A Gentle Pioneer: Nancye Stuart 1871-1956: A Young Mother's Life and Travels in Southern Africa

 
9781905864386: A Gentle Pioneer: Nancye Stuart 1871-1956: A Young Mother's Life and Travels in Southern Africa

Nancye Stuart was born in Natal, South Africa, in 1871, and spent her childhood both there and in Zululand so she was used to Africa and its people. She led an interesting domestic and social life in her teenage years - much of it involved with the military owing to the many tragic wars going on around them. She was not, however, expecting the very different life she was to lead after her marriage in 1896 when she found herself one of the few women following in the footsteps of the original pioneers who ventured north into the country that was then Southern Rhodesia. She wrote about many of her experiences in diaries and letters which describe in a charmingly modest, matter of fact style, the hazardous journeys in mule-wagons, and the primitive living conditions in which she gave birth to her four children. Although enduring constant bouts of malaria, often during periods of drought and food shortages 'until Mafeking was relieved,' she seldom mentions these or the difficulties of trying to feed and clothe her family. Names of people and places now remembered in school history books - Cecil Rhodes, Baden-Powell, Bishop Colenso, Rorke's Drift, and many others appear casually among the day to day stories. Using many of these diary entries and memories contributed by members of Nancye's family, the author presents a vivid account of the life of this very brave, but very Gentle Pioneer.

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