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 Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi patrol of the 21st January

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Julian Whybra




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Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi  patrol of the 21st January - Page 3 Empty
PostSubject: Re: Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi patrol of the 21st January   Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi  patrol of the 21st January - Page 3 EmptyFri Feb 18, 2022 5:28 pm

Aussie
Except that Durnford did not believe it was the entire impi opposing him just an annoyance of a thousand or so on the plateau.
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aussie inkosi

aussie inkosi


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Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi  patrol of the 21st January - Page 3 Empty
PostSubject: Re: Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi patrol of the 21st January   Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi  patrol of the 21st January - Page 3 EmptyFri Feb 18, 2022 7:04 pm

Yes but it ended up that way being the whole army, by the way ,those Zulus retiring were retiring with the intention to draw the British out of camp. And they succeeded.
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Julian Whybra




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Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi  patrol of the 21st January - Page 3 Empty
PostSubject: Re: Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi patrol of the 21st January   Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi  patrol of the 21st January - Page 3 EmptySat Feb 19, 2022 8:49 am

Proof?
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aussie inkosi

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Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi  patrol of the 21st January - Page 3 Empty
PostSubject: Re: Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi patrol of the 21st January   Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi  patrol of the 21st January - Page 3 EmptySat Feb 19, 2022 8:54 am

Correctly locate Barkers Discovery and then you will have proof Julian
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Julian Whybra




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PostSubject: Re: Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi patrol of the 21st January   Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi  patrol of the 21st January - Page 3 EmptySat Feb 19, 2022 8:59 am

Aussie
But as you know, this is not proof. An historian does interpret information such that it fits his version of events. He cannot state it was someone's intention to do something without evidence. He can suggest that it might have been the case if A, B, or C but without proof it is merely unprovenanced conjecture.
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Julian Whybra




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PostSubject: Re: Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi patrol of the 21st January   Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi  patrol of the 21st January - Page 3 EmptySat Feb 19, 2022 9:48 am

It also flies in the face of the numerous Zulu accounts describing their accidental discovery on the 22nd and the intention to attack on the 23rd.
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aussie inkosi

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PostSubject: Re: Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi patrol of the 21st January   Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi  patrol of the 21st January - Page 3 EmptySat Feb 19, 2022 11:21 am

Zulu testimony is clear read Mehlakazulu, Intending to attack on the 23rd all changed when the Zulu heard the gunshots coming from Mangeni and that can be confirmed being early morning around 8am.
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Julian Whybra




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PostSubject: Re: Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi patrol of the 21st January   Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi  patrol of the 21st January - Page 3 EmptySat Feb 19, 2022 12:16 pm

But nothing in Mehlokazulu indicates any intention of 'drawing the British out of camp' as you suggest.
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Julian Whybra




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PostSubject: Re: Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi patrol of the 21st January   Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi  patrol of the 21st January - Page 3 EmptySat Feb 19, 2022 12:16 pm

Kate
i'm starting to wonder whether Harford didn't get his directions in a muddle or even miswrite Isipezi...!
I mean how was it possible that the vedettes on Itusi didn't see any of the kerfuffle in the space between the escarpment and Isipezi?
The distance must be all of 5 miles with a clear view - UNLESS of course it was getting dark and the vedettes had been withdrawn.
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gardner1879

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PostSubject: Re: Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi patrol of the 21st January   Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi  patrol of the 21st January - Page 3 EmptySat Feb 19, 2022 1:46 pm

That is a possibilty Julian as there seems to be a lot of contradictory evidence.
I certainly don't think they spent the night up there on Ispezi but they could have gone up there on the afternoon of the 21st and the reports received back at the camp would still tie in with actions of various key players and of patrol reports.
Regardless of were they were, even if they were between Silutshane and Magogo or up on Phindo, the sightings of the Zulus would still have been to the north, to the left of the camp.
Heres a couple of pictures taken from the top of Magogo looking north first  looking at  Phindo and the second looking towards Isepezi:-

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From Phindo they would have had an excellent view of the northern country. Perhaps Harford was up there?

This third picture looking west just gives you an idea of the nature of the ground between Magogo and Silutshane.
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I think George Michael was a Zulu War enthusiast as he wrote that famous song 'Wake me up  before Magogo'
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Julian Whybra




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PostSubject: Re: Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi patrol of the 21st January   Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi  patrol of the 21st January - Page 3 EmptySat Feb 19, 2022 2:14 pm

The trouble is that Harford ONLY mentions Walsh being sent back to camp. No mention of Davey. Might Dartnell have sent Davey back BEFORE meeting up with Harford - we know that he had been watching the same Zulus from a different location at the same time as Harford.
'Wake me up before Magogo' is certainly not eesi- pezi.
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gardner1879

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PostSubject: Re: Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi patrol of the 21st January   Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi  patrol of the 21st January - Page 3 EmptySat Feb 19, 2022 2:19 pm


The trouble is that Harford ONLY mentions Walsh being sent back to camp. No mention of Davey. Might Dartnell have sent Davey back BEFORE meeting up with Harford - we know that he had been watching the same Zulus from a different location at the same time as Harford. wrote:

