Cover photo
Craig Sheldon
Lives in Cape Town, South Africa
203 followers|477,995 views


Craig Sheldon

Shared publicly  - 
Rope maker George Dryden (right) with his nephew on the ropewalk in Tabard Street, London, where they manufacture their products, circa 1920. (Photo by Paul Thompson/Archive Photos/Getty Images)
Credit: Archive Photos / stringer
Add a comment...

Craig Sheldon

Shared publicly  - 
Add a comment...

Craig Sheldon

Shared publicly  - 
Fahrenfort #genealogy

Research into the Fahrenfort family descended from Gerhard Friedrich Fahrenfort (1776 - 1846) and Charlotte Strangmeier of Quernheim, Germany. There are branches in South Africa, the Netherlands, and the United States. 

The basis of Fahrenfort research was carried out by Marion Fahrenfort over at ; additional research can be found at ; interested people are encouraged to join and contribute to and to Facebook -
Add a comment...

Craig Sheldon

Shared publicly  - 
Dryden #genealogy  of South Africa and Hounslow, Middlesex

Alfred Dryden, my third great grandfather, arrived in South Africa c.1860, possibly on board a steamer ship named "Celt", sailing from Plymouth, England to Table Bay.

However he arrived Alfred's Estate Papers, held in the Cape Town Archives, do not name his parents and only give his place of birth as England. According to his Death Notice Alfred, a railway stores night watchman, was born c.1821 and died in Woodstock, Cape Town on 9 Dec. 1888. His wife was named as Priscilla Norris Dryden nee Wood (c.1833 - 4 Mar. 1888), a cook, and his children as Henry Norris Dryden and Sophie Hayes nee Dryden.

Further research revealed that in fact both Alfred and Priscilla were widowers, and that Alfred Dryden, age 44, a railway guard, had married Priscilla Walford (nee Wood), age 38, a cook at Somerset Hospital, were married in St. Mary's District Chapel, Papendorp (old Woodstock) on 7 Feb. 1865. (Source:, "Cape Town, Papendorp and Woodstock, St Mary and St George, Marriages 1865-1879", Image no.: 1) records also uncovered several more children born to Alfred and Priscilla; their absence from both Alfred and Priscilla's Death Notices implies they all died young:

- Sarah Dryden, born 30 Aug. 1865, Woodstock
- Sophie (Sophy) Dryden, born c.1867, Woodstock, married Elias Hayes
- Arthur Dryden, born 23 Aug. 1870, Woodstock - died 7 Oct. 1870, Woodstock, buried in St. George's Church cemetery, Woodstock.
- Edward Norris Dryden, born 2 Dec. 1873, Cape Agulhas
- Henry Norris Dryden, born 6 Jan. 1876, Cape Agulhas
- Alfred Dryden, jnr., born 21 July 1877, Cape Agulhas

From 21 Dec. 1872 - 1 Jun. 1879, Alfred Dryden snr. worked as a 1st lightkeeper or assistant lighthouse keepr at Cape Agulhas Lighthouse, the southernmost tip of the African continent. James Orchard (born 1833 - 1880), Chief Lighthouse Keeper at Cape Agulhas, was a Witness at the baptism of my second great grandfather, Henry Norris Dryden. For unknown reasons Alfred Dryden was dismissed from his position in 1879, though it may have been due to alcoholism. (Source: Personal records of Harold Williams, Lighthouse Inspector, courtesy of Heather Vallance,; see also, Jeannette Grobbelaar, Cape Agulhas lighthouse: the first hundred years 1849-1949, where Alfred is listed as: "A. Dryden 1872 - 1879".) Alfred Dryden is described as an Assistant Lighthouse-keeper at L'Agulhas in 1875. (Source: 1875 Cape Almanac)

Although the South African records give very little information on Alfred's life before his arrival from England, there is enough to suggest that he was born 19 Nov. 1820, Hounslow, Middlesex, the son of Henry Dryden, flax dresser, and Sarah Watkins. It seems the only other Alfred Dryden born around this time - at least that appears in the Census records - was Alfred Erasmus Dryden, lawyer, and son of Reverend Sir Henry Dryden.

