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 Wagons at Isandlwana

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ymob

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PostSubject: Re: Wagons at Isandlwana   Sun Apr 24, 2016 7:26 pm

Barry,
From memory only the supply ammunition about the NC and the number of cartridges fired by Granger.
There is also 2 comments about the first Zulus in the camp...
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PostSubject: Re: Wagons at Isandlwana   Sun Apr 24, 2016 7:42 pm

Mr Whybra,
I sent you a PM.
Cheers
Frédéric
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PostSubject: Re: Wagons at Isandlwana   Mon Apr 25, 2016 5:15 pm

Frederic
       The identification of the fugitive Carbineers from Isandhlwana is fraught with difficulty.  
       Granger's letter seems to solve a number of mysteries.

       It is known that a Carbineer accompanied Adendorff to Rorke’s Drift and was despatched
       post haste to carry the news to Helpmekaar.  Binns, (The Last Zulu King, p. 137), positively  
       identified this man as Trpr. Sibthorpe but without providing any evidence (and none has since
       emerged).  Yet Trpr. Barker, writing forty years later, stated that Sibthorpe, whom he met at
       Helpmekaar, escaped via Fugitives’ Drift.  Had his memory failed him and was he mistaken?  
       
       Lugg positively identified the man who brought the first news of the disaster as a garrulous
       Carbineer.  Symons stated that the post got its first news of the disaster from Fletcher and Hall
       which identifies Lugg’s garrulous carbineer as Fletcher.  

       Barker further states that only two carbineers, Trprs. Fletcher and Granger, escaped from
       Isandhlwana by not going via Fugitives’ Drift.   Barker was mistaken.  It seems that Fletcher did
       cross there and then carried Gardner’s message to Rorke’s Drift (QED 'A Brave Fugitive'
       England's Sons Vol I) and Granger in his letter home (as found by ymob) wrote that he also
       crossed there.  

       Thus Barker was wrong about Sibthorpe (and Binns was right; Sibthorpe accompanied
       Adendorff) and about Fletcher (who was Lugg’s Carbineer; no other carbineer was reported
       as speaking to so many defenders) and Granger (who went straight to Helpmekaar).  
       This would seem to settle the identification of the surviving Carbineers (unless a source
       emerges for Morris’s tale about a silent Carbineer who rode by RD without stopping (see TWOTS p. 397).  

       Granger's letter also provides interesting asides on being provided with ammunition by Lieut.
       Scott on his return to camp as well as the positioning of the Carbineers in the firing line.

       If Frederic lived closer I'd buy him a pint (or perhaps a diable au menthe)!


Last edited by Julian Whybra on Mon Apr 25, 2016 5:52 pm; edited 1 time in total
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PostSubject: Re: Wagons at Isandlwana   Mon Apr 25, 2016 5:46 pm

Congratulations Frederic! Well done on finding a new source my friend.

Steve
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PostSubject: Re: Wagons at Isandlwana   Mon Apr 25, 2016 6:32 pm

Bonjour,
Thank you Mr Whybra for your analysis and Steve for you kind comment.
Exceptionnally this evening I will drunk a pint of beer!
Bonne soirée à tous les deux.
Frédéric
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PostSubject: Re: Wagons at Isandlwana   Mon Apr 25, 2016 7:38 pm

Frederic
Well done my friend, a new source indeed and one filled with information. There are a lot of points to work through and fit into the jigsaw.

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PostSubject: Re: Wagons at Isandlwana   Mon Apr 25, 2016 10:21 pm

Bonsoir Frank,
Thank you very much for you encouragements.
Mr Whybra, kindly, has already bring on the table some very good points about the fugitives.
I'm excited about your concerns, those of Steve of course, and others members.... which certainly arouse a reaction from Mr Whybra Very Happy Very Happy Very Happy Very Happy

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PostSubject: Wagons at Isandlwana   Tue Apr 26, 2016 1:12 am

Well done Frederic Very Happy Salute Salute , enjoy your Beer or 6 ! agree agree Very Happy Very Happy
Cheers Mate 90th Very Happy
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PostSubject: Re: Wagons at Isandlwana   Tue Apr 26, 2016 6:36 am

Hi Gary, Thank you, mate.
All: I wonder if the narrative of Granger about the "boys" is "hersay"...If it is not the case, his narrative proves that the zulus were capable of cruaulty during a fight (sadism) and are in opposition with the analyses of IK and KIS on the subject.
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PostSubject: Grangers testimony   Tue Apr 26, 2016 6:53 am

Hi Frederic,
Bravo! A job well done.
These revelations once again illustrate that there is yet much unearthing to be done on the real facts of the AZW. This could come from previously known unpublished works or archival research.
Sadism was a reality of the that war, and I too would take the first hand word of that trooper, fleeing for his life, rather than some writer trying to piece together a story 130 years later.

