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Lt. (Captain) J.B. Carey, 98th, Ityotozi River--
(Isandula Collection)
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 Durnfords retreat.

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ymob

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PostSubject: Re: Durnfords retreat.   Sun Jan 22, 2017 3:27 pm

ymob wrote:
Bonjour,
Frank,
You are severe and harsh with my previous post!!!!! Very Happy  Very Happy  Very Happy  Very Happy
My intention is never to dismiss "events, especially first hand account" without honest reason, especially when a testimony is corroborated by other(s).
Before dismissing the testimonies from Fynn and Gosset, I tried to show that the testimony from Fynn was unreliable (the meeting between LC and Harness) and that the messenger could not be a man of Hamilton-Browne (according to Gosset) after reading the report from Milne and the aversion of HB for the Natives.
I submitted this "analysis" to your approval and the other members
The 3 others testimonies (Crealock / Milne / NN) were in my mind similar.
In my  mind (with the problem of translation English-French), "our native" meant only (and apparently wrongly) "native rallied", but I understand now your point.
Incidentally, you wrote: "Both Noggs and Milne record it as "our native": Please, where Milne wrote "our native"? In my copy of his testimony, Milne wrote "one of the mounted native".

I understood you scenario but I am not convinced by it.  Very Happy
but I try to keep an open mind :I admit that your scenario is possible. Wink... if you/we can demonstrate that some natives (in the Mangeni) were mounted. As you know, there are not native mounted units in the Mangeni with LC.
You wrote in a previous post that you have no idea about the unit of this native.
If this native is not a Durnford's trooper,  I wonder if he could be a native attached to Drummond.
Amitié.
Frédéric

Bonjour
The native could not be a native attached to Drummond:
According to Drummond :"a native on horseback, who had just galloped down from the opposite ridge where the camp could be seen, began to halloa, and on a staff officer who spoke the language going up to him, he said that an attack was taking place on the camp”.
So again, probably a Messenger sent by Durnford.
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PostSubject: Re: Durnfords retreat.   Sun Jan 22, 2017 6:12 pm

Hi Frederic

Where can I find Drummond's report?

I note he says the "native on horseback galloped down from the opposite ridge, where the camp could be seen". Does that mean he thought that was where the native was when he saw the camp being attacked? If so, that would not have been with Durnford would it?

Steve
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PostSubject: Re: Durnfords retreat.   Sun Jan 22, 2017 7:14 pm

Bonsoir Steve,
Natal Witness, 30th January 1879.
Probably published in the Red Book (Lock Ron).
In your view, where did he come from, Isandhlwana?
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PostSubject: Re: Durnfords retreat.   Sun Jan 22, 2017 10:13 pm

Hi Frederic. Thanks, it is in the Red Book as you suggest.

No, I don't think he came from Isandhlwana, it's too far away. Reading the account, I wonder if he was just a local native on a horse who had seen and heard the attack from up on the ridge - not part of the mounted contingent at all. According to the account he comes down off the ridge just after Chelmsford had been told by captive Zulus that the main Zulu army was going to attack the camp and after they had heard gunfire. After hearing both accounts Chelmsford rides up to the ridge but sees nothing unusual, even though he is reported to have seen people moving about. Drummond was his intelligence officer and so would take a particular interest in this kind of information. I note also that a few days later Drummond sends a telegram to the Capetown Argus (Red Book page 69) saying he has been quoted by their special correspondent as his authority regarding the operations around Rorke's Drift, which he denies. He also says that his letters to the Argus had not said anything in any way unfavourable to Lord Chelmsford's conduct of the campaign. He says he has been misunderstood. I think he has been got at! His account of the warnings received by Chelmsford at Mangeni (including from our mysterious native on horseback) were meant very much as a criticism of LC from this intelligence officer for disregarding the evidence before his eyes.

