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Donald McLean Calder
I was born of Scottish immigrant parents in the village of Bloemhof in the heartland of South Africa and Afrikaner Nationalism.
We moved to the 1820 British settler coastal city of Port Elizabeth where I completed my schooling. Not knowing what I wanted to do with myself I worked on a pineapple farm for a year until the bottom fell out of the export market and I was left jobless. I returned to the city where I worked for the then union castle shipping line before plunging into the advertising industry for a few years.
I gravitated into selling and for four years represented a major oil company in a Karoo town for three years where I learnt my love of the Karoo and began to take an interest in the South African, or second Anglo Boer War. I wrote a sports column for a small town newspaper and completed a full length novel which I never considered worth submitting to a publisher.
I was transferred on promotion to Johannesburg to a company in the Anglo American Corporation, the largest gold, coal and diamond organization in the world. I remained with the corporation for the remainder of my working career and on retiring was CEO of a sub division of eleven operating companies across South Africa.
I travelled extensively in Europe, the UK, Australia and the USA. Writing took a back seat until I wrote another novel based on the isolation and terrorism in South Africa of the late nineteen eighties. I had not researched my subject sufficiently and along with the release of Nelson Mandela and the coming of democracy, rendered much of the book redundant. I set it aside.
My love for the Karoo took me there often when I would visit Boer War battlefields, museums and concentration sites which had a deep effect on me and which prompted me to write 'a legacy of secrets. I am currently researching a little known about battle which took place on the first anniversary of the war.
My interests are golf, cricket - as a spectator - walking remote beaches and of course the Anglo Boer War. I have been happily married to artist wife, my childhood sweetheart. We have four children and thirteen grandchildren - all resident in South Africa.