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Nachtengel
Wednesday, December 9th, 2009, 07:31 AM
Comodoro Rivadavia, Argentina - Once they lived here in their thousands, but now only a handful of Afrikaans-speaking Boers remain in the windswept Patagonian coastal town of Comodoro Rivadavia and its hinterland.

Between 1903 and 1909, up to 800 Boer families trekked by ship to this lonely spot on Argentina's east coast, about 1500km north of Tierra del Fuego.

They had suffered badly in the 1899-1902 South African War. Some had lost family members in Kitchener's infamous concentration camps; others had their farmhouses destroyed by British troops.

Most of the Boer men who shipped out to settle in South America, taking their wives and children with them, had fought in the war against Britain, the nation that had seized their former independent republics of Transvaal and Orange Free State. The Boers left because they had no desire to live under their conqueror's thumb.

A century later, their numbers have dwindled. On Saturday, a small group of Afrikaans-speaking Argentines, descendants of the first Boers to set foot in South America, assembled in the town to greet newly appointed South African ambassador Tony Leon.

The ambassador and his wife had travelled to Patagonia from the South African embassy in Buenos Aires, 1800km to the north, to meet the Boer descendants.

"Speaking at the event, Juan Kruger, born in Argentina in 1947, told Sapa: "Ek glo nie jy sal meer as 20 Afrikaans-sprekende mense kry in die land [I don't believe you will find more than 20 Afrikaans-speaking people in the country]."

Kruger was referring to those, like him, whose grandparents had come over at the beginning of the last century and still speak Afrikaans as a first language.

It is a Patagonian paradox that the Afrikaners who helped turn Comodoro Rivadavia from a tiny settlement with few buildings into a large and noisy oil town, now number so few. Local legend says it was Boers drilling for water who made the first oil strike, in a region that currently supplies a considerable portion of Argentina's fuel needs.

About a dozen Argentine Afrikaners, most in their fifties and sixties, gathered at a suburban house in Comodoro Rivadacia to speak to Leon. They served him tea and melktert, baked by Graciela Hammond, who learned the recipe from her mother, a Boer woman.

Leon told them the South African embassy stood ready to help them.

"If there is anything we can do for you, please let us know," he said. They handed him a commemorative book to sign. In it, he wrote: "Ek hoop dat hierdie gemeenskap, met sy erfenis en taal, sal in Argentinie oorleef [I hope that this community, and its heritage and language, will survive in Argentina]."

The surnames of those present at the event could be found in any South African telephone directory: De Lange, Botha, Kruger, Norwal and Schlebusch, among others.

Danie Botha, 67, whose daughter is a pharmacist in Comodoro Rivadavia, told Leon his forefathers had come to Argentina to escape the British.

"You'll see no Afrikaners here who are well off. Other people who came here, such as the Portuguese and the Italians, they are wealthy. But the Afrikaners did not come here to make money, they came here to escape the English."

He said the Afrikaner community in Argentina, which in 1909 had numbered about 800 families -- about three thousand people -- had made a "groot fout [big mistake]” in 1938, when many of its founders returned to South Africa, leaving their descendants behind.

"Some of us never knew our grandparents," he said.

Botha said he planned to visit South Africa for the first time in March next year.

Sarah de Lange, who farms sheep on a 10,000-hectare farm granted to her grandfather by the Argentine government a century ago, told Sapa she made biltong.

"Ek maak biltong van guanaco vleis [I make biltong from guanaco meat]," she said.

The guanaco is a type of llama, about the size of a small horse, which runs wild in the region.

De Lange said her biltong was quite different to beef biltong, but tasted good nonetheless.

Jan Schlebusch, who was at the event with his wife Martha (nee Myburgh) and two of his three daughters, owns a sheep farm about 200km inland from Comodoro Rivadavia.

Both daughters spoke Spanish, and neither understood more than a few words of Afrikaans, though Schlebusch said he was keen to have them visit South Africa.

