The Douglas Archives

A collection of historical and genalogical records

Southern African Connection


Southern African Connection

Members: 10
Latest Activity: Jan 21, 2021

Southern African Connections

This group is for those who are researching South African Douglas family members.

To find all correspondence mentioning South Africa, enter that as a search term in the box at the top of the page.

Discussion Forum

Descendants of Norman Douglas

Started by William Douglas. Last reply by William Douglas Jan 28, 2020. 5 Replies

I am attempting to locate descendants of the author, Norman Douglas. I am told that his son, Robert Sholto…Continue

Tags: South Africa, Norman

Born, bred or immigrant?

Started by William Douglas. Last reply by Debbie Schonken May 2, 2014. 1 Reply

This discussion group is for anyone reporting on, or seeking Douglas family members in, any of the countries in Southern Africa.Continue

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Comment by William Douglas on October 17, 2016 at 11:03

I have added a new report on the Douglas family in South Africa to the genealogy database which might prove helpful: 

Comment by William Douglas on August 22, 2015 at 20:23
Comment by William Douglas on May 15, 2012 at 15:50

Charles Whittingham Horsley Douglas was born at Cape Town on the 17 July 1850, and on his mother’s side (Caroline Hare, born at Cape Town in 1816) inherited a South African lineage dating back to at least 1807, when her father Captain Joseph Hare first arrived at the Cape of Good Hope, and who was later also to serve as adjutant-general at the Cape. In addition Douglas’s grandmother, Sally Bird, was the daughter of the Cape Town merchant and philanthropist, William Wilberforce Bird, who also arrived at the Cape in 1807.

Douglas was appointed Adjutant of the London Scottish Volunteer Rifles on the 6 March 1886, and acted thus for the next four years. After a further short spell of regimental work he was chosen to be a Brigade Major at Aldershot in May 1893, and discharged staff duties until the 28 May 1895, whereupon he vacated the post, having been promoted to a Lieutenant-Colonelcy, albeit on half-pay. He returned to Aldershot (in Hampshire) on the 1 October 1895, as Deputy Assistant Adjutant-General of the Division, also taking charge of the instruction of officers. Douglas was then appointed and Aide-de-Camp to Queen Victoria, with the rank of Colonel in the Army. Before the end of the month he became Assistant Adjutant-general at Aldershot, his promotion to colonel having facilitated such a position, and was to carry on in that capacity until October 1899, and the beginning of the 2nd Anglo-Boer War, whence he departed for South Africa as Assistant Adjutant-General on the Headquarters Staff of the ill-fated General Sir Redvers Buller, who apparently entertained the highest opinion of Douglas.

When the reorganization of commands was carried out in early 1900, Douglas was chosen to command a brigade, serving thus until the cessation of hostilities in 1902.

Comment by William Douglas on May 15, 2012 at 10:47

I have been reading an article published in 2008 in Northumberland and Durham Family History Society Journal about three men, all named John Douglas, who emigrated to South Africa.  Ferdie Jansen, the author, tells me that these three men have often been confused, and assumptions have been made that they were one and the same.

 Jansen told me:

Through some strange coincidence these three men were considered as one person by the local historians and genealogists. If you therefore read through the local S A publications, you will find a mixture of the data of three different persons, all dished up as a single person. This was simply because none of these authors and historians actually tried to trace the origins of the patriarch. I did, and found three John DOUGLASses that originated from three distinct different regions. The big problem was to determine who was who, that is, which of the three was the actual DOUGLAS patriarch? I have managed to reduced the search for the origins of the actual South African DOUGLAS patriarch to one region, namely Berwick Upon Tweed in the border region of Scotland and England (Northumberland). But this is where the path ends - no further information could thus far be found. I did find his wife's parents for a further two generations from the same area.

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Members (10)


Making conections

The more information you can give about the people you mention, the more chance there is of someone else connecting with your family.

Dates and places of births, deaths and marriages all help to place families.

Professions also help.

'My great-grandmother mother was a Douglas from Montrose' does not give many clues to follow up! But a bit of flesh on the bones makes further research possible. But if we are told who she married, what his profession was and where the children were baptised, then we can get to work.

Maybe it is time to update the information in your profile?

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