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 Durnford's Watch

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John

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PostSubject: Durnford's Watch   Tue Nov 03, 2009 5:10 pm

Does anyone know where Durnfords watch is. It was removed from his body and had stopped at a certain time can't remember what the story was behind it.
But I was wondering if it was on display in a museum anywhere. Or is there a photograph of the watch.
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PostSubject: Re: Durnford's Watch   Wed Nov 04, 2009 8:48 pm

The 'Natal Almanac' for 1879 recorded that the partial eclipse of the sun began at about 1.10pm and the greatest took place at 2.29pm (Pietermaritzberg time) and ended at 3.50pm. Durnford's group lasted until, according to a Zulu with the Mcijo, 'the afternoon was well spent'. It does seem, however, that they could not have held on much longer than an hour. This would put their demise at approx. 2pm. The Zulus were looting the camp at about 2.30pm. Durnford's brother Edward reported later that the smashed watch recovered from Durnford's body had stopped at 3pm.

Source: Engineers and the Zulu War 1879
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PostSubject: Re: Durnford's Watch   Wed Nov 04, 2009 9:24 pm

Thanks for G. Did you find out if the watch in-question is on display anywhere.
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PostSubject: Re: Durnford's Watch   Thu Nov 05, 2009 8:27 am

Are they saying, that Durnfords watch had stopped at 3pm meaning on the 22nd January 1879. How can that be clarified. The watch could have stopped at 3am the next day.
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PostSubject: Re: Durnford's Watch   Thu Nov 05, 2009 7:47 pm

Littlehand
Quote :
Edward reported later that the smashed watch
most likely the watch stopped working when it was damaged during the Battle.
I have been looking to find the whereabouts of the watch. but with no joy.
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PostSubject: Re: Durnford's Watch   Thu Aug 04, 2011 10:44 am

Hi the watch if i remember was found by a civil surgeon who was attached to the 24th. It had been damaged and stopped at 3.30.
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PostSubject: Re: Durnford's Watch   Thu Aug 04, 2011 11:26 am

When Durnfords body was found, Shepston removed two rings and a knife. I dont recall mention of a watch. In similar vein when his body was removed to PMB for re burial I cant find any source that mentions a watch.
Are we sure that the watch story is not being confused with Melvills?

Could we have a source for the story please.

Most sources put Durnfords death at around 1.30 to 2.00

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PostSubject: Re: Durnford's Watch   Thu Aug 04, 2011 11:43 am

