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Johannes Hendrick De Lange was a well-known figure in Natal, having been an early Voortrekker scout into Natal and a member of the commando which defeated the Zulu’s at the Battle of Blood River on 16 December 1838. De Lange, commonly known as Hans Dons, was hanged in Ladysmith on 26 March 1861, and he had the dubious distinction of being one of the first white men in South Africa to be executed for the murder of a Black man.