Search this wonderful list of over 500 Voters from the 1928 who resided in the Klerksdorp area. This database provides full names, addresses and occupations of voters who qualified to vote.
From bank clerks, boere, miners, teachers, railway officials and speculators, we have them here. Below is a list of surnames that can be found in this database.
Ackerman, Ackermann, Alant, Annandale, Aspeling, Badenhorst, Beckley, Beetge, Benadie,
Bergman, Beukus, Bezuidenhourt, Bezuidenhout, Blom, Blomkamp, Bloom, Boltman, Bolton,
Bond, Boshoff, Bosman, Botha, Bothma, Braude, Breedt, Brink, Brits, Broderyk, Bronkhorst,
Brown, Bruckmann, Buissine, Burger, Burns, Buys, Cameron, Cawood, Celliers, Chambers,
Christian, Claase, Clemitson, Clinton, Coetzee, Cohen, Colyn, Combrinck, Cooks, Cordier,
Cowan, Cox, Davidtz, De Beer, De Bruyn, De Klerk, De Kock, De Koker, De Korte, De Wet,
Deane, Delaport, Delport, Dix, Dove, Dreyer, Driver, Du Bruin, Du Plessis, Du Plooy, Du
Preez, Du Toit, Dyason, Elliott, Ellison, Els, Engelbrecht, Erasmus, Ernst, Esterhuizen,
Evain, Evans, Favard, Fenwick, Ferreira, Fourie, Freeman, Fullard, Gericke, Gordon,
Gravell, Greef, Greyling, Griesel, Grobbelaar, Grobler, Groenewald, Halgryn, Halkerston,
Haman, Hamilton, Harmzen, Hart, Havenga, Haywood-May, Heenop, Herberden, Hern, Hesketh,
Hills, Hockey, Hoffland, Holland, Horan, Horwitz, Hunter, Jacobs, Janneke, Janse, Janse
Van Rensburg, Jansen, Johnson, Jonker, Jooste, Jordaan, Joubert, Jowell, Kaminer, Kieser,
Klue, Knight, Koen, Kotze, Kotzee, Kriel, Kropman, Kruger, Kuhn, Labuschagne, Laffens,
Lambard, Le George, Le Grange, Le Roux, Lemmer, Levin, Levy, Lewis, Liebenberg, Lindeque,
Lodewyek, Loggenberg, Lombaard, Lombard, Loubser, Lourens, Louw, Lubbe, Lucas, Ludick,
Maartens, Maartins, Macklin, Malan, Marais, Maree, Marx, Matthews, Mcdonald, Meeding,
Meintjes, Mendelsohn, Meyer, Moir, Morris, Morrison, Myburg, Myburgh, Nagel, Nel, Neser,
Nicoll, Nienaber, Nieuwenhuis, Nightingale, Nortje, O’reilly, Oberholzer, Olivier,
Oosthuizen, Opperman, Page, Palm, Panley, Parkhill, Paterson, Pawson, Peacock, Penn,
Phaal, Plant, Potgieter, Pretorius, Prinsloo, Prynne, Randall, Reneke, Revill, Reyneke,
Richardson, Roach, Robinson, Roesch, Roodt, Roos, Rootman, Rossouw, Rousseau, Roux, Rowe,
Ryce, Saaiman, Schaiowitz, Schapow, Schoeman, Seyffert, Shapcote, Sharpley, Shaw, Shearer,
Simpson, Smit, Smith, Smook, Snyders, Solomon, Staddon, Stapelberg, Starfield, Starr,
Steel, Steinberg, Sterley, Stevn, Stewart, Steyn, Stiles, Stopforth, Storm, Strauss,
Strydom, Surname, Swan, Swanepoel, Swart, Taylor, Teichert, Templeman, Terblanche, Tolmay,
Usher, Van Der Heever, Van Der Linde, Van Der Lith, Van Der Merwe, Van Der Schyff, Van Der
Walt, Van Der Watt, Van Der Westhuizen, Van Deventer, Van Gruene, Van Heerden, Van
Lelyveld, Van Logenberg, Van Loggenberg, Van Niekerk, Van Nispen, Van Rensburg, Van
Rooyen, Van Schalkwyk, Van Sittert, Van Staden, Van Vuuren, Van Wyk, Van Zyl, Vardy,
Venter, Vercueil, Vermeulen, Vice, Viljoen, Visagie, Visser, Viviers, Vorster, Vos,
Vosloo, Wallace, Want, Warmenhoven, Wilken, Wilkens, Willcocks, Williams, Willis, Wilsen,
Wilson, Woite, Wolfaardt, Wolmarans, Wrightson, Zaayman, Zwarts,
Search this unusual 1927 Willowmore Voters List. Over 3000 individuals listed in this farming community. Details provided are: surname, first names, title, residence, occupation, qualification to vote, employment status, employer details, race destinction, polling district and division.
The town was established in 1862. According to some, it was named after William Moore, who occupied the farm The Willows on which the town was laid out. Another source states that it was established and named by a farmer, Lehmkuhl, who combined his wife’s maiden name, Petronella Catharina Moore, with a large willow tree that stood near his house.
Below is a list of surnames to be found in this voters list.
Abrahams, Ackerman, Ackermann, Adams, Africa, Ahrens, Albert, Albrish, Allers, Altenstead, Anthony, Ash, Aspeling, Assia, Avontuur, Badenhorst, Baldie, Barkhuizen, Barkhuysen, Barnard, Barnardt, Barnett, Barry, Bashford, Basson, Beaton, Becker, Beer, Bekker, Beling, Bellardie, Bellingham, Benecke, Beneke, Bergh, Berman, Bernhardt, Berrington, Bester, Bezuidenhout, Blake, Blignaut, Bosch, Boshoff, Bosman, Botes, Botha, Bothma, Bouwer, Bowers, Brauns, Brewis, Breytenbach, Brits, Britz, Brooker, Bruce, Bruinette, Brunette, Brunsdon, Bruwer, Buckley, Burchell, Burger, Burgher, Burton, Buys, Büchner, Cairncross, Caithness, Campbell, Campher, Carelse, Catton, Cawood, Cecil, Cellarius, Chambers, Chatwind, Cilliers, Claasen, Claassen, Clarke, Classen, Coblentz, Codner, Coen, Coertze, Coetzee, Coetzer, Cohen, Colborne, Coleman, Coleske, Combrinck, Cooper, Cormack, Cornelius, Cowley, Cronin, Crouse, Crumpton, Dall, Danhauser, Davel, De Beer, De Bruin, De Goede, de Jager, De Klerk, De la Harpe, De Lange, De Leeuw, De Swardt, De Villiers, De Vos, de Vries, De Waal, De Wet, Delport, Devine, Deyce, Deysel, Deyzel, Dickson, Didericks, Didloff, Diedericks, Dill, Dithmers-Hughes, Dixon, Dorfling, Doubell, Douglas, Draai, du Pisani, Du Pisanie, Du Plessis, Du Plooy, Du Preez, Du Toit, Dumon, Dumons, Dumont, Eales, Eathoo, Eaton, Ecker, Ellis, Els, Engelbrecht, Ensor, Erasmus, Esterhuizen, Eyre, Ezekowitz, Featherstone, Ferendal, Ferreira, Finn, Fisher, Fitch, Fivaz, Fortuin, Fouche, Fourie, Frank, Fraser, Freedman, Friend, Friends, Gavin, Geard, Geldenhuis, Geldenhuys, Gellman, George, Gerber, Gerdener, Gericke, Gibbs, Gillespie, Glago, Goedhals, Golden, Goldman, Goss, Gough, Gous, Gouws, Greef, Greeff, Green, Greenwood, Groenewald, Grootboom, Grundlingh, Haarhoff, Haggard, Hall, Hanekom, Hartman, Hashe, Havenga, Hayes, Hayward, Heese, Helm, Hemens, Hendriks, Henshilwood, Henstock, Herbel, Herbst, Herselman, Heunis, Heyns, Hicken, Hinds, Hitge, Hobson, Honey, Honiball, Hooper, Horn, Horowitz, Horscroft, Horwitz, Hough, Human, Jacobs, Jamneck, Janse Van Rensburg, Jansen, Jansen Van Rensburg, Jens, Johnston, Jonck, Jonker, Jordan, Joseph, Joubert, Judelman, Kamfer, Kaplan, Karelse, Keller, Kemp, Kempen, Kerspey, Keulder, Keyser, Keyter, Kilian, Killian, King, Kirchner, Kirkman, Kirsten, Kiviet, Kleinhans, Kleu, Klewansky, Kleyn, Klopper, Klue, Kluyt, Kluyts, Knight, Knoesan, Knoesen, Koch, Koekemoer, Koen, Koertze, Komo, Komoetie, Korkee, Korkie, Korsten, Krause, Krige, Kritzinger, Krugel, Kruger, Kuhn, Kunneke, Laas, Lamb, Lamini, Lamprecht, Landman, Lane, Lategan, Lazarowitz, Le Grange, Le Roux, Lee, Leiserowitz, Lemmer, Lendoor, Lewis, Lewis-Haslemere, Linde, Lloyd, Loggenberg, Lombard, Loock, Lotter, Lourens, Louw, Lovegrove, Lowensohn, Loynes, Lucas, Ludik, Luiters, Lyons, Maart, Macdonald, Maclachlan, Maclean, Madlakana, Magawn, Magerman, Malherbe, Marais, Marcowitz, Maree, Marincowitz, Markotter, Marthinsen, Marx, Masiza, Massyn, McClune, McKay, McLeod, Mcloughlin, Meintjies, Meyer, Middleton, Miller, Mills, Minnie, Minty, Moggee, Monk, Moorcroft, Moore, Morgan, Morris, Mostert, Muller, Munro, Murray, Musikanth, Myburgh, Myles, Mynhardt, Naude, Nel, Nicol, Nkomo, Nobatana, Noeka, Noll, Nomdo, Nortier, Nortje, Nortjie, O’Donoghue, Oelofsen, Olckers, Olivier, Olls, Oosthuizen, Oosthuysen, Orton, Otto, Palmer, Park, Patel, Pedro, Perry, Petersen, Pettit, Pfister, Pickard, Piek, Pienaar, Pietersen, Pitout, Plaatjes, Potgieter, Pottas, Pretorius, Prins, Prinsloo, Proskewitz, Rabie, Rademeyer, Randell, Rankie, Rathbone, Raubenheimer, Rautenbach, Redelinghuis, Reitmuller, Renison, Rensburg, Reynecke, Reynolds, Rheeder, Rich, Richardson, Ring, Roberts, Roelofse, Roll, Rollison, Roman, Roscoe, Rossouw, Rothner, Roux, Rubidge, Rudman, Runeveld, Ryan, Saaiman, Samworth, Sayewitz, Schaap, Scheepers, Scheltema, Schiltz, Schoeman, Scholtz, Schonees, Schonken, Schoonees, Schoonraad, Schoultz, Schreiber, Schreuder, Schuin, Schutte, Scott, Senekal, September, Serfontein, Shand, Shapiro, Sharp, Shear, Sieff, Siew, Silver, Skorbinski, Slabbert, Slater, Slier, Smith, Smuts, Snyman, Socishe, Solomon, Speelman, Spies, Stander, Steffens, Stegmann, Stenhouse, Stevens, Stewart, Steyl, Steyn, Steynberg, Stidolph, Stokes, Stols, Stoltz, Stone, Strimling, Stroebel, Strumpher, Strydom, Studer, Stuurman, Swanepoel, Swart, Swarts, Swemmer, Tait, Targowsky, Taute, Taylder, Terblanche, Terblans, Theophilus, Theron, Thom, Thompson, Thomson, Thurtell, Thyse, Thysse, Tintinger, Tipper, Tiran, Topic, Toua, Trytsman, Tuck, Turck, Turner, Twaku, Valtijn, Van Aarde, Van Alphen, Van Blerk, Van Breda, Van Deempter, Van Deemter, Van der Berg, Van der Bijl, Van der Byl, Van der Hoven, van der Merwe, van der Mescht, Van der Ryst, Van der Spuy, Van der Walt, Van der Watt, van der Westhiusen, van der Westhuisen, Van der Westhuizen, Van Dyk, van Eck, Van Eyssen, Van Graan, Van Heerden, Van Huyssteen, van Jaarsveld, van Jaarsveldt, Van Loggerenberg, Van Molendorf, van Niekerk, van Rensburg, Van Rhyn, van Rooyen, Van Schalkwyk, Van Soelen, van Staden, Van Tonder, van Vuuren, Van Wijk, Van Wyk, van Zyl, Veldtman, Venter, Verasammy, Vermaak, Verwey, Viljoe, Viljoen, Visser, Vister, Vlok, Vogel, Volschenk, Vos, Vosloo, Vrey, Wabana, Wagenaar, Wagener, Wagner, Walsh, Walton, Wamsteker, Wannenberg, Ward, Warraker, Wasserman, Webster, Wehmeyer, Weinstein, Welch, Welgemoed, Welman, West, Wevers, Weyers, White, Wickham, Wiggett, Wildeman, Wilken, Willemse, Williams, Wilmot, Wilson, Windvogel, Witbooi, Woudberg, Wright, Yake, Young, Zaaiman, Zaayman, Zondag, Zondagh,
Master Builder of Cape Town
William J. Morris was born on the 11th February 1826 in Oxon, England, and was employed by the Duke of Marlborough as a game keeper when he developed pulmonary tuberculosis during the severe winter of 1856. His doctor recommended that he move to a sunnier climate.
