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 Eye Witness RD

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Eddie




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PostSubject: Re: Eye Witness RD   Eye Witness RD - Page 3 EmptyWed Oct 19, 2022 8:22 pm

Yes John, I referred to him in my second paragraph as unfounded speculation, and able to keep his medal, as he was not charged with the offence.
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PostSubject: Re: Eye Witness RD   Eye Witness RD - Page 3 EmptySat Nov 18, 2023 5:44 pm

Hi All 

Perhaps we can employ a matter of deduction to this case.

A reminder of Chaplin George Smith's letter:

About 4:30 the Zulu came in sight, but the garden with its trees and surroundings gave great facilities for numbers getting near to (us) unseen. The garden must have soon been occupied for one unfortunate Contingent Corporal, who's heart failed him when he saw the enemy and heard the firing, got over the parapet and tried to make his escape on foot, but a bullet from the garden struck him and he fell dead within 150 yards of (our) front wall.

Chards extended Report in the Pall Mall Gazette / The Pembroke Herald and General Advertiser 4th July 1879, after Private Dunbar had shot the chief in the initial attack it goes on to say:

Numbers of the enemy fell at once. They hesitated, broke, and the greater number scattered to their left, and occupied the garden and orchard, where there was plenty of cover. A few got close up to the house and lay behind the field oven and kitchens that there were built.

It goes on to say: all Zulus with guns were stationed on the hill, and kept up continuous and rapid fire on the yard. It caught our men in their backs as they were guarding the garden side, and five men were thus shot dead.

Can we now find out who the five were that were shot dead guarding the garden side? 

Adams, J Williams, Sgt Maxfield, Native, Jenkins, died in hospital.
Byrne civilian, shot whilst giving a drink to Scammell.
Hayden hospital patient possibly died in hospital?
Cole died later fleeing hospital.
Hunter hospital patient-possibly died there.
Nicholas/Horrigan  hospital patients - did they die in hospital?
That leaves the following:
LSgt Williams who died of wounds later
Fagon.
Scanlon
Chick
Beckett who died of wounds later
Anderson*

When guarding the garden side and the shots from the hill started picking defenders off, did Anderson then jump the parapet and attempt to flee only to be shot from the orchard, garden?

Assistance please


Last edited by Eddie on Sat Nov 18, 2023 9:08 pm; edited 1 time in total
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PostSubject: Re: Eye Witness RD   Eye Witness RD - Page 3 EmptySat Nov 18, 2023 6:17 pm

Hi All 
Amended above
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PostSubject: Re: Eye Witness RD   Eye Witness RD - Page 3 EmptySat Nov 18, 2023 6:19 pm

Hunter was killed crossing from the hospital to the biscuit boxes.
Nicholas was shot on the wall.
Beckett was wounded (later died) exiting from the hospital.
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PostSubject: Re: Eye Witness RD   Eye Witness RD - Page 3 EmptySat Nov 18, 2023 6:25 pm

Hi Julian/ All 

Does anyone know if Nicholas was on the wall on the garden side? Probably an impossible question to answer, but does any reference exist of where he and others were,?
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PostSubject: Re: Eye Witness RD   Eye Witness RD - Page 3 EmptySat Nov 18, 2023 6:31 pm

I thought that Bryne was killed outside the hospital - shot after helping a wounded colleague (giving him water?)
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PostSubject: Re: Eye Witness RD   Eye Witness RD - Page 3 EmptySat Nov 18, 2023 6:36 pm

Hi SRB1965

You may be correct but I do recall that fagan and Scanlon assisted others during the battle
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PostSubject: Re: Eye Witness RD   Eye Witness RD - Page 3 EmptySat Nov 18, 2023 6:51 pm

Chards report from 'RD by TWWT'

"Mr byrne, acting commissariat officer, and who had behaved with great coolness and gallantry, was killed by a bullet through the head, just after he had given a drink of water to a wounded man of the N.N.C. (Cpl Scammell)
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PostSubject: Re: Eye Witness RD   Eye Witness RD - Page 3 EmptySat Nov 18, 2023 7:03 pm

Hi SRB1965 

Thank you 

As a civilian storeman i shouldn't imagine him being at the wall defending the garden side, but could have been one of the five, or was Scammell elsewhere?
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PostSubject: Re: Eye Witness RD   Eye Witness RD - Page 3 EmptySat Nov 18, 2023 7:22 pm

IHi Eddie,

It's hard to say...Scammell was near Chard - when he was shot in the shoulder he crawled to JRMC and gave him his cartridges and asked for water....cue Byrne...