Alfred, the son of the flax dresser, married Margaret Miles, on 28 Oct. 1850 in Brixton, London (Source:, Alfred Dryden and Margaret Miles, Marriages Dec 1850, District: Lambeth, Vol.: 4, Page: 284) Margaret Miles was born c.1815, Wenvoe, Wales, daughter of Morgan Miles, a labourer, and Janet Jenkins. Although Alfred is described as a Twine Spinner in his 1850 marriage record, by the time of the 1851 England Census he was working as a Policeman. It would seem then that Margaret Dryden nee Miles is the deceased wife of Alfred Dryden who married Priscilla Walford nee Wood; and  Alfred's training as a Policeman would have undoubtedly suited him well in his later occupations as a railway guard and night watchman. 
Add a comment...

Craig Sheldon

Shared publicly  - 
Andre Brink's latest book, "Philida" - - is a fictional re-telling of the real relationship between Francois Gerhard Jacob Brink - - my fourth great grandfather - and the Brink family slave, Philida van der Kaap - - See also "Philida's Story" on the Cape Slave Heritage Blog - #genealogy  
Add a comment...

Craig Sheldon

Shared publicly  - 
Dan Gillmor originally shared:
Romney says OccupyWallStreet is class warfare. Not even close.

The real class warfare is what the wealthy and powerful have waged against the rest of us for decades -- and they've won almost every battle in recent times. What's finally happening, and long overdue, is that the rest of us are starting to resist.
Add a comment...
In his circles
88 people
Have him in circles
203 people
David Cifuentes's profile photo
Adalheid Severina's profile photo
Brian Kai's profile photo
rose lee's profile photo
cpockettsAviation's profile photo
Best Classical Music Albums's profile photo
Jonathan Dotse's profile photo
Alan Jones's profile photo
Faizal Daniels's profile photo

Craig Sheldon

Shared publicly  - 
Add a comment...

Craig Sheldon

Shared publicly  - 
Add a comment...

Craig Sheldon

Shared publicly  - 
Dryden #genealogy  of Hounslow, Middlesex

Henry Dryden, flax dresser, lived in Hounslow, Middlesex in the early 19th century. He was married to a woman named Sarah (possibly Sarah Watkins, on 10 July 1814 in All Saints Church, Isleworth) and had at least four children with her:

- Matilda Dryden, born 10 Aug. 1814

- Sophia Ruth Dryden, born 7 Nov. 1815

- William Henry Dryden, born 27 June 1817

- Alfred Dryden, born 19 Nov. 1820

I don't know what happened to Matilda or Sophia, but I suspect that Alfred Dryden is my third great grandfather who, after the death of his first wife (Margaret Miles) immigrated to Cape Town, South Africa, c.1860, where he re-married and died. Alfred's 28 Oct. 1850 marriage record to Margaret Miles gives his occupation as Twine Spinner (although in the 1851 Census he was working as a policeman) and his father, Henry's occupation was flax dresser.

William Henry Dryden, a Twine Spinner and Rope Maker, was married to Jane Dinah Stevenson on 8 Feb. 1842 in Lambeth, London. It is possible though that William was previously married as in the 1841 Census he has a young son, William jnr., who also appears in the 1851 Census, and his date of birth, c.1838, is clearly earlier than William's marriage to Jane.

Also in the 1841 Census is William's mother, Sarah, who gives her date of birth as c.1776; unfortunately, the marriage record of Henry Dryden and Sarah Watkins doesn't give their ages, so I'm unable to confirm this, though if correct it would mean she married somewhat late in life.

While attempting to find further information on Henry Dryden, the flax dresser, I came across the flax and twine Drydens of Northumberland; specifically I came across a reference to a Henry Dryden, Flax-Dresser and Twine-Spinner, in the 1806 A Directory, etc., for Berwick-upon-Tweed (Source:, living in Church-street, which made me wonder if it might be the same man, who had perhaps immigrated from Berwick-upon-Tweed to London, but unfortunately I've been unable to confirm.

I do note though that the Dryden family have lived a long time in Berwick-upon-Tweed, and that according to FamilySearch, a Henry Dryden was christened in Berwick-upon-Tweed on 22 Sept. 1779 to parents Henry Dryden and Jane. Perhaps both Henry and Sarah Watkins got married in their thirties (their marriage record describes them as a bachelor and spinster)?

