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 Ntombi River.

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John

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PostSubject: Ntombi River.   Mon Nov 09, 2009 8:31 pm

Captain Moriarty was in command of a supply train, which was attacked. Where was he going to or coming from. Was it wise to travel undermanned in Zulu territory, And why did he dived his forces. Some on one side of the river and the others on the other side.
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Mr Greaves

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PostSubject: Re: Ntombi River.   Mon Nov 09, 2009 9:02 pm

12th march 1879 Chief Mbilini lie in wait as supply column, under command of Capt. Moriarty, that was heading for Khambula to restock Col Sir Evelyn Woods left Flank Column.

Moriarty only managed to get some of the wagons over the Ntombi River; before it flooded forcing Moriarty to spend several days waiting for the waters to recede. The British laager was poorly fortified and was ambushed by the Zulus Commanded by Mbilini, a force of 800 Zulus, who unseen due to morning mist, approached the camp within 50 meters, then rushed the defences killing 60 men, including Moriarty.

The men on the south bank fired on the Zulus, forcing them into retreat, and pursuing them for some distance. But the fleeing Zulus turned around and despoiled the train.
British lost 73 officers and other ranks, while the Zulu casualties were negligible.

Its worth mentioning that after Moriarty death, “Lt. Howard took charge, but he decided to ride off and fetch help leaving Colour-Sergeant Booth with about 40 of his men fighting against the approaching Zulus who were crossing over the river to the south bank. After their fighting retreat, which covered a distance of over 3 miles, most of Booth's men eventually returned safely to Luneburg. Before then, Harward had reached Luneburg and gasped out "All slaughtered!” Major Tucker, with about 150 mounted men, galloped to the Ntombi and on his return he recorded "dense masses of Zulus and dead men". Colour Sergeant Booth was later awarded the VC.”
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Frank Allewell

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PostSubject: Re: Ntombi River.   Tue Nov 10, 2009 7:23 am

Lt Howard was charged with cowadice in the face of the enemy and dereliction of duty.
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Mr Greaves

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PostSubject: Re: Ntombi River.   Tue Nov 10, 2009 8:21 am

I'.m sure I read that Howard was aqquited. But a high racking officer (can't remember his name) announced the fact that Howard had left his his men, while took off on his horse. The problem was he announced this infront of the whole Regiment. Howard was not seen again after that.

G.
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90th

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PostSubject: ntombi   Tue Nov 10, 2009 9:35 am

hi all.
Harward was indeed exonerated , but Wolseley was the one responsible for the reading out of the charge in
front of all the British line regts in all corners of the globe. Harward resigned his commission and quietly slipped
away. Wolseley did this even after howard was acquitted and in my way of thinking , RIGHTFULLY SO.
After all he did leave his men and took the only horse !!!!. Tucker also tried to cover it up somewhat as he
and Harward were on good terms. The truth of the whole affair came out months later .
cheers 90th.
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PostSubject: Re: Ntombi River.   Tue Nov 10, 2009 12:49 pm

90 th , i agree completely with that - rightly so .

But at Ishandlwana certain officers also left on horseback and ended up being awarded VCs , something which i have never been satisfied with .
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Frank Allewell

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PostSubject: Re: Ntombi River.   Tue Nov 10, 2009 2:16 pm

The endless debate Gary. Personally I agree with you, and Wolsley. However it is argued that the officers that left from Ishandlawana did so when there was no other option. Essex was in fact the only line officer that did leave the battlefield, the rest were all ancilliary to a degree. Ive always had a problem with the timeline with Mellville and Coghill. Harwood was extremely lucky to escape sensure.

Regards
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keith4698



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PostSubject: Re: Ntombi River.   Tue Nov 10, 2009 3:24 pm

The order that the actions of Lt Halward should be read out to all units of the British Army came from the
only officer who could issue such a order the Commander in Chief the Duke of Cambridge whilst he did not
like Wolseley they did both agree about this.

I do not see any problem with the officers who got away from lshandlwana as none had direct command of
troops apart from Curling and with the RA of course the most important action is to try and save the guns
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Saul David 1879



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PostSubject: Re: Ntombi River.   Tue Nov 10, 2009 3:45 pm

Gentlemen. Why were so many killed on fugitives trail. Because they were rallying to the colours. Trouble was they could not keep-up with those, who had the colours.
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Frank Allewell

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PostSubject: Re: Ntombi River.   Tue Nov 10, 2009 3:53 pm

SD A gentle touch of Irony I feel.

Kieth
Essex was a line officer.

Regards
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24th

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PostSubject: Re: Ntombi River.   Tue Nov 10, 2009 7:34 pm

When Chelmsford heard of this disaster he was furious. Lieutenant Harward was court martialled a year later, accused of abandoning his men and not having laagered the camp. He was acquitted, having put up a strong case in which he pointed out that he only had 2 wagons, therefore could not laager. He was the only man with a horse and had he not ridden for help, the probability was that the whole force would have been slaughtered, not just Moriarty's force on the north bank. Before the court martial convened, Colour Sergeant Booth was awarded the Victoria Cross.