Not long after this William was accepted, together with his wife and three children, for the Sir George Grey Immigration Scheme. In screening the prospective applicants, there were some basic requirements: good health, sober habits, industrious, good moral character, and in the habit of working for wages (as promulgated by Act No. 8 of 1857). From these regulations it would seem that a person with T.B. would certainly not have been accepted, and as the gentleman in question lived to the grand age of 90, and certainly worked industriously on arrival in the Cape (not conducive to a sickly person) the circumstances appear to dispel such a legend.
The journey to the Cape was aboard the vessel named “Edward Oliver” under the command of Master J. Baker. The ship departed from Birkenhead on 10th July 1858, and after 57 days at sea arrived in Table Bay on 5th September 1858. Little is known about the voyage excepting 14 deaths were recorded and seven births took place on board. Listed as the ships surgeon was Dr. Fred Johnson as well as trained teacher Mr. Tom Gibbs who were to care for the passenger’s health and education. It is possible that it was not a pleasant journey for the Morris family remembering that the three children Richard, Kate and William were still young and the latter being under twelve months of age.
The majority of the artisans and tradesmen had been fixed up with immediate employment, as there was a great demand for skilled and semi-skilled men for the new railway track being constructed from Cape Town to Wellington, as well as the harbour construction project in Table Bay.
Not long after Williams arrival he leased some land at the top end of Duke Road in Rondebosch, then a distant suburb of Cape Town, and very reminiscent of Wychwood Forest and his native Oxfordshire. This piece of land was developed into a market garden and the family lived in a nearby cottage.
It was whilst William J. Morris and family were living in Rondebosch that on 29 April 1862 their youngest son Benjamin Charles Morris was born and baptized in St. Paul’s Anglican Church in Rondebosch, whereby his father (William) declared his occupation as a “gardener” and place of residence as “Rouwkoop Road”, Rondebosch. Click here to search these church records.
Richard H. Morris was still a growing boy of just 8 years old. By the age of 14 years and still living in Rondebosch, he was indentured to Alexander Bain, a shipbuilder/shipwright of 17 Chiappini Street, Cape Town as an apprentice carpenter/shipwright.
Although the new suburban railway from Cape Town to Wynberg had been opened to the public in 1865, Richard was obliged to walk from Rondebosch to the North Wharf in Dock Road, Cape Town as transport was too expensive for his meager earnings. However, he was soon organized in getting a “lift” from the coachman he befriended who worked for the governor of Rustenburg House. Richard secured his free lift on the footman’s place at the rear of the coach, where he would sit in reasonable comfort for the journey which took him to the Castle. Unfortunately this mode of travel did not operate for the return journey home, nor did it operate during the winter months, so Richard just had to “jog”.
It would appear that the last train from Cape Town to Wynberg in the afternoons was scheduled for departure from the city at 5pm, but needless to say as an apprentice, Richard was still working at the shipyard. Despite the arduous circumstances of his youth, the enforced exercise proved most beneficial a few years later when he entered into competitive sport i.e. race rowing, especially as Richard was just over 5ft. tall and weighed less than 60 kilos.
During 1870, the Bain’s Shipyard was taken over by Mr. Christopher Robertson, as specialist in sailing ships and wooden masts, and as Richard was learning his trade with three other young apprentices, he was taught the art of shaping a sailing vessel’s mast with the hand spokeshave. The firm from then on was known as “Robertson & Bain” which continued operating in Dock Road, Cape Town for several decades, specializing in the supply of wooden masts for sea-going sailing ships.
Before carrying on with the life story of Richard H. Morris it is important to mention that the Anglican Church of St. Johns on the corner of Long and Waterkant Street had been built in 1856. It was at this church that during the 1860′s Richard became a choir boy and in 1872 a Sunday School Teacher.
In 1876 the Templar rowing club started in Cape Town where Richard and his brother were both members and enthusiastic oarsmen.
The christening of the personally constructed fast rowing boat by Richard came as no surprise by the owners of Robertson and Bain. The name of the boat was called the “Alpha”.
In 1882 the construction of a row of cottages built by Wm. J. Morris and his brother Richard (father & son) was started in Upper Church and Longmarket Streets and were to be called “Lorne Cottages” in honour of the Lorne Rowing Club which was started in Cape Town in 1875 and named after the Scottish Firth near Island of Mull of Kintyre.
On Saturday 6th June 1885 Richard married Helen Ann Lyell in St. John’s church. The newly married couple went that day to “Lorne Cottages” to make their permanent home and raise a family.
Helen was in fact a little girl of ten years old when she first encountered Richard. That was when he was in his twenties and he was late for work and was running along the road when he accidentally knocked over a little girl. He tried to console her, and from this time onwards a very special friendship developed.
It was in the same church that Richard’s younger brother William John married Matilda Jane Altree on 25th August 1886 and a younger brother married in St. Paul’s in Rondebosch on 14th September 1887. It is interesting to note that St. John’s Church was deconsecrated after the last evening service in June 1970 as the ground and building was sold, after much pressure from business interests, for an astronomical amount, and the church was completely demolished to make way for the present modern commercial complex known as “St. Johns Place”. Click here to search these church records.
In 1884 Richard Morris as cox and his brother of the “Templar Club” had their first win as champions winning both “Maiden Oarsmen” and “Championship of Table Bay” events.
In June 1878 Richard H. Morris went into partnership with friend & neighbour Chas. Algar from Rondebosch, who had known the Morris family for quite some time. Little known to Chas was that Richard was to be the future brother-in-law to his sister Bertha Algar.
The first workshops of Algar and Morris were at 39 Shortmarket Street, Cape Town. (between Long and Loop Street ). But misfortune was the cause of the break-up of the working partnerships as the 30-year-old Chas Algar died suddenly on 4th October 1883.
Banking institutions were now playing a major role in the economy of the country and in 1883 Richard Morris landed the contract to build the Standard Bank in Adderley Street for the amount of £32,000 – the two storied building was designed in neo-classical style by Charles Freeman. Two additional floors were added on by Morris in 1921.
Richard made a repeat performance in May 1885 wining the 2 mile race in 15 minutes and 55 seconds.
March 1886 saw the arrival of Richard and his wife Helen’s daughter Kate as well as Richard wining the “Champion of Table Bay” for the third consecutive year.
Eleven years after the death of Chas Algar, Richard Morris secured the construction contract for the new City Club in Queen Victoria Street for a sum of £22,000.
Between the years of 1888 and 1895 Helen Morris gave birth to Edith, Bertha and William Henry Morris, the only son to Richard.
By 1896 Richard H. Morris had become known as a builder of distinguished quality and workmanship and the fame of R.H. Morris had spread. Herbert Baker had met Richard on several occasions and took immediately to this man who built with such fine quality and precision. It was then that R.H. Morris secured the prestige contract for the restoration of “Groote Schuur”, after the building had been extensively destroyed by fire.
Richard H. Morris by 1899 had workshops in both 52 Rose Street and 173 Longmarket Street. In 1902 Frank Lardner joined the staff of R.H. Morris and in 1911 he became the manager.
Father, William James Morris, died at the old age of ninety years on 22 March 1915. In 1919 the company of R. H. Morris (Pty) Ltd was officially formed to cope with the new lumber contract in Knysna. It was from this time onwards that R.H. Morris was renowned throughout Southern Africa for the excellent workmanship and quality in carpentry all starting from old Mr. Morris himself. School desks, church pews and altars were manufactured in their joinery shop for years to come. The items were delivered as far away as Botswana, Rhodesia, Zambia and Mozambique. Along with the desk and school equipment Morris ink wells and stands were also produced.
The Morris workshop also manufactured one of the very few original gramophones that were ever produced in South Africa and which was called a “melophone”. Many of these items can be seen on display in the Educational Museum in Aliwal Road, Wynberg today.
Sadness unfortunately halted joy when Richard and Helen Morris celebrated their Golden Wedding Anniversary on 6th June 1935 and then on 24 July Helen tragically passed away at home as well as Bertha, wife of Benjamin Morris, on the 6th December.
Richard at the age of 83 years old in 1936 retired from the construction industry and handed the reigns over to Frank Lardner. Frank ran the company until 1942 when he passed away. The business was then handed over to a young civil engineer, Clifford Harris. The existing premises of Rose and Longmarket Street were finally vacated when the furniture workshops and Building /Civil Engineering were consolidated and new premises built in Ndabeni.
In April 1949 Richard Henry Morris succumbed to natural causes and passed away at the age of 95 years and 5 months.
This was certainly not the end of an era for R.H. Morris Pty Ltd – as in 1952 the company was given financial backing for the New Municipal Market at Epping in Cape Town by the British Engineering giant Humphreys. The firm is no longer associated with the family. Later the company was taken over by the Fowler Group and is now in the hands of Group Five Construction who have retained the image of the name in perpetuating the fine record of the founder Richard Henry Morris.
Many of the other buildings in Cape Town which were either completed by or alterations were performed on, include the University of Cape Town, Diocesan College in Rondebosch, Music School at U.C.T. as well as many Sir Herbert Baker buildings.
In 1995 when much of this research was done I managed to find a second “melophone” and an original “Morris” desk for sale which ex-Managing Director Frank Wright was extremely grateful for me finding these wonderful company artifacts. Shortly before the final documents were found I also located the grand nephew of R.H. Morris who very kindly gave me the medal won by Richard in the “Championship of Table Bay”. This is now on display in the boardroom of Group Five Construction in Plum Park, Plumstead in the Cape.
Authors: Heather MacAlister and H.W Haddon
A large number of beauty contests have been held in South Africa since 1910. The most important being those in which the winners are entered in overseas contests.