Thomas Cole was in the hospital but ran out to man the front wall and was almost immediately shot (from the garden direction?)
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PostSubject: Re: Eye Witness RD   Eye Witness RD - Page 3 EmptySat Nov 18, 2023 7:29 pm

Hi SRB1965 

As you can imagine Chard would have been here there and everywhere whilst accessing and Commanding the battle, does it say where Chard was when that happened or a time.
Interesting the statement on Cole suggests he was shot from the garden direction, just as Chaplin Smith says the same for Anderson and confirms the Zulu in the garden had rifles.

We know from Corporal John Lyons letter that he, Bromhead, Cpl Allen were defending the right flank, am I right in saying Fagan was with Lyons also, I recall somewhere fagan assisting Lyons or someone else, maybe Cpl Allens wounds, and then getting shot.
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PostSubject: Re: Eye Witness RD   Eye Witness RD - Page 3 EmptySat Nov 18, 2023 7:54 pm

Hi Eddie

The 'garden direction' was my comment.

In Bancrofts RD it says that Cole left the hospital after the building had been set alight.

Bancroft has Chick. Scanlon and Fagan killed defending the biscuit box wall and Lyons wounded next to Desmond at the junction of the biscuit box wall and storehouse.

Dalton and Hitch wounded on the front wall along with L/Sgt William's and Jenkins (killed)

Cole could have possibly been hit from the Oscarberg.

Allen was shot near the biscuit box wall after the hospital evacuation

But I am unsure of his sources....not saying he's wrong...just I don't know.

Cheers

Simon


Last edited by SRB1965 on Sat Nov 18, 2023 8:17 pm; edited 1 time in total
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PostSubject: Re: Eye Witness RD   Eye Witness RD - Page 3 EmptySat Nov 18, 2023 8:00 pm

I do find the idea that the all the Zulus with firearms headed up the Oscarberg, a little strange....I'm not doubting that many fired from up there (at least in daylight) but I have read that the initial attacks were piecemeal and uncoordinated...
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PostSubject: Re: Eye Witness RD   Eye Witness RD - Page 3 EmptySat Nov 18, 2023 8:07 pm

I have noticed not much primary source information to clarify in the footnotes where this information originates, as per yourself, not saying he is wrong. 

The Zulu in the garden had to have had rifles, as in Chards report they kept up continuous fire as they advanced.


Last edited by Eddie on Sat Nov 18, 2023 8:16 pm; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : Add information)
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PostSubject: Re: Eye Witness RD   Eye Witness RD - Page 3 EmptySat Nov 18, 2023 8:36 pm

If think about it, a lot of RD defenders were hit in the upper body or head - Hitch, Allen, Scammell, Cole, Byrne

I suppose this makes sense because if defending a wall, the chances of being hit are reduced (by the cover) but the potential injury caused by a hit are increased.

It has been theorised that Zulus tended to fire high.

I have no doubt that with the Zulus firing from the Oscarberg, would have had difficulty aiming at a specific target, given the distance, angle of fire, shooting skill and weapons....just pure luck if a hit was achieved.



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PostSubject: Re: Eye Witness RD   Eye Witness RD - Page 3 EmptySat Nov 18, 2023 9:15 pm

Simon 

I point out that these five men supposed to have had their backs to the direction of fire and the Oscarberg, as mentioned in Chards report. This is possibly why Anderson jump over the parapet to avoid the in coming fire from behind him. In that case defenders could have been hit anywhere on the body.
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PostSubject: Re: Eye Witness RD   Eye Witness RD - Page 3 EmptySat Nov 18, 2023 9:34 pm

There are some quite good details of the wounds on the living defenders - not by Reynolds but the surgeon who took over from Reynolds (can't recall his name but his evidence is used to debunk the Martini Henry armed Zulus idea)

I'm not sure if the defenders of the biscuit box wall, would gave been viable targets from the Oscarberg given the obstruction of the storehouse and angle of fire.

