of the limits
of China's ability to control the Barbarians through trade alone, the further
Cheng Ho's voyages enlightened the Ming Court as to the extent of the known
world, which undermined whatever Chinese enthusiasm there may have been
to continue the voyages after the seventh, when the principal sponsor, the
Emperor Yung Lo, was already dead.
Again, as we examine some of the other problems which were to confront
Hongwou, we are struck by the sophistication of Chinese society and economy
when compared with the pastoral simplicity of coastal Natal, a good paradigm
for much of east Africa which the Chinese would soon be visiting. During this
period, for example, it is difficult to contemplate currency and inflation
problems preoccupying the good folk of Natal overmuch in the late fourteenth
century. Yet this was one of Hongwou' s most pressing problems, and his
position and indeed response was little different from that of a modern central
banker. The nub of the problem was that the Mongols had recklessly issued
inconvertible notes and insisted that only paper money be used in commerce.
Contract prices could only be determined by Mongol paper money and traders
were forbidden on pain of death from using gold, silver, silk or other precious
barter goods to effect a means of exchange. Economic crimes were taken as
seriously then as they were during the worst excesses of the Communist
Chinese reign. But there was little to back this paper money up, nothing in the
Mongol reserves, and with paper money losing its value day by day, the
average trader began using silk thread as an alternative money, but because the
value of the thread was dependent upon market conditions, ultimately, unlike
gold and silver, lawsuits were frequent.
When Hongwou came to power he was confronted with a good old fashioned
liquidity crisis, with inadequate stocks of gold and silver in the central vaults to
buttress the value of the new paper money he began issuing to replace that of
the Mongols. The shortage of gold and silver led to a geological search on a
grand scale for new mines and new technologies, for example zinc making as a
refining process in gold extraction, were developed. But the deficiencies in
gold and silver were very definitely one of the reasons why the Yung Lo
emperor was prepared to invest so much in Cheng Ho's voyages. It was his
hope that gold would be discovered abroad.
China in those days had a population of sixty million people, some fifteen
percent inflation annually and a war-ravaged economy. Through fiscal pru­
dence inflation was eventually reduced somewhat, the currency gained value as
a result and the coffers were further replenished through wise tax policy. Peace
returned to China and prosperity gradually filtered down to all classes of the
But the Mongols continued to be a problem even after their defeat. It took
twenty years of unprecedented slaughter before General Suta finally defeated
the cruel Mongol general Arpuha. In the meanwhile Chinese authority was
gradually consolidated for the first time beyond the Great Wall over the
wilderness approaches to the principal trade route with Turkestan and the
West. It was a mediaeval version of defence in depth. The Mongols left their
mark on history. In Hochow, a city of tens of thousands, rather than allow its
16 Early Chinese Mariners

citizens to live under the advancing Chinese, the retreating Mongol army
slaughtered every man, woman and child. Confronted with these thousands of
rotting corpses, the eerie wastelands around them, the desert winds howling
through the ramparts of the ghost city, the Chinese army almost lost heart, but
eventually stilyed on to repopulate the once prosperous centre.
In 1389, general Suta returned to Nankin as Governor to the Prince Imperial.
There he died when he was only 54 years old, thirty of them spent under arms,
a Generals general. He had conquered a capital, three provinces, several
hundreds of towns and his departure was keenly felt, not only by Emperor
Hong Wou, then 63, but also by an eight year old boy, Hui Ti, son of Hong
Wou's eldest son and natural heir who had died of a sudden disease.
After these events the heart seemed to leave the old man, but he ruled on for
another nine years before dying in 1398. At this point the seventeen year old
Hui Ti (also known as Chu Yun Wen) became emperor in accordance with the
Ancestral Admonition, the dynasty's house law.
At this point enter the uncles. Without going into detail, it was clear from old
Hong Wou's instructions that Hui Ti, the grandson, was also his preferred heir
because the old man was afraid his surviving sons would squabble over the
empire. In fact they accepted Hui Ti initially until it became clear that the
young man was being ill-advised by his father's old court retainers who had
ambitions of their own. Against his will Hui Ti was persuaded to arrest some
uncles, bankrupt others and so on until eventually he found himself locked in a
civil war with his eldest uncle Chu Ti, who later became the Yung Lo emperor
responsible for Cheng Ho's voyages.
Hui Ti's uncle wrote to him frequently warning him against his advisers, but
the letters were either intercepted 'or the boy was overawed by them because
eventually there was nothing for it but to prosecute the civil war in a manner
which devastated China. Finally Hui Ti's uncle cornered the boy Emperor in
Nankin which was besieged and burnt. Hui Ti disappeared as we already know,
but what we assume, because of the correspondence between uncle and
nephew, is that the new Yung Lo emperor, while wishing to apprehend Hui Ti
because he still provided a potential rallying point for dissenters, also had his
well-being at heart. Certainly Cheng Ho would have been part of the
picture ... hence the admonition to search the oceans everywhere until the
young man was apprehended.
So in conclusion, we can see in our mind's eye a time not long before the
arrival of the Europeans when southern Africans, and those in Natal, going by
the research of scholars in Pietermaritzburg, lived peaceful lives, coexisting in
a seamless web of interaction with their fellows to the north in what is present
day Mozambique, Zimbabwe and Tanzania; and being touched in turn by the
Chinese whose story from 1395 to 1435 when the Mings destroyed their great
fleet, permitting no junk at sea with more than two masts, is both riveting and
poignant. For the Chinese it was an extraordinary lapping at the edges of
another world they had yet to know, thirty brief years which saw them
criss-cross the Indian ocean and leave their foot prints on the shores of Africa,
as discreet as visitors from outer space, to be found fifty years later by the first
European explorers who had rounded the Cape.

Needham, Joseph. Science and Cil'ili:ation in China, Vol.4 Part 3.


Colenso Letters

I ntroductioll
The letters selected for publication deal with two events of crucial significance for the Colensos as a
family: the death of Bishop Colenso in June 1883 and the destruction of the family home at
Bishopstowe/Ekhukanyeni in September 1884. Two letters are written by Frances Ellen Colcnso
(1849-1887) who died at Vent nor, on the Isle of Wight, and the third by Harriette Emily Colenso
(1847-1932). the eldest and the longest-lived of the Colenso family.
None of the Colenso children was horn at Bishopstowe. Four were born in Britain while /\gnes
Mary. Ihe youngest. was born in Pietermaritzburg, shortly before the newly-arrived family of Natal's
first bishop moved into the newly-built home at Bishopstowe. Some memories of Forncelt in Norfolk
lingered. among them of strawberries tossed by their father to the young Frances ElIen and her liltle
brother Robert as they stood obediently on dry ground in the garden; but Bishopstowc was the family
home where the Colensos grew up. It was from the quaint house here that they rodc into
Pietermaritzburg for visits to Government House. balls and bazaars or, in the case of the boys, lessons
from one of their father's clergy. while the Bishop himself rode into town at least once a week for
services at St Peter's, or left Bishopstowc to travel about his diocese. For all there were picnics on
Table Mountain and visits further afield.
Childhood in Natal was interrupted when their father, taking his family with him. went to Britain to
seek support for his theological views and ecclesiastical position. The visit was important for all the
Colensos. For the older girls there was the experience of school days at Winnington Hall where John
Ruskin taught art and where friendships were formed. In England Charles Bunyon, their maternal
uncle, was the main representative of Colenso interest until the Co1enso sons went to England to
study and then to settle. Charles Bunyon was relatively prosperous and helpful. but the Colensos
realized that there were limits to the affection between the wealthy, evangelical and London-based
Bunyons and the rather more straitened. unorthodox and colonial Colensos. Mrs K. M. Lyell,
sister-in-law of the geologist Sir Charles Lyel!. and a woman of talent and means, was probably the
most important of their English friends both to the Bishop and his wife and to their children. Many
distinguished people supported Colenso in the 1860s when significant judicial decisions were made,
and the family was drawn into the social life of some of the intellectual elite of London. The Colensos
returned to Natal in 1865.
A few years later the family began to disperse. In 1869 the sons, Frank and Rober!. went to
England for higher education at Cambridge and Oxford respectively, and for professional training,
Frank as a lawyer and Rober! as a doctor. They were away for ahout a decade. Each returned to Natal,
hoping to remain permanently. But Frank's fiancee would not come to Natal, and he returned to
Britain to marry. carve out a career as an actuary, and rear his own family. Robert John did not
establish himself successfully either in Natal or on the Witwatersrand and he returned to Britain in
about 1890,
Franccs Ellen accompanied her brother to Britain in 1869 hut only for a short visit, for she returned
in 1870, being chaperoned by Bishop Wilkinson, the Church of the Province of South Africa Bishop
of Zululand. She visited Britain again in 1879 accompanying Frank on his return from Natal. She
at)ended some classes at the Slade School and paid a visit to Rome. returning to Natal in 1881. She
went back to England in 1886 where she died after a short stay. Harrielle. for all her intellectual gifts,
did not receive the opportunities for higher education afforded her brothers: family resources were
too limited for so radical a step to he considered. But, since both her brothers were away from home,
it was natural th1t she should draw closer to her father, accompanying him on his episcopal
visitations. and supporting him in his political confrontations with the authorities over the fate of
Langaliba1ele anclthe injustices of Britain's Zulu policy. Agnes Mary Colenso was throughout her
18 Colenso Letters

life the loving and able supporter of those in the family who played a more public role. while ready to
take the initiative herself when necessary.
For Frances Ellen the years I RR3 and I R84 belonged to a very unhappy period. There had been an
early close friendship that ended in separation, and by 1873 she was in love with Col. Anthony
William Durnford who. committed to an unhappy marriage. could not give her the fulfilling
relationship she sought. As . Atherton Wylde' she wrote My Chief and I in honour of Durnford when.
as commander of the force sent to pursue Langalibalele, he was blamed for the colonial deaths that
occurred in the Bushman's River Pass. Isandlwana was a tragic turning point in her life. Her physical
strength was eroded by the tuberculosis contracted while nursing a sick soldier in Pietermaritzburg
and she grieved deeply for Durnford. But she devoted energy. emotional intensity and intellectual
concentration to defending his reputation from what she believed was the unjustified blame for
Isandlwana. With Anthony's brother Edward. she wrote A History of the Zulu War and its Origin, and
she collaborated with him in the composition of A Soldier's life in south east Afri('a, a memoir of the
latc Col. A. W. DUr1!ford. Her friendship with Edward. himself a married man. grew too intense for
comfort. She undertook her last book. the two-volume The Ruin of Zululand. on her father's
suggestion and it contains many references to Isandlwana. Convinced that Durnford was the victim of
a conspiracy of silence and calumny, Frances Ellen believed that Offy Shepstone had stolen papers
from the body of Durnford which. if recovered. would show quite clearly that Durnford had not
received specific orders to take command. of the camp. She pursued tangled, probably inconclusive
and possibly irrelevant evidence on this point, and did so with a frightening intensity until her
Allusions to political and ecclesiastical matters occur in the text. At the time the letters were
written Zululand was in a state of chaos and uncertainty as civil conflicts continued after January
1883 when Cetshwayo returned to a mockery of his former position, and the situation was
exacerbated after Cetshwayo's death in February 1884 by the intrusion of white landgrabbers. In
regard to Church affairs the death of Bishop Colenso raised the formidable questions of a successor to
him and of how the property he had held was to be controlled.
These three letters are among the papers of Frank Colenso which. having been preserved by his
widow and his daughter. were donated to the Rhodes House Library. Oxford. in 1967. The permission
of the Librarian to publish these letters is gratefully acknowledged. I have also to thank members of
the Editorial Board of Natalia. Mrs Shelagh Spencer and Dr Sylvia Vietzen. for specific information
incorporated in the footnotes.
Alterations to the text have been kept to a minimum. Changes to punctuation are so slight that they
have not always been indicated and. in the interests of easy communication. the ampersands and the
Colenso abbreviations have been replaced by 'and' and the full version of the words abbreviated in
the original text. For the 1110st part. however. the Colensos speak for themselves.


Bishopstowe June 24, 83

My poor darling Brother l I am thinking a great deal of you through this almost
unendurable time of sorrow for us all. It is so hard on you to be away, and I
know how much you will feel that besides the grief and loss which we all share.
Still I almost think that it was harder still for me to have been so near and yet
too late. I see Mama has said something of that - but in point of fact it must
have been just her own feeling that I had been 'wronged' and therefore must
feel it so, for I never said a word of the sort and if I blame anyone it is Dr Scott2
and the man in town who is paid to post our letters daily and apparently does it
at his own convenience. I must tell you just what I know for you will wish to
hear all that can be said about our dreadful loss. For the last 6 months we seem
each to have been secretly anxious about him. All the while I was painting him
I used to feel as though the lovely soul was daily shining more and more
through the earthly form. and I think almost every loving look one has cast
upon him has been accompanied by a momentary thrill of pain - hastily
pushed away as foolish and needless. It has been rather the thought of what a
Colenso Letters 19

dreary blank the world would be were this to be which now is, than actual
anxiety. For though very thin and tired looking he seemed wonderfully to keep
his health, and my feeling always was 'when once the Zulu business is happily
over he will rest - both heart and mind,' and here I must tell you how very
much pleased he was with your late literary and political efforts. I don't think
you could have done anything to please him more, and I am very very glad you
did it, for your sake as well as because it was a good and right thing to be
But to go back to my miserable tale, (my part in it truly so) he went down to
Durban on May 30, my birthday, and I was to have gone with him, but was not
well enough, and for various reasons decided to go a week later. I was to stay
away till Sept. It so happened that I went down at last the very day he came up.
We knew it beforehand, but it so happened that it could not be helped. Our 2
trains stopped at the way house together for a few moments, just long
enough for us to exchange greetings from our windows, unfortunately not
opposite each other by some 4 or 5, and for me to have one look - my last ­
at his blessed white head. That thought did cross my mind as we passed on but
only in the form of . Suppose that were my last sight of him how should I bear
it!' but of course I had no slightest reason for really fearing it except because it
would be so dreadful. When I got to Durban I heard from Rob' that our darling
Father had had a touch of coast-fever down there, but that he was better when
he started and Rob had treated him and was certainly not alarmed, and both he
and I were relieved when our next letters from Bishopstowe gave good
accounts. So a fortnight ... passed, and I got comfortably settled in my winter
quarters, feeling sure that Papa would manage to come and see me in the
middle of the time.
But on a Tuesday morning - only last Tuesday, the 19th, I got letters from
home written on Saturday night, and which ought to have reached me the day
before. Harrie 4 wrote, saying he was not well and they had decided to ask Dr
Scott to come and see him next day, Sunday, on w\1ich day H. added a p.s. to
the same effect. But though anxious they were not then when they wrote
alarmed, nor do I think we in Durban should have been but for our having had
no later news and Rob's not having heard from Dr Scott. Rob at once
telegraphed to Dr Scott for information, but the reply was rather uncertain, and
mentioned that the sender was writing. This did not look urgent you see, and
though Rob said that he should go up, it was already too late for that
afternoon's train, and no passenger train left again before 8 next morning.
Meanwhile I also telegraphed on my own account to Dr Scott (who is my
medical attendant) charging him to telegraph for me if there was any danger.
About 7 p.m. came another telegram from Dr Scott asking Rob to come up by
the night luggage train, but making no mention of me. Now I find that poor
Harrie specially asked Dr Scott to send for me also, but he did not do so. I
suppose he thought that any alarm would bring us both but he should have
remembered that I was not situated like other people. In Durban I was under
Rob's medical control, and as there could be no doubt that a sudden night
journey into a colder atmosphere and without travelling conveniences would
be a great risk for me, he might have been sure that nothing short of the full
alarm would induce Rob to bring me. As it was Rob wished me to wait, not
only for the morning train, but until he telegraphed for me, which could not be
until the afternoon. In fact he was not sure from the telegrams whether there
was immediate danger or not, or whether Dr S. was merely nervous about the
responsibility etc. So, though Rob told me that I must decide for myself, he
20 Colenso Letters

plainly thought that I ought to be patient and wait, and not risk getting ill, and
making them all unhappy, perhaps without need. I am thankful to say that Rob
and all of them say that if they had known the dreadful blow that was coming,
they would not have dreamt of keeping me away, feeling with me that nothing
could be so terrible an injury as to be too late to see him. So Rob went off by
the 2 a.m. train and I felt that right or wrong, I could not stay behind, so I
started after him by the first morning train, which should have reached
Maritzburg at 2 p.m. but was nearly -} an hour late. All the way up - six
hours - I was feeling gUilty and fearing it was selfish of me to come, but
now that Rob was with him I don't think that I felt frightened until just that last
half hour which happened to be beyond the time. I had telegraphed to Mr
Egner5 to provide a trap for me for I did [not] want to trouble them out here
or - in case I was doing wrong to come - for them to know it till I reached
home. But meanwhile during the 6 hours I was in the train I had been sent for at
last and Emil 6 had telegraphed back to say that I was on the way. So at the
P.M.B. station I found Dr Scott to meet me and Mr Egner, and a trap with a pair
of large, fast horses. I knew from all their looks that the great fear of our lives
was coming near, although Dr Scott's words were not hopeless - only that he
was better in one way, but not so well in another. It was rather the extreme care
and tenderness with which he looked after and cared for me than anything else
that made me feel sure he had no hope. He was not coming out here with me
but Mr Egner was and also Mr. Gallway? [sic] whom we picked up in town by
his request to Mr Egner. As we left the station the latter began to talk of Papa of
how he had been in on Thursday - and so on and I just told him I could not
talk of him if I were to get home and then Mr. Gallway [sic] came up and began
'the accounts are better today,' but I had said hurriedly to Mr Egner 'for God's
sake tell him not talk to me of my Father' (I don't use such expressions
naturally, but it seemed like some-one else speaking, outside myself) and so
Mr Egner somehow managed to stop him, and we drove out, very fast, yet it
seemed an age, and almost silent, I quite. Frank, it seemed to me that I had
leapt back 4 years in an hour, and that it was again that day - the 24th Jan. 79,
when I drove the other way, but in just the same swift, tardy silence, and with
just the same terror, and almost certainty of the worst, yet clinging desperately
to one gleam of hope K• I felt sure that we were soon to lose our darling Father,
but I did not for a moment dream that he was already gone. It was two o'clock
when all was over, and as they watched his parting breath, our dear Harrie
(Mother tells me) said softly 'Oh! poor Frances!' Poor indeed to have lost the
last look and word, to have been but just too late. I would have given all the
rest of my life to have been just two hours sooner. He knew and recognized
Rob, but had hardly strength to speak. Only on Saturday did he begin to be ill
(as far as anyone knew that is - he was too patient and enduring), only on
Tuesday did Dr Scott tell them there was danger, and on Wednesday all was
over. Oh! Frank! he did look so very, very beautiful next day, it was hard to
tear oneself away from gazing upon him. It seemed as though all the lovely
qualities of mind and heart which he possessed in life were traced on every
feature of his beloved face. How are we to live without him. At least we have
not to say what is often said 'We did not know how dear' a lost one was till too
late for he has been the very light of our existence for years. Harrie and Agnes 9
have never had any interest in life apart from him, while to me my Father has
been the great comfort of my life and for his sake I have cared to live. You will
want to know how we all are. Poor dear Mother is very brave and good, but I
think she feels that for her the separation is only for a little while, and that it
Colenso Letters 21

will not be very long before she is once more with the Beloved One who for
nearly 40 years has been all the world to her. I feel as though we ought not to
wish to keep her. Yet she is not ill though always very frail and weak. 10 We can
hardly tell yet how she will be. As to our dear Harrie, she is wonderful, truly
she is worthy to be his daughter, and no more can be said than that! Though to
her the loss is so very very great, she does everything - thinks of, and for us
all, and most of all of everything that he would wish and of carrying on his
work. I do not think she has faltered or spared herself for one hour, and she
never shrinks from any duty, great or small. She sets us a noble example which
Agnes follows gallantly, and I more halting and far behind, try at least to keep
in sight of her. She went with Rob on Friday whe~ they laid the mortal remains
of our darling Father to rest beneath the stones just in front of the Communion
Table, on which he stood to give the blessing for so many years. They say that
nearly 4,000 people were present, and at least the universal sorrow is the best
answer to all the old false tongues against him. I cannot write more to-night but
will do so next mail.
I am my darling Brother your loving sister, my dearest love to my sweet
sister, Nelly.11

1. Francis Ernest Colenso (1852-1910) second son of John WiJliam Colcnso, then an actuary
living in Norwich. He supported the political and religious Colenso causes in Britain.
2. Presumably Dr W.J. Scott. M.B.C.M.
3. Robert John Colenso (I R50-1925) elder son of John William Colcnso, a medical doctor at the
time at Palmhurst, Beach Grove, Durban. His qualifications are listed as M.A., B.M. Oxon,
M.R.C.S. Eng, M.A. Capetown.
4. Harriette Emily Colenso (1847-1932).
5. J. M. Egner, general dealer of Pietermaritzburg, churchwarden of St Peter's, member of the
Church Council of the Church of England in Natal, later a curator of the properties of the
Church of England.
6. Emil (or Emily) Colenso (nee Kerr) wife of Robert John Colenso, born in Canada of Scottish
7. Michael Gallwey (1826-1912) attorney general and subsequently chief justice of Natal, friend
and adviser of Bishop Colenso although a Roman Catholic.
8. She recalled the drive from Bishopstowe into Pietermaritzburg when first reports of Isandlwana
were recei ved.
9. Agnes Mary Colenso (1855-1932).
10. Sarah Frances Colcnso (1816-1893) survived her husband for more than ten years dying in
December, 1893.
11. Frances Ellen signed in the diminutive of her name which she preferred although 'Fanny' was
the form used by her parents.
22 Colenso Letters

[H.E. Colenso added an unsigned postscript to her sister's letter of 24 June


My darling Frank,

I send you all the Newspapers but please let Mr Chesson 12 see them. He sees
only the Witness.

[The following addition is either a sequel to Frances Ellen's letter of 24 June

1883 or a separate undated letter, probably of July 1883.]

Dear Sophie - dear, dear Sophie, I wish I were with you. There! that is a
tribute to the real sympathy which I feel exists between you and me which no
less spontaneous, 'unintended' utterance could have told. I got up to write it
from where I was sitting, just reading an idle, but pretty, book which I had
taken up toforget for a little while, and I came upon the mention of your name
'Sophie' - no more, nothing further to remind me of you, not the heroine, but
just the mere passing mention of 'that pretty girl in blue and ... M. Sophie
etc.' So it was just the mere name at the moment that sent my thoughts home to
you. But I was reading darling Frank's last letter to Mama, and his account of
'Eothen's'13 birth not an hour ago, so it is not very wonderful that my thoughts
should easily revert to you. My darling, I am so thankful that you should have
this comfort just now when both your own loving nature, which made you love
our Father, without seeing him, and your sharing of our poor Frank's sorrow,
will have made such comfort more than ever needful to you. One of our first
thoughts when all was over was the hope that the dreadful news would not
reach you until your time of weakness should be over. .
8th. Dear, I meant to write you a long letter, but I have been too unwell these
last few days to do anything in that way, so you must forgive me for another
week. It is one of our few comforts that our darling Frank has you and the little
one to help him through this grievous time. I have written so much to him, in
my mind, these weeks that I cannot feel sure what I have said, or have not said
on paper, and now I am only sending this scrap. Do not be anxious about me,
dears. We can't any of us be very well just now, but I don't think my lung is
any worse. I like your little daughter's name, and think it suitable for is she not
the light in the east, the dawn to you and Frank, of I trust, a very long bright day
of new happiness to come?
Goodbye my darling brother and sister, and blessing on your little one,
from your most loving

Next week I will write to you at length, and I hope also to send home the first
part of what I am writing on Zulu matters, 14 which he set me to do, the last time
he spoke to me, and which I am, therefore, all the more anxious to do well. It is
difficult to begin anything, yet it is our only comfort to do what he wished
done. I have this, (of which I will tell you fully next time) and also his Zulu
dictionary proofs to correct. I was doing that, under him, before I went to
Durban, and now I am going on by myself. Davis had bought this edition from
him, and was glad to accept our offer that I should finish the correction. 15 It is
nearly 3 hours work each time but they don't send them every day.
Colenso Letters 23

12. F. W. Chesson (1833/4-1888) journalist and secretary of the Aborigines Protection Society.
13. Eothen (I 883-c. 1976). the eldest surviving child of Sophie and Frank Colenso whose
first-born. Esmond. died in infancy. Sophie Colenso (/lee Frankland) had German family
14. This work. which Frances Ellen wrote in co-operation with her brother Frank and sister
Harriette. was published as The Ruin of Zululand, 2 volumes (1884-5).
15. P. Davis. printer, publisher and bookseller of Pietemaritzburg published some Colenso texts in

Sept. 9. 1884

My darling Frank,
I feel as though you had been very badly treated, and I fear you have really
suffered, and are suffering, more than any of us in consequence of our disaster.
We did immediately think of sending you a cablegram, but then it seemed
needless as the Witness was sending one to England, and Statham l certainly
ought to be, if he is not, friendly enough to assist us in such a thing. So we went
in to him to be sure to include in his cablegram that we were all safe, which
indeed, was as much as there was to say then. I am afraid it has cost you a great
deal, both in anxiety and money, that you might have been saved.
I will now tell you what I can of the event. For the last 3 months Harrie has
gone out on every still afternoon, with all the men she could collect, to burn
round the place. Never before has so much been done (though we have always
been careful) for the season was unusually dry, and H. felt especially
responsible for the property this year. Destructive fires have been unusually
frequent, and again and again, had anyone but Harrie, with her long experience
in the matter, her remarkable presence of mind and energy, and her special
influence over the natives around, been in charge the same thing would have
happened much sooner, and when it was avoidable, which it was not when it
did happen. It was the most tremendous hot gale I ever experienced, - all day
no-one could face it, and this fire (which is said to have come from 10 miles
away) was blown, or hurled right across our defences - i.e. as wide a burnt
strip as the oldest colonist would have thought necessary for safety. When you
think that flakes of flaming grass were hurled from the haystack beyond the
stables over them and the chapel, and fell upon the roof of the house at the
furthest end - i.e. over the drawing room and my room upstairs, you will see
how useless were the broadest burnt strips. I say all this because some enemies 2
have been sneering at this as the result of leaving the place in our (women's)
hands! as though any dozen Natalian men would have been as fit for the charge
as Harrie, or as though any of them could or would have done half she has
done. No man could have done more, but no human power could have saved
the house that day, in such a gale and drought, and the fire directly to
windward. Harrie had been intensely anxious for weeks, while she was burning
round, (she came in one evening with her eyelashes and front hair singed off,
but with no hurt) and would constantly stay out four to six hours over the work.
When we objected to her over-taxing her strength so much she often said 'Do
you want to be burnt out?' However her mind was fairly at rest on the morning
of the 2nd, as we were well burnt round on every side. The day was a most
oppressive one, hot and heavy, the air heavy within, the sky lurid and dull, and
a fierce hot gale blowing without. These, as you know, are common features of
24 Colenso Letters

a bad windy day - fortunately rare occurrences - but no doubt they were
greatly increased by the great fire advancing upon us though not yet in sight.
About 2+[2.30 p.m.?J it came over the crest to which Cope's hill belongs, and
the alarm was given. Harrie ran out with all the men she could collect. but in a
few minutes the fire had leaped across and swept through the young plantations
down towards the stables. Katie, Emil, Eric 3 and I were at this moment the only
people at hand. K. cut the horses loose, and she and I led them down just
beyond the old kitchen tying them to the trees there. I had been a good deal out
of sorts for the previous fortnight, hardly leaving my room, and was actually in
my dressing-gown when I came down to look out and seeing Katie leading a
horse out of the stable, went, as I was, to help her. After that I thought I had
better go and put on a dress, hat, and boots, not that I expected danger to the
house then, but simply to be more useful. I went up-stairs, and was certainly
not 5 minutes dressing, and came down again at once. As I left my room, that
dear pretty room, so full of pretty things, some instinct made me take up a
basket into which I had put, some days before all the important papers in our
case against O.S.4 in order to take them to town to show them to a lawyer, and I
carried that down with me. It could have been no expectation of danger, or I
should have carried off my box of letters etc., at all events, which I could easily
have done then had I known it was my last chance. I went back to the horses,
thinking that looking after them was about the only use I could be, and found
the whole of the back, one thick dense smoke. Emil's German maid, our two
little black maids and I got the horses further off, round the next corner of the
house, i.e. between the window of the room you used to have (and which was
still called 'Frank's room') and the carriage drive. Here We remained about
five minutes when a great dense blast of dense smoke came pouring round the
front upon us, while we were struggling for a clearer spot, the horses getting
frightened, and I finding it most difficult to draw a breath, (the smoke did not
suit my weak lung) two or three wild-looking men (natives) rushed through the
gloom, caught the horses from us, shouting to us that the house was on fire and
we must follow the rest. We did not in the least understand where - but ran
into the house at the back along the back verandah, and down the long passage,
looking for the others. We saw no-one only smoke everywhere and I caught up
my basket which I had left in Emi\'s room down-stairs and ran out to the front
where I was met by Mr Phipson' looking for us. He almost dragged me out of
the house and looking up I saw the whole roof in flames. He took me round the
garden, (the front lawn was in flames) and across to the mulberries in the centre
of which I found Eric sitting in his grandfather's study chair, with his mother,
our mother and Katie around him. Harrie was stiIl trying to get things out of the
study, but she had to give it up as hopeless in a few minutes having, however,
saved the papers which she cared most about of His. Emirs German girl (a
very powerful and sensible young woman) did good service by catching up the
drawing room table-cloth with all its contents, including all Mother's little
array of framed photographs - yourselves and Eothen, Eric and so on and
various little treasures. worth more to her than their money's worth, also folios
of her flower-paintings. and some books. My portrait of Papa, and Sophie's of
you were saved, but no other pictures, except mine of Helen," and the great
Millais print from the dining room. Everything was got out of the dining room,
which was the last room attacked, but it only contained tables and chairs, the
old piano, one bookshelf of books and the best china tea and dessert sets.
Everything else is gone - not a thing left from upstairs except that basket of
papers in O.S.'s case. Surely I am to succeed in that! I suppose I have lost,
Colenso Letters 25

because I possessed, the most actual property. All that pretty furniture that the
Colonel had made for my room, all the nice things I brought out from England,
all my books, photographs, casts, painting materials, pictures, including 4
genuine Burne-Jones drawings,7 not to speak of copies, Sophie's portrait,
Edward'sx portrait, all the work I have done since I came out, and of course,
worst of all that box of letters etc. which and I always carried about with me.
My watch, heavy gold-chain, silver ornaments, 3 gold brooches etc. etc. all
gone, but I had on the black and gold brooch with spray of small pearls on it,
belonging to Grandmama's hair bracelet, also Dora's9 gold bracelet, and the
rings that I always wear, all except one. Not one of us saved her watch except
Emil, whose maid got hers out and was nearly suffocated in doing so. The
extreme rapidity of the fire and the awful smoke, which, driven before the level
wind, was something indescribable, were what prevented our saving more - I
think if I had had the full use of my lungs I should have tried for my little box,
and I believe I could have got to my room, but I do not think I should gave got
back again. The whole thing was over in an hour, during which we stood in the
mulberries, out of danger as long as the wind did not change in our direction,
which mercifully it did not. We were really surrounded by fire, but the smoke
from the house did not come our way. I think having Eric with us prevented our
feeling alarmed for ourselves, we were so anxious about him. The darling boy
was so good, never gave us any trouble at all, and hardly ever complained
when the smoke made his eyes smart. When we could get away we went over
to Bishopsthorpe at Mrs Bonifant's 10 invitation, where we camped the night.
She did all in her power for us, but of course had not real accommodation for
us - 7 of us, in that little 4-roomed house. However, we were only too
thankful for a roof over us, mattresses and blankets on the floor (besides one
bed), and a meal of tea, bacon and first-rate eggs. Next morning Emil, Eric,
tqeir maid and I were sent down here, where I am to remain for the present. It is
a great trouble to me to be away from them all at such a time, but I know it is
the best thing for them as well as for me, that it would have been only selfish in
me to insist on staying. They have moved into the farm buildings,11 and are no
doubt writing to you from there. Mother has borne it all wonderfully well.
After last year nothing would distress her much except the loss of one of us.
None of us seem the worse for the fright and distress, and after all what a
different thing it would have been if anyone of us had been lost!
I must now say a little on business. I had fortunately sent you, the day before
the fire, my latest written ms. taking ourtale down to the end ofthe libel trial. 12
I mean, this week to write a single chapter, or sort of summary of what is yet to
come, and explaining that as the whole of my materials have been destroyed
and must be re-collected, a 3rd. vol. becomes a necessity. I can say a good deal
in that last chapter. We had better, if we can, bring out the 2nd vol. at once, and
the 3rd next year. 13 I am going simply to ask Dora to enable us to bring out the
2nd vol. I shall write to her next mail, and I feel pretty sure she will. I shall
begin next week, as soon as my last chapter and preface are sent off to you, to
re-collect my newspaper materials by going daily to the library here, and
copying what I want from the files, and please do you or Mr Chesson send me
out at once copies of the 2nd and 3rd vols. of our 'Digest', especially the 3rd
beginning with the 'restoration'. 14 If this subscription business comes to
anything we may be able to pay for vol. 2 ourselves. You of course, must not
think of risking more. I only hope you have not risked too much with vol. 1. I
shall send my letter to Dora through you, on the chance of people having
already subscribed enough to make it needless. Dears, believe that we are none
26 Colenso Letters

of us broken down by this calamity - after the great sorrow we have gone
through the loss of property seems comparatively light to us, and even that of
sacred relics however dear, is endurable, however painful. If you show my
letter to anyone beyond yourselves carefully scratch out the sentences about
writing to Dora, please. By the way there was 1/5 to pay on each of the copies
of vol.l you sent out. otherwise they would have been burnt. The one day's
delay saved them. IS
Now goodbye darlings, think of us as cheerful, and not unhappy since we
have each other. Some people call us 'stoical', and cannot understand us at
I am your loving sister Nelly.

