Views!
HUNDREDS of daily LOCAL views - THOUSANDS of monthly LOYAL readers! THE MOST POPULAR ATTRACTION IN HARTIES!
Published:  2014-12-25 Views:  1784
Author:  Fanie
Published in:  Harties Heritage/Erfenis
HOEV / HEHA Article 002: Dodona Farm And Chapel

HOEV: OPNAME VAN BESIENSWAARDIGHEDE                     Nr 002

HEHA: SURVEY OF HERITAGE SITES                                     No 002

(Please note that Mr Beresford Jobling was tragically a victim of a farm attack after this article was written)

 

DODONAPLAAS EN KAPEL:

DATUM 1941/1945

SAEA BESKERMING (60jr) ja

VERKLAAR nee. GELYS nee

GPS data: X 27.46.43 Y –25.50.04

HARTBEESHOEK 489JQ

PAD P 123-1

EIENAAR / KONTAKPERSOON: Beresford Jobling 

 

 

Op ‘n hoogte langs die Skeerpoortrivier, en met ‘n pragtige uitsig deur die Skeerpoort na die moot en die Magaliesberge in die verte, staan die plaashuis en kapelletjie, “Dodona”.

 

Dodona was die oudste antieke Griekse heiligdom in Afrika (Egipte) met ‘n orakel van Zeus. Hierdie orakel is geïnterpreteer deur die geluide wat die wind gemaak het soos dit deur ‘n ou eikeboom wat daar gegroei het, geritsel het of deur die geluid van die duiwe in die boom. Latere priesteresse van die orakel is “paleiai” genoem, wat duiwe beteken. In ‘n Christelike konteks oorgeplaas kan mens dus aanneem dat Dodona beteken “die plek waar mens God se stem duidelik hoor”. 

 

Dodona op die Skeerpoortrivier is duidelik die verwesenlikte droom van ‘n mens met ‘n romantiese inslag wat die lewensnoodsaaklikheid van skoonheid, vrede en menseliefde besef het om hierdie hoekie van die plaas uit te kies en hierdie atmosfeer te skep.

 

Sy was ook ‘n merkwaardige persoon, die Vida Pretorius (1890 gebore Roux), wat met haar man, Abraham Johannes Lodewicus Pretorius (1884-1938), hier op naweke in ‘n tent kom woon het en in die 1930’er jare eiehandig ‘n rondawel opgerig het.

 

Reeds as twaalfjarige dogtertjie het Vida popkleertjies gemaak om geld in te samel vir ‘n behoeftige vrou om ‘n treinkaartjie terug na haar familie in die Kaap te help koop. Later is sy as verpleegster opgelei en het haar lewe aan kreupelsorg gewei. Sy was die eerste matrone van die Meerhof kreupelhospitaal wat nou die Meerhofskool is, en het die kapel aldaar laat bou. (Kyk 051).

 

Ampie, haar man, was die agterkleinseun van Andries Pretorius, die Voortrekkerleier van Bloedrivier-faam. Die plaas, “Grootplaas” of “Rust der Ouden” of ook “Grootplaas der Rust” is in 1848 deur Kommandant-Generaal AWJ (Andries) Pretorius aangelê en was sowaar groot: meer as 300 vk myl of 76800 hektaar! (kyk 014).

 

Hier op die uithoekie van die plaas het Vida en Ampie wou aftree, en het sy gedroom van die kapelletjie wat sy wou bou want haar oupa het so ‘n aparte kamer vir aanbidding in stilte gehad. In 1933 het haar man gesterf en by sy afsterwe haar herinner: “moenie die kapel vergeet nie.” Sy is in 1938 weer getroud met ene John Beynon en in 1941 het hulle die woonhuis op ‘n rotsplaat gebou waarvan gedeeltes in die hoofslaapkamer nou nog as vloer dien.

