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VAN ASSEN Gerrit Gideon

Gerrit Gideon van Assen

Born on 28 Dec 1834 Ootmarsum, Netherlands and died on 15 Jul 1922 Weltevreden, Bethlehem, Orange Free State, South Africa.The son of Jan Louis van Assen, a watchmaker by trade, and Fenna Gezina van Linge.

Married Gerritdina Jalink on 5th November 1862 in Amsterdam, Netherlands.

Gerritidina was born on 12 December 1835 in Goor, Netherlands and was the daughter of Jan Roelof Jalink and Antonia Cras, she died on 8 December 1924 in South Africa.
Gerrit and Gerritdina and their 3 surviving children arrived in South Africa in 1882, from Ootmarsum, Overijssel, Nederlands and they settled in Bethlehem, Orange River Colony, South Africa.

Gerrit was a shopkeeper (Winkelier) by trade and in the Dutch records he is recorded as a “Broodbakker” or baker. Gerrit had built a hotel in Bethlehem, called Green's Hotel and was listed on the voter’s role of 1899 in Bethlehem as a Hotel keeper.
During the Anglo-Boer War, Gerrit and Gerritdina stayed in Bethlehem until the troops came in on 7th July 1900. Gerrit did not go on commando and took parole and stayed on in Bethlehem until the evacuation of the town in October 1901, when he took his family to Harrismith Concentration camp and stayed there until peace. Gerrit took the Oath of Allegiance in November 1901 in Harrismith. Gerrit wrote to the military compensation board in Harrismith on 17th February 1902. He stated that he was compelled by the military authorities to leave Bethlehem on 26th September 1901. He was owner of stand 26 with large buildings and outside houses thereon valued at 3000 pounds. He had left furniture to the value of 160 pounds and other things for which he had no time to make a list of. He had not been able to return before the 28th February 1902 to assess the damage done by British troops in December 1901.
On 8th February 1901 in Bethlehem, Captain Oakley wrote out a receipt for 6 Bedsteads, 6 mattresses, and 4 pillows for 21 pounds taken from the Hotel. It was used by the Left Half 23rd Field Hospital, Bethlehem.
On the 26th April 1901 a Cape Cart in good condition was requisitioned by Captain A. R. H. Hutchinson for Head Quarter staff of 16th Brigade, 8th Division. The cart was valued at 50 pounds.
On 7th October 1901, Captain C. E. Cobb, supply officer Second East York Regiment, Bethlehem requisitioned supplies for the British troops as follows - wheat 175 pounds, mealies 350 pounds, mealie meal 138 pounds, sugar 56 pounds, flour 144 pounds and paraffin 7gallons
In the compensation claim Gerrit was awarded a total of 200 pounds. 152 pounds for the following furniture – 16 oxen trek chains, 5 iron pots, 2 brooms, a type of stand, sewing machine, fish net, bookrack and a writing desk.
Gerrit was compensated 48 pounds for the loss of his cattle taken by Boer forces. He had arranged a written pass dated 13th March 1901 to graze his cattle at Mr. van Raalte’s farm called “Utopia”. This pass was signed by H. N. Middleton and countersigned by Captain C. F. H. H. Noble. His livestock included 8 cattle, branded “V A” and 2 calves. 

In 1909, Gerrit Gideon applied for a licence to sell stamps at Slabberts siding, a railway stop on the railroad from Fouriesburg to Bethlehem, about 20km South, South West of Bethlehem.

A notice of their 50th Wedding Anniversary was published on page 16 of “Het Nieuws van die Dag” of Amsterdam on 5th November 1912.

