Title: South West Pioneer. A memorial tribute to James Frank Bassingthwaighte, first permanent white settler in South West Africa
Author: Colin Earl Bell
Publisher: Bennu Books
South Africa; Sea Point, 1977
ISBN 090907304X / ISBN 0-909073-04-X
Original hardcover and dustjacket, 19 x 25 cm, 124 pages, several b/w photos and drawings
Fair. The dustjacket shows traces of usage, inside clean.
In the midst of the industrial revolution where sweated labour and stark poverty stood cheek-by-jowl with affluence and strict class distinction, James Frank Bassingthwaighte, a 22-year-old wagon builder, answering a call for adventure in distant places, left England in 1842 to escape a society in upheaval. Recruited into a cattle trading venture in the last remaining unexplored portion of darkest Africa - the territory of South-West Africa (since renamed Namibia by the United Nations Organisation) - the young Englishman commenced an exciting new life. The many trials and tribulations encountered by this intrepid pioneer, who eventually became the first permanent white settler in South-West Africa, are graphically portrayed by the author, a close friend of the Bassingthwaighte family James Bassingthwaighte's descendants, now numbering in their hundreds, have reached the fifth generation of a truly remarkable family who have played a large part in the civilising of Africa's South West. The author has succeeded in breathing life into the dry bones of history. The sterling qualities of his central character and the almost unbelievable adventures and vicissitudes of the pioneering life are skillfully combined to form an engrossing and exciting story.
Remark: South African genealogist Dr. Stephen Hayes made out some given facts in this book as beeing fictionally and according to the admission to the author more than thirty years ago, he placed "for the sake of the story" fictional first names where he had no sources.