Before I write my biography I would first want to honor among all of my ancestors over all the generations going back in time, Gaele Andriesz - the first Van der Walt in South Africa, and my grandmother ten generations removed - Catharina of Malabar. They and many other unnamed forebears and their descendants have sacrificed, suffered, rejoiced and lived so much, for me to be here in healthy spirits today.
I also honor my mother and father sadly but understandably deceased now, my three brothers and their families. Especially my youngest brother who introduced me to this WikiTree - Wynand van der Walt.
I was born on the 27th of March 1963 and baptized the 9th of June 1963. Born and bred in South-Africa, a product one might say of the 400 year old legacy of the Dutch East India Company (Dutch: Vereenigde Oost-Indische Compagnie, VOC). I am descended from a long line of Polish, English, Slave, Huguenot, Dutch, Frisian, German and Scandinavian ancestors. What a wonderful mix of blood that runs through my veins.
After 30 years of living in the Netherlands (Amsterdam), I am as near as fluent in Dutch as a non-native born and bred can be. I have (in various degrees - mostly basic but better than nothing) some knowledge of Frisian, German, French and even Spanish. This is also the reason I volunteerd to help out with the New Netherland Settlers Project and the Dutch Cape Colony 1652-1806 Project, trying to make sense of all the variations of the LNAB's of the settlers of these two small Dutch colonies, one that later would grow to be New York as we know it today, the latter that would eventually grow into the geographical entity and the nation state of South Africa. My expertise lies in knowing (and still learning) how the different Dutch and Huguenot spellings differ and evolved over time in different locations. For example the different spelling of surnames in South-Africa (Cape Colony when it was still a Dutch Colony and not English compared to the USA (New Amsterdam and the surrounding Dutch and English settlements) and the socio-geopolitical dynamics that caused this morphing of (sur)names. I am not a linguistic expert though. And the reason that I enjoy WikiTree so much is that I learn so much. A whole new world opened up to me - with all it's glory and horrific evil - it is my second university ...
The Dutch Cape Colony 1652-1806 Project is my favorite hobby at this moment. I am privileged to be the Project Coordinator and research leader - providing assistance with sourcing, citation, merging, translation and any other questions regarding issues relating to the project. My personal goal regarding this project is to get as many of the profiles of the settlers and their descendants as well any of the indigenous peoples in so far they are available, correctly merged into the properly researched, validated and protected profiles. Eventually this project will encompass everyone known and documented who lived in the Cape during that period, so their descendants will only have to link their lineages (connect them if you will) to the researched and validated profiles.
When I'm not being absorbed by the merging of profiles and the organizing of the biographies, I indulge in researching my own ancestry and the general history of South Africa. It both exhilarates and astounds me, at times it is humbling and even shocking to see (actually only to get a glimpse of) with hindsight the context of the realities of all the generations that went before us.
To think that only a few years ago I bought my first smart phone - an apparatus that at the slightest touch of the finger brings the whole of mankind into my palm - internet, social media - I even had trouble finding the actual phone to communicate with. My mother who died in 2007 just saw the dawn of Facebook. She still had the cranky old black and white television in her flat when I last visited her (no cable). My father who died in 2000 still witnessed the introduction of the first mobile phones. We were all there as children when the state television was introduced in 1976. Before then it was the drive-in or the movie theater formula of the 1930's that entertained us. My grandparents grew up on farms, rode buggies (or 'Spiders' as they used to be called) and I remember my grandfather 'Oupa' Jimmy Baker recalling his first (model?) Ford-T he owned in the 1920's. In just 3 generations all this and so much more has happened. The mind boggles.
"To aid WikiTree in the administration of my account should I be incapacitated, or in the event of my death, I hereby give permission for all private profiles I'm managing to be transferred to the following WikiTreers, whether or not they are currently on the Trusted Lists: Wynand van der Walt ; Eugene Andre van der Walt ; Reinette (Wehmeyer) Hesseling ; Shireen (Pontac) van der Walt ; Angie Oosthuizen (formerly van der Walt). These profiles are not to be deleted because they contain information (i.e. photographs, narratives and other texts) that is important to be saved for posterity; for the children of my brothers and the children of my cousins. As such they are also the property of the next generations."
Andriesz was the patronym of the progenitor of the van der Walt-family in South Africa. Geale was his first name. Like many Dutch and other European surnames the place from which a person came got administratively attached to the LNAB during migration in the 17th and 18th centuries.
Andriesz was the patronym of the progenitor of the van der Walt-family in South Africa. Like many Dutch and other European surnames the place from which a person came got administratively attached to the LNAB during migration in the 17th and 18th centuries.
In regard to Clarence Connor (Connor-632) and his close family members, I've done some updating since your work on that group on about 3 Jul. Have tried to open up access enough for you to make further changes. After you're done, please let me know of any whose Privacy Level needs to be changed back to "Private" or "Private with Public Family Tree" to prevent possible identity theft. Thank you.
Do you perhaps have a link to the NGK Church records for the Cape, Free State and Transvaal? The one on family search does not include the records that I need.
Hi cousin, it is indeed a small world.
I always wonder what would have happened if the Voortrekkers did not pack up and move to their unknown future in Ox wagons. over mountains and through rivers. I am sure our ancestors also did not foresee a future for their children and here we are today with all the mind boggling technology.
My son, Rudi, always teases me and says that the Voortrekkers should have waited a 100 years then they could fly up to Natal, Free State and Gauteng. LOL
Dia Labuschagne [Kruger]