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Letter ReferenceOlive Schreiner BC16/Box2/Fold4/1901/15
ArchiveUniversity of Cape Town, Manuscripts & Archives, Cape Town
Epistolary TypeLetter
Letter DateMonday 11 March 1901
Address FromHanover, Northern Cape
Address To
Who ToBetty Molteno
Other Versions
PermissionsPlease read before using or citing this transcription
The Project is grateful to Manuscripts and Archives, University of Cape Town, for kindly allowing us to transcribe this Olive Schreiner letter, which is part of its Manuscripts and Archives Collections. The date has been written on this letter in an unknown hand. Schreiner was resident in Hanover from September 1900 to October 1907, after 1902 with visits, sometimes fairly lengthy, elsewhere. The name of the addressee is indicated by salutation.
1 Monday
3 Dear Friend
5 I was so glad to get your note. Cape Point must be lovely. I am just
6going out to buy some meal for a poor woman with six young children
7whose husband has been imprisoned at de Aar, & who is not to be tried
8or allowed out on bail till the war is over. He is supposed to have
9been one who was at ?Taabosch siding the night the train was blown up.
10The poor woman & her children are in great want as they depended on
11the man’s daily earnings: Could you ask Mrs Sauer or Mrs Steytler,
12anyone who has the funds for women & children to send me 10/- to buy
13them a little meat. I will give it to a butcher here & he will send
14them 6d of meat a day, giving them more for the 6d than he would other
17 I am working at those woman articles. Just finishing the book.
19 Good bye
20 Olive
22 What was the name of the ?minister you mentioned as calling on our
23friend Alf.
25 ^I see Lloyd is coming to Cape Town. unreadable "One path ^task^ more
26declined," one more foot path untrod, one more devil’s triumph and
27sorrow for angels; one wrong more to man; one more insult to God."^
29 ^Mrs J How is administering the money from England There is so much
30want here caused by Martial Law &c.^
The 'woman articles' were published in the US under the title of 'Woman', and eventually became Woman and Labour. They were part of a major theoretical work, a book on the 'man and woman' question. However, the manuscript, left in Johannesburg when Schreiner went to Karree Kloof in late August 1899, was destroyed when her house was badly damaged and burned by marauding troops during the South African War. The book she was 'just finishing' is likely to be 'Stray Thoughts on South Africa', to have been composed by the essays originally published pseudonymously by 'A Returned South African'. Although prepared for book publication, a dispute with a US publisher and the South African War prevented this. They and some other essays were posthumously published as Thoughts on South Africa.