ANTHONY WILLIAM DURNFORD
COLONEL, ROYAL ENGINEERS.
Colonel Anthony William Durnford, who was killed at Isandlwana on 22 January 1879, was the eldest
son of General E.W. Durnford, Colonel Commandant, Royal Engineers. He was born on 24 May 1830, and was
educated chiefly in Germany. He entered the Royal Military Academy at Woolwich, in July 1846, and obtained
a commission as second lieutenant in the Royal Engineers on 27 June 1848; from Woolwich he proceeded to
Chatham, and remained there until December 1849, when he was ordered to Scotland, where he served at
Edinburgh and Fort George. In October 1851, he embarked for Ceylon, and upon his arrival was stationed at
Trincomalee; there he gave so much assistance to Admiral Sir F. Pellow, relative to the defenceless state of the
harbour, that the services he rendered were brought to the notice of the Master-General of the Ordnance by the
Lords of the Admiralty. In 1855 he entered upon civil in addition to military duties, being appointed Assistant
Commissioner of Roads and Civil Engineer to the Colony. Early in 1856 he proceeded to Malta, and was
employed there as Adjutant until February 1858, when he returned to England. After a short time spent at
Chatham and Aldershot he proceeded to Gibraltar in December 1860, when he again returned to England. In the
latter part of the same year he embarked for China, but was landed at Ceylon, suffering from heat apoplexy, and
was invalided home. From May 1865, until 1870, he served at Devonport, and then for a short period at Dublin.
At the end of 1871 he embarked for South Africa; upon his arrival he was employed for a short time at Cape
Town and King William’s Town, and the proceeded to Natal, where he formed one of the expedition that
accompanied the Minister for Native Affairs into Zululand to be present at the coronation of King Cetshwayo in
August 1873. He subsequently acted as Colonial Engineer in addition to performing his own duties, and under
his superintendence much valuable work was done for the Colony.
Colonel Durnford came prominently into public notice towards the close of 1873, at the time of the
Langalibalele affair, when he was the senior officer of Royal Engineers in Natal. He was ordered to proceed by
a forced night march into the Drakensberg Mountains to seize and hold the Bushman’s River Pass, to prevent
the escape of Chief Langalibalele, who was wanted by the colonial authorities for allegedly failing to surrender
firearms owned by his young men. Durnford supposed that he would be able to arrive there in one night, and he
started at dark with the Karkloof Carbineers under Captain Barter, twenty men of the Natal Carbineers, and
some twenty Basutos as guides. The greatest ignorance had prevailed as to the distance of the pass and the
impracticability of the way. Major Durnford found he had to cross an almost inaccessible mountain range, over
9,000 feet high, and to move along dangerous and most difficult ground. Nothing daunted, however, he pushed
on, and although he lost many men too exhausted to proceed, and nearly all the pack-horses with rations and
ammunition, and met with an accident by which his shoulder was dislocated and his head and body injured from
his horse falling over a precipice, he yet struggled on in the hope that he might arrive in time to effect his object.
He succeeded in reaching his destination at 5.30 a.m. on 4th November 1873, having been dragged up on the
Giant’s Castle Pass during the previous night by aid of a blanket, thirty-six hours instead of twelve after starting,
with only thirty-eight rank and file left, and all exhausted from fatigue and want of food. No sooner had he
formed across the mouth of the pass than he became aware that he was to late, and Langalibalele’s followers
were not only in front of him, but also on either flank. His orders were “not to fire the first shot;” so, attended
only by his interpreter; he went forward to endeavour to persuade them to return peaceably. This, however, they
refused to do, and the volunteers wavering, he at last reluctantly directed an orderly retreat to higher ground,
from which he could still command the pass. On a heavy fire being opened upon his force, the retreat became a
stampede: three of the Carbineers and one Basuto fell, the horse of the interpreter was killed, and Major
Durnford, while endeavouring to reach its rider by leaping over a deep gully, in order to lift him on to his own
horse, was surrounded and left alone, the interpreter being killed by his side. Shooting his assailants, who had
seized his horse’s bridle, he rode through the enemy, under a shower of bullets and assegais, receiving, besides
several minor wounds, one from an assegai through the left arm, near the elbow, which severed the muscles and
nerves, and from which he permanently lost the use of the limb. Rallying the Basutos and a few of the
Carbineers, he covered the retreat of the force, which was pursued as far as the Giant’s Castle Pass. The
headquarters camp was reached about 1 a.m. on the 5th. At 11 p.m. on that day, Major Durnford let out a
