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Rededication Rorke's Drift Defender William Wilcox. 8th May 2011 Dolton Devon.
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 No Martini Henry Rifles Found Among The Zulu Dead At Rorkes Drift.

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SRB1965

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PostSubject: Re: No Martini Henry Rifles Found Among The Zulu Dead At Rorkes Drift.   Tue Apr 03, 2018 11:56 am

Hi

Sorry Barry. I mislead you, I was referring to the Snider (Enfield) rifle - the previous issue for the British Army - which the Zulus would have had more access to. Sorry for the confusion.

Looking at the two weapons (albeit on the internet) there seems very little difference -  50ft/s extra muzzle velocity of the MH, but (?) greater range with the Snider Enfield..... greater rate of fire of the MH and 7 groves to the MH rifling and only 3 to the SE and presumably a greater 'twist' with the MH -  improving accuracy.

A report from 1878 suggested 20000 guns in Zulu hands in 1879. Estimated to be 500 modern breech loaders, 2500 percussion muskets and the rest flintlocks of which many were in poor condition.

If the famous 'coronation picture' (JY collection) shows the Prince and three retainers with double barrelled weapons and 2 retainers have (muzzle loading?) rifles

Sime
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PostSubject: Re: No Martini Henry Rifles Found Among The Zulu Dead At Rorkes Drift.   Thu Apr 05, 2018 10:58 pm

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Published in Judy 5th March 1879.
(John Young Collection.)

Finger-pointing by the satirical press as to the source of the Zulu firearms.

JY
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PostSubject: Re: No Martini Henry Rifles Found Among The Zulu Dead At Rorkes Drift.   Fri Apr 06, 2018 12:43 am

Very droll JY. almost like it was all planned! that poor independent
sovereign nation..
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PostSubject: Re: No Martini Henry Rifles Found Among The Zulu Dead At Rorkes Drift.   Fri Apr 06, 2018 4:21 am

Dont just blame the arms dealers bringing in from Mozambique. When a laborors contract on the mines was ended he was given a gun as part of his wages. And that was to the Zulu, Suthu Xhosa and Swazi plus all the other tribes so a touch of imperial machination.
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PostSubject: Gun running to the Zulus   Fri Apr 06, 2018 6:00 am

Hi All,

There was quite an epidemic of gun running at that time, not only from over the border but via clandestine shipments being brought in at night directly onto the Zululand coast, from sailing ships ,around the St Lucia area. The weapons involved were generally those of, European manufacture, but technologicaly retired. The price was about 3 B/ pounds each, roughly equal to the cost of one head of cattle.
Complicit in this black market trade were some well known agents, who were very friendly with the Zulus.
Some Christian missionaries living near the coast were held in high suspicion over this matter too.

regards

barry
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PostSubject: Re: No Martini Henry Rifles Found Among The Zulu Dead At Rorkes Drift.   Fri Apr 06, 2018 6:05 am

Up early this morning Barry? Watching the 7's
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PostSubject: The 7's   Fri Apr 06, 2018 9:11 am

Hi Frank,

Yes , are you keeping well?

regards

barry
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SRB1965

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PostSubject: Re: No Martini Henry Rifles Found Among The Zulu Dead At Rorkes Drift.   Fri Apr 06, 2018 10:58 am

I often wonder if Jim Rorke dabbled.......maybe if not in actual 'gun running' because of his role in the BBG but maybe "sourcing pieces for discerning collectors" .......

cheers

Sime
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PostSubject: Re: No Martini Henry Rifles Found Among The Zulu Dead At Rorkes Drift.   Fri Apr 06, 2018 6:49 pm

Sime,

I make a point about Jim Rorke in my Rorke’s Drift talk:
Rorke volunteered, and became a First Lieutenant in the Buffalo Border Guard.  One of the tasks of the Buffalo Border Guard was to prevent the running of guns into KwaZulu, a task that Rorke must have found difficult to enforce.

JY
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PostSubject: Re: No Martini Henry Rifles Found Among The Zulu Dead At Rorkes Drift.   Fri Apr 06, 2018 7:10 pm

John,

At the time (prior to 1879) was it illegal to sell guns to the Zulus or did the 'authorities' just frown on large scale gun running?

