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 Captain Gardner's Mysterious Captain

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WeekendWarrior

WeekendWarrior

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PostSubject: Captain Gardner's Mysterious Captain   Captain Gardner's Mysterious Captain EmptySat Nov 09, 2019 9:07 pm

I’m attempting to solve a fairly small mystery regarding one of Captain Gardner’s accounts. He states that he attempted to rally a group of (likely) the Natal Native Horse, in the vicinity of Black’s Koppie. After their Captain was killed, they joined in the general rout. I’m trying to identify this Captain. First off, a look at the two accounts of Gardner that mention this action:

I saw all was over; our men fought well, but both Colonel Durnford and Pulleine were shot; the guns attempted to retire, but the road was occupied by the enemy; they were overturned, and all the gunners were stabbed. I then endeavoured to rally a few of the mounted men, who had retreated up a slight rise on our right, intending to make a dash through the enemy in front and regain the General’s force, but their captain and many more were killed, and I could not get them together.
-Letter dated Jan 26, 1879

The few mounted men remaining retreated up the small hill on the right rear of the camp, but were soon surrounded by the enemy advancing from the left and front. Many were killed. A few of us managed to escape by riding down the hill on the right…
-Official statement at Rorke’s Drift.

From this, it would appear that the candidate is a Captain of the Natal Native Horse. However, no NNH Captains were killed in action at Isandlwana. Allowing for a misidentification of rank, or the chance that another Irregular NNC Officer fell in with a group of NNH, here’s a list of potential candidates I’ve come up with, the criteria being Irregular Officers killed in action.

No. 2 Column
Staff:
Captain Shepstone- ID’d on the western slopes of Isandlwana. Allegedly surrounded by native troops. Brickhill tentatively suggests these were Basutos. Vause suggests Shepstone was last seen galloping back towards the camp. Erskine last saw Shepstone trying to rally men among the tents.

NNH:
Lieutenant Joseph Roberts- Stafford IDs him as killed in a kraal by Royal Artillery. Vause last saw him before the order to retire was given.
1/1 NNC:
Lieutenant Norman David Black- Lieutenant Skottowe claims he was last seen leaving the camp.
Lieutenant Joseph Lister- last seen by Stafford at the Buffalo River.


No. 3 Column
Captain Bradstreet- identified in stand near Durnford.
Lieutenant Scott- identified in stand near Durnford, under part of a wagon.
1/3 NNC
Captain Krohn- Last seen by Higginson when he was fighting on the right side of the “companies tents”.
Captain Lonsdale- Gave up his horse to Malindi. Last seen joining the 24th firing line as it was overran.
Lieutenant Samuel Avery- Last seen by Lieutenant Harford leaving Major Dartnell’s camp for Isandlwana, ostensibly without leave. No record of arriving at Isandlwana or of being found among the dead.
Lieutenant Francis Holcraft- Last seen by Lieutenant Harford leaving Major Dartnell’s camp for Isandlwana, ostensibly without leave. No record of arriving at Isandlwana or of being found among the dead.
Lieutenant Charles Jameson- Not referenced in any account.

2/3 NNC
Captain Barry- Higginson states that Sergeant Major Williams assisted Captain Barry and Lieutenant Veriker into camp; letting them ride in turn on his horse. Barry did not have a horse and does not appear in any further account.
Captain Murray- Not referenced in any account other than Maxfield, which only states he was sent back to Isandlwana on the morning of the 21st along with Lieutenant Pritchard.
Lieutenant Gibson- Lieutenant Maxfield buried his body alone on the eastern slope of Isandlwana, below Captain Younghusband’s final position.
Lieutenant Pritchard- Not referenced in any account other than Maxfield, which only states he was sent back to Isandlwana on the morning of the 21st along with Lieutenant Pritchard.
Lieutenant Rivers- Not referenced in any account.
Lieutenant Vereker- Last seen by Lieutenant Raw, horseless, having given up the mount that Raw had captured for him to a Trooper of the Natal Native Horse. Identified on the battlefield, no location.
Lieutenant Young- Last seen by Stafford along Fugitive’s Trail, severely wounded.


