VAN RIEBEECK SOCIETY

Catalogue of Publications

First series

Vol. No

Year

Volume

Description

In/Out of Print

1.         

1918

Reports of De Chavonnes and his Council, and of Van Imhoff, on the Cape.

 

ISBN: 0-9584522-4-5

Written in Dutch, with translations in English, according to John X Merriman, one of the founders of the society, these documents deal 'with matters that Dr Theal characterized as, probably, of  the greatest importance to the European Settlement in this country'. They are official reports on conditions at the Cape.

Out of print

Softbound reprint available

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2.         

1919

Mentzel, O.F. - Life at the Cape in the mid-eighteenth century, being the biography of Rudolph Siegfried Allemann, Captain of the Military Forces at the Cape of Good Hope. Translated from the German by M. Greenlees.

ISBN: 0-9584522-5-3

This 'biography' of Allemann is, in fact, an entertaining account of social life at the Cape during the mid-18th century.  The topics range from the structure of the military forces to the life of slaves, and the revolt of Etienne Barbier to shipwrecks and the financial prospects of young women.

Out of print

Softbound reprint available

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3.         

1920

De Mist, J.A. - Memorandum containing recommendations for the form and administration of government at the Cape of Good Hope, 1802, with an English version by M.K. Jeffreys.

ISBN: 0-9584522-6-1

As was the case with many of the early volumes of the Society, this is a bilingual text. It is the report of the commission sent to the Cape in the critical years between the two British occupations. The purpose of the report was to decide on the future government of the Cape, but it ranged widely over social, economic and political conditions of the Cape at the end of the 18th century.

Out of print

Softbound reprint available

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4.         

1921

Mentzel, O.F. - A geographical-topographical description of the Cape of Good Hope. Translated from the German by H.J. Mandelbrote. Part I

7-X

The first of three volumes by Mentzel on conditions at the Cape as he found them in the mid-18th century. Mentzel intended to correct the errors perpetrated by such earlier travellers as Kolb. This volume contains an historical background, a description of the physical features of the Cape and accounts of the administration and finances of the colony.

Out of print

Softbound reprint available

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5.         

1922

Collectanea, Vol. I.

 

 

ISBN: 0-9584522-8-8

Includes  descriptions of the Cape by Ovington, 1695; Beeckman, 1715; Dampier, 1691; Rogers' Description of Natal, c. 1696; Cnoll's Dagregister van een reis naar het Warme Bad, with an English translation; Dagverhaal wegens de reis naar 't Warme Water, opgesteld door Willem van Putten, C. 1710, with an English translation; letter dated 1708 from John Maxwell to Rev. Dr Harris; Instructien gedateerd 30 Maart 1699 door Gouverneur Simon van der Stel; Instructien gedateerd 19 April 1708 door Commissaris Cornelis Joan Simons.

Out of print

Softbound reprint available

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6.         

1924

Mentzel, O.F. - A geographical-topographical description of the Cape of Good Hope. Translated from the German by H.J. Mandelbrote. Part II

ISBN: 0-9584522-9-6

The second part of Mentzel's account of life at the Cape ranges widely, from revenues available to the Cape government, to the daily life of the burghers, public auctions and the treatment of slaves.

Out of print

Softbound reprint available

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7.         

1926

The Diary of the Rev. F. Owen, Missionary with Dingaan, together with the accounts of Zulu affairs by the interpreters, Messrs. Hully and Kirkman. Edited by Sir Geo. E. Cory.

Owen produced one of the best-known descriptions of life in Dingaan's kraal, including an account of the Retief massacre, of which he was the only white witness. This was the first time that the diary has been published in its entirety, apart from the Bechuanaland portion 'which had been re-written to include the history but to exclude the theology'.

Out of print

8.         

1927

The Wreck of the Grosvenor.

Containing a narrative of the loss of the Grosvenor, East Indiaman, wrecked on the Coast of Caffraria, 1782; compiled by Mr George Carter, from the examination of John Hynes, one of the survivors, London, 1791; and Journal of a Journey from the Cape of Good Hope in 1790 and 1791, undertaken by J. van Reenen and others in search of the wreck of the Grosvenor; a literal translation of the original by Capt. Edward Riou, London 1792.

Out of print
 

Softbound reprint available

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9.         

1929

Die Dagboek van Hendrik Witbooi, Kaptein van die Witbooi-Hottentotte, 1884-1906. Bewerk na die oorspronklike dokumente, in die Regeringsargief, Windhoek.

 

Hendrik Witbooi, who had been born at Pella, south of the Orange River, was trained as an evangelist.  Subsequently he moved north to Gibeon in Namibia where he established himself as a powerful figure, conducting campaigns against the Herero, many of whom were subordinated to him. The diary, which he kept from 1884 to 1894 , is in Dutch, with an introduction, translated from the German into English, by Gustav Voigts, a member of the S.W.A. Scientific Society.

Out of print

10.      

1928-30

Lichtenstein, Henry - Travels in Southern Africa in the years 1803, 1804, 1805, 1806; by Henry Lichtenstein. Translated from the original German by Anne Plumptre. London, 1812-15 Vol I

 

Lichtenstein was a German doctor who travelled widely through the Cape, commenting on the landscape and economy of the people whom he encountered. His first journey, in the western and northern parts of the colony, took him to Saldanha Bay, the Bokkeveld and into the Great Karroo. From there he visited Swellendam and travelled along the southern coast to Algoa Bay. The first volume concludes with his encounter with African people as far east as the Fish River. An appendix discusses the Xhosa language.

Out of print

11.      

1928-30

Lichtenstein, Henry - Travels in Southern Africa in the years 1803, 1804, 1805, 1806; by Henry Lichtenstein. Translated from the original German by Anne Plumptre. London, 1812-15 Vol II

In this second volume Lichtenstein returned to Cape Town via Graaff Reinet and the Karroo. Subsequently he returned to the Swellendam district. His last journey took him north to Kuruman where he encountered the Koranna and the Bechuana.

Out of print

12.      

1931

Journals of the expedition of the Honourable Ensign Olof Bergh [1682 and 1683] and Isaq Schrijver [1689]; transcribed and translated into English and edited . . . by Dr E.E. Mossop.

 

The Swede, Olaf Bergh, was one of the earliest travellers to undertake the journey up to Namaqualand.  The purpose of his journeys was to negotiate with the 'Sousequase and Gourisse Hottentots' , to trade and to familiarise himself with the region up the Cape west coast. Isaq Schrijver of Leiden was also sent north by Governor Simon van der Stel to barter for cattle and to look for minerals. Bergh has a parallel Afrikaans-English text while Schrijver is in English only..

Out of print
 

Softbound reprint available

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13.      

1932

Louis Trigardt's Trek across the Drakensberg, 1837-1838, by Clause Fuller; edited by prof. Leo Fouché.

This volume reconstructs Trigardt's journey into Natal, using his diary as the basis for this journey. It also records his comments about the people he encountered en route.

