The 1806 Opgaaf (census) of the vast Graaff-Reinet "Colonie" shows Magdalena already living with her husband in the Zwarteberg "wyk" [#1]. They have a son and daughter, ten oxen, twenty head of cattle, 250 sheep, and a wagon. The 1809 Opgaaf also shows them in the same region. It also shows Johannes as being "Csz" , abbreviation for "Cornelis zoon". This clearly identifies the particular Johannes Bezuidenhout [#2]. The 1812 Muster Roll also has them in the Zwarteberg wyk, though her first names are omitted and her surname is wrongly spelled [#3].
When the parish of Beaufort--later Beaufort West--is started in 1819, Magdalena Geertuyda and her husband, Johannes Bezuidenhout, are among the first to baptize children in this church. They appear on the first page of that baptism book as entry #5. Magdalena's younger brother, Daniel Jan Andries Booyens, is a witness. The child, Pieter Christiaan, is already almost two years old. The entry reveals that in 1817, when the child is born, they live on the farm Kookfontein (Kookvonteyn) [#4]. This reveals the difficulties faced by the Karoo stockmen, situated behind a barrier of mountains that separates them from any church in the Cape Colony. Until the creation of Beaufort, their choice is either Graaff-Reinet, far to the north, or George, behind the double barrier of the Swartberg range and the Tsitsikamma/Langeberge. Far to the west are the parishes of Tulbagh (Roodezand) or Drakenstein. Far to the southeast is Uitenhage.
The 1824 Muster Roll of the Beaufort (west) district distinctly records Johannes Bezuidenhout Corns Son & Magdalena Geertruida Booyens [#5]. They have a wagon & horse; 2 breeding horses; 16 oxen; 20 breeding cattle; 100 breeding sheep; and 20 goats. There are 25 Khoekhoe people of various ages with them. In the very next census [#6], likely 1826, they are still living in the Gouph Wyk of Beaufort District with two sons, a daughter, 18 "Hottentots" (Khoekhoe), and the identical complement of livestock as before. While they are absent from the 1828 census (Volume J13), the family still lives there in 1829 [#7] with more or less the same collection of farm animals. No indication is given in 1829 of any Khoekhoe people.
In the very early 1800s we repeatedly see this specific Bezuidenhout family, and the Booyens, Oosthuysen and Human families in the South Karoo, serve as mutual witnessses to baptisms. There are also several marriages among these families.
Magdalena's brother, Pieter Johannes Booyens, marries Susanna Human, Johannes Bezuidenhout's niece, daughter of Johannes' sister, Anna Maria. Anna Maria is married to Johannes Human. Johannes' oldest sister, Catharina Bezuidenhout and her husband Jan Oosthuysen turn up as witnesses to the baptism of Susanna Human. The Booyens family acts as witnesses to the later baptisms by Anna Maria.
We list her son Wynand, as he marries a Booyens cousin, Anna Catharina, daughter of Barend Matthys Booyens.
When Johannes dies on 4 October 1848, it is Magdalena that signs his Death Notice. Unfortunately, the document itself is not dated, though a note on it states that it was submitted only in 1849. We have been unable to locate any death notice for her. So, she simply disappears from the record at the time of Johannes' death notice.
For the references, see below#