Heraldry Society of Southern Africa

Colin Graham Botha

Colin Graham Botha

Colin Graham Botha (1883-1973), VD, KStJ, KLJ, was the Union of South Africa’s first Chief Archivist. He had already retired from this position when the HSSA was formed on 27 August 1953 – at this founding meeting he was one of five men (and one woman) in attendance.

Botha was elected president of the society, and served in this office until his death at the age of 90 in 1973. It is not clear what became of the presidency following his death, and it appears that Cor Pama, who was already chairman, subsumed that office into his chairmanship. Certainly since Pama’s death in 1994 no further presidents have been elected.

His arms were granted by the College of Arms on 6 February 1947. The blazon reads:


Arms: Gules, on a fess Argent between in chief, two open books leaved of the last edged Or and, in base, two swords in saltire proper pommelled and hilted gold, a thistle slipped and leaved also proper.

Crest: Between two wings Argent a cubit arm vested Azure, cuffed Or, the hand grasping a roll of parchment.

Motto: Alteri Si Tibi.


The bookplate above on which these arms appear was designed by W H Armstrong.


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