P.S. I was just getting over a bad cold which had thrown me back for a
while - but I am going on well now.

l. F. R. Statham (1844-1908) author of Blacks, Boers and Brirish. a rhrec·c(}rnered prohlclI/
(1881) and intermittently editor of the Nallll Willless was a supporter of Bishop Colenso but the
family quarrelled with him when he insisted on regarding William Grant as the 'agent' of the
Aborigines Protection Society. thus implicating the Society in Grant's role in facilitating the
'Boer' seizure of land in Zululand and blunting its criticism of white filibusters.
2. Among themselves the Colensos frequently called their critics 'enemies'.
3. Sister-in-law of Warwick-Brookes (the firm friend of Colenso and Natal's first superintendent
of education whose suicide in I Rn deeply grieved the Bishop), Katie Giles (d. 1910) was a
life-long and admiring friend of the Colensos and at the time of the fire a member of the
household. Eric John Colenso (Robert's son) later followed a military career. After the death of
his aunts. Harriette and Agnes, in 1932 he donated the Colenso papers to the Natal Government
4. Offy (Theophilus) Shepstone (1843-1907) lawyer, politician and later agent with the Swazi
king. Frances Ellen's suspicions of him culminated in an enquiry in Pietermaritzburg in 1886
by means of which Offy pre-empted further effective action against himself and secured an
apology from Colonel Luard who, as Frances Ellen's 'Sir Lancelot', had made allegations
against Offy on her behalf.
5. Presumably a neighbour. possibly an assistant in managing the estate.
6. Helen Shepstone. nee Bisset, wife of Offy.
7. Georgiana Burne-Jones was a friend of Frances Ellen Colenso and her link with the artistic
world and the warmth and vitality of the Burne-Jones's social circle. In 1887. when Frances
Ellen left the convalescent hospital knowing that her case was regarded as incurable. she hoped
to stay in the Burne-Jones's home 'to get well again', but it was in lodgings at Ventnor that
Frances Ellen died.
8. Edward Durnford. brother of Anthony William.
9. Dora Lees. a friend of Frances Ellen (possibly since their schooldays) and evidently a woman of
10. Evidently a neighbour on the Bishopstowe/Ekukhanyeni estate.
I!. This cottage, known as 'The Farm' or 'Seven Oaks' or 'Little Bishopstowe' was the Natal home
of the Colenso women until about 1900. It was itself destroyed by fire in about 1964.
12. In September 1883 John Wesley Shepstone, 'Misjan', brought a libel case against the Naral
Willless which. with F. R. Statham as editor, had published Zulu reports of coercion and
violence in the Reserve where J. W. Shepstone was commissioner. Harriette Colenso gave
evidence at the hearing which resulted in Shepstone receiving £500 damages. The Col ens os
maintained that the issue was not decided on the merits of the case.
13. The third volume of The Ruill of Zululalld was completed but, because friends warned that it
would not sell, it was never published.
14. Colenso's Digesr was a running commentary on Zulu affairs in which official accounts of
events were countered by Colenso comments. Printed on the Bishopstowe press, the sheets
were circulated among sympathetic friends in Britain. The 'restoraiion' was the return of
Cetshwayo in January. 1883.
15. Publication of The Ruill of Zululand was financed partly from the Colenso Sympathy Fund, i.e.
money collected in Natal to assist the Co1ensos after the fire.
Colenso Letters 27

(,The Farm')

Sept 8, 1884

My dearest Frank
Much as you will want to know all about us, you will recognize that we have
not much time for writing letters, besides I know that Frances is writing to you.
I send you the Witness and Times accounts of the fire but as they have managed
to make several mistakes, I'll add a few notes. We had been burning more
extensively than usual this year, and had fair reason to consider ourselves safe
unless from some carelessness within the charmed circle, and even against that
we were somewhat prepared, strips burnt or cleared in various directions, when
there came a day of wind such as happily we don't have more than once in
many years - the sort of wind in which we can see the Maritzburg dust
hanging in a cloud over Table Mountain. Sotsha came to me in the study to say
that they wanted branches as there was a fire coming by Martens' red road. I
got my hat and matches and went with the men, but no sooner had I got out
above the stable than I saw the towers of smoke rolling along towards us and
already at the top of the hill, swooping down on the porcupine [bushes?] you
know. It was plain that there was nothing to be done except at home, since it
had already leapt all our outer defences. The only thing to be done was to try to
light an opposing fire along the path running along the top of the mulberries,
and what a hazardous business this was, owing to the fury of the wind, you may
judge from the fact that I measured today one place where the main fire has
scorched and burnt afresh 34 yards across a place which we had burnt only a
month ago and where there was only here and there a green blade sprouting for
it to burn, we struggled along for a few yards on either side of the angle where
the path along the top of the mulberries meets the road to the village (all along
which we had previously burnt as a precaution) and then, just by haystack, the
main body of the fire came upon us up from the river, transversely, from
Zandile's trees, I - there was just one sweep of flame and (in 3 minutes
Phipson says) the front roof of the house itself was blazing, and we were
carrying ... Eric and the leather despatch box etc. into the mulberry grove,
the front wing of the fire had already partly swept through here, and we were
safe. and tolerably out of the smoke. The smoke was choking though at times
and Eric was as good - as his grandfather's child - all through. Just before
the main fire came up, Katie got the horses out of the stable, and Frances with a
boy looked after them and kept them out of the smoke, and finally they joined
the rest of us in the mulberries. The cows, the Hlubi 2 women drove right out
into the burnt grass the other side of the house (we had burnt the whole, from
the house to the farm) and we got the baby calf out of the cow house, the two
pigs were ranging the plantations eating acorns, and one poor thing was killed,
so also were many poor little duykers [sic - duikers] though there are some
left. We got out from the study the leather Despatch box containing all His'
private money matters, our Debentures etc. two tin boxes containing Diocesan
accounts and Church Council business (one of them in fact the box which I had
prepared for the Church Council, another small box containing letters of His to
Dean Williams~ etc, His big letter book with Zulu Affairs at one end and
Horace at the other. His own interleaved copy of I st. part of Digest, nearly the
whole series of his Almanacs which he used as Diaries, his paper case with his
28 Colenso Letters

and my cheque books. his desk and chair, and cushion, and my account books,
more or less burned, but that does not matter as Mr James" has duplicates.
From the drawing room His picture in oils, and Helen's in water colours, and
the whole contents of the large middle table including all Mother's flowers (my
collection), the King'sl' Book and our Prayer book, the book of Addresses to
Mother last year, Mother's old Bible and box of His old letters, photos of Him,
of the King, and half a doz. little 'Eoceans' as Ekky7 calls her! and my bound
copies of Langa, Matchana, and Natal Sermons, our last copy of the
Humiliation Day Sermon. From Mother's room her old trinket box, pictures of
Him and large mattress and blankets, from the dining room nearly every thing,
as this was the last part which took fire. the table, leather chairs, old piano,
Sophie's pictures of you, the Huguenots, Cardinal Wolsey, Mr Heale's birds,
and the green dessert service. From the next room (Katies) a chest of drawers
and two mattresses and blankets, oh! I forgot the dining room bookshelf,
including Shakespeare, Clarendon, Lyell, with the College arms, His name.
The carriage too was saved (with a hole burnt in the seat), and now I've given
you a pretty complete list. Mr Phipson was very kind and fetched over his little
wagonette to drive Mother and Katie across to the Bonifants, who offered us
two rooms for the night - as you may suppose, we did not have much sleep
(we sent the horses to the barn here) and next morning Mr Phipson and I set off
early to hunt for some money which I had had tied up ready to take to the Bank,
we got it all but £3, also my watch, Dean Stanley'sK little tray (from study
table) His seal, and spectacles, His rocking chair, which is iron and only needs
a fresh covering. The other things are surely relics. The heat was so intense that
the glass. windows, bottles, inkstands, everything is run together and twisted,
the ashes in it showing how it was molten when they dropped on it. The walls
stand a great deal better than I should have expected - you remember how we
used to walk about on a windy night 'to hold the house up.' But it is rather a
ghastly sight. The bare walls. Every scrap of wood gone, every door plate and
window frame, and nothing visible in the heaped up ashes at the bottom of the
foundations but a few tin boxes and numerous iron bedsteads twisted in all
directions, as if they had been tortured to death. In the drawing room too are
visible the remains, one - iron plate I suppose - of the poor dear piano, a
little collection of springs marks the drawing room sofa while the mangled
remains of a coffee pot and tray [are] where we drank our last cup of coffee.
The study is of course still more grievous. Again the little heap of springs
marks the sofa, crucibles and iron stands stick out from the ashes which lie in
heaps - some parts two and three feet deep, and still red hot, (I set my dress
on fire with them yesterday). These are still legible and are greatly prized by
the relic hunters and sightseers, who are just now my daily care. They are many
of them quite reverent and all well behaved when I am there, but I had to stop
one from riding his horse up into the ruins, and they will go poking and
scratching for themselves when it is quite hopeless for them to find anything
unless I tell them where to look, and they don't know then what they've found
till I tell them. Glass from the study window is a very favourite relic. Two
photographers have been out so in due time you will see how terrible it looks.
One of them lamented it as the 'Stratford on Avon of Natal.' Well! its only
what Natal deserves, to lose it entirely, though I've done my best to avert the
catastrophe. The very lawn, mowed a week before, and just beginning to show
a tinge of green is burnt black, and the rose trees round it charred to the ground.
The great gum tree will I think, recover, tho' somewhat scorched the orchard
has to some extent escaped, some of the gum trees between the house and
Colenso Letters 29

stable will recover, others are charred, some burnt white by the blaze of the
chapel, which just flared up and settled down in IS minutes, the ground by it
[as a result of] the way the wind blew the fire, i.e. towards the house, is baked
red. So it is all along in front of the house. The font is shattered to atoms and
the harmonium smashed. The type in the printing office was all running about
molten the day after, fortunately there was not much in hand there. The old bell
tree will recover. We sent off Emile and Eric with Frances, the next morning to
Durban. Offers of house room have poured in on us, rooms at Govt. House,
and .... a room at Col. Mitchell's, Kenneth Hathorn's country house, Mrs
Hulley's Mrs Barter's, Mrs Windham's, Mrs Robt. Acutt's, Mrs Pepworth's,9
but we have decided to remain for the present, here at the Farm. There is only a
three roomed cottage, tolerably habitable, but there are other rooms needing
flooring, whitewash, glass and doors, which will do to keep some of our·
salvage in. and there is the barn for the horses close to us, and we are 011 the.
spot. I go up daily and dig, and keep order and have found many little odds and
ends my flint implement an ugly lump of bits of metal which was the plate
chest etc. Tomorrow I am going to hold a meeting under the Bell Tree to warn
the abantu against cutting the trees, while my last new friend Mr Blunderfield
the butcher, has a thorough search for Frances' watch, and my dressing-case
- that is for what little morsels of gold may represent it. I have asked Frances
to send you a copy of a letter from Egner with our reply. I enclose a note from
the Mayor to the papers. Mr James and I standing in the warm ashes agreed that
it would be a great pity to let such good walls be destroyed by the rain and that
the first thing to be done would be to have out a competent man to examine it,
and give estimates. But this you see is in mabibus [sic 1 [In manibus = in
handl. 15 It will have to be done with Church funds - (I mean we can't do it,)
and there are none - unless the income for this vacant year could be used for
this purpose - I don't quite see why it should not, but this you see is only an
idea of mine, and not, I fear, likely to bear more fruit than the idea of having
Sir G.C. [Sir George Cox] as Bishop.11 Meanwhile, - for the next few weeks
at any rate, we mean to stay here, and though we have no room and little
furniture, we are faring sumptuously, for as we've only an open fire place here,
our friends keep sending us cooked provisions, and roast fowls, hams, eggs,
and cake pour in till really we shall have to give a party!
There have been other terrible fires here, at Durban (by the bye, they declare
that the ashes from Bishopstowe reached Durban) at Boston, at Kranskop [? J
etc. I wonder if all these fires will have cleared the air and land, and so spare us
the cholera or small pox or something.
The enemy are loud against Dean Williams. But I got a telegram today from
Dr. Atherstone in reply to a note of mine. He says 'Charges will be entirely
disproved, vestry and congregation unanimously forbid resignation, will
publish unanswerable refutation. Congregation larger than for two years.' 12
I have no Zulu news - can't have while the Passes BillD prevent their
getting to me. Nor have we heard from Mr Grane 4 again since I wrote to Mr
Chesson. Please tell him this - say I could not write this mail - perhaps he
will like to see this letter. Tell Sir G. Cox too about the Dean. I had just done up
a parcel of Bishopstowe photos for him, to show him the house that ought to be
his, and they have gone with the study table! Give our love to Uncle Charles
too. and tell him all about us - and Mrs. Lyell,15 for I don't know when there
will be time to write more.
Goodbye Dear Frank and Sophie,
from your loving sister,
H. E. Col en so
30 Colenso Letters

Poor dear Agnes was away in Durban, and had a sad 'coming home' next
day - except that the first feeling was of relief that we were all alive.

Mrs Sarah Frances Colenso, widow of the Bishop added

Dear A's face when she arrived at the Bonifants, was the brightest and sweetest
thing I have seen for a long while and none of our whole party mopes.

I. The allusion is obscure, but Frances Ellen used the pseudonym 'Zandile' when she wrote her
short novel called Two Heroes,
2. Probably refugees who moved to Bishopstowe after the 'eating-up' of Langalibalele.
3. The Colensos usually used a capital letter for the third person singular when referring to the
Bishop. and did this even before his death.
4. Bishop Colenso and Harriette visited Grahamstown in October/November 1880 where Bishop
Colenso conducted a confirmation for F. H. Williams, the Dean of the Cathedral of St Georgc
who was feuding with the Bishop of Grahamstown. Nathaniel Merrimen. The Dean succceded
in excluding Merrimen from the cathedral of St George, obliging him to found his own
cathedral of St Michael.
5. W. H. James, a Church of England supporter, a member of the Building Committee of St
Mary's and subsequently very involved in the running of St Mary's school.
6. An imperial blue book on Zulu affairs relating to the affairs of the Zulu king, Cetshwayo,
entrusted to Bishop Colenso.
7. Eothen and Eric Colenso, grandchildren of Bishop Colenso.
8. A. P. Stanley, Dean of Westminster.
9. The list includes the wife of Charles Barter, a neighbour; the wife of the judge of the Native
High Court and mother of the Windham sons who became civil servants in Natal and Zululand;
and the wife of Robert AculI. prominent businessman of Durban, churchwarden of St Paul's
and member of the Church Council of the Church of England who supported Bishop Colenso as
lawful bishop while deprecating his theological views. Kenneth Ha-thorn was the prominent
Natal lawyer and latcr judge of the Suprcme Court. He undertook legal work for the Colcnsos.
Colonel Mitchell was presumably the subsequent Governor of Natal (l S89-1 H93) when
Harrielle Colenso was in vehement controversy with officials over the fate of Dinuzulu then
exiled at St Helcna.
10. Harrielle's Latin and her meaning in using the phrase are uncertain. The contcxt suggests that
she means 'in God's hands'. The walls were incorporated when, in about 1900, rebuilding made
the old site inhabitable. The Colcnso sisters lived there until evicted by the Church of tile
Province of South Africa in consequence of the Church Properties Act of 1910.
11. •Sir' George Cox was elected bishop by the Church Council of the Church of England, but was
never consecrated.
12. Or W. G. Atherstone (lSI4-IR98) member of a medical family of Grahamstown and a man of
many talents and interests. Atherstone performed the first surgical operation under anaesthetic
in South Africa and identified the diamond discovered at Hopetown in 1867. He was a staunch
supporter and churchwarden of Dean Williams who. in August 1884. was awarded a derisory
one shilling damages in a defamation case which he had brought. Atherstone wrote a pamphlet
attempting to vindicate the Dean who refused to rcsign but died in 1885.
13. The Colensos dubbed legislation requiring Zulus to obtain passes on visiting Natal. 'The
Colenso Extinction Bill'.
14. William Grant went to Zululand as unofficial agent to Cetshwayo with Colenso's blessing but
he was subsequently criticized by the Colensos for his role in the alienation of Zululand to thc
'Boers' of the New Republic.
15. Charles Bunyon and K. Lyel\. brother and friend of Bishop Colenso's widow,

The Tradition of Hindu

Firewalking in Natal

Every Good Friday in Pietermaritzburg thousands of members of the Hindu

community, and other interested onlookers, gather to watch a strange cere­
mony that has been practised for centuries in India, and faithfully followed in
this South African city since the beginning of this century. This is the
firewalking festival, in which over one hundred devotees of the Goddess
Draupadi walk barefoot across a 7-8 metre pit of red-hot embers. As this takes
place in a so-called Indian area, most other people who live in the city are
largely unaware of the yearly occurrence of this ancient and colourful
Annual firewalking ceremonies are held at four traditional Hindu temples in
Natal: the 'Marriamen' Temple next to the Stri Siva Soobramoniar Temple in
lower Longmarket Street, Pietermaritzburg; two temples in Durban, the
Umbilo Shree Draupadiamman Alayam in the grounds of the Umbilo 'Second
River' Temple in Bellair Road, Cato Manor, and the Mariamman Temple in the
grounds of tbe Shree Murugar Alayam in Jacobs Road, Clairwood; and the
Glencoe Hindu Temple in northern Natal. (I have recently been informed that
in the last three or four years three new temples in Chatsworth, Durban, have
started practising firewalking.)
At the three southern Natal temples the festival is held between the end of
March and the end of May, while at Glencoe it is held during July/August,
which is the Tamil month of Adi especially dedicated to the goddess. This
corresponds with the custom in India of holding firewalking festivals between
the months of March and August.
Firewalking was brought to Natal last century (from 1860 onwards) by
Tamil-speaking Hindus from the Madras area of South India, whose ancestors
had practised this as part of their village goddess tradition. An article in The
Natal Witness of 14 April 1927, not long after the Pietermaritzburg 'Marria­
men' temple was officially opened in 1925, reported that 'as usual' the annual
firewalking ceremony would take place on Good Friday, and claimed that this
ceremony had been observed for the last thirty years in Pietermaritzburg.
(However, some people recall that for a number of years the holding of the
festival was not observed in Pietermaritzburg, and that it was revived again at
Easter 1926, since which time it has been held every year.)
This firewalking festival appears to be confined to Natal, as I am informed
that no other Hindu communities in South Africa practise it. Today the
ceremony is no longer confined to Tamil circles, but has a wider appeal.
The firewalking ceremony as practised in Natal is held in honour of the
32 Hindu Firewalking

Goddess Draupadi, one of the many goddesses worshipped by Hindus, who

believe that both female and male deities are necessary to sustain the universe.
The goddess is the great Earth Mother who is the active power of existence,
animating the entire natural world, and can thus be worshipped as the Supreme
Power of the universe. Although it is believed that she is basically One, she
manifests herself in a great variety of forms: as Uma, Parvati, Lakshmi and
others, she is gentle and benign, whereas in forms such as Kali, Durga,
Mariamman and Draupadi she is fierce and at times malevolent. Thus the
various goddesses represent the life-giving, preserving forces of nature as well
as the destructive forces of disease, famine, decay and death, all of which are
recognized as essential for conti'nuity and new life. Worshippers can approach
the goddess with loving devotion, but there is also a need to propitiate her.
Thus, various propitiatory rituals such as firewalking are practised in order to
maintain or restore the health and wellbeing of individuals and the commun­
Draupadi is usually one of the goddesses housed in Mariamman temples,
which are numerous and very popular in Natal (the word 'amman/amma'
means 'mother' - Mariamman and Draupadi are village goddesses of South
India, who have become identified with the goddesses of the Shiva tradition).
The tradition about the Goddess Draupadi, recorded in the great epic, the
Mahabharata, is that she was born from the sacrificial fire prepared by her
father, King Drupada, and was an incarnation of the Goddess Sri, or Lakshmi.
As the heroine of the epic, she was the faithful wife of the five Pandava
brothers, and many Hindus regard her as the model of duty, love and devotion,
who bore various severe trials and defilements with fortitude and patience, thus
helping to deliver her family. Although there is no episode in the Sanskrit
Mahabharata in which Draupadi walks through fire, through a complicated
process of intermingling various mythologies, South Indians have come to
accept several stories which tell of Draupadi walking on fire, either to confirm
her chastity or to purify herself from a number of attempts to defile her. These
stories also emphasize many incidents associating Draupadi with fire, which
have earned her the title Goddess, or Mother, of Fire. (6: 436)
It is interesting that in the other great Hindu epic, the Ramayana, the heroine
Sita, wife of Rama, who is also regarded as an incarnation of Lakshmi,
appealed to the fire god, Agni, to bear witness to her wifely fidelity by
protecting her as she threw herself onto the fire. She emerged unscathed,
protected by her purity.
One of the Indian names for the firewalking ritual is 'Pookulithal' which
means 'walking on a bed of flowers', presumably because of the belief that
Draupadi cools the coals for her devotees, making them like flowers. (9: 75;
10: 50) Most local Hindus appear to be more familiar with the name
'Theemeri', which they say means 'firewalk'.
The decision to participate in the firewalking ceremony is closely associated
with the taking of vows (vrata), which plays an important part in all traditional
Hindu worship. Individuals can take vows on their own or another person's
behalf, promising that if illness or misfortune is averted or overcome, or
success achieved in some enterprise, they or the person for whom the vow was
taken, will walk across the fire for a specified number of times. This is usually
for one, three, five, seven years, or for life. (Hindus tend to regard uneven
numbers as being auspicious.) Dire consequences are believed to follow the
breaking of such a vow. (7: 119-220; 12: 99)
Two other characteristics of the firewalking ceremony, which it shares with
Hindu Firewalking 33

Devotee in a trance. His face is adorned with pins and

two skewers through his cheeks; his body is smeared

with ash and limes and marigold chains dangle

from hooks through his flesh.

(Photograph: Awhor' s collection)

some other traditional Hindu festivals (such as' Kavady), are 'the trance' where
certain devotees believe themselves to have become possessed or over­
shadowed by a particular deity who bestows extraordinary powers on them;
and the piercing of the body with skewers and hooks in order to show devotion
to the Godless. When they are in a trance, devotees can often have needles and
hooks pierced through their flesh without bleeding, walk or even dance on
nailed shoes without any pain, or walk through the fire without being burnt.
People in trances are also believed to have the power to act as oracles and
healers. However, it is not necessary to be in a trance in order to walk through
the fire. (7: 217-227)
The preparation period before the actual firewalking day is traditionally
eighteen days, which is a reminder of the length of the great battle narrated in
the Mahabharata. At the Cato Manor temple this drama is performed in dunce
during the final night of preparation. Jacobs Road temple appears to be the only
temple which still observes the full eighteen days, with Pietennaritzburg and
34 Hindu Firewalking

Second River keeping only a ten day period. During this preparation, devotees
who intend to walk across the fire refrain from eating meat and drinking
alcohol. and observe sexual abstinence, thus attaining a state of ritual purity.
They will also probably attend all the evening activities at the temple. On the
last night of the preparation, many devotees spend the whole night in the
temple. The belief is that the virtue and purity (tapas) gained through these and
other austerities allow them to walk unharmed through the fire.
The first night of preparation involves the flag-hoisting ceremony, when the
flag to the Goddess, bearing her vehicle, the lion, is hoisted on the kodi pole
outside the temple, where it remains until the completion of the festival.
Thousands of people are attracted to all the festivals, with Pietermaritz­
burg's being the largest. In Pietermaritzburg on Good Friday the proceedings
start early. The street outside the temple is closed to traffic, and many Indian
organizations set up bazaar stalls, selling food, books and puja (prayer) items,
so that a carnival-like atmosphere prevails, with loud music played over a
public address system. By about 11.30 a.m. crowds of devotees are circum­
ambulating the temple with small trays containing offerings of fruit, milk and
camphor. The images of various goddesses are placed outside the temple so
that people can present their offerings to them. Later Draupadi is placed at the
end of the fire pit, under an umbrella, so that she faces those who walk across
the fire.
At about twelve noon the priest and his attendants perform a blessing, in the
fire pit, of those who intend participating. After this a small pyre of wood is
constructed in the middle of the fire pit and this is lit from the fire on the
priest's tray. Wood is then piled on to make a larger and larger pyre, with
flames leaping metres into the air.
Traditionally a procession then makes its way to a nearby river where the
necessary ritual washing can be performed by the participants. At most temples
there are no rivers close enough to allow this, so buckets of water are provided
at an open space some distance from the temples. In Pietermaritzburg,
however, the Dorp Spruit is conveniently situated several blocks from the
temple, so this is where the participants with their various support groups go to
prepare themselves for their act of worship.
Soon after the completion of the purifications the drums begin to beat and
many of the participants begin showing signs of going into trances, often
dancing and swaying back and forth, and sometimes painting their faces with
turmeric or pink kum-kum (vermilion).
Family members and friends then often pin hooks, from which limes,
coconuts or flowers are suspended, across men's chests and backs. Some
devotees have skewers pierced through their tongues and checks. On occasions
men dance on sandals with soles of nails. Many people crowd round those in
trances, requesting to be blessed, usually by having a dot of ash or kum-kum
placed on their foreheads.
Another feature of this festival is the constructing of 'goron gons' (also spelt
'karagam '). A 'goron gon' is believed to be a manifestation of the goddess, and
is made up of a clay or brass pot filled with sanctified water, with a conical
bamboo frame constructed over this, covered with marigolds, and vines, with a
lime placed on the top. Sometimes it also has a clay face just above the vase.
These are carefully put together by groups of worshippers during the prepara­
tion period, and some devotees carry these, often very heavy, tall structures, on
their heads.
Finally, a large, colourful procession is formed which makes its way along
Hindu Firewalking 35

The head of the procession on its way to the temple. Some people hold
rope whips above their heads while others carry 'goron gons ' .
(Photograph: AlIfhor·s collenioll)

the route to the temple. accompanied by crowds of supporters and onlookers.

with considerable noise from drums, cymbals, and loud chanting. At various
points along the road the procession is halted by people, mostly women,
placing burning camphor across its path, and requesting blessings from the
participants. The atmosphere is highly charged with excitement and intense
religious fervour.
The procession often only arrives at the gates of the 'Marriamen' Temple at
dusk. By this time the grounds are packed to capacity with thousands of people
who have waited patiently for many hours in order to get as close a view as
possible of the fire pit.
In recent years, upwards of 130 people have walked across the fire in
Pietermaritzburg. (For some years the Maritzburg temple committee has not
allowed any women to walk.) At the Durban temples the numbers are about
hillf this, and include some adolescent boys and a number of women. A few
men carry young children in their arms. Once the first person has run across the
fire, the others follow in quick succession, so that it takes only about twenty
minutes for such a large number of people to walk.
In general, it takes about seven to eight steps to run across the fire-pit. At
each end of the pit there is a trough, filled with water, with milk and turmeric
powder added, through which the participants walk as they enter and leave the
pit. Different devotees react differently. Most run across as quickly as possible,
with their feet sinking into the intensely hot ash. But others walk slowly, palms
of hands pressed together in an attitude of meditation. For many it appears to
be a considerable ordeal, not easily accomplished, and some on arriving at the
other side appear on the verge of collapse, as they prostrate themselves before
36 Hindu Firewalking



A woman devotee walks across the fire.

(PholOgraph: AUlhor's colleClion)

the Goddess. They get tremendous verbal and physical support and encourage­
ment from the crowd.
After it is all over, numbers of devotees use empty milk cartons to scoop up
some of the still hot ash to take home, as ash is believed to be very holy and
powerfully curative. (14: 175)
I have spoken to a number of participants, and I include summaries of what
three of them have told me about their involvement in firewalking :

Interview A
A man and his wife were spoken to at the river not long before the actual
firewalking began. This was his tenth time of walking the fire, although he had
not done so the previous year, because his wife's mother died shortly before
Hindu Firewalking 37

the ceremony. He started walking years ago when he went to visit his future
wife, and saw her niece, who was an infant with a disability which prevented
her from walking and talking. She had been taken to many doctors who were
apparently unable to help. He felt so sad for her that he said, 'I'm going to take
this child across the fire with me'. Within days of this resolve, the child
appeared to improve, and he believed this was a message that God had heard
him. So, since then, he has walked across the fire; on the first two occasions
holding the child, and she continued to improve, although he said she still
cannot talk. He still walks for her every year that he can. He said that he does
not get a trance at all. He has never had one, and said if he did he would accept
it, but he does not especially want a trance. He claimed that too many people
are jealous of those who do get trances, and they try to 'bind them'. Sometimes
when this happens, the people who are 'bound' start ailing, and finally get very
sick, and even die. He said that he only becomes aware of the heat of the fire
when he gets about halfway across the pit, and then he knows that it is very hot,
but he has never been burnt.

Interview B
This man, in his thirties, has not taken a lifetime vow, but has decided to walk
every year that he is able. However, he has not walked for the last two years, as
he has not felt himself to be sufficiently prepared. He claims that he gets a
'Perumal trance' (another name for the God Vishnu). He says that he goes in
and out of trances all day on the day of the firewalking. He is in a trance before
and during the time of the inserting of skewers and hooks, but he claims that
people usually come out of the trance before walking through the fire. 'You
have to be in your "normal mind" when you walk; you must know what you
are doing; but you go back into the trance as soon as you have crossed the pit.'
He admits that he is frightened just before he walks. Many people back off, and
need lots of encouragement. He says he is aware of the heat on his feet, but
says that most people do not burn or get blisters. However, later that same
night his feet feel very hot. 'If you have faith, the Mother protects you.' Some
years ago, he claims, the first nine people who walked got burnt, and he, too,
got badly burnt one year. This was because something had 'gone wrong' during
their preparation period and 'Mother teaches you a lesson'. He suggested that
they had eaten the wrong food, or done something wrong.

Interview C
A conversation with one of the three white men who had just participated in the
walking at the Second River Temple elicited the information that he is a
businessman, and that this was his third time of walking. He showed his feet,
which were completely unmarked in any way from the fire. He admitted that
this year he had not participated fully in the preparation period. He had only
prepared formally for the last three days. But he pointed out that the
requirements are no alcohol, no meat and no sexual activity, and that as he
never drinks alcohol and is a vegetarian, all he had to observe was sexual
abstinence. He said he has never taken a vow, but decided to walk because he
wanted the spiritual discipline of concentrating on the mother principle in the
universe. He explained that the Creator as male represents thought, while the
mother is action oI"energy: the life-force or vitality in all creation (Mother
Nature, he said). He sees the discipline of preparing for the firewalk as burning
out the impure aspects in his life. He said he is aware of the intense heat of the
38 Hindu Firewalking

fire, but feels no pain. However, immediately afterwards, and for some days,
he can feel the heat through his whole body. He would not speculate on
whether he w~uld participate again; it would depend on how he feels.

There is most interesting evidence of firewalking in India in the 18th and

19th centuries recorded by J. G. Frazer in The Golden Bough, where his
description of a ceremony in the Madras area records details almost exactly the
same as those observed in Natal in present times. Referring specifically to
firewalking, he writes:
Ceremonies of this sort used to be observed in most districts of the
Madras Presidency, sometimes in discharge of vows made in time of
sickness or distress, sometimes periodically in honour of a deity. Where
the ceremony was observed periodically, it generally occurred in March
or June, which are the months of the vernal equinox and the summer
solstice respectively ... In 1854 the Madras Government instituted an
enquiry into the custom, but found that it was not attended by any danger
or instances of injury sufficient to call for government interference.
The French traveller Son nerat has described how, in the eighteenth
century, the Hindoos celebrated a fire-festival ofthis sort in honour of the
god Darma Rajah [better known as Yudhishthira, one of Draupadi's
husbands] and his wife Drobede (Draupadi). The festival lasted eighteen
days, during which all who had vowed to take part in it were bound to
fast, to practise continence, to sleep on the ground without a mat, and to
walk on a furnace. On the eighteenth day the images of Darma Rajah and
his spouse were carried in procession to the furnace, and the performers
followed dancing, their heads crowned with flowers and their bodies
smeared with saffron. The furnace consisted of a trench about forty feet
long, filled with hot embers. When the images had been carried thrice
round it, the worshippers walked over the embers, faster or slower,
according to the degree of their religious fervour, some carrying their
children in their arms, others brandishing spears, swords, and standards.
This part of the ceremony being over, the bystanders hastened to rub their
foreheads with ashes from the furnace, and to beg from the performers
the flowers which they had worn in their hair; and such as obtained them
preserved the flowers carefully. The rite was performed in honour of the
goddess Drobede (Draupadi), the heroine of the great Indian epic, the
Mahabharata ... In some villages the ceremony is performed annually;
in others, which cannot afford the expense every year, it is observed at
longer intervals ... or only in special emergencies, such as the outbreak
of smallpox, cholera, or plague. Anybody but a pariah ... may take part
in the ceremony in fulfilment of a vow. For example, if a man suffers
from some chronic malady, he may vow to Draupadi that, should he be
healed of his disease, he will walk over the fire at her festival. As a
preparation for the solemnity he sleeps in the temple and observes a fast.
The celebration of the rite in any village is believed to protect the cattle
and the crops and to guard the inhabitants from dangers of all kinds.
When it is over, many people carry home the holy ashes of the fire as a
talisman which will drive away devils and demons. (4: 6-8)
There are many records of the practice in present day India and Sri Lanka.
(1: 254; 5: 193-98)
My observation is that it would appear from the increasing numbers of
Hindu Firewalking 39

people who attend and participate in the firewalking and other similar festivals
that they are growing in popularity rather than diminishing, in spite of various
recent predictions that this type of ritualistic Hinduism is on the decline. This
is confirmed by G. Buijs in her study of the worship of Mariamman in Natal in
While in some overseas Indian communities there has been a noticeable
trend away from 'folk worship' to more universalistic definitions of
Hinduism, which focus on the main Hindu Gods, in Natal an emphasis
remains amongst a proportion of South Indians on the worship of the
gods of so-called 'village Hinduism'. (2: 1)
Possibly the comparative isolation imposed on the Hindu communities by
apartheid policy has helped to preserve such traditional, ritualistic ceremonies,
free from any interference by disapproving or missionizing whites. And, in
turn, these festivals, with their vows, religious fervour and excitement, the
meaning of which is often only understood by the participants, have helped to
invigorate and strengthen these minority communities. (7: 215) Certainly the
village tradition of ritual folk worship, brought from South India to Natal by
the earliest Hindu settlers, has been very carefully preserved from generation
to generation, and appears at present to be enjoying something of a revival.