volunteer party (artillery with rockets, fifty men of the 75th Regiment, seven Carbineers, and thirty Basutos) to
the rescue of Captain Boyes, 75th Regiment, who had been sent out with a support were in danger, and he knew
the country, he determined to go. He was lifted on to his horse and left amid the cheers of the troops in camp.
Having marched all night – resting only from 3 to 5 a.m. – his force met that of Captain Boyes about m id-day.
For his conduct in this affair Major Durnford was thanked in Field Force Orders for his “courage and coolness.”
In 1874 he patrolled the country, and carried out by means of natives the demolition of the passes in the
Drakensberg Mountains in sever winter weather, restoring confidence among the colonists. For this service he
received the written thanks of the Local Government.
In July 1876, Colonel Durnford returned to England. He was mentioned in General Orders issued by
General Sir A. Cunynghame, on quitting the Cape; was thanked by the Colonial Office for his services in Natal,
and was recommended for a C.M.G. He was awarded a gratuity of one year’s pay as a Major for the wounds he
had received, and was subsequently granted a pension of £200 a year.
In February 1877, Colonel Durnford again embarked for Natal. He was one of the commissioners on the
disputed Zulu boundary, whose award restored to the Zulus a considerable portion of territory.
The engineer arrangements made before the commencement of the Zulu war, viz., raising, equipping, and
training three companies of African pioneers, organising two field parks, and providing complete bridge
equipment for crossing the Thukela, were all the work of Colonel Durnford, and show the same earnestness of
purpose and energy that have always distinguished him.
When war was declared against the Zulus, Colonel Durnford received the command of the No. 2
Column, consisting of three battalions Natal Native Contingent, of 1,000 men each, five troops of mounted
natives (the Natal Native Horse), and a rocket battery under Captain Russell, R.A.
In a letter from one of his brother officers, written from the Cape just before the receipt of the news of his
death, Colonel Durnford is thus alluded to: -“From long residence in the Colony, and from having commanded
native contingents during former outbreaks, Colonel Durnford has great influence over the natives of Natal and
Basutoland, many men coming hundreds of miles to serve under him.”
The headquarters of No. 2 Column were at Fort Buckingham. On 16 January 1879, Colonel Durnford
was ordered to take a part of his force about thirty miles farther up the river to guard the frontier, as raids were
expected, and a few days later to move up to Rorke’s Drift. On 22 January he was ordered to move up to
Isandlwana, where the General had encamped on the 20th.
He arrived about 10.30 a.m. Zulus had been sighted moving about in the immediate neighbourhood of the
camp, and one column of their force was reported to be retiring in the direction in which Lord Chelmsford had
moved in the morning. Apprehending that this column was threatening to cut off the General’s force from his
camp, Colonel Durnford, with a portion of his mounted men, followed it. Two troops which he had previously
sent on to reconnoitre a range of hills on the left and the valley beyond, after proceeding about five miles, met
the Zulu army, numbering at least 20,000, and the officer in command at once rode back to warn the camp.
Colonel Durnford and the force with him slowly retired before the advancing horde, fighting, in good order, on
to broken ground and a watercourse in front of the camp, and formed to the right of the 24th Regiment. This
position was held as long as the ammunition lasted; when it failed, Colonel Durnford withdrew the mounted
men to the right of the camp, and galloped towards the 24th, to endeavour to concentrate the force. The Zulu
army at this moment, dashing forward in the most rapid manner, surrounded the regiment, and the survivors
retreated by the right rear. For months little was known of the later events of the fatal day, beyond the fact that
firing was seen up to nearly four o’clock. Colonel Durnford’s watch was by chance taken from his body at dawn
on the 23rd; it had been injured, and had stopped at 3.40 p.m. On May the 21st, General Marshall made a
reconnaissance to Isandlwana.
Colonel Durnford’s body, surrounded by those of fourteen of the Carbineers and
their officer, Lieutenant Scott, a few Mounted Police, and about thirty soldiers, was discovered at the mouth of
the nek on the right of the camp: there the little force had made a last stand, and had given their lives away in
order to afford their comrades in arms a chance of retreat; it must have been within fifty yards of them over the
nek, that the rush was made to escape. Colonel Durnford’s body was temporarily interred close to where he fell;
it was subsequently removed, and buried with military honours at Pietermaritzburg, on October 12th.
His commissions bore date as follows: -

