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The Battlefields of Isandlwana and Rorke's Drift
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 Isandlwana, Last Stands

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Drummer Boy 14

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PostSubject: Re: Isandlwana, Last Stands   Tue Oct 18, 2011 6:07 pm

But in total their was only around 700 redcoats on the field that day/


Regards DB14
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Chard1879

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PostSubject: Re: Isandlwana, Last Stands   Tue Oct 18, 2011 7:38 pm

Quote :
But in total their was only around 700 redcoats on the field that day/
Regards DB14

DB14, What do you mean by this.
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PostSubject: Re: Isandlwana, Last Stands   Tue Oct 18, 2011 8:40 pm

Hi chard their where 400 1st battalion men and 171 2nd battalion men in the camp. This is a ruff figure from memory.


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PostSubject: Re: Isandlwana, Last Stands   Tue Oct 18, 2011 9:07 pm

Chard 1879

1st Battalion 24th.
Present 15 Officers and 398 men

2nd battalion 24th
Present 5 officers and 171 men
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PostSubject: Re: Isandlwana, Last Stands   Tue Oct 18, 2011 9:48 pm

Rorke's Drift - mostly regulars and colonials as the defenders. I seem to recall Chard afterwards saying, considering how things went, it was maybe good that the natives who had been stationed there fled, as they could have created havoc inside the defences if trying to flee once the battle started.

Blood River - mostly Boer defenders, making a then cohesive defence, same as Rorke's Drift. Apparently, the numbers of the attacking Zulus as well as the number of casualties inflicted upon them is considered to be exaggerated.

Isandhlwana - multiple Regular, Colonial, Native Units. Where to put the horsemen - in a laagar or out harrying the Zulu force of 20,000 warriors ? Where to put the horses if these men were to fight in the laagar ? You wouldn't want numerous horses wounded and panicking within your defences disrupting cohesion. Where to put the 2 cannon in a four-sided laagar ? Where to put the several hundred N.N.C. in case they try to bolt over the wagons during the attack affecting cohesion, or in a more extreme case ripping of their red headbands and turning on the other defenders creating absolute chaos both inside and outside the barricades ? The firing line may not have worked, but then again Pulliene deployed the 24th companies badly. A laagar is one thing, but it still needs cohesion by those inside to defend it well.
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PostSubject: Re: Isandlwana, Last Stands   Tue Oct 18, 2011 10:26 pm

The similarities were actually quite interesting;

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Boers also had 2 cannon. Horses were inside the laager and later deployed to chase down stragglers. The real difference lay in better forward planning by Boer commanders. They deployed with their rear against the river making it a 3 sided defensive situation. It is recorded that they also had many native servants in the laager.

In effect what you have is a differing approach by the different commanders. The Boers were aware of the offensive capabilities and planned ahead moving into a defensive position of their choosing and fighting a battle based on their terms. Chelmsford backed the capability of his own technology and men under any circumstance. In effect he made numerous very bad command decisions. The primary one being that all commanders must observe under all circumstances; know your enemy, his tactics and capability.

The point I am making is that advice was given by Boer commanders who had already had success against the same enemy and won. Chelmsford chose to ignore this advice.
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PostSubject: Re: Isandlwana, Last Stands   Tue Oct 18, 2011 10:56 pm

Blood River. Was there not a "River" the Zulu's had to cross to get at the boers.
Also I do recall, that some of boer defenders namely women were responsible for loading the weapons therefore allowing the boers to maintain a near constant fire. The cannons used fire all manner of metal objects, causing a grapeshot effect, very handy at close quarters. Not sure what was used at Isandlwana, but if they had used grapeshot the effect would have been far greater on the close ranks of the attacking Zulu's.
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PostSubject: Re: Isandlwana, Last Stands   Wed Oct 19, 2011 8:07 am

The site of the Blood River battle is now a national monument. On the site the wagon lager has been re created with the very realistic wagons cast to full size in bronze. The lager was sited between the "Blood" river and a deep Donger.
It was a killing field.
The Boer proved time and time again that the Lager worked. Small numbers of men well serviced with loaded guns held of Native armies through Natal, OFS, Transvaal and even the Rhodesian areas.

No question that if Chelmsford had listened to reason and sited the camp where he had been advised ( on the plain ) the wagons could have been drawn up and a lager formed. The boers had multiple guns each, these were loaded by wives and children, thats a really good comparison with the loading speed of the MH.