What time was the hospital evacuated, and when did it get dark? Fire from the Oscarberg probably caused the withdrawal from the from wall of the space between the hospital and storehouse (from potential rear fire) but one ensconced in the storehouse zone, I feel that most of the fire would have been from the ground level, from the garden or rough kraal areas.
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PostSubject: Re: Eye Witness RD   Eye Witness RD - Page 3 EmptySat Nov 18, 2023 9:54 pm

Simon 

That's the difficulty, Chard in his report only said they (Zulu on the hill) kept up continuous rapid fire on the yard.it caught our men in their backs as they were guarding the garden side, and five men were thus shot dead. 
No mention of the time from which they started firing and when the men fell. Point being, is this where Anderson got shot at the outset of the battle, the initial assault and shots coming from the hill and garden?


Last edited by Eddie on Sat Nov 18, 2023 9:57 pm; edited 2 times in total (Reason for editing : Add info)
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PostSubject: Re: Eye Witness RD   Eye Witness RD - Page 3 EmptySat Nov 18, 2023 11:11 pm

Hi Eddie

I will see if I can dig out the surgeons report on the casualties, I will have them in on one of my books....hopefully it will describe exit wounds etc.

When Cole was shot, the bullet went through his head wounded Bushe....(hit him on the beak)....it doesn't help much because it depends on their relative positions.

According to Bancroft only one man was killed on the south wall (I think?) 'Old King' Cole....the rest were killed inside the Storehouse 'Zone' - not guarding the garden side.

True depending on angles and obstructions- soldiers manning the biscuit boxes could potentially have been shot in the back (I'm not sure of the view from the Oscarberg to storehouse 'yard') but then we get back to the 'guarding the garden wall' quote.

I believe the first Zulu charge was from the North, prior to any firing from then hill etc.....with the warriors swinging east around the hospital and also occupying the ove/cookhouse area.

If the firing drove Anderson to skip over the wall works he have risked it.....would he have been sure the garden was not occupied?


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PostSubject: Re: Eye Witness RD   Eye Witness RD - Page 3 EmptySat Nov 18, 2023 11:31 pm

Simon,

The surgeon you are thinking of is Dugald Blair Brown, his booklet in which he details the wounds of the patients he treated id available online.

JY
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PostSubject: Re: Eye Witness RD   Eye Witness RD - Page 3 EmptySat Nov 18, 2023 11:39 pm

Byrne was killed in front of the storehouse inside the biscuit box line.
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PostSubject: Re: Eye Witness RD   Eye Witness RD - Page 3 EmptySat Nov 18, 2023 11:40 pm

Jenkins was killed in the hospital.
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PostSubject: Re: Eye Witness RD   Eye Witness RD - Page 3 EmptySun Nov 19, 2023 1:25 am

Thanks Julian/Simon/John 

So, Adams, J Williams, Sgt Maxfield, Native, Jenkins, killed in hospital.

Byrne killed whilst giving drink to Scammell inside Biscuit box line.

Cole shot in the head later on when exiting the hospital, bullet hit Bushe in the nose- from which direction?

Hunter killed crossing from hospital to biscuit boxes - was this after the hospital was fired, and later in the battle? I think after?

Beckett escaped hospital during the fire, later died of wounds.

LSgt Williams who died next morning and Nicholas shot on front wall according to JB/JW.

Leaving Fagan who I believe was with Lyons and Allen right flank.

Horrigan and  Hayden - hospital patients
Scanlon 
Chick 
Anderson*


Last edited by Eddie on Sun Nov 19, 2023 1:34 am; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : Add name)
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PostSubject: Re: Eye Witness RD   Eye Witness RD - Page 3 EmptySun Nov 19, 2023 4:50 am

John Young wrote:
Simon,

The surgeon you are thinking of is Dugald Blair Brown, his booklet in which he details the wounds of the patients he treated id available online.

JY
 Thanks John 

Fancy me forgetting his name....he must be from the Scottish branch of the family.....🙂
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PostSubject: Re: Eye Witness RD   Eye Witness RD - Page 3 EmptySun Nov 19, 2023 8:46 am

Horrigan and Hayden both kia in hospital.