1. K. D. Bhagavati. 'Sakti cult in South India', in The Cultural Heritage of India, V o 1.1 V.
Ramakrishna Mission. 1983.
2. G. Buijs. 'The Role of the Mother-Goddess Mariamman in Natal' in Religion il1 Southern
Africa. Vo!. I, No. I, January 1980.
3. Alleyn Diesel. . Hindu Firewalking in Natal' in the Journal for the Study of Religio/J, Vol. 3.
No. I, March 1990.
4. J.G. Frazer. The Colden Bough, Volume 11. Macmillan, 1913.
5. Barbara Gunn.. A Fire-walking Ceremony' in Blackwood's Maga:ine, Volume 291. No. 1757.
March 1962.
6. Alf Hiltebeitel. The ClIlt of Draupadi. University of Chicago Press, 1988.
7. Hilda Kuper. Indian People in Natal. Natal University Press. 1960.
8. Hilda Kuper. . An Ethnographic Description of Kavady, a Hindu Ceremony in South Africa' in
Aji"ican Studies, Vol.18. No.3, 1959.
9. C. Kuppusami. Religious Practices and Customs of South African Indians. Sunray, 1983.
10. S.M.L. Lakshmanan Chettiar. Folklore of Tamil Nadu. National Book Trust, India, 1980.
11. Mikula. Kearney & Harber. Traditiollal Indian Temples ill South AJiica. Hindu Temple
Publications, 1982.
12. L. S. S. O·Malley. Popular Hinduism - The Religion of the Masses. Cambridge, 1935.
13. Nowbalh, Chotai & Lulla (eds). The Hilldu Heritage ill South Africa. S.A. Hindu Maha Sabha.
14. Margaret Stutley. flinduism -the Eternal Law. Aquarian Press. 1985.
15. Margaret and James Stutley. A Dietiollary of Hinduism. Routledge, 1977.
16. Benjamin Walker. Hindu World. Alien and Unwin, 1968.
17. Henry Whitehead. The Village Gods of South India. Asian Educational Services, 1988.


The Influence of the Geology

of Durban on the Supply of Water

from Wells to Early Settlers

The provision of a secure supply of potable water is a primary requirement for
the growth of a community. Europ-ean settlement in Durban started with the
arrival of the brig Salisbury in 1824,1 with a subsequently increasing popula­
tion causing a steady rise in water consumption. Supplies for owners of the
original wattle and daub dwellings were drawn from surface streams, from
shallow wells in backyards and collected from roofs in wooden casks.
By 1854 the first Town Council was established, with one of its earliest
resolutions directing the Town Clerk to report on the state and requirements of
the town pump, in order that it might be made available for the use of the
public. 2 Situated in Smith Street, this was the Old Well, remaining in use until
the 1890s.
The importance of the well water supply was such that from 1865 a report on
the condition of wells throughout the town was included in the annual Mayor's
Minutes published by the Council. The number of wells in use steadily
increased, but the drought between 1878 and 1881 severely reduced yields
from them. As stated in Henderson:
the unsatisfactory quality and sparse quantity of water obtained from the
public wells has been the source of serious and lengthy Council
discussion since 1861. 3
The drought precipitated matters and emergency measures were instituted to
rail water from the Umgeni River. A search for a more permanent supply
began, with local rivers being investigated for their suitability for dams. In the
interim, boring operations by Councillor H. W. Currie at the foot of the
Botanic Gardens succeeded, with Currie's Fountain continuing to be the
principal source of water to Durban until the Umbilo waterworks were opened
in 1886.
Some 100 years later in 1983, water supplies were again threatened by
drought, with dams at critically low levels. Flow in the Umgeni River was low
and in contrast to the situation in the previous century, groundwater supplies
were investigated for drought alleviation. Exploration boreholes were drilled
to determine water levels and potential well yields. These results, together with
Durhan Wells 41

Present-day Old Well Court leading to

Old Well House.
(Photograph: Author's collection)

A building constructed on the well site.

(Photograph: AlIlhor' s ['(J/lcClion)
42 Durban Wells

other records, have been used to clarify the geology of the central City and
suggest why the well water used by the early settlers of Durban was described
as being of unsatisfactory quality and sparse quantity.

Positions of early wells

Few original well positions are known with any accuracy. An exception is the
Old Well in Smith Street, known by cadastral description and the presence of
Old Well Arcade and Old Well Court, a building constructed over the well site.
As implied by its name, the well appears to be the oldest which was in public
use. It was first mentioned during a meeting on 23 June 1835, in which it was
described as a natural fountain, named the Buffalo Spring, from which
shipping obtained water. 4 Its use as a public well was reserved in the title deeds
of the property in which it was sited, Erf 20 of Block D.
Wells are known to have been sunk in the sandy soil of Salisbury Island by
refugees fleeing Dingane's threatened invasion of Port Natal in 1838, follow­
ing Piet Retief's murder. 5 No records of the camp or well positions have been
kept, but they would have been on high ground, drawing from the thin lens of
freshwater which floats on denser saltwater in sandy sediments under is­
A well was used for water supply to Fort Victoria at the Point," whereas
~oldiers at the Old Fort drew water which was 'as black as ink'7 from the
adjacent reed-filled stream, which flowed southward under the present Muni­
cipal complex in Old Fort Place, Discolouration of the water would have been
due to organic compounds leached from peat surrounding the now-buried
stream channel, which currently causes many difficulties with the foundations
of buildings in the area. The Old Fort well was dug together with protective
embankments under the command of Captain Smith during a week of armistice
between 26 May and 31 May 1842, during his battle with the Boers.8
A blockhouse built later near the old Fort Victoria on Alexandra Square
behind Time Ball Station also used a well, which was still visible in 1899.') The
present Timeball Road at the end of Point Road marks its approximate
With the passage of time and increase in number of wells in use, more details
concerning them have been preserved.

Record of well construction alld maintenance from 1854

A chronological record is given below of wells sunk and their maintenance
requirements, from the first Council meetings in 1854 to the opening of the
Umbilo waterworks in 1886. This is mainly a summary of the Mayor's Minutes
published annually by the Town Council, supplemented by details from Fifty
Years' Municipal History, written by W.P.M. Henderson.

1854: On 14 November, the Town Clerk was directed to report on the

state and requirements of the town pump, in order that it might
be made available for the use of the public. (This, as already
noted, was the Old Well in Smith Street).
1862: Mr. W. Hartley presented a drinking fountain to the Borough,
sited in the corner of the Town Gardens facing West and Gardner
1863-1864: Twelve new pumps were erected.
Durban Wells 43

1865: All wells were cleaned out and four more constructed.
1866: Three more wells were constructed.
1867: No new wells.
1868: Iron parts in wells were wearing away and replaced by copper.
1869: Well repair and maintenance in the town was contracted to Mr.
Thomas Edwards. A tender from an Australian miner for the
repair of the Berea Road well, damaged in the September 1868
flood, was accepted. He succeeded in sinking it to its original
depth of 86' (26,2 m), with a water level of 6' (1.83 m).
1870: Berea Road well was now working while Umbilo well was to be
1871: Mr. Edwards was absent at the diamond fields, but Mr. Fysh was
working for him. More iron was replaced by copper. A new well
was dug in Mr. Brunton' s premises in Smith Street, but required
slight alterations due to a land slip.
1872: Repairs and maintenance was let to McNeil & Singleton, at £68
1873: Drought had affected well supplies. The Council apologized for
any inconvenience to burgesses.
1874: Repairs and maintenance were again let to McNeil & Single­
1875: All wells were cleaned and deepened, with soundings morning
and evening showing an everage depth of water of 7' (2.2 m).
The well in Smith Street on lot 20 of D (the 'Old Well') was
rebuilt and deepened, providing a good supply for domestic but
not drinking purposes. A substantial pump was placed on it. The
large temporary well sited on Market Square for drought relief
purposes might be sunk deeper for permanent use.
1876: The dangerous state of well covers in the town had been caused
by Zulus and others removing them. The Town Clerk was to
have all covers fastened down, with trap doors fitted and
padlocked. The Market Square well was now 25' (7.6 m) deep
and had the greatest holding capacity of any well in town. It
would shortly be fitted with a rotary lift pump as an experiment.
Soundings of all wells were taken and tabulated by the Superin­
tendent of Police.
1877: An application from Mr. F. Hill to undertake borings for an
artesian well was accepted, £50 being voted to pay for the
experiment. Work proceeded to 54' (16.5 m), where the bore
failed for various causes. A second boring reached 75' (22.9 m)
before failure, the anticipations of the Council not being met.
Mr. Winsor snr. of the Natal Government Railways indicated
that the tools used were unsuitable and recommended disconti­
nuance until material was imported from England. The Vote was
supplemented by an additional £50. The rotary action lift pumps
were found to be simple and effective and an order placed for
Table 1: Summary of Well Sounding Results as Tabulated by the Superintendent of Police in 1876 111 t

I Well Position I Depth Hour of Interval Depth of Increase

1 (m) Sounding Between Water (m) in Water
Soundings in 9 Hours
(hours) (m)
p.m. a.m. p.m. a.m.

Market Place not known 9.10 6.\0 9 0.58 1.58 1.0

West St. near Natal Bank 5.19 9.12 6.12 9 3.66 3.86 0.20

Pine Terrace (Dacomb's corner) 6.66 9.15 6.15 9 0.92 2.77 1.85

Kennington House 4.12 2.20 6.20 9 3.05 3.10 0.05

Drew's corner 6.41 9.30 6.30 9 0.61 2.97 2.36

Queen St. 3.36 9.25 6.25 9 2.81 3.38 0.57

West St. (near Cathedral Chapel) 5.80 9.35 6.35 9 0.28 0.36 0.08

St. George's St. 4.58 9.40 6.40 9 2.34 2.69 0.35

St. Andrew's St. 6.41 9.45 6.45 9 3.05 3.30 0.05

Smith St. near Mr. Lumsden's 2.90 9.50 6.50 9 1.40 1.58 0.18

Smith St. below Mr. Lumsden's 3.05 9.55 6.55 9 0.64 1.73 1.09

Smith St. cnr. Post Office 4.58 1

9.0 6.0 9 2.36 2.52 0.16

West St. near Wilson's canteen 3.97 9.05 6.05 9 2.03 2.16 0.13

West St. cm Prince Alfred Street 3.97 9.10 6.10 9 1.02 1.12 0.10

West St. at Cato's Creek 2.75 9.25 6.25 9 0.92 0.97 0.05 S
Pine Terrace near Gaol 5.03 9.40 6.40 9 2.75 3.02 0.27 §
Remarks: Market Place well undergoing repairs, otherwise all wells in fair working order. ~

Durban Wells 45

twelve more. Dry weather again affected well supplies, and with
increasing population the necessity for providing another source
of supply became imperative. Superintendent Alexander of the
Police reported on his soundings taken in July 1877 of the 18
public wells, which yielded approximately 47 000 gallons (214
kilolitres) in 24 hours. The unsatisfactory quality and sparse
quantity of this supply had been the source of serious and
lengthy Council discussion since 1861.
1878: All wells were altered by fitting their pumps some distance
away, to keep their water purer and prevent filth penetrating. The
wells were nearly dry in the dry season and heavy pressure on the
pumps by Zulus was causing damage. New large capacity wells
were being constructed, Boring operations by Councillor H. W.
Currie eventually succeeded, a well being sunk at the foot of
Botanic Gardens which yielded 50 000 gallons (227 kilolitres)
per day.
1879: Wells were now cleaner, iron troughs being used to lead water
away. The drought made the possibility of the water shortfall so
serious that the Mayor made arrangements with the Railway
Department for a supply of water in tanks from the Umgeni
River, to be sold at 1 penny per bucketful!.
1880: Hydrants were laid from some wells, and water sampling
resulted in closure of others.
1881: Currie' s Fountain was further developed to avert a serious water
famine, as rainfall for the three years from 1878 had fallen far
below average. Tanks on a tower were to be connected with the
two wells and main by steam power, to increase the yield to
100000 gallons (455 kilolitres) in 24 hours. Analysis showed
the water quality to be favourable. Heavy outlay was required to
maintain the town well pumps. Mr. Shire had sunk a well to over
50' (15 m) at Stamford Hill in Umgeni Road. First steps were
taken to develop the Umbilo water supply.
1882: The supply from Currie's Fountain proved to be lower than
hoped for, with 29 000 gallons (136 kilolitres) actually pumped.
1883: Currie's Fountain was inadequate for the growth of the Borough
and the Umbilo water supply scheme was started.
1886: The Umbilo Waterworks was opened, celebrated by com­
missioning the Queen's Fountain in the Town Gardens,
1888: A lamp pillar and drinking fountain was erected at the corner
of Point Road and West Street extensions as a memorial to
Mr. Currie's exertions and skill in averting a water famine in the

Yields of water from the public wells

Fortunately Superintendent Alexander's listing of well positions, depths and
water levels for 1876 was reproduced in the Mayor's Minutes of that year.1O
Sixteen wells were sounded (Table 1), although their yields were not recorded
until 1877, when dry weather was again causing supply problems and a further
46 Durban Wells

two wells had been dug. Total yield from eighteen wells was 47 000 gallons
(214 kilolitres) in 24 hours, which in present-day terms would supply
approximately 200 average households.
The method of measuring individual yields was not recorded, but would
presumably have involved bailing the well dry for a certain period and
recording the volume of water bailed. The subsequent restitution time of the
standing water level is an important factor in well supply, being directly related
to geological factors, namely the permeability of the surrounding soil and its
storage capacity. This was obviously recognized in 1876, as shown by the
column 'Increase in water in 9 hours' in Table 1, being the difference in water
levels between the 9 p.m. and 6 a.m. soundings, recorded as 'depth of water'.
Modern-day terminology is such that this would now be taken to be depth to
water, but the overnight increase in values for each well shows that they are in
fact differences between the bottom of well and water level.

Geology of central Durban

Known and estimated positions of wells in use up to 1854 together with some
of the sixteen wells recorded in 1876 are shown in Figure I. This area,
encompassing the main early Durban settlement, is underlain by estuarine
sediments, deposited during the major sea level changes which affected the
south-east African coast during the last 100 000 years. Cyclical periods of
world-wide glaciation caused sea levels to drop, shore-lines to retreat and river
valleys to become deeply scoured. During interglacial periods climates
warmed, ice packs melted and sea levels once again rose.
A maximum sea level lowering of rlbout 120 m occurred during the last
(Wurm) glacial maximum 18 000 years ago, with the subsequent transgression
peaking about 3 000 years ago, when sea level rose to 3 m to 4 m above
present. I I The Durban Bay was infilled with fine sands and silty sands,
interlayered with sandy clays. Reworking and sorting under shallow, tidal
waters occurred, gradually merging one sedimentary unit into another. When
sea level dropped to its present state, aeolian processes became dominant,
covering the exposed flats with a veneer of fine, wind-blown sands.
Geological cross-sections have been constructed across the central city from
exploration boreholes, as shown in Figures 2 and 3. From these it will be seen
that surface sands commonly cover a bed of sandy clay or clayey sands,
although the reverse also occurs. The water table is shallow, with temporary
perched phreatic surfaces developing on lower-permeability, clayey sediments.

Geological influences on well siting, depths and construction

Geological information in relation to knowledge of well positions is inadequate
to indicate whether or not variations in soil profiles and water tables influenced
well siting in the central parts of the town. Sedimentary units vary across
distances of hundreds of metres in this area, rather than over a single plot, and
wells were probably sited for convenience to users rather than on geology.
Variations in particle sizes of sands and water levels nevertheless can occur
locally and an optimum site would probably have been selected after trial
excavations or borings had been made.
The reported natural fountain on the site of the Old We1l 4 is exceptional, as
local geological conditions are not thought to be conductive to artesian water
flow. However, examination of a contour plan indicates that the fountain was
sited at the head of a concave depression draining to the Bay. Falling sea levels
in geologically recent time (within the last 4 000 years) would have created
Durban Wells 47





:, 'J



Figure 1: Plan of central Durban showing known well sites with positions of
exploratory boreholes.
48 Durhan Wells

~ 600 m ~ 350 m-c­

r ~ 1,Om \;,3~,


- 1,8m
§I 'i' - -p 2,5 m - - 2"J4 -i""~ ~,5m 2,6~ ,
~ ;::,
; I'
c'~..".~' - - v/ 4,um__
. m .'::.',,1
m 7
.. 3, m
~ ~
~ l
~ 5,4m_
; '" I 5,5m
et: 6,6 m ~
I.', '" /
'" V
~ Fine sand
/ 7,Om
, -._",- ~. ..:
~ I" en Silty sane!
1 \ ~ B,Om
i': LEGEf.,D
it ''""
en ~
en Clayey sand
Lr ~
~ Sandy clay
co i!l ~
~3 ~ t"iater table

Figure 2: Geological section: North-South.

-<>- 350 m=--=- 320 m =- -<Cl- 330 m-eo-


1,Om n


U) - tr 3,Om- - t? 3,01)),

i': - 3,l!!: \ 3 , 7 m , : 4,Om

.. '
f. ~ r.

/ /.
'P':" r
~·.5,7m ,...",p:5,Sm
" ~ :'~ ...... / IX "'­
. \ v:: \
f;:; 1\: 7 r:;
~ 7,5m ..: ,5 m

>- ..:
..: 8.5 m
c, i':
csflj .... ....
~ ~
~ Fine sand

Si lty sand
Clayey sand
en '.;,.
~ Sandy clay
.'S ¥ Water table

Figure 3: Geological section: East-West,

Durban Wells 49

youthful channels draining higher ground above West Street. The heads of
these would have been fed by artesian springs tapping the water table, which
probably was the Old Well fountain origin.
Most wells would have been hand-dug to about 0.9 m diameter, but it is
evident that by 1877 drilling machines were available to bore smaller diameter
holes. l " In that year a Mr. Hill persuaded the Town Council to vote money for
exploration boring to find an artesian water source, or one from which water
would flow without pumping. Unfortunately the place of work was not
recorded, although the failure of it was, together with the additional expendi­
ture required to import special equipment. Sympathy could be expressed for
Mr. Hill, as the technical problems encountered during drilling through sands
under even slight artesian pressure are formidable, even today. A similar
comment could also be expressed concerning the problem of explaining a
doubling of expenditure on a fruitless project to sceptical town councillors.
The geology of the City changes westward under the footslopes of the Berea
ridge, where groundwater flows down the contract between red sands of the
Berea Formation and lower-lying, clayey estuarine deposits. Particularly
strong flows emanate from the area below the Botanic Gardens, known as
Currie's Fountain. Councillor H. W. Currie presumably selected this site as
suitable for supplying water to the town because of the wetland conditions
which would have prevailed at the time.
Geological conditions giving rise to these flows are also exceptional, as the
eye of the spring is a major fault zone in which the Pietermaritzburg Shale
Formation is upthrust against tillite of the Dwyka Formation. A geological
section between two exploration boreholes on either side of the fault is shown
in Figure 4. Artesian water flows from the fault and sandy infill in the fault
zone, confined by the overlying clayey layers. No present-day trace of


550 m -----<~;;
2,Om ­
3,5 m

Fine sand

Si lty sand
~ 10,6m Clayey sand

..~.~.~':~ 11, 6 m
...... " .. ". ..........,. 2,4 m
LEGEND Sandy clay

Med. & coarse sand

P.M.8. Shale Form.

Owyka tillite

Figure 4: Geological section across Currie's Fountain.

50 Durban Wells

Councillor Currie's wells or headworks remain, but it is probable that they

would have been sited above the fault in the area reclaimed as the Currie's
Fountain sportsfield. The artesian water now flows underground, discharging
into a culvert draining along Warwick Avenue to the Bay.
The 1869 reference in the Mayor's Minutes to a Berea Road well I' and an
Umbilo well in the succeeding year 14 indicate that the individuals responsible
for well siting were aware of the widespread presence of groundwater below
the Berea footslopes. The Berea Road well is reported as being 26.2 m deep,
with ground water levels in exploration boreholes suggesting that it would have
been sited some distance up from Umbilo Road, possibly in the Turner's
Avenue area. Details of the Umbilo well are not recorded, but the buried zone
of seepage extends far southward along Umbilo Road beyond the boundary of
the City, and could have been intercepted at any point.
Depths of individual wells would have been such as to allow sufficient
storage of free water in the well to supply abstraction by bucket or pumps.
Superintendent Alexander's survey in 1876 (Table I) recorded well depths
from 2.75 m to 6.66 m, with between 0.28 m and 3.66 m of standing water in
each. These depths are superimposed on the geological sections across the City
(Figures 2 and 3), from which it will be seen that most wells terminated in silty
or clayey strata of lower permeability than the overlying sands. Present-day
groundwater levels are similar to those recorded in 1876, as shown on the
geological sections.
The far greater depth of the Berea Road well would have been necessary to
reach a layer of clean, water-bearing sand which is known to overlie bedrock
(probably shale) in this vicinity. Reconstucting a shaft of perhaps one metre
diameter through loose sand to penetrate saturated sand for 1.8 m at a depth of
26 m would now be defined as a major civil engineering project, costing more
than RI 00 000. The un-named' Australian miner' rightly earned considerable
respect for doing this in 1869, for his successful efforts were recorded in the
Mayor's Minutes of that year. Repairs to the original well were necessitated by
damage resulting from floods in 1868,15 which probably caused sidewall
collapse. The assumed well position is far removed from any surface streams
and it is unlikely that the damage was due to inundation by floodwaters.
Shaft wall instability is the major problem encountered during well sinking,
particularly when the water table is reached. Walls become less stable with
depth and require more restraint as earth pressures increase, but by the late
nineteenth century empirical rules for the size, type and placement of timber or
brick support were well established. Early householders used simple methods,
however, sinking holes 1,8 m to 2,4 m deep in their backyards, into which
casks without heads were successively inserted. Wells were bricked after the
casks rotted and caved in. 16
Support timbers or bricks have to be placed against an exposed soil face
shortly after excavation, to allow sufficient earth movement to occur to
develop arch strength but prevent complete collapse. The process was not
always successfully undertaken, as is apparent from the Mayor's Minutes of
1871, where it is recorded that 'the new well dug in Mr. Brunton's premises in
Smith Street required slight alteration due to a landslip.'

Groundwater quality
The groundwater quality obtained from the old Durban wells was described by
Russell as 'not nice, but preferred to rain water off tarred roofs or dusty thatch,
combined with the flavour of wine or spirit hogsheads used as water butts' ,16
Durban Wells 51

General public concern regarding well water quality had been expressed from
1861 3 and in 1875 water from the Old Well was described as 'only suitable for
domestic but not drinking purposes'!? for unexplained reasons. Much contro­
versy surrounded the supply from Currie's Fountain, which was initially feared
to be unsuitable for dietetic purposes. A chemical analyst was employed by the
Town Council, who tested the water and declared it to be suitable for
drinking. IX However, in 1880 certain wells had to be closed as a result of
impurities found after analysis. 19 Test results were unfortunately not recorded
in the Minutes, but it is probable that both chemical and microbiological
analyses were undertaken .
.Analytical chemistry was reasonably advanced by the 1870s, but the role of
contaminated water in disease transmission had only been established in 1854
in London by physician John Snow. After more than 500 people died of cholera
in a week in the area around the intersection of Cambridge and Broad Streets,
Snow plotted cases on a street inap to find the epidemic source. This proved
to be the Broad Street water pump and removal of its handle halted spread of
the disease. 2() Cholera epidemics continued, however, as shown by the drawing
of Pinwell (reproduced below) documenting the 1866 London epidemic.

King Cholera dispenses contagion with drinking water:

George Pinwell's sketch, London, 1866.
(Reproduced from National Geographic, January 1991)
52 Durban Wells

These epidemics no doubt caused the public concern in Durban over local well
water quality and led to its regular sampling. Most bacteriological pollution
enters wells through unsanitary conditions around their wellheads. This
appeared to be realized by 1878, when all wells were altered by fitting their
pumps some distance from them, and further improved in 1879 by using iron
troughs to lead water away.11. 21
Apart from its bacteriological quality, which is dependant on conditions at
the time of sampling, groundwater abstracted by the early wells would have
been potable. Present-day testing from the shallow central city aquifer
indicates that it is brack, with a high dissolved solids content, but otherwise
suitable for drinking. Groundwater sampled at 3 m and 30 m depths below the
~entral Park (outside the present-day Workshop) and at Currie's Fountain is
compared chemically with current Durban tap water, together with S.A.B.S
limits, in Table 2. Brackishness is indicated by hardness values, together with
total dissolved solids, which comprise various salts. It will be seen that the
Central Park water is more bnick than that from Currie's Fountain, due to
leaching of salts from the estuarine sediments through which it is drawn. The
latter supply, in contrast, flows through salt-free aeolian sands of the Berea
Some lower-yielding wells excavated into silty or clayey soil could have
produced turbid water at times of heavy use, due to the infiltration of fine
sediment. Turbidity caused by suspended solids, although innocuous, creates
great concern in consumers and may well have contributed to the doubts which
were continually expressed about water quality.

Adequate quantities of groundwater from wells were available to meet the
needs of the early settlers in Durban. Demands from an increasing population
soon outgrew supplies, as the geology of the original town centre is not

Table 2: Groundwater Chemistry

Durban S.A.B.S Central Central Currie's

Tab Park Park Fountain
3m 30 m

ph 7.9 6-9 7.7 8.1 7.1

Conductivity mg/l 13 - 91 55 56
Sulphate mg/l 3 <250 197 9 52
Chloride mg/l 16 <250 16 94 68
Alkalinity mg/l 30 - 182 147 82
Total Hardness
mg/l 39 <200 326 116 48
Calcium Hardness
mg/I 23 - 236 72 24
Total Dissolved
Solids mg/l 80 <500 306 365 420
Durban Wells 53

favourable for large-scale groundwater abstraction. Droughts during cyclical

variations in the climate of South Africa created critical water shortages, which
led to searches for more permanent sources. Currie's Fountain provided relief
for a few years, until the town's first waterworks were opened in 1886.

1. G. RusselL The hislOry of" old Dllrhall (New Edition). Durban, T. W. Griggs, p.6.
2. W.P.M. Hcndcrson. Durban: FiJiy Years' MUllicipal His/ory. Durban. Robinson, 1904, p.225.
3. Ibid. p.225.

4, G. Russell. p. 10.

5. Ibid. p. 14.
6. Ibid, p.29.
7. Ibid. p.23.
8. Ibid. p, 31 .
9. Ihid, p.70.
10. Mayor's Minut(!s. Durban City Council, 1876.
11. B. W. Flemming, 'Guide 10 the Cainozoic deposits of the SaIdanha Bay/Langebaan Lagoon
area'. CSIR Report SEA 8002, 1980, p. 169.
12. Mayor's Minutes, Durban City Council, 1877.
13, Ibid, 1869.
14. Ibid, 1870.
IS. Ibid, 1869.
16. G. Russcll, p. 100.
17. Mayor's Minut(!s, Durban City Council, 1875.
18. Ibid, 1881.
19, Ibid, 1880.
20. 'The disease detectives', NaTional Geographic Maga:ine, Jan. 1991. p. 116.
21. Mayor's Minutes, Durban City Council, 1878.
22. Ibid. 1879.


The Centenary of the

Augustinian Sisters in Natal

I Iltroductioll
31 October 1991 marks the centenary of the arrival in Natal of the first group of
sisters of the Canonesses Regular Hospitallers of the Mercy of Jesus, better
known as the Augustinian Sisters. During this hundred years the Augustinian
Sisters have served the people of Natal through their sanatoria or private
hospitals and through their homes for destitute or orphaned children.
The Augustinian sisters belong to an ancient Order that can be traced bac!< to
well before the thirteenth century. The name of the founder and the exact date
of their foundation are not known, the archives of the congregation having
been destroyed in the pillage of Dieppe in 1562. However in 1285 Pope
Honoratius IV referred to religious who were already making solemn vows and
serving the poor under the Rule of St Augustine. I The sisters take the usual
vows of poverty, chastity and obedience as well as a vow to serve their fellow
men. They are an enclosed congregation and live according to the Rule of St
Augustine of Hippo, based on love of God and neighbour. The Order had its
roots in Dieppe where the Hotel Dieu was established to care for the poor and
sick and for pilgrims and travellers. The first group of Augustinian sisters left
France in 1639 to work in Canada where they established hospitals, so the
Natal sisters were part of a long missionary tradition.
Under Bishop Charles Jolivet. vicar apostolic of Natal from 1874 to 1903,
there had been a considerable extension of Catholic institutions, especially in
the field of education. He decided to bring a group of Augustinian sisters to
Natal to open a private hospital in Durban partly because he believed that this
would be a useful addition to the medical facilities and partly because he
wanted to extend the influence of the Catholic Church in the traditional field of
nursing and social work. 10livet was born in the diocese of Quimper in Brittany
and was well acquainted with the excellent hospitals run by the sisters there.
As early as 1885 he began to negotiate with the Bishop 0; Quimper, under
whose jurisdiction the sisters came. He also began to sound out public opinion
in Natal as to the need for a private hospital and the amount of co-operation he
could expect from the medical fraternity in Durban. He received support from
Dr P. Prince and encouragement from the mayor B. W. Greenacre, with
qualified support from a number of doctors who wanted to assess the quality of
the facilities before committing themselves. This was sufficiently positive for
the bishop to go ahead with his plans to look around for a suitable site.
Durban's Berea was relatively unpopulated in 1891, with plenty of empty
sites available and Dr Prince and the bishop made a joint request to the Durban
Augustinial/ Sisters 55

Corporation for a site for a hospitaL the cost of the buildings 'to be borne by a
charitable lady'.2 The response to the application was initially successful and
the corporation agreed in principle to provide five or six acres for the project,
valued at £250 to £300. However elections were due to be held and the final
decision as to whether to grant the land was to be left to the incoming council.
lolivet, confident that the land would be made available, left for Europe in lune
1891 to finalize the arrangements for bringing the sisters to NataL a plan that
had been in the air since 1885. This meant visiting the various convents that
had agreed to release sisters for mission work, meeting the sisters who were to
come to Natal and persuading the Bishop of Quimper, under whose jurisdiction
the sisters came, to allow them to leave France. 3
While Bishop lolivet was in France the new council was elected in Durban
and the question of the hospital site came up for discussion. Dr Prince and
Father W. P. Murray were called to a meeting to explain their plans, particu­
larly to the newly elected councillors who had not been present at the earlier
meetings. The site that had been tentatively agreed upon was in Manning Road,
next to the plot acquired in 1888 by the Methodist Church. William Palmer, a
newly elected councillor, became the spokesman for the Methodists in
safeguarding their interests in this matter. 4 At the same time a series of letters
appeared in the local press objecting to the fund-raising appeals that were
being made on behalf of the new hospital. The writer of one such letter, writing
under the nom de plume 'Protestant Sentinel', maintained that if another
hospital was needed then the government should provide the funds; if they
were unwilling then the Protestants must wake up and raise money for their
own hospital." Anti-Catholic prejudice had declined considerably over the year
since Bishop AlIard arrived in 1852, but it tended to reappear in a limited form
whenever any new project was proposed or any unusual event placed Catholics
in the spotlight. It was in an attempt to break down these prejudices even
further that lolivet wished to bring nursing sisters to Durban, believing that
their friendly and caring attitude to their patients as well as their nursing skills
would together reverse the prejudices still remaining among some Prote­
The Methodists who were planning their new church in Manning Road were
also unhappy about having a Catholic institution so close to them, especially
one that would inevitably increase traffic and thus noise. The original
agreement, which the bishop had drawn up, permitted the building of a chapel
for the use of hospital staff but when Father Murray requested that Catholic
patients and families living in the area be permitted to attend services in the
chapeL there was strong opposition inside and outside the council. After
discussion the council decided that the land would still be made available but
that no chapel might be built. On hearing this Bishop 10livet replied, 'rather
than accept such unreasonable conditions he would prefer to buy a piece of
land ... ' and the request to the council was withdrawn. In a letter to Father
Kolbe written after his return, lolivet explained what had caused him to cancel
his application for land:
Now, judging from this you will think that the people of Natal and the
town councillors in particular are a set of narrow-minded bigots; it is not
so however. The people of Natal as a rule are generous and broad­
minded ... nevertheless there are bigots in Natal - the genus is to be
found everywhere.
The decision to withdraw the request for a grant of land had a significant
56 Augustinian Sisters

effect on the plans that Jolivet had made for the Augustinian sisters and which
now had to be radically changed. The hospital plan had to be postponed while a
suitable site was found and the purchase completed and only after this could
building plans be drawn up. In the meantime the sisters had to be accommo­
dated and to be provided with the means to earn a living. Jolivet finally decided
that the sisters should make a start at Estcourt where the Church owned
property on which there was accommodation of a simple kind available.