Out of print

14.      

1933

The early Cape Hottentots described in the writings of Olfert Dapper [1688], William Ten Rhyne [1686] and Johannes Guilielmus de Grevenbroek [1695]. The original texts, with translations into English by I. Schapera and B. Farrington, edited . . . by I Schapera.

Most early travellers to the Cape included some account of the local Khoisan societies. The three works published here are more comprehensive than most, giving a reasonable idea of the state of knowledge about indigenous peoples in the Western Cape by the end of the 17th century. These are the accounts of travellers rather than scientists but the more readily observable features of material culture are treated quite fully.

Out of print

15.      

1935 [for 1934]

The Journal of Hendrik Jacob Wikar [1799] with an English translation by A.W. van der Horst; and the Journals of Jacobus Coetse Jansz [1760] and Willem van Reenen [1791] translated and edited by Dr E.E. Mossop.

These journals were published originally in Molsbergen's Reizen in Zuid Afrika. Wikar's report is an account of the daily life and adventures of the first European who is known to have journeyed along the Orange River, while that of Jansz records the first European crossing of the Orange River into South-West Africa [Namibia]. Van Reenen crossed the Orange River into Damaraland in a search for copper.

Out of print
 

Softbound reprint available

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16.      

1935

Travels and Adventures in Eastern Africa by Nathaniel Isaacs, edited by Louis Herrman. Vol. I

Isaacs' journal is one of the earliest European accounts of Natal and the Zulu kingdom. The first volume opens in 1825 when Isaacs first went to Natal. Most of the volume is devoted to an extended description of Shaka and his society and culture.

Out of print

17.      

1936

Travels and Adventures in Eastern Africa by Nathaniel Isaacs, edited by Louis Herrman. Vol. II

In 1830 Isaacs returned to Natal , now ruled by Dingaan. He gave an account of the early white settlement and the volume also contains much material on Zulu culture.

Out of print

18.      

1937

Die Joernaal van Dirk Gysbert van Reenen, 1803; uitgegee . . . deur wyle prof. Dr. W. Blommaert en prof. J.A. Wiid,  with an English translation by J.L.M. Franken and Ian M. Murray.

This is an account of a journey in to the Eastern Cape undertaken by the Governor of the Cape, J.W. Janssens and Capt Paravicini de Capelli,  recorded by D.G. van Reenen. Van Reenen was a prominent burger at the Cape, a winemaker, reputed to make the best wine in the Cape, and he held the wine and meat contracts for the VOC on a number of occasions. The purpose of the journey was to inspect the land now ruled by the Batavian Government, and to settle the conflicts occurring between the Dutch burgers and the indigenous residents of the area. This is an official report with much factual information.

Out of print

19.      

1938

Die Duminy Dagboeke [with English translation]; geredigeer  . . . deur prof. J.L.M. Franken.

The Duminy diaries consist of the diary of Johanna Margareta Duminy (1797), the journal of François Duminy of his visit to the Caledon Baths and the Bok river (9 November 1810 to 4 March 1811), the journal François Duminy's expedition to Walfish Bay in 1893 and Sebastian Valentyn van Reenen's journal of the same expedition. An English translation of the text of the diaries is provided but the lengthy introduction is in Afrikaans only.

Out of print

20.      

1939

The Diary of Dr Andrew Smith, director of the 'Expedition for exploring Central Africa', 1834-6; edited . . . by Percival R. Kirby. Vol. I

Andrew Smith, an army doctor, arrived in the Cape in 1820, remaining there until 1837. The expedition to Central South Africa was undertaken to find out more about the people living to the north. Smith travelled up to Kuruman and into Ndabele country, and explored the Oori, Mariqua and Limpopo Rivers. The expedition included a number of missionaries, among them Robert Moffat. The first volume takes the journey up to 9 May.

Out of print

21.      

1940

The Diary of Dr Andrew Smith, director of the 'Expedition for exploring Central Africa', 1834-6; edited . . . by Percival R. Kirby. Vol. II

The second volume of Smith's diary picks up the expedition with descriptions of Baralong social life. The party travelled through the northern Cape to Mafeking and onto Mosega. Subsequently they trekked east and then returned to Cape Town, via Mzilikazi whom they visited for the second time. The diary includes extended accounts of wild life as well as the customs of the African peoples they encountered.

Out of print

22.      

1941

The Narrative of Private Buck Adams, 7th (Princess Royal's) Dragoon Guards on the Eastern Frontier of the Cape of Good Hope, 1843-1848; edited by A. Gordon-Brown.

An unusual account of military life on the Eastern Frontier from the perspective of a common soldier. Adams wrote his account in 1884, forty years after his service in South Africa. The editor observes that 'His improbable tales have proved substantially true on investigation'. He served in the War of the Axe and the action at Zwart Koppies in the Orange Free State.

Out of print

23.      

1942

Willem Stephanus van Ryneveld se Aanmerkingen over de verbetering van het vee aan de Kaap de Goede Hoop, 1804; uitgegee en toegelig . . . deur H.B. Thom; with an English translation by I.M. Murray and J.L.M. Franken.

This volume touches on one of the most important aspects of South African economic history before the discovery of diamonds and gold. It is an early study of the livestock industry at the Cape, especially the development of the merino sheep industry. The author was a colonial-born Company official, who found favour with the British authorities when they took the Cape in 1795. Despite his pro-British sympathies, the Batavian government found his wide knowledge invaluable and asked him to report on the agricultural potential of the Cape. This report was the result.

Out of print

24.      

1943

M.D. Teenstra - De vruchten mijner werkzaamheden, gedurende mijne reize over de Kaap de Goede Hoop, naar Java en terug, over St Helena, naar de Nederlanden, 1830. Uitgegee en toegelig . . deur F.C.L. Bosman; met taalkundige beskouing deur prof. Dr. J.L.M. Franken, with a summary in English by P.J. Smuts.

M.D. Teenstra was a Dutch gentleman-farmer, who visited the Cape in 1825. During the course of his stay he went for a cure at the Caledon baths, and visited Genadendal and Cape Agulhas, returning to Cape Town via Franschhoek and Stellenbosch. His observations are acute and full and he made full use of statistics and other official information available to him. His editor considers him one of the finest writers on the Cape of that period.

Out of print

25.      

1944

Mentzel, O.F. - A geographical-topographical description of the Cape of Good Hope. Translated from the German by G.V. Marais and J. Hoge; revised and edited . . . by H.J. Mandelbrote. Part III.

ISBN: 0-9584522-0-2

In this third volume of Mentzel's account of life at the Cape he travelled into the interior, to Stellenbosch and Swellendam. He comments on agriculture and viticulture, as well as hunting. The final chapters discuss the Khoi inhabitants.

Out of print

Softbound reprint available

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26.      

1945

South African Journal of John Sheddon Dobie, 1862-6; edited . . . by A.F. Hattersley.

