South African Place Names

+9 votes

Firstly, may I take a little time to wish you all well in the year 2019 ahead, especially within this wonderful and social community of genealogists.  I have enjoyed my short association with you all and hope this continues into 2019.

To the business of the day… it may well be opportune to discuss the categorization of South African and predecessor country place names.   As promised, I have written a proposal for those interested in the Southern African region in the hope that we can stimulate the concept of categorization of place names within the region.  This follows on from a discussion already had on name changes in the region (referenced in the Free Space document).

This proposal is brought straight to G2G, since, as I understand it, the South African Roots Project is not using its Google Groups mail list for this type of discussion.  Besides, this subject needs open transparent collaboration with the broad spectrum of profile managers overseeing South African and regional profiles.  

The Free Space Document is a proposal for discussion.   I seek your indulgences, your comments and eventually resolution for the way forward.  The document will change according to the general consensus expressed, and obviously the input of the South African Roots Project and the Categorization Project leadership is sought.  

I volunteer my services to layout the root structure proposed and once done will assist and encourage categorization by South African profile managers.

in Policy and Style by Andrew Field G2G6 Mach 2 (28.5k points)

4 Answers

+10 votes
Best answer

Hi Andrew

Regarding Implementation into SA Roots Project only:

The scenario for COGH is quite different.

First of all: An excellent and comprehensive piece of work I am impressed. Thank you for all the time you have put into this.

I can see and would love to reap the benefit of the categories but I do have misgivings to the implementation thereof.

Sorry to rain on you parade:-D

We have a hard time just getting people to add historical correct names to places (as indicated in our SA Roots Home page) and the complexity of your proposal will cause more work than we can manage with the little help we have.

The only way I can see this working, so we could reap the benefits, is if one would commit all there time to add, watch, re add and correct the place name categories on an ongoing basis, which is virtually impossible, because one would have to be on almost every single profiles trusted list, to do that.. (Changes to the profiles that are not managed by SA Roots will not show in the Google Groups mail list and will go undetected)     

This is my humble opinion and I stand to be corrected.

Warm Regards


by Ronel Olivier G2G6 Mach 7 (77.5k points)
selected by Philip van der Walt
Hi Andrew

I agree with Ronel, it is an impressive piece of work that you have put together and it would be amazing if you can make it work.

From years of experience of working on Wikitree I know that you will have to spend all your personal time trying to keep everything in order.

I just don't think that there is a practical way of implementing it unless you have a huge team of volunteers that will be able to assist you on a permanent basis.

At this stage I am already trying to avoid working on South African profiles. There is just too much admin and rules that needs to be adhered to and there is not a lot of time spent on researching and adding valuable sources to profiles
Greetings Ronel... thanks for your comments.  I don’t feel this is raining on my parade at all.  I would be happy to set up the very basic structure and monitor implementation by profile managers, who will do most of the work.  They will categorise their profiles if they choose to and I wouldn’t expect the Project or lone project members to do a massive exercise to categorise all South African profiles.  That is not the intention.  It’s an iterative and gradual process.

This initiative is simply to agree a structure for place names so that profiles  may be categorized consistent with other locations.  Fact is people are born, married and die in places, and those places need to be correctly named.  It will also pave the way for much needed work on cemetery categorisation.  

I need to better understand COGH, but in principal profiles under this project still have relationships to places.  

Hello Esmé... thanks for your comment.  Some valid points and yes priority needs to go to sourcing and there is so much to do.   I think if we can agree the category structure for place names at Project level and then as a Project we can discuss the various strategies I have for implementation.

I agree that the last thing the COGH and SA Roots projects need is further strictures on the fine details of what volunteers should be entering. Personally, I have stopped thanking people for "improving" profiles I manage if the only contribution is to make them more project-compliant.