The Augustinian Sisters leave France

The sisters at Pont L'Abbe, in Brittany, received the long awaited news that
their move to Natal had been approved on 21 July 1891, the formal agreements
having been completed. The sisters were to embark at Dieppe in September
under the direction of Mother Therese of Jesus, who was appointed supe­
Accounts written by the sisters at this time reveal their expectation and
excitement. Most of them were young, few had been outSIde of Brittany and
none had any real information about Natal apart from what Bishop Jolivet had
told them about the Natal mission and the Zulu people. They soon became the
centre of attention as they prepared to leave France for the "foreign missions'
from which they would probably never return. 6 Gifts of useful items for the
missionary life ahead were presented to them wherever they went and added to
the considerable amount of luggage that accompanied them to Natal.
The party of five from Pont L'Abbe said farewell at 3 a.m. on 8 September
1891, travelling by coach to Quimper and then by train to Auray. They were
accompanied by their chaplain who saw to all the business affairs and the
luggage. At Auray they were welcomed by the sisters at the convent where
the cloister was transformed into a garden of greenery and flowers; the
community room and the refectory were beautifully decorated and
welcoming songs had been composed for the occasion. 7
From Auray they travelled to Rennes where their welcome, was just as warm
and generous and on the morning of 12 September they came to the
Augustinian convent at Vitre where two sisters were to join them; their last
visit was to Fougeres where Sister St Marthe joined the group. After a short
stay in Paris they proceeded to their motherhouse in Dieppe where they were to
remain a week. At Dieppe
we severed the last threads joining us to our dear community when our
devoted and kind chaplain left us ... like another Raphael, his mission
happily fulfilled, he said goodbye. s
It was at the Dieppe convent that Sister Claire, an English woman, quite
unexpectedly volunteered to join the Natal group and was given permission by
her superiors, bringing the party to nine. This was to make their lives much
easier once they reached their destination since she was able to translate and
interpret for her French colleagues and also could explain the customs and
manners of the English colonists.
On 28 September 1891 the travellers met at the quay at Dieppe where
a large crowd of friendly people, several religious and nearly all the
priests of Dieppe came to greet his Lordship and wish us all best ... for
our future mission. Shortly after the steamboat carried us away towards
the English shore and soon it was a last look, a last goodbye to France,
our beloved country.9
Augustinian Sisters S7

Throughout the journey the sisters travelled as cloistered religious and saw
none of the sights of Paris or of London.
The last stage of the journey began when the entire party of Bishop Jolivet,
three priests belonging to the congregation of Missionary Oblates of Mary
Immaculate, to which the bishop also belonged, and nine Augustinian sisters
boarded the Illanda on 29 September, the feast of St Michael. They set sail the
following morning. The voyage passed without incident and for the sisters it
was an adventure and a time for learning English under the help of Sister
Claire. The highlight of the day was the evening recreation period when the
whole party would meet on deck and the captain remarked 'I would never have
believed that religious people were so cheerful, so happy'. JO The gatherings
ended with a hymn and prayers, with the bishop giving them his blessing
before they all retired for the night.

Arrival at Port Natal

The lllallda arrived at Port Natal on the evening of 30 October 1891; a
thanksgiving service was held on board for their safe arrival, followed by Mass
and then the disembarkation began. Fathers Murray and Barret, superiors of
Durban and Pietermaritzburg, came on board to greet the hishop and the new
missionaries and then it was time to climb into the basket for the descent to the
'steamer' that was to carry them ashore. The sisters were full of hopeful
expectations when they stepped ashore to start their missionary experience,
after what had probably been the most exciting period of their lives.
As was the custom at the time when the bishop returned from overseas, a
great deal of ceremonial took place. A deputation from the Catholic commun­
ity came to congratulate him on a safe return, a coach belonging to the
Portuguese consul awaited him with lackeys in full livery, and he entered the
coach to drive to St Joseph's church in West Street. The remainder of his party
and those who had come to the ship to meet Bishop Jolivet now entered one of
the many coaches and went in procession to the church. All the Catholic clergy
of Durban and Pietermaritzburg and dozens of altar boys came in procession to
greet the bishop at the coach, while convent pupils dressed in white and
carrying flowers waited at the church door. Th~ church bells pealed, a
welcoming hymn was sung by the children and flowers were strewn in the
bishop's path while a large crowd was present in the church for a Te Deum,
followed by Benediction. After this refreshments were served in the courtyard
where an address of welcome was read and prominent citizens were present to
congratulate Jolivet on a successful trip. A firework display ended the day.
Since the following day was the feast of All Saints the celebrations continued
and Sister Therese noted that 10livet 'officiated [at High Mass] with pomp and
splendour such as we were not expecting'.!!
The first few days were spent with the Holy Family Sisters in Durban and
then they accompanied the bishop and his party who travelled by train to
Pietermaritzburg where the welcome home ceremonies were repeated, the
military band providing the music. The si~ters were welcomed by Mother St
Leonide and offered the hospitality of the Holy Family Sisters in their Loop
Street convent. In the evening they were invited by the bishop to see 'the
illumination and hear the joyful music of the military band which had returned
to serenade the bishop'.

Settling in Estcourt
After a few days in Pietermaritzburg the superior and two of the sisters went on
58 Augustinian Sisters

to Estcourt where their luggage had already arrived. Bishop 10livet sent Father
Louis Mathieu, an experienced missionary, to assist them with business
matters and to establish the first Augustinian foundation in Natal. Here for the
first time they were introduced to a small Natal village. They were met at the
station by Mrs Cooke, wife of the storekeeper, and taken to the cottage that was
to be the first convent. One room was set aside as a chapel and the sisters
everything was poor but clean. A modest altar with a wooden crucifix and
four glass candlesticks was all the ornamentation. A beautiful altar rail,
the gift of a Catholic worker, formed the sanctuary, three school benches
on either side replaced chairs. At the back of the room there was an old
harmonium which could play only a few notes! That was all. 12
Bishop 10livet arrived a few days later and decideCl to convert the large
stable on the property into a temporary church since there was very little
money available and the structure was strong and in good condition. The result
was a pleasant building, large enough for the few Catholics in Estcourt. The
sisters, being of an enclosed order, were provided with a grille with a curtain to
separate them from the congregation. The church was blessed by Bishop
lolivet in May 1892 and named Our Lady of All Graces after the monastery of
that name in Carhaix in France.
The question now was how the sisters were to support themselves since there
was no building suitable for a hospital and even when a building was erected
there would be very few patients in such a small village. The only option was
to open a school to serve Estcourt and district, offering limited boarding
accommodation. The fact that the sisters with one exception did not speak
English and that none was trained as a teacher were immediate obstacles but
the Dominican Sisters of Newcastle sent one of their teaching sisters to help for

Pioneering days in Estcourt

(Photograph: Author's collection)
Augustinian Sisters 59

the first few months. Then Jolivet arranged for two young girls, Cecilia and
Mathilde McLoughlin, both of whom were experienced teachers, to help with
the running of the school. D It began in a very small way but numbers increased
each year and the sisters were pleased with the progress made. The two young
women eventually joined the Augustinian community as novices and became
known as Sister St Charles and Sister St Augustine, the first South Africans to
enter the Order. Eventually the former was elected superior in Durban and the
latter superior in Ladysmith.
Meanwhile funds had to be found for the hospital building and the sisters
were obliged to raise a loan in France to pay for building materials. From the
well-established and secure background of a French religious foundation the
sisters must have found Estcourt unbelievably poor and primitive. But what
they found most extraordinary of all, after their experiences in Catholic
Brittany. was the fact that there was no mission or missionary for 80 kms in
any direction and, until the arrival of Father Le Bras, who was appointed
chaplain to the sisters, there was no resident priest between Pietermaritzburg
and Newcastle. The hospital was ready to accept patients in 1893, and
indentured Indian patients at Government expense from 1894.

Progress in Durban
Bishop Jolivet's main aim in bringing the Augustinian sisters to Natal was to
open a private hospital in Durban and although his plans were delayed they
were still uppermost in his mind. He quickly found a suitable nine acre site in
Chelmsford Road and arranged for an architect to draw up plans for the
hospital. l • The property included three shabby cottages and a number of
outbuildings and initially two of the cottages were to be converted into
wards for IS or 20 patients. It was generally felt that Jolivet had acquired
the best site on the Berea with spectacular views of the sea and the bay. The
grounds were described as being 'covered with all kinds of trees, orange,
lemon. mango and great ornamental trees' .15 The main criticism of the site
was its distance from the town although some foresaw that the town would
spread in that direction in the next ten years. The property was to become
available in September 1892 and a tenth sister, Sister Rose de la Croix, arrived
from France in August 1892 to help with the nursing and to be superior of the
Durban sanatorium, the second foundation in Natal. Two choir sisters and a lay
sister were transferred from Estcourt to work in the sanatorium, known as the
Hotel Dieu of the Sacred Heart. and the first patient was admitted in December
1892. The sisters were accommodated in the third cottage, with several other
sisters who had arrived from France and Canada to assist with th~ nursing, until
the newly erected sanatorium building was ready for use in October 1894.
On the surface the history of the Durban sanatorium tells of extensions to
buildings. improved facilities, new trained staff, success in nursing examina­
tions and satisfied patients, but in reality the sanatorium was affected by the
events taking place in Natal and in South Africa as a whole and there were
many problems to be overcome, especially after 1902. Among the improve­
ments were the installation of electric light in about 1900, the recognition of
the nurses' training college in 19 IO. extended to allow secular nurses also to be
trained there between 1912 and 1940. the opening of the new maternity block
in 1950 and the reopening of the nurses' training school as a first class tI;aining
school in 1954. The sisters also had to overcome serious financial difficulties
during the long depression from 1904 to 1909 when patients were unable to
pay for their treatment and went instead to the government hospitals, leaving
60 Augustinian Sisters


N a
00 "'~"










Augustinian Sisters 61

all the sanatoria to run at a loss. So bad was the financial position in 1907 that
Bishop Delalle, who had succeeded Jolivet in 1904, seriously considered
closing some of the sanatoria including the one at Durban, and did in fact close
the Port Shepstone sanatorium run by the Kermaria Sisters.
It was not only the depression that caused problems for the sanatoria at this
time. The medical profession had lost confidence in the nursing standards at
the Durban sanatorium where the nursing techniques as well as some of the
equipment were thought to be old fashioned, while the nurses lacked any
formal training. Legislation for the compulsory registration of nurses began in
the Cape in 1891 and spread to the rest of South Africa. The Augustinian
sisters had received informal 'on the job' training in Brittany and had had wide
nursing experience but this no longer satisfied the doctors at a time when
medical practice was changing rapidly. Training of nurses remained informal
in South Africa until 1910 but probationers were required to work in an
approved institution with not less than twelve beds for two years and to be
under the supervision of a medical practitioner for one year. 16 The first
candidates passed the newly introduced nursing examination in 190 I. Both the
Durban and Pietermaritzburg sanatoria had the required number of beds but did
not have a full time doctor to supervise student nurses, and hence they were not
recognized. Faced with the declining support for the sanatorium, Bishop
Delalle persuaded the superior of the Durban sanatorium to retire some of the
older sisters, to reorganize the administration and to send the younger sisters to
Johannesburg to be trained. When this was done the doctors began to support
the sanatoria again and the financial position improved. The name St
Augustine's Hospital was adopted at the request of the Nursing Council when
the institution became a recognized training college, since the term sanatorium
was associated with the treatment of patients with tuberculosis.

The Ladysmith Foundation

In 1894 the third foundation was established at Ladysmith when the
Augustinian sisters were invited to establish a sanatorium in the town where
there was no hospital. Seriously ill or injured persons had to be transported to
Pietermaritzburg for treatment at great inconvenience and it seemed that a
private nursing home on the same lines as the Estcourt sanatorium would solve
many of the town's problems. The pioneer sisters, Mother Therese of Jesus and
a'companion, visited the town and were able to buy a ten hectare site on the top
of the hill overlooking the town for only 2500 francs (about RI96). They
rented a house, opened a school in it and supervised the building of the convent
and sanatorium on the hilltop. In January 1896 three sisters left Estcourt to start
the Ladysmith foundation with Mother Marie des Anges as superior. The
buildings were almost ready for occupation at the beginning of 1897 and the
first patients were admitted. At first the sanatorium was for white patients only
but it was not long before the sick of all races were accepted.
Ladysmith and Estcourt were similar in many ways. Both were on the
railway to the Transvaal and the towns had benefitted greatly from the
presence of hundreds of construction workers over a number of years. Both had
small white populations 17 and the completion of the railway line meant that
there was a decline in population. felt particularly by traders. The problems
encountered by the Augustinian sisters were related in that neither town was
large enough to require a government as well as a private school and neither
could support a private hospital without a government grant. In addition the
Catholic popUlation consisted of only three of four families and most of these
62 Augustinian Sisters

were poor. 18 The sisters had virtually no financial resources and it was not long
before they began to realize that neither foundation was viable.
In October 1899 the South African War broke out and Natal was invaded.
British forces withdrew to Ladysmith by the end of October and the convent
buildings on the hill were an easy target for the Boer guns and were shelled
regularly throughout the siege of Ladysmith. Despite the fact that the Red
Cross flag was flying over the convent buildings they came under early attack
and on 6 November 'after a projectile weighing 90 Ibs exploded in the
refectory, knocking down the walls and making an enormous breach in the
floor of the corridor' 19 it was decided to evacuate the staff and patients, most of
whom were wounded soldiers from the early battles. At first they were moved
to the church hall and then to Intombi camp where they remained for the 118
days of the siege. From the camp the sisters could see 'Mbulwana hill on which
the famous long Tom was placed and which 'we could see distinctly hurling
missiles onto our dear convent' .20 Intombi camp was about four miles from
Ladysmith and here hundreds of wounded soldiers, civilians, prisoners-of-war
and the hospital staff and patients were crowded into tents for nearly four
months through the rainy season and with very little food. Typhoid fever broke
out at the end of December and the sisters were called to assist in nursing the
Natal volunteers in the army camp who were affected by the outbreak. Heat,
flies, mud, toads and torrential rain made life miserable for everyone but
particularly for the sick and there were many deaths, including Sister Martha
and an Irish nursing sister, Sister O'Brien, who had joined the staff of the
hospital just before the war broke out.
When the siege was lifted the sisters were allowed to return to their convent
on the hill. They found the damage much more severe than they had expected,
the grounds were littered with tents, horses and mules, wagons were every­
where and General Buller and his staff occupied all the habitable buildings that
remained. Several of the sisters were ill and it was with relief that they received
the instructions of Bishop Jolivet to leave Ladysmith and take the first
available train to Durban. Here they spent their time on the Bluff recovering
their health. When they returned to Ladysmith in June 1900 they were able to
reopen the school but the sanatorium had been severely damaged and nothing
could be done before repairs had been completed. The Invasions Losses
Enquiry Commission reported that the damages were of a 'very extensive
character, being one of the worst cases in town'.21 The Commission allocated
£419 for structural damages but for the sisters it was a matter of starting all
over again especially as linen, china and equipment had disappeared, furniture
had been damaged, windows broken and doors ripped off their hinges. The
gardens were in ruins and horses had eaten the young trees and shrubs that the
sisters had planted. It was not until September 190 I that the hospital was able
to take patients again and for the worried sisters the Natal government's grant,
made on the understanding that they would accept patients of all races, saved
the day. By 1904, when the military expenditure had been drastically reduced,
soldiers discharged and the population returned to pre-war levels or less, the
school found itself with no pupils and there were very few patients in the
Economic conditions deteriorated all over South Africa at this time and the
small towns did not escape. The Augustinian foundations at Ladysmith and
Estcourt were particuarly vulnerable because neither had had time to become
established before the depression struck and neither was really viable in any
case. The white population diminished as people left for the Witwatersrand,
Augustinian Sisters 63

The Augustinian community in the early days at Ladysmith, 1900.

(Photograph: Awhor's colleclioll )

businesses failed and parents removed their children from the convent schools
because they were unable to pay the fees, while both the sanatorium and the
school had bad debts to cope with. Estcourt had an additional problem in that
one of the two doctors in the town ran his own nursing home and did not
support the sanatorium at all. Fortunately the Indian section was moderately
Eventually the depression lifted, the white population of the two towns
increased, sisters were sent to be trained as nurses and the crisis was past.

The Pietermaritzburg Sanatorium

The fourth foundation was the Pietermaritzburg sanatorium established in 1898
after a group of doctors had approached Bishop Jolivet with a request for an
institution similar to the Durban sanatorium. 23 Bishop Jolivet was closely
associated with this venture, drawing some of the plans, assisting the sisters to
raise the capital necessary for the building and appointing Sister Mary of the
Sacred Heart as the first superior. The venture started off badly with the
completion of the building delayed month after month while the worried sisters
were paying interest on the loan of £8 000 at 6%. Eventually they decided to
move into the incomplete building in April 1898 in the hope of hurrying the
workmen into completing the construction. The first patient was admitted as
soon as one bedroom was ready. At the same time Bishop Jolivet was
summoned to France and was away for six months at a crucial stage. Thirteen
patients were admitted in May despite numerous difficulties. Eventually the
64 Augustinian Sisters

building was completed, patients were admitted and doctors gave their support.
Their first patients included a Zulu chief who arrived in an ox wagon with a
large retinue, and the Prime Minister, Sir Henry Binns.
Economic depression hit the Pietermaritzburg sanatorium later than the
others, reaching a climax between 1907 and 1915. Bishop Delalle believed that
their problems were caused to a large extent by their refusal to take debtors to
coure~ and also because they treated large numbers of poor people without
charge. The Provincial Council provided a grant in 1913 which enabled the
sisters to survive the crisis.

Other service
Apart from their nursing foundations, the sisters were concerned about the
welfare of destitute children, especially coloured and Indian, from the time of
their arrival in Natal. An orphanage was opened in one of the cottages on the
Durban property in 1895, initially to care for the children of domestic workers.
It remained there for many years until their number grew too large for the
shabby cottage and the property known as St Philomena's orphanage in
Malvern was bought for them in 1939. In 1976 the property was sold and St
Philomena's was moved to Sydenham where the cottage system was intro­
duced and the name changed to St Philomena's Anchor Village. In 1982 the
Augustinian sisters withdrew, handing over control to the Archdiocese of
Durban. 25
In 1925 the sisters of the Durban community saw the need for a home for
destitute Indian and coloured boys and obtained land in Mayville where they
built St Theresa's home for boys. Initially they opened a school for Indian boys
and another, St Peter Claver school, for black children living near the
sanatorium. For about eight years they ran a small hospital for Indians living in
Sydenham but this was closed when it was no longer needed by the
community. St Theresa's church was erected as a parish church for Mayville
and is now a chapel of ease for St Anne's parish, Sydenham. St Theresa's home
is still in existence; the boys are now housed in modern cottages with trained
housemothers to see to their needs. 26

Recent years
The foundations at Estcourt, Ladysmith, Pietermaritzbuurg and Durban closed
down one after the other after 1966. There were many reasons for this. The
shortage of religious after Vatican 11 made it impossible to staffthe schools and
hospitals without the assistance of qualified lay people. In the case of the
sanatoria, where medical advances made it necessary to update the theatre,
laboratory and X-ray sections, the costs involved were unacceptably high. The
Augustinian sisters realized that a private hospital was incapable of competing
with the facilities of provincial and government hospitals unless they could
regularly expend large sums on equipment in order to keep up to date. The
Durban and Pietermaritzburg sanatoria were taken over by companies and are
still in use as private institutions. The Estcourt sanatorium was closed and at
Ladysmith the buildings were used for La Verna hospital, run by the
Franciscan Minoresses.
At the present time Augustinian sisters are engaged in pastoral work in the
Estcourt parish and district, they have a novitiate and small school at
Nottingham Road, they run a clinic and maternity home at Pomeroy, as well as
undertaking pastoral work among the poor of the district. They are also
Augustinian Sisters 65

engaged in mission work at various centres. Older sisters have established a

community at Botha's Hill and old or ill sisters are looked after there. In 1972
the autonomous houses were joined together as the House of St Augustine.
Generations of Natalians have been associated with the Augustinian sisters
in one way or another - as patients, or infants born in one of the sanatoria or
as pupils at one of the schools or as children taken in and cared for by the
sisters. Throughout their century of service they have shown remarkable
resilience and faith that their problems would be overcome by prayer and
perseverance. In recent years tbey have adapted to changing circumstances,
moving into new fields to meet new demands. Natalians will surely wish them
every success as they begin the next hundred years of servicel

I. Augustinian Sisters of the Mercy of Jesus. Natal 1891-1991, Mayville, Augustinian Sisters,
1991. p.8.
Durban Corporation. Minute of the Mayor, 1891. p.64.
3. First Annal, wrillen by the Foundress, Mother Thcrcsc of Jesus, I g93, p.3.
4. Joy B. Brain, Catholics ill Natal 11, Durban, Archdiocese of Durban, 1982, pp.28-32.
5. Natal Adl'ertiser, 25 June 1891.
6. It was generally accepted by missionaries at the time that they would probably never return to
their home country, particularly as regular overseas leave was not provided until recent
7. First Annal, p.6.
8. Ibid., p.7.
9. Ibid., p.7.
10. Ibid., p. 11.
11. Ibid .. pp. 15-16.
12. Ibid .. pp. 17-18.
13. Percnnes, MOIlseigneur Jolil'et, Priziac. Imprimerie de l'Orphelinat Saint-Michel, 1937,
14. Jolivet's Journal, 30 November 1891.

IS. First Annal, p.24.

16. C. Searle. The history of the Development of nursing in South Africa 1652-1960. Cape Town.
Struik. 1965, pp. 284-285.
17. The white population of Ladysmith was given as 2 123 in 1891 and Estcourt was somewhat
18. Joy B. Brain, Cath(!lics in Natal 1/, pp.48-49.
19. Annal written by Sister Marie des Angcs, Ladysmith, 1900, p.4.
20. Ibid., p.5.
21. CSO 2926: Claims of associations, churches etc., schedule 1927 (NAD).
22. Dclalle's Diary, 7 January 1911.
23. They were Doctors Currie. Ward. Gordon, Scott. Alien, Campbell-Watt, Buntine and Dau­
24. Joy B. Brain. Catholics in Natal 1/. pp. 184-185.
25. Augustinian Sisters of the Mercy afJeslls. Natal 1891-1991, p.20.
26. Ibid., p.24.

Neville lames (1911-1991)
Mankind is, by and large, perverse and quarrelsome; it is devious, given to
intrigue and it strives by doubtful stratagems to contend against conventional
order. It is, by its very nature, much in need of restraint.
It is, therefore, the foremost purpose of the Law to observe the frailties of
behaviour that abound and to spin a web of reason as best it can to bind the
unruly into the essential whole so that there can be a preponderance of good
over evil.
A heavy burden must then fall upon the judge. He is to be schooled in the
Law and fortified in his task by skill in its practice in the many corridors of
justice. Only then is yielded to him the power to gather fairness and principle
together to unravel the affairs of men and the complexities of State, to resolve
their disputes and to devise their punishments.

Justice Neville James

(Photograph : Natal Witness)
Obituaries 67

To be a good and a wise judge, he must add to his store of knowledge a

profound understanding of human nature which he gains at first hand from the
wisdom wrought from experience in life's crucible.
To be a truly good and a truly wise judge, he must add to the amalgam of
these virtues a well of compassion for his fellows so deep and constant that it
allows mercy to flow freely with justice at all times.
Mr Justice Neville James, who died at Pietermaritzburg on 14 June 1991,
after a distinguished career in the Law and in other public service, was
unquestionably just such a man.
He epitomized all that is best in the tradition of justice. He abundantly
possessed those qualities needed to sit in judgement - an incomparable
mastery of the law, a lifetime of experience, deep wisdom and compassion. To
these he added an indispensable ingredient. He had and used to advantage a
marvellous wit and a gentle, but sometimes devastating, humour.
Neville James was born at Stanger in Natal on 24 September 1911. He was
educated at Cordwalles in Pietermaritzburg and at Michaelhouse. He studied
law at Natal University College (as the University of Natal was then known)
and, after qualifying there, was admitted to practice in Natal as an attorney in
Thereafter, as a member of Grays Inn, he read successfully for the Bar in
England. He returned to South Africa in 1938 to be admitted as an advocate of
the Natal Provincial Division of the Supreme Court of South Africa. He opened
chambers in Pietermaritzburg in that year and not long afterwards the War of
1939-1945 interrupted his acti ve career at the Bar.
Setting aside his bib and gown, he donned the accoutrement of Adjutant of
the 1st Field Regiment of the South African Artillery. He saw active service
throughout the war and was mentioned in despatches. He left the Regiment in
1945 and resumed chambers in Pietermaritzburg.
It was not long before Neville James had built up a busy, successful practice
and established a sound reputation in the profession. In 1955 he took silk and a
number of acting appointments to the Bench followed. On I February 1957 he
accepted appointment as puisne judge on the Natal Bench where he remained
for twenty six years, the last twelve of which were marked by his distinguished
tenure of the office of Judge President.
Following his formal retirement at the age of seventy, he continued for a
further year as Judge President until the appointment of his successor. Not
content, however, with a lifetime devoted to the Law and public service and
despite the temptations of a tranquil retirement. he acted as a Judge of Appeal
in Bloemfontein during 1983 and from 1985 until shortly before he died he was
a Judge of the Appellate Division of the Transkeian Supreme Court.
Neville James was a gentleman of great courtesy and consideration both in
his Court and beyond it. When he presided, he failed to display, save by the
mildest personal gesture, the exasperation which he must surely have suffered
on occasion in the face of manifest nonsense. His immense patience was sorely
tried, in particular, by the slightly comic egg-dances performed with men­
dacious dexterity by some of the principal players in the James Commission of
Enquiry, firstly into the affairs of the Durban City Council and, later, into
irregularities in the House of Delegates.
To the cognoscenti, his chin cupped in hand, his empty stare into the
distance, the spectacles pushed upwards on his forehead, his hand across his
eyes accompanied on occasion. by a mild, quietly spoken rebuke, was each
irrefutable evidence that His Lordship was approaching the limit of his
endurance to suffer fools in whatever guise they might appear before him.
68 Obituaries

As a boy at Michaelhouse, Neville James must have passed thrice daily

below the stone lintel of the door to the Dining Hall on which are engraved the
significant words 'Quit you like men'. Whether he regarded them at that young
age as solemn or, like so many irrepressible boys before and after him have
done, jocularly reversed their order, cannot now be said with any certainty.
But by any test, his life , his achievements, his dedication in war to duty and
at peace to his career, his devotion to the pursuit of justice, his undoubted
sincerity, indeed, every aspect of the man was without exception governed by
that imperative motto from his boyhood.
In the long line of Natal's greatest sons, Neville James undeniably acquitted
himself like a man amongst those peers and each one of us, whether family,
colleague, friend or acquaintance, is left with a lasting respect and admiration
for a very fine gentleman and a truly good and a truly wise judge.

John McGregor Niven (1921-1991)

Jack Niven, as he was known to his many professional colleagues, his friends
and his family, died suddenly in his office at the Natal College of Education on
the morning of Wednesday 31 July.
All who knew him were stunned by the sudden end to his distinguished
professional and academic career. He will be remembered for his highly

Professor J. M. Niven
(Plww grapiz: Nata l Witll css)
Obitllaries 69

successful life's work devoted to teacher education and as a man who ,vas a
very good friend to his colleagues and a proud and loving husband, father and
grandfather to his family. This is a tribute not only to a man of rare intellect,
insight and organizing ability, but to a warm and caring person who made the
people around him feel that what they were doing was important. He never
made anyone feel that he had more important things to do than to attend to their
concerns. In any company he was able to add the perceptive observation, wry
comment or apt joke which gave purpose to the work at hand, or in relaxation
made everyone feel that they belonged and enjoyed being in his company.
Although he retired as Professor Emeritus from the University of Natal in
March 1985, at the time of his death he was working on contract for the
K waZulu Department of Education and Culture writing study material for a
further Diploma in Education (Educational Administration and Management)
to be offered by distance education to selected black teachers in promotion
posts. This task was nearing completion and it was one which Jack greatly
enjoyed. He loved having an office and being able to work in it each day. He
took great pleasure in spending tea times with College staff, where his
infectious enthusiasm and his lively comment on the affairs of the day made for
highly entertaining moments. He was able to enjoy just such a tea time on the
morning he died. He worked energetically and with a clear-headed sense of
purpose and direction right to the end of his life.
The start of Jack's very distinguished academic and professional career was
delayed by going straight into war service when he left university with a B.A.
degree and his teacher's diploma in the first class. He did military service in
the South African Air Force and then on secondment to the Royal Air Force.
operating in South Africa. the Sudan, Egypt, Italy and Yugoslavia. On his
return from the war in 1946 he returned to uni versity to complete an Honours
Degree in Geography with distinction. and then went to teach at the Estcourt
High School. In 1950 he was awarded an M.A. degree in Geography, again
with distinction.
Shortly thereafter he took his family to Bulawayo and in 1956 his long
association with teacher education began. In that year he was appointed to a
part-time post at the Teachers' College, Bulawayo, then to a full-time
lectureship and by 1962 he had advanced to the Vice Principalship of the
As a member of the College staff he became a contributor to courses offered
by the Institute of Education and accredited by the University of London.
In 1965 he returned to the University of Natal as a Senior Lecturer, and there
followed an M.Ed. degree with distinction and a Ph.D. for a thesis entitled
'Teacher Education in South Africa'. In 1970 he was appointed to the second
Chair in Education at the University of Natal, Pietermaritzburg, and in 1971 he
became Head of the Department of Education. He held the headship for eleven
years until in 1982 he became the Director of the University of Natal Herman
Ohlthaver Trust Project which aimed at improving the quality of teachers in
primary schools in the Natal K waZulu region, while continuing as a professor
in the Department of Education.
This outline of his career advancement does not do justice to the quality of
his work, the depth of his critical insight, the breadth of his interests or the
personal qualities he brought to bear on whatever he did. The list of his
membership of committees and councils also does not properly convey the
qualities of the man. but it does attest to his remarkable energy and to the many
claims made on his time, expertise and wise counsel. Jack was an excellent
70 Obituaries

organizer, a facilitator and a skilled diplomat who could make committees

work, and hence the list of committees on which he sat is a very lengthy
When he was in Southern Rhodesia (now Zimbabwe) he was elected to a
committee responsible for the formation of a National Council for Teacher
Training in that country. On returning to South Africa he served on the
University Committee which prepared evidence for the Gericke Commission
of Enquiry into Universities. In addition to serving on numerous University
Committees he was a member of the National Education Council (1975-84)
and its Executive Committee (1978), and the Council of the Institute of
Educational Research of the Human Sciences Research Committee. In 1981 he
was seconded to that Committee to participate in the de Lange Commission
Report on Education, the most wide-ranging official investigation into educa­
tion ever to be conducted in this country. His contribution was to the sections
of the report on curriculum development and education systems management.
He was a member of the Joint Matriculation Board (1977-82), the Examina­
tions Board of the then Department of Indian Education and a consultant to the
Transkeian Matriculation Examination Board. He served on the Standing
Committee on Education of the English Academy of Southern Africa and on
the Board of Governors of Hilton College (1968-87) and of Wykeham School
(from 1974) which later became the Wykeham Collegiate School. From 1965
until 1982 he was a member of the South African Association for the
Advancement of Education in South Africa and was awarded their highest
honour of a gold medal for his service to education.
In reciting this list of Jack's contributions to national and regional bodies
outside the University, one may overlook that his main energies were devoted
towards educational research and the maintenance of academic and pro­
fessional standards in the preparation of teachers within the University. His
main teaching contribution was in the area of comparative education and
educational administration. He supervised many higher degree students,
including the supervision of the first black candidate to achieve a Ph.D. in the
Faculty of Education.
In 1973 he was awarded the Oppenheimer Travelling Fellowship to study
education in the United Kingdom and a follow-up study was undertaken in
1977/1978. He wrote numerous research reports and articles published in
educational journals.
After his retirement he became Chairman of the Council of the Natal
Training College, now the Natal College of Education, a member of the Board
of Governors of the Transkei Teachers' In-Service College and Chairman of
the Springfield College of Education. Jack was chairm;n of the Education
Committee of the KwaZulu Natal Indaba. In 1987 he conducted an evaluation
of the pre-service curriculum for teacher education in Bophuthatswana. In
1988 he was appointed a consultant to the Development Bank of Southern
Africa on the matter of the development of teacher education in KwaZulu.
What still needs to be added to this account of a life-time of creati ve and
productive work is that Jack's work was done in a time when the policies of the
ruling party were inimical to his own philosophies. The policy of apartheid was
quite contrary to Jack's vision of a future for South Africa. Some academics
who found themselves in opposition to official Government policy tried to
distance themselves from official bodies. Jack believed that change required
involvement: his professed policy was to make his views known wherever he
could. He reasoned that if he did not join in the debate fully, then opposition
Ohituaries 71

would not be expressed in places where it mattered most. Jack's educational

philosophy and goals are well expressed in his words, taken from his inaugural
address to the University of Natal delivered on 1 June 1972, as follows:
Education must retlect the. mores of the cultural groups which constitute
the society and not merely sectional interest within them. Education itself
must provide greater opportunities for the mingling of the cultures
... Education should not attempt unnecessarily to straitjacket the youth
of the nation in an ideological mould and thus create a static society
... These conditions to be met by education, require well trained and
dedicated teachers who are ... supported in the schools by a profes­
sional status which is considerably greater than it has been in the past.
Jack's contribution to raising the professional status of teachers was
immense. It was the main focus of his professional and academic life.
In conclusion, his role as a family man must be mentioned. For Jack his
family was very important and the support they gave him was measured in his
work. He wife Cynthia, who was herself involved in a busy teaching career,
gave him unwavering support, but had to deal with the fact that Jack was
always busy and that he had innumerable friends and colleagues calling for his
time. Jack was also very proud of his three daughters, Frances, Joan and Sheila.
Frances and Joan followed their father into education, while Sheila, who
received the first Rhodes Scholarship awarded to a woman, went into corporate
banking. His own home and those of his daughters, their husbands and his
grandchildren were a joy in his life and the basis from which his very
considerable contributions to education in South Africa, and especially on the
south-east seaboard, were made.

