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Zulu Dawn:“Excuse me, my Lord, there's something I must convey to you. I rode along the track down to Rorke's Drift. The sky above is red with fire. Your orders my Lord? Do we move to the drift?”
 
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 Rorke's Drift defenders.

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Spudee

Spudee

Posts : 25
Join date : 2017-01-06
Age : 75
Location : Australia

Rorke's Drift defenders. Empty
PostSubject: Rorke's Drift defenders.   Rorke's Drift defenders. EmptyThu Sep 02, 2021 1:28 am

I am working on a diorama of Rorke's Drift and as with all of my dioramas, I strive for as much accuracy as possible. For example, I have read references to RD being littered with expended cartridge cases and cartridge packets after the battle.  To depict this, I have been using cut up small brass safety pins for the cartridges and very light brown tissue paper for the packets. So does anyone have any idea of what dress the 24th Foot and other defenders of RD would have worn during the battle?  The film Zulu of course tends to show the defenders, particularly those of the 24th, as being very spick and span and almost at parade standard.  I suspect that as the fighting raged the coats may have been dispensed with. Or was discipline so tight in those Victorian times, that no relaxing of regulations would have been tolerated?
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Frank Allewell

Frank Allewell

Posts : 7853
Join date : 2009-09-21
Age : 74
Location : Cape Town South Africa

Rorke's Drift defenders. Empty
PostSubject: Re: Rorke's Drift defenders.   Rorke's Drift defenders. EmptyThu Sep 02, 2021 4:03 am

Spudee google A Soldier-Artist in Zululand: William Whitelocke Lloyd he has some very accurate paintings of the men. They had all been on service in SA for a number of years fighting through the Addo bush in the Eastern Cape. They were a rag tag outfit not the immaculate immitations from Zulu etc.
In Wolseleys South African Diaries he mentions haw the men were called out on parade for him and had to spend the night trying to wash out the tea and coffee stains from there helmets and hours using pipe clay on their webbing.
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Spudee

Spudee

Posts : 25
Join date : 2017-01-06
Age : 75
Location : Australia

Rorke's Drift defenders. Empty
PostSubject: Re: Rorke's Drift defenders.   Rorke's Drift defenders. EmptyThu Sep 02, 2021 4:26 am

Thank you for that Frank. Pretty much as I suspected that after service in SA, especially in summer, the troops would have been a little rough around the edges. And of course that white webbing would have been impossible to keep clean.
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WeekendWarrior

WeekendWarrior

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Location : San Diego, CA

Rorke's Drift defenders. Empty
PostSubject: Re: Rorke's Drift defenders.   Rorke's Drift defenders. EmptyThu Sep 09, 2021 6:41 pm

Charles Fripp was present in Zululand and his painting of Isandlwana is a great uniform study. Another good one is the Lady Butler painting of Rorke's Drift as she consulted with several of the defenders, and even had them pose.
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Spudee

Spudee

Posts : 25
Join date : 2017-01-06
Age : 75
Location : Australia

Rorke's Drift defenders. Empty
PostSubject: Re: Rorke's Drift defenders.   Rorke's Drift defenders. EmptyThu Sep 09, 2021 11:10 pm

Thanks Warrior. So we can assume then that both depictions are spot on.
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