Home
Upfront
Books
What's New
Towns
Structures
People
Firms
Lexicon
Search
Contact us

Book

Author: Picton-Seymour, Désirée
Year: 1977
Title: Victorian Buildings in South Africa
Place: Cape Town
Publisher: AA Balkema

A survey of the varied and exotic architectural styles of South African buildings constructed between 1850 and 1910 — a period loosely described as Victorian. But the scope is wider: for the period also covers the pre-1900 Transvaal Republican as well as the post-1900 Edwardian styles.

These rich and varied styles are the author's main interest: the houses, churches, schools, public and commercial buildings are described and fully illustrated: so are the architects and builders, and the materials they used.

During these great days of the British Empire places marked red on the map all had their share of almost interchangeable buildings; for this was the age of mass production and prefabrication, of cast-iron and corrugated-iron, materials ideally suited to the hotter climates, where weather conditions were often violent.

Chosen from pattern books and from foundry catalogues, architects working in South Africa exploited the rich variety of prefabricated ironmongery, and imported these from Europe to adorn and support buildings in both town and countryside, often transported overland for hundreds of miles: lamps and lamp fittings; drinking fountains; poles, brackets, spandrils and railings for verandahs; window frames and fanlights; lettering and ornaments; conservatories and bandstands; spiral staircases; and whole shopping arcades.

There are some 500 illustrations: most are photographs of buildings; and these are supplemented by more than a hundred of the author's drawings; together they provide a comprehensive visual record of extant buildings, with considerable detail.

A great part of the work has been based upon personal observation, for Desiree Picton-Seymour has travelled widely, through the length and breadth of the country: driven by a manifest enthusiasm for her subject she has tracked down architectural Victoriana, and conscientiously built up the record: the result is this exhaustive and exciting book.

The urgent need for a record of the fast-vanishing buildings of the past, says the author, provided the stimulus: "in my search for interesting buildings to draw, again and again I was confronted with the disappearance of a particular building I had remembered on some former visit to a city or dorp. 1 have drawn buildings since I could hold a pencil, and the highly ornate quality of late-nineteenth-century architecture seemed especially suited to my style. The patterned cast-iron verandahs and intricate roof-lines of these buildings were infinitely draw-able…"

Link to WorldCat - find this book in a library near you
Link to Google books - places where you can buy this book

