Sir William Milton : a leading figure in public school games, colonial politics and imperial expansion 1877-1914
Thesis (PhD)--Stellenbosch University, 2013.
This investigation is aimed at providing a better understanding of William Milton’s influence on society in southern Africa over a period of more than thirty years. In the absence of any previous detailed work, it will serve to demonstrate Milton’s importance in restructuring the administration, formulating policy and imposing social barriers in early Rhodesia – factors that will contribute to the research undertaken by revisionist writers. It will also go some way towards answering Lord Blake’s call to discover exactly what the Administrator did and how he did it. Milton’s experiences at the Cape are seen as being essential to an understanding of the administration he established in Rhodesia. Through examining this link – referred to by historians but not as yet explored in detail – new knowledge will be provided on Rhodesia’s government in the pre-First World War period. The Cape years will offer insight into Milton’s working relationship with Rhodes and his involvement in the latter’s vision of the region’s social form and future. They will also shed light on Milton’s attitude towards people of colour. Cricket and rugby are key themes running through Milton’s life. The study will illuminate much about the creation of South African sport at a time when the public school games ethic was important in the nature of empire. Milton made an enormous but controversial contribution to the playing of the games, club culture, facilities, administration, international competition and who was eligible to represent South Africa.