William F. Lye South African manuscripts, 1834-1972  PDF

Overview of the Collection

Lye, William F.
William F. Lye South African manuscripts
1834-1972 (inclusive)
9 boxes and 5 ledgers, (6 linear ft. )
Collection Number
This collection contains the papers of William F. Lye, a former USU history teacher who specialized in African history, including Lye's Ph.D. notes, and primary source material connected to Andrew Smith and Captain R. S. Webb providing a wealth of information on South African history. The materials in this collections have been arranged topically.
Utah State University, Merrill-Cazier Library, Special Collections and Archives Division
Special Collections & Archives
Merrill-Cazier Library
Utah State University
Logan, UT
Telephone: 435-797-8248
Fax: 435-797-2880
Access Restrictions

Open to public research.

Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA) grant, 2007-2008

Biographical NoteReturn to Top

William F. Lye was born February 19, 1930 in Kimberley, British Columbia, Canada. After graduating from his local high school, Lye served a two-year mission for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Upon his return, Lye married ‘Velda', a woman he had met while serving his LDS mission. Thereafter, Lye applied to Rick College (now B.Y.U. Idaho) and studied history. After two years at Ricks, the Utah State Agricultural College (now Utah State University) offered Lye a scholarship, which Lye accepted, and later graduated from the U.S.A.C. with a B.A. in history. Shortly after his graduation, Lye was awarded a Woodrow Wilson Fellowship and enrolled in the University of California, Berkeley. Two years later Lye graduated with a M.A. in British Imperial History.

Following his graduation from the University of California Lye was offered a teaching job at Ricks College. After teaching at Ricks College for four years, the College granted Lye a sabbatical leave to pursue a Ph.D.. Lye enrolled at U.C.L.A. and studied African history before colonial rule. After graduating from U.C.L.A. Lye returned to Ricks for one year, but then accepted a position to teach African history at U.S.A.C., where he taught until his retirement.

Source: ‘Biographical Sketch', by William F. Lye.

Content DescriptionReturn to Top

This collection contains the papers of William F. Lye, a former USU history teacher who specialized in African history, including Lye's Ph.D. notes, and primary source material connected to Andrew Smith and Captain R. S. Webb providing a wealth of information on South African history. This collection consists of nine boxes of material and five ledgers. The materials in this collection have been arranged topically.

Andrew Smith was a government physician of the Cape Colony, South Africa that led a exploratory expedition into the frontier around Cape Colony from 1834-1836. This collection contains Smith's papers (Box 1).

Captain R. S. Webb was born Feb 13, 1892 in London, England. In 1910 he relocated to South Africa, where he taught himself topographical and hydrographical surveying between 1910 and 1915. In 1914, he was called to serve in the war effort in France. He returned to South Africa in 1919, damaged by chlorine mustard gas from which he suffered to end of his life. Continuing his career in mapping South Africa, he worked in the Orange Free State, made a reconnaissance in Basutoland, prepared his Gazetteer for which he was honored by the Queen, and awarded a prize by the Royal Geographical Society. Webb also fought to verify the traditional lands claims of the BaSotho people who lived near the Orange Free State, the Eastern Cape Colony, and Southern Transvaal. In 1955, he was evicted from his home, and 89 percent of his property was appropriated by the State. This collection contains some of his maps, surveys, papers, and record ledgers.

In addition to the materials found in this collection, U.S.U. Special Collections & Archives also houses a collection of African books donated by William F. Lye catalogued as Book Collection 55; William F. Lye African Collection. Lye's Andrew Smith's Journal of his Expedition into the Interior of South Africa; 1834-1836 is available in USU Special Collections & Archives (call # 8.8:63 no. 1). Webb's Gasetteer for Basutolandis also available (call # ASL 916.861 W384).

Use of the CollectionReturn to Top

Restrictions on Use


It is the responsibility of the user to obtain permission to publish from the owner of the copyright (the institution, the creator of the record, the author or his/her transferees, heirs, legates, or literary executors). The user agrees to indemnify and hold harmless the Utah State University Libraries, its officers, employees, and agents from and against all claims made by any person asserting that he or she is an owner of copyright.