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barry
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PostSubject: Re: Wagons at Isandlwana   Tue Apr 26, 2016 8:25 am

Frederic/Barry
Im really tempted to put that down to heresay. The writer seems to suggest at the time of his departure the guns were in the process of fleeing and that the companies were in the midst of a fighting retreat approaching the neck. This would suggest that the 'drummer boys' incident was still to come.
Just early thoughts at this stage. Interestingly this is the second mention of a stone/brick wall at iSandlwana and he tends to place it between the donga and the camp but close enough to the camp that he could get back to his horse on foot.
As I said earlier theres a heck of a lot in that letter.

Cheers
PS Hope the beer went down well, you deserve it.

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PostSubject: The letter   Tue Apr 26, 2016 9:38 am

Hi Frank,
Indeed,....... I would not write it off to hearsay, not just yet anyway.
As for the mention of a stone wall ( a second report of that too ?) ,... now maybe someone had adhered to SI's and had started to build a laager of sorts.
The mind boggles.

regards

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PostSubject: Re: Wagons at Isandlwana   Tue Apr 26, 2016 9:51 am

Hi Barry
The stone wall could of course been a part of an old kraal or animal enclosure. There were a couple of kraals in the immediate vicinity including one on the rocky ridge. And yes your quite right the only thing Im prepared to write of at iSandlwana is the fact that Harry Flashman wasn't there. Very Happy

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PostSubject: Re: Wagons at Isandlwana   Tue Apr 26, 2016 10:00 am

The 'drummer boys' incident is interesting. The early flying visits did not result in a flurry of reports about the boys. Granger's letter of 14th Feb may be a little confused in its ordering of specific events (quite naturally) but it has a constant ring of truth and honesty about it. Perhaps he did see something of the sort happen regarding a boy - not necessarily all the boys - which expanded with literary licence.
As Frank says, write nothing off.
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PostSubject: Re: Wagons at Isandlwana   Tue Apr 26, 2016 10:30 am

Morning Julian
Without doubt the letter has a full ring of authenticity about it, but, even if events are not chronological sequenced the escape from the camp and the observations he makes puts a timeline of sorts to the ride out. Hence my comment that he seems to have been ahead of the saddle invasion. Having said that of course, unless he got lost on the fugitives trail he landed well behind the 'officer' survivors hence his meeting on the ride to Helpmakaar. A bit early to judge but his sighting of the guns moving tends to put his escape before that of Smith Dorrien and Curling, SD mentions the guns being static.
An interesting point is the mention that after being ordered out by Gardner they didn't just line the donga and wait for Durnfords retreat but actually rode out onto the plain to meet him and then retired onto the donga with him.
Some extremely interesting issues to explore.
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PostSubject: Re: Wagons at Isandlwana   Tue Apr 26, 2016 11:11 am

About « the stone wall » :
I am sure that I have at home a report from a special correspondant (Drummond ?) who wrote that a stone barricade had began to be built at Isandhlwana.
I remember sneered (foolishly) by reading this comment....
Today, I aplogize to this « special correspondant ».
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PostSubject: Re: Wagons at Isandlwana   Tue Apr 26, 2016 11:16 am

ymob
I recall that too - I'll search for it as well.
Frank
I agree absolutely.
Granger does say he went off to the right (from the Fugitives' Trail) at one point before returning to it later - perhaps that slowed him down and allowed the officers to catch him up.
The 'sortie' going out to meet Durnford is of course also brand new information!!
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PostSubject: Re: Wagons at Isandlwana   Tue Apr 26, 2016 11:26 am

Mr Whybra, I am not at home.
His comment about the Zulus inside the camp " on the the left" is also very interesting. He wrote anything about the zulus "inside" the camp "on the right".according to IK the first Zulu to have penetrated the British line of defense came from the left (the regiment Umbonambi)
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PostSubject: Re: Wagons at Isandlwana   Tue Apr 26, 2016 11:28 am

I.E "came from the left "horn" (the right of the camp or the British))
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PostSubject: Re: Wagons at Isandlwana   Tue Apr 26, 2016 11:31 am

Frederic
Well, that remark is ambivalent. He could simply mean that he saw Zulus 'to his left' i.e. having entered the left of camp either from a descent of the spur or from a frontal charge on the camp.
I don't think he means the left horn entering from the rear of the mountain via the saddle.
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PostSubject: Re: Wagons at Isandlwana   Tue Apr 26, 2016 11:58 am