After emigrating to Australia twice, where he had acquired experience in sheep farming, in 1862 Dobie emigrated to Natal, intending to bring sheep farming to Natal. He had little success and left Natal in 1866 for South America. The diary describes his attempts at pastoral farming and his experiences in Natal.

Out of print

27.      

1946

The Chronicle of Jeremiah Goldswain, Albany Settler of 1820; edited . . . by Una Long. Vol. I

Jeremiah Goldswain's journals, written phonetically in his mid-English dialect, have been a source of interest to linguists as well as historians. A sawyer from Buckinghamshire, Goldswain migrated to the Eastern Cape in 1820. The first part of his journal describes the early difficulties of the settlers on the frontier.

Out of print

28.      

1947

The Journal of Carel Frederik Brink of the journey into Great Namaqualand [1761-2] made by Captain Hendrik Hop and The Journal of the journey of Ensign Johannes Tobias Rhenius [1724]; transcribed, translated and edited . . . by E.E. Mossop.

Hendrik Hop was a Stellenbosch farmer who led a pioneering journey into Namaqualand. The account of the journey is told by the Cape surveyor and map-maker, Carel Brink. Accompanying this record is the brief journal of the trading journey of Johannes Rhenius of Berlin, made nearly 40 years before that of Hop. His account is of particular interest because of his encounters with Khoi people distant from the Cape settlement.

Out of print

29.

1949 [for 1948]

The Chronicle of Jeremiah Goldswain, Albany Settler of 1820; edited . . . by Una Long. Vol. II

In the second volume of his journal, Goldswain described the increasing tension between black and white on the frontier, his experiences as a trader, and his relations with his own family, including their medical treatment. His journal is most attractive for its naïve frankness.

Out of print

30.

1949

Journals of Andrew Geddes Bain, trader, explorer, soldier, road engineer and geologist; edited . . . by Margaret Hermina Lister

Andrew Geddes Bain is best known for his building of Cape roads and passes. His diaries, from 1826 to the 1840s, were both working journals and accounts of his experiences and descriptions of the people he encountered in the course of his work. This volume includes his chronicle of his journey in 1826 to the northern Cape.

Out of print

31.

1951 [for 1950]

Letters of the American Missionaries, 1835-1838; edited by D.J. Kotzé,

The American Board of Commissioners for Foreign Missions was one of the last missionary societies to begin work in South Africa. Since the Cape Colony was well-populated with missionaries, the Americans concentrated initially on the Matabele in the Transvaal, and on Natal. Their arrival coincided with the Great Trek and Boer expansion north and east so they were well placed to observed developments in Voortrekker society and its impact on indigenous societies.

Out of print

 

32.

1951

Die Konvensie-dagboek van Sy Edelagbare François Stephanus Malan; uitgegee . . . deur Johann F. Preller; with an English translation by A.J. de Villiers.

F.S. Malan, at one time editor of Ons Land, was a Cape delegate to the National Convention in Durban, which negotiated the terms of the Union of South Africa. Malan himself noted that the journal had a dual purpose: '1 To give a short summary of the proceedings of the Conference and 2. To put on record what my own views were on the major problems to be dealt with'.

In print

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33.

1952

Die Dagboek van H.A.L. Hamelberg [in die Kaap en Oranje-Vrystaat], 1855-71; uitgegee en toegelig . . . deur F.J. du T. Spies; with a summary in English by N.G. Sabbagha.

H.A.L. Hamelberg was a Hollander who visited the Cape in 1855, remaining there for six months. Subsequently he undertook a journey from Cape Town to Bloemfontein where he spent about seven years. The journal covers the earlier events in more detail

In print

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34.

1953

A Source Book on the Wreck of the Grosvenor East Indiaman, compiled and edited . . . by Percival R. Kirby.

This volume is a companion to The Wreck of the Grosvenor, published by the VRS in 1927. It includes various accounts of the wreck, the journal of William Hubberly, a survivor of the wreck, as well as some Dutch material on the event. The volume concludes with a full list of the ship's company and passengers.

In print

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35.

1954

The Narrative and Journal of Gerald McKiernan in South-West Africa during the years 1847-70; edited . . . by P. Serton.

Gerald McKiernan was an American trader, operating in South West Africa in the last decade before German colonial rule. The manuscript consists of a narrative of 5 years' travel in Africa, from 1875 to 1879, and a diary which he kept from 1877 to 1879. The author travelled widely, probably reaching well into Angola.

Out of print

 

36.

1955

Andrew Smith and Natal; documents relating to the early history of the Province, selected, edited and annotated by Percival R. Kirby.

Andrew Smith, a British doctor, journeyed to Natal in 1832, ostensibly for scientific purposes, but almost certainly operating under instructions. The text includes an account of his visit to Dingane and notes on the different tribal groups which he encountered, the Cape Town Merchants' Memorial of 1835 and some of the records of the South African Land and Emigration Association

In print

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37.

1957 [for 1956]

The Cape Journals of Archdeacon N.J. Merriman, 1848-55; edited . . . by D.H. Varley and H.M. Matthew.

Archdeacon Merriman was appointed Archdeacon of Grahamstown by Bishop Robert Gray in 1848. his instructions were to expand the church in the Eastern Cape by establishing new congregations and building churches in the small townships. He was to 'awaken 'religious instincts long dormant through lack of opportunity' and to 'preach to barbarous people the saving grace of Christianity.' In accomplishing these goals he travelled widely throughout the eastern frontier regions of the Cape Colony, commenting on Dutch and British settlers and meeting many of the Xhosa leaders.

In print

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38.

1957

Maleo en Sekoekoeni, vertaal uit die Duits van Th. Wangemann deur J.F.W. Grosskopf; uitgegee en toegelig deur G.P.J. Trümpelmann; with an English summary by A. Ravenscroft.

Dr Theodor Wangemann was a director of the Berlin Missionary Society who came out to South Africa in 1866 to visit the mission stations throughout the country. This work, one of several which Wangemann wrote and a typical example of nineteenth-century German missionary literature, describes mission work in the Lydenburg district of the northern Transvaal.

In print

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39.

1958

The Reminiscences of Sir Walter Stanford, edited . . . by J.W. Macquarrie. Vol. I, 1850-1885.

Sir Walter Stanford served for many years in the Native Affairs Department of the Cape Colony, retiring in 1907, when he began to write his memoirs. This first volume describes his youth, education at Lovedale College and his work in the Native Affairs Department during the 1870s, concluding with the Cape Native Laws and Customs Commission in 1881-3.

In print

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40.

1959

The Journal of Joseph Tindall, missionary in South-West Africa, 1839-55; edited . . . by B.A. Tindall

Joseph Tindall, a Wesleyan missionary, worked in South-West Africa, initially with Jonker Afrikaner in Damaraland. His journal includes much information about local customs and conflicts between Damara groups.  This work lacks the usual historical introduction.

In print

Order

41

1960

Selections from the Correspondence of J.X. Merriman, 1870-1890; edited by Phyllis Lewsen.

