Bestand MSS. Afr. s. 2175 - Papers of Sir George Farrar and family

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MSS. Afr. s. 2175


Papers of Sir George Farrar and family


  • c1864-1982 (Anlage)



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21 boxes

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Sir George Farrar (1859-1915) was educated at Bedford Modern School before entering his uncles engineering firm (Howard, Farrar and Co.). In 1879 he travelled to South Africa to represent the firm in the Cape. The discovery of goldfields in the Transvaal led him to move to the Witwatersrand in 1886. Seven years later he established the East Rand Proprietary Mine (ERPM) company. In 1893 he married Ella Mabel Waylen, with whom he had six daughters The lack of political representation in the Transvaal for uitlanders (English settlers) caused Farrar to become a leading member of the Reform Committee. The organisation was implicated in the Uitlander Risings in Johannesburg (timed to co-ordinate with the Jameson Raids of 1896), after which he was sentenced to death, though the sentence was later commuted to fines and a three year ban on political participation. During the South African War of 1899-1902 he was a major on the Colonial Division staff, responsible for intelligence-gathering. For his work during the conflict he was knighted and awarded the DSO. In 1902 he was elected President of the Transvaal Chamber of Mines, though he resigned the presidency in 1904 to return to a career in politics. In 1905 he was elected president of the Transvaal Progressive Association and won the seat for Boksburg East in Transvaals first general election, 1907. After his election he was appointed Leader of the Opposition to Bothas government. He campaigned for the unification of the South African colonies and later merged his Progressive Party with Jamesons Cape Unionists to form the Unionist Party. In 1910 he was elected member of Parliament for Georgetown (Johannesburg) in the first elections of the Union of South Africa. The following year he was created a baronet. He retired from politics in 1911 in order to deal with management problems at ERPM. In World War One he was appointed Assistant Quarter-Master General for the campaign in German South West Africa, with responsibility for rebuilding the sabotaged railway line through the desert so that South African troops could advance. He died in 1915 from injuries sustained in an accident on the railway.

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Photographs, correspondence, newspaper cuttings relating to mining activities in South Africa, 1871-1929 Telegrams, newspaper cuttings, photographs, etc. concerning the Jameson Raid, 1896 Maps, correspondence, etc. relating to the South African War, [1899-1906] Correspondence, newspaper cuttings, cartoons, etc. relating to political career, 1903-1915 Visitors book from Farrars farm during the South African War, with cartoon sketches, postcards, etc., 1900-1902 Correspondence, newspaper cuttings and photographs relating to social and family activities, including accounts of a journey to the Victoria Falls, 1900-1919 Correspondence, photographs, telegraphs, newspaper cuttings, etc. concerning field of service in World War One and his subsequent death and funeral, including household inventory, will and related papers, 1909-1975 Biographical notebooks, c1915-1919 Personal and family photographs, c1864-1920 Newspaper cuttings concerning members of the Farrar family and Benoni, the township founded by Sir George Farrar, 1904-1982 Miscellaneous items, 1908-c1970

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