Johann Friedrich Tönsing, SV/PROG

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Johann Friedrich Tönsing, SV/PROG

Also Known As: "Johann Friedrich Tonsing"
Birthdate: (50)
Birthplace: Wimmer bei Lintorf, Osnabrückerland, Germany
Death: October 28, 1882 (50)
Manuane, ZAR (Transvaal), South Africa
Place of Burial: Zeerust rural / Lehurutshe, North West, South Africa
Immediate Family:

Son of Johann Conrad Tönsing and Maria Clara Johann-Wlecke
Husband of Dorothea Schulze and Maria Dorothea Marwede, SM/PROG
Father of Klara Caroline MARIE Tönsing; Konradine Wilhelmine Henriette Tönsing; Fr. H. Conrad Tönsing; Dorothee Juliana Ernestine Franziska Muhl; Ernst Christoph Otto Tönsing and 4 others
Brother of Franz Henry Tönsing; Johann H. Tönsing; Henry (Gerhardt) Tönsing; Ernst Friedrich (Frederick) Tönsing; Maria Elsabein Tönsing and 2 others

Occupation: Missionary
Managed by: Private User
Last Updated:

About Johann Friedrich Tönsing, SV/PROG

Missionary Education: 1857 - 1861 in Hermannsburg, Germany

Travelled on the Kandaze to SA

Arrival in South Africa: 18 March 1862 in Port Elizabeth, then changed and arrived in Durban late April 1862

Missions: Edlomodlomo, Northern Natal

1865 - 1882: Limao (now Botswana)

1882: Manuane, Transvaal (founded this station at the request of Chief GOPANE)

J Fr Tönsing

Born Wimmer, Bad Essen, DE

Old Family, prevalent in Lower Saxony/ Westphalia. The surname is derived from Anton's Son

Johann Friedrich studied theology at the mission seminary in Hermannsburg after training as cabinetmaker. He was sent out to South Africa in 1832 in the third sending of Hermannsburg missionaries. After some time in Hermannsburg, South Africa, he was sent to Ehlomohlomo in 1833 to complete Zulu studies and assist Miss. Weber there.

J Friedrich Tönsing was first sent, after learning Zulu in Hermannsburg, Natal, to join Miss Weber in the Mission in Edlomodlomo. This was a Royal Kraal. The King welcomed the missionaries as a honoured guests, assigned them a place to stay across the little river from the village. According to Zulu custom, a guest is provided with all that is neede for life and settlement by the community, represented by its leader. So the King sent a numer of young women and men to make a homestead for the missionary - huts for cooking, sleeping, and a wall around an ope area. An extra hut was also built.

The relationship carried on on a positive note, with the teaching and preaching of the missionaries being respectfully received, but no baptisms occurred. After Missionary Tönsing had crafted a cabinet for the King, a group of young women crossed the little river to the homestead of the missionary, ululating and singing. At the homestead, they continued to sing, dance and ululate - until they left, leaving one of their number behind - daughter of the royal family - who had moved into the extra hut.

J Friedrich Tönsing, being a gentleman of the Victorian age, could not imagine staying in the homestead overnight with a scantily dressed member of the opposite sex, without her being married to him, and she being not baptised. He sent her back.

Post-haste, a messenger returned, in which the King informed the missionary that this rejection of the gift of his daughter was an insult so severe that he would not be able to withhold the anger of his people more than 24 hours.

Johann Friedrich Tönsing jumped on his horse, taking only the minimum necessary, and rode at speed to Hermannsburg, where, after consultation, it was decided that he should continue riding up to the far western Transvaal - as far away from the wrath of the King as possible.

There, he had to learn a new language. At his first station, Limao, he worked for 17 years, but only baptised very few people.

On invitation of the Kgosi Gopane, who had founded Gopanestad/ Manuane, he moved there (Limao was deserted soon afterward, and the ruins are scarcely to be found now), and soon could baptise many. He worked hard to teach, preach, and build - but died soon after completion of the manse and before the completion of the church.

He had married twice - a widow each time. First, the Widow Dorothea Prydtz, nee Schulz, who brought two daughtes into the marriage, and bore him four children. Then to Maria Drewes, born Marwede, who braught a son with her and bore him five children. His widow soon had to move out of the manse - to make space for his successor. She was accompanied by ten children, some of whom were nor related to her at all.

Children in the Marriage: Marie Prydtz, married Kahl Johanna Prydtz, married Schroeder

Clara Tönsing, married Stauch Friedrich Heinrich K Tönsing, married Springhorn DJE Franziska Tönsing, married Muhl

Heinrich Wilhelm Christian Drewes, married Wehrmann

ECO Tönsing - died 12 days old EWN Tönsing - died aged 20 in Riekertsdam Rudolf HL Tönsing - Married El. & Anne Ehlers Eleonora Tönsing, married Springhorn Theodor Tönsing, no issue ------------------------------ Grave: Op Gopane by die Manoane (S25° 18’ 54.3” & E25° 4’ 52.7”. Tussen al die grafte daar is ook die van Sendeling J.F. Tönsing Geb 03 04 1832 Gest 28 10 1882 te Mamane

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Johann Friedrich Tönsing, SV/PROG's Timeline

April 3, 1832
Wimmer bei Lintorf, Osnabrückerland, Germany
- 1863
Age 29
ehlomohlomo, kwaZulu, South Africa
- 1879
Age 31
Limao, Botswana
February 13, 1866
Age 33
Limao, Botswana
Age 34
Zeerust Rural, North West, South Africa
April 2, 1868
Age 35
October 25, 1870
Age 38
Zeerust Rural, North West, South Africa
November 12, 1876
Age 44