John X. Merriman, son of Archdeacon Merriman, was one of the most brilliant politicians at the Cape. His long political career spanned most of the major political events of the late-19th and early 20th-century, culminating in the prime minister's office just before Union in 1910. Politically Merriman was a liberal, working closely with Rhodes when the latter first became prime minister, but subsequently becoming a firm pro-Boer. Vol. I covers Merriman's early life on the eastern frontier of the Cape, and the first years of responsible government for 1872. Economically this period also covers the mineral revolution - the discovery of diamonds and gold.

In print

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42

1961

Journal of Residence in Africa, 1842-1853, by Thomas Baines, edited . . . by R.F. Kennedy, Vol. I.

Thomas Baines was one of South Africa's most notable artists, recording many historical events, which he meticulously recorded both with brush and with pen. This volume covers many of his journeys in the eastern Cape, with the Liddle expedition and on his own.

Out of print

43

1962

The Reminiscences of Sir Walter Stanford, edited . . . by J.W. Macquarrie. Vol. II. 1885-1929

Stanford's second volume of reminiscences records his life in Pondoland as chief magistrate, up to its annexation, the impact of the South African War, the creation of Ndabeni, Cape Town's first location and the Native Affairs Commission of 1904.

In print

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44.

1963

Selections from the Correspondence of J.X. Merriman, 1890-1898; edited by Phyllis Lewsen.

Vol.II covers the first Rhodes' ministry,  of which Merriman was Colonial Treasurer, his break with Rhodes and the period leading up to the South African war, including the Jameson Raid. It was in this latter period that Merriman formed his alliance with the Afrikaner Bond and adopted his pro-Boer stance.

In print

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45

1964

Journal of Residence in Africa, 1842-1853, by Thomas Baines, edited . . . by R.F. Kennedy, Vol. II, 1850-1853.

Vol. II covers the Vaal River Expedition of 1850, in which Baines travelled through the Orange Free State and up to Potchefstroom. It concludes with the 8th Frontier War from 1850 to 1851.

In print

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46.

1965

Reize in de Binnen-Landen van Zuid-Africa. Gedaan in den Jaare 1803 door W.B.E. Paravicini di Capelli, Kapitein Aide de Camp, by den Gouverneur van de Caap de Goede Hoop. Uitgegee en toegelig . . . deur W.J. de Kock.

Paravicini di Capelli was an artillery-captain at the time of the Batavian Republic and aide-de-camp of the Cape governor, General Jan Willem Janssens. He travelled with the governor into the interior, keeping an official journal as well as his own, and was active in preparations of the Cape against attack by the British, travelling widely during this period. In 1804 he returned to Holland.

Out of print

47.

1966

Selections from the Correspondence of J.X. Merriman, 1899-1904; edited by Phyllis Lewsen.

Vol. III covers the period of the South African War, including Merriman's participation in the pro-Boer Schreiner ministry, and a period in opposition. During this time he fought against the suspension of the Cape constitution and for a fair deal for Cape rebels. It concludes with his participation in the South African Native Affairs Commission and the election which brought Dr Jameson to power as prime minister.

In print

Order

48.

1967

Travels and Adventures in South Africa by George Thompson, 1823-24. Edited by Vernon S. Forbes. Vol. I.

George Thompson, who arrived in the Cape about 1818, was a successful merchant in Cape Town. He married a Dutch woman and travelled widely in southern Africa in the early years of the 19th century. Much of this travelling was to expand the business of his company amongst the 1820 settlers of the Eastern Cape. He also travelled up to Kuruman and across to the Augrabies Falls on the Orange River.

In print

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49.

1968

Travels and Adventures in Southern Africa by George Thompson, 1823-24. Edited by Vernon S. Forbes. Vol. II.

This second volume of Thompson's travels covers a journey to the 'country of the bushmen, Korannas, and Namaquas', in the Roggeveld and Namaqualand. The volume concludes with 'observations on the present condition of the Dutch and English inhabitants' and a discussion on the commercial potential of the Cape Colony.

In print

Order

50

1969

Selections from the Correspondence of J.X. Merriman, 1905-1924; edited by Phyllis Lewsen.

The final volume of Merriman's correspondence deals with the making of Union, including his views on constitution-making, and his period as prime minister of the Cape Colony. Merriman remained in parliament after Union, participating in events leading up to, and just after World War I.

In print

Order

 


 

Second Series,

Vol. No

Year

Volume

Description

In/Out of Print

1

1970

Dagboek van Adam Tas, 1705-1706, uitgegee deur Leo Fouché en hersien deur A.J. Böeseken met bykomende voetnote deur prof. A.M. Hugo. English translation by Dr J. Smuts.

Adam Tas (1668-1722) was an early Dutch free burgher, farming in the Stellenbosch district. He is best known for the part he played in the free burgher conflicts with the Governor Willem Adriaan van der Stel, concerning the corruption of Company officials and their misuse of trading monopolies. This diary, the work of an engaging and genial man, describes the comfortable life of the emerging Cape 'gentry' and the drama leading up to the arrest of Tas as the ringleader of the malcontents.

Out of print

2

1971

Beschryvinge van Kaap der Goede Hoope, met de zaaken daar toe behoorende, door François Valentyn, 1726. Dl. I. Uitgegee en toegelig deur P. Serton, W.J. de Kock, R. Raven-Hart en E.H. Raidt. English translation by R. Raven-Hart and introduction by P. Serton.

François Valentyn (1666-1727) was sent out to the Dutch East Indies as a young man to work as a minister of religion. His interests extended to the natural world which he encountered in the Moluccas and the Cape. Valentyn visited the Cape several times over a period of almost 30 years and observed the changes occurring in the fledgling colony over this time. As a passionate observer of facts rather than a true scientist, his work is packed with information. This volume is the first complete English translation of part 5 of Valentyn's account of the Cape to be  published.

Out of print

3.         

1972

Sir James Rose Innes: Selected Correspondence (1884-1902). Edited by Prof. Harrison M. Wright.

Sir James Rose Innes (1855-1942) was one of South Africa's leading jurists. This volume deals with Rose Innes's political career, initially as a member of Cecil John Rhodes's first ministry in 1890-1893. The political divisions caused by the Jameson Raid forced Rose Innes reluctantly into the loyalist camp. In 1900 he returned to cabinet as attorney-general for the Cape and subsequently was appointed Chief Justice of the Transvaal. Rose Innes was noteworthy as a politician for his sensitive insights into the plight of the country, and for his integrity and moderation, qualities which emerge in his letters.

Out of print

4.         

1973

Beschryvinge van Kaap der Goede Hoope, met de zaaken daar toe behoorende, door François Valentyn, 1726. Dl. II. Uitgegee deur E.H. Raadt. English translation by Maj. R. Raven-Hart.

This second part of Valentyn's travels continues with the account of his visit in 1702 and a later visit of 1714. It includes a lengthy account of the customs of the Khoi and their language, the fauna to be encountered and the early history of the settlement.