Second Lieutenant June 27th 1848.
First Lieutenant February 17th 1854.
Second Captain March 18th 1858.
First Captain January 5th 1864.
Major July 5th 1872.
Lieut.Colonel December 11th 1873.
Brevet-Colonel December 11th 1878.

Source: The South Africa Campaign of 1878/1879 By Ian Knight and Dr Adrian Greaves.

Springbok if you attended the exhibition on the 17th September. You could ask them about his watch....
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Frank Allewell

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PostSubject: Re: Durnford's Watch   Thu Aug 04, 2011 12:48 pm

Hi Mr G
Sorry I will be in NZ watching some rugby at that time.

Thanks for the post. Something niggles about it though. Firstly it says it was taken from his body at dawn on the 23rd.
As far as Im aware it was only on the visit by Marshall that his body was found, long after. Shepstone is credited with the find and he removed two rings and a watch and argueably some documents. No mention other than that account of a watch.
If the body had been identified on the 23rd, by whom? Yet again if the body was searched why not take the rings and knife as well?
Do you know of any other references to a watch?

Regards
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PostSubject: Re: Durnford's Watch   Thu Aug 04, 2011 1:43 pm

I've no sources at hand for this. Durnford's watch was removed by someone on the night of 22/23, but they did not recognise the body, apart from mentioning it was tangled in a scarlet waistcoat. It was kept in their possession for a time, eventually being identified as Durnford's and passed on to the family. Daughter ? But it vanished, much in the same way as his daughter disappeared into history. I'm of the notion it not only still exists, but is hidden amongst someone's long-forgotten belongings, or is in private ownership, perhaps purchased during hard-times through an auction sometime in the past. Trace through various auction record archives ? It is possible that the now owner doesn't know it's history, therefore not brought it forward for study.
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PostSubject: Re: Durnford's Watch   Thu Aug 04, 2011 2:24 pm

Hi Colin
Thats the problem, lots of rumour about the watch but no source material. If the watch was removed from his body during the dawn period, without comment or admission its down to grave robbing really.
My other issue is that if Durnford was wearing a red waste coat under his tunic, not reported before then so who ever spotted it and took the watch has virtually undressed the corpse. Surely that would have been spotted by the last person to leave the camp that morning, that was Maxwells group.

Regards
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PostSubject: Re: Durnford's Watch   Thu Aug 04, 2011 2:38 pm

Colin

Some time ago CTSG posted a family tree of the Durnford family, Im sure he chronicles the life of all the Durnford children and offspring.
It was under the title of the Durnford Family line.

Regards
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PostSubject: Re: Durnford's Watch   Thu Aug 04, 2011 3:44 pm

I read somewhere. He lost his watch in a game of cards on the 21st Jan 1879.
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PostSubject: Re: Durnford's Watch   Thu Aug 04, 2011 6:25 pm

Because of limitations put on the soldiers in the camp on the night of the 22nd about roaming about, there does seem to have been some officers allowed to wander around, though not too far from the main body. The person who found the watch, appears to be have been a doctor, his surname evades me at the present. It strikes me that he may have took this opportunity to search for wounded, or at least find some personal belongings to ease any of the families' suffering, knowing their relative's body was indeed located in the vicinity of the battleground. Hard to tell. The patrol jacket was seemingly already open, the red of the waistcoat catching his attention in the lantern-light. Perhaps recognised as a mess waistcoat only known to be worn by officers ?
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PostSubject: Re: Durnford's Watch   Thu Aug 04, 2011 7:35 pm

Hi, the name of the person who took the watch was cival surgeon Thrupp who was attatched to the 24th. He was wondering round the field of the dead when he stumled across the body of a Royal engineer officer and seeing his watch took it from the body. Later when he tried to trace the owner he discovered it to be Durnfords.
Source from Ian Nights Zulu Rising
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littlehand

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PostSubject: Re: Durnford's Watch   Thu Aug 04, 2011 8:43 pm

James Godfrey Thrupp.
Source- [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]










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PostSubject: Re: Durnford's Watch   Thu Aug 04, 2011 9:23 pm

James Godfrey Thupp was a famous surgeon in the Zulu Wars.

Click Here:
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littlehand

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PostSubject: Re: Durnford's Watch   Thu Aug 04, 2011 9:43 pm

Click Here The unknown horn of Africa
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90th

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PostSubject: Durnford's Watch   Fri Aug 05, 2011 3:31 am

The following from ' Red Earth - The Royal Engineers And The Zulu War 1879 ''

'' Poor Durnford was easily recognisable , as he had on his mess waistcoat, from the pocket of which Shepstone took a small
pocketknife with his name on it ; two rings were taken from the Dead man's hand , and presented with the knife, for transmission
to his family '' - Charles Norris - Newman , 1880. Present on the patrol to identify bodies , Isandlwana , February 1879 .
cheers 90th.


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PostSubject: Durnford's Watch   Fri Aug 05, 2011 3:12 pm

Hi All .
From a friend.