I've also come across a reference to an earlier Henry Dryden, perhaps the father or grandfather of the one found in FamilySearch, who worked as a flax dresser in Berwick-upon-Tweed around the 1750s; tragically he lost his first wife to the hangman after she was convicted of murder, according to the book A place by itself: Berwick-upon-Tweed in the Eighteenth Century by David Brenchley. This would seem to be Margaret Dryden who was hanged on 3 May 1758 for the "murder of her bastard-child".

"The practice of Henry Dryden (who had survived the shock of losing his first wife to the hangman and re-married) was to advance his flax-dressers a sum for subsistence, and to pay the balance paid when a cartload of flax had been worked."
Add a comment...

Craig Sheldon

Shared publicly  - 
Samuel Nield, farm labourer of Crompton

Samuel Nield, my fourth great grandfather, was born c.1806 in Crompton, Lancashire or Whitfield, Crompton, England, depending on the Census record.

In his daughter Mary Hampshire nee Nield's 1868 marriage record Samuel's occupation is given as Labourer. (, Marriages: Dec 1868; Surname: Hampshire; First name(s): William; District: Oldham; Vol: 8d; Page: 953)

Samuel has the same occupation in the 1851 Census and was a Farm Labourer in the 1861 Census; Mary's mother was Alice Hall, c.1809, Manchester, daughter of Benjamin Hall, and Samuel's second wife.

According to, Samuel, a widower, married Alice Hall on 26 May 1844, in St. Mary's Church, Oldham.

In the 1851 Census, Samuel and Alice were living in Crompton, Lancashire with their daughter Mary, and Alice's illegitimate son with an Edmund Whittaker, David Hall. Mary's name seems to have been erroneously written as Nancy.

In the 1861 Census, this same family were living together in Shaw Head, Crompton. Mary and David worked in a cotton factory.

Mary Nield seems to have been the only child born of Samuel and Alice's marriage.

I don't yet know who Samuel's first wife was or if they had any children. I also do not know who Samuel's parents are.

Neither Samuel Nield nor Alice Nield nee Hall seem to appear in the 1871 Census; Samuel is not described as deceased in Mary's 1868 marriage record, however the only death record on FreeBMD that seems to fit is from 1866, though this Samuel's estimated date of birth was c.1801.

Add a comment...

Craig Sheldon

Shared publicly  - 
Jeff Jarvis originally shared:
Here's my debate about privacy and publicness on Jian Ghomeshi's CBC Radio show Q, with Micheal Vonn, a B.C. civil liberties attorney.

I love this show and listen on my Sirius all the time. They get a chance to dig into topics with more than the standard 1:30 segment and Ghomeshi's a very good interview and easy on the ears.

The debate comes down to the question of whether there is too little or too much privacy regulation and what the risks and benefits of that are. It's an attempt to turn around the privacy discussion and look at it from another end of the prism, from the perspective of publicness.
Today on the show, we convened a Q Debate on privacy in the digital age. Jeff Jarvis, author of the new book Public Parts: How Sharing in the Digital Age Improves the Way We Work and Live, argues it's...
Add a comment...

Craig Sheldon

Shared publicly  - 
Tim O'Reilly originally shared:
I went back down to Zuccotti Park in Manhattan to see how the #OccupyWallStreet protest was progressing a few weeks after my last visit (which I wrote about in The crowd was larger - perhaps twice the size - and signs of permanent organization are starting to appear. The mood was serious but many of those in attendance really seemed to be enjoying themselves, and there was a real sense of community.

I was hoping to get on camera to voice my support for some of the key ideas behind this protest - that many of the companies in our financial sector have started extracting far more value from our society than they provide to it, and that we need businesses to remember a more honest form of capitalism, where companies make money by providing sufficient value to customers that they are happy to pay for it, where the gap between the amount extracted in profits to owners doesn't so far outstrip the amount paid to workers in the business that those workers need to go into debt to pay for ordinary living expenses, where government protects all its citizens, not just those who can afford lobbyists, and where society as a whole feels the virtuous circle that can only happen when companies create more value than they capture for themselves.

Alas, there was a press conference going on, with all cameras focused on an existing lineup of speakers. Since I only had a half-hour before heading for JFK for my flight home to SFO, I wasn't able to get on camera.

