Cape Town archive tour (May 2022 & October 2023)

GSSA members planned to visit the Cape in August 2020… and then Covid-19 happened.  When we say ‘planned’, it means that the accommodation and places of research were all booked and participants already received lots of information.  We had to postpone, first to May 2021 (the second wave over Christmas gave us a scare), then August 2021 (the new winter lockdown made us to rather not go) and now to August 2022 and to repeat it during 2023.
But South Africans are very accommodating and all our bookings could just be rolled forward.  (However, three eGGSA participants from other countries pulled out completely, afraid of Covid-19 tests, long flights, quarantine or isolation.  But their deposits are paid and they want to join the next Cape trip as soon as the pandemic has calmed down, i.e. in 2023.)
After flying on Sunday from OR Tambo (Johannesburg) we break the ice at an introduction and the first supper when we also meet the local tour members.  On Monday morning after an early breakfast and a short walk to the Cape Archive in Roeland Street, Cape Town, the two day research marathon starts.  Only short intervals for a quick coffee can intercept the enthusiasm of researchers, novices or advanced!  On Tuesday the same programme is followed. After some rest in the afternoon, debriefing and shop talk take place at the dinner table.
On Wednesday a bus takes us to Wellington where the Cape Peninsula University of Technology (CPUT) now houses in its library the genealogical collection inherited from GISA (Genealogical Institute of South Africa).  Here we can work in books, registers, films of church records, photographs and much more.
Then on Thursday back in the National Archive in Cape Town we have another chance to continue our work from Monday and Tuesday.  If time allows it, some could visit friends or join a tour to the National Library.
On Friday the bus takes us to Franschhoek where we made an appointment with the Huguenot Society which keeps many family registers of French ancestors who arrived in South Africa in 1688. When participants work on their pedigree sheets they usually find that many of their ancestors belonged to this group: examples are Marais, Roux, Pienaar, Fourie, Bruwer, and many, many more.
After a special farewell lunch the bus takes us via a scenic route to the Cape Town international Airport for us to arrive at OR Tambo at about 21:00.