When General Sir Garnet Wolseley learnt of Harward's acquittal, he refused to condone the findings, and stated "Had I accepted the verdict it would have been a tacit acknowledgement that I concurred in what appears to me a monstrous theory, viz, that a regimental officer, who is the only officer present with a party of soldiers actually and seriously engaged with the enemy, can, under any pretext whatever, be justified in deserting them, and by so doing, leaving them to their fate. The more helpless a position in which an officer finds his men, the more it is his bounden duty to stay and share their fortune, whether for good or ill. It is because the British officer has always done so that he possesses the influence he does in the ranks of our army. The soldier has learnt to feel, that come what may, he can in the direst moment of danger look with implicit faith to his officer, knowing that he will never desert him under any possible circumstances. And went on to say It is to this faith of the British soldier in his officers that we owe most of the gallant deeds recorded in our military annals, and it is because the verdict of this court martial strikes at the root of this faith, that I feel it necessary to mark officially, my emphatic dissent from the theory upon which the verdict has been found."

Harsh words, but words similar to those he would use when he learnt that staff and transport officers who had survived the Battle of ISandlwana by leaving the field early, had later claimed that they had no command and could therefore save themselves. Lieutenant Harward had however returned to duty.

The Duke of Cambridge approved of Wolseley's comments and ordered the findings and Wolseley's comments to be read at the head of every regiment in Her Majesty's service.
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24th

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PostSubject: Re: Ntombi River.   Tue Nov 10, 2009 7:40 pm

The death of Moriarty.

Moriarty was surrounded by a number of warriors but fought his way down the side of the laager to the river, killing 2 Zulu with his revolver and snatching an assegai from one that he'd shot. Once his revolver was empty he thrust and stabbed with the assegai at those assaulting him, receiving an assegai wound and bullet in his chest, he fell shouting I’m done. Fire away boys. Death or glory, as an assegai ended his life.

Avery brave man. I bet his men remembered his last words, until their dying day. I would have if I had been there and lived.. Moriarty was a real soldier.
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Dave

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PostSubject: Re: Ntombi River.   Tue Nov 10, 2009 8:16 pm

Colour-Sergeant Booth was awarded the VC. But he had 40 men with him, they were in the same boat as Booth, did any of them receive an award.
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PostSubject: Re: Ntombi River.   Tue Nov 10, 2009 9:32 pm

Hi Dave, this might help.

Medal Entitlement: Victoria Cross, India General Service Medal (1854-95) (Clasp: Perak), South Africa Medal (1877-79) (Clasps: 1877-9, 1877-8-9), Army Long Service & Good Conduct Medal
VC Action: Anthony Clarke Booth VC (21 April 1846- 8 December 1899) was 32 years old, and a sergeant in the 80th Regiment of Foot (Staffordshire Volunteers) (later The South Staffordshire Regiment), British Army during the Zulu War when the following deed took place for which he was awarded the Victoria Cross.

British Zulu Wars Victoria Cross Recipient. Born in Carrington, in Nottinghamshire, he joined the 80th Regiment (the South Staffordshire Regiment) and served as a Sergeant during the Zulu War.

On 12 March 1879 on the Intombe River (also Intombi River), South Africa, during the Battle of Ntombe (or Battle of Intombe), during an attack by very large numbers of Zulus, Sergeant Booth rallied a few men on the south bank of the river and covered the retreat of 50 soldiers and others for a distance of three miles. Had it not been for the coolness displayed by Sergeant Booth not one man would have escaped.

Booth was promoted the following day to Colour-Sergeant, to replace a soldier of that rank who had been killed in the action.

The gazetting of his VC was delayed due to the fact the surviving officer from the action Lt. Henry Hollingworth Harward was court-martialled for cowardice, the trial commenced on 20 February 1880 and concluded on 27 February 1880, during the course of the trial Booth's award appeared in the London Gazette on 24 February 1880.

G.
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old historian2

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PostSubject: Re: Ntombi River.   Tue Nov 10, 2009 11:29 pm

If it’s any consolation. Harward resigned his commission in May 1880. His career was finished. Wink
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90th

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PostSubject: Ntombi river .   Wed Nov 11, 2009 12:50 am

Hi 24th .
If i remember rightly , Moriarty was killed as he came out of his tent , but he did manage to squeeze off some
rounds before being assagaid , and yes, he did indeed say those famous last words ...
The following is from " A STAFFORDSHIRE REGT IN THE ZULU AND SEKUKUNI CAMPAIGNS OF 78-79
80 TH REGT OF FOOT by Robert Hope. " Capt Moriarty rushed from his tent just outside the laager to be
surrounded by the enemy . He shot dead 3 of them , before he fell , wounded by a thrown assegai, and then
was hit by gunfire . As he fell dying , he cried out , " Fire away boys ! Death or glory !. Within a couple of
minutes the doctor , the majority of the enlisted men , along with the black drivers and the wagon conductors had
all been killed ".
The following passage from NTOMBE - THE BLOODY AFFAIR AT MYERS DRIFT by Mark Hobson.


