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Lieutenant John Chard: What's our strength? Lieutenant Gonville Bromhead: Seven officers including surgeon, commissaries and so on; Adendorff now I suppose; wounded and sick 36, fit for duty 97 and about 40 native levies. Not much of an army for you.
 
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 Pte John William Jones Davies

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Vaughan




Posts : 14
Join date : 2021-02-20

Pte John William Jones Davies Empty
PostSubject: Pte John William Jones Davies   Pte John William Jones Davies EmptyTue Feb 23, 2021 1:42 pm

I am JWJD's 1st Cousin 3 times removed.
The big question is WHY was the first born son and Graduate of Pembroke College Cambridge serving as a private in the British army in South Africa. Don’t forget he was also born into one of the most affluent family’s in Carmarthenshire who’s father was High Sheriff. The cost of purchasing a commission would have been easily affordable.
The romantic’s amongst you will dream perhaps of unrequited love (There is no record of John getting married) and the eight years between graduation in Cambridge and dying in a foreign field remain a mystery. Perhaps he had a row with his Dad and decided to cop out of the Victorian expectations and burdens he might have carried. We will probably never know.
I believe he was killed at Isandlwana on 22 January 1879 at the age of 31 and is among the casualties buried in scattered mass graves on the battlefield. I am not however convinced he is that fine brave soldier named as John James Davies army no 743. If we can find out who 743 really was we might start to solve the riddle!
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1879graves

1879graves


Posts : 3317
Join date : 2009-03-03
Location : Devon

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PostSubject: Re: Pte John William Jones Davies   Pte John William Jones Davies EmptyTue Feb 23, 2021 3:47 pm

Hi Vaughan

Welcome to the forum. Great first post.

In The Noble 24th by Norman Holme, it is recorded with the following :-

"He was killed in action at the Battle of Isandhlwana on 22nd January 1879. He attested at Brecon on 2nd February 1876, aged 24 years. His effects were claimed by his brother. Medal and Clasp ‘1877-8-9’. His regimental service number was 25B/743."

If this is your man and his effects were claimed by his brother, it might suggest he had a fall out with his father?

Andy
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gardner1879

gardner1879


Posts : 2634
Join date : 2021-01-04

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PostSubject: Re: Pte John William Jones Davies   Pte John William Jones Davies EmptyTue Feb 23, 2021 5:53 pm

Welcome to the forum Vaughan.
You've certainly come to the right place to  have your questions answered.

First quick search. This is all that is recorded in the Cambridge Student list database:-

Davies, John William Jones.
Adm. pens. (age 20) at PEMBROKE, Jan. 29, 1869. [Eld.] s. of Edward Morris, Esq. B. at Carmarthen.
Matric. Lent, 1869.
Though it gives the approx lifespan as 1849- 1947

Kate Very Happy
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Bill8183




Posts : 135
Join date : 2015-11-08
Age : 54
Location : Sunderland

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PostSubject: Re: Pte John William Jones Davies   Pte John William Jones Davies EmptyTue Feb 23, 2021 7:08 pm

25B/743 Pte Davies is shown in the 25th Brigade Depot pay lists for Jan-Mar 1976 (WO 12/10246) as enlisting into the 24th on the 2nd Feb 1876 as Davies John J. at Brecon age 24 years. (Form 4)

He then appears in as number 743 in Form 2 from the 5th Feb to 9th Mar as John Ivor Davies before posting to th2 2/24th on the 10th Mar 1876[You must be registered and logged in to see this image.]
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gardner1879

gardner1879


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PostSubject: Re: Pte John William Jones Davies   Pte John William Jones Davies EmptyTue Feb 23, 2021 7:41 pm

Little bit of background about his father (apologise if you already know this)
His father Edward Morris Davies of Upland, near Carmarthen was a Justice of the Peace and nominated as Sheriff 13th November 1863.
In 1846 he married Maria only child an heiress of John Jones of Dowliawr. By the marriage there were four sons and one daughter.
One (as we know) died in the Zulu War, one died in London and his daughter died in Upland at 11 years of age.

Edward died in his 83rd year on the 17th October 1900 at 2 Brynymor, Barmouth in the County of Merionith where he had resided for nearly 3 years.
He was the son of William Davies of Upland who was a captain in the Carmarthshire Militia who was ordered out with Major Bevan, Lord Cawdor and the Right Hon. Lord Dynevor in 1797 to meet the French when they landed at Fishguard and assisted in taking them prisoner and lodged them in the County Gaol.

13th March 1869 Cambridge Chronicle.
JWJD appeared in court to give evidence against a Joseph Tabner who moored his barges in an obstructive place and blocked Mr Davies passage. Tabner was fined £1 with 9s costs.

Kate Very Happy
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Tim Needham

Tim Needham


Posts : 261
Join date : 2011-10-18
Location : Cornwall

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PostSubject: Re: Pte John William Jones Davies   Pte John William Jones Davies EmptyTue Feb 23, 2021 8:42 pm

Just in case it's of any use/interest, here's a link to the original thread:

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

I have been able to confirm that JWJD's two brothers were buried in Highgate Cemetery in different graves - Edward Warlow Davies was buried 6 Jan 1927 aged 77 and Arthur Owen Davies was buried 24 Aug 1936 aged 74.

It would be interesting to see whether either grave mentions their brother who was killed at Isandlwana (there could be an inscription which gives further clues as to his identity), but unfortunately both plots are in the West side of the cemetery and the office don't allow visitors to go wondering around off the paths; the cemetery does offer a service whereby they will locate a grave and photograph it for a fee of £40 each, but although I briefly considered it, I decided against it!

Regards,

Tim
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