Steve
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PostSubject: Re: Durnfords retreat.   Mon Jan 23, 2017 6:02 am

Bonjour Steve,
" a local native on a horse"...
If You read, Zulus's testimonies, very few of them had an interest in the horses (" the foot of thé white men). It's one of the reason why they kiled them at Isandhlwana. Most of thé Zulus hadn't horses in civil life.
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PostSubject: Re: Durnfords retreat.   Mon Jan 23, 2017 6:47 am

Read further: ' he said that an attack was taking place on the camp- that he could see heavy firing and hear big guns.' If he had been sent from the Camp/Durnford would the message not have been different? This seems to intimate that he was acting on his own volition!
A question that I hope Barry will be able to answer: Did the colonial forces NMR. Police etc have servants along, mounted servants that is? Cant really imagine a bunch of Colonials going of to war without.
If they did Frederic it could be an answer to your questsion.

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PostSubject: Re: Durnfords retreat.   Mon Jan 23, 2017 8:55 am

Steve, Frank, all,
Maybe a spy ?
There is a spy, a friendly native, mentioned by a witness at Isandhlwana the 22 January.
Fannin and Fynn for example used spies.
My doubts with this hypothesis is in link with the horse – a mounted native-.
I keep also in mind the detachment of mounted natives seen by Trooper Fred Symons, Natal Carbineers, in the Mangeni.
« Offy » Sheptone the Chief of the Natal Carbineers had a native servant with him the 22 january (from memory : Fred Symons's account).
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PostSubject: Re: Durnfords retreat.   Mon Jan 23, 2017 9:03 am

Morning Frederic
The options are wide that's why Ive refrained from trying to make a guess. All we can say is that there was a 'messenger'.
There were actually a number of Zulus that where familiar with horses. Manyane was mounted for a while before he ran of on foot, At least a dozen or so were with the main impi, they were seen by Chelmsford I think. Barker was chased away by a number of mounted Zulu. So its highly possible there were servants etc, or as you say a spy or Zulu that was friendly to the British.
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PostSubject: Re: Durnfords retreat.   Mon Jan 23, 2017 10:00 am

Bonjour Frank,

The number of mounted men in the Zulu army was derisory (scouts / Zibhebhu's men for example met by Lt Browne, IMI, or scouts seen by LC the 21 january (report from Milne)
But I admit, your hypothetises  are possible.

From Trooper Fred Symons (Natal Carbineers): "The prisoners, nine in all, were handed over to some of Colonel's Durnford's mounted natives where they sprang rom I cannot say, for there was not much time for questioning. They informed us that fighting was going on, but I had no time to ascertain whether at Isandhlwana or with the regulars on our far left. ; at any rate as we descended the hill heavy firing could be heard from the direction of the camp, then shortly ceased ».

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PostSubject: Re: Durnfords retreat.   Mon Jan 23, 2017 10:10 am

Incidentally, to my knowledge, the regulars have not fired a single shot in the Mangeni.
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PostSubject: Re: Durnfords retreat.   Mon Jan 23, 2017 12:32 pm

Natal Carbineers 1855 1911 Ed John Stalker page 92 mentions that when pursuing Matyana up the valley three horse were captured from the Zulu.
Not that I believe the messenger was a Zulu.
Durnford at one point in the valley got rather irritated because scouts he had sent out hadn't returned. Would there be a possibility that one seeing what was happening rode of the Mangeni?
Just a thought.
But the big issue for me is still the timing, Chelmford gets the message around 12.30 the battle had just begun, hence all seemed well in the camp, no masses of black smoke. So potentially the fight on the ridge was just approaching the camp, Durnford was still fighting down the valley.
Again random thoughts.
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PostSubject: Re: Durnfords retreat.   Mon Jan 23, 2017 12:55 pm

Frank,
There was indeed some mounted Zulus with Matyana (Norris-Newman).
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PostSubject: Re: Durnfords retreat.   Mon Jan 23, 2017 12:58 pm

And the brother of Fred Symons caught a Zulu's horse.
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PostSubject: Re: Durnfords retreat.   Mon Jan 23, 2017 1:13 pm