He himself had done so in 1990.

Kruger said the Nederduitse Gereformeerde Kerk in Comodoro Rivadavia had once had an Afrikaans dominee [minister], but he left in 1953, and a Spanish-speaking cleric had taken over.

This, he said, had been a big factor in the decline of the Afrikaans language in the region, because the children no longer needed to learn it in order to understand the preacher.

Afrikaans speakers used to gather each year in the Sierra Chaira mountains to hold Boere sports, but this too had ceased. There were too few Afrikaans speakers left, Kruger explained.

Dante Botha, a cousin of Danie Botha, said the original Boers had come to Argentina "because of pride". His grandfather, who had fought with De Wet against the British, had been one of them.

Speaking in Spanish through an interpreter -- unlike his cousin, Dante speaks no Afrikaans -- he described the Argentine Afrikaners as "a very closed community".

An account by travel writer Bruce Chatwin of the Boer community around Sarmiento, inland from Comodoro Rivadavia, is at one with Botha's description.

"They lived in fear of the Lord, celebrated Dingaan's Day, and took oaths on the Dutch Reformed Bible. They did not marry outsiders and their daughters had to go to the kitchen if a Latin entered the house," Chatwin wrote in his 1975 book, 'In Patagonia'.

According to a report in the Sunday Times ten years earlier, there was "more Afrikaans than Spanish" heard in the shops, bars and offices of Sarmiento.

Almost fifty years later, the days of hearing Afrikaans spoken in Patagonia appear to be drawing to a close.

Sixty-five year-old Carlo de Lange - whose father was a small boy when his grandparents arrived in Argentina in 1905, two years after British soldiers had burnt down their farmhouse - said he thought the Afrikaans language would soon become extinct in the region.

"Na my geslag is daar nie meer Afrikaans nie [After my generation there will be no more Afrikaans]," he said. - Sapa

http://www.iol.co.za/index.php?set_id=1&click_id=3&art_id=nw20091201065254224C907283

SaxonPagan
Wednesday, December 9th, 2009, 03:10 PM
This is a very sad tale :(

Hauke Haien
Wednesday, December 9th, 2009, 04:32 PM
"They did not marry outsiders and their daughters had to go to the kitchen if a Latin entered the house," Chatwin wrote
It is sad that this fundamental decency would be interpreted as rude and impossible today. "So you consider me to be on the same level as the negro?", the foreigners complain. It has become compulsory to advance the destruction of one's own ethnic group for the benefit of outsiders.

Stormraaf
Wednesday, December 9th, 2009, 09:05 PM
The people of Afrikaner descent mentioned and quoted in the article have typical Afrikaner surnames, but most have Latin first names. The combination looks decidedly alien to me. Considering when they would have been born and christened ("Juan" Kruger in 1947 f.ex.), it seems to me the community assimilated more quickly than is indicated by the fact that the Afrikaner-descended Argentinian youth now speak only Spanish.

Angelcynn Beorn
Tuesday, December 22nd, 2009, 01:06 PM
The people of Afrikaner descent mentioned and quoted in the article have typical Afrikaner surnames, but most have Latin first names. The combination looks decidedly alien to me. Considering when they would have been born and christened ("Juan" Kruger in 1947 f.ex.), it seems to me the community assimilated more quickly than is indicated by the fact that the Afrikaner-descended Argentinian youth now speak only Spanish.

Good point. Carlo de Lange sounds very Spanish to me, and that's the name of a 65 year old - born in 1944. Like most small settlements it got swallowed up by it's host population.

Bittereinder
Wednesday, December 23rd, 2009, 06:25 AM
I will stop just short of saying these Afrikaners are not Afrikaners anymore. This is a an excellent example of what is happening to the Afrikaner today as more and more of our folk leave the country as they do not want to live under black biased rule. The mingling of their blood with South Americans is a tragedy as their genes are lost to the Germanic world. A sign of things to come for sure...