 

Met die hulp van een enkele swart arbeider, Mararo, ook “Pumpkin” genoem, wat afgelei is van “Pommie” want hy was die agterryer van ‘n Britse offisier, het sy die kapel in 1945 “ter herinnering aan alle gesneuweldes en uit dankbaarheid vir die soldate wat uit oorloë veilig teruggekom het, en ook ter nagedagtenis aan haar eerste man” opgerig. Die kapel is op Paassondag 1945 ingewy. Dit is van plaaslike leiklip gebou wat met ‘n skotskar aangery is. Die dak is met gras gedek. Dit is slegs 7m x 5m groot en bied plek vir twintig mense. Die binnekant en uitrusting het ‘n beskeie, middeleeuse gewyde atmosfeer tipies vir ou Angelse plattelandse kerke. Daar is ‘n ou Statebybel (erfstuk van die Pretoriusfamilie), vier kandelare, ‘n altaar met ‘n kruis van Canterbury en ‘n klein helderluidende klokkie uit Holland. ‘n Klein steentjie uit Rome is soos die van die St Peterdom. Die kleurglasvensters is deur Me Quigley in Engeland gemaak. Die doopfont is ‘n maalsteen uit die Matopoberge. Twee kinders van familievriende uit Joegoslawië het hier vakansie gehou en nadat hulle weg is, het ‘n wit spoelklippie op die altaar bly lê wat vandag nog daar te sien is. Sowaar ‘n internasionale versameling.

 

Buite die kerkie is daar ‘n borsbeeld van Vida, gemaak deur die beeldhouer, Hennie Potgieter van Hartbeespoort (kyk 078). Dit is ongelukkig later gesteel. Die kapelletjie is en word steeds gebruik vir doop, huweliksbevestigings, begrafnisse asook ander dienste of net vir stil gebed.

 

 

Die binnekant van die kapel.                                                                   Interior of chapel.

 

Die huidige eienaar, Beresford Jogling is die sesde generasie na Andries Pretorius wat die plaas bewoon. Daar is verskeie memorabilia in die familiebesit. Die plaas word tans as kwekery geboer en daar word gastekamers uitgehuur.

 

DIE STAMBOOM VAN ‘N GEDEELTE VAN DIE PRETORIUSFAMILIE

 

Andries Wilhelmus Jacobus Pretorius                 x          Christina Petronella de Wit

(27/11/1798 – 25/07/1853)                                                (9/12/1799 –?/09/1848)

Christiaan Pieter Pretorius,                                 x          Johanna Christina Vorster (sy

3de kind en jonger broer van MW Pretorius                      niggie)

(21/10/1823 -24/05/1904)                                                   (9/05/1829 -03/11/1883)

 

Susanna Elizabeth Adriana Pretorius,                 x          Nicolaas Jacobus Pretorius,

oudste dogter                                                              (11/09/1842 -06/06/1921)

(20/05/1846 -24/03/1898)                                                                                   

 

Abraham Johannes Lodowicus Pretorius,           x          Sarah Vida Roux

(Ampie), hulle tiende kind,                                             (01/03/1890 - 12/01/1979)

(20/05/1884 – 27/05/1938)                                                         

 

Isabelle Marguerite Pretorius, oudste kind,          x          Hugh Beresford Jobling

(26/11/1913 –04/02/2007)                                               (28/11/1911-17/10/2003)

 

Charles Beresford Pretorius Jobling

(03/08/1956-)

(kyk: Pretorius, ME, Pretorius oor drie eeue/through three centuries 1600-1900 p 184, 185, 227, 255, 605 en  607)

 

 

Die uitsig deur die Skeerpoort vanaf Dodona.

 

View through the Skeerpoort from Dodona.

 

 

DODONA FARM AND CHAPEL

DATE 1941/1945

SAHRA PROTECTION (60yr) yes

DECLARED MONUMENT no. LISTED no

GPS data: X 27.46.43 Y –25.50.04

HARTBEESHOEK 489JQ:

ROAD P123-1:

OWNER / CONTACT PERSON: Beresford Jobling (082 494 7568)

 

On a rise close to the Skeerpoort River, with a beautiful view through the Skeerpoort to the valley and Magaliesberg range beyond, stands the farmhouse and small chapel, known as Dodona.

 

Both the house and the chapel were erected by Vida Pretorius. Vida Pretorius, later Beynon, was born as Sarah Vida Roux at Rhodes on 1 March 1890. She was a remarkable person. At the tender age of twelve years she made and sold dolls’ clothes to help collect money to enable an impoverished woman to buy a train ticket to return to her family in the Cape. Vida was later trained as a nurse and dedicated her professional life to cripple care. She was to become the first Chairman of the Meerhof Hospital, now the Meerhof School, and was also responsible for the building of the chapel in Meerhof (see 051).

 

Vida was married to Abraham Johannes Lodewicus Pretorius (20 May 1884 - 27 May 1938), a great grandson of Commandant-General Andries Wilhelmus Jacobus Pretorius, the Voortrekker leader of Bloedrivier fame, who on his arrival in the Transvaal in 1848 established the farm “Grootplaas” or  “Rust der Ouden”, also called “Grootplaas der Rust”.  This farm exceeded 300 square miles or 76800 hectares. (see 014).