Mhlabunzima Joseph Maphumulo

(1950-1991 )
His parents named him Mhlabunzima. Translated loosely it means 'we live in
troubled times'. Could they then have foreseen what a full, interesting, but
troubled life their infant son would live?
At the young age of 24 Mhlabunzima Maphumulo became hereditary Chief
of the Maphumulo Tribe. His jurisdiction extended over a vast area of land
surrounding Table Mountain to the north-east of Pietermaritzburg. Thirty five
thousand people resided in it and owed allegiance to him.
His early years as Chief were devoted to tribal matters and were relatively
uncontroversial. But he rose to prominence when the civil violence began in
the Pietermaritzburg area in 1986. While violence raged in Imbali, Edendale
and Slangspruit, his area was calm. By Easter 1989 more than ten thousand
people who had tled their homes in those areas took up temporary residence
there. The miserable plight of these refugees and the tens of thousands of other
sufferers moved him deeply. He became a mediator and peacemaker. He
sought the counsel and opinions of others. The chaos and lawlessness moved
him in that year to petition the then State President, P. W. Botha, to establish a
Judicial Commission of Enquiry into the violence. His request was granted by
Botha's successor three years later.
In the meantime Maphumulo had become President of Contralesa (Congress
72 Obituaries

Chief Mhlabunzima Joseph Maphumulo

(Photograph: Natal Witness)

of Traditional Leaders of South Africa). Before he assumed office this

organization had been neutral politically, but under his leadership and in the
context of a shifting political climate, it soon aligned itself with the ANC.
Maphumulo's stature grew and so did people's sentiments about him. He
became dearly loved by followers and sympathizers, and deeply hated by
opponents. So fierce was this hatred that his tribal home was burnt down and
he and his family had to flee for safety. He acquired a small home in
Pietermaritzburg. In December 1990 a motorcade of vehicles travelling to
Maphumulo was ambushed and shot. Three people died and several were
injured. The ambush was aimed at him. He, however, was not travelling in any
of the vehicles at the time. These attacks did not deter him, but spurred him on
to serve his people with greater vigour and determination. He raised funds to
conduct a private investigation into the violence and participated fully in it.
But his enemies lay in waiting.
He was shot and killed by assassins' bullets at his home on 25 February
1991. News of his death was received with shock and disbelief. His funeral, at
Wadley Stadium, was attended by some 30 000 mourners. But who had shot
him? Nobody knew. Nobody, that is, but those who had done the deed.
Following dramatic claims by one Sipho Madlala that a hit squad under the
direction of members of the Security Forces had assassinated him, a Judicial
Inquest was appointed which, at the time of going to print, is still in session.
Mhlabunzima was a kind gentle man with an easy smile. He was devoted to his
people and the betterment of their lives. His shocking death has left South
Africa and its people poorer.

Notes and Queries

Macrorie House Museum: hope for the future
If the compiler of Notes and Queries may be permitted a remark, it must be to
reflect that Mr Frost's 1990 editorial prognostication that Graham Dominy
would prove a considerable asset to Natalia's editorial committee has proven
true. Mr Dominy's interests and concerns have provided several Notes for this
number of Natalia, including this first. Many of them are cause for anxiety
rather than satisfaction, but it is appropriate to open on a note of optimism.
The future of Pietermaritzburg's well-known settler history landmark,
the Macrorie House Museum, which has been hanging in the balance for
several years, now looks much brighter. There has been persistent
wrangling between the Simon van der Stel Foundation, the owners of the
building who wish to sell it, the museum's Board of Trustees, the owners
of the collection and managers of the property who cannot afford to buy
it, and the Pietermaritzburg City Council which refuses to buy it for a
market-related price (arguing that since it gave the Foundation the
original purchase price of R 15 000 in the 1960s it should not have to buy
it again). The Board of Trustees have been running the museum on a
shoestring budget (aided by a small grant from the City Council and the
Natal Provincial Administration) and have been unable to get adequate
funds for the museum because of the dispute over the property. This has
meant that the museum has become more and more run down despite its
attracting increasing numbers of visitors.
In February 1991 the Pietermaritzburg Society attempted to break the
deadlock by arranging a high-powered meeting at Macrorie House which
brought together all interested parties. Progress towards an equitable
solution was made at the meeting, but the National Council of the Simon
van der Stcl Foundation later expressed reservations which delayed
matters considerably.
Several months of public protests, including a well-supported Pieter­
maritzburg Society petition, circulated on 18 May, International
Museums Day, followed, but the problem could not be resolved. Finally
the museum's Board of Trustees offered to purchase the property for a
much reduced price and their chairman travelled to the Transvaal to
persuade the National Council of the Simon van der Stel Foundation to
reconsider its position. Agreement has now been reached whereby the
Foundation will sell Macrorie House Museum to its Board of Trustees for
R25 000, provided that the building continues to be used for museum
purposes, that the Trustees maintain it in a manner befitting its historic
and architectural status and that the Foundation can repurchase it for the
74 Notes and Queries

same price if it is no longer to be used as a museum. The Foundation also

hopes to become involved in conservation activities in Natal again.
The Province and the City Council have been approached for financial
support and are viewing the request sympathetically, so for the first time
in perhaps a decade the Macrorie House Museum is to be placed on a
sound foundation from which it can grow and adapt into a new role for
the future.

Vandalism at Natal's battlefields and historic sites

Against this optimism, Graham Dominy notes a distressing recent phenome­
The battlefields, cemeteries and monuments commemorating various
wars and campaigns in Natal and KwaZulu have been subjected to
increasing vandalism over the past few years. There have been cases of
opportunistic vandalism which have resulted in the defacing of monu­
ments or the destruction of individual memorials. Sometimes unsophisti­
cated local communities are suspected, but the worst cases are not usually
caused by bored teenagers, or poor rural people thinking that there is
treasure buried under an imposing cross. The worst cases are caused by
organized networks of well equipped grave robbers complete with metal
In late 1990 and early 1991 there was a spate of systematic grave
robbing at Anglo-Zulu and Anglo-Boer sites in Natal and KwaZulu.
Isandlwana and Khambula battlefields were among the worst affected,
although the isolated military cemetery at Tchrengula near Ladysmith
was also comprehensively vandalised. The prime suspects were foreign
curio-seekers and the KwaZulu Monuments Council has uncovered
evidence of a chain of smugglers who used local people in KwaZulu to
rob graves and cairns and who smuggled the cartridges, medals, badges
and memorabilia out of the country and sold the material in the United
Kingdom and in the United States of America.
The police investigations uncovered some material in South Africa and
court cases are pending. KwaZulu officials visited the United Kingdom
and traced more material there. The National Monuments Council has
also requested the authorities not to issue an entry visa to an American
citizen allegedly invol ved with the illegal excavation of material at
The problem received widespread publicity in South Africa and abroad
and there has been a marked decrease in the number of incidents

Desecration at Fort Napier military cemetery

After the limited, but welcome, success of the authorities in curbing the
robbing of cemeteries and sites in rural areas, there was a shocking
occurrence of vandalism in Pietermaritzburg itself. The Fort Napier
military cemetery, where the earliest graves date back to 1843, was the
scene of appalling destruction in early JUly. This was not, however,
attributable to organised grave robbers, as the cemetery is next to the
unsightly entrance to the new Pietermaritzburg prison and the presence of
the prison guards and a caretaker in the cemetery has been presumed to
be a deterrent to premeditated vandalism.
Notes alld Queries 75

Some 65 headstones were knocked over, some were completely

smashed and others seem to have been used as missiles and flung against
ornate railings and other graves. The grave of Sir Henry Binns, Prime
Minister of Natal (1897-99), is one of the most prominent of those
damaged, but it may be possible to restore the headstone. The railing
around the grave of Col. Anthony William Durnford, who was killed at
the Battle of Isandlwana, was also chipped and many of the oldest and
most beautiful memorials have been damaged. Mr Andrew Hall, the
Regional Representative of the National Monuments Council, told the
Natal Witness that the 'destructive energy involved is staggering'. He
estimated that to replace the graves would cost some R 130 000 and that
simply to repair the damage would cost R60 000.
It appears that the offenders were local teenagers who hung about in
the cemetery during the school holidays. The police arrested a group of
minors who have been convicted in the Children's Court and sentencing
is pending. The National Monuments Council intends proceeding with a
civil claim for damages against the offenders' parents.

Thomas Baines: the McGonagall of Shepstone's 1873 Zululand expedition?

Thomas Baines's contribution to the literary heritage of Natal is not widely
acknowledged. Mr Dominy illustrates Baines's claim to wider recognition.
Thomas Baines's works of art are well known and highly prized items of
Africana. The Brenthurst Library in Johannesburg preserves many of
them and has published several magnificent art history works of 'Baine­
siana'. The most recent of these is Jane Carruthers's beautiful book,
Thomas Baines: Easterr Cape Sketches, 1848 to 1852 (Johannesburg,
1990). What is hitherto unrecorded are his efforts as a poet!
Baines, who was born in Norfolk, England in 1820, died in Durban in
1875 and spent most of his last years in Natal. Despite this connection,
Baines's time in Natal and his artwork done in this region is neither as
well known nor as well documented as his Eastern Cape and his Central
African work.
I visited the Brenthurst Library in January 1991 to do some research on
Baines's little-known sketch of the LangaJibalele Rebellion (See my
recent paper in the Natal Museum Journal of Humanities, Vo1.3, Oct.
1991) and came across an item of verse in Baines' s handwriting
recounting the Natal colonial foray into Zululand in 1873 to 'crown'
Cetshwayo kaMpande, the Zulu king.
Much has been written on Theophilus Shepstone's expedition to stage
a coronation of Cetshwayo. John Laband and John Wright, in their short
biography King Cetshwayo kaMpande (Pietermaritzburg, 1980), de­
scribe the events at the Mlambongwenya homestead as a 'caricature of a
"coronation" ceremony'. Shepstone's motives were indeed rather dubi­
ous and the expedition was highly theatrical - in fact some of the
coronation regalia draped on Cetshwayo was borrowed from the ward­
robe of the Natal Society's amateur dramatic group in Pietermaritzburg!
What is well known is the fact that Cetshwayo's alleged breaches of the
so-called 'Coronation Promises' formed one of the pretexts for the
British invasion of Zululand in 1879.
One of the most interesting analyses of these events is Norman
Etherington's 'Anglo-Zulu Relations 1856-1878' which appeared in
76 Notes and Queries

Andrew Duminy and Charles Ballard's compilation, The Anglo-ZlIlu

War: New perspectil'es (Pietermaritzburg, 1981). Etherington effecti vely
demolishes the carefully nurtured colonial myth of the benign Shepstone
appearing in Zululand in response to desperate appeals from the new king
for a benediction from 'Somtseu'. Furthermore, he links Thomas Baines
with Shepstone ' s visionary plans for expanding Natal influence to the
Zambezi and beyond.
Baines was closely involved with the Shepstone family and Theophilus
clearly admired and respected his work as an artist and as a geographer.
In his turn, Baines served as an imperial artistic propagandist. This did
not help his pocket and much of his work in Natal was a drain on his
financial resources. He accompanied the expedition to Zululand at his
own expense, although he was attached to the Natal Volunteers in a
vague way which must have given him meals and shelter. According to
1.P.R. Wallis, Thomas Bailles: His life and explorations in South Africa,
Rhodesia and Australia 1820-1875 (Cape Town, 1976), Baines
described himself as the 'artist and geographer' of the Zululand expedi"
tion, but he received no monetary compensation from the colonial
authorities, nor did the notoriously mean Colonial Treasury even pay him
for the valuable cartographic work which he did en route.
To help make ends meet Baines acted as the special correspondent of
the Natal Mercury for the expedition and sold some of his sketches to the

'The Victoria Mounted Rifles at Rendezvous Camp, Tugela River, August 1st
to 8th 1873'. Baines has drawn himself in as the figure on the extreme right.
(Pf;otograph : Killie Camphell AFicalla Lihrary. reproduced
for Natalia hy the Natal Provillcial MuseulIl Serrice)
Notes and Queries 77

Illustrated London News which engraved and published a few, such

as a fine sketch of Cetshwayo's carriage. He also drew sketches of
various scenes at the request of several individuals. The one which we
reproduce here was requested by the men of the Victoria Mounted
Baines's account of the expedition was published in instalments in
diary-form by the Natal Mercury in early September 1873 and makes
fascinating reading, although his pro-Shepstone slant is very clear, as it is
in the poem reproduced below.
Cetshwayo was not anxious to meet Shepstone and sent various
excuses and changed the venue for the meeting several times before
finally entering the Natal camp on 28 August 1873. Baines was not able
to get a clear sketch of the king 'as he stood leaning on his harpoon­
shaped spear near Mr Shepstone', nor could he get near enough for
a good sketch at any later stage of the ceremonies. When Baines tried
to sketch during crowded stages of the ceremonies he had to conceal
what he was doing lest he be accused of a gross discourtesy: 'I made
a slight sketch here, concealing my paper as carefully as clergymen
did their notes when it was unlawful to read a sermon before the
Baines did. however, give the Mercury readers a clear verbal picture of
Cetshwayo: 'He appeared rather tall, but so stout that had he stood alone
his height would not have been observable'. According to Wallis, Baines
also described the king's features as expressing 'tolerable good nature,
combined with shrewdness and determination rather than high intellect'.
What is interesting to a reader in Natal in 1991 is the absence of 'cultural
weapons' which Baines remarked on: 'Indeed the whole assembly were
merely in their ordinary walking dresses and unarmed; hardly any except
the imhonga - a court flatterer and jester - having even a few sticks
and a small walking shield'.
The great artistic recorder of 19th century southern Africa was unable
to make a significant enduring visual record of the expedition and
therefore his doggerel verse assumes a significance which it would not
otherwise have attained. It is not a good poem and had Baines managed to
complete one of his superb watercolours of the 'coronation' the poem
would have deserved to languish in complete obscurity in the Brenthurst
The text is roughly written in a small notebook (Baines African
Collections, MS 049/11/3). There are many words crossed out and the
punctuation is extremely poor. In some places there are alternative
words, lines and even stanzas; in others, the script is so indistinct as to
defy decipherment. Thus 'swig' seems an unlikely rhyme for 'down'. and
'Double Bass' may be a mystery for some Natalia reader to solve. These
and other doubtful words have been italicized. The original spelling has
been left unchanged. including the spelling of Zulu personal and place
names, but apostrophes and the possessive case have been inserted.
Where Baines has clearly deleted an alternative it is omitted, but the
alternative stanza has been included.
The poem is reproduced with the permission of the Brenthurst Library,
78 Notes and Queries

Thomas Baines's doggerel verse on the coronation of Cetshwayo

In Zululand there lived a chieftain

a prince he was of very great fame

He was the son of Great Umpande

and Ketchewayo was his name

He sent at once to father Somtseu

saying wouldn't it be a jolly thing

If you'd come up with a little party

from Natal and make me King

Singing Re 101 101 101

Says Somtseu I'd not be unwilling

to do you honour clo Natale
But your relative had a knack of killing
His visitors in his royal Kraal
and long ago your uncle Dingaan
played that trick on Piet Retief
So I'll have two guns and a little escort
To do more honour to you 0 chief

Says Ketchewayo no come to Ondine

Oh my Father and crown me there
and I'll feed you on fat instead of on lean
Beef and give you pots of beer
But when we came to the place appointed
All as eager as hungry cats
We didn't find the nation's nointed
but a few old women and lots of rats

When we climbed by kloof and mountain

expending Voorslag tow and reim
passing Ondine & Oham and family
Till we reached amathlabatine
But Ketchewayo sent a messenger
Oh my father don't stop there
that place was unlucky to all my family
and twill be the same to me I fear

So we moved on the river Umvolosi

and next day we trekked again
and we made our camp neither snug nor cosy
on the banks of the river Umlambengwain
There we found that grumbling would not avail us
our biscuits & melies were going Down
our coffee and sugar began to fail us
and we'd neither tobacco nor our ration swig

Then the chief sent another message

Oh won't you come and visit me

I would like to come to you first

but I'm out of sorts d' ye see

Notes and Queries 79

for I got tired with six days hunting

and the doctors they made a fuss

they gave bolus pill and blister

and as a matter of course I'm wuss.

Says Somtseu pray convey my compliments

to your mighty Zulu King
He may get someone else to crown him
For I'm blowed if I don't go back again
Oh says Ketchewayo now send a doctor
If you thinks I'm chaffin you
And if he finds I'm Shammin' Abram
I'll give in and come for true

So thinks Ketchewayo I'd better cave in

If I wants any good out of this Somtseu
or else my skin I won't be saving
For the Boers will thrash me till all is blue
So the first visit there he paid us
and listened to the music of our band
and a present of ivory he made us
and our cannon they thundered in Zululand

[and then we let off a lot of rockets

and next day we crowned him King
and turned our faces home to you
and then we let off a lot of rockets
with Catherine wheels & other displays
which trebled £20 from Natal folks pockets
But Douhle Bass is the Slave who pays]

[This bracketed stanza seems to be an alternative to the next verse]

And on Thursday the - of August [date omitted in the text]

we went to his kraal and crowned him King
and hurrahed till our throats were as dry as sawdust
But he didn't give us beer to wet them again
So now you see how we won our battle
Between Ketchewayo and Somtseu our chief
and the Zulus they sent us a lot of cattle
and we escaped all mischief by the skin of our teeth
and this in brief is a true narration
of the great events that there befell
how we got safe out from the Zulu nation
and are now marching homeward through Natal.

Threat to Fort Pearson and the Ultimatum Tree

The balance between the preservation of significant elements of our heritage
and the development of new facilities has ever been difficult to maintain.
Graham Dominy notes a new manifestation of a perennial concern, and one
that again touches on the affairs of King Cetshwayo.
80 Notes and Queries

While some state agencies have been fighting to protect historic sites, the
activities of others are seriously endangering the historic complex of sites
on the Thukela river which stand on the line of the new N2 toll road on
the north coast. The National Road Transportation Commission plans to
route the new dual carriageway across the river betH'ccn Fort Pearson and
the Ultimatum Tree, both of which are proclaimed national monuments
and are a few hundred metres apart.
The British ultimatum to the Zulu kingdom which preceded the
Anglo-Zulu War was handed over to King Cetshwayo's representatives
on the banks of the river under the tree now known as the Ultimatum Tree
in December 1878. The tree itself was severely damaged in the 1987
floods and has virtually died. The Natal regional committee of the
National Monuments Council is seriously considering cutting down the
dead tree and presenting the wood to cultural institutions for reworking
as appropriate objects, as the British did in 1987 when hurricane force
winds uprooted many historic trees in Kew Gardens and at other
nationally important sites.
Fort Pearson is on a knoll above the Ultimatum Tree and was the base
for the British column which invaded Zululand along the coast. It was a
vital bastion during the siege of Eshowe and guarded by both military and
naval detachments. There is a military cemetery nearby and a viewsite
manned by the Natal Parks Board.
Extensive publicity and letters of protest to Members of Parliament,
etc., etc. have failed to make much of an impression on the road planners.
The Environment Conservation Act which became law in 1989 makes
provision for professionally conducted Environmental Impact Assess­
ments to be conducted before such projects are undertaken, but no such
report has been drawn up for this route. The transportation authorities are
adamant that they will not change the route, but they have provided funds
for an archaeological and for a botanical survey.
In a sense history has sabotaged this site because it was identified by
the Royal Engineers and the officers of the naval brigade as the best
crossing point of the river in 1879 and modern engineers are of exactly
the same opinion. Nobody denies the need for a new road on the North
Coast, but this need should not give the engineers carte blanche to
destroy one of the most important and best preserved historical sites in
Natal. Therefore the refusal of the transportation authorities to follow the
procedures laid down in the Environment Conservation Act for scientifi­
cally based impact assessments to be undertaken as part of the planning
process is extremely disturbing.

Rail route centenary

The rail link between Natal and the Transvaal through Laing's Nek and the
ascent of the Drakensberg to Van Reenen were both completed in 1891. The
note that follows is culled from an article contributed by Bruno Martin to the
May-June 1991 number of SA Rail.
The Natal railhead reached Ladysmith in 1886. The discovery of gold on the
Witwatersrand provided the incentive for a main line extension into the
Transvaal, and the Natal Government decided to construct a line to the Orange
Free State at the same time. Work on both routes out of Ladysmith began in
Notes alld Queries 81

1888, and the engineers were confronted with the great challenge of locating
railbeds to scale the steep rise of the escarpment.
Having learned from the disadvantages of the line from the coast to
Ladysmith, the engineers set the ruling grade at l-in-70 (rather than l-in-30)
and the minimum radius of curves at 122 metres (instead of 91) on the section
towards Charlestown. Only for the Biggarsberg and Drakensberg ascents was
the gradient increased to l-in-50, and 30 kg/m rails were used for the heavy
Dubs engines which would work the Laing's Nek part of the line. For the first
time on Natal's railways, the important engineering practice of systematic
compensation for curvature was applied on the track alignment - in effect,
the gradient of curved and straight track being adjusted so that the locomotive
would exert the same amount of pull throughout the ruling grade.
When the section to Newcastle was opened to traffic in May 1890, work on
the trackbed to Laing's Nek was already well advanced. The principal ascent
involved a climb of 406 metres over a distance of 27 kilometres. Two reverses
were laid out to overcome the Ingogo Heights, and a 674 metre (2 213 feet)
tunnel with a l-in-70 gradient would take the track beneath the crest ofLaing's
Nek. The contract for the tunnel was awarded to R. Wagstaffe & Co., and the
headings met on 24 January 1891. On 15 February the track was completed to
Charlestown, and the official opening of the line to the Transvaal border
station was done by Governor Sir Charles Mitchell on 7 April 1891. President
Kruger was present at the ceremony, and at 2.45 p.m. he joined the train to
embark on an official visit to Natal.
Sir Charles, this time in the presence of Sir Henry Loch, High Commissioner
and Governor of the Cape, performed the official opening of the Laing's Nek
Tunnel on 14 October 1891. Some 500 men had worked to remove 195 000
cubic metres of rock and soil from the bore at a total construction cost of
£80 ODD, and the Laing's Nek Tunnel - hailed as the greatest engineering feat
of its kind in the country - was the longest on the Southern African rail
network until it was superseded by the 800 m Stockton Tunnel on the Mooi
River-Estcourt deviation in 1914.
With only bridge structures and rails being replaced to carry heavier rolling
stock, the original track alignment remained unaltered for forty years, until
realignment and electrification were carried out as employment schemes
during the Depression years. Subsequent changes were considerable, however,
and the boring of a new tunnel led to the abandonment of the original one in
The branch line to the Orange Free State, meanwhile, generally followed the
watershed of the Klip and Sand Rivers before climbing the escarpment ­
rising 268 metres in 12 km., with three reverses on a grade of l-in-30. Van
Reenen was reached on 8 August 1891 and the Ladysmith-Van Reenen section
was opened to traffic in November. By mid-1892 the 38 km link to Harrismith
had come into service, with the N.G.R. operating the line under an agree­
ment with the Volksraad. Again, the alignment remained unchanged for many
years: the first and third reverses were linked into a single loop in 1924,
and electrification came in the thirties. The present alignment dates from
Seat at Breakfast Rock
T.B. Frost leads not only the Natalia editorial panel but also the Pietermaritz­
burg Ramblers' Club. He records one of his happier, and more literal, duties as
82 Notes and Queries

The Pietermaritzburg Ramblers' Club, one of the oldest such organiza­

tions in the country, celebrated its seventieth birthday in 1991. To mark
the occasion, it had a seat constructed on the top of Breakfast Rock in the
Ferncliffe nature reserve as a gift to the citizens of Pietermaritzburg. The
inscription on it reads:
This seat was presented to the citizens of Pietermaritzburg by the
Pietermaritzburg Ramblers' Club to mark its seventieth birthday
and in appreciation of the pleasure gained by generations of
Ramblers, past and present, in walking the hills of the city.
June, 1991
Breakfast Rock, from the top of which the hiker has extensive views
over the city, got its name from the fact that it was there that ramblers, in
the days before easy transport, stopped for breakfast on hikes yet further
afield. The surrounding area is also historic in that here, from this
escarpment, Jesse Smith, who arrived in Natal in 1850, quarried stone for
some of the city's early buildings, as well as for the graves and
headstones of its pioneer citizens.
The seat is constructed from blocks of Scottish granite which also have
historical associations. Reportedly brought to Natillast century as ballast
in sailing ships, they were used as the foundation stones for the municipal
tram lines when these were built in the early years of this century. When
the last of these old lines, that running down Commercial Road, was dug
up in recent years, the blocks were rescued by the municipal Parks
Department and stored.
In a short ceremony the new seat was officially received (opened?,
dedicated?, consecrated?, enthroned?, unveiled?, sat upon? - what on
earth do you do to a seat?) by Deputy Mayor Rob Haswell on behalf of
the city council, who officially sat upon it for the first time, together with
Jack Frost, Chairman of the Pietermaritzburg Ramblers' Club.
Schooling for all?
Just as the last number of Natalia was being prepared for print, the then
Minister of Education and Culture in the House of Assembly, Mr P.J. Clase,
announced a shift in policy which has had a significant impact on the schools
administered by his department, that is, the 'white' state schools, including
those of Natal. John Deane of Natalia's editorial panel is singularly well­
qualified to provide an explanatory note.
In September 1990 Mr Clase announced that parents could vote to open
their schools to children of all races by deciding on one of three
'additional models of schooling'. These were complete privatization;
retention of public school status, but with admission policy in the hands
of the school; and a state-aided option, under which staff remain state
employees, but the board of management accepts financial responsibility
for everything else. These 'models' are labelled A, Band C respect­
There were probably two main reasons for this departure from the
hitherto exclusively 'own affairs' vision of public school education
which prevailed in Mr Clase's ministry: the embarrassment of half-empty
white schools in a country desperately short of schools, and growing
demands from white parent communities all over South Africa for more
say in who should attend their schools.
Notes alld Queries 83

Certain conditions attached to the new plan. The arrangement was still
seen as part of an 'own affairs' situation, where one department was
constitutionally able to 'render service' to another by educating some of
the latter's pupils. Therefore, no matter how many vacancies there were,
white pupils were to remain in the majority to 'preserve the ethos' of the
school. Furthermore, parent communities voting for a new 'model' were
to do so by a very convincing majority - at least an 80% poll, and a 72%
majority in favour of the change. Initial public reaction to the proposal
was that the Minister had deliberately made the requirements impossibly
Whatever the Minister's reasons for the percentages he laid down, the
prediction that they were impossibly high proved very far from the mark.
In Natal, many schools voted during October or November, all but a
few obtaining the required percentages with ease. By January 1991 more
than sixty of the approximately 250 Natal Education Department schools
had been declared 'model B schools', this being the model favoured by
the overwhelming majority of schools that voted. During 1991 more
schools voted, and by June there were almost a hundred and twenty.
These were mainly urban and English-medium, but with a good sprink­
of parallel-medium schools in country towns. Voting continues, and the
list of 'open' schools grows longer, but the number of African, Indian
and Coloured pupils admitted to Natal Education Department schools
will probably not exceed two thousand by the end of 1991.
Minister Clase's 'additional models of schooling' are generally per­
ceived to be a transitional phase before 'own affairs' education dis­
appears. The 'opening' of some white schools must, however, be seen in
proper perspective. Filling all vacant places in all white schools would
not even begin to solve the problems of millions of African children not
receiving any schooling at all. At least the 'model B' phenomenon shows
that large numbers of white parents in Natal are no longer prepared to
maintain racially exclusive schools.

The Great San stone saga

Perhaps because they are generally awed by science, lay people take a delight
in discomfitting scientists. The recent discovery of an apparently unique piece
of San rock painting in Pietermaritzburg provided much fodder for the
sceptics. The find was made by a small boy, Richard Henwood, and remained
unrecognized for two years. until a class project on cave paintings reminded
him of the sometime door-stop that now lay in his garden. Richard, by then a
sensible eight-year-old, and his teacher referred the painted stone to the Natal
Museum for expert study. The paintings were typical of the San art of the
Drakensberg region, and two features of the find made it a potentially
important rarity: the painting was on a single dolerite stone whereas Drakens­
berg paintings almost all take the form of a frieze in a rock shelter; and the
stone was found on open ground, near the Maritzburg Golf Club and much
closer to the city than any previous find.
Museum archaeologist Aron Mazel was, however, properly cautious. The
paintings looked genuine, but authenticity had to be demonstrated. The
chemistry of paint being complex, UCT suggested that a sample of the paint be
84 Notes and Queries

sent to the Oxford Radiocarbon Accelerator Unit for dating. Any date older
than ISO years would be persuasive evidence of authenticity.
The sample was too small to be subjected to the full range of Oxford tests,
but the results indicated an age of some I 160 years before the present. Dr
Mazel remained dubious: it was not absolutely certain that the source of the
dated carbon was the pigment itself, rather than perhaps the stone or organic
matter on the stone. The geology and botany departments of the local
university reassured him. Further consideration of the paintings, which had
some unusual features, left the experts divided - some were sceptical, others
satisfied that the figures were representative of San art. After a year of very
careful study, Dr Mazel was persuaded to publicize the discovery.
Public excitement over the find was as nothing compared to the huge
enthusiasm for the next pronouncement. The Oxford dating of 1160 BP was
almost exactly eleven-and-a-half centuries out. Having seen the newspaper
story of Richard Henwood and his stone, a Mrs loan Ahrens came forward to
claim the painting as her own - a copy of a San painting, completed 11 years
previously in an art class. It was a claim which had to be treated with the same
scientific scepticism as the original find, but in the end Dr Mazel had to
c~ncede that the dating techniques had misled him.
For the popular press the story ended there. For the scientists, it did not: the
mistake presented a challenge, not a defeat. For the Oxford unit, the
explanation for the incorrect dating lay in the fact that Mrs Ahrens had used
some oil-based paints, thereby introducing old carbon and mixing it with new
to produce, inadvertently, a false age. The carbon dating technique has not
been invalidated, but there is a new awareness of the need to identify the source
of the carbon in dating samples. For the Natal Museum and University, the
mistake has spurred closer research into the chemistry of San pigments, and
comparisons with modern paints have revealed some hitherto undetected
differences. Richard Henwood's discovery may have embarrassed the scien­
tists, but it has also pointed the way to valuable new work. In the first report of
his find, Richard declared his intention of becoming an archaeologist himself.
If he reflects carefully on what has ensued, he will be all the better qualified to
enter the field.
Hanging up the nets
Durban's Local History Museum is distributing a video film on the history of
that city's seine fishing community. Produced by University of Natal re­
searchers Dianne Scott and Costas Criticos, the film traces the experiences of
the Salisbury Island Indian community that first fished with seine nets from
rowing boats. Good catches sustained the fishermen until the 1950s, when
over-fishing and pollution of the Natal coast, together with technological
progress, threatened their livelihood. Harbour development and Apartheid
legislation also contributed tothe disintegration ofthe community. Drawing on
the recollections of the fishermen's descendants and on archival films and
photographs, the video is a unique narration and documentation of a neglected
facet of Durban's history.
The video can be ordered from the Local History Museum, Old Court House,
Aliwal Street, Durban. It costs R27, with the usual postal charges if it is
ordered by mail.
Compiled by MORAY COMRIE

Book Reviews and Notices

translated by FLEUR WEBB, introduced and indexed by STEPHANIE J.
Durban. Killie Campbell Africana Library and Pietermaritzburg. University of
Natal Press, 1990. 359 pp. R49,95.

