Jesuit Jean-Baptiste (John) Loubiere, with his assistant Joseph Dambaza, are credited with the founding of Kutama Mission, located near Norton, approximately 80 km southwest of Salisbury (Harare). Father Loubiere named it Kutama after his first convert the chief.
The mission began as an outstation of Chishawasha Mission. Cassiano Ushewokunze, who was trained at Chishawasha, was posted as the first teacher-catechist at Kutama in 1913. Fr Loubiere became the first resident priest in September 1914 (the date generally given as the mission’s founding date) and through his efforts, Kutama became a fully-fledged mission independent of Chishawasha.
Fr. Loubiere’s initial focus was on evangelism, but realizing that educational development was needed as well, he began primary education. By 1926, the Jesuits had established a two-year Teacher Training course for primary school teachers, which would become St. Francis Xavier (Kutama) College. After the death of Fr. Loubiere in 1930, Father Jerome O’Hea arrived in 1931 to become the school’s headmaster.
Fr. O’Hea established a hospital on the mission site using his family’s resources after a request for government funding was turned down. The hospital was later named Fr O’Hea Memorial Mission Hospital (Kutama Hospital) in his honor.
The Jesuit were challenged to both perform pastoral work and run the school, so in 1939 Bishop A. Chichester S.J invited the Marist Brothers to come to Kutama and assume responsibility for education. Under their leadership, Kutama was one of the first missions in Southern Rhodesia to offer secondary (high school) education to Africans.
President Mugabe was born in the village of Kutama and educated at Kutama College.
Fr O’Hea Memorial Mission Hospital (Kutama Hospital)
In 1897 Rhodesia Railways asked one of Cape Town’s top lawyers Mr Webb to come to Bulawayo to open Bulawayo’s first legal firm. Webb quickly established a firm which provided top quality legal services to the fledgling colony.
Webb soon invited Henry Low, another lawyer practicing in South Africa, to join him. Henry Low was later knighted for his services to Bulawayo and lends his name to the Henry Low primary school in Bulawayo. Michael Barry, the firm’s third named partner, joined the firm in 1922 creating Webb, Low & Barry.
In 1983 Bob Cole became senior partner on Michael Barry’s retirement and the following year David Coltart, the current senior partner became a partner. Norman Pattison became a partner in 1985, with Josephat Tshuma becoming a partner in 1989. David Coltart became senior partner in 1998 when Bob Cole retired.
The firm prevailed through the harsh economic climate and hyperinflation in Zimbabwe from 2000 to 2008. In 2006, Webb, Low & Barry took over and incorporated another old Bulawayo firm, Ben Baron and Partners. The firm migrated to larger premises in 2008 in the Belmont suburb of Bulawayo.
Since dollarization in 2009, the firm has continued to grow and expand its client base both within Zimbabwe and internationally. Webb, Low & Barry is a full service law firm with a dedicated team of lawyers that practice in all areas of Zimbabwean law.
Peter Forrestall was born in 1864 in Nova Scotia. He worked for the Native Affairs Department as Native Commissioner of the Chibi District at Chibi Station. He was referred to by locals as Ndambakuwa – ‘the one who refuses to budge on anything.’ Forrestall also managed Nyazuguwi Ranch, Victoria – one of the first lowveld ranches.
He died 30 August 1921. He never married.
Transient Workspaces: Technologies of Everyday Innovation in Zimbabwe – Clapperton Chakanetsa Mavhunga
Mtoko (Mutoko) Mission, located approximately 65 km north of Mrewa (Murewa) in Mashonaland East Province, was founded by Dr. Samuel Gurney of the Methodist Episcopal Church(MEC) in 1911. The Mutoko area had a large population and Dr. Gurney saw it “as a way to move on from there toward Nyanga” and “as a final link that would connect Methodist work in the Mutasa area.”
The British South Africa Company granted MEC an old police camp containing several brick buildings from which the missionary work could begin. Dr. Gurney, then residing at Mrewa Mission, was appointed head of the Mrewa-Mtoko (Murehwa-Mutoko) Circuit, while African evangelist James Apiri was stationed at Mtoko itself.
For the first several years, the Mtoko Mission suffered from the lack a resident missionary. Eddy H. Greeley and his wife were appointed to Mtoko in 1916-17, but were transferred after only six months to Old Umtali Mission. Another missionary was appointed in 1919, but again his stay lasted for only six months. Dr. Gurney managed the mission from his base at Mrewa while juggling his other duties. He wrote in a report to the Methodist Rhodesia Mission Conference in 1919 that in most “respects this Mtoko child of our mission family seems to have suffered from arrested development.” With my time fully occupied and living forty miles distant, “the poor little Mtoko mission received much more of absent treatment than was good for it.”
Nonetheless, with the help of African evangelists (pastor-teachers), and later missionaries, including Wilfred Bourgaize (beginning 1921 – still in the field as of 1954), the mission prevailed. As of 1924, a new church building had been built and there was a small primary boarding school consisting of six boys. By 1944, the Boy’s Boarding school had increased to nearly 100 students.
Today, under the control of the United Methodist Church in Zimbabwe, Mtoko (Mutoko) consists of the Mutoko Central Primary School, Mutoko Methodist Center/church, and it serves as the base of the Mutoko/Nyadire District.
Andrew Milroy Fleming was the son of Reverend John Fleming of Edinburgh. After his education at Durham School he received his medical training at the University of Edinburgh, qualified as Bachelor of Medicine (MB) and Master in Surgery (CM) in 1893, and became a Fellow of the Royal College of Surgeons of England (FRCSE).
