25 August 2013


Mike RUTHERFORD (62), founding member of Genesis and currently of the band Mike and the Mechanics, has some interesting connections to South Africa. Not only does he own a house in Cape Town's Bantry Bay, but some of his ancestral roots are also in the fairest Cape.

He was born Michael John Cloete Crawford RUTHERFORD on 02 October 1950 in Guildford, Surrey. His father, William Francis Henry Crawford RUTHERFORD, CBE, DSO (1906 Streatham, London - 1986, Surrey) married Annette Jessie Downing WILSON (1908 Cheshire - 1993, Somerset) in 1937 at Westminster, London. He was involved with the sinking of the Bismarck.

William was the only son of Colonel Nathaniel John Crawford RUTHERFORD, DSO, MB, RAMC (1874 - 1960, Surrey) and Lilla Roberta JACKSON (1883, Wynberg, Cape - 1979, Hampshire). William joined the Royal Navy in 1920 and served until 1956, retiring as a Captain. Nathaniel served in the Royal Army Medical Corps and was the author of two books, Soldiering with a stethoscope, and Memories of an Army Surgeon.

Lilla Roberta JACKSON was the daughter of Charles Henry JACKSON (1838, Devonshire, England - 1905, Vredenhof, Wynberg, Cape) and Johanna Reneira Catherina CLOETE (1855, Cape - 1895, Wynberg). Charles married Johanna in June 1874 in Cape Town. He served as a Captain in the 86th Regiment of Foot. They are both buried at St. John's Cemetery in Wynberg.

Charles and Johanna had the following children:
  1. Anna Augusta born in 1875, died in 1949, married Francis William Cubitt CHIAPPINI
  2. Henry born in 1877
  3. Lucy Arabella Bettina born in 1878, married Frank HARVEY
  4. John Sidney born in 1880, died 1927
  5. Lilla Roberta born in 1883, married Nathaniel John Crawford RUTHERFORD
  6. Dirk Cloete van Alphen born in 1885 at Alphen Farm, Constantia, died in 1976 at Silkaatsnek Farm, Brits. Attended Bishop's Shool in Cape Town. He was a member of the Springbok rugby team that toured the UK in 1906-07. He also played cricket for Western Province and Transvaal. Also known as Dirk Cloete JACKSON.
  7. Charles Goss born in 1888
  8. Munton Francis born in 1890
  9. Raneira Catherina
Some of the children were baptised at St. John's Anglican Church in Wynberg, where family members are buried in the church's cemetery.

Johanna was the daughter of Dirk CLOETE (1820, Wynberg - 1894, Wynberg) and Johanna Reiniera Catherina VAN OOSTERZEE (circa 1823 - 1891). Her parents married in March 1843 in Cape Town. Dirk was also known as David. The family lived at Alphen Farm in Constantia.

The history of Alphen dates back to the early 18th century, when 5 morgen and 200 square roods of garden land were granted to Theunis VAN SCHALKWYK. More land was added over the years, until in 1765 it was consolidated into a single property some 16 morgen in extent. In 1850 Johannes Albertus MUNNIK bought the estate, and after his death in 1854, Dirk CLOETE acquired the estate.

The Cloete family of Alphen can be traced back to Dirk CLOETE who lived on the farm Nooitgedacht and farmed there until his death in 1833. Dirk's son married Anna Gesina BORCHERDS, and their only son married Reiniera Johanna VAN OOSTERZEE after which they moved to Alphen. Their descendants are known as the Alphen Cloetes.

Alphen has remained in Cloete family hands for over 150 years and today is owned by The Alphen Trust whose trustees administer the estate for the Cloete family.

a) Jacob CLOETE arrived at the Cape from Cologne, believed to be in 1652, in the service of the Dutch East India Company. Jacob was one of the first free burghers at the Cape, in August 1657, receiving a farm in October 1657, situated on the Liesbeeck River. A free burgher (vryburgher / vrijburgher) was a soldier or employee of the Dutch East India Company who was released from his contractual obligation to the Company and given permission to farm, become a tradesman or work for another employer. In 1671 he returned to the Netherlands, and later returned to the Cape as a Corporal. He was mysteriously murdered on 23 May 1693 by deserters near the Castle. He was married to Fytje (Sophia) RADEROOTJES, who arrived at the Cape in 1658 from Cologne with her brother Peter.

b4) Coenraad CLOETE (1663 - circa 1703) married Martha VERSCHUUR in 1693

c2) Jacobus CLOETE (born 1699) married Sibella PASSMAN

d2) Hendrik CLOETE (1725 - 1799) married Hester Anna LOURENS in 1753

e8) Dirk CLOETE (1767 - 1833) married first to Sophia Margaretha MYBURGH in 1792, and second to Anna Elizabeth VAN DER BYL in 1800 in Stellenbosch.

f1) Hendrik CLOETE (1793 - 1838) married Anna Gesina BORCHERDS (1794 - 1870, Stellenbosch)in 1813.

g2) Dirk CLOETE (1820 - 1894) married Johanna Reiniera Catharina VAN OOSTERZEE in March 1843

h?) Johanna Reneira Catherina CLOETE (1855, Cape - 1895, Wynberg)

Johanna Reiniera Catherina VAN OOSTERZEE was the daughter of Dr. Johannes Knockers VAN OOSTERZEE (1793, Cape - 1829, Rotterdam, Netherlands) and Augusta Wilhelmina Magdalena THALMAN (born 1804, Batavia). Johannes was a medical doctor in Cape Town and Leiden. He married Augusta in August 1819 in Cape Town. Johannes' father, Willem Johan VAN OOSTERZEE, was born circa 1765 in Sas van Gent, Netherlands. He was in the service of the Dutch East India Company at the Cape, where he was a merchant and bookkeeper. He married Reineira Johanna Catharina KNOCKERS (born 1762) in June 1789 in Cape Town.

Mike RUTHERFORD received his first guitar at the age of 8. He was a bassist and backing vocalist with Genesis in the early days, and often played rhythm guitar and twelve-string guitar for the band. In 1977 he became their lead guitarist. He wrote the lyrics to many Genesis songs. He formed Mike and The Mechanics in 1985, and in 2010 was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

Furthering his South African connections, he bought a plot of land in Bantry's Bay from a cousin in 1995, and eventually built a house. He has also ridden the Cape Argus Cycle Tour, and is involved in a music education project with Pieter Dirk-Uys in Darling. Last year he recorded a new version of his song, The Living Years, with Cape Town's Isango Ensemble. He lives mostly in Surrey, England, with his wife Angie. They were married in November 1976 and have three children: Kate, Tom and Harry.