Permission to publish material from the William F. Lye South African manuscripts must be obtained from the Special Collections Manuscript Curator and/or the Special Collections Department Head.

Preferred Citation

William F. Lye South African manuscripts, 1834-1972. (COLL MSS 260). Utah State University. Special Collections and Archives Department.

Administrative InformationReturn to Top

Detailed Description of the CollectionReturn to Top

Smith, Andrew. Journal of the expedition to the interior of South Africa , 1834-1836Return to Top

Container(s): Box 1, Folder 1-4

Photocopy of manuscript. Vol. 1, 272 leaves. 35cm. Vol. 2, 333 leaves. 35cm.

Extract from ... Diary of Dr. Andrew SmithReturn to Top

Container(s): Box 1, Folder 5

Includes portions concerning Basuto tribe. 14, 2 leaves: 38cm. Photostat in paper binder.

Ethnology notes of Andrew SmithReturn to Top

Container(s): Box 1, Folder 6

Andrew Smith, report of the expedition for exploring Central Africa, from the Cape of Good Hope, under the supervision of Dr. A. Smith. Cape Town: Printed at the Government Gazette Office, 1836. 67, 1 p. : 22cm. (loose) Photocopy by South African Library, 1834 June 23Return to Top

Container(s): Box 1, Folder 7

Includes copy of article from The Cape of Good Hope Library Gazette, 23d. Dec. 1834. Pp. 13,14.

Andrew Smith, M.D. Founder of the first South African Museum. (Autographed by Kirby, Percival R) Return to Top

Container(s): Box 1, Folder 8

Reprinted from Annals of the South African Museum, Vol.36, Part 1. 26 p. : port., ill.; 25cm.

Moletsane, Morena Abraham Aaron, account of the autobiographical memoir. Printed at Paarl, C.P. South Africa, By Fischer and Sons (Pty) Ltd. for R. S. Webb ... 1967. 2 v. : 24cmReturn to Top

Container(s): Box 2, Folder 1-2

The Journal is annotated with additional notes by R. S. Webb; and with mounted photographs; and a copy of a sketch map of "Our Village Families." Vol. 2 is a scrapbook of newspaper clippings and manuscript notes by R. S. Webb. Letter of presentation from Webb to W. F. Lye laid in v. 2.

Grant, James Murray. A journey from Qacha's Nek to Advance Post, 1873; via ‘Milikane; Schonghong; Linakeng; Kolobere; Lekaka-la-Sekhonyana; Senquonyane & Phustiatsana-ea-ha-Malopo, 1873 Dec. 7th ... 25th. By Inspector J. M. Grant, F.A.M.P., guided by Mora QuingReturn to Top

Container(s): Box 2, Folder 3

Notes from diary of Charles Maitin of Bogate: , 1897Return to Top

Container(s): Box 2, Folder 4

[concerning] Inspector J. M. Grant's diary of the Langalibalele Expedition of 1873, by Ronald Webb, April, 1951. 56 leaves (carbon copy in bound letterbook)

Joubet, Gideon. Report [of Trans-Orange, including Thaba Basin] , 19 Aug. 1845Return to Top

Container(s): Box 2, Folder 5

with inked in photostat [of sketch map] from file CO 2828.2 of 1845. 28 leaves : 38cm. Plus map 37x57 cm. Folded [photostat copy]

Stow, G. W. The Intrusion of the stronger races. The Amazulu, Matabili and Natal Tribes. Unpublished manuscript (Olden Times) in South African Library, Cape Town. Photocopy of typescript, annotatedReturn to Top

Container(s): Box 3, Folder 1-3

Container(s) Description
box folder
3 1-3
Box Folder
3 1
pt 1, p. [1]-107
3 2
pt 2, pp 108-226
3 3
pt, 3, pp 227-320

Bloemhof Commission Report , 1871. Return to Top

Container(s): Box 4, Folder 1-2

Evidence taken at Bloemhof before the Commission appointed to investigate the Claims of the South African Republic, Captain N. Waterboer, Chief of the West Griqualand, and certainother Native Chiefs, to portions on the Vaal River, now Known as the Diamond Fields. 392 leaves : photocopy; 36cm.

