Thursday, October 6, 2011

Schickerling family

Jan van Riebeeck settled the Cape of Good Hope on 6th of April 1652, as a halfway house for the trading ships of the VOC. These ships needed to take on fresh water, fruits and vegetables on the way to Batavia and back to the Netherlands. To assist van Riebeeck in this task he brought 19 colonists with him from Holland -of whom 8 were women. He came with three ships the Dromedaris , the Reijger and the Good Hope. He stayed in the Cape of Good Hope for ten years ,and then was sent to Batavia where he died in 1677.

Maria de la Quellerie. Jan van Riebeeck's wife. 

Abraham van Riebeeck- their son born in the Cape 1653-1713

Abraham van Riebeeck, 1st Cape Commander Jan van Riebeeck's 2nd son, born at the Cape (14 October 1653) & sent to Rotterdam for his education. After taking his Doctorate in law at Leiden he took employment with the VOC as Under-Merchant working his way to Governor-General of the Dutch East Indies.(1704-1713)

Cape Town from space. False Bay and Table Bay with Cape Point.

Cape Town 1752. 

Cape Town and Table Mountain in November 1772.
From an oil painting by William Hodges, R.A, who accompanied Captain Cook on his voyage to the South Seas.

Letter form Captain Cooke . Dated November 5 1776 to the artist William Hodges.

Cape Town 1776.

Thomas Whitcombe 1800 .View of Table Bay Cape Town.

Castle of Good Hope sketch  1680.

Vereenigde Oostindische Compagnie VOC.
Monogram on the entrance to the Castle
and on a china plate.

Coat of Arms of the VOC and Batavia.


Our ancestor  Johann Friedrich Schickerling, was born on December 12 1747 in the medieval town of Burg bei Magdeburg, He emigrated from Germany to South Africa in 1773.He was  the son of Johann Conrad Schickerling and Maria Elizabeth Seeger. He arrived in Cape Town  as a soldier-for-hire, working for the Dutch Indian Company "Vereenigde Oostindische Compagnie VOC"  .He left Amsterdam on October 20 1772 on board the ship "Overhout" and arrived in the Cape of Good Hope on April 14 1773. He was about 24 years old. After completing his service to the Dutch Indian Company  he became a Vrijburger on  August 22 1780 .

Burg bei Magdeburg 1759

Burg bei Magdeburg. Germany .

On February 24  1782  the  34 years old Johann Friedrich Schickerling married  Maria Magdalena
 ( Helena)  Maartens . She was two years older than him. She  was the widow of George Carl Kirchmann who fathered 6 children with her. Helena was born about 1749 and was baptized on August 24 1749.She died in 1802
  Helena's father was Jasper Maartens and her mother Catharina van Laar. They were married on July 29th 1736. Catharina was 19 years old and Jasper 26.

Celle Germany 1654

 Celle. Germany .

Jasper Maartens was born around 1710 in Celle, Lower Saxony in  Germany. His parents were Anton Maartens and  Sara Moller from  Hamburg. Jasper  was baptized in Cape Town at age 4 on the July 14  1714  and died in 1761 at the age of 51. Sara was 13 when Jasper was born and she died in Cape Town on December 15 1720  at the age of 23.


Johann Friedrich  Schickerling had two children with Maria Magdalena  ( Helena) Maartens:-
 Catharina Elisabeth born 17  November 1782 who died at the age of 17 in 1799.

" Gedoopt, de dogter van een Lutherschen vader den Burger Johan Fredrik Schickerling die gehuuwd is met de nagelaatenweeduwe van onser overleedenen Broeder en geweesen Lidmaat onser Gemeente de Bode van Politie George Carel Kirchman dewijl de moeder daar in volkoomen heeft bewilligt en toegestaan, dat aan haar kind den Heijligen doop in onse kerk wierd toegedeelt"

  Abraham Frederik (1785-1821)  who died at the age of 36, but left 7 children behind with his wife Maria Johanna van Reenen. (1790-1853)  Maria van Reenen  was 17 when she married Abraham Schickerling

Johann Friedrich also had a relationship with Martha Hendrina Schultze .They never married. They had a son Johannes Petrus Schikkerling  (different spelling of the surname) born in 1798. He was baptized in the Groote Kerk, and not in the Lutheran Church where the other Schickerling children were baptized.  Only his mother's name is on the baptismal certificate. This son was not mentioned in Johan Friedrich's will.

