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Showing posts from November, 2014

Moshweshewe: Letter to Sir George Grey, 1858

Moshweshewe: Letter to Sir George Grey, 1858 - Sourced from Modern History Sourcebook.
[The establishment of Basutoland]
Your Excellency---it may scarcely appear necessary to lay before Your Excellency any lengthened details of what has taken place between the Orange Free State and myself. I know that you have followed with interest the transactions which have led to the commencement of hostilities, and you have heard with pain of the horrors occasioned by the war, at present suspended in the hopes that peace may be restored by Your Excellency's mediation. Allow me, however, to bring to your remembrance the following circumstances: About twenty-five years ago my knowledge of the White men and their laws was very limited. I knew merely that mighty nations existed, and among them was the English. These, the blacks who were acquainted with them, praised for their justice. Unfortunately it was not with the English Government that my first intercourse with the white…

Speech by President Nelson Mandela at the launch of the Bram Fischer Memorial Trust

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SPEECH BY PRESIDENT NELSON MANDELA AT THE LAUNCH OF THE BRAM FISCHER MEMORIAL TRUST (GREY COLLEGE), Bloemfontein, 28 November 1997

Master of ceremonies;
Principal of Grey College; members of the staff and pupils
Distinguished guests,

It is a great honour to be with you today and share in the commemoration of Bram Fischer.

The names of only very few people are remembered beyond their lives. And some of those are remembered with revulsion for the harm they have done. But there are those who are remembered for their good deeds and the contribution they have made to the society in which they live.

Bram Fisher tel ongetwyfeld onder daardie klas van goeie mans en vroue wat op die wyse deur alle Suid-Afrikaners in verering gehou sal word.

Ons weet egter dat dit nie altyd die geval was nie. In sy lewe het hy voor die moeilikste keuses te staan gekom. En sy uiteindelike keuses, het hom 'n uitgeworpene gelaat in sy eie gemeenskap en in die geledere van sy beroepslui.

'n Man so hartstog…

Psychological stress of M.T. Steyn

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from Mcleod The Ulimate Impact.






M.T. Steyn's crucial intervention

from The Rise and Possible Demise of Afrikaans as a Public Language by Hermann Giliomee

The Cape Times continued its long tradition of publishing letters from readers that denounced Afrikaans as ‘a mongrel’, ‘kitchen’, ‘hotchpotch’, ‘degenerate’ and ‘decaying’ language, fit only for ‘peasants and up-country kraals.’
Unexpectedly language became one of the critical questions at the National Convention of 1908–1909 that drew up the constitution for the new Union of South Africa. General J.B.M. Hertzog, a leading Afrikaner nationalist from the OFS, proposed ‘equal freedom, rights and privileges’ for Dutch and English. Every appointment in the new government had to be made ‘with due regard to the equality of the two languages.’ He insisted that the constitution had to guarantee the right of every citizen to claim English or Dutch ‘as the medium of communication between himself and any officer or servant in the Union.’ According to an account of the Convention debates, the English-speaker…

Onthulling van die Vrouemonument

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van Dugeot se Mielestronk. REGS: ’n Skare op die rantjies by die Vrouemonument die dag voor die onthulling op 16 Desember 1913. Op 16 Desember 1913 is die Vrouemonument in die teenwoordigheid van meer as twintigduisend mense deur mev. Steyn, vrou van die oudpresident, onthul. Emily Hobhouse, ’n uiters meelewende Britse vrou wat ondanks teenstand in haar eie land baie gedoen het om die aandag op die lyding van die Boerevroue en -kinders in die kampe te vestig, het spesiaal uit Engeland gekom om die plegtigheid waar te neem, maar het weens swak gesondheid nie verder kon kom as Beaufort-Wes nie. (Nadat mej. Hobhouse op 8 Junie 1926 in Londen oorlede is, is haar as na Suid-Afrika gebring en op 26 Oktober 1926 in die basis van die gedenknaald ter ruste gelê.) Ook M.T. Steyn was glad nie meer gesond tydens die onthulling nie. Hy het dit wel bygewoon, maar sy boodskap moes voorgelees word. Diep ernstig het hy sy mense daar…

Polynesian Mythology and ancient traditional history of the New Zealanders

Sir George Grey's orbituary in the New York Times

The obituary is available here in PDF.