Wookey, Alfred J. Dinwao leka e la Dipolelo kaga Dico tsa Secwana. 6th ed. Tiger Kloof, Cape of Good Hope: London Missionary Society, 1938. 90 p., [45] p. : 35cm. PhotocopyReturn to Top

Container(s): Box 4, Folder 3

Research papers of Lye, mapsReturn to Top

Container(s): Box 5

Maps used by William F. Lye to prepare his Gazeteer For Basutoland. ASL 916.861 W384. Maps are annotated with route marked in ink. Maps are official section maps listed alphabetically.

Container(s) Description
No. 1 : Arboussets Journey. 4 plates with small map as key to reassemble large maps
No. 2 : Bethulie. folded
No. 3a : Bloemfontein. Paper mounted on cloth, folded. 3b Bloemfontein. Photostat
No. 4 : Brandfort. Photostat
No. 5 : Breypaal. Paper on cloth, fold
No. 6 : Christiana. Paper on cloth, fold
No. 7 : Dewetsdorp. Paper on cloth, fold
No. 8 : Ficksburg. Paper on cloth, fold
No. 9 : Fouriesburg. Paper, fold
No. 10 : Fouriesburg. Paper, fold
No. 11 : Harrismith. Paper, fold
No. 12 : Kimberly. Paper, fold
No. 13a : Kroonstad. Topographic map, annotated in 4 pts., fold.13b Kroonstad. Photostat
No. 14 : Lesotho. Paper, fold
No. 15 : Lindley. Paper, fold
No. 16 : Mount Fletcher. Paper on cloth, fold
No. 17 : Philipstown. Paper on cloth, fold
No. 18 : Reddersburg. Paper on cloth, fold
No. 19 : Rouxville. Paper on cloth, fold
No. 20 : Senekal. Photostat
No. 21a : Springfontein. Paper, fold. 21b Springfontein. Paper, fold
No. 22 : Ventersburg. Paper on cloth, fold
No. 23 : Victor. Paper on cloth, fold
No. 24 : Wepener. Paper on cloth, fold
No. 25a : Winburg. Paper on cloth, fold. 25b Winburg S. W. Photocopy, fold
No. 26 : Witkopjes. Photostat
No. 27 : Witziesheok. Paper on cloth, fold
No. 28 : Zastron. Paper on cloth, fold

Lithographed in Switzerland on linen, colored. Published by Edward Stanford, no date, circa 1899 folds into black cloth covers. Jeppe's Map Sheet 3, North East Transvaal, red cloth coversReturn to Top

Container(s): Box 6, Folder 1

(This map usually appears in six sheets contained in a folding case with a key on the upper cover.)

Index to GSGS Reconnaissance SeriesReturn to Top

Container(s): Box 6, Folder 2

Geographical Section. General Staff. Reconnaissance Series. Printed on paper and mounted on linen. Colored. Fold into brown cloth covers. Cape Colony. a. Prieska 1909. b. Upington 1908Return to Top

Container(s): Box 6, Folder 3

Cape of Good Hope. A. Prieska 1912. b. Griquatown 1914. c. Carnarvon 1912. d. Douglas.1913Return to Top

Container(s): Box 6, Folder 4

Orange River Colony. a. Lindley 1907. b. Vredefort 1908. c. Heilbron 1909. d. Wit Kopje 1910Return to Top

Container(s): Box 6, Folder 5

e. Commando Drift 1907. f. Bothaville 1906 g. Odendaals Rust 1906 Return to Top

Container(s): Box 6, Folder 6

Orange Free State a. Brandfort 1913 b. Ficksburg 1911 c. Fouriesburg 1913 d. Kestell 1912 Return to Top

Container(s): Box 6, Folder 7

e. Thaba'Nchu 1913 f. Ladybrand 1913 g. Wepener 1915 h. Springfontein 1915 i. Bethule 1914 Return to Top

Container(s): Box 6, Folder 8

Transvaal and the Orange Free State. a. Vereeniging , 1913.Return to Top

Container(s): Box 6, Folder 9

(These come with a key, which was probably made by Captain Webb).

