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Title: South Africa and the Boer-British War, Volume I

Author: J. Castell Hopkins

Murat Halstead

Release date: December 1, 2012 [eBook #41521]

Language: English

Credits: Produced by Al Haines



JOSEPH CHAMBERLAIN, Colonial Secretary of England. PAUL KRUGER, President of the South African Republic. (Photo from Duffus Bros.
JOSEPH CHAMBERLAIN, Colonial Secretary of England.
PAUL KRUGER, President of the South African Republic. (Photo from Duffus Bros.)

South Africa


The Boer-British War


THE WAR OF 1899 AND 1900



Author of The Life and Works of Mr. Gladstone;
Queen Victoria, Her Life and Reign; The Sword
of Islam, or Annals of Turkish Power;
Life and Work of Sir John Thompson.
Editor of "Canada; An Encyclopedia," in six volumes.



Formerly Editor of the Cincinnati "Commercial Gazette,"
and the Brooklyn "Standard-Union." Author of The
Story of Cuba; Life of William McKinley;
The Story of the Philippines; The History of American
Expansion; The History of the Spanish-American War;
Our New Possessions, and
The Life and Achievements of Admiral Dewey, etc., etc.





Entered according to Act of Parliament of Canada, at the
Department of Agriculture, Ottawa, in the year One Thousand
Nine Hundred, by J. L. Nichols & Co.


To measure the South African War of 1899-1900 merely by the population of the two Boer Republics, would necessitate its consideration as an unimportant contest in comparison with the great international conflicts of the century. To measure it by the real power of the Dutch in South Africa, under present conditions, and by the principles involved in its inception and prosecution, makes it a struggle which rivals in importance the Crimean War, the American Civil War or the Franco-Prussian conflict. In the first of these, Great Britain, France and Sardinia united to resist the dangerous designs and aggressive policy of Russia which threatened their power in the Mediterranean and the British route to India through its intended seizure or acquisition of Constantinople. In the second, the United States was fighting a great conflict for national unity. In the third, Prussia averted a campaign of "On to Berlin" by speedy and successful military action.

All of these elements find a place in the South African War. The policy of President Kruger, President Steyn and the Afrikander Bund, of Cape Colony, has been developing for years into a dangerous and combined effort for the creation of a United Dutch South Africa and the seizure of Cape Town—one of the chief stations of British commercial and maritime power. Mr. Chamberlain precipitated matters, so far as the Cape Colony Dutch were concerned, by a policy of firmness to which they were unaccustomed at the hands of the Colonial Office and which, cautious and conciliatory as it was, forced the hand of the Transvaal President before his general policy was quite matured. As the diplomatic negotiations proceeded and the war itself developed it became a struggle for Imperial unity as truly and fully as was the American Civil War. Two great Colonies of the Empire were threatened, the principles of equal right and equal liberty upon which its entire self-governing portions have been built up and maintained were spurned, and the feeling of unity which has latterly grown so amazingly amongst its various countries was openly flouted by the treatment of the Uitlanders and the attack upon Cape Colony and Natal. Backed by the undoubted ability of President Kruger, the sentiment of racial unity amongst the Dutch of all South Africa, the swords and science of European officers and experts, the immense sums drawn from the Uitlanders and possibly from Europe, the armaments prepared during a long term of years with skill and knowledge, the characteristics of a people admirably adapted through both knowledge and experience for warfare on South African soil, the Boer cry of "On to Durban" was really more menacing to British interests and conditions of unpreparedness than was the cry of the Parisian populace, in 1870, to the Kingdom of Prussia. A war with France might not have been nearly as difficult or as serious a matter to Great Britain under existing conditions as the war with the Boer Republics has turned out to be.

The loss of South Africa, or the failure to assert British supremacy as the Paramount Power in that region, would not only have humiliated Great Britain in the eyes of rival nations everywhere and precipitated peril wherever aggressive foreign ambition could find a desirable opening, but it would have lost her the respect, the admiration or the loyalty of rising British nations in Australia and Canada; of lesser Colonies all over the world; of swarming millions of uncivilized races in Hindostan, China and Northern Africa. Its influence would have been a shock to the commercial and financial nerves of the world; a blow to the independence and liberties of the "little peoples" who now rest securely under the real or nominal guarantee of British power. In the Persian Gulf and on the borders of Afghanistan, upon the frontiers of Siam and the shores of the Bosphorus, in the waters of Australasia and on the coasts of Newfoundland, upon the banks of the mighty Nile and along the borders of Canada, the result would have come as the most menacing storm-cloud of modern history. The power of a great race to continue its mission of colonization, civilization and construction was involved; and would be again involved if any future and serious European intervention were threatened.

The origin of the question itself is too wide and complicated to treat of in a few brief words. To some superficial onlookers it has been a simple matter of dispute as to franchise regulations between President Kruger and Mr. Chamberlain. To the enemies of England it has been a wicked and heartless attempt on the part of Great Britain to seize a Naboth's vineyard of gold and territory. To a few Englishmen, even, it has seemed a product of capitalistic aggression or of the personal ambition of a Rhodes or a Chamberlain. To many more it has appeared as a direct consequence of the Gladstone policy of 1881 and 1884. In reality, however, it is the result of a hundred years of racial rivalry, during which the Boer character has been evolved out of intense isolation, deliberate ignorance and cultivated prejudice into the remarkable product of to-day, while the nature of his British neighbor has expanded in the light of liberty and through the gospel of equality, of labor and of world-wide thought, into the great modern representative of progress in all that makes for good government, active intellectual endeavor, material wealth and Imperial expansion.

Stagnation as opposed to progress, slavery to freedom, racial hatred to general unity, isolation and seclusion to free colonization and settlement, the darkness of the African veldt to the light of European civilization—these are the original causes of the war. British mistakes of policy in defending the Boer against the Kaffir or the Kaffir against the Boer; political errors in making the Conventions of 1852 and 1854, of 1881 and 1884; hesitancy in the annexation of territory and indifference in the holding of it; have increased the complications of South African life and government, but have not affected the root of the evil—the fact of two absolutely conflicting social and political systems developing side by side during a century of difficulty and racial rivalry. This antagonism has been absolute. The Boer love for liberty or independence became simply a love for isolation from the rest of humanity and a desire to imitate the slave-owners of Old Testament history. The final result has been the creation of a foreign, or Hollander, oligarchy in both the Dutch republics for the purpose of preserving this condition. The British ideal is freedom in government, in trade, in politics, for himself and for others, regardless of race, or creed, or color. The Boer principle of morality has always been a mere matter of color; that of the average Englishman is very different. The Boer religion is a gospel of sombreness wrapped in the shadow of Hebrew seclusion and exclusiveness; that of the true Englishman is a gospel of love and the light of a New Testament dispensation. Side by side these two types have lived and struggled in South Africa, and to-day the racial, national, individual and other differences are being thrown into the crucible of a desperate conflict. There can only be one local result—the ultimate organization of a united South Africa in which race and creed and color will be merged in one general principle of perfect equality and the practice of one great policy of liberty to all, within the bounds of rational legislation and honest life. A second and more widely potent consequence will be the closer constructive union of the British Empire and the welding of its scattered and sometimes incoherent systems of defence and legislation and commerce into one mighty whole in which Canada and Australia and South Africa and, in some measure, India will stand together as an Imperial unit. A third and very important result, arising out of the policy of foreign nations during the struggle, should also be the drawing closer of existing ties of friendship and kinship between the British Empire and the American Republic.


THE RT. HON. SIR BARTLE FRERE, G.C.B. High Commissioner for South Africa, 1877-1881. THE RT. HON. SIR GEORGE GREY, K.C.B. High Commissioner for South Africa, 1854-1862.
THE RT. HON. SIR BARTLE FRERE, G.C.B. High Commissioner for South Africa, 1877-1881.
THE RT. HON. SIR GEORGE GREY, K.C.B. High Commissioner for South Africa, 1854-1862.

MR. CECIL J. RHODES, The Diamond King and Promoter of the Cape-to-Cairo Railroad, South Africa. LORD ROBERTS, V.C., G.C.B., G.C.I.E., Commander-in-Chief British Forces, South Africa.
MR. CECIL J. RHODES, The Diamond King and Promoter of the Cape-to-Cairo Railroad, South Africa.
LORD ROBERTS, V.C., G.C.B., G.C.I.E., Commander-in-Chief British Forces, South Africa.

Part I.



Early Scenes of Settlement and Struggle.

The Dark Continent—The Old-time Natives of the South—The Bantu, Hottentots and Bushmen—The Portuguese of South Africa—The Dutch East India Company—A Dutch Colony at the Cape—The First Slaves—Introduction of Asiatics—The Boer Pioneer Farmer—Arrival of the Huguenots—Wars with the Bantu or Kaffirs—Extension of Settlement and Exploration—The First British Occupation—Final British Conquest—The Dutch, the English, the French and the Natives—Birth of the South African Question


The Dutch and the Natives.

The Early Dutch Character—Contempt for Coloured Races—The Commencement of Slavery, Its Nature and Practices—The Wandering Native Tribes Learn to Hate the Dutchman—English and Dutch Views in Antagonism—The Missionary Interferes—Unwise Action in Some Cases—Policy of Dr. Philip—Dutch Hostility to England Increased by Dislike of Mission Work and Antagonism to Slavery—Missionary Influence upon the Latter—The Dutch and the Kaffir Wars—Hardships of the Settlers—Rise of the Zulu Power under Tshaka—The Matabele and Moselkatze—Moshesh and the Basutos—A Second Period in the South African Problem Begins


The Great Trek and its First Results.

The British Abolition of Slavery—The Immediate Effects of the Measure Disastrous to Both Dutch and Natives—The Trek of 1836 Commences—The Emigrant Farmer, Qualities and Mode of Life—Nature of the Country Traversed Character of the Various Native Tribes—Ruthless Warfare—The Boer Skill in Marksmanship—The Boers North of the Orange River—Their Subjugation of the Matabele—Pieter Retief and His Party in Natal—Massacre by Dingaan—Boer War with the Zulus—Conquest of Dingaan and His Followers by Pretorius—Dutch Treatment of the Natives—Boers Develop Strength in War But Show Signal Weakness in Government—Collision with the English in Natal—The Cape Governor Decides that the Natives Must be Protected—Conflict Between Boers and English—The Republic of Natalia Becomes a British Country—The Boers Trek North of the Vaal River and Colonize the Transvaal—Establishment of Moshesh by the British as Head of a Border Native State—The Griquas—A Third Phase of the South African Question


Birth of the Dutch Republics.

English Policy in South Africa During the Middle of the Century—Non-interference, no Expansion, Limitation of Responsibility—Brief Exception in the Case of the Orange River Boers—Annexation, in 1848, and Establishment as the Orange River Sovereignty—English Protection of the Boers Against the Natives—Rebellion of Pretorious and Defeat of the Dutch at Boomplaatz by Sir Harry Smith—A New Governor at the Cape and a Hastily Changed Policy—Independence of the Transvaal Boers Recognized in 1852—The Sand River Convention—English Campaign Against the Basutos in Defence of the Orange River Boers—Arrival of Sir George Clerk with Instructions to Withdraw British Authority from the Orange River Country—Protests of the Loyal Settlers—Formation and Recognition of the Orange Free State—A New Setting for an Old Problem


Development of Dutch Rule.

Divergent Lines of Growth in the Republics—The Orange Free State and the Basutos—Early Difficulties and Laws—Rise of President Brand into Power—His High Character and Quarter of a Century's Wise Administration of the Free State—Diamond Discoveries and the Keate Award—Liberal Policy of the Free State and General Friendship with England—In the Transvaal—Troubles of the Emigrant Farmers North of the Vaal—Four Little Republics—Union Under Martin W. Pretorius, in 1864, after a Period of Civil War—Rise of S. J. P. Kruger into Prominence—Conflicts with the Natives—T. F. Bergers Becomes President—General Stagnation, Developing by 1877 into Public Bankruptcy—Failure to Conquer Sekukuni and the Bapedis—Danger from the Zulus under Cetywayo—Annexation to the British Empire—A New Link Forged in the Chain of Events


Development of Cape Colony.

Gradual Growth of Population after the Great Trek—Climate, Resources and Government—Agriculture and the Dutch Settlers—Lack of Progressiveness—The English and the Cultivation of Special Industries—Partial Self-government Granted to the Cape—Executive Council, Schools and Courts—English as the Official Language—Elective Council and Assembly Constituted in 1853—Extensive German Colonization—Railways and Diamonds—Incorporation of New Territories—The Establishment of Responsible Government—The Dutch and the English in Politics—Representative Men of the Colony—Cecil Rhodes Appears on the Scene—Racial Conditions in 1877—The Confederation Scheme Defeated in the Cape Parliament—Religion, Education and Trade—The Afrikander Bund Formed at the Cape—It Becomes a Most Important Element in the South African Situation


Imperial Policy in South Africa.

The Early Governors of Cape Colony and Their Difficulties—The Colonial Office and its Lack of Defined and Continuous Policy—Growth in England of Public Indifference to Colonies—Its Unfortunate Expression in 1852-54—Fluctuating Treatment of the Natives—Good Intentions and Mistaken Practices—Sir George Grey and South Africa—A Wise Statesman—His Policy of Confederation and Conciliation—Hampered by the Colonial Office and the Anti-Expansion School in England—The Non-intervention Policy and the Natives—Conditions in Natal—Importance of the Cape to the Empire—Importance of South Africa to the British People—Slow-growing Comprehension of these Facts in England—Sir Bartle Frere at the Cape—Eventual Repudiation of His Plans and Recall of the Best of South African Governors—The Gladstone Government's Responsibility for Succeeding Evils—The Absence of a Continuous Policy toward the Natives and Varied Questions of Territorial Extension Involve the Colonists in Constant Trouble and the Imperial Exchequer in Immense Expenditures—A Story of Imperial Burdens, Mistakes and Good Intentions; of Colonial Difficulties, Protests and Racial Complexities


The Native Races of South Africa,

Origin, Character and Customs—The Bantu or Kaffirs—Offshoots Such as the Matabele and Zulus—Some Great Chiefs—Tchaka, Dingaan, Moshesh, Cetywayo and Khama—Merciless Character of Native Wars—Dealings with the English and the Dutch—Difference in National Methods of Treating Savages—Force, or Evidence of Power, the Surest Preservative of Peace—The Slaves of the Boer and the Slaves of the Savage—Result of Emancipation upon the Native—Result of Missionary Labour amongst the Tribes—Livingstone and Moffat—Imperial Problems in the Rule of Inferior Races—Strenuous British Efforts at Justice and Mercy—The Bible and the Bayonet, the Missionary and the Soldier—Extremes Meet in the Policy of the Dutch and English


Character of the South African Boer.

A Peculiar Type—Mixture of Huguenot and Netherlands' Dutch—Divergence Between the Permanent Settler at the Cape and the Emigrant Farmer in the Two Republics—Good Qualities and Bad Curiously Mixed—A Keen Desire for Independence in the Form of Isolation—A Patriotism Bred of Ignorance and Cultivated by Prejudice—A Love of Liberty for Himself and of Slavery for Inferiors—The Possessor of Intense Racial Sentiment and of Sincere Religious Bigotry—Modification of these Qualities in Cape Colony by Education and Political Freedom—Moderate Expression of them in the Orange Free State as a Result of President Brand's Policy—Extreme Embodiment of them in the Transvaal—The Dutch Hatred of Missionaries—Dr. Livingstone on Dutch Character and Customs—Throughout South Africa the Dutch Masses are Slow and Sleepy, Serious and Somewhat Slovenly, Averse to Field Labour, Ignorant of External Matters and Without Culture—The Transvaal Boer the Most Active, Hardy and Aggressive in Character—Hatred of the English and His Wandering Life the Chief Reason—Morality and Immorality—Different Types of Dutch—Kruger and Pretorius, Joubert and Steyn—Hofmeyr and DeVilliers, Representative of the Higher Culture of Cape Colony


The Annexation of the Transvaal.

Condition of the Republic in 1877—Dangers Without and Difficulties Within—The British Policy of Confederation—Public Opinion in England not Sufficiently Advanced—Lord Carnarvon, and Mr. J. A. Froude's Mission—Sir T. Shepstone Takes Action—A Peaceful Annexation Quietly Carried Out—Neither Force nor Serious Persuasion Used—The Ensuing Administration—Self-government not Granted—Sir Owen Lanyon's Mistakes—The Failure of the Confederation Scheme—Mr. Gladstone's Political Campaign in England—Effect of His Utterances in South Africa—He Comes into Power—Protests against Annexation Develop—Dutch Delegates in England—Refusal to Reverse the Annexation—Boer Rebellion and Ultimate British Repudiation of Pledges and Policy—Magnanimity Appears to the Dutch as Pusillanimity and Paves the Way for Years of Trouble and Much Bloodshed


Natal and the Zulu War.

Slow Progress of Natal—Limited White Population—Constitution and General History—Rise of the Zulu Power—From the Days of Tshaka to those of Cetywayo—A Curious British Encouragement of Native Strength—Bravery and Good Qualities of the Zulus—Lust of Conquest and Cruelty in War—Cetywayo's Impis Threaten the Boers of the Transvaal and the English of Natal—Sir Bartle Frere Arrives at Cape Town as High Commissioner and Considers War Necessary in Order to Avert Massacre—Takes the Initiative and British Forces Invade Zululand—Lord Chelmsford in Command—Isandlhwana, Rorke's Drift and Ulundi—Sir Bartle Frere Recalled and Sir Garnet Wolseley Sent Out—Settlement of the Zulu Troubles—A Curious Portion of a Complex Problem—Ensuing Advancement of Natal


A Review of the South African Question.

British Views of Government and Treatment of Natives Antagonistic to those of the Dutch—No Question of Republicanism versus Monarchy—The Dutch at the Cape Possessed of a Larger Share in Public Administration than the Boers of the Transvaal—The Language Question a Serious One—Equality of Population and Opportunity and Privilege at the Cape Without Equality of Education or Knowledge—The British Government and the Missionaries—The Dutch and Slavery—The Non-intervention Policy and Confederation—The Question of Cape Colony Extension—Cecil Rhodes and South Africa—Progress versus Stagnation—The Latter Wins at Majuba Hill and for a Time Turns Back the Hand of Destiny—The South African Question Enters on its Last Phase


The Colonies and the War.

Sentiment in the Colonies Regarding Imperial Defence—Changes within a Few Years—Australians and Canadians in the Soudan—Public Feeling in Canada and Australia concerning the Transvaal Negotiations—General Sympathy with Great Britain—Expressions of Public Opinion and Parliamentary Resolutions—The Outbreak of War—Action Taken by New Zealand and Queensland, by Victoria and New South Wales—Other Colonies Move—The Sudden Outburst of Feeling in Canada—Colonel Hughes and the Volunteer Movement—The Premier and Parliament—Public Opinion Impels Immediate Action—The Government Does its Duty in a Patriotic Manner—Mr. Israel Tarte and the French Canadians—Attitude of Sir Charles Tupper—The Contingent Enrolled—Popular Enthusiasm during the Enlistment—The Officers Chosen—Lieutenant-Colonel W. D. Otter Commands the "Second Battalion of the Royal Canadian Regiment"—Sir Charles Holled-Smith in Command of the Australasians—Departure of the Canadian Contingent amid Scenes of Unprecedented Popular Enthusiasm—Similar Incidents in Australia—Speeches by Lord Brassey, Governor of Victoria, and by Lord Minto, Governor-General of Canada—Attitude of the Imperial Government toward the Colonies—Mr. Chamberlain's Correspondence—Dr. W. H. Fitchett on Australian Loyalty—The New-South-Wales Lancers in London—Arrival and Great Reception of the Colonial Forces at Cape Town—Second Contingent Offered—The Colonies and the Empire




The Origin of the Recent War—Boers' Policy Against Immigrants—Characteristics of the Boers—Antagonism to British Rule—British Government in South Africa—Telling Statistics—A Magnificent Project—Opinions of the Canadians


The Battle of Majuba Hill.

Lord Rosebery's Reflections—The Sting of Majuba Hill—The Gordon Highlanders at Majuba Hill—Testimony of an Eye Witness—Proclamation of President Steyn—Reply to the Boer Proclamation—The First Right to the Transvaal Gold—The Broukhorst Spruit—The Laing's Nek—Terms of Settlement


The President of the South African Republic.

Birth, Education, etc.—Paul Kruger at Ten Years—Appearance and Manners—The Boer of Boers—Daily Life—His Grand Passion—Facts of History—Kruger's Chinese Wall—A Misleading Reputation—Racial Prejudices—Free and Independent Krugerism—Kruger's Nepotism


The Boers and British Gold and Diamonds.

Solomon's Ophir—How the Gold was Discovered—Early Gold Finds—Gold Production in 1897 and 1898—A Clear and Impartial Statement—Boss and Caste Government—Boer Intolerance—The "Dog in the Manger"—Commerce of the Transvaal—The First Stamp Mill—Diamonds for Toys—Boyle's Statement—Star of South Africa—Dry Diggings—Qualities of the Cape Diamonds—"Nature's Freemasonry"


The Cause of War.

Conference With Kruger—Many Points of Difference—Kruger's Objection to Franchise—Qualifications for Citizenship—An Absolutely Fair Proposition—Ireland and Transvaal—What Mr. Chamberlain Wrote—A Statement by Kruger—Petition from Natal—Resolutions of the House of Commons of Canada—Kruger's Views on the Question—President Steyn as Peace-maker


The Boer Declaration of War and the Gathering of the Armies.

Both Sides Surprised—The Boer Ultimatum—Centres of Combat Quickly Defined—Important Decisions—Early Days of the War—Public Opinion—Two Popular Illusions


The First Bloodshed.

First Battle of the War—Battle of Elandslaagte—Hard Work on Both Sides—General Buller Arrives—The Strategy of the Boers—Difficulties in Mobilizing the Troops—Boers Select Their Time Judiciously


The Magersfontein Battle.

Heavy Losses on Both sides—The Hottest Fight of the British Army—Gatacre's Serious Reverse—Methuen's Failure—The Losses—What Dispatches Say—Sudden Change of Public Sentiment—The Official Boer Account


Battle of Colenso.—Defeat of General Buller.

"Tied by the Leg"—American and Boer Revolution Compared—New Conditions of Warfare—Plan of the Fight—Mistaken but Heroic Advance—Attack Fruitless—Boers Capture the Guns—Why Were the Guns Lost?—Conduct of the Men—Bad Light and no Smoke—Defeat Admitted—Dazed by Defeat—A Foredoomed Failure


The Siege of Ladysmith.

Location of Ladysmith—Timely Arrival of the Naval Brigade—First Serious Reverse—Excitement in London—Symon's Death and Victory—Closing in of Ladysmith—A Narrow Escape—Caves Excavated for Families—Town Hall Struck—Midnight Bombardment—Hard Pressed—Boer Attempt to Storm—Thrilling Encounters—Relief at Last—British Troops Enter the Town


The Relief of Kimberley—The Turn of the Tide of War
Against the Boers.

Difference in Positions of Roberts and Buller—A White Man's War—Each Step Carefully Considered—A Remarkable Cavalry Movement—Kimberley Relieved—Roberts and Buller in Co-operation—Roberts' Public Utterances—What a Military Specialist Says—The Spion Kop Affair—The Kop Retaken by the Boers


Cronje's Surrender and the Occupation of Bloemfontein.

Cronje Hard Pressed—Cronje Capitulates—Cronje and Roberts Meet—The Detailed Report of Roberts—Kruger Willing to Compromise—From Modder River to Bloemfontein—Kruger and Steyn's Address to Lord Salisbury—Lord Salisbury's Answer—The British Cordially Greeted in Bloemfontein—The Press on Mediation

Official List.

of the Royal Canadian Soldiers Gone to South Africa

NOTE.—Official lists of Second and Third Contingents not being complete at time of issuing FIRST VOLUME, they will be inserted in full in SECOND VOLUME.


The Illustrations in this volume have NO FOLIOS. There are 64 FULL PAGES of PLATES, and 448 pages of reading matter, making a total of 512 pages.

Glossary of Boer Terms.

That the readers of this volume may understand the meaning of certain Boer names and words which the author has found it necessary to use, we append the following glossary of those most frequently employed:

  Aarde  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Earth, ground
  Afgang . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Slope
  Baas . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  Master
  Beek . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Brook
  Berg . . . . . . .  Mountain (the plural is formed by adding en)
  Boer . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  Farmer
  Boom . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  Tree
  Boschveldt . . . . . . . . . . . An open plain covered with bush
  Broek  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Marsh, pool
  Buitenlander . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Foreigner
  Burg . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  A town
  Burgher  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . A citizen
  Commandeer . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  To levy troops
  Commando . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . A body of armed men
  Daal . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  A valley
  Dorp . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . A village
  Drift  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  A ford
  Dusselboom . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Pole of an ox wagon
  Fontein  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  A spring or fountain
  Gebied . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  District
  Hout . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  Wood, timber
  Inspan . . . . . . . . . . To harness or tether horses or cattle
  Jonkher  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Gentleman of the Volks Raad
  Karroo . . . . . . . A geographical term for a certain district.
                       In Hottentot, a "dry place"
  Kerel  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . A chap, or fellow
  Klei . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  Clay
  Kloof  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  A valley or ravine
  Kop, or Kopje  . . . . . . . . . . . .  A hill or small mountain
  Kraal  . . . . . . . . . . . .  A place of meeting, headquarters
  Kruger . . . . . . . . . The family name of present president of
                           South African Republic
  Krantz . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . A precipice
  Laager . . . .  A fortified camp, but often applied to any camp,
                  fortified or not
  Landdrost  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  Local governor
  Loop . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Course, channel
  Modder . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Mud
  Mooi . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  Pretty
  Nachtmal . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Lord's Supper
  Nieuwe . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . New
  Oom  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Uncle
  Pan  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  Bed of a dried-up salt marsh
  Poort  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . A passage between mountains
  Raad . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  Senate
  Raadsher . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Senator
  Raadhuis . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Senate hall
  Raadzael . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  Parliament house
  Rand . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  Edge, margin
  Rooinek  . . . . .  Term of contempt applied to British by Boers
  Ruggens  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . A barren, hilly country
  Schantze . . . . . . A heap of stones used to protect a marksman
                       against opposing rifle fire
  Slim . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Cunning, crafty
  Sluit  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . A ditch
  Spruit . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Creek
  Staat  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . State
  Stad . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  A town or city
  Transvaal  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Across the valley
  Trek . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . A journey
  Trekken  . . . . . . . . . . . . .  To travel, or pull away from
  Uit  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Outside
  Uitspan. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . To unharness, to stop
  Uitlander  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . An outsider or newcomer
  Vaal . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  Valley
  Veldt  . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  A prairie, or treeless plain
  Veldtheer  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  The general in command
  Vley . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . A prairie-like meadow
  Volks Raad . . . . . . . . . House of commons or representatives
  Voortrekkers . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  Pioneers
  Vrow . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Housewife
  Witwaterstrand . . . . . . . . . . . The edge of the White Water
  Zuid . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . South

The correct pronunciation of Boer words is very difficult to a speaker of the English tongue, hence the attempt to give it in above glossary is omitted. The language is as peculiar to South Africa as the jargon French of lower Louisiana is to that country and even more unlike Holland Dutch than the Creole dialect is unlike Parisian French. While the Boer speech was primarily Dutch, it has been so modified by isolation from the mother country for more than two centuries, and by contact with the native African tribes, and by the influx of French, Spanish and Maylay elements, that a native Hollander is scarcely able to understand it, even when written, and to speak it, as the Boers do, he finds impossible.






GENERAL SIR WILLIAM GATACRE, GENERAL LORD KITCHENER, THE HON. FREDERICK W. BORDEN, Canadian Minister of Militia and Defence, GENERAL JOUBERT Commander-in-Chief of the Dutch Forces. Died at Pretoria, March 27th, 1900.
THE HON. FREDERICK W. BORDEN, Canadian Minister of Militia and Defence,
GENERAL JOUBERT Commander-in-Chief of the Dutch Forces.
Died at Pretoria, March 27th, 1900.

WILLIAM BRYANT, KINGSTON, CANADA, and Batt. Royal Fusiliers, Imperial Army, in South Africa. VICTORIA CONTINGENT FOR THE TRANSVAAL, Troops marching through Melbourne on Oct. 28th, 1899, Photo by Bishop, Prahran. MAJOR DUNCAN STUART, LONDON, ONT., With B Co., 1st Canadian Contingent in South Africa
and Batt. Royal Fusiliers, Imperial Army, in South Africa.
Troops marching through Melbourne on Oct. 28th, 1899,
Photo by Bishop, Prahran.
With B Co., 1st Canadian Contingent in South Africa


Early Scenes of Settlement and Struggle.

The Dark Continent

From the date of its discovery by Bartholomew Diaz, in 1486, until the first Dutch settlement by Van Riebeeck, in 1650, the Cape of Good Hope was simply a finger post on the route to India—a convenient and temporary anchorage for Portuguese, Dutch, English, Spanish and French ships. And around its stormy and rock-bound headlands had passed the richly laden ships of the English and Dutch East India Companies for half a century before the latter founded its pioneer establishment. Henceforward, however, the shores of Table Bay, with its towering and mountainous mass of granite sheltering the Castle of the Dutch Governor and the tiny settlement of Cape Town, was to be the scene and centre of a gradual colonization, of continuous struggle with innumerable natives, of peculiar trade conditions and curious governing experiences, of capture by the English and of varied experiments in British government.

The First Settlement

The first Dutch settlement was really a station for supplying the passing ships of the Dutch East India Company. No idea of territorial extension was present in the minds of those who proceeded to erect a fort and to barter with wandering natives. They knew nothing of the vast interior of the Dark Continent and its two or three hundred millions of black or brown population, its merciless wars and campaigns, its savage customs and cruelties, its vast lakes and rivers and mountains and rolling plains. They were equally unaware that about the time of their own establishment in the south, under the protecting shelter of the vast square mass of Table Mountain, a tribe of dark-skinned natives, called the Bantu, had swarmed down upon the far eastern coast and were preparing to overrun from their home in Central Africa all the great region of barren upland and rolling veldt and level Karoo plain known now by the common name of South Africa. The tiny settlements of the Dutch were thus unconsciously preparing for a future in which the persistent pressure of millions of Bantu, or Kaffirs, from the north and east upon the white colonies of the south was to make history of a most prolonged and painful character. The Old-Time Natives At first little was seen of the natives excepting members of a degraded coast tribe whom the Colonists called Bushmen and who lived more like animals than human beings. A little higher in the scale were the Hottentots, who, in large numbers, formed a fringe of wandering tribes along the whole of the southern part of the continent. Fighting continually amongst themselves, trading occasionally with the white men and stealing cattle wherever possible from the gradually extending settlement, these natives proved a source of much trouble to the pioneers.

The Dutch East India Company

Between 1652 and 1783 the European population of the Cape increased to about twenty-five thousand persons, in comparison with an increase of four millions in the English population of the thirteen American Colonies during much the same period. But conditions were different and the character of the settlers still more so. The Dutch East India Company ruled with despotic power, and its regulations read like a product of romantic imagination. Slaves were, of course, permitted and encouraged, and, in 1754, the penalty of death was fixed for any slave raising his hand against his master, and that of a severe flogging for any who loitered outside the church doors during service time. How the French Huguenots were Received The French Protestants, or Huguenots, who came out in 1688-90, were welcomed as settlers, but were very soon shown that no ideas of racial equality pervaded the Dutch mind. A schoolmaster was imported expressly to teach the children the language of the dominant race. No separate communities were allowed, and the French were carefully mixed amongst the Dutch and other settlers. Requests for distinct church organization were stigmatized as impertinent, and the use of the language was forbidden in official or public life. By the middle of the eighteenth century it had entirely died. Sumptuary laws of the most extraordinary character prevailed. Any person seeing the Governor approach had to stop his carriage and get out of it. No one lower in rank than a merchant could use a large umbrella, and only the wives and daughters of those who were, or had been, members of the Council could do so. The trade monopoly of the Company was so rigorous that Colonists were entirely debarred from external commerce, and were dependent upon officials for the sale and price of their products. They had not the most elementary self-government, and at the end of the eighteenth century did not possess a printing press. Cut off from all literature, having nothing but the Bible and a metrical version of the Psalms, they developed a type of character unique in itself and productive of most serious consequences.

The System of "Loan Leases"

Nor was permanency of settlement encouraged by the Dutch authorities. From 1705 to 1770 the Government issued what were termed "loan leases," or licenses to occupy land in the interior for grazing purposes upon the payment of a small rental and with a right to re-assume possession at any time retained by the Government. Combined with changes in the seasons and the pasturage, and the desire to obtain better locations, this system encouraged the formation of that peculiar characteristic called "trekking," which has marked the pages of South African history with so much bloodshed and trouble. It also brought the wandering farmers, or Boers, into contact or conflict with the wandering natives. Even the Dutch officials at Swellendam and Stellenbosch complained at last of a plan under which the farmers "did not scruple to wander about hither and thither several days' journey from their loan farms;" and finally, in 1770, the system was abolished. Meantime a region larger than the British Isles had been taken from the Hottentots and their cattle driven away from the best grass-land available for their use, and which had been theirs for centuries. The natural result of cattle-stealing which ensued upon the part of the natives was punishment by the Colonists in the form of war; in the holding of captured children as apprentices or slaves; and in the occasional application of torture to individual savages.

Successive Racial Importations

This matter of relations with the natives and of slavery was complicated at an early date (1658) by the introduction of some negro slaves from a Portuguese ship. They were brought from the coast of Guinea and sold to the Government for rough labor in the neighborhood of Cape Town, and also to some of the more distant settlers. Naturally inclined, already, to utilize natives for any work of a manual nature, this official encouragement immediately complicated the relations between Hottentots and Bushmen and the Dutch farmers. The latter, having once tasted the pleasures of slave-ownership in the midst of vast reserves of dark-skinned people, soon put the principle into the fullest practice and application. From time to time further consignments of slaves from other parts of Africa were introduced by those inveterate dealers, the Portuguese, and to them were soon added large numbers of native criminals from Malacca, Java and the Spice Islands, who were sent by the Batavian Government to serve out terms of punishment or slavery at the Cape. They were, of course, more intelligent than the imported slaves from Guinea and Mozambique, and often made excellent masons, harness-makers, coopers and tailors; but their influence upon the moral tone of the white community amongst whom they were placed is not hard to estimate. From their arrival dates one of the many mixed races with which South Africa swarms. Another class of imported Asiatics of a higher type consisted of political offenders sent from Java at a later date to live, with their families, upon fixed Government allowances. They received occasional accessions up to 1781, when the last batch came out. As a result of these successive racial importations Cape Colony came in time to include a most singular and varied half-breed population in which Dutch and Hottentots and Malay and Negro were all intermixed.

European Population in 1759

In 1759, a century and a half after the Colony was established, its population contained 9,782 Europeans, of whom 1,486 were women and 8,104 slaves. How many natives there were it is difficult to estimate, as they were always a very movable quantity. Up to the end of the century this population lived and slowly increased under conditions which absolutely precluded real progress and evolved the character of singular stagnation which met the English conquerors in 1795. In 1779 the Dutch settlers pleaded in vain with the Directors of the East India Company for a limited privilege of making purchases directly in Holland instead of through the Company's stores at Cape Town. In vain the so-called burghers also asked for the most elementary political rights—though even then entirely unwilling to concede any rights to the surrounding natives. In vain they petitioned for printed copies of the laws and regulations of the Government and for a printing press.

They were regarded at this time by the Batavian Government much as the Transvaal authorities regarded the Uitlanders of another century. The Law Officer of the Cape Government, to whom the petitions were referred in 1779 by the Home authorities, declared that: "It would be a mere waste of words to dwell on the remarkable distinction to be drawn between burghers whose ancestors nobly fought for and conquered their freedom and such as are named burghers here, who have been permitted as matter of grace to have a residence in a land of which possession has been taken by the Sovereign Power, there to gain a livelihood as tillers of the earth, tailors and shoemakers."[1] At the end of the nineteenth century the Uitlanders believed themselves to have been taxed and treated in the Transvaal with very much similar motives and entirely from the point of view of Dutch revenues and the strengthening of Dutch supremacy. The Boers had been well taught this peculiar lesson in government, and nowhere better than in another part of this same document: "Now it is clear, and requires no lengthy argument, that for the purpose of enabling a subordinate Colony to flourish as a Colony it is not always expedient to apply those means which, considered in the abstract, might be conducive to its prosperity. The object of paramount importance in legislating for Colonies should be the welfare of the parent state, of which such Colony is but a subordinate part and to which it owes its existence."

[1] Three Lectures on the Cafe of Good Hope, Judge Watermeyer. Cape Town, 1857.

The Afrikander Dialect

Meanwhile, to the degradation of character which came from the possession of slaves by a people naturally narrow in view and necessarily ignorant through their unfortunate environment, was added the creation and cultivation of a curious patois, or Afrikander dialect, which increased their isolation and intensified the problems of the future. The Huguenots had been compelled to learn and to speak Dutch, and probably did not do it very well; the Boers were themselves compelled to frequently speak the language of the natives; there was no school system and no sifting of the culture of a higher class of permanent residents down through the grades of other settlers; there was no emigration of population from Holland which might have helped to maintain the morale of the language; and the result was the evolution of a dialect which became neither Dutch nor French, nor native, but a mixture of all three called the Taal. Olive Schreiner has given the following explanation and description[2] of this product of seventeenth century evolution amongst the Boers:

"The Dutch of Holland is as highly developed a language and as voluminous and capable of expressing the finest scintillations of thought as any in Europe. The vocabulary of the Taal has shrunk to a few hundred words, which have been shorn of almost all their inflections and have been otherwise clipped.... Of the commonest pronouns many are corrupted out of all resemblance to their originals. Of nouns and other words of Dutch extraction most are so clipped as to be scarcely recognizable. A few words are from Malay and other native sources; but so sparse is the vocabulary and so broken are its forms that it is impossible in the Taal to express a subtle emotion, an abstract conception, or a wide generalization."

[2] The Story of South Africa. By W. Basil Worsfold, M.A. London, 1898.

The Batavian Republic

In 1792 a Commission came out from Holland to investigate the affairs and government of the now decadent and bankrupt Company; and shortly afterwards the widespread colonial system of that famous organization was taken over by the Home Government of Holland, or, as it became under French influence, the Batavian Republic. Minor reforms were introduced at the Cape, but they were not sufficient to meet the current conditions of corruption and stagnation, and by 1795, when Cape Town capitulated to Admiral Elphinstone and General Craig, during one of the varied phases of the Napoleonic wars and European combinations against England, much of the interior Colony was in a state of rebellion, and two little republics had been established amongst the settlers away to the north and east of the capital. Thus ended a system of Government which the late Judge Watermeyer, of Cape Town, has declared was "in all things political purely despotic; in all things commercial purely monopolistic;" and which the Historiographer to the Cape Government has summarized in the words:[3] "It governed South Africa with a view to its own interests, its method of paying its officials was bad, its system of taxation was worse, in the decline of its prosperity it tolerated many gross abuses."

[3] George M. Theal, LL. D., in "Story of the Nations' Series."

Preliminary Period of British Rule

In this way were laid the foundations of character and custom upon which have been built the developments of the nineteenth century in South Africa. So far, however, there had been no real antagonism felt towards Great Britain, no apparent reason for its creation and no direct cause for its application. But, with the entrance of Holland into the league against England in 1795 and the evolution of India as an important dependency of the Island Kingdom, had come the first real clash of English and Dutch interests in South Africa through the capture of Cape Town. This preliminary period of British rule in the country lasted until 1803. Everything possible was done to conciliate the Dutch population, which in the country districts refused at first to have anything to do with, or to in any way acknowledge, the new Government. The people of Cape Town were treated with generosity. Officials taking the oath of allegiance were, as a rule, retained in their posts; the depreciated currency, amounting to a quarter of a million pounds sterling, was accepted by the authorities at its full nominal value; some very obnoxious taxes were abolished and a popularly chosen Council or burgher Senate was established in the capital. More important than all, the announcement was made that anyone might now buy and sell as he would, deal with whom he chose in a business way, and come and go as suited him upon land and water. The farmers were invited to Cape Town to trade as they might wish, and to lay any matters they desired before the Governor. The early British administrators included Major-General Sir J. H. Craig, the Earl of Macartney, Sir George Yonge and Major-General Sir Francis Dundas.

The New Government Unpopular

Unfortunately, the weaknesses inherent in the British Colonial system of that time soon manifested themselves in South Africa. While free trade was allowed and promoted throughout the Colony, and a great advance thus made on previous conditions it was soon found that external trade to the East was restricted by the existing monopoly of the British East India Company; while duties were, of course, imposed upon goods coming from the West in any but British ships. Even in this, however, there was an advance upon the previous limitations under which goods could not be imported at all by the people, even in Dutch ships. These regulations, it must also be remembered, applied equally, under the strict navigation laws of that time, to British Colonies in North America, including French Canada and the West Indies, as well as to South Africa. It was not an easy population to govern. The Dutch farmer did not like the oath of allegiance, although it was made as easy as possible for him to take. The very strictness of the new Government and the absence of corruption made it unpopular in some measure. The fact that Holland had become a Republic, which in time percolated through the isolation of the public mind, added to the prejudice against monarchical government which already existed as a result of the despotism of the Dutch East India Company. Naturally and inevitably positions under the Government soon drifted into the hands of men who could speak English and who possessed British sympathies. It is not difficult to realize that the somewhat sullen character of a Cape Town Dutchman who was always looking forward to some change in the European kaleidoscope—of which he naturally knew more than the farmers of the interior and therefore hoped more from—made co-operation difficult and at times unpleasant.

Kaffir Wars

In the interior there had been one or two petty insurrections, or rather riots, amongst the farmers, and in the last year of the century occurred the third Kaffir war. The first had been fought in 1779 under Dutch rule, and the troublesome Kosa tribe driven back over the Fish River which, it was hoped, could be maintained as a permanent frontier between the Colonists and the Kaffirs. The second was a similar but less important struggle with the same tribe in 1789. One was now to take place under British rule. The clans along the north bank of the River joined in a sudden raid into the Colony in February, 1799, took possession of a large strip of country, drove the fleeing settlers before them, attacked and almost surprised a force of British troops marching under General Vandeleur upon another errand to Algoa Bay, cut off a patrol of twenty men and killed all but four. By August, when a large body of Dutch volunteers and some British regulars were got together, all the border country had been harried. There was nothing else to plunder, and the Kaffirs therefore withdrew before the advancing force, and readily accepted terms of peace which General Dundas offered against the wish and advice of the settlers. Three years later the war was renewed, as a result of continued and isolated Kaffir depredations and, this time, the initial movement was made by a Dutch commando. It was defeated, but the Kaffirs soon became tired of a struggle in which there was no profit to them, and a new peace was patched up. Meanwhile, in this same year, a fresh and important element of the future was introduced into South African life by the arrival of the first Agents of the London Missionary Society, and in February, 1803, a temporary lull having occurred in the European conflict, Cape Colony was restored to the Holland Government and a Dutch garrison of 3,000 men placed at Cape Town under the control of a Governor of high military reputation and personal worth—Jan Willem Janssens.

Restored to Holland Government

During the next six years the Colony was governed under some of the milder laws of its mother-land; though not always to the liking of Dutch settlers, who objected to political equality—even in the limited application of the the phrase which was then in vogue—being given to "persons of every creed who acknowledged and worshipped a Supreme Being." To them there was only one Church as well as only one people, and religious or political equality was as extraneous to their ideas as racial equality. Nor would they have anything to do with the state schools which the Batavian Government tried to establish amongst them as being some improvement upon the few and feeble schools connected with the churches. All useful discussion or development of such tentative efforts at reform were checked, however, by the renewed outbreak, in 1803, of war in Europe, and by the appearance in Table Bay, on January 4, 1806, of a British fleet of sixty-three ships, with 7,000 soldiers under the command of Major-General (afterward Sir) David Baird. The troops landed on the beach at Blueberg, defeated a very motley force of German mercenaries, Dutch soldiers, volunteers, Malays, Hottentots and slaves under General Janssens and marched toward Cape Town. Capitulation followed, and, on March 6th, transports took away from South Africa the last representative of direct Dutch rule.

Again Under British Rule

The settlers did not take kindly to the new Government, and lived in continuous anticipation of some fresh change in the European kaleidoscope—so far as they could, in a very vague way, follow situation—which would once more revive the power of the Batavian Republic through a renewed French triumph, and thus give them back their allegiance. It was not that they had greatly prized Dutch rule when it was theirs without the asking; that the brief period of republican administration had really soothed their wild ideas of liberty or removed the dangers of Kaffir raid and native aggression; or that they had forgotten the century and a half of oppressive government and hurtful restriction which they had suffered from the Dutch East India Company. It was simply the earlier form of that racial feeling of antagonism which—unlike the sentiment of civilized peoples like the French in Canada and the better class Hindoos, or educated Mohammedans of India, and the wild natures of Sikhs and Ghoorkas and kindred races in the Orient—has never given way before the kindness and good intentions of British administration. Mistakes were, of course, made by England, as they have been made in Lower Canada as well as in Upper Canada, in Ireland as in India; but the resulting dissatisfaction should not have been permanent. However that may be, the new Government started out wisely. Under the Earl of Caledon, a young Irish nobleman, who ruled from 1807 to 1811, the system of the first period of British administration was revived and guided by the established Colonial principles of the time. In the matter of representative institutions and commercial regulations the Dutch of the conquered Colony were treated neither better nor worse than the Loyalists of Upper Canada, the French of Lower Canada, or white subjects in the East and West Indies. As was really necessary in a community so cut off from European civilization, so inert in an intellectual connection and so morosely ignorant of constitutional freedom, Lord Caledon governed with much strictness and even autocracy; but with boundless personal generosity and amiability. The Fourth Kaffir War What is termed the fourth Kaffir war was fought with the Kosas in 1812, and this time, under the command of Lieut.-Colonel John Graham, the result was eminently satisfactory to the Europeans concerned. In the preceding year Sir John Cradock had become Governor, and he also proved himself a man of high character. Under his rule autocracy was again given its best form and application.

Finally Ceded to Great Britain

Meanwhile, events in Europe were tending towards the final triumph of British arms and diplomacy and subsidies over the tremendous military power of Napoleon. Holland, once freed from French domination, overthrew the peculiar republican system which Napoleon had established, and accepted, in 1813, the Prince of Orange—who for eighteen years had been living in England in exile—as its ruler. An agreement was at once made with him by the British Government, and, in return for a payment of $30,000,000, Cape Colony and some Dutch Provinces in South America were formally and finally ceded to Great Britain by a Convention signed at London in August, 1814. In this way the Dutch of the Cape became British subjects. Not through a conquest preceded, as in the case of French Canada, by a century of continuous conflict or a rivalry which was as keen as war, but through the medium of an almost peaceful annexation succeeded by a friendly purchase of territory and ratification of the annexation on the part of their Mother-land. Had the character of the Boers not been so peculiar and exceptional, there was consequently every ground for the hope of eventual contentment under British rule and of assimilation with the developing life of the Empire during the ensuing century. There was no inherited legacy of civil war or racial hatred. The Mother-lands of England and Holland had fought with each other, it is true, but more often they had stood side by side in Europe for the cause of religious and popular freedom.

A Period Tending to Racial Co-operation

And, at the Cape, during the succeeding years from 1806 to 1814, there were few causes of real friction. The voices of the missionaries were occasionally heard in criticism of the Dutch treatment of natives; but the antagonism had not yet become acute. The Courts of law and public offices under British administration were found to be ruled by considerations of justice, and the local language was still in use. Dutch churches increased, the clergymen were paid by the State and six new magistracies were established. Inter-marriages were also common amongst the various racial elements—sometimes too much so—and everything pointed to a period of gradually developed internal unity and racial co-operation. What followed was regrettable, and the blame for it is very hard to adequately and fairly apportion. Lord Charles Somerset, who governed the Colony from 181410 1826, is accused of drawing far too heavy a salary—ten thousand pounds a year—from the revenues of the country; of having treated the Dutch rebels under Bezuidenhout with too great severity; of having mismanaged relations with the Kaffirs on the northern frontier; of prohibiting the Dutch language in the Courts and official documents; and of having weakened the values of paper money to such an extent as to ruin many of the settlers. Taken altogether, there was enough in these charges, if true, to explain a considerable measure of discontent; but there was hardly enough in them to cause the absolute hatred of England and Englishmen which had developed amongst the Dutch farmers by the end of the first quarter of the century. As it was, many of the circumstances mentioned have more than the traditional two sides. If the Governor received a large salary, he certainly spent it freely in the struggling Colony. He had an expensive establishment to maintain, and the duties and pecuniary responsibilities of the position were much greater in those days than they are now. He was, in himself, practically the entire Government of the country, and without Ministers to share either expense or duties. The Castle was the centre of a hospitality which was in constant requisition for visiting fleets and passing travellers of rank to, or from, the Orient. Some of the Earliest Grievances Moreover, as in all the Colonies at that time, the local revenue was largely supplemented from London, the Army Chest was at the frequent service of the Governor, and an expensive military establishment was maintained by the Home authorities. The figures for this immediate period are not available; but a little later,[4] in 1836, the local military expenditure by Great Britain was £161,412, or over eight hundred thousand dollars. The Fifth Kaffir War The Bezuidenhout matter will be considered in a succeeding chapter, and the fifth Kaffir war, in 1818, was simply another of the inevitable struggles between a race of pastoral farmers who openly despised and ill-treated the natives and tribes which possessed much savage spirit, bravery and natural aggressiveness. In any case, Lord Charles Somerset anticipated attack by attacking first, and turned over a page of history which Sir Bartle Frere was destined to repeat with the Zulus many decades after. His policy was certainly plainer and more promptly protective to the Boers than had been the action of any preceding Governor. Still, there was a period of surprise and frontier devastation, and this the Dutch settlers once again resented.

