Author Topic: ANGLO ZULU WAR 11 JAN 1879  (Read 12669 times)

Offline John Young

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Re: ANGLO ZULU WAR 11 JAN 1879
« Reply #9 on: Friday 29 January 10 08:41 GMT (UK) »
Bridget,

I've found him!  My fault - I've got a separate file for Medical personnel.

Private 3804 C. H. Cox, Army Hospital Corps.

Enlisted 21st June 1878.  Paid by the General Depot, Pietermaritzburg 24th January 1879 until 31st March 1879, then to AHC rolls.

Discharge by purchase 22nd June 1882, received the South African General Service Medal without clasp.

That being the case the doctor he would have travelled with on the Asiatic was Surgeon Dugald Blair Brown, Army Medical Department.

The 'Taylor' mentioned in the text would I'm sure have been Private 3732 John Taylor, who also travelled on the Asiatic, and was also paid by General Depot, Pietermaritzburg for the same period of time.

No 'Hemmings' as yet but still looking!

Isandlwana
...Neither praise nor blame add to their epitaph but like it be simple as that which marked Thermopylae.
Tell it in England those that pass us by, here, faithful to their charge, her soldiers lie.

Offline bhunter

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Re: ANGLO ZULU WAR 11 JAN 1879
« Reply #10 on: Friday 29 January 10 10:06 GMT (UK) »
 :)
You are amazing - thank you - that is brilliant!!
B
Ireland - Connor; Foley.
England - Connor; Hale; Cox; Tucker; Foley; Allison. Scotland -  More; Clark; Niven; Milne; Brown; Barclay; McIntosh.
South Africa - Cox

Offline GrahamSimons

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Re: ANGLO ZULU WAR 11 JAN 1879
« Reply #11 on: Wednesday 14 November 12 22:21 GMT (UK) »

If you are looking for a particular name, please fire away I'm an Anglo-Zulu War fundi.

Isandlwana

On the off-chance, can you find the name Herbert Rowland Symons (or perhaps Simons), probably in one of the irregular or volunteer units? I've not found him in the Army List. He was born 1850 and spent some time in the RN, but did not pass for Lieutenant, not sure why not, and also spent time in India in the Police. A family source says he was involved in the Zulu War - and the source has yet to be proved wholly wrong on any claim, although some were just off-target.

Thanks a million

Graham
Simons Barrett Jaffray Waugh Langdale Heugh Meade Garnsey Evans Vazie Mountcure Glascodine Parish Peard Smart Dobbie Sinclair....
in Stirlingshire, Roxburghshire; Bucks; Devon; Somerset; Northumberland; Carmarthenshire; Glamorgan


Offline caro-dee

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Re: ANGLO ZULU WAR 11 JAN 1879
« Reply #12 on: Thursday 15 November 12 17:01 GMT (UK) »
Have just discovered this thread. How exciting!
I wonder if 'Isandlwana' is able to find any mention of my great grandfather Robert Whinham (sometimes spelt wrongly as Winham), Farrier Sergeant of N Battery, 5th Brigade, Royal Artillery who was killed at Isandlwana on 22 Jan. 
My grandmother, an only child, who was born on 24 April 1877 in Woolwich, never knew her father, but I wonder when exactly he left for South Africa and if he may have seen his child.  Granny was very proud of him and used to tell me he was the tallest man in the British Army, 6ft. 7.  Each of her four children was given the name Whinham as a middle name.
Is there any way of finding out where he was during the battle?
I attach (hopefully) his photograph.
Many thanks Caroline
Parsons-Somerset
Ballam-Dorset
Whinham-Northumberland
Frazier-Middlesex
Atwell-Somerset
Carrington-Norfolk
Harvey-Glos.

Offline John Young

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Re: ANGLO ZULU WAR 11 JAN 1879
« Reply #13 on: Thursday 15 November 12 20:32 GMT (UK) »
Graham,

Sorry no exact matches I'm afraid the Medal Roll shows some Simons & Symons, but none with those initials.

Sorry,

Isandlwana
...Neither praise nor blame add to their epitaph but like it be simple as that which marked Thermopylae.
Tell it in England those that pass us by, here, faithful to their charge, her soldiers lie.