I also agree that the time would be better spent in hunting down more sources.
+3 votes

Hi Andrew,

We already have two database fields for place names' Wiktree will try to connect historical p[ace names to geographic coordinates so that locations can be used more effectively, so what we actually need to compile is this list for them to implement.. If we then really need place categories after that, we can do it afterwards.

by Louis Heyman G2G6 Mach 7 (71.4k points)

Greetings Louis, 

Thanks for you comments.

Perhaps I am missing something here, but my only concern is to be able to categorize existing South Africa born profiles with the place of birth and wherever they died.   What you are saying, I guess, is that on each profile there is a date and place of birth and death series of fields.   Point taken.   

However, I wonder why other continental areas have placed a huge amount of emphasis on developing place name categories and their structures - take a look at, for example, the England place names - highly structured and being well populated with profiles.   It may therefore be pertinent for the Categorization Project to outline clearly why they value place name categorization, which as you seem to imply is a duplication of existing fields within profiles.  It merits comment.

In this light I would very much like members of the Categorization Project to actually comment on this G2G thread, perhaps outlining why place names categorization is important and why this is, apparently, a priority area of categorization.

The single biggest thing we as southern Africans can do to contribute towards any listing that WikiTree might wish to put together is to gear up on an appropriate category structure.   I have just developed the categorization of Zimbabwean place names.  This has set the platform for other Projects, such as the Cemeteries Project.   You might acknowledge that there are no data fields for cemeteries on profiles, and cemeteries profiles are very much on the priority list.

In time I shall develop place name categories for other southern African countries.  In my humble opinion I am simply moving with the trend on place name categorization (under the root Regions).   On a personal note, I actually like to categorize all of my profiles with birth and death place names.  My present exercise is Rhodesian profiles (many of whom are of 1820 Settle stock or originate by birth in the Cape Colonies).  

All I am asking of the South African Roots Project is their acknowledgement and support that the categorization structure I propose is acceptable and consistent with the general trend elsewhere in the world.   I should stress I am not wishing to impose a huge burden upon the Project.  Categorization is such that the work is actually done by profile managers and it is voluntary, but they need a structure to work to.  My choice is to categorize, as I believe it is the choice of many SA profile managers.  Perhaps they could contribute to the discussion.

Thus I appeal to the SARP project to consider this proposal in the light that it should not be a burden to the Project, and that it creates a globally consistent structure for those who wish to categorize place names.  

Best wishes


Hi Andrew,

I do not consider place categories to be very functional at the moment. If we were able to limit for example a surname list to such a category, it would certainly merit implementation.

We do not have a definitive guide at the moment as to what functionality can be attained with the proposed Wikitree implementation with database fields.   It might be that surname lists could then be limited to a database place name and not the place category.

I can only speculate that it looks like Wikitree might move away from the current Familysearch API.

Thanks once more Louis.   I would have thought that place name categorization would have done exactly that, generating surname listings in one place.

As an example - The Fields of Canterbury   

This is the surname lists I am referring to. Field. If you consider the category lists to be superior, by all means.

Thanks Louis...  I hear you... Now all we need is a filter for a place, a county, or country to make sense of that extremely long list of Fields.  Perhaps I need to look at it a bit closer.
Categories are used to group people either by geography or some other treats such as occupation.

Place categories can be useful when looking for a commonly named spouse. If that name can be found in the same category, it is worth to take a closer look to determine if it would be the intended spouse.

Looking for a father for a child born out of wedlock where those in the same category would probably have had the best opportunity.

Place categories can even be used to find family members with common names such as Smith or John. Without having to use filters in the site wide search function.

There is a very easy way to add categories to profiles now when editing, so there need not be a whole lot of time spent doing it once the categories are actually created.  (category picker boxes)

If there is one category that is in fact most useful to my mind, it is location category.  You want to know what families lived in this small town xyz?  Look in the category.  

