Grahamstown Journal 1897 11 November
Tuesday 2 November 1897
PASSED AWAY at the Albany Hospital on 1st November 1897, Armien Julia Brinsmead, the youngest and beloved daughter of W.H. and J. WESTAWAY, aged 10 years and 11 months.
[Transcriber’s note: Civil Death Notice gives her first name as Amien – she died of peritonitis]
At Robertson, Cape Colony, on Thursday, a Hottentot cut the throat of a farmer’s wife named MALHERBE, and then violated her. Mrs. MALHERBE was able to make a statement, but it is not expected that she will recover.
LADY KILLED ON THE LINE
A shocking discovery has been made on the Sea Point Railway, near Three Anchor Bay, when the mutilated body of an elderly lady was found lying between the metals. It appears that shortly before nine o’clock the previous night the police at Green Point were informed that Mrs. Johanna C. BOTHA, wife of Mr. C.F. BOTHA, gunmaker, of 169 Longmarket Street and Pine Grove, Main Road, Green Point, was missing from home. Search was made, and about an hour later he body was discovered between the metals on the railway opposite her late residence. The body was terribly mutilated, and death must have been instantaneous. The remains were removed to the Railway Morgue, and were viewed by the Acting Resident Magistrate (Mr. G.B. WILLIAMS). The event is particularly painful in view of the social position of the family, and the circumstances that led to it will be the subject of an inquiry.
A grown up son of Mr. Hendrik SNYDERS, of Buffelsvlei, about three hours drive from Prince Albert-road, met with a very sad fatality. He went out with a gun on Monday morning (says the Argus) and as he did not return a search was made, with the result that the third day his corpse was discovered. It appears that he shot himself, accidentally, through the leg, above the knee, and crept from the spot where he met with the accident, about a thousand yards in a straight line, to the nearest water, but the poor fellow died, probably of hunger and thirst, before he could reach the water. Deceased was a strong, healthy and well built young man.
A NATAL RAILWAY FATALITY
The goods train arriving at Estcourt, Natal, at seven o’clock on Wednesday morning, brought down a man named John RYANE, overseer of a relaying party on the N.G.R., stationed at Chieveley, who had been picked up unconscious by the driver lying alongside the line not far from Frere. On arrival here, notice was sent to Dr. THOMPSON, who was quickly in attendance, and had the injured man removed to the Sanitorium, where he died shortly after admission, without recovering consciousness. How the unfortunate man met his death can only be surmised, but from inquiries I hear that he had been spending the evening at Frere, not wisely but too well, and had asked the guard of a goods train, a man named JOHNSON, to give him a lift to Chieveley. This the guard refused to do, and deceased said “Very well, I will walk”. This was the last seen of him until found on Wednesday morning. From the appearance of the body it is thought that RYAN must have been walking alongside the line, and hearing a train overtaking him, had looked round and been struck on the face and shoulder by the engine.
A SAD SUICIDE
The death occurred last Friday under most distressing circumstances of a promising young man named WILLSON, about 19 years of age, son of Mr. C.G. WILLSON, ex M.L.A. for Newcastle Division. Deceased was employed in the engineering shops on the Natal Government Railways, and was being trained with a view to proceeding to England, there to finish his engineering course. For some months past he has been suffering, we believe, from the effects of fever and blood-poisoning. He had been queer for the past few days, and refused to eat any breakfast yesterday morning, and did not partake of dinner. The lady with whom he was boarding on the Berea endeavoured to persuade him to eat, but he refused and remained in his room. Shortly afterwards she heard the report of a gun in the room, and being frightened, she called in a neighbour. They entered the room together, and found deceased lying on the floor, with a bullet wound near the heart, dying. Medical aid was at once called in, but the injury proved fatal. The rifle which he had used was his own, one he had purchased when becoming a member of the Rifle Association.