Structures on this website found in this book

with images
with notes

Begley Bros, 1895, Cape Town, Western Cape. pp 82*, 83
Bellvue Seminary, n.d., Somerset East, Eastern Cape. pp 215
Boys' High School - now CP Nel Museum, 1905-1907, Oudtshoorn, Western Cape. pp 161, 163*
Caledon Baths, pre-1905, Caledon, Western Cape. pp 148*, 149
Carl Hermann Building, 1904, Cape Town, Western Cape. pp 58
Christelike Jongelingen-Vereniging : Hofmeyrsaal, 1874, Stellenbosch, Western Cape. pp 136 ill, 139
City Hall, 1906-1910, Durban, Kwazulu Natal. pp 250 ill, 251, 252
City Hall, 1897-1899, East London, Eastern Cape. pp 220 ill
Coetzenburg, refurbishment, 1893/1903, Stellenbosch, Western Cape. pp 134 ill, 135, 167
Colonade Building, 1895, Central, Cape Town, Western Cape. pp 61
Conservatory - Botanical Gardens, n.d., King William's Town, Eastern Cape. pp 23
Court House - now Local History Museum, 1865, Durban, Kwazulu Natal. pp 237
Court House and Post Office (now the Tatham Art Gallery), 1864, Pietermaritzburg, Kwazulu Natal. pp 238
Delponte Building, 1890s, Central, Cape Town, Western Cape. pp 83
Dockyard Church - Second, St George's Dockyard Church, 1820-1824 : 1898, Simonstown, Western Cape. pp 77 [WO Jones, 1824 not 1864], 91
Driscoll's Corner, 1894, Cape Town, Western Cape. pp 83-84
Durban Club, 1902, Durban, Kwazulu Natal. pp 38, 233, 235, 236, 241, 242, 243, 244, 245
Electricity Power Station, pre-1910, Durban, Kwazulu Natal. pp 244
Empire Hotel for Thomas Mulhival, 1894, Cape Town, Western Cape. pp 84
Exploration Building, 1897, Johannesburg, Gauteng. pp 27, 39, 321, 322 ill
Farmhouse and Barn for Nellmapius, c1889/99, Doornkloof, Irene, Gauteng. pp 301
Feathermarket Hall, 1885 : 1908, Port Elizabeth, Eastern Cape. pp 181
Fort England, including East Barracks - Later Lunatic Asylum, then Mental Hospital, 1815 : 1825 : 1894, Grahamstown, Eastern Cape. pp 211-212
General Post Office, 1897 : 1905, Johannesburg, Gauteng. pp 323, 324 ill,
General Post Office, 1900, Port Elizabeth, Eastern Cape. pp 189
Government Building - Compol Police Museum, c1890, Pretoria, Gauteng. pp 278 ill
Grey Institute, 1856, Port Elizabeth, Eastern Cape. pp 180, 192
Grey University College and School - now Grey College, 1906, Bloemfontein, Free State. pp 367 ill, 369
Grey's Hospital, 1859, King William's Town, Eastern Cape. pp 225
Gymnasium, 1858, Paarl, Western Cape. pp 141
Harbour Board Offices, 1905, Port Elizabeth, Eastern Cape. pp 38, 193, 194 ill, 195
Hothouse - Gardens, c1848, Central, Cape Town, Western Cape. pp 23
House C Foster - Fosters Villa, 1896, Rondebosch, Cape Town, Western Cape. pp 117
House CH Smith: The Firs, c1903, Rosebank, Cape Town, Western Cape. pp 123
House CL Andersson: Dolobran, 1905-1906, Parktown, Johannesburg, Gauteng. pp 329, 331
House De Witt: Montana Vista, c1898, Wynberg, Cape Town, Western Cape. pp 115
House Fred Ayres, 1895, Rondebosch, Cape Town, Western Cape. pp 117
House G Alexander, 1892, Cape Town, Western Cape. pp 58
House G Olivier: The Towers, 1902, Oudtshoorn, Western Cape. pp 156 ill
House Galpin: Tower house, (now the Observatory Museum), 1850, Grahamstown, Eastern Cape. pp 103-104 ill
House George Heys, Melrose House, 1887, Pretoria, Gauteng. pp 281, 296 ill, 297
House H Storm, n.d., Kalk Bay, Cape Town, Western Cape. pp 121
House J Holberg, n.d., Rondebosch, Cape Town, Western Cape. pp 121
House J Loopuyt, 1904, Rondebosch, Cape Town, Western Cape. pp 116 ill, 117
House JA Foster: Foster's Folly, 1902, Oudtshoorn, Western Cape. pp 155, 157 ill
House Lind - Gottland House, 1902, Oudtshoorn, Western Cape. pp 155, 158 ill, 159
House P Bosman, 1896, Sea Point, Cape Town, Western Cape. pp 117
House PH Marais, Highbury, 1895, Wynberg, Cape Town, Western Cape. pp 117 & 121
House R Hunter - Hunters Villa, 1896, Kenilworth, Cape Town, Western Cape. pp 117
