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William Timlin

TODAY IN KIMBERLEY’S HISTORY 6 JUNE

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UPDATED: 06/06/2018

6 June 1900, Official welcome to the Kimberley Mounted Corps on their return from relieving Mafeking.
6 June 1911, John Weston gives first public performance in an aeroplane.
6 June 1943, Well-known artist and architect William Timlin (pictured) dies.

Pictured is William Timlin and two of his paintings.

DID YOU KNOW

William Timlin Painting

William Mitcheson Timlin (11 April 1892 – 6 June 1943) was an architect and illustrator, and was born in Ashington, Northumberland, England, the son of a colliery foreman. He showed talent for drawing at Morpeth Grammar School, and received a scholarship to the Armstrong College of Art in Newcastle. In 1912, he joined his parents in South Africa where he completed his training in art and architecture and remained for the rest of his life.

He designed a number of important buildings in Kimberley including Kimberley Boys’ High School while pursuing his interest in art, turning out a large number of watercolour fantasies in addition to oils, pastels, etchings and periodical illustrations. His work was regularly exhibited. He also wrote stories and composed music.

PT-William_Timlin-Painting-2-1943

William Timlin Painting

Timlin worked on “The Ship that Sailed to Mars” for two years, started as a diversion for his son in 1921. The work expanded until in its final form it had 48 pages of text and 48 colour plates showing remarkable flights of fantasy.

Timlin sent the book to publishers George Harrap, who were delighted with the illustrations and the calligraphic text, deciding to print it without typesetting. The book has since become a fantasy classic. The film rights to the book were purchased in the United States, where Timlin enjoyed great popularity. Alan Horne in The Dictionary of 20th Century British Book Illustrators describes the book as a masterpiece and “the most original and beautiful children’s book of the 1920s”.

The book has since become a fantasy classic. The film rights to the book were purchased in the United States, where Timlin enjoyed great popularity. Alan Horne in The Dictionary of 20th Century British Book Illustrators describes the book as a masterpiece and “the most original and beautiful children’s book of the 1920s”.

Timlin illustrated many South African travel books and prepared illustrations for a book titled “The Building of a Fairy City” which was never published. He died in Kimberley aged 51 years, from pneumonia.

UPDATED: 06/06/2017

6 June 1900, Official welcome to the Kimberley Mounted Corps on their return from relieving Mafeking.
6 June 1911, John Weston gives first public performance in an aeroplane.
6 June 1943, Well-known artist and architect William Timlin dies.

DID YOU KNOW

Heading the Mafeking relief column was the Imperial Light Horse (ILH), battle weary but famous from the defence and relief of Ladysmith; it also included several men who had been among Jameson’s raiders. From the siege of Kimberley came the Kimberley Mounted Corps, consisting of veterans from the Diamond Fields Horse, Cape Police and Kimberley Light Horse; four 12-pounder guns of M Battery, Royal Horse Artillery; two pom-poms (Maxim-Nordenfeldt quick-firing one-pounder machine-guns); and one hundred infantry from General Geoffrey Barton’s Sixth Fusilier Brigade, comprising twenty-five men each from England, Ireland, Scotland and Wales.

Carrington’s Rhodesian Field Force was taking longer than expected to mobilize, so Roberts planned that Australian and Canadian troops with Carrington would join Plumer, while soldiers from the other colonies – Rhodesia, the Cape Colony and Natal – were already serving in both columns. Plumer in the north would meet and join Mahon’s column from the south, and they would then relieve Mafeking together.

The southern column included many personalities such as Colonel Alfred Edwards of the ILH; Major Walter Karri-Davies, also of the ILH, who, as a member of the Reform Committee, had refused to pay his fine after the Jameson Raid in 1896 and spent a year in the Pretoria prison; Sam Weil, the brother of Benjamin; Prince Alexander of Teck, the brother of the future Queen Mary and a relief of Kimberley hero; Frank Rhodes DSO, brother of Cecil and like Karri-Davies, a Reform Committee member; and Sir John Willoughby, another raider. Mahon’s southern relief column was thus something of a reunion of Jameson’s men.

Since the raiders had left from Pitsane near Mafeking on their ill-fated expedition, their inclusion in the relief of Mafeking would rub salt in Boer wounds.

In command of the Kimberley Mounted Corps was Lt-Colonel Thomas Peakman. As the second-in-command of the Kimberley Light Horse during the siege of Kimberley, Thomas Peakman was promoted to officer commanding the mounted troops upon Lieutenant-Colonel Henry Scott-Turner’s death in action at Carter’s Ridge on 28 November 1899.

From Kimberley Calls and Recalls on Facebook By Steve Lunderstedt

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