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» “Lest We Forget”
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» Lt. A.S. Justice - 2/21st Foot
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» Private James White 515 2/24
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 Hidden Ground at Isandlwana

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WeekendWarrior

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PostSubject: Re: Hidden Ground at Isandlwana   Hidden Ground at Isandlwana - Page 4 EmptyThu Nov 11, 2021 1:59 pm

The Thomas Anstey maps are official documents. The notes on copies found in the RE museum are not.
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John Young

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PostSubject: Re: Hidden Ground at Isandlwana   Hidden Ground at Isandlwana - Page 4 EmptyThu Nov 11, 2021 2:37 pm

Michael,

I thought Anthony’s direct question to me related to H.G. Mainwaring’s map, rather than that of Thomas Anstey & Cooper Penrose, or am I in error?

JY
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Frank Allewell

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PostSubject: Re: Hidden Ground at Isandlwana   Hidden Ground at Isandlwana - Page 4 EmptyThu Nov 11, 2021 2:40 pm

You in error John? God forbid ! Thats akin to saying Balls to the Colonel Suspect Very Happy
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Julian Whybra




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PostSubject: Re: Hidden Ground at Isandlwana   Hidden Ground at Isandlwana - Page 4 EmptyThu Nov 11, 2021 2:46 pm

Aussie
Just to remind you that as far as I'm concerned, we have agreed to disagree about your 'theory'. So, I'm not going to comment on it. However, to answer your ten specific and unrelated questions and to clarify the other points you raise:
1) The map No. 3 is not an official map. The annotations have been drawn on to Anstey's 'official' blank map. That does not make the annotations have any authority or put an official stamp on them. If I take a WWII military map from the memoirs of Winston Churchill, and annotate it, it does not make the map I have produced 'official' and it does not make it Churchill's. So it is with the map you posted.
2) I know full well that the map No. 3 is signed at the bottom by Anstey. I found the map. I know every inch of it. But that makes not a ha'p'orth of difference as to its official standing. And it does not mean that the annotations can be associated with Anstey's beliefs.
3) I did not write that Henderson drew the map for private reasons. I wrote that it was likely that he did so.
4) The proof that map No. 3 had no official standing lies in the fact, as I have already written above, that the Chatham maps (& their kin) - in fact all the Durnford Papers - did not see the light of day between when they were written and 1989 when they were found. They are not referred to in any contemporary document or by any person from the time. The reference against their accession numbers in the RE Museum indicates that they had belonged to Frances Colenso and were deposited there probably after her death. Hence my suggestion that she collected them together for private purposes: to aid in her campaign to clear Durnford's name You can read the details in 'Isandhlwana and the Durnford Papers', The Soldiers of the Queen, Journal of the VMS, March 1990, issue 60 and re-printed & updated in Studies in the Zulu War vol I.
5) You wrote that I don't believe Barker because "I believe it cannot be proven he wrote it down in 1910." You are putting words in my mouth; I have never said that. Nor would I. What is the case is that I don't believe that any reliance can be put on Barker's account regarding the timing and order of events (though not the events themselves) precisely because he DID write them down c. 1910 - over thirty years later! Memory deteriorates and details become blurred.
6) Re your comment: "then you have a map signed by Thomas Anstey in 1879 the brother of Edgar Anstey one of the life's lost in the battle it seems you pick and choose what you believe", I think you are confusing two unrelated items. I have never said that Anstey did not create the original blank map in 1879 on to which the annotations were made. Of course he did. I have nowhere said that I do not believe Henderson's annotations on that map to be inaccurate. Of course they are accurate. You don't seem able to understand that Anstey's original map was printed many times over and used as templates for the creation of many subsequent maps (of which the one I found and you posted was one).
7) Lieutenant Mainwaring's map was drawn by him and was known about at the time. Of course it's an official map. I have nowhere said that it isn't. I don't quite see its relevance in this matter.
8) Likewise I have nowhere written that Davies's February account is invalid. Of course it is. All Davies's accounts need to be examined.
9) I repeat that Barker on no occasion specifically mentioned Scott's location.
10) All officers were not issued with field glasses. And in no account does Davies mention that he observed the Zulus or anything else using a pair.
I've tried to answer your questions as clearly and fully as possible and hope that they clarify the situation and especially your confusion regarding the facts relating to map No. 3.
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Julian Whybra




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PostSubject: Re: Hidden Ground at Isandlwana   Hidden Ground at Isandlwana - Page 4 EmptyThu Nov 11, 2021 2:54 pm

John
I think AUSSIE directed questions at both you and I on Mainwaring's map.
AUSSIE
Of course Mainwaring's map is not a fake.
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WeekendWarrior

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PostSubject: Re: Hidden Ground at Isandlwana   Hidden Ground at Isandlwana - Page 4 EmptyThu Nov 11, 2021 6:43 pm

For what it's worth, there is a map by James Hamer and copied by Frank Jackson that illustrates where the 'Beef on the hoof!' were first seen and where the Zulus were first seen in large numbers. It's mislabeled in the 'Ashes and Blood' NAM gallery book and does tend to discredit the assertion that the discovery 'ridge' was the Nyoni escarpment itself. It also alludes to two more maps Hamer sent to the War Office.
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aussie inkosi

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PostSubject: Re: Hidden Ground at Isandlwana   Hidden Ground at Isandlwana - Page 4 EmptyThu Nov 11, 2021 10:44 pm

Julian

 lets start with your last line.  I am not confused.