On October 25 1802 Johann Friedrich married Maria Elizabeth Mocke  (1774- 1865)  -his second wife- and had another son with her Johan Conraad born in 1806.. Johann Friedrich was 54 and  Maria Elizabeth was 28 years old when they married. Maria Elizabeth Mocke  died in 1865 at the age of 91.
Johann Frederick died at the age of 78 on August 6 1826. He was most probably buried in the graveyard of the Lutheran Church that does not exist anymore. It was located next to the church towards Sea Point .His will shows their address as 29 Keerom Street. Cape Town. The South African High Court stand on that spot today.

Click here to see the will:-

Jacobus Johannes Mocke 1788-1842  brother of  Maria Elizabeth Mocke Schickerling.


Their only son  Abraham Frederik Schickerling married Maria Johanna van Reenen and had seven children  before he died at age 36.
Maria Johanna van Reenen's  father was Jacobus Arnoldus van Reenen  1757-1815  and her mother Jacoba Munnik 1765-1815

Maria Johanna van Reenen. (1790 - 1853)

Her great -grandfather was Graaf Jacob von Rehnen  (von Reenen) 1703-1764  from Memel, Lithuania.

Her   grandfather was Jacob van Reenen (1727-1793) the leader of the Kaapse Patriotte , was one of the delegates who went to Holland in 1772 to lay the grievances of the burgers before the Council of Seventeen. 

"Oldest son of Graaf Jacob von Rhenen, the 'stamvader' in South Africa. He was generally known as Jacobus. During the last half of the eighteenth century he was one of the outstanding Cape burgers. In public life he filled many important positions. In 1763 he is appointed as a 'lieutenant van die tweede Kompanjie Burgerkavallerie'; In 1767 as 'Lid van die Weeskamer' and in in 1775 as 'Burgerraad' - the most senior administrative position a Cape burger could attain during the time of the Company. He was the leader of the 'Kaapse Patriotte'. In 1772 he went on a visit to Europe leaving on the ship "Boselen" and spent eighteen months in Paris to get monies from the French government which he loaned to French troops when they were in trouble at the Cape. They returned via Amsterdam to the Cape in January 1775. He was known as 'Die Oud Heemraad' Lived at 89 Bree Street, Cape Town". 

Jacobus Arnoldus van Reenen.1757-1815

Her father Jacobus Arnoldus  owned the farm Welgelegen Mowbray- now part of the Groote Schuur Estate.

Board of Executors  De Heer : J.C. Schickerling .


Their eldest son Jan Fredrik  Schickerling born (March 3 1808- May 14 1844)  who  married  Wilhelmina Margaret Combrink ( 1808- ) on December 30 1829   was our line of the family. The mother's surnames in out line of the Schickerling family were :-
Maartens, Van Reenen, Combrink, Gibbon, Uys, Kotzé and de Beer.


Schickerlings in Australia.

William Godfrey Schickerling

William Godfrey Schickerling  (1834-1900) was the great -grandson of Johann Friedrich Schickerling .
His father  was Jan  Fredrik  Schickerling born (March 3 1808- May 14 1844) who  married  Wilhelmina Margaret Combrink ( 1808- ) on December 30 1829  at the age 20.
 Young William was born in 1834 .He emigrated to Australia and landed in Melbourne Victoria on 15 February  1853 at the age of 19.On December 30 1855 the 21 year old William married Elizabeth Brennan ( 1836-1911)  He settled the Schickerling name in Australia. He died in 1900.


Johann Friedrich left a substantial estate to his wife and grandchildren. The will also names 24 slaves that was passed on to his family. Twelve years later in -1838- all the slaves in the Cape of Good Hope were set free.

Map of Cape Town 1785
Keerom Street left of the Gardens.

St George's Cathedral with the Slave Quarter and the end of the street .
The street to the right is to the right Keerom Street .

14 Keerom Street

The photo above is the only Cape Dutch house still standing on Keerom Street today. It is number 14.
Our ancestor owned numbers 20 ,27  28  and 29  Keerom Street. This house was built in 1793 so it stood  there when the family lived there, and their house must have looked very similar.
Today it is a famous Cape Town Restaurant "The Five Flies".

