21 July 1920, F Walton Jameson (Jacaranda Jim) appointed Kimberley City Engineer.
Jacaranda Jim and the trees…
Frank Walton Jameson, popularly known as “Jacaranda Jim” was the person responsible for planting the jacaranda trees in Kimberley, Nairobi (Kenya), and in Pretoria, the latter city being the most famous for the purple flowering tree and where he received his nickname.
Jameson (pictured), was born in Durban in 1873 and received his education by private school and tutoring. From 1891 until 1894 he had his pupilage under the Borough Engineer of Durban, John Fletcher, and was an assistant engineer with the Durban council from 1894 to 1896.
In 1896 he was appointed as assistant engineer to WH Radford in Nottingham, England, taking a course at the Technical University in Nottingham at the same time. In 1897 he was the resident engineer of the Bridgeford (England) development scheme and in 1898 the assistant resident engineer on the Walton-on-Thames sewerage scheme.
Returning to South Africa in 1899 he worked for the Durban Corporation as the waterworks engineer and was appointed Borough engineer of Pietermaritzburg in 1902. In 1905, Jameson was seconded and appointed technical commissioner by the governor of Transvaal to inquire into the Pretoria Sewerage Scheme and a threatened interdict of the scheme. In 1909, he was appointed town engineer of Pretoria where he remained until 1920. From 1920 to 1931, Jameson was city engineer of Kimberley. (In 1920, he was also appointed technical member of the Central Housing Board in the Department of Public Health.)
In 1931, Jameson was town engineer of Krugersdorp. After that, he was working for Central Housing Board until 1948 and for National Housing Commission in 1948–1951.
He died in 1956.
“Jacaranda Jim” was responsible for the majority of the Jacaranda and Karreeboom trees planted in Kimberley.