Do you have South African Roots? Join our South African Roots Project !

+14 votes

Do you have South African Roots or maybe an extended family line in South Africa?

Join the South African Roots Project. We do not just accept experienced members, but our membership is open to new members on WikiTree as well.

The requirements are simple. After you volunteered on WikiTree:
Sign the Honor Code
Become a WikiTree Genealogist
These two requirements will enable you to work on your own family line.
We recommend that you do the Pre-1700 Certification as well because this will enable you to contribute to all open profiles on WikiTree.

After you have done that, just add an answer (not a comment) and tell us a little about yourself and what you are researching.  

Do not forget to add the tag south_african_roots to your followed tags.

in Requests for Project Volunteers by Louis Heyman G2G6 Mach 5 (55.8k points)
edited by Bea Wijma
If your project can assist me in getting connected to more details on our families then please let me join your SA Roots Project.

Thanks Elize Taylor
Hi Elize

Welcome to SA Roots project

Here s the link to our Home Page

Lots of information on sources as well. Links to Sources

Looking forward to work with you in connecting our Global family with South African Roots
Thanks Ronel and welcome to the South African Roots Project Elize !
Good day

I would like to join the SA Roots project.

My family is linked to the van der Westhuizen and Herholdt family
Just reply, not comment please

75 Answers

+9 votes
Yes, I am however not sure which generation moved to South Africa, when. On my father's side, my great Grandfather I suspect did the move from Northern Ireland to South Africa. As for my Great Grandmother, I have no idea. The same can be said on my mother's side. In fact I have no idea on both my Grandmothers ancestry...
by Douglas Burns G2G Crew (620 points)

Samuel was the son of Moses and Martha. He died 1938-01-24 at the age of 64 years and 10 months. You will see that there are 8 children listed- He came from BallinasKeagh, Banbridge, County Down. 

Enjoy the research :)

Let me know when you are ready to join the project.

+11 votes
Good day members,


I am Etienne Bosman, i have been busy with my Family Genealogy for the past 9 years.

I am so happy to see that there is a South-African community on Wikitree.

My main branches are Bosman and Guthrie, at the moment i am focusing  on sub-branches that include Klopper, Scheepers, Coetzee.

I would love to be apart of the South-African Roots project. If anyone has any knowledge on the above families your help will be highly appreciated.

Kind Regards,

Etienne Bosman
by Etienne Bosman G2G Crew (710 points)
Also searching for SCHEEPERS - but that is our main search. Great to work alongside others on this SA roots project

Hi Etienne Bosman , D Scheepers

Did you find anything interesting that was from help on Wiki Tree?

The Scheepers family is huge, I am working on them for a while now

(Scheepers/Prinsloo/Erasmus) + (Coetzee / Coetsee)

 Please feel free to email me if you hit a brick wall in your family line. I will try and help.

Looking forward to hear from you :)



Hi Susan,


Thank you for your comment.


I have hit a brick wall yes, i only found Cornelia Potgieter Coetzee (Coetzee-1187) and John Adamson Guthrie's (Guthrie-2063) wedding certificate about 2 weeks ago from a family member.


I have her parents initials on the wedding certificate and the location that they got married at that says Nelspruit, Barberton district, Northern Transvaal. But unable to find anything further on her or her parents.


Any help will be highly appreciated.
Hi Susan

Very stuck on Benedict Antony's first wife's name or any details about her (Unknown-364476). She is my husband's mother. Have had no luck when applying for his birth certificate. Am hoping there is a marriage certificate for her and Bennie, but if they werent married I am not sure what else I can do - except reapply for a birth certificate for hubby and wait another 18 months!!!

Will be adding some photos and clues I have regards her family in the next day or so.


Do you have any idea of where they lived?

Maybe that can be a starting point for a search.
I know they first lived in JOhannesburg and then in the Pinetown area near Durban. I have no photos of her father, but I do have some of her mother and grandparents. (and some older pics that could be great great grandparents etc. But hard to tell with no names and I would just be guessing really. Thanks for you suggestion

I have set up a page with all the lmystery people/ photos that I am stuck on, but that I know are related in some way:
I am Kevin Brooks ans I personally know David Guthrie from Nelspruit.
If you are interested to know more - just send me a mail.
HI - well it has been 14 months and I have heard nothing from SA regarding my application for my husbands CORRECT birth certificate - the last one they sent us contained wrong info. Even the SA embassy in NZ has been no help. What next?? Any suggestions on how else we could find my husbands mothers name? Or get Birth cert details quicker? Thanks Diane
+10 votes
Yes, I have south African roots! Please add me to this project?