" One of the first to appear from his tent was Moriarty himself , yelling , " guards turn out ", he then spun to face the
nearest zulus . Armed with his revolver he shot 3 dead - all strangely enough , sons of MANYANYOBA - but in seconds
was surrounded by more warriors . Discarding his empty sidearm he snatched up an assagai and began to battle his way
down the side of the lager , trying desperately to join those fighting inside . He was struck by a flung assagai , which hit him in the back, but staggered on until he was shot in the chest seconds later , managing to cry out " Fire away boys , Death or Glory !
I"m done !, before he slumped forward over one of the disselbooms . A further spear thrust finished him " .

cheers 90th.
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PostSubject: Re: Ntombi River.   Wed Nov 11, 2009 7:19 am

Springbok 9

Essex was employed as a staff officer, he was not serving with his own Regiment and did not have a field
command

Regards

Keith
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John

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PostSubject: Re: Ntombi River.   Wed Nov 11, 2009 7:32 am

Was the same Zulu ritual carry out on the bodies of the British Soldiers at this battle, as it was at Isandlwana another thing I find odd is, that we know what happened to the bodies at Isandlwana with reference to burial, and we have seen detailed accounts from those that walked the Battlefield among the dead. But there seems to be very little on the other battles. How long did the dead lay in the open at Intomi before they were layed to rest.
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90th

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PostSubject: Ntombi river .   Wed Nov 11, 2009 8:36 am

hi john .
If I remember rightly , when Major Tucker arrived with the relief force the zulus had already gone , and the
dead had been " cut up " , he buried them straight away. I seem to remember the zulus exhumed them the
same day , and when the british went back a day after , they buried them again.
cheers 90th.
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PostSubject: Re: Ntombi River.   Wed Nov 11, 2009 10:13 pm

Just a few points to discuss for those interested.

On the 7th, Tucker dispatched Captain David Moriarty with a hundred men to gather together all the wagons and laager them on the bank of the Intombe, and then gave orders for them to wait until the river went down.

Tucker only sent 100 men (Was this enough)

On the 11th of March, Tucker inspected the laager at the river but found it to be poorly constructed, not being impressed with the inverted 'V' shape in that the wagons were arranged, with the base at the river. The river however, had gone down and there was a gap of several yards between the base and the river. Other flaws in the arrangement were viewed by Tucker as affording no 'protection whatever in the event of the Zulus attacking in numbers'. Furthermore, the garrison was weakened by the fact that thirty of its number was camped on the other bank of the river.

Tucker comments on the construction of the Laager and the dividing of the men. But fails to rectify the problems.

On the night of the 11th, two sentries were stationed 20 yards from the laager, however their vision range was only 50 yards due to a rise to their front.

Did Moriarty not see this for himself? Did he have a military background? Or are we looking at another admin clerk.


At 3.30am on the 12th, a shot was heard close to the camp, however the men returned to their beds after Moriarty decided that it was nothing.

Moriarty could have posted more sentries but failed to take any action. And went back to bed.

An hour and a half later, a sentry on the far bank saw to his horror, through a clearing in the mist, a huge mass of Zulus advancing silently on the camp. 'He at once fired his rifle and gave the alarm,'

To Late.

Tucker recorded. "'The sentries on the other side did the same. Of course the men were up in a moment, some men sleeping under the wagons and some in the tents; but before the men were in their positions the Zulus had fired a volley, thrown down their guns... and were around the wagons and on top of them, and even inside with the cattle, almost instantly. So quickly did they come, there was really no defence on the part of our men; it was simply each man fighting for his life, and in a few minutes all was over, our men being simply slaughtered."

Being one of the first to die, Moriarty was struck in the back with an assegai as he charged out of his tent, shooting dead three Zulus with a revolver. He was shot while trying to climb the laager. His last words were 'I am done; fire away, boys.' However, few managed to put up any resistance, sharing a similar fate.

Why was Tucker sent to Lüneberg in the first place?

Because the Zulus posed a serious threat to the area (as indicated by a vicious night attack on the area on the night of 10th/11th of February). Fearing a repeat of the attack, the British dispatched four companies of the 80th Regiment under Major Charles Tucker to garrison Lüneberg.

Tucker must have known why he had been sent there,


In late February, a convoy of eighteen wagons was sent from Lydenburg to re-supply the garrison, and from the Transvaal a single company escorted border. By 5 March the convoy was still 8 miles from Lüneberg, having been hampered by rains which caused the rivers to swell and the ground to soften. Fearing a Zulu attack, Major Tucker sent an order for to the company commander to reach Lüneberg that night 'at any cost'.

Unfortunately, the company commander took this literally and abandoned the wagons and proceeded on. This company commander should have been in total command. Not Tucker

The escort had succeeded in having six wagons reach the opposite bank of the Intombe, four miles from Lüneberg. Six other wagons were three miles further back.

