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 Clery's advice to Chelmsford

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rusteze

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PostSubject: Clery's advice to Chelmsford   Sun 14 Feb 2016 - 6:38

I have just noticed that there is a short aside by Clery in his letter of 28th Feb. to Harman (see page 85 of Clarke's Zululand at War). He is describing the disbelief that prevailed to the message from Gossett that the camp had been taken. He says:

"Indeed, I myself had this feeling (disbelief) notwithstanding that I had ventured to suggest to the General the evening before that if we should have to move out to the irregulars next morning that he should move with his whole camp."

So the irregulars he is talking about is Dartnell and he is advising the general ( before Dartnell's message arrives during the early hours of 22nd) that Chelmsford should take the whole camp out in support. I have not read that anywhere else and it seems to indicate that Clery was offering guidance direct to Chelmsford. Am I just missing something, is it Clery bigging himself up, or is there a whole passage of earlier advice to Chelmsford that led him to take half the force out early on 22nd?

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PostSubject: Re: Clery's advice to Chelmsford   Sun 14 Feb 2016 - 6:46

This looks like wisdom after the event!!!. Clery. Hmmm.

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PostSubject: Re: Clery's advice to Chelmsford   Sun 14 Feb 2016 - 6:55

Clery says himself that it might appear as wisdom after the event. It has always been a little difficult to understand why Chelmsford took such a large force out to Dartnell's assistance. Perhaps the seeds had been sown by Clery.

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PostSubject: Re: Clery's advice to Chelmsford   Sun 14 Feb 2016 - 7:03

Good point Steve, it will be interesting to see what others think.. Salute
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PostSubject: Re: Clery's advice to Chelmsford   Sun 14 Feb 2016 - 10:13

Hi Steve
The principle of taking out a large force leaving a 'holding force' behind was pretty standard in the Frontier war. Even Wood did it at Khambula.

Just think if Chelmsford had not moved out on the 22nd, it was his intention to recconoiter the plateau himself on the morning of the 22nd. Could have been interesting to see his reaction bumping into 20000 Zulu warriors.

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PostSubject: Re: Clery's advice to Chelmsford   Sun 14 Feb 2016 - 11:01

Actually, the quote in the current ammunition thread from Impi contains a reference by Crealock to Clery asking Chelmsford the previous evening about taking out the 24th to support Dartnell. That must be the same converstion that Clery mentions in his letter. Clery describes it as advice to Chelmsford to take the whole camp with him, Crealock describes it as a question about taking the 24th to which the answer was no. If nothing else it is evidence that Clary was having conversations with Chelmsford about the 24th that should have been coming from Glyn. Glyn looms more and more in my mind as a vital missing element in all this - he surely could have been more persuasive than Clery regardless of how difficult Chelmsford could be.

On your musing about what if. If Chelmsford had reconnoitred the plateau that morning I guess we would never have known his reaction to meeting the Zulus. Ponder though what might have happened if he had taken 2/24th with him up there and left the 1/24th back in camp?


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PostSubject: Re: Clery's advice to Chelmsford   Sun 14 Feb 2016 - 11:24

Posted in error!
Thanks Steve!


Last edited by impi on Sun 14 Feb 2016 - 11:43; edited 1 time in total
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PostSubject: Re: Clery's advice to Chelmsford   Sun 14 Feb 2016 - 11:37

Impi

Are you responding to my post on the reserve ammunition thread or this one?

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PostSubject: Re: Clery's advice to Chelmsford   Sun 14 Feb 2016 - 14:36

A big puzzle for me is the fact that Chelmsford was so
obviously lacking in good staff officers. to filter out a
lot of the burden's he heaped on himself. what was going
on there? how, did Crealock assume so much
' power '.

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PostSubject: Clery's Advice to C'ford    Sun 14 Feb 2016 - 15:44

In the letter from Clery to Col Harman from RD , dated 17th Feb , which I've just quoted in the reserve ammo thread re the message arriving from Dartnell , Clery does not say or state that he had any input on the forces to leave the camp , Clery as I wrote said '' The General did not hesitate much he said , '' Order the 2 Batt 24th Regt etc etc as I've already posted , nothing from Clery saying he had an input of any description .
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PostSubject: Re: Clery's advice to Chelmsford   Sun 14 Feb 2016 - 16:03

Gary

That's right, but in his letter of 28th to Harman he talks about giving Chelmsford advice the previous evening (before the second message from Dartnell arrives) and Crealock seems to also mention it in his evidence.

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