Isaac (Ecky) Wilfred Jacobson

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Isaac (Ecky) Wilfred Jacobson

Birthdate: (97)
Birthplace: Veksna, Lithuania
Death: July 1993 (97)
Johannesburg, South Africa
Place of Burial: Johannesburg, South Africa
Immediate Family:

Son of Herscher / Harris Jacobson and Rebecca Ruth (Ruti) Jacobson
Husband of Rachel Jacobson
Father of Bernard Maurice Jacobson and Joan Barbara Mendelsohn
Brother of Solomon Philip (Jacko) Jacobson; Bella Taback; Emanuel Jacobson; Yankel (Jacob) Jacobson; Barney Jacobson and 1 other

Managed by: Pam Karp - on hiatus
Last Updated:

About Isaac (Ecky) Wilfred Jacobson

Stories of Ecky’s role in quelling the Rebellion which resulted in a dinner with the King and Queen in Johannesburg in 1947 - told by John Mendelsohn

The Rebellion [also the origin of Ecky’s love of horses]

Ecky: Did I ever tell you about General Kemp coming to see us before the War? Well I’ll tell you.

John: Which war Ecky? Napoleonic? Crimean? Boer?

Ecky: Don’t be cheeky! The First World War. So, do you know who General Kemp was?

John: He was a Boer War general and also the first head of the Union Defence Force [A conversation with Ecky could also be a test of one’s general knowledge].

Ecky: That’s right and the Union Defence Force was established in 1912 when I was a student at the Potchefstroom Agricultural College. General Kemp came to visit us and he encouraged us to volunteer to join the Commandos. We were then taught to shoot a rifle and to ride a horse. The riding instructor asked us which of us had never ridden a horse before. To those of us who never done so, he told us that we were the ideal people to be mounted on horses that had never been ridden before. In September, 1914, when the Rebellion broke out, I was still a student and our Commando was called up. We were sent on a wild goose chase on horseback after General de Wet into the western Transvaal. We never got anywhere near him and, thankfully, we never fired a shot in anger.

The invitation to dine with the King and Queen

During the Second World War Ecky served on the Governor General’s committee to reintegrate returning soldiers back into civilian life. He was specifically involved in assisting the Jewish men. He told me this story: One of the returnees, who spoke with a heavy Lithuanian accent, wanted can an advance of capital with which to start his own business. Ecky raised the uncertainty of the times and the risk involved and suggested that he wait until the war was over. The man, however, was not discouraged and would not be dissuaded. Returned Soldier: Der var vill be over very soon. Ecky: How do you know that? Returned Soldier: I know better dan you! I vas dere! You veren’t! (I’m not sure if the man got what he wanted).

In appreciation of his efforts Ecky and Ray (his wife) were invited to the Royal dinner.

  • Related by grandson John Mendelsohn to Pam Karp in August 2015

Since death of his wife Ray, Ecky lived with his daughter Joan Mendelsohn in Westcliff, Johannesburg.

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Isaac (Ecky) Wilfred Jacobson's Timeline

September 10, 1895
Veksna, Lithuania
Age 23
Johannesburg, South Africa
June 29, 1923
Age 27
Johannesburg, South Africa
July 1993
Age 97
Johannesburg, South Africa
Johannesburg, South Africa