That is a possibility yes. As far as a I know their reports back at the camp were similar which would tie in with them observing the same force.
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Julian Whybra




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PostSubject: Re: Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi patrol of the 21st January   Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi  patrol of the 21st January - Page 3 EmptySat Feb 19, 2022 2:21 pm

Just e-mailed you this:
If Harford is wrong about the bivouac location then, depending on where he and Dartnell actually were (the slopes of Hlazakazi?), it is also true that he is wrong about the direction in which he saw the Zulus and may not be talking about the Nqutu at all. Davey certainly did return to camp but there’s no mention of HIS having seen ‘1000 Zulus’ or even ‘large bodies of the enemy’ to the north of the camp. The only connexion is the timing viz.
Davey arrives at 9 pm (Clery)
and
towards evening LC receives a report about large nos. of Zulus atop the plateau (Symons)
Curiouser and curiouser said Alice.
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gardner1879

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PostSubject: Re: Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi patrol of the 21st January   Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi  patrol of the 21st January - Page 3 EmptySat Feb 19, 2022 2:31 pm

Thinking out loud here but someone must have been either on Magogo or Silutshane looking north as the reports of Zulus massing to the front and left front of the camp as referred to by both Symons and Russell must have come from someone.
And 'front and left front of the camp' can only mean one thing, the plateau in front of the camp and up towards Nqutu and the Ngwebini.

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Julian Whybra




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PostSubject: Re: Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi patrol of the 21st January   Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi  patrol of the 21st January - Page 3 EmptySat Feb 19, 2022 3:38 pm

I somehow think this issue is not going to go away...I'm going to see what else I can find.
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Frank Allewell

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Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi  patrol of the 21st January - Page 3 Empty
PostSubject: Re: Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi patrol of the 21st January   Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi  patrol of the 21st January - Page 3 EmptySat Feb 19, 2022 4:15 pm

A discussion with legs. I have some photos that may help. I will post tomorrow. Interesting points Kate.
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PostSubject: Re: Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi patrol of the 21st January   Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi  patrol of the 21st January - Page 3 EmptySun Feb 20, 2022 12:41 pm

Getting back to your earlier post Frank about Dartnell and Chelmsford.

You are right it was too late for LC to go out to him on the 21st. Why? Because it would have taken him a couple of hours to prepare everything before he set off and he would have been moving at the speed of his slowest gun carraige.
However Dartnell had no such hindrance and could have moved straight away.
Alan got back to camp on the 22nd in an approx two and a half hours at an ambling pace (I can't imagine him charging across the plateau  just to give the order to order some wagons out)
Dartnell could have got back to camp quicker than that if he had a stern order from LC. Yes they were tired after a long day but look at what LC's force achieved movement wise on the 22nd.
And as for leaving his NNC straggling in his wake I don't think that would have bothered him at all. He was a Colonial they were just Native Contingent(Although on foot they could still move relatively quickly).

LC had no worries about his Imperial infantry and guns straggling in his wake across the plateau on the 22nd and that was moving towards a possible enemy in force and battle.
Likewise Durnford's column was all strung out with him galloping ahead on the way to iSandlwana.

LC could have changed his earlier orders and ordered Dartnell back if he had wanted to and Dartnell would have obeyed.
But he didn't.
You can't blame Dartnell for the disaster.

LC was in command Dartnell was not.
Kate
ps Alan was party to all the command decesions that morning. He blames LC for the disaster not Dartnell
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Julian Whybra




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PostSubject: Re: Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi patrol of the 21st January   Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi  patrol of the 21st January - Page 3 EmptySun Feb 20, 2022 3:03 pm

Having read umpteen different accounts of the encounter and bivouac on the evening of the 21st from people like Browne, Maxwell, Symons etc. I can find no real correlation with it having taken place at Isipezi.  There were two accounts though by colonials who appear to have been the men who volunteered to cross over to 'Isipezi' (for want of a better word) to try to draw the Zulus out and then skedaddled back to safety.  They confirm the numbers as being in the region of a thousand.  I can post these if anyone's interested.  The interesting thing is that they indicate that they bivouacked on that site and in the morning took part in the Mangeni operations from the Hlazakazi.  Harford's identification of 'Isipezi' MUST be incorrect, which has ramifications for Davey's report.
Davey only ever took Dartnell's message about permission for attacking in the morning.  It might be that en route Davey himself saw 'a large group of Zulus' to the north, either on the plateau's edge or en route to the plateau and he reported this IN ADDITION to delivering Dartnell's message.  That's the only way I can account for the synchronicity of the time of his arrival and the timing of the report coming in.
If Davey left Dartnell about 6 pm BEFORE the incident reported by Harford (he witnessed it at sunset, about 7) and a return trip to camp would have been 2-3 hours in the twilight, then he would have arrived about 9.
Walsh would have left much later (as per Harford).


