Jameson, Sir Leander Starr, 1853–1917, British colonial administrator and statesman in South Africa. He went to Kimberley (1878) as a physician, became associated with Cecil Rhodes in his colonizing ventures, and was appointed (1891) administrator of Mashonaland. On Dec. 29, 1895, he led a band of volunteers on the famous Jameson Raid into the Boer colony of Transvaal in an effort to support a brewing rebellion by foreign settlers (mainly British), and to further Rhodes's ambition for a united South Africa. The raid was premature. Jameson was captured within a few days and turned over by President Kruger to the British to be punished for his unauthorized venture. He was returned to London for trial and sentenced to imprisonment for 15 months. On his release he returned to South Africa, served in the Cape Colony Parliament (1900–1902), and was premier (1904–8). He played an important role in the South African National Convention (1908–9), which achieved the union of the South African colonies.
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