S2A3 Biographical Database of Southern African Science

Backstrom, Urbanus von (veterinary medicine)

Born: 15 January 1920, Heidelberg, Transvaal, South Africa .
Died: 6 February 1983, Plettenberg Bay, South Africa .

Urbanus von Backström qualified as a veterinarian (BVSc) in the Veterinary Faculty of the University of Pretoria at Onderstepoort and in 1944 was appointed as Veterinary Officer by the government of the Bechuanaland Protectorate (now Botswana). He was stationed at Maun and was in charge of Ngamiland (North West District). Here, on the shores of Lake Ngami, he made the first diagnosis of lumpy skin disease in southern Africa (first called Ngami cattle disease). In 1947 he returned to South Africa and set up practice in Krugersdorp. He served as external examiner in veterinary medicine for the Veterinary Faculty at Onderstepoort for many years.

List of sources:
Posthumus, P.J. Past veterinarians in South Africa (10th edition), Vol. 2, [1992].

Von Backström, U. Ngamiland cattle disease. Preliminary report on a new disease, the etiological agent probably being of an infectious nature. Journal of the South African Veterinary Medical Association, 1945, Vol. 16, pp. 29-35.

Compiled by: D.W. Verwoerd