I have sent Admin some photos of the Blood River Lager/Monument , its impressive and will give the forum members some idea of the extent.

In the centre by the way all the servants, cattle and horses were kept.

When the impi looked beaten then Pretorius had a wagon wheeled aside and the Boer charged and followed up the retreating impi causing massive carnage. Ala Ulundi.

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PostSubject: Re: Isandlwana, Last Stands   Wed Oct 19, 2011 8:13 pm

In relation to Springbok's post above..
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Photo's by Springbok.
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Brett Hendey

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PostSubject: Re: Isandlwana, Last Stands   Thu Oct 20, 2011 6:10 am

Am I right in remembering films of the American west that showed Pioneers using a lager system of wagons when attacked by Indians?

Brett
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90th

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PostSubject: Isandlwana , Last Stands .   Thu Oct 20, 2011 11:55 am

Hi Brett.
Yes , you are correct .
cheers 90th, Idea
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PostSubject: Re: Isandlwana, Last Stands   Thu Oct 20, 2011 12:03 pm

Blood River.
"Within the laager were their 900 oxen, 500 horses and other livestock.It was a 14 foot deep trench on one side and the Ncome river into which it flowed on the other side; on the remaining sides were open plains to easily rake with gunfire. The laager was ingeniously configurated with 64 covered wagons drawn up close to one another with the shaft of one tied firmly to the deck of the one in front and the wheels were joined with chains. A large gateway in the middle of the crescent allowed for last minute access for their animals and an exit for their cavalry. A straight wall of wagons ran parallel with the donga about 20 meters from the edge. The other wagons were arranged in a wide crescent from one end of the wall to the other end, resembling a capital D." [You must be registered and logged in to see this image.]
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PostSubject: Re: Isandlwana, Last Stands   Thu Oct 20, 2011 12:07 pm

Just out of Interest. What weapons did the Boers have at Blood River
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PostSubject: Re: Isandlwana, Last Stands   Thu Oct 20, 2011 4:12 pm

Littlehand


I think they where armed with the typical muzzle loading muskets and pistols.
Also they had 2 cannons.

This is from wikipedia

"A Zulu eyewitness said that their first charge was mowed down like grass by the single-shot Boer muskets."



The Trekkers brought to bear their full firepower by having their women and children and servants reload other muskets, allowing a single rifleman and a band of servants to fire a shot approximately every 5 seconds. Buckshot was used to maximise casualties. Mackenzie claims that 200 indigenous servants looked after the horses and cattle and helped load muskets but no definite proof or witness of servants helping to reload is available. Writing in the popular Afrikaans magazine, Die Huisgenoot, a Dr. D.J. Kotze said that this group consisted of 59 "non-white" helpers and three English settlers with their black "followers".[10]

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PostSubject: Re: Isandlwana, Last Stands   Thu Oct 20, 2011 10:24 pm

Just e-mailed to me by a friend..

"Durnford made an error, a correctable one, that was understandable (he raced out to cut off the zulus he thought were interdicting the communication lines with Chelmsford. Cavalry can afford to be rash, as they can get out of trouble as fast as they get in))

The messenger that rode down the spur to warn the camp was ridiculously unable to convince Pulliene that the main impi was coming.

Pulliene, regardless, of wether he knew the size of the attack or not, was criminally liable for failing to do the one and only thing absolutely neccessary, deploy his forces into a tight, defensible formation. THAT is what his orders were! (BTW, If he didn't realize the main impi was attacking, WHY did he disperse the 24th so wide. The only force that could attack over 3,000 yards of front had to be sizeable, and I think he knew it.)

Claiming he did it to cover Durnford (even if he thought he was under Durnford's command, and promised to support him) was ridiculous. Durnford, suprised by the horde dropping down the escarpmet, extricated himslef, and could have retired upon the camp at any time. He stopped at the donga, precisely to hold the Zulu left Horn, BECAUSE the 24th was already extending (he formed the line's right flank).

This deployment was the proximate cause of the disaster. It led to the appalling ammo/resupply situation, allowed any Zulu breakthrough or company withdrawl in one section to mean a qucik collapdse of the whole perimeter, and s if they were holding off the horns and chest fine, the Zulus behind Isandhlwana could have hit the camp, then lines, in the rear.


