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Letter ReferenceSmuts A1/187/93
ArchiveNational Archives Repository, Pretoria
Epistolary TypeLetter
Letter Date26 September 1902
Address FromHanover, Northern Cape
Address To
Who ToJan Smuts
Other Versions
PermissionsPlease read before using or citing this transcription
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.
1 Hanover
2 Sep 26th 1902
4 Dear Friend
6 Will you do me a very great favour.
8 Please write & tell me exactly what you payed on my luggage at
9Pretoria station, &, if possible get me a written statement of the
10amount from the clerk
. I know how very busy you are & will be glad to
11pay an law attorney in Pretoria for getting it if you are too busy. In
12fact it might be better to employ an ordinary attorney, if Jingo so
13much the better. I
15 I want to return you the money of course, but that is not the
16important reason why I want it. When I got to Hanover Rd Station I
17showed it to the ticket to the station master & he said I had been
18charged about 3 th times too much on the luggage. I asked him to
19return me the ticket. He appeared to do so, but I now find that what
20he returned to me was my passenger ticket & not the luggage ticket. It
21was simply part of their whole plan as they charged me £7.10. too much
22on my passenger ticket the last time I traveled to Graaff Reinett. I
23can’t explain to you why I want so much to have it but I will gladly
24pay £10 to the attorney in Pretoria if he can get it for me. He must
25see the station master himself who is a kindly & gentlemanly man, who
26without whose help I should never have got away.
28 The subordinates absolutely refused to give me a ticket; they told me
29my pass from General Lyttleton was so much dirty paper, that I would
30never be allowed to go out of the Transvaal with it, & had not the
31station master insisted they would have given me no ticket. Even after
32I was sitting in my carriage just before the train left a filthy
33little fore-man came in & shook his fist at me & jeered at me & told
34me I would never be allowed to leave the Transvaal &c.
36Don’t please take any action in the matter as soon as I I am better I
37will see write to General Lyttleton about it. This is not a solitary
38case, or it would not matter it is a system on the railways among the
39subordinate officials. I shall never forget the kindness of the
40station master. If you've any diff Perhaps it would be better
41as keeping you quite out of the matter if you just sent me the name of
42an attorney (not Hudson Findlay, who evidently doesn’t want to have
43anything to do with me) to whom I could write to get me a statement of
44the amount you paid. The station master at Johannesburg when I put the
45bicycles on the train told me there would be no duty on them as they
46came from the Colony.
48 The people here are very anxious Cron should stand for Parliament; at
49this this by election. I shrink so from Politics that I shall be sorry
50if he stands, unreadable for my own sake.
52 Politicians & priests always fight with "reservations". Cron is so
53straight forward I should be sorry to see him become a real politician:
54 I hope even if he is returned he ^never^ will.
56 No I never want to see Pretoria again. I only want to see you people.
58 Olive Schreiner