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» 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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 'Witts' Kraal

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Julian Whybra
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SRB1965

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PostSubject: Re: 'Witts' Kraal   'Witts' Kraal - Page 3 EmptyThu Jun 07, 2018 4:19 pm

Oh yes, Daly of course - I did think that it was too polite for Anstey, him being an antipodean........ Joker
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PostSubject: Re: 'Witts' Kraal   'Witts' Kraal - Page 3 EmptyThu Jun 07, 2018 4:21 pm

Maybe waving was a euphemism for something else...
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PostSubject: Re: 'Witts' Kraal   'Witts' Kraal - Page 3 EmptySat Jun 09, 2018 4:26 pm

According to the writings of David Jackson, it is categorically stated in the Anstey Family Papers that Lieut. Anstey's "body was found on the banks of the Manzimnyama by Black, surrounded by his men".


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SRB1965

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PostSubject: Re: 'Witts' Kraal   'Witts' Kraal - Page 3 EmptySat Jun 09, 2018 8:32 pm

Its a pity 'dog tags' did not come around a few decades earlier, than they did.....though I suppose the Zulus would have had off with them.....
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90th

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PostSubject: Witt's Kraal    'Witts' Kraal - Page 3 EmptySun Jun 10, 2018 5:12 am

Hi JW
Not surprising , after all ...the Regimental Record stated Anstey had gained the banks of the Manzimnyama ( not a 100 yds from it ) I mentioned earlier Black , Pen- Symons or T.H.Anstey must've found the body there , as why would it be mentioned if it was otherwise . So there we are , something that can be put to rest ! .
90th You need to study mo
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PostSubject: Re: 'Witts' Kraal   'Witts' Kraal - Page 3 EmptySun Jun 10, 2018 7:10 am

Would love to see where Black mentions it? No
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SRB1965

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PostSubject: Re: 'Witts' Kraal   'Witts' Kraal - Page 3 EmptySun Jun 10, 2018 8:01 am

Hi,

Looking at the various maps/plans and 'Franks' aerial photos, one thing I find strange is that there are no cairns close to the two kraals just west of Isandlwana - this of course assumes they are Witts kraals

Have they been 'lost' due to the later farming activity in the area, show on one of the 1945 photos?

You would think that some of the first escapees would have been caught along the road, before the right horn forced the latter ones along the Fugitives trial.

The chap (Keane) who was identified (by JY?) from his button was found in an unusual place, not commonly associated with burials (I believe)

Cheers

Sime
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Julian Whybra




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PostSubject: Re: 'Witts' Kraal   'Witts' Kraal - Page 3 EmptySun Jun 10, 2018 8:34 am

Frank
I'll ask David whether he copied out that part of the family papers.
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Frank Allewell

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PostSubject: Re: 'Witts' Kraal   'Witts' Kraal - Page 3 EmptySun Jun 10, 2018 11:13 am

Julian I may be so bold but: "Proof Proof Proof."
No matter what family/regimental traditions state, if its not backed with evidence its circumstantial. IF we are to accept this as evidence then Colonel Mike Snooks comment on Melvill being ordered to take the flag to safety, as being Regimental lore has also to be put into the same context.
What of McPhail sharing a bottle with Chelmsford?
I have no doubt that Davids memory is correct, that isn't the issue.
It comes to the larger picture, what is acceptable as proof?
And that is the whole point of my argument.

I have a telegram informing my Great grandmother of her sons demise during the war with: "He fought and died for his country with courage." Family tradition was for years, recorded, that he died a hero."
He turned up alive years later in Canada having deserted from his Regiment.
Cheers

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Julian Whybra




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PostSubject: Re: 'Witts' Kraal   'Witts' Kraal - Page 3 EmptySun Jun 10, 2018 11:40 am

Frank
Precisely. That's why I'll ask David exactly what the Anstey Family Papers contained (note: 'Papers', not traditions or folk memory or oral tradition). If, for example, it was a letter from Black himself to the family, that would be proof positive. The family after all got that info from somewhere/someone - the only question is from where/whom?
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PostSubject: Re: 'Witts' Kraal   'Witts' Kraal - Page 3 EmptySun Jun 10, 2018 12:52 pm