 

Vida’s husband, nick-named Ampie, was an Inspector of Mines, and the couple spent weekends relaxing on a corner of the farm, originally in a tent, but later in a rondavel-house that they erected themselves during the thirties of the previous century. They wanted to retire here, and Vida dreamt of building a small chapel, similar to the separate room her grandfather had dedicated in his house for silent worship. On his deathbed in 1933 Ampie reminded Vida not to forget about her little chapel.

 

In 1938 Vida married John Beynon, and in 1941 they built the dwelling house on a rocky outcrop, part of which served as the floor of the main bedroom.

 

In 1945 Vida had the chapel constructed. This she did “in memory of all the fallen and in gratitude for all the soldiers who returned safely from the wars, and also in memory of her first husband”. The chapel was dedicated on Easter Sunday, 1945.

 

The chapel was built with the help of a single black labourer, called Mararo. Mararo was nicknamed “Pumpkin”, derived from “Pommie”, because he had previously been the “agterryer” of a British officer. The chapel was built from local slate, which was transported to the site by “skotskar”. The roof was thatched. The chapel is 7m by 5m and seats twenty people. The interior and fittings endow it with the humble sanctified medieval ambience typical of old English rural churches. Inside the chapel is an old “Statebybel”, a Pretorius family heirloom, four candelabra, an altar with a Canterbury Cross and a small bell from Holland, with a particularly clear ring. A small stone from Rome is similar to one found in Saint Peter’s Cathedral. The coloured glass windows were made by a Ms Quigley in England. The christening font is an old millstone from the Matopo Mountains. The white pebble left on the altar by the two children of friends who visited the farm from Yugoslavia, is still there, serving as reminder of their visit. The chapel truly houses a most international collection.

 

Outside the church is a bust of Vida, sculpted by Hennie Potgieter, late sculptor of Hartbeespoort (see 078). This bust has unfortunately been stolen. The little chapel is still used for christenings, wedding ceremonies, funerals and other services, and also for quiet worship. Vida passed away at Skeerpoort on 12 January 1979.

 

The chapel seems to be the realisation of the dream of a romantic person, for whom beauty, peace and humanity was so important that she selected this particular corner of the farm and created such an atmosphere.

 

The current owner, Beresford Jobling, a grandson of Vida, is the sixth generation of the Pretorius family to occupy the farm. The family owns a collection of memorabilia. The farm is currently used as nursery and guest rooms are rented out.

 

 

 

Bronsbeeld van Vida Beynon deur beeldhouer, Hennie Potgieter. (Ongelukkig is die beeld gesteel.)

 

Bronze statue of Vida Beynon by sculptor, Hennie Potgieter. (unfortunately stolen.)

 

GENEALOGICAL TABLE OF THE RELEVANT PORTION OF THE PRETORIUS FAMILY

 

Andries Wilhelmus Jacobus Pretorius                 x          Christina Petronella de Wit

(27/11/1798 – 25/07/1853)                                                (9/12/1799 –?/09/1848)

Christiaan Pieter Pretorius,                                 x          Johanna Christina Vorster, his

3rd child, and younger brother of MW Pretorius                cousin, daughter of his father’s

(21/10/1823 -24/05/1904)                                               youngest sister

                       (9/05/1829 -03/11/1883)

 

Susanna Elizabeth Adriana Pretorius,                 x          Nicolaas Jacobus Pretorius,

eldest daughter                                                            (11/09/1842 -06/06/1921)

(20/05/1846 -24/03/1898)                                                                                   

 

Abraham Johannes Lodowicus Pretorius,           x          Sarah Vida Roux

(Ampie), their tenth child,                                              (01/03/1890 - 12/01/1979)

(20/05/1884 – 27/05/1933?1938)                                                 

 

Isabelle Marguerite Pretorius, eldest child,          x          Hugh Beresford Jobling

(26/11/1913 -                                                                 (28/11/1911-)

 

Charles Beresford Pretorius Jobling

(03/08/1956-)

 

(see Pretorius, ME, Pretorius oor drie eeue/through three centuries 1600-1900 p 184, 185, 227, 255, 605 en  607)

 

 


Directors: S.A.M Smit & J.F Koster - Copyright ©2018 HartiesNet (Pty) Ltd - our Disclaimer