"Will Schreiner's political duty, difficulty of finding path of duty,' Peter Halket' & lay aside ambition" Read the full letter
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Letter ReferenceOlive Schreiner BC16/Box7/Fold4/Mar-Dec1920/30
ArchiveUniversity of Cape Town, Manuscripts & Archives, Cape Town
Epistolary TypeLetter
Letter Date27 October 1920
Address FromOak Hall, Wynburg, Cape Town, Western Cape
Address To9 Porchester Place, Edgware Road, Westminster, London
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 of this letter is derived from the postmark on an attached envelope, which also provides the address it was sent to.
1 Oak Hall
2 Main Rd
3 Wynberg
5 but still address
6 to c/o Standard Bank
7 Strand St
8 Cape Town
10 Darling Betty
12 I’ve had no letter from you the last two weeks nor a post card, but
13Lucy Molteno tells me all the party are coming out to be here by the
14end of July, & she tells me they are going to build a big house with
1531 rooms at Elgin. I suppose it is to be a sanatorium Elgin doesn’t
16seem to me a good place for a sanatorium as lung & chest people will
17never be able to go there, but they say Kathleen has already begun
20 I have now moved into this boarding house. I have a tiny room like
21yours at Mrs Smiths, & the food is the worst I ever tasted any where,
22but it is close to the tramway line & there is a beautiful large
23balcony round three sides of the house where I can sit. I think you
24would be happy here, because to you like me food matters less than air
26 I am much much better since I came here. I have left off coughing up
27blood. Yesterday Fan’s favourite sister Kitty Sutton died. It will
28be a great blow to dear little Fan She was so kind to me while I was
29with her & cried so bitterly when I left: the first time I ever saw
30her do such a thing.
32 You will have seen about the great strike in Port Elizabeth & the
33numbers of natives shot. "Woe unto them that cry ‘peace’
34‘peace’ when there is no peace" Of course every one knows it was a
35lie that the natives fired first It was a second thought on the part
36of the authorities who were swaggering about the prompstande with
37which they acted & fired!
39 I had a long letter from Jannie last week which I have not yet
40answered I wish I could have a long talk with you on the native
41question just now. If they keep on shooting them down the feeling will
42become so bitter that life will be impossible in South Africa.
44 I am glad to see from todays paper that there is a big strike in
45Roumania. They may crush it now – but the day will come when the
46Roumanians will be a free people; & again Roumania will determine the
47fate of Eastern Europe. Oh it is to so nice to be a little better
48again. I could read if only I had anything to read. I am wondering so
49whether after all you did go with the Murrays & Margaret to France!
51 Do tell me something about yourself. Do you see much of Percy? Ruth
I shall not see for ten days as she is in Town entertaining
53the Jewish Rabbi Hertz who is here on a visit. So the mayor of Cork is
54dead! I wonder what England feels – still no shame??
56 Good bye my darling Betty You don’t know what a comfort to me your
57lovely little green shawl has been, & the broach you gave me I always
58wear. Ursie’s little boy is so fond of it whenever he sees it he
59points with his little finger & says "Pitty – pitty!" He is a lovely
60child. Ursie’s new little baby will come in Jan.
62 Good bye my own beloved friend
63 Olive