General – Jan Hendrik Olivier


General Jan Hendrik Olivier
J.H. Olivier was born near Burgersdorp on 24 January 1848 and joined the Orange Free State Border Police at the age of 15. By the age of 17, he was serving as a Field Cornet. He saw action in the Basotho wars. He entered politics and became a member  of the Free State Volksraad in 1883. At the start of the Boer War, he commanded the Rouxville and Thaba Nchu Commandos.  His area of operation was Colesberg, Barkly East and Dordrecht. He commanded the successful engagement at Stormberg in December 1899.  He later operated with General de Wet in the east of the Free State and around Brandwater Basin. He left de Wet after a disagreement and  was captured while he was trying to join the commando in Transvaal. He and his three sons were sent as prisoners to Ceylon. He was married to  Elizabeth Jane Pringle Olivier and they had five children. He died at Volksrust on 30 May 1930