Of this list, who would you suggest is the likely candidate? If any… There is always the possibility Gardner may have talked up his role a bit.


Last edited by WeekendWarrior on Sat Nov 09, 2019 10:35 pm; edited 1 time in total
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John Young

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PostSubject: Re: Captain Gardner's Mysterious Captain   Captain Gardner's Mysterious Captain EmptySat Nov 09, 2019 10:23 pm

Michael,

I don’t see where in either of the two statements above that Alan Gardner mentions that these mounted men were Natives, I’m I missing something?  Or are you just surmising that they were Natives?

I also note you have Lt. Scott of the Natal Carbineers and Capt. Bradstreet of the Newcastle Mounted Rifles as members of No. 2 Column, but surely they were part of No. 3 Column?

JY
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WeekendWarrior

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PostSubject: Re: Captain Gardner's Mysterious Captain   Captain Gardner's Mysterious Captain EmptySat Nov 09, 2019 10:32 pm

Yes you are correct on Bradstreet and Scott! I'll edit the initial post. I'd say the identification of these men as NNH seems fairly logical, although I suppose another unit could be the one in question.
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WeekendWarrior

WeekendWarrior

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PostSubject: Re: Captain Gardner's Mysterious Captain   Captain Gardner's Mysterious Captain EmptySat Nov 09, 2019 10:44 pm

Reading through Gardner's account again, he describes retiring with these guys and subsequenty dispatching a messenger via Basuto. Seems to suggest NNH presence.
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John Young

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PostSubject: Re: Captain Gardner's Mysterious Captain   Captain Gardner's Mysterious Captain EmptySat Nov 09, 2019 10:59 pm

Michael,

I’ll take a look at Kate Birbeck’s book to see what she has on Gardner’s accounts, I will response after looking at that.

JY
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WeekendWarrior

WeekendWarrior

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PostSubject: Re: Captain Gardner's Mysterious Captain   Captain Gardner's Mysterious Captain EmptySat Nov 09, 2019 11:00 pm

Much obliged, sir. Another title on my to-get list!
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90th

90th

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PostSubject: Capt Gardner's Mysterious Captain    Captain Gardner's Mysterious Captain EmptySun Nov 10, 2019 2:44 am

Hi Weekend Warrior , you my friend will be able to purchase Kate's book from Isandlwana Lodge in May ! You need to study mo You need to study mo You need to study mo . It's an excellent publication , quite large and bloody heavy .
90th Salute Salute
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John Young

John Young

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PostSubject: Re: Captain Gardner's Mysterious Captain   Captain Gardner's Mysterious Captain EmptySun Nov 10, 2019 3:08 pm

Michael,

I have looked up the relevant passages in Kate’s book, and I’ve been in touch with her outside of the forum.

That said I have recently received an interesting mention of Alan Gardner’s escape from a Battlefield Guide known to a number of the forum.  The reminisce appears to be from a member of the Newcastle Mounted Rifles which makes me believe that the deceased officer was Captain Charles Robert Bradstreet.

Currently awaiting a response from KZN as to the source of the statement.

JY
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WeekendWarrior

WeekendWarrior

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PostSubject: Re: Captain Gardner's Mysterious Captain   Captain Gardner's Mysterious Captain EmptySun Nov 10, 2019 6:12 pm

I think you've nailed it... I went back and found this in Trooper Holohan's account.

"When the Zulu pressure became severe, some half-dozen of us fell back covering the retreat of some of our mounted men towards the little hill. Half-way up the track Bradstreet shouted, “God! They’re behind us,” and we could see numbers of Zulus coming over the road from Rorke’s Drift. At the same time."

Furthermore, I went back to the Norris-Newman account that mentions Shepstone finding the bodies of Bradstreet, Durnford, etc and it doesn't state they were necessarily together per se.

"Captain Shepstone, with the Carbineers, after some search, came across the corpses of Colonel Durnford, RE., Captain Bradstreet, N.M.R., Lieutenant Scott, N.C., and all their slain comrades…"

I'll see what more I can dig up.