!0. As I have proved from my Panorama Scott could see Nyezi from Amutshane  and you dont need field glasses to see that far. 

9.  I said indirectly, you need to work it out yourself. Another Example Barker meets up with the rocket battery Russel wants to go up the ridge and Barker said not to, go to Scott and your saying his on Itusi you need to climb the ridge then. Your confused not me.  You still need to provide the source concerning Scott changing his location from Amutshane to Itusi there is no source its FAKE.

8. You confirmed Davies account in February is valid he said Scott was on the pointed hill and was told not to leave it by Pulliene So his statement is valid.

7. Good we both agree the Mainwaring is official, I did not say it was fake

6.  So you are saying the annotations showing the locations of the regiments is added later can you prove this and the identity of the person who made those annotations and when. Have you considered maybe its Anstey ? 

5. You can not prove Barkers testimony was written 30 years latter Nor can I prove it was written shortly after the battle So its a stand still.

4. We then need to confirm who are those annotations and when they were added.

3. Where does Henderson fits in all this ? ,and then you said its likely we need facts not assumptions.

2.  If what you say concerning the annotations are true then another official in the military could of added those regiments You need to prove someone privately did it then.

1. I would like to see Ansty's  Blank map before the annotations please.

It seems Julian we have different points of view.
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Julian Whybra




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PostSubject: Re: Hidden Ground at Isandlwana   Hidden Ground at Isandlwana - Page 4 EmptyFri Nov 12, 2021 10:58 am

AUSSIE
I'm sorry but this is ludicrous.  I have said we must agree to disagree.  The answers to some of your replies 1-10 I and others above have already answered in previous posts.  I'm not going to repeat them ad infinitum.  As for the rest they do not require answers.  They have been in the public domain for years.
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SRB1965

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PostSubject: Re: Hidden Ground at Isandlwana   Hidden Ground at Isandlwana - Page 4 EmptyFri Nov 12, 2021 12:59 pm

Just as an aside, I am always quite sceptical, when I read that 'so and so said that's where 12000 Zulus sprang into sight' (or whatever). It's hard for the human mind to comprehend large numbers - even militarymen struggle. If the men were in companies or battalions, in close order, it would be fairly easy to to guestimate the number but given the terrain, the loose order of the Zulus, troop moving, heat haze or whatever. I once did an exercise with Xs printed on an A4 page - people who saw the regular blocks of crosses could estimate more accurately than the ones who had the same number of crosses randomly on the page....stange what you get upto on evening shift in a biscuit factory....
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90th

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PostSubject: Hidden Ground at Isandlwana    Hidden Ground at Isandlwana - Page 4 EmptyFri Nov 12, 2021 1:29 pm

Just don't burn them Simon !
90th Salute
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Julian Whybra




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PostSubject: Re: Hidden Ground at Isandlwana   Hidden Ground at Isandlwana - Page 4 EmptyFri Nov 12, 2021 2:02 pm

SRB
I did an exercise in trying to represent with rectangular blocks the physical presence of the iNgobamakhosi on a 2D map in bodies of 80 men per iviyo (if each man covered 2 square yards) with suitable gaps in between just to picture how much ground they might cover. The result is on p. 63 of Studies in the Zulu War vol. V. I also tried the same thing on the same page with the small bodies of NC and NMP confronting them. The result is fairly horrendous to look at in terms of the relevant sizes of the two groups.
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Frank Allewell

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PostSubject: Re: Hidden Ground at Isandlwana   Hidden Ground at Isandlwana - Page 4 EmptyFri Nov 12, 2021 2:31 pm

In the rugby world cup one of the english chaps could be seen counting the springboks, he looked very puzzled ad counted again before wandering of shaking his head.
Just easing into the world of academia.
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WeekendWarrior

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PostSubject: Re: Hidden Ground at Isandlwana   Hidden Ground at Isandlwana - Page 4 EmptyFri Nov 12, 2021 2:34 pm

Aussie, if you want the original Thomas Anstey map, I'll send it to you.
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Julian Whybra




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PostSubject: Re: Hidden Ground at Isandlwana   Hidden Ground at Isandlwana - Page 4 EmptyFri Nov 12, 2021 2:43 pm

Frank
Given the current state of our education system no wonder he was having trouble...
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SRB1965

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PostSubject: Re: Hidden Ground at Isandlwana   Hidden Ground at Isandlwana - Page 4 EmptyFri Nov 12, 2021 3:34 pm

JW, I've often thought about taking photos of my Wargames collection and copying and pasting them (multiple times) to try and get the appropriate look. Ideally you need 15mm or 10mm - figure height) for that kind of thing though...
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WeekendWarrior

WeekendWarrior


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PostSubject: Re: Hidden Ground at Isandlwana   Hidden Ground at Isandlwana - Page 4 EmptyFri Nov 12, 2021 4:02 pm

For perspective, look at the max capacity of major sports stadiums. Petco Park, in San Diego CA, for example can hold over 40,000. It's a simply staggering number of people.
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SRB1965

SRB1965


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PostSubject: Re: Hidden Ground at Isandlwana   Hidden Ground at Isandlwana - Page 4 EmptyFri Nov 12, 2021 4:25 pm

