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 Prince Imperial visited

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Frank Allewell
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Richie Rich

Richie Rich


Posts : 21
Join date : 2018-10-23
Age : 49
Location : Durban, KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa

Prince - Prince Imperial visited  Empty
PostSubject: Prince Imperial visited    Prince - Prince Imperial visited  EmptyMon Jun 07, 2021 1:37 pm

I finally got to visit the remote memorial commemorating The Prince Imperial, thanks to my two favourite local battlefield guides in KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa, namely Pat Rundgren and Pam McFadden. Having done all the research prior, nothing could have prepared me for the sobering moment of actually standing in the presence of the memorial and taking in the whole ambiance. With the wind whispering in my ears and the leaves rustling at my feet, I could have almost imagined Empress Eugenie visiting the very spot a year later after that fateful day, looking for a sign from her son to acknowledge that he knew that she was there. Taking into consideration this Frenchman's adventurous spirit and his wee bit of arrogance, Louis would have certainly been very proud of that inscription...... 'and fell with his face to the foe'.[You must be registered and logged in to see this image.]
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Frank Allewell

Frank Allewell


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PostSubject: Re: Prince Imperial visited    Prince - Prince Imperial visited  EmptyMon Jun 07, 2021 8:35 pm

Did the old lady from the local imusi try and con money out of you?
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Richie Rich

Richie Rich


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Location : Durban, KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa

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PostSubject: Re: Prince Imperial visited    Prince - Prince Imperial visited  EmptyTue Jun 08, 2021 1:43 pm

Ha,ha....I do believe that a small donation would have been most welcome !!!!!
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Marksniat




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Join date : 2021-06-24

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PostSubject: Re: Prince Imperial visited    Prince - Prince Imperial visited  EmptyFri Jun 25, 2021 12:35 pm

I believe he is not buried there though.
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90th

90th


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Location : Melbourne, Australia

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PostSubject: Prince Imperial Visited    Prince - Prince Imperial visited  EmptyFri Jun 25, 2021 2:10 pm

Hi Marksniat.
Yes his body was repatriated back to the UK and was initially interred at Chislehurst , he was again relocated in Jan 1888(?) to a Mausoleum in St Michaels Abbey at Farnborough .
90th
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Kenny




Posts : 465
Join date : 2013-05-07
Location : Brecon

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PostSubject: Re: Prince Imperial visited    Prince - Prince Imperial visited  EmptyFri Jun 25, 2021 11:24 pm

Dear Richie,

In the annuals of the British Army, the campaign against the Zulu is comparatively short but there are many human stories which are still being discovered.

On 15th September 2016, the unveiling of the commemorative stone in the memory of Lieutenant Colonel (later Brigadier-General) John Vaughan Campbell VC CMG DSO, Coldstream Guards, took place outside the MOD Main Building in London as part of the Government wish to commemorate all VC holders in the Great War.  However, there is a noteworthy story connected with John Campbell’s parents linked with the 1879 Anglo-Zulu war.

John Vaughan Campbell was the son of Captain the Honourable Ronald George Elidor Campbell, Coldstream Guards, who was tragically killed on 28th March 1879 at Hlobane Mountain, Zululand (now KwaZulu-Natal), South Africa.  It is said that if he had survived, he would have been recommended for the Victoria Cross as were his companions, Lieutenant Henry Lyson (90th Foot) and Private Edmund Flower (90th Foot).  Ronald Campbell was the second son of the Earl of Cawdor, born 30th December 1848 and was educated at Eton.  He was commissioned in the Coldstream Guards in 1867.  On reaching the rank of Captain in 1871 he was appointed Adjutant of the 1st Battalion.  However, he relinquished this appointment to seek operational experience in South Africa.  He was appointed staff officer to Colonel (later Field Marshal) Evelyn Wood VC, who commanded No 4 Column of Lord Chelmsford’s force aimed at capturing the Zulu capital at Ulundi.  Colonel Wood’s ensuing despatch to Lord Chelmsford, describes Ronald Campbell’s death: ‘We soon came under fire from an unseen enemy on our right.  Ascending more rapidly than most of the Border Horse, who had got off the track, with my staff and escort I passed to the front, and, with half-a-dozen of the Border Horse, when within a hundred feet of the summit, came under well-directed fire from our front and both flanks, poured in from behind huge boulders and rocks.  Mr Llewellyn Lloyd fell mortally wounded at my side, and as Captain Campbell and one other escort were carrying him on a ledge rather lower, my horse was killed, falling on me.  I directed Colonel Weatherley to dislodge one or two Zulus who were causing the most loss; but, as his men did not advance rapidly, Captain Campbell and Lieutenant Lysons, and three men of the 90th Foot, jumping over a low wall, ran forward, and charged into a cave, when Captain Campbell, leading in the most determined and gallant manner, was shot dead….Mr Lloyd was now dead, and we brought his body, and that of Captain Campbell, about half-way down the hill, where we buried them, still under fire’.  The following day Wood was to write about Campbell in a private letter home ‘I never saw a man play a more heroic part than he did yesterday’.  In December 1872, Captain Campbell had married Katherine Susanna (known as Kitty), daughter of Bishop Thomas Claughton who was later to become the first Bishop of St Albans.  Their third child, John Vaughan Campbell was born in London in October 1876.

