Swaziland Mon Amour

      If you have been there you know why we loved it

Welcome to a scrapbook collection of items by the first Peace Corps [Swaziland 1] volunteers of and other International Volunteers who served in Swaziland, now eSwatini, from 1968 to 1971. We hope you will contribute your images, writings and memories to this project.

Wayne Phillips Swaziland 1 Site »

Wayne writes, " I was a member of the first Peace Corps group to serve in Swaziland, herein referred to as Swaziland 1. We did our training in Baker, Louisiana, near Baton Rouge. We flew to Swaziland in January of 1969.

"I am hoping that some of my cohorts will recognize the content and people in these photos and let me know. Each photo has a reference label in the lower left corner."

 

Bingelela

Bingelela [Greeting], by Swaziland 1 volunteer Steve Hank, was created for the Peace Corps as a "Welcome video from the first Peace Corps Volunteers in Swaziland in 1968-70" to introduce new volunteers to the country. It would be the first film of his distinguished career in film that would conclude as Director of the Film Program at the University of New Orleans. Several members of Swaziland 1 are shown at their sites. View more of Steve's films here »


Chris Matthews' This Country

Chris Matthews' memoir This Country includes two chapters on his experiences as a Peace Corps Volunteer with Swaziland 1 and many mentions of and quotes by other Swaziland 1 volunteers. View details from the publisher's website »

Film clip of Chris serving as a Peace Corps small business advisor in Swaziland by Steve Hank.

Image Archive [in Development] »

A structured collection of images from these experiences is currently being assembled for display here.

Please contribute your images, writings or memories to this project. For instructions, contact us here »

Visit Image Archive Home page »


July 2015

Fred Schwartz »

Fred Schwartz was a warm and lovable member of Swaziland 1, the first Peace Corps volunteer group to serve in Swaziland.

Fred died on January 11, 1970 in a highway auto accident near Piggs Peak that also took the life of South African volunteer Marcia Silver. Fred was serving as a rural development worker and had been engaged in a project to create a national woodcraft industry.

Across the years we Swaziland 1 Volunteers warmly remember Fred.

read full tribute »»

Cover of Halfway From Home

November 2015

Review of Halfway from Home »

Halfway from Home is an account of teaching in rural Swaziland written by Swaziland 1 Volunteer Ron "Bheka" Pierce. Bheka returned to Swaziland in 1976 to teach English Literature in Swaziland with his late wife and in memoriam co-author Britta at her father's rural mission high school. Their students addressed them by the Swazi translation of their name ‘Pierce’, as ‘Magwaza’.

Finding their students largely isolated in traditional Swazi culture, rarely seeing urban life and consequently having little exposure to spoken or written English, the Pierce’s hit on the idea of having their students keep a journal to fill that gap and encourage daily usage.

In a manner akin to what the internet age has dubbed as crowd-sourcing, journal entries from over 60 different students were selected. These were assembled in chronological order to form a multi-voiced day-by-day journal of 1976.

read full review »»

March 1996

Manzini to Mbabane, the Hard Way »

Sure, one could get to Mbabane the usual way.
Cross the plain to Malkerns Market,
pass the Royal Kraal of Sobhuza at Lobamba,
gamble to overtake chugging buses,
passing by comical South African tourists,
in pursuit of forbidden fruits at the Casino,
then climb out of the Ezulweni and enter Mbabane.

But there is another way to Mbabane...
It is farther but much more rewarding.

Travel back in time to 1969, Leave Manzini and head not west, but east. Then turn north on the road to Ekukanyeni...

A 1996 online tour by Lowell Boileau
Chosen as a Yahoo Pick of the Week October 21, 1996

take the tour »»

June 2012

Letters from Swaziland »

"Letters from Swaziland" is comprised of a trove of letters sent by Lowell Boileau to his family from 1968-1970 while serving with the first Peace Corp contingent in Swaziland.

"In 1968 I took break from my post graduate studies at the University of Michigan and joined the Peace Corps. The letters begin with the flight to Swaziland. This followed a 3 month Peace Corps training session in Baker, Louisiana where we studied siSwati, did practice teaching, underwent 'sensitivity training', got our shots and got to know each other."

Continue reading Letters from Swaziland »»

Swaziland 1 - Volunteer Directory & Training Syllabus »

Training Syllabus issued to all volunteers for training conducted at the Leland Peace Corps Training Center in Baker LA from October 10 - December 23, 1968.

download Volunteer Directory »

[Large 42 MB file -- allow time]

link to Swaziland 1 Dropbox images »

Swaziland Volunteers Locations

This is a Google Map of Locations of Peace Corps and other International Volunteers who served in Swaziland from 1968 to 1971.

Visit Map [Opens in a new window] »

Contact Us Here »

 

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