Yes, stadia can hold an immense number but the real estate for a deployed or bivouacing army is much more, you will probably find that 20000 Zulus in the field would look a lot less than 20000 in a stadium....Theres photos of various British battalions in column of companies and it looks really small..... 50 men wide (company in 2 ranks) 8 companies deep, so it's 50 men wide by 16 men deep.... (plus hangers on etc)
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WeekendWarrior

WeekendWarrior


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PostSubject: Re: Hidden Ground at Isandlwana   Hidden Ground at Isandlwana - Page 4 EmptyFri Nov 12, 2021 4:37 pm

I'm more speaking from the post event crowds. As a law enforcement Officer I've dealt with Taylor Swift concert attendees more frightening and dangerous than any amabutho!
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Julian Whybra




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PostSubject: Re: Hidden Ground at Isandlwana   Hidden Ground at Isandlwana - Page 4 EmptyFri Nov 12, 2021 4:40 pm

Simon
I'm not so sure.  I read somewhere that a fully-kitted out Zulu with shield and pointy things needed 2 square yards in which to operate i.e. jog, fight, run.  Spread out, a line of Zulus is going to cover more ground than one line in a sardine-packed, shoulder-to-shoulder football stadium.
Mike
Does that include Taylor Swift herself?
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WeekendWarrior

WeekendWarrior


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PostSubject: Re: Hidden Ground at Isandlwana   Hidden Ground at Isandlwana - Page 4 EmptyFri Nov 12, 2021 5:20 pm

I'm sure I'd be worthy of a breakup song to the tune of 'Men of Harlech' or perhaps 'Garryowen'.
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aussie inkosi

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PostSubject: Re: Hidden Ground at Isandlwana   Hidden Ground at Isandlwana - Page 4 EmptySat Nov 13, 2021 5:30 am

WeekendWarrior wrote:
Aussie, if you want the original Thomas Anstey map, I'll send it to you.
What I want is for any one to prove those regiments were placed later on by someone other than the Military otherwise this is a fruit less exercises. If your going to say these are frauds then proof is required.

Then if no proof is brought forward then I have my answer.
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Julian Whybra




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PostSubject: Re: Hidden Ground at Isandlwana   Hidden Ground at Isandlwana - Page 4 EmptySat Nov 13, 2021 8:55 am

AUSSIE
What I was trying to explain to you before calmly, but perhaps poorly, was that the topography of the map, surveyed by Anstey, was created first, as a base for others to use once many were printed off. Mike has I hope sent you a 'blank' base by now. These are printed maps.
One of these was then drawn on at a later date in pencil by Henderson showing the Zulu regiments and attacks. It's initialled. The date he did it is unknown but presumably soon (within a couple of years) after Isandhlwana because it ended up in the hands of Frances Colenso. At some point before or after this, it was imperfectly overdrawn in ink, perhaps by Wood. The RE Museum recorded it was part of a group of docs from Frances Colenso so was given probably soon after her death in the early 1880s.
This map appeared in no govt. narrative, book, survey, or description of the battle., contemporary or later. No writer, politician or soldier mentioned it. Its purpose is unknown but it had nothing to do with Anstey. David and I found it in a drawer of a map chest in the lower cellars of the museum in 1989 and published an article about it, with the other docs in 1990.
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PostSubject: Re: Hidden Ground at Isandlwana   Hidden Ground at Isandlwana - Page 4 EmptySat Nov 13, 2021 9:16 am

Julian thanks for your reply

So If I get you correctly you are saying Henderson penciled in the regiment locations  and he initail it .
This is the same Henderson that was with Durnford correct ?

So the locations of the regiments were placed their by Henderson. 

So Henderson most likely was taken to the location by one of the eyewitnesses Raw, Hamer someone else after the battle and was shown the location.

Do we have Henderson copy, or version and does it matches the one I posted ?

Would it not be more authentic if he mark the regiment locations
Than
Thomas Anstey who was not their on the day

I still dont understand why its a Fake if Henderson mark the regiment locations
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PostSubject: Re: Hidden Ground at Isandlwana   Hidden Ground at Isandlwana - Page 4 EmptySat Nov 13, 2021 9:29 am

AUSSIE
To reply to each of your lines in turn:
Yes, Lieut. Henderson NNH drew the map.
Yes, the regiments' locations were placed there by Henderson.
I doubt whether Henderson was 'taken' to X by Raw/Hamer.  They would have been engaged on their various duties during 1879.  I suspect the X as a location was described to Henderson by Raw/Hamer afterwards and he noted down an approximate position on the map.
The one you posted IS Henderson's map.
Anstey did not mark the regimental locations.  The locations are in pencil then ink.  Anstey only drew an original topographical base map showing physical features, contours, dongas, etc.  All the detail relating to the battle is in pencil/ink.
The map is not a fake.  It is authentic.  100%.  No-one has ever said that it is a fake.

P.S. I'm glad we're corresponding calmly again. Let's try to keep it that way.
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aussie inkosi

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PostSubject: Re: Hidden Ground at Isandlwana   Hidden Ground at Isandlwana - Page 4 EmptySat Nov 13, 2021 9:43 am

Julian

I will be as calm as possible

You said The Map I posted is Henderson Map. correct

The last line you said the map is not a fake. This is the one I posted. correct.

