About Ignacy Werredilsky
Ignatius Werreditsky (Ignacy Weretycki), was most probably born in 1759 in the part of Poland, which belonged since 1772 to the Kingdom of Prussia. In the VOC registers his native locality was written down as Tama. We deal, most probably, with the present-day locality of Tama Brodzka, situated near Brodnica. In the vicinity of this town persons of the same name lived at that time, and nowadays this area constitutes the biggest concentration in Poland of people, bearing this name.
Teenstra (1943) suggests that Weretycki was born in Poznań (Posen), although this appears little probable, since Poznań was incorporated into Prussia only in 1793. The only alternative is the small locality in West Prussia, of a similar name – Postolino (Posselin), where the census of 1772 mentions a person bearing a similar family name. [or, he was born in Poznań but lived in Tama - M. K.]
Weretycki took part in the fighting between the “patriots” and the supporters of the Oranje party in The Netherlands. These events remained in association with the general European tendencies of the struggle between the conservative and the revolutionary forces. It can be supposed that Weretycki wandered there as a soldier of the Prussian army, incorporated into it like many Poles from the areas taken by Prussia. The Prussian army entered The Netherlands in 1787, tipping the scales of war to the advantage of the Oranje party. The garrison of four thousand Prussian soldiers remained in The Netherlands. Weretycki did probably not like the role of the Prussian soldier and an occupant. He might have defected and get enlisted in the East Indies Company. We know for sure that he came to South Africa aboard the ship “Enkhuizer Maagd” in 1793, together with Jan Michał Sowiecki and other soldiers, originating from various European countries. He went off the ship on April 30th and started his service in the Cape Colony as a soldier of the East Indies Company.
The subsequent mention of Weretycki concerns his marriage with the 48-years-old widow Johanna Wilhelmina Beukes (on April 5th, 1807). Ignacy lived with his second wife, Maryna Jakubina Cordier (Cortje) in the area of Potberg mountains (they were married in Swellendam on November 17th, 1823). In 1825 they visited together the spa of Caledon Bath. According to M. D. Teenstra (1943), who met them there, the couple of Weretycki were friendly and very pious. In the last years of his life Weretycki appeared in the documents as Werdetskij or Werditsche (MOOC 7/1/192 64; MOOC 6/9/45 9400). He died in 1848. His potential descendants might have been born from the marriages of the years 1792-1807.
Source: Kowalski Mariusz, Polish soldier-immigrants to South Africa in the period of French Revolution and the Napoleonic wars (1789-1815), Familia 2009, 46, 3, p.147-164.