In 1910, a beauty pageant was held in Cape Town to celebrate the newly formed Union of South Africa. Each province sent a representative that was picked by a prominent man in her region.
The first national beauty contest was organised by the magazine Stage Cinema in 1918. Three women were chosen to star in films based on Rider Haggard's books.
Edna JOYCE was chosen to play the Queen of Sheba in King Solomon's Mines. Mabel MAY and Elise HAMILTON were chosen to play twin sisters in Allan Quatermain.
Many contests held after World War I were mainly fund-raising efforts, often for the Governor-General's fund. In 1925 Mavis ALEXANDER won the Cape Argus Queen of the Gala competition.
The first woman to carry the Miss South Africa title, unofficially, was Winnie COMYNS of Cape Town, who won a national contest organised by the South African Lady's Pictorial in 1926. Blanca Borckenhagen was Queen of the Orange Free State; Ethel Jagger, Queen of the Cape, Gyn Hathorn, Queen of Natal, and Blanca van der Hoven, Queen of the Transvaal.
In 1927, the Cape Town city council banned beauty contest as they felt that they are undignified and not for the good of the city.
In 1930 Molly LAMONT, a dancing teacher from Scottburgh, won the Outspan Film Candidate competition. Her prize was a holiday in England and a film test at Elstree Studios. She went on to act in more than 50 films in England and the USA.
In 1938, the Sunday Express held a Marlene Dietrich look-alike national contest, which was won by Thelma Fairlie of Kensington, Johannesburg. In 1963, Thelma met Marlene Dietrich during her visit to South Africa.
During the late 1930s and early 1940s, there were many Wool Queen contests across the country. Local winners went on to regional and provincial contests, from which one girl would become the overall winner. However, the final stage was never reached. Doreen O'Neill was Midlands Wool Queen in 1939, but only four more regional queens were chosen and when World War II broke out, the contest was abandoned.
After the war, the Wool Board partnered with Photo News magazine and Metro Goldwyn Meyer Films to create a national Meet the Stars contest. The winner was to be known as Miss South Africa 1948. Forty-nine finalists spent a week in Johannesburg. General SMUTS, then Prime Minister, crowned Avelyn MACASKILL of Bloemfontein as winner at the Johannesburg City Hall. Her prize included a trip to Hollywood as the guest of MGM, visits to New York, Holland, London, Paris and Canada, and a diamond ring.
A few days before Avelyn's crowning, Stage & Cinema ran a readers' contest which gave the winner an entry in Universal International's Hollywood Beauty Contest. June FULTON of Durban won. Her prize included a six-month film contract and being photographed with film stars.
In 1944 Avelyn MaCASKILL won a beauty pageant. In 1949, Wynona CHEYNEY won a beauty pageant and reigned from 1949 to 1951.
Before the 1950s, most of the larger contests were organised by magazines such as Stage & Cinema, South Africa Pictorial and Outspan, or by newspapers, often in partnership with African Consolidated Theatres. Women submitted a photo and from these photos finalists would be chosen and published. The readers would vote for their favourite.
Beauty contests were racially segretated until the late 1970s. In the 1950s, Drum magazine, aimed at black readers, started running model and beauty contests. Later on a Miss Black South Africa pageant was held. Other popular contests were organised by the Ellerines furniture chain, and football associations.
In 1952, Outspan magazine and African Consolidated Theatres started a contest to find an entrant for the first Miss Universe pageant that year. Catherine HIGGINS, a short-hand typist from Johannesburg, wanted to become an actress. She entered the contest and won, taking her to Long Beach, California, where she was placed 7th and voted by the other contestants as Miss Friendly Spirit.
In 1956, Piet BEUKES, editor of Die Landstem, obtained the right to send a South African representative to the Miss World pageant in London. In 1960, the Miss Universe pageant in Miami Beach, Florida, and the Miss International Beauty pageant in Long Beach, California, also gave Die Landstem the right to enter a South African representative. Die Landstem, in partnership with the Sunday Times, arranged the contests for the Miss World entrant. The Sunday Express was in the partnership to choose the entrant for Miss Universe.
Beauty competitions were held in Margate where Miss Hibiscus was chosen and entered in the Miss Universe pageant. The Miss Hibiscus organisers re-named their title to Miss Protea in 1968.
The first official Miss South Africa contest was held in 1956. This was after the Afrikaans newspaper, Die Landstem, acquired the rights to enter someone in the Miss World pageant in London. Together with the Sunday Times, a South African English newspaper, they organised the first official Miss South Africa contest. It wasn't a pageant yet as entrants only sent in their photos and the newspaper readers voted for their favourites. The finalists' photos were again published and readers selected Miss South Africa. There was no crowning ceremony.
In 1964 and 1965, the selection system changed. The finalists and the winner were selected by the newspapers' editorial staff. In 1966 and 1967 the finalists were still selected by the newspapers, but the winners were selected by the readers.
In 1968, Die Landstem closed down and the Sunday Times took over the contest, bringing in another Afrikaans newspaper, Dagbreek. The selection process in 1968 still saw the finalists selected from photos but the winner was selected by a panel of celebrity judges meeting in Johannesburg.
The selection process changed again in 1970. Regional pageants were held and the regional winners appeared before celebrity judges in Johannesburg. The winner and runner-up were announced at a cocktail party in Johannesburg, after being announced in the newspapers. In 1972, the Miss South Africa contest became a pageant and Stephanie REINECKE was crowned in front of a live audience in the Johannesburg City Hall.
Regional pageants were not held in 1975. The finalists were selected after nationwide auditions. This system remained in place until 1994.
In 1978, the Miss South Africa pageant was opened to all races.
In 1994, Doreen MORRIS, a former M-Net presenter, went into partnership with Sun International to run the Miss South Africa pageant, after Rapport and the Sunday Times withdrew due to political interference from the ANC's Youth League. Sun International took full ownership of the pageant in 2000.
Beauty pageants, especially Miss South Africa, crown came with many opportunities and most of the winners made good use of them. After their reigns, many beauty queens launched busy careers, while others found domestic life pleasing. Here we take a look at what happened to some of them.
In October 1925, a Cape Town newspaper, the Argus, sponsored a beauty contest. Close to 800 contestants entered by sending in their photos which went on public display. On the 14 November the winner was crowned in the Tivoli Theatre in Cape Town.
Mavis ALEXANDER, a school teacher from Montagu won. Her prizes included a cheque for 25 guineas, theatre seats, a camera, a hat, a dress, silk stockings, shoes, an umbrella, lunch for six people for a week, a perm, a one-seater sofa, a watch, dance lessons, and a photo frame for her winning photo. She was also driven around Cape Town in the car which the Prince of Wales had used in Cape Town shortly before the contest.
Mavis later moved to the Strand, where her mother lived. She went back to teaching and spent 26 years teaching at Somerset West Primary. After her mother's death in 1950, she married a life-long friend, Bertie MITTEN. A few years later Bertie passed away. Mavis became involved in charity work and the Methodist church in Strand. In her will she left money to the Rotarary Club. In 1994, the Rotary Anns of the Strand, erected a clock in Beach Road in her memory. A bronze plate has the following inscription: "Tyd vir vrede, time for peace, Ixesha Ngo Xola. A gift to the community from Strand Rotary Anns. In memory of Mavis Mitton. 1994
After her reign, Avelyn went to London where she attended the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art for two years. When she returned to Bloemfontein, she married businessman Jannie WESSELS and they had three children. After Jannie's death, she married Ronnie VAN REENEN. They moved to Cape Town in 1983, where they were involved with the Capab Opera Chorus and the Philharmonic Choir. In 1994, they bought an apartment in Spain 's Costa del Sol, and divide their time between Cape Town and Spain. Avelyn enjoys working in her gardens and painting in oils.
Winifred (Winnie) Nora Mary Florence COMYNS married Egmar WESEMANN, but was divorced in 1951.
After returning from her prize trip to California, June met Antony BURTON from London. They got married and had two daughters. The family lived in Portugal for 11 years, where June ran a modelling school. They moved to England, where June died of cancer in 1990. June had acting roles in The Gal Who Took the West (1949) as a dance hall girl, and in Yes Sir That's My Baby (1949) as Mrs. Koslowski.
Catherine Edwina Higgins
Catherine became a successful model in South Africa. She was known for her diamond smile, as she had a diamond embedded in one of her front teeth. She was the daughter of James Arthur HIGGINS and Christopholina Edina VAN RENSBURG (MHG reference 10845/71, her father's death notice). She had an aunt and uncle, Mr and Mrs F.C. TOWNSEND who lived at 86 Moore Street, East London, in 1952. This was her mother's sister. Catherine's uncle on her mother's side, Freddie VAN RENSBURG, was a national professional snooker and billiards champion. He passed away in 1997 at the age of 88.
Now Ingrid DE HAAST, she is a successful glass artist in Somerset West, after starting out as a potter more than 20 years ago. She attended classes in Corning, USA, as well as in Oregon. The former Miss South Africa 1953 also had a role in a Hollywood film. Ingrid was crowned in Johannesburg in May 1953. Her runner-up was Una DE BEER (Miss East London). Ingrid was Miss Salisbury, and was born in East London.
Penny Anne Coelen
Penelope Anne was born in Shepperton, Middlesex, on April 15, 1939, she lived in the Cape, in Witbank, Pretoria, Swaziland, Benoni and Estcourt before the family finally settled in Durban. When she won Miss World in 1958, it was the 8th Miss World pageant and had 22 contestants. Penny was an 18-year-old secretary. After her reign, she tried acting in Hollywood with James GARNER's help, but failed her screen test. After returning to South Africa, she married her first love, Michael REY, whom she met when she was 16. Michael was a suger-cane farmer at Umhlali, outside Durban.
They had five sons – Michael, Jean-Paul, Dominic, Nicholas and Christopher. Penny ran a beauty salon and gave lectures. She used to do promotional work, marketing and sales for American Airlines. In 1991, the ATKV awarded her a Vrou vir Vroue award for her involvement in charity and environmental work. Penny has her own clothing range, and endorsed beauty products. Her hobbies include gardening, painting, and learning languages.
In November 1974, Helen Morgan, Miss UK, was crowned Miss World. Four days later, it was discovered that she was an unmarried mother and the title was passed on to the runner-up, Anneline KRIEL (19). She was born in Witbank on 28 July 1955 to Johannes (Hannes) and Marie. Her father passed away in Pretoria in November 1997. Anneline's siblings are Renette and Ernst. Renette was married to Graham McKENZIE, an Australian cricketer.
Anneline was Joolkoningin at Tukkies. She was Miss Northern Transvaal when she won Miss South Africa. After her Miss World reign she appeared in films (she studied drama at the University of Pretoria), including Someone Like You (1978), alongside Hans STRYDOM; Kill and Kill Again (1981), alongside James RYAN, Bill FLYNN and Ken GAMPU; and Reason to Die, alongside Arnold VOSLOO. She also had a role in the TV series, Ballade van 'n Enkeling. In 1986 she acted in the play, The Marriage Go Round.
In 1976, a scandal erupted when her naked pictures appeared in the Sunday Times. Ray HILLIGEN, a bodybuilder, had taken them while Anneline was sunbathing next to his pool.
Anneline also tried her hand at singing, releasing a record, He took off my romeos, in 1981. At the age of 39, she posed for Playboy magazine, draped in the new South African flag.