Here's a scenario:

Oh look, just found a source that says he sued his neighbour John Smith.  Now which one of the multiple John Smith's is the right one?  Look in location category, how many are there?  4? ok, then presuming they are all present and accounted for, look at each profile for dates on them to further reduce the possibles.  And voilà, you just found your co-litigant.

+1 vote

The South African Place Names categories proposal is an attempt to introduce categorization for Southern African profiles.  The concept has been deployed on most continents and place name categorization is simply seen as another tool for genealogy research.  It supplements the search function, rather than replaces it.  It is acknowledged that both search and categorisation functions each have their limitations.  Search functions do not have place filters, even if they did there is no place name standardization.

The Categorization Project has given priority to stabilising the root structures under 26 global themes, and has adopted acceptable standards for subsidiary categorization of these themes.  Through a process of collaboration with relevant projects the “Regions” theme has evolved.  The African region is not only undeveloped, but fraught with error or inconsistency with accepted structure standards.  South African place name categories are already evolving, based on individual rather than collaborative decisions.  Thus, many South African place name categories are wrong and there are many places missing.  

Categorisation is only as good as profile managers choose to use the concept.  It is a powerful tool for clustering surnames in one place.  It also standardizes place names, if controlled (Ronel Olivier says that the SA Roots Project has difficulty with people not adding historically correct name places).  In my experiences using pre-set categories for places has often resulted in correction of the place name data field.

Correct categorization of a profile within the accepted matrix also provides headers for genealogically pertinent keys on profiles (in other words, if categorized well, a profile is summed up at the top of the biography section).  Categorization is easy for profile managers, each of them being able to access a category picker box.

There was a concern expressed that introducing place name categorization would place an additional burden on an already stretched SA Roots Project.  In actually fact, this is not so.   Categorization is done by individual profile managers and it is voluntary.   The Project would have no concern, other than they approve the proposed structure and someone within the project monitors implementation and conformity.  The author offers to take on that burden as a member of the Project.

The other concern is that there is inconsistency with categorization already established, for example, Ronel Olivier says that the Cape of Good Hope is quite different.  Agreed, but this is the entire reason for this collaboration.   It’s a matter of assessing carefully and establishing how one initiative fits into the other and vice versa.   It is also a matter of not treading on toes and interfering with all the hard work done.   There is no wish to undo what had been established but there will be suggestion for change.

All the points raised in this thread are pertinent, but in summation, I think we need to draw out more positive resolution for this important aspect of the WikiTree tenet.  I therefore appeal to South African Project members and profile managers to lend the concept support and allow me to gradually implement the structure.  It can only add to the Project.  Once done, I shall keep a watching eye on place names, as I shall be doing for other southern African countries (Southern Rhodesia/Rhodesia/Zimbabwe implemented).  However, I need the ‘go ahead’ from the relevant projects to continue, otherwise it would be up to individual profile managers to do their own thing, and that is not always consistent with our categorization objectives. 

by Andrew Field G2G6 Mach 2 (28.5k points)

I clearly understand that place names categories could have value for people who stayed in the same place, but I am reluctant to even start this as I have 20 years of experience in South African research and experience have taught me that the South African farmers were nomads. 

Trekking into the deeper interior and returning and trekking again was a way of life. The entire family would pack up the ox wagon and move to the "Winterveld"  returning again to the "Sommerveld" 

All we can do is follow the primary sources to link a profile to the correct parents, wife and children. Place names can not help in any way to ensure this is correct. 

I will try to explain  

Children was baptized on the way, The "birth" place is therefor most of the time in a certain district rather that a specific place and not always  the place he or she was born,stayed or lived, making the finding of a certain surname in a certain aria having no meaning or significance for research. 

The same are applicable to marriage and death place names.


Thanks Ronel... Yes, agreed... but less pertinent perhaps after Union and into the Republican periods.  I know exactly what you mean too, I have great grandparent profiles from Outshoorn who ended up in Vyburg Kuruman... Now I believe that clusters of Mullers, through categorization, in all three locations would, eventually provide some leads to family heritage or even descent... it’s just a tool... sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t.  