Hunter killed crossing from hospital to biscuit boxes after it was fired during the exodus from the hospital.

Beckett stabbed during his escape from south side of hospital during the fire, later died of the wound.
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PostSubject: Re: Eye Witness RD   Eye Witness RD - Page 3 EmptySun Nov 19, 2023 9:12 am

Hi All 

Thank you Julian 

I think that little exercise may suggest that Anderson was one of the five defending the garden side wall.

Both statements by Chaplin Smith and chard confirm that the Zulu had occupied the garden and orchard very early, and during the initial assault.
It seems more and more likely that Anderson jumped over the parapet shortly after the Zulus had scattered into the garden and orchard, it is possible that seeing men dying around him he made to get out of the firing line.

Still not convinced he deserted.

Julian do you still believe he was innocent?
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PostSubject: Re: Eye Witness RD   Eye Witness RD - Page 3 EmptySun Nov 19, 2023 9:26 am

I'm not convinced he left it that late before leaving - for whatever reasons.....

Was his body 'mutilated' after the Zulu fashion or is that not recorded?
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PostSubject: Re: Eye Witness RD   Eye Witness RD - Page 3 EmptySun Nov 19, 2023 10:02 am

I don't think anything like that is recorded.
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Julian Whybra




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PostSubject: Re: Eye Witness RD   Eye Witness RD - Page 3 EmptySun Nov 19, 2023 11:23 am

Corp. William Anderson, 2/3rd N.N.C.  appears in the official casualty returns for Isandhlwana.  He was in fact killed in action at Rorke’s Drift and also appears in the casualty return for that action.  The Revd. Smith at Rorke’s Drift wrote in a contemporary letter that Anderson was a hospital patient there (Letter written by the Revd. George Smith regarding the death of Corp. W. Anderson, N.N.C., NAB ref. 3012/1879,  KwaZulu-Natal Archives, Pietermaritzburg).  Clearly, from the casualty roll, Anderson’s presence at Isandhlwana was assumed so he may have been a fairly recent arrival at the hospital.  
Smith, who later examined the body, wrote that Anderson was a hospital patient who was shot by the Zulus from the garden during the N.N.C. flight (gunshot through the head).  The accounts of Ptes. Hook and Pte. Hitch (1905 and 1908) claim that (without naming him) a man was shot in the back by British soldiers as he fled – these may of course just be old soldiers’ embellishments or what they thought had been the case – at the time they were hardly in a position to go and look.  Anderson might, of course, have actually been chasing and trying to restrain the fleeing N.N.C.  How can anyone know?
From your perspective, you are interested in where Anderson was killed.  That would be outside the defence perimeter following the N.N.C.’s direction of flight.
You asked my opinion about whether he was running away.  We have only Hook and Hitch’s late accounts to rely on, that that was the case. And they weren’t able to ask Anderson what he was doing.  Chard didn’t mention the incident.  Why let truth or doubt spoil a good story, a cynic might ask?  
Only Smith wrote of Anderson in a specific context as above.  I like to give Anderson the benefit of the doubt.
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Eddie




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PostSubject: Re: Eye Witness RD   Eye Witness RD - Page 3 EmptySun Nov 19, 2023 12:54 pm

Hi Julian 

Yes I was aware of the location where he was shot, I was attempting to establish if he was one of the five mentioned as defending the garden side wall.
The reason I asked your opinion is because you had posted many a post earlier in the thread, informing that you thought him innocent of desertion. 
You have said you give him the benefit of the doubt, as do I. 
Cheers Eddie
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Julian Whybra




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PostSubject: Re: Eye Witness RD   Eye Witness RD - Page 3 EmptySun Nov 19, 2023 1:49 pm

Eddie
Sorry for any confusion. I wanted to demonstrate the fact that Anderson's being killed outside the perimeter meant that he could not have been one of "the five men shot dead as they were guarding the garden side" which was what you asked. The important word I homed in on in your question was "as".
I believe the five you are looking for are Scanlon, Chick, Fagan, Willliams, Nicholas.
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Eddie




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PostSubject: Re: Eye Witness RD   Eye Witness RD - Page 3 EmptySun Nov 19, 2023 5:08 pm

Hi 

Thank you Julian, they are probably the five.
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