THE LATE JAMES R. WATSON
A correspondent to the Watchman says: The death of Mr. J.R. WATSON of Breakfast Vlei on Thursday last came as a great surprise to his many friends. It was known he had been ailing for some little time, but so sudden a collapse was not expected. On Thursday afternoon, however, there was a change for the worse and he passed quietly away. His nephew, his sister, Mrs. THACKWRAY, and others were with him. He was quite conscious up to the last. The name of the WATSON family has become a household word throughout the Border. For upwards of 35 years they have occupied Breakfast Vlei, and made the most comfortable roadside home in the Colony. The weary traveller, rich or poor, at all times found it a haven of rest, and was sure of comfort and courtesy: no benighted footsore tramp was ever refused a meal and rest. The WATSONs are of Welsh descent, and come of a stock from which we get our heroes. Old Mrs. WATSON, so well and affectionately known as “Granny”, with her two sons Jim and Harry and several daughters, settled at Breakfast Vlei in the sixties, and have nobly done their duty as pioneers and patriotic Colonists. In the war of  the eldest son “Jim”, the subject of this notice, although a youth, was enrolled in the Grahamstown Rangers and fought during that war. During the rebellion of 1879, when all the roadside inns were abandoned, dear old Granny WATSON stuck to her post, and when advised to retire to one of the towns for safety declared that she was not too old to load her sons’ rifles and they would defend their home: this they did, and by their pluck Breakfast Vlei was kept open during the rebellion. Subsequently a detachment of the Grahamstown Volunteers under Captain D. SAMPSON garrisoned this important position. When his home was safe, Harry WATSON went to the front in command of some of the auxiliary forces, and did good service. Subsequently this fine young fellow went to Matabeleland, and was one of those heroes who fell at “the last stand” with WILSON’s party on the Shangani. James R. WATSON was an enthusiastic sportsman, a capital shot, and was never so happy as when he had his sporting friends with him; he was a most successful breeder and exhibitor of pointers and setters, and won many prizes at the Border dog shows: he was a genuine, large hearted man with no enemies, and will be mourned by many in all parts of the Colony. When it was known he had passed away, the natives from far and near in the district met at Breakfast Vlei to pay a last token of respect, and express their deep sorrow at the loss of one who they declared had always been a friend and treated them with patience and justice: it was most touching to see the genuine mourning of these untutored savages, which proves more than words what a good kind hearted and true man the late James R.WATSON was. The funeral took place at Fort Peddie on Saturday, and was attended by farmers and friends from far and near, whilst floral tributes were sent from Kingwilliamstown, Grahamstown and the district; the ladies of Fort Peddie by their presence at the grave testified the esteem the deceased was held in. There was a full service in the Village Church, from which the cortege procession proceeded to the cemetery. The pall-bearers were old friends – Mr. SAUNDERS, of Keiskama, Messrs. HARTLEY, John SURMON and J.D. ELLIS. Our old friend James R. WATSON rests peacefully beside his beloved mother, dear old “Granny”.
[Transcriber’s note: The sister mentioned was Elizabeth WATSON, who married Benjamin Mortimer THACKWRAY on 2 March 1865]
Thursday 4 November 1897
BIRTH at the School House, Fort Peddie, on the 3rd Nov., the wife of A. Agars WOOD of a daughter.
A FAMILY POISONED
An episode that might have been attended with very serious consequences occurred in the house of Mr. Cabell SHEPPARD at Barberton. Butcher’s meat is particularly dear, scarce, and of poor quality, and like many another household Mr. SHEPPARD has to vary the daily bill of fare with preserved provisions. On Wednesday some Australian mutton was served – the contents of two tins. Shortly after retiring Mr. SHEPPARD was taken seriously ill, and before long Mrs. SHEPPARD was similarly affected. Dr. POWRIE was summoned, and pronounced it a case of poisoning. Arthur LUXTON, Mr. SHEPPARD’s stepson, was also seized with sickness, and another child was much out of sorts. All the patients are happily recovering. The assumption is that one of the tins of meat was bad and that it was of this portion of the dish that Mr. And Mrs. SHEPPARD principally partook. Mr. SHEPPARD remembers having noticed an acrid taste.