[4] Montgomery Martin. History of the Colonies of the British Empire. London, 1843.

British Immigration Encouraged

The prohibition of the language in official and legal matters was a more important grievance. It arose out of the movement of English-speaking settlers into the country after 1819, when it was found, according to the Census of that year, that there were only 42,000 white people in the whole region. The Colonial Office and Parliament thereupon resolved to encourage colonization, voted $250,000 for the purpose, and, between 1820 and 1821, established some five thousand immigrants of British birth in the Colony. Within a few years about one-eighth of all the Colonists were English-speaking, and it was then decided to issue the order regarding the official use of the one language. It was a very mild copy of the principle which the Dutch had formerly applied to the Huguenots and which the United States has never hesitated to apply to subject races such as the French in Louisiana or the Spaniards and Mexicans elsewhere. It must be remembered also that the white population of the Colony was not at the time larger than that of a third-class English town, and that the statesmen in question were trying to legislate for a future population in which it was naturally supposed the English people would constitute a large majority. The policy did not go far enough, was not drastic enough, to effect the object in view, and may in any case have been a mistake; but in Lower Canada, where the opposite course was taken, the tiny French population of 1774 has developed into nearly two millions of French-speaking people in 1899, and not a small part of the population of the present Dominion think that a great error was made in the liberal practice inaugurated by the Quebec Act. It is hard to satisfy everyone. By 1828 the language arrangement was completed, so far as laws could effect it, but without the autocratic educational regulations which had made the Dutch treatment of the Huguenots so thorough. The policy certainly had an irritating effect upon the Dutch settlers, who promptly refused, as far as possible, to have anything to do with the Government, or the Courts, or the high-class Government schools which had been for some time established throughout the country, and where English was, of course, the language taught.

The Paper Money Policy

The paper money matter was a more complicated affair, and one which the ignorant settlers were naturally unable to comprehend. The monetary system of the Colony was practically an inheritance from the days of Dutch rule. The Company had not been very scrupulous about the security of its paper money, and the succeeding Batavian Government seems to have been utterly unscrupulous. In 1807 Lord Caledon found mercantile transactions in an almost lifeless state, and the currency not only depreciated and contracted, but the subject of usurious charges of all kinds. Every effort was made by him and succeeding Governors to effect a betterment in the mass of half-useless paper which was floating about, and, by 1825, there remained only some three and a half million dollars' worth in nominal value, of which one-third had been created by the British authorities in various attempts to ease the financial situation, while the greater part of the balance was of Dutch origin. Lord Charles Somerset finally took the desperate, but apparently necessary, course of cutting down the currency to three-eighths of its nominal value and making British silver money a legal tender at that rate of exchange. The result was the practical ruin of a number of people and the creation of much discontent; but at the same time the measure placed trade and commerce upon a permanent footing and laid the basis of future monetary safety. For the time, however, it was like the amputation of a limb in the case of an ignorant and unsatisfied patient—producing suffering and discontent without that feeling which a belief in the necessity of the operation and confidence in the skill of the physician would have given.

Other Grievances or Reforms

These were some of the earlier grievances which are claimed to have caused the evolution of Dutch feeling against the British. Others arose between 1826 and 1836, when the Great Trek was inaugurated. In 1828 the Courts were all remodelled upon the English plan, and the existing Dutch system replaced by a Supreme Court, in which the Judges were appointed by the Crown and were to be independent of the Governor. Minor and local matters were in the hands of Civil Commissioners and resident magistrates and justices of the peace in the various scattered communities. The Dutch code, or law, was to be retained, but English forms and customs were to be observed. It is hard to see why this rearrangement and admitted improvement should have added so deeply to the sullen discontent of the Boers or Dutch farmers. In being allowed the retention of their own peculiar laws they were given more than any other country would have granted in those days and at the same time they obtained what French Canada was not to have for years afterwards—an independent Judiciary. The only explanation is the fact that hatred toward the more progressive and liberal Englishman (or English-speaking man) was swelling strongly and surely in the Dutchman's breast, and that every British reform or change had the effect of deepening this sentiment. The reform in the legal system was accompanied by changes in the municipal system of the capital. The antiquated "burgher senate" of Cape Town was abolished, and the Government assumed charge of the municipal and miscellaneous duties performed by that body. The measure was beneficial on the score of efficiency; but, of course, it produced some dissatisfaction amongst the Dutch residents. There were also some disputes in the interior districts as to the necessity of all jurymen understanding English, and this was eventually settled by an ordinance issued in 1831 which defined the qualifications required but omitted any language test. At the same time official salaries were greatly reduced and one of the standing causes of complaint thus removed.

Governor D'Urban's Policy

In 1828 Sir Lowry Cole became Governor and made several legislative experiments in connection with the Hottentots, which were looked upon by the Dutch with open suspicion and dislike. Four years later Sir Benjamin D'Urban succeeded with a policy of extensive retrenchment in expenditures and the inauguration of Legislative and Executive Councils after the style of other Colonial Governments of the time. Some petitions had previously been sent to England asking for representative institutions, but the Colonial Office naturally shrank from giving popular power into the hands of the evidently discontented Dutch settlers—ignorant as they were of all constitutional principles and practices. Moreover, public opinion in England would not then have permitted the grant of any legislative authority which would have limited the right of the Colonial Office, for good or ill, to manage native affairs and protect native interests. The Council of Advice, which had previously existed, was, however, changed into an Executive Council composed of four high local officials, and the new Legislative Council was made up of the Governor, as President, five of the highest officials and five representative Colonists selected by the Governor. But the primary and central object of Sir Benjamin D'Urban's policy was the emancipation of the slaves, and this touched a subject of so much importance as to require the fullest consideration. It was from the early evolution of peculiar and unique racial characteristics in the Dutch farmer that the South African question has been born; but it was from the opposing principles connected with the Dutch and English view, or treatment, of native affairs that the first pronounced phase of that question was produced. All other considerations were subsidiary.


The Dutch and the Natives.

Hottentot Character

At the commencement of British rule in Cape Colony (1806) there were in the country 26,000 persons of European descent, chiefly Dutch; 17,000 Hottentots who wandered around the outskirts of settlement and made a precarious livelihood by raising or stealing cattle; and 29,000 slaves. The Bantu had only occasionally appeared upon the visible horizon to the east and this gathering cloud was not yet a serious subject to the people or their Governors. The yellow-skinned Bushmen had retired from sight and sound of the settlers and were in any case a small and diminishing quantity. The Hottentots were in abject fear of their masters, whether as slaves "tending another's flock upon the fields" which once had been their fathers', or as wandering and homeless vagrants constituting a continuous nuisance to the scattered communities. Apart from their subjection to the Dutch, however, they were a thoughtless, cheerful, good-natured people, ignorant of everything except a little hunting and, in physique and character, were about half-way between the Bantu and the Bushmen. Like the latter they became almost extinct under the recurring attacks of small-pox and the increasing pressure of a white population on the south and the swarming masses of Bantu on the north-east.

Native Tribes

Following the conquest other native elements came into view. Under the earlier Dutch régime Malays from the East Indies had been introduced for purposes of special work and negro slaves from the west coast had been obtained in large numbers. From the union of Hottentots and Malays came a mixed race called "Cape Boys," and from the union of Dutch and Hottentots came the Griquas who afterwards filled a considerable place in local history. From the seventeenth century until the abolition of slavery, in 1834, all the hard and humble work of the community was done by slaves. The Dutch farmer lost all knowledge of menial work and acquired a conviction of personal superiority which became ingrained in his character. Upon his lonely farm he was master of what he surveyed, and even the laws had little real influence or effect upon him. Constant danger from Hottentot inroads and afterwards from the far more serious and deadly Kaffir raids had bred an independence of character which isolation and ignorance deepened into extreme racial narrowness combined with contempt for men of darker colour or alien extraction.

Grievance of the Hottentots

The plowing of ground and fence-building by the Dutch was to the natives a declaration of war upon the rights of Africans—that is, according to the natives themselves, just as the building and mining by the British in the Transvaal is held to be hostile by the Boers who have inherited Hottentot principles with their Hottentot blood. In 1659 Van Riebeck, of Cape Town, wrote to the Governor-General at Batavia that the natives had been in mischief again, that one prisoner spoke "tolerable Dutch," and "being asked why they did us this injury, he declared ... because they saw that we were breaking up the best land and grass, where their cattle were accustomed to graze, trying to establish ourselves everywhere, with houses and farms, as if we were never more to remove, but designed to take, for our permanent occupation, more and more of this Cape Country, which had belonged to them from time immemorial."

Wars with the Natives

Wars with the natives were frequent. The first one with the Hottentots occurred in 1659, and arose out of the natives finding their cattle debarred from accustomed pasture lands. It consisted chiefly in a series of cattle raids and fruitless return expeditions, but was perhaps as annoying as a more real war would have been. The Hottentot tribes could never be found when sought for by the Colonists, and no doubt this mobility on the part of their earliest enemy gave the Dutch settlers lessons from which they profited during the succeeding two hundred years. The last important struggle with this native race was in 1673, and arose out of the destruction by Dutch hunters of antelopes, elephants and other game which were very precious to the Hottentot, and were within the territories of the principal remaining tribe—the Cochoqua. During four years a sort of guerilla war was carried on with Gonnema, the Chief of the clan, and considerable loss of cattle, some loss of life and a great loss of sleep caused to the border settlers before peace was concluded. Their expeditions could never get at Gonnema, although he became eventually tired of living a hunted life in the mountains, moving from hiding-place to hiding-place to escape his pursuers. Gradually, however, the Hottentots disappeared from view, so far as any measure of organized hostility was concerned, and, like the Bushmen, became either wandering pariahs of the veldt or bondsmen in the fields of their fathers.

The Kaffir Wars

A hundred years or more after the war with Gonnema, the Dutch came into collision for the first time with the Bantu, or Kaffirs. During the preceding century this sturdy, vigorous, brave and restless race had spread itself southwest of the Zambesi in all directions, and were now beginning to press ominously upon the tiny fringe of white settlements at the Cape. Wars, already referred to, occurred in 1779 and 1789, and in each case the Dutch Governor endeavored to persuade or compel the Kosas—as this particular division of the Kaffirs was called—to accept the Fish River as the boundary line. But this they would not do with any degree of continuity, and each war was marked by raids south of the River, the capture of cattle, the burning of homes, the murder of settlers and the final driving back of the natives with hastily levied commandos of Dutch Colonists. In 1799, during the years of preliminary British rule, a similar struggle took place with very similar incidents and results. So in 1812 with the fourth Kaffir war, and in 1818 with the fifth contest. But in the two latter British troops had been employed to help the Dutch commandos, as British diplomacy had been used—not very successfully—in order to control the aggressive and quarrelsome Kosas now coming into continuous contact with the equally truculent Colonists.

Missionary Influence

Meanwhile, and during the years preceding the Kaffir war of 1835, a new factor in the general situation had developed in the form of missionary influence, chiefly of the London Missionary Society. Dr. Van der Kemp had come out in 1798 and given himself up, with the most unswerving devotion, to the establishment of a Hottentot mission in the eastern part of the settlement. With other missionaries, who joined him at a later date, he became the guardian of the hapless natives and the natural enemy of the Dutch farmers. To the latter nothing could be more obnoxious than the presence in their midst of men who not only preached to the wandering Bushmen and Hottentots, but treated them as human beings not expressly created for slavery and subjection; and who closely criticised, complained about and reported to headquarters, and finally to the Colonial Office, any arbitrary treatment by the Boers of slaves, or migratory natives, or so-called apprentices. Of course there were two sides to the case which history has developed and which is so important to any adequate conception of the Dutch farmer and his character. To him, through close devotion to the Old Testament and to the peculiarities of its chosen people wandering in the wilderness—of whom he believed his race to be in some sense a prototype—the natives were simply servants raised up by Providence for his especial benefit. They were little better than the surrounding wild animals, and a common inscription over the doors of the Dutch churches, as they slowly spread over the land, was: "Dogs and natives not admitted."

Dutch Prejudices

To the missionary this was not only incomprehensible, but cruel and wicked in the extreme. He did not understand the nature of the Boer as evolved out of conditions of frequent war with environing tribes, and from customs which included slavery, and did not tolerate equality in color, race, or religion. He could not understand a creed of the Boer type—hard, narrow, unsympathetic and essentially selfish. He felt in his own veins the broad sentiment of a sacrificial Christianity, and, in trying to lift up the degraded and light the pathway of life to the darkened eyes of the savage, he frequently failed in comprehension of the reserved, taciturn and bigoted Dutchman. Hence the rivalries which spread from individuals to districts, and were finally transfused into the general Dutch estimate of British Government, and into the relations between the Cape and the Colonial Office and between Dutch and English settlers. Ultimately the missionaries became identified with the British authorities, and Dutch prejudices were intensified by the protection thus given to the natives within their districts; whilst the wilder native tribes outside British limits grew in turn to hate the authorities for the opposite reason afforded by their protection of the Dutch settlers—or their efforts to protect them—against external raids and attack. Thus the Colonial Office, had a double difficulty and a double development on its hands.



The Hottentots and Bushmen Within the Colony

It was, in any case, no easy matter to manage the Hottentots and Bushmen within the Colony. Up to the time of Lord Caledon's administration (1807-11) they had been allowed to run wild through the region without restraint other than their somewhat chaotic ideas of chieftainship, their innate belief in the natural superiority of any kind of a white man, and the rude justice, or injustice, of the Dutch farmer. Many of them lived as voluntary dependents of the settlers, and constituted a sort of movable slave class which associated with the permanent slaves and were treated much as they were, while retaining the nominal right to transfer their services. Children born of unions between Hottentot women and the imported slaves constituted a body of apprentices whom the farmers had the right to keep for a certain number of years, and who then became free. Practically, however, they were as much slaves as any other black children pertaining to the property. Those of the Hottentots who did not connect themselves with the farmers in any way became rovers and vagrants, who were willing to do almost anything—except steady work—for brandy and tobacco. This was the material selected by Dr. Van der Kemp and other missionaries for reclamation and protection. When the Circuit Courts were instituted in 1811 two of the best known missionaries brought a number of charges against the Boer families on the frontier, accusing them of varied acts of violence and forms of oppression in connection with their slaves and Hottentot servants. A large number of families and a thousand witnesses were involved, and great expenses were incurred by the accused whether they were found innocent or guilty. Charges of Cruelties No case of murder was proved, though several were charged. Without going minutely into the result of the charges, it seems evident from our knowledge of the Boer character as it then was, and afterwards proved to be, that cruelties were more than probable. At the same time there is every proof of the utter unreliability of native evidence in any matter involving controversies between white men, or affairs in which his own interests, or fancied interests, appear to be at stake.

The Rev. Dr. Philip

In 1818 Dr. Robert Moffat commenced his long sojourn in South Africa by going out to the far north in what is now Bechuanaland. Two years later one of the most curious figures in Colonial history, the Rev. Dr. Philip, reached Cape Town and took charge of the London Society's Missions. He found the missionaries hampered at every point by Dutch dislike, and under some suspicion also from the Government of the Colony. The latter knew enough of the situation to feel that, beneficent as it was to spread the lessons of Christianity, it was also dangerous to inculcate the principle of absolute racial equality in a mixed population such as that of the Cape. To preach the new dispensation of freedom and equality alike to the haughty Boer and to Malay, slave, and Hottentot, was in perfect harmony with religious enthusiasm and with the growing principles of English conviction; but it was not always politic. The abolition of slavery idea, however, was carrying everything before it at home, and Dr. Philip came out with a feeling in his breast which Thomas Pringle, the South African poet, and afterwards Secretary of the Society for the Abolition of Slavery, so well embodied about this time in the following lines:

"I swear, while life-blood warms my throbbing veins,
    Still to oppose and thwart with heart and hand
Thy brutalizing sway—till Afric's chains
    Are burst, and freedom rules the rescued land—
        Trampling oppression and his iron rod."

The Narrow Views of the Dutch

He found the Dutch rigidly opposed to him at every point. The great agencies of civilization in such a country as the Cape then was were the magistrates, the missionaries, the schoolmasters and the traders. But the Boer wanted none of them in the full English sense. He accepted the appointment of magistrates, or lauddrosts, but he desired them to be Dutch and to dispense Dutch law. Any religious element outside of the Dutch Reformed Church—which had become the embodiment of his own narrow views and prejudices—was alien and antagonistic, even without missionary interference amongst the natives. Schoolmasters were only good so far as they taught in accord with his crude and very limited ideas of education; while traders were obnoxious as introducing new and disquieting conditions into the loneliness of the veldt and into his relations with the dark-skinned population. Dr. Philip, however, had a plan to work out, and he proceeded with ability and determination to the end. He established himself at Cape Town, and used an influence which came from the strong feeling known to exist in England against slavery and in favor of sympathetic treatment of colored races, to bring about continuous modification in the relations of master and slave. Sometimes he was right and sometimes wrong, but in every case the Government was between two horns of a dilemma—the Colonial Office at home and the Dutch settlers at the Cape. The latter objected to every change in law or regulation; and every interference, no matter how slight, with their living chattels produced one more ember of smouldering hatred. But, in the fourteen years from the time of his arrival until slavery was abolished, Dr. Philip usually carried his point, and by 1834 had the conditions of servitude so moderated that the Abolition Act itself made substantially little difference to the slave.

The Incident of Slaghter's Nek

The history of this period and of the entire relationship of English and Dutch toward each other and toward the natives is the record of a high civilization and wide code of liberty—though with many admitted weaknesses and errors of judgment—coming into contact, and inevitable conflict, with a wild and crude system of life and an intensely ignorant and isolated people. The famous incident of Slaghter's Nek illustrates this fact most thoroughly. In 1814 a Hottentot apprentice, named Booy, complained to the Cradock magistrate that his master, Frederick Bezuidenhout, refused to allow him to leave his service or to remove his few belongings. Instructions were given to investigate the case and it was found that the man's time of service had expired, as he claimed, and that under the law of the Colony he was, and should be, at liberty to leave his master. Bezuidenhout refused, however, to obey the order issued for the man's release, although admitting the facts to be as stated; declared that such interference between him and his Hottentot was a presumptuous invasion of his rights; and defied the authorities by beating the man and sending him with a message to the magistrate that he would treat him in the same manner if he dared to come upon his grounds to touch the property or person of a native. He treated a summons to appear before the District Court and then before the High Court of Justice with equal contempt; and when a small force was sent to bring him under subjection to the law, he retired to a cave, well supplied with food and ammunition, and fired upon his assailants until he was himself shot dead.

A Small Rebellion

The matter would not have been important, except as illustrating the contempt for law and still greater contempt for the natives which had developed amongst the farmers, had it not been for what followed. The brothers and immediate friends of Bezuidenhout attended his funeral and hatched a small rebellion, in which about fifty men joined—the object being an attack upon the Hottentots of the neighborhood. Loyal Boers of the vicinity joined the forces which were at once sent down to suppress the trouble, and all the rebels were captured, with the exception of Jan Bezuidenhout, who refused to surrender and was shot dead. Thirty-nine prisoners were tried by the High Court and six were sentenced to death. Lord Charles Somerset, after a careful investigation of the whole matter, would only mitigate one of the sentences, and five men were therefore hanged for this wild and almost incomprehensible folly.

Consequences of Slaghter's Nek

From the standpoint of to-day the action of the Government seems harsh, and to the Boers the Slaghter's Nek incident is a vivid and continuously quoted illustration of British tyranny and bloodthirstiness. To men on the spot and comprehending the widespread nature of Bezuidenhout's contempt for British power and law and native rights, a lesson may well have appeared necessary and present sternness better than future and more general disregard of law and order. The fact is, that presumption born of mingled ignorance and pride was even then becoming so ingrained in the nature of the Boer as to have rendered some such incident inevitable. And, although the summary policy pursued planted seeds of bitterness which time has failed to eradicate, it certainly averted serious insurrectionary trouble through all the subsequent changes in the law affecting masters and their slaves, or servants, up to the days of the Great Trek.

Continuous Conflict with Surrounding Natives

While the Dutch settlers were thus cultivating in their silent and morose manner the most intense feelings against England and the English because of the policy of amelioration in the condition of colored races—the making of fresh slaves had been forbidden by law in 1808—the British Government and the Colonial authorities were being dragged into continuous conflict, or controversy, with surrounding natives on behalf of, and in defence of, the Dutch Colonists. The latter were absolutely remorseless in their treatment of bordering tribes. Of course they had suffered from raids and were in fear of future raids, but this was hardly a sufficient reason for urging and obtaining in 1811 the forcible expulsion of all the Kaffirs from within the border, and the driving of some twenty thousand men, women and children across the Great Fish River. And this in spite of most pathetic appeals to the Dutch commando, as in the following case: "We are your friends. We have watched your cattle when they were taken away by our countrymen. Our wives have cultivated your gardens. Our children and yours speak the same language."[1] Little wonder that during this and succeeding years many natives hated the English, who had permitted this policy, almost as much as they did the Dutch who had perpetrated it. The fourth Kaffir war had naturally followed, and the fifth had come in 1818 as the result of a British attempt to hold the border intact by endorsing a powerful native chief, without available means to take up the note by force when the chief came under the subjugation of a rival stronger and abler than himself. The Kaffir War of 1835 In 1835 occurred the most important of these wars with the Kosas, or Kaffirs—not so much because of its actual events as of the movement amongst the Dutch which it accelerated. The war was interesting, also, apart from the destruction of Boer property and the loss of life which followed. It illustrated those evils of vacillating administration which have caused so much trouble throughout the modern history of South Africa. Lord Charles Somerset's first policy toward the Kosas had been the maintenance of a vacant strip of territory between the Great Fish and the Keiskama Rivers as a sort of buffer against Boer aggression and native raids. His second plan had been the creation of a buffer native state—a sort of early and shadowy edition of the Afghanistan of a later day. The one had failed because of the lack of coherent action or system amongst the native tribes; the second because of their rivalries and the fact of one chief being paramount to-day and another to-morrow. And, in both cases, the Governor lacked money to persuade the recalcitrant, or men to enforce his decisions.

[1] Parliamentary Papers relative to the Cape, 1835, Part I., p. 176

A New Line of Action

Dr. Philip and his party agreed with a portion of this policy. Living five hundred miles from the disturbed frontier; knowing much of the mildness and docility of the Hottentot character, and little of the fiercer and wilder spirit of the Kosa; surrounded by many evidences of Dutch cruelty to the domestic or vagrant colored man, and therefore not disposed to sympathize with the Colonists' real difficulties and sufferings on the border; Dr. Philip supported with ability and earnestness a policy of frontier conciliation instead of coercion. After the conflict of 1835 was over Sir Benjamin D'Urban inaugurated a new line of action. The pressure of the wasting wars of Tshaka and Moselkatze had driven various tribes or remnants of tribes from the north and east down upon the Kosas and into the vicinity of Cape Colony. The Governor therefore took some eighteen thousand Fingoes—as one of these mixed masses of fighting fugitives was called—and established them between the Great Fish and Keiskama Rivers as a new form of the old "buffer" scheme. They and the Kosas hated each other, and he believed that the former would prove a strong British influence upon the frontier. Between the Keiskama and the Keir further to the eastward, certain Kosa clans were proclaimed British subjects, the territory was named the Province of Queen Adelaide, and troops were located at a spot called King Williamstown. But the war had been a bitter one, the natives had been punished for an unprovoked aggression by a somewhat harsh desolation of their country, and the missionary influence at Cape Town saw and seized its opportunity.

Formation of States Ruled by Native Chiefs

Their plan was the formation of states ruled by native chiefs under the guidance and control of missionaries, and from which Europeans not favored by, or favorable to the latter, were to be excluded. It was a very idyllic proposal, and was, of course, based upon an entirely wrong conception of the native character and of the necessity of strong, if not drastic, measures being employed to protect the Colony from the Bantu masses, which were now pressing upon the border tribes in all directions. Dr. Philip Visits London To press these views, however, Dr. Philip visited London with a carefully trained Kosa and a half-breed Hottentot as examples of the wild and gallant races of the east and north, and testified at great length before a Committee of the House of Commons. He was also supported by the evidence of Captain Andries Stockenstrom, a retired Colonial official. The net result of his mission, combined with the English sympathy for colored races which was then at its highest point of expression, and the hardships of the native war just ended, was a victory for the missionary party; a despatch of unmitigated censure from Lord Glenelg, the new Secretary for the Colonies, to the Governor; the public reversal of the latter's policy with the statement that "it rested upon a war in which the original justice was on the side of the conquered, not of the victorious party;" and the still more extraordinary assertion that the Kosas "had a perfect right to endeavor to extort by force that redress which they could not expect otherwise to obtain." British sovereignty was withdrawn from the region beyond the Keiskama, Sir Benjamin D'Urban was recalled, Captain Stockenstrom was appointed Lieutenant-Governor of Eastern Cape Colony and shortly afterwards created a baronet, and the whole Colony was thrown into a state of violent commotion.

Sir George Napier's Declaration

Looking back now and placing oneself in the position of a British Minister pledged by duty to protect British subjects, and by the most ordinary rules of policy bound not to encourage or approve the proceedings of an enemy, there appears to be no adequate practical excuse for this line of action. Sir George Napier, who succeeded to the Governorship and went out to carry Lord Glenelg's policy into effect, declared some years afterwards in examination before the House of Commons that: "My own experience and what I saw with my own eyes have confirmed me that I was wrong and Sir Benjamin D'Urban perfectly right." No matter how reckless the Dutch settlers may have been regarding the border natives, there was no justification in policy for such an insensate and ill-timed defence of native invasion. From the standpoint of sentimentality, however, Lord Glenelg had much support in Great Britain as well as amongst the missionaries at the Cape; and there was much of the theoretically beautiful and Christian-like in his conception of the situation. But from the practical point of view of a statesman dealing with diverse races and absolutely different ideals, and responsible, in the first place, for the guardianship of the subjects of the Crown as against irresponsible tribal attacks, the theories and opinions of religious enthusiasts afford poor foundation for such a policy.

Noble Ideals of the British Authorities

At the same time, no one can take the two principles of Government exhibited in the respective incidents of Slaghter's Nek and the results of the sixth Kaffir war without paying an involuntary tribute of admiration to the noble ideal of the British authorities; apart from questions of practical statecraft or wise administration. The Dutch Colonists' principle was the enslavement of the Hottentot; the subjugation of the Kosa within British territory so long as his retention in servitude was safe; the driving of him out of the Colony with ruthless severity when his numbers became considerable; the carrying of fire and slaughter into native regions when war broke out. The policy of succeeding British Governors seems to have been an attempt at compromising between the views of a local missionary party which could see no gleam of good in the Dutch character and the feeling of the latter that all natives were created for the special footstool of a chosen people. The British public, while knowing little of the Dutch farmers beyond their belief in slavery felt very strongly the duty of Great Britain as a guardian of inferior races, and was willing to go so far in defence of an ideal of freedom as to tacitly approve—without probably fully understanding—the extreme development of this policy in the action of Lord Glenelg. The latter was philanthropic, it was Christian-like in a high and cosmopolitan sense, but it was also injurious to the interests of British and Dutch settlers and to the welfare and peace of the Empire. Had a large force of British troops been kept in the Colony to enforce British theories of liberty and high-minded justice, as between natives who knew nothing and could comprehend nothing of either and Boers who would sooner starve than accept the principles thus propounded, the ideal might in the end have been put into praiseworthy practice. As it was the policy of Lord Glenelg helped to promote the Great Trek and to lay the foundation in a territorial sense of that South African question which in its racial connection had now been developing for a couple of centuries.


The Great Trek and its First Results.

Abolition of Slavery

The abolition of slavery is one of the landmarks in South African history. The motive for the expenditure of a hundred million of dollars in freeing slaves within the bounds of the British Empire was noble beyond all criticism. The act itself was wise and necessary. But the immense distance of the British Government from the scene in South Africa and the unfortunate ignorance of the Colonial Office, at times, concerning conditions in those far-away regions, produced mistakes in the carrying out of their policy of freedom which created a distinct injustice and made memories which still rankle in the breasts of Dutchmen from the Cape to the Zambesi. The Slave Emancipation Act came into force in Cape Colony on December 1st, 1833, and by the terms of its administration $6,235,000 was apportioned to the Cape proprietors, as against the $15,000,000 at which they had valued their property. The difference was considerable and, as many of the slaves were mortgaged it is apparent that some measure of trouble must have followed even had the whole six million dollars been promptly distributed amongst the farmers. As it was, the period of seven years' apprenticeship originally granted in order to prepare all parties for the inevitable change of condition was shortened to five years, while the money itself was doled out from London after individual proof of claim. The result, through a natural and complete ignorance of procedure amongst the farmers, was the wholesale disposal of claims against the Government for mere trifles and the enrichment of hordes of agents at the expense of the settlers.

A Disastrous Measure

To many this meant ruin. Their source of labour was gone; they could not, or would not, themselves perform manual work; their discontent with the British Government was intensified by a bitter feeling that the missionaries were their sworn enemies and were installed at the ear of the Governor and in the heart of the Colonial Office; their belief in British power was at a minimum owing to weakness in dealing with the Kaffirs; their homes had been harried along the border during many Kaffir wars and sometimes in days of peace; their pleas for a vagrancy law which should restrain wandering Kaffirs or Hottentots while within the Colony had been refused from fear of harshness in its local administration; their whole social system, religious sentiment and racial pride seemed in a state of revolt against existing conditions. At this unfortunate moment another Kaffir war broke out. There had been warning signs of danger along the eastern frontier of the Province, much alarm had been felt and expressed and appeals were sent to Cape Town for protection. Dr. Philip, the political missionary and self-constituted defender of all natives, declared these fears unwarranted, and Sir Benjamin D'Urban, who had just come out as Governor, failed to take any serious measures for defence. The result was that on December 23rd, 1834, 10,000 Kaffirs swept over the frontier, plundered the farms, murdered fifty Europeans within a week and, before the Colony was cleared of them, had wholly, or partially destroyed 806 farm-houses and captured, or destroyed sixty wagons, 5700 horses, 111,000 horned-cattle and 161,000 sheep. This was the final blow to thousands of Dutch settlers. Had they been naturally loyal to British institutions and allegiance, their repeated misfortunes must have produced some discontent, and, as it was, they were said to create an absolutely impossible situation. The Trek Commences Disregarded by their own slaves, whom they despised and often ill-treated; pillaged by the native tribes, whom they hated with a bitter hatred and oppressed wherever possible; governed by the English, whom they had learned to dislike intensely and to in some measure despise; controlled by rules of administration which they failed to understand and by laws of liberty which aimed at their individual right of control over human chattels, while striving to permeate by education the dense mass of their inherited ignorance; they prepared their caravan-covered wagons, gathered together their household possessions and flocks and herds, and withdrew in thousands from the Colony, and, as they hoped, from British rule.

Qualities and Mode of Life

Such is a brief pen-picture of the immediate and surface causes of the Great Trek. It gives the most favorable view for the emigrant farmer, and constitutes, in various forms, the basis for the belief in foreign countries that the Boers were forced to migrate from Cape Colony by British tyranny or maladministration; that they deserved their independence if ever a people did; and that Great Britain had no right to interfere further with them in the interior. Such an opinion is far from correct. As we have seen in preceding pages, the British Government had made sundry serious mistakes in policy; but they had occurred under conditions of exceptional difficulty and from motives of the highest and best. The Boers, in fact, did not want firm government or free institutions; they desired liberty to do as they liked with their own living chattels and with the natives of the soil. They deliberately cultivated modes of life and thought diametrically opposed to everything the Englishman holds dear, and carefully fanned the smouldering embers of dislike and distrust in their own breasts until they became a flame of active hatred. The development of conditions, therefore, which in Canada or Australia would have produced protests and elicited eventual and satisfactory reforms only served, in South Africa, to intensify individual bitterness, to increase the racial misunderstandings and prejudices, and to hasten the great migration into the interior.

There are some important details to consider in this connection. Many of England's troubles in administering the eastern part of the Colony were due to Boer arrogance and contempt of native rights and property; while the wars which resulted in the destruction of Dutch property, in turn, were natural though regrettable ebullitions of that spirit of revenge which is not always confined to savages. Unwise as Lord Glenelg's despatch to Sir Benjamin D'Urban was, its terms clearly prove this fact. As to the Trek itself, there is a possibility that it would have occurred in any case. The Boers were accustomed to a wandering life in wagons, and, in time, their laagers must inevitably have extended further and further into native territory. The loss of their slaves would have naturally driven parties of the more enterprising and youthful into the vast interior, and the spirit with which they slaughtered natives as readily and as cheerfully as they did wild beasts would have surely established Dutch communities to the north and east without the provocations afforded by missionary charges of cruelty, the Slaghter's Nek incident, the freeing of the slaves, or native raids of retribution across the frontier. The pity of it is that the feeling of hatred toward England and Englishmen was so early in its origin and so deep-seated in its nature that some of these occurrences, which superficial writers give as the undoubted cause of the sentiment, were in reality more like the froth and foam upon the top of a slow-gathering wave of sullen and stubborn resentment against a superior racial civilization.

Troubles with the Natives

The Boers who migrated were chiefly those of the eastern part of the Colony, far away from the seat of Government and almost entirely isolated from communication with English settlers—largely by their own desire. They were accustomed to fighting the natives, and had the authorities allowed them at pleasure to throw off their allegiance and move into the interior in detached bodies, there would have been no end to complications with the native tribes, while a prolonged series of little wars in partial defence of men who were alien in race and thought and policy would have resulted. At this period, too, England still maintained throughout the world the principle that he who is born a British subject is always one, and in South Africa, up to 1836, it was really good policy to prevent isolated Dutch settlements in the native regions. When the migration became too large and too well organized to prevent, later developments made it still necessary to press this claim of allegiance in order to try and control, or check, the new régime of strife and bloodshed which the Boer commandos had established and which threatened both British interests and settlers in Natal. There was much of the picturesque and something of the apparently heroic in this famous migration. Out of Egypt and from the bondage of the Englishmen—who would not let them retain their bondsmen—the Boers went to the number of at least ten thousand, and traversed the vast wilderness stretching through what is now Griqualand East into the Natal of to-day; or else trekked into the regions north of the Orange and Vaal Rivers. The interest and striking features of the migration were undoubted, but the heroism was not at first so clear. As events turned out there was much of danger and death in these determined raids into native territory—conquered and partially cleared of population by the wars of Moselkatze and Tshaka—but at first the contempt of the Boers for all savages, their absolute belief in themselves as a chosen people and in their shotguns as invincible allies, made the movement an apparently simple matter.

Preparations and First Party of Trekkers

In 1836 the Great Trek began. All through the frontier districts sounded the hum of preparation, while the still primitive roads became crowded with large wagons laden with household goods, provisions, ammunition and the families of the men who rode on either side or guarded the droves of cattle and horses and the flocks of sheep and goats which accompanied each caravan. The parties travelling together were usually made up of related families, and were led by one of themselves duly elected to the post and to the title of Commandant. The first party to start was divided into two sections of about fifty individuals each. One section met the not uncommon fate of over-confident invaders in a land of savages, and its members were destroyed with the exception of two children. The other went away up to the north and east, and only a few finally reached the Portuguese settlement at Delagoa Bay alive. Fever and the Tsetse fly had been too much for the expedition. The Second Party The second party was a large one under command of an able leader—Hendrik Potgieter. Slowly and carefully he guided his people up to an extensive strip of land lying between the Vet and Vaal Rivers, and of this they took possession. It was not long, however, before Moselkatze, the potent Chief of the Matabele, heard of this invasion of his sphere, and some isolated parties of the farmers were killed by his warriors. Then came the news that a grand attack was to be made and the settlement wiped out. Potgieter at once selected a suitable elevation, made a strong defence with wagons and trees, and with forty men awaited the attack. The result of fierce onslaughts upon such a position by the naked bodies and brandishing spears of a Matabele army was what might have been expected, and 155 corpses of the enemy were finally left outside the laager.



The Third Contingent

Relief came to the party from a third contingent of emigrants under Gerrit Maritz, who soon after joined forces with them, and then the Boers with their characteristic and inborn contempt for the natives organized an expedition of one hundred and seven farmers to attack the nearest kraal of the Chief whose name was a household word of terror amongst alien tribes and a force for unity and fighting power amongst his own people. The commando surprised a large kraal from which both Moselkatze and his Induna happened to be absent, slew at least four hundred warriors, fired the village and returned to camp with nearly seven thousand cattle as trophies of victory. The emigrants then established themselves at a place on the Vet River, which they called Wynburg, and here they were soon joined by other families from Cape Colony, and, notably, by one band with Pieter Retief at its head. The latter was elected Commandant-General, and a skeleton of a constitution, after the Dutch plan, was framed. Instinct, however, with the roving spirit of their people, many of the continually arriving bands would not settle down even at this spot, and hankered after the lowlands and sea-coast of Natal. Pieter Uys, one of the leaders, had visited this region a couple of years before, and was eloquent in praise of its beauty, fertility and delightful climate. The fact that Natal had been partially colonized as early as 1825 by Englishmen, under arrangements with Tshaka; that it was claimed as a British possession, and that, in 1835, the settlers at Durban had petitioned the Imperial Government to take them formally under its protection; does not seem to have greatly concerned the Boers. The only point in question was how Dingaan, who had succeeded Tshaka as head of the Zulus, could be persuaded or coerced into a cession of territory outside the immediate sphere of British settlement on the coast. How they Obtained Land To this end Retief himself crossed the Drakensberg mountains, paid a visit to Dingaan in what is now Zululand, and found him apparently quite willing that the farmers should settle in Natal. Meantime a second Dutch expedition against the Matabele in the west had been organized, and the result, as told by Dr. Theal, the Cape Town historian,[1] is so typical of Boer methods and character in warfare that no apology is needed for its reproduction here:

[1] The Story of South Africa. By George M. Theal, LL.D. London, 1895.

Ruthless Warfare

"It consisted of one hundred and thirty-five farmers in two divisions, under Hendrik Potgieter and Pieter Uys. Moselkatze was found on the Marikwa, about fifty miles north of Mosega, and he had with him at least twelve thousand warriors, all splendidly trained and as brave as any troops who ever lived. But the advantage of the farmers in their guns and horses was so great that the hundred and thirty-five did not hesitate to attack a force which was to theirs as ninety to one. For nine days the Matabele tried to reach their opponents, but all their efforts were in vain. The farmers were more than once nearly surrounded; still their plans were so perfect that they were never quite entrapped. They had little else but dried meat to live upon, and they had no resting-place but the bare ground with a saddle for a pillow. Only the hardiest of men and horses could have carried on aggressive operations so long. The loss of the Matabele was great, so great that at the end of the nine days Moselkatze gave up the contest and sought only to escape. With his people and his cattle he fled to the north, and in the country beyond the Limpopo commenced to destroy the Mashona tribes as he had destroyed the southern Betshuana. The farmers were too wearied to follow him, and indeed they could not have continued in the field much longer under any circumstances, so they contented themselves by seizing six or seven thousand head of cattle, with which they returned to Wynburg."

Subjugation of Matabele

There seems to have been no particular reason for the expedition except the driving of the Matabele out of a region which the Boers wanted and the making of their own position more secure. It is probable that negotiation would have answered the purpose, as Moselkatze was more amenable to reason than other native potentates had proved to be, and was to some slight extent under the influence of Dr. Moffat. But the emigrant farmers wanted territory, and despised the native owners too much to care about taking time and trouble for its acquisition. Better a bold assault, a speedy and successful slaughter of the enemy, than an ordinary and peaceful but prolonged settlement. The immediate result of this raid was a proclamation issued by Commandant Potgieter in which he declared territory now including the greater part of the Transvaal, a half of the Orange Free State, and the whole of northern Bechuanaland, to belong to the emigrant farmers. Pieter Retief Not satisfied with this immense acquisition, or annexation of territory, Retief, in the succeeding year (1838) led a large party of Boers over the Drakensberg, and went on himself with about seventy men to Dingaan's capital—Umkungunhlovu, where he claimed the formal cession of that part of Natal which had been previously promised him. The Zulu Chief expressed his approval of the deed which had been drawn up, affixed his mark to it, and then invited the visitors into his own private part of the kraal. Unsuspiciously leaving their guns behind them, the entire party seated themselves, and were then seized, bound and slaughtered by surrounding guards. Immediately afterwards ten thousand Zulus left the kraal, and after a march of eleven days fell upon the nearest Boer encampment at a place since called Weenen, and destroyed men, women, children and slaves. The horrors of that massacre have never been forgotten or forgiven by the Dutch. Had not one young man, sleeping at a distance from the camp, awakened in time to save himself on a swift horse, every Dutch emigrant in Natal must have suffered the same fate. As it was, he succeeded in warning the other scattered parties in time for them to form their simple laagers and to shoot down the attacking Zulus until surrounded, literally, by heaps of dead savages.

War with the Zulus

Immediately upon hearing of the disaster Potgieter and Uys collected every available fighting man and crossed the mountains to the relief of their comrades. The Englishmen of Port Natal, or Durban, also offered their assistance. Finally, a force of 347 Boers rode straight for the Zulu capital, intent only on vengeance. After five days' journey they were, however, drawn into an ambush and lost ten men, including Commandant Uys, and much ammunition and baggage. About the same time seventeen Englishmen, leading fifteen hundred friendly natives, of whom some four hundred were armed with muskets, started out to help the Dutch. A little south of the Tugela River they came upon a Zulu regiment, and were in turn drawn into an ambush on April 17, 1838, which resulted in one of the bloodiest battles ever fought in that region of almost continuous conflict. The little force found itself between the wings of a Zulu army numbering at least 7,000 men and with thousands more coming in during the battle. Three times the Englishmen and their little force beat back the enemy. One division, with four white men and four hundred blacks, did fight its way down the steep bank of the Tugela and across the river. The other division, after battling for hours with the serried masses of savage warriors, was finally overpowered and slaughtered. Natal Overrun by Native Soldiers Natal was now overrun by Dingaan's soldiers, and the remaining Boer families were gathered together in fortified camps, which the Zulu armies could not carry by storm.

Pretorius in Command

In November, 1838, however, a change came over the scene. Andries Pretorius, a Boer leader of great natural skill and characteristic self-confidence, arrived in Natal, was elected to the command of the scattered forces, and speedily succeeded in getting together a compact and mobile little army of 464 men. With prayers and psalms the men rode straight for the place where they expected to find the enemy. Every precaution against surprise or ambush was taken, and wherever they camped they were surrounded with a circle of wagons lashed together; while scouts were maintained continuously in all directions. A vow was made that if victory came to the little troop they would build a church and set apart a yearly thanksgiving day in commemoration. On the 16th of December, Dingaan's army of ten or twelve thousand men attacked their camp on the margin of a stream which has ever since been called Blood River, and for two hours the brave Zulu warriors faced the storm of bullets from that deadly laager. It was useless, however. The guns and artillery of the invaders killed over three thousand of the enemy before they finally broke and fled. Pretorius followed them to the Zulu capital, which Dingaan meantime set on fire, and then tried without success to capture the Zulu Chief, who had fled with some thousands of men to a part of the country where cavalry could not operate. Finally, the commando returned to Natal with some 5,000 head of cattle and the loss of six white men in the entire campaign. Dingaan also returned and rebuilt his capital, while the Dutch founded Pietermatitzburg, erected a church in memory of their victory, and commenced the annual celebration of Dingaan's Day which is still maintained.

Durban Re-occupied by the British

Meanwhile Durban had been re-occupied by a small British force in accordance with a proclamation issued by Sir George Napier, Governor of Cape Colony, and dated November 14, 1838, which declared that it was intended "to put an end to the unwarranted occupation of the territories belonging to the natives by certain emigrants from Cape Colony, being subjects of Her Majesty." No definite interference was effected, however, and a year later the troops were withdrawn in one of the multiform mutations of Colonial Office policy; though Sir George Napier absolutely refused to recognize any right of control over the country by the Boers, and declared in January, 1841, that "Her Majesty could not acknowledge the independence of her own subjects." Despite this Pretorius acted as if he were the head of a free and all-powerful community, and with a degree of autocratic contempt for other races and peoples which was very characteristic. Dingaan, during the year succeeding the battle on the banks of the Blood River, remained passive, and does not appear to have had any aggressive intentions. Invasion of Zululand In September, 1839, however, the Boers made common cause with a local rebellion raised by his brother Panda, joined the latter in January, 1840, with four hundred men under Pretorius, invaded Zululand and defeated Dingaan with great slaughter. The latter fled to the Delagoa Bay region, and was shortly afterwards murdered, being replaced by Panda as "King of the Zulus" under the terms of a curious proclamation signed by the Boer leader as "Commandant-General of the Right Worshipful Volksraad of the South African Society," and in which he claimed for the farmers the whole of Natal by right of conquest. During this campaign against Dingaan—from which the Dutch farmers received a booty of 40,000 head of cattle—an event occurred for which there is no adequate excuse, and which illustrates the unscrupulous nature of Boer warfare. Dingaan, at one stage of the invasion, tried to come to terms with his enemy, and sent an officer named Tambusa to negotiate for peace. Contrary to all the rules of war, savage or civilized, Pretorius had the envoy arrested, tried by court-martial for an alleged but unproven share in the Umkungunhlovu massacre, and executed.

Republic of Natalia Established

What was called by the Boers the Republic of Natalia, stretching from the Umzimvubu to the Tugela and including a claim to much of modern Zululand, was thus established. The first act of its Government, toward the close of 1840, was to attack a chief named N'Capai, living two hundred miles from the territory of the alleged Republic, and not far from the border of Cape Colony. Without apparent rhyme or reason, the men were slaughtered, their cattle captured, and seventeen young children carried away into slavery. This at last aroused the Colonial Government, and, in turn, the Home authorities. Sir George Napier promptly sent some soldiers into the region to watch events and prevent further aggression upon the natives, announced his intention to resume the military occupation of Natal, and at the same time appealed to the Colonial Office for further aid and instructions. Ultimately it was decided to occupy Natal permanently. But before this was done there had to be some fighting with the irrepressible farmers. A small British force had been sent to defend Durban, but before it reached that place was surprised and almost surrounded by a number of Boers. After fighting for some time the British retired, losing their guns and oxen and some nineteen men. Captain Smith found a new position, strengthened it, and stood a siege at the hands of Pretorius and his six hundred men, until he was relieved on June 25, 1842, by troops from Cape Town, who came to his rescue by sea.

Further Developments

The further developments of the situation were peaceful. Lord Stanley, then Colonial Secretary, wrote a despatch on December 13, 1842, appointing Mr. Cloete as British Commissioner at Durban, and laying down definite and important rules in a new system of administration for the country. Under these instructions the white people were to be called together and given every opportunity for stating the nature of the institutions they desired, although full legislative power was not yet to be granted. "I think it probable," said Lord Stanley, "looking to the nature of the population, that they will desire those institutions to be founded on the Dutch rather than on the English model, and however little some of those institutions may be suited to a more advanced state of civilization, it is the desire of Her Majesty's Government that, in this respect, the contentment of the emigrants, rather than the abstract merits of the institutions, should guide our decision." There were, of course, to be certain limitations in this connection. No distinction or disqualification founded on "color, origin, language or creed," was to be recognized. No "aggression upon natives beyond the Colony" was to be tolerated or sanctioned. Slavery in any shape or form was to be "absolutely unlawful." But the Boers were incorrigible. They would not meet with the British Commissioner or fairly discuss his terms. They would not accept the principle of racial and religious equality under any condition of affairs. They would not accept any restriction upon their right to take whatever territory they liked from the natives outside of Natal and at any time they might feel disposed. They would not endure the principle of negro freedom in this new region any more than in the older Colony at the Cape. Apart from these basic principles of government, practical details also galled them. The establishment of a Land Court to limit and define the possessions of settlers and to give legal rights of ownership to the natives, was especially objectionable, and, by 1847, most of the emigrant farmers had again trekked away to the Orange Free State and the country beyond the Vaal.