[url=From Durnford's obituary in Mackinnon and Shadbolt's 'The South African Campaign 1879' - 'Colonel Durnford's watch was by chance taken from his body at dawn on the 23rd; it had been injured, and had stopped at 3.40 PM'. Edward Durnford was probably the source of the information in the obituary, and he certainly mentioned the watch again elsewhere.
cheers 90th.
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PostSubject: Durnford's watch   Fri Sep 02, 2011 8:48 am

My husband's great -great uncle was the civil surgeon , James Godfrey Thrupp, who took the watch from Durnford's body on the morning after the battle. He later wrote about his experiences in volume 2 of a victorian novel " the New Dance of Death" which he co-authored under his pen-name of J G Lefebre ( Lefebre was his mother's maiden name) with Alfred Egmont Hake. My husband has his g-g-uncle's own copy, in which 40 pages are heavily annotated and signed as true eyewitness accounts of Isandlwana and Rorke's Drift. This includes a section of the taking of a watch from the Colonel's body. Thrupp did not personally know Durnford and did not recognise him, but some month's later discovered his identity and returned the watch to the Durnford family. The book is still available on Amazon.
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PostSubject: Re: Durnford's Watch   Fri Sep 02, 2011 9:15 am

MFletcher

Hi and Welcome to the forum
The annotations in your husbands copy of the book.
Wow thousands of questions
What do they refer to?
Who are they signed by.
Are they fully legible?
Any way they could be scanned and publish on the forum?

Im sure there are many many forum members that would love to see those comments.

regards
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PostSubject: Re: Durnford's Watch   Fri Sep 02, 2011 11:44 am

That is very interesting news considering Dr Thrupp must have been the first person to see Durnford's body not long after the battle, which in itself makes it an important historical event. I've not heard details of the book before, but one wonders if he had further contact with the Durnford family after returning the watch. Thanks for sharing these details.
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PostSubject: Re: Durnford's Watch   Fri Sep 02, 2011 12:32 pm

[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]

Just been entering various words. I really think this book as eye-witness accounts we have seen before. I'm going to order mine right now.
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PostSubject: Re: Durnford's Watch   Fri Sep 02, 2011 7:42 pm

Yes i would love to see the account of the watch being found if this is possible.


Last edited by Drummer Boy 14 on Wed Sep 28, 2011 7:52 pm; edited 1 time in total
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90th

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PostSubject: Durnford's Watch   Sat Sep 03, 2011 2:17 am

Hi Littlehand.
I've ordered my copy as well .
cheers 90th. Idea .
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PostSubject: Re: Durnford's Watch   Sat Sep 03, 2011 9:48 am

Must admit. I had never heard of this book before.
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90th

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PostSubject: Durnford's Watch   Sat Sep 03, 2011 9:57 am

Littlehand that makes two of us !!.
cheers 90th. Idea .
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PostSubject: Re: Durnford's Watch   Tue Oct 18, 2011 4:03 pm

A little more on the watch,

Thrupp found it on Durnfords body early in the morning.

All he could make out was that
the face was whiskered and the man was from the Royal Engineers.

He kept the watch for some time then tried to find an owner, he posted a drawing in
the Natal Witness, but the deawing was done wrong and no one came forward.

After around 2 months Sir Bartle Frere suggested he take it to the Colonsoes who reconized it at once.

Cheers DB14


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PostSubject: Re: Durnford's Watch   Tue Oct 18, 2011 4:46 pm

DB14.
Where is the source for this information. Idea
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Drummer Boy 14

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PostSubject: Re: Durnford's Watch   Tue Oct 18, 2011 5:16 pm

Hi Mr Greaves

It comes from page 440 of the Washing of the spears by Donald Morris.



I know the book is old and the battle scences are not true but this account sounds trustworthy also it ties in with
all the rest of the imfomation i read on the topic of the watch.


Regards DB14
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PostSubject: Re: Durnford's Watch   Wed Oct 19, 2011 12:45 pm

" BiSHOPSTOWE, March 23, 1879.