Might I suggest that perhaps we have an off G2G discussion in which Susan and Bea are included and we can work to a compromise which will not result in extra work for you or the project, but which allows me to set up the structure following acceptable place name categorization standards so that any profile manager can categorize non Project profiles...  We can then discuss Project profile categorisation among your other priorities.  The whole idea is I set the agreed structure and everyone else does the work to develop something which will become a useful tool.

Best wishes

Yes I agree Andrew

Looking at some of the categories you already placed I feel it is very urgent that we talk privately

Looking forward to your mail.
+2 votes

Hi Andrew, 

First of all thanks for all the wonderful work and of course for your enthusiasm ! And I also understand the category structure needs to be correct so all help and work you are willing to do is of course appreciated, what I think I understand, and please correct me if I'm wrong, is that you want to create categories now for each and every place in South Africa, including the Historical correct ones and in perhaps multiple languages as well ? 

I think maybe a reason why not everyone is as enthusiastic as you probably hoped or maybe expected they would be, is because not so long ago, several things were changed and we had some pretty major reorganizations, including the category reorganization, the category structure often was a mess, many wrong categories were created over the years, and there were just too many categories (including correct ones !), that all were created but never used by anyone and during this reorganization I think all wrong ones and the majority of the 'empty' or almost empty categories was deleted, so I think you can better start with just a few or with part of the structure you have in mind, and only if members ask for one for a specific place to create them. If I remember correct one of the things that also changed was that we now were no longer allowed to just go ahead and create any category we perhaps liked, so for categories everyone now first has to contact the categorisation project ?

We have had a similar discussion for the Dutch profiles, we decided not to create categories for all places, because of all the reasons mentioned  here and we were bumping into the same problems you all are bumping into now also. wink

Place names changed, places vanished or were renamed, small villages joined and became larger towns / cities and in many provinces and also in the Dutch colonies, there were many places or area's etc, that were all named exactly the same, so to create categories for all of them, and for all historical correct ones + in multiple languages, etc. would be an endless task, so we all decided not to create any for the places and not to activate the plaats and gemeente parameters in the Dutch Roots Project box. 

And not only because of the above, but this also was decided because we now work a lot with the WikiTree+ links and we all felt there no longer is a need to add categories for places etc. to profiles, if the location fields are filled in properly, we all can find them now very easy and without having to add categories just by using the WikiTree+ (or suggestion links) 

You can search profiles by place or province or country etc, etc. (this for example is the search result for profiles from Bloemfontein) (you can try searches by filling in different places and it will show them all)

But ...if you still want to create many categories for places in advance to make sure they are correct and ready, a positive thing is that we now have this  new feature for the adding of categories that makes adding them more easy.. so perhaps if people discover this they will add them more frequently..

And not sure if this would effect the use of categories, but there also was this G2G about where categories should appear (should categories appear below the text ?) 

Hope it helps and good luck ! 

by Bea Wijma G2G6 Pilot (282k points)
edited by Bea Wijma

Bea, Thank you for your message.  I have been requested by the South African Roots Project to stand back on this matter, thus moved onto another area of interest.  A pity, because what I proposed is much needed (by South African genealogists).  This task would be done in collaboration with the SARP and strictly following the rules set by the Categorization Project.  You will see from the correspondence above that there are reservations, and I fully understand them, but the time is ripe for this mission and I am prepared to do the work.