Frank,

Finally, if Durnford sent messengers, we do not know "when".
We don't know also the cause (like Brickhill in the morning).
We only kwow that there was a group of Durnfor's mounted natives in the Mangeni who said that "there was a firing" and a mounted native who said that the camp was under attack.
Incidentally, as I wrote previously, I do not agree with your deduction regarding the "timing".
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PostSubject: Re: Durnfords retreat.   Mon Jan 23, 2017 1:21 pm

Interesting thought about the Durnford's scouts.
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PostSubject: Zulu horsemen and factotums   Mon Jan 23, 2017 1:23 pm

Hi Frank,
Yes, there were indeed Zulu constables accompanying the NMP at Isandlwana.
These men were employed mainly as mulateers, cooks etc, but all were very good horsemen and had been trained as such.
Mounted training for them was important as in peacetime as they frequently accompanied the NMP patrols into the hinterland, performing their allotted tasks.
Whilst perusing the NMP Nongquai magazine recently I found proof that these contables were at Isandlwana when reading about how the fleeing Trumpeter Stevens was rescued from the flooded Mzinyathi on 22/01/79. There it reported.....
"Zulu NMP constable Madijane saw the predicament Trooper Stevens was in, in the swollen river, rescued his horse and gave it back to him on the river bank, enabling him to escape...."
Now the other colonial units, ie NMR, NC, etc styled themselves on the NMP and employed Zulus in their ranks in the same way. SO, in view of this it is quite to be expected that there were many Zulu horsemen amongst the colonial units.

regards

barry
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PostSubject: Re: Durnfords retreat.   Mon Jan 23, 2017 1:41 pm

Bonjour Barry,
Thank you very much for these useful informations on the Colonial units.
I am not sure that the these constables for the most part accompanied the Volunteers and Policemen (NMP) in the Mangeni. I wonder if they did not stay at Isandhlwana.
For example, when Fred Symons evoked meals in the Mangeni (at least twice: tinned fish and "spinach"), he didn't mention the constables.
From memory, only the constable of Offy is mentioned by Symons (I.E: Offy was encumbered with personal baggages / packhorses).

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Frédéric
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PostSubject: Re: Durnfords retreat.   Mon Jan 23, 2017 1:51 pm

Remember that the men who left Isandhlwana with Dartnell in the morning of the 21 January would have to return to Isandhlwana in the afternoon of the same day, not the 22 January.
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PostSubject: Re: Durnfords retreat.   Mon Jan 23, 2017 2:04 pm

About the mounted men (with Matyana), I suspect that they were the "body-guard" of Matyana.
Cheers.
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PostSubject: Re: Durnfords retreat.   Mon Jan 23, 2017 2:16 pm

Barry,
I wonder if these constables were wearing an "(European) uniform". It seems to me that I have seen somewhere a picture of a constable in uniform scratch scratch scratch scratch
Cheers.
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PostSubject: Re: Durnfords retreat.   Mon Jan 23, 2017 10:46 pm

Frank Allewell wrote:
Durnford at one point in the valley got rather irritated because scouts he had sent out hadn't returned. Would there be a possibility that one seeing what was happening rode of the Mangeni?
.

Bonsoir,
At isandhlwana, the 22 Junuary just before the "fighting retreat by Durnford's mounted natives:
-« It was during this conversation [with the messengers] that our scouts reported the enemy in sight. We looked up to the ridge on our front and could see the enemy in great numbers about 1,500 yards, steadily advancing and firing us. Colonel Durnford gave the order for us to extend our men, and wait for the enemy to come within 400 yards of us, then Henderson's and my Troop to retire, and fire alternately towards the camp. We did as were were ordered » (Lt H.D. Davies)

It seems that the group of Durnford's mounted natives seen by Trooper Symons can't be Durnford's scouts.