Could they not of off loaded the supplies, leaving anything that was not important, I don’t think the Zulu’s would have been to interested in the wagons anyway.
If I had to blame anyone it would be Major Tucker for making nothing but wrong decisions, and putting the price of wagons above human life. And for putting Moriarty in command
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Saul David 1879



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PostSubject: Re: Ntombi River.   Wed Nov 11, 2009 10:22 pm

CTSG Don't forget those famous words from your hero. ""I can't understand it, I left a thousand men there". It seems they just can't get their numbers right. Wink I bet one day we will see a new forum member with the Initals TTSG.

S.D
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Chelmsfordthescapegoat

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PostSubject: Re: Ntombi River.   Wed Nov 11, 2009 10:23 pm

TTSG. scratch
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PostSubject: Re: Ntombi River.   Thu Nov 12, 2009 3:58 am

Chelmsfordthescapegoat wrote:
TTSG. scratch

ThesigertheScapeGoat?
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24th

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PostSubject: Re: Ntombi River.   Thu Nov 12, 2009 11:01 pm

Does it say anywhere, what supplies were in the wagons that was important enough to warrent 100 men to guard it.
I can kind of see CTSG point.
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PostSubject: Re: Ntombi River.   Fri Nov 13, 2009 12:13 am

Why did the troops not stay together on one side of the River.
They still could have defended the supply's. And caused a lot more damage to the Zulus as they would have to cross the river to get to the troops.
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PostSubject: Ntombi river .   Fri Nov 13, 2009 5:12 am

