The Black Countess

crane
panoramic view of Wellington

Beginning in the late 1800's, in the small Boland town of Wellington, and evolving in the old Cape Town suburb of Wynberg (against a backdrop of extreme class- and colour-consciousness both in the UK and the Cape), the well-documented tale of Harry and Martha's extraordinary cross-cultural romance is a riveting one, which begs to be transformed into an audio- visual medium, and shared with audiences both in this country and abroad.

Had Martha and Harry's children, John and Lady Mary Grey (in whose veins mingled the blood of both English aristocracy and African slaves) been afforded their rightful dignity and privilege as heirs to one of the most ancient and noble hereditary titles in England, the future of their now-scattered descendants may have been very different. Today, the venerable House of Stamford is no more. In, perhaps, a classic example of Karmic justice, the lineage died out with the last (childless) Earl in 1976, and today, the stately 17th Century Dunham Massey Manor near Manchester belongs to the British National Trust.