The Genealogical Society of South Africa

Ons tak se stories

StoDuring 2012, our branch embarked upon an ambitious (for us!) project. Renier Feldtmann, our chairperson at the time, challenged us to produce our own publication. Thirteen people contributed stories and photographs to our first edition, which has since become an annual effort.
The Ons Storiewa banner picture shows an old, broken-down ox wagon, with a little flower blooming at its wheel. It was chosen to remind us that our family histories are old, come from afar and are missing a lot of pieces, but they bloom again when we tell and re-tell them to our friends and our children. By hook or by crook, we genealogists will keep our story-wagons on the road!
We have put together six Ons Storiewa’s so far. We suggest themes that could help to get people writing. For our very first edition, members were asked to share their research methods, triumphs and tragedies, and stories about themselves as researchers and about their research methods. For subsequent issues we chose themes that encouraged us to tell our own life stories and stories about our families. Isabel Groesbeek, genealogy guru, emphasizes that your first duty is to make sure that your own life is well documented for your descendants. Examples of past themes for telling your story are ‘family fests’, ‘schooldays’ and ‘falling in love’. We believe that these themes have made our publication exceptionally readable and personal. As members have grown in confidence, they have come up with wonderfully original and entertaining stories.
We've uploaded the PDFs onto this website for everyone to enjoy. You can find them by clicking on Ons Storiewa in the menu on the right, and then select either Storiewa 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 or 6. Most of the articles in Ons Storiewa are in Afrikaans, but there are excellent ones in English, too, such as the one about the descendants of the 1820 Settlers. Some articles reflect impressive research skills, some are by beginners, but all are worth reading. We’d really love to hear your comments if you’ve enjoyed reading them.
Should you prefer a print copy, please contact Kobie Stroh - This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. The complete first six issues are available as a ring-bound A4 book, quality printed in full colour on glossy paper. Price excluding postage R350.