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» Australians who went to Zululand and fought in the 1879 war.
George Hocking EmptyFri Feb 23, 2024 2:23 am by peterfarrell

» About the second invasion
George Hocking EmptySat Feb 17, 2024 9:53 pm by Hobbes

» Zulu Festival Brecon July 2024
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» Letter of officer during Zulu wars.
George Hocking EmptyThu Feb 15, 2024 4:46 pm by Will M

» Bearing The Cross by Ken Blakeson | BBC RADIO DRAMA: Ken Blakeson's play tells the story of the Battle of Rorke's Drift and the effect it had on three of the soldiers who fought in it.
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» Death of Michael Jayson (Zulu Dawn)
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» A few questions regarding Rorke's Drift and Isandlwana
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» What was G company supposed to do?
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 George Hocking

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RickB24




Posts : 10
Join date : 2023-11-30

George Hocking Empty
PostSubject: George Hocking   George Hocking EmptyThu Nov 30, 2023 3:50 pm

Hi, I have just registered so thanks for having me on board.
My great uncle was George Hocking. The family story was that he was at Rorke’s Drift but we now know this wasn’t the case. My late father knew George quite well and it seems George didn’t very actively discourage this misapprehension! I believe my father verified he was is Chard’s royal engineers but it would be interesting to know where he was and what he did before, during and after Rorke’s drift. We have his medal, 1879, which is engraved 14340 Sapper G Hocking. My recollection was that he wasn’t in the army for a long time.

Any information about him or hints on where to look would be great.

Best regards
Rick
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1879graves

1879graves


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George Hocking Empty
PostSubject: Re: George Hocking   George Hocking EmptyThu Nov 30, 2023 5:44 pm

Hi Rick

Welcome to the forum.

I can not add a lot more information to your already information.

Here is George's Attestation Papers.

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

George's Netley Hospital Entry

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

On the medal roll he received the Zulu War Medal without a 1879 Clasp.

Hope the above helps.

Andy
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RickB24




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George Hocking Empty
PostSubject: Re: George Hocking   George Hocking EmptyThu Nov 30, 2023 9:25 pm

Hi Andy,

Thanks for that information. I’ll put that all in the archive.
Best regards
Rick
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90th

90th


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George Hocking Empty
PostSubject: George Hocking    George Hocking EmptyFri Dec 01, 2023 1:50 am

Hi RickB24
If you were issued the ' Zulu War Medal ' ( South Africa Medal ) without the ' 1879 Clasp ' it means you never crossed the Border into Zululand .
90th Salute
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RickB24




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George Hocking Empty
PostSubject: Re: George Hocking   George Hocking EmptyFri Dec 01, 2023 10:28 am

Thanks “90th” interestingly the medal seems to have the clasp dated 1879.
My understanding is there were just a few (4?) sappers with Chard who were sent to Isandlwana and only Chard and his driver who went back to Rorke’s drift.
So where were the rest of the 5th company of royal engineers? How many were in that company?
As you say maybe they never went into Zululand?

Thanks Rick

( I was going to put in a picture of the medal but can’t see how to do that, sorry to be dim)
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90th

90th


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George Hocking Empty
PostSubject: George Hocking    George Hocking EmptyFri Dec 01, 2023 12:40 pm

Hi Rickb54.
That's a little Strange as in the Forsyth Medal Roll and the Dutton Roll your Relative is listed as P. Hocking with the Regimental Number 14340 as he is in the Papers posted by Graves1879 , the Roll states that your Forebears medal was issued  ' without a Clasp '  , so I'm unsure why yours has the 1879 Clasp ? , don't worry Mate I've got no idea how to post photo's here either !. The 4 sappers Chard took to Isandlwana with his Driver Robson were Cpl Gamble , Sappers Cuthbert , McLaren & Wheatley all 4 were killed . There were 138 Medals issued to the 5th Co R.E , 39 of which were Unclasped . Chard's Company was still making it's way from Greytown to Helpmekaar but didn't arrive at Helpmekaar until Jan 29th due to the poor state of the roads . Well the Medal Roll has 100 medals issued with the 1879 Clasp so they crossed the river .
90th Salute
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RickB24




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George Hocking Empty
PostSubject: Re: George Hocking   George Hocking EmptyFri Dec 01, 2023 1:54 pm

Hi 90th,

Yes I guess it shows the records may not always be 100% accurate, the documents Andy posted show his name and number as 14340. Medal engraved with G Hocking. Bad handwriting transcribed incorrectly? so if his initial wrong maybe the "without clasp" is too? No doubt the scribes at the time would have been surprised anyone would be looking at this nearly 150 years later!
Looking through my late dad's family history notes I found in 1991 he looked at the Royal engineers paybooks which showed George joining the 5th Coy. at Chatham during the quarter oct to dec 1878 and embarking at Gravesend on 2nd Dec 1878. Also noted is that the C.O of the 5th Coy. was Capt. W P Jones with Lt. Chard as second in command.
It was bad luck for 4 who got picked for the job with Lt. Chard. I think I have read it was repairing punts? it seems a very small number when you have a whole company to choose from. I also wonder if Capt. Jones rued missing out on a V.C. or maybe glad to have sidestepped Isandlwana.

Thanks again for the very interesting informaton, Rick
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RickB24




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George Hocking Empty
PostSubject: Re: George Hocking   George Hocking EmptyFri Dec 01, 2023 2:59 pm


Further to my posts above after various internet searches I came across an old post on this forum (July24 2019) about the sale of a medal for Sapper James Gibson.