Its probably been done before, but Lt. Anstey's family history and connections are quite interesting. His probate was not finally cleared until 1897 when he left just £48.00 in total to his brother in law Reginald Freeland Yonge retired Commander RN. Yonge had married Anstey's sister Julia Sybilla Anstey on 24th May 1879 just four months after Isandhlwana. By sheer coincidence Reginald Yonge had been born in Brecon in 1849 the son of Captain Gustavus Nigel Kingscote Yonge at that time serving in the 2nd Foot (Queen's Royal West Surrey's) and just returned from India. In 1867 Gustavus was appointed Colonel of the 67th Foot (Royal Hampshire Regiment). Later he transferred to the First West India Regiment and assumed command in Sierra Leone.
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Lt. Col. Gustavus Nigel Kingscote Yonge.

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SRB1965

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PostSubject: Re: 'Witts' Kraal   'Witts' Kraal - Page 3 EmptySun Jun 10, 2018 2:40 pm

Frank Allewell wrote:

I have a telegram informing my Great grandmother of her sons demise during the war with: "He fought and died for his country with courage." Family tradition was for years, recorded, that he died a hero."
He turned up alive years later in Canada having deserted from his Regiment.

Maybe not a hero but it makes a better story......
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PostSubject: Re: 'Witts' Kraal   'Witts' Kraal - Page 3 EmptySun Jun 10, 2018 3:21 pm

Sime the point being I have my GGs journal in which she mentions the receipt of the telegram and the visit of a couple of his friends after the war. It makes an apt point that just because its written in the family history it isn't gospel.
Cheers
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Julian Whybra




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PostSubject: Re: 'Witts' Kraal   'Witts' Kraal - Page 3 EmptySun Jun 10, 2018 8:33 pm

Frank
You may well be right about Anstey. I don't know. That's why I just want to ask David exactly what evidence he saw among the Anstey Papers. David is not one for 'opinion' or 'second-hand' rumour. He will only have believed proofs positive seen with his own eyes. I hope to be able to phone him tomorrow afternoon.
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PostSubject: Re: 'Witts' Kraal   'Witts' Kraal - Page 3 EmptySun Jun 10, 2018 8:35 pm

Hi Frank,

I couldn't agree more - uncorroborated family tradition, whether written or spoken, is not worth the paper it is written on (or not)

I have spent many years trying to find out about my families history and having got to the 'root' of the tale, find it is nothing like that story told by my Grandfather......but the basic tale has a germ of truth behind things.

We know that Anstey was found by his brother and repatriated to England - I'm not sure in my own mind (reading the comments/posts) if he knew where to look or if he found him after a exhaustive search.

Cheers

Sime
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PostSubject: Re: 'Witts' Kraal   'Witts' Kraal - Page 3 EmptyMon Jun 11, 2018 1:10 am

This letter to the Times by Anstey's father was posted by Graves back in 2012. It makes clear that Anstey's body had been found and identified by Lt Armitage 2/24th and interred when the regiment buried it's own. Armitage also accompanied Anstey's brother when recovering the body in 1880. So he clearly knew where to look and who to take with him to find it again. I shall not be surprised to find that Black or Armitage had written to the family.
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SRB1965

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PostSubject: Re: 'Witts' Kraal   'Witts' Kraal - Page 3 EmptyMon Jun 11, 2018 6:25 am

Steve,

I wonder what had upset Anstey snr, the tone of his letter - particularly the second paragraph seems a little 'angry'

Cheers

Sime
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PostSubject: Re: 'Witts' Kraal   'Witts' Kraal - Page 3 EmptyTue Jun 12, 2018 7:21 am

Armtage wrote to his mother from Koppie Alein on the 2nd August 1879. An interesting quote comes from that letter: " I found 2 or 3 officers’ bodies, amongst them that of poor Anstey."
He seems to point to other officers being part of the 'last stand'. I don't think Mostyn and Daly's bodies were ever mentioned as being located. As the retreat down to the river was by a pretty large party would it be possible that both those officers were present?
Just a thought.
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PostSubject: Re: 'Witts' Kraal   'Witts' Kraal - Page 3 EmptyTue Jun 12, 2018 7:40 am