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Julian Whybra



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PostSubject: Re: Captain Gardner's Mysterious Captain   Captain Gardner's Mysterious Captain EmptyMon Nov 11, 2019 10:08 am

The Holohan account is a fake - see my ES.
Gardner states it was mounted men - no inference of NNH can be made - JY is quite right about Bradstreet.
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WeekendWarrior

WeekendWarrior

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PostSubject: Re: Captain Gardner's Mysterious Captain   Captain Gardner's Mysterious Captain EmptyMon Nov 11, 2019 3:43 pm

Yes... Holohan seemed a bit sketchy to me. Zero cross referencing in other accounts or survivor lists, etc. Glad my gut was right. I've seen him quoted in some extremely reputable works surprisingly.
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John Young

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PostSubject: Re: Captain Gardner's Mysterious Captain   Captain Gardner's Mysterious Captain EmptyMon Nov 11, 2019 4:50 pm

Michael,

What works were those?

I have had a response from KZN.

Once I’ve put it altogether I will post it on the forum, as it makes interesting and informative reading.

JY
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Julian Whybra



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PostSubject: Re: Captain Gardner's Mysterious Captain   Captain Gardner's Mysterious Captain EmptyMon Nov 11, 2019 5:03 pm

Yes, I've not seen Holohan quoted anywhere. Where did you see him?
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WeekendWarrior

WeekendWarrior

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PostSubject: Re: Captain Gardner's Mysterious Captain   Captain Gardner's Mysterious Captain EmptyMon Nov 11, 2019 5:29 pm

PMs sent, gentlemen. Mr. Young, very much looking forward to the response from KZN!
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John Young

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PostSubject: Re: Captain Gardner's Mysterious Captain   Captain Gardner's Mysterious Captain EmptyMon Nov 11, 2019 9:59 pm

Michael,

You need wait no longer.

Over the course of the past weekend I received cryptic e-mail from Major Paul Naish - who is well-known to a number of us on this forum - in which he revealed part of the piece reproduced below.  As it included a reference to Captain Alan Gardner, 14th Hussars, albeit with his name spelt incorrectly, and placing him in the wrong regiment, there was another recipient of the e-mail as well, Kate Birbeck.

Paul explained whilst assisting the late Ron Lock with Blood on the Painted Mountain, they had chanced upon a cropped newspaper cutting.  A narrative of an iSandlwana survivor, at the time in 1994 both Ron and Paul concluded it was an unknown account from Quartermaster Dugald MacPhail of the Buffalo Border Guard.  The cutting was filed away until it resurfaced again this weekend, and Paul decided to seek my input on it.

The first thing I noticed was that the author of the piece appeared to be writing in response to a statement made by F. W. Chase, this was a letter to a newspaper’s editor clarifying an erroneous statement.  My inclination was it was written in 1929, around the time of the fiftieth anniversary, a thought shared by Paul.

I also concluded that the author of the piece was a member of the Newcastle Mounted Rifles, as he was intimate with the other members of the unit knowing their forenames.  Referring to them twice as being …of my troop.

Then I looked at the survivors of the Newcastle Mounted Rifles.

The author of the piece mentions Sergeant John (“Jack”) Walsh; Trooper John (“Jack”) Berning & Donald Moodie.  Walsh and Moodie are referred to in the past tense so they have died in the interim period.  It was then I saw the connection in Terry Sole’s For God, Queen & Colony - these three had been employed at Newcastle Magistrates’ Court.  Could the author also held a position there?  Indeed he did!

The biggest clue was the fact he could not accompany Captain Alan Gardner further than Dundee due to a bullet wound in his leg.  Like the Mounties I had got my man - Trumpeter John Joseph Horne.  Horne’s leg wound was mentioned when his medal came up for sale.

