Back to the archives! I’ve just come across this tract I wrote back in 2012 on the occasion of the reunion of the Dunn family in that year. My grandmother Elizabeth Nunn, was a daughter of this illustrious and controversial ancestor. John Dunn, secretary and diplomatic adviser to Cetshwayo, King of Zululand (1873-1879); labour recruiter and Protector of Immigrants in Zululand for the Natal colonial government; political and military intelligence officer under Lord Chelmsford in the Anglo-Zulu War of 1879; principle political adviser to Sir Garnet Wolseley on the post-war settlement, and chief of the largest and wealthiest of the thirteen districts carved of the subjugated Zulu kingdom. Having married 49 wives and sired 120 children, the gathering was large indeed!
Dunns Unite 2012 – John Dunn’s Descendants Reunion
On 2 December 1856 on the north bank of the Lower Tugela river, one of the largest military battles ever to take place on South African soil happened. This battle, the ‘Second Battle of Ndondakusuka’, between two of King Mpande’s sons, Prince Mbuyazi, the favoured heir to the throne and his adherents, the Gqoza, and Prince Cetshwayo, contender for the throne and his Usuthu, resulted in the deaths of Mbuyazi and five other sons of Mpande, as well as an estimated ten to fifteen thousand of his followers, women and children included, in a single day. John Dunn, who loyally fought on the side of Mbuyazi, along with a contingent of about fifty of his men, narrowly escaped with his life. Continue reading
In 2011 I produced a photographic exhibition for the Apartheid Archive Project http://www.apartheidarchive.org
This project aims to archive accounts of living under apartheid, or recollections of the effects of apartheid by those who lived this experience or where adversely affected by apartheid. The submissions are entirely voluntary and can be made online at the above address, as can the existing ones be read online.
My submission is as follows;
My first encounter with apartheid happened very early, long before I could call it by its name. I was four when uncle Lawrence came to stay with us in our little cottage in Hluhluwe village, one of many men who sojourned with us whilst passing through or working in the area. He had come to build a school, and I was elated, because this evidently meant that, unlike the rest of my siblings, I would have the good fortune to remain at home, and not be sent off to some distant place to school. I was wrong. Continue reading
Rorke’s Drift is the site of the earliest school for black artists, as well as one of the earliest arts and craft centers in South Africa. It is also the site of a battle associated with the Isandhlwana battlsite in which the British army was defeated by the Zulu’s. The battle of Rorke’s Drift took place immediately after that of Isandlwana, and was lost by the Zulu’s.
The documentary is about another battle, that of the Evangelical Lutheran Church’s Rorke’s Drift Arts and Craft Center, which has experienced many ups and downs in its struggle to survive. This documentary is both an investigation into the trails and tribulations of the development sector through an arts institution, and a tribute to this iconic and legendary South African arts and craft center.