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» Letter of officer during Zulu wars.
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 "With 6 good riflemen"

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SRB1965

SRB1965


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"With 6 good riflemen" Empty
PostSubject: "With 6 good riflemen"   "With 6 good riflemen" EmptyTue Jan 02, 2024 8:33 am

Prior to the Zulu attack at Rorkes Drift, Sgt Milne (and Pontman Daniels?) offered to anchor the.ponts midstream and defend them, with 6 riflemen.

Looking at photos it does seems that the river was wide enough (and presumably deep enough) to make this viable. 

There is not a lot of protection on the ponts but I suppose that could have been remided, with mealie bags etc

Was the idea ever seriously considered?

Milne must have thought it was possible - I doubt he had a death wish....

Cheers

Simon
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John Young

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"With 6 good riflemen" Empty
PostSubject: Re: "With 6 good riflemen"   "With 6 good riflemen" EmptyTue Jan 02, 2024 8:55 am

Simon,

Although Sergeant F. A. Millne and Yankee Dan volunteered their services, Chard appears to have quickly dismissed the suggestion.

As is evident from this photograph there was little, or no protection afford - get my drift - on the ferry.  
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The crossing point at Rorke’s Drift, 1879.
(John Young Collection.)

JY
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SRB1965

SRB1965


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"With 6 good riflemen" Empty
PostSubject: Re: "With 6 good riflemen"   "With 6 good riflemen" EmptyTue Jan 02, 2024 11:34 am

Is that all one ferry John or was it in two or three sections?

Looking at the waterline, there seems to be two long sections and a smaller one?

Thanks
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John Young

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"With 6 good riflemen" Empty
PostSubject: Re: "With 6 good riflemen"   "With 6 good riflemen" EmptyTue Jan 02, 2024 12:36 pm

Simon,

I believe the actual ferry is the white painted section, it was apparently extended with a barrel raft which appears to be the section with six of the men on, to increase the capacity.

If you look at the shoreline, you can see the remains of one the rafts which broke up.

The ferry at the Lower Drift of the Thukela is very similar in design the white painted section.

JY
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Mr M. Cooper

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"With 6 good riflemen" Empty
PostSubject: Re: "With 6 good riflemen"   "With 6 good riflemen" EmptySun Feb 04, 2024 10:40 am

Great picture John, what is the hill in the background?
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John Young

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"With 6 good riflemen" Empty
PostSubject: Re: "With 6 good riflemen"   "With 6 good riflemen" EmptyMon Feb 05, 2024 9:12 am

Martin,

That’s Shiyane, a.k.a. Oscarberg.

JY
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Mr M. Cooper

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PostSubject: Re: "With 6 good riflemen"   "With 6 good riflemen" EmptyMon Feb 05, 2024 2:30 pm

Thank you John, much obliged. Salute
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