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PostSubject: Re: Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi patrol of the 21st January   Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi  patrol of the 21st January - Page 3 EmptySun Feb 20, 2022 5:19 pm

Hi Kate
As I said, agree to disagree. My opinion that Dartnells actions created the situation for things to happen stands.
Its of no consequence that Chelmsford didnt order him back or in fact the travelling times. The bottom line is simple Dartnell had something of a moment of grandure in his believe that he could take on the zulu army, he even requested permission to attack.
The fact that Chelmsford agreed to allow that is just another 'brick in the wall' in his moments to forget.
The Curling was great.

Frank
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PostSubject: Re: Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi patrol of the 21st January   Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi  patrol of the 21st January - Page 3 EmptySun Feb 20, 2022 5:33 pm

Would Dartnell have made it back to the camp, even if he had wanted to or ordered to. ?
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PostSubject: Re: Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi patrol of the 21st January   Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi  patrol of the 21st January - Page 3 EmptySun Feb 20, 2022 6:41 pm

Frank
Yes, Eyes glued to the set!
Admin
Unquestionably I think. If LC was able to get half the column out to Hlazakazi in time for morning tiffin then Dartnell's men could have got back, if ordered, in time for a cup of rooibosch.
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PostSubject: Re: Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi patrol of the 21st January   Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi  patrol of the 21st January - Page 3 EmptySun Feb 20, 2022 6:43 pm

Incidentally, re my last but one post, one account seems to have been by an NMP who may have been one of Davey's escort back to camp. He doesn't mention seeing any Zulus. Perhaps Davey saw nothing at all and the 'mystery patrol' remains still, a mystery!
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PostSubject: Re: Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi patrol of the 21st January   Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi  patrol of the 21st January - Page 3 EmptySun Feb 20, 2022 6:48 pm

I believe so Pete. As you know there were various movements going backwards and forwards across the plateau that afternoon carrying either despatches or supplies  and none to the best of my knowlege were attacked.

(I know Brown had a light skirmish but he was in a different location)

I think it is right Julian. Someone in Dartnell's force on the afternoon/early evening saw a large force of Zulus to the front and left front of the camp.
Symon's says a message was brought in that evening.
The only despatch from Dartnell that evening was Davey.
Wether he actually saw them or was just told about them is another matter but he brought the evening message in that Symons mentions.
I'm certain of that.
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PostSubject: Re: Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi patrol of the 21st January   Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi  patrol of the 21st January - Page 3 EmptySun Feb 20, 2022 6:54 pm

I'm a firm believer, safety in numbers. LC force would have been greater, than Dartnells, probably more confidant going to Dartnell.
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PostSubject: Re: Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi patrol of the 21st January   Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi  patrol of the 21st January - Page 3 EmptyMon Feb 21, 2022 8:09 am

I think Major Graves, 2-3rd foot may, in retrospect have a different opinion! Very Happy Very Happy Salute
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PostSubject: Re: Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi patrol of the 21st January   Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi  patrol of the 21st January - Page 3 EmptyMon Feb 21, 2022 9:06 am

All
I've been looking again at Harford's notebook account.  I think Child might have mistranscribed it.  Alter one word 'we' for 'it' and the meaning is changed.  
"The sun was full setting as we reached the top of the Isipezi"
It's an easy mistake for a transcriber to make especially if the ink was faded.  Carruthers seems to have copied Child.  
Equally, Harford kept his original diary contemporaneously in 1979 but the version we now all look at was transcribed by him from the diary into a notebook in 1920 (with revisions and additions) and given to Durban Library in 1937.  The mistranscription may even be Harford's own!  Lord knows where the original diary now is - (with his daughter's descendants?)
(Later in the same extract Harford wrote about it being "still daylight" - presumably once the sun had emerged from behind Isipezi.)

Kate
It looks as if as a result of what was seen by Dartnell & co., Gosset & Buller went back to camp "to ask for instructions" and Davey was sent later to ask for permission to attack in the morning.  I did wonder whether Davey plus escort accompanied Gosset & Buller, but from the timings perspective (and message content) they don't seem to have travelled together as one group.   That said, as usual, timings are all over the place except for the approximate arrival of both groups at Isandhlwana.
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PostSubject: Re: Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi patrol of the 21st January   Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi  patrol of the 21st January - Page 3 EmptyMon Feb 21, 2022 10:17 am

I would speculate that Harfords sightings took place from the Hlazakaki heights. He had advanced up the hill with his NNC. At the bottom of the Magogo hill the Police and Carbineers had halted while Mansell and Royston rode forward to the small ridge connecting Phindo with Silutshane.
Symons recorded their return as being faster than they left pursued by a long line of zulu that halted on the ridge.
That actions sounds so much like a screening force, akin to the one Lt Browne encountered on the plain.
At this point the NNC were not prepared to advance, as Harford was an officer in charge I would have to assume he was in close proximity to his men.
Symonds "leading our tired horses back to the summit where as the sun sank behind the furthest range we met the NNC who were standing watching the Zuu antics. I dont believe they ever intended joining us in the valley so near the foe."
I would speculate then that Harford never got near iSipezi and his view of the action was from what eventually became the bivouac area.
Based on that then the the 1000 plus zulu sighted were not on the plain but at the head of the valley on Phindo.
At that point Gosset and Buller were sent back with I would assume the message of 1000 men to the east of the camp. And Dartnell having now experienced the NNC's reluctance to attack was actually requesting permission to attack in the morning?