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PostSubject: Re: Durnfords retreat.   Tue Jan 24, 2017 6:39 am

That eliminates one variable Frederic, 20 to go. Very Happy
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PostSubject: Re: Durnfords retreat.   Tue Jan 24, 2017 8:29 am

Right!
but 19 unlikely, 1 highly probable! Wink Salute
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PostSubject: Re: Durnfords retreat.   Tue Jan 24, 2017 8:40 am

ymob wrote:
Barry,
I wonder if these constables were wearing an "(European) uniform". It seems to me that I have seen somewhere a picture of a constable in uniform scratch scratch scratch scratch
Cheers.
Frédéric

I found it. A photography commented by Brett Hendey on another forum: apparently not conclusive (I.E: the photography / not the analysis given by Brett!)
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PostSubject: Re: Durnfords retreat.   Tue Jan 24, 2017 8:46 am

Can you post a link?
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PostSubject: Re: Durnfords retreat.   Tue Jan 24, 2017 9:05 am

Frank,

The same photography is on two websites.

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Soldiers of the Queen - Zulu Police Constable and White NCO

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Email this page - Gentleman's Military interest Club

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Frédéric
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PostSubject: Re: Durnfords retreat.   Tue Jan 24, 2017 9:40 am

There is a photograph of the NMP taken in 1877. At the rear holding a horses reins is a native auxiliary. Easiest way to see it is in the 'Big Silver Book' Page 13. The uniform seems to be a pill box hat with tunic and white ish slacks.
Brett are you familiar with that one?

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PostSubject: Uniforms for Zulu NMP constables   Tue Jan 24, 2017 6:08 pm

Hi Frederic,
The Zulu NMP constables wore a uniform issued by the NMP. It was a prerequisite of their employment to be uniformed and thus identifiable. It became a status symbol too amongst themselves and they wore their simple uniforms with pride.
The gear consisted of a pill box hat on a chin strap, shorts and a shirt. No boots were issued. A wide leather belt with brass buckle was a much treasured part of the gear. They were all issued with traditional weapons too, ie an iWisa of no mean proportions and a broad bladed mKonto, both were short hafted for close up use. A pair of hand cuffs completed the gear.
They were first class scouts and intelligence gathers, and prided themselves in that work.
These men were very bush savvy too, knowing the enemy regiments very well and able to quite literally smell the wind to judge which way things were going.
I will bet that on the 22/01/1879, that most of these men quickly changed into mufti to avoid detection by the Impi and made their escape.

regards

barry
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PostSubject: Re: Durnfords retreat.   Tue Jan 24, 2017 10:46 pm

Bonsoir Barry,

So, the constables wore an uniform issued by the NMP....
Do You know if young men (around 15 years old) were recruited or only adults men?
Very interesting, indeed, thank you very much.
Regards
Frédéric

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PostSubject: Re: Durnfords retreat.   Wed Jan 25, 2017 4:21 am

Morning Barry
That's pretty much the description of the photo I described earlier.
So Frederic, do we add back another possibility?
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PostSubject: Zulu horsemen   Wed Jan 25, 2017 6:43 am

Hi Frederic/ Frank,
Indeed with so many gaps in the recorded events of that day it is prudent to keep all options open rather than close some.
To answer the question about the age of the Zulu NMP constables; no only mature adult men were recruited. Now if any "umfaans" (12-15yr olds Zulu boys) were seen riding around delivering messages, they would in all probability have been employed as the voorlooopers on the ox transpost wagons.  They would have been quickly co-opted into the "messenging" service used by the various regiments.

regards

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PostSubject: Re: Durnfords retreat.   Wed Jan 25, 2017 7:45 am

Any good.
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PostSubject: Re: Durnfords retreat.   Wed Jan 25, 2017 8:16 am

Hi Ray
That's the shot that Frederic refered to earlier
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PostSubject: Re: Durnfords retreat.   Wed Jan 25, 2017 9:16 am

Bonjour,
Frank,
Already recorded (in the unlikely column: 19)
Even if the arguments given by Barry are convincing.
I am only looking for a source that I have in mind but that I do not yet find.
I keep the secret hope to convert you to the thesis (Black mounted messenger = Durnford's trooper).

Barry,
Frankly, thank you very much, I learned a lot with your messages about the constables.