I have visited Hlobane mountain several times.  Access to the area is still challenging but the physical effort is rewarding to reach those spots where Victorian military history was actually made:  Campbell’s grave; the cliff over which Colonel Weatherley and his men were driven to their deaths by the Zulus; the mad scramble of men and animals down the rock strewn aptly named the Devil’s Pass where Colonel Redvers Buller (subsequently the British general commanding forces in South Africa twenty years later) and Major William Knox-Leet (13th Foot) displayed extreme valour and on the plain below somewhere the grave (the location to this day unknown) of Captain Robert Johnston Barton, Coldstream Guards, killed in the attempt to save the life of a brother officer.  Barton had been first commissioned in 9th Queen’s Royal Lancers before transferring to Coldstream Guards.  He served with Campbell in 1st Battalion Coldstream Guards in 1870s, and like Campbell volunteered for service in South Africa.  He was given command of the Frontier Light Horse.  At home on the 23rd April 1879, the Commanding Officer, 1st Battalion published a regimental order that included ‘The commanding officer wishes to express the sorrow which he and all ranks must have felt at hearing the loss the regiment has sustained by the deaths of Captains Campbell and Barton, killed in action at the Cape in the performance of that duty for which they had so gallantly volunteered’.  Their names were subsequently recorded on memorials in the Guards Chapel, Wellington Barracks.

The next character in the story is Prince Eugène Louis Jean Joseph Napoleon Bonaparte, known as the Prince Imperial of France or often ‘the last Bonaparte’.  Prince Louis was the only son of Emperor Napoleon III and Empress Eugénie and was in early 1879 studying at the Royal Military Academy Woolwich.  Keen to gain active service experience, he through the influence of his mother obtained Queen Victoria’s permission to join the British Army in Zululand.  Attached to Lord Chelmsford’s staff, the Prince took part in reconnaissance parties east of Dundee and Utrecht.  On 1st June 1879 he was with a patrol under the command of Captain Jahleel Carey (98th Foot).  While resting near the confluence of the iTshotshosi and Thombokala Rivers, they were surprised by a party of Zulus.  While attempting to mount, the Prince fell.  He then turned to face his attackers only to be stabbed to death.  Subsequently the Prince’s body was ceremoniously transported to England for interment.  His mother, Empress Eugénie was naturally distraught over the loss of her only son.  She was consoled by Queen Victoria.  The Queen arranged for a cross to be erected at the site of the Prince’s death.  In March 1880 Empress, incognito as the Comtesse de Pierre-fonds, embarked at Southampton aboard the Union Steamship ‘German’ for South Africa accompanied by Kitty Campbell, Colonel Sir Evelyn and Lady Wood as escorts.  The group travelled 800 miles in a four-horse carriage and slept 50 nights under canvas.  On the anniversary of her son’s death, she kept a vigil at the cross Queen Victoria had erected at the site of his death.  In the stillness before dawn, she saw the candle flames bend and flicker and believed that her son’s spirit was present.  They also visited Hlobane, the grave of Captain Campbell and the site of the British defeat at Isandlwana.  A small bouquet of flowers picked from this battlefield and later given to Mrs Evelyn Younghusband widow of Captain Reginald Younghusband 1/24th, the last British officer to fall on the party’s return still survives in the 24th Regimental Museum in Brecon.  The party arrived back at Southampton aboard the steamship ‘Trojan’ on 26th July 1880.  The Empress was 55 years old and would live another 40 years, the first 20 as the tragic widow who had lost a son, and the last 20 as the doyenne among the sovereigns of Europe.  She had a successful cataract operation shortly before she caught a cold while on a visit to Spain and died.  Eugénie is buried alongside her husband and son in the crypt of St Michael’s Abbey, Farnborough, Hampshire.

