Clement-Jones family v2/21 - Person Sheet
Clement-Jones family v2/21 - Person Sheet
NameDouglas Flemmer GILFILLAN, 2635
Birth1865, Cradock, SA
MotherCharlotte Maria Louise FLEMMER , 2641 (1844-)
Marriage1890, Pretoria
ChildrenNoel Hamish , 2531 (1902-1977)
 Angus Edward , 2637
 Dagmar Marie , 2638
 Vera Louise , 2639
Notes for Douglas Flemmer GILFILLAN

One of six children.

Matriculated from Cradock Boys’ High School and decided to become a lawyer, like his father. In those days, no university degree was required. Instead, articles were served and exams written. Douglas did his articles with the Cape Town firm, Reid & Nephew. He had to wait until he turned 21 in 1886, before being admitted as an attorney. While living in Cape Town, he stayed at a boarding house in Moullie Point run by Maria Elizabeth DE JONGH (maiden name VON SCHONNBERG), the widow of Lourens DE JONGH. Here he met one of the daughters, Sophia. When he returned to Cradock in 1886, they stayed in touch. In 1888 he moved to Pretoria where Sophia's brother James had a legal practise. In 1889 Douglas moved to Barberton where he bought a share in the legal practise of Henry CALDERWOOD. He married Sophia Magdalena DE JONGH on 10 Apr 1890 in Pretoria. The couple lived in Barberton, where Sophia often played piano at concerts. The piano was a wedding gift from Douglas. While living in Barberton, Douglas founded the forerunner of the Wildlife Protection Society. In 1892 the couple moved to Johannesburg, where their four children were born.

When tensions started rising between the Boer government and the Uitlanders in 1895, a Reform Committee was formed by Douglas and others, to fight the cause of the Uitlanders. Because of the Jameson Raid, the Reform Committee members were arrested and jailed in Pretoria. They were brought to trial and sentenced to death. This was later reduced to a fine of £2000 pounds. Douglas was released when Sir Abe BAILEY paid his fine. Douglas returned to his legal practice.

In 1898, the family moved to Belgravia, Johannesburg, where they built a house called "Elgin", which cost £8000. In that year, Douglas went into partnership with Richard BAUMANN (later BOWMAN) and so the legal firm of Bowman Gilfillan was founded.

In 1899, tensions rose again and war rumblings were heard. Douglas sent Sophia and the children by refugee train to Queenstown, where they stayed with her sister. When war broke out in October 1899, Douglas left for Pietermaritzburg where he helped form the Imperial Light Horse and became a Lieutenant. He was at the Relief of Ladysmith, and also saw action at Colenso, Spion Kop, Vaal Krantz, Tugela Heights, and the Relief of Mafeking. He was awarded the Queen’s Medal with 4 clasps and ended his service as a Captain.

After the fall of Pretoria, Douglas was appointed a judge of the Special Court for the Witwatersrand. He also served as Magistrate for Germiston and Boksburg. After the war was over, he returned to his legal practice. The family moved back into "Elgin", which had been used by the British Army. Their neighbour was now Lord KITCHENER who had moved into "Friedenheim" next door. In 1908 Douglas was one of the founders of the South African Field Trial Club. Douglas served on the governing board of Jeppe Boys’ High School for many years. The family sold "Elgin" and Douglas and Sophia moved to Parktown before settling in Linden. Douglas moved in with his son Noel. Douglas died on 05 Sept 1948 at the home of his son Angus.
Last Modified 16 Aug 2009Created 11 Feb 2021 using Reunion for Macintosh