Fonds BC106 - James Stewart Papers

Reference code



James Stewart Papers


  • 1863-1904 (Creation)

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Extent and medium

24 boxes

Name of creator


Biographical history

James Stewart, born in Edinburgh, 14 February 1831, died Lovedale 21 December 1905: medical doctor, explorer, minister of religion and missionary of the Free Church of Scotland at Lovedale. Between1855 and 1860, studied divinity at New College, Edinburgh, during this time he attended medical classes which he resumed in 1864 and completed two years later. From 1861 to 1864, travelled to central Africa at the request of a committee he had formed to put to practical account the discoveries of David Livingstone by founding a mission. In 1866, proceeded to South Africa, accompanied by his wife Mina, having agreed to become a missionary of the Free Church of Scotland at Lovedale. On the retirement of William Govan in 1870, Stewart became principal of Lovedale Institution. In 1874, attended Livingstone's burial in London, and thereafter took up again the scheme for a mission in central Africa. In 1876 Stewart followed the pioneer group to Nyasaland, together with a considerable part which included senior Lovedale students. Left central Africa in 1877 after laying the foundations of the Livingstonia mission at the southern end of Lake Nyasa. Between 1890 and 1894, led a missionary expedition to east Africa where he establish a mission at Kibwezi. In 1899, was elected moderator of the general assembly of the Free Church, and was appointed Duff lecturer by the Church in Scotland in 1902. In 1904, was called upon to preside over the general missionary conference of South African missionaries. His last years were spent on the scheme for higher education which resulted in the opening of the South African Native College, now the University of Fort Hare.

Archival history

Immediate source of acquisition or transfer

The Stewart Papers were presented to the University of Cape Town Libraries in 1965 by Dr and Mrs W Lennox Gordon

Scope and content

The collection consists of the papers of Dr James Stewart (1831-1905) and includes diaries, letters, pamphlets, articles, photographs and newspaper clippings.


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Conditions governing access

No restrictions apply

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Language of material

  • English

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  • English



Accession area