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Mombasa Football Club 1930’s | Coastweek

Coastweek-- Mombasa Football Club 1930’s.
In Search Of A Life: James A.C. Burke
A Lawyer Who Came To Kenya In 1920

Coastweek-- In search of information about a grandfather, father, lawyer, businessman, in Kenya.

The attached photo comes from the cover of the ‘Old Africa’ magazine of October-November 2013.

To the right of the photo is a gentleman by the name of James A.C. Burke who came to Kenya in 1920s, soon after the country became a British Colony.

He hailed from Trinidad and Tobago, of Asian stock, whose ancestors must have been part of the Indentured labour force from India in the 1800s. He was educated in Britain, and came to Kenya to practice law.

He was also an entrepreneur, with his fingers in many business pies. He did go bankrupt once, according to the records kept by the Official Gazette of Kenya, at the time.

He was born in 1883 and died in Kenya in 1947, leaving two wives and a string of children.

His youngest daughter was in Mombasa on holidays, until one month ago, when she returned to UK where she lives with her family. But one of his grand-daughters lives in Mombasa, with a Swedish husband.

The reason we have sent you this photo is that in the magazine there was no article to say what the name of the football club or team was, and who were the people in the photo.

By mistake, the magazine pointed out the person on the left side of the picture as James A.C. Burke because it was an Englishman’s name and he looked English.

Perhaps you can find in your archives the name of the football team, whose T-shirts bore an emblem of ‘fleur-de-lis’. In a recent commemoration of lawyers and judges who had contributed their services to the Courts of Kenya, James Burke was remembered and his grandson, now living in Nairobi, came down to Mombasa to collect some token and a photo of his grandfather at the Mombasa High Court.

C.B. Gor, the retired lawyer, now in his 80s, remembers James Burke as a young man swimming across the channel from the Mombasa Club to English Point.

The family will appreciate your assistance in this matter.

Captain Musa M. Ittiso, Principal Marine Surveyor & P&I Club
Correspondent Protecting and Indemnity (K) Ltd., Mombasa.

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