Unknown street     1977.

14 Keerom Street

Cape kitchen of this time.

Cape home interior 1804.


Lutheran Church. Strand Street .Cape Town.

Johann Friedrich was also one of the founders of the Lutheran Church in Cape Town. He was married there and his children was baptized there as well. He was also buried from this church.
The church graveyard does not exist anymore but was to the left of the church .He was most probably buried there

Lutheran Church. 1808.

 Drawing of the Lutheran Church 1830's. By Sir Charles D'Oyley.

Strand Street with the Lutheran Church in the background.

Cape Town 1890 .Lutheran Church and Strand Street on the right of the photo.

 Lutheran Church Cape Town.


Jan and "Issie" Smuts .

General Jan Smuts and his wife  "Issie" (Sybella Margaretha Aletta  Krige)

Mrs. Issie Smuts with the royal family during the Royal Visit to South Africa, 1947.

My Great - Grandmother , who's surname was Uys , was  a first cousin of  Jan Smut's wife Sybella (Issie) Krige. They shared the names Sybella. Margaretha Aletta . My Great-Grandmother was called Bella.
Issie  wanted to be a doctor but her parents could not fund her studies so she became a teacher instead. She retained her knowledge and love of Greek and German throughout her life and translated her husband’s books into English.

General Jan Smuts.

Jan Smuts Clark and Donna Shaftoe Clark.

General Jan Smuts's grandson , Jan Smuts Clark has been my neighbor here in New York for 30 years. His mother was Catharina Petronella (Cato) Smuts - the second daughter of General Smuts and Mrs. Issie Smuts. She met William Bancroft Clark while she studied at Cambridge.They married in South Africa in 1928, and settled in the UK.  Bancroft and Cato had seven children and Jan Smuts Clark was their third born.


Uys Krige was a famous South African writer and poet, also  part of the Uys/Krige  family.


Our branch of the  Schickerling family  left the Cape and settled in Fauresmith in the Orange Free State.
My paternal grandfather  Henry Uys Schickerling , who I am named after ,was born December 7 1888 on the farm  "Bergfontein,"  "Ruigtepoort" or " Botany Grove" in the district of  Fauresmith in the Orange Free State. They were a wealthy farmers and had several farms between Fauresmith Koffiefontein and  Edenburg. 

His grandfather was Johannes Schickerling* and his grandmother Cecilia (Gibbon) Schickerling.1833-1914  Norfolk England.They married 1853
Born from this union;- 
 John Frederick  Schickerling * , John Gibbon Schickerling  Wilhelmina Margaretha Schickerling (Voortman)  Cecilia Schickerling (Voortman) William Godfrey Schickerling  and Charles Steven Schickerling,

John Frederick Schickerling* 1857-1920  married Sybella Margaretha Aletta Uys 1860-1939.
From this union was born:-
John Arthur Vivien Schickerling, Frederick Edward Schickerling, Reginald Howard Schickerling.
Wilfred Cecil Schickerling ,Henry Uys Schickerling*. Wynand James Schickerling.William de Villiers Schickerling .Maria Cecilia Schickerling (Rheeder) ,Charles Cyril Schickerling ,Sybella Elizabeth Schickerling .

Henry Uys Schickerling* 1888-1985 married  Anna Elizabeth Kotzé.
From this union was born:-
Johan Frederick Schickerling* 1921-2000, Johannes Schickerling , Henry Uys Schickerling, 
Teunis Schickerling ,

John Fredrick Schickerling * 1921-2000 married Catherina Magdalena (de Beer) Schickerling *1923
From this union was born :-
Henry Uys Schickerling,*  Zacharias Andreas Schickerling , John Frederick Schickerling, Charel Vorster Schickerling , Quintin Schickerling. Catharina Magdalena Schickerling (Kriek)

Fauresmith Orange Free State  around 1900.

My paternal Great-Grandmother  Sybella Uys Schickerling  with her 5 sons.
Wynand, Henry (my grandfather) Wilfred, Reitz and John.