hi 24th .
When this convoy left Lydenburg in february it consisted of 18 wagons , fully loaded with crates of Tinned meat , Preserved friuts ,
Biscuits , Sacks of mealies , A good supply of gin , Various weapons ( including a Rocket Battery) and 90,000 rounds of boxed
Martini Henry Ammunition. It reached Derby at the end of Feb. Meanwhile at Luneburg Major Tucker recieves news of its imminent
arrival with the USUAL REQUEST for an escort . To his surprise he was told the convoy would shortly leave Derby BEFORE his
escort would arrive. So he hurried on D COMPANY on its way from FORT CLEARY on the 1st of MARCH with instructions to meet it
somewhere on the road south of town , and to bring it safely in. It had been raining heavily for days, the track was a quagmire , Capt
Wilfred Anderson in charge of D Company( 1879graves do you know where he is buried ? ) slogged along the track for 30 miles before coming across the convoy. In appalling conditions they began to manhandle the fully loaded wagons down the track to
LUNEBURG . For four days they stuggled mile after mile , but towards the end of 5th March they neared NTOMBI . About this time
CAPT ANDERSON recieved a note from Major Tucker , this note has since been lost so the exact wording is unknown , but the gist
of it appears to be an order for D COMP to return to LUNEBURG as fast as possible for there was expectation of a zulu attack .
No-one knows where this came from but Tucker obviously gave it some credence . Anderson was still 7 miles from the river , so
urging his men on with re-newed vigour they succeeded in getting 6 of the wagons down the north bank . the other wagons were
still spread some miles back. As the men attempted to haul the 1st wagon through the deep drift it became bogged mid stream.
Therefore blocking the way, rain still fell heavily , and no amount of effort could budge it. A short while after the men trudged wearily
back to Fort Cleary . Mbilini and Manyanyoba had been watching from high up in their hills , so when the escort abandoned the
wagons they decided to help themselves . Moving down the road they drove away the drivers and native help , amongst them the convoy leader JOSSIAH SUSSENS of Pretoria , he watched from his hiding place as the zulus looted all the wagons still on the road from Derby . They took all they could carry and left behind the Rocket Battery and some smashed boxes . As no attack eventuated
at FORT CLEARY , after manning the defences all night the men were stood down , all except a small party who were sent the few
miles to Ntombi to recover the wagons . When they arrived they saw the river had risen overnight , and was too deep to cross to
the Northern side . All they could do was unload the wagon that was marooned in the middle of the river , and drag it up onto the
bank on its side . They then headed back to the fort. The next day 7th March Tucker determined to bring the wagons in to LUNEBURG. He was unaware they had been emptied of their contents 2 days before , otherwise he may have decided against
making an effort to recover them. He proceeded to send a company strength detatchment of 103 men drawn from ALL companies
at Luneburg , under the command of Capt MORIARTY and LT"S JOHNSON and LINDOP. ( 1879graves :) ) to gather all wagons
onto the northern bank and bring them across to safety . Once at the river , because of the previous problems they built a small raft . Made from planks of wood and barrels lashed together by rope , very flimsy and lucky to stay afloat , after finding a calmer place to cross 80 metres upstream they began bringing the men across a few at a time . By mid-afternoon they had 69 on the north
bank and 33 under Lindop and Booth on the Luneburg side . Moriary then gave them orders to cut down the muddy riverbank to
make it easier to haul up the remaining wagons . Moriarty then set off to locate the remaining wagons , he found it spread over
several miles . The drivers and Voorloopers were in a terrible state shivering and cold and frightened . They explained how the
zulus ransacked the supplies and how many oxen had wandered off in the night . Annoyed at these events , Moriarty set his men
to work in hauling the convoy down to the river . Using the remaining oxen in relays they reccomenced man-handling the wagons
along the track , and still it rained. March 9th they finally reached ntombe , where the other wagons still waited unattended. The
river was in spate , 8 feet above its normal level and 40 yds wide running at 7 knots .Moriarty ordered the wagons into laager .
But the men were at the end of their tether , Moriarty also despondant and failed to enforce sufficient discipline when they began
to construct their camp . The result a pooly formed laager. The worst was yet to come as on the 10th the river burst its north bank,
flooding the tents and the lower half of the laager turning the interior into a deep , muddy swamp , although the river soon subsided
the mens spirits were at rock bottom. The 11th dawned sunny and warm , the men for once ate b'fast in the open and spent the rest of the morning drying all their things . Watching the water level fall away they thought they may be able to get the convoy across the
next day if the rain stayed away. During this break in the weather Tucker rode out from Fort Cleary with LT HENRY HOLLINGWORTH HARWARD a 31 yo who had been in the army since 1874. They arrived shortly after lunch and crossed over the
river in the raft to confer with Moriarty . Tucker quickly looked over the camp and told Moriarty in no uncertain terms what he thought
of it !. As the water level was dropping considerably leaving the laager full of gaps , Moriarty thought this a good sign as he should
manage to get all the wagons across the next day , this seems to have appeased Tucker as he let the matter rest . Before leaving
Tucker instructed Harward to stay and relieve Johnson and Lindop , who he took back to Luneburg with him. Harward took some men off in search of the missing oxen , while he was gone some friendly natives arrived to sell mealies . These were allowed in the
laager . One of the white conductors claimed he recognized MBILINI , Reporting this to SGT BOOTH , he was surprised when NO
action was taken . Whether he was right or not is hard to say. Booth was an experienced NCO and it seems strange he didnt
take the report seriously . At dusk Harward returned recovering some of the cattle and killed 2 zulus in the process . Exhausted ,
he went over to Moriarty "s tent thinking he would sleep there the night . But , Moriarty was already sharing his tent with surgeon
Cobbin , so he ordered Harward across the river as there wasnt an officer on the otherside . At 4.15 am a single gunshot echoed
down from the hills , Harward who was already awake went to rouse Booth who was also awake after hearing the same gunshot.
Harward ordered Booth to alert the camp , so booth dressed only in his nightshirt went down to the waters edge and shouted across to the sentries but there was no reply. A few more shouts and a PVT TUCKER appeared , Booth hurriedly told him of the
gunshot and he was to inform Moriarty at once. Pvt Tucker returned stating the camp was alerted and Moriarty was turning the men
out. Satisfied Booth passed this onto Harward , dutifully the camp did turn out , but only briefly . Moriarty thought there was no indication of any zulu present so stood the men down .( obviously the gunshot not convincing enough !). Harward took the matter more seriously , he ordered his men to dress but return to their tents . Sussens awoke shortly before 5 am , jumped down to the
ground intending to see the state of the river , he had only gone a few srtides when a second shot was heard . This shot was fired
by the sentry on the southern bank . He had been peering through the mist when to his horror he saw the zulus close to the laager
on the northern side . Where they had been hidden by the state of the ground , he only saw them himself as he was on a rise .
Quickly , he loosed off a round to raise the alarm . As the zulus were so close to the camp they fired off a volley with what firearms
they had , dropped them then charged in with spears . Moriarty"s men were taken by complete surprise , all fumbling around for
weapons , clothes etc. Many never made it out off their tents . Surgeon Cobbin was killed in the doorway of Moriarty"s tent before
he even tried to escape. Luckily Harward and Booth"s men were better organised as they managed to poor some volley fire into
the zulu ranks , which enabled some of those on the northern side to try and cross the river . As little organised resistance there
was on the northern it was over fairly quickly. hope this clears up a few points. This passage is from NTOMBE .... THE BLOODY
AFFAIR AT MYER"S DRIFT by MARK HOBSON.
cheers 90th
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PostSubject: Re: Ntombi River.   Fri Nov 13, 2009 12:35 pm

90th Thanks for posting that. A good detailed account.
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PostSubject: Re: Ntombi River.   Fri Nov 13, 2009 2:51 pm

This is the 80th Memorial at Meyers Drift
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Here is the wagon crossing point, the bush line to the right is the little intombe, water here is only knee deep.
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The point where Booths wagon and squad began their rearguard
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Images from our 2007 visit.
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PostSubject: Ntombi river .   Fri Nov 13, 2009 10:01 pm

hi pete.
No worries pete , pleasure to post the account.

Neil.
Great pictures , I really have to make an effort and get off my backside and get to these places :lol!:
cheers 90th.
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PostSubject: Re: Ntombi River.   Sat Nov 14, 2009 10:33 pm

As the terrain change very much. It’s seem very flat and open. I would have thought it would nave been impossible to approach without getting seen or heard. Which way did the Zulu attack from?
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PostSubject: Re: Ntombi River.   Tue Dec 01, 2009 8:53 pm

Google Earth Photo.