Just some grist for the mill.
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PostSubject: Re: Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi patrol of the 21st January   Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi  patrol of the 21st January - Page 3 EmptyTue Feb 22, 2022 7:26 am

I think there are two words crucial to understanding these events.

"About 11 miles from the camp I was told that large masses of the enemy had been seen on the hills in our front and left front..." Russell

"Towards evening on the 21st January the General was informed that there was reason to believe that large bodies of the enemy were collecting behind the hills on the left front of the camp" Symons

The crucial two words in the above statements are 'Left Front'
Why say 'left front' in a report? Why make the distinction between 'front' and 'left front'?

In my opinion any sightings of Zulus around the Magogo, Silutshane,Phindo area would be deemed to be 'in front' of the camp. To back this up look at the third photo I posted above of the dongas between Magogo and Silutshane. You can see iSandlwana in this distance. I would suggest this is 'in our front.'

Somebody from Dartnell's contingent must have been further north during the daylight hours either looking out north from Phindo or near Isepezi to then claim that Zulus were to the  'left front' of the camp.
If we look at a lot of the survivors reports from the battle they claim the Zulus came from the left of the camp and as we know they came from the Nqutu plateau over the Inyoni ridge.
As an example look at Alan's statement below that he sends out to LC shortly after his meeting with Shepstone.

I would say that to the Officers the 'left front' of the camp was north of the Inyoni ridge, Nqutu and the Ngwebeni, the plateau is 'the front' and Halakazi and Malakata ranges are the 'right front'.

Look at Glyn's suggeston further in Symons's account about sending out a patrol to explore the 'Left front' on the morning of the 22nd. He is refering to the Nqutu plateau.

The Zulus were sighted in the direction of the Nqutu plateau/ Ngwebeni  on the afternoon of the 21st by someone (possibly Harford) and that information went back to the camp with Lieut. Davey arriving at 9pm.
If there is a mystery it is who saw them 'to the left front'?
I need a brew  Very Happy
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PostSubject: Re: Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi patrol of the 21st January   Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi  patrol of the 21st January - Page 3 EmptyTue Feb 22, 2022 7:53 am

Kate
I agree re left and right fronts; front would be the plain between Isandhlwana and Isipezi.  
There is an alternative explanation to Symons's recording that 'someone' reported a large body of Zulus on the left front.  
A large body of people is rarely static and when first spotted the Zulus did not know they were being observed.  
Might the Zulus that Harford/Dartnell have seen from Hlazakazi in the direction of Isipezi have been MOVING in the general direction of northwards (or at least so reported by Davey) such that by the time the message arrived with LC, the suspicion was that those Zulus would have already have moved up on to the plateau?


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PostSubject: Re: Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi patrol of the 21st January   Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi  patrol of the 21st January - Page 3 EmptyTue Feb 22, 2022 7:58 am

Kate
'The crucial two words in the above statements are 'Left Front'
Why say 'left front' in a report? Why make the distinction between 'front' and 'left front'?

Possibly as in North, East and North-East.So from the command tents a half left could be construed as left front or North East.
That same phrase, left front, pops up on a number of testimonies and generally refers to the Qwabe/iThusi direction and onwards towards Silutshane/isipezi
Just a thought.
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PostSubject: Re: Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi patrol of the 21st January   Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi  patrol of the 21st January - Page 3 EmptyTue Feb 22, 2022 9:25 am

The movement idea is possibilty Julian. It would make sense.

I would have thought though that the report would have read Zulus in front moving towards the left front, rather than front and left front.

Without seeing the original despatch brought in by Davey though we may never know.
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PostSubject: Re: Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi patrol of the 21st January   Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi  patrol of the 21st January - Page 3 EmptyTue Feb 22, 2022 10:23 am

Hi all I have finally found a clue to when Trooper Barker wrote his testimony

We need to find out when Captain Davey Died. Below can be found in the last lines of Barkers testimony

We were gladly welcomed by Major Dartnell and the late Captain Davey, but the General was very gruff and short with us as we did not get out the post and letters quick enough for him, Major Dartnell himself assisting us. We were then sent on with the post to Rorke’s Drift, and re-joined our regiment just as it was starting from there.


Once determined it will give us a rough date
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PostSubject: Re: Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi patrol of the 21st January   Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi  patrol of the 21st January - Page 3 EmptyTue Feb 22, 2022 10:47 am

Aussie
He died July 30th 1889 age 40.
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PostSubject: Re: Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi patrol of the 21st January   Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi  patrol of the 21st January - Page 3 EmptyTue Feb 22, 2022 11:01 am

Thanks Frank
So Barkers testimony was written down after July 1889.

