Wednesday, 14 October 2009



Bob Saunders spends some time every month writing a newsletter. E-mail you comments to Bob by clicking here. Even if it is one sentence. He (and the branch committee) will appreciate it.


During September’s meeting, the committee decided to go ahead and hire a post box for the branch, as it was felt that the imposition on former committee members sharing their private mail boxes should have been a temporary arrangement and not a permanent one.

Our thanks to Richard Ford for having carried this burden for as long as he did. We also spent some of our funds purchasing our own projector, which you will see in use in the near future.

A decision was made to once again have a mini expo for our final meeting in November. All members please take note of this advance notice and bring some contribution of your own work to swell the exposition. It need not be a “great” work, but certainly any example of what you are currently working on (or have completed) will be most welcome. Please do not be shy especially to show work that is as yet incomplete.

The committee also took time to thank Penny Evans for her regular contributions to the blog – watch out for her reports of the past meetings if you were unable to attend one. Thanks were also extended to Bob Saunders for the newsletter. Last but by no means least, appreciation was again expressed for the sterling job our blogmaster Japie Bosch continues to perform on our behalf.


Ons was verlede maand deur Simon du Plooy, voorsitter van die Noordwestak, besoek waartydens hy ons vertel het van Robert Jacob GORDON, wie hy as Suid Afrika se eie Davy Crockett beskryf het . Lees gerus die artikel op die blog wat Simon aan ons vir die doeleinde gestuur het. Ons dank aan Simon vir sy tyd en dat hy so ver gery het om ons oor hierdie interesante man te inlig.


As previously announced, we will NOT be having our normal monthly meeting at the normal venue, but will be assisting the Cemetery Project, by undertaking our own survey of a number of burial sites in the Eikenhof area just south of Johannesburg.

For those of you interested in this “outing”, we will meet each other at the corner of Columbine avenue and Maluti streets in Mondeor. From there we proceed to the Turfontein Concentration Camp cemetery. If you feel so inclined, do bring a flower/flowers to be left at the memorial. Do not forget to bring a camping chair/stool, water or other thirst quenchers, a hat, sunblock and also a pen.

John Stephens, who is co-ordinating this outing says that the intention is to listen to a short address about the Greatest Tragedy that occurred South of Johannesburg during the Second Boer War. From there we will proceed to Eikenhof where we will also hear about The Greatest Spy Hero (Danie Theron), and then at Hartzenberfontein hear about the Greatest Sacrifice of the Second Boer War. We will then proceed to record the graves.

At the conclusion of the day’s events, we are all invited to the home of John and Iris Stephens (who live in the vicinity) for some tea and refreshments and the usual socializing. This is going to be a bumper day, folks, so do try to attend. It is not often at these recording events we are treated to some history at the same time.


Soos voorheen aangekondig, het e-SAGI die 500 000-naam-mylpaal behaal. Danksy Lucas Rinken en ‘n baie klein span van helpers, word hierdie projek verfyn. Daar verskyn egter nog baie duplikate onder die databasis. ‘n Versoek word gerig om te help met die takprojek. Lucas is tans besig om 35 000 naame te sorter. Vrywilligers word benodig om ‘n familievan aan te neem (dalk jou eie) en deur die name te soek vir moontlike duplikate. Verwittig Lucas, asseblief. Dit sal die proses grootliks aanhelp indien hy hulp kry van ons taklede. Maar dit is nie al manier wat jy ‘n bydrae kan maak tot e-SAGI nie. Die byvoeging van jou familie is noodsaaklik asook die normale onderhoud daarvan elke keer as daar ‘n sterfte of geboorte is. Stel Lucas asseblief in kennis.


September birthdays were as follows:

20th Myra Bosch, 21st Derek Rubidge, 23rd Johan Lourens and the 30th Celia Baylis.

Our very best wishes to you all.


Ons persoonlike ervaring die maand is een van ons “ouer” lede en ‘ n kenner van 1820 Settlaar geskiedenis – Graham Southey. Hy skryf soos volg:


By Graham Southey

My research began seriously in 1954/55 when computers were in their infancy and PC’s non-existent.

My method was to correspond with members of the family who referred me to possible sources within the family if they had no answers themselves. Having had to earn a living as a priority cut down time radically, and such sources who relied on memory were also sometimes inaccurate.

My first good fortune, came in the form of a distant relative living in England and whom I met during a visit he paid to South Africa in 1969 shortly after his 80th birthday. Edward Humphrey’s mother was Elizabeth Southey (1846-1933), the granddaughter of one Samuel Southey (1784-?), brother of the 1820 settler, George Southey (1777-1831). Edward and I kept up a lively correspondence in our common interest – the Southey family.
In the 1970’s he and an elder brother (a priest) went to Culmstock in Devon, where George and his wife lived before leaving for South Africa and researched the church records. He produced the names, dates of birth and baptism of the entire family.