When she won Miss World she was dating fellow student Jacques MALAN but the relationship did not stand the strain. A relationship with Richard LORING, the singer, followed. He recorded a song for her, called Sweet Anneline. Another short relationship followed with the wealthy Italian baron and industrialist, Rudolf PARISI. In 1979 she dated Henk PISTORIUS of Johannesburg for awhile. Anneline married three times – first to Sol KERZNER, hotel magnate, in 1980 in the Randburg magistrate's office (they divorced in 1985). On 10 October 1989 she married Philip TUCKER, a show jumper, but they divorced in 1993. They had two children, Tayla and Whitney. On 29 March 1996, she married current husband, Peter BACON (Sun International executive). They live in Cape Town where she is involved with charities such as Child Welfare and the Cancer and Heart Foundations. Her business interests include marketing her clothing range her beauty products and perfumes.
Margaret, born in Woodstock, was 15 when she was discoverd as a model by the then Rapport photographer Bernard JORDAAN. In 1978 she was crowned as Miss RSA. Later that year she won the Miss Universe pageant in Acapulco, Mexico, becoming the first African winner, and the only South African winner to date. Her mother, Dawn, lives in Table View. Her father passed away in 2000. Her sister, Sandy BRONKHORST, lives in Klerksdorp. Sandy was a finalist in the 1976 Miss South Africa pageant.
Margaret married André NEL, son of Kay, in Cape Town on 14 February 1987 at St. George's Cathedral. He is a medical researcher at the University of California in Los Angeles, where the couple have lived since 1989.
Margaret has faced some serious health issues. She had TB as a child. In 1993 she was close to death after suffering an ectopic pregnancy. In January 1995 she gave birth to Brandon. He was christened at St. George's Cathedral in 1996. Margaret had breast cancer in 1998.
She has a degree in psychology from Charleston College in South Carolina. In the early 1990s she took small roles in a TV series, a film and in theatre plays. In 1994 she published a book for aspiring beauty queens, Die wenpad vir modelle en skoonheidskoninginne, published by Human & Rousseau.
She is now a freelance journalist and TV reporter, and a member of the Hollywood Foreign Press Association. Margaret often reports for the SABC show, Top Billing. Her articles regularly appear in the You, Huisgenoot and TVPlus magazines.
Later changed her surname to FOSTER and went on to make TV documentaries.
Mitsianna (Mitzi) died in a car accident while driving her sports car in Victory Park, Johannesburg, on 18 June 1973. She was married to David Johannes FOURIE at the time (her death notice: MHG 6664/73).
She died at her home in Sandton in 1992.
Monica became a radio presenter in Durban.
Her father served in the South African Air Force. Her parents retired to Hermanus where they had a restaurant.
She married Bobby VERWEY, the pro golfer.
She was Miss Africa South 1973 and placed in the final 15. In 1976, she entered Miss RSA and came second. Afterwards she went to live in Greece and met Israeli-born Naaman SKOLNIK, a businessman. She converted to Judaism and was married in Israel. They live in Hertzelia Pituach, where Ellen is an Orthodox Jew. (see picture)
It's not everyone that hits the headlines thirty years after their moment of glory, but in the case of former Miss South Africa, Kazeka Somhlahlo (nee Ntantala) this is exactly what happened. BARBARA HOLLANDS recently caught up with her. Kazeka, of Idutywa then but now living in Amalinda, won the Miss South Africa 1970 pageant in Umtata, which was under the auspices of the South African Non-White Cultural Syndicate. Tandiswa BAM of Umtata was second. Kazeka's prize included cosmetics from Elida Gibbs, a bedroom suite, a radio display cabinet and clothing vouchers. The main prize of a trip to the USA was cancelled because the organisers ran out of money. She was a teacher in Idutywa. She endorsed Karoo Cream in magazines. In 1972 she was in a car crash near Willowvale, which left her with facial scars. Kazeka ended up marrying the social worker who was driving that night and they had two children. After marriage she taught in Alice and later worked for an insurance company before joining Zingisa Educational Project where she is still a regional co-ordinator.
In 1977, Liz was the first non-white contestant to place in the Miss South Africa pageant.
Ellen was until recently the wife of Jannie Engelbrecht , former Springbok rugby player and owner of Rust en Vrede. She was Miss Matieland 1962. In 1963 she got engaged to Jannie in Sea Point and they went on to have three children – Jean, Angeline and Judy (married to GRAAFF). They met during her student days at the University of Stellenbosch. Ellen left her studies in 1963 shortly before her wedding, to represent South Africa at the Miss Universe pageant in Miami. Ellen was Miss South West Africa, which made her an automatic finalist in the Miss South Africa contest. The Engelbrecht family was broken up recently when Jannie divorced Ellen, and a court case followed whch involved the farm Rust en Vrede.
Vera married the All Black rugby player, Alan SUTHERLAND. They have a horse stud farm, Somerset, near Mooi River. She has a rose named after her.
Wilma van der Bijl
She was a qualified pharmacist when she won the crown. She married the Greek businessman, Ari TAPANLIS, owner of a toy company. In 1995 Wilma's first child passed away two days after being born.
She married Walter WARD, a doctor, and had a stormy marriage.
Karin married show jumper Errol WUCHERPFENNIG.
She married Willie JOUBERT and they owned a nature reserve near Warmbaths for a while. Her sister, Olivia, was runner-up in Miss South Africa 1990.
Leanne married an Australian cricketer, Mike HAYSMAN.
She converted to Judaism in 1991 before marrying businessman Geoffrey RUBENSTEIN.
She owns a modelling agency in Edenvale. She is the only Miss South Africa to represent another country in the Miss World contest. In 1989, she won the Miss Germany contest as she was of German origin and still had a German passport. In 2002 she was engaged to the Springbok rugby player, James DALTON. Tat same year, a rose was named after her at the Bloemfontein Rose Show.
She married businessman Richard BARKHUIZEN and lived in Knysna.
She has a son and lives in Johannesburg.
Her grandmother was Thelma Fairlie, who was also a beauty queen. Older sister Janine BOTBYL won Miss South Africa 1988, and her sister Leanne was a finalist in 1982. Diana had a role in the horror film Howling IV and the action adventure Captive Rage. While doing a documentary in the Okavango, Diana met Chris Kruger. They were married at the Momba camp. They live in Maun in their safari business.
She has a son and lives in Cape Town. Some of her business ventures included edible underwear and marketing condoms.
Suzette Van der Merwe
She was married to Greg VOGT, but later divorced.
Amy was the first Coloured woman to wear the Miss South Africa crown. Amy married a New Zealander, businessman Leighton CURD. The couple have a son, Thomas. She is involved in educational ventures.
Jacqui was the first black woman to win Miss South Africa. She was nominated by the ANC in the elections but she declined. In 1994 Jacqui appeared in the film, A White Man in Africa, in the role of Hazel, an illiterate rural woman who has a relationship with an Australian diplomat. Today she is involved with human resources and production companies, and serves on the boards of several companies.
Basetsane was a popular beauty queen. She was born and bred in Soweto. After her reign she became a TV presenter. She went on to become a shareholder in Tswelopele, the company that produces Top Billing. She has two older sisters, Lerato and Johanna, and a younger brother, Abbey. Her parents are Philip and Beatrice. She is married to Radio Metro station manager Romeo Khumalo and has a son, Nkosinathi.
Peggy Sue Khumalo
Peggy Sue (21) was Miss South Africa 1996. Five days afer her crowning, it was discovered that she was Peggy Priscilla Erasmus (24) and had changed her name first to Peggy Priscilla Khumalo and subsequently to Nonhlanhla Peggy-Sue Khumalo, as was publised in the Government Gazette on 04 April 1996. She was born in Newcastle on 07 December 1972 to Jumaima Khumalo and James Erasmus, a coloured or white farmworker. She was raised by her white grandmother, Afrikaans-speaking Cornelia Susanna Dunn. She attended Chelmsford, a coloured school in Newcastle, and matriculated from Haythorne High School in Pietermaritzburg. Peggy caused a public outcry when she said that she would slaughter a goat and several cows if she won Miss Universe or Miss World. After establishing her own PR company she went to study further in the UK, where she is a fund manager for Investec.
Kerishnie had an honours degree and planned to open her own pharmacy. She was the first Indian woman to wear the crown. She grew up in Reservoir Hills, Durban, with her parents Amra and Joey, and two siblings. After obtaining a first class Matric, Kerishnie enrolled for a Bachelors Degree in Pharmacy, and later a Masters in Pharmacy. During her final year, her father passed away from a heart attack. He was a self-employed businessman and Kerishnie got involved in the family's business interests. In 1997, whilst practicing as a pharmacist, Kerishnie entered the Miss South Africa pageant and won. She participated in both Miss Universe and Miss World. Kerishnie is involved in many business ventures, health research, is a television presenter, producer, master of ceremonies and public speaker. She helped secure funding for the building of 12 community health clinics, and played a key role in getting the Chatsworth Youth Centre up. She is also director of her own company, KJN and Associates, a consultancy facilitating corporate social investment projects.
Now a TV presenter, businesswoman and speaker, Jo-Ann was 19 when she won Miss South Africa in 2000. She started presenting the magazine programme Pasella in the same year, and joined Top Billing in June 2005. She speaks English, Afrikaans and Xhosa. Jo-Ann was head-girl at Hottentots Holland High School in 1998. She graduated from Stellenbosch University with a B.Comm (Law) degree. In July 2002, Jo-Ann participated in the Celebrity Big Brother reality TV show to raise R2 000 000 for five children's charities. She finished in second place. She has her own communications company.
Heather has a Bachelors in Commerce from the University of Kwazulu-Natal. She became a fund manager and joined a prominent asset management firm working as an investment consultant. In 1994 she won the South Africa Junior Equitation championships. Her brother was instrumental in exposing canned lion hunting.
One of Sonia Raciti's dreams is to release her own CD. She was a member of the National Youth Choir for three years, having started singing at 13. Sonia, from Estcourt, studied for a higher diploma in education at Edgewood College of Education.
Miss South Africa 2003 was rcently marred to Jeff. Khanyisile Mbau. She was a part-time model from Pretoria. Joan speaks five languages: English, Afrikaans, Northern Sotho, Tswana, and Zulu. After completing a PR diploma, she started her own PR agency.
Claudia was a second-year top law student at the University of Pretoria when she entered the Miss South Africa pageant. She has two sisters, Anica and Nicola. Her father Irmin is an ear, nose and throat surgeon, and mom Linda looked after the family home in Pretoria East. Claudia attended Pretoria Girls High and was a finalist in a model search competition in Matric. She spent two months in Italy and finished Matric through correspondence while modelling. Claudia could not represent the country at Miss World in Sanya, China, as it was held on the same night as the Miss South Africa finals in Sun City. Her runner-up, Dhiveja Sundrun, was sent in her place.
She represented South Africa at the Miss World pageant in 2005. Dhiveja was a fifth-year University of Cape Town medical student. She lives in Gardens, Cape Town. The Miss World competition was the third pageant she'd entered. Her first one was Rapport's Miss Cape Peninsula in 2004, which gave her automatic entry into the Miss South Africa pageant. She's appeared in TV ads and fashion catalogues, and was a TV presenter. Her father Dayalan is an orthodontist and mom Veena is a former teacher.
South Africans in the Miss World pageant
Miss South Africa has done well in the Miss World pageant, with Penny (1958) and Anneline (1974) taking the top prize.
Politics got involved and from 1978 to 1991, Miss South Africa was barred from Miss World. In 1970 a non-white South African was chosen to compete in Miss World and was given the title of Miss Africa South. This continued until South Africa was expelled from Miss World after the 1977 pageant.
In 1975, Vera JOHNS was not allowed to take part in the Miss World as she did not meet the pageant's residency requirements. She had been Miss Rhodesia in 1972 and had not lived in South Africa for 5 years. Her first runner-up, Crystal Cooper, refused to enter Miss World unless she was awarded the Miss South Africa title and prizes.
