David, many thanks for your info. I missed that lead.
It certainly adds to an already fascinating story. John Spottiswoode Eustace certainly embodied the Victorian quest for adventure! No doubt he would have honed his already competent horsemanship in the Dakotas making him a very useful soldier on the South African veldt.
I wonder what happened to Hattie Belle.......
His wife in South Africa, Rosamund Evans, shared a home with him at Pilgrim's Rest.
Hattie Belle Hale was my great-great grandmother. She had one son with Jack, James Lionel Eustace. He died of cancer at the age of 53. Hattie married Charles Vargason a year (or less) after Jack left and lived until the age of 77. She spent almost all of her life in NW Iowa. Thank you for the information on JS Eustace. I knew most of this generally, but the details provided here are fascinating.
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Many thanks for your additional information for Jack's story. He certainly had an adventurous spirit, I guess the lure of South Africa may have pulled him away from Hattie.
Nice to know that she lived to a good old age, and a pity James passed away relatively young. Did Hattie or James have any further correspondence with Jack once he had left? I assume that they did in view of the fact that you knew much of his life history.
Thanks again, you have made my day to hear from someone connected with this fellow.
My impression from all I have heard is that they never heard back from him. I could be wrong, I'm just guessing. Unfortunately, I began my research into this man long after I could get any verbal history. My great-grandmother (Elnora Schneider Eustace) married James L Eustace, and so my grandmother and her sister were Jack's biological granddaughters. They were all born after Jack was killed, so all the information they had came from Hattie. I never met Hattie, but my great-grandmother lived until 2003! They made it sound like he was getting bored living in rural Iowa and running a small town cafe and "went back to his castle in Ireland" (this is the phrase repeated in the family history). He may have left with the sole intention of serving in this war, but either way I think it is clear he had an adventurous spirit. Most of the information I have learned has come from Ron Eustice
Eustace Families Association
I knew Jack had married Rosamund Evans but I always assumed they were in Ireland. Amazing they had shared a home in Pilgrim's Rest, SA! I also appreciate the narrative story provided here. It makes me want to visit and see the area. Would love to see the grave marker in person.