"Getting in Dutch vice president of Women's Enfranchisement League, Mrs MacFadyen, we have to educate women in South Africa slowly" Read the full letter
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Letter ReferenceOlive Schreiner BC16/Box2/Fold4/1901/40
ArchiveUniversity of Cape Town, Manuscripts & Archives, Cape Town
Epistolary TypeLetter
Letter Date17 June 1901
Address FromHanover, Northern Cape
Address To
Who ToBetty Molteno
Other Versions
PermissionsPlease read before using or citing this transcription
Legend
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 name of the addressee is indicated by salutation.
1 Hanover
2 June 17 / 01
3
4 My darling Friend
5
6 I am always thinking of you but I don’t seem able to write at all
7now.
8
9 Cron is taking me out to a farm tomorrow near de Aar where I think I
10may get better. It belongs to that dear little woman who made the
11touching little speech at W- do you remember. Every thing seems so
12dream like to me now.
13
14 Good bye dear.
15 Olive
16
17 Address still to Hanover unless I wire or write that we are staying on
18there. The address of the Farm is Mrs Coos Van Zyl Ha [wordspace] near
19de Aar

20
21 My sister Ettie stopped here for a day to see me on her way to
22Grahamstown. I was very glad to see her: she saw my brother in England
23just before the end. His son Wilfred died also of heart disease just
24eight weeks before his father. It is strange he ^my nephew^ knew he was
25dying: three weeks before when he was quite well apparently he told
26several friends he had only a few weeks longer to live.
27
28
29
Notation
Schreiner’s ‘touching little speech’ comment refers to the Worcester peace congress. Schreiner sent written addresses to some of the Volkskongresses and peace congresses and she spoke at others, as follows: Graaff-Reinet Volkskongres, April 1900 (spoke); Cape Town women’s meeting, June 1900 (spoke); Somerset East peace congress, October 1900 (a letter of address); Paarl, November 1900 peace congress (a letter of address); Worcester Volkskongres, December 1900 (spoke). Two days later on 19 June, Cronwright-Schreiner wrote to Molteno about his and Schreiner’s proposed visit to a farm in the De Aar area, as follows:

‘Just a short note to say that tomorrow we leave for Haartebeest Hoek, near de Aar, the farm of Mrs J.A. Van Zyl. We drive to Hanover, thence by rail to Riet Siding, & thence by a number of cart. Continue to address Hanover.

On Monday aft. Olive was able to lie down flat for the first time & get a real sleep. Tuesday & Wednesday she was remarkably well, but Wednesday night the weather changed & came up damp, & she had a bad time. She is however much better again today. I do hope the farm may suit.’

Cronwright-Schreiner's updating letters to Molteno continued, with a letter dated 26 June 1901 from Haartebeest Hoek reporting that:

‘We got here on Monday evening at 7 o’clock. Olive stood the journey very well. She is better here, this place, as far as I can judge in two days, suiting her much better than Hanover. She is undoubtedly much stronger on the whole, but her chest is in so delicate & vulnerable a state that she cannot walk at all. If she walks 10 yards she caugh coughs terribly. So she remains in bed most of the morning & sits about in the afternoon. We are having exquisite weather. She has takes her food well and is sleeping better, everything is so quite and restful here. It is a fine farm with a very nice dry homestead. The house is quite ?modern, & our room has the sun in it nearly all day. Olive is very happy. Mrs & Mrs Van Zyl are kind beyond words with that incessant yet delicate kindness which is so typical of the Dutch. If the place continues to suit Olive, we shall stay on some time.’