The second runner-up, Rhoda Rademeyer, competed at Miss World 1975 and was finished in the top 15. In 1976, the presence of a black Miss Africa South and a white Miss South Africa, caused 9 countries to withdraw their contestants in protest against South Africa's apartheid system. In 1977 ten countries withdrew in protest against the presence of a white Miss South Africa. After 1977, Miss World organizers did not accept South African contestants until 1991, with the end of apartheid. Diana TILDEN-DAVIES represented South Africa at the 1991 Miss World contest, ending the ban.
From 1992 to 1995, and 2001, the pageant was held at Sun City, South Africa. In 2002, Vanessa CARREIRA boycotted the pageant which was held in Nigeria, in protest against the Amina Lawal affair. Claire Sabbagha, runner-up, was sent as a replacement when the pageant moved to London. This led to confusion as the Miss World organisers said that at 25, Claire was too old. Karen Lourens (19), Miss Junior Africa, of Roodepoort, was also sent in as a replacement but after two days she was sent home without being allowed to participate.
1957: Adele KRUGER, third
1958: Penelope Anne COELEN won the title
1959: Moya MEAKER, semi-finalist
1960: Denise MUIR, third
1961: Yvonne Brenda HULLEY, semi-finalist
1962: Yvonne Maryann FICKER, fourth
1963: Louise CROUS
1964: Vedra Karamitas
1965: Carrol Adele Davis
1966: Joan (Johanna) CARTER, semi-finalist
1967: Disa DUIVESTEIN, semi-finalist
1968: Mitsianna (Mitzi) Stander
1969: Linda Meryl COLLET, sixth
1970: Pearl Gladys JANSEN (Miss Africa South), second, and Jillian Elizabeth JESSUP (Miss South Africa) fifth
1971: Monica FAIRALL, semi-finalist, and Gaily Ryan (Miss Africa South)
1972: Stephanie Elizabeth REINECKE, semi-finalist, and Cynthia Shange (Miss Africa South)
1973: Shelley LATHAM (Miss South Africa), fifth, and Ellen PETERS (Miss Africa South), semi-finalist
1974: Anneline KRIEL won the tile, and Evelyn Peggy WILLIAMS (Miss Africa South), semi-finalist
1975: Rhoda RADEMEYER, semi-finalist, and Lydia Gloria Johnstone (Miss Africa South)
1976: Veronica Rozette Kuki Matsepe (Miss Africa South) and Lynn Massyn
1977: Vanessa Wannenburg (Miss South Africa)
1991: Diana TILDEN-DAVIS, third
1992: Amy KLEINHANS, fifth
1993: Palesa Jacqueline (Jacqui) MOFOKENG, second
1994: Basetsane Julia MAKGALEMELE, second
1995: Bernalee DANIEL, semi-finalist
1996: Peggy-Sue KHUMALO, semi-finalist
1997: Jessica MOTAUNG, third
1998: Kerishnie NAICKER, fifth
1999: Sonia RACITI, third
2000: Heather Joy HAMILTON
2001: Jo-Ann Cindy STRAUSS, semi-finalist
2002: Boycotted the pageant in Nigeria, but then joined in London
2003: Cindy Nell
2004: Joan Kwena Ramagoshi
2005: Dhiveja Sundrum, semi-finalist
The Miss Universe pageant has been held annually since 1952. It was started by the Californian clothing company Pacific Mills to showcase its Catalina swimwear brand. In 1996 Donald Trump acquired ownership of the pageant. Various beauty contests had the right to send a South African representative to Miss Universe.
In 1952 the winner of the Miss South Africa (Universe) contest represented South Africa. In May 1952, Catherine HIGGINS, Miss Johannesburg, represented South Africa. Her runners-up were Jean BROWNLEE (Miss Cape Town), Stella COUTTS (Miss Durban) and Helena VAN DER LINDE (Miss East London). In 1953 the winner of Miss Golden Jubilee competed in Miss Universe.
From 1960 until 1967, the South African representative for Miss Universe was elected at the Hibiscus Queen contest in Margate. The contest existed prior to 1960 and still continues today. From 1969 to 1974 South Africa did not take part in the Miss Universe pageant. In 1975, Rapport, an Afrikaans newspaper, acquired the rights to send a representative to the Miss Universe pageant. They sponsored the Miss RSA regional pageant and the winner went to Miss Universe. Gail Anthony was selected to represent South Africa in 1975. In 1978 the Miss RSA pageant became a national pageant. Jenny KAY, Miss RSA 1980, did not compete at Miss Universe 1980 in Seoul as the Korean government did not recognise the government of South Africa and refused to grant her a visa.
In 1982 the newspaper changed the name Miss RSA to Miss South Africa. This followed after a dispute about the national title and international participation. In 1982 and 1984, the dispute led to two beauty pageants – each sponsored by a Sunday paper – Rapport, and the Sunday Times, an English paper. Rapport argued that as the only pageant to have entry to an international pageant, their winner should be known as Miss South Africa. This is why there are two Miss South Africas in 1982 and 1984. In 1985, the newspapers agreed to join forces and one Miss South Africa pageant was held.
Miss South Africa did not compete in Miss Universe from 1985 to 1994. In 1985, Andrea Steltzer was not allowed to compete in the pageant. Andrea went on to become Miss Germany 1988 and was a semi-finalist in the 1989 Miss Universe pageant. As Miss Germany 1988 she was not allowed to enter Miss World because of her South African background.
In 1995, South Africa was again allowed to participate in the Miss Universe pageant. A new title, Miss Universe South Africa, was created but was discontinued after the 1997 pageant, as the Miss South Africa organisation acquired the right to send their winner to the Miss Universe pageant. Miss South Africa now represents South Africa in both international pageants.
1952: Catherine Edwina Higgins, semi-finalist
1953: Ingrid Rita Mills, semi-finalist
1954-1959: no entry
1960: Nicolette Joan Caras
1961: Marina Christelis
1962: Lynette Gamble
1963: Ellen Leibenberg, semi-finalist
1964: Gail Robinson
1965: Veronika Edelgarda Hilda Prigge, semi-finalist
1966: Lynn Carol De Jager
1967: Windley Ballenden
1968: Monica Fairall
1969-1974: no entry
1975: Gail Anthony
1976: Cynthia Classen
1977: Glynis Dorothea Fester
1978: Margaret Gardiner, winner
1979: Veronika Wilson, semi-finalist and 2nd runner-up for Best National Costume
1980: no entry
1981: Daniela Di Paolo
1982: Odette Octavia Scrooby
1983: Leanne Beverly Hosking
1984: Leticia Snyman, runner-up
1985: Andrea Steltzer did not compete
1986-1994: no entry
1995: Augustine Masilela, semi-finalist
1996: Carol Anne Becker
1997: Mbali Gasa
1998: Kerishnie Naicker, semi-finalist
1999: Sonia Raciti, third
2000: Heather Joy Hamilton, semi-finalist
2001: Jo-Ann Cindy Strauss
2002: Vanessa Do Ceu Carreira
2003: Cindy Nell, third
2004: Joan Ramagoshi
Miss Africa South
The Miss Africa South competition, for non-white women, was first organised in 1970, with the winner taking part in the Miss World pageant.
1970: Pearl Jansen
1971: Gaily Ryan
1972: Cynthia Shange
1973: Ellen Peters
1974: Evelyn Williams
1975: Lydia Johnstone
Miss International Beauty Winners:
1960 Nona Sheriff
1961 Dina Robbertse
1962 Aletta Strydom
1963 Madie Claassen
1964 Lorraine Mason
1965 Dianne Webster
1966 Dawn Duff-Gray
1967 Mary Macdonald
Generations – A South African genealogy newsletter, Vol. 3, Iss. 19
Written by Anne Lehmkuhl
I have been asked by the Author of this Volume to write “something” relative to the recruitment of the Cape Corps. Search our Cape Corps records.
It may be said at once that there are two gentlemen who could have under-taken this task with greater credit. I refer to Colonel Sir Walter Stanford, Chairman of the Cape Corps War Recruiting Committee, and to Colonel T. J. J. Inglesby, one of its valued members. Both were associated with the movement from its commencement, both keenly interested in the possibility of the Coloured man as a fighter able to share with the white man the privilege of taking part in the Great War, and both particularly well qualified to lead such a movement.
There were times when, as we all know, the Mother Country was almost pathetically calling to her sons to come forward voluntarily in the cause of humanity and Empire. Men were stirred as they never were before, and perhaps never will be again.
The appeal got hold of the Coloured man and gripped him, and with the help of his many friends strong representations were made to the Union Government to give him his chance.
But it was only on General Botha’s return from the German South-West African Campaign that those earnest representations were seriously considered.
The acceptance of the principle that the Coloured man should be allowed to become a soldier took concrete form in the month of September, 1915, when the Imperial Army Council accepted the offer of the Union Government to raise an Infantry Battalion of Cape Coloured men for Service overseas.
A telegraphic despatch was received in Cape Town from the Director of War Recruiting at Pretoria (Sir Charles Crewe) asking Senator Colonel the Hon. Walter Stanford, Sir John Graham, Dr. A. Abdurahman, the Mayor of Cape Town (Mr. Harry Hands), Colonel T. J. J. Inglesby and Mr. Eames-Perkins (Hon. Secretary of the Cape Town War Recruiting Committee), to meet him to discuss the formation of a Cape Coloured Regiment.
The formation of such a Unit was entirely in the nature of an experiment. A section of the people of the Cape Province resented the idea of raising such a force for employment in the fighting line. On the other hand there were many who resented the exclusion of such an organised force from the German South-West Campaign, and saw no valid reason now why the Coloured man should not be given an opportunity to serve his King and Country and follow in the footsteps of the white men and coloured races throughout the Empire then flocking from all its corners to take part in the great struggle for human freedom.
The Empire was calling for men, more men. The Cape Coloured man asked for and was given his chance and a new chapter in the history of the Coloured people of the Cape opened.
Prudence demanded that a very high standard should be aimed at, and it was decided that only men of exceptionally good character, between the age of 20 and 30, minimum height 5 ft. 3 in., chest measurement 33% in., unmarried and without dependents of any description, should be accepted for service in this unit.
On enrolment the Coloured man became an Imperial soldier, under the Army Act, for the period of the War and six months afterwards, or until legally discharged, with Imperial rates of pay, viz. :
|Sergeant Cook||2||10||per diem|
|Lieutenant Sergeant||2||0||per diem|
|Bugler, Piper or Drummer||1||1||per diem|
and with Pensions and Gratuities as for the British West Indian Imperial Service Contingent.
The foregoing details and instructions having been determined, the Cape Corps War Recruiting Committee was formed, with Headquarters at Cape Town, for the purpose of enrolling Coloured men for active service with the Battalion of the Cape Corps.
Colonel Grey (Commissioner of Police), Major G. A. Morris of the Natal Carbineer’s (Special Service Squadron), Captain J. C. Berrange, and Captain H. G. Wilmot were mentioned in connection with the Command.
The mantle fell upon Major George A. Morris, son of Mr. J. W. Morris, a former Transkeian Magistrate.
Major Morris was duly gazetted as Lieut.-Colonel and Officer Commanding the Cape Corps on October 5th, 1915.
