2. DU PREEZ, Margarita Jacomina
1. ASPELING, Georgina Agnes
WEEBER, Matthys Johannes
- Born: Feb 1843, Beaufort West South Africa
- Marriage (1): ASPELING, Georgina Agnes on Apr 10, 1876 1
- Marriage (2): DU PREEZ, Margarita Jacomina on Apr 20, 1906 in Riversdale Cape Province Souith Africa.
- Died: Oct 31, 1932, 49 Donkin St. Beaufort West South Africa aged 89
Other names for Matthys were WEEBER, Mathew and WEEBER, Mathew J.
1. Alt Birth. 2 3 The Headstone on his grave in Beaufort West shows different information. It records his death on 21 Oct 1932 Aged 84 which also gives a different birth year of 1848 instead of 1843. In the Municipal graveyard records for the Blyth St. N/W cemetery, there are 2 M.J.Weeber's recorded in adjacent graves, RY-F9 dated 31 Oct '32 and F10 dated 5 Sep '33. The second must refer to his spouse (who has the same initials) although she is recorded as having died in Cape Town.
2. Historical: Beaufort West. 4 Matthys Johannes Weeber was born and grew up in the Karoo town of Beaufort West. He had one brother Pieter and at least four sisters. Like most of the youngsters of that time he received little formal education when compared with the standard today and directed his life toward farming at an early age. Beaufort West had established itself as an ideal sheep farming area and this was obviously the intended activity of most of the young folk - especially when their parents were also involved in sheep farming as Matthys's were.He was a simple man with basic needs who was always ready to help his neighbour but must have had good business sense and obviously worked very hard - because he became an affluent farmer with a total farm area of approximately sixty thousand morgen ( approx. 51000 hectares - or two hundred square miles) - an area so vast that one could not cross it in one day on horseback.
Although originally of German stock the Weebers spoke English and Afrikaans at home. They belonged to the Dutch Reformed Church and were staunch supporters of the United Party. In fact Matthys's brother Pieter decided to go into politics and became a senator in the South African Parliament at which time Matthys bought his farm Sunnyside - which is owned by the Nel Family today. Pieter married but had no children of his own. He adopted a daughter Jessie Verster who was known by my family as cousin Jessie. Matthys married a miss Aspeling and lived on the farm Elandsfontein where they raised seven children - Eric, Carrie, Lulu, Percy, Evelyn and Martin..After his first wife had passed away, Matthys married Maggie (Magriet) a teacher from the Riversdale district - who was approximately thirty years younger than he. She was a Du Preez and her brother Wouter farmed in the area - his farm "Windsor" is on the road to Stillbaai soon after the turnoff from the national road.The twins Olga and Alma were born of this marriage and they too lived on the farm Elandsfontein..Apparently there was a certain amount of rivalry between the two sets of children with the first seven claiming that the twins were receiving special attention. For this reason the twins were sent to school at Worcester and not to the "posh" schools in Cape Town where the seven had been educated.After matriculating at Worcester both Olga and Alma went to Teachers Training College in Cape Town where they qualified as teachers. Olga specialised in physical education.Matthys died in 1932 at the age of 89 years - and Maggie died one year later in 1933 at the age of sixty. Both are buried in the cemetery at Beaufort West..Some Anecdotes In his kindness apparently Matthys signed surety for a certain Mr Bailey who farmed in the Beaufort area. While the family were on holiday at the Strand the fun was cut short by the news that Bailey had died and that the surety was being called. It's not sure what the amount of the surety was but it did not bother Matthys. That was the sort of person he was - if he could help he would - and he did not expect a return.When the twins were seven years old the family moved into town permanently as Matthys was becoming too old to farm actively. He actually tried to sell off the farms, but money was scarce and he was obliged to let some. Those he did sell he was obliged to leave large bonds on.In the town house Olga and Alma have memories of "the men" sitting in the smoking room of an evening after supper. One of the regular visitors was a certain Mr or Reverend Barnard, a missionary from the "Sendeling Kerk" - whose sons Chris and Marius were to achieve fame as heart surgeons with Chris performing the world's first heart transplant. Apparently Matthys provided some of the money for one of the brother's university education and the Weebers - who were quite well off, often sent over vegetables and goodies to the Barnards who, like most missionaries, struggled for money. Many years later when Olga and Eddie left Beaufort West Chris Barnard played the piano in the band at their farewell party.