Letter 1135 — Darwin, C. R. to Grey, George, 13 Nov 1847

Down, Farnborough Kent. Nov. 13/47/ My dear Sir
Although your Excellency must be overburthened with business, I cannot resist the temptation to thank you cordially for the very kind, & if I may be permitted to say so, admirable spirit, with which you excuse & tell me to forget, the to me painful, origin of our correspondence.f1 I have been the more gratified by your letter, as I had not the least expectation of hearing from you.—
I am extremely glad to know how well your Colony is now prospering.f2 Ever since the voyage of the Beagle, I have felt the deepest interest with respect to all our colonies in the southern hemisphere. However much trouble & anxiety you must have had & will still have, it must ever be the highest gratification to you to reflect on the prominent part you have played in two countries,f3 destined in future centuries to be great fields of ci…

Extracts of Denys Reitz's memoirs (BBC Radio)

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A Boer View (BBC radio)
Denys Reitz, a young Boer commando, at the Spion Kop
A Boer picket on Spion Kop, Ladysmith (Getty Images) View more images
"We woke with the falling of the dew and, as the sky lightened, gazed eagerly at the dim outline of the hill above, but could make out no sign of life. Gradually the dawn came and still there was no movement. Then to our utter surprise we saw two men on the top triumphantly waving their hats and holding their rifles aloft. They were Boers and their presence their was proof that, almost unbelievably, defeat had turned to victory - the English were gone and the hill was still ours. Leaving our horses to fend for themselves we were soon hastening up the slope past the dead until we reached yesterday's bloody ledge. From here we hurried across to the English breastworks to find them abandoned. On our side of the fighting-line there had been many casualties, but a worse sight met our eyes. In the shallow trenches where they had fought …

Reitz in the Great War

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In "The Irish Regiments in the Great War: Discipline and Morale" By Timothy Bowman, Denys Reitz relates how he as the Commanding Officer of the 7th Royal Irish Rifles, prevented a major outbreak of violence between the divisions:

Commando - A Boer Journal Of The Boer War

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Victrix causa diis placuit sed victa Catoni
Commando has for many years been regarded as one of the best narratives of war and adventure in the English language. While still in his teens Deneys Reitz served in the Boer forces during the South African War and, after fighting to the bitter end, chose exile in Madagascar rather than life under the British flag. It was during those years of banishment that he set down, while it was still vivid in his memory, this record of battle and guerilla warfare. The word 'commando' has been made familiar to us, these last few years, by the exploits of those picked men who harried the enemy by many spectacular and desperate stratagems in the Second World War. It was originally, of course, the Boer word used for those mobile columns of fighting men which, despite their inferiority in numbers and supplies, held out and hit back so vigorously against the British in South Africa. This chronicle of forced marches, ambuscades, night attacks and nar…

Lambert Colyn: a rebel with a price

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Lambert Colyn: a rebel with a price Lambert or Lemeul Colyn of Afgunst, Piketberg was a hanger-on in the outskirts of the Smuts Commando and known to Theron's Commando as Oom Willie. Colyn's son Piet was also a rebel in Maritz's Commando. Consequently when Colyn snr approached Cmdt Ben Bouwer and asked to join his commando near Van Rhynsdorp on 10 February 1902, he was accepted as a matter of course. None of the Boers, apparently not even his son, was aware that Colyn had been recruited by Lieut-Col CM Kavanagh of the 10th Hussars to betray the whereabouts of Bouwer's Commando. Colyn, who had been instructed by Kavanagh to spend a week with Bouwer's Commando, had joined the Boers when the commando divided into three detachments and advanced from the vicinity of Van Rhynsdorp to a new position along the Olifants River, as they planned to harass the Clanwilliam garrison. Bouwer, with V/C Peter Visser, was camped at Krantz on the Olifant's River. In the early hour…