I spose the BBG was not helped by the fact that there were only around 30 of them.....and a lot of Buffalo Border......

Cheers

Sime
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PostSubject: Re: No Martini Henry Rifles Found Among The Zulu Dead At Rorkes Drift.   Fri Apr 06, 2018 8:52 pm

Sime,

Technically as Zululand was a sovereign kingdom, British control obviously did not extend there.  Hence it was possible for King Cetshwayo to have managed to acquire a firearm of some description for every man in his army.

The uprising of Langalibalele of the amaHlubi, had its roots in the possession of firearms by Africans within the Colony of Natal.  I think fear played a great factor within Natal that just across the watery divide were thousands of warriors with firearms. That fear was stirred-up without doubt by Frere’s machinations when he appeared on the scene.

Gun-running in the mid-1870’s rates a mention in H. P. Holt’s The Mounted Police of Natal.  Bertram Mitford actually wrote a historical novel The Gun-Runner about it in 1896.

JY
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PostSubject: Re: No Martini Henry Rifles Found Among The Zulu Dead At Rorkes Drift.   Sat Apr 07, 2018 7:49 am

Hi John,

I once read in a book, that the British firing lines at Isandlwana, may have 'lost' the fire fight with the Zulus - not obviously based on accuracy but by weight of fire coming back at them and mounting casualties.

Firearms in the Zulu army have always been played down, as something they carried, shot and then discarded, in favour of melee.

I wonder had the Zulu Kingdom lasted (undisturbed) another couple of decades and weapon availability (& quality) increased - would the Zulu army relied less on the old methods and have started to evolve more skirmishing tactics, similar to the Xhosa?

Cheers

Sime
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PostSubject: Re: No Martini Henry Rifles Found Among The Zulu Dead At Rorkes Drift.   Sat Apr 07, 2018 9:06 pm

Sime,

The current keepers of the inherited oral history of Prince Shingana kaMpande once described to me how their forebear commanded one hundred and fifty riflemen at the Battle of iSandlwana.

They told me how those riflemen crawled forwards through the long grass towards the centre of the British line. On reaching that position they fired a controlled volley into the British ranks, inflicting heavy casualties on the British forces.

There those on this forum who have doubts on the value of Zulu oral history, but the story appears to be corroborated by John Laband's in his work 'Rope of Sand', in which he mentions that Prince Shingana commanded one hundred and twenty riflemen at iSandlwana.

Prince Shingana like his brother Prince Dabulamanzi was well versed in the use of firearms, in fact he was still using them with some effect against the British until 1888, refusing to accept the surrender of 1879.

JY


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PostSubject: Re: No Martini Henry Rifles Found Among The Zulu Dead At Rorkes Drift.   Sat Apr 07, 2018 9:52 pm

Hi John,

I have read about Prince Shingana, a couple of days ago and his 'rifle' detachment.

I have not read Rope of Sand but I wonder what source he used.

I have always held oral history in some respect - whilst not within living memory, it may be in the memory of Grandfathers and whilst in the west - written 'evidence' is the norm but in more 'primitive' (no disrespect intended) oral tradition is very important and usually well kept.

Have you ever thought about compiling the oral history into an essay/book along with corroborative evidence?

Cheers

Simon
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PostSubject: Re: No Martini Henry Rifles Found Among The Zulu Dead At Rorkes Drift.   Sun Apr 08, 2018 6:06 am

Oxymoron: If Oral history is written down does it remain Oral history?
There was a discussion some time ago on the forum about the degree of awareness amongst the Zulu of the impact of firearms. I was shot down.

Cheers
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PostSubject: Re: No Martini Henry Rifles Found Among The Zulu Dead At Rorkes Drift.   Sun Apr 08, 2018 7:16 am

The combination of firearms and assegais was used by the Zulus in the 1906 Natal Rebellion. For example in an account of the Mpanza ambush of a Natal Police escort of civilians, Barry's granddad wrote:
The Zulus "waited until the advance guard was abreast of them, and then fired a volley, wounding several horses and one man. The volley was followed by a rush of natives, who used their assegais with considerable effect." (The Nongqai, p. 877)

Brett
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PostSubject: Re: No Martini Henry Rifles Found Among The Zulu Dead At Rorkes Drift.   Sun Apr 08, 2018 9:05 am

Frank Allewell wrote:
Oxymoron: If Oral history is written down does it remain Oral history?
There was a discussion some time ago on the forum about the degree of awareness amongst the Zulu of the impact of firearms. I was shot down.