British Principles of Government

There seems to have been no valid reason for this movement. The British Government, outside of certain fundamental principles of morality and administration, desired to give the farmers every possible latitude. It had no wish for territorial expansion, and would never have interfered at all if the aggressive policy of the Boers meeting the wild instincts of the Bantu, or Zulus, half-way, had not drenched the region with blood. But the deterioration of the Boer character, or rather the expression of that character in a sphere where it was practically uncontrolled, had assumed a form in which the possession of large tracts of land and the compulsory service of natives appeared as absolute essentials of life, which they had the right to take by force—in the same way as Moselkatze and Tshaka had done previously and with apparently no higher motives than those which had actuated savage chiefs at war with weaker tribes. Moreover, they had failed signally in this first effort at self-government, and the rivalry of leaders like Hendrick Potgieter, Gerrit Maritz and Andries Pretorius had not only helped to prevent the establishment of any form of administration amongst the people capable of levying taxes and compelling obedience to the state, but had made constant raids upon neighboring native tribes appear almost essential to the holding together of the scattered communities in a common bond of conflict and territorial acquisition.

The Trek North of the Vaal River

With the failure to acquire and hold Durban and to rule themselves or the regions of Natal which they had taken from the Zulus ended the first Boer effort to reach the sea and to establish Dutch independent communities in touch with the external world. The bulk of the farmers, as already stated, trekked north of the Orange or the Vaal. Here they found conditions, in 1845-47, which were scarcely less perplexing and troubled than their own had been. Over an area of some 700 miles long and 300 wide was established a Dutch population of about fifteen thousand persons which was constantly at war with the natives, and, as a result of losses in this connection, did not increase greatly in numbers despite the numerous accessions from Cape Colony and Natal. Nominally, and by British theory, they were still British subjects; practically, from the Orange to the Limpopo they were independent communities whom the Colonial Office would have preferred to forget altogether rather than to assert claims over or make demands upon. But their relation of permanent and bitter hostility towards the natives appears to have made absolute British neutrality impossible. Accordingly, in 1843, an effort was made to further isolate the Boers from Cape Colony, and "buffer states" of native or half-breed tribes were established and recognized; much in the same way as in the days of the Kosa tribes on the eastern frontier of the Colony. Then, however, it was for the protection of the Dutch farmers against the natives; now it was for the protection of native and Colonial interests against the turbulent Boers.

Moshesh the Basuto

Moshesh the Basuto was at this time established in much strength upon the borders of the present Orange Free State and in territory now known as Basutoland. He was one of the ablest men produced by the Bantu, or Kaffir, race, and, unlike chiefs of the type of Moselkatze the Matabele or Tshaka the Zulu, did not build his fortunes and his power upon bloodshed and devastation. When the regions afterwards covered by the Dutch republics and Natal were swept by a sanguinary tide of conquest under the leadership of the two chiefs mentioned, Moshesh followed in the wake of the wave of slaughter, gathered together scattered remnants of tribes, conciliated, strengthened and united them until, by almost imperceptible degrees, he had established a strong state around the rock-ribbed heights of Thaba Bosigo—the centre of his kraal and his kingdom. In 1843, therefore, when the British authorities were looking around for some means of restricting the sphere of Boer difficulties and aggressions upon the natives, Moshesh seemed an ideal instrument. He was intensely ambitious to extend and consolidate his power. He was not a savage or barbarous potentate in the sense of Dingaan or his predecessor; and to him the proffered alliance, a small annual subsidy, an extension of recognized territorial rights and supremacy over minor chiefs in contiguous regions, was extremely attractive and easily acceptable. West of his territory lived a tribe of Griquas—a half-breed people of mixed Dutch and Hottentot blood—numbering about two thousand and ruled over by a man named Adam Kok. They were largely influenced by missionaries, and were an inoffensive and, as it turned out, perishing race. Establishment of a Border Native State With Kok a similar arrangement of alliance was made, and he was recognized as ruler of all the territory from the Basuto border westward to where Andries Waterboer—another Griqua chief—held sway over the region afterwards dominated by Kimberley and including Modder River and the southern portion of the present Free State. East of Moshesh and the Basuto territory a similar alliance was made with the Pondo Chief, Faku, and thus the girdle, or league of allied states between British territory and the Boers was complete.

Rebellion by the Boers

But the plan did not work out as well as was expected. The racial elements involved were too mutable, the conditions too loose, the Governments too inadequate in strength and prestige, the Dutch too aggressive and hostile in character, to admit of its permanent success. A strong man, backed up continuously with plenty of British troops, might have saved the situation and averted the wars which followed; but continuity of policy for these fluctuating frontiers seems to have never prevailed at either London or Cape Town. The Treaty States did not prevent personal and commercial intercourse between the Boers of the Cape and of the interior. They did not avert further emigration or encourage the return of those who had left the Colony. The Dutch population in Adam Kok's territory did not like being ruled by a half-breed chief, and the greater part of them repudiated the right of Great Britain to support him in this government. Some of the minor native chiefs refused to accept the sovereignty of Moshesh. The first result was a small Boer rebellion against Kok and the defeat of 250 men by some British troops under Colonel Richardson. The second was an entire rearrangement of existing matters by Sir Peregrine Maitland, who had meantime become Governor at the Cape. Kok's sovereignty over the whole region was still acknowledged, but he was limited in government to the portion of it occupied by Griquas; while the whites living in the other section were placed under the supervision or rule of a British officer, who, in 1846, established himself at a small place called Bloemfontein, where some three hundred Boers of a friendly disposition took the oath of allegiance to the Queen. The rest moved north to Wynburg and out of the region thus controlled by Major Warden. With Moshesh much less could be done. He had been far too shrewd to violate directly the terms of his arrangement with Great Britain or to accept any proposals which would seriously alleviate the differences between himself and the bordering tribes or neighboring Boers. Thus the State, which had been strengthened with a view to maintaining peace, now threatened to promote conflict instead, and in this condition matters rested when Sir Harry Smith came out to Cape Town in 1848 as Governor and High Commissioner. Now the events which immediately followed came the Orange Free State and the Transvaal Republic.


Birth of the Dutch Republics.

British Policy During the Middle of the Century

By the middle of the century there were some twenty thousand emigrant farmers scattered over the region between the Orange and Vaal Rivers and north of the latter. They had no organized government; no bond of union except a feeling of hostility to British sovereignty and a common love of independent isolation; no adequate security against sudden attacks from surrounding savages. Occasionally they combined in small forces and fell with merciless severity upon tribes which had aroused their displeasure. They would brook no control, even from self-constituted authorities, and at first endeavoured to govern themselves by general meetings of citizens. Distances were too great, however, to render this practicable, and small elective Assemblies in several semi-republican communities eventually developed. But the Boer character possessed a positive genius for disobedience, and the feuds of families and communities soon became as marked as those of the native tribes around them—whose cattle they delighted to capture and whose children were occasionally enslaved by Dutch commandos. The settlers were not seriously interfered with by the British Government in London, or in Cape Town. A general supervision, or pretence at supervision, over their relations with the natives was maintained and with ultimately important results. But for some years following the Natal annexation nothing of importance occurred. No formal recognition of their feeble efforts at self-government was given, they remained British subjects in the eyes of the law, and Sir Peregrine Maitland's Proclamation of August 21, 1845, at the Cape, expressly reserved the rights of the Crown in this connection.

Moshesh the Basuto

Meanwhile, however, two other communities had developed in their neighbourhood. East of what afterwards became the Orange Free State and in territory which the emigrant farmers, or Boers as they were beginning to be called, claimed for themselves, an exceedingly able native chief, in the person of Moshesh the Basuto, had risen into power and had welded together the scattered fragments of tribes which had been crushed by the raids of the Matabele and Zulus. From the rugged heights of Thaba Bosigo he dominated a large extent of country, an increasing native population and much spoil in cattle and slaves. To the south and west of the Boers two half-breed leaders named Adam Kok and Waterboer had established themselves respectively with strong, armed bands of Griquas—the name given to the offspring of Dutch farmers and Hottentot women—and had become a recognized force. With Moshesh they constituted the elements of a new British policy which was inaugurated in 1843. The Colonial Office did not want at this time to extend its territories. South Africa, indeed, appeared during the first portion of this century as the least promising, and the most turbulent and troublesome, of all British possessions. The soil was supposed to be arid and without fertility or minerals, the population seemed hostile and the net result of colonization and administration had been a series of costly Kaffir wars. In dealing with the Kaffirs, or Kosas, on the eastern frontier of the Colony the British Government had shown this disinclination with quite sufficient clearness. But to allow the emigrant Boers to repudiate their allegiance was another matter, and even to the not very far-seeing statesmen of the Colonial Office of that day it presented possibilities deserving of consideration. With Sir Harry Smith's arrival and the termination of the Kaffir War of 1846-47 came another development of the situation. The new Governor of Cape Colony, who for the first time had also been appointed High Commissioner with power of control over native matters outside of the bounds of the Colony, visited the Orange River region, looked into the results of the Treaty State policy, came to the conclusion that agreements with native chiefs were like arrangements made with little children, and determined to suppress these creations of missionary statecraft as soon as might be possible.

Orange River Sovereignty

Meanwhile the High Commissioner was well received at Bloemfontein, and soon made arrangements with Adam Kok and Moshesh which greatly curtailed their authority and independence. On February 3, 1848, he announced the annexation to British dominions of the whole territory between the Vaal and Orange Rivers and the Drakensberg mountains under the name of the Orange River Sovereignty. The colored population was left under the control of its chiefs, and their land was carefully reserved for their own use. All relations between tribes, however, or with Europeans, were to be guided by British authorities. Major Warden was continued at Bloemfontein as the Governor, or Resident, and Sir Harry Smith returned to Cape Town after having carried out a policy which should have been effected long before. And it was now too late. Although without any definite government amongst themselves, or any allegiance to the little republics which had sprung up over the Vaal, a certain number of Dutch farmers in the new Sovereignty would not accept British rule, and they were speedily aided by the Transvaal Boers under Pretorius in a direct attack upon Bloemfontein. Major Warden was compelled to surrender, and the British officials were speedily driven out of the country. Sir Harry Smith, however, was too vigorous and able a commander to stand this sort of thing, and he hastily got some troops together, crossed the Orange River, attacked Pretorius in a strong position at a place called Boomplaatz, defeated him and re-established the Sovereignty Government. Those of the Boers who were inveterately opposed to British rule at once crossed the Vaal and were not interfered with by British officials. Their places, to some extent, were taken by fresh emigrants from Cape Colony, many of them English, and from this time forward the Orange River State was populated by white settlers more or less passively friendly toward England and composed of the least hostile amongst the emigrant farmers with a certain proportion of Englishmen.

Rebellion of Molitsane

For a time all went apparently well. Then, in 1851, Moshesh, finding his power had been restricted by the new arrangements, and knowing that he was much stronger in a military sense than the British authorities had any conception of, began to foment disturbances between his own people and native clans in the Sovereignty. He did not appear publicly in the matter, but his policy was none the less effective in drawing both Major Warden and the Cape Governor into a determination to punish Molitsane—a vassal of Moshesh—who was a distinct offender. With 162 soldiers, 120 Boers and some fifteen hundred natives, Major Warden marched out from Bloemfontein, and at Viervoet was drawn into a trap and suffered a disastrous defeat. It is said that Moshesh himself was surprised at the easy result. At any rate, he at once threw off the mask and joined forces with his vassal. A section of the Boers also repudiated the Sovereignty Government, so far, at least, as to promise Moshesh absolute neutrality if he would leave their cattle and property unharmed. This he promised and fulfilled by plundering without mercy the Boers who remained loyal. Major Warden was now helpless at Bloemfontein, as Cape Colony was in the throes of another Kaffir war. and not a soldier could be spared—a fact of which Moshesh and the disloyal Dutch were perfectly aware. The latter added to the difficulties of the situation by suggesting to Pretorius that now was his time to avenge Boomplaatz. He was not unwilling, but thought a primary duty lay to his own adherents beyond the Vaal; so he wrote Warden that if the independence of the Boers of that region were definitely acknowledged he would refrain from participation in the struggle.

The Sand River Convention

Major Warden reported to Sir Harry Smith that the safety of the Sovereignty for the time lay in assenting to this proposal, as he could not hold it against the Basutos and the Transvaal Boers combined. The result was the appointment of Commissioners and the negotiation in 1852 of the Sand River Convention "with the Commandant and Delegates of the Boers living beyond the Vaal," by which the British Government "guaranteed to the emigrant farmers beyond the Vaal River the right to manage their own affairs and to govern themselves according to their own laws without any interference on the part of the British Government." Provisions were included by which the British authorities disclaimed all alliances with colored peoples north of the Vaal, and the Boers accepted the declaration (on paper) that "no slavery is or shall be permitted or practiced" in the country under their control. This arrangement finally severed the two communities, carried across the Vaal another migration of the anti-British element, and in time consolidated the bitterly hostile and prejudiced sections of population into the present Transvaal Republic. Meanwhile, peace had been made with the Kaffirs, and Sir George Cathcart, who was now Governor at the Cape, invaded Basutoland with a considerable force of regulars for the purpose of punishing Moshesh. As usual in South African warfare, he under-estimated the numbers and fighting skill of his opponents as well as the natural strength of this Switzerland of the Veldt. Thaba Bosigo was too hard a nut for his force to crack, and he was, besides, drawn into an ambush and defeated. Moshesh, however, was wise enough not to press his advantage too far, and with statecraft which was worthy of a greater sphere, asked and received peace on terms very beneficial to himself.

Changed Policy

But the Colonial Office was now in the hands of the Manchester School party, England was living in the exhilaration of a period of great and growing commercial prosperity, and her politicians were sick of the prolonged succession of petty and costly wars which had marked South African history. It was decided that all further responsibility must be avoided, that existing boundaries must be drawn back wherever possible, and that extension of territory must be imperatively resisted. The first point of contact with this feeling was the Sovereignty, and the Duke of Newcastle, who was then acting as Colonial Secretary, sent Sir George Russell Clerk out in 1853, as a Special Commissioner: "To ascertain whether it was practicable to make arrangements for the abandonment of the whole of that territory." Then followed the most extraordinary and perhaps regrettable incident in all the turbulent and troubled history of South Africa. The Commissioner had called a Convention of European Delegates for the purpose of taking over the government of the Sovereignty. But these twenty-four men sounded public opinion, and they had soon found that the feeling was clear and unmistakable that from every standpoint of right, honor and expediency Great Britain should retain its authority and continue its protection. Sir George Clerk, however, was under definite instructions, and any protests from the Delegates, or from the public meetings which were hastily held, were simply regarded as so much unnecessary obstruction to the fulfilment of his mission. The Convention refused to accept in any way his proposition, and was promptly dissolved. Formation of the Orange Free State A small body of men were found, however, to favor independence, and with these representatives of a distinct minority Sir George concluded an agreement on February 23, 1854, by which the country was practically handed over to them as the Orange Free State. This precious document "guarantees on the part of Her Majesty's Government the future independence of that country and Government"—although it also provides "that this independence shall, without unnecessary delay, be confirmed and ratified by an instrument promulgated in such form and substance as Her Majesty shall approve, finally freeing them from their allegiance to the British Crown, and declaring them, to all intents and purposes, an independent people." So far as can be ascertained this instrument was never actually promulgated, and it may be a delicate technical point as to whether the Free State people have ever been legally freed from their allegiance to Great Britain.[1]

[1] Westminster Review. April, 1869.

Large popular gatherings were held to protest against the policy of dismemberment, and the Chairman and another member of the late Convention were sent to England to bring the whole case before the Queen's Government. But it was all in vain. Hardly any notice had been taken in Great Britain of the Sand River Convention, and even less concern was exhibited over this new development of weak and nerveless Colonial administration. A motion upon the subject in the House of Commons had to be withdrawn for lack of a seconder, and Parliament voted $240,000 as a compensation to loyal settlers—presumably as a solace for having forced them to give up their allegiance. By the terms of the Bloemfontein Convention—already quoted from—no slavery or trade in slaves was to be permitted and the Government was made free to levy import duties and to buy ammunition in the British Colonies. In this way were two Boer Republics founded in South Africa, and the evils which might naturally have been expected from the intense isolation and ignorance of the emigrant farmers crystallized into constitutional shape, and finally into military form. These Conventions of 1852 and 1854 legalized a lasting and bitter schism in the small European population of South Africa, and even the conditions and interests of the Free State and the Transvaal were not, for many years afterwards, considered identical by the Boers themselves.


Development of Dutch Rule

Development of the Two Republics

From 1854 to 1877 the two Republics developed along very different lines. Their general principle of government was the same, but it was not administrated in the same way. In form their constitutions were nominally republican; in practice they became essentially arbitrary and absolutely antagonistic to British and Colonial ideas of government. The coloured people who, in hundreds of thousands, were established around the Dutch, had few civil rights and no political ones. They were the prey of small military bodies, the source of an enforced labour which could not in practice be distinguished from slavery, the object of personal contempt and with little protection from public law or private conscience. Citizenship was practically limited to the Boer, in the Transvaal; and in the Orange Free State, through the stringent military conditions connected with the privilege, the same result followed for some years. The right of participating in the Government of the country was thus confined to one class, the burghers or native-born Dutch citizens. These alone could elect the President, the Executive Council and the Volksraad, or popular Assembly.

Important Differences

There were important differences, however, in the further evolution of the Republics. Something of this was due to the modified feeling of the Orange River Boers towards England, to their proximity to the Cape and to the fact of English settlers being scattered amongst them with the natural result of friendly association and occasional intermarriage. They, therefore, approximated in character and type to the Dutchmen of Cape Colony. The Boer of the Transvaal, on the other hand, was entirely isolated, of unmixed stock and with sentiments of hostility toward everything British as strong and stern as they were when he first left Colonial territory. Both Republics were allowed to develop their own institutions in their own way and were, as the Bloemfontein Convention of 1854 declared, "to all intents and purposes a free and independent people." No slavery, or trade in slaves, was to be permitted, however, and what might be termed Imperial rights of control over native questions was retained along lines enunciated as follows, by Sir M. E. Hicks-Beach, in a despatch dated November 20, 1879: "Neither by the Sand River Convention of 1852, nor at any other time, did Her Majesty's Government surrender the right and duty of requiring that the Transvaal should be governed with a view to the common safety of the various European communities." The same principle, of course, covered the Free State position and, later on, was applied in connection with Moshesh and the Basuto question.

Early Organization

Without roads and bridges, churches and schools, or the ordinary machinery of government, the Dutch of the Free State commenced the work of organization in 1854, and the ultimate result reflects considerable credit upon the ignorant burghers of those scattered communities. As in the Cape Colony and the Transvaal the fundamental law was the old Roman system as modified by the Legislature of Holland prior to 1652. The official language was Dutch, and the Courts were constituted after the Dutch fashion. For a short period Josias Hoffman was President, and then Jacobus Nicolaus Boshof was elected to the position. Relations with Moshesh and the Basuto tribe constituted the chief trouble of this early period. The continuous object of this ambitious ruler was to recover certain territory which had once belonged to tribes of which the remnants now acknowledged his rule. The Boers wished to retain regions which had in great part appeared as wild and empty wastes when they had settled there. Apart from the general question, both sides were aggressive and warlike. Each hated the other, and the intermittent struggles which ensued were of the usually merciless character. But Moshesh was too much for the Boers in skill and craft, and, in 1858, the Free State President, after appealing in vain to his Transvaal brethren for aid, turned to Sir George Grey, who was then Governor of the Cape. Sir George accepted the position of mediator, studied the situation closely, and came to the apparent conclusion that the claims of Moshesh were in a measure just. To him, therefore, he gave a piece of territory which the Boers believed to be theirs, and handed over to the latter an outlying mission station which had hitherto acknowledged Basuto authority. Mr. Boshof promptly resigned the Presidency, and was succeeded by Marthinus Wessel Pretorius, a son of the famous general. He devoted himself to effecting a union with the Transvaal republics of the time, but was unsuccessful, owing to conflicting interests and jealousies and to the declaration from Cape Town that such action would dissolve the Conventions with Great Britain.

Chronic Condition of War

Meantime, and during the greater part of the years from 1854 to 1868, the Boers of the Free State were in a chronic condition of war with the Basutos. There were few direct conflicts, and the troubles consisted mainly in raids, the burning of houses or kraals, the stealing of cattle, or the kidnapping of children. The Basutos fought in much the same Fabian manner that the Boers themselves practiced, and met invaders concealed behind rocks or cairns or the ever-present kopje. The region ruled by Moshesh was a compact and round-shaped territory lying between Natal, Cape Colony and the Free State. Its surface was broken by steep hills or mountains with more or less flat summits admirably fitted for villages or kraals, and with every requisite for defence in the form of perpendicular wall-like sides. The Basutoland Between these natural fortresses were the sweeping and fertile valleys where the Basutos grew their corn and raised their cattle, and which for years it was the delight of the Boers to raid; as it was the primal pleasure of the Basutos to pour down in sudden forays from their rocky fastnesses upon Dutch territory. This constant interchange of robbery and pillage embittered the character of both peoples, but naturally had the most degrading effect upon that of the Boer. For a presumably civilized and Christian race to be engaged year in and year out in the seizure of cattle from a savage enemy and in the occasional enslavement of children or the shooting down of stray individuals and small parties of a mobile enemy could not but have an evil influence upon a character so peculiar as was that of even the best and most enlightened of the emigrant farmers.

Basutoland Overrun

After a decade of this sort of intermittent struggle, however, the Boers were encouraged by familiarity with that part of the Basuto country which lay in the valleys and fields to try the task of storming some of the strongholds of the enemy. With the aid of a few small cannon, the first attempts were successful and surprisingly easy. Thus encouraged, within the three years following 1865, the greater part of Basutoland was overrun and the best cornfields captured. They were promptly "annexed" to the Free State, and then attention was devoted to the French missionaries, who had, meanwhile, been doing a splendid work amongst the natives. They were turned out of the country in which half a million of dollars had been expended upon their stations; their homes were plundered and the private property of men who had, in some cases, been laboring for thirty years in the region was confiscated; furniture, books and other items of value were destroyed, and all redress was refused. Permission was afterwards given to re-occupy their stations, not as such, but as farms for which $500 was in each case to be paid the Boer Government. Much of the conquered territory was also surveyed and sold. But the power of the Boers was a very fitful one. With a weak Government at home they were unable to hold the regions which they captured from time to time, and the result was a re-occupation by the Basutos, an attempt to cultivate their fields, further reprisals, and more attacks upon the mountain strongholds. Upon one occasion the Boers destroyed all the growing crops of an extensive section. But Thaba Bosigo, the central fortress of the country, could not be subdued by any force available.



Basutoland under British Rule

In 1867 one last struggle occurred, and then Moshesh, weakened by age and realizing that his sons were much as other natives were, and did not possess the ability to hold the country together when his own end had come, turned to Sir Philip Wodehouse, the Governor and High Commissioner at Cape Town, and asked that his people be proclaimed British subjects. This was done, partly from a wise unwillingness to have the Free State so immensely strengthened as it would have been by the possession of Basutoland, partly by a natural objection to have so large a number of natives dispersed over the country without home or special object, and partly by dislike of the policy which the Boers had been for years pursuing in regard to savages generally and missionaries in particular. The Free Staters were intensely annoyed. They had lost the opportunity for a lasting revenge upon their enemy and the possibility of possessing the Switzerland of South Africa. In the light of after events the action of Sir Philip Wodehouse seems almost Providential, and is certainly one of the few instances where British statecraft was really brought into play in this part of the world. Were the Basuto strongholds in possession of Dutch sharpshooters and fortified by German science and artillery, the struggle of 1899-1900 would be infinitely more serious than it is at the time of writing.

"The Hollanders"

The Boers of the Free State bitterly resented this annexation. Although now governed by the wisest Dutchman who has come to the front in South Africa—Jan Hendrik Brand—(afterwards better known as Sir John Brand) who had succeeded Pretorius as President in 1865—they were also greatly influenced by a small and compact body of men, known as Hollanders, who had obtained possession of nearly all the offices of emolument in the State. These Hollanders afterwards drifted largely into the Transvaal where they had fuller and freer scope for anti-British sentiment and policy; and for isolation from the British ideas and principles which gradually and, in the end, powerfully, controlled the policy of President Brand. Meantime, however, these adventurers from Holland had much influence in the Free State. In 1858, when the Basutos had driven back the farmers and were threatening their homes and cattle during one of the ups and downs of the long struggle, a number of the Boers, and even some of the Hollanders, were in favor of seeking annexation to Cape Colony, and actually a resolution to that effect went through the Volksraad. But five years later, when fifteen hundred and fifty signers of a memorial asked the Volksraad to press an agitation to this end, the situation in regard to the Basutos had meanwhile changed, and the Hollanders opposed the proposition strongly. The movement was never seriously revived. Speaking in this connection at the prorogation of the Cape Parliament in September, 1868, Sir Philip Wodehouse declared that: "Entirely on my own responsibility, giving expression only to my own opinions, I may say that I regard the measures which severed from their allegiance the European communities in those regions to have been founded in error."

The Boers Protest

This Hollander party refused to enter into any negotiation with the High Commissioner concerning the Basutoland annexation, indulged in much talk about French and Russian intervention, and finally despatched two Commissioners to London armed with a long and emphatic protest. Fortunately for all concerned, the British Government approved of the policy pursued by Sir Philip Wodehouse and authorized him to take such further action as, to his knowledge of local conditions, might seem desirable. This wisdom of this course was so unusual and striking in connection with South African affairs that a tribute of respect seems due to the Colonial Secretary of that period—the Duke of Buckingham and Chandos. The annexation was, in fact, in the immediate interest of the Free State as well as in the future interests of Great Britain. It gave the exhausted republic a rest from protracted and injurious conflict. It afforded an opportunity for the statesmanship of the new President to assert and express itself. It facilitated the development of a friendliness between Cape Colony and the Free State which, so long as President Brand lived and ruled (1865-88), did much for the general good of South Africa and something for the improvement of individual character amongst the less implacable farmers of the little republic. There was indeed much for a statesman to do. Ideals of Government amongst the best of the Boers were still so crude as to be almost laughable. Masses of useless paper money were in existence. Farms or ranches had been neglected, many cattle destroyed and heavy debts incurred.

Discovery of Diamonds

Just at this moment the discovery of diamonds effected a revolution in South African affairs. As this incident is variously described by many writers, and as its importance is so great from an historical point of view, I propose to pin my faith upon the record given by Dr. George M. Theal. His position as a civil servant and Historiographer to the Cape Government would, perhaps, lay the most impartial of historians open to occasional allegations of favoritism in dealing with annals so permeated with Dutch and English rivalry as are those of South Africa. But there can be no question as to his accuracy in treating of such questions of fact as this.[1] He states that: "One day, in 1867, a child on a farm in the north of Cape Colony was observed to be playing with a remarkably brilliant pebble, which a trader, to whom it was shown as a curiosity, suspected to be a gem of value. It was sent for examination to a qualified person in Grahamstown, who reported that it was a diamond of twenty-one carats weight and that its value was £500. Search was immediately commenced in the neighborhood by several persons in odd hours, and soon another, though much smaller, was found. Then a third was picked up on the bank of the Vaal River, and attention was directed to that locality. During 1868 several were found, though as yet no one was applying himself solely to looking for them. In March, 1869, the 'Star of South Africa' was obtained from a Korana Hottentot, who had been in possession of it for a long time without the least idea of its value except as a powerful charm. It was a magnificent brilliant of eighty-three carats weight when uncut, and was readily sold for £11,000."

[1] The Story of the Nations Series. South Africa, p. 322.

Ownership and Territorial Rule

The lower Vaal then became the scene of a bustling, restless and struggling population of miners and speculators. Wealth and diamonds go together, and with them naturally came questions of ownership and territorial rule. The latter was and had been in dispute for many years. The southern bank of the river was probably Free State territory, but the ownership of the northern bank was in grave doubt. No actual government had been established there, although the Transvaal, the Free State, the Batlapin tribe of natives, and the Griqua captain—Waterboer—all claimed portions of the ground. There was naturally much disorder at the mines, both north and south of the River, under such conditions, and, finally, as the bulk of the miners were British subjects, the High Commissioner at Cape Town decided to interfere, and proposed a general arbitration. President Brand declined the suggestion, but President Pretorius of the Transvaal acceded, and a Court was established at Bloemhof, on the northern bank of the Vaal, with Mr. Keate, Governor of Natal, as final Umpire. From the information then available there seems no doubt that the Award issued by Mr. Keate in October, 1871, was just. He acted, and could only act, upon the evidence presented to the Court, and, as the Free State refused to work up or present its case, and as Waterboer was enabled by the use of a clever advocate to prepare a fairly strong one, the region in dispute was finally awarded to him. He had already offered his claim to the territory to the British authorities, and, as soon as the legal decision was announced, Sir Henry Barkly, as High Commissioner, proclaimed the Diamond Mines and what had long been familiarly known as Griqualand West, to be a British dependency. Afterwards, during the holding of a special Court for the settlement of individual ground-claims, a minute search into the history of the region south of the Vaal revealed an unsuspected flimsiness in Waterboer's title, and the judgment of the Court thereupon threw out all titles based upon Griqua grants. This very impartial verdict—under all the circumstances of the case—at once gave President Brand a position in the matter which he did not hesitate to use. He went to London and laid his case before the British Government, which replied that the possession of the country in question was a necessity to the paramount Power in South Africa, but that he would be given $450,000 as a settlement of the Free State claims. This he accepted.

A Momentous Decision

The decision was as momentous in its results as the annexation of Basutoland. Without the possession of Griqualand West, the British Government and settlers, and Cape Colony itself, would have been shut off from expansion to the north. The unclaimed country from the Limpopo to the Zambesi would have been open to the raids and eventual occupation of the Boers of the two Republics. The diamond mines of South Africa—with their hundreds of millions' worth of precious stones—would have been in the hands of England's enemies as well as the gold mines. Matabeland and Mashonaland and the empire created by Cecil Rhodes to the north and west of the republics would have been alien ground. The development of British South Africa would, in a word, have been effectually confined to the limited region south of the Orange River and the Drakensberg Mountains. The Keate Award, therefore, and the dispute between the two Dutch Governments and that of Great Britain, turned upon more important issues than the discovery of diamonds. The Boers did not really want the latter, but it is fairly evident now that they fully appreciated the importance of holding the only route to the north which still remained open to British acquisition. Had President Brand shared in the hostile sentiments of many of his own people and of his compatriots over the Vaal toward Great Britain, he would never have sold his claim even for the sum which did so much to place the finances of the Free State upon a sound footing. From this time forward to the end of the century, however, the Orange Free State enjoyed a condition of progressive prosperity. Roads, public buildings and bridges were constructed. A fairly good system of Dutch public schools was established in the villages, though it did not greatly affect the farmers on their wide ranches. Railway from Cape Town A railway was run through the country from Cape Town to Pretoria, largely at the expense of the Cape Government, while branch lines in time connected the Free State system with Durban, in Natal, and with Port Elizabeth and East London, on the southeast coast of Cape Colony. President Brand was re-elected to his position until he died in 1888, leaving the highest of reputations as a wise administrator, a warm friend of Great Britain, and a sincere admirer of British institutions. After his time other influences predominated, and the first evidence of this was in the election of Mr. F. W. Reitz—previously Chief Justice of the State—as his successor.

Condition of the Transvaal

Meanwhile, the Transvaal State, or South African Republic as it called itself, was passing through an infinite variety of more or less painful experiences. The region possessed by the Boers north of the Vaal is a great tract of fairly fertile and level land broken here and there by rugged hills. The climate is varied, but upon the whole pleasant and healthful. Its wheat-producing capabilities are famed throughout South Africa. Coffee and tobacco also thrive. But cattle-raising was and is the primary pursuit of almost the entire white or Dutch population. The Boers of this region did not arrive there all at once, or found their State upon conditions of mutual interest and a basis of common principles. Their one tie of union, their single basis of co-operation, was hatred of the English. Whether trekking north from Cape Colony under Potgieter and fighting the Matabele for a country to live in; or leaving Natal in utter disgust at the proposed free institutions of the new British administration; or crossing the Vaal from the Orange River Sovereignty to escape from even friendly relations with British communities; they were, and remained, the most implacable, the most ignorant, the most isolated and unmanageable of the emigrant farmers. At first the Boer population numbered only some sixteen thousand, and in 1837, after the destruction of Moselkatze and the Matabele power on the south side of the Limpopo, an unsuccessful attempt was made to form a common government. A little later four republics—Pochefstroom, Zoutpansberg, Lydenburg and Utrecht—were established, but without much effect so far as practical government was concerned. A period of wild license followed, and was marked by much cruelty towards the natives as well as anarchy and strife amongst the farmers themselves.

Transvaal Under Pretorius

In all the great region between the Orange River and the Limpopo these conditions, however, prevailed between 1836 and 1850 to a greater or lesser degree. South of the Vaal a check came through the vicinity of British power and population; but north of that historic river there was little ameliorative influence until about 1864. Marthinus Wessel Pretorius became President of one of the Transvaal sections, or republics, in 1857, and by 1860 had united the entire region under his control. Even then, however, there was a further period of civil war until, in 1864, Pretorius succeeded in obtaining general acceptance by the people and a legal election, with S. J. P. Kruger as Vice-President. He at once resigned the Presidency of the Orange Free State, which he had also held since 1858—but without success to his efforts at uniting the northern and southern republics—and devoted himself to breaking the power of the Baramapulana tribe which had established itself, in great and growing strength, upon the southern banks of the Limpopo and in territory which the Boers thought they should control. During more than three succeeding years the Transvaal tried in vain to subjugate this tribe. The State, however, had no money, and could not even pay for the transport of ammunition from Durban, on one occasion, while its people were not united in the prosecution of the war. The result was a practical withdrawal from the Zoutpansberg region; a recognition of the independence of the Baramapulana under the nominal form of a small annual tribute; and the creation of difficulties amongst other tribes which realized the check thus given to a people who had often oppressed them and frequently attacked their kraals. Wars followed with the Baralong and other clans, and the Republic presently found itself unable to assert its authority over the natives within its claimed sphere of supremacy, or to even hold its own territory intact. By 1870, when the Transvaal became mixed up in the Diamond Fields controversy and entered into the arbitration resulting in the Keate Award, the condition of the people was deplorable. Ignorance and Isolation The generation which was now grown up had absolutely no knowledge of anything beyond their own family circle, and had no acquaintance whatever with books, or history, or external affairs. The rivers were unbridged, the Treasury was empty, the salaries of the officials were only occasionally paid and trade was carried on by barter in the absence of gold or silver. The natives around them could not be more densely ignorant, or more completely isolated, than were these farmers on the veldt with all their thriving flocks and herds and stores of grain and vegetables and fruit. Whatever the poverty of intellect, or knowledge, or the primitive nature of their government, there was never any lack of food and wealth of cattle amongst the Dutch of the Transvaal. Like the Matabele and Zulu in their days of power, the Boers always possessed these requisites of life. Yet they would not pay taxes, or support their government, or educate their children.

Discontent and Disintegration

President Pretorius was compelled to resign as a result of his participation in the Diamond Fields' arbitration, and the Reverend Thomas Francois Burgers, a clergyman of unorthodox views, who had distinguished himself as a lawyer, was elected, in 1872, to the position. He was an able man, but somewhat visionary for the strained situation which required his attention. He had to deal with a few thousand ignorant men of seventeenth century views who were unable to govern themselves, or to control the surrounding natives, and be expected within a few years to mould out of this unpromising material a prosperous Republic with colleges, railways, telegraphs and a great name amongst the nations of the world. That his dreams were afterwards in a measure realized reflects credit upon his patriotism and perspicacity; but his policy broke down before the obstacles of the immediate present. Money to the extent of $450,000 was obtained from Holland, which the President visited in 1874, under authority from the Volkraad. With this sum railway material was purchased for a proposed line from Lorenzo Marques to Pretoria, and a Superintendent of Education was brought back to manage a system which was not yet in existence and for the creation of which there was neither money nor popular desire. When Mr. Burgers arrived home again he found discontent and disintegration everywhere visible, and his educational scheme was put aside; while his railway material was sent to rot at the Portuguese port for want of more money to carry on the enterprise. Then the strong Bapedi tribe under Sekukuni rose in rebellion; many of the Boers refused to fight under an agnostic President; and a large commando which he succeeded in getting together failed to accomplish anything and in the end stampeded homeward. The first result of this failure was anarchy, and the secondary consequence was the development of a situation, through the menacing attitude of the Zulu forces upon the frontier, which brought about annexation to the British Crown and the creation of the strictly modern phase of the South African question.


Development of Cape Colony.

Gradual Growth of Cape Colony

The dismemberment of South Africa, which commenced in the days of the Great Trek, which was made more distinct by the Conventions of 1852-4, and was destined to culminate in the Conventions of 1881-4, was at first somewhat of a boon to Cape Colony. It removed about ten thousand of the most discontented, restless and ignorant portion of its population and left plenty of land and room for the occupation of future immigrants. They came slowly, however, as the Kaffir wars had given the country a bad name and the reputation of its climate was not particularly good. But, between 1845 and 1850, some five thousand British settlers were brought in under aid from the Government, and a little later a number of Germans who had fought for England in the Crimean war migrated to the Cape. In 1858, two thousand German peasants were settled on lands near the southern coast of the Colony which had once belonged to the Kaffirs. They made excellent settlers, and in time merged with the British population, which came to predominate in the eastern part of the country, as the Dutch did in the western section.

The Climate

The climate was found to be reasonably healthful. To newcomers the sudden change from heat to cold, owing to the south-east winds, was found unpleasant, and in cases of weak constitutions somewhat dangerous. But with proper care in clothing and gradual acclimatization this difficulty soon moderated, and the peculiar dryness of the climate was found to make strongly for health. Sunstrokes were rare, and the only serious evil arising from the heat was the drying up of the rivers in the interior of the country. In most parts of the continent malarial fever was then an admitted and serious danger, as it is to-day in the great lake region of Central Africa and in the valley of the Nile. In German East-Africa, in parts of the Transvaal and in the Delagoa Bay region there is still a similar state of affairs. But Cape Colony, the Orange Free State and Natal were then, and are at the present time, almost entirely free of this dreaded disease. For weak lungs it was discovered that no finer country exists in the world than the Cape, and for the development of general healthfulness and vigour the settlers of the Colony soon found themselves in an ideal region.

Natural Resources, etc.

Natural resources were not quite so apparent. A wealth of brilliant flowers and tropical plants existed, but forests were few, timber was scarce and costly, and it was years before the introduction of the Australian Eucalyptus embowered many a village from the Cape to Kimberley and from Buluwayo to Pretoria in groves of that useful tree. The land in some cases was fertile, but, on the whole, was perhaps more suited to the raising of sheep and cattle than to agriculture in the American or Canadian sense. Farming of the latter kind involves severe labour, and neither the original slaves, the coloured labourers of an after-time, nor the Dutch farmers, were fitted by disposition or nature for the work. But, as the population increased from 26,000 Europeans in 1805 to 182,000 in 1865, and to 237,000 ten years later, the country assumed a more civilized and prosperous appearance. Sheep and cattle were literally scattered over a thousand hills, while various collateral industries were developed by English settlers which the slow-moving Dutch would never have dreamed of. Between 1812 and 1820 the Merino sheep was introduced, and its wool soon became a source of profit and wealth. In 1865 ostrich farming was commenced, and speedily developed great importance through the process of artificial incubation. Roads were made, churches and schools were built, municipal government in the towns and villages was introduced, and the Colonial finances were put into shape despite the expenses of Kaffir wars and native troubles—which were mainly charged to the Imperial exchequer. The first railway was constructed in 1859, and wagon roads were carried over various mountain passes and through much of the settled part of the country.

An Executive Council Created

In 1834 an Executive Council had been created composed of members nominated by the Governor, and therefore more or less dependent upon his good-will. Perhaps at that time, and in view of the limited population, the racial rivalry and religious and educational complications, it was just as well that such a body should not be elective, as some desired. Twenty years later, however, when conditions had somewhat changed, a representative Legislature was established composed of a Council and a House of Assembly. Members were to be elected upon a wide franchise, with no distinction of race or color, excepting that a Kaffir had to hold some small amount of property and to have given up the tribal system. There were very few natives in this condition. Meanwhile the dissensions between the Dutch part of the population and the missionaries continued, and they extended at times to the English settlers also. There can be no doubt of the intense irritation aroused by this controversy. The Dutchman looked upon the native as created and existing for his special benefit, and through the effect of contiguity and similarity of conditions often induced the English farmer to agree with him. The missionary, on the other hand, believed himself appointed to guard the interests of the weaker race, and was too apt to forget the suffering caused by Kaffir raids from the outside, in his general sympathy for the downtrodden representatives of the race in the Colony itself.

A Long Struggle

From about 1820 to 1860 this struggle lasted. It weakened the hands of the Governors, who usually shared the Colonial view of the Kaffir wars, as against the missionaries. It injured the reputation of the Colonial Office throughout South Africa from the widespread belief that its officials were inspired, or guided, by the friends of the missionaries and by the impracticable sentiments of Exeter Hall, rather than by the wishes of the people of Cape Colony. It seriously affected the continuity of policy which should have marked the action of the British Government, in these regions of all others, and which, unfortunately, so seldom characterized their treatment of either Cape Governors or native questions. In 1846 commenced the seventh Kaffir or Kosa war. Sandili was the heir of Gaika, the Kosa chief who had figured in a previous conflict, and he had for some time prior to this date permitted raids upon the settlers of the Colony's eastern territory, and had entirely disregarded pledges and arrangements. Finally, Sir Peregrine Maitland sent a military force to occupy the region controlled by Sandili and bring him to terms. With incomprehensible but oft-repeated carelessness in South African warfare, a long ammunition wagon train following the expedition was left practically unguarded, and was, of course, surprised and seized by the Kaffirs. A Sweeping Raid The result of the ensuing retreat of the British troops was a combination of the Kosa and the Tembu tribes, a sweeping raid along the entire frontier, the murder of settlers, the capture of cattle, and the burning of dwellings. The local forces of the Colony were hastily got together, and operations carried on in a scattered sort of way for some months until the arrival of several British regiments from abroad. A temporary submission was then made by the natives with a view to the planting of their maize. As soon as this was garnered the war broke out again.

The province of British Kaffraria

The Governor had meantime been recalled, and was succeeded for a few months by Sir Henry Pottinger. Sandili, however, soon had enough of the struggle, and, in 1847, peace was made after an enormous cost to the British authorities and amid the clamor of ruined Eastern farmers. At the end of the year Lieutenant-General Sir Harry Smith came out as Governor and High Commissioner, with unusual personal powers and under the awakening perception of the Colonial Office that it was better to let the man on the spot guide affairs than to attempt the real government of South Africa from six thousand miles away. It was not a permanent awakening, but it was useful so long as it lasted. Sir Harry Smith adopted the repudiated native policy of Sir Benjamin D'Urban; proclaimed the territory between the Kei and the Keiskama as a British possession for the absolute use of the western clans of the Kosa tribe; appointed a Commissioner to exercise general authority over the Chiefs and sent a strong body of troops to garrison various forts; and named the region—which once for a brief season had been called after Queen Adelaide—the Province of British Kaffraria. A few years later the eighth Kaffir war took place. The tribes seem to have considered the peace as nothing more than a truce, and as soon as the British authorities began to suppress the worst of their savage customs—notably the murders and tortures arising out of the hunt for witchcraft—discontent very speedily developed into the war of 1850-51. The usual struggle followed, with surprises, raids, murders and the ravaging of the frontier. The war was the most costly of all the conflicts with these restless tribes, and was specially marked by an event memorable in the annals of British bravery—the loss of H. M. S. Birkenhead with 400 soldiers on board. It occurred near Algoa Bay, where the ship had struck a reef in the middle of the night. The women, children and sick people were sent away safely, in all the available boats, while the troops remained drawn up in line as though on parade, with the ship breaking up under them and a sea swarming with sharks around them.

An Extraordinary Incident

For two years a large force of soldiers, farmers and auxiliaries of various kinds were employed in trying to end a war with enemies who had the fleetness of the antelope and powers of disappearance equal to that of a bird. When their food was exhausted, and not before, the Kosas gave in and asked for peace. As usual in such cases, the Governor was recalled, and Sir George Cathcart appointed his successor. The government of British Kaffraria was reorganized and the region subdivided amongst the Tembus, a section of the Kosa tribe under a chief named Kreli, the western clans of the Kosa and the loyal Fingos. Several regiments of regular troops were maintained in the Province and a body of local police formed from amongst the younger white colonists. In 1857 there took place one of those extraordinary incidents which can only occur in a region such as South Africa. The Kosas, prompted by some wizard who professed to wield unknown and vast powers and to hold communication with the unseen world, destroyed all their cattle and stores of grain in the belief that their ancestors would, as a reward for their faith, join them in driving the white man out of the country and in creating for them a boundless stock of new cattle and a limitless supply of fresh crops. Famine naturally followed, and some 30,000 natives perished of hunger or disease despite all that Sir George Grey, who, in 1854, had become Governor at Cape Town, could do for them in a hurried supply of provisions and work. Some good came out of the evil. Large tracts of depopulated land were taken possession of by European settlers, peace came to the exhausted region, and in 1865 it was annexed to Cape Colony. It may be added here that some small risings occurred in 1877, termed the ninth Kaffir war, and that in 1880 the region held by the Pondos was formally annexed to the Colony, and its borders thus became coterminous with those of Natal.



A Vexed Question

Meanwhile, the history of Cape Colony was by no means confined to conflicts with border natives or to the controversies with the Orange Free State, which have been detailed in preceding pages. In 1850 occurred one ol the most striking illustrations of what mistakes a fair-minded and well-meaning Home Government may at times be involved in when dealing with far-away regions. There seems to have been no perception in those days of the wrong which might be inflicted upon a Colony by the exportation of convicts undergoing various terms of penal servitude. Confinement in Australia or South Africa seemed to British statesmen, and especially to Earl Grey, who presided over the Colonial Office at this time, no more objectionable on principle than it would be if they were kept at home in the British Isles. They forgot that on being released these men—some punished for serious crimes, some for slight offenses—were let loose upon a community widely scattered and isolated and composed of many persons who, taken in this way, were easy victims to robbery or attack. And they entirely overlooked the danger of allowing hundreds, or in time thousands, of men without personal responsibility or character, to roam at will amongst a large and restless population of natives. They appear to have felt only that in the vast and vacant spaces of the Colonies there was room and verge for a released convict, or a ticket-of-leave man, to make for himself a new career untrammelled by the past, or by the danger of drifting again into the deeps of the great cities at home.

Penal Settlement in the Colony

When it was understood at the Cape that the Imperial Government proposed to establish a penal settlement in the Colony, similar to the one which had been formed at Botany Bay, the indignation aroused was immediate and intense, petitions and protests were sent in great number to London, meetings were held throughout the Colony, and when the Neptune arrived in Simon's Bay, Cape Town, with convicts on board, nearly all the people of the Peninsula bound themselves together in a pledge to supply nothing to the ship or to have any dealings with persons connected with it. Sir Harry Smith, who was then Governor, had expressed his own strong opposition to the plan; but he was compelled to obey his orders from home and could not therefore send the vessel back. For five months it lay in the Harbor, supplied from passing men-of-war and treated by the Colonists as though the plague were within its wooden walls. And then, at last, came the order—in frank and acknowledged response to the petitions of the Colonists—transferring its convict cargo to Tasmania.

A New Constitution

Four years after the satisfactory settlement of this vexed question came the grant of Parliamentary institutions to the Colony. This action was part of a general Colonial plan by which full responsible or ministerial government was established in Canada, under Lord Elgin—there had long been elective legislatures in the British-American Provinces—and a system formulated in the Australias similar to that of the Cape. The details of the proposed changes were left by the Colonial Office largely in the hands of the Governor and the appointive Legislative Council, which had been created in 1834, and it was therefore not expected that the result would be extreme in a democratic sense. The new constitution was promulgated on March 11, 1853, and by its terms an elective House of Assembly numbering forty-six members was created—afterwards increased to seventy-six, and with a five years' limit in time as against the earlier seven years period. The Upper Chamber or Legislative Council was, to the surprise of many, also made elective. It consisted of fifteen members, who were afterwards increased to twenty-two, with the Chief Justice of the Colony as an additional member and ex-officio President. The right to vote for both Houses was given to every male British subject over twenty-one years of age who occupied a house or land worth $125, or was in receipt of a salary or mixed remuneration valued at $250. There was no distinction as to race, color, religion or mode of life, and this pronounced measure of electoral liberty was a matter of constant friction in the minds of the Dutch settlers—so far as they cared in these years to think or trouble themselves about the affairs of an alien rule. The legislation, however, was more important as the enunciation of a principle than because of its working out in practice at this particular period. There were few natives for many years in a position to take advantage of even this low franchise, and, of course, all who continued to share in the tribal system were absolutely debarred. Right to Vote Limited In 1892 the right to vote was limited by fresh legislation—resulting from the rising political power of the Afrikander Bund and the Dutch dislike to the natives—to such adult males as were able to sign their names and write down their addresses and employment. The franchise qualification was raised to a property one of $375, while the wage qualification was allowed to remain as it had been.

