Introductions

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The members of the original settlement at the Cape from 1652 onwards were supplied by the Dutch East India Company with a sieketrooster (a lay reader). He held Sunday services where he was allowed to read sermons (but not preach) and to instruct the children in their religion, but not to offer communion, or to marry or baptise. Sieketroosters up to 1665 were Willem Wylant, Pieter van der Staal, Ernestus Back and Jan Jorisz Greef.

Marriages were conducted either by the Commander (civil marriages were part of the normal system in the Netherlands) or by ministers passing on ships calling at the Cape and these latter also conducted any baptisms required.

Eventually the Dutch East India Company management decided to appoint a resident minster at the Cape (all such religious ministers were company salaried officials) and on 18th August 1665 Dominee Johannes van Arkel landed at Table Bay. Later a church was built and its present day successor is the Grote Kerk in Cape Town. The particular sect was then known as the Hervormde Kerk, modern South African equivalent the Nederduits Gereformeerde Kerk.

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This is the second register of the Dutch Reformed Congregation in Cape Town following the first register which covered the baptisms, marriages and memberships for the period 1665-1695.

This register has two numbering systems, one by page number, the other by folio number. For folio numbers, only the right hand page is numbered, increasing by one every second page. The left hand page is the 'verso' page of the previous folio number. The first readable folio number is fo. 9 on page 13. After that the numbering of the folios follow each other as expected. However, the number of folios in the first 13 pages should have been 7 and not 9 suggesting that 2 folios are missing. This suggestion is supported by the fact that the last entry on page 8 is dated 17 Nov 1697 and the first entry on page 9 is 5 Oct 1698, jumping almost a full year without any baptisms. In this part of the register, one year represented about 4 pages or 2 folios. Further-on in the register from page 74 to page 75, the folio numbers jump from fo. 40 to fo. 45.
This seems to suggest that the register was originally numbered only by folio, and at some later time rebound, and renumbered by page. Another possiblity is that some folios were removed before it was renumbered by page. Whatever the case may be, it seems evident that this register is not complete.  

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This is the third series of registers of the Dutch Reformed Congregation in Cape Town following the second register which covered the baptisms, marriages and memberships for the period 1695-1712.

This register contains baptisms covering the period 1713 to 1742. The pages are rubber stamped with ascending numerals starting with no. 1 and ending with no. 191. It is divided into three sections. The first section is a series of baptisms of the "non-slave" christian children and starts with page 1 on 1 Jan 1713 and ends with page 152 on 30 Dec 1742. The second is a series of baptisms of the children of company slaves, starting on page 153 (8 Jan 1713) and ending on page 175 (18 Nov 1742). This is followed by the third, a series of baptisms of the slave children of the Free Burgers and company servants, starting on page 176 (8 Jan 1713) and ending on page 191 (16 Sep 1742.)

The first part of the register was formatted in tabular form, i.e. columns with headings: date | child | parents | witnesses, for example:
1715         Gedoopten        Ouders                               Getuigen
23 Junii     Maria                Jan Kuiperman, en               Gerrit van der Heijden, en
                                       Catharina van der Heijden     Maria van Brakel.

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This is the fifth series of registers of the Dutch Reformed Congregation in Cape Town following the fourth register which covered the marriages and memberships for the period 1713-1756.

This register contains baptisms covering the period 1743 to 1756. The pages are rubber stamped with ascending numerals starting with no. 1 and ending with no. 134. It is divided into three sections. The first section is a series of baptisms of the "non-slave" Christian children and starts with page 1 on 6 Jan 1743 and ends with page 126 on 25 Dec 1756. This is followed by another 7 baptisms dated between 10 January and 12 December. They seem to belong to the year 1756.
The second is a series of baptisms of the children of company slaves, starting on page 127 (3 Feb 1743) and ending on page 129 (8 Nov 1756). The baptisms cover the years 1743 to 1748 and 1756. There are no baptisms recorded for the period 1749 to 1755. The baptisms for 1748 and 1756 are recorded consecutively on the same page suggesting that the lack of entries for the period 1749-1755 are not due to missing or lost pages.
This is followed by the third, a series of baptisms of the slave children of the Free Burgers and company servants, starting on page 130 (17 Feb 1743) and ending on page 134 (26 Sep 1756). No baptisms were recorded for the years 1747, 1749-1751 and 1755. The baptisms were recorded consecutively suggesting there are no missing or lost pages.

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The members of the original settlement at the Cape from 1652 onwards were supplied by the Dutch East India Company with a sieketrooster (a lay reader). He held Sunday services where he was allowed to read sermons (but not preach) and to instruct the children in their religion, but not to offer communion, or to marry or baptise. Sieketroosters up to 1665 were Willem Wylant, Pieter van der Staal, Ernestus Back and Jan Jorisz Greef.

Marriages were conducted either by the Commander (civil marriages were part of the normal system in the Netherlands) or by ministers passing on ships calling at the Cape and these latter also conducted any baptisms required.

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Source: This transcription has been made from photographs of the Cape Archives Verbatim copies document VC 603 - Cape Town baptisms, memberships and marriages 1665-1695, which is a photocopy the original register, now housed in the Nederduits Gereformeerde Kerkargief, Noordwal-Wes, Stellenbosch, as G1-1/1. This photocopy was made for the Sciences Research Council (HSRC) and a copy was donated to the South African Archives, a copy going to the Cape Town Repository (VC series) and to the Pretoria Repository (where it is part of the FC series).
The marriages cover pages 75 through 91 of this register.

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