Cheers

Hmmmm interesting question.......would it be a written record of an oral history? I never thought of that.....I'm sure there must be an answer

Were you shot down by a Martini Henry from a cave or a smoothbore from the bushes.....? Was the weapon supplied by gun runners.....?

Questions, questions, questions......

I believe that the Zulu army was evolving constantly - reacting to enemies.......and would have (given time) followed a similar path to the Matebele - whose King went to some lengths to acquire a large number of (at the time 'fairly') modern Martinis.

Supposedly (at times) the British during WW1 advanced through NML with unloaded weapons because the High Command did not want them to stall and get engaged in a fire fight......

Along the same lines - once the Zulus (if they had) got large numbers of fire arms - the emphasis would have been less of close combat (at least initially in the engagement) but more on ranged combat - if you can not hit from a distance you have no choice but to close......and I feel they would have been less aggressive in the field.......

One thing I have wondered is - would shields have become obsolete - at least with firearm equipped Zulus......could you 'skirmish' dragging a shield along with you (obviously they would have kept an assegai thing) - its a bit of an encumbrance.

Cheers

Sime
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PostSubject: Re: No Martini Henry Rifles Found Among The Zulu Dead At Rorkes Drift.   Sun Apr 08, 2018 12:18 pm

No shot down by an Aussie and a bloke from Manchester ( who is probably not on speaking terms with anyone this morning as his team were beaten yesterday by the boys in red)

Cheers
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PostSubject: Re: No Martini Henry Rifles Found Among The Zulu Dead At Rorkes Drift.   Sun Apr 08, 2018 12:26 pm

Both still readily available..

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PostSubject: Re: No Martini Henry Rifles Found Among The Zulu Dead At Rorkes Drift.   Sun Apr 08, 2018 1:31 pm

Frank Allewell wrote:
No shot down by an Aussie and a bloke from Manchester ( who is probably not on speaking terms with anyone this morning as his team were beaten yesterday by the boys in red)

Cheers

Hmmm....not that I am a fan of 'the beautiful game'.....my interest only peeks during the brief time England hold out in the World Cup or Euro's (before they are beaten by some footballing giants, like Iceland) but it was a bit of surprise.......
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PostSubject: Re: No Martini Henry Rifles Found Among The Zulu Dead At Rorkes Drift.   Sun Apr 08, 2018 1:33 pm

xhosa2000 wrote:
Both still readily available..

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I have read neither of those Xhosa - which would you recommend?
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PostSubject: No MH Rifles found among the dead at RD    Sun Apr 08, 2018 1:37 pm

Sime anything by Laband is well worth reading , ' Rope Of Sand ' can be a little expensive .
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PostSubject: Re: No Martini Henry Rifles Found Among The Zulu Dead At Rorkes Drift.   Sun Apr 08, 2018 1:44 pm

But without doubt the best


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PostSubject: Re: No Martini Henry Rifles Found Among The Zulu Dead At Rorkes Drift.   Sun Apr 08, 2018 1:45 pm

Are they not the same book - different title?

Steve Reinstadtler
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PostSubject: Re: No Martini Henry Rifles Found Among The Zulu Dead At Rorkes Drift.   Sun Apr 08, 2018 1:56 pm

I quite like Labands writing - I have few essays/articles I have downloaded, over the years.

I have consulted my book supplier (i.e. e-Bay) and I can only find them in Franks 'back yard' at the moment......and the shipping is a bit much, for one of meagre budget and great carefulness.

I will look later....I have been conscripted into taking the kids swimming - in emulation of Uttoxeter's other famous son - Adam Peaty......which is very unfair, because I can't swim and I just stand there like Poseidon in "Jason & the Argonauts" whilst they flail and splash in the water.....and Mrs SRB1965 swims around like Esther Williams.......