A second point comes to mind, would Anstey have been 'buried' apart from his men by the 24th burial party? If not Armitage would have had to disturb a 'mass' grave to re locate it. So if he did bury him seperatly could one assume the other two or three officers would also have been buried seperatly? And would that have been the norm across the battlefield?
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PostSubject: Re: 'Witts' Kraal   'Witts' Kraal - Page 3 EmptyTue Jun 12, 2018 8:51 am

Bonjour ,
The corpses of the 24th were buried only in June (at the request of Glyn).
To my knowledge, Mostyn's body was never found (except a ring alleged to belong to him).
Ditto for Daly, even if Ron Lock and Peter Quantrill wrote in "Zulu Victory" (p.217)
"Months later, his body [Lt P. DALY], with that of WARDELL was found amongst a group of sixty men who had rallied and died together" (Typo error?).
Cheers
Frédéric
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ymob

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PostSubject: Re: 'Witts' Kraal   'Witts' Kraal - Page 3 EmptyTue Jun 12, 2018 9:49 am

I tend to think that the officers were buried seperatly (see for example Durnford or Pope ).
I read a comment from a member of a burial party: He tells that the Officers were buried in first (without further comments about the identity of the Officers or their units ).
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rusteze

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PostSubject: Re: 'Witts' Kraal   'Witts' Kraal - Page 3 EmptyTue Jun 12, 2018 11:09 am

I tend to agree that the officers were buried separately. The letter, which sold for £7,000., was supposedly available for a short while at Brecon for "serious" researchers to study although could not be copied or photographed. A number of AZW historians expressed a desire to go and see it, but it is unclear whether any of them did.
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PostSubject: Re: 'Witts' Kraal   'Witts' Kraal - Page 3 EmptyTue Jun 12, 2018 11:19 am

Two letters written by Lt Anstey (dated 6 and 13 January 1879) and also a telegram dated Feb. 11 confirming date of this death are actually (and unfortunatelly) in private hands....
I Wonder if someone on the forum has already read them ...
Cheers
Frédéric
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Julian Whybra




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PostSubject: Re: 'Witts' Kraal   'Witts' Kraal - Page 3 EmptyTue Jun 12, 2018 11:44 am

I have just spoken to David Jackson who told me that the Anstey family had an official communication - he can't remember whether it was a telegramme or a letter - saying that their son's body had been found by Black on 20th June, identified and given a Christian burial.
He said that MS. 1/24th Records states 'Lieut. Anstey gained the Manzamjama [sic]' with no provenance provided.
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PostSubject: Re: 'Witts' Kraal   'Witts' Kraal - Page 3 EmptyTue Jun 12, 2018 12:40 pm

Thanks Julian. Found by Armitage on Blacks patrol one would assume.
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PostSubject: Re: 'Witts' Kraal   'Witts' Kraal - Page 3 EmptyTue Jun 12, 2018 3:33 pm

Absolutely correct.
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PostSubject: Re: 'Witts' Kraal   'Witts' Kraal - Page 3 EmptyTue Jun 12, 2018 5:51 pm

Hi,

I think the idea of officers (if identified) being buried separate to their men quite logical.

Officers (or perhaps volunteers) were the only ones who were likely to be 'repatriated' (especially to England but also maybe to a family burial ground, in say Natal), obviously due to cost and family connections.

Although I have no proof of it - to me it seems to be the 'done' thing, perhaps it was an example of the 'brothers in arms' thing - looking after your peers, in the hope that if you 'bit the dust', you would be looked after the same.

I believe that most of the officers at Little Big Horn, were identified (within a couple of days - must have made it easier) and later received private burials elsewhere in the US - whilst many of the men received individual burials - they remained mainly unidentified - "Trooper of the 7th"

If you think about it, it seems many of the officers at Isandlwana, were found (in May/June) and buried - only to have the locations lots in time - unless moved or marked (Mel/Cog, AWD, Shepstone etc)

ta

Sime
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