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Thread: Black watch in the boer war 1902

  1. #1
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    Black watch in the boer war 1902

    I am getting on track with following one of my grandfathers diaries from ww1 with the help of the war diaries to compare too, and starting to understand more and more.... Searching through more bits and pieces I have now found a army diary which though says from 1901 my GF has changed into one for 1902! He is gazetted to BW in jan and sets sail for SA in March on the SS Assage arrived Cape Town 1st April -
    I can't seem to find any diaries that I could compare with this to try and decipher what is written here ...and where it all goes - lots of mentions of the weather, the food and who won at hockey or golf? With the odd mention of mail bringing baccy and chocolate. Also 31st May he writes " Botha said to have surrendered " with the next day " peace signed. Beastly day, dust storms and very cold"

    Is there a diary from the black watch that will follow the 42nd at this time - as it would be nice to know what else was happening at the time he was writing about which would explain the medal and clasps a little more?!
    Regards GG

  2. #2
    Administrator Chalky's Avatar
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    The 1st Battalion arrived in South Africa from India about the end of December 1901.

    In a despatch from Lord Kitchener on 8th January 1902 he remarks, "On receipt of the news of this successful attack (that is, the capture of about a battalion of Yeomanry at Tweefontein on 25th December 1901) I arranged to reinforce General Rundle by the 1st Black Watch and 4th King's Royal Rifles". General Rundle issued an order to the colonel of the 1st Black Watch stating that their expeditious march and timely arrival had saved a critical situation.

    The battalion was afterwards chiefly employed on the construction of the blockhouse lines, and in guarding these lines during the big driving operations which went on in the north of the Orange River Colony down to the close of the campaign.

    Have you checked the National Archives for the War Diary?

  3. #3
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    Thanks Chalky,
    I have looked at the Anglo boer war site which gave no time line for my GF and his time there, and generally has been of little help other than looking at medals... I didn't realise there were war diaries for the boer War online- that would have been answer enough .. I am not looking for people to do my research for me but I don't have the easy option of being in the UK and am only just a beginner .. Sorry if it above everyone to repeat what others may have asked.. Maybe an opening page with more help and FAQ would prevent " silly" questions. I am keen to understand more of my families history with the BW and appreciate things which meant a lot to them.
    Kind regards

  4. #4
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    What was your grandfather's name? We have a Roll of Officers which might give a little more detail as both the 1st and 2nd Battalions were in South Africa. You may also be interested to know that we are having a very well researched Regimental history written and Vol 2 which covers from 1899 - 2006 will be published in late 2015. I have seen a draft of the Boer War chapter and it is very good. Roddy

  5. #5
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    The Boer war medal rolls for the regiment, Queens South Afria Medal and Kings South Africa medal, of all battalions, can be freely downloaded from the National Archives.

    Derek

  6. #6
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    Hi, The Military History of Perthshire has a good chapter on the 1st Bn in South Africa. I will check and see if it can be read online and let you know. Also you might be able to get access to a copy via your local library.
    If all else fails I can check my copy and see how many pages this chapter is and possibly photograph them and email them to you.

  7. #7
    Administrator Chalky's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Horsegunner View Post
    Hi, The Military History of Perthshire has a good chapter on the 1st Bn in South Africa. I will check and see if it can be read online and let you know. Also you might be able to get access to a copy via your local library.
    If all else fails I can check my copy and see how many pages this chapter is and possibly photograph them and email them to you.
    There is a link to an online copy on the forum:

    http://blackwatchforums.co.uk/showth...-History-Books

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