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 Did Coghill Meet Melville, Before Entering The River.

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DrummerBoy 16



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PostSubject: Re: Did Coghill Meet Melville, Before Entering The River.   Sun Mar 23, 2014 3:41 pm

impi wrote:
Coghill was long gone, the first he saw of Melville was in the river.

Not quite true, they were seen riding together on the trial (by a 1/24th mounted man i think ?) and it was at this point Coghill informed Melvill that Pulline had been shot.


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PostSubject: Re: Did Coghill Meet Melville, Before Entering The River.   Sun Mar 23, 2014 3:47 pm

Rubbish! He made that statement to Curling. Read Curling Statement court of enquiry. Which part of I'm about to post.. Coghill saw Melville clinging to the rock with Higginson. That's the first time Coghill saw Melville after he deserted. saved the colours.

Springbok extract from Curlings statement.

"About twelve o'clock we were, turned out, as heavy firing was heard in the direction of Colonel Durnford's force. Major Smith arrived as we were turning out and took command of the guns, we trotted up to a position about 400 yards beyond the left front of the Natal Contingent Camp, and came into action at once on a large body of the enemy about 3,400 yards off. The 1st Battalion 24th Regiment soon came up and extended in skirmishing order on both flanks and in line with us. In about a quarter of an hour, Major Smith took away one gun to the right, as the enemy were appearing in large numbers in the direction of the Drift, in the stream in front of the camp. The enemy advanced slowly, without halting; when they were 400 yards off, the 1st Battalion, 24th Regiment advanced about 30 yards. We remained in the same position. Major Smith, returned at this time with his gun, and came into action beside mine. The enemy advancing still, we began firing case, but almost immediately the infantry were ordered to retire. Before we could get away, the enemy were by the guns; and I saw one gunner stabbed as he was mounting on to an axle-tree box. The limber gunners did not mount, but ran after the guns. We went straight through the camp but found the enemy in possession. The gunners were all stabbed going through the camp with the exception of one or two. One of the two sergeants was also killed at this time. When we got on to the road to Rorke's Drift it was completely blocked up by Zulus. I was with Major Smith at this time, he told me he had been wounded in the arm. We saw Lieutenant Coghill, the A.D.C., and asked him if we could not rally some men and make a stand, he said he did not think it could be done. We crossed the road with the crowd, principally consisting of natives, men left in camp, and civilians, and went down a steep ravine leading towards the river. The Zulus were in the middle of the crowd, stabbing the men as they ran. When we had gone about 400 yards, we came to a deep cut in which the guns stuck. There was, as far as I could see, only one gunner with them at this time, but they were covered with men of different corps clinging to them."
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PostSubject: Re: Did Coghill Meet Melville, Before Entering The River.   Sun Mar 23, 2014 3:58 pm

Hi Impi

Regarding the Melvill Coghill first meeting. There is  statement that they met on the bank, Zulu side, and promised to stick together, I will dig out the source tomorrow. But of the cuff DB I cant recall them meeting on the trail. could be wrong I will check through the notes tomorrow.

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PostSubject: Re: Did Coghill Meet Melville, Before Entering The River.   Sun Mar 23, 2014 4:05 pm

Was there a 3rd Postion. Smith took one away, and then returned with it, came in to action along side Curling, but not for that long, as the Zulu's were near the guns soon after!



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PostSubject: Re: Did Coghill Meet Melville, Before Entering The River.   Sun Mar 23, 2014 4:16 pm

" Again i rode through unheeded, and shortly
after was passed by Lieutenant Coghill (24th),
wearing a blue patrol jacket and riding a red
roan horse. we had just exchanged remarks
about the terrible disaster, and he passed on
towards fugitive's drift. a little further on i
caught up Lieutenant Curling R.A. and spoke
to him, pointing out to him that the Zulu's were
all around and urging him to push on, which he did.
Smith-Dorrian.
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impi

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PostSubject: Re: Did Coghill Meet Melville, Before Entering The River.   Sun Mar 23, 2014 4:21 pm

Still no mention of Coghill and Melville together. Does Smith not also say that Melville passed him after Coghill had gone past. Something along those lines. Coghill got across the river, turn back to help Melville. Thus the first time they met on the trail!
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PostSubject: Re: Did Coghill Meet Melville, Before Entering The River.   Sun Mar 23, 2014 4:25 pm

Here's the extract from Smiths account! After seeing Coghill!