A CHILD IN FLAMES
On Sunday evening the youngest daughter of Mrs. J. WEBB of Queenstown (says the Representative) had a very narrow escape from being burnt to death. It appears that the child was in a room with a candle performing some household duty, when by some means her hair caught on fire. She had previously been using paraffin oil, and in placing her hands on her head to put out the flames the latter also became ignited. In terror the unfortunate child then rushed out into the passage in flames, where she was met by her mother and older sister, who succeeded in extinguishing the flames. The poor child was terribly burnt both on the head and the hands. She now lies a painful sufferer from the effects, although hopes are entertained of her recovery with careful nursing.
A J.P.’s SUICIDE
Mr. Hugh DAMANT J.P., an old and respected resident of Beaconsfield, shot himself through the heart with a rook rifle on Sunday. The deceased was sixty-eight years of age. He had been in poor health for some time, and had latterly been somewhat despondent. He had been playing with his grandchildren and retired to his room. A few minutes afterwards his relatives heard a rifle shot, and on entering the room found him lying with a bullet through his heart. Medical aid was summoned, but life was extinct, death being instantaneous. Deceased had been a resident in the township for over twenty years, and was formerly in the office of the registrar of mines.
The body of a white man, named ROWLAND, was found in the dam on HARMAN’s property, [Pietersburg] on Sunday morning. The body had been in the water some days, the features being eaten up by crabs. There was a mark of a severe blow on the left side of the head. The deceased had been doing odd jobs of painting in the town and was last seen alive on Thursday. Aman named STEVENS was arrested on suspicion of murdering the deceased. It is believed both men were engaged in recent burglaries, and a man named ROWLAND threatened to inform. Both men were convicted last April for house-breaking.
GONE TO HIS REST
The death is announced of Mr. T.D. POTGIETER of Tyger Kloof, Elands Drift, in the Cradock district. The deceased had attained the ripe old age of 88 years. In common with most of the old farmers he had spent many a day on commando, and could tell stirring tales of desperate encounters and hairbreadth escapes in the Kafir wars from 1836. Companionship with men of other nationalities in the field made him friendly-disposed to all Europeans, and to the end of his days he was noted for his genial disposition towards his English neighbours.
FOUND ON THE VELD
A white man giving the name of James HARVEY was found on the veld near Krugersdorp on Friday night in a state of great exhaustion. He said he was just from England, and had been nursed at Johannesburg by a Miss THOMPSON. He was removed to the gaol, where he was seen by Dr. LESSER, and died five minutes later, apparently from typhoid fever, accelerated by exposure. He was about thirty-eight years old, dressed in a blue shirt and blue trousers, and had the appearance of a labourer. All he had on him was a [metal] watch in a celluloid case and a pair of eyeglasses.
A HORRIBLE CRIME – MOST EXTRAORDINARY CASE
Elizabeth Katrina Maria VAN AS, a farmer’s wife, and Elizabeth Katrina Maria GOUS, also a farmer’s wife, mother and daughter, were jointly charged at the last Vryburg Circuit Court with being guilty of the crime of culpable homicide, in that they on July 15th, at Matlahko, assaulted a female Kafir servant named Mietje by thrusting caustic soda into a certain part of her body, from which assault she ultimately died.
An old shepherd named Stiglang, employed on the farm, said accused sent him for the soda, and that he saw the assault committed, after which prisoners drove the girl into a dam, and caused her to be pressed under the water. The girl was naked, and after keeping her wading in the water for some little time they allowed her to go.
Dr. ROSCOE, Police Surgeon at Kimberley, stated from instructions he received he had the body of deceased dug up out of her grave on the veld. He found marked symptoms of peritonitis, from which in his opinion the girl died. He could not trace the effects of caustic soda on the parts of the body referred to. Caustic soda so applied might in an indirect way cause peritonitis.