Huguenot Memorial Building, 1900, Cape Town, Western Cape. pp 107
International Hotel, Long St, pre-1905, Cape Town, Western Cape. pp 84
Iziko Museum, 1893, Cape Town, Western Cape. pp 80 ill
JW Jagger & Co Building, 1892, Cape Town, Western Cape. pp 83
Kamp's Café, n.d., Cape Town, Western Cape. pp 58
King Edward's Mansions, now King Edward Hotel, c1904, Donkin Reserve, Port Elizabeth, Eastern Cape. pp 196 ill, 197
Koch & Dixie bldg, 1890, Cape Town, Western Cape. pp 83
Kraaifontein Hotel, n.d., Kraaifontein, Western Cape. pp 139 & 141
Le Roux Townhouse, 1909-1910, Oudtshoorn, Western Cape. pp 155, 156
Lennon Ltd, now Gardens Pharmacy, c1896, Cape Town, Western Cape. pp 63
Lennon's building, rebuilt, 1885/6, Central, Cape Town, Western Cape. pp 20, 21, 56*, 57, 63, 83
Lennon's Corner, 1895, Beaufort West, Western Cape. pp 169-170
Markham's Building, 1896, Johannesburg, Gauteng. pp 350
Metropolitan Methodist Church, 1876, Central, Cape Town, Western Cape. pp 52, 53, 90, 149
National Library of South Africa, Cape Town Campus, 1857 - 1864, Cape Town, Western Cape. pp 40 ill, 41
Nederduitse Gereformeerde Kerk, 1904, Johannesburg, Gauteng. pp 353
Nederduitse Gereformeerde Kerk - Moederkerk, 1863, Stellenbosch, Western Cape. pp 137, 138 ill
Netherlands Bank - Second, 1896, Central, Pretoria, Gauteng. pp 292-293
Northwards, 1904 : 1912, Parktown, Johannesburg, Gauteng. pp 330 ill
Opera House, 1894, Cape Town, Western Cape. pp 57, 82 ill
Opera House, 1903, Pretoria, Gauteng. pp 295, 301-302
Palace Building, 1889, Johannesburg, Gauteng. pp 303, 304 ill, 317, 318 ill
Pinehurst - House Edmeades, 1911, Oudtshoorn, Western Cape. pp 159
Post Office, 1891, Bloemfontein, Free State. pp 367 (ill)
Post Office - Second, 1887, Johannesburg, Gauteng. pp 318 ill, 323
President Kruger's house, 1883, Pretoria, Gauteng. pp 284-185
Prince Alfred's Guard Drill Hall, 1882, Port Elizabeth, Eastern Cape. pp 185, 187 ill, 188 ill, 189 ill
Raadsaal, 1889, Central, Pretoria, Gauteng. pp 4, 273, 275 ill, 276-279, 290
Railway Station Building, 1884, Port Alfred, Eastern Cape. pp 215
Rand Club - Third, 1902-1904, Johannesburg, Gauteng. pp 337 ill, 339, 343, 347
Rust-en-Vreugd, 1777, Cape Town, Western Cape. pp 130-131
SA News Building, now Nasionale Pers, 1904, Cape Town, Western Cape. pp 109
School, nd, Clanwilliam, Western Cape. pp 397
Settlers' Memorial Tower, c1905, Port Elizabeth, Eastern Cape. pp 197
Sir George Grey School, later Grey College, 1856, Bloemfontein, Free State. pp 369
St John's Church, 1884, Wynberg, Cape Town, Western Cape. pp 131
St Mark's Anglican Cathedral, 1850, George, Western Cape. pp 45
St Mary's Cathedral, 1840-51 : 1864 : 1951, Cape Town, Western Cape. pp 41-43, 42 ill, 48, 58
Staatsmodel School, 1897, Pretoria, Gauteng. pp 281
Standard Bank, 1902-1904, Oudtshoorn, Western Cape. pp 160 ill, 161
Stellenberg Gates, n.d., Kenilworth, Cape Town, Western Cape. pp 121
Stellenbosch University - Victoria College (Ou Hoofgebou), pre-1905, Stellenbosch, Western Cape. pp 134 ill, 135
Synagogue, 1901, Kimberley, Northern Cape. pp 392
Telephone Exchange, 1904, Durban, Kwazulu Natal. pp 244
Theological Seminary (Kweekskool), c1900, Stellenbosch, Western Cape. pp 136 ill, 137
Town Hall and Market Buildings, 1905, Cathcart, Eastern Cape. pp 222
Town Hall, Rondebosch - now Rondebosch library, 1899, Rondebosch, Cape Town, Western Cape. pp 109
Victoria Cottage Hospital, 1891-1892 : 1905, Wynberg, Cape Town, Western Cape. pp 101
Victoria Memorial Home, 1902, Port Elizabeth, Eastern Cape. pp 193
Volkshospitaal, 1890, Pretoria, Gauteng. pp 281
Volunteer Drill Hall, additions, 1888-9, Cape Town, Western Cape. pp 21
Westminster Estate Buildings: The Big House, 1904, Tweespruit, Free State. pp 377
White House Hotel, 1893, Cape Town, Western Cape. pp 68
YWCA, Long St, 1886, Cape Town, Western Cape. pp 63