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PostSubject: Re: Ntombi River.   Tue Dec 01, 2009 10:42 pm

Littlehand

As Daves image of Khambula, the google marker is in the wrong place by about 5 miles! not good
If you google braunsweig it will get you closer, go to co-ordinates 27 deg 16'23 south and 30 deg 40'50 east that will put you bang on the drift

You will see the crossing clearly visible with the little intombe tributary coming in slightly above and right of the crossing. The " V" of the laager leg came just right of the crossing and track. Booths position was south of the river. You can just make out the memorial a little white dot.

In 2008 after wading the river, I could see some crockery in the little intombe, I know of pottery with the Staffs knot being found in the river, which is sandy stoney bottom. I leapt in, only to find the water was three feet deep, not 18 inches as iot looked, un-deterred I waded in, Staffs Knot?, no Oven and dishwasher proof!.
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PostSubject: Re: Ntombi River.   Tue Dec 01, 2009 11:15 pm

Littlehand I have changed your Google Earth Image. Base on Neil's co ordinance
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PostSubject: Re: Ntombi River.   Wed Dec 02, 2009 7:59 am

Admin

Thanks, sorry to be pain, but could you move it up a touch as the main area on the laager is just off shot above :-).

I'll get to co-ordinates of Ulundi, Prince imperial, Fugitives drift, etc and post. I Jan we will be crossing the Nyezane so once I have the topography correct I'll post that too.
ta
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PostSubject: Ntombi river .   Wed Dec 02, 2009 11:16 am

hi neil.
Looking forward to the photo"s from your trip, Wish I was going :lol!: . Neil , how big is your suitcase :) .
cheers 90th.
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PostSubject: Re: Ntombi River.   Wed Dec 02, 2009 7:50 pm

Google Earth Image changed. Are we there.
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PostSubject: Re: Ntombi River.   Wed Dec 02, 2009 10:12 pm

Bang on
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PostSubject: Re: Ntombi River.   Tue Aug 02, 2011 7:22 pm

Harward actually retuned to his dutie's. I always thought he disappeared with disgrace.
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PostSubject: Re: Ntombi River.   Wed Aug 03, 2011 9:09 am


Hello everybody,

I search a photo of Lt HARWARD (I have found only a sketch of him).

Thanks for your help.

Regards

YMBOB (a frenchman)

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PostSubject: Re: Ntombi River.   Wed Aug 03, 2011 12:48 pm

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Lieutenant Harward.
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PostSubject: Re: Ntombi River.   Wed Aug 03, 2011 1:15 pm

[Hello Littlehand,

Thanks you very much.
Great picture...but i have got already (and only) the same!!!
No photograph?

Regards

YMob (a frenchman never happy!!)
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PostSubject: Ntombi River   Wed Aug 03, 2011 1:33 pm

Hi Ymob.
Sorry , I only have the same picture also . Idea .
cheers 90th.
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PostSubject: Re: Ntombi River.   Wed Aug 03, 2011 2:09 pm

Monday, May 19th 1879 "The Brisbane Courier"

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The above: In-text.