Accused denied that they had ever assaulted the girl.
The prisoner VAN AS said that when the girl first came to her she was naked and in a starving and miserable condition. She took her home to Takfontein, washed and clothed her. When she was cured she took the girl to the Magistrate at Taunga, when she was told that she could take her into service, but that she would have to give her up if her parents came for her. The girl was peculiar. She would not wear clothes and declined to work.
Elizabeth GOUS also gave an emphatic denial to the allegations of the shepherd, and stated that they had washed and carefully looed after the girl during her illness.
His Lordship sentenced prisoners to six months’ imprisonment without hard labour.
On the jury finding them guilty of assault with intent, a pathetic scene took place on the removal of the prisoners from the precincts of the court. The younger woman wept bitterly before her husband and over her little child, whom she passionately kissed in parting from her.
Saturday 6 November 1897
THRASHED TO DEATH
Cornelius VORSTER, of Dwaarsbank near Colesberg, who trashed a native servant, who died a few days after, appeared before the Magistrate on Tuesday and is now out on bail for £200.
A SERGEANT’S FATE
Sergeant TOMLIN, a steady Durban Borough police officer, was found drowned in the Bay. Sergeant TOMLIN was last seen shortly before midnight on the wharf on duty, and his unaccountable disappearance caused considerable excitement in the neighbourhood. It is surmised deceased stumbled over a mooring ring whilst perambulating the wharf and fell into the water.
A sad accident occurred at Bloemfontein on some ground belonging to the railway. It appears that the only child of Mr. CLARKSON, a bright little fellow of three years of age, was playing among some deal which were stacked near his father’s residence when by some means or other the stack gave way and some of the timber fell on the little chap and killed him. Death was instantaneous.
A TRAFALGAR HERO
Complaints are being made by the Cape Mercury of the disgraceful condition of the old burial ground in Edward Street, Kingwilliamstown. After referring to the state of the ground, the Mercury says:- One of the heroes of Trafalgar sleeps his last sleep at the old ground. A large square slab of slate, once upright, but now leaning forwards at an acute angle to the ground and so surrounded by weeds and rank grass that it can scarcely be deciphered, testifies to the memory of “John MACKINTOSH Esq., 1st Lieutenant, Royal Marines, in the Battle of Trafalgar, and Paymaster of the 6th Regiment of Foot, born 20th April 1786, died 6th November 1850 at Kingwilliamstown, Kaffraria.”
HOW WE LIVE AND DIE – CITY BIRTHS AND DEATHS
THE ILLEGITIMATE OFFSPRING
The Returns of the Deputy Registrar of Births and Deaths for this Division always furnish interesting facts as to how the Grahamstown population is increased by births and decreased by deaths month by month. It is satisfactory to note from the Returns for October that the Births exceeded the Deaths by 25.
There were 28 legitimate white children born, of which number 15 were female and 13 males, while 11 coloured children saw the light.
3 illegitimate white children were born, and they were all girls, while 13 illegitimate coloured children, 9 males and 4 females, came to life.
Altogether there were 28 males and 27 females and the grand total was 55
The large proportion of coloured illegitimates is easily explained by the fact that the offspring of natives married according to Native Custom are treated as illegitimates.
Turning to the burials, we find that there were 10 for the month to whites and 20 coloured: 3 white babies died, one from whooping cough, another from phthisis and a third from developmental defects and degeneration. The white deaths over 5 years of age were caused by 1 disease due to specific organism, 1 by [....] mesenterica, 1 by constitutional disease, 1 by disease of the circulatory system, 2 by disease of the respiratory system and 1 by disease of the urinary system. 10 native babies and 10 adults died from various causes.
