Post from beeza~maybe others with equal knowledge of Isandlwana and Rorke's Drift
I lived in Dundee Natal from 1955 [9 years old] until 1965 and in January 1956 found a seam of battlefield debris in a washed gulley in the centre of the Isandlawana battlefield with a friend. That day and later with George Bunting [then owner of Fugitives Drift Farm] and George Chadwick [Monuments Commission] we recovered numerous broken bottles and jars, melted buckles, ammunition box strapping and screws, small horseshoe shaped boot cleats, pieces of leather, a rocket tail-fin and even tent clasps and canvas cloth. It was said that this was the debris buried by the clean-up group that arrived in July 1879.
My father was a fertilizer salesman for the area and he would drop us off at the Isandlawana battlefield [and others in the area] in the morning and fetch us in the evening, leaving us to wander the site. I have visited the site many times over the decades, finding small relics on most occasions! My last find is a large bullet head at Younghusband’s cairn, thought to have been fired by a Zulu from an “elephant gun” perhaps bought illegally from a trader! As a youngster, I climbed around the face of the Hill to find the rocky indent where a soldier attempted to hide in vain. In my cupboard at home, I still have lumps of iron slag from an ancient Zulu foundry on the top of the Hill. My elder son is named Rorke for an obvious reason!
I have a similar passion and knowledge of the Ladysmith area related battles and the actual battlefields having spent holidays on a farm named Pepworth, a Long Tom site and location of the Boer headquarters during the siege.