Offline GrahamSimons

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Re: ANGLO ZULU WAR 11 JAN 1879
« Reply #14 on: Thursday 15 November 12 22:20 GMT (UK) »
Thank you ever so much for help in the hunt. As always a negative result is disappointing, but it does mean I have more research to do in order to complete the story of this man's life.
Simons Barrett Jaffray Waugh Langdale Heugh Meade Garnsey Evans Vazie Mountcure Glascodine Parish Peard Smart Dobbie Sinclair....
in Stirlingshire, Roxburghshire; Bucks; Devon; Somerset; Northumberland; Carmarthenshire; Glamorgan

Offline John Young

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Re: ANGLO ZULU WAR 11 JAN 1879
« Reply #15 on: Thursday 15 November 12 22:36 GMT (UK) »
Caroline,

Firstly an excellent photograph of your Great-Grandfather!  (I’m going to have to divide my reply to you over three posts afraid due to the word count.)

Farrier Sergeant 841 Robert Whinham, attested for the Army on 21st March 1866 at the age of 19 years.

N Battery, 5th Brigade, Royal Artillery - which was composed of five officers and 133 men - left Woolwich for South Africa on 9th January 1878.  The Battery embarked on the steamer Dublin Castle the following day for service in the 9th Cape Frontier War against the amaXhosa people in the Eastern Cape.  The ship arrived in Cape Town on 3rd February 1878.  Here the Battery divided with two officers, roughly a third of the other-ranks and two cannon going to the Colony of Natal, whilst the remainder of the battery were transported by sea to the port of East London and from there to King William's Town, which was the headquarters of the British & Colonial forces fighting the amaXhosa.

The 9th Cape Frontier War was in main a war of hit & run tactics by the amaXhosa, N/5 acted in support of the infantry on a number of occasions.  With the conclusion of the campaign in June 1878 the larger section of N/5 moved up through the Eastern Cape and on to Natal, a journey which took two months to complete.

The Battery were based at Fort Napier, Pietermaritzburg from September 1878 until November 1878, when they moved upcountry to the town of Greytown, in readiness for the Anglo-Zulu War.  The Anglo-Zulu War of 1879 came about due to the British Confederation Policy, this in turn led to the British High Commissioner for southern Africa Sir Henry Edward Bartle Frere issuing a series of demands on King Cetshwayo kaMpande, the King of the Zulu.  Demands which Frere know Cetshwayo could not, and would not accept.  Consequently on the expiry of an ultimatum on 11th January 1879 British forces invaded the sovereign kingdom of kwaZulu (Zululand).

N/5 were attached to No. 3 Column, which was accompanied by the General-Officer-Commanding British Forces in southern Africa, Lieutenant-General Lord Chelmsford.  No. 3 Column entered kwaZulu by crossing the Buffalo River at a crossing-point named Rorke's Drift.  Two other columns would enter kwaZulu in a pincher movement one from the south-east, the other from the north-west.  The aim of the three columns was to confront the Zulu army at Ulundi, the Zulu 'capital'.  After an initial skirmish with Zulu forces on 12th January 1879 at the homestead of a border chieftain named Sihayo kaXongo, No. 3 Column progressed slowly into the Zulu country.

On Monday 20th January 1879 the lumbering column reached the foot of a rocky crag called Isandlwana.  The men of the 24th Regiment of Foot, who provided the infantry arm of the column, could not help but recognize how the mountain resembled their Sphinx cap and collar badges, which had been awarded to the regiment to commemorate the campaign in Egypt against Bonaparte.

(To be cont.)
...Neither praise nor blame add to their epitaph but like it be simple as that which marked Thermopylae.
Tell it in England those that pass us by, here, faithful to their charge, her soldiers lie.

Offline John Young

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Re: ANGLO ZULU WAR 11 JAN 1879
« Reply #16 on: Thursday 15 November 12 22:43 GMT (UK) »
(Cont.)

The camp at Isandlwana was only meant to be a temporary staging-camp before a further advance into the Zulu heartland.  Therefore contrary to his own orders Lord Chelmsford did not establish a defensive wagon laager as he felt the Zulu threat lay nearer to the royal inkandla at Ulundi.  On Tuesday 21st January he ordered a two-pronged reconnaissance to probe the stronghold of Matshana kaMondisa.  Commandant Rupert Lonsdale took two battalions of the N.N.C. eastwards on one route, whilst Major John Dartnell took eighty of his Natal Mounted Police, together with fifty mounted volunteers on another.

In the late afternoon, Dartnell come into contact with Matshana’s forces.  He sent gallopers back to Isandlwana seeking assistance from Lord Chelmsford.  At 4.30a.m. on Wednesday, 22nd January 1879, Chelmsford divided No. 3 Column in order to reinforce Dartnell and Lonsdale.  Chelmsford took with him six companies of the 2nd Battalion, 24th Regiment, four cannon from N Battery, 5th Brigade Royal Artillery and most of the mounted infantry squadron. 