Out of print

5.         

1974

David Livingstone South African Papers (1849-1853). Edited by I. Schapera.

This volume of Livingstone's writings, which predates his travels, is concerned primarily with South African racial and missionary affairs as well as comments on traders. His bitter prejudice against the Boers emerges clearly, as do his conflicts with other missionaries., but his insights into local societies are nonetheless revealing.

Out of print

6.         

1975

Anders Sparrman. Travels in the Cape 1772-1776 with introduction and editing by Prof. Vernon S. Forbes. Vol. I.

Anders Sparrman (1748-1820), a young Swedish doctor, is noteworthy for his visit to parts of the Cape which were little known at that time. This first volume describes his journey past Mossel Bay and through the Langkloof.

Softbound reprint available

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7.         

1976

Anders Sparrman. Travels in the Cape 1772-1776 with introduction and editing by Prof. Vernon S. Forbes. Vol. II.

This second volume of Sparrman's travels concerns his account of his journey to the Eastern Cape including a stay at Agter Bruintjies Hoogte. It includes comments on the practices of the Khoi of the eastern districts and of  local flora and fauna.

Softbound reprint available

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8.         

1977

Lawrence Richardson. Selected correspondence (1902-1903). Edited by Prof. Arthur M. Davey.

Lawrence Richardson (c.1869-1953), a member of the Society of Friends (Quakers), was involved in two fact-finding and humanitarian missions to South Africa in the wake of the South African War. His meticulous diaries detail his interviews and draw a perceptive picture of a society devastated by war.

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9.         

1978

Selected Articles from the Cape Monthly Magazine (New Series 1870-76). Introduction and notes by A.M. Lewin Robinson

ISBN:0-620-03369

The Cape Monthly Magazine was the best-known of the 19th century Cape journals. Edited by Professor Roderick Noble of the South African College, and Alfred Whaley Cole, it attracted contributions from leading Cape intellectuals. This selection deals with travels and historical reminiscences and includes articles by Dr W.G. Atherstone, Charles Brownlee and Robert Godlonton

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10.      

1979

William Somerville's narrative of his journeys to the Eastern Cape frontier and to Lattakoe 1799-1802. Introduction and notes by Edna and Frank Bradlow

ISBN:0-620-04232

William Somerville, an Edinburgh doctor, accompanied the invading forces of Major-General Craig when the British took the Cape in 1795. He remained at the Cape for some years, accompanying Major-General Dundas to the eastern districts during the height of conflict on the frontier. Subsequently he accompanied  an expedition to the Orange River. On both occasions he recorded the cultures of the indigenous people whom he met, and the flora and fauna.

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11.      

1980

Edward Ross: Diary of the siege of Mafeking, October 1899 to May 1900. Edited by Brian P. Willan.

ISBN: 0-620-05207-4

Edward Ross, Mafeking's auctioneer, is best-known for his role in the production of banknotes during the siege. His diary is amongst the finest of the many accounts of the siege, recording the activities of Mafeking's residents as well as the military aspects of the siege.

Out of print

12.      

1981

Selections from the correspondence of Percy Alport Molteno 1892-1914. Edited by Vivian Solomon.

 

ISBN:0-620-05662-2

Percy Molteno (1861-1937) was a son of Sir John Molteno, first prime minister of the Cape Colony. Trained as a lawyer, he married the daughter of Sir Donald Currie, the shipping magnate, and went to work for his father-in-law in England. He remained passionately interested in the political life of the colony and conducted a wide-ranging correspondence with many of its leading luminaries. During the South African War he supported the pro-Boer movement and, in 1906, entered the British parliament under the leadership of the Liberal Sir Henry Campbell-Bannerman.

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13.      

1982

Briefwisseling van Hendrik Swellengrebel Jr. oor Kaapse Sake 1779-1792. Uitgegee met inleiding en aantekeninge deur dr. G.J. Schutte. With an English summary by Dr A.J. Böeseken assisted by Prof. H.M. Robertson

ISBN:0-620-06614-8

Hendrik Swellengrebel Jr (1734-1803) was the son of Hendrik Swellengrebel who served as governor for a number of years and retained extensive properties there. The younger Swellengrebel lived a comfortable life in the Netherlands, but visited the Cape between 1776-1777. Thereafter he retained an interest in Cape affairs. He became associated with the rebel Cape Patriot movement and did much to promote its economy. His letters contain much information on the social history of the colony in the last quarter of the 18th century.

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14.      

1983

The Letters of Jane Elizabeth Waterston 1866-1905. Edited by Lucy Bean and Elizabeth B. van Heyningen with an introduction by Elizabeth B. van Heyningen.

 

ISBN:0-620-07375-6

Jane Waterston (1843-1932) accompanied the missionary, Dr James Stewart, to the Eastern Cape when he became principal of the Lovedale Institution. There she started the Girls' Institution but her real desire was to work as a doctor amongst women in the interior of Africa. In 1874 she returned to England where she was amongst the first women to train in medicine at the London School of Medicine for Women. After a brief and disillusioning stay in Nyasaland, she moved to Cape Town where she became a notable figure, participating actively in the political life of the town. She retained her friendship with James Stewart throughout her life, writing to him regularly on a wide variety of topics.

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15.      

1984

The Garrett Papers, edited with an introduction by Gerald Shaw.

 

 

 

ISBN:0-620-08211-9

Edmund Garrett (1865-1907) was a member of the family which produced such leading feminists as Dr Elizabeth Garrett Anderson and Millicent Garrett Fawcett. In 1895 he was appointed editor of the Cape Times and remained there during the crucial period of the Jameson Raid and the lead-up to the South African War. A staunch imperialist he formed close relationships with Sir Alfred Milner, Governor of the Cape, and with Dr Jane Waterston. His letters to his cousins give an intimate and lively account of life in Cape Town until 1899, when he was forced to return to England on account of his health.

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16.      

1985

Johannesburg Pioneer Journals 1888-1909, edited by Maryna Fraser.

 

ISBN:0-620-09432-X

Produced to commemorate Johannesburg's centenary, this volume explores the social history of the mining town in its pioneer days. The four journals included are C. Du-Val, 'All the World Around!!! with pencil, pen and camera'; T.R. Adlam, 'Sunrise and Advancing Morn: Memories of a South African Boyhood'; E. Bright, 'Letters, 1902-1909; Excerpts from the memoirs of William T. Powell.

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17.      

1986

Carl Peter Thunberg. Travels at the Cape of Good Hope 1772-1775, edited by Emeritus Prof. V.S. Forbes.

 

ISBN:0-620-10981-5

Carl Peter Thunberg (1743), a Swede and disciple of the renowned botanist, Linnaeus the elder, was the first university graduate to travel extensively in the Cape interior, preceding the expedition of his compatriot, Anders Sparrman. Apart from recounting his three journeys - two to the Eastern Cape as far as the Sundays River, and one to the Roggeveld - he spent some time in the vicinity of Cape Town, describing the social life and customs of the inhabitants, colonial, slave and indigene.