First paragraph... my offer is to create the root structure for place names to include the transitions from countries in their own right to post 1994 provinces (all of which were or are in the territory we now know as South Africa) - thus take the Cape (the identical geographic territory):

  • Dutch Cape Colony
  • British Cape Colony
  • Cape Province under the Union and Republic pre 1994
  • Western Cape, Eastern Cape and Northern Cape post 1994

Cities, towns, villages and districts/settlements which existed in each transition will be linked by a location category information box (CIB).  I do NOT propose setting up each and every place, unless there are profiles which may be allocated to them.  I am merely wishing to set up the structure.  I shall not be creating empty categories for the sake of it.  South African genealogists did not have either a place names root structure or locations to categorize their managed profiles.  In fact, when I arrived there were only Camp locations.  I have about 1,000 profiles of persons who died in Southern Rhodesian and Zimbabwe, but were born/originate from South Africa.  I also have many born in Southern Rhodesia, who emigrated, and died in South Africa.  There must be many other profile managers working with profiles of South African origin and demise. 

South African profile managers are at liberty to create place name categories if they need them, provided they link it into the structure correctly.  If the structure is not there, then there is very much a need to consult with the Categorization Project, of which I am an active member.  I sought the Categorization Project's approval when I set up the structure for Zimbabwe, and they have been included in the proposed structure for South Africa, which is the subject of a free space proposal page for everyone to review.   

The fact that place names changed, places vanished or were renamed, small villages joined and became larger towns / cities is EXACTLY the reason why I am here to assist and guide the SARP!  If you look at location categories in Zimbabwe you will see transitions of places from one nation to the new Zimbabwe and all the name changes which took place.  What ever we choose to do, it has to be historically correct.  Source documents will show deaths, for example, in Pietersburg, Transvaal Province and later Polokwane, Limpopo Province.  Exactly the same place, but renamed!  The two would be linked by a CIB.  Deaths pre-1994 would be categorized as Pietersburg, Transvaal Province and thereafter Polokwane, Limpopo Province.  

Now if you have somebody willing to do the work as we go along, and being consistent with the root structure then we will not get into a mess.  I can always fall back on the Categorization Project for guidance and support where difficulty arises.

I hear you on the matter of data fields existing for locations, and the capability of search.  However, such search is only as good as spelling and structure of the name is consistent.  Enkeldoorn and Chivu are the same place in Zimbabwe (many South Africans populated this town).  Profile managers are using both names in location fields (using Chivu when it should be Enkeldoorn and vice versa) I have already touched on this in the messages above.  By the same token categorization is only as good as the frequency that profile managers use categorization...  but you have to kick off somewhere.

Its not a case of my wanting to create many categories, but as I said, to create a sound structure for location categories.  Soon, there is going to be a push to start working on South African Cemeteries, which I might well get involved with.  For South African Cemeteries to click into place, it would be prudent to have the locations root structure in place.  This is proving to be extremely beneficial with the Zimbabwe Cemeteries initiative.

The categories pull down menu will make categorization much easier for all who wish to categorize.  This function should be encouraged.  As we stand now, apart from the dozens of names I have already added, there are no place names for South Africa. 

Now, Bea, the most important thing here is not that I set forth on my mission and do my own thing, but rather that this matter be done with agreement of the South African Roots Project and the Categorization Project. We discuss, agree and disagree, and come up with solutions which all South African genealogist can work with... that is the WikiTree way.  I shall be dropping you, Ronel, Susan and Phil a joint email in the near future and hopefully I can come to some agreement with the leaders of the project. 

I do hope the SARP and COGH Projects come to understand my point of view. 

Thank you Andrew for responding and happy to see you are still positive and enthusiastic ! wink

I think we all understand your point of view, the page(s) you have been working on and all the work and time you have spend on this is impressive and quite clear, but it's indeed a whole lot of and probably too much work for one person, so I agree it sure would be nice if you could find at least a few enthusiastic members who can assist you with this.

Looking at the responses so far I think that for the majority of members and for both projects so SAR and COGH, priority was and still is the finding and adding of sources, and making sure all families and lineages are as accurate as possible and free from duplicates, so that's what everyone is working on most, the categorization by places, as you already noticed, never was priority and I think almost no one has worked on implementing or creating them for South Africa.