The First Parliament of the Colony

The first Parliament of the Colony met in June, 1854, and from that time onward all laws had to be sanctioned by both Houses and approved by the Governor. As elsewhere in the Empire the right of disallowance was reserved to the Queen for a given period after such laws reached London, but in practice the power was, and is, seldom used. Like so many of the apparently dormant prerogatives of the Crown it is, however, available for an emergency. Following this creation of Parliamentary institutions came the usual struggle for Parliamentary control over the appointments to office, over the expenditure of money, and over the personnel of the Governor's Council. As in other Colonies, it was found impossible to construct in a day, or a year, an exact imitation of Great Britain's Cabinet and governmental system, with all its complex Parliamentary code, its elaborate constitutional checks and counter-checks, its numerous traditions and precedents. And there was, of course, the same difficulty as Canada had already faced and overcome—the presence of a large electoral population with no hereditary or natural adaptability to the British constitutional system, and without, in some cases, the basis of cordial loyalty which is so essential to its successful operation. At first, therefore, the officials of the Executive Council (or what afterwards became the Ministry) were appointed by the Colonial Secretary. They framed the financial legislation of the Government and introduced it to the House of Assembly, and they held the right of discussion, though not of voting, in both Houses. This system was maintained for eighteen years, and, in view of England's heavy financial responsibilities in South Africa, the racial condition of Cape Colony itself and the continuous troubles everywhere with natives and Boers, it was, perhaps, as well that the threads of government should be largely held in London. And this may be said despite all the vacillations of the Colonial Office. Had there been firmness and continuity in the general Home policy concerning South Africa, there could be no question at all upon this point.

Wise Administration

Meanwhile, Sir George Grey had been distinguishing himself by a singularly wise administration between the years 1854 and 1859. He conciliated the Hottentots of the Colony by granting certain claims which had been long and fruitlessly pressed upon the authorities. He settled tor a time the native troubles in Kaffraria, and founded a great hospital for natives, in which, by 1890, more than 130,000 cases had been treated, and the resulting cures heralded in many corners of "Darkest Africa" as a proof of the Englishman's power and unexpected beneficence. He despatched troops to India at a critical period of the Mutiny and upon his own responsibility, settled the German Legion from the Crimea in the Colony, and brought out a number of German families for its members to marry into. Finally, during his first Governorship, he urged the union of the Legislatures of the Cape, Natal and Orange Free State in a common federal system, and at a time when the Free State might easily have been persuaded to accept the policy. But the Colonial Office would have none of it. Unfortunately, and to the lasting injury of South Africa, the Home Government distrusted him, and in 1858 he was recalled.

Sir George Grey Reappointed

The Derby Administration, however, met with defeat while Sir George Grey was on the sea, and when he reached London it was to find that he had been reappointed to his position. It long afterwards became known that this was done by the personal command of the Queen, who had appreciated the policy he pursued and had sympathized with his proposed federal scheme.[1] But despite this fact the new Government, as a whole, was so strongly opposed to the much-feared increase of responsibilities, under a federation in South Africa, that Sir George Grey was obliged to forego the hope of even attempting to carry his schema further. During his second administration, which only lasted until 1861, he entertained Prince Alfred (the Duke of Edinburgh), and traversed with him a great part of Cape Colony, Kaffraria and Natal; improved to an immense extent the splendid natural Harbor at Cape Town; visited the Orange Free State and established at Bloemfontein, as a token of friendship, the Grey Institute, in which so much has since been done for the higher education of the youth of that State. Annexation of Basutoland In 1861 he accepted the Governorship of New Zealand, and was succeeded by Sir P. E. Wodehouse, whose administration was chiefly distinguished for the annexation of Basutoland. In 1870 Sir Henry Barkly took charge of affairs and assumed possession for Great Britain of the Diamond Fields. With the coming of Sir Bartle Frere, in 1877, arose new developments along the lines of Sir George Grey's disappointed hopes and hampered policy. This time, however, a check was to be given from within the Colony instead of by the Colonial Office. The wheel of fate refused to reverse itself.

[1] Life and Times of Sir George Grey. By W. L. Rees. London, 1892. Vol. XI., p. 298.

The First Cape Ministry

The year 1872 had seen the grant of full responsible government to the Colony and the crowning of its Parliamentary system by the establishment of the first Cape Ministry. As in the British-American Colonies, from 1854 onwards, the Ministry now had to obtain and hold the confidence of a majority of the members of the House of Assembly, and its defeat upon any important question necessitated immediate retirement. The head of the Government, or Prime Minister, was ex-officio in charge of native affairs within the Colony, but, owing to the complex position of South Africa in the relationship of its various states to each other and towards the natives, the Governor of Cape Colony remained High Commissioner in South Africa with the control of British interests outside the bounds of Cape Colony. In such matters he was responsible to the Crown and not to his own Colonial Ministry. Parliament could be dissolved, constitutionally, at the pleasure of the Governor, but practically and mainly upon the advice of his Ministry. It could not sit longer than five years, so that the people were, and are, able to turn out their Government either through pressure upon their representatives at Cape Town, resulting in a Parliamentary vote of want of confidence, or by their own votes at the polls as the result of a general election. The following have been successively Prime Ministers of Cape Colony:

1872, Sir John C. Molteno, K.C.M.G.
1878, Sir J. Gordon Sprigg, K.C.M.G.
1881, Sir Thomas C. Scanlen, K.C.M.G.
1884, Sir Thomas Upington, K.C.M.G.
1886, Sir J. Gordon Sprigg, K.C.M.G.
1890, The Hon. Cecil J. Rhodes.
1893, Right Hon. Cecil J. Rhodes, P.C.
1896, Right Hon. Sir Gordon Sprigg, P.C.
1898, Hon. W. P. Schreiner, Q.C., C.M.G.

Lord Carnarvon's Scheme of Federation

Upon the structure of these Governments and around the names of their members turns much of the history of Cape Colony during these years; although a man of the wide influence of Jan Hendrik Hofmeyr never held office except for a few months in 1881, while Sir John Henry de Villiers has not been in a Ministry since 1873 when he retired from the Molteno Cabinet to accept the Chief Justiceship of the Colony. The first great question which had to be dealt with under the new constitution was Lord Carnarvon's scheme of federation. This most cultured representative of British statecraft had, curiously enough, been Under-Secretary of State for the Colonies at the time when the head of that Department, Sir Edward Bulwer-Lytton, had refused any favorable consideration to the policy proposed by Sir George Grey in 1858. He had then agreed with his chief; now he was at the head of the Colonial Office, under the inspiration of Lord Beaconsfield's new Imperialism, as a convert in the most enthusiastic degree to the general principle of Colonial federations under the Crown. Accordingly, in 1875, he addressed a despatch to the Cape Government pointing out the complications of South African inter-state relations, the advantages of unity and the willingness of the Imperial Government to enact legislation bringing into effect a federal union of the various communities. At the same time he sent out, as a sort of confidential envoy to press the matter upon public attention, a man who, with all his brilliant attainments as a writer and historian—the late James Anthony Froude—seems to have been without that tact and personal magnetism so essential to the success of a delicate mission. His own record of the matter in Oceana proves this conclusively. And it was not a favorable moment for any general consideration of the matter. The Orange Free State was in a somewnat exasperated condition over the annexation of Griqualand West to Cape Colony, and had not yet become mollified by the personal influence of President Brand and by the results of the monetary return given for the loss of the Diamond Fields. The Transvaal was in a position of such factional discontent and general disintegration that its people could hardly have dealt clearly with such an important issue had even their still keen hatred of the English been eliminated from the question. Natal was in imminent danger from the massing of Zulu spears upon its frontiers; while the Dutch people in Cape Colony looked upon the whole matter with suspicion and certainly without sympathy.

Sir Garnet Wolseley as Governor

Following Mr. Froude's mission to the Cape came the appointment of Sir Garnet (afterwards Field Marshal Lord) Wolseley as Governor of Natal, with the special object of studying the situation and promoting federation. He returned to London after a few months without accomplishing anything very definite, and on August 3, 1876, presided over a Conference held in the metropolis and attended by several South African delegates. Amongst them was Theophilus Shepstone, a clever and ambitious man who had for years been in charge of native affairs in and around Natal, and for some time prior to this date had been in London urging a union of the various States as the only way out of existing evils and difficulties. The meeting adjourned, however, without any practical result, and in the succeeding year Sir Bartle Frere, a brilliant Anglo-Indian administrator, was sent out as Governor and High Commissioner with a special view to the promotion of confederation. Steps for Annexation of Transvaal About the same time Mr. (now created Sir) Theophilus Shepstone was given exceptional authority as a Special Commissioner in Natal to steps for take steps for the annexation of the Transvaal under certain possible conditions of necessity or willingness on the part of its inhabitants. These conditions appeared to present themselves and annexation followed; as did the Zulu war and the war of 1881. Meantime Sir Bartle Frere found himself and his policy opposed by practically the whole Dutch population of Cape Colony. He was violently criticised by the press and politicians of the Colonial Boers—who were now awakening to the possibilities of racial power under the new institutions of the country—and in 1880 had the mortification of having his carefully prepared federal proposals thrown out of the Cape Parliament; chiefly at the instigation of the Transvaal Boers, who were just then entering upon their struggle for independence. Meanwhile the Beaconsfield Government was defeated, Mr. Gladstone came into power, and in the prompt recall of Sir Bartle Frere and the equally prompt repudiation of his policy another unmerited grave was dug in the cemetery which South Africa has provided for the reputations of many Governors.

THE NAVAL BRIGADE AT LADYSMITH SHELLING THE BOERS, OCTOBER 30, 1899.  The large gun mounted on Captain Scott's carriage is shown in action.
The large gun mounted on Captain Scott's carriage is shown in action.


This action of the Cape Parliament was an effective evidence of the growing political influence of the Dutch population in the Colony. Another was the establishment in 1882 of the dual language system. Prior to this date, and since 1828, the English language alone could be used in Parliamentary debate, in the Courts of Law, or in the Public Offices. But now the local Dutch farming population had awakened to its real political influence—largely through the formation of the Afrikander Bund in 1881—and its representatives in the Assembly soon obtained a change in the law. Henceforward either language could be used in any place or position, and it was also enacted eventually that no one should be admitted to the ordinary branch of the Civil Service without a perfect knowledge of both English and Dutch. Such a result was inevitable, under the circumstances, but it is hard to see any real advantage which has ensued. The measure did not improve the standard of public life, and even Dr. Theal, who is disposed to give the brightest view of Dutch development in the Colony, declares that it would be incorrect to say that the change "raised the tone of debate in Parliament or improved the administration of justice in the slightest degree." As a matter of fact it helped still further to isolate the Dutch people, encouraged the publication of Dutch newspapers, helped the progress of Dutch political organization in Parliament and in the Afrikander Bund, and promoted the use of a patois which was very far, indeed, from being the mother-tongue of the race.

General Progress

Meanwhile, Cape Colony was making considerable material and general progress. It was largely an English development, as the Dutch population still adhered to the slow-going ways of its ancestors, and cattle and sheep remained the chief support of the farmers under British rule as they did of those beyond the Orange or the Vaal. At the beginning of the century, when the Colony finally came under the control of Great Britain, its products had been limited to grain, cattle and wine—the total exports being under half a million of dollars in value. At present they include aloes, coffee, copper ore, ostrich feathers, dried fruits, guano, angora hair, hides, horns, skins, tobacco, wine, wool and diamonds. In 1875 the vines of the Colony yielded four and a half million gallons of brandy. In the same year three million pounds of tobacco were produced; while the Colony, as a whole, possessed eleven million sheep, twenty-two thousand ostriches, over three million goats and a million horned cattle. The trade of the country has always been chiefly with Great Britain and carried in British vessels. Facts and Figures Between 1861 and 1886 the imports doubled and the exports trebled. From 1872 to 1897 they rose by leaps and bounds—the imports increasing by $67,000,000 and the exports by $66,000,000. Since English agricultural settlement and work has increased the growth of grain in some of the richer regions has been considerable. Wheat, maize, oats, barley and millet are common crops, while rice and cotton are grown in certain localities—the latter being still an experimental production. Merino sheep have largely taken the place of the big-tailed sheep of the early Dutch settlers. The following table,[2] beginning with 1854 and including 1872, as the years marked by important constitutional changes, will illustrate the general progress in this connection:

                                  1854         1872          1897

  Receipts,                    $1,479,010  $ 5,770,205  $ 36,949,830
  Expenditures,                 1,562,605    4,612,840    34,261,930
  Public Debt,                    none       7,755,470   136,412,025
  Shipping, tons (inwards),     1,202,715    2,412,780    32,101,005
              " (outwards),     1,197,975    2,353,455    32,166,020
  Imports,                      7,740,185   21,943,640    89,659,390
  Exports,                      3,822,305   30,347,645    97,181,520

[2] Condensed from official figures in the Statistical Register. Colony of the Cape of Good Hope. 1897.

In 1868 the declared value of diamonds exported was $750, while from 1881 onwards the export averaged twenty millions a year—in 1897 being $22,271,880. In 1872 the export of wool reached its highest point, and exceeded sixteen millions in value. Since then it has diminished, owing to the effect of frequent droughts upon the sheep, and, in 1897, was but little over seven millions. Of all the exports Angora hair is now the most important, and excels gold, diamonds and precious stones. In 1857 its export was about $5,000 in value; forty years later it was $60,900,000. The population had meantime been growing slowly. The Census of 1865 gave the Europeans as numbering 181,592, and the natives 314,789. Ten years later the figures were 236,783 and 484,201, respectively, and in 1891 the Census of that year showed an increase to 382,198 Europeans and 1,217,762 natives. How far these figures are accurate it is difficult to say. There has been an objection to differentiating between European races in the official returns—partly from the English portion not liking to appear in so marked a minority and partly, perhaps, from the Dutch themselves not desiring to have their full strength known. And it is not improbable that the last Census very greatly understated the numbers of the latter; as seems to have also been the case with the figures of Boer population in the two Republics.

Other Statistics

In other branches of development there have been marked evidences of advancement; though in the figures which follow, and notably in connection with railways and banking, the English part of the population is again the principal progressive element. In 1860 there were 225 schools and 18,757 scholars, and in 1897 2,358 schools and 119,812 scholars. The railways were taken over by the Government in 1873 to the extent of 64 miles. In 1897 the railways under Government control covered 1901 miles, with total receipts of $15,350,000 and expenditures of $9,500,000. This particular branch of progress was greatly assisted by the Orange Free State under President Brand. Telegraph lines, with 19 stations, 781 miles of wire sending 15,500 messages in the year, were also assumed by the Government in 1873, and in 1897 there were 426 stations, 18,631 miles of wire, and 2,392,503 messages despatched. The fixed and floating deposits in the banks of the Colony amounted, in 1865, to ten million dollars and the bills and notes under discount to over fifteen millions. In 1897 the fixed deposits were $13,500,000, the floating deposits $24,000,000, and the discounts $17,000,000, in round numbers. The chief railways in the Colony start from Cape Town, Port Elizabeth and East London, and the main line into the interior now reaches Buluwayo. If Mr. Cecil Rhodes ever succeeds in the aim of his life, it will eventually reach Cairo, and thus connect the Cape with Egypt.

The Colony from a Religious Standpoint

Until the discovery of gold in the Transvaal the British emigration to South Africa was never extensive, and even since that time it has not been greatly added to so far as Cape Colony is concerned. The total of those sent from England between 1873 and 1884 was only 23,337. From a religious standpoint the condition of the Colony is somewhat complex. There are two Church of England Dioceses, and the Church is very popular amongst the English part of the community, whilst its organization is excellent—a fact largely due to the work done during many years by Dr. Gray, Bishop of Cape Town. It is in close touch with the Church at home, and in 1874 had 45,000 adherents, of whom 19,000 were colored people. The Roman Catholic Church at that time numbered 8,000, and the Dutch Reformed Church, which is, of course, the Church of the Boers, included 132,000 adherents. In 1891 there were, according to the Census, 186,073 white members of the Dutch Reformed congregations in the Colony and 24,441 colored; 46,114 white adherents of the Church of England and an equal number of colored; 20,215 white adherents of Wesleyan Methodism and over a hundred thousand colored; and 12,000 Roman Catholics, mostly white; with the balance of the population scattering amongst minor denominations and the various sections of the Lutheran Church.

The most prominent public man of British extraction in the earlier period of the history of Cape Colony was the Hon. William Porter, C.M.G., who died in 1880 after many years' seclusion at his home in Ireland. A native and barrister of Erin, he was Attorney-General of Cape Colony as far back as 1839, and held office for a long period prior to the attainment of responsible government. The constitution of 1854 was largely his creation, and his personality, combined with great natural eloquence, made him a strong place in the hearts of the people. Three times he refused the position of Chief Justice, and, in 1872, declined the office of Prime Minister under the newly established system of complete self-government. Bishop Gray of Cape Town, who died in the year just mentioned, was also one of its great public figures. During quarter of a century, and amidst innumerable ecclesiastical storms and political complications, he administered the affairs of the Anglican Church, and left it in a strongly organized position as the "Church of South Africa," with its own Synod, prosperous finances and growing membership. Sir Walter Curry, of Cape Mounted Rifles fame; Sir Sydney Smith Bell, a learned Judge of twenty-three years' labor; Sir Christoffel Josephus Brand, the first Speaker of the House of Assembly; the Hon. Robert Godlonton, M.L.C., and Thomas Burt Glanville, M.L.A.; Hon. Saul Solomon, M.L.A., Sir Andries Stockenstrom, Bart., M.L.A., Hon. J. W. Leonard, M.L.A., Hon Jonathan Ayliff, M.L.A., Hon. George Wood, M.L.C., the Hon. Andries Stockenstrom, Judge of the Supreme Court, and John Noble, C.M.G., were all men who left their mark upon the history of the Colony.

After William Porter, the most prominent of the earlier Colonists, was the Hon. John Paterson. A Scotchman by birth, he went out to South Africa in 1840, and became a teacher, a journalist, a capitalist, a banker, and, finally, during many years was a keen politician. A member of both Houses in turn, a strong advocate of Confederation and railway development, a progressive leader in every sense of the word, his death by drowning in 1880 left a serious void in the life of the Colony. Of Sir John Charles Molteno, the first Premier at the Cape, much might be said. An Englishman by birth, he was a Colonist from the age of sixteen (1830) until his death in 1886. Participating in different Kaffir wars, fighting for responsible government, struggling for railway extension, sharing in all the ups and downs of local political life, he became Prime Minister in 1872, and retired from public life in 1883, after receiving the honor of knighthood from the Queen.

In later years and in the development of Dutch individuality the Afrikander Bund did some measure of good.

Some Prominent Leaders

Apart from its influence in arousing a racial passion which was innate, but as yet sluggish, amongst the Cape Boers, it had detached them somewhat from their previous position of absolute isolation, and, under the local leadership of Mr. J. H. Hofmeyr and others, had brought them into political and constitutional action. That this growing knowledge and experience was ultimately twisted by the influence of President Kruger of the Transvaal and President Reitz of the Free State into an increased and active aversion to Great Britain and the English was the misfortune of the situation. Meantime, however, the movement taught the Dutch something of the freer life of British politics and brought some able men to the front. Mr. Hofmeyr could have been Premier at almost any time during these years, but seems to have been without personal ambition of the official kind. Sir John Henry de Villiers was the first Attorney-General under responsible government, President of the Legislative Council for many years, and has been Chief Justice of the Colony since 1873. He was a Delegate in 1894, with Mr. Hofmeyr, to the Colonial Conference at Ottawa, and three years later was appointed a member of the Judicial Committee of the British Privy Council—the highest Court of Appeal in the Empire—as part of a new policy which included Canadian, Australian and South African members in that important body. He has long represented the best type of loyal, cultured and able Dutchmen at the Cape. His name indicates the strain of Huguenot blood which so curiously mingles with many of the Dutch families of the Cape.

Sir Pieter Hendrik Faure, K.C.M.G., is another Dutch leader of the same type—loyal to the finger-tips and progressive in ideal and in practice and as a follower of Cecil Rhodes. He was in the latter's Ministry from 1890 to 1896, and in the succeeding Government of Sir Gordon Sprigg until 1898. The Hon. Jacobus Wilhelmus Sauer has been a very different style of political leader. A thorough Dutchman and enthusiastic member of the Afrikander Bund, he helped to break up the first Rhodes' Ministry, in which he had been included as a part of the Premier's conciliatory policy, and he is now a member of very doubtful loyalty in the Schreiner Government. He has declined a knighthood. Mr. Wilhelm Philip Schreiner has not had that opportunity, but he has accepted a C.M.G., or Companionship in the Order of St. Michael and St. George. He was a member of the second Rhodes' Ministry (1893) for a short time, and, in 1898, when the Bund had become a strong political factor and had overpowered Rhodes and his friendly successor—Sir Gordon Sprigg—at the polls, he became, on October 14th of that year, Premier of Cape Colony as well as the local leader of the Bund in practical succession to Hofmeyr. As events developed in the direction of racial hostilities in South Africa, and as political power at the Cape came to centre in the hands of the Bund Ministry, Mr. Hofmeyr's influence has naturally diminished and that of Messrs. Schreiner, Sauer and Te Water increased. The latter, the Hon. Thomas Nicholas German Te Water, B.A., M.D., has been, for some time, a leader of the Afrikander party, and, though a graduate of Edinburgh University, a student of Berlin, Vienna and other Universities and a man of culture, he also has become enmeshed in the web of racial or Dutch ideals. He was for two years in the last Sprigg Ministry, and is now in that of Mr. Schreiner.

Mr. Cecil Rhodes

First and foremost of all English leaders in South Africa, and ranking higher in practical power and developed policy than any British Governor or ruler in its history, is Mr. Cecil John Rhodes. He has been in the Parliament of Cape Colony since 1880, and was for a short time, in 1884, Treasurer in the Scanlen Ministry. He held no other official post until he became Chairman of the British South Africa Company in 1889, and Premier of the Colony in 1890. Of the other Prime Ministers of the Cape Sir Thomas Upington was a clever Irish Roman Catholic lawyer, a brilliant speaker and strong Imperialist, who became Attorney-General in 1878, after he had only been a couple of years in the Colony. Six years later he was Premier. Sir John Gordon Sprigg is an Englishman by birth and a politician of acknowledged personal probity. He is, however, described by a well-known writer on Colonial affairs[3] as a political opportunist who has changed his opinions upon various subjects, and who generally believes in being in accord with the majority wherever an opening may occur. This opinion arises somewhat from the fact that his policy of recent years has been in accord with that of Rhodes—up to 1895—and was very conciliatory toward the Dutch majority, while his own views were known to be strongly British. Sir James Sivewright Sir James Sivewright has not been Premier of the Colony, but was the pioneer head and front of its telegraph system—a native of Scotland and a graduate of Aberdeen—and was a member of the first Rhodes Ministry and the third Sprigg Ministry. One other politician must be mentioned—the Hon. John Xavier Merriman. A native of England, a son of Bishop Merriman of Grahamstown, a graduate of Oxford, and an early Tory and loyalist of strong views and enthusiastic adherence to Rhodes; he has developed into a Radical and a follower of Schreiner and the Afrikander Bund. It has been a remarkable change, presents a curious combination of racial inconsistencies, and has made him intensely unpopular amongst the Progressive, or Rhodes' party of recent years, as well as amongst the English element of the troubled present. He has been a member of the Scanlen Ministry, the first Rhodes Ministry, and belongs to the present Schreiner Government.

[3] Problems of Greater Britain. By Sir Charles W. Dilke, Bart., M.P. London, 1890.

The Parties of To-day

Meanwhile the parties of to-day had been developing—the Afrikander party and the Progressives. The former included Dutch leaders such as Hofmeyr, Schreiner, Te Water and Sauer, and a few Englishmen like J. X. Merriman. The latter was composed of English politicians such as Rhodes, Sprigg and Upington, and a few Dutchmen like Sir P. Faure. The policy of the former is and has been openly for some time voiced in the phrase: "Africa for the Afrikander." The policy of the latter is that of territorial expansion—as in the annexations to Cape Colony of Griqualand West and Bechuanaland—and of British supremacy throughout South Africa. Of course there have been many changes and developments, and it has only been within the past few years (1896-1900) that the policy of conciliating the Dutch has been in great measure dropped owing to its apparent impracticability. For the time being the Afrikander party is in power. It triumphed in the general elections of 1898, and the Legislative Assembly at Cape Town has a Dutch majority, the Ministry is emphatically a Bund Government, and the Legislative Council has fifteen Boer members to eight English. Such has been the final development of equal rights and British constitutional freedom in this South African Colony.


Imperial Policy in South Africa.

The Early Governors of Cape Colony

Like most of England's Colonial Governors those of the Cape were, from the time of Lord Caledon's arrival in 1807, men of character, standing and ability. They might make mistakes in policy, they might occasionally be led astray by local advisers and they were always liable to censure or recall from a Colonial Office which too often judged local conditions from the standpoint of Downing Street rather than by a clear comprehension of the difference between struggling pioneer communities and a wealthy and matured home society. But their intentions were good, they were never known to be, or even charged with being corrupt, and they usually had a degree of experience in public life which was naturally useful to a new country with crude institutions. Lord Caledon improved the postal system and established Circuit Courts for the better administration of justice in outlying districts. Sir John Cradock, who came out in 1811, established schools in the country regions and tried to control the nomadic tendencies of the Dutch farmers by making them freeholders of farms ranging from 6000 to 20,000 acres in extent. Lord Charles Somerset—a brother of the Duke of Beaufort and of Lord Raglan, the well-known Crimean General of after-years—was appointed in 1814 and carried out many measures of value to the infant Colony. He founded new townships, promoted industrial development, encouraged the importation of sheep and himself brought out Merinos whom he established in sundry breeding-farms. At the same time he broached and carried out the important scheme of immigration known in its result as the Albany Settlement and as one of the chief factors in the progress of the period. His large salary of fifty thousand dollars, paid by the Local Government was, therefore, well earned and though an unpopular and arbitrary man he certainly appears to have done good service to the community.

Good Service to the Community

In 1826 Sir Lowry Cole succeeded to the position and attempted for a time the difficult and dangerous task of Anglicizing the population. Eight years afterwards General Sir Benjamin D'Urban, who had seen military service in Canada, and elsewhere, was appointed to carry out the slave emancipation policy. Then came Sir George Napier, under whose régime a splendid system of roads was created and, in 1847, General Sir Harry Smith, a most popular and able Governor. He was followed by Sir George Cathcart in 1852. All of these rulers had to deal with native or Boer wars and none of them had much time to spare for the cultivation of material progress in the generally harassed country. From 1854 to 1862, however, Sir George Grey administered the affairs of the Colony and to this remarkable man South Africa owes much, and would have owed more had he not been hampered and overruled at every turn by Imperial fears of a policy of expansion and Imperial objections to the assumption of further responsibilities.

This was the period when Little Englanders abounded in the mother country; when Tories and Radicals were agreed in opposing any added links to the chain of Empire; when the masses believed that the manufacturing industries and commerce which they saw advancing by leaps and bounds on every side were entirely independent of political boundaries and national allegiance; when the markets of the world seemed for a time to belong to England, and the markets of the Colonies were in comparison absolutely insignificant; when public men like John Bright and Richard Cobden, Cornewall Lewis and Sir William Molesworth, Lord Brougham and Lord Ellenborough, Robert Lowe and even Lord John Russell, spoke of a future in which the Colonies would be independent, and of a present which was simply preliminary to a destiny which they did not regret. The popular idol of that day was Trade, as the popular idol of the last days of the century is Empire. The swing of the pendulum has come indeed, but it has brought with it a war which the acceptance of Sir George Grey's policy at this time would have prevented.

England's Unsettled Colonies

There is, of course, much to excuse this view of the Colonies in, and about, 1850. The British-American Provinces were still in a dissatisfied and disorganized condition from the Rebellion of 1837, the racial troubles of 1848, and the fiscal difficulties which followed the repeal of the Corn Laws and Preferential duties by England. The value and resources of Australia were practically unknown. It was still the home of convicts, and had only just entered upon a period of rushing settlement and turbulent mining successes in which the problems of government were extremely complicated. South Africa had been the scene of nothing but war and trouble. All the later Governors had been recalled one after the other, and their policy frequently reversed without either conciliating the Colonists or controlling the restless masses of native population along the ever-changing frontiers. As a rule the earlier policy toward the Kaffirs had been one of half-measures. The first plan of alliances with native chiefs broke down, and in Lord Charles Somerset's time had ended in conflict. Then came the Boer wars with the Zulus in Natal and a British effort to protect the natives against the invaders' onslaughts. Sir Benjamin D'Urban's policy in 1835, after the Kaffir war of that time, was the establishment of a living frontier along the east of Cape Colony, which should be sufficiently strong to resist the pressure of the savage masses from beyond. A line of European settlers was to be established, and beyond that a body of loyal Kaffirs supported by a string of forts. Before a Committee of the House of Commons this was afterwards declared by D'Urban's successor, Sir G. Cathcart, to have been a wise and necessary policy. But, unfortunately, it involved an advance from the Fish to the Kei River, and such a thing the Colonial Office would not tolerate. The policy was reversed and the territory in question given back to the Kaffirs.

England's Unsettled Colonies

Sir George Grey (1854-61) took a different line of action and policy. Everything that he did was bold and determined. He acted first, assumed the responsibility next, and made it necessary for the Colonial Office to either approve, or else recall, a Governor who had for the first time in a quarter of a century proved a successful South African ruler. This statement is not necessarily a reflection upon previous Governors. Sir Benjamin D'Urban was overruled by Downing Street. Sir George Napier went out simply to reverse a certain policy under detailed instructions. General Sir Peregrine Maitland had distinguished himself as a soldier, had made an excellent Governor of Upper Canada and of Nova Scotia, and was no more responsible for the Kaffir war which caused his inevitable recall than was the Premier of Great Britain. General Sir Harry Smith, the victor of Aliwal in India, and the only British officer who before 1899 had won a direct victory over the Boers, had in him the making of a statesman, as his annexation of the Orange River region proved. But the war with Sandili brought about his recall, and a very few years also saw the reversal of his policy toward the Boers, the creation of the independent Free State, the establishment of the Transvaal, and the foundation of endless opportunities for trouble in the future. For these actions the Government of the Earl of Aberdeen and the Secretaryship of the Duke of Newcastle must always hold an unpleasant responsibility. Sir George Grey did what he could to rectify the errors which had been made. He was instinct with the Imperial idea, and, although doomed to fail in some measure in the attainment of his great ambitions, none the less did splendid work for the Empire. The men at the Colonial Office were constantly changing, and the only continuity in their policy was a common desire to be relieved from any new developments and fresh responsibilities. Politics did not come into the matter at all, as one party was then as ignorant of Colonial requirements and as indifferent to Colonial possibilities as the other.



Governors and Colonial Office Differ

During Grey's seven years' administration of the Cape, for instance, Sidney Herbert (afterwards Lord Herbert of Lea), Lord John Russell, Sir William Molesworth, Henry Labouchere (afterwards Lord Taunton), Sir Edward Bulwer-Lytton, Lord Stanley (afterwards Earl of Derby), and the Duke of Newcastle, succeeded each other at the Colonial Office; while Sir Frederick Rogers (afterwards Lord Blachford) was Permanent Under-Secretary during part of the period. Molesworth, Russell, Stanley and Labouchere were all tainted strongly at this time with the Manchester School theory, and Sir F. Rogers who, in his more permanent position, had greater influence than all the passing Secretaries of State put together, is upon record as having advised his chief, on more than one occasion, to encourage the Colonies in every line of thought and action which would develop separatist and independence sentiment. It was little wonder, therefore, that Sir George Grey failed in his effort to weld the infant States and Colonies—first of South Africa and afterwards of Australasia—in a federal union. Had he succeeded in the one it would have averted much bloodshed and racial hatred, and in the other much of useless controversy, crude constitution-mongering and demagogic development. "I believe I should have succeeded," he declared in bitterness of heart many years afterwards; but the statesman proposed, the Colonial Office disposed. For years the whole scope of the suggested federation was discussed between the Governor and the Imperial authorities. The former suggested the constitution of the then federated islands of New Zealand as a practical basis, and even obtained a Resolution of the Free State Volksraad in favor of the general principle. The consent of Cape Colony would have been unanimous. Natal was ready, and it is not likely that the conflicting and tiny republics into which the Transvaal was then divided would have long resisted Free State influence and the personal magnetism which Sir George Grey could have brought to bear upon them. Even had their deeper prejudices and denser ignorance prevailed for a time in the perpetuation of their isolation, the increased prosperity of the Free State under the new conditions would have ultimately brought them into the union.

Federal Union Proposed

When the Cape Parliament met in 1859 the Governor placed before it the Resolutions of the Orange River Volksraad, and in his accompanying address said: "You would, in my belief, confer a lasting benefit upon Great Britain and upon the inhabitants of this country if you could succeed in devising a form of federal union under which the several provinces composing it should have full and free scope of action left to them, through their own local Governments and Legislatures, upon all subjects relating to their individual prosperity or happiness; whilst they should act under a general federal Government in relation to all points which concern the general safety or weal." Along this path alone lay safety and success for the South African States. A copy of the address was sent to the Colonial Office with full explanations and comments, and then came a reply expressing great dissatisfaction at the question having been brought before the Legislature at Cape Town without authority from the Ministers at home. Sir George claimed, on the other hand, to have indirectly understood that the policy proposed had the approval of the Colonial Department. There seems, however, to be little doubt from the terms of the general correspondence that he did really try to force the hands of the Imperial Government in this matter; as one which he deemed essential to the welfare of the Empire, and for the success of which he was willing to risk personal humiliation in a bold effort to stem the tide of anti-colonialism then swelling on the shores of British thought and sentiment. Government's Disapproval of Grey's Policy The result, however, was his recall in a dispatch from Sir Edward Bulwer-Lytton, dated 4th June, 1859, and containing an expression of the high opinion held by the Government of Sir George Grey's endowments and patriotism, but explaining that "they could not safely continue to entrust with your present functions one committed, as you have committed yourself, to the policy of which they disapprove on a subject of the first importance; nor could they expect from you the necessary assistance when steps, which you have taken without that authority, have of necessity to be retraced." Sir George Grey's Vindication The reply to this was dated July 20, 1859, and constitutes a distinct and complete vindication of his general policy. In its closing paragraph is summed up the situation facing more than one Governor of Cape Colony, or High Commissioner to South Africa, before and since his time:

"Can a man, who, on a distant and exposed frontier, surrounded by difficulties, with invasions of Her Majesty's territories threatening on several points, assume a responsibility which he, guided by many circumstances which he can neither record nor remember as they come hurrying on one after another, be fairly judged of in respect of the amount of responsibility he assumes by those who, in the quiet of distant offices in London, know nothing of the anxieties or nature of the difficulties he had to encounter? If Her Majesty's possessions and Her Majesty's subjects are saved from threatening dangers, and they gratefully acknowledge this, whilst the Empire receives no hurt, is it a fitting return that the only reward he should receive should be the highest punishment which it is in the power of Her Majesty's Ministers to inflict? This may be the reward they bestow; but the true one of the consciousness of difficult duties performed to the best of his ability, with great personal sacrifice, they cannot take from him."

Grey Reinstalled by Palmerston

But Sir George Grey had friends of greater power than the novelist politician at the Colonial Office or his narrow-visioned assistant. From the time, in 1857, when he had diverted troops to India, which had stopped at Cape Town on their way to China, and by this seemingly reckless assumption of responsibility had enabled Sir Colin Campbell to relieve Lucknow and to save the situation in those terrible days of mutiny, he was given the lasting friendship and appreciation of the Queen. His further policy of conciliating the natives by personal visits and explanations of the situation; his wise trust in the friendship of savage chiefs whom he knew often understood honor and practiced it better than the white man himself; and his stripping the country of troops and munitions of war in order to give additional help in the Indian crisis; naturally added to the esteem which his first and most daring act had inspired in the mind of a Sovereign who was, even in those days, an Imperial statesman in the highest sense of the word. Of his action in changing the route of the troops from Hong Kong to Calcutta, and sending Cape troops and artillery and stores and specie to India in time to be of the most valuable service, the Queen commanded Mr. Labouchere, Colonial Secretary, to express privately to Sir George Grey "her high appreciation" as well as in a more formal manner. Later on she hesitated for some time in giving her assent to his recall, and short of precipitating a Cabinet crisis did refuse. A little later the Derby Government was defeated, and as soon as Lord Palmerston came into power Grey was promptly reinstalled, and, on his arrival in London, was informed by the Prince Consort of the Queen's "approval of the measures taken by him and the policy of confederation which he had pursued," and her opinion that the plans proposed were "beneficent, worthy of a great ruler, honorable to himself and advantageous to her people." Speaking at Sydney, New South Wales, in 1891, Sir George Grey referred to this matter, and declared that "one person in the Empire held that I was right, and that person was the Queen."

Advancement During Grey's Governorship

Back he went to South Africa amid general rejoicings at the Cape, but with the refusal of the new Government at home to take any steps whatever in the direction of federation. But, as if to expressly mark the Queen's sympathy with Grey's Imperial ideas, Prince Alfred was sent out in 1860 to make a tour of South Africa, and to evoke, as he did, the same sentiments of loyalty as were aroused by the visit of the Prince of Wales to Canada at about the same time. Cape Colony, Natal and the Orange Free State were visited with due ceremony by the Governor and the Prince, and at Bloemfontein one of the arches of welcome contained the significant motto: "Loyal, though discarded." During the succeeding year Sir George Grey finally left the Cape to take up the Governorship of New Zealand, at a critical period in its troubles with the Maoris, and at a time when the Duke of Newcastle, Colonial Secretary, had given him to understand that the Governor-Generalship of Canada and ultimately of India were open to him after leaving South Africa. But duty seemed to require him in New Zealand, and thither he went to live for years as Governor, for other years as Prime Minister, and for a still longer period as a private citizen. During the eight years in which he had ruled Cape Colony he had inaugurated representative institutions and established schools, libraries, hospitals, public works, roads and railways. The Cape Town and Wellington Railway, the first line in the Colony, was his enterprise. The great ostrich-farming industry of the future was started by him. Above all, he won the affection and respect of the most varied types of native races, and the after voluntary submission of Moshesh, the Basuto, to British authority may be largely traced to the friendly feeling inspired by a visit which Grey paid to the rocky heights of Thaba Bosigo. In his greatest aim he had failed, and in later days he became eccentric and erratic in his views; but none the less does South Africa owe much to the life and memory of Sir George Grey.

His successor, Sir Philip E. Wodehouse, was a man of ability who had been Governor of British Guiana, and was afterwards for five years Governor of Bombay. His administration was signalized by the inauguration of a new and wiser policy on the part of the Colonial Office. Whether it was that the Manchester School, in reaching the meridian of its power during these years, had temporarily overlooked South Africa; or that it had become apparent even to the Colonial Office that the man on the spot must be allowed some latitude; or that Sir Philip Wodehouse was more trusted and less feared by the Home authorities than Grey; is not visible upon the surface. But the fact remains that in 1865 British Kaffraria was finally incorporated with Cape Colony, and definite responsibility assumed for its government and control, and that in 1868 Basutoland was annexed to British dominions—not to the Cape Colony—and perhaps the most rugged and strongest natural fortress in the world prevented from falling into Boer hands. Sir Henry Barkly, an experienced Australian Governor, assumed charge in 1870, and a year later Griqualand West, with its vast potentialities as a diamond-producing country and as the only available British route to the far interior, was annexed and placed, like Basutoland, under the authority of the Cape Governor as High Commissioner for South Africa and direct representative of the Crown and the Colonial Office.

Natal a Separate Colony

Meantime Natal, which had up to 1856 been under the control of the Governor at the Cape, was in that year made a separate Colony governed from the Colonial Office under a Lieut.-Governor, and with only partially representative institutions. Zululand and the Zulus were to this region what the Kosas had been to the Cape settlers so far as the fear of raids and the dangers of war were concerned. Of actual and serious war there was but little from the time of the Boers until 1879. Of trouble in management, however, there was abundance because of the number of Zulus within as well as from the Zulus without the strict limits of Colonial territory. In 1873 Cetywayo was installed under authority of the British Government as head of the Zulu nation, and from this time dates the inauguration of the serious situation which culminated six years later and ended in the annexation of a large part of that region in 1887, and the protectorate established over the sea-coast country, called Tongaland, in the same year. These two events marked a singularly wise expression of Imperial policy, as they checked and prevented the realization of the greatest ambition of the Transvaal Boers—the obtaining of a sea-port. While this extension was taking place in the east under the general administration of Sir Hercules Robinson (afterwards Lord Rosmead) as High Commissioner, and the whole sea-coast region from Portuguese territory to Cape Town was being made British, a similar expansion had occured in the north and west.

Zululand Annexed

It was to a great extent forced upon the British authorities by Boer aggressiveness which, after the war of 1880-1 and the succeeding Conventions, had become very marked. The Transvaal Dutch first trekked into Zululand when it had been placed again under Cetywayo's rule—after the war of 1879 and in the useless hope of avoiding its annexation—and endeavored to establish there another Boer republic. In order to prevent this and to protect the Zulus, under pledges previously made, the Imperial Government had to formally annex the greater part of the region. Then the Transvaalers turned to the west, and a large number trekked into Bechuanaland, threatened to cut off British territory and trade from the interior and menaced the independence of Khama—a wise and friendly ruler to the north of Bechuanaland. Sir Charles Warren's expedition of 1884 was despatched by the Imperial Government and checked this movement, though at the serious risk of war, and forced the Boers to recede. Bechuanaland was then made a Crown Colony. Khama's Country was proclaimed, in 1885, a British Protectorate, while in the preceding year, the important naval station of St. Lucia Bay, just south of Zululand and about the ownership of which there was some doubt, had also been annexed. Four years previously Griqualand West had been taken from the direct control of the Colonial Office and annexed to Cape Colony, and, in 1895, the Dutch of the Cape had recovered somewhat from the angry feelings provoked by the Warren expedition and the repulse of Boer ambitions which its success involved, and permitted Mr. Rhodes to arrange the annexation of all Bechuanaland to the Colony and its consequent removal from the control of the Governor as High Commissioner to his charge as the constitutional Governor of the Cape.

Mr. Rhodes Premier of Cape Colony

This curious combination of duties had been first created in 1847 when Sir Henry Pottinger, for a few brief months, held the position of Governor of Cape Colony and High Commissioner for South Africa. The latter position simply involved, at that time, certain powers of control over border tribes and certain specified authority in negotiation. There were then no recognized independent States in South Africa, and no self-governing powers at the Cape to complicate matters. In time these conditions developed, and yet the Governor of the Cape, responsible to his Ministers and Parliament for every detail of local government, remained apart from that Parliament as the centre of a thousand strings of diplomacy and negotiation throughout all South Africa and the Governor of various regions, with undefined powers and with responsibility only to the Colonial Office or the Crown. In 1889, for example, Cape Colony was under complete self-government, and Natal only partially so—the latter having a Governor of its own. Basutoland, Pondoland, Bechuanaland, the Khama Country and the sphere of British influence to the far north were under the Governor of Cape Colony as High Commissioner only. In the same year the latter region came under the direct control of Cecil Rhodes as Chairman of the British South Africa Company, and Mr. Rhodes, in 1890, became Premier of Cape Colony and the responsible adviser of the Governor. Zululand and Tongaland were at the same time subject to the joint control of the Governors of Cape Colony and Natal, though not in any way governed by the Ministers of either official. Meantime, Swaziland (northwest of Tongaland) was managed by alternate British and Boer Committees, and ultimately was allowed to pass into the hands of the Transvaal; while the latter Republic was nominally under the Queen's Suzerainty and the Orange Free State was absolutely independent.

Gold not the Cause of Expansion

Such a complication, it is safe to say, never existed in any other region of the world, or in any other record of colonization and expanding empire. That government was possible at all reflects great credit upon the administrators, and shows that, as years passed on, the Colonial Office had at last risen to the level of its responsibilities, had grasped the true spirit and the absolute necessity of Imperial growth, and had learned that the men in charge of distant regions must have the confidence of rulers at home and a policy with some degree of continuity in plan and principle and detail. What really caused this change in policy and the resulting expansion of Great Britain in South Africa is an interesting historical question. The position of late years has been so different from the developments of the fifties and from the dominating ideas and ideals of the Manchester School of thought that some explanation is necessary. The discovery of gold and diamonds does not afford an adequate one. There was none of either in Basutoland, or Zululand, or Bechuanaland, or Tongaland, or in the great regions which the Chartered Company had acquired and held under the Crown. Much was due to the slow but sure subsidence of the Little Englanders after 1872, when Mr. Disraeli in a famous speech expressed the first formal antagonism of a great party, as a whole, to any further playing with questions and principles of Imperial unity. More was due to the sustained Imperialism of his succeeding Ministry, to the purchase of the Suez Canal shares and increasing public appreciation of the value of the Cape in connection with the route to India, and to the growing popular comprehension of the value of India itself. More still was due to the rise of a new school of British statesmen, in all parties, who had become instinct with the spirit and pride of Empire and inheritors of the sentiment which Disraeli in his later years, and under his new designation of Lord Beaconsfield, so strenuously propagated. The Imperial Federation League, formed in 1884 with strong support from leaders such as the Earl of Rosebery, Mr. W. H. Smith, Mr. Edward Stanhope, Mr. Edward Gibson, Mr. W. E. Forster, Sir John Lubbock, Sir Lyon Playfair and Lord Tennyson, constituted a most important educative influence. Writers like Froude and Dilke and Seeley took the place of philosophic disintegrationists of the Molesworth and Cornwall Lewis school; whilst Radical politicians of the Chamberlain and Cowan type came gradually into touch upon this subject with aristocratic Imperialists such as Salisbury, Carnarvon and Rosebery.

Cecil Rhodes and Expansion

The rise of Cecil Rhodes and his enthusiastic perception of the necessity for South African expansion and unity had also much to do with the change, while the discovery of diamonds did of course have some effect in creating, at the time, a fresh interest in a country hitherto chiefly known for wars and natives and missionary explorations. So too with the natural rivalry aroused by German and French and Italian efforts at acquisition of African territory. The Transvaal annexation and war, 1877-81, had an effect also of considerable importance. It projected South Africa into the wide publicity of a place in British politics, and taught many opponents and supporters of Mr. Gladstone more than they had dreamt of in all their previous philosophies. The result was unfortunate as a whole, but in a somewhat undefinable degree it cleared the way for a knowledge of conditions and necessities which made the expansion policy of 1884-95 possible. The sending of Sir Bartle Frere to the Cape in 1877 was an illustration of the Imperialistic principles which actuated the Beaconsfield Government. No more brilliant and honorable administrator had ever graced the service of the Crown in India than Sir Bartle Frere. He was loved by subordinates, respected by all races and creeds, trusted by Ministers at home, and, like all the greater Governors of the Empire, was a strong believer in the closer union of its varied portions. Reference to his connection with the Confederation question, the Zulu war and the Transvaal annexation has been made elsewhere, and must be still more expanded in another chapter. But, something should be said here as to his general treatment by the Imperial authorities. He went out with distinct powers in connection with the unification of South Africa, and, with the additional ones given Sir Theophilus Shepstone in Natal, held practically a free hand.

Gladstone and the Boers

The annexation of the Transvaal and the subjugation of Cetywayo were duly accomplished, but success to the policy as a whole was prevented by the war of 1881; and the latter was greatly encouraged, if not practically caused, by the eloquent objections urged in England by Mr. Gladstone. There seems to have been no very clear comprehension of the issue, and there was certainly no accurate knowledge of the Boer character and history, in Mr. Gladstone's mind. They were simply to him a pastoral people asking, and then fighting, for a freedom for which they had struggled steadily during half a century. He knew nothing of the land and cattle and liberties stolen by them from unfortunate native races; of the bitter and ignorant hatred felt by them towards England and British civilization; of the contempt for missionaries and religious or political equality; or of their ambition, even in those days of weakness, to expand north and east and west and to cut off British power to the north and eventually in the south. He never had an Imperial imagination and cared little for the ideal of an united South Africa under the Crown. An historical imagination he did possess, as was shown in his devotion to the cause of Greek independence and his willing transfer of the Ionian Isles, in earlier years, to the new Hellenic Kingdom. But that was based upon his love of Homer and ancient Greek literature—not upon so modern and material a matter as the welfare of British settlers in a distant and storm-tossed colony.