COL. CHARD’S DEATH
DEFENCE OF RORKE’S DRIFT – HOW THE V.C.WAS WON
The news of the death of Colonel CHARD, the hero of Rorke’s Drift, comes as a shock. He was born on the 24th December 1847, and was thus in his 50th year. His death recalls to mind his grand defence of Rorke’s Drift against enormous odds after the massacre of Isandwhala. He was left in charge of the Commissariat post and, an attack being imminent, a barricade was hastily thrown up under his direction, the men using for this purpose a number of bags, biscuit tins and other matters belonging to the commissariat stores, being part of the time under fire. The attack was made soon after dark by at least 3,000 Zulus and the fight was kept up during the greater part of the night. The Zulus got inside the barricade six times, and were as often driven out at the point of the bayonet. In the meantime another body of Zulu troops passed to the rear of the miliray hospital and set fire to it. At dawn the attacking force withdrew, for Lord CHELMSFORD’s column was then seen approaching, and was enthusiastically hailed by the gallant defenders. Three hundred and fifty-one dead Zulus were counted near the entrenchment, and the number killed since that attack was estimated at 1,000. The defenders of Rorke’s Drift were undoubtedly the means of saving Greytown and Helpmekaar, and also of securing time for effecting a retreat with the main columns. Lieutenant CHARD left Rorke’s Drift sick with fever on February 17th for Ladysmith, where he was hospitably entertained at the house of Dr. Hyde Allen PARK. He left Ladysmith for the front on April 27, rejoined the 5th company of the Royal Engineers at Landsman’s Drift on April 29, and was present at the Battle of Ulundi. On returning to St.Paul’s he was presented with the Victoria Cross by Sir Garnet WOLSELEY. Soon afterwards he was ordered home. Arriving at Portsmouth October 27 1879 he was met by a telegram from Her Majesty, and shortly afterwards he proceeded to Balmoral, where he was graciously received by the Queen. For his services he was advanced to the rank of Major.
THE MAGISTRATE’S FALL – SUED FOR DIVORCE
In the Supreme Court on November 1st, the divorce case TRUTER vs TRUTER was heard, in which the wife claimed a divorce on the ground of her husband’s misconduct.
The plaintiff stated that they were married in 1871 and lived at Capetown till 1872, when the husband went to Kimberley, first as Magistrate’s clerk and then as Magistrate. Six children of the marriage were alive in 1888. Her husband went to England, and after his return to Capetown the wife heard of his misbehaviour with a young woman named Louise BROWN. He denied the allegations, but confirmation was forthcoming, and he went to live in a boarding house in Rosalind Street, in which Miss BROWN was living. In 1890 the husband went to Kimberley, and plaintiff followed. He wanted her to go back, but she refused. A deed of separation was signed, defendant agreeing to pay her £10 a month, but she got money with difficulty. In 1891 he returned to Capetown and asked her to pay some of his debts, and he acknowledged the girl BROWN had a child, of which he was the father. He afterwards went to Australia, and she had not seen him since.
Norah PATERSON spoke to having seen defendant and BROWN together in the latter’s bedroom in a Rosalind Street boarding house while BROWN was half dressed.
The Court granted a decree of divorce, giving the wife custody of the minor children and £10 per month maintenance.
Tuesday 9 November 1897
KOWIE RAILWAY COMPANY LTD. – SPECIAL TRAIN
Leaves Grahamstown at 6:30 tomorrow morning
In connection with Mr. BEZANT’s funeral
Single Fare for Double Journey
DEATH OF MR. BEZANT
A private wire from Port Alfred dated Monday 6.5pm conveys the sad news that Mr. C.A. BEZANT, one of the leading citizens of the Kowie, and well known throughout the district, died yesterday afternoon. Mr. BEZANT, who was well and favourably known in connection with his Auctioneering and General Business, has suffered a long and painful illness, but expired peacefully yesterday. The funeral will take place on Wednesday morning (tomorrow) and the Kowie Railway Company has made special arrangements for friends from Grahamstown to attend. A “special” will leave here at 6:30 am, returning at 12 noon.