Cheers

Sime

ps it saves having to worry about bathing them I spose.......
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PostSubject: Re: No Martini Henry Rifles Found Among The Zulu Dead At Rorkes Drift.   Sun Apr 08, 2018 1:59 pm

Steve,

They are indeed.

JY
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PostSubject: Re: No Martini Henry Rifles Found Among The Zulu Dead At Rorkes Drift.   Sun Apr 08, 2018 2:02 pm

Sime,

Take a look on abebooks.co.uk the paperback is available on there for just over £2, plus postage.

JY
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PostSubject: Re: No Martini Henry Rifles Found Among The Zulu Dead At Rorkes Drift.   Sun Apr 08, 2018 2:54 pm

This bloke from manchester is gutted beyond reason.. but
that's the way the mop flop's, that's football, there is alway's
the next game. No No No Mad
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PostSubject: Re: No Martini Henry Rifles Found Among The Zulu Dead At Rorkes Drift.   Sun Apr 08, 2018 4:52 pm

Thanks JY

Managed to pick a hard back copy up for just under a fiver.

I prefer hard backs - they have a greater affect on the cats or kids, if I launch it at them......

Cheers

Simon
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PostSubject: Re: No Martini Henry Rifles Found Among The Zulu Dead At Rorkes Drift.   Sun Apr 08, 2018 5:12 pm

Good stuff!
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PostSubject: Re: No Martini Henry Rifles Found Among The Zulu Dead At Rorkes Drift.   Sun Apr 08, 2018 6:33 pm

John Laband at the NAM with a Zulu percussion rifle.  He spoke that day alongside Ian Knight and Katie Stossel. As always, IK was engaging but Laband was undoubtedly the star of the show. The least said about the other participant the better.
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PostSubject: Re: No Martini Henry Rifles Found Among The Zulu Dead At Rorkes Drift.   Sun Apr 08, 2018 7:53 pm

I have read neither of those Xhosa - which would you recommend?....
The Rope of Sand is the first edition 1995 the Rise and Fall of the Zulu
Nation is a reprint 1997, but yeah the same book. i collect first edition's,
i try to hunt down signed example's... it just make's it a bit more inter-
sting for me, but with the consequence that i end up with multiple copy's
of some.. Joker Glad you got sorted out.

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PostSubject: No MH Rifles found among the dead at RD    Sun Apr 08, 2018 10:07 pm

Hi Les
Very interesting copy , seems you have a copy that was owned by Huw Jones , the Author of ' The Boiling Cauldron ' a wonderfully detailed book dealing with the emergence of the Zulu Nation , and the lead up to the AZW , focuses on the Utrecht district and surrounds , including an excellent account of Hlobane among others.
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PostSubject: Re: No Martini Henry Rifles Found Among The Zulu Dead At Rorkes Drift.   Mon Apr 09, 2018 10:45 am

Hiya Gary, your right Huw Jones deserves to be remembered.. The boiling
Cauldron was the culmination of a life devoted to african studies, he was
most interested in the Swazi's.. when he died his library started to appear
in various book dealer's list's so i started to aquire them as they turned up.
that's how i got hold of the Drooglever thesis. You was bang on re Kate's
book, it's a cracker. cheer's mate, xhosa.

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PostSubject: No MH Rifles found among the dead at RD    Mon Apr 09, 2018 11:10 am

Hi Les
That was excellent work by you to track down books from Huw's own library , well done that man ! . I got home from work this evening and my Alan Gardner had arrived down under , I've had a very quick browse , and from what I've seen , it's an absolute fantastic piece of work , Kate should be well pleased with here effort , a wonderful job , I believe there aren't to many left , if anyone hasn't yet grabbed one I urge you do so much sooner than later , once they've gone , they are gone , only a small print run of 350 .
90th You need to study mo You need to study mo .
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PostSubject: No MH Rifles found among the dead at RD    Mon Apr 09, 2018 11:12 am

Geez , I see it was way back in 2012 when Huw Jones passed away , where is the time going ! Shocked No No .
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PostSubject: Re: No Martini Henry Rifles Found Among The Zulu Dead At Rorkes Drift.   Mon Apr 09, 2018 11:26 am

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