Governor's Restraint of Boers

However that may be, his eloquent attacks upon the Government hampered their further action, and when the Transvaal rebellion broke out Sir Bartle Frere—to the lasting discredit of the Administration—was promptly recalled. Then and to-day his name is perhaps the most loved in the list of British rulers at the Cape—not even excepting Sir George Grey. In the Diary of Prince Alfred Victor and Prince George of Wales, written during their cruise around the world, in 1880-81, there is a reference to the Governor who had just left the Cape of interest in this connection: "Ask any Colonist, haphazard—Afrikander or English—and in ninety-nine cases out of a hundred you will be told that he was conscientious, able, far-seeing, magnanimous, truthful and loyal." The reversal of his policy followed, and was embodied in the Convention of 1881. The new Governor and High Commissioner, Sir Hercules G. R. Robinson, was a man of considerable ability and of prolonged experience. After the settlement of the Transvaal troubles he was given a certain amount of latitude in dealing with the natives and in controlling the Boer disposition to seize territory in every outstanding direction. The annexations and protectorates already alluded to followed in due course, and Sir Hercules claimed before he left Cape Town in 1889, after eight years of administration, that: "As Governor of a self-governing Colony I have endeavored to walk within the lines of the Constitution; and as Her Majesty's High Commissioner for South Africa I have, whilst striving to act with equal justice and consideration to the claims and susceptibilities of all classes and races, endeavored at the same time to establish on a broad and secure basis British authority as the paramount power in South Africa."

To this claim there was certainly one exception. The treatment of the Swaziland question during these years was a distinct evasion of responsibility on the part of both High Commissioner and the Imperial Government, and appears to have been better suited to the earlier fifties than to the developments of the eighties. It was, however, a fitting sequel to events such as the somewhat indifferent agreement of the British Government, in the days of Lord Granville's weak administration of the Foreign Office, to the German acquisition of Damaraland and North Namaqualand on the western coast—for no other apparent reason than to have some territory contiguous to that of Great Britain. Fortunately, the vigorous protests of the Cape Government prevented Walfisch Bay—the only useful harbor on the shores of all that parched and arid region—from being given up to the same Power. The Swazis were a branch of the Zulu race, and their territory bordered the Transvaal to the north-west, and Tongaland and the Delagoa Bay region to the south-east. Its acquisition meant that only Portuguese territory would lie between the Boer country and the great harbor at Lorenzo Marques. But apart from the immense strategic importance of the country—afterwards so strongly realized—it was the duty of the British Government to have in this case withstood the covetous designs of the Transvaal.

Swazis Appeal to England

Protected by the terms of the Convention of 1884, when their practical independence was guaranteed, and appreciating the policy by which the infant Boer republics of Stellaland and Goshen had been suppressed in Bechuanaland by the Warren expedition, the Swazis naturally looked to England for support when they found numerous individual Boers settling amongst them and preparing for further and more active aggression. In 1886 and 1887 the Swazi Chief appealed to the British Government for the establishment of a formal protectorate; but was refused on the ground that the Convention of 1884 by guarding their independence practically prevented Great Britain from taking such a step. For years prior to this period the Swazis had been friendly to the British, and had stood by them in war and peace. Promises of consideration were given, but nothing was done. The fact of the matter is that the Afrikander party in Cape Colony wanted to help the Transvaal to a seaport, and from some motive of conciliation, or strange error of judgment, Sir Hercules Robinson shared, or appeared to share, the same sentiment. So far as this point was concerned, the protectorate established over St. Lucia Bay and Tongaland neutralized the evil of the subsequent acquisition of Swaziland by the persistent Boers, but nothing can ever compensate the loyal and friendly Swazis of that time for their apparent desertion through the final refusal of the British Government—after a discussion with a delegation of Chiefs in 1894—to interfere with the action of the Transvaal in claiming full possession of their country. It is only fair, however, to say that the issue had become complicated by extensive and voluntary Swazi grants of land to individual Boers.

Delagoa Bay Decision

In this connection some reference must be made to the Portuguese territory of this coast, in view of the important international issues since involved. Delagoa Bay is, perhaps, the most important harbor on the east coast of Africa and a vital naval factor in the protection of trade with India and China. The surrounding country is of little value, and in the main a hot-bed of malarial fever. The harbor was claimed for many years by Great Britain under terms of cession from a native chief to an exploring party in 1822. Portugal resisted the claim, and in 1872 the matter was referred to the arbitration of Marshal MacMahon, President of the French Republic. As usual in such cases, the decision was against Great Britain, but with the curious concession of a right to purchase the territory at any time Portugal might desire to sell it, and to the exclusion of the wish of any other Power in the same connection. It is stated that Portugal was actually ready at that time to sell her rights for £60,000;[1] and Lord Carnarvon, British Colonial Secretary in 1874-78, afterwards stated that: "When I succeeded to office I had reason to think that the offer of a moderate sum might have purchased that which a very large amount now could not compass. Unfortunately the means were not forthcoming, the opportunity was lost, and such opportunities in politics do not often recur." The inference from this statement is that the Chancellor of the Exchequer—Sir Stafford Northcote—was the obstacle. If so, and in the light of the many millions sterling which Great Britain in 1900 would give for this bit of territory, his name certainly merits recollection.

[1] Molteno: Federal South Africa, page 87.

Milner Appointed Governor

Sir Henry Brougham Loch, a most successful Australian Governor, and afterwards created Lord Loch, became Governor and High Commissioner in 1889, and, in 1895, was succeeded by Sir Hercules Robinson again for a couple of years. It does not appear that the latter was recalled in 1889, but was simply not reappointed at the expiration of his term of office. He left the country in the midst of much and strongly expressed regret, and when he returned six years later was welcomed with open arms. Shortly afterwards he became Lord Rosmead, and, in 1897, his health compelled a retirement which was soon afterwards followed by death. Sir Alfred Milner was then appointed and at a most critical period. He had to assume charge of a complicated political and racial situation, and to supervise the relations of Great Britain and the Colonies with the increasingly aggressive Transvaal Republic and Afrikander organization. A strong Imperialist, a man of high reputation for ability in conducting the finances of Egypt for some time, and as Chairman of the British Board of Revenue in the preceding five years, he went out to Cape Town with large powers and with the complete confidence of Mr. Chamberlain and the Imperial Government. The immediate result of his conclusions and policy will be treated elsewhere in this volume, and whatever verdict the historian of the future may have to give upon data and documents and secret developments not now available, there is no doubt that he will accord to Sir Alfred Milner a high place for honest statesmanship, conciliatory personal policy and absolute conscientiousness of action in events, and amidst surroundings, calculated to disturb the equanimity of the coolest statesman and to influence the reasonableness of even the most strong-minded representative of the Crown. Unlike Sir Benjamin D'Urban, Sir Peregrine Maitland, Sir Harry Smith, Sir George Grey and Sir Bartle Frere, he has had the rich and rare privilege in South Africa of being endorsed and supported through all the tangled threads of a complicated situation by the Colonial Office, the Imperial Government, the British Parliament, and, eventually, the people of the Empire. Of this he will always have reason to be proud, whatever may be the arduous labors and responsibilities and perhaps changes of the hidden future. And the fact, in itself, affords a fitting conclusion to the consideration of British policy, or policies, in South Africa, and marks the wonderful change which has come over the face of affairs since the days of D'Urban and Lord Glenelg, Grey and Bulwer-Lytton, Frere and Hicks-Beach—the Governors in Cape Colony and the Secretaries of State in London.




The Native Races of South Africa.

The Bushmen

The physical and mental differences between the three chief native races of South Africa have been very great. The genuine aborigines, or Bushmen, ranked amongst the lowest of human races, and maybe placed upon much the same level as the Fuegians or the Black-fellows of Australia. Though primarily natives of the coast they seem to have become scattered in after times throughout the region from the Cape to the Zambesi. Nomadic by nature, knowing nothing of agriculture, and not even owning cattle, they wandered here and there, living upon such wild animals as they could kill with poisoned arrows, or upon wild fruits and the roots of plants. They were small in stature and untamably savage, swift in passage from place to place, and capable of enduring the severest fatigue. Almost inevitably, the pressure of a civilization which had to often shoot them in self-defence, the influence of progressive settlements which destroyed the game upon which they lived, and the force of stronger types of savagery which bore down on them from the north, have in the end blotted the Bushmen out of existence.

The Hottentots

Superior in some respects were the Hottentots. Though small in stature they were not by any means pygmies, and they lived in a better manner than the Bushmen knew anything of. They possessed sheep and many lean cattle, which they drove hither and thither over vast tracts of country, doing a little intermittent hunting, fighting occasionally with one another and living in a tribal system which the lower racial type found it impossible to emulate. Like the Bushmen their muscular power was slight, their hair grew in woolly tufts upon the skull, and they were of a yellowish-black colour. They made fairly good servants after a period of subjugation, but suffered in numbers very greatly from the spread of small-pox and similar epidemics, which were at times introduced into the country from the ships of the white man. In 1713 immense numbers perished from this cause. The Hottentot was for many decades in the succeeding century a favourite subject of missionary labour in Cape Colony, but it is to be feared that the degraded elements which are to be found in every white community, with the additional factor of an absolute contempt for all natives amongst the Dutch of South Africa, had far greater influence for evil upon the unfortunate tribes than English legislation and Christian efforts had for good.

The Bantu and its Sub-Divisions

A far more important native race than either of these, and one which has taken a place in history as distinct as that of the Indian in America or the Maori in New Zealand, is the Bantu, with its many tribal sub-divisions. Popularly known as Kaffirs from the earliest days of Portuguese discovery and slave raids, there seems little reason to doubt that they have gradually drifted southward from the Upper Nile and the Nyanza Lake region; while the brown colour of many of them would appear to indicate an admixture of Arab blood from settlers and traders along the coast of the Indian Ocean, the majority are black and they all possess the thick lips, woolly hair and scanty beard of the typical negro. Usually they are strong and well-made, fierce in battle, savage in their punishments, brutal in many of their customs. Their bravery is of a high order, as a rule, but has varied somewhat in quality, and the various tribes in later days have developed special lines of intelligence. At the present time, for instance, the Zulus and the Matabele are the most noted for courage and for fighting skill of a savage sort, the Fingoes show some natural adaptiveness for trade and barter, and the Basutos, under the influence, no doubt, of English contiguity and friendliness have given distinct indications of steady industry—a most unusual quality amongst natives.

Civilization Helping the Natives

There are various groups of this widely scattered race. They include the Amakosa, with whom the Cape Colonists so early came into conflict along the Fish River frontier, and who afterwards became known as Tembus and Pondos; the Amazulu of Natal and Zululand; the Swazis, the Matabele and the Amatongas; the Bechuanas, who are subdivided into Bamangwato, the Basutos, the Barolongs, and the Barotze; the Makalakos of Mashonaland. The speech and habits of these people are sufficiently similar to denote a common racial origin and to stamp them as a distinct type. As a race they are very prolific, and in this respect present a marked contrast to the primeval natives of America or Polynesia. The approach of civilization, instead of killing them off, has surrounded them with safety, bound them to a more or less peaceful life, and thus prevented the strife which at one time changed the central part of South Africa from the home of a teeming population into an almost lonely and empty wilderness. The result of this régime of peaceful power is that their numbers all over South Africa are increasing at a rate which, in itself, creates a serious problem for the future and resembles the rapid advance of the population amongst the myriad races of Hindostan under the gentle rule of Great Britain. Dr. Theal states[1] that "the Bantu population in South Africa from the Limpopo to the sea has trebled itself by natural increase alone within fifty years," and he goes on to add that even this is asserting "what must be far below the real rate of growth." In 1879, for instance, there were 319,000 Kaffirs in Natal as against 455,000 in 1891; while in Cape Colony between 1875 and 1891 the natives increased from 483,000 to 1,150,000. Roughly speaking, the native population of all South Africa south of the Zambesi was, in 1893, about five millions.

[1] Theal, History of the Republics.

Vain to Avoid Interference

Of this population Great Britain controls more than one-half. About a million and a half are in the Portuguese possessions, a hundred thousand in the German Protectorate, seven hundred thousand in the Transvaal, and something over a hundred thousand in the Free State. Since the time, in the early fifties, when Earl Grey was at the Colonial Office, and the proposed abandonment of the Orange River region was announced, he added in his despatch to the Governor: "That done, no war in future, 'however sanguinary,' between the different tribes and communities which will be left in a state of independence beyond the Colonial boundary are to be considered as affording ground for your interference." In this vain effort to avoid further responsibility beyond the outer marches of the Cape Lord Grey was certainly logical. But, like the Manchester School in this respect—although he did not adhere very closely to its general views—he bore a striking resemblance to Mrs. Partington, in the familiar pages of Punch, sweeping back the ocean tide with a broom. He believed that, with utterly inadequate military resources at the Cape and with absolute indifference at home, it was useless to try to control a vast region where the majority of the white settlers were opposed to Great Britain and the masses of the natives strongly hostile. But he overlooked the impossibility of maintaining a stable frontier amid the shifting sands of a savage population, and he forgot that justice had to be done, as between native and native and often as between white man and native, if Great Britain was to fulfill her mission and do her duty. Neither of these ends could be accomplished without strife or expansion. As time passed, and amid all the countless mutations of South African policy, this inevitable advance of the British border and gradual incorporation of native tribes went on. In 1865 British Kaffraria, with its 78,000 natives, was annexed to the Cape, and then Basutoland, with (in 1893) some 218,000 natives, was brought under British control. Following this came Griqualand West, with its 30,000 natives; British Bechuanaland, with some 50,000; Khama's Country, or the Bechuanaland Protectorate, with over 100,000; Zululand, with its 140,000; Pondoland, with 200,000, and Tongaland, with 80,000; and finally Rhodesia, or British Mashonaland, with a quarter of a million Matabele and Mashonas.

Expansion Inevitable

Earl Grey's despatch was, in fact, only a passing phase of the many-sided British policy toward the native territories. Every now and then, however, this principle of non-extension and non-responsibility, so far as the Kaffirs were concerned, continued to come into practice—as in the previous case of Lord Glenelg and the Kosas. Instances in point may be mentioned such as the giving up of part of Zululand and much of Swaziland to the Transvaal, the earlier and prolonged refusal to annex the Kosa country, afterwards known as Kaffraria, the hesitating and lingering policy over Bechuanaland and the refusal to annex Damaraland and Namaqaland at a period when no objection would have been raised by anyone, and a region covering 300,000 square miles and, with the Providential exception of Walfisch Bay, guarding the entire western coast, might have become British instead of German territory. There were three causes—all connected, directly or indirectly, with the natives and the native question—for the ultimate and inevitable expansion. The first was the determination of the British people to suppress and prevent slavery. This produced emancipation in Cape Colony, and partially caused the Great Trek of the Boers. The second was the intensity of Dutch arrogance, the frequency of Dutch oppression and a continuous Dutch policy of aggression, in connection with native tribes. The third was the impossibility of holding frontiers intact against uncivilized races, and the natural wish of missionaries to extend British influence and through it the power of Christianity. The second and third causes worked together in some measure and may be seen controlling or modifying many complicated conditions.


Little doubt exists as to the continued practice of slavery amongst the Boers—in Natal before 1846, in the Orange Free State up to recent years, and in the Transvaal at the present time. There was, in the earlier period, a state of absolute lawlessness amongst the Boers themselves, combined with constant war, or raids, upon surrounding tribes. Kaffirs were shot down in cold blood, beaten at pleasure, their families burned out of their little huts and their children, or the most promising of them, taken away as "apprentices" for a given period—the euphemistic expression for a condition of permanent enslavery. Of course the natives retaliated when they could, and during the first thirty years of the Boer migration and history—1836 to 1866—the state of affairs was lamentable. It was estimated in 1869 that six thousand child-slaves were in the Transvaal as the much-prized booty of casual raids upon different tribes. And this despite the clause in the Sand River Convention forbidding, and promising to prevent, anything of the kind. During these years agitation in England against these practices of the Boers was incessant, and local protests from missionaries and others at the Cape and in Natal equally so. Papers in 1868 were laid before the Natal Legislature describing many accredited instances even at that late date, and three years before, Mr. W. Martin had laid before the Government of that Colony a detailed statement of his own experiences across the Vaal in this connection. The Lieutenant-Governor (Mr. John Maclean, C.B.) transmitted the documents to Cape Town, and the High Commissioner intimated that while he believed there was much of truth in the charges, yet it would be practically impossible to intervene successfully without being prepared to use force. A Resolution of protest against this view was at once passed by the Legislature, of which the following is an extract:

"That the traffic is a direct breach of the Treaty entered into with Her Majesty's Commissioners, is an outrage upon humanity and civilization, and is an aggravation of the traffic which Her Majesty's Government has so long sought to suppress upon the east coast. That so long as this traffic in children is suffered to exist there can be little hope for the progress of civilization amongst the native tribes in the Transvaal Republic, while the prevalence of such practices in the immediate neighborhood of independent and colonial tribes has a most pernicious and injurious effect, and tends to lower the position and influence of the white race. That it is impossible for the High Commissioner, living as he does so far from the scene of those atrocities, to judge clearly and fully their character and tendencies."

Livingstone Reports on Slave Trade

This statement regarding the Boer slave policy represented the feeling and knowledge of Englishmen generally along the borders, or when they came into contact with the Dutch and the natives together. Of the missionary sentiment in this connection the works of Livingstone and Moffat and the more recent statements of the Rev. Dr. Stewart afford abundant evidence. And this aside from the aggressive and sometimes mistaken or exaggerated views of Dr. Philip and Cape Town missionary leaders and semi-political preceptors in the earlier days of Kosa or Kaffir warfare. All around the frontier of the two Republics commandos would from time to time attack isolated tribes, with slight excuse and sometimes none at all, burn their kraals, take their cattle and kidnap their women and children. Dr. Livingstone has put it on record,[2] after prolonged experience of both Boers and Blacks and with a personal character for honesty and honor which no one will impeach, that "the great objection many of the Boers had, and still have, to English law is that it makes no distinction between black men and white." Elsewhere in the same volume he declares that "it is difficult for a person in a civilized country to conceive that any body of men possessing the common attributes of humanity should with one accord set out ... and proceed to shoot down in cold blood men and women, of a different color it is true, but possessed of domestic feelings and affections equal to their own.... It was long before I could give credit to the tales of bloodshed told by native witnesses; but when I found the Boers themselves, some bewailing and denouncing, others glorying in the bloody scenes in which they had been themselves the actors, I was compelled to admit the validity of the testimony." Early Scenes of Bloodshed The great missionary proceeds, in detail, to describe one of the Boer methods of fighting natives. "When they reach the tribe to be attacked, friendly natives (previously captured) are ranged in front to form as they say 'a shield;' the Boers then coolly fire over their heads till the devoted people flee and leave cattle, wives and children to the captors." He knew of this being done nine times within his own personal experience, and upon no occasion was any Boer blood shed. He also declares that the Boers never intended to abide by the promise regarding slavery made in 1852-4, and describes how a slave raid amongst the Bechuanas was organized and carried out by 400 Boers under Piet Scholz immediately after that engagement was entered into. It was the same all along the line until, in the latter sixties, England began to advance into the interior and to definitely plant her feet upon regions which the Boer deemed himself heir to and, almost, actual owner of. During these years the Natal Mercury, the Cape Argus and the Transvaal Argus—a small but energetic sheet—drew continuous attention to this slave system and policy, and a bulky pamphlet was published in 1868 at Cape Town containing a mass of printed proof as to the real condition of affairs. As Dr. Livingstone says, no attention was ever paid, or intended to be paid, to the pledges in the Conventions. The only effect was to change the name of "slave" to "apprentice." The following paragraph from an authoritative source[3] summarizes the situation in this respect:

"Children were kidnapped, trained to work in the fields, had their price and were as little protected by the law as any other live stock on the farm. The 'apprenticeship' never came to an end. Wagon-loads of slaves, 'black-ivory' as they were called, passed through the country and were put up to auction or were exchanged, sometimes for money, and sometimes for a horse, or for a cow and a big pot."

[2] Missionary Travels. By David Livingstone. London, 1857.

[2] Martineau's Life of Sir Bartle Frere. Vol. II., p. 174.

English Abhorrence of Slavery

Such were some of the causes of British dislike for Boer methods and for naturally unfriendly contact with them through strong sympathy for oppressed races and utter abhorrence of slavery in every shape and form. The relation of the Boer and the native was indeed at the root of much to of British expansion during the last thirty years of the century. The threatened subjugation of Moshesh caused the annexation of Basutoland. The Transvaal attack upon the Bapedi under Sekukuni and its failure precipitated the annexation of 1877. The danger of a Zulu invasion of the same country and of Natal, as a consequence of this attack, caused the war with Cetywayo and the establishment of a feeble and tentative protectorate over Zululand. The raids of the Boers into the latter region and the formation of what they called the "New Republic" caused the ultimate annexation of a greater portion of the whole country and of Pondoland. Their attempt to crush the Batlapins and Barolongs in Bechuanaland and to establish the so-called Republics of Stellaland and Goshen caused the expedition of General Warren and the annexation of the territory. Their effort in 1891 to trek north of the Limpopo and to take possession of a portion of Rhodesia had to be repressed by Dr. Jameson under threats of force. Their previously well-known ambition in this connection had much to do with Mr. Rhodes' determination to extend British power northwards by means of his Chartered Company. Similar efforts in Tongaland had, meanwhile, compelled its ruler to appeal to the Queen's Government for protection in 1887. The complications of British policy with the natives of South Africa north and east of Cape Colony, in the latter half of the century, were, therefore, as much the fault of Boer ambition and arrogance and ill-treatment of the Blacks as were the difficulties in the earlier part of the century with the Hottentots and Bushmen and Kosas.

The Napoleon of South Africa

Of these natives—Bantu, or Kaffirs, or whatever their local names might be—much has been written and much might be said here. The race has produced some great men. Merciless in war they generally were, but it is a question whether the cruelties perpetrated by Matabele or Zulu chiefs have not been excelled by leaders of Christian nations without the aggravation of continuous warfare or the excuse of natural savagery. The religious strife of mediæval Europe, or the fire and sword and tortures of Spain in Mexico and Peru, will occur to every mind. Bravery was an almost universal quality amongst the Bantu, though it varied in degree. Tshaka, the founder of the Zulu nation, possessed boundless ambition, a powerful and ruthless will, a genuine genius for military organization and rule. He was emphatically the native Napoleon of South Africa. Dingaan, his successor, had a few of his qualities; Cetywayo enough of them to constitute him an interesting figure and to give him a permanent place in history. Had he not been obliged to contest his supremacy with the firearms and cannon of the white man, he might have extended his sway up to the Zambesi and been a greater warrior than Tshaka. Moselkatze, until he came into conflict with the emigrant farmers, was a savage potentate of considerable ability. Like Tshaka with his Zulus, he organized the Matabele into a strong military power and ruled the west and north with a rod of iron for many years. His successor, Lobengula, resembled the Zulu Cetywayo in many respects, and in none more than in his final overthrow by the white man. Had conditions been otherwise the two chiefs might have disputed the primacy of South Africa; and it is hard to say which would have won. These men were all warriors by nature and environment and generals by instinct. Moshesh the Basuto was, however, a statesman as well, and his rise and progress and career afford most striking evidence of the natural ability which a savage may possess. Of a somewhat similar character is Khama, the present Chief of the Bechuanas. So much for the greater names among the Bantu.

Native Bravery

Their customs and characteristics are, and have always been, somewhat varied in detail amongst the different tribes, though the main points are the same. In a military sense they all possess bravery, skill in ambush, and resourcefulness in attack or defence. The assegai is certainly a manly weapon in many respects, as well as a deadly one. It required physical strength, skill and courage in assault, and marked powers of endurance in the long marches which they have so often undertaken to surprise a foe or raid a kraal, to attack a British force or a Dutch commando. The southern tribes—Zulus, Pondos, Tembus and Kosas—have been perhaps the fiercest and strongest warriors, but the Matabele of the north ran them pretty close. On the west coast, however, owing to intermixture with the Bushmen and Hottentots, the Bantu have deteriorated in both physique and intellect. As a whole, they knew something in earlier days of agriculture and tilling the soil, though their women performed the labor; could work in metals to some extent; had a common language, fairly developed, and a sort of general law of custom. In government they were, with certain exceptions, autocratic, and the chiefs possessed great personal power. Cattle constituted and still comprise the principal source of wealth and measure of value. Slavery amongst the tribes of the interior was common up to the days of British rule, and was a natural result of wars of conquest or predatory excursions. With the Zulu and the Matabele, as with the Boer, it was a matter of course to keep prisoners of strength or usefulness as slaves, and to the Kaffir, being constitutionally lazy, it was a great advantage to have some in his possession. If he had none, his wife, or wives, occupied a position of practical serfdom.

Religion and Superstitions

Religion has always been a strong factor in Kaffir life. It is not, however, a principle of Deity worship, nor has it ever been potent in morals, or government, or military enthusiasm. It is more like the Chinese deification of ancestors, and consists chiefly in a worship of the spirits of the dead. The greater the dead chiefs or warriors, the more pronounced the worship, and the system has, therefore, some influence in maintaining loyalty to the living chiefs. Spirits are supposed to pass into animals, and at different times and places, snakes and lions and antelopes and crocodiles are revered, and have been propitiated by the sacrifice of other animals—but never of human beings. It is a moot question as to whether a Supreme Being has ever been so much as thought of in their original conception of religion, and the probabilities seem to be against it. Of proof there is practically none. With a simple superstition which peoples the world with spirits of no higher character than their own gross or wild imaginations it has, therefore, been a matter of course that the Kaffir religion should not influence for good the morals and habits of the tribes or inspire them even with the religious and military enthusiasm of the Mahommedan dervish or the Hindoo devotee. Such power as it had, up to recent years, lay with the wizards, or witch-doctors, who took the place of the priests in other creeds, and, like the medicine men of the Red Indians, revelled in cruelties and ruled by playing upon superstitious fears. The practice of "smelling-out" persons suspected of witchcraft or of causing sickness, or drought, or cattle-disease, gave a tremendous power into the hands of chiefs and their unscrupulous allies. Once a victim was "smelled-out" little chance was left him, and, no matter how wealthy in person, or strong in influence, his end had usually come. His property then went to the chief. The murders and terrorism this system gave rise to constituted perhaps the darkest side of native life, and its suppression has caused at least one war between the British and the Kaffirs; while it was for long the greatest obstacle in the way of the missionary. Of morals the Kaffirs never knew much, and could not, therefore, lose by association with the white man in as important a degree as other savage races have done. They were distinctly inferior in their conception of woman's position to even the Indian of North America, and females appear to have always held a very degraded place amongst them. Hence the easy immorality of the Boers and the practical impossibility of abolishing the polygamous system amongst semi-independent tribes despite all the efforts of generations of missionaries.

Tribal Divisions

These general characteristics were, of course, modified by surroundings and external influences. Roughly speaking, the Kaffirs are divided into the military and industrial Bantu. The former live largely in the fertile regions between the Drakensberg mountains and the Indian Ocean, in the Zoutpansberg district of the Transvaal and in Kaffraria. The latter prefer the mountainous country, and are to be found in Basutoland, in the greater part of the two Boer republics and in the regions south of the Orange River or on the confines of the Kalahari Desert. The differences between these classes of the same race are pronounced. The military Bantu is stronger, fleeter of foot and sterner in battle. His assegai has a short handle and a long blade, and is used for fighting at close quarters; while the other tribes have a weapon with a long shaft and light blade intended primarily for hunting. Among the former the chief is a despot; amongst the Mashonas and Bechuanas and Basutos his power is limited by a council and sometimes by a general assemblage of the people. The town, or kraal, of the former is designed chiefly for defence; that of the latter for purposes of open intercourse and barter. The sole business of the one has, up to recent years, been warfare and the raising of corn and cattle as a subsidiary pursuit. The latter cultivated gardens, sowed fields of grain and could smelt ore and work in iron. Their seats of power and influence were, and are, in Basutoland and Bechuanaland. Outside of the steadily improved civilization and character of the Basutos themselves their country is noteworthy for the career of Moshesh; his almost final words in 1868, after twenty years of intermittent conflict with the Boers: "Let me and my people rest and live under the large folds of the flag of England before I am no more;" and for the general and sincere loyalty of its people in these later days. Bechuanaland is famous as the scene of the labors of Robert Moffat, David Livingstone and John Mackenzie; as being the trade route from Cape Colony to Central Africa; and as the scene of a prolonged struggle voiced in the words of Livingstone: "The Boers resolved to shut up the interior and I determined to open it." Eventually it was opened, and the work of the great missionary became triumphant.

British Efforts at Civilizing the Natives

Meanwhile, much was being done by the British in the various parts of South Africa which they controlled, from time to time, to elevate the life and pursuits and character of the natives. In regions governed by the Dutch no such idea was ever tolerated. Dr. Moffat tells a story in this connection which describes much in a few words. He was visiting a Dutchman's house, and suggested that the servants be brought in to the Sunday service. His host roared with laughter. "Preach to Hottentots!" he exclaimed. "Call in my dogs and the preach to them! Go to the mountains and preach to the baboons! Preach to the Hottentots! A good joke." Aside from the missionaries, Sir George Grey was probably the first prominent Englishman to even partially understand the natives, and he was certainly the first to put his views into effect as Governor. He was greatly respected by all the tribes with whom he came into contact personally or by policy. Yet he had his limitations. Mr. Rees in his biography of the Governor tells an amusing story of his having upon some public occasion remonstrated against the extravagant folly of a number of the native women in wearing brass ornaments. One of the chiefs promptly rose and pointed out that there were bounds to human power. "Rest content, O great chief," said he, "with what you have accomplished. You have made us pay taxes. You have made our people work. These things we thought could never be. But think not you can stop women wearing ornaments. If you try to do this, O Governor, you will most surely fail."

Education of Natives

The first and most important point in the improvement of the native races is the matter of education. To be really effective it must take the form of an organized system with plenty of pliability and machinery; and there should be a fair number of Europeans in the general community to prevent the native children, after they have once been trained and taught, from relapsing by degrees into the barbarism of their natural associates and older relatives. For this reason little has been done in Natal to educate the Kaffirs; although there are some seventy-three native schools and the natives appear to be improving in general character and even in willingness to perform mild sorts of intermittent labor. Nothing of importance has been achieved in the purely native territories except such isolated teaching as the missionaries can manage. Nothing has been even attempted in the two Republics. But in Cape Colony very successful results have followed the labors of many men during a number of years—assisted by special provision made through the Government for purposes of native education. Sir Langham Dale, Superintendent-General of Education, reported in 1883 that there were 396 mission schools in the Colony, with an attendance of 44,307 pupils; 226 aborigines' schools, with 13,817 pupils; and 21 boarding and trade schools, with 2,519 pupils. About one-third of the annual Education Grant, which amounted in 1866 to $110,000, and in 1889 to $425,000, and in 1897 to nearly a million dollars, was appropriated to these purposes. In the latter year, it may be added, the number of mission schools had risen to 551, and the aborigines' schools to 420. Of the various native schools, or institutions, that at Lovedale is the most important. In 1883 there were 300 pupils in attendance, and it had a yearly revenue of $125,000. Native clergy and teachers are trained in its College department; young men are taught book-binding, printing and other trades in its workshops; young women are instructed in sewing and laundress work, and there is also an elementary school for children.


A DERVISH CHARGE, SOUDAN WAR. A battle of the Soudan in which Sir Herbert Kitchener avenged the massacre of Hicks Pasha and his 12,000 men; also the death of the heroic Gordon which occurred a year later.
A battle of the Soudan in which Sir Herbert Kitchener avenged
the massacre of Hicks Pasha and his 12,000 men; also the death
of the heroic Gordon which occurred a year later.

Progress of the Natives

The Superintendent-General of Education, already quoted, in a supplementary Report published in 1884, speaks of the general opposition he has had to meet as coming from two classes of people—one which describes the schools as worthless and decries educated natives as useless, and another which describes the aborigines as getting a better education than white people and denounces the system as consequently increasing the competition in industrial employments. And then he appeals to such evidences of progress and success as: "The large interchange among natives of letters passing through the Post-Office; of the utilization of educated natives as carriers of letters, telegrams and parcels; of the hundreds who fill responsible posts as clerks, interpreters, school-masters, sewing-mistresses; and of the still larger number engaged in industrial pursuits, as carpenters, blacksmiths, tin-smiths, wagon-makers, shoe-makers, printers, sail-makers, saddlers, etc., earning good wages and helping to spread civilization amongst their own people." This is a good record, and there is no doubt that amongst the million natives of Cape Colony the influence of the system is steadily spreading. There is the natural defect, however, of the refusal of the white population to mix with the black either in school or elsewhere, outside of politics. The native schools and the native system are things apart and isolated, although, throughout the Colony, there are wealthy and influential Kaffirs, many of whom are substantial owners of property. And, as a matter of fact, there are more negro children now attending Government schools than there are pupils of white extraction.

Everywhere in British territory an effort has been made to utilize Kaffir free labor and to make the native appreciate the money value of his work and his time. But although some progress may be seen, it has not been very great. In Natal, for instance, the sugar industry, with an invested capital of nearly five million dollars, finds colored labor absolutely essential. But the Kaffirs cannot be got to work with any degree of permanence, or effectiveness, and the planters have had to import coolies in thousands, while all around them are multitudes of natives admirably suited to the work. At the Diamond Mines of Kimberley, Mr. Rhodes has employed thousands of black laborers, but it has only been for short periods and in successive relays. They make a little money and then go back to their huts, or kraals, as miniature millionaires—able to obtain cattle enough to buy a wife and to settle down in Kaffir comfort. Of the important matter of liquor drinking and liquor selling to natives a word must be said here. In Natal, where there are at least half a million Zulus, scattered around the villages and settlements of the fifty thousand white men, it is naturally a vital question—as in a lesser degree it is all through South Africa. The law is therefore very strictly administered, and the penalty for a European selling liquor to a native is severe. It is practical prohibition, and a similar law has been enforced in the vast territories of the Chartered Company. Incidentally, it may be said that in the Colony of Natal the general native management approximates somewhat to the model of India. The tribal organization has been largely preserved, instead of being broken up, as it was in Cape Colony by Sir George Grey. The native mass was too great to be merged in the small white population. European Courts, mixed Courts of native and European Judges, and Courts composed of Kaffir chiefs alone, administer the law in a peculiar form which admits the validity of Kaffir custom and precedents and law—modified, of course, by Colonial statutes. Order is maintained, and splendidly so, by a system of passes and by a code of special police regulations applicable to natives alone. Written permission from a magistrate must be obtained before a Kaffir can change his abode, and in the towns all natives must retire to their huts when curfew rings at nine o'clock. Registration of firearms is imperative, and the sale to natives is guarded by very strict enactments. Every native who is responsible for a hut has to pay a yearly tax of 14s., and this is very cheerfully done.

The Liquor Laws

Drunkenness amongst the Kaffirs of Natal is limited, as may be inferred from this sketch of their management. But in Cape Colony the natives are not nearly so well guarded from its evils—partly because of the aversion of the Dutch electorate to legislate in their behalf or to enforce laws of this kind when they are made; partly from the influence of the wine-growers and distillers, who naturally have something to say; partly, in general result, from the intermixture of lower races such as the Hottentot and Bushmen, and the creation of a type of negro and half-breed much inferior in parts of the Colony to the Kosa of the east or the Zulu of Natal. Civil Rights and Qualifications In the important matter of civil rights there is a common feeling among all settlers of British origin in South Africa, as elsewhere in the Empire, that no color line should exist in the franchise—other things being reasonably equal. The qualification is, of course, vital, although the Dutch part of the community make no qualification or admission of equality in any way, shape or form, and were, for instance, greatly disgusted when, in 1895, Khama, the educated, Christianized and civilized Chief of the Bechuanas, was received in England with respect and consideration, and entertained by prominent personages. The principle of political equality is, however, firmly established in British South Africa. But, so far as the natives are concerned, the tribal system must be given up, and this debars the greater part of the population of Natal. In that Colony, also, a native must have lived for seven years exempt from tribal laws before he can share in the franchise under qualifications of the same kind as affect the white population. In Cape Colony there are similar conditions, with an added proviso that the would-be native voter must be able to sign his name and write his occupation and address.

Native Suffrage

Practically it is only at the Cape that the experiment of native suffrage has been fairly tried. In Jamaica it failed for various reasons, and in Natal it did not work when first tried, and at present has little more than a theoretical existence. In the eastern part of Cape Colony, which contains the chief native population—including the Kaffraria of earlier days and the Transkei region—a member of the Legislative Council is apportioned to mixed constituencies containing an average respectively of 227,000 colored people and 18,000 whites; and a member of the House of Assembly is similarly given to every 56,000 natives and 4,500 whites.[4] There are, as yet, not very many constituencies where this colored vote is an important consideration. The chief exceptions are to be found amongst the Malays in and around Cape Town, the Hottentots of the Kat River Settlement, and the Kaffirs at King Williamstown, Beaufort and Alice. But the number of voters is growing, and in the eastern part of the Colony their influence appears to be very good. The educated Kaffir is very unlike the educated Hindoo, who is apt to become a sort of skeptic in patriotism as well as in creed. He is intensely conservative in a natural fondness for land and aversion to change. He is also loyal in the extreme to the British institutions from which his opportunities and position are derived; and in this respect has set an example of gratitude worthy the appreciation of some more civilized peoples. Practically, he is an Imperialist, and one student of the subject has recently expressed a belief that the wiping out of the native vote in Cape Colony would mean the loss of eight or ten seats to the Progressive party in the Assembly. Most instructive of all, and even more striking than the fact of their being adherents of Mr. Rhodes' advanced British policy, has been the support given by educated natives to measures presented to the Legislature for the prohibition of the sale of liquor to colored people—proposals defeated from time to time largely by the Afrikander vote. This is, indeed, a fitting statement to conclude a brief sketch of native history and development.

[4] Tables of Director of Census. Cape Town. 1891.


Character of the South African Boer.

A Peculiar Type

The Dutchmen of South Africa present in character and type one of the most peculiar racial results of all history. They came originally of a people who had proved its love of liberty and its faith in religion on many a well-fought field and in the pages of noble national annals. Yet they did not carry their qualities with them to the new land in any sufficient measure to overcome surrounding influences of a pernicious nature. They were raised from the lowest class in the home community and migrated practically for the wages offered them by the Dutch East India Company. In this respect the origin of the Colony was greatly different from that of New England, to which men of high character and earnest thought had migrated in order to obtain religious freedom; of Virginia, where men of the best English families and culture came in that adventurous spirit which has made the British Empire or the United States a present possibility; of French Canada, where Jesuits roamed the vast forests in a spirit of intense missionary zeal and where the scions of noble French families hunted in the wilderness of the West, or fought the Iroquois on the banks of the St. Lawrence; of English Canada, to which the United Empire Loyalists came from motives of loyalty to King and country.

Their Religious Life

As these Dutch settlers drifted into the Colony, over a period of a hundred years, they left every source of knowledge, refinement and high principle behind them. It is true they had their Bible. Upon its interpretation depended greatly their future development of character amid surroundings of absolute isolation, and it has been a permanent misfortune that they chose the natural view of narrow and ignorant men, and made their religious life one of practical devotion to the Old Testament dispensation in a most crude and sometimes cruel application. Around them on all sides were the moral laxities of savage life, the dangerous powers of slavery, the looseness incident to any small population of whites in the midst of great numbers of ignorant and superstitious natives. Their Government was intolerant in the extreme, they had no books or newspapers, they saw no intelligent visitors, and the naturally somewhat sombre character of the Dutchman developed under these conditions into a unique mixture of religious zeal, intolerant ignorance and qualified immorality. To this character was added the quality of undoubted bravery and into the general melting pot was thrown the further attributes, as time went on, of intense dislike and distrust of the Englishman and of absolute confidence and belief in themselves.

Mixture of Huguenots and Dutch Culture

The Huguenots, who joined the small Dutch population of 1689, brought a considerable element of culture and liberality of thought with them, but although many of the best families in Cape Colony, and South Africa generally, to-day trace their descent from these settlers, the effect upon the scattered masses of the people was very slight. The distinctive language and religion and culture to a large extent disappeared under laws which enforced uniformity and in time merged the Frenchman in the Boer. Of course, the influence was to some extent a good one and it yet dwells on the surface of affairs in such names as De Villiers and Joubert, Du Plessis and Le Seuer, or their local corruptions. A more potent factor in this evolution of character was the solitary nature of the settler's life. Boer and American Colonist Pioneers on the American continent were often alone with their families for a time in some advanced frontier location, but it was not usually a continuous isolation. As the years passed on other families joined them, settlements grew rapidly, and with these villages came the various amenities of social and civilized life. But the Boer seemed to catch from the wandering savages around him something of the spirit of their roaming life, and in this he was encouraged by the nature of his occupation and by the Government regulations, which simply charged him rental for three thousand acres of grazing ground without confining him to any specific location. He did not carve his farm out of some primeval forest, build a permanent home for his family on his own land, or cultivate the soil with the strenuous labor of his hands. During the century in which his racial type was developing the Dutch settler moved from point to point with his cattle in accordance with the season and the pasture, and lived an almost nomadic life. His covered wagon was to him what the wigwam has been to the savage of the American continent, while his skill in shooting held a somewhat similar place to that of the bow and arrow in Indian economy. Hence the accentuation of his intellectual narrowness by continued isolation and the strengthening of the physical frame at the expense of mental power.

Boer Characteristics

As the years passed on, however, and settlement increased; as the effects of English administration and laws were felt more and more throughout the regions owning the authority of the Cape Government; as, unfortunately, the growing inroads of the Kaffirs and their continuous raids made combination necessary amongst the Dutch farmers; as villages grew more numerous and occasional schools were to be found in the communities; some modification of these personal conditions might have been expected. Amongst the Dutch farmers of Cape Colony changes of this kind did occur. They adopted some of the customs of civilization, they lost a part of the more intense Boer narrowness and ignorance of the past, they developed a qualified interest in education of a racial character, they lived upon terms of slightly freer intercourse with their neighbors of both races, they had drilled into them a wholesome respect for the law and a more humane, or, at any rate, legal view of the natives position. But to the emigrant farmers of Natal, of the Orange River and the Vaal, these modifications of character were long indeed in coming, and to a great mass of them have never come at all. In their main pursuits the Boers of all South Africa are the same—owners of cattle and horses and dwellers upon ranches as widely separated from each other as conditions of population and law will permit. Of course, in Cape Colony and Natal, there are town and village Dutchmen sufficient to constitute a small class by themselves; and the slow-spreading influence of a persistent educational system is having its effect in other directions; while the natural increase of population has been doing its work in lessening the isolation of the farmers. So to some extent in the Orange Free State. Physically and mentally, however, the Dutch farmer is much the same everywhere in South Africa—tall, raw-boned, awkward in manner, slow of speech, fond of hunting whenever and wherever possible, accustomed to the open air, lazy as regards work, but active in pursuits involving personal pleasure. Especially has this latter quality been apparent in such amusements as war with the natives, or the English, or in predatory excursions into alien territory and the shooting of big game.

Livingstone's Description of the Boers

All these qualities have become accentuated in the two republics, while the latter ones have not been called into practical exercise of late years in the Colonies proper. The Boer of the Transvaal and the Free State is, in fact, a most peculiar type even in that region of the strangest inconsistencies. Authorities are not wanting who praise his general character in terms of the highest laudation. Mr. J. A. Froude, after spending a few crowded weeks in South Africa, declared with almost poetic enthusiasm of the Boers that they: "of all human beings now on this planet, correspond nearest to Horace's description of the Roman peasant soldiers who defeated Pyrrhus and Hannibal." Mr. F. C. Selous, who has hunted with and amongst them for years, found "no people in the world more genuinely kind and hospitable to strangers than the South African Dutch." Other less well-known travellers and public men have spoken in equally high terms of the Boer; while during the last few years a whole library of literature has been published on his behalf, and proves, if it does nothing else, that Englishmen have plenty of impartiality in dealing with such subjects. On the other hand, evidence accumulates that the character made by history and environment is in this case a permanent one; that the Boer of to-day is the natural and inevitable product of the past; and that the visitor, or traveller, or the interested advocate of racial and political theories, can no more turn over the pages of a record written in blood and sorrow throughout the wild veldt of South Africa than the Boer himself can, in Rudyard Kipling's phrase, "turn back the hands of the clock" in the region now under his control. Dr. Livingstone saw more of the emigrant farmer in the formative days of his republican and independent existence than any other Englishman, and he has described the strongest influence in his historic evolution as a distinct racial type[1] in the following words:

"They are all traditionally religious, tracing their descent from some of the best men (Huguenots and Dutch) the world ever saw. Hence they claim to themselves the title of 'Christians,' and all the colored race are 'black property' or 'creatures.' They being the chosen people of God, the heathen are given to them for an inheritance, and they are the rod of divine vengeance on the heathen as were the Jews of old.... No one can understand the effect of the unutterable meanness of the slave system on the minds of those who, but for the strange obliquity which prevents them from feeling the degradation of not being gentlemen enough to pay for services rendered, would be equal in virtue to ourselves. Fraud becomes as natural to them as 'paying one's way' is to the rest of mankind."

[1] Dr. Livingstone's Missionary Travels. London, 1857.

Impressions of James Bryce

Mr. James Bryce, in his Impressions of South Africa, points out with evident truth that: "Isolation and the wild life these ranchmen led soon told upon their habits. The children grew up ignorant; the women, as was natural where slaves were employed, lost the neat and cleanly ways of their Dutch ancestors; the men were rude, bigoted, indifferent to the comforts and graces of life." Opinion of Canon Knox Little Canon Knox Little, so well known as a divine and a writer, declares[2] that "it is probable that even the most corrupt of the South American republics cannot surpass the Government of the Transvaal in wholesale corruption," and then proceeds to analyze the Boer character in the following expressive terms: "They detest progress of any kind, are frequently regardless of truth and unfaithful to promises when falsehood, or betrayal of engagement, will suit their purpose. They are subject to alternations of lethargic idleness and fierceness of courage which characterize many wild animals. Some of them are, of course, not bad fellows to get on with, if there is no reason for crossing them. They delight in isolation, detest work, dislike paying taxes, hate all progressive ways, cling to the most wretched stationary stage of semi-civilization with unparalleled tenacity, and love what is called 'independence'—that is, selfish self-seeking up to the verge and over the verge of license. They are utterly uncultured—indeed, have no conception of what culture means; their very language is incapable of expressing high philosophical ideas; and the pastoral home life so much insisted upon by their panegyrists thinly veils in many cases—such is the testimony of the many credible witnesses who have lived among them—the most odious vices."

[2] Sketches and Studies in South Africa. By W. J. Knox Little, Canon Residentiary of Worcester. London, 1899.

Misinterpretation of the Old Testament

Similar quotations might be given from many sources and of the same repute and strength. But, leaving unfavorable generalizations on the one side to offset favorable ones on the other, it might be well to take the qualities of the people in detail and examine them from various points of view. Religion is perhaps the first and foremost influence. The creed of the Boer is based by universal admission upon the Old Testament. The love and light and liberty of the newer dispensation has no place in his belief or in his life. The Bible, as he reads it, permits slavery, tolerates concubinage, teaches the perpetual intervention of a personal Providence, and makes him as truly one of a chosen people as was ever Abraham, or Isaac, or Jacob. He lives upon the broad veldt of South Africa a patriarchal life not unlike in some respects that of the Hebrew of old, and he has thoroughly convinced himself that the British are to him what the Philistines were to the Jew, while the natives are intended to be his footstool as fully as ever were some of the surrounding races of Palestine to the heroes of Scripture. His religion is essentially a gloomy and serious one. There is no lighter side of life to him, and a text from the Old Testament is made to apply to most of the events of the day. Built into his character by isolation and intensified, in the crudest and wildest application, by an environment of inherited and continued ignorance, this religion has produced some very curious consequences. It has not made the Boer an enthusiast; it has simply rendered him contemptuous of all other creeds and sects to a degree of arrogance which is hard to meet and worse to endure. It has not had any softening influence, but rather a hardening one—making every prejudice stronger, every hatred more bitter, every avenue of intellectual expression more narrow and less susceptible to the forces of modern progress and education. It has developed into a more or less formal expression of defiant racial pride through the almost profane belief that the God of the Hebrews has become, essentially and entirely, the Providence of the Boers. The continuous use of Old Testament words and phrases has become a part of his individual life, though it usually means as little as do the continuous oaths of the cheerful sailor in the performance of his work. Ignorance has, in fact, crystallized the faith of his fathers into an extraordinarily narrow creed of which Tant' Sannie, in Olive Schreiner's Story of an African Farm, presents one of many picturesque embodiments:

"My mother boiled soap with bushes and I will boil soap with bushes. If the wrath of God is to fall upon this land (said Tant' Sannie, with the serenity of conscious virtue), it shall not be through me. Let them make their steam-wagons and their fire-carriages; let them go on as if the dear Lord didn't know what he was about when he gave their horses and oxen legs—the destruction of the Lord will follow them. I don't know how such people read their Bibles. When do we hear of Moses or Noah riding in a railway?"

