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Bill Schreiner

William Francis Reitz (Bill) Schreiner (born 1886) was the elder of Will and Fan Schreiner’s two sons. Bill, or little Will or Willie, as he is referred to in Schreiner’s earlier letters, graduated from the University of Cape Town and went on to become an advocate in the Supreme Court at Cape Town. During the First World War he fought with South African government forces in German South West Africa. Bill Schreiner was passionately interested in rugby and became a prominent rugby administrator in South Africa.

Of Will and Fan Schreiner’s four children, Bill seems to feature least prominently in Schreiner’s letters. While she frequently referred to Dot Schreiner as the ‘apple of my eye’, doted lavishly on Oliver Schreiner and became quite close to Ursula Schreiner while she was living in London during and after the First World War, Schreiner comments much less often about Bill Schreiner in her letters. Schreiner’s four extant letters to Bill Schreiner are nonetheless warmly affectionate and full of family news and good wishes, and always signed in the diminutive with some version of ‘your smallest of aunts, Olive’.

For further information see:
D.H. Craven (1981) ‘Schreiner, William Francis Reitz (Bill)’ in (ed) C.J. Beyers Dictionary of South African Biography Vol IV Pretoria: Human Sciences Research Council, pp. 546 - 547
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recipient icon Recipient Of
collection icon University of Cape Town, Historical Manuscripts: Manuscripts & Archives at the University of Cape Town is a leading location for accessing archival papers across many per... Show/Hide Collection Letters
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mentioned icon Mentioned In
collection icon SCCS Edited Extracts: Four groups of edited extracts from Olive Schreiner's letters can be accessed from here, made by her estranged husband Cronwr... Show/Hide Collection Letters
collection icon University of Cape Town, Historical Manuscripts: Manuscripts & Archives at the University of Cape Town is a leading location for accessing archival papers across many per... Show/Hide Collection Letters
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