Grey and the New Zealand constitution

Alex Frame writes in, “Building the Constitution” Conference: "A.H. McLintock has given us an indispensable account of the events leading to Sir George Grey’s refusal to implement the Westminster Parliament’s 1846 Constitution for New Zealand and its accompanying Royal Instructions , and of his role in the design of the 1852 replacement document. McLintock refers to the enigmatic Governor’s account of the ‘drafting process’ :
‘...I had visions of a new form of constitution being helpful , far beyond New Zealand. In the end , when my thoughts had bent to a shape , I went up the mountains between Auckland and Wellington , camped on Ruapehu , in a little gipsy tent , and set to the task. A few Maoris accompanied me to carry the baggage ; nobody else , for I could not have drawn the constitution with a cloud of advisers about me.’
Sir George Grey told Milne 50 years after the event :
‘the greatest merit of my constitution , was that the people of New Zealand could alter it at any point…

Gert Marais - die goeie vriend

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Berig uit die Volksblad: "Gert Marais wat vroeër die week in ’n vliegongeluk in Amerika dood is. Die gewese haker van die Vrystaat was, soos sy groot vriend en gewese stut van die Vrystaat, Piet Bester, die week gesê het, ’n man uit een stuk. ’n Waaghals, ’n spanmens en ’n vriend.
Snaaks genoeg, is hy oorlede toe hy in Amerika besig was om met sy vliegtuig water aan te ry om ’n brand te probeer blus.
Bester vertel dat Marais drie noue ontkomings met sy vliegtuig gehad het.
Een keer was dit juis toe hy ’n brand probeer blus het.
Hy het toe gesê dat hy nooit weer met sy vliegtuig sal probeer om ’n brand te blus nie . . . en nou het dit sy lewe geëis.
Bester vertel dat Marais ’n regte platjie was.
’n Slag het die twee Lesotho besoek en die aand by die ou Victoria Hotel ’n drankie gedrink.
Een van Lesotho se vroue van die nag het meer as die gewone belangstelling in die twee getoon waar hulle op ’n bankie in die onthaalkamer gesit het.
Sy het aanvanklik net gestaar, maar al hoe meer moed gek…

Die eerste Greybrakke

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Richard John Seddon (left) was photographed with George Grey in London in 1896, towards the end of Grey's life.
Reference: "In 1879 Seddon stood again for Hokitika and this time was elected. He later claimed his decision to stand was influenced by an exchange of telegrams between himself and Sir George Grey, who was then premier. The story went that Seddon asked Grey whom he wished to see standing, and Grey replied, 'You are worthy; stand yourself'. However, there is no contemporary evidence for the sending of these telegrams. Indeed, Grey is reported to have commended another of the candidates. It may have been a story that Seddon later invented, or he may have read back into the situation in 1879 what actually did happen in 1893, when he secured the premiership.
As a new member of Parliament, Seddon was a Greyite or 'Greyhound' and - for possibly the only time in his political career - called himself a radical. Later, especially in the succession crisis of 189…

Grey, Sir George (1812-1898), governor and statesman.

Reference: "GREY, SIR GEORGE (1812-1898), governor and statesman, was born at Lisbon on 14 April 1812. His father, Lieut.colonel Grey, who was killed during an assault on Badajoz about a week before his birth, belonged to an aristocratic English family, his mother was the daughter of an Irish clergyman, the Rev. John Vignoles. Grey was sent to a school at Guildford in Surrey, and was admitted to the royal military college in 1826. Early in 1830 he was gazetted ensign in the 83rd regiment. In 1830, his regiment having been sent to Ireland, he developed much sympathy with the Irish peasantry whose misery made a great impression on him. He was promoted lieutenant in 1833 and obtained a first-class certificate at the examinations of the royal military college at Sandhurst in 1836. It was at that time believed that a great river entered the Indian ocean on the north-west of Australia, and that the country it drained might be suitable for colonization. Grey, in conjunction with Lieuten…

Gert Marais - bang vir wie?

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Vollies het vir my 'n storie vertel. Laat een aand in Leith Huis hoor hy 'n deur wat klap. Omdat hy lig slaap besluit hy om dit toe te maak. Die deur het belang aan Gert Marais en sy kamer maat, maar hulle was beide nie daar nie! Hy los toe 'n nota dat hulle vir hom kom sien. Die volgende dag dag klop Gert op Vollies se deur. Vollies was by krieket, maar Vollies se vrou nooi Gert in vir 'n koppie tee. Gert vertel toe vir Vollies se vrou dat hy bang is vir twee mense, die een is Vollies en die ander is Liewe Jesus. Albei weet wanneer hy iets verkeerd doen! Lees die Gert Marais huldeblyk hier.