Children born out of their marriage:

b1 Euphemia Gesina b. 29 Jun 1863, Amsterdam, Netherlands, d. 29 Apr 1952, Durban, Natal, South Africa, bur. 1 May 1952, Cremated in Stellawood Crematorium, Durban. Married Hendrik Westermann on Monday the 26th November 1888 by Charles Pieter Theron, the resident minister of the Nederduitsch Gereformeerde Kerk in Bethlehem. Hendrik Westermann was born on 13 December 1862 in Amsterdam and was the son of Carl Heinrich Westermann and Elizabeth de Haan. Hendrik died on 16 December 1933.
They had 4 sons and one daughter.

b2 Anthonia Johanna Louisa b. 14 May 1865, Amsterdam, Noord Holland, Nederland, d. 17 Jun 1865, Amsterdam, Noord Holland, Nederland

b3 Jan Louis b. 30 Apr 1866, Amsterdam, Noord Holland, Netherlands, d. 29 Dec 1871, Amsterdam, Noord Holland, Netherlands

b4 Gerrit Christiaan b. 15 May 1868, Amsterdam, Noord Holland, Netherlands, d. young

b5 Gerrit Christiaan b. 15 Mar 1869, Amsterdam, Netherlands, d. 17 Apr 1929, Weltevreden, Bethlehem, Orange Free State, South Africa
He was for a time in the Transvaal Republic and was a shopkeeper by trade. He was in Transvaal during the Anglo-Boer War. He never married. In 1912 he was at Slabbert’s Siding. He did move to Weltevreden, district Kestell, OFS, where he was a shop-keeper. He died of Pneumonia and Heart Failure of 4 days duration, as diagnosed by Dr. E. J. Papenfus.
In 1937, Euphemia, who was widowed and still in Bloemfontein, had requested to be paid out her brother’s estate monies in 1937 and stated that she had last seen him in 1924.

b6 Antonie b. 9 Feb 1871, Amsterdam, Noord Holland, Netherlands, d. young

b7 Jan Louis Antonie b. 11 Dec 1872, Amsterdam, Netherlands, d. 5 Mar 1945, Kestell, district Bethlehem, Orange Free State, South Africa

He was a Joiner (Skrynwerker) by trade.

During the Anglo-Boer War, wood was requisitioned from Mr. J. L. A. van Assen by order of Lt. Col. F. S. Ingelfield, then commandant of Bethlehem and was used in erecting Supply Stores & other government buildings on Stafford Hill, Bethlehem. The requisition was signed by Captain C. E. Cobb, Supply Officer, Second East York Regiment. The timber was to the value of 25 pounds and 18 shillings. Also an ox wagon for 25 pounds. Timber and wire nails were used for erecting tents on wagons for conveying refugees to Harrismith. Receipt signed by Lt. O. F. D. Harrington of Stores Office Col. Reay’s Column. The total amount awarded in compensation was 64 pounds 6 shillings and 6 pence.

Jan Louis had joined the British town guard of Bethlehem as soon as it was started, in about December 1900 and served 9 months.

He married Cecilia Jacoba Fourie on Tuesday the 24th February 1903 Bethlehem, Orange Free State.

Cecilia was born on Saturday the 17th October 1874 Bethlehem, Orange Free State and died on Monday the 12th October 1936 in Kestell, Orange Free State. She was the daughter of Johannes Jacobus Fourie and Elizabeth Johanna Susanna Smit.
They had 3 children:

b8 Gerritdina Johanna b. 16 Apr 1875, Amsterdam, Noord Holland, Netherlands, d. 28 Jul 1877, Amsterdam, Noord Holland, Netherlands


1) Family Register of the South African Nation by Dr.D.F. du T. Malherbe M.A., Ph.D., D.Sc. Emeritus – Professor University of Pretoria 3rd Enlarged Edition
Printed by Tegniek, Stellenbosch, September 1966.

2) Nederlandse Emigrasie na Suid-Afrika 1800 – 1900 by Jan Ploeger & Gideon de V. de Kock Dept Computer Science, University of Port Elizabeth.

3) National Archives of South Africa records – Death Notices.

4) Genlias – Dutch web search site

5) website of LDS.

6) Johan Jalink website –

British Concentration Camps of the South African War 1900-1902

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