One of my favorite things about the protest (besides the issue they are bringing to the fore) is the lovely crowdsourced megaphone, in which the speaker's words are echoed phrase by phrase in shouts by the crowd of those closest to the front so that those further back can hear. There's a great example of this human megaphone in the video of +Dylan Ratigan's visit, which I happened to see on my Virgin flight in to New York yesterday. I've embedded a link below.

I'm not fond of all the populist rhetoric by some of the protestors. It's understandable though, why people are using the language of class warfare when the other side is actually practicing it. But name calling both obscures the fundamental rightness of the #OccupyWallStreet position and alienates those who might otherwise be supporters (after all, even Warren Buffett, one of the greatest capitalists of the past half-century, agrees with many of their positions). And as the Tea Party has also shown, anger gets attention. But anger can get out of control, which is why it's so important for the #OccupyWallStreet movement to do some work on message control.

I'd suggest that the protesters get a bunch of copies of Gene Sharp's From Dictatorship to Democracy, which was reportedly influential in the Arab Spring, and study it. There's something building here that I really like. But it's important that it go right. (Hmm. I think I'll order a bunch of copies and send them there.)

As I think about all of these revolutions around the world, I'm constantly mindful of a book I read a few years ago, Jay Winik's The Great Upheaval, which contrasts the American Revolution, the French Revolution, and an abortive revolution in Russia that was put down by Catherine the Great at about the same time. We're not talking a revolution here in America, but there are lots of lessons to be learned from past and present revolutions. And in their heedlessness and their greed, the Wall Street bankers do so remind me of French aristocrats before that Revolution, which began so nobly and ended so badly.
Add a comment...
Craig Sheldon's +1's are the things they like, agree with, or want to recommend.
Meiko Kaji – Music on Google Play

Meiko Kaji is a Japanese actress and singer. She has appeared in about 100 films, with her most famous roles being outlaw characters in earl

Welfare Recipient Targets (1971-1979)

In 1971 it became compulsory for welfare recipients to sew targets onto their clothing so that they could be identified in public at all tim

A Precursor to the Chainmail Fantasy Supplement

Chainmail (1971) is correctly regarded as the first commercially-available fantasy wargame system. The Fantasy Supplement that Gary Gygax an

"Stop The Ripper From Killing Again" Police appeal ads

This police message appeared in national newspapers and as posters in Scarfolk schools, libraries and community centres for occult cloning.

How South Africa could get 100% of its energy from renewable sources

New research shows how South Africa can meet all of its energy requirements using wind, solar, and water power.

Pandora buys Rdio

Pandora is acquiring several key assets from Rdio.

How the South African government will spy on your Internet activities

We explore the capacity of the government to spy on the communications of individuals’ cellphones, landline phones, and internet activities.

Tech you won’t believe was illegal in South Africa

It’s crazy to think that there once was a time when it was illegal to Skype call someone from South Africa.

Fingerprints should never be used as passwords

A new report highlights that fingerprints should never be used in place of a password.

Appeals Court Smacks Lower Court For Making It Even Harder For People To...

Asset forfeiture often appears to be nothing more than the government seeing just how hard and long it can screw someone. Beyond the fact th

Appeals Court Gives Google A Clear And Total Fair Use Win On Book Scanni...

The Authors Guild's never-ending lawsuit against Google for its book scanning project has been hit with yet another blow. The 2nd Circuit ap

Data Retention Rules Go Into Effect Down Under, But No One's Sure What's...

As we reported earlier this year, Australia put in place a ridiculous data retention law that requires ISPs to store all sorts of informatio

Matthew Keys Found Guilty Of Criminal 'Hacking' For Sharing News Company...

Two and a half years ago, we wrote about former Reuters editor Matthew Keys being indicted based on charges that he'd shared the login infor

14 Mayors Have To Join Forces And Beg Verizon To Upgrade Its DSL Network...

We've long noted how it's now Verizon's modus operandi to take millions in subsidies and tax cuts from state or local governments in exchang

Personal Space Allowance (1975)

Until 1975, the standard PSA (Personal Space Allowance) had always been fixed at a comfortable, civilised 20 inch zone around each citizen.

Public Wi-Fi: Your security questions answered

We look at the five top questions you should be asking before connecting to public Wi-Fi.

Federal Judge: Profanely Insulting An Entire Town On A Speeding Ticket I...

Do you remember Willian Barboza? No? He was the un-creative but quite profane young man who, upon being pulled over for speeding the laughab