The following gentlemen accepted the responsibility of a seat on the Cape Corps Recruiting Committee, viz. :
Senator Colonel Walter Stanford, C.B., C.M.G., Chairman ; Major G. B. Van Zyl, M.L.A., Vice-Chairman ; Mr. A. Eames-Perkins, Hon. Secretary. Colonel T. J. J. Inglesby, V.D.; Lieut.-Colonel John Hewat, M.L.A.; Lieut.-Colonel F. W. Divine ; Captain W. D. Hare ; Sir John Graham, h.C.M.G.; Sir Frederick W. Smith, Kt., J.P.; Rev. Canon Lavis ; Rev. George Robson ; Advocate Morris Alexander, M.L.A.; Mr. J. W. Jagger, M.L.A.; with the following leaders of the Cape Coloured community, viz. : Dr. Abdurahman, M.P.C.; Mr. H. Hartog ; Mr. P. Ryan ; Mr. M. J. Fredericks ; Mr. J. Currey. NOTE.-Several other gentlemen joined this Committee later and Sir Harry Hands, P.B.E. (Mayor of Cape Town) became Chairman of the Committee-vice Colonel Stanford who went to Pretoria to become Director of War Recruiting-and Canon S. W. Lavis, Vice-Chairman. (Vide Illustration, page 17.)
The Cape Corps War Recruiting Committee had the good fortune to secure the services of Sergeant-Major Samuel Hanley Reynard as a member of the Staff. No choice could have been better. His cheerfulness and conscientious performance of his work throughout the Recruiting Campaign won the esteem and respect of all who came in contact with him. Though a veteran he never flinched in carrying out of his very arduous duties.
During especially busy times the assistance of the Boy Scouts was asked for, and they never failed to answer the call made on them. Valuable assistance was willingly given, and the boys who were detailed to the Recruiting Committee by the Secretary of the Boy Scouts’ Association well earned the War Certificate that the performance of their duties at the City Hall entitled them to.
A large crowd of Coloured men and women gathered outside the Recruiting Station at the City Hall, Cape Town, in the early morning of 25th October, 1915, aroused into action by announcements in the Press that the Coloured man’s opportunity was now open to him. The crowd surged into the Vestibule when the doors opened at 10 o’clock, and it became necessary to erect barriers and to provide a squad of Police before the men could be handled. To witness the inauguration of this circumstance of significance many prominent personages, Civil and Military, visited the Recruiting Station, including the General Officer Commanding in South Africa (Major-General C. W. Thompson) and his Staff.
Captains W. R. Cowell and C. G. Durham, Officers of the 1st Cape Corps, with Colonel T. J. J. Inglesby and Lieut.-Colonel Divine, members of the Recruiting Committee, had charge of the proceedings. By noon well over a hundred recruits had passed through the hands of the Military Medical Officers, but only a small percentage succeeded in passing the very strenuous test imposed. As a result of the first day’s recruiting twenty-two men were entrained at Cape Town for Simonstown, where the Mobilisation Camp for the reception of the enlisted men had been established, there to receive their first instruction from competent instructors and to have instilled into them habits of discipline, etc., as well as to meet their future comrades who were journeying from such places as Stellenbosch, Worcester, Port Elizabeth, Kimberley, and the Mission Stations of Saron and Mamre, etc.
Considering the strenuous conditions of enlistment laid down the first day’s result was not unsatisfactory, but there were some who had got their “tails up.” “The pay was insufficient “”There was no separation allowance “! To ventilate those views a meeting of Coloured men was held on the Grand Parade, and no blame could be attached to the women who kept a strict watch on the actions of the men who supported them. Though, as a matter of fact no men were accepted for service in cases where there were dependents, and the Officers of the Cape Corps and the members of the Recruiting Committee zealously guarded instructions to that effect from Headquarters. And no wonder! They were not out to pauperise women and children.
There could be no burking the fact that at Cape Town the class of man required was holding back, and this reluctance to come forward was due solely to the question of no separation allowances and the insistence that there should be no dependents. Reports from other recruiting centres for the Cape Corps in this connection were illuminating; for example: -Worcester was asked to supply 6o men; that number was obtained in one day. Port Elizabeth provided 31 men out of 45 required. Johannesburg was only asked to supply 30 recruits, and those left for Simonstown on the clay recruiting for Coloured men opened. Kimberley’s quota was 50 men, and they were secured also in one day and were entrained for Simonstown.
In addition, other country places intimated that they could supply a certain number of men, while districts which had already furnished their quota expressed willingness to add to the number already secured, and the Mission Stations at Saron and Mamre each volunteered to furnish a company.
The Mother City of Cape Town found itself in this peculiar position that while she had taken the lead in expressing the desire for Coloured men to serve in the War, it seemed that the Coloured residents of the Peninsula would be ill represented in the first coloured fighting force to be established, whilst places other than Cape Town collared the honour. One loop hole in this peculiar situation presented itself, viz.:-the Governor-General’s Fund. But all hopes in that regard was quickly dispelled by the definite instructions of the Director of War Recruiting that no man with dependents would be accepted. Indeed, it was hardly a fair request to make that the Governor-General’s Fund should provide for dependents.
The very real grievance 9c pay and allowances was immediately tackled by the Recruiting Committee, and in November, I915, Colonel Inglesby and Mr. Brydone were deputed to go to Pretoria to endeavour to obtain better conditions, whilst Colonel Stanford, the Chairman, and the members of the Recruiting Committee in force waited upon General Smuts in Cape Town in the sane pressing connection. Meanwhile a slight concession was made by the Governor-General’s Fund, viz.: that they would give assistance in special cases, when brought to their notice.
It was about this time that the Cape Corps Gifts and Comforts Committee came into being. Later this committee became affiliated to the South African Gifts and Comforts Committee and did splendid work in supplying comforts for the men of the regiment.
“I have been informed,” said Lord Buxton at the Recruiting Conference held at Pretoria on November 14th, 1915, “that the successful operations in German South-West Africa have had a great moral effect in the European sphere of operations and caused great depression in enemy circles. The successful subjugation of German East Africa will bring about even greater moral effect to the advantage of our side all the world over.”
To take part in that subjugation of the enemy’s outposts Lieut.-Colonel Morris was now busy training his men at the camp at Simonstown, which, notwithstanding the many difficulties encountered, was steadily swelling its population.
” They are as keen as mustard,” said their Commanding Officer, ” and in their spare time are drilling on their own,” so that when His Excellency the Governor-General, accompanied by Major-General Thompson, inspected the Cape Corps at Simonstown on the 3oth November, 1915, they were complimented by him on their smart and soldierly appearance and workmanlike bearing.
That outside forces were in fullest sympathy with the men of the Cape Corps was shown by many thoughtful incidents. Two may be given.
“Tango” was enrolled. He was a smart Airedale terrier presented by Master Jack Ashley of Bellville as a mascot to the 1st Cape Corps. In the proverbial canine fashion he wagged himself into the affections of officers and men alike during his short stay at the camp at Simonstown, and Lieut.-Colonel Morris, in expressing his thanks to the juvenile donor, wrote: “I am sure that he will bring us luck.” “Tango,” when the Battalion embarked for East Africa, was called upon to show the stuff he was made of, for the Commander of the “Armadale Castle” was compelled to refuse to allow him to embark. With the persistence of his kind, however, “Tango” found another way of circumventing official opposition. A flying leap from the quay landed him on deck among his pals and the ship’s Commander had no heart to eject him.
The following letter speaks for itself: -
Wellington. “Dear Sir,
I am a coloured woman. It is a very little money that I send this is the money for the Cape Corps fund which I buy flowers from my own money and sell out again. I think it is very little but it will help too, my husband is gone to the front.”
(Signed) (Mrs.) D.S.
A postal order for fifteen shillings was enclosed.
During the months of October, November, and December, 1915, very strenuous work was done by the Recruiting Committee to enable the full complement of men (about one thousand and twenty) to be secured. The methods employed varied. Bands, Street Parades, Meetings in outlying Suburban Districts, Speeches at Bioscopes, Stirring Posters, Press Notices (the value of which cannot be overestimated) all had their turn. Ours was, of course, the job to induce those who were hanging back for various reasons to come to the recruiting stations. Once there the conditions were fully explained to the men, and the presence on duty of officers and non-coms in the smart uniform of the Cape Corps swept away all hesitation, if there were any, and made them all long to emulate those who had already joined as soldiers of the King. Having made up their minds they were then invited to interview the selection officers appointed by Lieut.-Colonel Morris.
These had their tables in the vestibule of the City Hall, Cape Town, and with drafts continually arriving from other centres, were kept pretty busy.
The officers in charge were Major Durham (a strict disciplinarian) and Captain Cowell (a kindly and just officer and beloved by his men, who later made the great sacrifice). They accepted or rejected the men. The accepted men were then passed on to the inner room (Reception Hall) for medical examination.
I remember one particularly strenuous morning. The vestibule was a busy hive with the hum of many voices, and, a not particularly savoury odour of old clothes-clothes that reeked with the sweat of hot and honest daily toil. The folding doors from the Reception Hall opened and a waft of sweet music floated through. The City Orchestra in the Main Hall was rehearsing. Instinctively drawn to breathe the music’s divine message, I was met by the Military Medical Officer, stethoscope in hand. He came to invite me to witness between sixty and seventy coloured men stripped for examination. These men had just previously been handed over to him. Then I realised that the clothing makes (or mars) the man. Now, lined up and smiling, naked to the world, they were fine specimens of strong brawny manhood. So splendidly developed were many of them that it might have been a parade of prize fighters, and, ugly in physiognomy as many of them undoubtedly were, their smiles revealed dentures that many a woman would have sacrificed a good deal to call her own. It is perhaps needless to say that every one of those men passed as medically fit for active service. They were attested and sent to the camp right away.
Early in December, 1815, the Cape Corps was nearing its full complement, and recruiting definitely closed on 12th December, 1915.
At that date the Nett result of the recruitment for the Cape Corps was one thousand and sixteen men. Considering the difficulties in regard to pay and allowances, which all the efforts of the Recruiting Committee had so far failed to get altered, it did vast credit to the young coloured man without encumbrances and showed quite clearly the spirit that was in him to assist his country in time of need.
On the world’s day of rejoicing, Christmas Day (1915), the Camp at Simons-town was thrown open to relatives and friends of the men of the Cape Corps, and full advantage was taken of the concession.
Amongst the old time customs, plum puddings and music and bands were provided and dancing and joviality took place as though no red war existed and in spite of the gloomy news that trickled through over the cables. It was just for the day, the work with all its seriousness and earnestness, was for the morrow.
Mr. Harry Hands (the Mayor) in his message to the citizens of Cape Town clearly gave the key note in reference to the position as it was at that time.
“We are on the eve of Christmas,” he said, ” and at the end of another year, a year of war, and, for many hundreds and thousands of human beings, of suffering and sadness, a year in which death has taken a heavy toll of the Empire’s manhood. From many a home in the Peninsula loved ones who have gone forth at the call of duty will be absent this Christmas. There must there-fore, be a note of sadness in our greetings, but we can still find comfort in the old, old message. Seventeen months of war have not shaken our confidence and our conviction that right must prevail, and though we may be sore let and hindered we shall endure to the end, and the end will be victory.”
In January, 1916, with the full complement of recruits secured, courtesies were exchanged between the Senior Officers of the Cape Corps and the members of the Cape Corps War Recruiting Committee in the form of simple luncheons at the Camp at Simonstown and at the Civil Service Club at Cape Town. The main reason for those proceedings was to wish ” God Speed ” and ” Good luck ” on the eve of departure on the one hand, and on the other the expression of thanks (none of course were needed) to the Recruiting Committee for what they had accomplished.
When the Cape Corps’ embarkation date arrived, very naturally the South African Military Command did not take any chances. A smoke-screen was thrown over the movement of all troops. That notwithstanding, a great crowd assembled at the docks at Cape Town, and all the approaches thereto, to witness the departure of the Battalion for East Africa on 9th February, 1916.