"The ground was terribly bad going, all rocks and boulders, and it was about three or four miles from camp to Fugitives' Drift. When approaching this Drift, and at least half a mile behind Coghill, Lieutenant Melvill (24th), in a red coat and with a cased Colour across the front of his saddle, passed me going to the Drift. I reported afterwards that the Colour was broken; but as the pole was found eventually whole, I think the casing must have been half off and hanging down. It will thus be seen that Coghill (who was Orderly Officer to Colonel Glynn) and Melvill (who was Adjutant) did not escape together with the Colour. How Coghill came to be in the camp I do not know, as Colonel Glynn, whose orderly officer he was, was out with Lord Chelmsford's column."
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PostSubject: Re: Did Coghill Meet Melville, Before Entering The River.   Sun Mar 23, 2014 4:32 pm

Careful impi, are you really going to
go all the way? you know what i mean!
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PostSubject: Re: Did Coghill Meet Melville, Before Entering The River.   Sun Mar 23, 2014 4:35 pm

"Curling's take on meeting with Coghill.

"We saw Lieutenant Coghill, the A.D.C., and asked him if we could not rally some men and make a stand, he said he did not think it could be done. We crossed the road with the crowd, principally consisting of natives, men left in camp, and civilians, and went down a steep ravine leading towards the river. The Zulus were in the middle of the crowd, stabbing the men as they ran. When we had gone about 400 yards, we came to a deep cut in which the guns stuck. There was, as far as I could see, only one gunner with them at this time, but they were covered with men of different corps clinging to them. The Zulus were in them almost at once, and the drivers pulled off their horses. I then left the guns. Shortly after this. I again saw Lieutenant Coghill, who told me Colonel Pulleine had been killed. Near the river I saw Lieutenant Melville, Battalion 24th Regiment, with a colour, the staff being broken. I also saw Lieutenant Smith-Dorrien assisting a wounded man. During the action, cease firing, was sounded twice."


All the way Les! You should know that by now. However quite happy for you to post selectively to make your point.


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PostSubject: Re: Did Coghill Meet Melville, Before Entering The River.   Sun Mar 23, 2014 4:51 pm

yeah Rodger that. as ive said i studied
this place for any signs of outdated
anachronistic class structures and was
pleasantly surprised, not like the daily
mail tinted moribund attitudes prevailing
in the place which quite rightly invited'
me to leave.so admin knows what i refer
to by ' all the way ' so Pete is it ' no holds
barred? '. within the bounds of common
decency and sensitivity of course.
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PostSubject: Did Coghill Meet Melville, Before Entering The River.   Sun Mar 23, 2014 5:08 pm

Did a Mr Foley survive!
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PostSubject: Re: Did Coghill Meet Melville, Before Entering The River.   Sun Mar 23, 2014 5:48 pm

Impi

Private James Bickley's report, he was riding with Melvill when

"Mr Coghill joined us and reported to the adjutant that Colonel Pulleine had been shot."


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ymob

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PostSubject: Re: Did Coghill Meet Melville, Before Entering The River.   Sun Mar 23, 2014 5:51 pm

[quote="springbok9"]Hi Impi

Regarding the Melvill Coghill first meeting. There is  statement that they met on the bank, Zulu side, and promised to stick together, I will dig out the source tomorrow. But of the cuff DB I cant recall them meeting on the trail. could be wrong I will check through the notes tomorrow

I think DB is wrong.
There is only a "thesis" that Melvill and Coghill were together ( before thé river) in Heaton diary's (from memory)
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PostSubject: Re: Did Coghill Meet Melville, Before Entering The River.   Sun Mar 23, 2014 5:52 pm

Impi,

Locally-recruited Conductor of Supplies Martin Foley was indeed an iSandlwana survivor.

John Y.
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PostSubject: Re: Did Coghill Meet Melville, Before Entering The River.   Sun Mar 23, 2014 6:08 pm

Ymob

Private James Bickley's report, he was riding with Melvill when

"Mr Coghill joined us and reported to the adjutant that Colonel Pulleine had been shot."

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PostSubject: Re: Did Coghill Meet Melville, Before Entering The River.   Sun Mar 23, 2014 6:33 pm

DB, I think your in-correct when it comes to the Pulleine being killed bit. By Brickhill does state he saw the two officers not far apart with Mr Foley just prior to entering the river. Like the rest, I don't think they met prior to crossing the river.

Brickhill also states that Mr Foley was was immediately behind Mr C. Before entering the river.