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18.      

1987

Breaker Morant and the Bushveldt Carbineers, edited, with commentary, by Arthur Davey.

Drawing on a wide selection of sources, this volume seeks to investigate the controversies surrounding the execution of 'Breaker' Morant and his two Australian compatriots. It explores not only the murders associated with Morant, but looks at the context in which the Bushveldt Carbineers were recruited and operated. It remains one of the most scholarly works on the subject.

Out of print

19.      

1988

The Frontier War Journal of Major John Crealock, edited and introduced by Chris Hummel

ISBN:0-620-14455-6

Major John North Crealock (1837-1895) fought in a number of colonial wars, including the Indian Mutiny and the Anglo-Zulu War. This volume is a detailed account of the warfare conducted against the Xhosa in the last phases of the frontier war of 1877-1878. Opinionated and inefficient, Crealock nevertheless gives a sober account of the military situation.

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20.      

1989

The Last Voyage of the Guardian, Lieutenant Riou Commander, 1789-1791, edited with an introduction by M.D. Nash.

 

 

ISBN:0-620-14455-6

The voyage of HMS Guardian is unique in naval history. She sailed from Spithead in September 1789 with stores for Britain's new colony in New South Wales. Thirteen days out from the Cape of Good Hope she struck an iceberg that tore away her rudder and most of her keel. Half the ship's company took to the boats, only one of which survived the stormy 1300-mile voyage back to the Cape. A month later, through exemplary courage and seamanship and against all probabilities, the crippled Guardian herself sailed into Table Bay. The full and fascinating story of the Guardian's voyage is told here in the ship's logs and letters.

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21.      

1990

The Commissions of W.C. Palgrave Special Emissary to South West Africa, 1876-1885, edited and introduced by E.L.P. Stals.

ISBN:0-620-16079-9

William Coates Palgrave (1833-1897) was active in South West Africa (Namibia) over a period of 25 years. As Special Commissioner to Hereroland and Namaland, he undertook 5 consecutive commissions to that country on behalf of the Cape government. This volume, containing the official journals, or minutes and reports produced during the commissions, records the life of a country on the brink of colonisation.

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22.      

1991

Guillaume Chenu de Chalezac, the 'French Boy', edited and introduced by Randolph Vigne.

 

ISBN:0-630-17524-9

The 15-year-old 'French boy' was wrecked on he Ciskei coast in 1687, and spent a year living in the household of a Xhosa chief.  The worlds of the Huguenot diaspora, the great days of Indian Ocean trading, the Cape's pivotal position in the struggle for mastery, and the awakening interest of the Dutch in the 'Terra de Natal' form a many-layered basis to this first full account of the Xhosa and their way of life since European settlement in South Africa began.

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23.      

1992

Johan August Wahlberg: Travel Journals and from letters, South Africa, Namibia and Botswana, 1838-1856, edited and introduced by Chris Hummel and Adrian Craig.

ISBN:0-958-3824-7-1

Johan August Wahlberg (1810-1856), a Swedish naturalist, travelled through much of southern Africa, including Natal and Namibia, before the mid-19th century. He had been chosen by the Swedish Academy of Sciences to collect plants and animals in southern Africa for the Natural History Museum in Stockholm. His account of his travels is often terse and businesslike but his accounts of the people he encountered are usually fair and open-minded.

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24.      

1993

The Cape Journals of Lady Anne Barnard 1797-1798, edited by A.M. Lewin Robinson with Margaret Lenta and Dorothy Driver.

 

 

ISBN: 0-620-18842-1

Lady Anne's journals were revised from her original diaries and produced for the interest of her immediate family and friends. They were never intended for publication. However, they are invaluable in the light which they cast on 'the interesting domestic particulars of life in Cape Town', dealing with matters which male writers ignored. In addition, her place in society, as wife to the secretary of the first British governor of the Cape and the latter's official hostess,  gave her access to a wide range of classes and people. Although carefully censored, her journals, enhanced by the quality of her writing, give a unique of view of life at the Cape at the end of the 18th century.

Out of print

25.      

1994

Griqua Records, the Philippolis Captaincy, 1825-1861, compiled and edited by Karel Schoeman.

 

 

ISBN:0-9584112-1-2

In the Transorange in the early part of the 19th century, there were four small, semi-independent Griqua polities, each ruled by its own Chief or Kaptyn. They of were of considerable importance to the British authorities at the Cape, and to the London Missionary Society. This volume comprises of  a collection of official and semi-official documents relating he Captaincy which existed at Philippolis in the modern Free State from 1826 to 1861, when it was transferred to Kokstad, Griqualand East. They provide a comprehensive picture of a poorly-documented aspect of the history of the Northern Frontier.

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26.      

1995

The war memoirs of Commandant Ludwig Krause 1899-1900, edited by Jerold Taitz with Ken Gillings and Arthur Davey.

ISBN:0-9584112-2-90

In 1899 Ludwig Krause left his legal practice in the Transvaal to fight on behalf of the Boers. At first an ordinary burgher, later he became an officer, waging war in the Northern Transvaal. Educated partly at Cambridge, Krause's memoirs are remarkable for their clarity and descriptive power. Their value is enhanced by his outspoken and sometimes pungent opinions, not only of some of his British foes, but of some of Kruger's adherents.

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27.      

1996

Norwegian missionaries in Natal and Zululand: selected correspondence (1844-1900), edited by Frederick Hale.

 

ISBN:0-9584112-3-9

The Norwegian Missionary Society established its first permanent stations north of the Tugela in the 1840s. The Zulu Lutheran Church which developed from conversions in the 1860s only really developed after the conquest of Zululand in 1879. The Norwegian missionaries were strategically located to view changes in Zulu culture and civilisation and their letters and reports comprise a rich and detailed historical source.

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28.      

1997

The Journal of Gustav de Vylder, naturalist in South-Western Africa 1873-1875, translated from the original Swedish and edited by Ione & Jalmar Rudner.

ISBN:0-9584112--4-7

Gustav de Vylder, a Swedish naturalist, journeyed through Namibia from 1873 to 1875, collecting insects and other natural-history specimens for institutions in his home country. His travels were undertaken some years before the German colonial occupation when the European presence was slight. De Vylder's journal is a record of an adventurous journey, personal encounters and conditions in what was then considered to be a remote region. He was a man of his age, but had some advanced and provocative views.

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29.      

1998

The Cape Diaries of Lady Anne Barnard 1799-1800, edited by Margaret Lenta and Basil le Cordeur. Vol. I.

 

 

ISBN:0-9584112-5-5

The Cape Diaries are the private and unrevised records on which Lady Anne based her Journals. Consequently they express Lady Anne's uncensored views on a wide variety of topics, social and political. The diaries are not only illuminating but also vastly entertaining because of her brilliant command of language and the pleasure she took in the act of writing itself. They greatly enlarge our historical awareness of the transition in her day from the aristocratic, hierarchical world of the 18th to the fast-emerging bourgeois culture of the 19th century.