PS: Tony Leon is a jew and previous leader of the Democratic Alliance...

Alqua
Sunday, April 11th, 2010, 10:46 PM
Grimner, it's quite cruel of you to say so, you know.

I always supported the Boer cause and still do, and I even know a (young) descendant from Afrikaner immigrants who may join the new group I'm building.

Descendants of Germanic peoples in Argentina number at least 4 million, and you could add more if you consider some northern Frenchs and so on. But let's just stick to the 4 million figure. Boers as 1.5 million as I understand, so Argentine Germanics outnumber the Afrikaners by far.

Look at this Argentine crowd from Crespo, Entre Rios: http://es.wikipedia.org/wiki/Archivo:Multitud_Crespo.jpg

I do not mean to start a fight at all, and actually I may be one of the few Argentines concerned about the Boer genocide at all. It's just sad that people think that Argentina is like Brasil or Mexico.


And yes, it's quite a sad story, but Argentine Afrikaneers are not gone and any Boer is welcome here. I know that the best is for them to stay and fight, but considering the child rapes and murders I don't think you can blame a father from trying to protect his family.

Stormraaf
Sunday, April 11th, 2010, 11:16 PM
and I even know a (young) descendant from Afrikaner immigrants who may join the new group I'm building

You could rather send him our way (provided he brings no Latin culture or blood with him) in order for his being descended from Afrikaner immigrants to retain some meaning.


Boers as 1.5 million as I understand,

More like 2.7 million, to be correct, though the point is off-topic.


so Argentine Germanics outnumber the Afrikaners by far.

Relevance?


It's just sad that people think that Argentina is like Brasil or Mexico.

Argentina is exactly like Brazil or Mexico in the sense that there are no Afrikaner communities in any of these countries today. Other than that, sure, knowing that Argentina is different in the sense that she houses mainly a recombination of European ethnicities, is good common knowledge.


And yes, it's quite a sad story, but Argentine Afrikaneers are not gone and any Boer is welcome here.

Argentine Afrikaners are gone, since those of Afrikaner descent no longer use Afrikaans to participate in Afrikaner culture, and any Boer, welcome as he may be in your country, would ensure the same fate for his bloodline if he were to integrate into Argentine society.

Alqua
Monday, April 12th, 2010, 12:15 AM
Even if they use their language less with time, they do have some influence on culture and if people notice that then the culture is not gone. For that matter many German-Argentines in their colonies barely speak German but I can assure you German culture is present on them.

The Welsh are another example. They had probably the most important Germanic colony in Patagonia, and even if some young (or not) people don't speak Welsh they marked Argentine culture and they still exist.

Although, now that I see it your way you may be right, but there's no way a community stays as closed as that in a different place that it's homeland.
That doesn't mean they do not exist as a community anymore, they are just changed.

Bittereinder
Monday, April 12th, 2010, 06:01 AM
I always supported the Boer cause and still do, and I even know a (young) descendant from Afrikaner immigrants who may join the new group I'm building.

Thank you for supporting our cause Alqua, the fact of the matter is that you used the words 'know a (young) descendant from Afrikaner immigrants' not I know a young Afrikaner, this is proof enough that even you do not consider them fully Afrikaner.


Descendants of Germanic peoples in Argentina number at least 4 million, and you could add more if you consider some northern Frenchs and so on. But let's just stick to the 4 million figure. Boers as 1.5 million as I understand, so Argentine Germanics outnumber the Afrikaners by far.

Names like Dante and Carlo are a clear indication of the state of Afrikaner culture of these Afrikaner decedents. If the Afrikaners integrated into Argentine-German society it would have been slightly better IMO. However the fact of the matter if you take Afrika out of Afrikaner you are not left with much. Folk is more than blood. It is soil, association, education and even religion.


I do not mean to start a fight at all, and actually I may be one of the few Argentines concerned about the Boer genocide at all. It's just sad that people think that Argentina is like Brasil or Mexico.

