S2A3 Biographical Database of Southern African Science




Cooper and nephews, (veterinary science)

Born: 1 January 1843, Berkhamsted, Hertfordshire, United Kingdom.
Died: 1 January 1973, South Africa.

The firm Cooper (William) and Nephews, with headquarters in Berkhamsted, England, manufactured sheep dip in Port Elizabeth around the beginning of the twentieth century, but also contributed in other ways to veterinary practice. For example, in 1893 the firm made a formal offer to the government of the Cape of Good Hope to completely eradicate scab (mange) in the Colony's sheep and goats. The proposal was published in Berkhamsted and Port Elizabeth (1893, 15p). The proposed treatment involved a sheep dip containing arsenic and sulpher, developed by William Cooper around 1850. In about 1909, by which time the local branch had moved to East London, the firm issued a booklet on Diseases in sheep and goats prevalent in South Africa (Berkhamsted, 1909?, 70p). The booklet was also translated into Afrikaans, and a fourth expanded edition, in both languages, was published in the early nineteen-twenties. Other publications by the firm included Sheep dipping, with special reference to its utility and practice in the colonies, United States of America, etc. (Berkhamsted, 188-, 16p); The world's sheep farming for fifty years, 1843-1893 (Berkhamsted, 1893, 104p); Ticks in relation to diseases of stock (Berkhamsted, 1912?, 45p), which dealt in a popular manner with ticks that attack farm stock and the diseases they transmit; and The stockfarmer's diary 1916 (South African edition) (Berkhamsted and East London, 1916, 80p).

The firm was established in 1843 by William Cooper, a member of the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons. From 1885, and still in 1919, the proprietor was Sir Richard Cooper, while the general manager for South Africa was C.W. Jarvis Palmer, holder of a Bachelor of Science degree in agriculture and a former Director of Agriculture of the Orange River Colony. At that time the South African branch of the firm was situated in Johannesburg, but it owned estates at Gonubie Park near East London, Haenertsburg in the Transvaal, and Sandown in Zimbabwe. It distributed various agricultural pest control products, but also imported and bred pedigree livestock.

In 1913 one W.F. Cooper, Bachelor of Arts, Fellow of the Chemical Society and of the Zoological Society of London, who may have been associated with the firm, published a paper on "The tick-killing properties of sodium arsenate" in the Agricultural Journal of the Union of South Africa.


List of sources:
Agricultural Journal (Union of South Africa, 1913, Vol. 5, paper by W.F. Cooper.

Dacorum Heritage Trust. The famous dip that helped cure the scourge of sheep. Retrieved from http://www.dacorumheritage.org.uk/article/the-famous-dip-the-helped-cure-the-scourge-of-sheep/ on 2016-4-26.

General Directory of South Africa, 1903.

National Union Catalogue, pre-1956 imprints. London: Mansell, 1968-1980.

South African bibliography to the year 1925. London: Mansell, 1979 (Vol. 1-4); Cape Town: South African Library, 1991 (Vol. 5).

South African who's who, 1919/1920 (C.W.J. Palmer, and advertissements on pp. 344, 788).

William Cooper (chemical manufacturer). In Wikipedia,Tthe Free Encyclopedia. https://en.wikipedia.org as on 2016-4-26.


Compiled by: C. Plug


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