So my question is.  The locations of the regiments on Hendersons map the one I posted are they in the correct locations
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PostSubject: Re: Hidden Ground at Isandlwana   Hidden Ground at Isandlwana - Page 4 EmptySat Nov 13, 2021 11:46 am

AUSSIE
They are in the positions that Henderson believed they were in.
My opinion is that he was correct although there are a couple of names left out which it couldn't be expected he'd know.
Again, this would have been from information he would have gathered after the battle (after the war?)
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PostSubject: Re: Hidden Ground at Isandlwana   Hidden Ground at Isandlwana - Page 4 EmptySat Nov 13, 2021 5:07 pm

Julian

So the only issue is I called it official when its not seeing it gives the impression Anstey placed in the regiment locations

But its an accurate map concerning the locations of the regiments.

You said the following

My opinion is that he was correct although there are a couple of names left out which it couldn't be expected he'd know.   
 which names are these ?


Thanks for clearing this up.
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Julian Whybra




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PostSubject: Re: Hidden Ground at Isandlwana   Hidden Ground at Isandlwana - Page 4 EmptySat Nov 13, 2021 6:45 pm

My pleasure. Glad we did it.
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PostSubject: Re: Hidden Ground at Isandlwana   Hidden Ground at Isandlwana - Page 4 EmptySun Nov 14, 2021 3:10 am

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

The map by Capt. Thomas Anstey, RE.
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PostSubject: Re: Hidden Ground at Isandlwana   Hidden Ground at Isandlwana - Page 4 EmptySun Nov 14, 2021 3:21 am

Thanks Mike and Julian

So Henderson penciled in the regiment locations on this one and initial it

Thanks

 I need to know these regiment  locations are accurate from the British point of view to see if they match with Zulu testimony.
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Frank Allewell

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PostSubject: Re: Hidden Ground at Isandlwana   Hidden Ground at Isandlwana - Page 4 EmptySun Nov 14, 2021 6:03 am

Aussie dont loose sight of the positions on the Anstey map being second hand. There are no maps by those who were on the plateau apart from Hamer, and his is rather worthless. A more accurate source would be the various Zulu statements that do position the order.
Your positioning on a map probably carries as much weight as anyone elses, we are all guessing albeit based on testimonies, scale rules, and for me a bottle of Gin and tonic. There is no definitive document map or source that will place them for you.
L and Q probably attempted more than anyone to prove the positions and have fallen short according to the illuminati. We've all had a go but its a case of weighing up the objections, finalising a time frame, discarding peripheral commentaries and then giving your thumb a good hard suck. Very Happy Very Happy Joker
Cheers mate,
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aussie inkosi

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PostSubject: Re: Hidden Ground at Isandlwana   Hidden Ground at Isandlwana - Page 4 EmptySun Nov 14, 2021 6:33 am

Frank and Julian 

Thanks for all your help I understand its second hand knowledge, but Henderson bring a new slant to the issue, he must have been in contact with some of the eye witnesses.

Just from those three maps I learnt something that I have overlook and it was in front of my eyes all the time.

Remember Uguku said they heard the gunshots and thought the inGabakmakosi was engaged only to find out the firing came from Mangeni and then he said they went to the Nqutu.

Well I always wanted to know the name of those line of hills running from Mkwene to Mabaso Go to map 2 and it clearly says the Nqutu hills that is the spot Uguku said they went.

So this is confirmation 100% thats where they hid until the discovery and then at 11am Barker discovers them

All is fitting in its place Frank.

Your help is paying dividends, thanks
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PostSubject: Re: Hidden Ground at Isandlwana   Hidden Ground at Isandlwana - Page 4 EmptySun Nov 14, 2021 7:48 am

AUSSIE
There are just a few survivors who describe the regiments facing them which help give an indication of which regiment they came from. One or two name them. Others just remarked on a distinguishing feature like wearing a red feather. Henderson's regtl. names are good, the locations cannot be regarded as totally precise.
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PostSubject: Re: Hidden Ground at Isandlwana   Hidden Ground at Isandlwana - Page 4 EmptySun Nov 14, 2021 8:06 am

Julian

Uguku came from the umCijo regiment on the Hendersons Map he named it umCitwya these two regiments came from the same corp called umCitwya just a name mix up

The other regiment is the Nokenke I have a zulu witness also confirming his advance to the Nqutu

Both these regiments were sighted by Barker at 11am around 45 minutes before the discovery in the dead ground beside that donga that flows down from the Nqutu

The right horn was sighted by Higginson, Barry, Vereker, Sergeant Major Williams plus 100 NNC at  930am and is confirmed also in Hendersons map. Confirmed in Higginsons 17th Feb testimony
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PostSubject: Re: Hidden Ground at Isandlwana   Hidden Ground at Isandlwana - Page 4 EmptySun Nov 14, 2021 8:17 am

I'm sure you'll find more.
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PostSubject: Re: Hidden Ground at Isandlwana   Hidden Ground at Isandlwana - Page 4 EmptyMon Nov 15, 2021 11:56 am

It would be interesting to get some ariel photos - (Google earth or whatever) and mark on the vidette position and what was dead ground to them.... I might have a go....
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PostSubject: Re: Hidden Ground at Isandlwana   Hidden Ground at Isandlwana - Page 4 EmptyMon Nov 15, 2021 8:53 pm

Hi SRB1965

I just look at google earth last night and it does not show the dead ground at all I have some photos which clearly shows the dead ground visible from Mkwene and Itusi next time I am there I need to take a panorama from the Nqutu hills [ which is the highest point in the area } which overlook the discovery location and from there you would see Itusi, Mkwene and Nyezi which is very important because thats is were those 2 regiments moved from.

