Column: Casualties and History of the Boer War

Between today and Wednesday, my genealogy column, Roots to the Past, is available in the following Atlantic Canada newspapers:

Saturday: The Citizen (Amherst)

Saturday: Times & Transcript (Moncton)

Wednesday: The Lunenburg County Progress Bulletin (Lunenburg County)

Title: Casualties and History of the Boer War

Snippet: Three hundred and sixty-four years ago, the Dutch East India Company established the first European settlement in South Africa. A group of Huguenot refugees followed them in 1689. This would set off a chain of events that would eventually see Canadian soldiers arrive and fight on behalf of the British.

After the Dutch East India Company went bankrupt, the English seized the colony in 1795. The settlement changed hands several times, and eventually the Boers (Dutch farmers) established their own Orange Free State and the Transvaal Republic in 1836. They endeavoured to maintain their way of life and discourage British influences. In 1867 diamonds were discovered followed by gold, creating an atmosphere of greed and a large influx of immigrants.

Tension rose between the British settlers and the Transvaal authorities, leading to conflict in 1880. The Boers successfully defeated the British, but it was far from over. The British reorganised and on October 11, 1899, the South African War, also known as the Boer War, began.

. . . To read more, pick up one of the above noted newspapers.

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