Did this Mr Foley leave an account of his escape?
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PostSubject: Re: Did Coghill Meet Melville, Before Entering The River.   Sun Mar 23, 2014 6:43 pm

LH

Private James Bickley clearly says they did in his account.

"Mr Coghill joined us and reported to the adjutant that Colonel Pulleine had been shot."

Pretty simple.

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PostSubject: Re: Did Coghill Meet Melville, Before Entering The River.   Sun Mar 23, 2014 6:48 pm

He must have made two accounts?  In the Brickhill's statement I'm looking at he states He saw Melville and Coghill and Mr Foley 200 yards infront.

Can you post the Brickhill account you have.
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PostSubject: Re: Did Coghill Meet Melville, Before Entering The River.   Sun Mar 23, 2014 6:52 pm

I'm not posting from Brickhill's account, i'm posting Private James Bickley's.


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PostSubject: Re: Did Coghill Meet Melville, Before Entering The River.   Sun Mar 23, 2014 6:55 pm

Just seen that, oops

Can you post the Bickley account
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PostSubject: Re: Did Coghill Meet Melville, Before Entering The River.   Sun Mar 23, 2014 6:58 pm

i have done 3 times  No 

""Mr Coghill joined us and reported to the adjutant that Colonel Pulleine had been shot."

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PostSubject: Re: Did Coghill Meet Melville, Before Entering The River.   Sun Mar 23, 2014 7:27 pm

Post the actual account. Or tell us where you came by it?
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PostSubject: Re: Did Coghill Meet Melville, Before Entering The River.   Sun Mar 23, 2014 8:00 pm

It's from Knight's book Zulu rising and referenced in HCMDB.

I'm not posting it again, i have posted the section where Melvill meets Coghill 4 times already !!

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PostSubject: Re: Did Coghill Meet Melville, Before Entering The River.   Sun Mar 23, 2014 8:02 pm

littlehand wrote:
Post the actual account. Or tell us where you came by it?

Littlehand,
YOU can find statement by Bickley in thé " Noble 24th" by Norman Holme.His account is held in thé National Archives (WO 32/7726/079/1588 / Source England's Sons) By Julian Whybra.
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PostSubject: Re: Did Coghill Meet Melville, Before Entering The River.   Sun Mar 23, 2014 8:04 pm

Cheers Ymob  Salute 
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PostSubject: Re: Did Coghill Meet Melville, Before Entering The River.   Sun Mar 23, 2014 8:07 pm

Thanks Ymob. Don't suppose you have a page number.
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PostSubject: Re: Did Coghill Meet Melville, Before Entering The River.   Sun Mar 23, 2014 8:24 pm

Also to be found in Holmes earlier book, 'The Silver Wreath'
account by 1173 Private J Bickley 1st 24th.

" I found a pony standing in the path which i mounted
and shortly after caught up Lieutenant Melvill who was
carrying the Queens Colour, Mr Coghill afterwards joined
us and reported to the Adjutant that the Colonel had
been shot.

When i got down to the drift i could see nothing of the
officer's who had passed me. page 46
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PostSubject: Re: Did Coghill Meet Melville, Before Entering The River.   Sun Mar 23, 2014 8:33 pm

littlehand wrote:
Thanks Ymob. Don't suppose you have a page number.

Littlehand

In my Edition of thé Noble 24th, p. 192 (Savannah publications / 1999).
Mister WHYBRA says in England'sons (p. 32 / 2013) that thé and written original is in thé Royal Régiment of Wales Muséum, Brecon.

Drummer Boy
Sorry, i am wrong.
I had forgotten this account.
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PostSubject: Re: Did Coghill Meet Melville, Before Entering The River.   Sun Mar 23, 2014 8:37 pm

ymob wrote:
littlehand wrote:
Thanks Ymob. Don't suppose you have a page number.

Littlehand

In my Edition of  thé Noble 24th, p. 192 (Savannah publications / 1999).
Mister WHYBRA says in England'sons (p. 32 / 2013)  that thé and written original is in thé Royal Régiment of  Wales Muséum, Brecon.

Drummer Boy
Sorry, i am wrong.
I had forgotten this account.

... and w.o 32/7726/079/1588 (National Archives / formerly 33/34 p.277) Source England's sons
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PostSubject: Re: Did Coghill Meet Melville, Before Entering The River.   Sun Mar 23, 2014 8:42 pm

Also Holmes first medal roll published
by Hayward & son 1971 page 263.
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PostSubject: Re: Did Coghill Meet Melville, Before Entering The River.   Sun Mar 23, 2014 9:12 pm

Page 192-193.