..." Yesterday Dr. Thrupp (a civilian from London, who came out as special surgeon for one year and is going home again) called here and brought a watch which he had taken from the body of an officer on the morning of January 23, to see if we could recognise it. It was Colonel Durnford's. The body was found lying within the camp, near to the hospital, with some two hundred others lying around him. It was not mutilated. ... It is strange that two months have passed before this fact has reached us, though we have made all manner of inquiries. This has apparently arisen from Dr. Thrupp's want of personal acquaintance with Colonel Durnford, whom he had only seen once before".


Source: BISHOP COLENSO
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PostSubject: Re: Durnford's Watch   Wed Oct 19, 2011 1:00 pm

Thanks Littlehand very interesting


Cheers DB14
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PostSubject: Re: Durnford's Watch   Wed Oct 19, 2011 2:30 pm

Of course, it doesn't tell up if "Thrupp" left the watch with the Colenso's. It would be nice to think that it was given to "Fanny Colenso" based on their relationship. And for all we know it could be buried with her on the Isle of White. (Only Time will Tell) No pun meant.!!!
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PostSubject: Re: Durnford's Watch   Sat Jan 14, 2012 2:49 pm

The watch had been stopped by blood by the time it was taken on the 23rd.





Cheers
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PostSubject: thrupp's eyewitness account of the Zulu wars and his removal of Durnford's watch   Thu Feb 16, 2012 7:46 pm

I have just consigned the book " The New Dance of Death" for auction by Bloomsbury Auctions. The book contains an autobiographical account of Dr James Godfrey Thrupp's experiences in the Zulu wars including a description of the finding of Durnford's body and his removal of the watch. The book has about 40 pages devoted to Islandhlwana and Rorke's drift with a number of annotations explaining exactly which parts (most) are eyewitness accounts and where he has fantasised( very little). The annotations are signed in his pen name JG Lefebre (mother's name) and again as JG Thrupp. He is my husband's great-great uncle. We want the book to go to someone who understands how important this document is.

If you are interested - look out for the book on the Bloomsbury site.
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ADMIN

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PostSubject: Re: Durnford's Watch   Thu Feb 16, 2012 8:16 pm

Thanks Mfletcher.

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PostSubject: Re: Durnford's Watch   Fri Feb 17, 2012 6:01 am

Thats a book that interests me, no sign of it yet on the web site. Is there any further information as to when It will be listed?

Regards
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PostSubject: Thrupp's book - I only took it in yesterday.    Fri Feb 17, 2012 1:51 pm

springbok9 wrote:
Thats a book that interests me, no sign of it yet on the web site. Is there any further information as to when It will be listed?

Regards
I took the book to the auction house yesterday. Bloomsbury auctions 24 Maddox St London.
Simon Luterbacher is dealing with it - you can email him on [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]. He won't put it into auction until I give him the background details to Dr Thrupp - I am trying to sort out all that information now.


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M Fletcher
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PostSubject: wrong bloomsbury!   Fri Feb 17, 2012 1:54 pm

Admin wrote:
Thanks Mfletcher.

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Hi

The book is with Bloomsbury Auctions of Maddox st London
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not bloomsbury publishers

regards

M Fletcher
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old historian2

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PostSubject: Re: Durnford's Watch   Fri Feb 17, 2012 4:58 pm

Click on link trying hard to locate book, No luck. Can anyone help
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PostSubject: Re: Durnford's Watch   Fri Feb 17, 2012 5:07 pm

old historian2 wrote:
Click on link trying hard to locate book, No luck. Can anyone help

Its not up for auction yet Salute
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PostSubject: Re: Durnford's Watch   Fri Feb 17, 2012 5:14 pm

Good answer. Problem solved. Salute
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PostSubject: Civil Surgeon Thrupp Book auction - Durnford's watch   Mon May 07, 2012 4:59 pm