Thursday 11 November 1897
MARRIED at St.Patrick’s R.C. Cathedral, Grahamstown, on Monday 8th November, by the Rev. Father O’Rourke, Mr. Max N. KINDT, formerly of Lűbeck, Germany, to Miss Mary COLCLOUGH of Westmeath, Ireland.
DIED at Port Alfred on the 8th November 1897, Charles Augustine BEZANT, in his 45th year. Deeply regretted.
DEATH OF A CENTENARIAN
A Kimberley paper mentions that on the 25th October last Mrs. Romana SCHEFFERS breathed her last, having attained the ripe old age of 103 years. She was buried from the residence of her son-in-law, Rajap JACOBS, on the 25th October, and her remains were followed to their last resting place by a large concourse of mourners. The deceased was born at Constantia, Cape Colony, in September 1794, on the farm of the CLOETEs, Mr. John CLOETE Sen. then being the proprietor, and the father and mother of the deceased being slaves, who were eventually manumitted in the year 1834. The deceased leaves a family of 12 children, four of whom are married (two sons and two daughters) and 36 grandchildren, and several great grandchildren.
Saturday 13 November 1897
DIED at Grahamstown, Nov 13th 1897, Obadiah PALMER, aged 71 years and 8 months. At Rest.
The funeral of the above will leave his late residence, Grey Street, tomorrow (Sunday) afternoon at 3 o’clock. Friends respectfully invited to attend.
DIED at Grahamstown, Nov 13th 1897, Rose, beloved wife of William DIGGENDEN. R.I.P.
The funeral of the above will leave her late residence, Bathurst-st, tomorrow (Sunday) afternoon at 4 o’clock. Friends respectfully invited to attend.
Tuesday 16 November 1897
AN OFFICER KILLED
Lieutenant THORP, of the 9th Lancers, left Ladysmith the other day to ride to Colenso on a bicycle. Some hours later he was found insensible on a steep hill nine miles out, the bicycle being smashed. He died from his injuries the following morning.
At Bloemfontein on Thursday Charles PHILLIPS, a well-known butcher, attempted to commit suicide by cutting his throat. Dr. RAMSBOTTOM was immediately called, and it is hoped he will recover, although he is in a very precarious condition. Mr. PHILLIPS has resided in Bloemfontein for over thirty years and was always a hard-working and conscientious man. It is difficult to account for the rash act.
[See issue of 20 November]
A TEACHER’S SUDDEN DEATH
The Meth. Churchman reports the sudden death of Miss M.A. RUDASI, mistress of the Fort Beaufort Wesleyan Native Day School, which position she occupied for many years with great credit, gaining the esteem of her scholars and of those associated with her in the work to which she gave her life. She had asked for food, it being lunch time, but before it could be brought she fell back and expired. The cause of death, it is supposed, was dropsy. She was a native of Healdtown.
Thursday 18 November 1897
MURDERED IN GAOL
On Tuesday week a tragic occurrence took place in the Colesberg gaol. It appears that one Abraham RENSBURG had been suffering from pneumonia, and was convalescent in the hospital of the gaol. There was also a Kafir boy names Piet in gaol under the charge of stock theft waiting his trial. The boy had been voluntarily attending Abraham during his sickness. As there was no other prisoner available on Monday night he was put in the same room to sleep with Abraham, in order to attend to his needs. During the night the deceased was evidently in some pain, and got up and walked about. This seemed to arouse the animosity of the prisoner (Piet) who took off his belt and strangled him. In the morning Abraham was quite dead. On Wednesday the prisoner was brought before the magistrate. He admitted having killed the man, and desired that sentence should be passed upon him. To all appearance (says the Advertiser) the man was in a sound state of mind, though after the terrible crime was committed the District Surgeon seemed to have his doubts about him.
