Colonel Hendrik Frederik Prinsloo


Colonel Hendrik Fredrik Prinsloo

Colonel Hendrik Fredrik Prinsloo, O.B.E., E.D., passed away at Ermelo in the Eastern Transvaal on 20th November, 1966, after a long and distinguished career of service during which he gained both local and international honour.
As a boy of twelve he was taken prisoner-of-war by the British while carrying weapons in his father's Commando (the Carolinaers) during the South African War 1899-1902 and, because of his tender age, was lodged in the Barberton concentration camp with his mother.
During the 1914-1918 war he saw service in the South West Africa campaign in which he received the award of the Croix-de-Guerre (avec palmes) from the French Government of that time.
At the outbreak of the 1939-1945 war Colonel Prinsloo was Commanding Officer of the Regiment Botha. When on the point of leaving for North Africa with his Regiment he was recalled at the instance of the late Field Marshal J. C. Smuts and placed in Command of the vast Italian prisoners-of-war camp at *Sonderwater starting from 14 December 1942.
In 1947 Colonel Prinsloo represented South Africa at the Diplomatic Conference held in Geneva for the purpose of revising the International Convention Relative to the Treatment of Prisoners-of-War, that is, the Geneva Convention of 1929.
Recognition of the achievements at Zonderwater was signified when the late Colonel Hendrik Fredrik Prinsloo, O.B.E., E.D., who was Camp Commandant at the Zonderwater Camp from the beginning of 1943 until the closing of the Camp in February, 1947, and **three of his officers, including Captain Ball, were invested with the Order of the Star of Italy by the post-war Italian Government with the approval of the Chief of the General Staff of the Union Defence Force. Yet further recognition came when His Holiness the Pope conferred upon Colonel Prinsloo the "Ordine di Bene Merente", that is the Papal Decoration, the Order of Good Merit.)

*Sonderwater (Afrikaans spelling) and Zonderwater (Dutch spelling) means "without water"

**Capt. John A. Ball
  Capt. H.H.Sonnabend
  Mj. Murray N.T.J 

Hendrik Prinsloo foto2

Colonel H.F.Prinsloo 

Commendatore dell'Ordine della Stella d'Italia (già Stella della solidarietà italiana) 

Commendatore dell'Ordine della Stella d'Italia (già Stella della solidarietà italiana)


 Here is the link to the South African Military Society website information on Col. H.F.Prinsloo


 Mrs. H.F. Prinsloo

 South African Military History Society

Mrs H.F. Prinsloo unveiling bronze bust of her late husband, Colonel H.F. Prinsloo, OBE, ED. On the left is Maj-Gen J.C. Lemmer, MC, Chairman, Board of Trustees who opened the display and on the right the Director, Col G.R. Duxbury



With acknowledgements to the South African Military History Society: