“a windswept huddle of seaside shacks”
Kanon is more than a windswept huddle of shacks. There would appear to be nothing but rocks and the sea. On first sighting, no immediate beach or surf, just sand dunes covered with exotic Port Jackson or some nondescript type of coastal vegetation that could or could not be classified as fynbos, actually untouched for 300 years and kept jealously alien free for the past 60 years.
The local farmers of the past on the adjoining farms had no need for sheltered permanence near the beach. They could – as they still do to this day – come down from the farms to fish or enjoy the solitude of the beach. The Johnsons had arrived at Voelvlei in 1888 the patriarch of the family a part shop owner, part blacksmith. One of the daughters of the family Anne married John van Rensburg in 1912 and by 1918 the family had moved from the northern end of Voelvlei to a second house on the farm “Die Eiland”. It is from this house that John McKenzie Johnson opened a shop that eventually became Johnson’s Post.
Holidays would have included family gatherings at the beach. The need for shelter would have necessitated some kind of tent structures. Some of the earliest structures on record include Shell Catcher built circa 1896. This could have been a cooking area or even some form of hut in which the woman and the servants could prepare meals. Soon it became necessary to ensure somewhat better facilities and the van Rensburgs would have allowed some form of semi-permanent structures to be erected. With the inception of the vehicular transport families would have had cars and these would have needed shelter.