Cordialement.
Frédéric
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PostSubject: Re: Durnfords retreat.   Wed Jan 25, 2017 10:06 am

Frederic, I'm really open minded about it, I don't have a cle who it was so quite happy to be convinced but to do that then this conundrum needs to be resolved.
Looking at, for me, one of the best time analysis around, Keith Smith. He puts the confrontation in the Quabe Valley at around 12 oclock, he then starts to retire. He would not have seen what was happening in the camp until he had rounded iThusi and was close to the conical koppie, Amatutshane, ( the rescue of Norse occurring around 12.35 ) If he was going to send a messenger to Chelmsford the obvious point would therefore be before the impi rounded the iThusi corner and blocked him of. At that point Durnford would for the first time be in sight of the camp and fully aware of the situation, as indeed would his 'messenger'. So assuming then that Durnford sent of to Chemlsford he still had a hard 7 to 8 miles hard riding. He couldn't have got there by 12.30.

A possibility would be something rather different in that the messenger wasn't sent by Durnford to tell Chelmsford about the fighting !
Consider the rather wild idea that Durnford decided when he was crossing the plain to send a messenger to Chelmsford telling him what was happening ie: he had arrived and left the camp to chase an impi he thought was trying to attack him, Chelmsford. That messenger was proceeding across the plain and up the long rise that leads to the Mangeni when he would have had a clear view of the camp and seen the first of the Zulu chasing Durnford across the plain. He would also have been able to hear the guns etc.
Would that offer an explanation of him
1) Being a Durnford man
2) put him at the Mangeni around the correct time
3) Explain the message he gave
4) Surely as Durnford was acting, wrong or right, as an independent column and he had just been hauled badly over the coals by Chelmsford, would it not make sense that he has told his Commanding Officer what he was up to?

Just a thought.

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PostSubject: Re: Durnfords retreat.   Wed Jan 25, 2017 10:24 am

Frank,
Without entering again on the field of the debate about the Timeline (without interest if I do not find the source I have in mind), I have also your second scenario in mind.
We know that when leaving Rorke's Drift, Durnford sent a messenger to LC (Hammer and not Brickhill as I wrongly wrote in a previous message).
Hammer did not find LC at Isandhlwana: information certainly brought to the knowledge of Durnford.
Durnford may have sent another Messenger to LC after his arrival at the camp.
Maybe, the weak point of this hypothesis is: why a "black's Messenger" and not a "white one" (as Hammer).

Cheers.

Frédéric
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PostSubject: Re: Durnfords retreat.   Wed Jan 25, 2017 10:42 am

« A question of Time » by Keith I. Smith
"One of the most vexed questions concerning the Anglo-Zulu War in general, and the battle of Isandlwana in particular, is the unreliability of the times mentioned in military reports and accounts. Discrepancies of between thirty minutes and two hours in reported times for the same event are not uncommon”. (Note Studies in the Anglo-Zulu war, D.P. & G Military Publishers, Doncaster, 2008).

I.E: Sorry Frank, an irresistible urge Very Happy Wink Salute
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PostSubject: Re: Durnfords retreat.   Wed Jan 25, 2017 10:45 am

Frederic
For the sake of exploration. When he sent prievious 'messengers' Hammer Cochrane etc. It was I think to try and get orders, and his camp was static so there were white officers 'kicking their heels'. In this scenario he wasn't requesting orders but giving a status report, and indeed as he had split his forces, men behind the mountain escorting wagons, on the ridge and riding with him, he possibly recognized the need to keep his officers at hand.
Does that work?
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PostSubject: Re: Durnfords retreat.   Wed Jan 25, 2017 11:06 am

Frank,
I have the same reasoning AFTER the discovery of the Zulu army (let's put aside the Timeline question for the moment).In this hypohesis, effectively, he needs his officers at the command of the troops and Hammer or Brickhill were not "soldiers".