Left behind at Isandlwana were five companies of 1st/24th; one company of the 2nd/24th; two 7-pounder Rifled Muzzle Loading cannon and their crews from the Royal Artillery (including your Great-Grandfather); just over 100 mounted troops drawn from the Natal volunteer force and the British Mounted Infantry and some four hundred African troops from the Natal Native Contingent and their European officers and n.c.o.’s.  All of whom fell under the command of Brevet Lieutenant-Colonel Henry Pulleine of the 1st Battalion, 24th Regiment.  Pulleine was a career soldier, yet in 23 years of soldiering he had not seen a shot fired in anger.

At about 8am a large force of Zulu were sighted near the camp.  Pulleine throw out his infantry in a line in front of the camp with two guns of N/5 initially deployed to the left of the line.

At about 10am the British was reinforced by the arrival of part of No. 2 Column under the command of a Brevet Colonel Anthony Durnford, Royal Engineers who commanded a force of about 500 men, composed of African infantry and light cavalry, who were called the Natal Native Horse. 

Reports were coming of increasing Zulu activity. One report stated that a Zulu column was moving off in the direction that Lord Chelmsford had taken his half column. Fearful that the General’s force might be attacked on two fronts Durnford took matters into his own hands. He informed Pulleine that he intended to sweep the area thus drawing out the Zulus. He asked Pulleine for some of his infantry to assist him in the task. Pulleine objected to the request, again stating his task was to defend the camp. Durnford then asked for support should his force encounter difficulties to which acquiesced.
...Neither praise nor blame add to their epitaph but like it be simple as that which marked Thermopylae.
Tell it in England those that pass us by, here, faithful to their charge, her soldiers lie.

Offline John Young

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Re: ANGLO ZULU WAR 11 JAN 1879
« Reply #17 on: Thursday 15 November 12 22:44 GMT (UK) »
(Cont.)

Durnford sent two troops of his Native Horse off on to the Nquthu plateau, under the command of Captain William Barton. Whilst he himself went out with two troops of the Native Horse along the track the General’s half column had taken. Following in the wake of the horsemen came Major Francis Russell and a rocket battery - which including a Bombardier of N/5 - supported by 'D' Company, 1st/1st Natal Native Contingent .

A patrol of Native Horse, chanced upon the concealed Zulu impi of some 25,000 warriors in Ngwebeni valley, thereby pre-empting an attack which Ntshingwayo, the Zulu field commander, had planned for the following day.  The young warriors of the umCijo regiment, rose up and charged.  The izinDuna tried to stem the tide but only succeeded in keeping the uNdi corps in reserve.  Battle had commenced.

The Zulu formed into their traditional battle formation of the impondo zankomo – the horns of the beast.  The impi poured off of the plateau.

Initially the British firing-line, supported by the two guns of N/5 held, and the Zulu forces began to take a large number of casualties.  As they sheltered from the leaden storm, Mkhosana, an inkhosi of the Biyela clan stood up in contempt of the gunfire.  He yelled to those around him an order that has become a rallying cry to this day when people talk of the Zulu heroes of this battle.  He shouted “The Little Branch of Leaves That Extinguished the Fire – one of King Cetshwayo’s praise names – gave no such order to hide from these British!  - To arms!”  At which a British bullet drilled into his skull. 

Thousands of Zulu heard this rallying cry and took fresh heart.  They leaped to their feet and charged.  A hole was punched into the British defensive line and the fleet-of-foot warriors soon amongst the British and the colonial allies.

The British forces were forced to retreat on the camp, the firing line fractured into small isolated groups and pockets of resistance, one survivor stated they were like red-coated islands in a sea of black.  At the height of the battle a solar eclipse occurred adding to the horror.

It was over within about an hour, about 1,400 men on the British side were killed.  About eighty-five Europeans survived the battle.  Of the two officers and seventy men of N/5 who were in the camp, only one officer and nine men survived the action, their guns - the Colours of the Royal Artillery, so to speak - were lost to the Zulu, they were taken as trophies of war they were paraded before King Cetshwayo.

I was present on 22nd January 1999 when a memorial to the fallen of N Battery, 5th Brigade, Royal Artillery was unveiled on the battlefield of Isandlwana.

Sorry if this is a long-winded reply, but hopefully it goes some way to answer your question as to where your Great-Grandfather was. 

Regards,

Isandlwana
...Neither praise nor blame add to their epitaph but like it be simple as that which marked Thermopylae.
Tell it in England those that pass us by, here, faithful to their charge, her soldiers lie.