"THE LUNEBERG DISASTER.Fix this text
FROM the special correspondence of the Cape Argus, under date Durban, March 22, received by the Cuzco, we take the following account of this second defeat of British forces in Zululand:—
The Queen's hope has not been realised, and another disaster even worse, in some respects, than that at ißandala, though happily upon a smaller scale, is the first thing of real note to be chronicled since that fatal day, now jußt two months ago. Information concerning this last Bad affair is more prompt and less meagre than that relating to the preceding misfortune. We have a knowledge, in fact, of all the circum- Btances, and it is this very fullness of information which justifies the public amazement that these things can possibly occur. It is some weeks now face Rowland's column was moved down from New Derby, a township consisting as yet of only two miserable shanties, to the military post at Luneberg, the chief village of the German set tlements in the disputed territory north of the Pongolo. The convoy to which the disaster befel would appear to have formed a part of the wag gon train of the 80th regiment. Owing to the condition of the roads, the convoy was late in its arrival at tbe drift on the Intombi river, just below Myers' mission station. Major Tucker, of the 80th, who was in command at Luneberg, re ported on the sth instant that he considered the position at the drift so unsafe that he had with drawn the detachment sent there some days be fore to await the arrival of the convoy, for the purpose of assisting to get the waggons over the river, which was very high, and for that of escort ing them into Luneberg. It would appear as though the waggons had oome down from Derby to the drift without any escort, for it is stated that some of them escaped capture by small bodies of the enemy hovering about the line of march only through the friendly intervention of Oham's men. It was on the 7th instant that the drift was finally reached, and on that day also Captain Moriarty, with 104 men, was sent out from Luneberg to assist in bringing the waggons in. The whole of the attendant circumstances were •uch as to call for the display of extreme caution on the part of the officer in command of this ■mall party. It had been dearly established, not very long before the date of this lamentable occurrence, that Cetywayo had despatched to the district a force of several thousand men to assist Umbeline and Manyanyoba in holding their own in the country about the Pongolo. That any danger might be apprehended from this force appears from the very able paper contributed to your columns by a German officer now at the front, and which I forward herewith, seems to have been a supposition which excited the ridi cule of Major Tucker, the commandant at Lune berg, Theapprehensions of Commandant Scherm brueker formed the subject of supreme ridicule. The detachment originally sent down to the drift, which might have made its position impregnable by a few noun' work with the shovel and the pick, was withdrawn in a fit of nervous anxiety, which had passed away before the waggons had actually arrived at the drift If it were not so, it might be reasonable to think that Major Tucker would have taken steps to assure himself, with his knowledge of what has been previously stated, added to the fact that Umbeline's strong bold, from which several successive attempts to dklodge him had been ineffectual, lay not more than four miles distant from this delicate posi tion. Major Tucker, it might have been thought, would have endeavored to satisfy himself in the course of the four days intervening between the 7th instant and the 11th that the officer in command of what was virtually an outpost of bis own, had duly complied with the alleged orders to fortify himself on the banks of the swollen river. It is passing strange, again, that Captain Moriarty should have wholly ignored these instructions of his superior officer, for no sane man will admit it that the order to form laager had been complied with when the camp was pitched, as it is said to have been 'in a hollow, with its back to the river, but with bills, sluits, and long reeds and grass all round it,' and no sort of earthworks were thrown np, even though—and there is much doubt upon this point—the waggons were properly parked with the disselboom of each carried under that hi front. Most incredible of all does it seem that the party should, shortly after 5 o'clock in the morning, have been taken so completely by surprise that most of them were killed while still sleeping in their tents, when (as Lieutenant Harward states in his report) he had an hour previously roused the camp and obtained from Captain Moriarty orders that the men should stand to their arms. This, to say nothing what ever of the warning which had been given on the preceding day by the native waggon-drivers, who had descried large bodies of the enemy assembling in the vicinity of the camp, which warning was palpably treated with fatal con tempt For these mistakes, partly his own and partly those of his superiors, Captain Moriarty has paid the penalty with his life. 11l though it may be to speak evil of the dead, and still worse though it may seem in some quarters to speak evil of the living, it cannot be avoided that when valuable lives are thus recklessly squandered away, as they have been throughout this unfor tunate war from the very beginning until now, all-upon whom responsibility rests, dead and living alike, must be called to a strict account. If it be not so, where are all these mischiefs to end? What we want in Zululand are strong limbs, stout hearts, aad clear heads, rather than horse artillery, Gatling guns, and engineer trains. The latter may be had in abundance, the former are not yst forthcoming. All the circumstances of the war point to the certain fact that a few hun dred horsemen, armed with the antiquated smooth-bore gun, and sent into the country to subsist on it as best they could, would have proved of more service than any number of her Majesty's line battalions, armed with the most terrible weapons of precision, and provided with the most completely equipped of modern trans port trains. But, however that may be, it seems to many a careful observer in Natal, that the men with whom Lord Chelmsford commenced the war —at least those of them who survive—are very far placed on the high road to demoralisation. What with acute disaster, relieved by no counter balancing triumph ; what with sickness, attaining to an amount which the public is not permitted to know ; and what with the fearful rust of a long protracted inactivity—if armies are now as bub ceptible in their composition as they were always wont to be, then it would be strange indeed if the men who have gone through the recent cam paign were still left in possession of anything like a satisfactory morale. There ia ignorance of the natural conditions of the theatre of war, lack of appreciation in regard to the relative merits of a Zulu warrior in his own country and weakly lads we are sending forward to the combat in a very trying clime. There is, moreover, amoDgßt the newoomers anything but tbe gpirit of an avenging army ; there is rather —and deny it who may—a lurking admiration and respect for the savage who has fought bo valorously in defence oi his father land."
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PostSubject: Another account.    Wed Aug 03, 2011 2:20 pm

THE INTOMBI RIVER DISASTER.
The following is extracted from the Caps Argus of March 22 :— DURBAN, March 19, 4.5 p.m.
A very profound sensation has been produced here by the news of the new disaster which has befallen our arms. The intelligence was received through a private agency, and the military authorities have yet even been officially in formed of the occtmttioe. Great consternation exists among military' men, and upon Lord Chelmsford, for whom a great deal of personal sympathy is manifested, the effect has been par ticularly marked. From the little that has been so far gathered of the circumstances, it appears only too clear that the disaster is the result of more blundering, a contempt of the enemy, and ignorance as to his whereabouts, and a neglect of the most ordinary precautions. It is regarded here as a singular coincidence that this fresh catastrophe should have occurred upon the day of humiliation, and amongst all classes it is regarded in the light of retributive justice, to which we were laid open by the scornful reception given to Cety wayo'a recent overtures for peace. It v not yet ascertained what is the extent of the loss in war material, but it seems not likely to have been very con siderable ; the number of waggons was twenty, and, including the men in charge, the total loss in killed could not have been less than 100. It appears from later intelligence that the camp was bo completely surprised that our men had not even any opportunity to get to their arms. Dubban, March 20,11 a.m. Major Tucker's report of the disaster on the Intombi river has now been received. It states that Captain Moriarty's party left Luneberg on the 7th for the purpose of bringing in from Derby the waggons, variously loaded, with which he had then arrived at the Drift.