I am glad that as an Argentine Germanic you view these Afrikaner descendants in a positive light. I had a lady friend at school whose grandfather was an Argentine German and immigrated to SA After the Anglo-Boer War and I can honestly say I never viewed her as anything other than Germanic. Her and her sisters appearance was Germanic indeed complete with fair complexion, blond hair and blue eyes, a rather wider mouth though I don't know if that is an un-Germanic trait. Many Nazi's would not have fled persecution to Argentina if it was a wholly un-Germanic land, I also understand that Argentina is probably the most civilized South-American land and that can be largely attributed to the German/Germanic influence.


The Welsh are another example. They had probably the most important Germanic colony in Patagonia, and even if some young (or not) people don't speak Welsh they marked Argentine culture and they still exist.

The Welsh are Celtic, though one of my favourite Celtic peoples they have and will never be Germanic.


Although, now that I see it your way you may be right, but there's no way a community stays as closed as that in a different place that it's homeland.
That doesn't mean they do not exist as a community anymore, they are just changed.

Changed indeed, not lost but removed from what they where, I will support them but blood and culture is enough for me to say that they cannot reintegrate into our dying race.

Alqua
Monday, April 12th, 2010, 06:38 AM
Well, now that I've been reading about past argues between other Argentines, and those kind of things, I have sort of new ideas. I rethinked everything.

You are right when you say that you cannot consider yourself Afrikaner if you are named Juan or Dante or whatever, and speak Spanish and your culture is not Afrikaner at all.

It seems I used to give way too much meaning to race. That's why I named the Welsh, they are "Germanic" racially (I mean, nordic, northern european), but not really Germanic.

As a conclusion I wouldn't say Argentina is part of the Germanic world. But we are not the same as the rest of Latin America neither, our identity is White, with heavy Germanic influence. And those being raised in some German colonies may be regarded as Germanic since they even speak German everyday.

Bittereinder
Monday, April 12th, 2010, 08:35 PM
La Begonia Journal; For Afrikaner Gaucho, Arid Land and Hard Work
Published: October 31, 1991

ESTANCIA LA BEGONIA, Argentina— He shuffles about with a heavy stick for a cane. But at 79, after 64 years of riding the plains on horseback, Enrique Carlos Grimbeek seems an archetype of life in the Argentine outdoors. He still wears the baggy pants and thick belt of a gaucho. A visitor to his 180,000-acre sheep farm in the southeastern corner of Chubut province will find him hospitable and talkative, full of stories about the hard life of a rancher.

But his tales are hard to follow. Mr. Grimbeek's Spanish is almost unintelligible, since it includes a heavy Dutch accent and is sprayed with Afrikaans words.

Mr. Grimbeek is a Boer, one of almost 2,000 decendents of hardy Afrikaners who came to Argentina after their crushing defeat in the Anglo-Boer War in 1902 and managed to survive by toughness in the arid Patagonian plains.

Most second-generation Boers speak Afrikaans among themselves, and many say they want to visit South Africa. Some say they want to stay there. Claim a Contribution

But the Boers did more than survive in Argentina. In fact, many argue that they contributed to much of Argentina's current wealth.

When their fathers got to Chubut in 1903, they found there was simply no fresh water. They were given large ranches by the Argentine Government as an enticement to immigrate, but they had to bring in drinking water by wagon. So they demanded a rig from Buenos Aires to drill for water. And in 1907 they hit their first oil well.

A drive outside of Comodoro Rivadavia, which is one of the country's petroleum centers, finds oil pumps almost every 600 yards. Had the law been different the Boers might today form a kind of super-rich subculture of Argentine society, since most of the oil was found on their land. But in Argentina, the state is owner of all mineral rights.

It is understandable that at one time as many as 600 Boer families chose to brave the wilds of Patagonia, instead of remaining in South Africa after the war. Most of those who came to Argentina were sheep farmers in South Africa, and were able to start new and highly successful ranches when the Argentine Government, seeking to populate Patagonia, offered each family between 6,000 and 18,000 acres of land.