Post description " Subject: The Zulu War medal awarded to Sapper James Gibson, Royal Engineers, a member of Lieutenant Chard’s No. 5 Company, who was a witness to the immediate aftermath of Rorke’s Drift and took part in the battle of Ulundi Wed Jul 24, 2019 9:15 pm "

It goes on:

"....Mr Gibson, who was a Glasgow man, joined the Royal Engineers as a young man, and belonged to the company, about 100 strong, that marched from Helpmakaar to Rorke’s Drift to the relief of the little garrison there. When the Engineers arrived the garrison, composed of 80 men of the 24th Regiment, South Wales Borderers, of whom half were in hospital, had beaten off the main attacks of the Zulus. Mr. Gibson also took part in the battle of Ulundi in which, after a fierce struggle, the Zulus were finally defeated. ... "

For my research interesting on the movements of the 5th Coy. Royal Engineers.
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1879graves

1879graves


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George Hocking Empty
PostSubject: Re: George Hocking   George Hocking EmptyFri Dec 01, 2023 8:25 pm

Hi Rick

Here is George Hocking's entry on the Medal Roll for 5th Company Royal Engineers. He definitely was only entitled to the South Africa Medal without clasp.

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

Andy

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RickB24




Posts : 10
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George Hocking Empty
PostSubject: Re: George Hocking   George Hocking EmptyFri Dec 01, 2023 9:17 pm

Hi Andy,

Thanks for that, I wonder where he was. I guess there were different duties that were done by different men that are completely lost to time. Probably never recorded at the time.

Best regards
Rick
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RickB24




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George Hocking Empty
PostSubject: Re: George Hocking   George Hocking EmptyFri Dec 01, 2023 9:38 pm


Hi again Andy, , are there instructions on the site to post a picture, when I click on the item it seems I have to send a url link? Couldn’t find in faq.

Then I could post a picture of the medal. Also on the medal roll it says “no trace of .. “ I can’t make out the last word, any idea?

Thanks Rick
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John Young

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George Hocking Empty
PostSubject: Re: George Hocking   George Hocking EmptyFri Dec 01, 2023 10:12 pm

RickB24,

Looking at his admission to hospital in Pietermaritzburg on 23rd May, 1879, I would say he had been serving at store depot at Helpmekaar, which was fortified by 5th Company, Royal Engineers. In May, 1879, prior to the 2nd invasion of KwaZulu the store depot was relocated to Dundee, Natal, where it was fortified by members of 5th Company, Royal Engineers and named Fort Jones in honour of Captain Walter Parke Jones, the company’s commander.

JY

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RickB24




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George Hocking Empty
PostSubject: Re: George Hocking   George Hocking EmptySat Dec 02, 2023 8:33 am

Hi John,
That makes sense, good detective work!
Thanks
Rick
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John Young

John Young


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George Hocking Empty
PostSubject: Re: George Hocking   George Hocking EmptySat Dec 02, 2023 9:00 am

Rick,

Just to give you an idea of where he was stationed.

[You must be registered and logged in to see this image.]
The laager at Helpmekaar, 1879.
(John Young Collection.)

[You must be registered and logged in to see this image.]
Fort Jones, Dundee, 1879.
(John Young Collection.)

Helpmekaar was very much a fever-ridden spot, the troops there ravaged by typhoid.

JY
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RickB24




Posts : 10
Join date : 2023-11-30

George Hocking Empty
PostSubject: Re: George Hocking   George Hocking EmptySat Dec 02, 2023 9:12 am

That’s great, yes not a lot there just what they brought with them. Thanks!
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90th

90th


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George Hocking Empty
PostSubject: George Hocking    George Hocking EmptySat Dec 02, 2023 1:59 pm

JY I wish Helpmekaar looked like that now ! , was basically a Forrest when I was there earlier in the year ! . I've never seen it as badly overgrown as it was .
90th Sad
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Eddie




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George Hocking Empty
PostSubject: Re: George Hocking   George Hocking EmptySat Dec 02, 2023 2:50 pm

Hi Rick 

Could this be a relation?

Evening Express 19th February 1900:

Suicide of Sergeant Major Hocking (Royal Engineers), who quitted Ladysmith in the last train from there, shot himself dead at Chatham on Sunday.

Eddie
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Eddie




Posts : 791
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George Hocking Empty
PostSubject: Re: George Hocking   George Hocking EmptySat Dec 02, 2023 3:36 pm

Hi All 

Ryle Record and Advertiser 24th February 1900:

Suicide of a Sergeant Major 

Sergeant Major Hocking, of E Company of the Royal Engineers, stationed at Chatham, has committed suicide under distressing circumstances.
He shot himself three times, twice in the mouth and once through the eye, reloading the rifle after the first  two discharges.
The deceased man and his wife were at Ladysmith immediately before the Boers completed their investment of the town. Mrs Hocking had to leave at half hours notice, and her husband followed in three days, being invalided home.
He is described as the last man in the last carriage in the last train that came out of Ladysmith. On arrival at Chatham Hocking had an attack of Influenza. The after effects of this, coupled with the worry of his official duties, produced depression..

Eddie
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RickB24




Posts : 10
Join date : 2023-11-30

George Hocking Empty
PostSubject: Re: George Hocking   George Hocking EmptySat Dec 02, 2023 5:10 pm

Hi, I’m pretty sure no relation, but I’ll check!
Rick
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1879graves

1879graves


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George Hocking Empty
PostSubject: Re: George Hocking   George Hocking EmptySat Dec 02, 2023 8:17 pm

Hi Rick

RickB24 wrote:
Also on the medal roll it says “no trace of .. “ I can’t make out the last word, any idea?

It reads: "No Trace Of Issue"

Andy
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