Prejudice Against Civilization

It would appear, therefore, as beyond doubt, and the conclusion may be stated in very few words, that his religion has intensified the racial peculiarities of the Boer; has increased an already strong natural bigotry and tendency to superstition; and has helped to evolve a most unique and unpleasant personal character. What it has not done for him may be still further summarized. It has not taught him that "cleanliness is next to Godliness;" that morality is more than a matter of the color line; that honesty in word and action is a part of righteousness; that hatred toward his territorial neighbors, and malice or contempt toward his racial inferiors, are characteristics of anything rather than Christianity. Incidentally, it may be said that the Boer hates the slightest tendency toward show or display in his religious worship, and that he will obtrude his views of religion upon others at any and every opportunity. The Dutch Reformed Church is the State Church of the Transvaal, and has two branches—the Gereformeede, which believes in the singing of hymns during service, and the opposing Hervormde Dopper branch, which has been led by Paul Kruger since the disagreement of 1883 upon this subject. The matter has become a political one, and the party opposed to singing hymns has now been in power for a decade. To the Boers of both Republics the Nachtmaal, or annual Communion, is the great event of the year. Pretoria is the centre of the annual pilgrimage and the Mecca of all Boers at this period. From the ranch and farm and village they trek to that point in wagons loaded with supplies and holding the entire family. It is really a national holiday, as well as a religious festival, and is the one occasion upon which the Boer throws aside his love for solitude and shows himself willing to mix with his kind. Such is the religion of the Boer in its general results.

Home Life and Morals

Of his home life and morals much might be written. The families live far apart from each other in a house which forms the centre of some wide-stretching ranch or farm, and the larger the farm, the more isolated the situation, the fewer and further the neighbors, the better pleased is the Boer. In a limited sense only is he hospitable. Visitors are very few, and when they come on horseback and properly attended they are received in a sort of rude way. Englishmen are not considered desirable guests—unless they happen to be great hunters with many stories of the sport which the Boer loves so well. Poor men, or those who have met with misfortune, are spurned. The women of the republics are very ignorant, and as mentally feeble as might be expected from their surroundings and history. Physically, stoutness is the end and aim of female ambition, and to weigh two, or even three, hundred pounds is the greatest pride of the Dutch women of the veldt. They are invariably treated as the inferior sex, and even eat apart from the men. The Boer woman thinks little of dress, and in the house wears chiefly a loose and scantily made gown, which does for night as well as day. Out of doors, upon the weekly visit to church, something slightly better is used, together with an immense bonnet and a veil so thick as to make the face invisible. Next to the desire for fatness is the wish for a good complexion, and these two vanities constitute the special distinction of the Boer woman. She does little work and takes less exercise; except in times of war, when she sleeps as easily on the veldt as in a feather bed, and handles her gun as skilfully as does her husband. The Kaffirs and Hottentots and miscellaneous colored servants do the labor of both the kitchen and the farm. They do not share in the long prayers of the family, or indeed in any religious exercise, as the Boer regards them as animals not requiring salvation. The common belief is that they are descended from apes and baboons.

The Homestead and Immorality

The homesteads are small and unpretentious, and nearly always dirty in the extreme, as are the clothes and persons of the people themselves. Washing is perfunctory and generally the merest pretense. Of course water is frequently scarce, and this fact affords some excuse for what has now become a general habit and condition. As to the morals of the Dutch farmer facts speak stronger than words. In his relations with his own race his code is as strict as can be desired, and im that respect the home life is entirely moral. But no law, spiritual or human, controls him in regard to the negro women with whom he has been surrounded for centuries. And the result is a brutalization of his whole nature, a loss of all refinement in manners and the absence of any real respect for the sex. The Griquas, who have numbered thousands and constituted large and distinct communities in South Africa, and are still being added to, are the offspring of Boer and Hottentot unions; while the Cape-Boys are the result of similarly unrecognized relations between Boers and the Kaffir women. This immorality extends to the Boers all through South Africa in their relation with colored dependents, and it is not difficult to comprehend its degrading effect upon men, women and children alike.

Lack of Education

Ignorance is universal and pronounced. It is more than a mere lack of education. Such as there is amongst the wealthier portion of the rural population consists in the occasional visit of some travelling schoolmaster—generally a broken-down Englishman, or drunken Hollander who has failed in every other pursuit. Even this measure of instruction is not supported by the poorer farmers. Schools in the Transvaal are very rare, though more frequently found in the Free State. Distances are, of course, considerable, and for this reason alone organized education would be difficult. In late years the well-to-do frequently engage tutors—usually of rather doubtful qualifications—for six months and in order to teach the children to read and write. But of anything more than this they do not dream, and the great majority of the adults can do neither. The Old Testament they are taught until they know it by heart, and do not really require to read it. Of literature, history, astronomy, the sciences, political economy, the nations of the world, nothing is known to the average Boer of the veldt. He believes the earth to be a flat and solid surface around which the sun revolves. A member of the Transvaal Volksraad is on record as having jeered at the English view of the matter. He declared that the earth couldn't move because he had often for hours at a time watched upon the veldt to see if a certain kopje gave any sign of motion. As to the sun, didn't Joshua bid it stand still, and how could he have done that if it was already stationary and the world went round it? No native Dutchman of South Africa has shown literary ability. Its only poet is Pringle—a Scotchman. Its only writer is Mrs. Cornwright-Schreiner—the daughter of a German. Its only historian is Dr. Theal—a Canadian. New ideas are to the Boer a source of dread; improvements are spurned as either impious or unnecessary. Cures for infectious sheep disease or for rinderpest amongst the cattle are opposed as contravening the intentions of Providence. Compulsory education is as heartily and vigorously denounced in Cape Colony, where the most intelligent members of the race are to be found, as is compulsory vaccination.

THE LAST CARTRIDGE.  An incident in the battle of Glencoe.
An incident in the battle of Glencoe.

QUEEN VICTORIA AT BALMORAL, OCTOBER 22, 1899. Writing letters of sympathy to the near relations of the killed and wounded at the battle of Glencoe.
Writing letters of sympathy to the near relations
of the killed and wounded at the battle of Glencoe.


Taxation in the republics of to-day is as strongly and sincerely disliked as it was in the days of the Great Trek, or of the little republics in the time of Pretorius. Had the Government of the Transvaal depended upon its ordinary revenues, or upon the taxation of its own people for munitions of war and for the great armament of the present day, it would have long since been overthrown by the Boers themselves. Like the Chinaman, the Dutch farmer reveres the practices and precepts of his equally ignorant father or grandfathers. They did not endure taxation, neither will he. His method of cultivating the soil affords another illustration of this quality. It is that of Syria and Palestine. Corn is still trodden under the foot of the ox, and the little agricultural work carried on is done by native servants. There is, of course, a better class of South African Dutchmen than the Boer of the veldt. But it is limited in number, outside of Cape Colony, and the latter constitutes the really important subject for consideration. For some of his qualities the Boer cannot be seriously blamed. Surliness of manner, uncouthness in appearance, aversion to strangers, ignorance of the outer world, religious superstition, are all matters in which he does not stand alone, and which are the natural products of an isolated life. So also is the fact of his being stupid and lazy in ordinary life, and only keen, alert and quick when he stands on the veldt with gun in hand and his horse by his side intent upon the game of sport or the greater game of war. But there is no adequate excuse for his continued hatred of the Englishman, for his tyranny toward inferiors and colored people, for his personal immorality, or for the phenomenal arrogance of his conduct and character. The higher class Boer of the towns in the Free State, and of Pretoria itself, may eliminate some of the more evident barbarisms of his veldt brother, but there remains the same extraordinary ignorance of external conditions, the same monumental conceit, the same absence of truthfulness and honor, the same arrogance and hatred of British power and progress. Added to this is the political corruption arising, in the Transvaal, out of conditions in which poor and ignorant farmers have obtained and held, through designing adventurers from Holland, the entire government and control of a State in which gold is being produced in immense quantities, and lavished, as opportunity offers, for the purchase of privileges or powers not obtainable through the usual channels of popular government.

Love of Liberty

What of the Boer love of freedom? There is no more admirable quality in the world than love of liberty; no greater inspiration to gallant deeds, to high ideals, to noble practices. But there are different kinds of liberty. The Iroquois of North American history stalked through his noble forests in all the pride of physical power and the freedom to torture and slaughter his red enemy or white foe whenever and wherever he could. He loved liberty in the sense of doing what he liked. The Dublin assassins of Lord Frederick Cavendish, the Chicago bomb-throwers, the lovers of lynch-law in Southern States, the anarchists of Paris or St. Petersburg, all have feelings of the fiercest nature in favor of freedom. License, however, is not true liberty, nor is the love of independence amongst the Boers a regard for freedom in the ordinary sense of that much-abused word. Of course, there is much that is admirable in the feeling, as there is in any sentiment or aspiration for which men will fight and die—as there was in the freebooting instincts of the old-time Scottish clans; as there was in the loyal passion of the Scottish Highlanders for "Bonnie Prince Charlie;" as there was in the prolonged and desperate struggle of the Southern States for a dying cause; as there is even in the Filipino desire for a sort of wild freedom. In the case of the Boer, however, it is simply an instinctive desire for solitude and for the free practice of certain inbred tendencies, such as hunting, slave-holding and ranching. It can hardly be said to be connected with questions of government or constitution. No Government at all would suit the Boer if it were practicable, and his record shows that an oligarchy is no less agreeable to him than was the one-time division of 15,000 settlers into four republics. He knows little of the struggles of his reputed ancestors in Holland for freedom of the higher kind, and for that equality of religious and racial rights which he is now the first to spurn, and to even fight in order to prevent others from obtaining in parts of South Africa.

Change of Policy

So long as the Boer love for independence was simply a fond regard for isolation, which inflicted no serious injury upon other white people around him, the British Empire and its citizens had no right to interfere or to do more than laugh at its crudities and, perhaps, denounce its cruelties to inferior races. But, when the so-called passion for independence became an aggressive passion for territorial acquisition, and the love for license to do as he liked with his own colored population was lost sight of in a widely manifested desire to acquire control over outside native tribes, the issue became an Imperial one, and raids upon Basutoland, Bechuanaland, Zululand, Mashonaland and Tongaland marked the direct pathway to present developments. This policy of extension, however, required statecraft, a quality somewhat lacking amongst the rude legislators of Pretoria or Bloemfontein. It also needed money, the supply of which, before the discovery of gold, was sadly deficient. Government of Dutch Adventurers President Brand, of the Free State, was a statesman, but, in the ordinary sense of the word, was never a Boer, and would have nothing to do with the more aggressive ambitions of the Transvaal rulers. President Kruger had plenty of native ability, and from the time of his taking hold of affairs in the Transvaal dates its growth in strength and influence. He is, however, of German extraction, although one of the boys who participated in the original Great Trek. Dr. F. W. Reitz, who ultimately became so strong a personality in the Government of both republics, was also of German origin. So with Hofmeyr of Cape Colony. President Steyn, of the Free State, is the son of a Dutchman, but one who was a resident of Bloemfontein and not a Boer in the popular sense of the term. Dr. W. J. Leyds, the cleverest manipulator and schemer of South African history, is a Hollander, as was Dr. E. J. P. Jorrissen, one of the Dutch negotiators of the Convention of 1881.

These facts illustrate an interesting phase of the situation. It was not from the ranks of the Boers that men came who were capable of making the Transvaal an arsenal of military power, a close corporation of clever financial government, the head of the great Afrikander movement of the past decade, a force of organized strength for the destruction of British rule in South Africa, and a diplomatic factor at the capitals of Europe. The Boers were, and are, simply the instruments of clever adventurers from Holland. The "Hollanders" first came to the front in South Africa during the early days of the Free State. They controlled its incipient constitution for some years, and helped, incidentally, to check and then kill the agitation for reincorporation in the Empire. They caused President Brand some trouble during the preliminary period of his administration, but then gradually settled down into the quiet and comfortable occupancy of such offices as required more education than the average Boer possessed. These they still hold to a considerable extent. After Brand's death their governing influence became greater; they joined and organized the Afrikander Bund in the State, and then stood shoulder to shoulder with President Reitz and his successor, Steyn, until the development of events brought them into closer relationship with fellow-Hollanders in the Transvaal under the common leadership of Kruger and the clever manipulation of Reitz and Leyds.

Anti-English Influence

In the Republic beyond the Vaal they first came into prominence under the administration of President Burgers, who, after his visit to Europe in the early seventies, brought some individual Hollanders back with him. But the bankrupt State did not possess sufficient attractiveness to draw very many adventurers from anywhere during the immediately succeeding years; and it was not until the discovery of gold, in 1884, and the prospect of the country becoming wealthy arose, that clever and adventurous natives of Holland began to think seriously of entering into the heritage they have since acquired. They did come, however, and in time acquired control of the chief offices in the State outside of the Presidency and Vice-Presidency; of the educational system, such as it was; of the railways and taxes and customs. It was not hard for them to see that the more isolated they could keep the Boer of the veldt the better it would be for their permanent success, and that the more they could estrange the Transvaal from Great Britain and the British Colonial system of South Africa the easier it would be to preserve the Republic and its riches for their own use and control. From these considerations it was natural and easy to take advantage of President Kruger's anti-British ambitions, of the machinery of the Afrikander Bund at the Cape, and of the money of the Uitlanders, in order to build up a great movement against British power in combination with the Free State; and to transform the republic of emigrant farmers into a strong, though small, military power. Plenty of foreigners and foreign help—especially German—was available, and out of that prominent Boer characteristic of hatred of England and the other one of pride in his own fighting records and belief in his own invincibility in war, were built up the military structure of the year 1899.

War a Big Game Hunt

To the fighting qualities of the Boer many tributes have been and more will be paid in the future. It is essentially a product of his environment. The student of British wars with the Kaffirs and of the interminable succession of struggles fought by the Boer with Hottentots and Bushmen in early Colonial days; with the Kosas on the frontiers of Cape Colony and the Zulus in Natal; with the Matabeles in the pioneer days of the republics, and with the Basutos during more than a decade in the history of the Free State; with the Bapedis of the Transvaal and the Bechuanas of the northern and western borders; with the Baramapulana of the Limpopo River and the Swazis of the southeastern border; will understand how much of native guile and savagery there is in the Boer method of warfare, and why it is so difficult for troops trained in other kinds of fighting to meet it when combined with European science in armament and trained skill in the management of great guns. Added to the quality of native cunning in warfare is an alertness of movement derived from long and hereditary skill in hunting wild animals and living constantly on horseback; as well as in fighting continuously a wily and ambush-making native foe. As with the Kaffir himself, laziness disappears when the game of the Boer is on the horizon, and it matters not whether the quarry be animal or human, the hunter and fighter becomes at once a creature of the veldt; a very part and parcel of the country around him. He knows every foot of South African soil. In the words of Pringle, referring to the emigrant farmer of earlier years:

"Afar in the desert I love to ride,
With the silent Bush-boy alone by my side:
Away—away—in the wilderness vast,
Where the White Man's foot hath never passed,
And the quivered Koranna or Bechuan
Hath rarely crossed with his roving clan:
A region of emptiness, howling and drear,
Which man hath abandoned from famine and fear."

Those days are passed; but the instinct remains, the knowledge has become hereditary, and, through the love of hunting which still continues in the breast of the Boer, it is to-day a practical and potent force. To the average Dutch farmer maps are therefore unnecessary, and the Drakensberg is as familiar in its every detail of mountain and kopje and rainless river as are the rooms of his own home on the rolling plains of the Transvaal or the Orange Free State. Hence it is that the general peculiarities of his complex character combine to make him a soldier and enemy whom it is no easy task to subdue—even for the legions of Britain and her allied Empire.


The Annexation of the Transvaal.

Dangers Without, Difficulties Within

In the years immediately following 1872 the disorganization and public weakness of the Transvaal Boers became dangerous to themselves and inimical to the peace of all South Africa. The emigrant farmers had for two decades been living in a chronic state of war with the ever-increasing number of natives around them and, while successful in their raids upon individual Bantu kraals, were entirely unsuccessful in the subjection of the tribes as a whole. They would not submit to taxation, what little paper money they possessed had in 1870 depreciated to a quarter of its face value, and the few business transactions indulged in were carried out on lines of barter not dissimilar to the aboriginal customs around them. No public improvements were made and no administrative system existed further than a nominal Presidency which was helpless in the face of the surrounding disorganization. The accession of Mr. Burghers to the position, in 1872, did not remedy matters and the repulse of the Boers from the stronghold of Sekukuni on their north-eastern border, in 1876, precipitated a situation which resulted in the British annexation of the Republic.

Authoritative Questions

So much of the subsequent discussion regarding this policy turns upon the then existing internal situation of the Transvaal that a couple of authoritative quotations may be given here. Mr. James Bryce, who has since made himself unpopular in England by his opposition to the War of 1899, states in his Impressions of South Africa that: "The weakness and disorders of the Republic had become a danger not only to the British subjects who had begun to settle in it but also to the neighbouring British territories and especially Natal." Dr. George M. Theal, a recognized authority upon South African affairs, despite a pronounced tendency to sympathize with the Dutch, refers in the Story of the Nations Series, to the troubles with Sekukuni and then proceeds; "But the country was quite unable to bear the strain. The ordinary charges of government and the interest on the public debt could not be met, much less an additional burden. And so the whole administrative machinery broke down. The Republic was really in a pitiable state, without money or an army, with rebellion triumphant and a general election approaching that was feared might be attended with civil war."

A Great Peril

National bankruptcy and the danger arising from 300,000 threatening natives surrounding, within the Transvaal, some 30,000 people of Dutch descent were also added to by the possibility of external attack from the Zulus. There can be no doubt of the reality of this peril although the events which followed led the Dutch to minimize its extent. Cetywayo, in 1876, had a large army of trained and physically powerful warriors numbering at least 30,000 men. He had immense reserves of savage population, in the event of war, both in the Transvaal and Natal, and all were bound together by a bond of hatred against the Boer—the only tie recognized by native tribes. He had his men in threatening positions upon the frontier from time to time and had announced that his Impis must have an opportunity of wetting their spears in the blood of an enemy. But at this point the Zulu chieftain touched British interests. If he attacked the Boers and was successful it meant a future onslaught with increased power upon Natal, and, in any case, might easily involve the hundreds of thousands of related tribes in the Colony. For the safety of the scattered British settlements it was therefore necessary to protect the now almost helpless Boer. Of course, the commandos of the latter would have put up a good fight against the invading hordes and the enmity of surrounding natives, but, without provisions, without ammunition, without fortifications, and without money (the Transvaal Treasury was so empty in 1876 that it could not pay for the transportation of some ammunition from Durban to Pretoria) the result must have been extremely disastrous.

The Federation Policy of Lord Carnarvon

It was at this junction that the Federation policy of Lord Carnarvon, Colonial Secretary in the Beaconsfield Government, combined with the apparent local necessities of the case to cause the intervention of the Imperial authorities. Lord Beaconsfield was an Imperialist of the strongest type, imaginative yet practical, initiative in policy and also courageous in execution. His Government had bought the Suez Canal shares in order to ensure the trade route of the Empire to India, and had made the Queen an eastern Empress and the Prince of Wales the centre of Oriental hospitality and magnificence, in order to appeal to the sentiment of those vast regions and teeming populations. Lord Carnarvon had, in 1867, as Colonial Secretary, presided over the Confederation of British America, and his present great ambition was to help in creating a federated South Africa. But it was too late so far as South Africa was concerned; too early so far as Imperialistic sentiment at home was concerned. When Sir Bartle Frere reached Cape Town he found that the Transvaal had just been annexed, and that one great apparent difficulty had been removed from his path. At the same time, however, he found the Orange Free State opposed to federation though ready for a customs union; and two years later the malcontents in the Transvaal, roused and encouraged by Mr. Gladstone's public sentiments as Leader of the Liberal Opposition and in defence of the Boer right to independence, were in rebellion and able to influence their racial allies at Cape Town in the vetoing of the Commissioner's general policy of federation. Such was the story in a brief summary.

Threatened Anarchy

The details are both interesting and important. In 1876 the Boer attack on Sekukuni—a not very strong Kaffir chief upon the Transvaal border—had, as already stated, been repulsed, and the High Commissioner of the moment in South Africa, Sir Henry Barkly, wrote to Lord Carnarvon, under date of October 30th, describing the ensuing situation of the Transvaal at some length, and concluded with the following expressive words:

"In short, the whole state of things borders very closely upon anarchy; and, although in other parts of the Republic lawlessness and inhumanity are less rampantly exhibited, the machinery of administration is everywhere all but paralyzed, and the Republic seems about to fall to pieces through its own weakness. In that event the Boers in each district would either have to make their own terms with the adjacent Kaffir tribes or trek onwards into the wilderness, as is their wont, whilst the position of the large number of British subjects scattered about on farms, or resident in the towns, or at the gold fields, might fairly claim the humane consideration of Her Majesty's Government even if there were not other reasons to save so fine a country from so miserable a fate."

There was more, however, to be thought of than the mere paralysis of the functions of Government, bad as it was. Then as now, the Transvaal was the Turkey of South Africa in its treatment of other races as well as in a Mahommedan-like superciliousness of religious view. Writing a few months after the above despatch from the High Commissioner, Lord Carnarvon—January 25, 1877—in referring to the Boer method of warfare on the native tribes as particularly illustrated in the Sekukuni struggle, declared that: "Her Majesty's Government, after having given full consideration to all the information attainable on the subject, and with every desire to view matters in the most favorable light, deeply regret that they are forced to come to the conclusion that the barbarities alleged to have been committed, though denied by the Transvaal Government, have, in fact, occurred."

Sir T. Shepstone's Arrival in Pretoria

Meanwhile, on October 5, 1876, Sir Theophilus Shepstone, who, during forty years of life and administration in South-eastern Africa had won the general respect of Englishmen, Boers and natives, received a Royal Commission to inquire into the Transvaal disturbances and to exercise power and jurisdiction in the matter subject to the will and welfare of the people. He arrived at Pretoria on January 22d, after a slow progress through the country and accompanied only by a small personal staff and 25 Natal Mounted Police. He had, during this period, in different parts of the Transvaal and to various portions of the people, explained his policy of annexation and the necessity of doing something for the preservation of personal property as well as real liberty. Everywhere he had been well received, and, for a month after his Proclamation annexing the Republic to the Empire had been issued on April 12th, he remained at Pretoria without the support of a single soldier of the Queen. The general position of the country was well explained in a despatch to Lord Carnarvon dated at Pretoria on March 6th. The white population was made up, at the outside estimate, of 8,000 men capable of bearing arms, and of these more than 6,000 were farmers scattered in isolated homesteads over a surface equal to that of the British Isles. It was patent, he declared, to every observer that:

Boer Government's Weakness

"The Government was powerless to control either its white citizens or its native subjects, and that it was incapable of enforcing its laws or collecting its taxes; that the Treasury was empty; that the salaries of officials had been and are for months in arrears; and that sums payable for the ordinary and necessary expenses of Government cannot be had; that payment for such services as postal contracts were long and hopelessly overdue; that the white inhabitants had become split into factions; that the large native population within the boundaries of the State ignore its authority and its laws, and that the powerful ruling king, Cetywayo, is anxious to seize upon the first opportunity of attacking a country the conduct of whose warriors at Sekukuni's mountain has convinced him that it can be easily conquered by his clamoring regiments."

Kruger's Visit to London

President Burgers himself recognized the situation, and a month before the annexation was consummated told the assembled Volksraad that "matters are as bad as they ever can be; they cannot be worse." Practically, he supported the policy of Sir T. Shepstone, and shortly afterwards retired on a pension to live at Cape Town. The Hollanders, who stood to lose heavily by the supremacy of British ideas and intelligence in the country, did their utmost to arouse the fanaticism of the farmers by printed manifestoes and memorials of the most inflammatory character, but without much success. In the end the only practical opposition made was the appointment by the expiring Executive Council, on the day before the Proclamation, of a delegation to England composed of Mr. Paul Kruger, Vice-President, and Dr. E. J. P. Jorrissen, Attorney-General. These gentlemen went to London and were well received personally, and a similar result followed from a second deputation headed by, Mr. Kruger in 1878. One evil, however, came from these visits. Instead of the astute Paul Kruger being impressed by the power of Great Britain, or conciliated by the courtesy of political leaders, he seems to have been interested chiefly in the study of party tactics and of the disintegrating influence of politics when carried into the field of Colonial government and foreign affairs. Coupled with the knowledge thus gained of a Radical faction which was already denouncing Lord Carnarvon's Confederation scheme, and of the anti-expansion views of Mr. Gladstone, Mr. John Morley and Sir William Harcourt, was a keen appreciation of the strength of the Home Rule issue then evolving such incipient power in the field of partisan battle. It was not hard for Mr. Kruger to discern, or hope for, the coming fall of the Beaconsfield Government; the growing power of a Radical element which would parallel the case of the Transvaal with that of Ireland; and a future in which some strong movement in the now quiet and peace-environed Boer country would result in a reversal of British policy.

But the annexation was now a fact. In England it was received with comparative indifference by the Tories and with a sort of passive hostility by the Liberals. No one seemed to know very much of the real state of affairs, and when, in the autumn of 1879, Mr. Gladstone practically urged the independence of the Boers as a portion of Liberal policy, his party opponents did not themselves realize the greatness of the issue involved or the inevitable consequences of playing with Empire questions as with measures for the building of a local bridge or the amending of some local law. In South Africa the English element rejoiced greatly at the annexation, and never dreamt of its reversal.

Dr. Moffat's Joy Over Annexation

The Rev. Dr. Robert Moffat, writing privately on July 27, 1877, with all his long accumulated experience in the South African missionary field,[1] declared that: "I have no words to express the pleasure the annexation of the Transvaal Territory has afforded me. It is one of the most important measures our Government could have adopted as regards the Republic as well as the aborigines. I have no hesitation in pronouncing the step one fraught with incalculable benefit to both parties, i.e., the settlers and the native tribes. A residence of more than half a century beyond the Colonial boundary is quite sufficient to authorize me to write with confidence that Lord Carnarvon's action will be the commencement of an era of blessing to South Africa." Such was the general view of the English element at the Cape, and such would have been the expressed view of Dutchmen like President Brand of the Free State if they could have ventured to explain their own sentiments. But Lord Carnarvon proposed, and Mr. Kruger's astute perception, combined with Hollander scheming and the fickleness of British party policy, disposed.

[1] Letter to Alexander McArthur, M.P., published in the English Independent of August 16, 1877.

Dutch Appeal to Gladstone

Slowly but surely Kruger played upon Boer ignorance and local prejudices, intense aversion to taxation and dislike of the English. Slowly and steadily he worked upon the racial sentiment of the Dutch at the Cape, until, in 1880, they largely signed an address to Mr. Gladstone asking his support for the "liberties" of their kinsmen. Eventually, he defeated, by indirect means, Sir Bartle Frere's policy of federating Cape Colony, Natal, Griqualand West and the Transvaal when it came before the Cape Legislature in June, 1880. Carefully, but with certainty, he built upon the shifting sands of England's Colonial policy that later structure of personal supremacy so well described by Kipling:

"Cruel in the shadow, crafty in the sun,
Far beyond his border shall his teaching run.
Sloven, sullen, savage, secret, uncontrolled,
Laying on a new land evil of the old."

For a couple of years, however, matters went on without open rebellion. The administration of Sir T. Shepstone was, upon the whole, a wise one. The former officials were largely retained, provision was made for a dual official language, the finances were got into fairly good shape, and the natives were conciliated. Sir Bartle Frere, looking on from Cape Town, wished to establish complete responsible government, and had his policy been carried out, it is possible that the war might have been averted, and certain that the growing influence of Kruger would have been checked. Two Dutch deputations had gone to London, and the restoration of independence had been refused them by both the Beaconsfield Government and the succeeding one of Mr. Gladstone. High officials of all kinds—Frere, Wolseley, Shepstone and Lanyon—had declared that it was an absolute impossibility, and, certainly, no overt attempts were made to obtain it while British troops were present in South Africa in large numbers engaged in crushing the Zulu enemy or the lesser power of the Sekukuni.

Encouragement from England

Unofficially, however, the Boer idea of independence received substantial encouragement from England. Before coming into power Mr. Gladstone, in his famous Midlothian speeches, proclaimed that "if those acquisitions were as valuable as they are worthless, I would repudiate them because they are obtained by means dishonorable to the character of the country." When he came into office he practically repudiated his own statements; but they had meanwhile done the mischief which so often accompanies demagogic or thoughtless oratory when uttered by highly-placed public men. In 1880 Colonel Sir Owen Lanyon became Administrator of the Transvaal in place of Sir T. Shepstone, who was paying a visit to England. He has been described as an "orthodox military man, somewhat pompous and a trifle haughty to inferiors," and, in reality, was the worst possible personage to be placed at the head of affairs in a country now seething with discontent and ripe for insurrection.

Taxation the Cause of War in 1880-81

One of the real and immediate causes of the war of 1880-81 was the question of taxation—not in any constitutional sense, as it might have been in an English community, but in the personal objection of the Boer to paying taxes of any kind to any person or any Government. The proceedings of the Volksraad from 1868 to 1877 teem with references to the difficulty of obtaining payment of the most ordinary and necessary taxes until, in March of the latter year, and just before the annexation was consummated, that body declared that the greater amount of the taxes had not been paid, that the Government of the country could not be carried on, and that the Government be authorized "to collect all outstanding taxes by summary process." There was, however, no personal objection to the drawing of money from the Government to any obtainable limit. Sir Owen Lanyon stated, as an illustration of this fact, and in a despatch to Lord Kimberley on December 5, 1880, that "Mr. Kruger's case exemplifies this (the avoidance of paying taxes on the ground of conscientious scruples against the Government), for he continued to draw salary as a member of the Executive Council for a period of eight and a half months after the annexation. In fact, he would doubtless be drawing it now, for notwithstanding his term of office expired on the 4th of November, 1877, he applied for and received pay up to the close of the year." Whatever the immediate cause of the rebellion, however, there can be no doubt of many of the collateral issues. Love of independence was one, and the careful manipulation of this sentiment by Mr. Kruger was perhaps as important a factor as any other. Hardly less so, in his hands and in those of clever Hollander intriguers, were the party utterances of English leaders. The men of the veldt knew nothing of England or English life, and how should they comprehend the complex character of partisan statements and eloquent platform vagaries? Hence it was that they were only too willing to believe that a show of force and the shock of a sudden revolt would break the back of the Gladstone Government's new-found objection to a recognition of their complete independence.

Sudden Coming of the War

The war came with apparent suddenness to the unprepared authorities—lack of preparation being, however, a not uncommon condition of South African history. Yet there was really ample warning. At a great mass meeting in December, 1879, the strongest possible sentiment had been expressed in favor of independence. Mr. M. W. Pretorius, a former President, had been arrested for sedition, and several others were in prison for the same reason. Passive resistance had everywhere become the order of the day, and a proclamation against seditious meetings was necessarily issued. Later on, Sir Garnet Wolseley, who had been recently appointed High Commissioner for South-eastern Africa, wrote to the Colonial Office (October 29, 1880) regarding the "continuance of grave discontent," and added: "I am informed on all sides that it is the intention of the Boers to fight for independence. There is no doubt, I think, that the people are incited to discontent and rebellion by ambitious agitators, ... and that the main body of the Dutch population is disaffected to our rule." Nothing of importance was done, however. Of course, Sir Garnet Wolseley did all he could in the careful disposition of his small force; but at home there was only wavering and uncertainty. The fact is, that the Gladstone Government was afraid to give way and did not want to hold on. They cared nothing for the Transvaal, but were face to face with repeated official pledges regarding its retention, as well as with their own unofficial advocacy of its abandonment. So they waited, and events drifted into the inevitable rebellion. The first overt action was the forcible resistance of a farmer, named Bezuidenhout, who had been served with a notice and then with an attachment for the sum of £27 5s., unpaid taxes.

Armed Boers Take Possession of Town

Then a great public meeting was announced for January 8, 1881, but was held instead on December 15th at Paardekraal. Armed Boers came in thousands, and, on the succeeding day, took possession of the Town of Heidelberg, declared their independence, and established a republican government, with Paul Kruger as President, Piet Joubert as Commandant-General, E. J. P. Jorrissen as Attorney-General, and a man named Bok as Acting State Secretary. Four days later a portion of the 94th Regiment, consisting of some 250 men, were surprised and shot down to the number of 120. Owing to the clever ruse of the Boers in announcing their mass-meeting for nearly a month ahead of its real date, the breaking out of active rebellion had not been expected for some weeks.

The British force was so small in the Transvaal that the Boers had it all their own way. The tiny garrisons were shut up and closely besieged, and the rebels advanced into Natal and occupied a favorable position in the mountains at a place called Laing's Nek. It was attacked on January 27th by Major-General Sir George Colley, commanding the troops in the Colony, with about a thousand men. He was driven back with heavy losses, owing partly to a lack of artillery and partly, on his own admission, to attempting a flank movement with inadequate means. Another unsuccessful fight took place at Ingogo, and then, on February 26th, he occupied Majuba Hill, and on the succeeding day met his second and famous defeat. Death buries mistakes, but there is no doubt that, once more, over-confidence had led a British officer into disaster. The results were more serious than those which usually follow such passing incidents.

Attitude of Gladstone's Government

The Gladstone Government did not want the Transvaal; did not like the preceding situation of suspended sedition; did not understand or care for the necessity and vital import of the country to a future united South Africa; did not desire to fight the Boers in any way, shape or form; did not know anything practical regarding the nature of Dutch politics and racial cohesion in South Africa, except to have vague fears of a general war; did not understand how greatly peace in such regions depends upon prestige or at how low an ebb British military reputation in South Africa already was. To them these little defeats were an excuse and a means to an end. Telegram followed telegram, after Majuba Hill, urging Sir Evelyn Wood—who had succeeded to the military command[2]—to obtain a meeting with the Boer leaders for the discussion of terms of peace. On March 5th, Sir Evelyn Wood telegraphed to Lord Kimberley, Colonial Secretary, that: "In discussing settlement of country, my constant endeavors shall be to carry out the spirit of your orders; but, considering the disasters we have sustained, I think that the happiest result will be that, after accelerating successful action which I hope to fight in about fourteen days, the Boers should disperse without any guarantee, and then many, now undoubtedly coerced, will readily settle down." But the Government was not willing to wait even fourteen days, and Mr. Gladstone had already stated in the House of Commons that he hoped to come to terms with the Boers. Accordingly, on March 12th, Lord Kimberley telegraphed Wood as follows:

[2] Sir Garnet Wolseley had returned to England some months before the outbreak of the war in order to take up the Quartermaster-Generalship of the Forces.

Proposition for Peace

"Inform Boer leaders that if Boers will undertake to desist from armed opposition and disperse to their homes we are prepared to name the following as Commissioners: Sir H. Robinson (High Commissioner), Chief Justice de Villiers (of Cape Colony) and yourself. President Brand would be asked to be present at proceedings as representing friendly State. Commission would be authorized to consider following points: Complete self-government under British suzerainty with British Resident and provisions for protection of native interests and as to frontier affairs. Control over relations with foreign Powers to be reserved."

Self-Government, but not Independence

Four days later the meeting took place under the shadow of Laing's Nek, and President Kruger accepted the terms of Lord Kimberley's telegram. On March 21st, the armistice having meanwhile been prolonged and President Brand not having turned up, a new meeting of President Kruger, Sir E. Wood and others was held and a draft treaty drawn up. Schedule 2d stated that: "We, Kruger, Pretorius and Joubert, declare our readiness to accept the suzerainty of the reigning Sovereign of Great Britain and Ireland according to the explanation given by Sir E. Wood." Schedule 3d declared that: "I, Sir Evelyn Wood, acknowledge the right of the Transvaal people to complete self-government, subject to the Suzerain rights." Everywhere throughout these negotiations the phrase "self-government" is used as contradistinguished from "independence." Not even the Boer leaders then suggested the latter as a possible policy. They were willing to accept the supremacy of the Queen, the British control of their foreign policy, the management of their relations with the natives and even the control of their border policy. But whatever they did ask for they received. The Lydenberg District, for instance, was distinctly debatable ground, with a mainly British and white population, and covering the region once ruled by Sekukuni and subdued by British troops on behalf of the Boers. This region the latter now demanded, though not very strenuously, and on March 31st Lord Kimberley telegraphed to the Royal Commissioners, in the concluding words of a somewhat fatuous discussion of the question, that: "Her Majesty's Government are averse, on general grounds of policy, to the extension of British territory in South Africa." Of course Lydenberg was ultimately given up and the Boer position further strengthened and consolidated. On June 13th the Royal Commission—Robinson, Wood and De Villiers—met the new Boer Government at Pretoria, and on August 3d the Convention of 1881 was signed and made public.



Suzerainty of the Queen

The document carefully guarded the Queen's supremacy, and declared in its important preamble that: "Her Majesty's Commissioners for the settlement of the Transvaal Territory, duly appointed as such by a Commission passed under the Royal Sign Manual and Signet bearing date April 5, 1881, do hereby undertake and guarantee on behalf of Her Majesty that, from and after the 8th day of August, 1881, complete self-government, subject to the suzerainty of Her Majesty, her heirs and successors, will be accorded to the inhabitants of the Transvaal Territory." Then follow the Articles of the Convention giving terms and conditions, reservations and limitations. Rights Guaranteed Residents Control was preserved over the natives; a British Resident was to be appointed at Pretoria; the right to move British troops through the State was acceded; "the control of the external relations of the said State, including the conclusion of treaties and the conduct of diplomatic intercourse with foreign Powers," was given to Britain; no slavery or "apprenticeship partaking of slavery" was to be tolerated; complete freedom of religion was promised; boundaries were defined and the independence of the Swazis "fully recognized." Finally, Article 26 declared that "All persons other than natives conforming themselves to the laws of the Transvaal State will have full liberty, with their families, to enter, travel or reside in any part of the Transvaal State; they will be entitled to hire or possess houses, manufactories, warehouses, shops and premises; they may carry on their commerce either in person or by any agents whom they may think fit to employ; they will not be subject in respect to their persons or property, or in respect to their commerce or industry to any taxes, whether general or local, other than those which are, or may be, imposed upon Transvaal citizens." This Article, reaffirmed in the same words by the ensuing Convention of 1884, and taken in conjunction with the guarantee of self-government to all the inhabitants of the Transvaal—not to the Boers alone—constitutes the charter of right to the Uitlander of a later day. Another point must also be considered in the same connection. Prior to the signing of the Convention a discussion[3] took place as to the existing rights of aliens or British subjects in the new State and in the following terms:

[3] See British Government Blue Book c. 3219, pp. 24 and 53.

What the Rights of Uitlanders were

"Question 239. Sir H. Robinson. Before annexation had British subjects complete freedom of trade throughout the Transvaal? were they on the same footing as citizens?

" 240. Mr. Kruger. They were on the same footing as the burghers; there was not the slightest difference, in accordance with the Sand River Convention.

" 241. Sir H. Robinson. I presume you will not object to that continuing?

" 242. Mr. Kruger. No, there will be equal protection for everybody.

" 243. Sir E. Wood. And equal privileges?

" 244. Mr. Kruger. We make no difference as far as burgher rights are concerned. There may perhaps be some slight difference in the case of a young person who has just come into the country.

" 245. There are no disabilities with regard to trade, are there?

" 246. Mr. Kruger. No.

"1037. Dr. Jorissen. At No. 244 the question was: 'Is there any distinction in regard to the privileges or rights of Englishmen in the Transvaal?' and Mr. Kruger answered, 'No, there is no difference;' and then he added, 'There maybe some slight difference in the case of a young person just coming into the country.' I wish to say that that might give rise to a wrong impression. What Mr. Kruger intended to convey was this: according to our law a newcomer has not his burgher rights immediately. The words young person do not refer to age, but to the time of residence in the Republic. According to our Grondwet (Constitution) you have to reside a year in the country.

"1038. Sir H. de Villiers. Is the oath of allegiance required from a person, not being born in the Transvaal, coming to reside there, who claims burgher rights?

"1039. Dr. Jorissen. In the law relating to the franchise there is a stipulation for the oath of allegiance to be taken to the State.

"1040. Then it is not every burgher who has a vote; it is only the burghers who have taken the oath of allegiance that have a vote?

"1041. Dr. Jorissen. Yes, the last revision of that law was made in 1876."

Complete Equality of Races

It is therefore plain that when the re-cession of the Transvaal took place complete equality of races existed and was pledged to continue; while a fair system of franchise was in force which required only a year's residence and the usual oath of allegiance—similar to that always used in the Orange Free State, and not like the one afterwards created which compelled a repudiation in set terms of allegiance to the Queen. The very term "self-government" naturally involved freedom of franchise under similar conditions for both Boer and Briton, and not even Kruger himself then claimed otherwise; whilst the British Government and the Commissioners took it as a matter of course that Englishmen would be kept upon the same level in the Transvaal as they always had been and as were the Dutch in Cape Colony and Natal.

Effort to Get Rid of British Suzerainty

However, results were still a matter of the future, and in the meantime the Convention, as signed by S. J. P. Kruger, M. W. Pretorius and P. J. Joubert, was ratified, on October 20th, by the Volksraad, though under protest from Joubert and others, and with the remarkable statement from Lord Kimberly that "no proposals for its modification could be entertained until it was ratified." This statement, coupled with the hostility secretly raised in the Volksraad by Kruger, and openly expressed as representative of public opinion, paved the way for a reconsideration of its terms along ultimate lines which should limit the Queen's Government to a supervision of the Transvaal's foreign affairs instead of their direction and control; which should abrogate the clause permitting interference with internal legislation, or with the policy pursued towards native tribes; and should strip the Resident of any authority other than that of a Minister or Consul. The aim was to get rid of British suzerainty by degrees, and Kruger, from his study of British political parties, believed he could eventually succeed.

Bold preliminary steps were taken. In open disregard of the Convention, a law was passed in 1882 providing that a newcomer must reside five years in the country, become duly registered and pay a sum of $125 before obtaining the privilege of naturalization. In 1884 President Kruger again visited London, accompanied by two other Delegates—Messrs. S. J. du Toit and N. J. Smit, and a clever Hollander lawyer named Van Blockland. Mr. Gladstone was still Premier, and Lord Derby, the weakest and most vacillating of modern British Ministers, was Colonial Secretary. As the hero of a retirement which had practically killed the Government of Lord Beaconsfield and of a New Guinea fiasco which had merited and received the execration of Australians, he was eminently fitted to become an instrument for trouble in South Africa under the shrewd manipulation of Kruger.

British Power Relinquished

The new Convention was duly negotiated, and all reference to the suzerainty omitted. Practically every power retained by the British Government in 1881 was now given up. As a "matter of convenience" the authority of the British Resident was wiped off the slate, and the right of the British Sovereign to move troops through the State in time of war with bordering natives was abrogated. The right to conduct diplomatic negotiations was also freely given up, and the only shred of authority visibly maintained was the power to veto treaties publicly entered into.

Loophole in the New Arrangement

Fortunately the declaration of suzerainty was not abrogated in set terms, and, of course, until that was done the British authority under which the first Convention was signed and sealed and the second Convention created remained the same. Moreover, the terms of the preamble to the second agreement simply stated that "the following Articles of the new Convention ... shall be substituted for the Articles embodied in the Convention of August 3, 1881," so that there was no direct substitution of authority. However, the new arrangement, through not definitely reasserting the suzerainty, gave President Kruger the opening he desired for some future period when he might claim that there was no longer any such authority; and in making possible this technical and vague claim the indifferent Lord Derby laid one of the foundation stones of great future trouble. The Transvaal State now became the South African Republic, and its Delegates negotiated treaties in Berlin, Paris and Lisbon. Gold soon began to be produced in great quantities, the revenues swelled into millions of pounds sterling, salaries of officials grew apace, President Kruger became one of the wealthy men of the world, alien settlers were treated like native inferiors, the oppressed Uitlander came into prominence, and presently the British Empire found itself face to face with an organized, compact, wealthy and powerful enemy.


Natal and the Zulu Wars.

Population, Climate, Resources, etc.

During these varied ups and downs of racial life and rivalry the progress of Natal had not been very great. Like Zululand, to the east, it lies on the sea-slope of a mountainous range and is undulating in surface with an alternation of hills and valleys. The latter have numerous and permanent streams, grass is plentiful, and in the coast region there is abundance of wood. It is much more favoured by nature than Cape Colony and, as a whole, its soil may be described as rich, its appearance as charming and its climate as temperate. Yet, at the end of the century, Natal has not more than 50,000 white residents within its bounds, although before the War of 1899 commenced it was making new and vigorous progress. Durban has become a beautiful, well managed and growing town of 30,000 people—half natives and coolies from India—while Pietermaritzburg is a small but pleasant capital with a cultivated society and agreeable natural surroundings. The population of the Colony includes nearly half a million Zulus, who are increasing in number by leaps and bounds; 50,000 immigrants from India of the coolie and artisan type, with an intermixture of Mohammedan traders from Bombay or Zanzibar who conduct a prosperous retail business with the natives; and about the same number of whites, of whom some nine or ten thousand are Dutch.

Progress of Natal

The progress latterly visible in Natal dates from the close of the Zulu war of 1879. Prior to that time the discovery of the Kimberley diamond fields had drawn away many of its more active spirits and, afterwards, the shadow of Cetywayo for some time loomed large upon the eastern border. After that cloud was dispelled the Transvaal War took place, and in 1886 the phenomenal growth of the Witwatersrand gold mines again drew away from the English population. As a whole, however, the people of the Colony have been very comfortable in their circumstances, and the bulk of the white settlers, outside of the villages, occupy large and prosperous cattle farms in which little of the soil is cultivated, and where the work is largely performed by coloured labourers. Sugar and tea plantations are, however, growing in numbers of late years. Politically, the Colony was governed directly from London during the years immediately following its British occupation in 1842 and latterly its Governor has had a curiously complicated position in relation to the Colonial Office and the High Commissioner for South Africa who dwells at Cape Town and acts as Governor of Cape Colony. Self-Government given to the Whites In 1893, with some hesitation and natural doubtfulness, the 15,000 adult white males of Natal were given self-government with almost complete control over hundreds of thousands of natives. There is now a Cabinet of five members, a House of Assembly and Legislative Council—the former elected for four years and the latter appointed by the Governor for ten years. It is greatly to the credit of these new institutions and the electorate generally that no trouble has occurred with the surrounding Zulus; that the law is easily enforced and thoroughly respected; and that the loyalty of the tribes has been pronounced and sincere.

But in 1876 this latter condition had hardly begun to develop, the natives were still a source of fear and natural suspicion, the Zulu impis of Cetywayo were darkly threatening, and the country was held back from settlement and progress by the encircling shadow of savage life. In the year 1877 Sir Bartle Frere, as Cape Governor and High Commissioner, had received a genial and not uncommon welcome to South Africa by a Kaffir war on the eastern frontier where two Kosa chiefs, Sandilli and Kreli, had revolted. Owing to the prompt action and wise measures taken the area of disturbance was limited and Cape Colony saved from those horrors of savage border warfare to which it had been so accustomed in the past. Satisfied with the result, Sir Bartle Frere turned to the northeast and found himself face to face with the menacing Zulu question and with the growth of a native power which had been practically encouraged by British policy to develop itself along the frontier of Natal.

THE DEATH OF COLONEL CHISHOLME AT ELANDSLAAGTE. As the daring officer fell from his horse at the head of his men, he shouted, "Splendid, Lads!
As the daring officer fell from his horse at the head of his men,
he shouted, "Splendid, Lads!