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30.      

1999

The Cape Diaries of Lady Anne Barnard 1799-1800, edited by Margaret Lenta and Basil le Cordeur. Vol. II.

 

 

ISBN:0-9584112-6-3

 

This second volume of the Cape diaries, dealing with 1800, further develop this rich and entertaining account of life at the Cape in the early years of British rule. Politically the Diaries lay bare the dynamics of the conflicts among senior office-holders, not only in the civil administration, but also in and between the army and navy. Lady Anne's independence of thought is reflected in her ideas on such diverse matters as animal rights or interior decoration or landscaping. She offers valuable insights into the social constraints upon women at the time.

Out of print

 

31.      

2000

A Canadian mounted rifleman at war, 189-1902. The reminiscences of A.E. Hilder. Edited and annotated by A.G. Morris.

 

ISBN:0-9584112-7-1

Albert Edward Hilder was determined to join the British and Allied forces in the Anglo-Boer War. After immigrating to Canada, he joined the Militia of the Royal Canadian Dragoons and volunteered for service when war was declared in October 1899, serving two tours of duty in South Africa in 1900 and 1902. Hilder's writings are rare accounts of the Canadian action in the war as seen from the perspective of the mounted infantry. No other substantial descriptions of these units have been published, despite the fact that these men made up over 50% of Canadian soldiers recruited to serve in the war.

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32.      

2001

The war diary of Burgher Jack Lane 16 November 1899 to 27 February 1900. Edited by William Lane

 

 

 

ISBN:0-9584112-8-X

John (Jack) Moody Lane, born an Ulsterman, sought his fortune in the South African Republic where he became a storekeeper in the hamlet of Hartbeesfontein in the Western Transvaal. Although he accepted Republican citizenship, he remained loyal to the British cause, and was reluctant to bear arms against his mother country when he was called up to join a commando at the start of the war. As a result, he was placed in charge of the ammunition in the main laager of General Piet Cronjé. Lane saw action at Magersfontein, outside Kimberley and eventually at Paardeberg where he was captured and sent to St Helena. Throughout he retained a wry sense of humour and observed the life in the Boer camps with a sharp and critical eye.

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33.      

2002

Sir Graham Bower's Secret History of the Jameson Raid and the South African Crisis, 1895-1902. Edited by Deryck Schreuder and Jeffrey Butler.

 

 

ISBN:0-9584112-9-8

Graham Bower's 'Secret History' is a personal insider's account of the great imperial scandal of the Jameson Raid. Bower adhered to a rigid Victorian code of honour. Although he was the official secretary to the British high commission in South Africa, he chose to keep silent and play the role of scapegoat rather than 'blow the whistle' to the high commissioner after Rhodes had confidentially told him of his plan to send forces into the Transvaal. He wrote several drafts of this 'Secret History' to vindicate his actions and the family name. This volume has been compiled from his unpublished manuscripts, his personal papers and official records.

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34.      

2003

Hendrik Cloete, Groot Constantia and the VOC, 1788-1799. Documents from the Swellengrebel Archive, edited and introduced by G J Schutte. English translation by N O van Gylswyk and D.Sleigh. (2003)

 

ISBN:0-95845221-0

Hendrik Cloete, the owner of Groot Constantia from 1778, extended the manor house and improved and marketed the celebrated Constantia wines. This volume, the correspondence between Cloete and Hendrik Swellengrebel jr follows his attempt o obtain the concession from the Dutch East India Company to freely trade and market his famous wines. This material enables the reader to take a close look behind the scenes of Cape politics and economic history and to learn of the daily life and work of the winemakers of Groot and Klein Constantia in the late eighteenth century: Hendrik Cloete, Johannes Nicolaas Colijn and their slaves. The letters and documents are published in the original Dutch with a complete English translation.

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35.      

2004

Moravians in the Eastern Cape 128-1928. Translated by F.R. Baudert, edited by T. Keegan

 

 

 

 

ISBN:0-9584522-2-9

The four missionary texts which make up this volume reveal the little-known range of Moravian missionary work in the Eastern Cape, from its inception in 1828 to 1928. Vivid and subjective in character, they illuminate this field of Moravian mission activity in South Africa, which extended to the Xhosa the pioneering work done at Genadendal and its family of stations in the Western Cape. The narratives paint a graphic picture of the commitment of the missionaries and their  families, the success and failure of their evangelical mission work and also provide rare insights into the thinking and conduct of those who converted to Christianity. As such, they offer a window onto cultural and social interaction in South Africa's longest-enduring and most volatile frontier zone, adding richly to an understanding of how this process played out on the ground at both a personal and institutional level.
 

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36.      

2005

Trials of Slavery. Selected Documents Concerning Slaves from the Criminal Records of the Council of Justice at the Cape of Good Hope, 1705-1794. Edited by Nigel Worden and Gerald Groenewald

 

 

 

ISBN:0-9584522-3-7

Trials of Slavery is a first in South African historiography, a collection of 87 verbatim records of trials involving slaves at the Cape during the 18th century. The cases are drawn from the exceptionally rich archives of the Council of Justice at the Cape of Good Hope under the rule of the Dutch East India Company (VOC), and illuminate not only the grim details of crime and punishment at the Cape in that century, but also abundantly details telling features of the lives, labours, languages and outlook of slaves and other inhabitants of the Dutch colony. Reading these case records provides glimpses of these slaves as flesh and blood people instead of as a faceless, silent mass, the object only of outsiders’ observations and enumeration. The transcriptions are  printed in the original Dutch, with an English translation

 

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37.      

2006

Words of Batswana: Letters to Mahoko a Becwana, 1883-1896. Translated and edited by Part T. Mgadla and Stephen C. Volz

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

ISBN: 0-9585134-1-4

Words of Batswanapresents a selection of letters that were written by Batswana to Mahoko a Becwana (News/Words of Batswana), a Setswana-language newspaper published by missionaries of the London Missionary Society at Kuruman between 1883 and 1896. The majority of the writers were members of congregations in what are today South Africa’s Northern Cape Province and North West Province, but many also wrote from as far away as the Transvaal, Orange Free State and the Bechuanaland Protectorate. Most of the writings were letters to the editor, but their intended audience was primarily other Batswana readers of the newspaper. They wrote on a wide range of topics of concern to literate, mission-educated Batswana at that time, including mission work, theology, standardization of written Setswana, cultural change and European colonization. Their letters were also often written in response to other letters or missionary articles, producing lively debates on a number of controversial issues. These writings offer a rare and revealing glimpse of conversations that took place among literate Africans during a crucial period in the formation of modern South Africa and Botswana. They are reproduced here both in their original Setswana form and as translated into English.

 

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38.      