Sorry Mr Whybra, I misspoke.
According to Ian Knight the first Zulus to have entered in the camp are the left horn, a few minutes before the right horn.
Granger wrote : « I went behind a stone wall to the right of the camp (IE : for me in front of the left horn) « I look round and saw the Zulus in the left of the camp » (For me the right horn or the chest). For him the first zulus to have entered in the camp are the right horn or the chest « right ».
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PostSubject: Re: Wagons at Isandlwana   Tue Apr 26, 2016 12:07 pm

Just to flesh out this individual a little, Walter Homer Granger was born on 13 June 1854 in Leeds, son of Charles and Sarah Ann (his father was a solicitor). So he was 25 years old when he found himself at Isandhlwana.

In 1871 he was living with his family at 12 Newton Grove, Headingly, Leeds employed as a solicitors clerk (age 16). There is no trace of him in the UK after that date so I assume he remained in South Africa - possibly becoming a solicitor?

Steve
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PostSubject: Re: Wagons at Isandlwana   Tue Apr 26, 2016 12:11 pm

Bonjour Steve,
He died young. There is something on the forum on this subject with a sketch of him (with a bowler hat from memory)
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PostSubject: Re: Wagons at Isandlwana   Tue Apr 26, 2016 12:12 pm

Topic: "the late Mr W.H. Granger"
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PostSubject: Re: Wagons at Isandlwana   Tue Apr 26, 2016 12:15 pm

Frederic
From any position between the donga and the beginning of the camp he could not have seen the right horn, the only elements of the chest would have been the uMbonambi and uMxhapho. I would think however that its more than likely that he was witnessing the iNgobamakhosi and uVe coming through the gap between Pope and the 2/3rd NNC. Later he mentions aprox 40 warriors charging from the front, again uMbonambi. So its probably marginal in terms of timing whether the uNdi coming in from the far left or the uMbonambi from the front got there first. But your right the left right bit is confusing so better to take what he says in context of other reports.
I suspect it was those uMbonambi elements that got between the retreating companies and the saddle.

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PostSubject: Re: Wagons at Isandlwana   Tue Apr 26, 2016 12:19 pm

Died at 31 from Cholera. An interesting young man indeed.
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PostSubject: Re: Wagons at Isandlwana   Tue Apr 26, 2016 12:29 pm

Frank,
I am agree with you about the umbonambi.
According to Cetewayo, the umbonambi are the first Regiment to « stab » the british.
The difficulty is where was the umbonambi ?, with the left horn ? The chest ?
If the Umbonambi was in the chest, the thesis of IK collapses (the lest horn was the first in the camp). It seems to me that for Granger the first Zulus in the camp were not members of the lest horn.
So, I think that the first Zulus in the camp were the Regiment Umbonambi with the chest.
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PostSubject: Re: Wagons at Isandlwana   Tue Apr 26, 2016 12:31 pm

Frederic
Have a look at the Mainwaring map, to the South East corner there is an old kraal. This area suits the description for the stone wall perfectly. Its to the right of the camp, facing the left horn, on the line of retreat from the donga and in close proximity to the horse lines. If I was a betting man that's where my money would be placed.

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PostSubject: Re: Wagons at Isandlwana   Tue Apr 26, 2016 12:41 pm

[You must be registered and logged in to see this image.]

Somewhere round about the tree on the right I would imagine. Gary will be there fairly soon maybe he would like to take a walk around to see if there are any remains of stone work.
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PostSubject: Re: Wagons at Isandlwana   Tue Apr 26, 2016 12:41 pm

I fear that my thought is confused in English. According to Granger , it's not members of the left horn the first in the camp but members of the chest. If Granger not mistaken, the IK's thesis collapses.
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PostSubject: Re: Wagons at Isandlwana   Tue Apr 26, 2016 12:51 pm

Frank,
Thak you.
I take a look at the Mainwering map at my return at home this evening. So for you (as me) the position of Granger was in the right of the camp facing the left horn.
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PostSubject: Re: Wagons at Isandlwana   Tue Apr 26, 2016 12:53 pm

Frederic, there was so much sole searching and talk after the battle in Zulu kraals that Im sure they would have got it right that the uMbonambi were first in. There to the left of the chest, left of Mcijo and quite possibly split by the conical kopie, in fact I would go as far to say probably split. If they went around the Southern side of the koppie then the left chest would have joined with the tail of the left horn.
One of Grangers comments relating to the attack ( and he does say he was on the left front, lower down) is of the strong attack coming down of the mountain between a little 'coppice (kopie) and the flat. That's the position the rocket battery was destroyed. And as they were fired on by the NNC it starts to point towards the NNC being in the traditional position at the 'knuckle'. As I said theres a hell of a lot coming out of that letter, its a valuable find.