Owing to the state of the river it was found impossible to get the waggons across. Lieutenant Harward's report of what occurred in the camp on the morning of the 12th will follow. Major Tucker states that Moriarty's order waa to laager his waggons, and this appears to have been done. The camp was taken by surprise, and Major Tucker is of opinion that the result would have been the same if the defenders had been double their actual number. There are no mounted men at Luneberg, and on news being brought in by Lieutenant Harward, the officers' horses were saddled, and a small party left for the scene, with instructions for 150 of the 80th Regiment to follow. The Zulus were observed retreating when Major Tucker arrived at the river, which was not crossed till the Lude berg party came up. The laager was then fou^d to be completely wrecked. The bodies of the killed upon our aide were brought over the rivfer, and at ouce interred. Twenty-five dead Zulutt were discovered, and from two wouded zulus it was ascertained that Umbeline led the attacking party, which also included some of Manyanyoba's men. Mcamane, the prime minister, had been asked to let his men take part in the attack, but he refused. Maj or Tucker states that it was only due to the fact that a portion of Moriarty'a men were upon the left bank of the river that any of the ill-fated party escaped. Major Tucker has saved rockets, gun, ammunition, and powder, but the cattle were carried off; and the waggons, with much of their contents, still remain on the scene of the disaster. "Lunebero, March 12, 1879. "Tothe Officer Commanding the Troops at Luneberg.

" Sir,—l have the honor to report as follows from the oamp at Intombi river, where an escort of the 80th Regiment, under Captain Moriarty, were laagered on the 12th March, 1879. Being awake during the night, I heard a shot fired in the distance. I got up and ordered tha-Bentry to rouse the detachment on the side of tbe Intombi Drift, nearest Luneberg, and to apprise Captain Moriarty of the fact, and ask for his orders. These were that the escort should remain under arms. I afterwards found that this Bhot was fired at 4a. m. I retired to my tent close by, where I waited, dressed, and about an hour after wards I heard ' Guard, turn out' I instantly turned out, and saw, m the fog lifted, a dense mass of Zulus about 200 yards from the waggon laager, extending all across the valley, with a front of some two or three miles apparently. I immediately put my men, thirty-five of all ranks, under a waggon near our tents, and directed their fire on the flanks of the enemy, who were endeavoring to surround our waggon laager on the other aide of the river. I next observed that the enemy had gained full possession of the camp, and were driving off the cattle. Our men were retiring on the river, which was now full of human beings. On seeing this, I directed my fire entirely with a view of covering the retreat of our men. This fire was well sustained, and enabled many to get over the river alive. The enemy were now assegaing our men in the water, and also ascend ing the banks of the river close to us. For fear, therefore, of my men beiag stabbed under the waggon, and to enable them to retire before their ammunition should be exhausted, I ordered them to retire steadily, and only just in time to avoid a rush of Zulus to our late position. The Zulus came on in dense masses, and fell upon our men, who, being already broken, gave way, and a hand-to-hand fight ensued. I endeavored to rally the men, but they were too much scattered, and finding reformation impossible, I mounted my horse and galloped into Luneberg at the utmost speed, and reported all that had taken place. I estimate the strength of the enemy at not less than 4000 men. I beg to draw atten tion to the good services rendered by Sergeant A. Booth and the men of the party on the Lune berg side of the river, whose steady fire wasFix this text instrumental in saving many lives.—(Signed) H, H. Habwabd, Lieutenant 80th Regiment."
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PostSubject: Re: Ntombi River.   Thu Aug 04, 2011 10:38 am

Reading between the lines, it seems to be one ruling for one and another ruling for another.

When General Sir Garnet Wolseley learnt of Harward's acquittal, he refused to condone the findings, and stated.

"Had I accepted the verdict it would have been a tacit acknowledgement that I concurred in what appears to me a monstrous theory, viz, that a regimental officer, who is the only officer present with a party of soldiers actually and seriously engaged with the enemy, can, under any pretext whatever, be justified in deserting them, and by so doing, leaving them to their fate. The more helpless a position in which an officer finds his men, the more it is his bounden duty to stay and share their fortune, whether for good or ill. It is because the British officer has always done so that he possesses the influence he does in the ranks of our army. The soldier has learnt to feel, that come what may, he can in the direst moment of danger look with implicit faith to his officer, knowing that he will never desert him under any possible circumstances. And went on to say It is to this faith of the British soldier in his officers that we owe most of the gallant deeds recorded in our military annals, and it is because the verdict of this court martial strikes at the root of this faith, that I feel it necessary to mark officially, my emphatic dissent from the theory upon which the verdict has been found."

The same could be said of those officers, who escaped from Isandlwana. Like Harward they also had horses. However out of all those that escaped only one officer (Non-British) Stayed to help at RD.

Harward setout to bring reinforcements, which he did, albeit to late. But he certainly did not leave them to their fate. !!!
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PostSubject: Re: Ntombi River.   Thu Aug 04, 2011 8:52 pm

Dave, Wolseley also made remarks regarding Melville & Coghill escaping on Horseback and would have preferred they had died on the Battlefield instead of where they did.
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