It was a true South African summer’s afternoon. Three train loads of men steamed into the Docks, direct from Simonstown to the ship’s side.
H.M.T. “Armadale Castle” was waiting to receive the Officers and men of the Cape Corps. The embarkation was speedily and smartly accomplished. Many a mother strained with tears of pride in her eyes to get a glimpse of her son; many a young Coloured woman, who had a very particular interest in her newly–made soldier friend, moved in the crowd in the hope of a last farewell.
With the Band playing martial airs and the men leaning over the great ship’s side anxious for a last good-bye, and the sun shining upon a sea of helmets and dark skinned faces and flashing upon the trappings of the uniforms, it was difficult to believe that these were the same men, who only a few months before had come to enlist at the City Hall, many- ill-clad and anything but smart.
The transformation was so complete. Straight, and smart and smiling, with boots, buttons, and equipment polished to a turn, they were a fine workmanlike body of healthy men, and for cheerfulness, dignity of hearing, and soldierly appearance the Officers in Charge would not have been easy to beat in any regiment.
Then, God Save the King, every one stood to attention, and the great Troopship steamed majestically away (I fancy “Tango” barked). As evening came she dwindled to a speck on the sea, and finally vanished from sight.
The Cape Corps had gone on the great adventure, taking with them the hearts and the hopes of thousands of their kinsfolk in the Union. The reputation of the Coloured community of South Africa was in their hands.
The Recruiting Committee could rest on its oars until casualties and disease thinned the ranks of the departed warriors and a new recruiting Campaign was ordered to fill the gaps.
It became evident soon after the departure of the “Armadale Castle” that a number of the men of the Cape Corps had left women and children dependents unprovided for, notwithstanding the care that had been exercised by the Selection Officers and the Recruiting Committee. It was unthinkable that these should be left to suffer. The situation was taken in hand at once by the Recruiting Committee, and a list of married men with dependents prepared. Commercial establishments who had employed such men before enlistment were approached, and guarantees obtained in most cases that half civil pay would be given to proved dependents, until Military separation allowances were secured.
The New Year (1916) was scarcely one month past w hen General Smuts took charge of the East African Campaign. From that time calls for reinforcements for the Cape Corps were frequent, with the authorisation that married men could be accepted for Service, and that Separation Allowances would be paid upon the following basis, viz.:-is. 1s. per diem to wives, and 2d. per diem for each child under the age of 16, or in cases of widowless and motherless children, 4d. per diem. Proved Dependents of unmarried men were placed on the same scale, always provided that the soldier allotted to the dependent half his pay. This placed recruitment for the Cape Corps upon a better footing, more especially as grants from the Governor-General’s Fund were left entirely in the hands of the local Committees of that Organisation.
The foregoing may, it is hoped, convey some idea of the activities of the Cape Corps War Recruiting Committee in the earlier stages of the Recruiting Campaign as well as of the feeling held by that body relative to the care of the families of the enlisted men, during their period of active service.
Frequent calls came later from the Director of War Recruiting, Pretoria, for men, more men, who, by dint of hard work and the beating up of Suburban and outlying districts, never failed to materialise. For instance, during the period 27th February to 27th April, 1917, 1,457 Coloured men were attested for the Cape Corps, whilst a large number were turned down as unfit for Active Service.
In all, during the Recruiting Campaign, 6,000 men were enrolled for the 1st Cape Corps, and 2,000 for the 2nd Cape Corps.
Other Coloured units were formed, of a different character to the Cape Corps it is true, but all useful in their different spheres, and all dovetailing and harmonising into the great fighting machine of the Empire. For instance, the Cape Corps War Recruiting Committee were requested to find one thousand men for the Cape Coloured Labour Battalion, with reinforcements as required, whilst they were interested in and consulted with reference to the formation of the South African Native Labour Contingent, in which ten thousand men were enrolled.
In addition, the Recruiting Committee were called upon to supply Coloured men to the S.A. Artillery (Drivers and Leaders) and for the Cape Auxiliary Horse Transport Companies, etc., etc.
The exact total figures of Coloured men obtained by the Cape Corps Recruiting Committee are not before me at the present time, but it is certain that they were in the neighbourhood of twenty-five thousand, over rather than under. It is in my opinion a fair calculation to make that 4 to 1 of the men who presented themselves for enrolment were turned down as medically unfit, and if this basis is correct, it shows the handling of one hundred thousand Coloured men.
Amongst the rejected there was genuine disappointment and not a little grumbling. Many such men, especially the younger ones, hung about the recruiting station for weeks hoping by hook or by crook to be allowed to go, while the spectacle of their “pals” in the smart uniform of the Cape Corps heightened their misery at being left behind.
Every post brought letters from men in the country districts, bitterly complaining that the medical officer either did not know his job, or that he had mistaken their case.
Covering some ten closely written pages, smatterings of English and Dutch, a Coloured boy at Clanwilliam, 19 years of age, bemoaned his fate because he was two inches under the regulation height to enable him to join the Cape Corps. He begged to be allowed to join as a bugler; he knew that he could get one cheap if the money was sent to buy it, and, he added, “God would bless the Recruiting Committee.”
Besides the actual recruiting of Coloured men, the Recruiting Committee took upon its shoulders other matters closely connected with the men enrolled. For instance
Medicine and Comforts for Sick wives and children of soldiers.
The witnessing of the Signature on Military Cheques for monthly allowances in order to satisfy Banking requirements, etc., etc.
A batch of from thirty-five to forty coloured women, some with babies at the breast, others leading ragged and bare-footed children by the hand-little things that the soldier of the Cape Corps had left behind him to be cared for by the country whose freedom he was helping to keep intact-came to the recruiting station one slack morning. Sergeant-Major Reynard was pounced upon in the vestibule of the City Hall. He stood their fury and anger like the good old soldier that he is until explanations were possible.
When order was restored out of the chaos, they were invited to appoint one of their numbers to interview the writer in an inner room.
It was not hard to enter into the feelings of these women. Their separation allowances as has been stated were very small, just enough to provide food to keep them and their children alive and with no hope of putting anything by to meet an unforeseen emergency. However, they were content to suffer the hardships that white and coloured alike were called upon to bear at that time.
But the least delay in the payment of the allowances due created more difficulties than they were prepared to endure. A delay of some days had already taken place in the arrival from the Paymaster of the usual monthly draft, and the children were without food. They had already applied to the Paymaster of the Cape Corps, but he was powerless to assist them in their trouble, and had to explain that there would be a further delay of three or four days-due entirely to the change of office from one centre to another. The Cape Corps Gifts and Comforts Committee found the matter was one that did not come within their scope, and no tangible result accrued as the result of an application to the local Secretary to the Governor-General’s Fund. Finally the Cape Corps War Recruiting Committee was approached as described.
The writer’s own application to the then Secretary of the Governor-General’s Fund shared the same fate as the women’s appeal, and it became necessary to bring the full force of the Recruiting Committee into action. The result was entirely successful, and each family or individual went away with a sufficiency to tide over the awkward period. The women were satisfied and even grateful and dispersed to their various homes in outlying parts of the Cape Peninsula. The same method was adopted in cases where difficulties arose with landlords, who either wished to eject dependents of soldiers on account of the men being on active service, or to increase the rent on threat of ejectment if they did not agree to pay.
In fact there was no genuine grievance connected with the dependents of the enlisted men, which the Recruiting Committee was not compelled to redress.
There were, of course, some strange incidents connected with the recruiting of the coloured units. The following may be cited:
Private John Jacobs of the 1st Cape Corps had, by good fortune-or otherwise-obtained leave of absence from his Regiment during a lull in its activities, and found himself in the Cape Peninsula. Resultant upon his good-or evil-fortune he took it upon himself to form fresh attachments and responsibilities in domestic life.
The sequel to this visit was revealed in a letter, businesslike in its brevity and very much to the point, to the Hon. Secretary Recruiting Committee, as follows : -
I married John Jacobs a week ago. He has gone back. We have ten Children. Please let me know how I stand.
On a tour of the Eastern Province of the Cape quite recently the writer had the good luck to have as a companion on the journey an ex-officer of the Cape Corps who had served in the East African campaign and in Palestine. During the journey opportunity was afforded of hearing something of the doings of the Cape Corps in the actual fighting line, some of which no doubt will be set down in this volume. That officer’s praise of his men, of their manly courage and pluck, of their discipline and cheerful endurance in times of hard-ship and difficulties, served to confirm the reports one had heard of the splendid work and behaviour of the men in camp, on the march, or under fire.
At most of the stations at which the train halted, coloured men stepped out from somewhere, and, in their working clothes, stood to attention and saluted-they were so obviously glad to see their old officer, and to have the opportunity to refresh in a few words their memories of the time when they had served under him in the Great War.
It was the same in many of the places we visited during the tour. There was generally some coloured man who halted in his work to salute the officer, notwithstanding that both wore civilian clothes. Indeed, on the train by which we travelled, an ex-member of the Cape Corps brought us our nightly bedding, and the chef’s coloured assistant in the dining-car tendered his respectful greetings and was recognised.
On some of the farms visited at which ex-officers of the Cape Corps had entered into possession, the servants, the farm hands, and those employed in other capacities were all, wherever possible, returned soldiers of the Cape Corps. In some of the town’s ex-officers of the Cape Corps who had embarked upon new ventures since release from service employ men in their offices who have seen service in the Battalion. This continued association in civil life of European officers and Coloured ex-soldiers who served under them during the Great War is of course only natural and may in course of time evaporate and become only a memory. But what seems to be forced upon one is that this sympathetic understanding and respect between the white officer and the coloured man who served with and under him, if fostered in some way, should prove of inestimable value to the State.
South Africa, we are told, is a land that is merely scratched upon the ‘surface. Could not some semi-military body be formed from what is left of the Cape Corps for its greater development?
By Mr. A. Eames Perkins.