From my mother's side there is the Oosthuysen / Otto / Vermaak and Bothma families. Some of them also have Cape of Good Hope connections!

My father's family (Bron) emigrated to South Africa during 1952, while my husband's family (Ros) arrived during 1971.
by Louise Ros G2G Crew (780 points)
edited by Louise Ros
Hi Louise

Welkom by ons Suid Afrikaanse familie .


+10 votes
Hi, I'm quite new to WikiTree and am still learning the ropes but would be interested in joining this project. My father's side is from Durban and has a long history there, Surnames I'm interested in from the Durban area are Warner, Currie, Burt and Cooper.

My mother's side is Van der Merwe and Marnewick from the Krugersdorp area. I've done quite well on the Marnewick line but have not had much luck on the Van Der Merwe line.
by Nick Warner G2G Crew (500 points)
Hi Nick

Baie welkom by ons Suid Afrikaanse familie groep.

As jy by 'n spesifieke persoon 'n doodloop straat het, voel vry om die wiki tree id vir ons hier te plaas dan kyk ons hoe ons kan help.

Vriendelike groete

Hi Nick

I have van der Merwe's and must admit I haven't even really looked at that line on WikiTree yet, but it is a family that has been well - researched. I have one van Der Merwe brick wall I want to tackle down the line. Perhaps we can support one another.
+10 votes
I have South African roots and am interested in Pendrey, Cantrell, Vermoter and Chatterton family trees.
by Jan Chatterton G2G Crew (650 points)
Hi Jan

Just awarded your badge.

Hope you will enjoy your time spent on Wiki Tree.

If you need any assistance ask .... you will always find someone friendly around to help and guide you.

+8 votes
Hello, I am Joanette Le Cornu.

My branches are from the Netherlands the Jersey Islands, and some South African roots I have yet to discover.

My mother's parents immigrated from the Netherlands to South Africa when they were young(1950s). My grandfather is Lubbinge and my grandmother was Smit.

My father's family on father's(Le Cornu) side came from the Jersey Islands. They immigrated to South Africa in the 1800s, I am not sure exactly when.

My father's mother's maiden name was Slabbert. I don't know much about her family, but I think her roots go back the furthest in South Africa of all my family roots.

Thank you!
by Joanette Smith G2G Crew (720 points)
Hi Joanette

Welcome to WikiTree and the SA Roots project.

Hope you will enjoy your stay.

Do remember to add your Family names and projects as tags to your profile to enable others with the same family interest to find you.

You will find more information here []

Do ask for help should you need any. :-D


+9 votes
May I join this project?  I don't personally have South African roots that I am aware of, but my husband and his mother do (my MIL's maternal line), so I guess that means my son does, too.  I spend more time, effort, and money researching my husband's family lines in South Africa than researching my own!

One surname I am researching in South Africa is Mallet/Mallett.  So far, no good evidence for where my mother-in-law's maternal great-grandfather John Mallet or his family came from or when he/they arrived in SA.

I also want to flesh out her Radtke/Birkholz ancestors at their origin,  Zadelow, Pomerania, Prussia, as well as the Birkholz collaterals in SA and their descendants (Carl Birkholz and Dorothe Radtke and children arrived in East London from Prussia in 1858); as well as John Earles Shepherd and Kate Jamieson in SA who married into the Mallet/Birkholz family.

The most intriguing mystery is my MIL's "paper" tree includes a Marsberg maternal grandfather (19th century immigrant family to SA from Germany/Prussia), however, autosomal DNA testing at 23andme as well as AncestryDNA confirmed a hunch that not all was as it appeared - there is not enough auDNA evidence or DNA matched contemporary cousins to support the three great-grandparents from Germany/Prussia in the paper tree.


Instead, the DNA matches and ancestry evidence strongly supports the family rumors of a NPE in that generation.  Family history includes a broken engagement, then marrying the sister's brother-in-law, and records that clearly show conception occurred well prior to marriage  with birth not long after the marriage date.  Not enough to bat an eye today, but who knows back then, even during a diamond rush.

Additionally, many, many of my MIL and husband's contemporary DNA cousins are documented descendants of the some of the early European families that colonized/settled in SA.  So we are now trying to discover the identity of this 19th century mystery man, most likely born between 1850- 1870, who may have lived in or spent time in or around Kimberley during the Big Hole era, in particular in late 1885-early 1886. With a diamond rush on, this won't be difficult, right?  ;-)  My pick is ready to sift through the rubble of time.
by Anna Salvesen G2G Crew (700 points)
+9 votes

I'm Anneme (Smit) Van Berge.

I've been working on my tree for a while  but Wikitree opened up a new world for me.

I would like to contribute to this project because I'm passionate about my SA roots.

I'm mainly researching the following surnames: SMIT, OLIVIER, WESSELS, CRONJE, SWART, HAVENGA, MEYER.

by Anneme van Berge G2G1 (1.5k points)

Hi Anneme

Welcome to the South African Roots Project  

Vra gerus as daar enigiets is wat jy nie verstaan nie. Ons wil graag help.

Sterkte met jou navorsing




Hi Anneme.

Baie welkom by die SAR projek, hoop jy geniet dit vreeslik :)



+9 votes
My name is Heinrich Robert Landsberg. I am trying to trace a family that is untraceable. Requesting unabridged certificates of my grandparents ended up with no results. Home Affairs stated no  records found.

My family is very feudal and not talking at all so information is scarce. My grandfather faugt in WW2 in North Africa. Military says they can't give information if they have it. So I think he may have been a Nazi who fled Germany.

I can find no records of anyone of my family dead or alive in any records anywhere on the planet. I am slowly loseing hope to find any results and being quoted nearly £10000 for assistance is not something I can even consider.

I still struggle onwards, hoping to find any information on my family on my father's side. The Landsberg family.
by H L G2G Crew (470 points)

Hi Heinrich,

The profiles of your grandparents is not open, so nobody else can see any information to start from. Try these sites first, maybe you are lucky.

eGSSA Graves 



Hi Louis,

Sorry, I'm new to Wikitree and wasn't sure how to set privacy. i have changed the privacy to public.

I hve tried FamilySearch, eGSSA and NAAIRS. With my mother's ancestry it is easy as they are from the UK, but my father's side is unknown. I once asked my father where our family is from and he said he doesn't know. he doesn't even know where my grandfther was born.

What makes this more difficult is due to the feudal family we have no communication with that side.

Thank you for your advice.

I see now, you think he is still alive but his wife mother is deceased. That means his privacy cannot be open on WT.  Location is important, you might try to complete that as best you could. If he was not born in SA there will be an immigration record. 

I see there is this record

DEPOT     KAB                                                                   
SOURCE    PIO                                                                   
TYPE      LEER                                                                  
VOLUME_NO 1132                                                                  
SYSTEM    01                                                                    
REFERENCE 49153E                                                                
PART      1                                                                     
STARTING  1951                                                                  
ENDING    1951        
+9 votes
Yes, I too have South African roots. My names are Jan Andries le Roux and  it was also my dad and grand-pa's names. I was born in Pretoria, but currently live in New Zealand.

My mothers maiden name was de Lange.

I have just started researching my family tree and origin(s), so I am keen to become part of the South African Roots project.
by Jan le Roux G2G Crew (470 points)

Hi Jan,

We will be glad to have you as soon as you complied with the above requirements. :)

Hi Louis,

Sorry about that, I think I have now signed everything there is to sign and agree to. How about now?
Middag Jan

Welkom, vra gerus as jy vashaak met jou familie. Ons wil almal graag help om 'n globale boom vir die Suid Afrikaanse families te bou en sien uit daarna om met jou saam te werk. Geniet die familie besigheid :-)
+9 votes
Hi Everyone,

I'm Elmarie Ras ( born van der Vyver). Born and bred South African.
May I join the group?
My focus is on Rochat ( maternal great grandfather) and Ras ( my husbands' family name).
by Elmarie Ras G2G1 (1.2k points)

Baie welkom Elmarie

Vra gerus as ons kan help . Ons wil almal graag help om 'n globale boom vir die Suid Afrikaanse families te bou en sien uit daarna om met jou saam te werk. :-D


+9 votes
I have joined Wiki Tree to consolidate my family history.  

I currently live in South Africa, born and raised here.  I will contribute with as much information as I can possibly obtain
by Elda Botha G2G Crew (470 points)

Hi Elda  

We would love to welcome you to the South African Roots Project, but you will have so sign the Honor code first. 

Do drop us a note when done and we will be honored to have you as member on this wonderful project. 

 Greetings and have a wonderful day - the South African Roots Team :)

+8 votes
Good day,

I am looking for my family roots.

The 4 main family surnames roots I am looking for is: Swiegers, Naude, Cronje and Liebenberg. And then also a big interest in the Surname Jackson where the family entered South Africa.

Thus I would be appreciated to be part of the South African Roots project to trace my roots.

