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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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 Isandlwana casualty Oswald Bretherton. Was he at Isandlwana.

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24th

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PostSubject: Isandlwana casualty Oswald Bretherton. Was he at Isandlwana.   Sun Apr 07, 2013 6:38 pm

There's a memorial stone and inscription to him in the forum grave section.

But can't seemed to find anything on this chap, does anyone else have any. Is there anything to say he was at Isandlwana?
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PostSubject: Re: Isandlwana casualty Oswald Bretherton. Was he at Isandlwana.   Sun Apr 07, 2013 7:04 pm

24th,

That's the puzzle he joined up under an assumed name.

'Jimu
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impi

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PostSubject: Re: Isandlwana casualty Oswald Bretherton. Was he at Isandlwana.   Sun Apr 07, 2013 8:05 pm

One mystery I feel will never be resolved. I wonder what made who ever deadicated the stone, assume he was at Isandlwana.
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PostSubject: Re: Isandlwana casualty Oswald Bretherton. Was he at Isandlwana.   Wed Apr 24, 2013 6:29 pm

impi wrote:
One mystery I feel will never be resolved. I wonder what made who ever deadicated the stone, assume he was at Isandlwana.
AND WHO ARE YOU TO SAY HE WASNT A
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PostSubject: Re: Isandlwana casualty Oswald Bretherton. Was he at Isandlwana.   Wed Apr 24, 2013 6:37 pm

kwajimu1879 wrote:
24th,

That's the puzzle he joined up under an assumed name.

'Jimu
how did you come to that conclusion what because he is not on your lists its nearly one hundred and forty years ago and even historians dont know every one who was there so stop talking Deleted.
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PostSubject: Re: Isandlwana casualty Oswald Bretherton. Was he at Isandlwana.   Wed Apr 24, 2013 7:04 pm

No one has said he was not there ? They said it is a puzzle - not the same thing .
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PostSubject: Re: Isandlwana casualty Oswald Bretherton. Was he at Isandlwana.   Wed Apr 24, 2013 7:24 pm

Jason, can you provide evidence that he was there.

If you wish to take part in the discussions, then please do so politely, and not in such an aggressive manner.
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PostSubject: Re: Isandlwana casualty Oswald Bretherton. Was he at Isandlwana.   Wed Apr 24, 2013 7:33 pm

From “The Freeman’s Journal” 10 September, 1879

“I hear with regret of the death of Mr. Oswald Bretherton, a relative of the Marchioness Stapleton-Bretherton, who after receiving an education in one of our best Catholic colleges, enlisted in the army under an assumed name, and fell fighting bravely in the ranks at Ulundi.”


Petty Officer Tom
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PostSubject: Re: Isandlwana casualty Oswald Bretherton. Was he at Isandlwana.   Wed Apr 24, 2013 7:35 pm

Please read Tim Needham's original post on Oswald Bretherton:

http://www.1879zuluwar.com/t6483-unknown-isandlwana-casualty-oswald-bretherton?highlight=bretherton

Clearly, the evidence that OB was killed at iSandlwana is the big, expensive memorial stone in Birkenhead, commissioned by his FAMILY. Why else would they do that?
OB was almost certainly killed at iSandlwana, but the name that appears on the casualty roll will be his alias. This is the puzzle to which Gary refers. Salute
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PostSubject: Re: Isandlwana casualty Oswald Bretherton. Was he at Isandlwana.   Wed Apr 24, 2013 7:38 pm

"and fell fighting bravely in the ranks at Ulundi.”

Ulundi ?
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PostSubject: Re: Isandlwana casualty Oswald Bretherton. Was he at Isandlwana.   Wed Apr 24, 2013 7:53 pm

There were very few kia at Ulundi, but either way, why would a public school educated man from a titled family enlist into the ranks under an assumed name??? Shocked
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PostSubject: Isandlwana Casualty Oswald Bretherton , Was he at Isandlwana ?   Thu Apr 25, 2013 12:31 am

Hi Tasker .
Perhaps Oswald joined up because he didnt wish his family to know of his wherabouts ? . Who knows , but it seems he had a reason
to do so ! .
Cheers 90th.
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PostSubject: Re: Isandlwana casualty Oswald Bretherton. Was he at Isandlwana.   Thu Apr 25, 2013 7:44 am

90th wrote:
Hi Tasker .
Perhaps Oswald joined up because he didnt wish his family to know of his wherabouts ? . Who knows , but it seems he had a reason
to do so ! .
Cheers 90th.

90th, I know all the usual reasons why guys enlist under aliases, but this is highly unusual in the Officer classes Salute
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Tim Needham

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PostSubject: Re: Isandlwana casualty Oswald Bretherton. Was he at Isandlwana.   Thu Apr 25, 2013 11:53 am

I have managed to track down a couple of Bretherton descendants but unfortunately they have no further information on Oswald; I had hoped that one of them would still be in possession of his South African campaign medal as this would obviously clear up both his enlisted name and regiment, but this was too much to hope for!

With regard to why Oswald may have joined the army under an assumed name, the two obvious reasons which spring to my mind are a) to escape detection by his family or b) to escape detection by the authorities should he later wish to abscond; I'm not sure how the death notification system would have worked in the Victorian army but as the Bretherton family seem to have received the news that he had been killed this may indicate that Oswald had them recorded as his 'next of kin' and therefore that there was no apparent feud between them (this is total conjecture on my part).

Finally, the confusion over where he actually died brought about by the Freemans Journal extract stating that he fell at Ulundi - this may well have been a simple jounalist's error due to the fact that in September 1879 the battle of Ulundi was possibly still very much in the news. Alternatively, Oswald may well have died there but a mix up may have resulted in the family being informed that he perished at Isandlwana - a similar situation seems to have occured with Private J. Jenkins 24th who is recorded on a family headstone as having died at Isandlwana when he actually died at Rorke's Drift (although confusion between these two engagements seems a little more understandable given that they were fought on the same day).

Regards,

Tim

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PostSubject: Re: Isandlwana casualty Oswald Bretherton. Was he at Isandlwana.   Thu Apr 25, 2013 12:05 pm

You have obviously done some fantastic work here Tim, it is such a shame that his records have been destroyed - as was the practice back then in the case of deceased soldiers. What you postulate all makes good sense.
It sounds as though you have come tantalisingly close to discovering Bretherton's alias and hence his name on the roll, but you now need a bit of luck!
Now it is in the minds of some of his descendants, maybe one day, one of them will turn up something! Salute
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