MAJOR-GENERAL SIR A. HUNTER, K.C.B., Chief of Sir George White's Staff.
LIEUTENANT-COLONEL T. SHERSTON, Killed in Battle of Glencoe

Cetywayo; his Power and Character

Since the struggle with his brother in 1856, and the slaughter of the latter with about one-fourth of the Zulus of that time, Cetywayo had been the real ruler of his nation. In 1872, upon the death of Panda, he succeeded also to the nominal government and was approved by the British authorities. In appearance the great Zulu chief was, in these earlier years, handsome and dignified, besides being possessed of undoubted mental gifts. He was, however, pitiless and cruel in the extreme, as hard of heart as a piece of steel, and as regardless of human life as a lion or tiger in its native fastnesses. In organizing power he had the genius of Tshaka, and he brought out all that was best and all that was worst in the Zulu race--the most intelligent, fearless and active of South African Kaffirs, or Bantu. As time went on and Cetywayo drilled and exercised and trained his _impis_, it became evident that unpleasant results must follow and that, hemmed in as they were by the Transvaal, Natal and the sea, there were only two possible outlets for the fiery spirits of the growing Zulu force. Cetywayo would have found it hard to control them had he desired to do so. Like all native armies, and especially with such disciplined and ambitious soldiers as he now had, they were more than anxious to test their power, to "wash their spears" in blood and to taste of the fierce pleasures of war. In this connection Sir Bartle Frere wrote with vigor in a dispatch of January, 1879, justifying his instructions to Lord Chelmsford to advance into Zululand:

War Clouds Gathering

"Whether his (Cetywayo's) young men were trained into celibate gladiators as parts of a most efficient military machine, or allowed to become peaceable cattle herds; whether his young women were to be allowed to marry the young men, or to be assegaied by hundreds for disobeying the king's orders to marry effete veterans, might possibly be Zulu questions of political economy with which the British Government were not concerned to meddle; but they were part of the great recruiting system of a military organization which enabled the King to form, out of his comparatively small population, an army, at the very lowest estimate, of 25,000 perfectly trained and perfectly obedient soldiers, able to march three times as fast as we could, to dispense with commissariat of every kind and transport of every kind, and to fall upon this or any part of the neighboring colony (Natal) in such numbers and with such determination that nothing but a fortified post could resist them; making no prisoners and sparing neither age nor sex."

Demonstrations of aggressiveness were frequent. About the time when Sir Bartle Frere arrived at Cape Town a powerful Zulu force had, in the most menacing manner, paraded along the Natal frontier, and, in response to protests, was described as merely a hunting party. British officials, who had been sent into Zululand from time to time as envoys, were treated in the most contemptuous manner by the Zulu Idunas. On one occasion (in 1876) two native women were captured on Natal soil and carried back to punishment, which, in this case, meant death. Proofs were not wanting of Zulu attempts to create disturbance amongst other Bantu tribes in distant parts of the country, and, on December 10, 1878, Sir Bartle Frere wrote to the Colonial Secretary that: "Whenever there has been disturbance and resistance to the authority of the Government between the Limpopo and the westernmost limits of Kaffir population, there we have found unmistakable evidence of a common purpose and a general understanding." The first embodiment of this fact was the Kaffir war already mentioned. Sandilli, leading the Gaika tribe, and Kreli the Galekas, had revolted in August, 1877, and only prompt military measures had saved the neighboring colonists from much suffering. As it was the tribes were not entirely subjugated until eight months after their first hostile action. The general effect, of course, was to still further encourage Cetywayo and his warriors in their aggressive ambitions.

The Zulus and the Boers

An additional factor to this end was the British annexation of the Transvaal in 1877. By placing their most hated enemy, the Boer, under British control it transferred the expression of that hatred to the new Government and the English people. A part of the general restlessness of the natives in the year of the annexation had been expressed in the war between Sekukuni, a Kaffir chief to the northeast, and the Boer Republic. The chief in question was a tool of Cetywayo's, and there is little doubt was egged on by him to hostilities which the latter intended as preliminary to a general attack upon the Transvaal; in which he was further encouraged by the defeat of the Boers and the retirement of President Burgers from his invasion of Sekukuni's territory. But the British annexation temporarily averted the attack and the whole burden of Zulu hostility was practically assumed by the British; as well as the subsequent brunt of Zulu attack. The situation, therefore, was not a pleasant one for Sir Bartle Frere any more than it was for the colonists of Natal, or for the Boers of the Transvaal prior to their annexation. It had been anticipated by Sir George Grey, a quarter of a century before, when he had urged that the growth of the Zulu power be checked by the establishment of a protectorate, or watched by the placing of a permanent Resident at its capital. Zulu Declaration But his advice was disregarded, and, in 1876, when Sir Henry Bulwer, Governor of Natal, protested against some Zulu act of force upon the frontier, Cetywayo was able to reply with a temerity born of the possession of a splendidly developed fighting machine of many thousand men: "I do kill; but do not consider yet I have done anything in the way of killing. Why do the white men start at nothing? I have not yet begun. I have yet to kill. It is the custom of our nation, and I shall not depart from it." In a dispatch to the Colonial Office on December 2, 1878, Sir Bartle Frere declared plainly that, as a result of these and other more practical manifestations, "no one can really sleep in peace and security within a day's run of the Zulu border, save by sufferance of the Zulu Chief."

In the end the war really came as a result of the Transvaal annexation, and, in the main, because of the bitter feeling between the Boers and the Zulus. During the month of September, 1878, Sir Bartle Frere, as High Commissioner for South Africa, visited Natal, and examined some territory in dispute between the Transvaal (then a British dependency) and Zululand. Finally he gave his decision as arbitrator in favor of the Zulu claim; but with a view to the general well-being of South Africa attached certain requirements to the announced Award. These included the disbandment of his army by Cetywayo, the reception of a British Resident at his capital of Ulundi, the surrender of certain persons guilty of an offence upon Natal territory, and the giving of specific guarantees for the better government of his people. The proposal obviously involved the establishment of a protectorate over Zulu territory, and the only possible alternative to its refusal was war. Knowing the ambitions of Cetywayo and his army, as Sir Bartle Frere did, he could hardly have expected the acceptance of these propositions or have supposed that there could be any other result than immediate hostilities. Advance into Zululand As a matter of fact no reply was received, and on January 10, 1879, Lieutenant-General Lord Chelmsford, who had commanded in the Kaffir War of the preceding year, crossed the Lower Tugela with a force which was small, but generally deemed sufficient, and marched into Zululand toward a place called Isandlhwana, where camp was formed for a few days. Colonel Pearson, with a flying column of 2,000 white troops and a similar number of blacks, marched on toward Ulundi, and got as far as Etshowe, after beating back a Zulu army of about his own number. A third column under Colonel Evelyn Wood marched from another direction toward the same objective point, reached a post called Kambula, and remained there for some time after duly fortifying it and defeating a persistent attack from a large Zulu army. Incidentally, one of his patrols was surprised by the enemy, and ninety-six of the party killed, including Colonel Weatherley and his son.

A Large Force Slaughtered

Meanwhile Lord Chelmsford had moved the main body of his forces to the capture of a large kraal near Isandlhwana, leaving about a thousand British, Colonial and native troops to guard the camp. Despite the warnings of some Dutch farmers, no attempt had been made at protecting the place by trench, or embankment, or even by the traditional and easy laager of wagons. Danger was hardly dreamed of until, on January 22d, the horns of a Zulu army of twenty thousand men were found to be closing around the devoted troops. There was practically nothing to do but to die, and this the soldiers did with their faces to the foe, fighting as long as their ammunition lasted and killing over a thousand Zulus. A few irregular mounted troops escaped, as did the bulk of the natives; but seven hundred British regulars and over a hundred Colonial troops were slaughtered by an enemy who gave no quarter and from whom none was asked or expected. Not far away from this camp, on the Natal frontier and guarding the line of communication, was a small depot for provisions and hospital work under the charge of Lieutenants Chard and Bromhead with 130 soldiers. In the afternoon of the fateful day at Isandlhwana this little post of Rorke's Drift was attacked by a picked Zulu army of four thousand men, and for eleven hours was defended so desperately, behind hastily improvised fortifications of biscuit boxes and grain bags, that the enemy retired after leaving over 300 men dead on the field. The little garrison was saved, and, more important still, Natal was saved from a sweeping and devastating raid of savage warriors. Lord Chelmsford at once fell back upon his base of supplies in the Colony, and the other columns at Etshowe and Kambula, respectively, proceeded, as already stated, to fortify themselves and await events. Further movements were slow in arrangement and reinforcements slow in coming, but, finally, Lord Chelmsford advanced again into Zululand with 4,000 British and Colonial troops and a thousand natives, and on July 4th, after relieving Etshowe and beating back the enemy at Gungunhlovu, reached Ulundi, where he defeated a Zulu army of 20,000 men.

Death of Prince Imperial

Meantime Sir Garnet Wolseley had been sent out to supersede Lord Chelmsford and to administer the regions affected by the war. He arrived on the scene very soon after this decisive conflict, and was able to report to the War Office that Zululand was practically at peace again. A few months later Colonel Baker Creed Russell went to the further rescue of the Boers in their seemingly hopeless struggle with the Bapedis, and, on November 28th, stormed and captured Sekukuni's stronghold. One of the melancholy incidents of a most unpleasant "little war" was the death of the Prince Imperial of France. The Zulus must have lost ten thousand men, all told, and their power was absolutely shattered. Cetywayo, after remaining in concealment for a time, was eventually captured and sent to live in guarded comfort near Cape Town. A little later he was allowed to visit England, where he was well received, and proved himself a dignified savage, and in 1883 was re-established in Zululand after the practical failure of Sir Garnet Wolseley's attempt to govern that region through thirteen semi-independent chiefs. Civil war followed, Cetywayo died, his sons kept up the internal conflict, the Transvaal annexed what is now called the District of Vryheid, and in 1887 what remained of the country was proclaimed British territory. Thus, and finally, was settled a question which threatened the very existence of the thirty thousand white people of Natal—surrounded within their own territory by three hundred thousand Zulus and faced upon their border by a strong Zulu nation and its army of 25,000 to 40,000 men.

Redress Necessary

Sir Bartle Frere was vigorously denounced for the war, for the disaster at Isandlhwana, and for everything connected with the matter. Yet it seems to the impartial judgment of later days that he only did what was wise in a most difficult and dangerous situation. There appears to be no doubt that Cetywayo was simply awaiting his chance to over-run the Transvaal and Natal. In writing to the Colonial Office, on March 1, 1879, Sir Bartle Frere pointed out the necessity of taking immediate action, and the difficulty, or worse, of waiting two months—in days prior to cable communication—for exact authority to move in the matter of compelling redress, and added: "The Zulus had violated British territory, slain persons under English protection, and had repeatedly refused the redress we demanded. Could a final demand for redress on this account be postponed? It seems to me clearly not, with any safety to Natal and its inhabitants." In another despatch to the Colonial Office, on January 13, 1880, the High Commissioner replied to some attacks from Mr. Gladstone by declaring that "in the judgment of all military authorities, both before the war and since, it was absolutely impossible for Lord Chelmsford's force, acting on the defensive within the Natal boundary, to prevent a Zulu impi from entering Natal and repeating the same indiscriminate slaughter of all ages and sexes which they boast of having effected in Dingaan's other massacres of forty years ago." He defended Lord Chelmsford, and incidentally stated that the disaster at Isandlhwana was due to disregard of orders. South Africa was for a time, however, the grave of Sir Bartle Frere's reputation, both in this connection and that of the Transvaal, and his recall followed a few months after the writing of the above despatch. But historical retrospect is wiser than political opinion, and time has now revived the fame of a great man and a wise statesman, and declared that there was practical truth and justice in the farewell address presented to him by the people of Albany in the Colony of the Cape:

"We have watched with the most anxious interest your career during that eventful period when the affairs of the neighboring Colony of Natal were administered by you; we perfectly understand that at that crisis the deep-laid plans and cruel purposes of the savage and bloodthirsty king of the Zulus were just reaching their full development, and that his inevitable and long-expected encounter with the British power could no longer be averted; it was, no doubt, fortunate for that colony, and for the honor of the British name, that you were on the spot ready to sacrifice every personal consideration, and to undertake one of the heaviest and most tremendous responsibilities ever undertaken by a servant of the Crown. Your excellent plans, your steady determination, your unflagging perseverance, led to the downfall of a barbarous tyrant, the break-up of a most formidable and unwarrantable military power, and the establishment of peaceful relations, which, properly managed, might have ensured the lasting peace and prosperity which you have systematically desired to secure for South Africa."

Order in Natal and the Transvaal

With the ending of this war and the temporary settlement of the Transvaal troubles there came to Natal a period of progress in both constitutional and material matters. The natives of the Province had always been well treated by the Imperial authorities, and there were none of the complexities of dual control so noticeable at the Cape; while the small number of Dutch settlers who remained after the "forties" were not important enough to create racial friction or to seriously antagonize the surrounding Zulus. The many privileges and immunities of the latter, and the possession of large tracts of land given and secured to them by the Colonial Office, seem to have made them a fairly satisfied people and to have prevented any organized effort at any time to join hands with their kin under Panda or Cetywayo. The experience of Englishmen with the Maori, the Red Indian, or the Kaffirs to the west of Natal, have not been repeated in that little Colony, and the small population of whites has lived in comparative security, though not without frequent fear, amidst the ever-increasing numbers of a savage race. Something of this has been due to the wise administration of the Colonial Governors and to their reasonable immunity from the influences which controlled the Cape and dragged the Colonial Office first one way and then the other. The local whites were also too few to claim constitutional government, to assert a right to control the natives, or to do more than occasionally protest against incidents such as the Transvaal slave-raids upon Kaffir tribes or hostility towards its general system of "apprenticeship."

In 1845 the first Lieutenant-Governor, under the jurisdiction of the Governor of Cape Colony, had been appointed in the person of Mr. Martin West. He was succeeded, in 1850, by Mr. Benjamin Pine, and, in 1856, by Mr. John Scott, who brought with him a Royal charter constituting the Colony, separating it from the Cape, and giving it an appointive Council. In 1866 an Assembly was created, with the same limitations as to responsible government which characterized all the Colonial Assemblies of that time. Mr. John Maclean, C.B., was appointed Lieutenant-Governor, and Mr. R. W. Keate became the first Governor of Natal in 1867. His successors were as follows, and their names mark several important incidents in South African history:

1872, Sir Anthony Musgrave, K.C.M.G.
1873, Sir Benjamin Pine, K.C.M.G.
1875, Major-General Sir Garnet Wolseley, B.C.
1875, Sir Henry E. Bulwer, K.C.M.G.
1880, General Sir Garnet Wolseley, G.C.B.
1880, Major-General Sir G. Pomeroy Colley.
1881, Brig.-General Sir H. Evelyn Wood.
1881, Lieut.-Colonel C. B. H. Mitchell, C.M.G.
1882, Sir Henry E. Bulwer, K.C.M.G.
1885, Sir Charles B. H. Mitchell, K.C.M.G.
1886, Sir Arthur E. Havelock, K.C.M.G.
1889, Sir Charles Mitchell, K.C.M.G.
1893, Sir W. F. Hely-Hutchinson, G.C.M.G.

An Uprising Threatened

Under the régime of Sir Benjamin Pine occurred one of those native wars which illustrate at once the precarious tenure of peace with savage tribes and the danger of a Governor falling between the two stools of a weak white population demanding protection against the serried masses of native races and a Colonial Office controlled, to some extent, by missionary and religious influences with sympathies wider than their statecraft or knowledge. Langalibalele, Chief of the Hlubis in Natal—a tribe which was great and powerful in the days preceding Tshaka—had gradually strengthened his people in numbers and in training until he thought himself able to defy the Natal Government, and to send his young men into neighboring communities to purchase guns and ammunition in defiance of the regulations of the Colony. Messages were in vain sent from Pietermaritzburg demanding an account of the matter and his presence at the capital. Finally, a small party of volunteers was sent to compel his obedience, and met with the usual preliminary repulse. Then upon a thread seemed to hang the peace of South Africa. Langalibalele was known to be held in high respect by Kaffir tribes from the Caledon to the Fish River, and it was afterwards proved that he really had tried to effect a general rising. Prompt measures were taken, however, by all the Governments—even those of the Republics offering aid—and the Chief was surrounded by a large force of Natal and Cape Mounted Police, captured, tried by a special Court and sentenced to imprisonment for life. Meantime the influence of Bishop Colenso and the Aborigines Protection Society had made the Colonial Office doubtful of the justice of these steps. The Governor was recalled, sentences were commuted, and compensation was given from the Imperial Treasury to a tribe which had suffered through expressing sympathy with the rebels.

Gen. Wolseley Arrives in State

The coming of Sir Garnet Wolseley, in 1875, amid much glitter of state and ceremony, marked the attempt of Lord Carnarvon to promote the federation of the Colonies; and the despatch of the same distinguished soldier, in 1880, was an effort to gather up the threads of military organization after the reverses and successes of the Zulu War. The death of Sir George Pomeroy Colley at Majuba Hill and the accession of Sir Evelyn Wood, with instructions to make peace with the Transvaal, are landmarks in the annals of the whole region; while the coming of Sir Walter Hely-Hutchinson in 1893, with extended powers as Governor of Natal and Zululand, marks the grant of complete responsible government to this miniature Colonial India, twenty years after it had been given to Cape Colony, and nearly fifty years after Canada had received it. Government of Natal Under this constitution there is now a Legislative Council of eleven members, nominated by the Governor-in-Council and appointed for ten years, and a Legislative Assembly of thirty-seven members, elected by popular constituencies—mainly white—for four years. The Ministry holds office by the same Parliamentary tenure as do all British Governments under free institutions, and, since 1893, the Prime Ministers have been Sir John Robinson, K.C.M.G., who held office until 1897; the Right Hon. Harry Escombe, P.C., who succeeded him and participated in the Queen's Diamond Jubilee; Sir Henry Binns, K.C.M.G., who died in 1899; and the present occupant of the position, Lieut.-Colonel Albert Henry Hime, C.M.G. The franchise of the Colony is liberal, and every European who is a British subject and possesses real property worth $250, occupies such property at an annual rental of not less than $50, or is in receipt of an income of $480 and upwards, can vote. He must, however, have resided in the Colony for three years. Natives are entitled to vote under the same conditions after seven years' voluntary exemption from the action of the special native laws and the tribal system.

One of the curious conditions of Natal, and which entitles the Colony to consideration as a sort of miniature India, has been elsewhere casually referred to. It was thought, at first, that in a country which combined tropical vegetation with a healthful climate and with a great reserve force of natives for local labor, immense development of production might be possible. Coffee, sugar, arrowroot, cotton and tea were all found to thrive in its fruitful soil. But European workers did not come in any number, and it was soon found that the natives would not work with the least bit of persistence or dependence. In this difficult situation planters and capitalists turned to the Eastern Empire, and coolies were engaged under contract for a term of years. And, when their term was up, these hired immigrants, as a rule, showed no desire to return, and settled down for good in a land which seemed to their minds greatly superior to the one they had left. Naturally, too, Indian traders followed, and, in time, a small but steady stream of immigrants flowed in from India, and through their cheap mode of living soon captured the bulk of retailing trade in the country, while also doing most of the cheaper labor. Of this class of settlers, now nearly equal in numbers to the white population, there were 17,000 in 1879, 41,000 in 1891 and 53,000 in 1898. They do not, through taxes, add greatly to the revenues of the country, or in any sense to its military strength, but they do add appreciably to its productive and industrial capabilities.

FIRST SERIOUS BOER-BRITISH BATTLE, MAJUBA HILL, 1881. In which the Boers defeated the English and gained internal independence.
In which the Boers defeated the English and gained internal independence.


Resources of Natal

In this latter connection there were, in 1892, over four million dollars invested in the sugar industry, including 36 factories, with an output of 15,000 tons and employing 6,000 coolies. But, although great possibilities exist in this and other industrial directions, serious development had only just commenced when the present war broke out, and the central resource of the Colony was still sheep and cattle raising, together with a fair amount of straight agricultural work such as the cultivation of maize, oats, barley, potatoes and vegetables of various kinds. Fruit, such as pineapples, oranges, lemons, bananas, peaches, etc., were, of course, grown to any extent desired. That the general progress of production was fair is seen from the fact that the Natalian exports rose from $6,200,000 in 1893 to $8,100,000 in 1897. Other conditions were good. The imports, chiefly from Great Britain, advanced during the same period from $11,000,000 to $29,900,000, and the revenue from five millions to eleven millions. Durban became the port for a large transit trade to the interior States. The population as a whole grew from 361,000 in 1867 to 543,900 in 1891, and 829,000 in 1898—four hundred thousand of this increase being amongst the natives. Educational progress was excellent. In 1892 the regular attendance at Government and inspected schools was 6,000, while 2,200 attended private schools, and only some 200 children were reported as receiving no education. There were 74 schools for natives, with a total attendance of 4,050, and 24 schools for Indian children, with an attendance of 1,402. In 1897 there were 7,685 in regular attendance at Government and inspected schools, and 1,600 at the private schools. There were 159 native schools with an attendance of 8,542, and 30 Indian schools with 1,961 pupils.

England's Wise and Generous Policy

Upon the whole, the historic life of Natal since the days of Dutch and native turmoil has not, with the exception of the eventful period of 1876-81, been a stormy one. The Dutch are too much in the minority to cause much trouble, and a fair measure of good feeling seems to have prevailed locally. The whole white population are fairly well agreed upon franchise questions as the free British principle works out in the practical exclusion of the ignorant and tribal savage. They are at one upon tariff matters, and the present system is for revenue only and is very low—the ordinary ad valorum rate being five per cent. Politics have not been as bitter as in Cape Colony, owing to a practical, though not always expressed, recognition of the fact that good reasons existed for not giving complete control over an immense black population, involving in its results at times the whole Imperial policy and system in South Africa, into the hands of thirty, forty, or fifty thousand white men, women and children, all told. The wise handling of the native problem, the conciliation of the Kaffir and the careful local laws, did, however, make this finally possible, and the Government of the Colony since 1893 has been all that could be reasonably desired. There is some rivalry with Cape Colony, owing to the latter's annexation of Griqualand East and Pondoland which Natal had hoped to acquire, and also, in some measure, to the railway competition of the richer and stronger Colony. But Natal has been allowed to absorb Zululand and Tongaland on its eastern border, and to thus reach up to Portuguese territory. The people have also led an easy and tranquil life, and are as a rule comfortably off. Now, of course, this is all changed, and the little Colony is the scene of an Empire-making strife, while its fruitful soil, or beautiful valleys and picturesque hills, resound with the march of armed men and echo with the roar of artillery. A tardy measure of healthful progress has thus been suddenly and summarily arrested; but in the end it is probable that good will come of evil and the natural riches of a splendid region be more generally recognized and developed.


A Review of the South African Question.

Religious Intolerance of the Boers

The South African War of 1899 grew out of racial conditions and national considerations far apart from, and long precedent to, the growth of Kimberley and Johannesburg or the discovery of diamonds and gold. It arose, primarily, from racial tendencies which had grown more and more opposed to each other as the climate and conditions of South Africa accentuated their peculiarities. History and tradition had early driven into the Boer's heart an intense intolerance of religious thought to which the isolation of the veldt added an almost incomprehensible ignorance. A wider survey of the world and a fuller grasp of the essentials of liberty had, meanwhile, developed in the Englishman's mind[1] a love for free religious thought and practice to which his belief in schools and his affection for literature and the press added strength and character. The Dutchman was nomadic in life, pastoral in pursuit, lazy and sluggish in disposition. The Englishman was at times restless in seeking wealth or pleasure, but upon the whole he liked to settle down in a permanent home and with surroundings which he could make his own in ever-increasing comfort and usefulness. He drew the line at no single occupation and made, as the case might be, a good farmer, or artisan, or labourer, or merchant. And he was usually of active mind as well as body.

[1] I use the word Englishman here in a general sense, and inclusive of the Scotchman or Irishman.

Two Opposite Views of Liberty

The Dutchman in South Africa wanted liberty to do as he liked and to live as he chose, but he did not wish to accord that liberty to inferior races, or to attempt the training of them in its use and application. The Englishman, on the other hand, loved liberty in a broad way, and wanted nothing better than to see it applied to others as freely and fully as to himself. The one race looked upon the negro as only fitted to be a human chattel and as not being even a possible subject for improvement, education or elevation. The other, in all parts of the world as well as in the Dark Continent, believed in the humanity of the coloured man, whether black, or red, or brown, and looked upon him as fitted for civilization, for Christianity and for freedom. He considered him as material for good government and for fair play. Both views, however, have been carried to an extreme in South Africa and upon either side evil resulted. The Boer treated the native from the standpoint of an intolerant and ignorant slave-owner. The Colonial Office tried to treat him solely from the standpoint of the sympathizing and often prejudiced missionary. Hence, in part, the Great Trek; hence some of the Kaffir raids and consequent sufferings of the early settlers; hence an addition to the growing racial antagonism.

Two Opposing Views of Government

The principles of government believed in and practiced by the Dutch and British in South Africa have been and are diametrically opposed. The one took territory from the natives wherever and whenever he could and used it without scruple, and without return in the form of just government, for his own purposes. The latter, time and again, avoided the acquisition of territory; experienced war after war which might have been averted by the prompt expression of authority and strength; gave up regions to native chiefs which had afterwards to be conquered by force of arms; tried every phase of policy in the form of alliances, protectorates and "buffer" states in order to avoid increased responsibilities; gave up the Orange Free State to an independent existence under circumstances of almost incredible insistence; annexed the Transvaal with indifference, and gave it up without serious thought; in later days allowed German East Africa to be established, and at one time practically declined the acquisition of Delagoa Bay; permitted the Boers of the Transvaal to annex part of Zululand and to take almost the whole of Swaziland at the expense, even, of possible injustice to the natives. And all this from an honest though mistaken desire to avoid unnecessary expansion of authority or extension of territory. In those departments of Government which are apart from questions of acquiring or ruling dependent states there was the same antagonism. Boer Ideas of Democracy Equality being an unknown principle to the Boer, it was, perhaps, natural that he should endeavor to make his own language and laws and institutions the pivot of administration in any country under his control; that he should regard with suspicion and fear any attempt to raise the status of surrounding natives; and should reject with contempt, in the Transvaal at least, later efforts on the part of civilized aliens to obtain equality of political rights. The Dutchman in South Africa knew, in earlier days as well as at the present time, absolutely nothing of democracy in the British sense of the word. Republicanism, in the sense of Government by the majority, he does not even now understand—unless the majority be Dutch. To dream of convincing, or trying to convince others, by argument and discussion that some particular policy is better than another has always been far from his point of view. He has been too long accustomed to using the shot-gun or whip upon inferior races to deem such a policy either desirable or possible.

Varied Opportunities for Settlers

The region these two races were destined to dominate was, and is, a splendid one. It had an infinite variety of resource and tropical production and temperate growth. Within the million and a half square miles of South African territory were room and verge for a vastly greater white population than has yet touched its shores; while every racial peculiarity or pursuit could find a place in its towns and farms and mines and upon its rolling veldt. To the lover of quiet village life and retirement nothing could be more pleasant than parts of Natal and Cape Colony, and of the two Republics. To the keen business man, eager for gain and intent upon quick returns, the rapid and wealth-producing progress of the great mining towns gave all that could be desired. To the adventurous spirit, willing to suffer hardships and endure labor in its severest form for a possibly glittering return, the diamond and gold fields offered untold opportunities. To the hunter and tourist and traveller the myriad wild animals of the interior gave a pleasure only second to that felt by the Kaffir and the Boer when hunting the lion to his lair or the elephant in its native jungle. To the man fond of country life the vast plains, stretching in varied degrees of value and elevation from Cape Town to the Zambesi, afforded room for pastoral occupation and the raising of cattle and sheep upon a veritable thousand hills. To the seeker after new industries, ostrich farming, mohair, the feather industry and diamond mining have from time to time proved the greatest attraction. To the farmer or planter parts of the region were eminently fitted for the raising of wheat and other cereals, and the cultivation of tobacco, cotton, sugar and rice. To the restless and wandering Boer, South Africa seems to have given for a time everything that his spirit desired—isolation, land, wild animals to hunt, independence of control, freedom from the trammels of education and taxation and civilization. To the quieter Dutchman of Cape Colony has been given every element of British liberty and privilege of British equality; as well as land in plenty, and for thirty years, at least, the pledge of internal peace.

Statistics and Finances of South Africa

According, also, to the latest figures[1] the material progress and recent position of all these countries has been good. Cape Colony, in 1897-98, had a revenue of $36,940,000, an expenditure of $34,250,000 and an indebtedness of $136,400,000; a tonnage of British vessels, entered and cleared, amounting to 12,137,000, together with 2,835 miles of railway and 6,609 miles of telegraph; exports of $108,300,000, and imports of $90,000,000; and 132,000 scholars in its schools. Natal and Zululand, combined, had a revenue of $11,065,000, an expenditure of $8,120,000 and an indebtedness of $38,720,000; a tonnage of British vessels, entering and clearing, of 2,132,000, together with 487 miles of railway and 960 of telegraph; exports of $8,100,000 and imports of $30,000,000; and 19,222 scholars in its schools. The exports of Basutoland, under purely native control, had grown to $650,000 and its imports to half a million. The length of railway in the Bechuanaland Protectorate was 586 miles and in Rhodesia 1,086 miles; while the telegraph lines of the former region covered 1,856 miles. The South African Republic, or Transvaal, had a revenue of $22,400,000, an expenditure of $21,970,000 and an indebtedness of $13,350,000; announced imports of $107,575,000 and no declared exports; railways of 774 miles in total length and telegraph lines of 2,000 miles; and scholars numbering 11,552. The Orange Free State had a revenue of $2,010,000, an expenditure of $1,905,000 and an indebtedness of $200,000; imports of $6,155,000—chiefly from Cape Colony—and exports of $8,970,000, which were divided principally between Cape Colony and the Transvaal; 366 miles of railway, 1,762 miles of telegraph and 7,390 scholars in its schools. The following table[1] gives an easily comprehended view of South Africa as divided amongst its Kaffir, Dutch and English communities in respect to mode of government and measure of British responsibility:

[1] British Empire Series. Vol. II. Kegan Paul, Trench, Trübner 4 Co., Limited. London, 1809.

[1] South Africa. By W. Basil Worsfold, M.A. London, 1895.

                                               MODE OF GOVERNMENT.

                          {  Cape Colony    }  Responsible Government
  Three British Colonies  {  Natal          }
                          {  Bechuanaland   }  Crown Colony.

                          {  South African  }  Full internal freedom
                          {  Republic       }  within terms of
           Two Republics  {  or             }  Conventions of 1852-54
                          {  Transvaal      }  and 1881-84.
                          {  Free State.    }

                          {  Basutoland,    }  Officers under High
                          {  Zululand,      }  Commissioner.
                          {  Tongaland,     }
      Native Territories  {
                          {  Transkei,      }  Officers under Cape
                          {  Tembuland,     }  Government.
                          {  Griqualand,    }
                          {  Pondoland.     }

         Territories of   }                 {  Administrator who
         the Chartered    }  . . . . . . .  {  represents the Directors
         Company          }                 {  and Secretary of State
                          }                 {  jointly.

Yet, with all the varied advantages and evidences of substantial progress and prosperity given above, the present war has broken out in a result which could not have been different had the whites of South Africa been dwelling amidst limited areas, restricted resources, few liberties and a crowded population of competitive classes. Some of the reasons for this situation have been pointed out, and they include natural racial differences; a quality which Lord Wolseley described in a speech at the Author's Club on November 6, 1899, when he declared that "of all the ignorant people in the world that I have ever been brought into contact with I will back the Boers of South Africa as the most ignorant;" the inherent desire of the Dutch population for native slave labor and intense aversion to principles of racial equality; mistakes of administration and more important errors of judgment in territorial matters made by the British Colonial Office; a Dutch pride of race born from isolation, ignorance and prejudice and developed by various influences into an aggressive passion for national expansion and a vigorous determination to ultimately overwhelm the hated Englishman, as well as the despised Kaffir, and to thus dominate South Africa. Afrikander Bund Of the elements entering into this last and perhaps most important evolution the Afrikander Bund has been the chief. The formation of this organization really marks an epoch in South African history, and has proved, in the end, to be one of the most effective and potent forces in the creation of the present situation. Nominally, it was organized in 1881 amongst the Dutch farmers of Cape Colony for the purpose of promoting agricultural improvement and co-operation and for the increase of their influence in public business and government. In 1883 it swallowed up the Farmer's Protective Association—also a Dutch organization. Practically, it was a product of the feeling of racial pride, which developed in the heart and mind of every Boer in South Africa as a result of Majuba Hill and the surrender of 1881. The openly asserted influence of their Transvaal brethren, and of this triumph, had prevailed with the Cape Boers to such an extent that the latter were able to compel the rejection of Lord Carnarvon's federation scheme although they did not at the time possess a large vote in the Cape Legislature or a single member in the Government. The same influence created a desire for racial organization, and the result was the Afrikander Bund.

Its chief individual and local promoter was Mr. Jan Hendrik Hofmeyr, a man whose record is one of a loyalty to the British Crown which seems, in some peculiar fashion, to have equalled his loyalty to his race. In the beginning of the Bund, and during its earlier years, he could easily harmonize the two principles. How he could do so at a later period is one of the puzzles of history and of personal character. Incidentally, it may be said that Mr. Hofmeyr attended the Colonial Conference of 1887, in London, and contributed to its proceedings the then novel proposition that each part of the Empire should levy a certain duty upon foreign products—above that imposed upon goods produced in and exported to British dominions—and that the proceeds should be devoted to the maintenance and improvement of the Imperial Navy. He also attended the Colonial Conference at Ottawa in 1894, and had, consequently, received all the knowledge of Imperial development and power which travel and experience and association with the rulers of its various countries could afford. He has, since 1881, always declined office at the Cape, and it is, therefore, apparent that the solution of the personal problem must, in his case, be left to the future—with, perhaps, the further intimation that he is looked upon with great suspicion by local loyalists, and is considered to be the owner, or controlling influence, of Our Land, the chief anti-British organ in Cape Colony.

An Imperium in Imperio

From the first the Bund was regarded with suspicion by not only English politicians in the Colony, but by a few of the more sober and statesmanlike leaders amongst the Dutch. They were, however, won over, as time passed, except the President of the Orange Free State. Sir John Brand—he had accepted knighthood from the Queen as an evidence of his British sympathies—absolutely refused to have anything to do with it. "I entertain," said he, "grave doubts as to whether the path the Afrikander Bund has adopted is calculated to lead to that union and fraternization which is so indispensable for the bright future of South Africa. According to my conception the institution of the Bund appears to be desirous of exalting itself above the established Government and forming an imperium in imperio." But, wise and far-seeing as were these views, the Free State President could not hold back his own people from sharing in the movement. Mr. F. W. Reitz, then a Judge at Bloemfontein, afterwards President in succession to Sir John Brand, and, finally, State Secretary of the Transvaal under President Kruger, joined enthusiastically in its organization, and soon had many branches in the Free State itself. Of this period in the history of the Bund, Mr. Theodore Schreiner, son of a German missionary, brother of the Cape Premier and of Olive Schreiner—the bitter anti-British writer—has described an interesting incident in the Cape Times. Mr. Reitz and the Present War He says that in 1882 Mr. Reitz earnestly endeavored to persuade him to join the organization, and that the conversation which took place upon his final refusal was so striking as to indelibly convince him that in the mind of Reitz and of other Dutch leaders it constituted, even then, a distinct and matured plot for the driving of British authority out of South Africa. "During the seventeen years that have elapsed," says Mr. Schreiner, "I have watched the propaganda for the overthrow of British power in South Africa being ceaselessly spread by every possible means—the press, the pulpit, the platform, the schools, the colleges, the Legislature—until it has culminated in the present war, of which Mr. Reitz and his co-workers are the origin and the cause. Believe me, sir, the day on which F. W. Reitz sat down to pen his Ultimatum to Great Britain was the proudest and happiest moment of his life, and one which has, for long years, been looked forward to by him with eager longing and expectation."

Branches of the Bund, within a few years, were established all over Cape Colony and the Free State, and, by 1888, the slow-moving mind of the Cape Dutch had grasped the racial idea thus presented with sufficient popular strength to warrant the holding of a large and general Congress. In his opening address the President spoke of a "United South Africa under the British flag;" but at the meeting held on March 4, 1889, at Middleburg, while much was said about the future Afrikander union, references to Britain and the flag were conveniently omitted. The platform, as finally and formally enunciated at this gathering, included the following paragraphs:

"1. The Afrikander National Party acknowledge the guidance of Providence in the affairs of both lands and peoples.

2. They include, under the guidance of Providence, the formation of a pure nationality and the preparation of our people for the establishment of a United South Africa.

3. To this they consider belong—

a. The establishment of a firm union between all the different European nationalities in South Africa.

b. The promotion of South Africa's independence."

Dutch and English not Harmonious

There was also a clause of gratuitous impertinence towards the Imperial country—through whose grant of absolute self-government in 1872 the Bund was now beginning to aim, with practical effort, at the racial control of the Colony—in the declaration that "outside interference with the domestic concerns of South Africa shall be opposed." Under the general principles of the platform these "domestic concerns" meant, of course, the relation of the different States toward each other, and the growing rivalry of Dutch and English in matters of Colonial Government, as well as the old-time question of native control and the newer one of territorial extension on the part of Cape Colony. So long as President Brand lived and ruled at Bloemfontein there remained, however, some check upon the Bund as well as upon President Kruger. If he had opposed the Bund actively, as he certainly did in a passive and deprecatory sense, the result might have been a serious hindrance to its progress. Brand's policy was to, indirectly and quietly, keep the Cape Colony and the Free State in harmonious and gradually closer co-operation instead of promoting that closer union of the two republics which was one of the ideals of the Bund leaders. He refused to accept Kruger's proposal of isolating their countries from the British possessions, and thus promoting the policy which, without doubt, had, since 1881, been shaping itself in the latter's mind. But, in 1888, Sir John Brand died, and was succeeded by F. W. Reitz. The influence of the new régime became at once visible in the platform above quoted, and in the whole succeeding policy of the Free State. It now assumed a more and more intimate alliance with the Transvaal, and frequently, during these years, the question of a union of the two countries was discussed. In 1896 Reitz resigned and accepted the State Secretaryship of the Transvaal—a position analogous in personal power, though not in the matter of responsibility to the people, with that of a Colonial Premier. Mr. M. T. Steyn became President of the Free State and the triumvirate of Kruger, Steyn and Reitz formed, with Mr. W. P. Schreiner and Mr. J. W. Sauer, in the Cape Parliament and Afrikander Bund, a very strong Dutch combination. Just where Mr. Hofmeyr stood it is hard to say now, but the probabilities are that, he was pretty well acquainted with the plots and schemes of these leaders.

Mr. Cecil Rhodes to the Front

Meanwhile Mr. Cecil Rhodes had come to the front in mining, in speculation, in wealth, in financial organization, in politics, and in a great policy of Empire expansion. He had studied South Africa from the Cape to the Zambesi as few or no Englishmen have ever been able to do. He understood its Governments, its peoples and its racial complexities with the innate thoroughness of genius or of a woman's intuition. To him the looming menace of the Afrikander Bund was as clear AS it had been to President Brand, and, from the time when lie entered the Cape Parliament in 1880 and became Premier in 1890 until his retirement from the latter post in 1895, his whole heart and ambition was devoted to preventing Dutch expansion and to checkmating the new Dutch organization with its clever manipulators at Pretoria, Bloemfontein and Cape Town. To this end he founded the famous British South Africa Company, and, by acquiring control over the vast areas of Mashonaland and Matabeleland, effectually checked Dutch expansion to the north of the Transvaal. With this in view he urged upon British statesmen the annexation of Bechuanaland, a huge strip of country to the west of the same Republic; and supported with his influence the annexation of Zululand on the south-east coast, into which many Boers had trekked and for the possession of which they had an intense ambition as opening the way to the sea. His reasons seldom appeared on the surface, and some of them were not fully comprehended in South Africa itself until long after their accomplishment. But there is no doubt that as Mr. Rhodes' power at the Cape became felt, as the great interests of the Chartered Company grew more manifest in their importance to the Empire, and as the wealth and ability of its Chairman became a factor in London as well as in the Colony, so also his influence at the Colonial Office was enhanced.

Rhodes' Policy of Conciliation

At the same time he developed this line of action for many years in conjunction with a policy of public conciliation toward the Dutch everywhere. If, eventually, a system of kindly co-operation could be evolved and the principles of the Afrikander Bund rendered comparatively harmless by the winning over of its strongest men at the Cape to his side, and to the continuous expansion of British power in the common interest of a United South Africa, so much the better. If he failed in this he did not, however, propose that the Empire should some day find itself face to face with the problem of a thin line of English settlement—mixed with Dutch—along the sea-coast, in rivalry or conflict with a united Afrikander nation holding all the keys of the interior to the north and stretching from the Delagoa region on the east to the German possessions on the west. Hence his continuous acquisition of territory, and hence the present position of the two republics—surrounded by British soil except for the small strip of Portuguese possessions to the east of the Transvaal. Hence, also, his hope that as British power grew in South Africa the Bund would eventually see the futility of its effort to make the whole country a Dutch republic, and would meet his policy of conciliation at least half way. Between 1890 and 1895, when the Jameson Raid and his resignation of the Premiership took place, Mr. Rhodes' speeches teemed with expressions of friendliness toward the Dutch, of appreciation of their rights in South Africa, of sympathy with all legitimate aspirations, of appeals for co-operation. In his Ministry, from time to time, he managed to include leaders of the roll such as W. P. Schreiner, J. W. Sauer, T. N. G. Te Water, and so prominent a Boer supporter of later days as J. X. Merriman. But it seems to have become gradually apparent to his mind that conciliation was practically useless; that the influence and power of the Afrikander movement was daily growing stronger; that Kruger had become too great a force with the Dutch of the Cape for him to be checkmated by friendly demonstrations or appeals; and that the oppression of the Uitlanders in the Transvaal was a growing evidence of Boer unity and arrogance just as the increasing electoral strength of the Cape Boers was a proof of their developing power. England's Ignorance of the Situation And, above all, he was aware that while this web of inter-state Dutch conspiracy was building up the Afrikander Bund into a great anti-British force, England was profoundly ignorant of the whole matter and was resting in the belief, expressed by passing travellers and presented by the usual number of superficial political theorists, that the Dutch and English of South Africa were not only dwelling together in amity, but were developing increased sympathy, and that the Uitlander trouble, of which vague reports were beginning to reach the British public, was more or less the creation of a transition period of development and would soon settle itself.

To meet the dulled vision of the British people, to settle the Transvaal issue without war between the Republic and the Empire, to play with President Kruger at his own game and overthrow him by an internal rebellion, Rhodes approved the general idea of the Jameson Raid and of external assistance to the people of Johannesburg. The policy was carried out rashly and prematurely by his deputy, the Uitlanders were not ready and did not redeem their promises, it failed and he had to retire from office. But one important result was achieved. The eyes of the British public were in some measure opened to the seriousness of the situation in South Africa. Mr. Chamberlain and the members of the Imperial Ministry no doubt knew something already of the general position from private advices—if in no other way—and it was for this reason that they stood by Mr. Rhodes when the Raid came before a Parliamentary Committee for investigation. They had not, of course, known of the Raid itself or supported its aggressive action. The code of honor, personal and political, is too high amongst British statesmen to permit of anyone but a sensational journalist or an unusually violent partisan accepting such a supposition for a moment. But they did understand the motive and were not prepared to punish the self-confessed originator, although obliged to allow the legal punishment of the active participators. Mr. Rhodes could not defend himself, and Mr. Chamberlain could not publicly support him in connection with the matter, without avowing their belief in the disloyalty of a portion of the population of Cape Colony and their knowledge of a secret conspiracy shared in by the chiefs of two nominally friendly republics. The former would have involved the making of unwise charges which, in the nature of things, could hardly have been proved, and if proved would have done more harm than good; the latter would have meant a war which it might still be possible to avert.

Efforts and Conciliation not Successful

Mr. Hofmeyr, the nominal leader of the Bund in Cape Colony, might at almost any time during recent years have become Premier and, through his reputation for moderate views, might, perhaps, have done good service to the cause of compromise and conciliation. On the other hand, it is doubtful whether he could have succeeded in this respect when Mr. Rhodes, between 1890 and 1895, failed. The latter did everything that man could do to hold the racial elements together and checkmate the Kruger influence, and it seems probable that Hofmeyr could not in the end have resisted the power of Pretoria over the Afrikanders any more effectively than did Mr. W. P. Schreiner in the two years preceding the outbreak of war. His Ministry would have been a Bund Government just as that of Schreiner is to-day; his principal co-workers would have been instruments of Kruger in much the same degree as members of the Schreiner Cabinet have been; and his participation in the general Afrikander movement, or conspiracy, or whatever it may be called, would have been more dangerous than that of Mr. Schreiner because his loyalty has always been asserted, and would have been used, consciously or unconsciously as a cloak for the action of his colleagues and friends. Kruger's Auspicious Opportunity In 1898, however, Mr. Schreiner took office; the Bund was triumphant at the polls in Cape Colony and in Parliament; and had a weak Government or vacillating Colonial Secretary been in power in London, Mr. Kruger's day would have indeed come. He undoubtedly built upon this latter possibility and upon his personal experiences of Mr. Gladstone, Lord Kimberley and Lord Derby. To demand, even in the days of Transvaal weakness, had been to receive, and now, with the Uitlander population under the heels of an ironclad law and of enactments allowing them less liberty than was given the Kaffir; with great guns guarding Pretoria and commanding Johannesburg—coupled with the consciousness of other and more extensive military preparations; with the policy of the Imperial Government hampered by the rash aggressiveness of the Jameson Raid; with the Orange Free State in close defensive and offensive alliance and its President a mere tool in his own hands; with clever advisers and unscrupulous helpers such as Reitz and Leyds; with the certainty of European sympathy, the expectation of American support and the hope of active interposition on the part of France, or Russia, or Germany; with the Cape Colonial Government in tacit sympathy with his aims and in occasional active support of his policy; with the assurance of an extensive support from the Boers of the Colony itself; it is not surprising that President Kruger entered the lists at the Bloemfontein Conference with great confidence, and ultimately faced the might of Britain with assurance that the weakness of a British Ministry, the power of a European combination, the interposition of the United States, or some other providential aid, would secure the abrogation of that British suzerainty which was the bane of his life and the chief apparent element in preventing the supremacy in South Africa of the Dutch race in general and the Transvaal Republic in particular.

Chamberlain's Strong Policy

But he knew not Mr. Chamberlain or the changed conditions of British thought. He did not realize that the days of indifference to the Colonies had passed away, and that the Colonial Office had become one of the greatest posts in the British Government and had been deliberately selected by one of the most ambitious and able of modern statesmen as a suitable field for achievement and labor. He had no idea that the retention and extension of British territory was no longer a party question, and that the days of Granville at the Foreign Office had as completely passed away as had those of Derby at the Colonial Office. His very knowledge of British political life and its see-saw system was turned into a source of error through the rapid developments of an epoch-making decade. It must have been a shock to him to find that an insult to the Imperial Government in the form of his ultimatum was looked upon as an insult to a dozen other British Governments throughout the world, and that the invasion of the soil of Natal and Cape Colony was regarded as an assault upon the interests of Canada and Australia as well as of Great Britain. The days of weakness had indeed departed, and despite all the conciliatory slowness and caution of Mr. Chamberlain during weary months of controversy the iron hand was concealed beneath the glove of velvet and there was nowhere a thought of surrendering that right of suzerainty which preserved and ensured British supremacy in South Africa. The inevitable war has now come—the struggle which the Gladstone Government shrank from in days when the Boer Power was weak, and which Sir George Grey spoke of in its wider sense when he declared, in 1858, after the abandonment of the Orange River State, that "many questions might arise, in which it might be very doubtful which of the two Governments the great mass of the Dutch population (in Cape Colony) would obey."

Uitlander's Many Grievances

Its more immediate cause has not been the chief reason, though, of course, the more prominent and pronounced. The position of the Uitlander was bad enough, and the facts which have been drilled into the public mind and explained in the dispatches of Mr. Chamberlain and Sir Alfred Milner are sufficiently explicit. Since 1895 the hundred thousand aliens—chiefly British subjects—established in Johannesburg and at the mines have been subjected to every restriction of liberty which is conceivably possible. None of the rights of self-government pledged in the Conventions of 1881 and 1884 have been given them or rendered possible in any succeeding period worthy of consideration. The press had been gagged and public discussion prevented; the Courts had been made subservient to the Boer Volksraad and the money raised in taxes applied upon armaments directed against Great Britain and the Uitlander. No attention had been paid to industrial development or financial security and the drink traffic amongst the natives had been openly encouraged. No protection had been given to individual Englishmen and their families by the Boer Police and education had become a matter of Dutch language and Dutch methods. Roman Catholics were excluded from even the faintest chance of obtaining the franchise and monopolies were publicly sold to Hollander favorites and adventurers. Heavier and heavier burdens of taxes have been laid upon the Uitlanders—poll tax, railway tax, road tax, miner's claims, digger's license, prospector's license. An enactment made in 1894, in addition to the five years' residence required of adult aliens, declared that the children of such, though born in the Transvaal, must wait fourteen years after making claim for the right to vote. The respectable, educated Hindoo merchants had been classed with and treated with the same contempt as the indentured coolies. These things were surely cause enough for Mr. Chamberlain's intervention, and more than cause for his sustained effort to obtain equal rights for British men.