Here is the transcript of the cutting supplied by Paul Naish:

ISANDLWANA - A Survivor’s Narrative

Sir, I read a statement written by F. W. Chase which I think is a little misleading. In his statement he says that Jack Burning (sic) and Jack Walsh were on vedette duty on the Rorke’s Drift side of Isandlwana camp. This is quite wrong as Jack Walsh was in the firing line. Jack Berning and Dirk Dinkelman (both of my troop) were on vedette duty on the extreme end of the hill covering our left front. Dirk Dinkelman was the man who brought the report into camp on the morning of Jan 22 saying that the Zulu's were approaching the camp in mass formation. He estimated that the Zulus numbered 24,000 to 30.000. I was present when the report was given to Colonel Pulleine who then gave the order to in-span the wagons so as to form a laager. By the time that the wagons were in-spanned, Colonel Durnford arrived from Rorke’s Drift with the mounted troop. Whatever took place between Durnford and Pulleine after that is more than I can say. However, no laager was ever formed. Jack Berning of my troop I believe was the first to convey the report to Rorke’s Drift, Helpmekaar, Dundee and further on as he got away earlier in the engagement. As for myself, I managed to escape with Capt. Gardener of the 24th Regt. There were five of us who managed to get away together, namely, Captain Gardener, the late Jack Walsh, the late Donald Moodie, a sergeant of the artillery whose name I did not know, and lastly myself.  I believe we were the last to get away. When we got through Fugitives’ Drift the five of us made for Helpmekaar in the hopes of finding a camp there. But to our surprise we found the camp deserted  with the exception of Mr H. Lee who kept a store there. He was just about to leave with his family for Ladysmith. During our conversation with Mr Lee, Jack Walsh, Donald Moodie and the sergeant disappeared, and later Captain Gardener and myself rode together as far as Dundee. There were parted, as I could not ride further, having a very bad bullet wound in my left leg, The next day I managed  to ride to Mr Ardendorff's farm, Normandine, where I received treatment for my wound. I wrote the following day to Mr W. H. Beaumont (who was magistrate of Newcastle at the time) reporting myself and requesting him to kindly forward my report on to head...

The cutting is cropped at this point, but I think we can reasonably conclude the last word to be headquarters.  Could there perhaps be more, and what of F. W. Chase's piece that had caused this response?

As to the identity of the Royal Artillery sergeant mentioned above, I think we can reasonably conclude that to be Sergeant 216 John Costellow, of 'N' Battery, 5th Brigade, Royal Regiment of Artillery.

Over to the newspapermen of the forum to see if they can find anything further.

JY


Last edited by John Young on Tue Nov 12, 2019 6:58 am; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : Two missing words in my text - not the transcript.)
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Frank Allewell

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PostSubject: Re: Captain Gardner's Mysterious Captain   Captain Gardner's Mysterious Captain EmptyTue Nov 12, 2019 1:39 am

John
I have Horne working under John Parks, Postmaster and Keeper of the Prison, also Officer for the sale of gunpowder ( Shiela Henderson)
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SRB1965

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PostSubject: Re: Captain Gardner's Mysterious Captain   Captain Gardner's Mysterious Captain EmptyTue Nov 12, 2019 6:31 am

Not that it is relevant in any way but I wonder if 'Ardendorff' has any kind of connection to Adendorff?

Cheers

Sime
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John Young

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PostSubject: Re: Captain Gardner's Mysterious Captain   Captain Gardner's Mysterious Captain EmptyTue Nov 12, 2019 7:59 am

Frank,

I did try to verify Horne’s position through the National Archives site, but all I getting at present are error messages, hence my reliance on Terry Sole’s book.

Simon,

Lieutenant G. W. Adendorff was from Graaff Reinet in the Eastern Cape, although there was, and still is a branch of the extended family located in Natal.

JY
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Frank Allewell

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PostSubject: Re: Captain Gardner's Mysterious Captain   Captain Gardner's Mysterious Captain EmptyTue Nov 12, 2019 9:15 am

John
What I have on Horne
1870 in Government service PMB
1871 Joined Natal Frontier Guards
1873 Fought in the Langalibalele rebellion
1875 Moved to Newcastle employed by Magistrate Melmoth
1877 Was asked by Melmoth to raise and train a company, Newcastle Mounted rifles.

