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Boy Scouts Beyond The Seas

For twelve years, with a few colonists, he struggled against bad harvests acid thieving natives, till he succeeded in making a thriving little colony of it. He was followed by the Van der Stels, father and son, who continued his good work, and also spread their boundaries farther afield inland. The thriving district of Stellenbosch was started by Van der Stel. The old castle now in the centre of the city (and where I had my home for a long time) was built by Van der Stel.

A good many English had meanwhile come to the Cape and taken to farming and trading there.

Then the French, who had occupied Mauritius, came and tried to take the Cape; but the British, who were then allies of the Dutch in Europe, sent an expedition against them.

But there was disagreement between the Cape Dutch, some being in favour of the French and others against, and when the British fleet and troops arrived at Simon’s Bay they found themselves opposed by the people they had come to help – acting with the French.

So the British had to fight their way to Capetown, having a battle at Muizenberg and another at Wynberg, places which are now happy suburbs of Capetown. And once more the British flag was hoisted there.

In 1800, however, under the Peace of Amiens, we gave; the Cape back to the Dutch. But it was only for a few years, for in 1806 there was war again, and a strong British fleet under Admiral Popham, with the grand old Highlander Sir David Bain, in command of the troops, sailed in and attacked the Dutch under Janssen and took Capetown once more.

Even while the terms of peace were being signed, the English were already making friends with their late opponents. A band had struck up the National Anthem, but the General at once stopped it as he did not want to hurt the feelings of the Dutch by any show of triumph. Such of them as wished to go he sent home to Holland with their arms and belongings, treating them as brave and valiant men, not as defeated foes.

Within four years Britons and Boers were fighting side by side against the Kaffirs as close friends and allies.

The Eastern Province

I visited Port Elizabeth and the neighbouring port of East London on the cast coast of South Africa to see the Boy Scouts at each. They were promising-looking troops. And they have proved themselves tough fellows like their fathers before them.

I am sure their brother Scouts in every part of the Empire will be proud of them. A small town called Alice comes within the Port Elizabeth district, and this is what the Alice Scouts did.

Gallant Work by Boy Scouts

A farmer, Mr. Julius Schmidt, was driving home from market with his family in a pair-horsed cart. When fording the river near his home, one of the horses slipped and fell. The cart was overturned and the whole party were washed by the rush of the stream into deep water. Mrs. Schmidt, with her baby, managed to struggle to the bank, but could see no sign of her husband or the other child. The poor woman could do nothing till a neighbouring farmer happened to come along and found her almost distracted. He immediately got help and the river was searched as far as possible before dark, but it was not till next morning that the body of the child was found.

Then search parties worked the river looking for Mr. Schmidt, but without success. Eventually a request was sent that the Boy Scouts might come and help.

A detachment of twelve Scouts under their patrol leader came out to the spot, and after doing splendid work in the cold water for many hours they succeeded in recovering the body.

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