About Gustav Imroth
Gustav Imroth (29 June 1862 – 10 October 1946)
Gustav was a minor Randlord who played a role in the development of the South African diamond-mining industry and sports.
He was born in Friedberg, Germany in 1862 into a Jewish banking family, and travelled first to London in 1880, where he was naturalised British. From there he went to Kimberley, South Africa in 1884 to work in the diamond industry for Dunkelsbuhler and Company, alongside his cousins Louis Oppenheimer and Fredrich Hirschhorn.
In 1909 Gustav Imroth was mainly instrumental in inducing Barney Barnato to put in a tender for the lease of the farm Modderfontein from the Transvaal Government. He later represented Barnato Brothers in their dealings with the diamond syndicate (later De Beers), working closely with Solomon Joel (his truasted friend) and Ernest Oppenheimer (also a first cousin). He helped found the Johannesburg Consolidated Investment Company Limited (“Johnnies”) and was its managing director from 1911 to 1920, when he retired to London.
An amateur boxer, keen supporter of South African sports and founder member of the Wanderers Club, Gustav Imroth was a boxing umpire in the 1908 London Olympics and served as chairman of the Olympic Games Committee.
He married his maternal first cousin Florence Hirschhorne (1871-1974) in London in 1893.
They had three children: Leslie (1896-1918) Freda (1899-1960) Alice (1903-1992)
Lieutenant Leslie Imroth of the 11th Hampshire Regiment died in 1918 of wounds sustained during the Great War.
Gustav Imroth was a man of great physical and moral character and was everywhere respected for his integrity, courage and far-sightedness, and ripe judgement.
- Rootsweb.com/South African Jews
- Sir Theodore Gregory, Ernest Oppenheimer and the Economic Development of South Africa (Oxford University Press, 1962, page 48).
- Geoffrey Wheatcroft, The Randlords: South Africa's Robber Barons and the Mines that Forged a Nation (Simon and Schuster, Inc., New York, 1987 page 274).
Gustav Imroth's Timeline
June 29, 1862
Friedberg, Hessen, Deutschland
London, Greater London, UK
January 22, 1903
City of London, Greater London, UK
October 10, 1946