Pulliene never commanded in battle before. Why the commander of the 24th (Glynn? who took over when pullene was elevated to camp XO?) didn't get in his face (or any other experienced officer) I know not.


Lastly, this Impi was a tough lot. They put up a Hell of a fight later, at Kambula against an unasailable defensive position. But they didn't come CLOSE to sniffing victory. Same would have happened at Isandhlwana against a square.

Six companies of infantry, 500-600 quality mounted who could stand in a defensive fight, and a few hundred other fighters, (not counting the NNC, hidden inside the square), with ammo, and no resupply problem, win, every time. The smaller square (Kambula's defense was a huge area for example) at Isandhlwana would have concentrated the zulus, and led to worse and shocking Zulu losses (later battles had a smaller percentage of British firepower actually engaging at a time)


Look at Durnford's, Shepstone's, and Younghusband's last stands, where a square/circle of 40-80 troops, already worn, held out against huge numbers until running out of ammo.

I haven't read Ian Knights recent, latest stuff (he seems to kinda change/update his version of Isandhlwana a lot), but I see nothing that convinces me a square at isandhlwana would have been defeated.

Pulliene not forming square was disasterous".
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PostSubject: Re: Isandlwana, Last Stands   Thu Oct 20, 2011 10:31 pm

Quote :
I think they where armed with the typical muzzle loading muskets and pistols. Also they had 2 cannons

That's what I thought. I was reading a book today, Where there was something about the women, carrying ammunition boxes. Could be wrong but would they have had ammunition boxes for muzzle loading muskets and pistols. scratch
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PostSubject: Isandlwana , Last Stands .   Fri Oct 21, 2011 2:22 am

Hi Littlehand.
In response to your email from a friend '' But they didnt come close to sniffing victory '' ( Kambula ) . Evelyn Wood thought
much differantly . He called it a close run thing !!!. He also mentions that he managed to draw on one of the horns before the
rest of the Impi was in proper position by virtually using Buller and his mounted force as a bait . This he said was the winning
move in his opinion . So I think it could have been a very differant result if Wood hadnt succeeded in drawing one of the horns
to attack to early .
cheers 90th.
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PostSubject: Re: Isandlwana, Last Stands   Fri Oct 21, 2011 10:43 am

Littlehand
Possibly your friend should join the forum and debate his opinion with us.

The messenger that road down the spur was a) Not english speaking and b) completely winded from the ride.

Pullein wasnt criminally culpable, he obeyed his orders.

Durnford was supported by Pope moving across to meet him, not Durnford tagging on to the end of the line.

Kambula, they came very close to carrying the day ( Read Woods recolections.)

We would need to agree to disagree on the square being able to hold out against a determined assault, 200 guns per side of the square wouldnt come close to doing it, look at Ulundi, Chelsford panicked there exhorting the men to shoot faster, and that was a well manned square.

The point about Durnford s et al last stands is that they were last stands.......... they lost.

Regards
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PostSubject: Re: Isandlwana, Last Stands   Fri Oct 21, 2011 2:11 pm

Except for the forming of a Laager the defencive positioning of the troops at Isandlwana was correct. It is a fact that the small squares that were formed gave the zulu's a torrid of fire and were only overcome when the ammo ran out . With a Laager I am sure the 24th would have survived the day out, at least .
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PostSubject: Re: Isandlwana, Last Stands   Fri Oct 21, 2011 2:23 pm

Hi. Rockape. Welcome to the forum.

This doe's raise a good point regarding the square formation. They could lay down a solid wall for fire, and going by the the statements of those that visited Isandlwana after the battle, regarding the groups of men found with large amounts of expended cartridges among them. Problem is of course. There was no body count relating to the Zulu Dead. So we will really never know if the squares were effective.
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PostSubject: Re: Isandlwana, Last Stands   Fri Oct 21, 2011 2:39 pm

Rockape, welcome to the forum and the endless debate, hopw you enjoy.

My view point on the square!

We agree that Pullein, wrong or right, followed his orders in defending the camp. It was only well into the conflict that he would have realised what he was up against.