I'm not sure what to make of it. He does claim to have met Melville who he had caught up with on a pony he found standing in the road ( Bearing in mind Melville was mounted on a Horse much faster than a pony) then Coghill comes up later. We have accounts that shows Coghill infront of Melville.

Bickly makes no mention of the river crossing, which most of those who crossed did, in some detail.

I'm not sure what time Essex escaped was it before or after Melville had left. I'm sure Lt Curling was with Essex and co. Perhaps he mentioned what Coghill had told him, regarding Pulleine's death, which Bickly added to his account!
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PostSubject: Re: Did Coghill Meet Melville, Before Entering The River.   Sun Mar 23, 2014 9:26 pm

Or ............... wait for it, Coghill told Curling AND Melvill at a different points on the retreat that Pulline had been killed.
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PostSubject: Re: Did Coghill Meet Melville, Before Entering The River.   Sun Mar 23, 2014 9:46 pm

Bickley..When i got down to the drift i could
see nothing of the officers who had passed me,
from the drift i found my way with Captain Essex
whom i met at the top of the hill to Helpmaaker.
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PostSubject: Re: Did Coghill Meet Melville, Before Entering The River.   Sun Mar 23, 2014 9:54 pm

DrummerBoy 16 wrote:
Or ............... wait for it, Coghill told Curling AND Melvill at a different points on the retreat that Pulline had been killed.

Odd that Bickly doesn't mention any of the others that saw Melville and Coghill. A man tells him he wounded, and Bickly leaves him and then says, he saw the man fall from his horse on to the ground. ( Does nothing to help). On the Natal side he see's a man on foot, and leaves him, luckily enough the chap finds a horse.

Me thinks Bickly held his cards close to his chest?

Either way there are too many other accounts, than state otherwise.
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PostSubject: Re: Did Coghill Meet Melville, Before Entering The River.   Sun Mar 23, 2014 10:53 pm

DrummerBoy 16 wrote:
Or ............... wait for it, Coghill told Curling AND Melvill at a different points on the retreat that Pulline had been killed.

There are just too many witnesses that contradict Bickly's account of Coghill & Melville.
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PostSubject: Re: Did Coghill Meet Melville, Before Entering The River.   Sun Mar 23, 2014 11:13 pm

Xhosa wrote:
"Bickley..When i got down to the drift i could see nothing of the officers who had passed me,from the drift i found my way with Captain Essex whom i met at the top of the hill to Helpmaaker.
"

I wonder what time Bickly left the Battlefield, as he says he could see nothing of the officers that past him after the drift. ( I take it, he's referring to Rorkes Drift?




Still it add's excitement to an individuals account.
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PostSubject: Re: Did Coghill Meet Melville, Before Entering The River.   Sun Mar 23, 2014 11:34 pm

Sothondose's Drift!
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PostSubject: Re: Did Coghill Meet Melville, Before Entering The River.   Tue Mar 25, 2014 6:34 am

Cochrane and Higginson rode together from the camp to the Drift.
'As we got near the river I met Lts Melville (sic) and Coghill, the former officer carrying the Queens color in a case. As I overtook them they were agreeing to stand by each other if either was hurt.
Higginsons statement'

The Bickley statement puts Melvill and Coghill together on the way down to the Stream, '......struck of for the left, bout a quarter of a mile on I found a pony standing in the path which I mounted and shortly after caught up with Lt Melvill who was carrying the Queens color. Mr Coghill afterwards joined us and reported to the Adjutant that Colonel Pulleine had been shot.'

They are also put together in a statement by J Williams who also times their departure from camp at the same time as the guns drove passed. The guns left the line as it collapsed, (Curling) So that puts Melvills preparation to leave (Collecting the colors from the guard tent) at or earlier than the line collapse.
That sighting was close to the waggons.

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PostSubject: Re: Did Coghill Meet Melville, Before Entering The River.   Tue Mar 25, 2014 6:46 am

Higginson should be taken with a pinch of salt.
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PostSubject: Re: Did Coghill Meet Melville, Before Entering The River.   Tue Mar 25, 2014 7:10 am

Although he mentions riding with Cochran, that officer has no mention of Higginson in his various reports !
I would tend to believe that to a degree all the escapees glossed over there accounts, possibly a touch of guilt, But Higginson was not to know if Cochran was going to mention his involvement or not so I would tend to believe that portion. Obviously there was no fear of contradiction in the later part of his statement so really anything could be said.