Is there some other provider that shows arial views ? Google does not show the folds and rises in the land which the zulu used to conceal themselves
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PostSubject: Re: Hidden Ground at Isandlwana   Hidden Ground at Isandlwana - Page 4 EmptyWed Nov 23, 2022 3:42 pm

First time I have read through this thread. It touches on, but does not elaborate on, another closely related issue in respect of Barker's location and indirectly that of Whitelaw.

I read with great interest Frank's recent book which makes a very strong and well argued case for Barker's location as being on iThusi, and to the north of the highest point, the summit of iThusi being hopeless ground for cavalry. This being the case the view from the supposed Vedette location is interrupted to the southward by the mass of iThusi summit. I believe that Barker, probably Scott and others, were in this location at some point during the morning of the 22nd. It is probably impossible to be definitive in locating Barker for certain, but as others have pointed out his position is pivotal to better understanding of the events.

There are some loose ends that do not, at least in my head go away, so I raise them here.

1, Barker and Hawkins are turfed out of their Vidette by "a lot of mounted men" sometime before say 5-30am. Frank identifies these men as part of Mehlokazulu's reconnaissance, which set off all mounted and arrived at "the range of hills overlooking Insandula", it is by this logic that Barker's location is identified as iThusi.

2, Barker also reports that Whitelaw that two other Videttes had been turfed out of their positions. Barker and Hawkins returned, presumably, to Scott's position on Conical Hill, they advised Scott of what they had seen and then commenced a return to their Vidette position accompanied by Scott.
En route they were joined by the complements of two other Vedettes including Whitelaw after noting that Zulus were "on the hill we had just left, and others advancing from the left flank where two other Videttes, Whitelaw and another had been obliged to retire from.".
Barker goes on to say that after Whitelaw and others had reported what they saw "thousands" Barker quotes them as seeing. This is very different to the numbers Barker had seen, it also infers a different timing and location. Somebody for example on iThusi would most likely see the same "thousands" as somebody farther westwards along the ridge. Not so for somebody on Qwabe.
Barker also says that after this conversation "about 8 O'clock" Whitelaw reported events to camp, timing which chimes with Pulleines note to Chelmsford. Barker afterwards stays with Scott presumably in the area of iThusi and Conical Hill.

(n.b. This statement by Barker conflicts with Davies reported imposition, earlier in this thread, by Pulleine on Scott not to leave his post, was it possibly not to abandon the position, rather than not to leave the position? )

3, Barker is identifying the "hill" as being distinct from the positions on the Left flank, in my reading of this. I therefore identify the Hill as Qwabe, according to Barker "a Hill to the extreme front of the camp". Mehlokazulu is identifying the plateau ridge line in his narrative.

4, Barker says in his narrative that "We retired to 2 miles to Lt. Scott about two miles nearer camp." The distance as the crow flies between iThusi and Scott's location on Conical Hill is c. 1 mile, the distance from Qwabe is c.2.25 miles. Qwabe itself is a prominent hill located at 90 degrees to the line of tents in the camp and is an obvious feature front and centre of the line of sight from the camp. It is difficult after observing the horizon from the camp tent line that any hill other than Qwabe could be what Barker describes in his narrative.

5, The Vedette locations were fixed it seems by Mansel and he records their locations, but on the morning of the 22nd he was away with Dartnell in Mangene. He could not therefore know of the Vidette locations on the 22nd. It follows that his locations are therefore speculative for that day, but accurate for the 21st. By the 22nd circumstances had changed, Malakatha was confirmed as clear of Zulus, Mangene was known to be occupied by a largish Zulu force, nothing was known of the plateau. For Vedettes to cover the camp there must be 360 degree cover, or complete confidence over uncovered ground. There was discussion as to the rear of the camp or mountain to the effect the rear looks after itself. To the front and flanks, that is from North to South the N was covered by Vedettes along the ridgeline, the South was confirmed clear, the East arguably is covered by the iThusi position and to some extent the SE. There is though a lot of undulating and dead ground ESE and SE of the Qwabe Nyeze ridgeline impossible to see in haze from iThusi and also a very long way away, which would be very well covered by a position on Qwabe. Dartnell covered the SE and South along with Chelmsfords force. To set up camp Videttes without a position on Qwabe looks a lot like a smile with a missing front tooth.

6, If Mehlokazulu was the group that disturbed Barker on Qwabe it is logical to assume that unless he took a deviating route from Ngwabene towards Qwabe then he would have disturbed whoever was on iThusi. The further from Ngwabene the less persuading the timings become, as does the direction of Barkers retreat (if he was on Qwabe). If Barker was on Qwabe therefore it was not likely that Mehlokazulu that turfs him out. It is more likely that Mehlokazulu was why for the Videttes on the ridge "moved about". Later, when Mehlokazulu returned to his camp and was eating breakfast, Ntsingswayo ordered the Zulu to advance towards the ridge. These timing are commensurate with the events and timings described by Barker when applied to Whitelaw if on the ridgeline.