But I hope there are some enthusiastic members that do have some time and that perhaps would love to help you with this, so if there are members who would like to assist Andrew please respond here, or perhaps it would be more handy if you all would read and add you want to help, with a post at Andrews proposal free space page ?

I think the location category information box (CIB) you mention probably needs a bit more explaining, because adding those boxes to profiles would be a whole different thing of course. (I guess it's a similar one as is used on WikiPedia pages and profiles?)

So I don't think you are planning or asking members to add such a location category information box to all profiles, but you will add these boxes only to the category page where members can find all the different categories you have created for that specific place ? 

I don't expect working on the category structure and creating correct categories and category pages so members can find and use them if they would want to, is going to be a problem for the South African Roots Project Andrew, of course I can't speak for everyone, but having the correct place/location categories ready probably only is making things more easy for everyone..

Just my two cents and hope it helps. 

Thanks Bea

My main concern is

In the period 1652 - 1806 I only found a few baptismal books with the actual birthplace or birth date. So which place will we add to the profile. The place of baptism - which is most probably not the place of birth.

Myself and Ronel still struggle to sort out the DB errors. With almost no help from the members.

My opinion, this will only add more and more workload to the leaders and coordinators of the projects. Here is an example. Louis spend hours sorting out the Anglo Boere War camp names (for members to add the camp names to the profiles). This don't happen.

Dirk spend hours helping us to create project help pages with links to template / place name  and general "how to" pages. A few members take the time to read this.

I think we need to remember not everyone do this as we do. Spending hours a day here. 

Out off all the COGH members we are a handful still working. 

I do understand that Andrew mean well, but I don't see this working in the CoGH project.

Please have a look through the SAR project profiles. People don't take the time to add something as simple as [[Category:South African Roots Project Needs Birth Record]]. This is all on the project pages (people don't like complicated things)

Dis net my klein bydrae.

Susan and Bea... thanks once more... let’s have a little group discussion on email... I’ll kick start that tomorrow.   Categorisation will catch on, once the structure is in place...  The grey area of not knowing if birth and baptismal places are the same should, in theory manifest itself in the birth location data field, surely?  If that’s wrong or indetermined then there is not hope for categorisation of the profile correctly.   Categorisation is all about clustering and listing... I have found this very useful working the Zimbabwean categorisation, and I dare say others might too.  I feel for you all being loaded with all the work and I don’t want to add to it.  However, soon enough people will begin using categorisation if the structure is set up, and with a little user education in our communities.
Hi Andrew, You are focussed on categorization. We (Ronel, Susan, I and a few others) are focussed on sourcing and validation of the genealogical lines, both in the SAR and COGH - but predominantly in the COGH because of the name variations and mass merges in the past. There is an abundance of baptism records in the period 1652-1806, with the exception of many progenitors whose records lie in Europe of elsewhere, many of which have not survived the raveges of war. So as I already explained, the districts for now is enough. Swartland for Swartland, Dutch Cape Colony (Tulbagh for Tulbagh. etc.) Please review our points of view. Bea has explained similar experiences with the Dutch Roots Project here in the Netherlands. Huge implications there. Your insistant communication on this subject is distracting from our priorities. If I look at all the projects you have joined, I must come to the conclusion that you have spread your time thinly and will not be able to shift all the work, or have no intention in helping to validate profiles. Only to create a super-structure of categories.

Rather an unkind and accusative response, I might say.  Too many assumptions.  A pity you are not seeing my point of view, and clearly you do not wish to.  Yes, my focus is categorisation for the time being and I am not thinly spread... this is not a task to be done overnight and it is not a mammoth task to set up the basic structure in line with other continents. However, I get the message loud and clear, the two projects do not wish to participate in or have anything to do with categorization. Fair enough, but sad, since it is a concept being promoted by WikiTree, to achieve location name standardization.  No one has given a real reason for the two projects rejecting my offer of meaningful contribution.   I shall thus abandon this initiative and basically revert to doing 'my own thing' with location categorizing with Rhodesian connected profiles.  Call me when you get to understand the concept...