Saturday 20 November 1897
BIRTH on the 19th inst, the wife of Mr. Charles HOPE of a son (Adrian Alexander)
MARRIED on the 26th Oct., at the Parish Church, Gillingham, Kent, by the Rev. C. De Carteret, Vicar of St.Paul’s, Lambeth Road, assisted by the Rev. W. Robins DD, Vicar of the Parish, Lionel Mabbott, son of the late Lionel Mabbott WOODWARD and Mrs. WOODWARD, of 14 Millfield, Folkestone, to Kathleen Tarifa, younger daughter of Lt.Col. F.F. GIBBONS, late Devonshire Regt., and granddaughter of the late John HAYTON, of Grahamstown.
The man Charles PHILLIPS, who cut his throat last Friday at Bloemfontein, has succumbed to loss of blood. Much sympathy is felt for his wife and children. PHILLIPS was always a hard-working, sober man, and the fact of his taking his own life must come as a surprise to many. He is said to be owed £3,000, which he could not get in, and to owe £2,000, for which his creditors were pushing him.
An elderly man named Michael TAUSEND, a well-known resident of Beaconsfield, committed suicide on Tuesday morning by shooting himself through the breast with a revolver. Deceased had recently been in monetary difficulties. He formerly carried on business as a carpenter and builder in Kimberley. Deceased was married, his wife being the first to discover the sad affair, as in drawing up the blinds in the morning she saw the body of her husband lying on the verandah.
[Transcriber’s note: He is here described as elderly, yet his Death Notice shows that he was 49 years 4 months!!]
A GRAHAMSTOWN WILL – LATE REV. W.C. HOLDEN
The will (dated 2 September 1896) of Rev. William Clifford HOLDEN, of Grahamstown, was filed on October 30. He bequeaths to his children Jabez Newell HOLDEN, Mary Clifford BRADFIELD (born HOLDEN), William Staunton HOLDEN, and John Samuel Blake HOLDEN, the sum of £60;12s:6d each, to be paid to them out of £242:10s invested in England in the name of Elizabeth NEWELL, of which Alfred DINGLEY of Sherborne is the trustee, and which moneys belong to the testator. The rest of the estate is to be converted into money and [invested] upon mortgages or other security at the discretion of the executors, from which the interest will be paid to his wife Sarah. After the latter’s death the residue shall be divided as follows: One half equally between the children then [....] of his son Jabez Newell. Mr. Henry WOOD of Grahamstown and Mr. J. Samuel Blake HOLDEN are appointed executors.
Tuesday 23 November 1897
KILLED AT SEA
News has been received at Durban from Tenerife by private cable that L.J. WILSON, late member of the Durban Town Council, and proprietor of the Criterion Hotel, has been killed on board the ‘Inchanga’ by a sea which broke over the vessel.
DEATH OF A MATRIARCH
At Pretoria on Friday the funeral took place of Mrs. BOTHA, who died at the age of 73. She was a daughter of Piet MARITZ, founder of Maritzburg, and took part in the Battle of Blaauwkrantz in Natal when only a girl of 14 years. She was born in Graaffreinet and trekked with the earliest Boers, eventually settling in Potchefstroom in 1852.
WHAT’S IN A NAME?
What’s in a name? (asks a Kimberley paper). Much depends on a name, as Mr. Isaac STONE can vouch. That gentleman, after a brief visit to the Diamond Fields, was returning to the Rand recently with his wife when a well-known Kimberley resident asked him to take charge of his daughter on the journey. Mr. STONE consented, and after the father of the young lady had seen his daughter on at the Kimberley station he proceeded to the Post Office and despatched the following telegram to Johannesburg: “____ left with the Stones this afternoon”. Whether this telegram arouse suspicion or not, it is not quite clear, but certain it is that Mr. and Mrs. STONE, together with other passengers by the same train, underwent a rigorous search at the Transvaal end, the supposition being that the officials were engaged in an unsuccessful search for “the stones” referred to. Mr. STONE considers that had his name been Smith, Jones or Robinson he would have been allowed to pass in the ordinary way.
Thursday 25 November 1897
BIRTH at Graaffreinet on Monday Nov 22, the wife of Kenneth R. STEWART A.R.M. of a son.
