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|Letter Reference||Smuts A1/188/66
|Archive||National Archives Repository, Pretoria
|Letter Date||3 September 1904
|Address From||Hanover, Northern Cape
|Who To||Isie Smuts nee Krige
The manuscript of this letter by Olive Schreiner belongs to the Archive referenced above; its ownership of the original should be acknowledged by referencing the letter as indicated: Copyright transcription: © Olive Schreiner Letters Project. This transcription can be freely used as long as copyright is acknowledged and it is referenced using the following citation: ‘Olive Schreiner to Isie Smuts nee Krige, 3 September 1904, National Archives Repository, Pretoria, Olive Schreiner Letters Project transcription’. Please also supply letter line numbers for specific quotations.
The Project is grateful to the National Archives Repository, Pretoria, for kindly allowing us to transcribe this Olive Schreiner letter, which is part of its Special Collections.
September 3rd 1904
Just the day after the beautiful fruit arrived I had to start off on a
7: long journey to fetch my dear old fathers remains to rest by my
8: mothers in Cape Town. I only returned the day pefore before yesterday.
9: I took a bag full of the fruit with me, & we enjoyed it much. You can
10: get plenty of oranges here but such wretched little sour things, only
11: good for cooking. I have still some of the nartjes quite quite good,
12: only dry.
Thank you very much dear Isie for writing me for the 16th of December.
15: I don’t know when I have wished so much for anything as to be there.
16: But is it true that cheap ticket will be given by the English
17: government costing only £1 return from Stellenbosch & Cape Town? In
18: that case I shall not be able to come, as the trains will be too
19: crowded & I My heart is a bit bad now & I shouldn’t be any good when
20: I got there if I came in a crush with no place place to lie down. It
21: doesn’t seem to me likely that the British Government should try to
22: collect thousands & thousands of Africanders in Pretoria on that date,
23: but it may be so! Please let me know if your husband knows anything of
24: the matter, as everyone here is very anxious to hear the truth. Thank
25: you so much dear Isie for offering the room & to pay my expenses but I
26: fear I shant be able to come but I think my husband will unreadable
27: try to. That funeral seems to me so much more than a funeral. It
28: should be a testimony that the love of freedom which lived in the old
29: man’s heart is not really buried with him but lives on in the hearts
30: of the thousands of South Africans who follow his remains.
Next Thursday ^Tuesday^ I leave for Cape Town to attend the re-burial of
33: my dear old fathers remains beside my mother’s; whom he always loved
34: so tenderly & devotedly. I & my sister felt we couldn’t rest till he
35: was sleeping beside her. He would have wished it so. I shall not stay
36: in Cape Town very long, & Cron will send on all my letters to me at once.
37: So just address here.
Thank you so much for the picture of little Sannie. She looks
40: splendidly strong & happy. I don’t mean only physically strong, but
41: she has such a strong little face, in her picture, mentally as well.
42: When I was in Eastern Province I meet some old friends English farmers
43: who fought all through the war on the English side. They are very
44: bitter, one & all, at the way they have been treated, much more bitter
45: than the Dutch; & they all say without exception "Never will we take
46: up a gun for the British Government again." It was rather interesting
47: to be among them. I think it is so well that Jameson & his party are
48: in power now: they are wonderful educators. I should like very much to
49: meet Botha & de la Rey. One would see all our leading people if one
50: came up to the funeral.
// I am so glad Daisy has a little one. Perhaps she will get quite
53: strong now. Much love to you