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The Battle of Isandlwana: From above
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John

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PostSubject: Natal Native Contingent   Natal Native Contingent EmptyTue Jan 19, 2010 10:15 pm

"Natal Native Contingent early in the battle broke and fled, leaving a gap in the defence line, 300 yards (275 m) wide."

Just a few questions to feed my brain. Well was left of it.!

Were all the members of the NNC at Isandlwana armed with the MH? Were they given ammunition or was that just for the Europeans.

Maybe I shouldn’t, But going by the film Zulu Dawn, One MH was issued between ten men of the NNC.

These lads were not trained soldiers like the British and were it not down to the lack of experience on the officer’s part for not keeping the NNC under control.

What was the average age of these guys ?

And Is there any records from the NNC giving their versions of events.

Thanks in advance..... Wink
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90th

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PostSubject: Natal Native Cont.   Natal Native Contingent EmptyWed Jan 20, 2010 12:11 am

hi john.
Zulu Dawn is fairly close to the mark in regards to the arming of the NNC , I think one rifle per
10 men is right , and also only 5 rounds I think !. Not sure if they had the M.H , my guess
Sniders but I dont know for sure , if I get a chance I will have a look. The NNC were deployed
on the right flank of the imperial troops and when and if they bolted it would have left a huge
hole which the thinly scattered line of soldiers could not have possibly held .
hope this helps .
cheers 90th.
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90th

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PostSubject: Natal Native Cont.   Natal Native Contingent EmptyWed Jan 20, 2010 1:17 am

Hi John.
This from I. Castle"s book. " ZULU WAR - VOLUNTEERS, IRREGULARS AND AUXILIARIES published
by Osprey.

NATAL NATIVE CONT. WEAPONS AND EQUIPMENT .
Due to fears expressed by Natal"s colonists only a limited number of firearms were issued to the NNC, and
in any case little enough time was available to train them in their use even had more been made available.
Accordingly only the African Officers and 10 NCO"s of each comp recieved them. Generally these were Enfield
Percussion Rifles , supplied with belts , bullet pouches and cap pockets . All others would be required to carry
their traditionial weaponry of shield and spears . Eurpoean officers and NCO"S were issued with MH "s , bayonets
and 50 cartridge bandoliers .
cheers 90th.
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Saul David 1879




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PostSubject: Re: Natal Native Contingent   Natal Native Contingent EmptyWed Jan 20, 2010 5:31 pm

The withdrawal was in full swing when Pulleine dispatched Capt R. Younghusband's company forward to cover it. At this point the N.N.C. were unsteady. Without warning some of the N.N.C. scampered down to the camp in disarray but the rest formed up at the foot of the escarpment and imposed severe fatalities on the uNokenke as they come into sight over the ridge.

The N.N.C. were in the same situation as there European counterparts, they were not used to European Warfare, and had little or no training. Many of the NNC died that day on the side of the British but they are only remembered for desertion. Maybe they themselves saw all was lost, and like the British also decided to escape the carnage.

S.D
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littlehand

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PostSubject: Re: Natal Native Contingent   Natal Native Contingent EmptyWed Jan 20, 2010 10:02 pm

S.D. I don’t think anyone on this forum doubts the bravery of the NNC.
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Frank Allewell

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PostSubject: Re: Natal Native Contingent   Natal Native Contingent EmptyThu Jan 21, 2010 5:43 am

SD
First I have heard of an NNC reform, this happened where?

Regards
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Saul David 1879




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PostSubject: Re: Natal Native Contingent   Natal Native Contingent EmptyThu Jan 21, 2010 3:43 pm

Here!

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SD
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Frank Allewell

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PostSubject: Re: Natal Native Contingent   Natal Native Contingent EmptyFri Jan 22, 2010 5:03 am

Hardly a 'reform'.
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Saul David 1879




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PostSubject: Re: Natal Native Contingent   Natal Native Contingent EmptyFri Jan 22, 2010 9:05 pm

The 3rd N.N.C. lost 18 officers and 36 N.C.O.'s, only 3 officers escaping. I do not think we lost many men as I am sure the Natal Kafirs bolted very early in the day. I must however make exception of the one Zulu company left in camp. They sat tight until the enemy closed in. Then they charged and were killed to a man. But as Umvubie would have said, they had a good fight first.

