Annie’s Abodes

Annie was one of the seven Royal Bains in Harrismith. She was born in the cottage behind the hotel where her parents Stewart and Janet raised all the kids. Her daughter Mary says they were Ginger, Stewart, Carrie, Jessie, Annie, Hector and Bennett. Only Hector got off his bum and got a job – heContinue reading “Annie’s Abodes”

The Grand Old Man of Harrismith

Stewart Bain was born in Wick, Scotland on 9 September 1854; He and his brother James came to South Africa in 1878, to Durban. Then they trekked on to the metropolis of Harrismith in the Orange River Colony; Stewart married Janet Burley, who predeceased him in 1924; He became Mayor of the town and ‘reigned’Continue reading “The Grand Old Man of Harrismith”

Bain of Harrismith

My granny Annie had an older brother Ginger. He was the oldest of the seven ‘Royal Bains’ and a great sportsman. They owned the Royal Hotel and were not to be confused with the ‘Central Bains’, who owned the Central Hotel! Playing rugby for Hilton, ‘Bain of Harrismith’ became the ‘Bane of Michaelhouse’ in theContinue reading “Bain of Harrismith”

The Bain Family’s Scottish Roots

Katrina (nee Miller) Duncan, from near Oban in Scotland, stumbled across my other blog here and made contact with us. She sounds delightful, but so she would – she’s family! She has been researching the Bain family tree and she and my sister Sheila have worked out that we share a Great-Great-Great Grandfather, one DonaldContinue reading “The Bain Family’s Scottish Roots”

Being Bland in Africa (one branch . . )

Our distant cousin Hugh Bland has been doing some wonderful detective work sniffing out the Bland family history. Today he found the grave of Josiah Benjamin Adam Bland – he was born in 1799 in ‘the UK’ – England, I guess! He arrived at the Cape in 1825. He settled in Mossel Bay, where heContinue reading “Being Bland in Africa (one branch . . )”

A Slice of Vrystaat

I was born in Harrismith in 1955, as was Mom Mary in 1928, and her Mom Annie in 1893. Annie thought “the queen” of that little island left of France was also the queen of South Africa. To balance that, there’s this side of the family. I attended the plaaslike schools in Harrismith till 1972.Continue reading “A Slice of Vrystaat”