Expert Research into the First Wave of British Immigration to Natal
News About the Publication Schedule
The records are published in alphabetical order, as far as ‘Guy’. The University of KwaZulu-Natal Press will be publishing volume 8: HAIGH to HOGSHAW in 2013. The following volume will run from HOLDEN to JUDGE. It will be published in 2013 or 2014.
Records after ‘Judge’ can be published on our database at a cost, but they will not contain source references and will be Dr Spencer’s notes on that individual. The proceeds from the database records will be used to subsidise current research. More information is available here.
Introduction to the Project
Since the 1960s historian Shelagh O’Byrne Spencer has been compiling biographies of the first wave of British settlers (the term ‘British’ encompasses English, Irish, Scottish and Welsh).
Her project covers the approximately 2800 settlers that came to Natal, South Africa between 1824 and 1857.
Today Dr Spencer has published seven volumes of these biographies in the critically acclaimed series known as ‘British Settlers in Natal 1824 – 1857: a Biographical Register’.
Emigres from Natal to Australia and America are also covered.
The sources consulted to write the biographies, apart from books and journal articles, are:
- The official records of births and deaths of the Department of the Interior (as it was then)
- Private manuscripts in archives and libraries
- Church registers, plaques and cemeteries
- Family Bibles (it was the practice at that time to record family births and deaths in the family bible)
- Diaries, Letters and Memoirs
- Deceased, Insolvent and Assigned Estates
- Papers of: the Supreme Court, the Surveyor General, the European Immigration Department, the Colonial Secretary’s Office and Government House.