Source: A lost legionary in South Africa"

A very Brave reform.!
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PostSubject: Re: Natal Native Contingent   Natal Native Contingent EmptySat Jan 23, 2010 1:16 am

European officers who escaped the battle of Isandlwana confirmed that some NNC elements fought hard, and only began to disperse towards the end of the battle, when European soldiers were also attempting to flee the battlefield.

E.H
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John

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PostSubject: Re: Natal Native Contingent   Natal Native Contingent EmptyMon Jan 25, 2010 2:46 pm

The Natal Native Contingent were led by unsympathetic officers. Most of who were called upon to fight with only their traditional spears due to insufficient time, funds and resources to equip.
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PostSubject: Re: Natal Native Contingent   Natal Native Contingent EmptyWed Feb 24, 2010 11:19 am

I realise this is an old discussion, I thought, as Im a recent member I should start somewhere. I have done some small amount of research on the NNC at Isandlwana. (Im trying to confirm if one of the NCO's is a relative).
As far as casualties are concerned 39 Officers and NCO's of the 1st Batt NNC, and 35 Officers and NCO's of the 2nd Batt NNC together with at least 400 African troops died on the battlefield that day.
It is a pity that we concentrate most of our praises on the regulars and give little regard to those colonials fighting with them.
As far as the NNC leaving the firing line is concerned, they quite frankly would have run out of ammunition and would have been of little use anyway. Besides with the withdrawal of Durnford from the right and the general withdrawal of the 24ths firing line there was little else to do, the Zulu horns were encircling and the battle was as good as lost.
It has been reported that Shepstone made a stand with approximately 60 Zulu NNC on the far side of Isandlwana. The bodies were not discovered until sometime after the battle and were difficult to distinguish from friend or foe.
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Dave

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PostSubject: Re: Natal Native Contingent   Natal Native Contingent EmptyWed Feb 24, 2010 7:40 pm

Hi Rob. Welcome to the forum.

Rob just out of interest, may I ask
Quote :
(Im trying to confirm if one of the NCO's is a relative).
The name of the person in question. ?
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robgolding




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PostSubject: Re: Natal Native Contingent   Natal Native Contingent EmptyWed Feb 24, 2010 10:10 pm

Hi Dave, Yes , nothing confimed at this stage but my grandfather spoke of a relative killed by natives in South Africa in the 1800's - the only one I can find is a Sergeant W Golding 1st Batt NNC. Unfortunately my grandfather has been dead for 30 years so cant confirm any other details. Although not a particularily common name, it appears in England, Australia, South Africa and the US.
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Chelmsfordthescapegoat

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PostSubject: Re: Natal Native Contingent   Natal Native Contingent EmptyWed Feb 24, 2010 10:50 pm

Just out of interest.

The 1st Regiment Natal Native Contingent of three battalions (Commandant Montgomery, Major Bengough, and Captain Cherry), and five troops mounted natives
formed No. 2 Column, commanded by Lieut. -Colonel Durnford.

The 2nd Regiment Natal Native Contingent (two battalions, under Major Graves) was attached to No. 1 Column, commanded by Colonel Pearson.

The 3rd Regiment Natal Native Contingent (two battalions, under Commandant Lonsdale) was attached to No. 3 Column, commanded by Colonel Glyn, and about two hundred Natal Native Contingent were attached to No. 4 Column, commanded by Colonel Wood.

Each battalion of Native Contingent was to consist of 5 staff and 90 officers and non-commissioned officers (white), and 110 officers and non-commissioned officers and 900 privates (natives) ; the native non-commissioned officer being armed with a gun, and being a section-leader of 9 men armed with assegai and shield.
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PostSubject: Re: Natal Native Contingent   Natal Native Contingent EmptyWed Feb 24, 2010 11:20 pm

Is there a list of names of those that served in N.N.C.
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robgolding




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PostSubject: Re: Natal Native Contingent   Natal Native Contingent EmptyWed Feb 24, 2010 11:29 pm

I only have the casualty rolls -

CASUALTY ROLL FOR THE ZULU AND BASUTO WARS - SOUTH AFRICA 1877-79 by I T Tavender, I think it is currently out of print.
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PostSubject: Re: Natal Native Contingent   Natal Native Contingent EmptyThu Feb 25, 2010 9:33 pm

Natal Native Contingent. This unit was formed by John Dunn.

