Long Walk Original Manuscript (Image #524) - Nelson Mandela Centre of Memory
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Title: Long Walk Original Manuscript (Image #524)
Transcript: widely travelled old sailor, ever resourceful and in brooding about our isolation from other prisoners, it never occurred to me that George may have cultivated new ways of "sailing". But one evening there was George inside my cell come to pay us a clandestine visit! He had many contacts among the warders, both black and white, and this made it possible for him to pay us a sailor's visit.
We were kept locked up in our cell for almost two days in succession. We protested at this treatment and demanded to be taken out to work like other prisoners. This was eventually granted but we were made to work alone, just the 4 of us. We were taken out to work under the charge of Kleynhans and our first job consisted of covering up a newly laid pipeline. This was my first outing since imprisonment and the experience of being out in the open was very pleasant. On our first day we overworked ourselves through sheer excitement. But as the days lengthened our enthusiasm for the work dried up proportionately. Kleynhans attempted to push us to work harder with the usual tough talk and threats. In doing so he must have overlooked Steve who re acted by giving him a tongue lashing of the kind he had meeted out to the lieutenant on the vening of our arrival. Steve commanded a fluent Afrikaans and once he set out on a verbal war with the warders the toughest Afrikaner warder became inhibited.
Grapevine reports singled out the Kleynhans brothers, including the one in charge of us, as being sadists who revelled in assaulting political prisoners and we were clearly fortunate that this behaviour towards the 4 of us was restrained, perhaps by instructions of his superiors. This appears to have been the case because in one instance the path of one of his brothers and ours crossed and I
Extent and Medium: 1 page