Thank you
by Luzette Jackson G2G1 (1.5k points)
Hi Luzette Jackson

Welcome to the South African Roots Project, we are very happy to have you as a member of our team

Have a wonderful day


A very warm welcome  Luzette
If you still have questions after you read the South African Roots pages, please ask and also let us know how you are doing. 



+10 votes
I would like to join this page as i want to improve my south african roots knowledge and assist with information that might help
by Gavin Killian G2G Crew (500 points)

Hi Gavin,

Thank you for your interest. There is still the confirmation of WikiTree Genealogist that you have to do. 

Hi Gavin, I see you are ready. Welcome to the South African Roots project. Your badge is on the way.
A very warm welcome Gavin

If you still have questions after you read the South African Roots pages, please ask and also let us know how you are doing.


+8 votes
Good afternoon,

I am Elizabeth (Lizelle) Bekker neé Blignaut.  I only recently started with my family tree.  The birth of my brother's son on the 1st of July 2017 really inspired me to push through.  I want to offer my daughter and my brother's son the opportunity to know their ancestors and where they come from.  This is an opportunity I did not have growing up, and the desire to one day research my family history never subsided.  

Thank you for giving me this opportunity.

I am researching the surnames Blignaut / Bekker / du Toit / Ritson / Jordaan.
by Elizabeth Bekker G2G2 (2.7k points)
edited by Elizabeth Bekker

Hi Lizelle, 

Welcome and we hope that you will enjoy WikiTree as much as we go. You should receive your badge shortly. Please add your name to the Project here . Do not forget to add the tags How to Join  
Please read the help pages as well:)

+8 votes
Hi I am Sylvi searching mainly for Beckford roots and especially who was the first Beckford to settle in South Africa.  I have managed to find a document stating that a certain Mr Beckford was part of the Menezes party travelling on the Weymouth as part of the 1820 British settlers but am not sure whether he had male descendants as only girls are noted.  Then obviously I have more gaps in my family tree than answers and I do not have family members that is able to add to my questions.
by Sylvi-Ann Nelmapius G2G Crew (710 points)

Hi Sylvi, Welcome to WikiTree. Should you want to join the project, you must first sign up to become WikiTree Genealogist 

Regarding Mr Beckford, Do you have any more info on him? 

Hi and welcome Sylvi-Ann to the South African Roots Project , we're very happy to have you as a member of our team.

Need help with the project? I am only  an e-mail away.

Enjoy !!



+9 votes
I am Cynthia Te Brugge and I was born in Cape Town in 1966. I am researching my ancestors, but have hit a brick wall with my grandparents on my dad's side as well as my mom's dad who changed his name before arriving in South Africa. The surnames I am researching are Te Brugge, Chase, James (not original name), Senior, Hess and Von Petrikowsky. I have done the autosomal DNA test, but I haven't found any matches within the family trees.
by Cyndi Lilkendey G2G Crew (470 points)
Hi Cynthia, welcome to our project. Complete the profiles as best as you can so that we can see what we have to work with and just post to G2G from the profile with the surname and project tags.

Hi Cyndi 

Welcome to the South African Roots Project , we're very happy to have you as a member of our team, so thanks for joining ! 

Need help with the project? I am only  an e-mail away.

Enjoy !!

+9 votes
Hi I have South African Roots,my family ,Pretorius,De Vos, Smit(H),van der Merwe,all going back to the first ,on the border side Tintinger a soldier with the German Legion,Lantz(Lanz)with the 1820 settlers,and al those founding fathers and mothers of our country.please note my email does not work ,please leave a note on my profile or whatsup me 0764761733 or my email
by Johan Smit G2G3 (3.7k points)

Hi and welcome to the South African Roots Project , we're very happy to have you as a member of our team, so thanks for joining ! Greetings and have a wonderful day - the South African Roots Team :)

+8 votes
Hi! I am Chris Swart and have been busy with my family history for a number of years. Only recently, I made a much needed breakthrough, thanks to a member on Wikitree.

My main biggest focus is the surnames of Swart, Buys, Roos and Lourens Families and will appreciate it to be part of this project.

Kind Regards,

by Chris Swart G2G1 (1.4k points)

Hi Chris

Welcome to the South African Roots Project , we're very happy to have you as a member of our team, so thanks for joining ! the South African Roots Team 

+8 votes
I was recommended to join the South African roots group.  My family is all South African and I have just recently started getting interested in learning more about my heritage and building my family tree.  I'd love to get involved in the group.
by Susan Brink G2G1 (1.2k points)

Hi Susan

Welcome to the South African Roots Project , we're very happy to have you as a member of our team, so thanks for joining ! the South African Roots Team 

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