There is still 23 years to get to 1912. sounds unlikely to me.

Is there a photo of him Frank.
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PostSubject: Re: Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi patrol of the 21st January   Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi  patrol of the 21st January - Page 3 EmptyTue Feb 22, 2022 11:28 am

Aussie
I agree that Barker's testimony could not be as late as the years prior to 1912.
In trying to pin down when it WAS written, the use of the word 'late' is a bit like 'how long is a piece of string?'
It would however be reasonable to assume that it would be used within at least a decade of Davey's death and the testimony might be provisionally datable to 1890x1900.
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PostSubject: Re: Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi patrol of the 21st January   Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi  patrol of the 21st January - Page 3 EmptyTue Feb 22, 2022 11:38 am

Julian
I tend to agree with you.
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PostSubject: Re: Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi patrol of the 21st January   Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi  patrol of the 21st January - Page 3 EmptyTue Feb 22, 2022 4:33 pm

I read a reference (I forget where) that Chelmsford was reliant upon "Durnford's Map". It strikes me that access to a map would have been limited and would probably not gravitate through the military hierarchy to Colonial forces. I have never seen a campaign map contemporary with the battle, only those drawn afterwards.

I think it likely that the ridge of which iSipezi from the northen extent being confused at some levle with the actual hill of the same name, located approx 11.5 miles from the camp. I also think it likely that geographical locations are also being confused with one another. I would not therefore place too much reliance upon recollected reports it follows that some contemporary reports may also be incorrect.

My understanding on reading has always been that Hlazikazi was the line of advance since it seperates Malakatha from the old wagon road. The location of Dartnell's bivouac was I understood to be at the southern end of the Hlazikazi ridge. If you were worried about you flanks on advancing then you would need to be assured there was no threat from Malakatha direction.

Browne was up in the direciton of iSipazi Hill and was encountered by flanking forces of the main impi. He misread the import of what he was observing. The Zulu I believe did not, possibly, I think likely the Zulu command decided that a show of force to the south would deflect attention from activity toward the north. there was a show of force to the north the same evening and the following day.

Hamilton Brown records interrogating two Zulus on the Malakatha drive, who were "visiting their mother" from the main impi (they would say that wouldn't they?). If they were there to observe the British there would be others. The Zulu were aware of British activity and the direction and had plenty of time to react.

Of course this may not be the case, but the outcome was the British had no idea of where the main Impi was, Zulu activity caused part of the British force to overnight away from camp. Chelmsford compounded the strategic error by reinforcing. When he arrived the Zulus were trickling away like sand through his fingers.
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PostSubject: Re: Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi patrol of the 21st January   Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi  patrol of the 21st January - Page 3 EmptyTue Feb 22, 2022 4:43 pm

Tig
This is the first I've ever heard of a 'Durnford map' and I think it might be the product of wishful thinking on the part of the author of whichever book you found those words in.
Broadly speaking I think everyone would agree with you re the locations you mention. Trying to tie them in with Harford's notebook is not an easy task and I think Harford might be at fault here (and also in other cases).
I don't know why but your mentioning the two Zulus who were 'visiting their mother' reminded me of the two Russian FSB thugs in England for the weekend 'visiting the famous Salisbury Cathedral' (they also would say that, wouldn't they?)
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PostSubject: Re: Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi patrol of the 21st January   Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi  patrol of the 21st January - Page 3 EmptyTue Feb 22, 2022 7:20 pm

Tig
Do you mean the maps drawn by Durnford for the Boundary Commission of 1878?
(reminder courtesy of Fred!)
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PostSubject: Re: Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi patrol of the 21st January   Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi  patrol of the 21st January - Page 3 EmptyTue Feb 22, 2022 7:29 pm

There are so many fragments from so many sources that I wish I could remember which snippet I saw it in, it stuck in my head so I know it is there somewhere. But yes, I think (but do not know) the map referred to would be Durnfords maps probably of the Boundary commisson or possibly one he made himself, he was an Engineer and would have been quite capable of making his own.

I koow there is a lot of wishful thinking and dodgy info, but armies need maps and they were in very short supply in this region. What do we know about the maps supplied to the army? I have not seen the boundary commission maps but for sure they will be out there somewhere probably for sure in Killie Campbell library if not the web.
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PostSubject: Re: Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi patrol of the 21st January   Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi  patrol of the 21st January - Page 3 EmptyTue Feb 22, 2022 8:10 pm

Welcome to the forum Tig
Is this the map you were thinking of, dated 24th July 1878 and from the African 158, Papers Relating to the Zulu Boundary
Sorry its in two parts but it was too big to photograph seperately.
Unfortunatly it doesn't cover the area in question.