I have just consigned a book for sale at Bloomsbury Auctions on 14 June 2012- members might be interested and I was asked by a member to let him know. It comes from my husband's great uncle James Godfrey Thrupp who was a Civil Surgeon, writing under the pen ame of JG Lefebre.
James Godfrey Thrupp (J.G. Thrupp) was the grandson of Joseph Thrupp the coach builder of Grosvenor Square. He wrote under his own name and his mother's maiden name - Lefebre. As well as being a member of the Royal College of Surgeons, Thrupp was a traveller and explorer. He joined Frank Linsley James as the medical officer for an expediation to the Sudan and is featured throughout James' book , 'The Unknown Horn of Africa'. From this expedition he brought back a number of new plants as is listed as a contrbutor to the Royal Botanical Gardens at Kew.
In 1878Thrupp joined the Zulu War as a Civil Surgeon, attached to Glyn's Column; he is mentioned in General Orders during the Zulu Wars, as follows:
No. 219, dated 10th December 1878, Times of Natal 13th December 1878.
7. Civil Surgeon Thrupp will take over medical charge of the 1-24th Regiment, in place of Civil Surgeon Hartley, reported sick.

District Order No. 9, dated 26th April 1879, Natal Mercury, 29th April 1879.
8. Civil Surgeon Thrupp will proceed on horseback to Ladysmith, where he is to report his arrival to the senior medical officer for duty.


Thrupp wrote 'The New Dance of Death' with Alfred Egmont Hake. Sections appear to be an autobiographical account of Thrupp's own experiences at Islanhlwana and Rorke's Drift, including the finding of Colonel Durnford's body and the removal of his watch (which is supported by the contemporary account of Bishop Colenso - see below *). The book has about 40 pages devoted to these two battle places with a number of pencil annotations explaining which parts are eyewitnes accounts ( most) and which are fantasy (very little) and signed in both his real name JG Thrupp and his pen name JG Lefebre.





*BiSHOPSTOWE, March 23, 1879.

..." Yesterday Dr. Thrupp (a civilian from London, who came out as special surgeon for one year and is going home again) called here and brought a watch which he had taken from the body of an officer on the morning of January 23, to see if we could recognise it. It was Colonel Durnford's. The body was found lying within the camp, near to the hospital, with some two hundred others lying around him. It was not mutilated. ... It is strange that two months have passed before this fact has reached us, though we have made all manner of inquiries. This has apparently arisen from Dr. Thrupp's want of personal acquaintance with Colonel Durnford, whom he had only seen once before".

Source: BISHOP COLENSO
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Ulundi

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PostSubject: Re: Durnford's Watch   Mon May 07, 2012 9:01 pm

I thought Edward Durnford, found his watch. scratch
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PostSubject: Re: Durnford's Watch   Mon May 07, 2012 9:07 pm

Edward Durnford was Anthonys his brother, he was sent the watch by the Colonso family.




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PostSubject: Re: Durnford's Watch   Mon May 07, 2012 9:35 pm

Going by what I have read. Thrupp would have participated in the chilling return to Isandlwana that evening, slept somehwere on the battlefield, and would have been one of the last to arrive at Rorke's Drift the following morning.

He didn't know the officers name from whom he took it. What was he doing searching bodies in the first place, and removing items of value. He would have gone throught the pockets.
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PostSubject: Re: Durnford's Watch   Mon May 07, 2012 9:46 pm

looking for a way to identify the body?
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PostSubject: Re: Durnford's Watch   Mon May 07, 2012 10:52 pm

Regarding those that spent the night at Isandlwana,I'm sure orders were issued, along the lines that no one was to move about the camp. If Thrupp was one of the last to leave perhaps he took advantage of the fact. Also he must have know Durnford. And as Durnford wasn't mutilated in anyway, he would have been easy to recognise. After all months later he was still recognisable.
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PostSubject: Re: Durnford's Watch   Tue May 08, 2012 6:02 pm

From Ian Knight

It was common for men finding the bodies of dead officers to search them for private effects in Victorian times; of course, at that point soldiers did not wear dog-tags, and the only way to identify the body of someone unknown to you was to see what they had on them. Thus Surgeon Thrupp was acting in a pretty standard way when he searched Durnford's body on the evening of the 22nd; he would have recognised Durnford as an officer, if he stumbled across him, by his patrol jacket, and a watch was a fairly obvious thing to look for.



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