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Lt. Melvill: Well done, Sir! Did you see that Noggs? Deceived him with the up and took him with the down. Norris-Newman: Well well, this one\'s a grandfather at least. If he\'d been a Zulu in his prime I\'d have given odds against your lancer, Mr.Melvill.
 
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Lt. (Brevet Major) J.R.M. Chard, 5th Field Company, Royal Engineers--Rorke's Drift and Ulundi
(Mac and Shad) Isandula Collection)
Rededication Rorke's Drift Defender William Wilcox. 8th May 2011 Dolton Devon.
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 Wolfe and the 20 men ?

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Drummer Boy 14

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PostSubject: Wolfe and the 20 men ?   Mon Feb 06, 2012 8:53 pm

Does anyone know who or can post the finding of Colour-Sergant Wolfe's body on the firing line ?



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littlehand

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PostSubject: Re: Wolfe and the 20 men ?   Mon Feb 06, 2012 10:22 pm

John Young replied to this question on another forum. And to be honest he does make a good suggestion.

"John Young
A question first, who is to say that Colour Sergeant Frederick Wolfe and his 20 men were forward of the firing line? H.G. Mainwaring's sketch map of November 1879, has the bodies roughly in the same area as Captain Anstey of the Royal Engineers has placed the firing line at 1pm, or so it would appear to my untrained eye.

It is just my suggestion, and I've made it before on the forum, as to why battle debris was discovered during the battlefield survey in advance of the position that previously considered to be the firing line - skirmishers! Who in 2003 can say with an authority that skirmishers were not deployed at Isandlwana? No-one I contend. It may well be that Wolfe was in command of a party of skirmishers, who knows? Just my suggestion.

John Young,
A.-Z.W.R.S."
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Frank Allewell

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PostSubject: Re: Wolfe and the 20 men ?   Tue Feb 07, 2012 5:41 am

As allways John Young makes excellent debating points.
My argument against his theory would be:

There are no reports of skirmishers.
The only report of any group in front of the firing line was of Degaucher advancing to cover the dead ground.
If as JY is suggesting Wolf and his group were skirmishers would they have been killed as a group in that position?
Would they not have interfered with the firing lines of the companies behind.
Curling reported that the guns couldnt fire because of the advance of Degaucher.
At this time of year the grass was long and green, skirmishers would be at a disadvantage..
Again what we need to bare in mind is that when the companies withdrew from the rocky ridge area they not only conceeded ground to the Zulu, they also conceeded a huge tactical point. The zulu were now able to get closer to the firing line unseen. The companies were now to all intent firing uphill at the ridge. The dead ground played a huge part in the retreat. Therefore doesnt it make sence that these highly experienced officers would not want to conceed such an advantage, ergo leaving a stronge detachment behind to act as a rear guard... CS Wolfe.

Ansteys positioning of the firing line was allways debatable being based largely on one mans testimoney. Half of that firing line was invisible to the other half so no one individual had an over all view of the battle.

All Im afraid debatable untill one or two long lost diaries pop up from obscurity.

Good points though.


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tasker224

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PostSubject: Re: Wolfe and the 20 men ?   Tue Feb 07, 2012 7:42 pm

Can't see how anyone would think that sending in 20 skirmishers against an advancing, fast moving, Zulu army would have been a useful tactic!
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90th

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PostSubject: Wolfe and the 20 men .   Tue Feb 07, 2012 9:21 pm

Hi Tasker .
Agreed , but it is 1879 !. The same military thinking and tactics which were applied in the previous Kaffir wars which as they found to their detriment !!!. Suspect The Zulu , a very differant beast indeed . Shocked Shocked .
cheers 90th. Salute
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Drummer Boy 14

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PostSubject: Re: Wolfe and the 20 men ?   Sun Mar 18, 2012 8:34 pm

Is there any photo's of their cairns/graves or have they been lost ?


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90th

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PostSubject: Wolfe and the 20 men .   Sun Mar 18, 2012 9:39 pm

Hi DB.
I'm not aware of the existance of any photo's regarding a Cairn or Grave for Wolfe and his men .
cheers 90th. Salute
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