Transvaal MapsReturn to Top

Degree Sheets, Printed on linen. Colored. Drawn in the Surveyor General's Office and Photo-Lithographed at the Government Printing Works, Pretoria. Cloth covers. Transvaal (Major Jackson's Series) Sheet 42 Wakerstroom. Photo-lithographed-Pretoria-April 1901. Revised and completed Feb. 1902. Yellow cloth covers. Transvaal (Revised series. Degree Sheet). Drawn in the Surveyor General's Office and Photo-lithographed in the Government Printing Works, Pretoria. Printed on linen. Cloth covers.

Container(s) Description Dates
Box Folder
7 1
a. Bloemhof 1908. b. Machodorp 1905
7 2
a. Potchefstroom (Revised - 1st October 1903. b. Taungs (July 1902) c. Middelburg. Sheet 10
1903 August 1
7 3
d. Vrede. Sheet 10 (July 1903) e. Ermelo. Sheet 69. (August 1903) f. Rustenberg. Sheet 98 Revised
1903 October 1
7 4
g.Greysdorp. Sheet 144 (Revised 1st October 1903) h.Vryheid. Sheet 153 J(1st June 1904) i. Greysdorp. Sheet 164 Revised
1903 October 1
7 5
j. Utrecht. Sheet 188 (February 1904) k. Klerksdorp. Sheet 230 (Revised 1st October 1903) l. Bloemhof. Sheet 233 Revised
1903 October 1
7 6
a. Zoutpansberg.. April 1910. b. Umbabat. September 1908. c. Malagakwin. December 1909. d. Vrede. Revised & augmented edition
1905 April
7 7
a. Phillipolis. (October 1901) b. Bothaville (May 1902) c. Frankfort . (Sept. 1901) d. Brandfort (April 1901)
Orange River Colony, Degree Sheet Series. Compiled from Orange Free State farm surveys and micrographed in the S.G. Office.
7 8
a. Machadodorp. (Revised 1911) b. Ohrigstad (April 1911) c. Pafuri. (1st May 1911) d. Leydsdorp
Union of South Africa, Province of Transvaal Official Maps. Degree sheet series. Printed on linen in color. Photo-lithographed at the Government Printing Works, Pretoria. (One is Helio-Zincographed)
(1st Apti 1911)
7 9
e. Rhodes Drift. (December 1909) f. Utrecht. (February 1911) g. Letaba. (December 1911) h. Bothaville (
June 1913)
7 10
i. Vryheid. (1st June 1904) j. Rustenburg (Jun 1913) k.Derde Poort (1st May 1911) l. Zeerust. (February 1904) m. Middelburg. (

R. S. Webb notes on genealogy of Morena KhasapaneReturn to Top

Container(s): Box 8, Folder 1

Account of Maketehete SekonyelaReturn to Top

Container(s): Box 8, Folder 3

Notebook, "L. J. Crachet, Notes & Souvenirs", 1845-1873Return to Top

Container(s): Box 8, Folder 5

Genealogy of Banulung-Lihoja Return to Top

Container(s): Box 8, Folder 6

History of the Native Tribes of Transvall, 1905Return to Top

Container(s): Box 8, Folder 7

The Native Tribes of Transvaal, 1905 Return to Top

Container(s): Box 8, Folder 8

Incoming correspondence to Lye from Webb (click to view: Letter 1, Letter 2, Letter 3, Letter 4), 1970sReturn to Top

Container(s): Box 8, Folder 9

Contains maps and materials with explanation by Webb. Letters not necessarily in chronological order(dates unknown).