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Kate Very Happy
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PostSubject: Re: Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi patrol of the 21st January   Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi  patrol of the 21st January - Page 3 EmptyTue Feb 22, 2022 8:19 pm

Thankyou Gardner1879 I had seen thumbnails of these maps, it looks a lot like a Durnford drawn map I saw in a paper on the web
entitled The_Utrecht_District_and_the_Disputed_Territory-A_Cause_of_the_Anglo-Zulu_War_Re-Examined   thanks for posting copies
I doubt Durnford stopped his map making at the border.
Sorry the site would not allow me to post the link
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PostSubject: Re: Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi patrol of the 21st January   Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi  patrol of the 21st January - Page 3 EmptyTue Feb 22, 2022 9:17 pm

None of his three maps cover the area in question, viz. the Hlazakazi-Isipezi-Mangeni area.
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PostSubject: Re: Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi patrol of the 21st January   Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi  patrol of the 21st January - Page 3 EmptyTue Feb 22, 2022 9:40 pm

Julian, True enough, but engineer officers were expected to map areas they were in whilst on duty. We are not talking theodolite surveys, much can be achieved by simple methods, a barometer for altitude, step counting for distance, and a sextant for latitude. Large areas of the Himalayas were surveyed by such means.

As I said it is unlikely that Durnford stopped surveying at the border, he had time in Natal to have a good look at the Buffalo river area.

If not Durnford, where did Chelmsford get his maps? he would need an area map for his reconnaisance patrols to fill in.
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PostSubject: Re: Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi patrol of the 21st January   Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi  patrol of the 21st January - Page 3 EmptyWed Feb 23, 2022 7:22 am

Tig
January 21st Lord Chelmsford to Sir Bartle Frere
He describes the countryside, the conditions and his own reconnoitre.
    "It ran (describing the track) at first North then North East and finally due East when we got around the Malakata range (vide Durnford's map). "
Theres also a note in a letter from Chelmsford to Pearson urging him to ensure that all his officers made sketches of the countryside.

Hope that helps.

Frank
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PostSubject: Re: Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi patrol of the 21st January   Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi  patrol of the 21st January - Page 3 EmptyWed Feb 23, 2022 8:03 am

And while looking through Chelmsfords letters I was reminded of this, contained in a memorandum to points raised by the Duke of Cambridge.
Under point 3
I would venture to remark that the force under Major Dartnell was not an advanced guard. My orders to that officer were distinct that he was to return to camp after completing his reconnaissance, and I was much vexed at my orders not being attended to. I went out to extricate Major Dartnell's force from what I considered a false position, as I felt that any repulse of the Native Contingent would seriously affect the moral of that force, without whose assistance the column could not advance.
Cheers
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PostSubject: Re: Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi patrol of the 21st January   Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi  patrol of the 21st January - Page 3 EmptyWed Feb 23, 2022 1:18 pm

Frank, Thanks for you posts, to the first this was possibly the reference I saw, I have not seen the full Chelmsford letters, the one to Frere on the 21st seemsmost relevant.

In response to the second post I think context here is everything, before and after. It raises questions. I apologise to start with for the lengthy response. Apologies for typo and all I wrote off the top of my head.

Chelmsford strategic plan was to advance to Ulundi there to defeat the main Impi, and to capture Catsewayo, if he had not done so already en route. To do so he had to move his column intact all the way there he had to take the shortest route for his main column, it had after all taken 10 days to move ten miles so far. Not surprising when he had a baggage train of 225 Cape wagons and another 82 carts (sorry, I noted the number but not the reference, if it is incorrect by all means correct me). Cape wagons were drawn by probably 16 oxen, his whole train would end to end have been at least 10 miles long. He had about 60 miles to travel to Ulundi, he had to find at least 6 camp sites. He had only basic maps, his requirements were for fodder, water, and a defensible space large enough to accommodate his force.

Probably when he was sitting with Bartle Frere this looked like a reasonable proposition, in the cold light of day on arrival eventually at Isandlwana camp site it was dawning on him that he had a problem. The Zulus were terrifically mobile, far more so than any British units other than cavalry and that only in open ground. The British advantage was firepower, but the Zulu had to be drawn on to the guns, since the Royal Kraal was he presumed the only place they would defend. How could he possibly defend such an extended baggage train, in poor terrain? The later strategy was to construct fort and defend the space in between and move forward organically and with good intelligence. The Zulu problem was almost the complete opposite with the exception that they had a small window of time to achieve their objectives, they were a citizen army and a workforce.

So why in this context did he go to Malakatha and why was he thinking of setting a camp near Mangene? It was certainly not the most direct or easiest route to Ulundi. Why did he send out Dartnell to reconnoitre Malakatha direction SE when the Ulundi route was NE to iSipezi? Chelmsford himself reconnoitred (Narrative p29) on 20th Jan with only mounted infantry and further up to 10 miles towards Matyana's stronghold, He visited (21st Jan) Gandama's Kraal overlooking the Malakatha (Hlazikazi?) Gandama was supposed to surrender arms to Chelmsford but was not "at home" when Chelmsford arrived, he surrendered later in camp. Gandama was Sirayo's brother. It was after his reconnaisance of the 20th that he determined to send Dartnell to reconnoitre the Malakatha valleys down to Mangene because according to the Narrative p29 "It was reported that many Zulus were in the valleys near this Stronghold" It should also be noted that Dartnell was not sent out without "minders" he had Col Gosset ADC to Chelmsford and the Hon. W Drummond Chelmsford's intelligence chief. Three groups went out, (best reference here is Norris Newman p51) Mounted troops under Dartnell, and 2 Battlains NNC infantry Browne and Cooper. The mounted element down to Mangene and Phindo/iSipezi ridge, and the infantry through Malakatha, rising up eventually somewhere near the left side of the Mangene stream on the SE flank of Hlazikazi @ 4-00pm ish. It is at this point according to Norris Newman that Harford with others rode out to meet the mounted troops who were halted some distance off. To consult over the intelligence each brought.

