Archives created in Asia and South Africa

9. Archives in Cape Town

he archives in Cape Town are perhaps the best preserved of any administration in the octrooigebied. Because the Cape, like Ceylon, was an area where colonists settled, in their structure the archives there bear a strong resemblance to those in Colombo. They seem to be pretty well organized. The short inventory compiled by Graham Botha gives a good idea of the structure(17). The archives of the Dutch administration consist of three separate blocks: the archives from the Politieke Raad (Council of Policy), those from the Raad van Justitie, and those from the weeskamer. When the inventory was compiled in 1918, important Dutch collections were still housed in the Hooggerechtshof (High Court), to wit the civil rolls of the Raad van Justitie, or in the office of the Surveyor-General (the landadministratie or administration of land).

Archives of the Raad van Justitie:the Counsil of Justice.
(click to enlarge)

The archives of the Politieke Raad (Council of Policy) are the real government archives. These consist of a series of both ordinary and secret resoluties with series of annexes, series of incoming and outgoing letters, one series of dagregisters, a series of reports from diplomatic missions and expeditions and ship's logs, registers of commissions and instructions, muster-rolls, petitions, and various series of protocollen van civiele akten heard before the court. There are also a great many other series, most of which are characterized by either greater or smaller lacunae. The archives of the Politieke Raad also contain a number of miscellaneous volumes and documents concerning other establishments in the octrooigebied. Very little to do with the book-keeping has survived. A few miscellaneous remnants from the archives of other bodies have been added to the archives of the Politieke Raad.

The archives of the Raad van Jusititie are very large. However, a number of the series contain fairly considerable gaps. The weeskamer archives are also extensive.

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