Research papers of Lye, oversized genealogy of Bakulung-LihojaReturn to Top

Container(s): Box 9

(duplicates can be found in Box 6.

Book 1Return to Top

Pt. 1: Notes for R. S. Webb's Gazetteer for Basutoland prepared as a Supplement to copy No. 27 of the Gazetteer issued in July 1960. Pt. 2: A Note Book from 2nd December 1960 to [?] by R. Webb. "A Miscellaney of details taken from the manuscripts and scarce books collected here during the past 20 years."1. Autobiographical Memoir, 1910-1950. Pp. 2-11. Pt. 3: On the Lihoja Tribe. December, 1960. Introduction by Webb, followed by a Memoir of his ancestry by Sgt. Frederick Serame Ramakabane. Transcribed with marginal notes by R. S. Webb. 40 leaves plus 3 l. name index. Pt. 4: A Summary or Transcription of the "Chieftainship among the Bakubung Lihoja." This is followed by Webb's Notes with sketch maps on the book by Arbrussih, T. et Dauma, F. Relation d'un Voyage d' Exploration" ... Paris, 1842. 20 leaves, July 11, 1961.

Book 2Return to Top

The Place Names of Basutoland. A list of names relating to the History of Basutoland to 1880, together with derivations and meanings. R.S.W. The entries are numerous and are in alphabetical order with a thumb index to alphabetical sections. 314 p.

Book 3Return to Top

Pt. 1 This volume comprises extensive extracts for various published and unpublished works and diaries which relate to Basutoland. The first is from Borcherd's Autobiographical Memoir, published in Cape Town in 1861. What interested Webb was the account of the expedition of Truter and Somerville to Lattakoo in 1801 in which Borcherd took part. From this Webb extracts extensive notes. P. 2-78. There follow notes on Gordon's travels; extracts from the History of Basutos of S.A. by the Special Commission of the Cape Argus, 1857; Notes extracted from a manuscript diary written by the French Missionary Cachet during the period 1857, January 1, to April 22, 1868. Pt. 2 "Notes et Souvenirs, per Janv. 1857 au 20 Janv. 1862. Leaf 80 to 136 in French, leaf 138, Oct 6, 1858 begins a transcription in English and French to leaf 162 January 1863. Leaf 162 to leaf 174 are selected entries. Beginning page 75-178, April 20, 1957 Webb inserts his personal opinion about the fate of the tribes. The ledger ends with Sebotsa's history of Sekonyela's people.

Book 4Return to Top

Notes on Geodesy extracted from various publications [Webbs Table of Contents follows] Monthly Notices. R.A.S. from p. 1 onwards. [Royal Astronomical Society] Geophysical Supplements. 101 The Observatory, 51 The Geogrphical Journal 211 "Nature" 301 [The Weekly Journal of Science - "Nature"] [p. 360-455 missing, or removed] Bulletin Geodesique 451 Travaux 481 [The notes cover about half the pages in this volume.]

Book 5Return to Top

A Collection of Notes on Geographical Surveying. R. S. Webb. Aug 1921. This comprises 211 pages numbered by Webb of detailed technical writing on such subjects as Spherical Excess, The Marine Chronometer, Mathematical Interpolation, The Zenith Telescope, Elimination of Error, etc. Compiled during the period after World War I, when he was concerned with Geodesy, mapping South Africa, the Orange Free State and Basutoland.

Names and SubjectsReturn to Top

  • Subject Terms :
  • Sotho (African people)
  • Personal Names :
  • Smith, Andrew, Sir, 1797-1872.
  • Smith, Andrew, Sir, 1797-1872.
  • Webb, R. S., (Ronald Stretton) 1892-1976.
  • Webb, R. S., (Ronald Stretton) 1892-1976.
  • Geographical Names :
  • South Africa--Discovery and exploration.
  • South Africa--History.