About 5 years ago, I was invited by Monmouth Field and History Society to a medieval banquet evening held at St Briavels Castle, Gloucestershire.  Before dinner we were given a tour of the castle.  Our jovial guide produced many interesting and amusing yarns about the historic building.  Built in the early 12th century, it was an important royal castle in the Forest of Dean overlooking the Wye Valley and was said to have been the base for King John and his hunting expeditions into the Royal Forest.  The last owner we were informed was ‘Lady Campbell’ who had bequeathed the Castle to the Youth Hostel Association on her death at the age 84 in 1934.  Today, the Castle is still a Youth Hostel with the fabric being maintained by English Heritage, parts are open to visitors free of charge.

After a bit of research, I discovered that ‘Lady Campbell’ was in fact ’Kitty’ Campbell – the widow of the Captain the Honourable Ronald Campbell who on her own brought up three sons and a daughter. She was ardent dog-lover, and up till her last illness her little light figure was a familiar sight each day on the roads round St Briavels with the dog, and across the fields and over stiles not possible to many at the age of 80. Her funeral service on 15th February 1934 at St Mary the Virgin Parish Church opposite the Castle was attended by a large gathering and included her three sons and grandson – the then Lieutenant John Ronald Campbell, son of Brigadier Campbell VC, who like his father was an Old Etonian. He was later to be killed in action while serving with 1st Battalion Coldstream Guards during the BEF withdrawal through France in May 1940. Certainly, a truly remarkable regimental family. Nulli Secondus.
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Richie Rich

Richie Rich


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PostSubject: Re: Prince Imperial visited    Prince - Prince Imperial visited  EmptySat Jun 26, 2021 3:00 pm

Kenny thank-you. That additional information is absolutely incredible, fascinating and so informative. Thank you for adding that, not only the historical notes and information relative to the subject at hand, but also the info on Campbell and the family reflecting the line of military accomplishments and service to the Empire.....remarkable !!!!
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Danny1960

Danny1960


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Age : 61
Location : Khon Kaen In Thailand

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PostSubject: Re: Prince Imperial visited    Prince - Prince Imperial visited  EmptySun Jul 04, 2021 10:24 am

Thank you Richie rich for the pictures of the prince imperials burial spot, I hope one day to visit myself, is it well off the beaten track? And is it included in any type of tour itinerary.
Thank you also Kenny for that information, it made a fascinating read, are there any photos of the burial spots of those who fell on Hlobane mountain, or are they marked in some way with cairns. Once again thanks to you both for interesting posts
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Richie Rich

Richie Rich


Posts : 21
Join date : 2018-10-23
Age : 49
Location : Durban, KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa

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PostSubject: Re: Prince Imperial visited    Prince - Prince Imperial visited  EmptySun Jul 04, 2021 12:57 pm

Hi Danny. Only a pleasure to post and share. As far as Prince Imperial goes, not really off the beaten track especially if under guidance. Not clearly signed but honestly, with some local input - it can be found !!! There is no specific tour that caters for this battlefield, but there are various guides up in the region that are available to conduct an expedition out there to visit the battlefield memorial and nearby graves. As far as Hlobane goes, there are no memorials unfortunately on the mountain itself or nearby pertaining to the Imperial troops that perished in this battle. The only two graves at the base are those of Campbell and Lloyd. On the other side of the mountain looking down 'Devil's Pass' if one can focus ones eyes you can see a small memorial to Piet Uys. Well worth a visit one day if you can.
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90th

90th


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Location : Melbourne, Australia

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PostSubject: Prince Imperial Visited    Prince - Prince Imperial visited  EmptyMon Jul 05, 2021 1:47 am

Hi Danny1960
Ian Knight's tours nearly always take in the Prince Imperial and Hlobane . Due to covid who knows when they'll resume !? .
90th Salute
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