My paternal Great-Grandmother Bella ( Sybella Margaretha Aletta Uys)  5/12/1860  5/11/1939  Schickerling was interned by the British Forces, with her family, in the concentration camp of the Orange River during the Boer War. My grandfather Henry Uys Schickerling was then 12 years old .

Concentration Camps of the Boer War. 1900  South Africa.

Canon been shipped back to the front after serviced. 

Taken prison at the battle of Paardeberg. 

My Great-Grandfather John Frederick Schickerling  ( 1857 -  1920 ) Prisoner number 6394 aged 44 was captured at the battle of Paardeberg on February 27 1900 serving with the Fauresmith Commando .He was sent to Cape Town to be deported as POW to Ceylon. His father-in-law ,Uys who lived in Paarl , intervened on his behalf with the British Government and he was sent back to the Orange River camp where his wife and children were .
The family  arrived in the camp on September 26 1901. Before the war they lived on the 2600 morgen farm "Bergfontein"  near Fauresmith in the Orange Free State. In February of 1901 the British Forces under Colonel Williams confiscated the following from the farm ;- 90 pieces cattle , 40 horses, 4000 sheep , 37 cows, a buggy two ox wagons.After the war they returned to the farm and had a dog left . They had to start allover again..
After the Boer War my grandfather Henry and his bother Reitz went to Vryburg where they stayed for a while but then they moved to the Western Transvaal between the towns of Delareyville and Ottosdal. They bought the farm Oshoek and later Boschbult where the Schickerlings still farm today.
My grandfather met my grandmother -Anna Elizabeth Kotzé who was from Hopefield in die Cape while she was a teacher in Vryburg,They got married and had 4 sons.They raised their four sons on Boschbult.

Great Great Grand Father John Frederick Schickerling.
Buried at Fauresmith.

Our Scottish Great Great Grand mother Cecilia Gibbon Schickerling.
Buried at Fauresmith .

Roland William Schikkerling.
"Commando Courageous"
He wrote this book about his experiences in the Boer War.
He was a "penkop" of 19 years old when the war started. 


My mother, Rina on the right, with her sister Miemie.

My mother was Catherina Magdalena (Rina) De Beer and she married my father, John Frederick (Fred) Schickerling on July 12th 1947 in Potchefstroom. Like my grandmother she was  a teacher and when she went to Doringbult school to teach ,she met my grandparents and my father's brothers. My father was working in Johannesburg and she met him later when he came for a visit on the farm.
After the marriage they settled in Pankhurst Johannesburg where they bought a house on 15th street .

My Grandparents; Henry and Anna Schickerling

My parents on their wedding day photographed with my grandparents -Henry and Anna Schickerling-
with their three other sons Uys, Johannes and Tienie.

My parents had six children- 5 boys and a girl - born 13 years apart.

Henry Uys Schickerling- I was named after my paternal grandfather .
Zacharias Andreas Schickerling - My bother was named after our maternal grandfather.
John Frederick Schickerling - Named after my father.
Charel Vorster Schickerling- Named after my maternal grandmother's father .
Quintin Schickerling - The fifth son.
Catherina Magdalena Schickerling - Named after my mother and maternal grandmother.

Queen Victoria Hospital Johannesburg where I was born.

Me at an early age.

Me with my parents .
(I have a grasshopper sitting on my left thumb.)

With my parents -- about  40 years later.

My brother Zackie and me.

Frikkie,Charel, Zackie .My parents. Carin + Quintin.
I was studying in Italy at this time.

As I was planning to leave South Africa for the USA ,the most difficult was leaving my family and friends behind .I left South Africa before when I went to study and work in Italy, but I knew I would be coming back. This was different -- this was a permanent  change in my life. Some nights I woke up in a panic and felt like abandoning it all and staying  where I was.Our ancestor left his land of birth almost 250 years ago -- so it must be in our blood.
In 2000 my third brother --  Frikkie (John Frederick) also immigrated to  the USA with his family and settled in Iowa.As I  write this, his grandson-the first Schickerling to be born in the USA will also be John Frederick, named after his great-grandfather,grandfather and father.

John Frederick Schickerling born in Washington. Iowa. USA .October 6 2011.