What a mixture of delight and horror awaits the reader of this enthralling book!
The delight stems from the story itself, Delegorgue's enthusiasm for life, Fleur
Webb's masterful translation from the original French, and sketches of pristine
Natal. The horror results from Delegorgue's tales of wanton bloodshed on his
hunting forays. No matter what one's reactions to these accounts, the book is
important historically. sociologically and biologically.
Delegorgue was an acute and astute observer of everything around him. One
of his most consuming passions, second only to hunting, was the collection of
information and specimens of natural history. His identifications were mostly
accurate and his interpretations of natural phenomena far more honest than was
the custom in those days, the years of the first half of the 19th century. Indeed,
he was moved to write 'I have never been able to understand how anyone, after
having travelled the world, should find it necessary to lie'. He viewed wildlife
with a strange mixture of brutality and compassion, a mixture bred no doubt of
the Africa he found spread out before him as a stage on which were enacted
scenes of animal and human violence, and even barbarism.
This translation of Delegorgue's Travels starts with a short 'General
Introduction' by the well known historian Colin de B. Webb, presently
Vice-Principal of the University of Natal in Pietermaritzburg. Webb outlines
the history of the production of the original Travels and of Delegorgue's
background. He draws attention to Delegorgue's 'self-righteousness and
criticism of others', which he ascribes to the Frenchman's relative youth, but
cautions also that Delegorgue himself 'was not beyond error; nor was he
beyond exaggeration'. I can forgive him these indulgences, however, since
most of his criticism of others was based on sound knowledge and judgement,
remarkable in one so young.
This part of the introduction is followed by an assessment of Delegorgue as a
scientist. written by the Pietermaritzburg zoologist Stephanie Alexander. Her
treatment of Delegorgue is fair, penetrating and highly readable. Ms Alexander
points up his strengths and his weaknesses, both as a person and as a scientist,
emphasizing again his youthfulness, his enthusiasm and the mixture of
dedication to biological collecting and destruction of wildlife, which he
brought to his travels.
Fleur Webb then interpolates a 'Translator's Note' before the main text. In
this note she describes how she has tried to maintain the flavour of the original
86 Book Reviews and Notices

French text, yet has used South African terms where the English equivalents
would not have conveyed the right atmosphere. She wisely retains
Delegorgue's original spellings of Zulu and Dutch words, which come over
somewhat amusingly, yet each is quite unmistakable and even pronounceable.
Indeed, so well has Ms Webb done her job that I could find only one
mistranslation in which, on page 166, she gives the name 'cattle egrets' to what
are obviously oxpeckers clambering about the buffaloes.
There is so much in this book that one could single out to dwell upon. But
there is no space to do more than touch here and there on the richness of
Delegorgue's experiences. He told his tale with vigour, leavened now and then
with humour. He travelled with Boers and Zulus, chiefs and ordinary men. He
knew Dingane and Mpande. He saw battles between Boer and Zulu, and he saw
great elephant hunts, sometimes involving thousands of Zulu warriors. He
travelled on foot across Zululand, from the upper Umfolozi to St Lucia,
through bush and forest and swamp. He overcame disease and discomfort. And
all this in his early twenties (he was only 23 when he arrived in Cape Town and
24 when he travelled north from Port Natal). Remarkably he was able to
communicate with all kinds of people, none of them French-speaking. How
accurately he has reported his conversations with the Zulus must remain
speCUlative, but he must have had a good working knowledge of the language
to get by as well as he did. Certainly the Zulus spoke no French!
Adulphe Delegorgue left France in May 1838 on board the brig Le
Telegraph and arrived in the Cape after a journey whose tedium was alleviated
by observations of seabirds. His descriptions of the town, the people and the
countryside all attest to his lively powers of observation. On 1 September of
the same year he left Cape Town for travels northward, first to Verloren Vlei,
then further afield to the Olifants River, Clanwilliam and the Cedarberg. He
recounted his meetings with the spring-hook, from whose flesh the local people
made heulton and from whose hide they cured their kros. This is a sample of
the charming spellings so freely invented by Delegorgue.
Back at Verloren Vlei, Delegorgue realized he must leave this country
'where there was nothing worthy of the attention of a naturalist'. So much for
his discernment of the uniqueness of the Cape Flora! But this was one of very
few such arrogant lapses. He made the acquaintance of the Swedish naturalist
Wahlberg during his preparations to leave for Natal. They departed together
and, after stopping off in Port Elizabeth, arrived in Port Natal without
Here Delegorgue discovered a wealth of wildlife. His descriptions of the
birds are particularly pleasing and accurate. He also unwittingly discovered
myriads of small ticks in his wanderings, a scourge for which any excursion in
Natal is renowned even to this day! His lyrical descriptions give the reader an
indication of his own wonder at the new marvels that he met with almost daily:
of the plumcoloured starling he wrote, 'Some, like the blackbird, Leucogaster,
left behind a long trail of fire in which blue deepened to violet, warmed to
purple, and then burst into flame as it caught the sun's rays.' (The plumco­
loured starling's scientific name is Cinnyricinclus leucogaster.) Such enco­
miums contrast strongly with the bloody scenes of hippo and elephant hunts in
which he participated later. His writing vacillated between incredible brutality
and extraordinary sensitivity.
Delegorgue's view of people was incisive and his descriptions of them
sharply focused. He regarded the Afrikaner with disdain - a person devoid of
culture - and the Zulu with admiration and affection. He saw the Zulu nation
Book Reviews and Notices 87

as civilized and tended toward the ideal of the 'noble savage'. He also tended
in his perception of himself to be smug and decidedly superior to those around
him. This conceit reveals itself for example in his perception of the Afrikaner's
regard for his oxen as opposed to that of his women: 'My God what oxen!'
exclaimed Delegorgue, 'Alas! what women! The first deserve to be much more
highly praised, the second much less so.' He also entertained a pretty dim view
of missionaries, with the possible exception of the Moravian Brothers at Groen
Kloof. He accused the missionaries generally of being involved in petty
politics for their own benefit and of being unscrupulous. The good Dr Grout,
who set up a mission station in Mpande 's territory came in for a special lashing
from Delegorgue's pen!
Throughout, no matter what the activity, the reader is treated to a South
Africa unspoilt and pristine. Even Delegorgue himself was moved to describe
scenes of breathtaking beauty amid the appalling waste of hunted mammals.
One moment he was looking over the Umfolozi River on a scene that 'recalled
the earliest days of creation', which man could chance upon only 'where men
are few and the innocent echoes repeat no sound of gunfire.' The next he
bemoaned the fact that the hippos in this bucolic scene are too far away to
shoot! And this same man was responsible for the shooting of enough game to
fill a ship 'of 786 tons burden' in only eight months. The valleys of the Zulu
country fairly echoed with the sound of his gunfire.
This is an important book. It is also an outstandingly good read. Let us hope
that Volume 2 is not too long in the making, so that we can follow the
adventures of the indomitable Adulphe Delegorgue in his further explorations
of Southern Africa a little over 150 years ago.



Pietermaritzburg, University of Natal Press and Constantia, N & S Press, 1990,

358 pp. illus. maps, R88,55 (hardback), R55,55 (paperback)

It's hard to believe that it's over ten years since Laband and Thompson first
broke new ground with their Field Guide to the Zulu War. Since then, they
have established themselves as the foremost academic historians working in
the 1879 Anglo-Zulu War field. John Laband, in particular, has made a major
contribution to this perennially fascinating campaign by re-shaping our
understanding of the way the Zulu kingdom responded both politically and
militarily to the threat posed by the British invasion. One of the drawbacks of
the academic approach, however, is that one's most original work is often
consigned to obscure publications of great intellectual weight but little
circulation: Kingdom and Colony at War is an attempt to correct that, since it is
a collection of no less than sixteen papers by the authors, all but one of which
have previously appeared in journals which, it's fair to say, are not well known
to the general pUblic.
Between them, these papers cover a wide range of lesser-known aspects of
the war. John Laband continues to explore the Zulu kingdom in studies which
assess the cohesion of the Zulu polity under pressure, undermining the popular
88 Book Reviews alld Notices

image of a monolithic state united in its resistance - it's sobering to reflect on

the degree of success the British had in ultimately prizing the izikhulu from
their King - and consider the performance of its army in several important
battles during the war. There is a thorough reassessment of the crucial battle of
Khambula, seen from a Zulu perspective, and the one new article in the book,
'O! Let us go and have a fight at Jim's!', is a much needed analysis of Zulu
movements at Rorke's Drift. He also includes a detailed account of the war on
the Transvaal/Zulu border, a running guerrilla fight which has scarcely been
mentioned in most histories. Paul Thompson's articles chiet1y consider the
response of colonial Natal to the war, and in particular the reaction of the main
urban centres and rural communities to the potential threat of invasion
following Isandlwana. Of particular interest, given the lasting obsession with
the events of 22 January, is his examination of the role of the NNC at Rorke's
Drift, and his account of British sorties across the Mzinyathi border after
Isandlwana. Where appropriate, most of these articles are illustrated with
extremely detailed maps prepared to their usual impeccable standard by Helena
Margeot and Ramond Poonsamy of the University's Cartographic Unit. There
is also an extremely comprehensive list of source material, which in itself is an
invaluable aid to any future researcher.
Taken together. these articles represent a remarkable body of work which
presents a much broader picture of the scope and effect of the war than has
hitherto been understood. Quibbles? A few. It's nice to see an academic work
which takes its illustrative content seriously, though more could have been
made of this: several of the photos are reproduced very small, and would have
benefited from more informative captions. In particular, it would have been
nice to have known when some of the portraits were taken. The sketches of
Captain Cramer of the 60th Rifles are a real find, and deserve to be more
widely seen. Also, the attempt in the introduction to separate this book from
popular histories of the war, and put it in a class of its own, may be deserved,
but it smacks of intellectual snobbery!
Nevertheless, the work of Laband and Thompson is already extremely
influential amongst students of the Anglo-Zulu War, and Kingdom and Coioll\'
at War serves as a summary of their achievement so far.


Pietermaritzburg, Shuter and Shooter, 1990, 233 pp. illus. R39,95


Natal Regional Committee of the National Monuments Council, undated
(1990'1),56 pp. illus. R25,OO

In 1972 the second issue of Natafia noted the publication of Charles Scott
Shaw's book, and now after twenty years a revised and enlarged edition has
appeared. This book has much in it to interest anyone with any knowledge of,
or connection with, the Natal Midlands. It is a study of the Karkloof area, in the
Book Reviews and Notices 89

form of a collection of the stories of some of the settler families who farmed
there. Its general setting of the Natal historical stage relies on Bryant,
Mackeurtan and Barbara Buchanan; and writings of various public figures and
family historians provide the more local and specific content. Photographs
from family albums, of individuals, school, sporting and regimental groups,
and some of the farms mentioned, illustrate the text. So, for example, we read
paragraphs from Bishop Colenso's and John Sheddon Dobie's journals, giving
descriptions of their first visits to the Karkloof area. There is a well-written and
fascinating reprint from a 1967 issue of the Lions River Advertiser in which
Mrs Christopher recalls her childhood in the village of Howick in the 1890s,
and Mr Shaw has quoted from various settlers' memoirs to be found in the
Killie Campbell Africana Library. One is grateful to the author for bringing
these accounts to light and giving them a wider readership, but the complete
absence of any index, or detailed reference to such sources, severely limits the
usefulness of Stories from the Km'k/oof Hills as the piece of historical work it
purports to be. On pp. 23-24, for example, an account is given of an attempted
robbery near Curry's Post, when sawyers from the Karkloof bush attacked a
vehicle conveying government gold from Ladysmith to Maritzburg. Mr Shaw
introduces his account with the words 'A manuscript in the Natal Society
Library tells of the first adventure at Currey's Post ... ' but does not mention
that the incident was described, and the same manuscript was quoted, by
Hattersley in More Annals of Natal (1936). To the general reader, this will be
of no consequence, but those who might wish to use this book as a
starting-point for further research will often be thwarted by its inadequate
Having presented much material in Part I about the notable families and
their fortunes in the Colony of Natal, Mr Shaw devotes Part 2 (about one-third
of the book) to autobiography, and in doing so captures much of the
atmosphere of farm life in Na:al between the two world wars. Accounts of an
idyllic existence on the home farm Talavera and of school days at Merchiston
and Hilton College reveal the author's own personality and developing
sensitivities, and also the physical and social environment that were shaping
the lives and attitudes of countless white boys and girls who had the good
fortune to grow up in that most beautiful part of Natal.
The book ends with seven pages of family trees, especially interesting and
useful to readers who need genealogical facts as well as the human stories. The
early farming families of the Natal Midlands understandably married their sons
and daughters off to each other, and for those who like to know who is related
to whom, this concluding section contains information of value out of all
proportion to its length!
There is no doubt that Charles Scott Shaw's Stories from the Karkloof Hills,
with its attractive cover photograph of the Karkloof Falls, is keenly studied not
only in that green and pleasant land itself, but among the younger generations
of those early farming families, in various parts of South Africa, and
The publication of Professor Kearney's book at about the same time as the
second edition of Charles Scott Shaw' s is a happy coincidence, as the two can
be regarded as companion volumes. (This does not apply to their physical
format, however, as Shaw's book is a conventional soft-covered volume, while
Kearney's is a rather unusual 285 mm square.) Verandas in the Mist is clearly a
'low budget' publication, which is understandable, given that it was sponsored
by the National Monuments Council rather than by commercial interests.
90 Book Reviews and Notices

The academic reason for the study seems to be summed up in Professor

Kearney's paragraph (p.10) on vernacular response.
It is al ways interesting to observe the way in which the strong architec­
tural concepts of an immigrant people give way to more pragmatic ones
of greater appropriateness and eventually to a regional vernacular. This
not only incorporates the necessary responses to a new land with a
different climate and landscape and different building resources, and
probably a new style of life, but also retains the seeds of stylistic images
of the other country which are not easily forgotten.
There is also a more immediate and practical reason:
(The National Monuments Council) ... believes that appropriate pub­
licity needs to be given to the remarkably rich architectural heritage of
the province and hopes that such publications may assist both the
understanding and care of this heritage.
Kearney traces the development of farm buildings from Voortrekker and
British settler times to modern adaptations and additions. His general discus­
sion of such aspects as farmhouse plans, avenue approaches, roofs and house
forms, stylistic exceptions, construction techniques and many others, is
followed by detailed examination of some forty buildings - mostly farm­
steads, but including some noteworthy buildings in the town of Howick. The
descriptions of various elements in the developing vernacular, and of indi­
vidual buildings, are accompanied by good illustrations in the form of old and
modern photographs, sketches, drawings, paintings, site plans, floor plans and
roofscape sketches.
Of special interest among the illustrations are reproductions of landscapes,
architectural studies and house plans by Mark Hutchinson, who arrived in
Natal in 1861 and obviously spent much time in the Howick-Karkloof area. A
collection of his works is in the Howick Museum, and Kearney gratefully
acknowledges permission to use some of them in his book. Clearly, economic
constraints forbade colour reproductions, but attention is now drawn to the
collection, and those who wish to see the originals know where they are.
I am sure that this book is of great interest to architects and architectural
students, but its chief virtue seems to be its clear and attractive presentation of
architectural-historical research to the layman, who may have a particular
interest in social history, or in conservation of the man-made environment, but
who equally may have no more than a general desire to be better informed
about significant and visible links between past and present.
The discussion of buildings and their setting is by no means all technical: the
men and women who built them as places to live and work in are not
overlooked. Professor Kearney acknowledges biographical information ob­
tained from Stories from the Km'k/oo! Hills and from Shelagh Spencer, whose
biographical register of Natal settler families is well-known. This reviewer's
comment on the family trees included in Charles Scott Shaw's book will be
recalled if it is mentioned that Verandas in the Mist also has a genealogical
page headed 'Families and farms - showing the inter-relationship between
the Trotters, Shaws and the Fannins, and the farms of the descendant
families. '
In his Introduction Professor Kearney describes the country between the
Dargle and the Karkloof thus:
Book Reviev.'s and Notices 91

It is an area of superb scenic beauty, with rolling hills given over to

pastures and plantations and with natural forest remaining along the
hilltops and in the clefts of valleys. These ranges of hills include the
Karkloof, which at its highest point reaches about 600 m above sea level.
Until recent times the area was well covered with indigenous bush
including sneezewood and yellow wood. The area is generally well­
watered, with many streams ... It is also an area of comparatively rich
farming land where successive waves of settlement have taken place over
In Stories from the Karkloof Hills and Verandas in the Mist this well-endowed
tract of land, and some of its people and its habitations, are fittingly recorded
and celebrated.

Select List of Recent Natal


ACHTZEHN, H.G.O. Zinkwazi Beach and surrounding area, Natal North

Coast: history, personalities, developments. Darnall: Achtzehn family,
ARNOLD, Pam. Tom and Ethel: the story of a soldier settlement. Pieter­
maritzburg: the Author, 1990. (Malonjeni, near Dundee, Natal)
BLACK SASH. Natal Midlands Region. Pietermaritzburg 1990: the frac­
tured city. Pietermaritzburg: the Black Sash, 1990.
BUTHELEZI, Mangosuthu G. South Africa: my vision of the future. Lon­
don: Weidenfeld and Nicholson, 1990.
DUNNE, Waiter Alphonsus. Eyewitness in Zululand: the campaign remini­
scences of Colonel W. A. Dunne, CB, South Africa, 1877-1881. Edited
by Ian H. W. Bennett. London: Greenhill Books, 1989.
EDWARDS, Terry. Seasons of change: 100 years of the Natal Agricultural
Union. Pietermaritzburg: Natal Agricultural Union, 1991.
FORSYTH, Paul. Pietermaritzburg conflict chronology: political develop­
ments in Pietermaritzburg, 1980-1986. Pietermaritzburg: Dept. of His­
torical Studies, University of Natal, 1991.
GREAT BRITAIN. War Office. Imeffigence Branch. Narrative of field
operations connected with the Zulu War of 1879. London: Greenhill
Books, 1989. (Facsimile of the 1881 ed.)
HALL, Darrell. Halt' Action front!: with Colonel Long at Colenso. Glenash­
ley: the Author, 1991.
HANVEY, Patricia M. Field guide to geocryological features in the Drakens­
berg. Johannesburg: Geography Dept., University of the Witwatersrand,
HARRIS, V.S. Land labour and ideology: government land policy and the
relations between Africans and Whites on the land in northern Natal,
1910-1936. Pretoria: Government Printer, 1991. Archives year book,
1991: VoU, p.1S7-303.
HA YES, Stephen. Black charismatic Anglicans: the Iviyo 10Fakazi baka­
Kristu and its relations with other renewal movements. Pretoria: Univer­
sity of South Africa, 1990. (Charismatic movement in Zu1uland)
KILLICK, Donald. A field guide to the flora of the Natal Drakensberg.
Johannesburg: 10nathan Ball and Ad. Donker, 1990.
LOTTER, I.M., et al. Crime and its impact: a study in a black metropolitan
area. Pretoria: Human Sciences Research Council, 1990. (KwaMashu
and Umlazi townships, Durban)
SelcC[ List 93

LOYALTY, Honour, truth: the story of Longmarket Girls' School, 1890-1990.

Pietermaritzburg: Longmarket Girls' School, 1990.
McKENZIE, Peter. Pioneers of Underberg: a short account of the settlement.
Pietermaritzburg: Africana Book Collectors, 1991. (Facsimile reprint of
the 1946 ed.)
MARTIN, B. F. Drakensberg approaches policy. Pietermaritzburg: Natal
Town and Regional Planning Commission, 1990. Natal town and re­
gional planning report; Vol. 74.
OOSTHUIZEN, Constance M. Conquerors through Christ: the untold story
of the Methodist Deaconess in South Africa. Port Shepstone: Deaconess
Order of the Methodist Church of Southern Africa, 1990.
RESEARCH and the environment, Maputaland: workshop proceedings, May
1989. Durban: Cord, University of Natal, 1989.
SHEPHERD, Olive. Wild walks of Natal. Durban: Natal Branch, Wildlife
Society of Southern Africa, 1990.
SMITH, Tim. They have killed my children: one community in contli€t,
1983-1990. Pietermaritzburg: PACSA, 1990. (Elandskop, Natal)
STRUTHERS, Robert B. Hunting Journal 1852-1856 in the Zulu kingdom
and the Tsonga Regions. Edited by Patricia L. Merrett and Ronald
Butcher. Durban: Killie Campbell Africana Library and Pietermaritz­
burg: University of Natal Press, 1991.
SWEET, Reg. Natal 100: centenary of the Natal Rugby Union. Durban: Natal
Rugby Union, 1990.

Register of Research on Natal

This list has been compiled from individual submissions of subscribers to
If you know of any current research which has not been listed, please fill in
the slip which has been provided for this purpose, so that the information can
be included in the next issue.

BRAIN. Prof. J.B.

Epidemic diseases in Natal and Zululand and their effects on humans,
19th and 20th centuries.
Computerization of the data from the Indentured Indian shipping lists,
1902-1911; part 2. (Project of the History Dept., University of

Contemporary political conflict in Natal.
Regionalism in South Africa.

Diary of Edward Arnold. late of Weenen: trading trip to the Zambesi
and Shire Rivers, 1868. A Livingstone connection?
Translation and summary of the Anglo-Boer War record of Nita
Meyer, sister-in-law of President Lukas Meyer, re campaign 1899­
1902 in Northern Natal. 'The woman's view'.

Public relations in academic libraries in South Africa.

MARES, Robert G.
The life and times of Herbert Watkins-Pitchford: his career in the
Natal Agricultural Service, his relations with Sir Arnold Theiler,
Killie Campbell, Baynesfield Estate, etc.

RAINIER, Margaret.
Madonela: Donald Strachan, autocrat of Umzimkulu.

An investigation of the library needs of Black high school students in
Register of Research 95

SHAH, Mrs T.D.

An investigation into the raison d' etre of the 'autonomous' libraries
on the Howard College campus of the University of Natal.

SHA W, M. and Bell, R.

A bibliography of Pietermaritzburg. (Project of the Library, Univers­
ity of Natal, Pietermaritzburg)

THAKUR, Pravin.
A history of Sastri College.

WYLEY, Chantelle.
Bibliography of published works on the political economy of Natal
and Zululand prior to 1910.

Index to Natalia 1-20

Volume numbers appear in bold type


Alan Patan: often admired. sometimes Bizley, William H. (Bill)

criticized. usually misunderstood [Natal All aboard for Howick! 7:24-27
Society lecture]. by Colin Gardner. John William Bews - a commemorative
18: 19-29 note. 14: 17-21
The Albany connection: Natal and the eastern Pietermaritzburg - the missing
Cape ISO years ago. by Col in de B. decades. 17:25-48
Webb. 4:5-7 The political career of Mr Reid's 'Ten
The Angl iean Diocese of Natal: a saga of Wheeler'. 19:43-49
division and healing. by lan D. Darby. The Rail conversations. 20:50-61
11:43-66 A remarkable survey: the Natal scene at
Union. 13:22-2B
Architccts versus Catholics: thc Emmanuel
Cathedral controversy. by Peter Spiller. B1endulf, Susan
15:89-94 Rabies in Natal. 20:43-49
All aboard for Howick!. by W. H. (Bill) Bizley. Bourbon, M.
7:24-27 Deux ans a Natal. [translated from the French
by Fleur Webb]. 18:6-18: 19:6-22;
Anon. 20:7-23
Thomas George Vernon Inman. 1905-1989
[obituary replinted from The Bishops Bozas. A.
News/ell",.]. 19:50-51 The Natal Provincial Council 1910-1986.
Ballard. Charles
The histmieal image of King Cetshwayo of Brain, Jov B.
Zululand. 13:2l)-42 Health and disease in white settlers in
On a tough missionary post in Zululand colonial Natal. 15:64-77
[editorial note]. 9:7-1l); 10:7-15 Mariannhill centenary: a look at the early
Barnes. P. years. 12:58-70
The great tlood of 1856. 14:33-41 Paul Canon Sykes. 1903-1983
[obituaryl. 17:6~-72
Barrett. A.M. 125 years - the arrival of Natal's Indians in
Willium George McConkev. 1898-1987 pictures. 15: I X-35
[obituary( 17:77-78'
Brann, R.W.
The battle of Ivuna (or Ndunu Hill). bv John P.e. The oldest houses in Pietermaritzburg, by
Laband. 10: 16-22 . R. F. Haswell and R. W. Brann.
Baudert. H.M. 13:67-75
Index to Prof. A. F. Huttersley's Porlrail of (l A brief history of the farm Bosch Hoek. by
cily. 5:53-58 Maryna Fraser. 15:95-99
Bayer. Adolf Joseph Wilhelm Brooks, S.
Discovering the Natal tlora. 4:42-48 The Natal Society Museum (1851-1904):
Benlon. John A. potentialities "and problems. 18:59-69
isandhlwana and the passing of a Brother Nivard Streicher: architect of Mariann­
proconsul. 8:38-45 hill. 1884-1922. by Robel1 Brusse.
Beyond school: some developments in higher 15:78-88
education in Durban ill the InOs and the Brown, R.A.
intlucllce of Mabel Palmcr. by Sylvia Maps of Natal and Zulllland. 1824-1910.
Vietzcn. 14:48-58 2:34-36
Bird. John Natal mission stations (excluding Zulllland)
Natal. 11146-1851 [rcprintl. 1:7-22 [list of names I. 3:50-51 ~
Index 97

Brown, P. A contemporary document: Durban. Feb. 1879

Henry Selby Msimang [obituary]. [instructions given by R. Jameson regard­
12:71-73 ing the defence of his house in the event
Brownell. F.G. of a Zulu attack]. 8:71
Heraldry in Natal [Natal Society lecture]. Cope, A.T.
17: 15-24 Harry Camp Lugg [obituaryJ. 9:43-46
Brusse, R. A curiosity of Natal settler literature ...,
Brother Nivard Streicher: architect of by John Clark. 6:2R-33
Mariannhill. 1884-1922. 15:7R-S8 Dale, George
Burnett, B. B. Natal Training College. 1909-1987
Alphaeus Hamilton Zulu. 1905-1988 [obituary]. 17:85-87
[obituary]. 18:93-96 Daly, Michael J.C.
Calpin, G.H. Alexander Milne. 1899-1987
The centenary of Pietellllaritzburg [obituary]. 17:80-82
[reprint].' 17:9-14 ' Allan Carlyle Mitchell [obituaryJ.
Candy, George
Darbv, lan D.
Italians in Pietermaritzburg. 18:70-79
The Anglican Diocese of Natal: a saga of
Captain AlIen·F. Gardiner. by Elizabeth division and healing. 11:43-66
Gardiner. 4:28-41 Praying for rain: a selmon preached by
Captain Alien Francis Gardiner: first missionary Bishop Colenso [editorial note]. 13:8
to the Zulu, by Colin de B. Webb. 3:5-7 Deane, John
The centenary of Pictermaritzburg [reprint]. by Solomon Levinson [obituary J. 14: 105-1 06
G. H. Calpin. 17:9-14 The defence of Ekowe. by W. N. L10yd
Chettv, Sam [reprint]. 5: 15-28
Inierview with Mr Sam Chetty. by Moray Deux ans 11 Natal [Two years in Natal], by
Comrie. 15: 10-17 M. Bourbon. translated from the French
Christopher, A.J. by FleurWebb. 18:6-18: 19:6-22;
The Natal Land and Colonization Company in 20:7-23
colonial times. 4:49-54 Dick King: a modest hero, by Jacqueline A.
Clance~', P.A.
Kalley. 16:39-44
A one-time Mecca for ornithologists. Discovering the Natal flora, by Adol f Joseph
5:29-35 ' Wilhelm Bayer. 4:42-48
Clark, John Dominy, Graham
Alexander Petrie [obituary]. 10:48-50 George Tatham, 1929-1986 [obituary].
Colenso's greatest sermon. 6: 12-14 16:79-80
A curiosity' of Natal settler literature: Yiator, Pietennaritzburg's imperial postscript: Fort
by John Coventry. 6:28-3.'. Napierfrom 1910 to 1925. 19:30-42
The histnrian of Victorian Natal: Alan The New Republicans: a centennial re­
Frederick Hattersley. 6:58-61 appraisal of the 'Nieuwe Republiek'
(1884-1888). 14:87-97
Colens(), John William. Bishop of Natal
Ekukanyeni in 1857. 13: 14-21 Duff. Thomas
Praying for rain: a sermon preached by First impressions of Natal. by a Perthshire
Bishop Colenso [reprint]. 13:7-13 ploughman [reprint]. 7:8-23
What uoth the Lord require of us? A sermon The Duke's people, by Jean Nourse. 5:39-41:
preached in the Cathedral church of SI. 6:40-41
Peter. Maritzburg. Wednesday. March 12. Durban's court-house: its opening and early
1879 [reprint]. 6: 15-23 years, by Peter Spillcr. 14:42-1
The Colenso cases: a perspective of law in nine­ The early African press in Natal [reprint].
teenth century Natal. by P. R. Spiller. 16:6-11
Early 'Varsity days (by a foundation student). by
Colenso's greatest sermon [editorial note]. by S.E. Lamond. 14:13-16
John Clark. 6: 12-14
The embossed postage stamps of Natal. 1857­
Colonial Coalopolis: the establishment and 1869. by E.C. Wright. 7:28-33
growth of Dundee. by Sheila Hcndcrson.
Ekukanyeni in 1857. by John William Colen so.
Commercial coal-mining in Natal: a centennial
Emery, Frank
appraisal. by W. R. (Bill) Guest.
The Revd John David Jenkins (1828-76).
Canon of the Cathedral of Natal [Natal
Commons, Hector Society lecture]. 14:22-32
Norman Wynne Bowden [obituary]. Soldiers' letters from the First Anglo-Boer
14:98-100 War.1880-8\. 11:16-26
Comrie, M. Soldiers' letters from the Zulu war: a source
Interview with Mr Sam Chetty. 15:10-17 of historico-geographical value. 8:54-60
98 Index

Ethnomusicology and its relationship to some Haddon, Gordon W.

aspects of music in Cetshwayo's time, by The incident of the Bra:ilia and the Rev.
Pessa Weinberg. 8:61-6R Pieter Ham. 7:38-42
'The fate of the natives': Black Durban and Hale, Frederick
African ideology. by Maynard Swanson. The 1882 Norwegian emit!ration to Natal.
14:59-68 12:35-44 ~ ~
Farrer, June Hallowes, Kenneth 8., Bishop Suffragall of
Ursula Evelyn Mabel Judd: a tribute, by June Nalai
Farrer and Jcnnifer Whitelaw. 6:9-11 A new cathedral-centre for Pieter­
'The father of Natal botany': John Medley Wood, maritzburg. 1:31-34
by Rudolf G. Strcy. 7:43-45 Hanks, John
Feist, Helen (translator) Institute of Natural Resources: Natal takes a
On a tough missionary post in Zululand: the lead with computer aids to optimum land
life experiences of the missionary use planning. 9:20-29
Friedrich Volker. 9:7-19: 10:7-15
Haswell, Rober! F.
First impressions of Natal. by Thomas Duff Indian townscape features in Pietermaritz­
[reprint]. 7:8-23 burg. 15:57-63
First lists of Natal artists. 1824-1910 (and The oldest houses in Pietermaritz­
supplementary lists). by Jennifer A. burg. 13:67-75
Verbeek. 1:38: 2:3R: 3:58 The Voortrekker dorps of Natal. 10:23-33
FitzPatrick. Natal and the unification of South Havemann, B. Administrator of Natal
Africa. by W. R. (Bill) Guest. 11:67-56 Speech at the opening of the Hall of Natal
Fraser, Marvna History at the Natal Museum on 8th Nov.
A brief history of the falm Bosch [[od:. 1972. 3:36-39
15:95-99 Health and disease in white settlers in colonial
Friedlander, F. Natal. by Joy B. Brain. 15:64-77
Robel1 El!iott Stevenson [obituary].
14:100-103 Henderson, Sheila
Colonial Coalopolis: The establishment and
Frost. T.n. growth of Dundee. 12:14-26
Frank Emery. 1930-1957 [obituary]. Douglas Mitchell. 1896-1988: A personal
17:83-84 memoir. 19:64-69
Harry Lundie. 1903-1989 [obituary].
20:62-64 Her Majesty's loyal and devoted Trekker leader:
Petrus Lafras Uys. by Ian S. Uys.
Fuggle, Frank A.
George Selwyn Moberly [obituary]. 18:30-40
IS: 102-105 Heraldry in Natal, by F.G. Brownell [Natal
Gadsden. R.J. Society lectureJ. 17:15-24
Francis Farewell. 4:8-13 Herrmann, Louis
Gardiner, Alien Francis Nathaniel Isaacs. 4: 19-21
Natal journal for 1838. 3:9-12 Hillcrest and its contribution to Natal education.
Gardiner, Elizabeth by Robin Lamplough. 17:55-64
Captain Alien F. Gardiner: a memoir by his HiIlebrand, Melanie
wife. written for his grandson. 4:28-41 Mary Stainbank. sculptress of Natal.
Gardner, Colin, O. 17:73-76
Alan Paton: often admired. sometimes criti­ The historian of Victorian Natal: Alan Fredcrick
cized. usually misunderstood [Natal Hattersley [obituary J. by John Clark.
Society lecture]. 18: 19-29 6:58-61
Mark Fiennes Prestwich [obituary]. IS: 100-­ The historical image of King Cetshwayo of Zulu­
102 land: a centennial comment, by Charles
'Natal literature': a scrap of history and a Ballard. 13:29-42
glance at some poems. 13:43-66
History of the wattle industry in Natal, by S.P.
Gordon. Ruth E. Sherry. 3:40-44
Henry Ogle. 4:23-24
John Ross. 4:26-27 Hooper, Anthony S.c.
Special collections of the Natal Society
Gordon-Gray, K.D. Library. 10:41-44
Adolf Joseph Wilhelm Bayer: a man of Natal
[obituary]. 9:36-38 Hosking, G.A.
Reginald Alfred Banks [obituary]. 10:45-46
The great flood of 1856, by Pamela Barnes.
14:33-41 A house for Harry: An architect looks at the
Guest, W. R. (Bill) former residence of Harry Escombe. by
Commercial coal-mining in Natal: a centen­ Brian T. Kearney. 2:21-23
nial appraisal. 18:41-58 Humphreys, William Clayton
FitzPatrick. Natal and the unification of South The Journal of William Clayton Humphreys:
Africa 11:67-56 Port Natal to the Zulu Country August­
The meaning of Majuba for Natal. 11:27-28 October 1851. 19:23-29
Index 99

Hurley, Denis Leverton, Basil J.T.

Father Denis Howard St. George OMI. 1902­ James Saunders King. 4: 18
1989 [obituary). 19:52-55 John Cane. 4:22
Images of the Natal Drakensberg. by John Thomas Halstead. 4:25
Pickles. 11:29--42 Lieutenant Joseph Nourse. by Jean
In search of Mr Botha: an investigation inro a Nourse. 2:24-26
Natal place name. by Robin W. Lines of power: the High Commissioner, the
Lamplough. 12:27-34 telegraph and the war of 1879, by Colin
The incident of the Bra:ilia and the Rev. Pieter de B. Webb. 8:31-37
Ham. by Gordon W. Haddon. 7:38-42 Lioyd, W.N.
Indian townscape features in Pietennaritzburg. by The defence of Ekowe [reprint). 5: 15-28
Robert F. Haswell. 15:57-63 The locllst invasion of Zulu land 1933-1937,
by Anthony Minnaar. 20:30-42
The indi"enous forests of colonial Natal and
iululand. by Donal P. McCracken. Lofthouse, Martha (Patty)
16: 19-38 Letters from Natal. 11:7-15
Institute of Natural Resources ... by John Macquarrie, J. W.
Hanks. 9:20-29 Dr Ernst Gideon Malherbe [obituary).
Interview with Mr Sam Chetty. by Moray
Comrie. 15: 10-17 'Make haste my Lord'. [letter to the Protector of
Indian Immigrants), by S. John. 15:7-9
Isandhlwana and the passing of a proconsul. by
John A. Benyon. 8:38-45 Maps of Natal and Zululand. by R. A. Brown.
Italians in Pietermaritzburg. by George Candy.
18:70-79 Mariannhill centenary: a look at the early years.
by Joy B. Brain. 12:58-70
James, Neville
Francis Napier Broome [obituary]. Martin, Bruno
10:47-48 The opening of the railway line between Dur·
ban and Pietermari tzburg - 100 years
Jameson, R. ago. 10:34--40
A contemporary document. 8:71
Mary Stain bank, sculptress of Natal. by Melanie
John, S.
Hillebrand. 17:73-76
. Make haste my Lord' [letter to the Protector
of Indian Immigrants]. 15:7-9 Mathews, A.S.
George Maurice Jex Sweeney [obituary).
The Journal of William Clayton Humphreys: Pon
Natal to the Zulu Country August-October
1851. by Humphreys. William McCracken, Donal P.
Clayton. 19:23-29 The indigenous forests of colonial Natal and
Zululand. 16: 19-38
Judd, Ursula Evelyn Mabel
The origins of the Natal Society. 2:30-33; The meaning of Majuba for Natal. by W. R. (Bill)
3:45-49: 4:55-60: 5:42-52: 6:24-27 Guest. 11:27-28
Previous homes of the Natal Society Meintjes, Sheila
Library. 5:36-38 The early African press in Natal [editorial
KalJey, Jacqueline A. note). 16:6-7
Dick King: a modest hero. 16:39-44 Merret, Christopher
Kearnev, Brian T. William Stanger and the early years of car­
A house for Harry: An architect looks at the tography in Natal. 1845-1854. 9:30-35
former residence of Harry Escombe. Mesthrie, Uma Shashikant
2:21-23 Reducing the Indian population to a 'manage­
Sense or fashion! Victorian architecture in able compass': a study of the South
Durban. 14:69-86 African assisted emigration scheme of
Laband, John P.C. 1927. 15:36-56 c

The Battle of Ivuna (or Ndunu Hill). Sushi la Gandhi, 1907-1938: guardian of
10:16-22 Gandhian traditions in So~th Africa
Labuschagne, J. Andre [obituary). 19:55-63
The oldest houses in Pietermaritzburg Milton, J.R.L.
reconsidered. 16:51-78 Exton Mabbutt Burchcll. 1917-1982
Lamond, S. E. [obituary). 12:76-78
Early 'Varsity days (by a foundation Minnaar, Anthony
student). 14:13-16 The locllst invasion of Zululand 1933­
Lamplough, Robin W. 1937. 20:30-42
Hillcrest and its contribution to Natal Mkize, Ernest H.B.
education. 17:55-64 Daphnc Duduzilc Tshabalala [obituary].
In search of Mr Botha: an investigation into a 13:87-89
Natal place name. 12:27-34 Mtshali, Mabongi
Letters from Natal. by Manha (Patty)
The Revd Victor Vivian SiphQ Africander,
Lofthouse. 11 :7-15
1930-1990 [obituary). 20:65-66
100 Index

Natal. 1R46-1 R51 by John Bird [reprint]. Pickles, J.