7, For Barker to have been moved off of Qwabe, where did the Zulus come from if not Ngwabeni? The operations towards Mangene are the most likely to provide an answer to this. Dartnell's force was active in the Magogo area at dawn, Chelmsford force reached him shortly afterwards. Russell's force located the spoor of a large Zulu force in the valley ESE of the iThusi position and with Qwabe between the two points as the crow flies a marching distance of 5 miles or little over 1 hour between the spoor and the Qwabe Nyeze ridgeline. Others have referred to this movement in passing but, without distinct and identifiable observations the reasons for and objectives of this movement are less than clear. We assume the Zulu were in largish numbers in the valley behind Silutshana and were moving off or had moved off before Chelmsfords force arrived at Mangene. It is easily possible how they would have been seen if Barker was on Qwabe at around 5-30am approaching his position and reaching it whilst on his way back from Scott's position.

8, Where did this body of Zulus go? If they were heading towards the ridgeline (iThusi) they may have joined the forces that were moving out of the valleys on the Plateau sometime after 7-00am. Or they may have stayed in the Qwabe Valley. Durnford's route for up the valley is uphill onwards a crestline. This force could have just stopped there though it would be visible to someone on iThusi. There are a multitude of possibilities.

Anyway I would be most interested to hear others thoughts on the subject.
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Frank Allewell

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PostSubject: Re: Hidden Ground at Isandlwana   Hidden Ground at Isandlwana - Page 4 EmptyThu Nov 24, 2022 10:26 am

Hi Tig.
The arguments you raised over that rather splendid lunch in Cape Town werent really opposed by me at the time ( thoughts were elsewhere).
A few issues you may consider.
The 'Dead Ground' south of iThusi is pretty well covered from the vedette posted on the ridge line looking due east. also from the piquet/vedette posted south of the camp itself so no real area that a 'sneak' attack could develop from there. In addition of course the Generals merry men were themselves covering that open expanse to a degree.
I am very sceptical of Barkers timings and estimate of distances, I believe implicitly in the honesty of his accounts but do question those two points.
No doubt that Mehlokazulu would have taken the easiest route from the valley to recon the positions of the camp. That route would have been exiting the Ngwebini via the western area and a straight ride across the plateau.
Its highly possible of course that the vedettes he disturbed were those on the Nqutu ridge and that would then be the area he observed the camp from. That would then leave Barker still in a position that he could see and be aware of Mehlokazulu, but only if he was on the ridge area.
If as you propose Barker was on Qwabe and was chased of from there, by the mounted zulu unit it would have left Mehlokazulu in charge of the hill but with a very interupted view and limited view of the camp area. That surely would have compromised his report to Ntshingwayo.
Ithusi itself is, from the lower levels viewed as a seperate entity from the ridge line itself by the seperation effect of the 'Notch' so could be easily refered to as the 'hill' and is in fact refered to in that regard by I think Brickhill.
I would agree that the vedettes were fixed by Mansell and I would see no reason for Scott to have changed them. There is of course the rider to that in that Clery is said to have told Pullein to draw in his piquets/vedettes.
Just my thoughts Tig.
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PostSubject: Re: Hidden Ground at Isandlwana   Hidden Ground at Isandlwana - Page 4 EmptyThu Nov 24, 2022 1:14 pm

Frank, I have a very keen and fond recollection of that lunch, which was also interesting and educational, as well as your help and hospitality throughout my trip. I really cannot thank you enough.

Incidentally there is nothing you have written in your response to my post or in your recent book that I disagree with, conditional though on Barker's location. This is a bit like toothache, once you have it is is hard to ignore it.

My interest in events down at Mangene is really the driver for these questions.

There were clearly quite a lot of people in the valley behind Silutshana, the only egress from which was over the Phindo ridge towards the East or northward towards Ngwabene. Where did they go and what did they do? Who saw them? There is also the question of the Zulu reserve sitting in the plain and moving later through the battlefield, is there any connection?

You see no reason why Scott would change the Vidette position. Circumstances and assumptions in the camp changed quite a lot between Mansell setting the locations and the morning of 22nd. Malakatha was proved clear and the main threat was identified as coming from the SE Mangene direction. Chelmsford took all available mounted men other than those required for Vidette duty with him to Mangene, he was clearly not anticipating a need for reconnaissance, (Vidette being rather outposts than reconnaissance) on the Plateau. There is a gaping hole in the Vedette locations if Qwabe is not manned between Magogo and Ithusi, for example along the plateau there are at least three Vedette locations in a distance of approximately three miles, the distance between iThusi and Silutshana is about 8 miles with no Vidette if one is not on Qwabe.

I agree the view from the Vidette position you place on iThusi gives some view over the eastern Qwabe valley and more so if Videttes are placed further eastwards along the north side of the valley, but the ground to the south of the Nyeze ridge which forms the southern edge of the Qwabe valley is a partial interruption to this view, in addition the ground is undulating and contains many dongas. Visibility cannot be assumed, the haze close to surface make visibility sometimes very difficult, therefore dispersed movements across undulating ground very hard to pick up from two to three miles away.

As to Barker, I understand from reading the thread that you and others have a problem with his timings and his distances. He states variously that Carbineers were placed between three and five miles. Qwabe as the crow flies is 4 miles. Then he says the hill is quite 6 miles from camp. He does not give his route out he does give relative timings 4-00am from camp to sunrise atop his hill, and about 15 mins before he sights his riders. He would be far more inaccurate if he was located in iThusi.