At that point he was dead. For him to recall the troops and get back to a place where he could physically form the square would have been a flat out run across the face of the mountain of the rocky ridge to an area some what above Popes last position. Bare in mind the tents were still up, the breakfast fires still burning, the space between the tents and the mountain was occupied by the company wagons. From the position of that square to the ammunition wagons would have still been a fair trek. In the time space available to him I doubt he could have got sufficient ammo into the centre. Further with 200 men per side, 3 deep and a space occupied of .9 of a meter ( 3 Feet) that would have been a frontage of 58 metre, less the depth of the lines on the ends of say 3 meter each. The space inside the square would have been in the region of 52 x 52. Could all the non combatants, horses and NNC been accomadated with sufficient space for the available ammo to be handled correctly?
A further point, there was in excess of 300 oxen plus the spare horses, these we know were driven over the saddle by the right horn. Could the square have stood up to that pounding?

The horse receiving square is just that, a defence against mounted lancers. Not meant for a defence against armed oponents who could have stood of and exchanged fire, it happened on the front line with certain effect.

Just a view point for discussion.

Regards
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PostSubject: Re: Isandlwana, Last Stands   Fri Oct 21, 2011 3:04 pm

The Battle is the "Bermuda Triangle" of battles , too many unaswerable questions, too many fantastic tales of heroism and probably too sad and tragic for us too want to know the truth. Regular infantry accuracy at that time an upto the end of the 2nd Boer War was very poor, which may have contributed to the zulu being able to close so quickly onto the centre of the camp.
I always remember a retired British Senior Officer said on the battlefield tour
" It was poor bloody standards all round , not just a bungling Lord, 400 jocks would seen them off and the war would've been a mere skirmish"
I did have a chuckle !

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PostSubject: Re: Isandlwana, Last Stands   Fri Oct 21, 2011 3:21 pm

Brilliant, thats made my day :lol!:
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Rockape

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PostSubject: Re: Isandlwana, Last Stands   Fri Oct 21, 2011 3:30 pm

springbok9 wrote:
Rockape, welcome to the forum and the endless debate, hopw you enjoy.

My view point on the square!



The space inside the square would have been in the region of 52 x 52. Could all the non combatants, horses and NNC been accomadated with sufficient space for the available ammo to be handled correctly?
A further point, there was in excess of 300 oxen plus the spare horses, these we know were driven over the saddle by the right horn. Could the square have stood up to that pounding?

The horse receiving square is just that, a defence against mounted lancers. Not meant for a defence against armed oponents who could have stood of and exchanged fire, it happened on the front line with certain effect.

Just a view point for discussion.

Regards

Your point is perfect Sprinbok9 and backs up some of the myths at Bloodriver where they had numbers of 600 cattle, goats, horses and all in an area the size of a rubgy pitch, never mind kids, and I have never met an Afrikaans kid that does what he is told , especially with fireworks going off :lol:
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PostSubject: Re: Isandlwana, Last Stands   Fri Oct 21, 2011 4:13 pm

Regarding the last post by Rockape and Springbok, that was what I was trying to say in my post to Rob, by questioning the slim and fairly unlikely possibility of organising the various units into a laager, along with horses, etc., and knowing the Isandhlwana camp area terrain. You both explained it better. Idea I like the quote by the retired British Senior Officer, it appealed to me greatly! :lol!:
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PostSubject: Re: Isandlwana, Last Stands   Fri Oct 21, 2011 4:55 pm

Rockape

Indeed, Ive published some photos from Blood River earlier in this string, What you say has merit, but dont say it to loud on Dec 16th anywhere near Pretoria. :lol!:

Still chuckling about the Jocks story.

Ken Gillings is a forum member, he can send chills up your spine talking about the stories that guides tell. Few years back I was wandering around RD and over heard the guide telling a group that "this is the exact door that trooper sos and so was dragged out of". scratch

Regards
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PostSubject: Re: Isandlwana, Last Stands   Fri Oct 21, 2011 11:36 pm

Doe's anyone know how far "Harness" was to Isandlwana,before he was stopped by Gosset. .
Would the Zulus at Isandlwana have seen him coming. Or could they have received reports from Zulu scouts that he was making his way back the camp.
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PostSubject: Re: Isandlwana, Last Stands   Sat Oct 22, 2011 8:51 am

Littlehand i believe he had only covered a distence of 2 miles before turning back.