1:7-22 Images of the Natal Drakensberg. 11:29-42
Natal journal for 1838. by Alien Francis Pietelll1aritzburg - the missing decades. by
Gardiner. 3:9-12 William H. (Bill) Bizley. 17:25-48
Natal Land and Colonization Company in colo­ Pietermaritzburg's imperial postscript: FOI1
nial times, by A. J. Christopher. Napierfrom 1910to 1925. by Graham
4:49-54 Dominy. 19:30-42
'Natal literature': a scrap of history and a glance Pistorius, R. A.
at some poems, by Colin Gardner. Town and regional planning in Natal.
13:43-66 3:27-31
Natal mission stations [list]. by R.A. Brown. Player, fan
3:50-51 Portrait of my friend. Magqubu Ntombela,
The Natal Provincial Council 1910-1986. by 7:34-37
A. Bozas. 16:45-50 Wilderness and the environment. 2:27-'29
The Natal Society Museum (1851-1904): poten­ The political career of Mr Reid's 'Ten Wheeler',
tialities and problems. by Shirley Brooks. by William H. (Bill) Bizley. 19:43-49
18:59-69 Pollock, N.C.
The native question. by Francis William Perception of landscape in Natal: the geogra­
Reitz. 2:10-14 pher's point of view. 1:26-30
The native question [reply to F. W. ReitzJ, by Sir Portrait of a city: index compiled by H.M.
Theophilus Shepstone. 2: :4-20 Baudert. 5:53-58
A new cathedral-centre for Pietcrmarilzburg. bv Portrait of my friend. Magqubu Ntombela. by Ian
Kenneth B. Hallowes. 1:31-34 ' ~ Player. 7:34-37
The New Republicans: a centennial reappraisal of Pre-Shakan age-group fOlll1ation among the
the 'Nieuwe Rcpubliek' (1884-1 RRR). by northern Nguni, by John B. Wrighl.
Graham Dominy. 14:87 8:22-30
A note on the centenary of a famous Natal school Previous homes of the Natal Society Library. by
[Hilton College], by Neville Nuttall. Ursula Evelyn Mabel Judd. 5:36-38
3:32-35 Pridmore, Julie
Nourse, Jean The journal of William Clayton Humphreys:
The Duke' s people. 5:39-41 Port Natal to the Zulu Country [editorial
Lieutenant Joseph Nourse: early Natal pioneer note]. 19:23-29
and port captain. 2:24-26 'Putting the Playhouse together again' [Natal
Nuttall, Neville Society lecture]. by Gordon Small.
A note on the centenary of a famous Natal 16:12-18
school [Hilton College]. 3:32-35 Rabies in Natal. by Susan Blendulf. 20:43-49
Old days at N. U.c. (by a foundat ion professor).
Rail, Gerhardus 'Horace'
by Alexander Petrie. 14:7-12
The Rail conversations: a Natal politician's
The oldest houses in Pietennaritzburg. bv R. W.
story as told to William H. (Bill) Bizley.
Brann and RobeI1 F. Has':;cll~ 13:67-75 20:50-61
The oldest houses in Pietermaritzburg recon­ A rare piece of Afrieana [Thomas Duff's First
sidered. by J. Andrc Labusch~gne. impressions of Natal], by Shelagh P. M.
16:51-78 Spencer. 7:7
On a tough missionary post in Zululand: the life Reducing the Indian population to a 'manageabk
experiences of the missionary Friedrich compass': a study uf the South African
Volker. by Dorothea Volker translated by assisted emigration scheme of 1927. by
Helen Feist. 9:7-19; 10:7-15 Uma Shashikant Mesthrie. 15:36-56
A one-time Mecca for ornithologists. by Reid, Pamela
P. A. Clancey. 5:29-35 Harry Lundie. 1903-1989 [obituary]. 20:65
The opening of the railway line between Durban Mrs E. E. M. Russell [obituary]. 11:57-58
and Pietelll1aritzburg - 100 years ago, by
Bruno Martin. 10:34-40 Reitz, Francis WiIliarn
The native question. 2: 10-14
The origins of the Natal Society, by Ursula
Evelyn Mabe! Judd. 2:30-33; 3:45-49; Reitz, Shepstone and native policy. by Colin de
4:55-60; 5:42-52; 6:24-27 B. Webb. 2:7-9
Perception of landscape in Natal: the geogra­ A remarkable survey: the Natal scene at Union,
pher's point of view. by N.C. Pollock. by William H. (Bill) Bizley. 13:22-28
1:26-30 The Revd John David Jenkins (lR2R-76), Canon
Perthshire Ploughman ,pseud.) of the Cathedral of Natal [Natal Society
See Duff. Thomas lecture], by Frank Emery. 14:22-32
Petrie. Alexander Ripley, S. H.
Old days at N.U.C. (by a foundation
George Maurice Jex Sweeney [obituary].
professor), 14:7- j 2
Index 101

Roadside memories: the reminiscences of Durban's court-house: its opening and early
A. E. Smith of Thornvi lie. 12:7-13 years. 14:42-7
Robbins. David Stevn, Richard
Douglas Livingstone. Natal poet? 17:49-54 'William George McConkey [obituary].
Robinson, P. S. 17:79
Planning and planners. issues to be Strey, Rudolf G.
addressed in the NatallKwaZulu 'The father of Natal botany': John Medley
region. 18:80-90 Wood. 7:43-45
Russell, George Swanson, Maynard
The wreck of the Mille/"va. 20:24-29 'The fate of the natives': Black Durban and
Saving the Queen's colour. by Jennifer A. African ideology. 14:59-68
Verbeek. 8:46-53 Swinny, George H.
Schreiner, G. D. L. A Zulu boy's recollections of the Zulu war
Professor Karl Nathanson [obituary]. [reprint]. 8:6-21
12:73-76 Town and regional planning in Natal, by R. A.
Sellers, John M. Pistorius. 3:27-31
Oliver Davies. 1905-1986 [obituary]. Two years in Natal, by M. Bourbon, translated
16:81-84 from the French bv Fleur Webb.
Sense or fashion! Victorian architecture in 18:6-18; 19:6-22; 20:7-23
Durban. by Brian Kearney. 14:69-86 Uys, lan S.
Shepstone, Sir Theophilus Her Majesty's loyal and devoted Trekker
The native question (reply to F. W. Reitz). leader: Petrus Lafras Uys. 18: 30-40
2:14-20 The Umsindusi: a 'third rate stream'?, by Trcvor
Replies to critics of his native policy Wills 12:45-57
[reprint]. 3:7, 13-26
Van Heyningen, Christina
Sherry, S.P. H. W. D. Manson. poet and playwJight, and
History of the wattle industry in Natal. his connections with Natal. 1:23-25
Verbeek, Jennifer A.
Slater, R.G. A first list of Natal artists, 1824-1910, and
Neville Nuttall [obituary]. 13:90-91 supplementary lists. 1:38; 2:38: 3:58
Small, Gordon Saving the Queen's colour. 8:46-53
'Pulling the Playhouse together again' [Natal Vermeulen, H.J.
Society lecture]. 16:12-18 Christoffel (Stoffel) 10hannes Michael Nie­
Smith, A .E. naber 1918-1988 [obituary]. 18:96-98
Roadside memories: the reminiscences of Vietzen, Sylvia
A. E. Smith of Thornville. 12:7-13 Beyond school: some developments in higher
Soldiers' letters from the First Anglo-Boer War, education in Durban in the 1920s and tile
1880-8\. by Frank Emery. 11:16-26 influence of Mabcl Pallllcr. 14:48-58
Soldiers' letters from the Zulu war. by Frank Volker, Dorothea
Emery. 8:54-60 On a tough missionary post in Zulu land: the
Special collections of the Natal Society Library, life expericnccs of the missionary
by Anthony S. C. Hooper. 10:41-44 Friedrich Yolker. according to the notes
Spencer, Brian of his wife. 9:7-19; 10:7::'15
John Clark. 1909-1987 [obituary]. The Voortrekker dorps of Natal, by Robert F.
18:91-92 Haswell. 10:23-33
Spencer. Brian alld Spencer. Shelagh P. M. Webb, Colin de B.
Charles Theodore Binns [obituary]. 8:69-70 Tile Albany connection: Natal and the eastern
Spencer. Shelagh P.M. Cape 150 years ago. 4:5-7
George Russell's account of the wreck of the Captain Alien Francis Gardiner: first mission­
Minerl'a [editorial note]. 20:24-29 ary to the Zulu. 3:5-7
Lofthouse letters from Natal [editorial Deux ans i\ Natal [editorial note]. 18:6-7;
note]. 11:7-15 19:6; 20:7-8
A rare piece of Africana [Thomas Duff's Edgar Harry Brookes [obituary]. 9:39-42
Firsl ill1pressiolls of !Volal] [editorial John Bird. 1:5-6
note]. 7:7 Lines of power: the high Commissioner, the
Roadside memories: the reminiscences of telegraph and the war of 1879. 8:31-37
A. E. Smith of Thornville [editorial Reitz, Shepstone and native policy [editorial
note]. 12:7-13 note]. 2:7-9
Spiller. Peter A Zulu bOY's recollections of the Zulu war
Architects versus Catholics: the Emmanuel [editorial nllle]. 8:6-7
Cathedral controversy. 15:89-94 Webb, Fleur (translator)
The Colenso cases: a perspective of law in Two years in Natal [Deux ans it Natal] by M.
nineteenth century Natal. 13:76-84 Bourbon. 18:6-18: 19:6-22: 20:7-23
102 Index

Weinberg. Pessa Wright, E. C.

Ethnomusicology and its relationship to some The embossed postage stamps of Natal,
aspects of music in Cetshwayo's 1857-1869. 7:28-33, iIIus.
time. 8:61-68 Wright, John B.
'What doth the Lord require of us?': a sermon Henry Francis Fynn. 4:14-17
preached ... by John William Colenso, Pre-Shakan age-group formation among the
Bishop of Natal [reprint]. 6: 15-23 northern Nguni. 8:22-30
Whitelaw. Jennifer A Zulu boy's recollections of the Zulu war, by
Ursula Evelyn Mabel Judd: a tribute, by June GeOl'ge H. Swinny [replint]. 8:8-21
Farrer and Jennifer Whitelaw. 125 years - the anival of Natal's Indians in
6:9-11 pictures, by Joy B. Brain. 15: 18-35
Wilderness and the environment, by lan The 1882 Norwegian emigration to Natal, by
Player. 2:27-29 Frederick Hale. 12:35-44
Wills, Trevor
The Umsindusi: a 'third rate stream'?

Adams. Alfred 5:61 Banks, Reginald Alfred [obituary] 10:45-46

Adams Mission 11:61 Barter, Charles 2:31-32
Addison, Richard H. 10:16-22 Battles
Africander. Rei'. Victor Vivian Sipho 20:65-66 Inyezane,1879 5:5-6: 15-16
Isandhlwana,1879 5:15-16: 8:6-21, 46-53,
Alan Paton Literary Competition 12:84 72-73

Albany settlement 4:5-7: 5:59-60: 8:59-60 Ivuna, 1888 10:16-22

American Board Mission 11:69 Majuba, 1881 11:27-28

Ammunition boxes Ndunu Hill see Battle of Ivuna

Role in battle of Isandhlwana 8:72-73 Bayer, Adolf Joseph Wilhelm [obituary]

Anglican church 11:43-46: 13:103-104 9:36-38
Anglo-Boer War, 1880-81 11: 16-26; Baynes, Joseph 7:25
11:27-28 Bayview [Harry Escombe's Durban house] 2:21­
Anglo-Zulu war 8 23
Ammunition boxes 8:72-73 Beale. Alexander 6:5-7
Anists 3:57 Beaulieu-on-the-lIIovo (Richmond) 5:39-41
Causes 8:31-37
Death of Melvill and Coghill 8:46-53 Bews. John WilJiam 14: 17-21
Maps 8:74-75 Bhojpuri language 15: 107-1 08
Missionary support for 9:7-8 Binns, Charles Theodore [obituary] 8:69-70
Role of Sir Bartle Frere 8:31-45 Binns. Si,. Henry 7:24
Soldier's letters 8:54-60
Zulu boy's recollections 8:8-21 Bird, Chlistopher (Kit) 13:93-94
See also Battles Bird. John 1:5-6, 5:50: 6:24
Angus. F.T. 3:41 Bleek. Wilhelm Heinrich Immanuel 5:63-64
Angus, G. 3:41 Bosch Hoek 15:95-99
Archaeologv in Natal and Zululand 4:63-64; Boshof. Jacobus Nicolaas 5:50
6:36-37 Botha. Cornelius 12:27: 13:94-95
Archbell. Rei'. James 2:31 Botha's Hill 12:27-34
Architects 15:78-88, 89-94: 16:92-93 Bowden, Norman Wynne 14:98-100
Architecture Brookes. Edgar Harry [obituary] 9:39-42
Conservation and restoration 2:21-23: Broome, Francis Napier [obituary] 10:47-48
6:38-39: 8:73-74; 9:52-53: 10:54-56;
11:61-64: 12:84-85, 87: 14:69-86 Brown. John Roland 15: 106-107
Armstrong. George Shearer 7:24 Brown, R.A. 3:8
Artists of Natal Bryant. Alfred Thomas
Catalogue 1:38: 2:38: 3:58: 4:66-67 Discussion of his works 8:22-30
See al.~) Names of individual artists Buccleuch, WaIter Francis, 5th Duke of
Astronomy in Natal 6:45-47: 7:53: 12:79-81 5:39-41
Ayres, Thomas H. 5:32 Buchanan, David Dale 3:47: 4:55, 56, 59;
Babanango 5:7-9. 13.42,52
Archaeological exploration 6:36-37 Burchell, Exton Mabbutt (1917-82) 12;76-78
Badges. emblems and insignia 20:73-74 Bushman paintings see Rock paintings
Baines, Thomas 10:62-63 Busby. Ralph 8:57
Baldwin. William Charles 4:65 Byrne settlers 19:76: 20:76-77
index 103

Caldecott. Alphonso T. 5:51: 6:24 Dudley. L.E. 13:92-93

Campbell. George Gordon [obituary] 7:49-50 Duff, Thomas 7:7.8-23
Camphcll. Margaret Roach (Killie) 11:65 Dundee (Natal) 7:51-52: 12: 14-26:
Campbell. ReI'. William 5:50: 6:24. 27 17:91-92
Cane. John 4:8. 22. 23. 24 Dunn, John 9:9-19: 10:8
Cane family Dunn. Robert 2:37
Relation to Fynn family 5:59: 10:62 Durban
Carnarvon. Herbert Henry Howard Molyneux. Africans in 14:59-68

4th Earl of 8:31-33. 38 Architecture 14:69-86

Cartography in Portugal 16:87 Bay 15: 106

Cal10graphy of Natal Bayview [Harry Escombe's house]

During Anglo-Zulu war 8:74-75

History 9:30-35
Botanic Gardens 11:74
Scc als(I Maps of Natal
Chelsea Houses 16:91-92
Conservation 2:21-23.6:38-39; 10:54-56
Cato Manor House 6:38-39 Courthouse 14:42-47
Cedara Agricultural College 14: 113 Description 1:7; 4:6; 6:30: 7:11-17
Cemeteries and graves 13: 100: 14: I1I Emmanuel Cathedral 15:89-94
Cetshwayo. kaMpande 8: 18-21: 9: 12-19; First railway commemorated 15:109-112
10: I 0-11; 13:29-42 Higher education 14:48-58
Chelmsford. Frederic Augustus Thesiger. 2nd Library 5:45-46
Baron 5:6. 17-18: 8:39. 48 Maritime Museum 18:75
Museum 17:94
Cinnabar 18: 104-107 Ornithology 5:29-35
Clark. John 18:91-92 Port 2:24-26
Clark. Margery 18: I0 1-103 Unidentified post 16:101
Cloete. Henry 2:30. 31: 3:46-48; 4:43. 55-57; Voortrekker planning of 10:28-29. map
5:11 Walking tours 16:90-91
Durban Art Gallerv 14: 114
Cloete. Peter Laurens or Lawrence [Lourens in Durban Girls' High School 12:87
text] 4:56-57
Coal-mining 18:41-58 Cedara Agricultural College 14:113
See als,7 Dundee Higher 14:48-58
Coghill. Nevill J. A. 8:46-53 Secondary 17:55-64
Colenso. John William. Bishop of Natal See a/so Mariannhill Monastery and other
Church schism 13: 104 mission stations
Colenso cases 13:76-1'14 Ekowe see Eshowe
EkuKanyeni Mission Station 13: 14-21 Ekukanyeni Mission Station 13:14-21. 100
What doth the Lord rC4uirc of us"? 6: 12-14:
9:47 Ekuhlengeni Mission Station 9:9; 10:8-15
Confcderation scheme 8:31-3.'. 38-45 Elephants 11:74
Conservation see Architecture: Conservation and Ellis. Henry Vaughan 3:33
restoration: Nature conservation; Ellis, Owen 8:56
Pietermaritzburg: Conservation Emery. Frank [obituary] 17:83-84
Coventry. John 6:28-33 Emlalazi Mission Station 9:8-19
Curling. Lt. 8:50 Empangeni, Meaning of name 17:98-99
Dabulalll<lnzi kaMpandc 8 Escombe, Harry 2:21-23
Attack on his ikhandil 5:21-22 Eshowe
Attack on patrol at White Ulllfolozi 8: 15 Defence during the Anglo-Zulu war
Davics.Oliver 16:81-82 5:15-28
Davis. Peter 6:47 Origin and spelling of name 5:66-67
Delegorgue. Adulphe 4:43: 5:30 Preservation of fort 8:73-74
Desel1itication 9:24 Falcon. William 3:33. 34
Dickinson. Charles 6:39-40 Farewell. Francis George 4:8-13
Dickson. Re\". R. 6:24. 26 Fell. Robert Black 8:57-59
Dingane. kaSenzangakhona 3: 10: 4: 15. 16.20. Ferreira. Philip 3:45-46
- FitzPatrick. Sir Pcrcy 11:47-56
Dinuzulu kaCetshwayo Floods 14:33-41
War against Zibhebhu 10:13. 16-22 Flora of Natal 4:42-48
Drakensberg 11 :29-42 Forests of Natal 16: 19-38
Drege. Carl Friedrich 4:42 FOil Napier 16:85-87: 19:30-42
Drege. Johann Franz 4:42 Foster. W.E. (Mashiya) 19:72-73
Dudgcon. Philip 2:21-23 FOllr Books of the Prophet Ignoramus 3:54
104 Index

Frere. Sir Henry Bartle Edward 8:31-45 Italians in Pietermaritzburg 16:95-100;

Fynn. Henry Francis 4: 10. 11. 14-17.23; 18:70-79 "
10:62-63 Ivuna see Battle of Ivuna
Fynn family 5:59-60 Jameson. Roben 8:71
Gandhi. Mohandas K. 13:98-99 Jardine, Joseph 6:45
Gandhi. Sushila [obituary] 19:55-63 Jenkins. Canon John David (1828-76)
Gardiner. Allen Francis 3:5-7.9-12: 4:23, 28­ 14:22-32
41: 20:69 Jigger fleas 20:77
Gelder. Betsy 11:68-69 Johnston. Charles 5:50-51: 6:24. 26
Genealogical Society 12:82-83; 14: III JUdd, Ursula Evelyn Mabel [obituary] 6:9-11
German settlers 11:69-70 Keate. Roben. Governor of Natal 17:90
Genard. William T. 4:45-46 Kendall and Strachan 17:93
Gordge. Henry 5:33 Keppel-Jones. Al1hur 16:90
Gonion. Stephen B. 4:58-59 Killie Campbell Africana Library
Graaff-Reinet 10:24 Oral history programme 9:48-49
Register of researchers 20:73
Grahamstown 5:46; 10:24-26
Killie Camp bell Bursary Fund 6:34-35
Grant. William 3:20-26
King, James Saunders 4: 10. 12. 13. 18, 19, 20
Graves see Cemeteries and graves
King, Richard 16:39-44
Greathead. Mary Milner 12:82-83
Kirkman, Thomas 7:26-27
Green. Rev. James 4:59: 5:40. 42. 43. 46
Knight-Bruce, Bishop Wyndam 12:81-82
Grey's Hospital 14: 113
Krauss, F.c.c. 4:43; 5:30-31
Gueizenius. Wilhelm 4:43: 5:30-31
Kwa Mondi Mission Station 5:5-6
Halstead. Thomas 4:20. 25 Lady Usher Literary Award 17:94-95;
Ham. Rev. Pieter 7:38-42 18;114-115
Hambanati Mission Station 3:9-11; 4:31-33 Landscape perception 1;26-30
Harford. H. C. 8:51 Langalibalelc uprising, 1873 3:55
Hartlaub. K.J. G. 5:32 'The last outpost' (television
Hattersley. Alan Frederick documentary) 10:57-58
Eightieth birthday tribute 3:52-53
Law. lawyers etc. 13:76-84; 14:42-47
Hattersley Road 13: 101

Level1on, Basil J. T. 10:6

Obituary 6:58-61

Port rail {!f a city: index 5:53-58

Levinsohn, Solomon [obituary1 14: 105-1 06
Health and disease 15:64-77 Lindley, Rev. Daniel 3;46,47
Heraldry in Natal 17: 15-24 Lines, John 8;56-57
Hermannsburg Mission 9:7-19: 10:7-15 Literature in Natal 13;43-66
See also Livingstone, Douglas; Poetry and
Hicks-Beach. Sir Michael 8:33-37.42-43
Higginson. W. 8:50-52
Livingstone, Douglas 17:49-54
Hillcrest 17:55-64
Lloyd, William Whitelocke 8:57
Hilton College 3:32-35
Locusts 20:30-42
History and historiography 11:75
Longmarket Girls' School 20;74-75
Hoffmann. John Philip 5:51: 6:24. 27 Lucas, Gould AI1hur 3:33
Holley. James Hunt 3:40-41
Lugg, Harry Camp [obituary] 9:43-46
Lundie, Harry [obituary J 20:62-64
Breeding for military purposes 6:45
McDonald, Hugh 5:9. 14: 6:30
Howell. James Michiel 2:31: 3:45-47: 5:49, 51.
52: 6:26. 27 McIntyre, Kenneth H. C. [obituary] 7:50-51
Hursthouse. William 3:47: 4:56-58 McKen. Mark J. 4;44.46.47: 5:32-33
Humphreys. William Clayton 19:23-29 McKenzie, John W. 3:19-20
Indians in Natal 15:7-9.10-17.18-35.36-56 Maclean, Charles Rawden see Ross. John
Bhojpuri language 15: 107-109 Macleroy, George 5:46,49.50; 6:24, 27
in Pietermaritzburg 15:57-63 Mandlakazi
Inkan)'iso Yase Natal (African War with Usuthu. 1888 10:16-22
. newspaper) 16:6-11 Manson, Harley William Daniel 1:23-25
Institute of Natural Resources 9:20-29 Maps of Natal 2:34-36.38: 4:66: 5:68; 6:37;
Inyezane see Battle of Inyezane 7:47-48; 8:74-75; 10:25: 16:20
1saacs. Nathaniel 4: 12. 19-21. 26 Maritzburg College 18: 103-104
1sandhlwana see Battle of Isandhlwana Marks, Shula 6;7-8

Marquard. John David 3:47: 4:56-59: 5:43. 45. Natal Society Library 5:36-38
47 Librarians: A. Beale 6:5-7: G. Challinor
Mariannhill Monastery 12:58-70: 15:78-88 5:37; C. Cock 5:46; J. Hiscock 5:46;
A. S. C. Hooper 10:6: U. E. M. Judd 5:6:
McConkey. William George [obituary] 6:9-11; J. Meek 5:37: 6:28;
17:77-79 . S. S. Wallis 10:6;

Mechanics Maga:ine alld Liferm}, Journal 5:62 New buildin" 5'6'

Melvill, Teignmouth 8:46-53 Special colle~tion's' 10:41-44

Methven. William Cathcart 16:92-93 Natal Society of Arts 15:109

Mgungundhlovu (Dinganc's capital) Natal Training College 17:85-87: 18:72
Excavation of 4:64: 6:37 Natal University College 14:7-12. 13-16;
Midmar Historical Village 14: 114
National Monuments Council 11:65: 12:85-86;
Millar. A.D. 5:34 13:102-103: 14:112; 15:115-117:
Millar. Harold M. 5:34 16:101-102; 17:99-100; 18:117-118;
Milne. The Hon. Justice Alexander 19:80-81
[obituary] 17:80-82 Natural resources of Natal
Mitchell, Alan Carlyle [obituary] 14: 103-105 Preservation 9:20-29
See also Kature conservation
Mission stations of Natal (List) 3:50-51
See alsl! Names of individual mission stations Nature conservation 2:27-29; 7:34-37;
Missionary activity in Zululand 9:7-19:
Ndunu Hill see Battle of Ivuna
See also Names of individual mission stations Neison. Edmund N. see Nevill, Edmund N.
Mitchell, Douglas [obituary] 19:64-69 Nevill. Edmund N. 6:46; 7:53
Moberly. George Selwyn [obituary] 14: 102­ New Republic 14:87
105 Newnham. William Orde 3:33,35
Moffal. RobeI1. Jnr. 5:51 Nguni. Northern
Age-group formation 8:22-30
Moodie. Donald 3:47.48: 4:59: 5:50: 6:24. 27
Nienaber. Christaffel Johannes Michael (Stoffel)
Moreland. John 5:49. 51, 52: 6:24 [obituary] 18:96-98
MOITis. Donald R. 6:8: 7 Nicnaber, Gabriel Stephanus (Gawie) 6:7
Morris. George 8:56 Norwegian settlers 12:35-44
Msimang. Henry Selby [obituary] 12:71-73 Nourse. Joseph 2:24-26: 7:40
MUITay. Sir Thomas Keir 7:25 Nqeto kaKhondlo 4:8
Murchic House (Durban) 6:38 Ntombela. Maqubu 7:34-37
Music 8:61-68 Nuttall. Neville [obituary] 13:90-91
Natal O·Brien. W.J. (special collection in Natal
Description 1:7-22: 5:7-14: 6:28-33' Society Library) 10:41-42
7:8-23: 11:7-15: 13:22-28 -. Ocrder. Frans David 2:38: 6:37-38
Natal Colony Ogle. Henry 4:23-24
History 11:47-56: 18:6-18: 19:6-22. Oral history 6:35-36; 9:48-49
23-29: 20:7-23
Ornithology of Natal 5:29-35: 11:75
Natal Carbincers Ono. P.A.R. 5:50; 6:27
125th anniversary 10:56-57
Overfishing 9:22-23
Natal Historical Documents Project 6:34
Overpark 10:53-54: 11:61
Natal Land and Colonization Company 4:49-54
Ox-waggons 1:9-10
Natal Mechanics Institute 5:62 Paarl 10:24
Natal Midlands Bird Club 18:107 Palmer. Mabel 14:48-58
Natal Museum Palframan, Thomas 17:88-90
Ernest Warren Hall 13:104
Parish registers. Presbyterian 15: 111
Hall of Natal History 3:36-39
History. (1851-1904) 18:59-69 Patan. Alan 18: 19-29: 19:71; 20:67-68
Natal Observatory 6:45-47: 7:53 Pearson. C.K. 5:5-6. 15-28
Petersen. Johan Lodewyk 4:9. 11
Natal Playhouse 16: 12-18
Petrie. Alexander [obituary] 10:48-50
Natal Provincial Council 16:45-50
Building 19:77-79 Photographic collections
Documentation and care 12:83
Natal Reading Society 3:48--49 Pietclwaritzburg
Natal Society Cathedral church of the Holy Nativity
History to 1851 2:30-33: 3:45-49; 4:55-60: 1:31-34; 6:41-43
5:42-52; 6:24-27 Centenary publication 17:9-14
106 Index

Conservation 9:52-53: 10:53: 13: 101;

Sand worms 20:77
14:107-108; 15;114-115; 17:93;
Schools 20:75
18:1 \3-114 See also Names of individual schools and
Description. I R46-1 R51 I:R-9; 2:30-33 mission stations.
Government House 3;37-39; 12;87 SchrOder. Rev. H. 13: 101-102
Hotels. taverns etc 9:53-56
Indian townscape features 15;57-63 Scott. D. B. 5:50; 6:24
Lanes 12:84 Seebohm, H. 5:33
Leighton Street 12:85 Seneque, Clement 14: 107
Oldest houses 13:67-75; 16:51-78
Public transport 15; 10-17 Settlers in Natal, 1824-1857
V00l1rekker planning of 10:26-28 in 1920s Biographical Register 3:53-54; 10:61
and IlJ30s 17:25--lR; 18:99-100 Shaka. kaSenzangakhona 4; 11-13. 15. 18, 20,
See a/so Natal Society; Natal Society Library 22, 23, 25~
Pietermaritzburg Choral Society 20:71 Shelley. George Ernst 5:33
Pietelmaritzburg Philharmonic Society Shepstone. Sir Theophilus 1: 17-18; 2;8-9;
15:117-118 3:47; 4:56, 59; 5:7. 50
Pieternlaritzburg Ramblers' Club 11:71-73 Ships
Planning in NatallKwaZulu 18:80-90 Actea 10:35, 39
Plant. Roben W. 4:45 Active, H.M.S. 5:16.24
Ama:on 6:28
Playhouse see Natal Playhouse Amphion, H.M.S. 4:9
Poetry and poets 19:7lJ-XO; 20;67-68 Antelope 4: 10. I I
See a/so Livingstone. Douglas Barracouta 4:9
Pollution 18:76-77 Brazilia 7:38-42
P0I1 St. Johns 15: 114 British Tar 6:30. 33
Portuguese explorers 18; 112 California 5: 10. 14
Cockburn 4:9
Postage stamps 7:28-33 Comet 4:24
Prestwich. Mark Fiennes [obituary] 15:100-102 Conquering Hero 7:23,49
Prisoners-of-war Diana 5:13,14
World War II 16:95-100; 18:72-75 Douglas 6:31
Queen's Tavern (Durban) 10:54-56 Dreadnought 7;23
Elizabeth alld Susan 4: 12, 13
Rabies in Natal 20:43-49
Fawn. H.M.S. 2:24-26
Radebe. Joshua 20:71 Frances Charlotte 4:9
Railways of Natal 6:43-44 Haidee 6:60
Alfred County railway 18:107-108 Hannah 7:16
Durban to Pietermaritzburg line 10:34-40 Henry Tanner 7:23
Durban - Point line 15:109-113; 18:111 Helicon 2:24. 25
Howick line 7:24-27 fna 7:8.23
Narrow gauge closure 16:93-94 iulia 4: I 0, 11. 23
Shongeni Dam line 18: I 08-111 Kate 5:13. 14
'Ten Wheeler' 19:43-49 Lady Bma 5:39
Rail. Gerhardus 'Horace' 20:50-61 Lel'en 4:9
Ramblers' Club see Pietermaritzburg Ramblers' Louisa 5:7.9. 12. 13
Club. Macedon 5:13
Maranon 6:29
Regimental colour Margaret .5:8. 13
Signiticance of 8:47-48 Mary 2:24; 3:11; 4:
Reid. Pamela 17:5-6 Ma:eppa 4:43; 5:30
Reitz. Francis William 2:7-8 Minen'(l 20:24-29
Reus. Cornelius 7:38-40 Nancl' 5:7. 13
Natai. R.M.S. 4:45
Richards. ReI'. John 3:47. 4R; 4:55-57 Northampton 5:59
Richmond (Natal) 5;39-41; 6:40-41 Orange Grove 4:5. 9
Road traffic 12:7-13 Phantom 3:53
Robel1son. Thomas 5:51; 6:24 Pilot 5:8. 13
Richard Mount 5:7
Robinson. George Eyre 5:51; 6:24 Salisbury 4:10,18
Robinson. Sir John 7:26 Skerne 4:30
Rock paintings 4:62-64 Souffren 5:8
Southampton. H.M.S. 2:24
Ross. John (Charles Rawden Maclean) 4;26-27, Sovereign 7:12
photo of statue Thunderbolt. H.M.S. 5:13. 14
Russell. Eleanor Ethel Mariella [obituary) Tral'ers Spaight 5:13. 14
11:57-58 Sihayo kaXonga (Sirayo)
Sanderson. John 4;44-45 British attack on 8: 10. 14. 19.49, 52
Index 107

