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 Colonel William Mathew Dunbar

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littlehand

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PostSubject: Colonel William Mathew Dunbar   Tue May 14, 2013 9:33 pm

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Colonel William Mathew Dunbar
Born 21 October 1833, Cork Ireland
Died 15 April 1900, 52 George Sq. Edin. (seen Will)
At marriage in 1862 in Edinburgh was lieutenant in the 34th(signature looks like HW Dunbar)
Gentleman-at-arms to Queen Victoria from 1882 to 1890 and Colonel in the 24th Foot. (this is confirmed by St James's Palace) Col
address, maybe late in life, Whitehall Lodge, Harrogate.
Crimea Medal with clasp Sebastopol
Turkish Medal
Indian Mutiny medal with clasp 1877-8-9.
Info from Museum of Royal Regiment of Wales Brecon, which has his travelling chest from the Anglo-Zulu campaign.
Crimea from 55, incl attack on Redan and siege of Sebstopol.
Indian Mutiny incl. Cawnpore 57, capture of Lucknow and fort at Gunge, relief of Azinghur, victory at Brotwul and affair at Bowhanie.
Commanded 1st Bn 24th Reg second advance into Zululand.
London Gazette 28/11/1879.
Commanded 1st Bn 1880
South Africa 78-80
Kaffir War 77-78
Zulu War 79, at Ulundi 4/7/79.

Source:http://www.nickcoleman.net
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6pdr

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PostSubject: Re: Colonel William Mathew Dunbar   Tue May 14, 2013 11:38 pm

littlehand wrote:
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Colonel William Mathew Dunbar
Source:http://www.nickcoleman.net

Great photo. He looks formidable. I like Dunbar. He sensed something amiss and objected before the disaster, only to be insulted by Crealock for it. He did not underestimate his enemy and seems to have known how to do his job.

After surviving the Crimea and the Mutiny having to choke down Crealock's bile without must have been a bitter pill.
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PostSubject: Re: Colonel William Mathew Dunbar   Wed May 15, 2013 12:01 am

"Isandlwana: Laagering and the “Dunbar” factor by Adrian Greaves

"In 1878, Lord Chelmsford wrote specific orders that British positions in Zululand must be laagered or entrenched at night. Why were these specific orders for protecting vulnerable positions ignored at Isandlwana?  Could one reason be that officers were reluctant to challenge verbal orders to the contrary, namely not to laager?

On 14th January, Maj. W.M Dunbar of the 2/24th was sent on with four companies of his battalion and some native troops to the Ibashe valley, between Rorke's Drift and Isandlwana, to repair the old wagon road and to make a depot for firewood. Dunbar was ordered to pitch his tents beneath a rock outcrop close to Sihayo's homestead and in heavy thorn with no field of fire. He did his best to clear the ground but was obliged to mount strong guards every night with men who had been working all day, and on the 16th when Lord Chelmsford and his staff, with Glyn and other officers and an escort, rode up to inspect the work, he made his fears known to them and asked for permission to move his camp to the other side of the stream. In the discussion that followed, Chelmsford's senior staff officer, Lt. Col. Crealock, seems to have lost his temper and remarked impatiently "if Maj. Dunbar is afraid to stay there, we could send someone who was not", Dunbar, a big imposing man, walked off in a rage and resigned his commission, but he was persuaded by Chelmsford to hold his hand for the time being.

This incident must soon have become known to his fellow officers. Until his promotion in 1874, Dunbar had been the senior captain of the 1/24th. He had the most distinguished war record of any officer in the two battalions. The embarrassment caused to both Chelmsford and Glyn, whose relationship was already difficult, should not be underestimated.

On the 21st, according to the "Historical Records of the 24th Regiment", "a field officer of the 2/24th being on duty with the picquets expressed strong misgivings to the staff officer who was showing him the line to occupy, pointing out that the broken ground was no protection and that there was no picquet in the rear" . "Well Sir" was the reply, "if you are nervous we will put a picquet of the pioneers there". The field officer was evidently Dunbar. On the same day Lt. Melvill remarked to this same field officer, "I know what you are thinking by your face, Sir, you are abusing this camp and you are quite right!"
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90th

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PostSubject: Col William Mathew Dunbar    Wed May 15, 2013 12:25 am

I think I may have also posted this info on Dunbar , It may have come from Charles Norris Newman's book ' In Zululand With The British Throughout The War Of 1879 '.
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PostSubject: Re: Colonel William Mathew Dunbar   Wed May 15, 2013 5:05 am

Crealock wrote:
"Well Sir" was the reply, "if you are nervous we will put a picquet of the pioneers there".

I love the implicit assumption that covering your rear in enemy territory makes you a 'nervous nelly.' And to further rub salt in the wound his permission to set up a sentry post was provisional -- the virtually unarmed pioneers had to be the ones so the regulars weren't tired out. Of course the Pioneers were busy moving earth and rocks all day, so may not have been too alert a 14:00 hours.

This is SO indicative of the overconfidence that did Chelmsford in -- but which the vast majority of the command structure was infected. It's really quite damning that battle hardened officer had to put his career on the line to gain any traction whatsoever with senior command.

You can imagine the tone it set --one where bravado overshadowed not merely sound military practice, but common sense. It also relates DIRECTLY (IMO, at least) to Pulleine's hesitation to look like he was crying wolf when the camp was attacked. If somebody like Dunbar could be twitted for being too cautious, what about an untried officer who had a C.V. that mostly featured staff duties!

And finally, (for the recalcitrant Durnford blamers) this makes it MORE THAN CLEAR where Chelmsford stood on fortifying the various camps. There were actually three after all -- Isandlwana, Dunbar's work camp and Durnford's successive camp sites near the Buffalo...and NONE OF THEM was ever entrenched. Moreover, the suggestion they might be risked outright derision from the Chief of Staff!



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PostSubject: Re: Colonel William Mathew Dunbar   Wed May 15, 2013 5:10 pm

[quote="littlehandCrimea Medal with clasp Sebastopol
Turkish Medal
Indian Mutiny medal with clasp 1877-8-9.
Source:http://www.nickcoleman.net[/quote]

Indian Mutiny medal will not have 1877-8-9 clasp. This will be his SAGS medal.
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