I dressed three of my brother's wives for  their weddings - as well as my sister.
Zackie's wife- Dorothea's gown was made out of pleated crinkle chiffon.It had a pleated top and a peplum, with a pleated skirt frill edged with lace. She wore a light blue satin belt and light blue shoes.
The veil was of light blue and white tulle. They were married in 1974.

Zackie and Dorothea.

Geretha -Charel's wife -wanted a more casual look. They got married in Namibia where she was from. We made her a satin blouse with a 7/8 lace skirt. She wore  a wreath of flowers on her head and sandals, to be as cool as possible in that heat. She wore this lace skirt again when their daughter Ilza got married in 2011.


Charel and Geretha.

My sister Carin wanted a traditional gown .We used 1/2" satin ribbon to braid the top on the bias.
Lace was appliqued onto flesh colored tulle to form the sleeves. The dress had a full circle chiffon skirt also appliqued with lace. They got married in 1981.
She was photographed in her gown for an advertisement for Stern's the  national jeweler. There were big photos of her in her wedding gown in every Sterns shop window to advertise engagement and wedding rings.

I also helped my cousin , Shani de Beer with her dress  when she married Petr Vavruch.


Carin, Henry, Ma, Quintin, Pa .

Dorothea, Zackie, Fred ,Dorie, Almero.

Catrie, Carin, Gerhard, Anneke.

Ilza, Geretha, Charel, Derek.

Francionette, Quintin, Wilma, Sean.

Pa,  Ma, Henry.

Rick Susan Werner Henry Frik Hein.

The farm "Boschbult".
Between  Ottosdal + Delareyville

My parents retired to the farm that my father inherited from his father in 1982. My father was the only one of the four brothers that left the farm and went into business in Johannesburg. The other three stayed behind to farm.

My Grandfather -Henry Uys- who died at the age of 96  and my father -John Frederick.

The  Afrikaners were mostly farmers and my father's generation was the first ones that left the family farms and went to the city to enter the business world. English speaking South Africans and Jewish South Africans ran the business world- and not the Boers.
The word "Boer" means farmer and we are proud op this name .Our language Afrikaans ,is a derived from Dutch ,Flemish ,German and Malay .The Dutch brought slaves from Batavia to the Cape  and they spoke mostly Malay. This became part of the white tribe of Africa's language.
All my sibling were married by now and my parents had their grandchildren to keep them occupied. The kids loved to go and visit "Oupa" and "Ouma" on the farm. Frikkie and his family also settled on the farm, with my parents. My other brothers Zackie, Charel  Quintin and their families lived in Johannesburg  while my sister Carin, lived with her family in Pretoria.

Last photo taken of the family before my Father passed away in 2000.
Charel Frikkie Zackie Henry
Quintin Father Mother Carin

After my father died in September 2000 my mother sold the family farm to my cousin .She bought a townhouse in a retirement center in Springs -the town where she grew up. This way she is closer to her children and her sister and brothers. 

Mark, Dorotheaand  my mother at her eldest grandaughter's wedding.

In the 30 years that I have been away I see them almost every year and we have stayed close .My parents have visited once with Zackie and Dorothea.
 Charel, Geretha and their children, Derek  and Ilza has been here a few times.
 Frikkie and Susan has visited twice from Iowa .
My mother came with Dorothea -her granddaughter- 8 years ago when she was 79.

My mother at 89, my brother Quintin and me.
Buffelspoort Resort .South Africa. January 2013

My mother (91) and Charel  in 2015.


  1. I'm eager to make contact with Jan Smuts Clark if he is still alive. Would you be able to help me?

    1. Hi Jeff Sorry. They are mostly in Pennsylvania and Mexico these days.I do not live in New York anymore. I left in February 2021.

  2. Thanks for your reply. When last did you see him? Do you think he is still alive?

  3. I saw him about two years ago, I think he is still alive,

  4. Thank you for a great blog!
    My mother was Cynthia Schickerling, daugher of Robert Schickerling, and granddaughter of Charles Schickerling, married to a Margaret Blair, who was a nurse who came out from Scotland to help the Boers during the Boer War. Charles was born in Fauresmith in 1875.

    Today, I work on Keerom Street, and literally walk past the High Court every day and so I have found this blog an absolutely wonderful family history. Thank you.