At this point Norris Newman reports a critical point, and one that I think has been entirely missed in this thread, and is very pertinent to the quotes you give from Chelmsford. To summarise.

1, It was noted that some 1500 Zulus were spotted on Phindo hill in a strong position
2, The crest of Phindo was not therefore reached. Preventing observation from that location.
3, The discussion concluded that the Zulus were too strong to be attacked by mounted infantry alone and needed Infantry support.
4, It was possible that the Zulu force was an advance guard of the main Impi, or a force sent to reinforce those in the location already hidden in caves and krantzes.
5, The 2 Batt of the NNC moved location to the SE flank of Hlazikazi where they could be in a position to advance on the Zulu position on "Upindo" Hill approx 3 miles away.
6, When in the new position Norris Newman reports the mounted troops gallop toward the Zulus to within 800yds at which the Zulus spread out and threatened an outflanking manouevre, The mounted troops withdrew.
7, By this time it was 6-00pm. It was decided to bivouac overnight and stay in contact with the Zulu force.

Gossett was Chelmsford's ADC on the battlefield the eyes ears and mouth of the commanding officer. He and any experienced officer of which Dartnell was one was aware that the first rule of reconnaissance is if you find an enemy force to stay in contact with it. It is inconceivable that Dartnell took the decision to bivouac on Hlaszikazi alone or without the tacit approval if not at the direction or encouragement of Gossett.

If this is not convincing enough then I would refer you to another comment from Norris Newman p51, who was after all, there. "Just previously to this the Major (Gossett was the only Major there, he was Brevet) had sent in for some blankets and provisions, to be sent out that night for our use, and had also stated the above facts to the General, asking for reinforcements."

So much for the events and background your second post, Chelmsford's response to some very uncomfortable pertinent questions from Cambridge.

I would venture to remark that the force under Major Dartnell was not an advanced guard. My orders to that officer were distinct that he was to return to camp after completing his reconnaissance, and I was much vexed at my orders not being attended to. I went out to extricate Major Dartnell's force from what I considered a false position, as I felt that any repulse of the Native Contingent would seriously affect the moral of that force, without whose assistance the column could not advance.

We can see, I hope from the above, that Dartnell's force although commanded by Dartnell was under the "supervision" of Gossett, in he same way that Glyn commanded the column under the "supervision" of Chelmsford. Either way the purpose of the reconaissance was being achieved by staying out, coming back into camp and not keeping contact with the enemy was not a good place to be either.

Chelmsford was trying to do too much with this force it is clear that infantry and cavalry were not in tactical co-operation until very late in the day, after 4-00pm, by which time they had been on the march for 12 hours. When they did tactically co-operate it was to attack an enemy in a strong position, which on reflection they decided not to do, having wasted a further 2 hours moving away from camp towards the Zulu rather than toward its own. Sunset would be approx 6.40pm. If they were going to return to camp the march had to start at 4-00pm.

It seems to me that Chelmsford is dissembling, he was aware that he needed to bring the Zulu to battle as quickly as possible because his logistics hamstringed his advance so much and threatened his success. He had been receiving information, presumably from the same secretive sources that Norris Newman refers to that initiated the move to Mangene. Certainly Hamilton Browne refers to information received on 19th January about the main Impi leaving Ulundi.

Questions still remain unanswered as to intelligence Chelmsford was receiving. The Hon W Drummond was his official intelligence officer. Drummond was a scion of aristocracy who earned a living as a peripatetic Hunter, he spoke Zulu. Henry Francis Fynn the magistrate at Msinga was also attached to Chelmsford and probably was the source of much of his information. Who and how they obtained information and how robustly it was analysed and assessed is a very moot point.

Chelmsford therefore was established in camp at Isandlwana on 20th Jan he "knew" that the main Impi left Ondini on the 19th Jan (according to Hamilton Browne p113). Norris Newman reports the "country to our in front and on our left had been thoroughly scoured". Malakatha and the road to Mangene where his intelligence informed him "a large force" was established was his target, but for what? Norris Newman says he did not wish to leave any large bodies of Zulus behind him (p48).

So Chelmsford by 6pm on 21st Jan he believed cleared both of his flanks or enemy, he knew there was a Zulu concentration in the direction of Matyana stronghold. He then decided to move down to Mangene deal with the Zulu force. In the cold spotlight of retrospect and interrogation from above, this became a rescue of a force exposed by the incompetence of its commanders. The role of Major Gossett in all of this was omitted and Gossett went on to become a Major General.

