Cape of Good Hope General Service Medal, bar Basutoland (1880-1), Private F.F. Freitag, Buffalo Volunteers.
Officially engraved: “Pte F.F. Frietag, Buffalo Vol”
The Buffalo Volunteers AKA Buffalo Mounted Volunteers earned very few medals and clasps for their service in the region, they are better known as the Kaffrarian Rifles, this unit still exists as the Buffalo Volunteer Rifles, still an infantry regiment of the South African Army.
Only 34 medals in total were issued to the Buffalo Vols, with 28 with the Basutoland Clasp, 13 single clasps issue such as this medal.
Most of the men were German Born Immigrants who came to South Africa in the 1800s, and Scandinavians etc.
Very few of these medals were issued, as they had to be claimed and the medal it self only came into existence some 20 years after the events in Basutoland circa 1900, Ferdinand who was a farmer in the Eastern Cape, was about 45 at the time of issue and the medal is in excellent condition as he likely had no reason to wear it by that point.
Ferdinand Fredrik (Frederick) Frietag or Freitag, was born in Germany, on 6th June 1854 in Ravenstein (Altheide), Pommern, Prussia.
His death records record his father was Wilhelm Fredrik Freitag, Birth Mother unknown by then in South Africa but was Maria Kumbier.
He was amongst a number of Germans who emigrated to South Africa in this period.
Died on 26th August 1905, a 51 year old Farmer.
Married his wife Wilhelmine Friedrike Marie Gastrow in Berlin, East London on 22nd January 1875.
At the time of his marriage he lived in the town of Breidbach, a neighbourhood in King William’s Town, at the time the recently established settlement had been established in 1857 for members of the British German Legion.
He lived in Komga, part of old “Kaffraria” now the Eastern Cape by the time of his death.
An Ancestry family tree for him, notes his father was Friedrich Wilhelm Freitag (1818-1903) and mother Julianne Henriette (nee Guse, 1829-1899).
The family had moved to South Africa during 1858, his father was born in Stolzhausen, Hesse.
HAMBURG PASSENGER LISTS 1858
A 4 year old Ferdinand set off with his family, having left their home of Pammin, in Prussia, on 16th October 1858, destined for the Capstadt, Ost-London, South Africa, on the Wilhemsburg.