Cheers
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90th

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PostSubject: Isandlwana , Last Stands .   Sat Oct 22, 2011 12:34 pm

Hi Littlehand.
DB14 is correct , Harness says they hadnt quite gone two miles when they were ordered to return to the campsite at Mangeni .
From memory they were 9 miles or so from Isandlwana so travelled nearly two which brings the distance to seven miles from Isandlwana , doubtful they would have been spotted by zulu scouts , and if so they wouldnt have been within threat range
for them to worry about to much . Would have been different if they had kept going and werent called back , no doubt Harness
would've '' had a battle on his hands '' one in which he would have lost ......sadly .
cheers 90th.
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PostSubject: Re: Isandlwana, Last Stands   Sat Oct 22, 2011 8:29 pm

At twelve o'clock upon the day of the Isandhlwana disaster, Colonel Harness, with four guns R.A., two companies of the 24th Regiment, and about fifty Natal sappers, halted upon a rising ground more than eight miles from the camp, heard the firing of cannon, and saw shells hissing against the hills to the left of it. One messenger from the camp reached him with the tidings that the camp was surrounded, and would be taken unless they were at once reinforced. Colonel Harness pro- posed instantly to march back, and, although Major Gossett ridiculed the idea, he started. Riding off to the General, Major Gossett returned with Lord Chelmsford's orders to Colonel Harness to turn back and march to the rendezvous.

“I have heard from an officer 16th Lancers that Colonel Harness himself told him the story of his recall at VOL. H. M M Isandhlwana exactly as I described it to you in a former letter, adding that the recall came from Lord Chelmsford upon the representations of Major Gossett. In order to have this fact upon record, will not some M.P. take a note of it to ask whether the statement is correct, and why it was not included in the report of the Commission of Inquiry ? ... It has been suggested that the reason why the Zulus fell back after their first attack . . . was that they saw Colonel Harness's force making for the camp."
Source Bishop Colenso.
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littlehand

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PostSubject: Re: Isandlwana, Last Stands   Sat Oct 22, 2011 9:43 pm

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PostSubject: Re: Isandlwana, Last Stands   Sat Oct 22, 2011 9:48 pm

Amazing where are thses from is it a documentry or something???????/


Cheers DB14
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PostSubject: Re: Isandlwana, Last Stands   Sat Oct 22, 2011 9:54 pm

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PostSubject: Re: Isandlwana, Last Stands   Sat Oct 22, 2011 10:14 pm

Here's a couple of different versions. One on "Younghusband" and the Famous last of the 24th Myth.

"Captain Younghusband’s company, tried to defend a shoulder of Isandlwana itself, until lack of ammunition forced them to try and join the others on the saddle below."

"It is difficult to be precise about the time the battle ended. The stands in the camp were probably largely over by about 3.00pm, although fighting in the Manzimnyama probably continued until some time later. Small groups of soldiers, and individuals, were able to survive late into the afternoon where they had been able to find a place to shelter, behind wagons or among rocks. Able-Seaman Aynsley - the only sailor in the camp, the servant of Chelmsford’s Naval ADC, Lt Milne - stood with his back to a wagon-wheel, challenging the Zulus with his cutlass, until a warrior crept under the wagon and stabbed him through the spokes. Some men feigned death, only to be discovered when the Zulus began to strip the bodies. Another man, presumably a survivor of Younghusband’s stand, broke away from the main party when it descended the rocky shoulder, and instead clambered up to a small cave at the foot of the cliffs behind. Crouching down among the boulders, he shot or stabbed every Zulu who approached him, until at last the warriors fired a volley into the cave, and killed him."


Source unknown.
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John

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PostSubject: Re: Isandlwana, Last Stands   Sat Oct 22, 2011 10:31 pm

Would this help. Located where it was presumed Younghusband & Company last stand took place.