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PostSubject: Re: Did Coghill Meet Melville, Before Entering The River.   Tue Mar 25, 2014 6:25 pm

I suspect most of those who claimed to have seen the two together did so just before they rode in to the river.
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PostSubject: Re: Did Coghill Meet Melville, Before Entering The River.   Fri Apr 18, 2014 2:43 pm

If you read accounts of battles, most eye-witnesses can recall seeing x and y but not necessarily when precisely and at what geographical point. In the unfamiliar country along which the flight occurred this will be especially the case. The only exceptions will be when something particular occurred which stood out in the memory or something was said which made an impression on the listener.
Bickley is a good example. Both Coghill and Melvill would be well-known to Bickley (so no fear of misidentification). Witnessing Coghill's report to the adjutant that the Colonel had been shot would also have stood out in Bickley's memory. Bickley SAW Coghill speak to Melvill and OVERHEARD the remark. It is undoubtedly true.
The others mentioned would all have known both officers and undoubtedly saw them - from memory I believe Brickhill and Foley also mention Coghill and/or Melvill in their accounts.
I'm sure as the two officers rode, sometimes they were together and sometimes not as they were mixed up in the melee. At the point where they entered the drift they were together (and undoubtedly with Higginson). Higginson knowingly put himself in line for criticism by saying he went off to find some horses - he might have done better to remain quiet - I suspect he didn't in case anyone had witnessed the event.
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PostSubject: Re: Did Coghill Meet Melville, Before Entering The River.   Fri Apr 18, 2014 8:02 pm

I don't think we can say for certain, they entered the drift together. We know Coghill was on the other side of the river when he saw Melville struggling, and went back to help.

You also have to take into account. Smith's and Curling's statement.
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PostSubject: Re: Did Coghill Meet Melville, Before Entering The River.   Sat Apr 19, 2014 9:46 am

Yes, that's broadly speaking what I meant by 'together' - close enough to be within reach of helping one another.
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PostSubject: Re: Did Coghill Meet Melville, Before Entering The River.   Sat Apr 19, 2014 10:43 am

It seems a bit of an odd statement in that, M & C made a pact to stick together, when you consider they were both officers, and men all around trying to escape. Would have made more sense to have made a pact with all the men in the vincinty. We know that Coghill left first, and was seen on the trail. We also know that Melvill was seen behind Coghil. Is it then not possible that someone had told Coghill that Melvill was behind with the colours forcing Coghill to either wait for him, thus when Melvill caught up, the conversation took place or did Coghill ride back to assist Melvill.
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Julian Whybra



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PostSubject: Re: Did Coghill Meet Melville, Before Entering The River.   Sat Apr 19, 2014 2:01 pm

24th
The sort of precision you seek with regard to events during the flight is simply not possible given what was reported. Beyond that, all is speculation.
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PostSubject: Re: Did Coghill Meet Melville, Before Entering The River.   Sat Apr 19, 2014 6:22 pm

I expect that goes for Higginson's account?
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Julian Whybra



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PostSubject: Re: Did Coghill Meet Melville, Before Entering The River.   Sat Apr 19, 2014 7:03 pm

Not necessarily but possibly in some areas. I've already given an opinion on Higginson; the need for cross-referencing for corroboration is self-evident.
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PostSubject: Re: Did Coghill Meet Melville, Before Entering The River.   Sat Apr 19, 2014 8:22 pm

Corroboration while on the trail and in the water, after that speculation. How many actually saw Melvill and Coghill's horses shot while in the water?
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Julian Whybra



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PostSubject: Re: Did Coghill Meet Melville, Before Entering The River.   Sat Apr 19, 2014 8:34 pm

impi
My notes tell me that the accounts of Pte. Bickley, Curling, Smith-Dorrien, Pte. Williams, Higginson, and Foley mention meeting Melvill AND Coghill in flight. Why not check their accounts out for yourself if you're interested?
No other survivor's account mentions them.
One thing to bear in mind re veracity when reading any survivor's account is the fact that he could not guarantee that another survivor was not witnessing the same event and that therefore his account might be challenged.  Lying or story-inflation post eventum, if proven to be the case, would be pretty pointless and reputation-damaging especially for an officer (witness Lieut. L. Young N.N.C.).


Last edited by Julian Whybra on Sat Apr 19, 2014 8:42 pm; edited 1 time in total
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