Simon van der Stel Foundation 10:52-53 Usuthu

Sinclair. Charles Ross 5:51: 6:27 War with Mandlakazi. 1888 10:16-22
Slocum. Joshua 19:73-74 Utrecht 10:31
Smellekamp. Johan Arnold 5:51: 7:38-40 Uys, Petrus Lafras 18:30-40
Smith. Andrew 5:30 Vanderplank. Charles 3:40
Smith. Sir Harry 1:16-17 Vanderplank. John 3:40
Smith. Margery (born Clark) 18:101-103 Vause. Richard 2:37-38
Smith-Dorrien. Horace 8:50 Via/or 6:28-33
Soldier settlements 17:94 Victoriana 14:114
Soldier" s letters Violence 18:80
In Anglo-Boer War 11:16-26 Volker, Friedrich 9:7-19; 10:7-15
In An£do-Zulu war 8:54-60
Voortrekkers 1:7-8. 12-15: 18:30-40
Spencer. Shelagh P. M. 17:7 Town planning 10:23-33
Spienkop Museum 11:66 Vryheid 14;87-97
Sprigg. Sir John Gordon 8:42. 44 Wahlberg. Johan August 5:30-31
St. Saviour's. Randjiesfontein 15: 108-109 Walker, Arthur 3:47-48; 4:56; 5:9-11,14,50,
St. Thomas·s. Durban 20:68-69 52; 6:26-27
Stainbank. Mary 4:27: 17:73-76 Walmsley, J. 5:50
Stanger. Dr William 3:47; 4:44. 59; 5:43; Wattle industry in Natal 3:40-44
Webb, Colin de B. 6:5
Stevenson. Robert Elliotl. [obituary]
14:100-103 Weenen 10:29-30
Stirling engine 6:44 Wilderness Leadership School 2:28-29;
Strachan and Co. (Umzimkulu) 7:47
Willow fountain 10:61-62
Streicher. Brother Nivard 15:78-88
Wilson. R. B. 5:34
Stuart. James 6:35-36
Sutherland. Dr Peter Cormac 4:46: 6:6 Wilson. William Robert 13: I05
Sutton. Sir George 3:41. 42 Window
Zulu words for 9:51-52
Sweeney. George Maurice Jex [obituary]
Wolseley . .';ir Garnet 8:39-42.45.47
Sykes. Paul Carton [obituary] 17:65-72 Women's Institutes
Area annals 5:65
Talana Museum 14:112; 16:88-90
Wood, John Medley 3:40; 4:46-48; 7:43-45
Tatham. George [obituary] 16:79-80
Woodgate. Edward 8:59-60
Tatham Art Gallery 14: 107. 114; 20:72
Woodward, Rev. J. D. S. 5:33
Telegraphic link to South Africa 8:31. 36
Woodward, Rev. R. B. 5:33
Thukela (Tugela) basin
Archaelogical exploration 4:63-64 Yellow-wood 9:56
Toohey. Daniel Charles 5:51 Yonge, Cecil Audley Sacheverell 7:25
Torry. Dr John Cooper 5:51; 6:24 York (Natal)
Church of SI. John the Evanaelist 7:46
Zaloumis. Dr Oliver (Nolly) 1~:74
Town and regional planning in Natal 3:27-31
Town planning
Voortrekker period 10:23-33 Zibhebhu kaMpitha
War against the Usuthu 10;16-22
Town trails 10:51-52
Zietsman. lohan Philip 3:45; 5:51, 52
Trade tokens 7:46-47
Zietsman. Paul Hermanus 2:31: 3:45. 46: 6:27
Tsetse flies 18:115-117
Zulu. Alphaeus Hamilton [obituary] 18:93-96
Tshabala. Daphne Duduzile [obituary]
13:87-89 Zulu artifacts
Tulbagh 10:23-24 In USA museum 17:93-94
Twentieth Regiment. Second Battalion. Zulu Dawn (film) 10:57
11:70-71 Zulu history and traditions 6:35-36; 8:22-30;
Twentv-fourth Reaiment 9:48-49
At-Isandhlwan~ 8:46-53 Zulu music 8:61-68
Umfolozi Game Reserve Zululand
Archaelogical exploration 6:37
Locust invasion 20:30-42
Umzindusi River 12:45-57;
Maps 8:74-75; 14:93
Unitication of South Africa 11:56-67
Zulu war see Anglo-Zu1u war
108 Index

In some cases illustrations have been entered under standard subject headings in preference to the
caption where this would facilitate retrieval. For example, an early photograph of a sailing ship is
entered under Ships and shipwrecks and not under its caption 'Brig on the waters',

No page numbers are given in references to the first 10 issues where illustrations appeared on
unnumbered plates,

Acutt, Ernest 17:58

West Street 14:39

Africander, Rev, Victor Henry Sipho 20:65

View from Berea ridge 1851 11:9

View from Moreland's office 14:34

Banks, Reginald Alfred 10

Victorian buildings 14:70-72, 74-76,

Bayer, Adolf Joseph Wilhelm 9

Beale, Alexander 6: cover
Em bossed postage stamps as used in Victorian
Bews, John William 14: 18, 19
Natal 7

Binns, Charles Theodore 8

Emery, Frank 17:84
Bird, Christopher 1
Farewell, Francis George 4

FitzPatrick Sir Percy II :51

Bird, John 1

Flags, standards etc. 17:16,18,20,21. 24


Buffspotted flufftail 5
Forests 16:22
Natal nightjar 5
Fon Napier 19: cover; 33, 36, 40

Boston sawmill, 1857 16:26

Frere, Sir Banle 8

Botha, Louis and Annie (born Emmett) 14:88

Fynn, Henry Francis 4

Bowden, Norman Wynne 14:99

Gandhi, Sushila 19:57
Brookes, Edgar Harry 9
Gandhi's home at Phoenix 19:60,62
Broome, Francis Napier 10
Gardiner, Alien Francis 3: cover 4

Buccleuch, Waiter Francis, 5th Duke of 5

Gillitt, William 17:57
Burchell. Exton Mabbutt 12:77
Haidee 6

Handley, Mr and Mrs Han), Pybus and

Bushman paintings 6

family 12:25

Cathedral of the Holy Nativity 11:46

Hallowes, Kenneth B.. Bishop Suffragan of

Cetshwayo kaMpande 13:37

Natal 1

Champion, A. W. 14:63
Ham, Rev. Pieter 7

Clark, John 18:92

Hartlaub, K.J.O. 5

Cloete, Henry 3
Hattersley, Alan Frederick 6

Coal and coalmining 18:46

Hillcrest 17:59,62

Colenso, John William, Bishop of Natal 6: 13:

Hindu temple 15: cover

Hooper, Anthony S. C. 10

Corset, c. 1891 6
Housing 18:87

Dabulamanzi kaMpandc 8: cover

Inchanga Viaduct, 1880 10

Davies, Oliver 16:83

Indians in Natal 15:29-35

Dick Addison, Commandant Mansel Reserve

Inman, Thomas George Vemon 19:50

Territory Carbineers, c. 1886 10

Italians in Pietern1aritzburg 18:74

Dinuzulu kaCetshwayo 10; 14:89, 90

Jcnkins, Canon John David 14:23, 25

Drakensberg 11 :34, 39,42 and cover

King, Richard (Dick) 16:41

Dudley, L.E. 13:92

J udd, Ursula Evelyn Mabel 6

Dundee 7: 12:22, 18
A lady's bedroom, c. 1887 (Natal Museum) 3

Lamond, S.E. 14:14

Bayside 1900 14: cover

Bayview house 2
'Last sleep of the brave', by A. de Ncuville 8

Bluff and Point 1850 7: cover

Levinsohn, Solomon 14:106

British immigrants landing 14:36

Locust invasion of Zululand 20:32. 35. 39

Coal-loading plant 18:46

Longmarket Girls' School 20:75

Coun House 14:43

Customs housc 11: 13

Lugg, Harry Camp 9

Farewell's encampmcnt, Pon Natal. 1824

Lundie, Harry 20:62

4: cover
Majuba battlefield 11:27

Marine Hotel 13:25

Verandah houses 11:62-64

Malhcrbe. Ernst Gideon 13:86

West Street 1851 11:76

Manson, Harley William Daniel

Index 109

Manannhill Monastery 11:59,60,65,67,69; Star and Garter Hotel 9

12: cover
Town Hall 13:24

Maritzburg College 7
Trams and tramlines 17:29,30

Marks. Shula 6
Umsindusi river 12:47-49.51. 53. 55

View from f0l1 Napier. 1851 13:70

Mm·loth. H. W. R. 14: 19
12 pounder gun from H.M.S. FGlVIl 2

Mason's Mill 12:55

Player, lan 7

McConkey. William George 17:77

The Playhouse see Natal Playhouse

Milne, Alexander 17:81


Minerl'G 20:26 Selection of cartoons from 4

Mitchell. Alan Carlyle 14: I 04


Mitchell. Douglas 19:64

Advert for opening of main line ... Durban

Monuments and graves 19:40

to Pietermaritzburg. Dec 1880 7

Morris. Donald R. 6; 7
Arrival of inauGural tl~ain at Pietermaritzbur u

station, I D~c. 1880 10

Msimang. Henry Selby 12:71
Donnybrook to Ixopo line 16:94

Natal Museum 3: 7: 18:61. 66

GMA Garratt steam locomotive 7

Natal Playhouse 16: 13, 14. 15

Inchanga Viaduct, 1880 and 1892 10

Natal Provincial Council Buildings 16: cover

N.G.R. passenger carnage. I X78 10: cover
N.G.R. train, 1877 7

Natal Training College 17: cover

Reid's 'Ten Wheeler' 19:45

Nathanson. Karl 12:75

Shongweni line 18: 109, 110

Nienaber, C. J. M. 18:96
Sweetwaters Station 13:28

Nienaber, G. S. 6
Rail. Gerhardus lHorace) 20:55

Norwegian Evangelical Lutheran Church,

Reitz. Francis William 2

Marburg 12:40

Nourse, Joseph 2
Early school 5

Early settler's cottage 5

Ntombela, Magqubu 7
St Mary's Church 5

NUllall. Neville 13:90

Russell, Mrs E.E. M. 11:58

Palmer. Mabel (born Atkinson) 13:50, 53

Ross, John (photograph of statue) 4

Pascoe, Mary Aire (born Ritchie) 12: 17

Sannyasi, Swam; Bhawani Dayal 15:38

Paton, Alan 18: cover: 21

'Saving the Queen's Colour', by A. de Neuville 8

Petne, Alexander 10; 14:8

Sawing 16:30

Scon's Theatre 13:26

Alexandra Park 13:23

Sculpture 17:75,76

Brid"es 12:47-49

Black Horse Bar 9

Shepstone. Sir Thcophilus 2

Botanical Gardens 17:33

Ships and shipwrecks 6; 20:26

Cathedral of the Holy Nativity 11:46

Smith, Marjoric (born Clark) 18: 103

Christie's Cafe-de-Iuxe 17:43

Smoking scene

Church Street 1880s 1

Natal Museum 3

Church Street 1933 17:26

South Staffordshire regiment 19: cover

City and P0l1 Hotel 9

Clothing factory and workers 17:44

Spioenkop Museum 11:67

Colonial Office Buildings 1

SI. George, Father Denis Howard 19:53

Commercial Road. 1914 19:31

SI. Saviour's Cathedral. Pietermantzburg,

Crown Hotel 9
c. 1870 1 ~

Government House 17: cover

Stanger, William 3; 9: cover

Horse Shoe Hotel 17:28

Italian Church 16:99: 18:74

Stevenson, Robel1 Elliott 14: 101

Maritzburg College 7
Sweeney. George Maurice Jex 11:59

McFarlane's hat shop 17:35

Sykes, Paul Carton 17:70

Natal Colonial Parliament Buildings

Tatham, George 16:80

16: cover ~

Natal Museum 7: 18:61. 66

Tshaba1ala. Daphne Duduzile 13:88

Natal Society Library 5

Umsindusi River 12:47-49.51-53,55

Norfolk Hotel 17:28

Uys, Jacobus 18:34
Oldest houses 13:71-74; 16:57, 60-73

Plough Hotel 9
Uysklip 18:36
Prince of Wales Hotel 9
Veld conservation
Rinko Bio-Vaudeville 17:41
African haal showing poor veld management
SI. Saviour's Cathedral. (' 1870
and consequent erosion 9

Seot!"s Theatre 13:26

Result of winter veld burning 9

Sowden and Stoddarts 17:36

Severe case of soil erosion 9

Spires. turrets etc. 13:96-97

Typical river scene 9

110 Index

Vryheid 1886 14:94 Woodward, Rev. R. B. 5

Wahlberg. Johan August 5 Yellow-wood fireplace
Water-collecting 18:88 Natal Museum 3
Water trough 7 York (Nata!)
Church of St. John the Evangelist 7
Webb. Colin de B. 6
Zibhebhu kaMpitha 10
Weenen 10
Zulu, Alphaeus Bishop 18:94
Wolseley. Sir Garnet 8
'Zulu procession before Dingane' 4
Wood. John Medley 7
Woodward. ReI'. J.D.S. 5

No page numbers are given in references to the first \0 issues
where maps appeared on unnumbered plates.
Coalfields of Natal 18:42 Natal Land and Colonization Company
Development in Natal 3 Land holdings 4
Distribution of Natal forests 16:20 Pietermaritzburg street plans 10:27; 13:68;
Durban, 1845 10:28
Plan of fort at Ekowe 5
Durban harbour 14:38
Sketch of the road from Fort Tenedos to
Early spread of the Afrikaner dorp 10:25 Ekowe 5
Fort Napier 16:86 Umsindusi river 12:52
Ivuna (Ndunu Hill). Battle of 10 Weenen, 1843 10:29
Main railway line. Durban to Pietermaritzburg 10 Zululand, divided by British and Boers 14:93


Akhurst, John Bhana, Surendra
A field guide to the Natal Drakensberg. by A documentary history of Indian South
Pat and David Irwin and John Akhurst. Africans, edited by Surendra Bhana and
11:83-84 Bridglal Pachai. 14: 119-120
Anderson, John Gandhi's editor: the letters of M. H. Nazar,
William Anderson (1790-1873) and his 1902-1903, edited by Surendra Bhana
descendants. 15: 126 and James D. Hunt. 19:88
Setting down roots: Indian migrants in South
Bailev, Harold Africa, edited by Surendra Bhana and Joy
P[etelmaIitzburg and the Natal midlands. Brain. 20:87-88
Bourquin, S. (trans.)
BaIlard, C. C. Paulina Dlamini: servant of two kings,
John Dunn: the white chief of compiled by H. Filter and translated by
Zululand. 15:123-124 S. Bourquin. 17:\01-\05
The Anglo-Zulu war: new perspectives,
edited by A. H. Duminy and C. C. Ballard. Brain, Joy
11:81-83 Catholic beginnings in Natal and
beyond. 6:54-55
Bassett, Brian (ed.) Catholics in Natal, Vo!.II, 1886­
The buildings of Pietermaritzburg. Vo!. I 1925. 12:90-92
16:112-113 Christian Indians in Natal. 1860-1911: an
Bee, David historical and statistical study. 13: 115
The victims [novel]. 3:66 Setting down roots: Indian migrants in South
Africa, edited by Surendra Bhana and Joy
Beeton, D.R. Brain. 20:87-88
Dictionary of English usage in Southern
Africa by Ridley Beeton and Helen Breitenbach, J.J.
Domer. 6:56-57 South Africa in the modern world. 1910­
1970. 5:67-68
Behrmann, Adolf and Behrmann, lan
The Behnnann family from Ocean Lodge, Brookes, E.H. and Webb, Colin de B.
1883 to 1983. 15: 126 A history of Natal, by E. H. Brookes and
Benyon, John A., (ed.) Colin de B. Webb [second edition].
Constitutional change in South 18:123-124
Africa. 8:83-85 Brownlee, Charles
Proconsul and paramountcy in South Africa. Reminiscences of kafir life and history
11:77:79 [reprint]. 7:63-64

Bvrom. James Cyrus, D. p"

. Dragon's wrath: Drakensberg climbs, acci·
Bird atlas of Natal by Digby Cyrus and Nigcl
dents and rescues, by R. O. Pearse and
Robson. 10:73-75
James Byrom. 16: 113
Davev. Arthur (ed.)
Cetshwayo kaMpande The defence of Ladysmith and Mafeking:
A Zulu king speaks. , .: edited by C. de B. accounts of two sieges, 1899 to 1900,
Webb and J. B. Wright. 9:62-63 being the South Africa War experiences
of William Thwaites, Stewart Binny,
Chadwick, G, A. Alfred Doun and Samuel Cawood. 13: 116
The Zulu war and the Colonv of Natal. bv
Davies, Marjory
G. A. Chadwick and E. cS. Hobson. .
Twin trails: the story of the Fynn and Southey
families. 5:60
Champion, A. W,G, Dictionary of South African biography; Vol. 11.
The Views of Mahlathi: the writings of 7:61-62
A. W. G. Champion. a black South African
edited by Maynard Swanson. 13: 112~ Dower. William
The early annals of Kokstad and Griqualand
East [reprint]. 8:82-83
Chapman, Michael (cd.)
Du Boisson. Louis
Voorslag 1-3 [reprint] edited by Colin The white man cometh. 17: 108
Gardner and Michael Chapman.
15: 11<,1-121 Duckworth, J,
Grey's Hospital. Pietermaritzburg: a comme·
Child, Daphne (ed.) morative brochure, 1855-1985. 15: 125
A merchant family in early Natal. .. 9:67
Portrait of a pioneer: letters of Sidney Turner. Duffield, Ernie
Through my binoculars. 12:98
The Zulu war journal of Col. Henry Duminy, A. H. (ed.)
Harford. 8:80-81 The Anglo-Zulu War: new perspectives,
edited by A. H. Duminy and C. C. Ballard.
Christison. Grant 11:81-83
Loyal little Natal. 16: 112 Natal and Zululand from earliest times to
Churchill, Winston Spencer 1910: a new history, edited by Andrew
London to Ladysmith via Pretoria [facsimile Duminy and Bill Guest. 20:85-86
reprint]. 12:99 Downe. David
Cilliers, B, Isandlwana and all that. 11:86
Genealogce van die Afrikancr familics in Edgecombe, Ruth (cd.)
Natal. 16: 110 Bringing forth light: five tracts on Bishop
Clammer, David Colenso's Zulu mission. 12:94-95
The last Zulu warrior. 8:79-80 Emerv, Frank
Clark.John The rcd soldier: letters from the Zulu
Natal settler agent. 3:66 war. 8:81-82
Clark. Sonia, (ed.) The 24th regiment at Isandhlwana. 10:75
Invasion of Zululand, 1879. 10:75 Everson, Gordon R.
Zululand at war, 1879. 14:122-124 The South Africa 1853 medal. 10:76
Clifford-Vaughan, F, MeA, Fev, Venn
International pressures and political change in . Valley of the eland. 15: 126
South Africa. 8:S5-86 Fiasconaro, Gregorio
Coleman, Terry I'd do it again. 16:95-101
Passage to America. 3:66-67 Filter, H. (eomp.)
Colenbrander, A.B, (comp.) Paulina Dlamini: servant of two kings.
The Natal Colenbranders (Addendum to thc compiled by H. Filter and translated by
S. Bourquin. 17:101-105
Pigcaud Papers). 16: 112
Frame, Richard
Cope. Jack For hearth and home: the story of Maritzburg
Student of Zend [novel], 3:66 College, 1863-1988, by Simon Haw and
Cortesao. Armando and Richard Frame. 19:84-85
Texeira da Mota, Avelino Frost, T.B.
Portugaliae Monumenta Cartographica. 6 A brief history of Government house and
vols. 16:87 Natal Training College. 9:66
Coulson. Charmian Fuze, Magema M.
Beaulieu-on-lIIovo, Richmond, Natal: its The black people and whence they came:
people and history. 17:105-107 translated into English by H. C. Lugg.
Crealock, John North 10:64-67
The road to Ulundi. 8:78 Gardner, Colin O. (ed.)
Currey, R,N. Voorslag 1-3 [reprint] edited by Colin
Vinnicombe's trek: son of Natal, stepson of Gardner and Michael Chapman.
Transvaal. 1854-1932. 19:88-89 15:119-121.
112 index

Gibson, .Ianet M. Head, Bessie

Wild Ilowers of Natal (coastal region). 5:61 Maru.
Gun. Philip When rainclouds gather [novel]. 3:66
The road to Isandhlwana. 9:65-66 Herd, Norman
Cordon. Ruth E. The bent pine. 6:57-58
Killie's Africa. 13: 107-108
Alive. Alive-O. 15: 127
Honour without riches. 9:67 Hillerman, H.G.
Natal's Royal Show. 14: 125-126 Die geschichte Neu-Hannovers ZU[11 125­
Petticoat pioneers: women of jahrigen gemeindejubilaum. 13: liS
distinction. 18: 124-125 HilIiard, Olive
The place of the elephant. 11 :80-81 Flowers of the Natal Drakensberg. 20:90
Victorian Pietermaritzburg [paintings by Matt Grasses and sedges. rushes and restiads of the
Louwrens. text by Ruth Gordon]. Natal Drakensberg. 17: 110
14:126-126 Trees and shrubs of die Natal
Drakensberg. 16: I 08-109
Gray. Stephen
John Ross: the true story [novel]. Hodson, Arnold W.
18: 122-123 Trekking the great thirst [reprint]. 7:58
Guardian of the light: tributes to Archbishop [Hoime, Norman]
Denis Hurley OMi on the golden jubilee The silver wreath. 10:75-76
of his priestly ordination. 1939-1989. Hopkins, H.E. (Paddv)
20:79-82 The South African 'connection of the Hulctt
family. 12:<jg
A guide to unofficial sources relating to the
history of Natal I University of Natal, Hunt, .lames D. (ed.)
Durban. Dept. of History and Political Gandhi's editor: thc letters of M. H. Nazar,
Science research monograph 4]. 7:5-6 1902-1903. edited by Surendra Bhana
and James D. Hunt. 19:88
Guest, Bill (ed.)
Irwin, Pat and David
Enterprise and exploitation in a Victorian col­
A field guide to the Natal Drakensberg by Pat
ony: aspects of the social and economic and David Irwin and John Akhul"st.
history of Natal. edited by Bill Guest and 11:83-84
J.R.Sellers. 16:107 .
Natal and Zululand from earliest times to Jeppe, Barbara
1910: a new history. ediled by Andrew Natal wild flowers. 5:61
DUl11iny and Bill Guest. 20:85-86 Journal of Natal and Zulu history. 8:87: 9:67
Guy, .Ieff .Ioyner, Patsy
The destruction of the Zulu kingdom. William Joyner (l818-IX87) and his
10:67-70 descendants. 15: 126
The heretic: a study of the life of John .Iuul, Natalie
William Colenso. 1814-1883. 14: II 5­ Harvest of optimism: the story of Thomas
118 Fannin and his family. 13: liS
Hamilton, Georgina Kearney, Brian T.
An appetite for power: Buthelezi's inkatha Architecture in Natal from 1824-1893. 3:67
and the politics of 'Ioyal resistance', by Traditional Hindu temples in South Africa. by
Gerhardus Mare and Georgina Hamilton. Paul Mikula. Brian Kearney and Rodney
18: 119-122. Harber. 12:96-97
Harber, Rodnev Kentridge, Matthew
Traditional Hindu temples in South Africa. by An unofficial war: inside the conflict in
Paul Mikula, Brian Kearney and Rodnev PietermaIitzburg. 20:82-85
Harber. 12:96-97 . King, Lester
The Natal monoclinc. 3:64
Harford. Henrv
The Zulu w;r journal of Col. Henry Harford Knight,lan
edited by D. Child. 8:80-81 Brave men's blood: the epic of the Zulu War,
1879. 20:89
HasweII. R. F.
An historic townscapes conservation scheme Laband, .Iohn P.C.
The battle of Ulundi. 19:85-86
for NataL 14: 127
The Buffalo border 1879: the Anglo-Zulu war
Pietermaritzburg 1838-19R8: a new portrait
in northern Natal bv John Laband and
of an African city. edited by John Laband
Paul Thompson. with Sheila Hendcrson.
and Robert Haswell. 19:82-83
Hathorn, Peter A field guide to the War in Zululand. 1879,
Henderson heritage. by Peter Hathorn and by John Laband and Paul Thompson.
Amy Young. 3:66 9:58-61
Haw, Simon A field guide to the war in Zululand and the
For hearth and home: the story of Maritzburg defe"Oce of Natal, 1879, by John Laband
College. 1863-1988. bv Simon Haw and and Paul Thompson. 13:114
Richard Framf' 19:84-85 Fight us in the open. 15: 127
Index 113

King Cctshwayo kaMpande. by John Laband Mikula, Paul

and John Wright. 13: 116 Traditional Hindu temples in South Africa by
Pietermaritzburg 1838-1988: a new portrait Paul Mikula. Brian Kearney and Rodncy
of an African city. edited by John Laband Harbcr. 12:96-97
and Robell Haswell. 19:82-83 Miller, Y,onne
War comes to the Umvoti. by John Laband ACUlls in Africa. 9:67
and Paul Thompson. 11:86 Dear old Durban bv Yvonne Miller and
LIII1Ii'm.Mav 1974 (Natal commemoration Barbara Stone.' 16: I I I
number). 4:62 Moodie, D.F.e.
Leverton, B..I.T. (ed.) Moodie's Zulu War. with an introduction by
John Laband. 19:87
Records of Natal. Volume I 1823-August
1828.16:111 Moran, S.
The first hundred years [of Durban Girls'
Liason Committee for the Preservation of Histo· High School]. 12:87
rical Amenities. First listing of the impor­
talll places and buildings in Durban. NL.O.N. (Natal education dept. magazine).
1974. 6:38 3:56; 4:61-62
Nicholson, John Duggleby Edwin
Liebenberg. Doyle P.
The Nicholson famIly tree. 17: 109
The Drakensberg of Natal. 3:64
Nkabinde, A.e.
Loudon, J.B. Isichazamazwi. I. 13: I 14
White fanners and black labourers. 2:47
l\' orenius, Connie
Louwrens, Matt l3estemor Schramm: her storY and her descen­
Victorian Pietennaritzburg [paintings by Matt dants I X43-1979. 11:68
Louwrens. with text bv Ruth GOI·don].
Norgaard. Sofie
14:126-127 .
A Norwegian family in South Africa. 9:67
Lynskey, Rory Nuttall, Neville
They built a city. 13: 110-112 Lift up your healls: the story of Hilton
I\lcClure, .lames
College. 2:-+7
The caterpillar cop [novell. 3:66
Oberholster, J.J.
The steam pig [novel]. 2:48
Historical monuments of South Africa. 3:65
.\lcMenernv. Nickic
Pager, Harald
Chaka and the slave girl. 3:66
Ndedema. 2:47
Malherbe. E.G.
Paton, Alan
Neyer a dull moment. 11:86
Towards the mountain. 11:86
Manson, A. Pcarse, R.O.
The Hlubi-chicfdom in Zululand-Natal: a Dra"on's wrath: Drakensber o climbs acci­
history by John Wright and Andrew 0.
dents and rescues by R. Pearse' and
Manson. 13: 106-107 James Byrom. 16:113
Joseph Baynes: Pioneer. 13: 109
Mare. Gerhardus
An appetite ['or power: Buthelezi:'; Inkatha Picton-Seymour, D.
and the politics of 'Ioyal resistance' by Victorian buildings in South Africa.
Gerhardus Marc and Georgina Hamilton. 7:58-60 ~
18:119-122 ~ Phillips. John
Margaret Alme, Sislcr. SS.1D Agricultural and related development of the
What the world counts weakness: a centennial Tugela basin and its intluent surrounds
history of the Society of St John the [Natal Town and Regional Planning Com­
Divine. Natal. 17: i07 mission: Report 19]. 3:64
Robbins, David
Marks, Shula
Inside the last outpost. 15:121-123
The ambiguities of dependence in South
Africa: dass, nationalism and the state in Sanderson, John
twentieth century Natal. 16:103-107 .\1emoranda of a trading tri p into the Orange
River (Sovereignty) Free State. and the
Maxwell, John

country of the Tr;nsvaal boers [reprint].

Reminiscences of the Zulu war. 10:75

Mazel. A.D. Saunders, Katharinc
Pcople making history: the last ten thousand Flower paintings of Katharinc Saunders.
years of hunter-gatherer communities in 10:72-73
the TI1llkela basin. 19:89-90
Schreiner. Olive
Meineke, E.N. Thoughts on South Africa. [reprint].
Municipal engineering in Pietcnnaritzburg: 7:62-63
the first hundred years by E. 01. 'YIeineke Scotnev, Pearl
and G.M. SUlllmers. 13:116 LioilS River Division Agricultural Society.
Mikula. Maggie
If:S4-1984. by Pearl Scotney and Olarles
The Adams story, 11:68
Scoll-Shaw. 14: 125-126
114 Index

Sellers, John (ed.) A field guide to the war in Zululand and the
Enterprise and exploitation: aspects of the defence of Natal. 1879. by John Laband
social and economic history of Natal, and Paul Thompson. 13: 114
edited by Bill Guest and John Sellers. Natalians first: separatism in South Africa,
16:107 1909-1961. 20:86-87
Skota, T. D. Mweli (compiler) War comes to the Umvoti. by John Laband
The African yearly register: being an iIIus· and Paul Thompson. 11:86
trated national biographical dictionary Turner, Sidney
(Who's who) of black folks in Africa. Portrait of a pioneer: letters. edited by
1931. 9:49-50 Daphne Child. 11:85
Smail,J.L. Tyrrell, Barbara
Those restless years. 2:46 Suspicion in my name. 2:47
Speirs, Eustace Fairlie Van Niekerk, Barend
Menfolk: the Speirs family. 13: 114 Durban at your feet. 10:70-71
Speirs, Waiter A. Verbeek, Jennifer A.
Ox-wagon to space travel. 16:112 Natal art before Union. 4:66-67
Spencer, S.O'B. Victorian and Edwardian Natal. compileq by
British settlers in Natal. 1824-1857: a biogra­ 1ennifer and Alistair Verbeek. 12:95-96
phical register. 12:89-90: 14:127: Webb's guide to the ofticial records of the
15: 127: 20:89 Colony of Natal: an expanded and revised
Spiller, Peter edition together with indexes, compiled
A history of the District and Supreme Courts by Jennifer Verbeek. Mary Nathanson and
of Natal, 1846-1910. 16:109-110 Elaine Peel. 14: 120-122
St. George, Howard (ed.) Vietzen, Sylvia
Failure and vindication: the unedited journal A history of education for European girls in
of Bishop Allard. OMI. indexed and fully Natal, 1837-1902. 2:48: second edition.
annotated by Howard St. George. 11:85-87
12:90-93 Vinnicombe, Patricia
Stavt, Don People of the eland: rock paintings of the
'Where on earth? 2:46 Drakensberg Bushmen as a reflection of
Steyn, M. T. (Chairman) their life and thought. 6:53-54
Report of the committee of enquiry into the WaIten, E. V.
possible incorporation of East Griqualand Terror and resistance: a study of political
into Natal (1977). 7:60 violence. 2:46
Stone, Barbara Webb, Colin de B.
Dear old Durban. by Yvonne Miller and A history of Natal. by E. H. Brookes and
Barbara Stone. 16: III C. de B. Webb [second edition].
Strutt, Daphne H. 18:123-124
Fashion in South Africa. 1652-1900. The James Stuart archive of recorded oral
6:55-56 evidence relating to the history of the
Stuart, Esme Zulu and neighbouring peoples. edited
I remember. 15: 126 and translated by Colin de B. Webb and
Swanson, M. W. (ed.) John Wright. Vol. I. 8:78; Vol. 4.
The views of Mahlathi: writings of A. W. G. 17:109
Champion. a black South African. A Zulu king speaks: statements made by
13: 112-114 Cetshwayo kaMpande on the history and
customs of his people. edited by C. de B.
Switzer, L.E.
Webb and J.B. Wright. 9:62-63
Problems of an African mission in a white
dominated multi-racial society [unpub­ Webb, Mary
lished thesis]. 2:48 Precious stone: the life and works of Mary
Stainbank. 17: 109
Tabler, E.C.
Pioneers of Natal and south-eastern Welsh, David
Africa. 7:60-61 The roots of segregation. 2:46
Taylor, Virginia Wild Life Protection and Conservation
Two families of lie de France: a story of the
Society. Natal branch. Proposals for the
Roliillards and de Chazals. Book l.
Pietermatitzburg green belt. 3:64
16:111 Wilks, Terry
Thompson, P.S. One hundred golden years: a history of the
The Buffalo border 1879: the Anglo-Zulu war Natal Building Society. 1882-1982.
in northern Natal by John Laband and 12:99
Paul Thompson, with Sheila Henderson. Willcox, A.R.
14:118-119 The building of the Berg: the geology of the
A field guide to the War in Zululand. 1879, Drakensberg of the Natal. 20:88-89
by John Laband and Paul Thompson. Shipwreck and survival on the south-east
9:5S-61 coast of Africa. 15: 125
Index lIS

Wolselev, Sir Garnet Zulu and neighbouring peoples. edited

The South African diaries ...; Vol. I. and translated by Colin de B. Webb and
1875. 2:46 John Wrigh1. Vol.l 8:78; Vo\. 4.
Woodlev. Valerie 17:109
On the high !lats of Natal: earliest pioneers in King Cetshwayo kaMpande, by John Laband
the Hightlats/lxopo area of southern and John Wri~h1. 13: 116
Natal. 14: 128 A Zulu king speaL: statements made
by Cctshwayo kaMpande on the history
Wright. John B.
and customs of his people, edited by
Bushman raiders of the Drakensber!,:. I X40­
uno. 2:47 ~ C. de B. Wcbb and J.B. Wright.
The Hlubi chicfdom in Zululand-Natal: a
history by John Wright and Andrew Young, Amy
Manson. 13: I Ob-I 07 Blaikie of Aberdecn. 2:48
The James Stuart archive of' recorded oral Henderson herita~e. bv Peter Hathorn and
evidence relating to the history of the Amy Young. ~ 3:(;6