Barnabas Shaw

Memorials of South Africa

The Pioneers were elegant

My mother is in this photo I took in Salisbury, Rhodesia at our home. She is wearing a Pioneers dress that we took to the Museum in Port Alfred South Africa as a donation. This dress was originally worn by a  settler in 1890 (74 years after Barnabas set out on his venture into the uninhabited areas) I loved to Daydream and envisage the life of adventure that the original owner of this dress had. She wore this dress as a “going-away” dress when she went on honeymoon. Imagine how she felt, wearing that uncomfortable corset to travel for months to a foreign land with a new husband.

Rita as Model
Dress Museum

Rita Shaw passed away in 2013 in Port Elizabeth, South Africa. She also traveled to Salisbury, after her wedding in Port Elizabeth in 1953. Her Husband Edwin, Ted Shaw Passed away a few years before her.

He built a thriving Wholesale clothing business in Rhodesia and traveled extensively throughout Tanzania, Malawi and Zambia on business trips. He had to contend with  malaria infections. I’m not sure if the first time he was ill was on a hunting trip in the Transvaal on his fathers farm, but recurrent attacks from the mosquito are typical. I have to wonder how the early pioneers managed to survive this awful illness.

I have to mention that my father, Edwin Shaw had to shoot a lion once because the lion had attacked his farm hands and it was charging at him, but he loved to watch animals and did not like to kill them. He wrote several books and I only discovered their existence after he died. I wish that he had Goggled himself before he died. one such mention is of him on page 92 of the Rhodesiana Publication No.19 in December 1968. Reproduced from the Journal of the Historical Firearms Society of South Africa. "Early  Rhodesian Military Units" by E.H. J. Shaw. A book on Military History.

I knew that he he had written a published  book about the research he did on war medals in his possession, and I remember that he was invited to partake tea on board of a ship belonging to an Admiral. This Admiral had requested permission to sail to Port Elizabeth to see my fathers medal collection. He had one of the largest in the world.

David Livingstone died in 1873 of Malaria. He was a Scottish pioneer explorer missionary with the London Missionary Society and an explorer in Africa. His meeting with H. M. Stanley on 10 November 1871 gave rise to the popular quotation "Dr. Livingstone, I presume?" He had to contend with dangerous deliberations with Cannibals and Slave Traders because they were the only people he encountered in the dark parts of Africa.

The more I study of that time, the more respect I have for Barnabas and his wife that they bravely traveled north in 1815.

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