Your Family History - - Letters -

Fol­low­ing our cover fea­ture on es­sen­tial web­sites in YFH183, one reader has writ­ten in with some more sug­ges­tions as to South Africans re­sources that read­ers can try.

Here you go – Na­tional Archives and Record Ser­vice of South Africa ( www. na­tion­ – mil­lions of South African records that can be searched and many un­der the old NAAIRS data­base are of par­tic­u­lar in­ter­est to ge­neal­o­gists. Most of the ge­neal­ogy ref­er­ences that can be found can be looked up on the Fam­il­y­search web­site to view the ac­tual doc­u­ments. The Ge­nealog­i­cal So­ci­ety of South Africa web­site ( in­cludes over 700,000 photos of grave­stones, church reg­is­ter tran­scrip­tions, news­pa­per ex­tracts new and old, pas­sen­ger lists and many more in­ter­est­ing items. The South African Set­tlers site ( www. southafricanset­ has a grow­ing list of names of peo­ple who em­i­grated to South Africa in the late 18th and 19th cen­turies, while the Uni­ver­sity of the Wit­wa­ter­srand’s His­tor­i­cal Pa­pers re­search archives site ( www.his­tor­i­cal­pa­pers.­dex.php?dig­i­tal/U/ lets you search the dig­i­tal records at the uni­ver­sity. You can search the Rhodes Uni­ver­sity Li­brary cat­a­logues at search~S2, and South African Ge­neal­ogy ( http://­con/) is a very good place to start on a South African ge­neal­ogy ex­pe­di­tion. Bri­tish Set­tlers in Natal 1824-1857 can be found at http:// she­lagh­­tlers/ and Eastern Cape’s Ger­man Set­tlers to South Africa ( www.east­lon­­mans/ in­dex.jsp) has lots of in­for­ma­tion on Ger­man set­tlers to the Eastern Cape in the 1800s. Des­ti­na­tion Al­bany 1820 ( www. al­ has the web­mas­ter’s own per­sonal fam­ily his­tory on his Bri­tish 1820 Set­tler an­ces­tors, and masses of tran­scribed church records, whilst Bri­tish 1820 Set­tlers to South Africa ( http://1820set­ is the web­site of the 4000 Bri­tish Set­tlers to South Africa in 1820, with gen­eral in­for­ma­tion, fam­ily trees (list­ing over 140,000 de­scen­dants), photos, search­able data­bases of church record tran­scrip­tions with links to the ac­tual images on Fam­il­y­search. There is a very strong and ac­tive ge­neal­ogy com­mu­nity in South Africa with Bri­tish, Ir­ish, Ger­man, Scan­di­na­vian and Dutch an­ces­try, and there are many more ac­tive South African web­sites avail­able than just this ‘starter for ten’. PAUL TANNER-TREMAINE, VIA EMAIL Thank you for this list, Paul. Our guide was very much de­signed as a start­ing point for re­search, and due to space con­straints, could only touch the sur­face of what is out there. We are al­ways very happy to re­ceive read­ers’ rec­om­men­da­tions of sites they have found par­tic­u­larly use­ful, es­pe­cially when they in­volve coun­tries out­side the UK – so do let us know if there are any you think we should men­tion!

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