MARRIAGE OF AN EDITOR
It is with great pleasure that we (E.P. Herald) chronicle the marriage of Mr. James Beal KEMSLEY, editor of our esteemed contemporary, the P.E. Telegraph, a son of Mr. James KEMSLEY, proprietor of that paper, with Miss Kate A. DAWES, daughter of the Rev. Dr. DAWES MA DD, British Chaplain at Corfu. The wedding was held yesterday at Uitenhage in the Church of St.Agnes. The clergyman officiating was the Rev. Mr. JACKS, assisted by the Rev. Dr. WIRMAN.
DROWNED AT QUEENSTOWN
A very sad accident occurred at Queenstown on Sunday morning last. Mr. MARTIN, a fine young, athletic fellow, employed in the Railways Parcels Office, went to have a bathe in the Komani. He was a fair swimmer, but must have been seized with cramp in the bathing “hole”. Some 20 bathers were in the water and on the banks, but a panic appears to have seized them, with the exception of one young fellow named LESTER, who unfortunately is an indifferent swimmer. LESTER pluckily went to the rescue, and MARTIN, in hi struggles, seized him by the waist, and dragged him down. LESTER managed to free himself, but was brought to the bank in an unconscious condition, and it was some time before he was out of danger. Poor MARTIN’s body (says the News) was recovered, and every endeavour made to restore consciousness, but without avail. The deceased had only been a short time in the Colony.
Saturday 27 November 1897
DIED at Salisbury, Mashonaland, on Nov 24th 1897, William George HILL, third son of Mr. and Mrs. Warwick HILL, of this city, aged 32 years.
AN OLD GRAHAMSTONIAN
The news comes to hand by last mail of the death in San Francisco of Mr. Frederick James MILLS, only remaining son of the late James MILLS Esq, of Brandeston Hall, Suffolk, England, aged 72 years 9 months and 4 days.
Tuesday 30 November 1897
A KIMBERLEY TRAGEDY
THE CANDLE FELL OVER – CHILD BURNT TO DEATH
On Friday night a small house in Crossmann Road, Kimberley, tenanted by Mr. HODGSON, a carpenter employed at De Beers’ workshops, was the scene of a destructive fire, unfortunately attended with loss of life.
From the scanty particulars available last evening it appears that Mr. and Mrs. HODGSON were seated on their stoop about half past nine. They have a family of five children, four of whom were in Kimberley, and two of these, a boy named Edward, aged seven, and his brother two or three years older, went to bed about nine o’clock. At that time a lamp was left burning on the dining-room table, and one of the children informed an Advertiser reporter that he believed his sister had removed this lamp and substituted a candle. It is supposed that the candle fell over, and set fire to some articles of furniture.
The first to discover the fire appears to have been the older boy, who was awakened, he says, by smoke and heat. The parents heard nothing to excite their suspicions, this being due to the fact that they were some distance away from the burning room.
The building was of wood and iron and the fire spread with almost unbelievable quickness, that is practically invariable in such cases. In a few moments, before the startled parents could do anything, the place was like an oven. The alarm was given at once, and a passing constable took the news quickly to the fire station. The brigade, under Superintendent POPE, was promptly on the scene.
In the meantime, however, a tragedy had occurred in the bedroom where the two boys were. The elder boy, as soon as he perceived what was the matter, ran to his little brother, roused him, and took him by the hand to lead him to safety. This unhappily, through no fault of his own, he failed to do. A Kafir boy came to the window of the bedroom to get the children through that way. He pulled the older boy through first, and in so doing separated him from his brother. The poor little fellow fell back into the blazing room, and it was found to be impossible to get near him.
The building fell in with a crash very soon after the brigade arrived, and it was remarkable that the firemen were able to save the adjacent buildings, so fierce were the flames, and so easily combustible did the buildings in question appear to be.
The charred remains of poor little Edward HODGSON were found in the building and removed in a bag to the mortuary, to await the customary magisterial inquiry.