During 1893 he served briefly as assistant physician to Victoria Hospital for Consumption and Diseases of the Chest in Edinburgh. Towards the end of that year he went to the Cape Colony and was licensed to practice there on 22 February 1894, was appointed junior house surgeon at Carnarvon Hospital, Kimberley.
In October 1894 he was appointed as medical officer in charge of Salisbury Hospital. He married Philadelphia Alice Fisher in 1896 and they had two children. That same year he acted as principal medical officer to the forces of the British South Africa Company in Mashonaland.
In April 1897 he became medical director and inspector to the British South Africa Company and principal medical officer to its police force. His post was subsequently named medical director of Rhodesia, a position he retained to about 1931. During these years he played a leading role in establishing a medical service in that country. He was honoured as a Companion of the Order of St Michael and St George (CMG) in 1898. By that time he was a member of the [second] South African Medical Association.
Fleming probably returned to England for some time, as he was awarded the Diploma in Public Health by Cambridge University in 1903.
The Prefecture of Wankie was cut off from the Apostolic Vicariate of Salisbury and Apostolic Vicariate Bulawayo and was erected on 29 June 1953 and confided to the Fathers of the Spanish Mission Institute (SMI). On 1 March 1963, the Prefecture of Hwange became a Diocese.
On 3 July 1991, the civil district of Gokwe, the area of Omay between the Sengwa and Sanyati rivers in the Kariba district, and the area of the Nkayi district north of the Shangani river, were cut from the Diocese of Hwange and formed into the Diocese of Gokwe.
The Diocese of Hwange comprises the following civil districts: Hwange, Binga, and the part of Lupane north of the Shabula River. It is bounded on the North by Zambezi River, on the West by Botswana, on the East by the civil districts of Omay, Gokwe, Lupane and on the South by Nyamandlovu.
The Margaretha Hugo School for the Blind (commonly known as Copata School for the Blind) had its origins when the parents of a blind boy approached Dutch Reformed Church missionary Reverend Hugo at Chibi Mission for help. Rev. Hugo asked his wife, Margaretha, to look after the boy and she replied “I will try,” from which was born the later motto of the Margaretha Hugo Mission – “We will try.”Soon, there were 8 children in her care. Margaretha later went to South Africa to learn how to teach Braille.
Established in 1915, the school was registered as a school in 1927 as the first school in Southern Rhodesia providing services to students with disabilities. Because of challenges with accessibility, the school was moved to the Zimuto Mission farm in 1938.
From its initial founding, the school has grown to include a primary and secondary boarding school supporting 480 students with disabilities, most of them with visual impairments, coming from across Southern Africa. The school has a staff of 35 primary and 14 secondary school teachers and continues to be managed by the Reformed Church in Zimbabwe (RCZ).
African evangelist from the Dutch Reformed Church (DRC) first entered the area of what would become Zimuto Mission in the 1870-80’s, but it was the Berlin Missionary Society (BMS) that opened Zimuto Mission in 1904, 15-20 km north of Fort Victoria (Masvingo). BMS transferred control of Zimuto to the DRC in 1907.
The first DRC missionary, Rev. G. S. Murray, was sent to the mission in 1907 and did a lot of evangelism in the area. Educational and medical work was started soon after the mission opened. In 1956 a secondary school was opened with the aim of offering preparatory training for entering the Higher Primary Teacher Training Course, an advanced nursing course, or a course for African ministers. The Margaretha Hugo School for the Blind (Copata) was moved from Chivi to the Zimuto Mission farm in 1938 as a sister institution.
Along with DRC’s other missions in Southern Rhodesia, Zimuto Mission was transferred to the local control of the African Reformed Church – later renamed Reformed Church in Zimbabwe (RCZ) – in 1977.
Today Zimuto is also one of the RCZ’ s largest mission stations. It has a conventional primary school, a primary school for the blind, a high school, a secondary school for the blind, a clinic and workshops for basketry and chalk making. Zimuto High School has students from Form 1 through “A” level and more than 50 teaching staff. Zimuto Clinic has 6 beds and serves the majority of the people in the Zimuto area. It averages 6 deliveries a month.
In 1923, Major James Barker and Captain Leonard Kirby of The Salvation Army moved the education facility that was at Pearson Farm to Nyachuru in the Chiweshe Communal lands, approximately 80km north of Salisbury (Harare). The new mission was built on 105 acres granted by the British South Africa Company and named Howard Institute after T. Henry Howard, the Salvation Army’s second Chief of Staff, who died in 1923.
Howard Institute would become the Salvation Army’s primary education center in Southern Rhodesia, with a “Practicing School” (where student teachers could practice in a class room), a combined Central Primary School with boarding section and theological training school for Salvation Army Officers, teacher training (established 1933 by Captain Thomas Lewis) and a nurses training school (begun 1939). By 1928, Howard had 48 students. Secondary education was added as of the 1960’s. Howard Hospital was opened 1928.
Eva Burrows, future General of the Salvation Army (as of 1986), was appointed an officer teacher at Howard Institute beginning 1952. During her 14 years at Howard, Burrows focused on the training of teachers to serve in the network of Salvation Army schools throughout Southern Rhodesia. She was promoted to Head of the Teachers’ College and then Vice-Principal of Howard Institute, before leaving to become Principal at Usher Institute in 1966/1967.
Howard Institute currently consists of Howard High School, with approximately 800 students, and Howard Hospital.