I am less sure about the other hypothesis (before the attack of the Zulus): Durnford sent Hammer AFTER reading Smith-Dorrien's message, not before.
But I am agree, your hypothesis is possible (he already knew that there are Zulus in the vicinity)

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PostSubject: Re: Durnfords retreat.   Wed Jan 25, 2017 11:20 am

In both of these hypotheses, the messenger does not deliver whatever message Durnford supposedly sent but simply says he has seen the camp under attack. Doesn't seem likely to me. Plus he needed an interpreter - also unlikely if he had been sent by Durnford with a message for LC?

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PostSubject: Re: Durnfords retreat.   Wed Jan 25, 2017 11:25 am

Bonjour Seve,
Do you mean that the "Black's Messenger" spoke English?

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PostSubject: Re: Durnfords retreat.   Wed Jan 25, 2017 11:29 am

Hi Frederic

No, I meant he did not speak English. Drummond says "a staff officer went up to him who spoke the language". Durnford would not have sent a messenger who did not speak English would he?


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PostSubject: Re: Durnfords retreat.   Wed Jan 25, 2017 11:33 am

The reality is that someone sent a Messenger who did not speak English.

Frédéric
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PostSubject: Re: Durnfords retreat.   Wed Jan 25, 2017 11:35 am

I'm still not convinced anybody sent him. He simply saw and heard the attack from the top of the ridge and rode down to tell people.

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PostSubject: Re: Durnfords retreat.   Wed Jan 25, 2017 11:47 am

So for you, Drummond is wrong, the native was not a messenger.
Major Gossett also evoked the reception of a report from a native (I.E:sent by HB according to him).

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PostSubject: Re: Durnfords retreat.   Wed Jan 25, 2017 12:17 pm

I can't see where in the article Drummond calls him a messenger. Where is Gossett's testimony?

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PostSubject: Re: Durnfords retreat.   Wed Jan 25, 2017 12:32 pm

Steve,
Sorry, you are right about Drummond.
About Major Gosset, according to my notes: (Ian Knight: “The NAM book of the Zulu War” p.110 / “Lord Chelmsford and the Zulu War” by G. French p.79 / Source : NAM 6807-686-8 ).
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PostSubject: Re: Durnfords retreat.   Wed Jan 25, 2017 1:18 pm

Thanks Frederic. I have found the two references for Gosset's report. Gosset certainly says the native came from Hamilton Brown. But would HB have sent such a message with a native who did not speak English?  Again this is speculation, but according to French Gosset is writing his report in 1906 when he was classifying and annotating Chelmsford's papers and it is attached to a pamphlet entitled "The Isandhlwana Disaster" produced by the Intelligence Branch in March 1879. French says Gosset's note is disagreeing with the Intelligence Branch pamphlet based on his own notes. Is Gosset conflating the message sent by Hamilton Brown half an hour before that the camp was surrounded with the one from the native? The Narrative, which is published again in 1907, and was no doubt based on the pamphlet of 1879,  doesn't say the native came from Hamilton Brown ( page 41). Is Gosset's note part of the further attempt to exonerate Chelmsford by downplaying the warnings he got before he took action to return to Isandhlwana?

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PostSubject: Re: Durnfords retreat.   Wed Jan 25, 2017 2:36 pm

Steve,
I am almost certain that the native described by Gosset has not been sent by HB for the reasons already given in this thread and maybe another one (HB wrote in "A lost Legionary in SA" that LC told him that he never receipted messages sent by him).

But the fact is that Gosset wrote that he receipted a report from a native -
So, if his memory is not faulty on this point, someone sent a black's Messenger to LC.
The fact that someone sends a black messenger (and not a white man) who does not speak English tends to indicate a "critical situation".

Cheers

Frédéric

I.E: I think it is urgent that I find the source about the messenger sent by Durnford...if my memory is not faulty
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PostSubject: Re: Durnfords retreat.   Wed Jan 25, 2017 2:45 pm

Frederic mon ami

Could it be you were relaxing in a warm Provencal garden one afternoon with the scent of lavender, thyme and rosemary gently filling your sleep when this idea came to you?

Steve
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