There are some significant differences between the cutting and a previous statement, memory lapses with age, or at least my grandchildren tell me. Gardners statement mentions he was accompanied from Helpmakaar by a German guide?
Normandine by the way is between PMB and Durban.
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Julian Whybra



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PostSubject: Re: Captain Gardner's Mysterious Captain   Captain Gardner's Mysterious Captain EmptyTue Nov 12, 2019 10:53 am

John
Excellent. Thank you for bringing this letter to light. Somewhere there will be the complete text!!
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John Young

John Young

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PostSubject: Re: Captain Gardner's Mysterious Captain   Captain Gardner's Mysterious Captain EmptyTue Nov 12, 2019 11:25 am

Frank,

Yes I have the same information on Horne from his 1929 interview with the Natal Advertiser.

Personally, I think the two statements date from roughly the same period. The biggest discrepancy between the two - in my opinion - is in this account he has corrected his confusion over the names of the Colonels involved.

Julian,

We’ll have to see what else might turn up.

JY
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WeekendWarrior

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PostSubject: Re: Captain Gardner's Mysterious Captain   Captain Gardner's Mysterious Captain EmptyTue Nov 12, 2019 1:35 pm

Great stuff gents, had not seen this one before. Wasn't an interview with Walsh of the NMR also uncovered fairly recently? For what it's worth, here's the full text of the Natal Advertiser Horne article...

Newspaper Interview/Biography of John J. Horne, Newcastle Mounted Rifles. Published in The Natal Advertiser on January 24, 1929.

"A surprising number of lsandhlwana survivors has been revealed by the 50 years’ peace celebrations. Mr. John J. Horne, an organiser of the Newcastle Mounted Volunteer Corps in 1875, and one of the survivors of lsandhlwana, is still hale and hearty and lives in Durban.

His account of the preparations for the battle at lsandhlwana shed new light on why no laager was formed. He and his corps were stationed at the far end of the camp and two members of his corps, Berning and Dinckleman, were on vedette duty about four miles out of camp Dinckleman rode in to Horne with the report that the natives were approaching in mass formation.

Colonel Durnford, then in command, rode up, and Home passed on the report to him. The Colonel ordered the dispatching of the ox wagons and the formation of a laager, but shortly afterwards Colonel Pullin rode up with an auxiliary force and the laager was not formed. Why the order was countermanded is not known to Horne.

Horne escaped the massacre with a shot through the leg. Mr. Horne's career has had more excitement during a year than most people have in their lives. In 1870 he was given an appointment in the Government service at Ladysmith. He joined the Natal Frontier Guards in 1871. In 1873 they were ordered out on the Langalibalele rebellion. He was one of the first volunteers to join up when the trouble started. During the course of the campaign he went into Basutoland by way of the Double Mountains and the Bushman's Pass, under Captain Ellis, where they captured their man and brought him to the gaol at Matitzburg. In the latter end of 1875 Mr. Horne was transferred to Newcastle, where he acted in many civic roles through the lack of other officials. Mr. Melmoth was magistrate of Newcastle at the time and when he received a request from a Major Dartnall to raise a mounted corps he asked Horne to do it. After official sanction had been obtained Horne raised a force of 37 men, whom he trained and drilled. In 1877 the Major inspected the corps and paid its organiser a compliment as to its efficiency. It was then brigaded with the Buffalo Border Guard between Newcastle and Dundee. A year later the corps was called up for the campaign the first leg of which ended in the disaster at Isandhlwana."
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Julian Whybra



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PostSubject: Re: Captain Gardner's Mysterious Captain   Captain Gardner's Mysterious Captain EmptyTue Nov 12, 2019 4:20 pm

A second-hand interview with Walsh appears in the Natal Mercury, 31st January 1879, p. 3.
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90th

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PostSubject: Captain Gardner's Mysterious Captain    Captain Gardner's Mysterious Captain EmptyWed Nov 13, 2019 2:54 am

Hi All
It seems a little strange to me that Horne was asked to raise , then train , and drill , the 37 members of the NMR , especially when you check the Roll and he doesn't have an Officer rank ! , surely he should've been an Officer one would think if he had done all the preparartory work with the unit ? . Horne after all was listed as a Bugler / Trumpeter ! , not even an NCO Rank ? ...am I missing something ? .
90th Shocked
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WeekendWarrior

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PostSubject: Re: Captain Gardner's Mysterious Captain   Captain Gardner's Mysterious Captain EmptyWed Nov 13, 2019 2:57 am

I agree! Unless someone has more Intel, I'd say it might be the story of an old Soldier talking up his role a bit!
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Frank Allewell

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PostSubject: Re: Captain Gardner's Mysterious Captain   Captain Gardner's Mysterious Captain EmptyWed Nov 13, 2019 7:37 pm

Gary you make a fare comment but remember Macphail was also not very high in rank, comparativly, but he was an extremely important man in Dundee generally accepted as responsible for the whole coal mining industry. The old colonial days were a different world. I seem to recall a discussion some time ago when one of the members pointed out that trumpeter was a rank rather than an occupation! Ive tried to look that up without success.