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John

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PostSubject: Re: Isandlwana, Last Stands   Thu Oct 27, 2011 10:25 pm

"The ground is high and full of dongas and stones, and the soldiers did not see us till we were right upon them. They fought well — a lot of them got up on the steepslope under the cliff behind the camp, and the Zulus could not get at them at all ; they were shot or bayoneted as fast as they came up. At last the soldiers gave a shout and charged down upon us. There was an induna ^ in front of them with a long flashing sword, which he whirled round his head as he ran — it must have been made of fire. "Supposed to be Captain Younghusband". Wheiigh ! (Here the speaker made an expressive gesture of shading the eyes.) They killed themselves by running down, for our people got above them and quite surrounded them ; these, and a group of white men on the " neck," were the last to fall".
Source: ITS BATTLEFIELDS AND ITS PEOPLE. Mitford
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Julian Whybra



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PostSubject: Re: Isandlwana, Last Stands   Sat Oct 29, 2011 10:41 am

The number of British soldiers involved at Isandhlwana is irrelevant. Do not forget that H coy alone held off 10,000 Gaikas the previous year simply by forming a square. Gaikas aren't Zulus it is true but the principle remains. Whether Chelmsford's reconnaissance had never left camp or not would have made no difference to the final outcome if the same troop dispositions had been adopted.
Against a straight line front the Zulus would always win. Against a defensive square they always lost.
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PostSubject: Re: Isandlwana, Last Stands   Sat Oct 29, 2011 4:39 pm

Julian Whybra wrote:
The number of British soldiers involved at Isandhlwana is irrelevant. Do not forget that H coy alone held off 10,000 Gaikas the previous year simply by forming a square. Gaikas aren't Zulus it is true but the principle remains. Whether Chelmsford's reconnaissance had never left camp or not would have made no difference to the final outcome if the same troop dispositions had been adopted.
Against a straight line front the Zulus would always win. Against a defensive square they always lost.


Well said Julian. I have long believed 2 theories about iSandlwana.

1. That the Central column would have been defeated entirely on the 22nd January 1879, if it had not split itself in two. The Zulu victory, or, British disaster would have been twice as big. Chelmsford got lucky.
2. That had Pulleine reorganised the camp's defences and the "actions on" appropriately and competently in the early hous of the morning of the 22nd, the moment he knew half the column was leaving and that he was i/c, there is a small chance the attack may have been repulsed; and this might have included a plan for forming a square at a suitable place that he should have pre-determined.

I know that some other members defend Pulleine with the argument that he was under orders to defend the camp as per Chelmsford's standing orders, but I don't buy that. If he did nothing to react to the developing situation around him that morning and stubbornly stuck to Chelmie's now defunct orders without the initiative to over ride them, well, that is negligent and why the defeat occurred
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PostSubject: Re: Isandlwana, Last Stands   Sat Oct 29, 2011 5:27 pm

Square ? Then you're getting back into the area of Pulliene's orders again, to defend the camp. I'm no fan of Pulliene or his decisions and actions, but he took that literally to mean the whole camp. That's why he put the wall of 24th in the Zulu path, obviously overlooking the possibility of there being the full 20,000, being enough warriors to outflank him with the two horns. The firing line might have worked had he positioned it further back, allowing Durnford to come right back to camp with his two Troops. 'Gaikas aren't Zulus it is true' - very true, there had been nothing like the Zulus, so to compare them with each other would be wrong. Julian, it's been quite a while since I've discussed things with you, but somehow you appear different, in tone and argument. I don't know what it is about you now that I can explain. scratch It is you isn't it ?
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PostSubject: Re: Isandlwana, Last Stands   Sat Oct 29, 2011 6:42 pm

A question

If the ground was to hard to dig in then how did all the burial parties bury all the dead???

The ground cant have just become soft enough over the 4 months can it scratch

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DB14
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tasker224

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PostSubject: Re: Isandlwana, Last Stands   Sat Oct 29, 2011 6:54 pm

Drummer Boy 14 wrote:
A question

If the ground was to hard to dig in then how did all the burial parties bury all the dead???

The ground cant have just become soft enough over the 4 months can it scratch

Cheers
DB14

with great difficulty and pick axes.

colin j - some fair points. the only explanation for Pulleine's lack of ability to defend the camp would be that he had no idea of the scale Zulu attack, or their determination and fighting ability. in other words, complacency.
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PostSubject: Re: Isandlwana, Last Stands   Sat Oct 29, 2011 7:05 pm

He even if he didnt thin the camp was in danger he still could have set up ammuntion stations or struck the tents at the front of the camp.

Tasker, if you could dig 400 graves then you could have at least dug some rifle pits or something.