The Riversdale connection was obviously well maintained, as Olga and Alma have many fond memories of visits to the seaside at Stillbaai - the resort closest to Riversdale. The journey took two days and was undertaken on oxwagon. At the halfway point they had to outspan and sleep over in the veld. This was always quite an event with the braai fires burning and everyone getting geared up for the holiday at the seaside. When they reached the river mouth the party had to be ferried across the river to Stillbaai where they stayed in a cottage belonging to the Wege family - very good friends of Maggie's. Stories are told of "streepsakke" full of oysters for a penny and of feeding the eels at the "paling gat" which is still an attraction today and, I think a national monument. This "paling gat" is a well of fresh water which flows from the hillside, close to where the Versveld family home stood, and in which the eels lived.
The famous South African artist Jan Volschenk was an associate of the family in the area. In fact Olga and Eddie owned a Jan Volschenk painting of the Kaffirkuils river mouth (the river at Stillbaai) - which was given to them as a wedding gift. Cousin Jessie was a close friend of Vera Volschenk (his daughter) who is also well known and paints from her cottage on the banks of the river at Stillbaai. Olga and Eddie owned several Vera Volschenks which were passed on to the children.The family owned a holiday house in the Strand. It actually belonged to Maggie and she left it to Olga and Alma when she died. They did not want it and sold it. The house still stands today.Like all young men of his time Matthys journeyed to the diamond diggings in Kimberley when the first fever was high - as stories were leaving the district of fabulous wealth and good times - which were generally not available elsewhere at the time. He worked a claim for some time but without much success - and eventually sold it to the next keen arrival who promptly found an enormous diamond the very next day. The new owner was so pleased with his acquisition that he was prompted to give Matthys a gold watch out of gratitude. What a consolation. (I inherited the watch from Olga - and still have it in my possession). After selling the claim Matthys returned to Beaufort West to pursue the life he knew best - sheep farming.Building up the farms was no easy task in those days. There was very little mechanisation and no fencing to keep out the jackals. Apparently Matthys was extremely dedicated and hard working in this regard. He travelled on horseback and built kraals for the sheep by stacking stones. Because of the vast distances he had to travel he was often not able to return home at night and slept out in the open with his sheep, under the stars. In the Karoo where the nights can be bitterly cold this could become quite an arduous experience. He recalled that he often slept with a wheelbarrow covering his head to keep out the cold.
After his death Matthys's attorney, a Mr Theron, arranged for the winding up of the estate. All the farms were sold through the Board Of Executors for around ten shillings a morgen - this being the time of the great depression. It has been claimed that in the settling of his affairs many of the bonds were never paid out and that the estate ended up considerably short of its real value.
3. Historical. 5 Information from Alwyn Smit resulted in the following exchanges:-
"Alwyn, Do I understand it correctly that c1 Christiaan Dettlief Pieter Ol(de)wage, bought an erf from (of?) Marthys Johannes Weeber for 250 pounds sterling?"
"I am not sure that I have sent you an answer on this one!!! (?) Yes, you are correct! Christiaan bought the erf from Matthys Johannes de Jager. Most probably Matthys junior."
4. Death. KAB MOOC 6/9/4180ef 35899 gives 39 Donkin St. Beaufort West as the residence where Matthys died.
5. Will. In his will, DN KAB MOOC 6/9/4180 Ref 35899, Matthys made the following bequests:- Margaretha Jacomina Du Preez (His 2nd wife) £1500
Percival, his 5th child of his 1st marriage £60 per annum for maintenance
Maria Carolina the 2nd child of his 1st marriage, £90 per annum to maintain
And the residue of his estate to be equally divided between the rest of his children excepting Martin Gustaf , his 3rd child of his 1st marriage who "left South Africa many years ago and believed now to be in South America" The rest were Alma (Van Wyk) and Olga, Evelyn Marguerite (Welsch), Catherine Agnis (Jackson) Johan Eric Aspeling, and George. In George's case, £3500 was to be deducted in consideration of sums expended for his studies and advances made to him from time to time.
Matthys married Georgina Agnes ASPELING, daughter of Johan Eric ASPELING and Maria Carolina UNKNOWN, on Apr 10, 1876.1 (Georgina Agnes ASPELING was born in Dec 1850 in George South Africa and died on Mar 26, 1904 in Elandsfontein, Beaufort West, South Africa.)
Matthys next married Margarita Jacomina DU PREEZ on Apr 20, 1906 in Riversdale Cape Province Souith Africa. (Margarita Jacomina DU PREEZ was born in 1872 in Riversdale, died on Sep 4, 1933 in Volks Hospital Cape Town South Africa and was buried in Cape Town ?.)
1. Marriage. Date of marriage is date of ANC(?)