The original Greybom

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Piet Roos (1962) writes:

"The Grey Bom that I remember was Kerneels Louw, a rather large fellow (around 1956 or so in matric) eldest son of Piet Louw who himself was a school captain and if I remember correctly a Springbok rugby player. They farmed around Jagersfontein and their farmhouse was part of the BoereOorlog and the “skade” is or was still preserved!!! The younger boet was in my class….Johan Louw…a great Old Grey and a lovely person!!!!!"

The Romance of a Pro-consul

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The full text of the Sir George Grey biography is available here. A word to the reader of the book by James Milne, London, March 1911: "When Sir George Grey died, twelve years ago, he left a message as well asa name to the English-speaking people. It was that their future rested in the Federal Idea of communion and government. He saw, vision-like, theform of this new age arise, because changed needs called it. As Pro-Consul he laboured for it unceasingly in our over-sea Commonwealths, andSouth Africa has most lately given answer. Now, at a historic turning in British Institutions, we hear of "Federal Home-Rule," and that may be asignpost to far travel along the road which Sir George Grey "blazed."Certainly it sends us to the spacious life and high thoughts of the"Father of Federation," whom Time in its just goodness will also callthe Walter Raleigh of the Victorians. Hence this people's edition of abook wherein, "he, being dead, yet speaketh…

There are reasons for life jackets, helmets and safety ropes

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One of the best party places in the world is Elephant Hills at Vic Falls. Been there twice. First in a DC3 and then in an Air Zimbabwe 707. The 707 has to be the most noisiest aircraft ever. You really knew you were in a jet, (or is that because they left the doors and windows open?)
Read the article on LinkedIn's Pulse here.

Surviving childhood

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My brother and sister both had me at the doctor for stitches. My brother jumped on the lid of a bricked storage compartment that we used for toys at my grandmother's house. The result was a split eyebrow and a visit to the doctor for stitches. My sister then bliksemed me using a spade. We were playing on the sand that was being used by my dad to build a new pool. Again a trip to the doctor, who happened to be the neighbouring farmer who lived in a mock castle and drove a Pontiac.

Read the article on LinkedIn's Pulse here.



Shredded luggage and other memories of an awesome trip to Spain

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One of the great trips I had, was to the Costa del Sol, or is that the Costa del Golf. It was a Madge Networks Sales Conference. We stayed in Marbella and flew into Malaga.

Read the article on LinkedIn's Pulse here.



Sir George Grey 1812-1898

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George Grey was born in Lisbon, Portugal, in 1812. His father, Lieutenant Colonel George Grey had been struck down in battle at the Spanish fortress town of Badajoz a matter of days prior to his son’s birth.
Young George and his sister Anne were raised by their mother Elizabeth Vignoles Grey, with the help of a close-knit extended family. In 1817 Elizabeth married the baronet Sir John Godfrey Thomas of Wenvoe, Vicar of Wartling and Bodiam. George and Anne subsequently acquired a number of half-brothers and half-sisters.
In 1826 George enrolled at Sandhurst as an officer cadet and on his graduation 4 years later was commissioned ensign in the 83rd Foot Regiment in Glasgow. During the regiment’s posting in Ireland Grey began to recognize the repressive nature of English rule in the country and began to resent, and eventually loathe, its harsh indifference to human misery. He was moved to write a report on ways to improve Irish peasant conditions, but his suggestions were ignored.
In 18…

The Polish uprising

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Anne writes in The SAAF and Warsaw: "Robert R. (Bob) Klette Pilot. Attended Grey College. Flew through heavy anti-aircraft fire with three of the aircraft's four engines hit. After dropping the cargo, he turned for home. The control panel was blank, all the gauges and instruments were broken. In the pitch dark night, he managed to make an emergency landing on a Warsaw airfield. The Germans took the crew prisoner. Died April 2001? in Somerset West."