Cheers
DB14
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PostSubject: Re: Isandlwana, Last Stands   Sat Oct 29, 2011 7:05 pm

DB14. some areas were better suited than others, but the graves were very shallow, bones getting washed out and appearing for years afterwards. I think it was Bromhead's brother at a later time, collected all the loose bones and placed them in bags and reburied them. I guess in some cases the places the graves/cairns are, weren't necessarily where the men buried below were initially found. I'm sure I was informed that there was the chance Maj. Russell's remains and anyone with him further out from the camp, may have been transferred back to the immediate camp area for burial, as I don't recall any cairns being found that far out. If there was, they are lost now.
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Drummer Boy 14

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PostSubject: Re: Isandlwana, Last Stands   Sat Oct 29, 2011 7:16 pm

But the 400 graves that where dug where done all over Isandlwana, the colum had all its tools and supplies at the camp, they could easily have dug some type of fortification at the front of the camp or a line to run back to. This would have taken time, probebly around 5 hours but they had that time to do something at least.

Its unfair to say Pulliene should have laarged or formed square.

The square wasnt used anymore and a laarger should have been done before the 22nd.

In 1884 the remains where removed and buried once and for all in graves around 1.5 meters deep.


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DB14
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Mr Greaves

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PostSubject: Re: Isandlwana, Last Stands   Tue Nov 01, 2011 2:00 pm

This is a good point. A vast deference between British and Colonial soldiers. I wonder if there was ever a consideration for court marshals, but it view of what to place, maybe they thought it best not to pursue.

Quote :
"Of fifty five European survivors from Isandlwana at least sixteen were officers which in effect represented a truly uncomfortably high proportion inconsistent with what would be expected by any commander particularly in this case Chelmsford and Wolseley. All officers managed to escape by horse as the four mile run through the Zulu gauntlet to the Natal border was practically impossible by foot. As the fugitives from Isandlwana fled to safety in Natal, Captains Gardner and Essex, Lieutenants Cochrane, Curling and Smith-Dorrien safely made their way to Helpmekaar and avoided involvement in any further conflict that day
."
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Julian Whybra



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PostSubject: Re: Isandlwana, Last Stands   Tue Nov 01, 2011 2:21 pm

Mr Greaves
Your numbers are wrong.
87 Europeans and 90 Africans survived Isandhlwana, possibly another 4 Europeans.
Of these 19 officers survived.
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Frank Allewell

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PostSubject: Re: Isandlwana, Last Stands   Tue Nov 01, 2011 2:58 pm

As far as Im aware there were 298 graves. Approx 40 of which no longer exist.
In terms of outlaying bodies been brought back into the camp, its highly possible, evidence has it that CS Wolff died on the rocky ridge, but there are no cairns in that position.

DB14
Why would Pullein have wanted to dig fortifications? He was under no threat, theoretically. To all intents and purpose Chelmsford had moved out of camp to engage the enemy.
If there was a need to entrench, his superiors would have done so.

Regards
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Mr Greaves

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PostSubject: Re: Isandlwana, Last Stands   Tue Nov 01, 2011 3:25 pm

Quote :
Mr Greaves Your numbers are wrong.

Hello Julian. My fault should have made it clearer. I was trying to emphasis the fact that "
Quote :
As the fugitives from Isandlwana fled to safety in Natal, Captains Gardner and Essex, Lieutenants Cochrane, Curling and Smith-Dorrien safely made their way to Helpmekaar."
Instead of assisting elsewhere, which i would have thought would have been expected of British Officers.
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Drummer Boy 14

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PostSubject: Re: Isandlwana, Last Stands   Tue Nov 01, 2011 3:38 pm

DB14
Why would Pullein have wanted to dig fortifications? He was under no threat, theoretically. To all intents and purpose Chelmsford had moved out of camp to engage the enemy.
If there was a need to entrench, his superiors would have done so.



Thats what i ment, Chelsmford could have done this, and didnt.

To say Durnford and Pulliene should have done anything like that is unfair.

Cheers
DB14
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Chelmsfordthescapegoat

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PostSubject: Re: Isandlwana, Last Stands   Tue Nov 01, 2011 4:08 pm

Quote :
DB14
Why would Pullein have wanted to dig fortifications? He was under no threat, theoretically. To all intents and purpose Chelmsford had moved out of camp to engage the enemy.
If there was a need to entrench, his superiors would have done so.

Good point Springbok. Same goe's for Chelmsford. " He was under no threat when they first arrived " The threat only came after he left. Then is would have been down to Pulliene.
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