Bryan Thomas Knights to Frederick Chesson, 29 April 1885

Bryan Thomas Knights to Frederick Chesson, 29 April 1885

Archive location: Bodleian Libraries, MSS. Brit. Emp. s. 18 / C139 – 268

Author(s): Bryan Thomas Knights

Recipient(s): Frederick Chesson

Sent from: Cape Colony

Date: 29 April 1885

Knights and Hearle

Attorneys, Notaries, and Conveyancers


Standard Bank Chambers

Kimberley, South Africa

29th April 1885





Aborigines Protection Society





I beg to enclose two cuttings from our diamond fields papers, and especially to bring to your notice the published letter by … the State attorney of Orange Free State, by which you will see that something very much akin to the old laws relating to a slaves’ disabilities under the Roman laws exists in the Orange Free State and of course in the so called South African Republic. Can it therefore be wondered at that the various kafir tribes refuse to be brought under these laws by annexation and would rather endure … or track away the instant they are sought to be incorporated into these Republics. Of course in the Cape Colony they have the Franchise, or there is nothing in the Constitution to prevent them having it if they obtain the property qualifications which is exceedingly low. We understand however that the Bond party are about to make an effort this season to increase the amount of property qualifications, as they foresee that the kaffir vote will be against the Bond party and with the Imperial. It is to be hoped that the Home Govt will not sanction this.


Kindly consider my name as confidential. You may rely on the facts as to the laws of the Republics.


Yours faithfully,

B.T. Knights