From this I discovered that the eldest son of George and Joan Southey died at Culmstock in 1818 before their emigration, and thus did not feature in the South African records. Their youngest son, Cannon, born Feb 1818, died on the voyage out to SA., so George and Joan arrived in South Africa with four sons and two daughters. At least I know that the dates I have of the original settler family are accurate!


Now for the usual punt for the library.

Your committee has decided that we wish to build on the foundation of books already held in our library. We suggest you take a look at what we have and make use of this facility.

We would further ask that if you see any books that you believe we should have on our shelves, kindly advise any committee member via e-mail or personally advise your librarian Graham Southey of your wish list and we will see what it is we can source.

There is a movement afoot to purchase some of the more recent publications which are available digitally and far cheaper than the hard copy. Once we have our computer up and running (hopefully by our November meeting), even our technically challenged will be able to access these on the premises with the help of anyone willing to assist.


Een van ons lede wat onlangs sy ondervinding met n wonderlike ou dame (weeke voor sy beswyk het) gedeel het skryf soos volg:


Deur Neels COERTSE

Sowat 18 maande gelede het ek ernstig begin lees oor genealogie en familiegeskiedskrywing.

Toe ek nou so op die internet rondkrap en lees en met mense praat en ander literatuur deurgaan, kry ek elke dan en wan die stuk wysheid wat internasionaal, nasionaal en plaaslik verkondig word: Kyk eers en vind uit of daar nie al iemand anders is wat reeds jou navorsing gedoen het nie, anders vind jy later uit jy het weer eens die wiel ontwerp.

Ek weet uit my verlede dat my pa se mense uit Hopetown kontrei kom.

Met my soeke na die Hopetown-COERTSE’s kom ek toe af op ‘n boekie wat ene Prof P.J. COERTZE geskryf het: Geslagsregister COERTSE COERTSEN COERTZE en COERTZEN; HAUM, 1984.

Met voorgaande wysheid in gedagte moes ek mos aanvaar het dat dit op datum is tot en met publikasiedatum. Moenie die wiel weer ontwerp nie – so draai dit deur my kop.

Toe ’n verlangse familielid ‘n afskrif van die boek aan my gegee het, het hy ewe trots en selfvoldaan teruggesit en vertel hy en sy familie verskyn op bladsy 36. Voordat ek hom ontmoet het, het ek inligting gehad dat hy die oudste van vier seuns is. Toe maak ek daar oop en vra hom waar sy jonger twee broers genoteer is? Hy skrik groot en gryp sy boek en kyk en kyk en kyk ... Wraggies. Sy twee jonger broers is nie genoteer nie. En sy vrou se name is foutief.

Ek ry daar weg en gaan koop ‘n ontbyt by ‘n restaurant. En soek my familie in die boekie. En ek soek en soek en soek. Het my voorgeslag geleef of nie?

Moenie verder “stress” nie; ek het my voorgeslag gekry.

Die takkie van die stamboom in daardie boek waaruit ek kom, noteer net 27 nasate tot en met 1984. Ek het op die stadium meer 70 ander mense gevind.

My ervaring is dat daardie stuk “wysheid” heeltemal te hoog aangeslaan word. Dit inhibeer die navorser met sy navorsings-ideale.

Dit plaas ons in die kern van akademiese vraagstukke en die problematiek waarmee die histograwe hulle elke dag besig hou: wat is die filosofie rondom die histografie? Wat dryf jou? Wat is jou bronne?

Moenie hierdie geskrif van my lees as sou ek Prof Coertze wil aantas nie. Geensins.

Ek dink hy het ook met hierdie vraagstukke geworstel. Die rede waarom ek dit sê is dat sy seun, my verwys het na ‘n baie spesifieke persoon en vertel dat sy pa probleme ervaar het met die noteringsproses: hoeveel moet genoteer word? Wat word genoteer? Hoe word dit genoteer? En dis presies dieselfde probleme waarmee ek worstel.
Een van my tannies het nou die dag vir my gesê: “Neels, dis te pynlik. Moet ek die gegewens vir jou gee?”

My benadering is dat jy maar jou eie navorsing moet doen.

• Baie dankie Neels dat jy die moeite gedoen het om aan ons te skryf en jou mening te gee. Ek persoonlik hoop dat daar ’n debat sal plaasvind onder ons lede as gevolg hiervan, nie noodwendig om ‘n finale besluit oor die kwessie te neem nie, maar wel om menings te hoor.

• Ons hoor graag van u oor die inhoud hiervan, kommentaar of verdere bydraes en enige versoeke. Skryf gerus aan enige van die komitteelede of direk na my per e-pos.

Bob Saunders bestee elke maand heelwat tyd aan die skryf van 'n nuusbrief. E-pos jou kommentaar aan Bob deur hier te klik. Selfs al is dit een sin. Hy (en die takkomitee sal dit waardeer.)

  • We look forward to meeting with a difference this month, so do try to make a special effort to attend and assist with the cemetery recording and here some history. See you there on Saturday, 17 October 2009 at the corner of Columbine avenue and Maluti streets in Mondeor at 14h00. And don’t forget your chair, water bottle, sunblock and pen.

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