But more important to their decision to leave was their treatment by the British authorities in South Africa. After the Treaty of Vereeniging was signed in 1902, ending 32 months of war, Boers continued to resist using guerrilla tactics. In response, Britain declared martial law and built concentration camps that included women and children. Boer farms were burned. Some say as many as 26,000 died from disease in the camps.

The first families came to Argentina in 1903, with the largest migration in 1905. Almost half returned to South Africa between 1910 and 1920 after self-governance was granted to Orange Free State and the Transvaal, where the Afrikaner population was concentrated. But 300 families remained in Argentina, creating the largest exile colony of Boers in the world. Grudge Against British

To this day, many Boers harbor a deep grudge against the British.

"I tried to sign up to fight in the Malvinas, but they wouldn't let me," said Mr. Grimbeek, referring to the 1982 conflict over the Falkland Islands. "I tell them now that if I had gone, the British wouldn't be on the islands today."

Though the Boers here have blood ties to South Africa, they seem to have little, if any, of the racial prejudice of the friends and relatives their parents left almost 100 years ago.

In fact, visitors with dark skin, of Indian extraction, swarthy gauchos or any other combination of ethnicity are likely to be treated to mate, the acrid Argentine hot beverage, or tea with chocolate cake and cookies.

Discussing apartheid, and its dismantling, seems to mystify the Boers who populate the countryside of Southern Chubut. They admit they know little about the homeland of their fathers. These are simple people, fiercely loyal to the Dutch Reformed Church, and are more concerned about putting food on their tables than debating racial politics.

"All I know is that out here the servant and the master are the same," Mr Grimbeek said. "They eat the same food, ride the same horses and sleep on the same land."

"When we came here, we had to work or die, it was that simple," said Enrique Blackie. "You didn't have time to say you didn't want to associate with gauchos or Indians or Latins. If we don't work together we can't survive."

Mr. Blackie is 63, has lost most of his teeth and has a face that the winds of the Patagonia have beaten into a leathery hide. He manages a ranch 50 miles northwest of Sarmiento, a dusty town that has long been a Boer colony, and he comes into town twice a month to visit his wife and 10 children.

Though the Boer descendents still hold an annual festival where traditional dance, dress and food are offered, they say they feel very much Argentine and more and more separated from their South African past. Now into the third and fourth generations, Boer descendents are intermarrying. Grandchildren no longer speak Afrikaans. Several of the towns the Boers first built and populated are now ghost towns.

Only two of the original settlers are still alive.

"That is how it should be," said Elizabeth Torry, who lives in Sarmiento. "I can't expect my grandchildren and great grandchildren to speak Afrikaans. They're Argentines."

Photo: "All I know is that out here the servant and the master are the same," said Enrique Carlos Grimbeek, a Boer decendent and a gaucho, on his 180,000-acre sheep farm in Chubut Province, Argentina. (Nathaniel C. Nash/The New York Times) Map of Argentina showing location of Chubut.


Source (http://www.nytimes.com/1991/10/31/world/la-begonia-journal-for-afrikaner-gaucho-arid-land-and-hard-work.html?pagewanted=1)

The Aesthete
Wednesday, April 14th, 2010, 10:13 AM
As an Anglo-Australian I am angered by what the British did to Boers in the Boer war and the Germans in the Second and First World War.

Argentina's Afrikaners will most likely continue to dwindle in numbers like the German Brazilians; I just discovered that Raquel Zimmermann has married outside her group.

EriknotRed
Saturday, April 17th, 2010, 06:03 AM
It's sad to see south-americans germanics losing their identity.I born in Brazil and many of my ex-friends love the "black-latin" culture.

Rassenhygieniker
Saturday, April 17th, 2010, 07:48 AM
Argentina's Afrikaners? There is no such thing, because all the Latins countries can do like the rest of the dark races is engulf the Germanic blood in hope to revigorate their degenerate race.