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PostSubject: Re: Wagons at Isandlwana   Tue Apr 26, 2016 12:56 pm

This may assist. look slightly to the left of the letter 'A'
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PostSubject: The possible brestworks   Tue Apr 26, 2016 1:05 pm

Hi Frederic,
You deserve a keg, ....not a pint.
What would be most interesting to me is to redraw the Isandlwana battlefield map showing where the attempted stonewalls may have been. If we know that, finding lines of stones out of place may not be too difficult.


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PostSubject: Re: Wagons at Isandlwana   Tue Apr 26, 2016 1:09 pm

Frank,
I have also read that the Umbonambi divided between the left horn and the chest. It's necessary for me to take a look at the Jakson's map (Hill of the Sphinx) for the position of the Umbonambi. it seems to me that for him, on the map, the Umbonambi was in the chest.
Time for me to work.
I.E: Thanks Barry:, in truth, I never drink alcohol, I do not like it. I am a fan of Coca-Cola, a shame for a French...

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PostSubject: Re: Wagons at Isandlwana   Tue Apr 26, 2016 1:31 pm

About the "Boys",
From memory, in their thesis, IK or Kis wrote that there were not testimonies from Officers (about the atrocities againt the boys). it's wrong, there at least one testimony from an officer; I'll give the source after my return at home.
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PostSubject: Re: Wagons at Isandlwana   Tue Apr 26, 2016 1:37 pm

Rupert LONSDALE.
Source: "Guy C. Dawnay "Campaigns: Zulu 1879, Egypt 1882, Suakim 1885; Being the private journal of Guy C. Dawnay".
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PostSubject: Re: Wagons at Isandlwana   Tue Apr 26, 2016 4:55 pm

Frederic
You quoted that word 'coppice' from Granger's letter and put 'koppie' after it in brackets. The same thought struck me I admit. Had the paper editor simply not been able to read the hand-written letter and interpreted the word as 'coppice'? The only thing is that Granger uses the word 'hill' all the time elsewhere - it would be strange for him to suddenly write 'koppie'. Is there any sign of trees now where he indicates on the battlefield?
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PostSubject: Re: Wagons at Isandlwana   Tue Apr 26, 2016 5:08 pm

Mr Whybra
This fine analyse is not from me but from Frank.
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PostSubject: Re: Wagons at Isandlwana   Tue Apr 26, 2016 5:27 pm

When Granger says the Carbineers were deployed "a little to the left of the camp" and later "to the left of the camp but lower down" he presumably means the Carbineer's camp. They then are pushed out in skirmishing order towards Durnford and fall back with him to the Donga. All of that is consistent with Granger being on the right of the camp as a whole and facing the Zulu left chest/horn. When he refers to seeing the Zulus coming over the hills to the left of the camp, and their engagement by the NNC, he perhaps is referring to the attack of the Zulu right chest from the spur rather than from the notch? That would place the "coppice" (I agree that he probably meant that rather than koppie) further to the west?

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PostSubject: Re: Wagons at Isandlwana   Tue Apr 26, 2016 5:43 pm

Frederic
Yes, sorry, meant Frank!

Rusteze
Careful here. In your analysis that would mean that when Granger wrote "to the left of the camp" he meant two different places.
Might "to the left of the camp but lower down" not mean, if he's facing the plain, out near Conical Koppie?
As for "coming over over the hills to the left of the camp" that might well mean Nourse's NNC?
There again, you might be perfectly right!!
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PostSubject: Re: Wagons at Isandlwana   Tue Apr 26, 2016 5:59 pm

Julian

The way I read the sense of it, the Carbineers second deployment was in a similar place to the first "but lower down". He then refers "to the hills" to the left of the camp where the Zulus are attacking and are engaged by the NNC. So yes, a different place. The Zulus are also then engaged by the guns (for the first time?)- which doesn't quite sound like Nourse at the Notch. There again, you might be perfectly right! Very Happy

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PostSubject: Re: Wagons at Isandlwana   Wed Apr 27, 2016 9:43 am

