In memoriam - Brian Marsh, the “pioneering hunter”, who later became a writer passes away


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Aug 21, 2009
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Brian Marsh, the “pioneering hunter”, who later became a writer, died on 10th November in Capetown at the age of 86.

Born as Ewart Pinker in 1928 in South Africa, he took his step-father’s name when he was 6 and remained Brian Marsh for all his life. Pioneering he really was. In the 1950s he started as one of the first professional crocodile hunters in Nyasaland, at what is now Lake Malawi. From that time into the mid-eighties the fisheries dept. issued unlimited crocodile licences. An able hunter like Brian could make a good living from selling the end with “Pondoro” Taylor and later greatly facilitated Peter Capstick‘s biography of John Taylor, the “Man called Lion”.


As a staff contributor to Magnum Magazine from 1987, when his days as a professional hunter in various countries of Southern Africa were over, he was a well-known figure in the hunting community. But his writing career really took off in 1982 with a novel, titled “The last Trophy”. Although the book had two reprints, he then settled for the non-fiction articles and books we know him for, drawing on his vast experience of hunting in Africa and the people he met over the decades. For many of us he is best known from his biographical books about the owner of Safarilandia in Mozambique, Werner von Alvensleben, “Baron in Africa”, and “The Hunting Blackbeards of Botswana”.

After his wife of almost 50 years, Jilly, passed away, his life became more difficult. His last years he spent in an old age home in Pinelands, where he was supported by a number of friends, mostly hunters from all over the world. When I visited him in 2012 to talk to a fellow crocodile hunter from Malawi, one could see that his age told against him. Nevertheless, he would always remain a gentle host to his visitors.

Author: Hannes Siege
Condolences to family and friends.
Great man, grew up reading some of his stories. RIP uncle Brian.
I still have the Last Trophy, read it years ago. Also have him on a video with Capstick that is quite entertaining. A real pro. RIP Brian.

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