Chelmsford made the mistake of having once ensured that the northern flank was clear, it stayed that way. As we know now in order to achieve that he needed to be aware of events happening around iSipezi Hill, he was of course but his focus was already elsewhere, with catastrophic consequences.
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Julian Whybra




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Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi  patrol of the 21st January - Page 3 Empty
PostSubject: Re: Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi patrol of the 21st January   Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi  patrol of the 21st January - Page 3 EmptyWed Feb 23, 2022 2:06 pm

Frank
I'll refrain from replying fully to Tig's post.  To begin with it's addressed to Frank and secondly it would take more time than I have at the moment to make comments.  Very briefly, for Tig's reference, Chelmsford only went to the Malakathas out of necessity to extricate Dartnell.  Chelmsford hoped that the impi would meet him long before he reached Ulundi and that it would immolate itself in the open on British rifle fire.
Tig
While I take your points about engineers being always on duty in terms of mapmaking, Durnford could not possibly have done this while engaged on the Boundary Commission work - the Disputed Territory lies in the north-west of Zululand, well north of the crossing and main track into Zululand and on to Ulundi.  Only the bottom right-hand corner of Map 2 just fits in Rorke's Drift with a vague placement of Nqutu Range and Sihayo's Kraal.  Anything farther is too much beyond the remit of the Commission and too distant.
There evidently WAS a map of Durnford's which marked the track to Ulundi but when and where he obtained it or drew it cannot yet be said with any certainty.
All
I now know that Davey did not accompany Gosset.


Last edited by Julian Whybra on Wed Feb 23, 2022 3:38 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Tig Van Milcroft




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PostSubject: Re: Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi patrol of the 21st January   Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi  patrol of the 21st January - Page 3 EmptyWed Feb 23, 2022 2:43 pm

Julian,

In response to your points, it is true that Chelmsford's assertion is that he went to extricate Dartnell, written of course after the event and under scrutiny by Horseguards. That does not make it a fact. Chelmsford omits any mention of Gossett's role in the affair. Though I suspect he may have slipped a little he refers to Major Dartnell, whilst Dartnell had been a Brevet Major he had resigned his commission years before his title was Commandant of the NNC regiment, his civilian role was commandant of the NMP. The only Major on Hlazikazi that day was Major Gossett his ADC. If you are writing a written response to some pretty heavy duty questions it seems a very sloppy mistake.

On your second point this from the recent book on Durnford.

Also from the National War Museum, included in the letter from Mr Sanderson to Col Crealock, is the passage where he relates to “assisting Col Durnford with his preparation of maps, and of which I never received a copy”.

Herron, Kristine. Durnford 1879 from Isandlwana to Chatham: Colonel Anthony William Durnford the Isandlwana Papers - 140 Years Later (Kindle Locations 4573-4575). Xlibris AU. Kindle Edition.
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Julian Whybra




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PostSubject: Re: Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi patrol of the 21st January   Lieut. Walsh and the Siphezi  patrol of the 21st January - Page 3 EmptyWed Feb 23, 2022 3:37 pm

Tig
Make no mistake, Commandant (but always as a courtesy referred to by his former military rank) Dartnell of the Natal Mounted Police (NOT the NNC) was in command of the Reconnaissance on the Mangeni.  It was his decision to send Gosset and Buller back Isandhlwana to ask Chelmsford for further instructions.  Since they had been with Dartnell during the encounter with the Zulus, and since both must have known something of Chelmsford's intentions, it is highly likely that they must have agreed with Dartnell's decision to bivouac in that location.
Whilst it is true that Chelmsford's intention to "extricate" Dartnell (as quoted by you) WAS written post eventum, Chelmsford's earlier writings to Frere et al. make it clear that his intention was to follow the track to Ulundi while ensuring that his flanks were cleared of Zulu (see Letter to Col. Wood 16.1.1879; Ltr. to Col. Durnford 19.1.79; Ltr. to Frere 21.1.79 all in the Chelmsford Papers NAM):
16 Jan
"Our first move must...be to the Isanblana (sic) hill...I shall from there clear the Equideni forest...I shall move on to ground between the Isepezi and Umhlabumkosi but nearest to the latter...From Isepezi I should at first work towards the mission station close to the little Itala..."
19 Jan
"No. 3 column moves tomorrow to Insalwana (sic) Hill and from there, as soon as possible to a spot about 10 miles nearer to the Indeni Forest."
21 Jan
"I am making for moving forward, and for guarding my line of communication when I do.  I shall move towards the Indeni Bush first of all so as to find out whether there are many Zulus there, and then move back again towards Isipezi."
Chelmsford wanted to ensure that the country around the Mangeni and the Malakathas were clear of Zulus.
Re Sanderson's ltr. to Crealock in the National Army Museum, Chelsea, is he not referring to the Boundary Commission maps?
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