In essence a movement of Zulus toward Qwabe from the direction of Silutshana does fit timings and distances far better than an iThusi placing for him.

There is another piece that does not fit. Why are Whitelaw and others displaced later? The timing of this is equal to the time it takes for Barker to signal, leave the Hill, and return two miles to Scott, confer with him, and start to return an undefined distance back towards the Hill. How is it possible if Barker was not on Qwabe that he would be moved off his position if other along the plateau ridge were not, when at least some of these would be in visual contact with Barker?

To me, Qwabe is a better fit. Conditional, of course, on that movement of Zulus from the Valley behind Silutshana. We know a large body moved but we do not know where. If you assume his timings are correct and that the Zulu movement from Silutshana occurred, it opens up a different perspective that still fits the events as we know them. The unfortunate thing is that there is no evidence they did make that move. This is not history of course, but it is an explanation. History which relies upon the discounting of what is truly factual, is history incorrectly interpreted.

I do not doubt that Mehlokazulu displaced Vidette(s) from the ridge. To guess a time for this would be approx 7-00am - 7-15am I just think they Whitelaw et al, and that Barker had been displaced sometime earlier by the Zulus moving from Silutshana @5-15-5-30am ish. It is inconceivable to me that if Barker were on Qwabe that Mehloazulu was the one who displaced him.

Is there any information out there regarding the later movements of the Zulus in the Valley behind Silutshana?
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PostSubject: Re: Hidden Ground at Isandlwana   Hidden Ground at Isandlwana - Page 4 EmptyThu Nov 24, 2022 1:49 pm

Tig
I'm glad Frank managed to answer your post - if he hadn't, I would have!
In response to the above can I just say that I don't believe there were any vedettes beyond (east of) Ithusi. No-one mentions them; they are on no plan.
Can I also remind you that there was a single vedette, often forgotten, on the rising ground east of the Nyogane and well to the south of where the track crosses it, also well to the south of Ithusi. I am not sure to what extent this position would have had an uninterrupted view eastwards across the plain toward Isipezi and Silutshane (i.e. over the undulations in between) but it must have been significant otherwise why would Mansell have bothered including it? The view from there must go some way to monitoring the ground you describe in the previous post.
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PostSubject: Re: Hidden Ground at Isandlwana   Hidden Ground at Isandlwana - Page 4 EmptyThu Nov 24, 2022 2:21 pm

Hi Julian
Yes that is the vedette I refered to above. His view, some what above the infamous Durnfords Donga would have commanded a huge piece of real estate, really from North of Qwabe across to Hlakazi and depending on the ground fog a long long way towards Mangeni.
Tig has a couple of interesting points that we have discussed at length but as we have agreed you can. easily be 100% right or 100% wrong with all the variables in between.
Thats the end of my contribution until next thursday Im afraid.

Cheers
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PostSubject: Re: Hidden Ground at Isandlwana   Hidden Ground at Isandlwana - Page 4 EmptyThu Nov 24, 2022 2:23 pm

Julian, I would not necessarily expect the Vidette locations for 22nd Jan to be recorded most of the people setting them or manning them were dead and there were no battlefield records of them found. Barker's testimony is derided as inaccurate.

To say that there were no Vedettes East of iThusi is to interpret Barker as being on iThusi. He describes a hill to the extreme front of camp. Anybody standing there on the tentline and looking to the extreme front of camp see Qwabe, if they look to the left front they see iThusi. Frank makes a good case for iThusi, but there is also a good case for Qwabe, lack of evidence of a Vedette there does not mean that there was not one, especially when a location is accurately described and moreover the timings a distances fit better. Barker's timings as I emphasise fit better to Qwabe than iThusi where you want to place him.

It does not seem reasonable to me to assume that Vidette locations would remain unchanged when circumstances clearly had. For example is the large body of Zulus in the valley behind Silutshana, Chelmsford movements were likely to displace any Zulus in that area od Mangene. Is it not logical to post a Vedette to observe where concentrations of force might move to?

It seems to me that there were at least two arrangements for outposts and Videttes, one under the command of Barry and another under the command of Scott. I am not aware of the arrangements for the 21st. Each unit it seems to me was operating independently of the other and reporting direct to camp. This is quite a long way from Mansel setting locations and being challenged upon their exact locations on the first day at the Isandlwana site. I also recall a quoted tenet to keep Vidette well out or something similar.

Haze at Isandlwana can be/is a problem when viewing distance in any direction. I stood on iThusi and using binoculars found it difficult to pick out detail at any great distance over Nyeze, there would be low to no chance for a lookout from the Vidette to the east of Nyogane. We should not forget also that Milne saw no problems from his Hill looking towards the camp.

