- Margaret Thomas
A South Africa Connection
Updated: Sep 1, 2021
I uncovered fascinating story of the East family several years ago. Francis Charles East born in London in 1870 joined the army in 1888. During the Boer war he was serving in South Africa where he met Anna Sophia Clayton. They married in Bloemfontein in 1902 and the following year the first of their large family was born.
It is Anna Sophia Clayton who has the most interesting history. Her father Joseph Clayton was an 1820 settler from England who married Anna Sophia Van Lingen and she was descended from a long line of original Boer settlers in South Africa. One of her ancestors Cornelis Jacobus Faber led a rebellion against the British for imposing a tax on them. When he was finally caught, he along with the other ringleaders were hanged at a place called Slachtersnek in front of their families, thus fulling the hatred of the boer settlers towards the English.
So it is interesting to see this couple marrying at the end of the Boer war. They came back to England and ended up having a family of 14 children.
Francis and Anna East in South Africa with their first son Francis.
Francis and Anna East with some of their children back in England.