Daniel Sleigh was born on 3 November 1938 on the farm Geelbeksfontein, near Langebaan. He did his national service in the South African Navy and then worked as a fisherman, truck driver, bank clerk and barman, before studying to become a Physical Education teacher at the Paarl Training College. He taught at, amongst others, Mariental High School in Namibia and Marist Brothers College in Rondebosch.
In 1969 he completed a BA Degree at the University of South Africa, majoring in History and English. This was followed by a MA (cum laude) (1983) and PhD in History (1987) at Stellenbosch University. His supervisors were professors Dirk Kotze and D.J. van Zyl. His field of study is the Dutch Seaborne Empire (1602-1795), specialising in the first Dutch colonial period at the Cape with particular emphasis on the establishment of a maritime replenishment service and its influence on the indigenous people.
Dan Sleigh became deputy head of the Cape Education Department's Teachers' Centre for in-service training, then Head of the Education Museum, Head of the Centre for Conservation Education and finally Provincial Co-ordinator for Conservation Education for the Western Cape Education Department, from which he retired in 1996.
After retiring he worked at the Cape Archives as an editor on the Tanap project (TANAP: Towards a New Age of Partnership, a Dutch/Asian/South African programme of co-operation) that transcribed VOC manuscripts into a world wide data base. he transcribed the VOC archives world wide into a data base.
He married Dewetia Hendriksz, an artist and Art lecturer at the Cape Town Teachers College and Ruth Prowse Art Centre in 1966. They lived in Pinelands and have a daughter, Jean. Dewetia passed away in 2006.
Apart from academic and public lectures, Dan Sleigh took part in radio talks and TV programmes. He was editor and translator for the Van Riebeeck Society series in 2003 and is editor of the Castle Military Museum series on Cape Military history.
Field of study: The Dutch Seaborne Empire (1602-1795)
Dan Sleigh was editor and translator for Van Riebeeck Society series in 2003 and is editor of the Castle Military Museum series Cape Military history. He is a now a freelance researcher and consultant on Cape History to various organisations.
Languages: English, Afrikaans, Dutch. Reading French and German.
Sports: Sailing, Rugby (centre and wing), Cricket (left hand bat and leg spin bowler.)
Hobbies: Collecting and building ships in bottles.
Memberships of Conservation and Cultural Organisations:
VOC Foundation (Secretary), Society of Archivists, SA Cultural History Society, SA Military History Society, Simon van der Stel Foundation (Life Member), Friends of Mostert's Mill, Jakkalsfontein Nature Reserve (ex-Director), SA Museums Association (Corporate Member), National Monuments Council (Western Cape): Regional Committee Member, Cape Town City Council Committee for Street Names.
with Riana Barnard and Dorothea van Zyl, May 2015
www.StellenboschWriters.com © Rosemarie Breuer