Hi, I wonder if you can help me. I have just joined this site as I'm trying to find out some info. In a cupboard in my home in Northumberland, UK is a hand-made violin and on the back it has the following inscription -
Gen F v d Merwe
27th Feb 1900
I think my great grandfather Edward Joicey, a Northumbrian Fusilier must have been out there. I'd love to return the violin to the General's family if there are any in S Africa. Can you help?
What a magnanimous gesture Fiona! I have taken the liberty of posting your request on a facebook site dedicated to the Anglo Boer War - I will let you know if their are any "hits".
I think you will find that you grandfather served as an officer in one of the POW camps and was most likely, not in South Africa at all. He would have been exposed to Van der Merwe as a POW. See below.
The following user(s) said Thank You: goose, Fo Millais
Someone has pointed out that it's not Gen. vd Merwe but "G" en "J" van der Merwe. This, translated into English, means "G" and "J" van der Merwe - thus not a rank but two relatives - brothers of father and son etc.
That's amazing, thank you so much for your help. The only ref to that name I could see on your pages is a Johannes Stefanus aged 13, but the violin and writing must have been from someone a lot older. I'm so excited to hear what you can find out!