According to information passed down by one of my family members, my 3rd great grandfater, Jacobus Berning ( https://www.wikitree.com/wiki/Berning-996
)was of Jewish descent.
According to information passed down in the family, he was "of Polish-Jewish descent and from a region bordering Russia".
Apparently they also spoke Yiddish and Afrikaans (one of the official languages in South Africa ) in their home.
I've been trying to search for information to verify all of this, but have yet to find any information on him. He definitely isn't part of the Berning family who came to South Africa early on. What also makes it difficult is, that if he was indeed Jewish, he might have had another name.
I've been doing my own research, trying to create a timeline to see if this would be possible and during the time I estimate he came to South Africa, there was a influx of Jewish immigrants from Lithuania (which borders Poland and the Kaliningrad area of Russia)
Kaliningrad was formerly know as Konigsberg and had a large Jewish population.
A lot of the Jews came to the diamond fields of Griekwaland-Wes (the area where my grandfather lived). He was a diamond prospector.
As you can see, it seems like the information fits (but it's easy to make a story fit if you want it to.)
I'm still searching for evidence of our Jewish heritage and hope to someday find it. I don't think I'll ever be able to stop looking. Until I find it, I'm enjoying the abundance of new things I'm learning with regards to Jewish history in South Africa.