Sorry you feel that way Andrew, I don't think Philip is meaning it wrong he, if I recall correctly, was quite helpful and really enthusiastic about your work and plans, so I think he probably just is worried that because you have not only this but several things going on already, you perhaps won't have time to get all of this done by yourself, you also are working on starting a Zimbabwe Project and if a project has enough members you might find it takes a whole lot, if not all, of your time to get that up and running and before you know it you probably and just like many of us are spending all your time on getting them all sourced, improved, categorized and trying to keep them all duplicate and suggestion (error) free as well.

I'm sure everyone understands your point of view and there's nothing wrong (it would be great) with having the basic structure and if you have the time and the help of some members who would like to help you work on this, to have the correct place categories ready as well, if things are ready and correct members can add correct ones more easy.

I hope you understand it's not that the two 'projects' don't want to help, what Susan and Philip and others are trying to explain or are worried about is that the priority for the projects as explained are not the place categories, the goal and priority for most projects is to get them all sourced and improved and free from duplicates, the huge messy and often unsourced gedcoms from the past have coused many problems, so it's a huge (mammoth) task to work on this, and there are not so many members working on it on a daily basis, so the main concern is that creating categories and categorizing them all will perhaps become a whole new task, including the task of correcting all the wrong place categories that very likely are going to be added, as Susan mentions there are already a whole lot of  project and other (error) suggestions (WT+ DB error suggestions) we with just a very few, need to work on, so I think the main concern is that this might become a whole new list of suggestions only taking more time they now can spend on finding sources.

Prrojects are started for and by groups of members that all are interested or related to the same groups of profile, so all we can do, and that's what I did, is ask member if they would like to help you with this, so I hope there are some enthusiastic members who would love to help you and work on this.
Hi Bea, Thank you... I am sure you all mean well...  Nothing personal.  However, all I am seeing is resistance to the initiative and I have basically been told to wind my neck in.  Sadly, what I am proposing will not alter the Project priorities in any way what-so-ever.  Nor will my proposal generate additional work load for the project, and for my part, its hardly a big task! All I sought was for the project leaders to look at and absorb a concept on location categorization and for us to agree away forward, allowing me to take a lead in this area.  All I got back were doubts and misunderstanding and opposition.   So I leave off here... walk away and hope that in due course Project leaders and the many thousands of South African profile managers see the light.  I am always here if you need me.

Hi Bea, thanks for understanding and giving more context to my previous reply. As it happens I just received the exact GPS locations (complete with modern day maps) for the farms (see this data base) on which many of the children, grand-children and great-grand children of my progenitor were born or died:

Uitkyk op die Roggeveldsberg 32:16:34 20:15:48

Tuinplaas op die Roggeveldsberg helling Tuinplaas al op Vinkekuil 32:41:32 20:26:34 Vinkelkuil – eintlik Vinke Kuil 

Bizansgat 32:50:09 19:59:26

Thyskraal 32:48:15 20:12:58

Hangklipoorspronklike naam op eiendomskaart was Hanglip 32:52:50 20:01:17

Inverdoorn 33:06:26 19:48:52

Karoopoort 33:13:03 19:42:13

Rietvallei Bietjie verwarrend – die plaas waarop Ceres uitgelê was is ook Rietvalley. Maar ek dink jou Rietvlei (Rietvalley) is waar Matjiesrivier is 33:15:51 19:39:04

However, it will take a small miracle to establish which children were born where, so we choose the places for birth as the places or districts of baptism. Right at this moment establishing where and with what names they as well as the some 80000 profiles between 1652 and 1806 were baptised, remains the main priority. And establishing who were the parentage and what mistakes previous genealogists of the late 19th century and 20th century made. Algorithims and an error data base are most helpful with that.

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1 answer
+4 votes
4 answers
+4 votes
1 answer

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