My pennyworth.
If they were deployed below the Carbineers camp then the plain below the 'hill' would have been invisible. To see that plain area below the ridge he would have had to be a fair distance along the camp front to the North. That's where the 'parade ground was situated so its highly possible they could have been posted as a screen for the companies on parade, so to the North. On their second call out it was becoming more clear the direction of the threat, North East, and so could well have been deployed below the Rocky Ridge, 'a little below' literally their last position. If they were in that sort of position it would have been a good view to the left chest/left horn coming down the ridge adjacent to the notch. In addition the scene in front of them would have had the tail of the rocket battery and the retreating Durnford force.
In terms of the 'hill/Kopie debate', the ridge extended virtually the entire horizon from West to East but from the camp wasnt apparent that it was in fact a ridge. It could and probably would have been then easily described as a hill whilst the isolated conical kopie is exactly that and for anyone that had been in the country for a few weeks or so it would have been the natural expression rather that a 'little hill'.
Extending the 'ifs' then: If the Carbineers were stationed to the South West of the koppie and were facing towards the anticipated threat the emerging Zulu army would appear to be attacking between the Little Koppie and the Plain.
I would go with Nourse and his NNC retreating from the Notch back along the plain towards the 'knuckle/bend' in the line taking a route between the ridge and the koppie. That's the shortest route for them back to the safety of the camp.
Im starting to get back to a theory I proposed some time back of Durnford having to face two separate forces with one (left horn) taking over from the one (reserve) chasing him down the Quabe Valley.
Yeah I know Julian, proof!

As Barry said theres still a lot more to come out there, tantalising isn't it?

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rusteze

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PostSubject: Re: Wagons at Isandlwana   Wed Apr 27, 2016 10:30 am

Just enough new information to raise tantalising possibilities and not quite enough to be certain of things! Presumably the stone wall might have provided ready material for the burial cairns and so disappeared. The only thing I find a bit contrived is that, as a trooper, he knew by name all of the people he met on the way down the escape trail.

Steve
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Frank Allewell

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PostSubject: Re: Wagons at Isandlwana   Wed Apr 27, 2016 10:58 am

Hi Steve
There is that aspect but its again probable that he has been in camp with the column for a couple of weeks and the named officers were generally special service types that he could have had contact with or again learned the names during the confinement at Helpmakaar.
Some of those old kraal walls foundations are still very much evident, there is the large one on the western slopes of the saddle close to the L shaped group of cairns. The speculation on that one is that a group of retreating men used it as a defensive point but were buried outside of it due to the hard nature of the ground.
Eventually there will be a find that starts to join the dots.
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Julian Whybra



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PostSubject: Re: Wagons at Isandlwana   Wed Apr 27, 2016 4:49 pm

Frank
No.  Not this time.  I had reached exactly the same conclusions as your 8.43 post.  The locations seemed logical and seemed to fit both Granger's descriptions and others' known whereabouts.  The 'proof' lies in Granger's account itself which is why I think Frederic should be so congratulated.
It still needs a lot of thinking about though and comparison with others' accounts before being carved in stone.


Last edited by Julian Whybra on Tue May 17, 2016 11:56 am; edited 1 time in total
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Frank Allewell

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PostSubject: Re: Wagons at Isandlwana   Wed Apr 27, 2016 9:08 pm

Theres quite a number of points he has raised that require some serious deliberation. One in particular is the point I mentioned earlier, the relative times the guns were seen and the fact he mentions all the escaped officers by name except one.
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rusteze

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PostSubject: Re: Wagons at Isandlwana   Wed Apr 27, 2016 9:28 pm

On the question of names I guess the fact that he is writing this 4 months after the event means he knows them by then - he probably did not know them all at the time. In terms of fitting with other accounts he seems to chime quite well with Lt Davies (Edendale Troop) so far as the battle is concerned. Did we know that Lt Scott was replenishing ammunition? He had been at the piquet on the Conical Hill when ordered off it by Durnford (according to Davies).

Steve
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PostSubject: Re: Wagons at Isandlwana   Thu Apr 28, 2016 7:29 am

Hi Steve
I don't believe there has been a mention of Scott between leaving the conical Koppie and his stand with Durnford, so this mention hits two nails, firstly it positions him and second it shows ammunition was being dished out.
I think I have located a possible position for the stone wall. On Google Earth take a baring from the Carbineers memorial on the side of Mahlabamkosi of 61.43 degrees and a distance of 88 metres.
There are foundations of an old kraal. There nothing visible from the surface, I have extensive photos of the area, it fits with the general descriptions of the 'stone wall'. Its also within spitting distance of the colonials last stand, the area Scott was found.
Its a possibility.

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barry

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PostSubject: The stone walls   Thu Apr 28, 2016 9:52 am

Hi Frank,

Thanks for that, I will take a closer look at GE to see if I can also pin the place down.
The more I think of all of this I think that a light archeological dig would certainly reveal other evidence of something happening there. I wonder too how many real VC's should have been awarded to the diehards who made their last stands at those places. Those stories will never be told.
Scott would not have been issuing MH ammo of course, but rather that used by the colonial troops.

regards

barry
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