Extracted from the publication The Story of the 1st Cape Corps 1915 – 1919 by Captain I.D. Difford
1897 – 1900 Johan Zulch de Villiers (clerk, farmer, soldier, lawyer)
1901 – 02 Chairman of council W A J O’Meara (storekeeper)
1902 – 03 Chairman of council William St John Carr (director of companies)
1903 – 04 William St John Carr (director of companies)
1904 – 05 G H Goch (mine owner)
1905 – 06 J W Quinn (baker)
1906 – 07 W K Tucker (land surveyor)
1907 – 08 J Thompson (builder)
1908 – 09 C Chudleigh (draper)
1909 – 10 H Graumann (financier)
1910 – 11 H J Hofmeyr (solicitor)
1911 – 12 J D Ellis (engineer)
1912 – 13 W R Boustred (merchant)
1913 – 15 N Anstey (draper)
1915 – 17 J W O’Hara (merchant)
1917 – 19 T F Allen (estate agent)
1919 – 20 G B Steer (fitter)
1920 – 21 J Christie (retail chemist)
1921 – 22 S Hancock (baker)
1922 – 23 L Forsyth Allan (barrister)
1923 – 24 M J Harris (architect)
1924 – 25 C Walters (brickmaker)
1925 – 26 E O Leake (building contractor)
1926 – 27 Alfred Law Palmer (stationer and printer)
1927 – 28 W H Port (wholesale merchant)
1928 – 29 W Fernhead (solicitor)
1929 – 30 D Anderson (builder)
1930 – 31 Geo W Nelson (oculist)
1931 – 32 D F Corlett (building contractor, master builder)
1932 – 33 B C Vickers (chartered accountant)
1933 – 34 D Penry Roberts (draper)
1934 – 35 Maurice Freeman (leather merchant)
1935 – 36 Maldwyn Edmund (chartered accountant)
1936 – 37 Donald W Mackay (music retailer)
1937 – 38 J S Fotheringham (director of companies, baker)
1938 – 39 J J Page (estate agent)
1939 – 40 T A M Huddle (director of companies)
1940 – 41 T P Gray (grocer)
1941 – 42 A R Thorburn (buyer for Anglo-Transvaal Consolidated Investment Co)
1942 – 43 L Leveson (solicitor)
1943 – 44 A S Holland (teacher, lecturer at Normal College)
1944 – 45 A Immink (accountant)
1945 – 46 Jessie McPherson (housewife)
1946 – 47 Jas Gray (analytical chemist)
1947 – 48 G B Gordon (director of companies)
1948 – 49 S P Lee (industrialist)
1949 – 50 J Mincer (director of companies)
1950 – 51 C F Beckett (builder and contractor)
1951 – 52 I E B Attwell (director of companies)
1952 – 53 H Miller (attorney)
1953 – 54 C J H Patmore (chartered accountant, director of companies)
1954 – 55 G J Beckett (builder)
1955 – 56 Leslie Hurd (estate agent and sworn appraiser)
1956 – 57 Max Goodman
1957 – 58 T Glyn Morris
1958 – 59 I Maltz
1959 – 60 Alec Gorshel
1960 – 62 D J Marais
1962 – 63 Keith J Fleming
1963 – 64 J F Oberholzer
1964 – 65 P M Roos
1965 – 66 Aleck Joffe
1966 – 67 B D Eagar
1967 – 68 C J Ross-Spencer
1968 – 69 I Schlapobersky
1969 – 70 P R B Lewis
1970 – 71 S Moss
1971 – 72 A Widman
1972 – 73 J C Lemmer
1973 – 74 A D Bensusan
1974 – 75 Harold Frank Dennis
1975 – 76 Max Neppe
1976 – 77 Monty Sklaar
1977 – 78 Martin Powell
1978 – 79 J S Otto
1979 – 80 J D R Opperman
1980 – 81 Carel Venter
1981 – 82 Cecil Long
1982 – 83 Danie van Zyl
1983 – 84 Alan Gadd
1984 – 85 Eddy Magid
1985 – 86 Ernie Fabel
1986 – 87 Harold Rudolph
1987 – 88 O H Fenn
1988 (March-Oct) J H van Blerk
1988 – 89 D J Neppe
1989 – 90 Koos Roets
1990 – 91 W G Janse van Rensburg
1991 – 92 E Kretmer
1992 – 93 J S Burger
1993 – 94 S Dishy
1994 (March – Nov) Dan Pretorius
1995 – 00 Isaac Mogase
2000 – Amos Masondo
Bibliography – A History of Johannesburg (Nasionale Boekhandhandel, 1964)
At least four of the world’s leading film stars were born in South Africa. Cecil Kellaway, Victor McLaglen and his brother Cyril, and Ian Hunter were born at the Cape, roved through the world, and eventually established their reputations in films produced in Hollywood and the United Kingdom. Unlike many others who tried their luck on the silent screen and in the first talkies but went on to other things (such as the first State President C.R. Swart), they became and remained stars. Basil Rathbone, also an enduring luminary, was born in Johannesburg, and his work on the stage and in television added to his world-wide reputation in films.
Many South Africans who sought their fortunes on the screen either failed completely or made transient appearances. But the urge to make a career of film acting was greatly stimulated in 1930 when a competition organised by an American film company through The Outspan, a national weekly, attracted a large number of entries and was won by Molly Lamont of Natal.
Molly Lamont was born on 22 May 1910 in Boksburg. She passed away on 07 July 2001 in Brentwood, Los Angeles. She was a dancing teacher in Scottburgh when she won the Outspan Film Candidate competition in 1930. The prize was a holiday in England and a screen test at Elstree Studios.
Molly landed a film contract, starting off with small roles in British films. By the mid-1930s she had started taking on bigger role and moved to Hollywood. In 1937 she played Cary Grant’s fiancée in The Awful Truth.
In 1944 she appeared in two popular films, The White Cliffs of Dover and Mr. Skeffington. Molly made more than 50 films until she retired in 1951.
Films she starred in and the roles she played:
The First Legion (1951), in the role of Mrs. Nora Gilmartin
South Sea Sinner (released as East of Java, in the UK) (1950), Kay Williams
Christmas Eve (released as Sinner’s Holiday, in the USA) (1947), Harriet Rhodes
Ivy (1947), Bella Crail
Scared to Death (1947), Laura Van Ee
So Goes My Love (released as A Genius in the Family, in the UK) (1946), Cousin Garnet
Devil Bat’s Daughter (1946), Ellen Masters Morris
The Dark Corner (1946), Lucy Wilding
The Suspect (1944), Edith Simmons
Minstrel Man (1944), Caroline (the mother)
Mr. Skeffington (1944), Eleanor Morris, Job’s Secretary
The White Cliffs of Dover (1944), Helen Hampton
Follow the Boys (released as Three Cheers for the Boys, in the USA) (1944), Miss Hartford, secretary
Thumbs Up (1943), Welfare Supervisor
A Gentle Gangster (1943), Ann Hallit
The Moon and Sixpence (1942), Mrs. Any Strickland
Somewhere I’ll Find You (1942), Nurse Winifred
The Awful Truth (1937), Barbara Vance
A Doctor’s Diary (1937), Mrs. Fielding
The Jungle Princess (1936), Ava
A Woman Rebels (1936), Young girl with sick baby
Fury and the Woman (released as Lucky Corrigan, in the UK) (1936), June McCrae
Mary of Scotland (1936), Mary Livingstone
Muss ‘em Up (released as Sinister House, and House of Fate, in the UK) (1936), Nancy Harding, Paul’s daughter
Another Face (released as It Happened in Hollywood, in the UK, and Two Faces, in the USA) (1935), Mary McCall
Jalna (1935), Pheasant Vaughn
Whiteoaks (see photograph to the right:
Molly Lamont, David Manners and
Peggy Wood in JALNA)
Alibi Inn (1935), Mary Talbot
Handle with Care (1935), Patricia
Oh, What a Night (1935), Pat
Rolling Home (1935), Ann
Irish Hearts (released as Norah O’Neale,
in the USA ) (1934), Nurse Otway
Murder at Monte Carlo (1934), Margaret
No Escape (1934), Helen Arnold
The Third Clue (1934), Rosemary
White Ensign (1934), Consul’s daughter
Leave It to Me (1933), Eve Halliday
Letting in the Sunshine (1933), Lady Anne
Paris Plane (1933)
Lucky Girl (1932), Lady Moira
Brother Alfred (1932), Stella
His Wife’s Mother (1932), Cynthia
Josser on the River (1932), Julia Kaye
The Last Coupon (1932), Betty Carter
Lord Camber’s Ladies (1932), Actress
Old Soldiers Never Die (1932), Ada
The Strangler (1932), Frances Marsde
Strictly Business (1932), Maureen
Dr. Josser, K.C. (released as P.C. Josser, in the UK) (1931)
The House Opposite (1931), Doris
Shadows (1931), Jill Dexter
Uneasy Virtue (1931), Ada
What a Night! (1931), Nora Livingstone
The Wife’s Family (released as My Wife’s Family, in the UK) (1931), Sally
The Black Hand Gang (1930)
Lamont began her career in British films in 1930 and for several years played small, often uncredited roles. Her roles began to improve by the mid 1930s and she later moved to Hollywood where she continued playing roles such as Cary Grant’s fiancée in The Awful Truth (1937). Her other appearances include such popular films as The White Cliffs of Dover and Mr. Skeffington (both 1944).She retired from acting in 1951 with more than fifty films to her credit.
She succeeded in establishing herself at Hollywood and appeared in a large number of films, mostly in supporting parts, for a number of years before retiring to married life in the U.S.A. Molly married Edward Antoine BELLANDE on 30 March 1937. They lived at 361 Fordyce Road in Bel Air.
Source: Standard Encyclopedia of Southern Africa
Alexander, Morris – born 4th December 1877 in Czinn, East Prussia, Germany and died in Cape Town on 24th January 1946, lawyer and parliamentarian, was the eldest son of Abraham Alexander and his wife, Flora Lewin; he had four brothers and two sisters. In 1881 the family settled in South Africa. Alexander’s education at private schools in Cape Town was interrupted in 1891, when he joined his parents in Johannesburg. Owing to his parents’ straitened circumstances, he was compelled to work, first as a clerk at the National bank and later as an employee of the Cape government railways.He succeeded in saving a little money, which enabled him to resume his schooling. In 1893 he enrolled at the South African college, Cape Town, where he won the gold medal for arts in 1896. He graduated at the University of the Cape of Good Hope in 1897, gaining a Porter scholarship; read law at St John’s College, Cambridge; and joined the Inner Temple, London. He obtained first-class honours in 1899 in the first part of the law tripos, and was awarded a Foundation scholarship. On 15 th November 900 he was called to the bar in Cape Town and rapidly established himself as a leading criminal lawyer, taking silk in 1919.
From his early youth Alexander showed a keen interest in public affairs. He served on the Cape Town city council (1905-43) and, except for the years 1929 to 1931, he was a member of the Cape and the Union parliaments from 1908 to 1946.
Throughout his life he remained true to his liberal creed of ‘equal rights for all civilized men, whatever their race, colour or creed’, and his sympathies were ever with the underprivileged. Elected to the Cape legislative assembly as a Progressive (later Unionist), he resigned from the party on account of ideological differences on 27th November 1920, and in 1921 he founded the Constitutional Democrat Party, of which he was the leader and sole parliamentary representative in the Union house of assembly for the following ten years. In 1931 he joined the South African party, remaining a follower of Gen. J.C. Smuts to the end.
He served the Jewish community for over forty years. He founded the Jewish Board of Deputies for the Cape Colony (4th September 1904) and was a leader of the South African Jewish Board of Deputies, of which it formed part after 1912. He was primarily responsible for the recognition of Yiddish as a European language in terms of the Immigration act of 1906. He had been a vigorous supporter of the Zionist movement ever since 1904, and throughout his life he continued to resist attempts such as the Immigration Restriction act and the Immigration Quota act of 1930 – to discriminate against Jewish immigration.
For forty years he was president of the New Hebrew congregation, Cape Town, and often preached there. Alexander befriended all sections of the population. In parliament he was the recognized spokesman of the Public Service association and of the postal and telegraph employees. Opposed to the colour-bar, he attacked every measure designed to restrict non-European rights. He was a friend of M.K. Gandhi and invariably championed the cause of the Indians. He was also a staunch supporter of the franchise for women.
He was active in many welfare organizations; humble people with wrongs to be righted continually sought his assistance. He was an inveterate letter-writer, fifty letters a day being his minimum quota; the number sometimes swelled to one hundred letters, all written by hand.
In June 1907 Alexander married Ruth Schechter, the daughter of Solomon Schechter, the Hebraist; they had three children, a son and two daughters. After a divorce in 1935, Alexander’s second marriage (15.8.1935) was to Enid Asenath Baumberg, of Sydney, who subsequently wrote his biography.
His portrait by J.H. Amshewitz is in the National art gallery, Cape Town. In 1963 his voluminous papers, some 14,000 items in all, including material on Judaism in South Africa, and the Coloured and other minority groups (1905-45), were presented by his widow to the Jagger library, University of Cape Town.
Source: Standard Encyclopaedia of South Africa – copyright Media24 Digital
Image: National Archives
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