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Archiver > SOUTH-AFRICA > 2011-06 > 1307264598


From: "Eileen & Marty Russell" <>
Subject: Re: [SOUTH-AFRICA]British soldiers who died between 1899 – 1902 in the Wakkerstroom/Piet Retief districts
Date: Sun, 5 Jun 2011 11:03:18 +0200
References: <170PFDHiN0832S02.1307171353@web02.cms.usa.net><DA633DD1-A19F-47CA-864C-6A43C4897372@audioio.com>


I am sure I read somewhere that the War Graves Commission put a lot of effort into tracking down graves on outlying farms etc and re-interring the remains in centralised locations where the memorials could be tended in perpetuity instead of being at the mercy of changing landowners.

Perhaps the politics of the time had something to do with it, not only changing from USA to RSA but many of the colonies were seeking to throw off British administration. The war graves I have visited elsewhere in Africa have all been in the local cemetery, not out in the bush where the soldier died and was probably first buried. Economics probably also comes into it, it would surely be much cheaper to pay the local council than to try to maintain graves scattered over a wide area.

Whatever the reasons for bringing the graves together it must be said that they are remarkably well maintained, and the cemeteries where you find them are also above the local average - presumably the War Graves Commission makes regular checks and this helps to keep up standards!

Eileen
----- Original Message -----
From: Andrew Rodger
To:
Sent: Sunday, June 05, 2011 10:08 AM
Subject: Re: [SOUTH-AFRICA] British soldiers who died between 1899 – 1902 in the Wakkerstroom/Piet Retief districts


On 4 Jun 2011, at 5:09 PM, Keith Meintjes wrote:

> Trysie,
>
> Thank you for that!
>
> It is interesting that at the height of anti-British sentiment (ZA
> was about
> to vote to leave the Commonwealth) such a monument was erected.
>
> Keith
>
> ------ Original Message ------
> Received: Fri, 03 Jun 2011 01:05:17 PM EDT
> From: Trysie Joubert <>
> To: Eastern Cape List <>Cc:
> Buitenpsten
> <>, Brittish Immigrants
> <>,
> , south-africa-orange-free-state
> <>
> Subject: [SOUTH-AFRICA] British soldiers who died between 1899 –
> 1902 in the
> Wakkerstroom/Piet Retief districts
>
> Contact me if you would like a photo of this Monument
>
> Trysie
>
>
> WAKKERSTROOM CEMETERY
>
> 1899 - 1902
>
> IN PROUD REMEMBERANCE OF SOLDIERS ORIGINALLY BURIED AT STURMAN RANCES,
> UITGEVALEN, CASTROL NEK, PIET RETIEF RUSTPLAAS WHO NOW LIE BURIED
> HERE WITH
> THOSE ORIGINALY INERRED AT WAKKERSTROOM

Indeed. I wonder whether the transcription is exactly accurate:
there are three errors in the above paragraph (one in the first line
and the others two successive words in the third line). Mind you, if
the transcription is correct, it wouldn't surprise me -- I've seen
worse in Woltemade, including one on my mother-in-law's stone, which
my brother-in-law didn't pick up and have corrected, along with an
incorrect date (or perhaps his writing was insufficiently legible and
he couldn't insist). This was done by a monumental mason right
opposite the cemetery who must get a lot of business ("position,
position, position!") and who should have known better, but these
days printers, once the best proof-readers, don't know better either.

Andrew Rodger




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