People/Firms on this website found in this book

ALEXANDER, George Murray. pp 57, 58, 82-3 ill, 85, 109
ARMSTRONG, J. pp 211
BISSET, James. pp 45, 166
BULLOCK, Charles. pp 155, 156, 157, 159, 161, 163
CLARIDGE & SIMMONDS. pp 287, 296
CUTHBERT, Charles Davenport. pp 353
DE WITT, Anthony M. pp 7, 21, 38, 54, 56*, 57, 61, 63, 82*, 83, 84, 97, 100*, 101, 107 , 115, 116*, 117, 121, 131, 135, 139, 141, 142, 148, 149, 166, 171
DE ZWAAN, Wilhelm Johannes. pp 292*, 293, 295, 296, 299, 301
DONALDSON, John Stanislaus. pp 303, 304, 317, 318, 319, 363
DRAIBY, Frederick Marius Rasmussen. pp
ELLIS, John. pp 295, 297
FREEMAN, Charles AS. pp 20, 27, 33, 38, 46-54, 57-58, 61-63, 65-66, 68, 70-73, 79, 81, 85, 90-91, 131, 139, 143, 146-147, 149, 164-166, 169, 171-173, 237, 254-255, 269, 298, 346, 347-349, 355, 369, 371
GALPIN, Henry Carter. pp 23, 203-204
GOODWIN, SMALL & CUTHBERT. pp 353
GRAY, Sophia (Sophie) Wharton Myddleton. pp 5, 43, 44, 45, 47, 74, 97, 139, 149, 150, 151, 152, 155, 161, 166, 171, 192, 217, 225, 226, 255, 256, 257, 363, 397
GREY, Sir George. pp 28, 41, 193, 255, 369
HAGER, Carl Otto. pp 137, 138 ill, 161, 162 ill, 357, 397
HESSE, Folkert Wilko. pp 135, 136 ill
HOETS, John George Douglas. pp 375
HOETS & WEBB. pp 375
JONES, Victor Thomas. pp 5, 193-196, 321
JONES & McWILLIAMS. pp 193, 194, 195
KITCH, W. pp 57
KNOX, Edward Baldwin John. pp 54
LINDHORST, Johannes Victor. pp 318
LUCAS, William. pp 259, 263, 265, 266, 267
MacGILLIVRAY, Donald. pp 107
MacGILLIVRAY & GRANT. pp 35, 107, 108, 249, 251
McCOWAT, Robert Lockhart. pp 345, 352-353
McINTOSH & MOFFAT. pp 295, 301-302, 343, 345, 353
MIDDLETON, Orlando. pp 197
MILES, William Henry. pp 181
PARKER, John. pp
PATERSON, Peter. pp 48, 237, 238 (ill), 239, 254 (ill), 255, 298
PILKINGTON, George (Captain). pp
PRYNNE, George Halford Fellowes. pp
REID & EAST (AH & W REID & EAST). pp 343
REID, AH & W. pp 57, 102, 115, 129, 220, 223, 231, 232, 344, 370, 371
ROBERTSON, Robert MacBeth. pp 58, 77, 91, 92, 134 ill, 135, 136 ill, 137, 139, 171
ROSENBERG, Maximilian (Max). pp 58, 81
SANTRY, Denis. pp 107
SEELIGER, Johann Carl Ernest. pp 79, 81, 109, 123
SIMMONDS, JW Leslie. pp 303
SMITH, George William. pp 185, 193
SMITH & DEWAR. pp 185, 188, 189, 193, 197
SOFF, Francois (Frans). pp 295, 296, 299, 369
SPARMANN, Carel. pp 41, 42
STOTT & KIRKBY. pp 244, 249, 251, 252, 255, 269, 271
STREET-WILSON, William. pp 239, 245, 252
STREET-WILSON & BARR. pp
STREET-WILSON & FYFE. pp 257, 259, 261 ill, 262 ill, 263
TILL, JH & AE. pp 352, 360, 376
TIMLIN, William Mitcheson. pp 388
TORSTENSON, Martin Bergman. pp
TUCKER, John Scott. pp 48, 49
VAN RIJSSE, Klaas (jnr). pp 275, 283, 284, 287*, 297*, 299
VIXSEBOXSE, Johannes Egbertus. pp 80*, 81, 155, 159*, 161, 163*, 276, 295, 365, 367*
WELLMAN, Ernest James. pp 112, 244, 321
WENTINK, Dirk Egbert. pp 295, 365, 367*
WEST, J Pender. pp 211, 221, 222, 229
WOCKE, Richard Carl George Theodor . pp
WYERS, Jan Brink. pp 295, 297*, 299