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 American Eagle Buttons found on the AZW battlefields

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gardner1879

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PostSubject: American Eagle Buttons found on the AZW battlefields   American Eagle Buttons found on the AZW battlefields EmptyThu Feb 09, 2023 7:42 am

There have been several buttons found at Kambula and Hlobane over the years bearing the American Eagle.

Common concensus is that they were from  old uniforms sent from the States and used by colonial units. We know supplies such as mules were sent from America so this was a possibility.
However here is another intreguing one. Could some of the mines have been supplied with American equipment and clothing which was worn by the miners. This was then taken with them when they left to assist Cetshwayo?
I appreciate the warriors would have been scantily dressed for war but perhaps these miners, used to wearing western clothes, went into battle wearing them.
Just an idea.
Natal Witness 25th January 1879
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gardner1879

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PostSubject: Re: American Eagle Buttons found on the AZW battlefields   American Eagle Buttons found on the AZW battlefields EmptyThu Feb 09, 2023 8:32 am

Just been given this information
Interesting idea, but in fact the Zulus didn’t send migrant workers to the mines pre-1879, so it doesn’t really work. Some African groups did - the Hlubi, the Pedi - but not the Zulus, who weren’t at that stage involved in the developing capitalist economy.
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Frank Allewell

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PostSubject: Re: American Eagle Buttons found on the AZW battlefields   American Eagle Buttons found on the AZW battlefields EmptySat Feb 11, 2023 4:22 pm

Kate I don't remember where I saw it but there was an article that stated zulu were being sent to work on the mines as they were being paid with a rifle/musket.
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gardner1879

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PostSubject: Re: American Eagle Buttons found on the AZW battlefields   American Eagle Buttons found on the AZW battlefields EmptySat Feb 11, 2023 6:58 pm

Thanks Frank. Salute
Hopefully someone may see this thread and have the article.
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Frank Allewell

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PostSubject: Re: American Eagle Buttons found on the AZW battlefields   American Eagle Buttons found on the AZW battlefields EmptySun Feb 12, 2023 3:24 am

I do have it Kate but everything is packed ready for the move. I have a gut feel it was mentioned in Rope of Sand
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Frank Allewell

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PostSubject: Re: American Eagle Buttons found on the AZW battlefields   American Eagle Buttons found on the AZW battlefields EmptySun Feb 12, 2023 8:36 am

Theres a story that springs to mind that around the late 1890's a contingent of Zulu working on the mines decided to break their contracts and wanted to go home. The mine owners, a tad miffed, refused to give them transport so one of the managers , chap by the name of Marwick, lead them in marching back to Zululand. Around 7000 of them I recall.
Again I have the book, but packed away, its by Elsabe Brink, "The Long March Home".
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90th

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PostSubject: A merican Eagle Buttons found on the AZW B'fields    American Eagle Buttons found on the AZW battlefields EmptyFri Feb 17, 2023 3:51 am

Hi Kate
Yes I also seem to remember reading that Zulu's went to work in the mines , but I have no idea of their numbers ?
90th
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Rob R




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PostSubject: Re: American Eagle Buttons found on the AZW battlefields   American Eagle Buttons found on the AZW battlefields EmptySun Mar 12, 2023 10:29 pm

Are there any photos of the eagle buttons? There were several variations through the 19th century, it would be interesting to see what was found. After the Civil War (1861-65) the U.S. had a huge number of surplus Federal issue sackcoats and Frock/Dress coats. Some were issued to soldiers in Veterans homes, some were given to the Indians, etc. etc. I was just going perusing Wil Hutchinson's "Artifacts of the Battle of the Little Bighorn" and he shows a group of buttons found together in the village site on the Little Bighorn - one each: c. 1830s New York "Excelsior", Confederate block "I", block "A", a Virginia state seal and a South Carolina state seal. I wonder if the Zulus used the eagle buttons decorations, or?
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WeekendWarrior

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PostSubject: Re: American Eagle Buttons found on the AZW battlefields   American Eagle Buttons found on the AZW battlefields EmptyThu Apr 27, 2023 12:39 am

Sir Harry Flashman was (inadvertently) attached to the US Army during the Centennial Campaign and later was present at both iSandlwana and Rorke's Drift. It's entirely possible he had a US Army greatcoat among his effects lost st iSandlwana.
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