With a large impi reported to be coming from the East why would you put all your Videttes to the North?
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PostSubject: Re: Hidden Ground at Isandlwana   Hidden Ground at Isandlwana - Page 4 EmptyThu Nov 24, 2022 4:01 pm

Tig
Thanks for your reply.
Mansel set the vedettes' locations and of course he was very much alive and his subsequent sketch recorded their positions (as did the Rothwell map in the Narrative).
While you are right to say that lack of evidence of a Vedette there does not mean that there was not one, it also does not mean that there was one. Qwabe was rather isolated and out of touch. What could be seen from there that could not be seen from Ithusi?
You are also right that circumstances had changed - but would the camp have been aware that they had? There is no evidence that it was aware. In that case there be no consequent knock-on effect on the camp's vedettes. A suggested movement only becomes logical if it can be proven that the event was known about. The only evidence re movement of the vedettes concerns Scott, after a time, moving his position from Conical Koppie to Ithusi.
I'm a little confused by what you mean when you write: "there were at least two arrangements for outposts and Videttes, one under the command of Barry and another under the command of Scott."
Barry's was an NNC picquet (like Lonsdale's); Scott was definitely in charge of all the vedettes. They had different functions and in so far as they both reported back to HQ in camp, yes, each was operating independently of the other. I have no doubt though that when necessary they DID communicate.
Re haze, I don't recall any of the survivors from the battle reporting haze obscuring their view.
To answer your question: "With a large impi reported to be coming from the East why would you put all your Videttes to the North?", the answer is surely because LC felt that the area to the south-east was well-covered by hos own Reconnaissance-in-Force, the area to the south had been 'cleared' already, and the view due east was visible from the camp as far as Isipezi 12 miles away. Only the north was 'blind' and had not been properly scouted.
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Tig Van Milcroft




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Join date : 2022-02-21

Hidden Ground at Isandlwana - Page 4 Empty
PostSubject: Re: Hidden Ground at Isandlwana   Hidden Ground at Isandlwana - Page 4 EmptyThu Nov 24, 2022 5:19 pm

Julian, I appreciate your taking time out to respond, this to me is a pattern that does not fit.

To what question was Mansel responding to? Where he placed the Videttes or where the Videttes actually were? They are not necessarily the same for Mansel was on his way to Mangene when they were placed. He could not know, he was not there. He could of course tell where he had placed them. To read Mansel as authoritative in this respect is highly questionable.

Why is Qwabe isolated and out of touch? It is two miles and easily observable from Conical Hill and as a vantage point over the Qwabe Valley and points South and East is an excellent location. Barker also describes it as his location. Why do you think that Barker would describe iThusi is to the extreme front of camp?

The summit of iThusi is no place for cavalry, the Vidette there has to be in Franks location, this is much more like a very large field than a position, if you want to cover all aspects.. If there though visibility South is occluded by the summit itself. There is another point worth considering all other Videttes had a much narrower "field" of cover interlocking with other videttes to an angle of approximately 30 degrees. You are expecting a Vidette of the same composition to cover a field of vision of well over 180 degrees if you are expecting them to cover the area south of the Nyeze Qwabe ridgeline.

How do you suppose that only Barker on iThusi was turned out by Mehlokazulu? To question the Qwabe position for Barker requires that to be addressed?

As to circumstances changed. It was obvious to all. Chelmsford was clearly making assumptions about Zulu forces in Mangene that he did not make the previous day. After his departure the camp was more than 50% less well protected. Chelmsford force was also exposed in the field. There was a gap of 8 miles between iThusi and Chelmsford force being observed in your view by a Vidette on iThusi and one near Nyongane. The Vidette locations would have been determined by Scott and presumably Pulleine at the same time Chelmsford force was moving out, at this time it is likely that each was focusing on their specific issues. It was Pulleine that was the object of the advice on throwing our Videttes.

As to the two commands, I am unsure, but it seems to me possible that the arrangements on the 22nd were subtly different to the 21st. The piquet was infantry, but seems to have had some cavalry attached the BBG Dirk Dinkleman for example. The Scott Videttes were NNC, it is not clear to me then that all Videttes, as you reported to Scott. This might be and issue of nomenclature rather than anything else, but nonetheless suggests that the flow of information along the ridgeline may not have been optimal, more like a hub with two spokes. Do you have information that confirms or infers to communication between the two elements. For clarification I believe both Vidette and Piquet are referred to as components of Outposts in the nomenclature of the time but are differentiated between Piquets (infantry) and Videttes (Mounted)? It seems that Scott commanded an entirely mounted "Outpost" founded on Conical Hill, and Barry a mixture of the two on the Spur.

You are not necessarily correct to say that Scott only moved once and to iThusi, if you believe Barker was on Qwabe to start with he accompanied Barker some way back to there. If you do not then Whitelaw joined them somewhere on the mile long route up to iThusi from Conical Hill.

As to haze, the day is clear but detail is almost impossible to pick up, you can see, but not see. A poor answer but my best description of its effect. As to being able to see iSipezi from camp, that is one thing seeing figures moving there is quite another.

"Only the north...etc" the iSipezi plain had been scouted and found to have sufficient Zulus to turn back the reconnaissance force. I think is sufficient answer as to why you might want to look a little closer, or at the minimum watch from a distance.

I quite understand why there is a reluctance to take on board why Barker would be on Qwabe, there are no specific references to it, but neither there is to iThusi, other than maps drawn by people who were not there. Barker was there and he describes something that to me looks like Qwabe more than iThusi, and his account which most hold to be accurate in events, does not fit implied timings to coincide with other events, so is held to be inaccurate in those respects.

My question remains, does anybody know where those Zulus in the valley behind Silutshana go? They were there and had to go somewhere. I doubt they travelled at night, I also doubt they went over the Phindo ridge eastwards. That suggests if the Vedettes were working as you suggest they were they would be seen and reported, but they were not, Why not?. My account explains how this may be so, your alternative account requires them (excepting the Phindo route) to be seen by somebody. Unless it was Barker on Qwabe. This is a loose end.
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