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Sourced from the Campbell Collections at the University of Pietermaritzburg.

Photo: Supplied by Springbok9
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Chelmsfordthescapegoat

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PostSubject: Re: Natal Native Contingent   Natal Native Contingent EmptyThu Feb 25, 2010 10:42 pm

Now that's interesting the front rankers all seem to have rifles, I thought only a few rifles were allocated to the NNC. One Rifle to every ten men. ?
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Guest
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PostSubject: Re: Natal Native Contingent   Natal Native Contingent EmptyFri Feb 26, 2010 12:05 am

NNC troops were not issued with sufficient firearms to compose an efficient force. Only 1 in 10 soldiers were issued with a rifle, and they were the generally old-fashioned muzzle-loading muskets rather than advanced firearms. In addition, those issued with rifles were supplied with only 4 rounds of ammunition. Most of the NNC had their traditional African spears and shields.

E.H
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PostSubject: Re: Natal Native Contingent   Natal Native Contingent EmptyFri Feb 26, 2010 6:07 am

Hi Elizabeth
In general your correct. The purpose of the NNC was never to fight in a defensive roll (as Isandlawana). Their primary roll was as a pursuing force, once an impi was turned by the rifes of the regular force the NNC would be turned loose to inflict the maximum damages to a fleeing enemy. Sounds unpalatable but that was the defined roll. Taking that, it therefore makes sense, in a 19th century way, that they did not need guns.
Traditionally in Africa theres allways been this terrible fear of arming a black force, obviously that was again part of the rational.
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Chelmsfordthescapegoat

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PostSubject: Re: Natal Native Contingent   Natal Native Contingent EmptyFri Feb 26, 2010 7:25 am

Thanks Elizabeth. A sensible answer for once. You must have left your legal head somewhere. (Only Joking) ??
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PostSubject: Re: Natal Native Contingent   Natal Native Contingent EmptyFri Nov 11, 2011 10:28 pm

Natal Native Contingent early in the battle broke and fled, leaving a gap in the defence line, 300 yards (275 m) wide



This didn't happened did it??


Cheers
DB14
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John

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PostSubject: Re: Natal Native Contingent   Natal Native Contingent EmptySun Nov 13, 2011 5:12 pm

I have read quite a few accounts that say it did happen. To be honest I don't think it would have just been the NNC that broke ranks.
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PostSubject: Re: Natal Native Contingent   Natal Native Contingent EmptySun Nov 13, 2011 5:37 pm

It didn't happen. Idea

Why would a battalion put a number of black levies in the middle
of there firing line. Also with a gap 300meters wide how did the men get back to the
camp if there flanks where exposed.

Its even mentioned in standing orders, NNC are to be no where near the front Idea


Source

How can men die better
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PostSubject: Re: Natal Native Contingent   Natal Native Contingent EmptyWed Nov 16, 2011 11:18 pm

I have a medal to the NNC named to Lieut. J.LUYT clasp 1879 for some reason he is on the second to last page in the D. R. Forsyth medal roll book, i have nothing else about him, any info would be appreciated.
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90th

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PostSubject: NNC . Lt. J. Luyt    Natal Native Contingent EmptyThu Nov 17, 2011 4:32 am

Hi Towerboy .
I looked through ' For God , Queen & Colony ' by Terry Sole and found a C. Luyt in the 2 nd Batt , 3rd Regt . .
I then checked my Ebay lists and back on the 13 / 3 / 08 - 19 / 3 / 08 , Lt . J. Luyt 3rd NNC , it opened at $ 39.99 USD , sold
for $ 610 .00 USD , there were 17 Bids . The Description read '' Re - named Medal - Upright Engraved , Block or Black Capitals.
Cant read my own writing !!. I also noted I couldnt find him on the roll , But he is indeed on the second last page of the Forsyth Medal Roll . Which has him in the NNC , Rank not known . Tricky one , this will be I suspect , not sure how you will find anything on him to be honest . Suspect If anyone can I'd say Littlehand can !. 1879 Graves may also be able to help .
cheers 90th. Idea
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PostSubject: Re: Natal Native Contingent   Natal Native Contingent EmptyThu Nov 17, 2011 7:28 am

Hi Towerboy

I have sent you a PM

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PostSubject: Re: Natal Native Contingent   Natal Native Contingent EmptySun Dec 18, 2011 2:03 pm

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