Cheers Mate
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John Young

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PostSubject: Re: Captain Gardner's Mysterious Captain   Captain Gardner's Mysterious Captain EmptyWed Nov 13, 2019 8:15 pm

The NASA site has sparked into life.

There’s a couple of things of interest:

DEPOT     NAB                                                                  
SOURCE    CSO                                                                  
TYPE      LEER                                                                  
VOLUME_NO 630                                                                  
SYSTEM    01                                                                    
REFERENCE 1878/542                                                              
PART      1                                                                    
DESCRIPTION  BREVET, MAJOR TUCKER, 80TH REGIMENT COMPLAINS THAT AN INSULTING LETTER HAS BEEN WRITTEN TO LIEUTENANT GRIFFIN 80TH REGIMENT BY CONSTABLE HORNE, NEWCASTLE MAGISTRACY.                              
STARTING  1878                                                                  
ENDING    1878              

DEPOT     NAB                                                                  
SOURCE    NT                                                                    
TYPE      LEER                                                                  
VOLUME_NO 26                                                                    
SYSTEM    01                                                                    
REFERENCE T98/1879                                                              
PART      1                                                                    
DESCRIPTION   RESIDENT MAGISTRATE, NEWCASTLE: REQUESTS THAT HIS EUROPEAN CONSTABLE  JOHN HORNE MAY BE RELEASED FROM HIS VOLUNTEER DUTIES.                
STARTING  1878                                                                  
ENDING    1879                                                                  
REMARKS   CSO4804/1878 343/1878 PLACED BETWEEN T302/2786 AND T822/1878.    

Then a change of location:

DEPOT     NAB                                                                  
SOURCE    CSO                                                                  
TYPE      LEER                                                                  
VOLUME_NO 1174                                                                  
SYSTEM    01                                                                    
REFERENCE 1887/694                                                              
PART      1                                                                    
DESCRIPTION    JJ HORNE, LADYSMITH APPLIES FOR POST OF GAOLER AT LADYSMITH.          
STARTING  1887                                                                  
ENDING    1887                                                                  
REMARKS   H1887/53.                            

JY
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Frank Allewell

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PostSubject: Re: Captain Gardner's Mysterious Captain   Captain Gardner's Mysterious Captain EmptyWed Nov 13, 2019 10:09 pm

All in PMB. Mabbe the Major could assist
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John Young

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PostSubject: Re: Captain Gardner's Mysterious Captain   Captain Gardner's Mysterious Captain EmptyWed Nov 13, 2019 10:33 pm

Frank,

I’ve already sent Paul the information.

They also have the By-Laws of the Newcastle Mounted Rifles dated 1875, it would be interesting to see if Horne features in them.

JY
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Herbie



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PostSubject: Re: Captain Gardner's Mysterious Captain   Captain Gardner's Mysterious Captain EmptyWed Nov 13, 2019 11:00 pm

I’d also read somewhere about Trumpter Horne being instrumental in forming the NMR and thought that odd too. But am I correct to think that at least the officers and maybe the NCOs of the volunteer units were elected by the men. Does that indicate his popularity and / or leadership skills didn’t reach up to the level of his local influence!?
Phil
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Frank Allewell

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PostSubject: Re: Captain Gardner's Mysterious Captain   Captain Gardner's Mysterious Captain EmptyThu Nov 14, 2019 6:35 am

John from:
The Buffalo Border 1879
The Anglo Zulu War in Norther Natal
JPC Laband and PS Thomson

In Newcastle John Parks had under him, John Horn the constable and nine Native Police.
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