Richard Whitfield to Frederick Chesson, 10 February 1884, C149/212

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Whitfield, Richard









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Bodleian Libraries

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MSS. Brit. Emp. S. 18 / C149-212


Private and confidential

20 Cockspur Street
Charing Cross SW

Sunday February 10 1884

Dear Sir,

I have had a long conversation with Moroka and Sekue today and have questioned them closely as to Mr Green’s relatives in the Orange Free State. They are quite decided in saying that he has no brothers in the Folksraad. He has but one brother out there now, and he is a shopkeeper and not being a member of the Free State cannot belong to the Folksraad. Neither is Mr de Villiers, who is Samuel’s advocate at Bloemfontein, any relation to Mr Green. During the time they have lived in the Minories with Mr Green’s sister they have never heard him state either of these matters. It seems clear therefore that he is exaggerating his own importance in the hopes of going out with them.

I have seen your letter to Samuel on the subject of Sir Donald Currie, and am of opinion that the less he is mixed up in the matter the better. He gives credit to himself for great influence with President Brand, but I feel, and Samuel and Sekue are of the same opinion, that the meeting you propose to call of influential men will have far more weight with Sir J. Brand than the word of a single individual.

Mr Green is evidently greatly taken with Sir Donald, perhaps hoping that he may offer them all three a free passage, which would perhaps obviate the difficulty of his going with them. It seems that Sir Donald has asked for another interview tomorrow afternoon (Monday), but I have written to Mr Green to say that Moroka, Sekue and I object to this until they have seen you and heard your opinion on the subject. Sir Donald is avowedly inimical to your Society and might run counter to the influence you can bring to bear on their case. The Revd A.C.A McLagle, a ‘Zulu missionary,’ is very much interested in Samuel, but as his zeal seems better than his discretion I have asked him to see you before he takes any steps in the matter.

I shall be happy to call on you whenever you think fit, but do not wish to take up too much of your valuable time.

Yours very faithfully,
Richard O Whitfield

F.W. Chesson, Esq