As long as the Germanic does not understand that for a Germanic to survive is to inhabit in Germanic soil, the Germanic immigrant will only commit the faith of his ancestry, race and blood to suicide.

We have seen it in Brazil with the Teutons, we have seen it in Italy with the Lombards, we have seen it in Spain with the Visigoths, we see it in Argentina with the Boers.

Here is something to read:



Race or Mongrel
By
Alfred Paul Karl Eduard Schultz

CHAPTER XVIII

THE SOUTH AMERICAN MONGREL

IT has been said that the degeneration of Spain is due to the fact that Spain is Catholic, a statement in which there is as much truth as in the statement that the deterioration of Egypt was caused by the Egyptian priests. When Spain was Gothic it was great and it was Catholic. The Northern races were great before they were Protestant, when they were Catholic, and great before they were Christian. Christianity sends many to heaven, many more to the other place, but regenerate a race it cannot. It cannot change the blood that rolls in the veins.

Race impresses its characteristics on the religion that a people profess. The Catholicity of Gothic Spain was not the Catholicity of modern Spain. With the post- Gothic Spaniard, the Iberian-Gothic-Moorish-African mongrel, Catholicity degenerated into the crass fetishism which is the religion of modern Spain. The Catholicity of Southern Italy is likewise a fetishism in accord with the African blood that flows in the veins of the Southern Italian. The Iberian fetishism became degraded to a still greater extent in South America, in consonance with the progressive degradation of the American mongrel, the American Spaniel, and Portugack. The Catholicity of the Irish or of the French is essentially different from that of the Iberians. The Catholicity of the South German is love for art, colour, music, life. Gothe, although a Protestant, preferred in life and in art the warm glow of the Catholic Church.

Religion does not cause the degeneration of a race, it degenerates with the race. The Spaniard who, in comparing Germany and Spain, thinks that the difference is due to the university system of Germany, that German patriotism and superiority, that the greatness of the empire, is created by schools and universities, is over estimating the importance of universities immensely. German universities accomplish so much, because the German race is a great race. A thousand German universities in Spain could do nothing for Spain. In a short time they would deteriorate to the Spanish level. Great races have great schools, but schools never make a race great. It all depends upon the blood.

As long as Gothic blood prevailed in Spain, Spain was great. After the Moorish wars were over, the Spaniards and the Portuguese fused with the Moors that remained. The Moors introduced Arabian and negro blood. In the fifteenth century the Portuguese acquired African possessions, and, carrying negro blood in their veins, elective affinity caused them to cross freely with the negroes. At first the negro blood came to Portugal in droplets; later it became a flood. It flooded Spain as well as Portugal.

These Iberian-Gothic-Arabian-negro mongrels colonized South America, Mexico, Central America, and the West Indies. What have they accomplished? Is it not true that Iberia laid rotten eggs in South America, and that the United States acted as their incubator and brooder?


Reminds me of this conversation:


The Irish Catholics could have gone to the Catholic nations of Latin America but they didn't.


What does this tell us? Where faith diverges, blood is stronger than faith. They obviously wished to be with their more culturally and ethnically akin counterparts from the British Isles than their Spanish- and Mestizo-descended fellow Catholics. :)

german islander
Tuesday, May 25th, 2010, 09:49 PM
I wish people could find a balance between assimilation and preservation of ones culture but this happens more often than anything the younger generations forget there roots

Sigurd
Tuesday, May 25th, 2010, 10:01 PM
Argentina's Afrikaners? There is no such thing, because all the Latins countries can do like the rest of the dark races is engulf the Germanic blood in hope to revigorate their degenerate race.

Argentina is the Whitest country of South America. Essentially, the main danger for the Germanic heritage becoming subsumed in non-Germanic heritage is mixing with other European-descended ethnicities such as Spaniards or Italians. The "Natives" are mostly to the South and in the capital. ;)