2007

Francois le Vaillant: Travels into the interior of Africa via the Cape of Good Hope. Vol I. Translated and edited by Ian Glenn with the assistance of Catherine Lauga du Plessis and Ian Farlam

 

ISBN:0-9585134-2-2

In 1780 the young Francois Vaillant (as he then was) set out from Holland for the Cape to collect specimens of birds and animals. His account of his travels, which was published widely during the revolutionary period in France and became an influential piece of writing about South Africa, popular throughout Europe, reflected many Enlightenment attitudes. Le Vaillant’s account used the freedom of the wilderness to attack civilised conventions; it was the first highly critical account of Dutch colonialism and the brutality of settler expansion; and it was the first detailed ethnographical account based on fieldwork. His first journey took him through the Karoo, as far as modern-day Somerset East and Cookhouse, leaving the reader with a tantalising conclusion. This new translation is prefaced by an introductory section that places Le Vaillant in his historical and intellectual context and discusses the literary and historical importance of the Travels.
 

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39.

2008

Isaac Williams Wauchope: Selected Writings 1874-1916, edited and translated by Jeff Opland and Abner Nyamende with an introduction and notes by Jeff Opland

ISBN:0-9585134-9-X

 

Isaac Williams Wauchope (1852-1917) was a prominent member of the Eastern Cape African elite in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, a Congregational minister, political activist, historian, poet and, ultimately, legendary hero in the Mendi disaster. As a Lovedale student he joined a missionary party to Malawi, he was instrumental in founding one of the first political organisations for Africans, a staunch ally of John Tengo Jabavu, an enthusiastic campaigner for the establishment of the University of Fort Hare, and he served a sentence of nearly two years in Tokai Convict Prison. For over 40 years, from 1874 to 1916, he was a prodigious contributor to newspapers, submitting news, comments, announcements, poetry, hymns, history and biography, travelogues, sermons, translations, explications of proverbs and royal praise poems. This volume assembles a selection of these writings, in English and in Xhosa, reflecting Isaac Wauchope's momentous and turbulent life.
 

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40.

2009

Alan Paton Selected Letters; edited and with an introduction by Peter Alexander.

ISBN: 978-0-9814264-0-2

 

Alan Paton was a dedicated letter-writer whose letters are almost like a series of vigorous conversations, displaying his capacity for friendship, his lively personality and his principled commitment to South African society. This collection of 350 previously unpublished letters are a major aspect of his writings. They range from those written as a brilliant student of 18 to his old age, illustrating many of the facets of his literary interests, his work as a teacher and reformatory principle and his political activism.

 

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41.

2010

Friendship and Union. The South African Letters of Patrick Duncan and Maud Selborne 1907–1943. Edited and introduced by Deborah Lavin.

ISBN: 978-0-9814264-1-9

 

This volume, published a century after Union in 1910, tells the story of the first decades of the new state. The narrative unfolds through letters exchanged weekly by two interested commentators: Scottish-born Patrick Duncan, who was initially a member of Milner’s famous ‘Kindergarten’ of young British civil servants, and who became a respected politician in the new Union. His career culminated as South Africa’s first local Governor-General. He corresponded for thirty-seven years with Maud, Lady Selborne, who was married to Milner’s successor. A feisty feminist and a fascinating character from a patrician background, she developed a lifelong friendship with Duncan, round their shared preoccupation with South Africa. The letters support the view that the first constitution was deeply flawed, although in 1910 the ‘new South Africa’ seemed almost miraculous. Bitter enemies agreed to start afresh and painfully negotiated a new constitution, using the finest international models; a political leadership emerged preaching reconciliation; change had to be accepted and worked at every level; new symbols of nationhood were painfully evolved. Almost at once the legitimacy of the state was challenged in the strikes of 1913 and 1922 and the rebellion of 1914. The letters help to show how, by 1943, South Africa had emerged as an independent nation within the Commonwealth alliance.

 

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42.

 


2011

The South African Letters of Thomas Pringle. Edited and introduced by Randolph Vigne

ISBN: 978–0–9814264–2–6

 

 

 Thomas Pringle (1789–1834) is remembered as ‘the father of English poetry’ in this country, as leader of the only Scottish settler party in 1820 and as a champion of the freedom of the press. He had an earlier career as founding editor of Blackwood’s Magazine in Edinburgh and a later one as man of letters in London and secretary of the Anti-Slavery Society. The abolition of slavery in the British Empire came into force in August 1834 but, crippled since infancy and suffering from tuberculosis, he died in December 1834, aged only 45.

In South Africa he worked for the relief of the hard-pressed settlers, the emancipation of the Khoisan and protection of the Xhosa on the frontier from retaliatory commando raids. In Cape Town he ran the South African Public Library, edited, with his friend John Fairbairn, the Cape’s first independent newspaper and the bi-monthly South African Journal, and established a successful ‘classical and commercial academy’ until all were brought down by the hostility of the Governor, Lord Charles Somerset. He fought back but, financially ruined, returned to his final career in Britain. His papers, sent to Cape Town by his widow Margaret, were lost but surviving letters in other collections here bring to life the character, outlook and South African career of a notable figure in our history.


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43.

 


2012

A B Xuma. Autobiography and Selected Works. Edited by Peter Limb

ISBN: 978–0–9814264–3–3

 

 

 Alfred Bitini Xuma (1893-1962) is best known as the president who revived the African National Congress (ANC) in the 1940s and was then defeated for office by the Congress Youth League. Less known is his important public career as a medical doctor and social reformer, or the continuity of his thought over three decades of writings and speeches, in which he articulated a consistent critique of white domination, inequality and state policies of segregation and apartheid. Xuma’s ongoing concerns with national liberation, health, and black identity lend his works a curious resonance with today’s burning issues. This volume brings together for the first time the works of this major African political and social leader of the mid-twentieth century, combining his previously unpublished autobiography with a careful selection of his prodigious output of letters, speeches, pamphlets, and submissions to government commissions.


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44.

2013

Into the hitherto Unknown. Ensign Beutler's Expedition to the Eastern Cape, 1752. Translated by Thea Toussaint van Hove and Michael Wilson. Edited and Introduced by Hazel Crampton, Jeff Peires and Carl Vernon 

ISBN 978-0-9814264-4-0

By 1752, the Dutch colony at the Cape extended no further than Mossel Bay. The lands beyond were officially unknown, entered only by illegal hunting and trading parties which had every reason to keep their activities secret. The Beutler expedition, conceived and equipped on a grand scale by Governor Rijk Tulbagh, was tasked to spare neither time nor trouble to obtain a thorough knowledge of the hitherto unknown condition of these interior lands’. The expedition penetrated beyond the Kei River before turning back frustrated, but it took more than fifty years before the next Cape traveller ventured even that far.

The expedition’s journal illuminates our understanding of the pre-colonial Eastern Cape like a comet lighting up the night sky. The reader will meet not only the fauna and flora of the region, but the Khoikhoi, Xhosa, Thembu and Oeswana San (Chinese Hottentots). This edition comprises both the original Dutch text (last published in 1922) and the first-ever English translation.

 

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