Causes of the War

Nominally, therefore, the failure to modify these grievances and abuses of the Uitlander was the cause of the condition out of which war came. Practically, the cause was in the distant past, in the character of the Boer, the development of his peculiar history, the British mistakes of 1836, 1852 and 1877, the aggressive Dutch pride of recent years, the historical hatred of the English, the growth of military resources in the Transvaal, the evolution of the Afrikander Bund, the determination to create a Dutch South Africa. The means for success, even to the most utterly ignorant and intensely vain Dutchman, were not apparent until the gold mines of the Witwatersrand paved the way and the revenues of the little State rose in the following ratio from $889,000 in 1885—the year preceding the discoveries—to nearly $25,000,000 in the year 1897:

  1886 ............... $1,902,165   1892 ...............  $6,279,145
  1887 ...............  3,342,175   1893 ...............   8,513,420
  1888 ...............  4,422,200   1894 ...............  11,238,640
  1889 ...............  7,887,225   1895 ...............  17,699,775
  1890 ...............  6,145,300   1896 ...............  22,660,970
  1891 ...............  4.835.955   1897 ...............  24,432,495

Misappropriation of Taxes

For an assumed Boer population of little more than 200,000, the expenditure of this large sum would have been difficult under ordinary and honest conditions of government. Nothing, practically was expended upon the Uitlanders, from whom the revenue came, and nothing upon the 800,000 Kaffirs in the country. Nothing was spent upon the development of natural resources, and but little upon the extension of railways, etc. Of this $120,000,000, in round numbers, it might be fair to allow $3,000,000 per annum for ordinary purposes of administration and development during the twelve years, or one million per annum more than had been spent by the Free State in any year of the same period. It would then be reasonably safe to assume that the remaining $84,000,000, and the acquired indebtedness of $13,000,000, have been spent upon fortifications, armament, subsidies to foreign papers and politicians and salaries to Hollander adventurers. It is in this connection a curious fact that the imports to the Transvaal in 1898 were over a hundred millions in value, with no recorded exports—except gold, of which the production in 1897 was over $85,000,000. These imports must have consisted very largely of ammunition and military supplies, as the Boers are not a people who use extraneous products or luxuries. Of course, the Uitlanders were responsible for a portion; but the great bulk must have been made up of articles very different from the usual commodities of peaceful commerce. Such was the state of affairs, in a brief summary, which led up to the diplomatic crash between Mr. Chamberlain and President Kruger, to the negotiations conducted by Sir Alfred Milner and the two Presidents, and to the invasion of the British Colonies on the eleventh of October, 1899.

LT.-COL. T. D. B. EVANS, Canadian Mounted Rifles in South Africa. LT.-COL. F. L. LESSARD, Commanding Royal Canadian Dragoons in South Africa. LIEUT. JAMES C. MASON, First Canadian Contingent in South Africa. LIEUT.-COL. A. M. COSBY Commanding 48th Royal Highlanders, Toronto, and his two sons in the Second Contingent in South Africa--Lieut. F. Lorne Cosby and Norman W. Cosby
Canadian Mounted Rifles in South Africa.
Commanding Royal Canadian Dragoons in South Africa.
First Canadian Contingent in South Africa.
Commanding 48th Royal Highlanders, Toronto, and his two sons
in the Second Contingent in South Africa—Lieut.
F. Lorne Cosby and Norman W. Cosby



The Colonies and the War.

One of the most striking and perhaps important historical features of the South African crisis of 1899 was the sentiment of sympathy expressed by other parts of the Empire and the co-operation offered, or given, by the Colonies in the ensuing conflict. The number of men who actually participated from Canada, or Australia, or New Zealand was not great. But the possibilities of aid shown by the enthusiasm in despatching the Contingents, the keen interest taken in the origin and nature of the war, the sudden recognition of Colonial responsibilities for the defence of the Empire, and the fresh and vivid appreciation of the vast Imperial burdens of Great Britain, were exceedingly and vitally important. Some three thousand men went from Canada and over five thousand from the Australian Colonies and New Zealand. Ceylon contributed Contingents and troops were offered by the Malay States, Lagos, Hong Kong, the West Indies and the leading Princes of India. When it was found that colored forces could not well be accepted the various native Governments of India proffered money, armament and horses; while Lumsden's Horse was raised and equipped amongst the white population.

Australians and Canadians in the Soudan

The history of the sudden movement which resulted in the sending of these Contingents from the Colonies is most interesting. To participate in the defence of the Empire was not, it is true, an absolutely new thing. In 1885 New South Wales had sent some troops from Sydney to share in the Soudan campaign for the relief of Gordon and they had duly received their baptism of hardship and disappointment. They left Australian shores amid scenes of wild enthusiasm and under the initiative of Mr. W. Bede Dalley, an eloquent Irishman who was then Acting-Premier of New South Wales; and they were received in a similar manner on their return. At the same time there had been carping criticism of the action taken, a certain amount of political discontent amongst the Radical element in the Colony had existed, and in some measure a reaction took place after the war was all over. There were not wanting bitter opponents of Imperial unity to prophecy that it was the last force which would ever leave Sydney to fight the battles of Britain. But there were other Colonies in Australasia besides New South Wales and, even there, the little wail of the pessimist was soon neutralized. Dalley died shortly afterwards, though he had lived long enough to receive the blue-ribbon of political honour—a place in the Imperial Privy Council; and to be given after his death a commemorative tablet in St. Paul's Cathedral and a lasting place in British history. At this time, also, Canada sent a small force of voyageurs or boatmen, under the command of Lieutenant-Colonel F. C. Denison, to help Wolseley's troops in their difficult expedition up the Nile. But it was neither a Government action nor one which the public had thought much about, and it consequently wielded little influence, although the Canadians did their duty well and received the warm approbation of Lord Wolseley.

Canadians in the Wars With the United States

Of course, the country had fought for the Crown in days of war with the United States, and in 1812-14 nearly every able-bodied man in the British Provinces had stood beside the scattered line of British regulars in defence of their hearths and homes. They were doing then what 10,000 Cape Colonists and 5000 of the men of Natal are doing in the present war. But it was, of course, a struggle upon Canadian soil just as the little rebellions of 1837 in Upper and Lower Canada, the Red River troubles of 1870, the Saskatchewan rebellion of 1886, or the Fenian Raids of 1866, had been. So far as Canada was concerned, therefore, no real precedent existed for the Imperialist demonstrations of 1899. Large numbers of Indian troops—chiefly Sikhs and Ghoorkas—had, it is true, been brought to Malta in 1878 by Lord Beaconsfield and Europe in this way electrified by a revelation of unexpected British military resources; while similar Contingents had been used against Arabi in Egypt and during the expedition up the Nile. In a naval sense too, the Australian Colonies had led the way in contributing to the Imperial defence system of the seas by paying for the maintenance of a British fleet on the Australasian station from 1887 onwards. But this exhausts all possible comparisons, or partial precedents, and to those who know the Canadian sentiment of a few years since regarding Imperial armaments and the assumption of increased defensive responsibilities the present situation seems very striking.

Change of Sentiment in the Dominion Since 1885

I had something to do with the movement for Imperial Federation which commenced in the Dominion in 1885, and, with many others, shared in the missionary work done during succeeding years. It is without hesitation, therefore, that I assert the greatest of the early obstacles, experienced by the advocates of closer union with Great Britain, to have been the fear of compulsory participation in wars of all kinds and in all parts of the world with which, perhaps, Canadian interests might have little connection and Canadian feeling no particular sympathy. The change of sentiment since then has been very great. It had already been shown in other ways by such official action as the granting of a tariff preference to the Mother-Country, in 1898, of twenty-five per cent. The war with the Boers, it should be also remembered, was a Colonial war in which British subjects had been attacked as they had for years been insulted and menaced and in which the general supremacy of the Crown in an important part of the Empire was threatened. Moreover, the liberties and equality of position asked for by the Uitlanders in the Transvaal were of a kind which Great Britain and Canada had a century since given to the French population of British America with the greatest eventual success. The diplomatic contest was, therefore, watched with continuous interest in Canada, and local talk of volunteering for the front was only checked by a mistaken feeling that if war came it would be but a small and insignificant struggle.

The Premier and Parliament

But amongst military men there was a strong undercurrent of desire to raise some kind of volunteer force for active service. In this connection Lieutenant-Colonel S. Hughes, M.P., was particularly enthusiastic. He introduced the subject in Parliament, on July 12th, while negotiations were still pending between President Kruger and Mr. Chamberlain. The result was that, despite the fact of Queensland having already offered troops and his own expression of opinion that five thousand men would readily volunteer in Canada, it was thought best not to take any immediate action, and the Premier, Sir Wilfrid Laurier, expressed the hope and belief that in view of the absolute justice of the Uitlanders' claims, recognition would eventually be given them and war averted. On July 31st more definite action was taken, and the following Resolution moved in the House of Commons by Sir Wilfrid Laurier and seconded by the Hon. G. E. Foster in the absence, but with the approval of, Sir Charles Tupper as Leader of the Opposition, was carried unanimously:

"That this House has viewed with regret the complications which have arisen in the Transvaal Republic, of which Her Majesty is Suzerain, from the refusal to accord to Her Majesty's subjects now settled in that region an adequate participation in its Government.

"That this House has learned with still greater regret that the condition of things there existing has resulted in intolerable oppression and has produced great and dangerous excitement among several classes of Her Majesty's subjects in Her South African possessions.

"That this House, representing a people which has largely succeeded, by the adoption of the principle of conceding equal political rights to every portion of the population, in harmonizing estrangements and in producing general content with the existing system of government, desires to express its sympathy with the efforts of Her Majesty's Imperial authorities to obtain for the subjects of Her Majesty who have taken up their abode in the Transvaal such measure of justice and political recognition as may be found necessary to secure them in the full possession of equal rights and liberties."

Popular Enthusiasm

The members, after passing the motion, sprang to their feet and sang "God Save the Queen" amid a scene of striking enthusiasm which was duplicated a little later in the Senate. Following this expression of feeling Colonel Hughes endeavored, upon his own responsibility, to raise a regiment for foreign service and in doing so naturally came into collision with the head of the Militia—Major-General E. T. H. Hutton. The result of this enthusiastic rashness was, of course, failure in the attempt though at the same time, he was able to afford a distinct indication of the general feeling in favour of something being done should war break out. Leading papers took up the subject and favoured the sending of a force in case of necessity and, on October 2d, a few days before the war began, a large and representative meeting of Militia officers was held in Toronto and the following Resolution passed with unanimity and enthusiasm on motion of Lieutenant-Colonels George T. Denison and James Mason: "That the members of the Canadian Military Institute, feeling that it is a clear and definite duty for all British possessions to show their willingness to contribute in the common defence in case of need, express the hope that, in view of impending hostilities in South Africa, the Government of Canada will promptly offer a contingent of Canadian Militia to assist in supporting the interests of our Empire in that country." On the following day the Prime Minister was interviewed at Ottawa, and expressed the opinion that it would be unconstitutional for the Militia, or a portion of it, to be sent out of Canada without the permission of Parliament, and that it would take some weeks to call that body together. Sir Wilfrid Laurier declared[1] that "there is no doubt as to the attitude of the Government on all questions that mean menace to British interests, but in this present case our limitations are very clearly defined. And so it is that we have not offered a Canadian Contingent to the Home authorities." Meantime, however, the matter had been under consideration, all the independent offers to serve from individuals or regiments had been duly forwarded to the Colonial Office, and each had received the stereotyped reply that while negotiations were in progress no further troops were required.

[1] Toronto Globe, October 4, 1899.

Forces Sent with Great Enthusiasm

Public sentiment soon proved too strong for what might have been in other circumstances a legitimate constitutional delay. On September 27th Sir Charles Tupper, in a speech at Halifax, offered the Government the fullest support of the Conservative Opposition in the sending of a Contingent, and on October 6th telegraphed the Premier to the same effect. The British Empire League in Canada passed a Resolution declaring that the time had come when all parts of the Queen's dominions should share in the defence of British interests, and the St. John Telegraph—a strong Liberal paper—declared on September 30th that "Canada should not only send a force to the Transvaal, but should maintain it in the field." The Montreal Star sought and received telegrams from the Mayor of nearly every town in the Dominion endorsing the proposal to dispatch military assistance to fellow-subjects in South Africa. Mr. J. W. Johnston, Mayor of Belleville, represented the general tone of these multitudinous messages in the words: "It is felt that the Dominion, being a partner in the Empire, should bear Imperial responsibilities as well as share in Imperial honors and protection." The Toronto Globe—the leading Ontario Liberal paper—also supported the proposal, and soon the country from Halifax to Vancouver was stirred as it had not been since the North-west Rebellion of 1885—perhaps as it has never been in the sense of covering the entire Dominion.

The Opposition Which Occurred

There was, inevitably, some opposition, and it was largely voiced by the Hon. J. Israel Tarte, Minister of Public Works in the Dominion Government. It was not a note of disloyalty; it was simply the expression of a lack of enthusiasm and the magnifying of constitutional dangers or difficulties. No one in Canada expected the French Canadians, amongst whom Mr. Tarte was a party leader, to look upon the matter with just the same warmth of feeling as actuated English Canadians; and very few believed that the absence of this enthusiasm indicated any sentiment of disloyalty to the Crown or to the country. The people of Quebec had not yet been educated up to the point of participation in British wars and Imperial defence; they were, as a matter of fact, in much the same position that the people of Ontario had been in ten or fifteen years before. The influences making for closer Empire unity could never in their case include a racial link or evolve from a common language and literature. The most and best that could be expected was a passive and not distinctly unfriendly acquiescence in the new and important departure from precedent and practice which was evidenced by the announcement, on October 12th, that a Canadian Contingent had been accepted by the Imperial Government and was to be dispatched to South Africa. There was no active opposition to the proposal except from a section of the French-Canadian press edited by Frenchmen from Paris, and from a Member of Parliament who resigned his seat as a protest and was afterwards re-elected by acclamation—both parties deeming it wisest to treat the matter as of no importance. Mr. Tarte eventually fell into line with his colleagues, but with the public announcement that he did not approve the principle of sending troops abroad without Parliamentary sanction; that he had obtained the Government's approval to an official statement that this action was not to be considered as a precedent; and that he thought the only way to adequately meet similar situations in future was by definite and permanent arrangement with the Imperial authorities and representation in Imperial Councils. Upon the subject as a whole his attitude was certainly logical and loyal, but in effect it was untimely, unpopular and unnecessary. And the continued utterances of his paper—La Patrie, of Montreal—were of a nature calculated to irritate loyal sentiment and arouse serious misapprehension amongst French Canadians.

However, the feeling of the country generally was too fervent to permit of this obstacle having anything more than an ephemeral and passing influence. And any opposition which might exist amongst French Canadians assumed an essentially passive character. Toward the end of October an already announced pledge from an anonymous friend of Sir Charles Tupper's to insure the life of each member of the Contingent to the extent of $1,000, was redeemed, and on October 24th the following message was received through the Secretary of State for the Colonies: "Her Majesty the Queen desires to thank the people of her Dominion of Canada for their striking manifestation of loyalty and patriotism in their voluntary offer to send troops to co-operate with Her Majesty's Imperial forces in maintaining her position and the rights of British subjects in South Africa. She wishes the troops Godspeed and a safe return." The first Contingent of one thousand men steamed down the St. Lawrence from Quebec on October 30th, after farewell banquets to the officers and an ovation from immense crowds in the gaily decorated streets of the "Ancient Capital." For weeks before this date little divisions of 50, or 100, or 125 men had been leaving their respective local centres amidst excitement such as Canada had never witnessed before. St. John and Halifax, on the Atlantic coast, were met by Victoria and Vancouver, on the shores of the Pacific, in a wild outburst of patriotic enthusiasm. Toronto and Winnipeg responded for the centre of the Dominion, and at the Quebec "send-off" there were delegations and individual representatives from all parts of the country. Every village which contributed a soldier to the Contingent also added to the wave of popular feeling by marking his departure as an event of serious import, while Patriotic Funds of every kind were started and well maintained throughout the country. It was, indeed, a manifestation of the military and Imperial spirit such as Canadians had never dreamed of seeing, and for many months the words upon every lip were those of the popular air, "Soldiers of the Queen." To quote the Hon. F. W. Borden, Minister of Militia and Defence, at the Quebec Banquet on October 29th: "This was a people's movement, not that of any Government or party; it emanated from the whole people of Canada, and it is being endorsed by them as shown by the words and deeds of the people at all points where the troops started from." The Earl of Minto, as Governor-General, in bidding official farewell to the troops on the succeeding day, expressed the same idea, and added, in words of serious importance when coming from the Queen's Representative and bearing indirectly upon the much-discussed question of alleged Government hesitancy in making the first offer of military aid, that:

An Act of Loyalty

"The people of Canada had shown that they had no inclination to discuss the quibbles of Colonial responsibility. They had unmistakably asked that their loyal offers be made known, and rejoiced in their gracious acceptance. In so doing surely they had opened a new chapter in the history of our Empire. They freely made their military gift to the Imperial cause to share the privations and dangers and glories of the Imperial army. They had insisted on giving vent to an expression of sentimental Imperial unity, which might perhaps hereafter prove more binding than any written Imperial constitution."



Canadians, Australians and British Comrades

The principal officers of the Contingent were its Commander, Lieut.-Colonel W. D. Otter, who had seen active service in the North-west Rebellion, Lieut.-Colonel Lawrence Buchan, Lieut.-Colonel O. C. C. Pelletier, Major J. C. MacDougall and Major S. J. A. Denison, afterwards appointed to Lord Roberts' Staff. The troopship Sardinian arrived at Cape Town on the the 29th of November, and the Canadians were given a splendid reception—Sir Alfred Milner cabling Lord Minto that: "The people here showed in unmistakable manner their appreciation of the sympathy and help of Canada in their hour of trial." The Regiment was at once sent up to De Aar, and later on to Belmont, the scene of Lord Methuen's gallant fight. From here a portion of the Canadian troops took part in a successful raid upon Sunnyside, a place some distance away, where there was an encampment of Boers. A number of the enemy were captured, but the incident was chiefly memorable as the first time in history, as well as in the war itself, when Canadians and Australians have fought side by side with British regular troops. Meanwhile public feeling in Canada seemed to favor the sending of further aid, and its feasibility was more than shown by the thousands who had volunteered for the first Contingent over and above those selected. But it was not until some of the earlier reverses of the war took place that the offer of a second Contingent was pressed upon the Home Government. On November 8th, however, it was declined for the moment, and a week later Mr. Chamberlain wrote the following expressive words to the Governor-General:

"The great enthusiasm and the general eagerness to take an active part in the military expedition which has unfortunately been found necessary for the maintenance of British rights and interests in South Africa have afforded much gratification to Her Majesty's Government and the people of this country. The desire exhibited to share in the risks and burdens of empire has been welcomed not only as a proof of the staunch loyalty of the Dominion and of its sympathy with the policy pursued by Her Majesty's Government in South Africa, but also as an expression of that growing feeling of the unity and solidarity of the Empire which has marked the relations of the Mother Country with the Colonies during recent years."

Additional Contingents Sent

On December 18th events in South Africa and the pressure of loyal proffers of aid from Australia and elsewhere induced the Imperial Government to change its mind, the Second Contingent was accepted, and once again the call to arms resounded throughout Canada. The first Regiment had been composed of infantry, the second was made up of artillery and cavalry. Eventually, it was decided to send 1,220 men, together with horses, guns and complete equipment, and they duly left for the Cape in detachments toward the end of January and in the beginning of February. A third force of 400 mounted men was recruited in the latter month and sent to the seat of war fully equipped and with all expenses paid through the personal and patriotic generosity of Lord Strathcona and Mount Royal, the Canadian High Commissioner in London. In addition to "Strathcona's Horse" another independent force of 125 men was offered in similar fashion by the British Columbia Provincial Government and duly accepted at London and Ottawa, while a movement was commenced to proffer an organized Dominion Brigade of 10,000 men, if required. Little wonder, when such a popular spirit was shown, and when the anxiety to enlist and the influence used to obtain a chance of going to the front were greater than men show to obtain positions of permanent financial value, that Lord Roberts, shortly after his appointment to South Africa, should have cabled his expression of belief that: "The action of Canada will always be a glorious page in the history of the sons of the Empire. I look for great things from the men she has sent and is sending to the front." Meantime even the slightest opposition to the policy of aiding the Empire had died out—in fact, its assertion would have been dangerous, or at least unpleasant, and when Parliament met early in February the Government announced its intention of asking a vote of two million dollars for expenses in the despatch of the Contingents and for the payment after their return, or to their heirs, of an addition to the ordinary wage of the British soldier. This brief description of Canada's action during an eventful period may be concluded by a quotation from the speech of the Hon. G. W. Ross, Prime Minister of Ontario, at a banquet given in Toronto on December 21st to Mr. J. G. H. Bergeron, P.M., of Montreal—a French-Canadian who also expressed in fervent terms what he believed to be the loyalty of his people to the British Crown. Mr. Ross declared in emphatic and eloquent language that:

"Canada and the Empire"

"It is not for us to say that one or two Contingents should be sent to the Transvaal, but to say to Great Britain that all our money and all our men are at the disposal of the British Empire. It is not for us to balance questions of Parliamentary procedure when Britain's interests are at stake, but to respond to the call that has been sent throughout the whole Empire and to show that in this western bulwark of the Empire there are men as ready to stand by her as were her men at Waterloo. It is not for us to be pessimists, but to have undying faith in British power and steadily to maintain the integrity of her Empire. He hoped that the present strife might soon pass, and that at its close Canadians will feel that they have done their duty to the flag that has protected them and under whose paternal Government they have prospered in the past. Their motto should be 'Canada and the Empire, one and inseparable, now and forever.'"

Throughout Australasia, from the commencement of the crisis, there was great interest taken in the question. The press and the public discussed its phases with ever-increasing sympathy for the British cause and the liberties of the Uitlanders. There has always been in recent years much good feeling between these Colonies—partly from the development of trade, partly from Australian admiration of Cecil Rhodes, partly from the common ties of life in a tropical or semi-tropical climate, partly from the keen and mutual interest felt in Gordon during his last lonely campaign in the deserts of Northern Africa, partly from such incidents as the proffer by the Rhodes' Ministry of financial aid to the Australian Governments during the banking crises of 1893. The relation in sentiment and practice has, in fact, been much closer than that between Canada and the Cape, although the desire to help in time of need could hardly be greater. During the earlier period of the controversy public meetings were held to discuss its details in the various capitals of Australia and New Zealand, and resolutions passed somewhat in the terms of the following motion, proposed by Sir Henry Wrixon, M.L.C., seconded by the President of the Chamber of Commerce, and accepted with enthusiasm by a great gathering in the Melbourne Town Hall, on May 16, 1899:

"Twenty-one thousand British subjects in the Transvaal having petitioned the Queen through the High Commissioner, Sir Alfred Milner, to extend her protection to them, to cause an inquiry to be held into their grievances, to secure the reform of abuses, and to obtain substantial guarantees from the Transvaal Government and recognition of the petitioners' rights, this meeting desires to record its sympathy with their fellow-countrymen in the Transvaal, and hopes that Her Majesty may be pleased to grant the prayer of her subjects."

Australia's Sympathy

With the progress of events this feeling of sympathy grew stronger, and culminated in a wave of military and loyal enthusiasm such as few had thought possible and none had considered probable. In July the Governments began to consider the subject of active participation in what seemed to be an impending struggle, and troops were offered to the Imperial authorities in the following order: Queensland on July 11th, Victoria on July 12th, New South Wales on July 21st, New Zealand on September 28th, Western Australia on October 5th, Tasmania on October 9th, South Australia on October 13th. The first offers were declined, for the time being, on the ground that it was hoped war would be averted and that, meanwhile, it was not desirable to assume an openly hostile attitude. The Legislature which first moved actively in the direction of organization was that of New Zealand, and the speeches of its leaders on September 28th indicate the general view taken by the people themselves. The Premier, the Right Hon. R. J. Seddon, declared that "the Colony shared the privileges of the Empire, and ought to share its responsibilities." The Leader of the Opposition, the Hon. W. R. Russell, supported the action of the Government strongly, and declared that "the Colony was loyal at heart to the Imperial idea. It was not merely the sending of a few men, for the power of England was more than enough to cope with the trouble. He hoped the British flag would float over South Africa, and that another empire like India would be formed in that part of the world. The present proposal would do more to consolidate the Empire than any speeches of politicians." A Meeting of the Colonies of Australia Meanwhile an agitation commenced in Australia proper for a federal, or united, contingent, and culminated on September 28th in a meeting of the Military Commandants of the various Colonies at Melbourne. Victoria was represented by Major-General Sir Charles Holled-Smith, K.C.M.G., C.B.; New South Wales, by Major-General G. A. French, C.M.G.; Queensland, by Major-General H. Gunter; Western Australia, by Colonel G. H. Chippendall; Tasmania, by Colonel W. V. Legge; South Australia, by Colonel J. Stuart. A plan was carefully evolved and submitted to the respective Governments, but was frustrated at the last moment by the hesitancy of the recently formed Ministry in New South Wales. Mr. W. J. Lyne had not long since defeated the Right Hon. G. H. Reid in the Legislature, and did not seem to know his own mind upon this new subject; or else he was seriously afraid of a possibly hostile Labor vote. At any rate, he refused to move in the matter until Parliament met again, and gave reasons not dissimilar to those adduced in Canada by Sir Wilfrid Laurier for the brief delay which afterwards occurred at Ottawa. On October 5th it was announced that the Queensland offer of troops, made some three months before, had been accepted, and that the voluntary proffer of service by some seventy-five Mounted Rifles from New South Wales, who happened to have been drilling at Aldershot, had also been considered favorably by the War Office. On October 10th this latter body marched through the streets of London on its way to the front with bands playing and banners fluttering to the breeze, and amid a reception which the city seldom accords to events of less importance than a state visit of the Queen or the departure of an army. It was not the little line of mounted men in the characteristic uniform of the Australasian trooper that caused a manifestation of almost unprecedented popular enthusiasm from the densely crowded streets of the metropolis; it was the fact that this tiny force represented a living loyalty in the breasts of Colonists in great countries all around the globe. Naturally such a "send-off" had its effect in Australia, and a week later the Melbourne Argus was able to say with patriotic enthusiasm regarding the universal desire to aid the Mother Country that:

Australia's Appreciation of England's Protection

"The event shows to the world that the Empire, as a whole, will stand and fall together. Nothing appears to have impressed our critics more than the ease with which 10,000 men could be withdrawn from India and landed at the scene of action, and the Canadian and Australian demonstrations indicate also that there are still larger reserves (though not so complete) to draw upon. And we in Australia know that the feeling is reciprocal. We realize that, while we are ready to make real sacrifices for Great Britain if she requires them, the Mother Country would exhaust her last man and her last shilling to guard our Austral shores from insult or injury. Saturday week will be one of the memorable days in the history of the Empire. It will imply that British victories in future will not be merely insular, but that the Colonies, by sharing the perils, will earn a right to share also the triumphs of the flag."

Various Contingents Leave for Africa

As in Canada, every little town and village and country centre contributed its quota of enthusiasm and recruits, from end to end of the island-continent, throughout little Tasmania and in beautiful New Zealand. The latter Colony was the first to get its troops away, and on October 21st they sailed from Wellington amid scenes of wild enthusiasm and in the presence of 25,000 people. The Governor, the Earl of Ranfurly, briefly addressed the Contingent, and, during the Premier's speech, when he asked the significant question: "Shall our kindred in the Transvaal be free?" there was a tremendous shout of "yes" from thousands of throats. A few days later the Governor received a cable from the Colonial Secretary expressing the gratification of Her Majesty's Government at home and the appreciation of the people generally. The Queensland troops left on October 28th under the command of Lieut.-Colonel Ricardo, and Brisbane, for the time being, was the home of immense masses of people and the scene of banquets, speeches and unlimited enthusiasm. From Melbourne, Sydney, Adelaide and Perth the various other Contingents sailed about the same time and amid scenes such as the pen finds it hard to describe in cold type. It was literally a wave of patriotism in which the Governors and Premiers—Lord Brassey and Sir George Turner, of Victoria, Earl Beauchamp and the Hon. W. J. Lyne, of New South Wales, Lord Tennyson and the Right Hon. C. C. Kingston, of South Australia, Sir Gerard Smith and Sir John Forrest, of Western Australia—simply represented in their speeches the feeling of the people, and were supported in doing so by Opposition Leaders and by every important element in their respective Colonies; even the Labor organizations having fallen into line where, in some cases, they had been antagonistic. The Sydney Daily Telegraph declared, in this connection that "the remarkable demonstrations in the two great cities of Australia (Melbourne and Sydney) on Saturday must have convinced the most callous soul of the deep-seated hold which the idea of Empire has upon the people.... In offering troops to Great Britain for service in South Africa the underlying feeling is that we are part of the Empire whose supremacy in one part of the globe is threatened." Lord Brassey, in addressing the Victorian and Tasmanian Contingents on October 28th at Melbourne, clearly and eloquently voiced the same sentiment:

"It was not through apprehension for the peace and security of Australia, nor through the influence of Governors, or Ministers, or a few men in positions of power, of wealth and responsibility. It was under the irresistible impulse of popular feeling that the resolve was taken to offer Her Majesty the services of her citizen soldiers dwelling beneath the Southern Cross. On the shores of South Africa you will wheel into line with the Canadian Contingent. All this marks an epoch, I would rather say a turning-point, in British history. It speaks of the firm resolve of the people of the Empire on which the sun never sets to stand together, and in the hour of stress and strain to rally round the old flag. It is a noble and wise resolve. It makes us from this time forward absolutely secure against foreign aggression."

The Empire a Unit

The total force thus despatched numbered 1480 officers and men, and included 386 from New South Wales, 258 from Queensland, 250 from Victoria, 213 from New Zealand, 104 from South Australia and 80 from Tasmania, besides the troop of Lancers from Aldershot. In connection with the latter body, which, of course, was the first of the external Colonial volunteers to arrive at Cape Town, the Cape Times of November 3d declared that they "come to us as a symbol of something greater and deeper and more durable than any display of military power or of patriotic ardor. Their presence represents in concrete form the Imperial idea, never before expressed with such forcefulness and vigor." As in Canada, Patriotic Funds were everywhere started, and before long hundreds of thousands of dollars were subscribed for the aid of sick and wounded or of possible widows and orphans. Incidents of striking generosity were many. Mr. R. L. Tooth, of New South Wales, subscribed $50,000; a South Australian gentleman gave $5,000 for the purchase of horses; a Victorian officer gave $5,000 for the equipment of new troops; a citizen of Sydney gave $15,000 toward sending out a force of Bush-riders, and another contributed $25,000 for the same purpose. By the middle of January, 1900, the various Patriotic Funds had assumed large proportions—that of Sydney, N.S.W., being $115,000; Brisbane and Queensland, $80,000; New Zealand, $300,000; Melbourne, $50,000. Meantime the first reverses of the war had occurred in South Africa, and the feelings of the people been greatly and deeply stirred by the news. Second Contingents were at once offered by all the Colonies, and upon this occasion the effort to combine them as one federal body was successful.

Large Funds Raised in the Colonies

The general sentiment was well expressed by a motion of the Queensland Legislative Assembly, on December 20th, which was proposed by the Premier and seconded by the Leader of the Labor party. It expressed the pride of the Colony in the splendid gallantry of the British troops in South Africa, authorized the Government to co-operate with the other Colonies in despatching an additional Australian force, and was carried unanimously amidst great cheering. At first it was proposed that a thousand men should go from the combined Colonies; then it was found that each Colony was anxious to send more than was thus provided for; and eventually 1,700 men were despatched by the middle of January, of whom New South Wales alone contributed seven hundred. But this was not all. Continued preparations were made for the despatch of more troops. On January 11th the Premier of Queensland telegraphed to Mr. Lyne, at Sydney, suggesting that the second Contingent should be increased so as to ultimately form a body of 5,000 men. To this the New South Wales Premier agreed, but pointed out at the same time that his Colony was already increasing its contribution to 840 men, besides 500 Bush-riders who were being sent by private subscription, and that many more were being drilled for service. Mr. McLean, of Victoria, replied to a similar telegram that: "I do not think that the number of our Contingent should be limited. We will send men as rapidly as they are trained and equipped." In saying farewell to the second New Zealand Contingent of 242 officers and men, on January 20th, the Premier of that Colony declared that another would follow, and that "if occasion arose every man who could bear arms in the Colony would volunteer; as in helping the Empire in South Africa they were securing New Zealand and upholding the Queen, the country and the constitution." By the middle of February 1,000 Bush-riders were also trained and equipped and almost ready to embark as a special Contingent from Queensland, Victoria, South Australia and New South Wales.

Cause for Demonstrations of Loyalty

And so these revelations of patriotic feeling and Imperial unity have gone on in increasing volume from day to day. To theorists like Goldwin Smith, political economists like Mr. James Bryce, or philosophical politicians such as Mr. John Morley, such demonstrations of loyalty are incomprehensible. To the man who really understands the history of the Empire and the evolution of its system, who reaches down into the hearts of the people and comprehends the undercurrents of sentiment, it is not so difficult to grasp the reasons. Speaking of Australasia more particularly, Dr. W. H. Fitchett, the well-known editor of the Australasian Review of Reviews, recently summed up a part of the situation very concisely: "Why," he said, "have the Colonies stood by the side of England? For Jingoism? Don't you believe the men who tell you that. Our people are too hard-headed and too businesslike to be carried away by mere Jingoism. They come because they know that the Transvaal question is a Colonial question, a question that intimately concerns all of them. To-day these little settlements of white men, planted down on the coastline of great continents, are able to remain secure, notwithstanding the earth-hunger of every great Power, because the might of the Empire is behind them." This, in part, is the reason. But there is more at the back of it than the mere principle of self-interest. A liberty common to all the Colonies has been threatened, a new-grown pride in the Empire was struck at, a feeling of manly aversion to further dependence was touched, an inherent but sometimes dormant love for the Mother Land was aroused.

Other Colonies Eager to Assist

Nor have these manifestations of affectionate allegiance to the Crown and the flag been limited to Australia and New Zealand and Canada. Back on the 17th of July the Malay States volunteered a body of troops; on the succeeding day the Lagos Settlements did the same; on the 21st of September Hong-Kong joined in the proffer of help; later on Ceylon offered a Contingent, and toward the end of January 130 officers and men, completely armed and equipped, sailed from there for the Cape. As already stated, however, it was not deemed well to use colored soldiers, so that the loyalty of the first-named Colonies was not utilized. Englishmen in India were keen to go to the front, and from every rank of life and labor came the offer to serve. Finally, in January, a mounted corps was accepted with Colonel Lumsden in command. Not only did men in large numbers volunteer, but money in immense sums was proffered. As native troops could not be accepted, the native rulers, Princes and great merchants did the next best thing. They all offered cavalry horses, money or guns. The Nizam of Haidarabad, on December 28th, at a Vice-regal banquet in Calcutta, told Lord Curzon that "his purse, his army and his own sword were ever ready to defend Her Majesty's Empire." The Maharajah of Gwalior asked to be allowed to serve on Lord Roberts' staff, and offered to send troops, horses and transport to South Africa. The Maharajahs of Mysore and Jodpore joined in the latter part of his request. The Maharajah of Kuch Behar wrote a stirring letter to the Calcutta Englishman proposing the enrollment of the Indian Princes and their sons in a sort of "Empire army," and, at the same rime, he contributed 350 guineas to the Indian Patriotic Fund which, on January 14th, amounted to $100,000. Amongst other contributors the Maharajah of Tagore had given 5,000 rupees.

Natal Forces

Meanwhile what of the South African Colonies? Seldom in history has there been such a spontaneous response to the call to arms as in Natal and Cape Colony; never has there been a more fervent belief in the righteousness of their cause than amongst the first and greatest sufferers from the inevitable agonies of war. The fleeing Uitlanders, almost to a man, volunteered; and by the middle of January little Natal, with its English population of about 40,000, had the following list of troops in active service:

  Natal Naval Volunteers . . . . . . . . . . .   150
  Natal Carbineers . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   465
  Natal Mounted Rifles . . . . . . . . . . . .   200
  Border Mounted Rifles  . . . . . . . . . . .   270
  Umvoti Mounted Rifles  . . . . . . . . . . .   130
  Natal Field Battery  . . . . . . . . . . . .   120
  Natal Royal Rifles . . . . . . . . . . . . .   145
  Durban Light Infantry  . . . . . . . . . . .   400
  Medical Staff  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .     7
  Veterinary . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .     3
  Natal Mounted Police (Europeans) . . . . . .   649
  Thorneycroft's Mounted Infantry  . . . . . .   500
  Bethune's Mounted Infantry . . . . . . . . .   500
  Imperial Light Infantry  . . . . . . . . . . 1,000
  Imperial Light Horse . . . . . . . . . . . .   500
  Colonial Scouts  . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   500
  Ambulance Bearers (1st Section)  . . . . . . 1,000
  Ambulance Bearers (2d Section) . . . . . . .   600

      Total  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 7,139

Cape Colony Forces

Cape Colony, with its larger population, had, however, greater local dangers to face from possible rebels, and men were anxious to organize for local defence as well as for service at the front. But at the same date as the above figures are given for Natal the mother Colony had ten thousand men at the disposal of the General commanding the forces. They included the Kaffrarian Rifles, with 600 men; the Queenstown Rifles, 200 men; the Port Elizabeth Guards, 520 men; the Grahamstown Rifles, 310 men; the Cape Town Volunteers, 3,000 men; the Kimberley Volunteers, 200 men; and the Protectorate Regiment, 800 men. Of Mounted Infantry there were the Cape Mounted Rifles, 800 men; Brabant's Horse, 800 men; Cape Police, 600 men; Kaffrarian Mounted Infantry, 100 men; Frontier Mounted Rifles, 200 men; Diamond Fields' Horse, 400 men; Mafeking Mounted Infantry, 500 men; South African Light Horse, 800 men; Grahamstown Horse, 120 men; Rimington's Scouts, 350 men.

Future of the Colonies

Such was the remarkable military development, in a Colonial sense, which has arisen out of the Transvaal trouble of 1899 and the ensuing war. Its result is in the womb of the future, but there can be little doubt as to the important effect which the evidences of loyalty and unity thus produced must have, not only upon the constitution of the Empire, but upon its prestige and practical power. The day, indeed, is not far distant when the Colonies will have their full share in the Councils as well as in the defence of British dominions. The voice of Canada in the control of matters affecting the British West Indies and Newfoundland and Alaska, or other American interests touching the Empire, will be then as fully understood by foreign nations to be a great and permanent factor as will be that of Australasia in matters connected with the Indian Empire, the New Caledonia question, or the islands of the Pacific generally. A new and greater power in the world's history is, in fact, being born amid the throes of South African warfare, and the incoming century must witness developments in this connection even more marvellous than those of the one which is passing.






GENERAL SIR REDVERS BULLER, C.B. (From Photo, Charles Knight, Aldershot). MAJOR GEN'L SIR W. S. SYMONDS (From Photo, Cowell, Simla)
GENERAL SIR REDVERS BULLER, C.B. (From Photo, Charles Knight, Aldershot).
MAJOR GEN'L SIR W. S. SYMONDS (From Photo, Cowell, Simla)



The Origin of the Recent War

The origin of the war breaking out in the later months of the last year of the nineteenth century between the Boers and the British may be traced to the famous defeat of the latter at Majuba Hill in 1881, the influence of which was intensified by the failure of the Jameson Raid, that had a good cause, but was irresponsible and disorderly. The Boers were entirely persuaded by these incidental successes of their army that they could always get the better of those they called intruders into their own country, which they had made a long journey to find and shed a great deal of blood of the natives to conquer. Their preference in the two pilgrimages away from the Cape country was to become herdsmen, raising cattle, shooting game, farming in a rude way, and enjoying the right to which they attached great importance to hold property in man. The first chief objection they had to the English, who superseded the Dutch at the Cape, was that they had prejudices against human servitude, and the slaveholders were sensitive as to interference with their high privileges and thought themselves greatly aggrieved that their scriptural institution was disapproved. It is true the Boers established a civilization immensely superior to barbarism of the natives, but they indulged all the passions of slaveholders, and were but little advanced in civilization. Something akin to semi-barbarism seemed the normal condition of Africa for countless centuries, and the light dawned gradually in South Africa from the occupancy of territory by the Dutch, the Portuguese and the English successively, and it may be fairly said that broad daylight came with the English, who in the lower regions of the Dark Continent were the stronger and the more persevering antagonists of barbarous peoples and made the greatest advancements to civilization. It was the nerveless policy of dealing with South Africans following the British defeat at Majuba Hill that produced in the Boers contempt for English military capacity and the personal courage of English speaking people, and led them to enter upon the policy of restriction of English speaking immigrants that appeared in great numbers after the discoveries of diamond mines and gold mines, assuming indeed that new comers had no rights, civil or military, as citizens or squatters, that the Boers were bound to respect. Boers' Policy Against Immigrants So distinct was the impression the Boers made of their exclusive policy to govern the immense territory upon which they had settled for the purpose of raising cattle and ruling the natives, that the circulars sent abroad in the United States by the enemies of England to form public opinion favorable to the presumption of the Boers, presented the specific complaint urged on behalf of the Transvaal people and government that the British would not cease to be subjects of their "Empire," and must not be allowed a share in local government, because in the gold country they were three times as numerous as the Boers themselves. It seems reasonable to say the English had as good a right to improve upon the Transvaal methods of aiding the good works of progressive humanity beyond the Boer limitations as the Boers had to take grazing land and game and forests from the original savages. The Boers made war upon the savagry and therefore upon the natives and were intolerant in the extreme in their exactions. There were between the original African tribes and their earliest invaders many wars and constant rumors of wars, and bloodshed frequently and profusely. When the diamond and gold mines that interested the whole world were discovered, it was as righteous to work them as it was for the Boers to open farms where there had been only hunting grounds. The great cause of South African advancement demanded British organization then just as it had required Boer enterprise in the beginning.

The Centre of the Diamond Mine Country

It should be well understood for the location of influential events that the city of Kimberley is the center of the diamond mine country. The Boers do not seem to have had the spirit of adventure, the breadth of understanding and the executive faculty to interest themselves largely in the development of the unparalleled riches found under their feet. They parted with the farms containing gold in such quantity that they are believed to be the Ophir Land of Solomon, of which the Bible contains a specific and most interesting account, and they, disgusted with the discovery of this wealth, that they had the shrewdness to see threatened their supremacy, were resentful toward the immigrants—the gold and diamond seekers that poured into the Transvaal impetuously, as the Americans crossed the deserts and the mountains to possess California fifty years before.

Characteristics of the Boers

The Boers are people whose hardihood, bravery, manliness, high spirit, marksmanship with the rifle, attachment to the soil, and content as farmers, fortified with solemn appreciation of religious duty, compel respect, but they are at fault in their attitude of determined obstruction of progress in the Dark Continent that is chiefly committed to the English. They interfere not merely with the people who have found and worked the most productive mines of diamonds and gold ever known, they have held those who have done in Africa what the Americans did in their acquisitiveness in Mexico in contempt, and in the name of a "free republic" have been apostles of class and personal tyranny and ruthless in regard to the rights of those who have enriched their country and the world with their adventurous industry—with their organization of prospecting, engineering machinery, chemistry, transportation and mastery of the elements and forces that have in great and good works in Europe and America crowded a millennium into the nineteenth century.

It is easy to assert that as people cannot eat precious stones and metals, the things that are most beautiful and costly are less useful than corn and potatoes, and yet the human race for several thousand years has attached importance to the sands and rocks that have yielded diamonds in Golconda and Brazil and gold in California and Australia; and it is a record and tradition that the gold of California gave the nations of the earth "Californian good times," a phrase that was historical and an inspiration, and significant of the prosperity of the people of the generation that had its enjoyment. The diamond cannot be converted into food save by exchange, for the dust of the ground stone is rather imperishable than palatable and nourishing, but it is "a thing of beauty" that is "a joy forever;" and even if the prejudices of the Boers were inflamed against the most beautiful and enduring forms of value, that should not commend them as heroes of civilization; and it does not prove their Republicanism to refuse the rights of self-government to a people certainly among the most enlightened on the earth because they are in the majority in the great and flourishing communities, where they founded splendid cities, opened railroads and established a commerce additional to the world's wealth of more than one hundred millions of dollars a year. Whatever may be said to the contrary, these achievements should command the respect of all nations and peoples.

Antagonism to English Rule

The English speaking inhabitants of the gold and diamond country of Africa are treated as hostiles by the Boers who were the first settlers and slaughtered the natives, and the English are held out of favor because they are so numerous and prosperous, and, it may be added, so superior in their intelligence and elevated in their purposes and resolute in their determinations, that the Boers must keep them disarmed and deny them the ballot and all consideration in local affairs. The English offense is that they have made the country flourish, have built cities in deserts, spanned rivers and penetrated mountains with roads of steel. These improvements may be bad for the peculiar civilization and hardy endowments of the Boers, but do not seem to vindicate the belligerent rancher in his ferocious antagonism to those who are leading in their day and generation those affairs that are working out the betterment of the race of man. There are boundaries that must be removed for the broad benefits of the general welfare of mankind that the forces of the age may overcome the most stubborn resistance to the triumphant processes by which civilization spreads abroad and acquires stability.

It is the semi-barbarous theory that gold and diamond hunters are offenders against liberty, that it is the holy duty of the Boers as cattle drivers and stalkers of game, to reduce intrusive English speaking people to a subordination down to the level of the native tribes, so that they may not become masters over the aristocracy of the African cowboys. What better title is there anywhere for self-government than a people in the majority? This is most obvious where racial questions arise, and there is more and more declared the rights of men under the sanction and rule of the majority to govern themselves. A higher civilization, greater property and educational qualifications and the output of "wealth beyond the dreams of avarice," are incidental to and co-operate with majority government in South Africa. But all this on behalf of Boerdom is denied.

The English have possessed a great quantity of land in Africa, and they are justified by the establishment of comparative peace under stable form of government, by the increase of prosperity of the people, irrespective of race or previous condition of servitude or of shades of color. The ancient despotism at the Cape which was a prohibition of progress, for it was the tyranny of an absolute monopoly, has been swept away; and there has been growth in human liberty as well as augmentation of wealth and comfort, and there is white light on the dismal shores of the Dark Continent.

English Government in South Africa

It has been the English policy to form a federation of colonies pressing by steady and encouraged advancement of the sovereign rights of intelligent people, forming states in South Africa. The objection to this first urged is that the British have insisted upon the flag of the Empire over the movement. That flag has not prevented the wonderful growth of Australia, for that world newly risen from the seas has become of imperial proportions. Under that flag in this new world are more remarkable experiments undertaken, testing the theories of municipal socialism and industrial unity than in any other part of the globe. Under the same flag the population of India has doubled. The inference is that it would not blast the bloom of Africa.

The racial complications on South Africa demand for the greatest good of the people at large (and we include in that phrase the greatest number of people) that the best form the rule of the land can take is that of British supremacy—this positively for an indefinite period of transition. It has been the British policy to set apart for natives a vast tract of good land, and that would seem to be better and more human than to devote them to extermination, unless they themselves insist upon exterminating others. In Natal over 500 miles of railroads have been constructed. These roads connect with harbors at Cape Town and Durban. The improvement of the country has turned out to the advantage of the military operations of the British. Good roads are a great help to a people, but, it must be admitted, they do favor the rapid movement of masses of armed men in these days as they did in those of the Romans.

A Few Telling Statistics

Consider the simple statistics of the productions of the territory contested between the British and the Boers. The yield of the diamond mines in 1897 was valued at $21,676,776, and the gold of the White Water range region in 1899, if the output continued as in September, was closely estimated at $76,647,375, putting that territory at the head of the gold producing regions of the world. With order, security for industry and its varied fruits, fair play for men of all races, the gold yield by the Transvaal would speedily equal one hundred millions annually. It is the result of an investigation by the use of the drills and the chemistry of experts that there is a certainty in the soil of an amount of gold equal to 3,500 millions of dollars, and probably a great deal more; and this addition to the metal that is the world's standard of value in the greater commercial and military transactions would, according to the logic of all examples in history, be a guarantee of good times for those identified with all the productive industries in the shops and on the farms. The yield of diamonds will be equal to the demands of trade, whatever it is. The store of them in the soil about Kimberley seems to be inexhaustible. It is these tremendous endowments of nature in the heart of South Africa that caused the immigration there, and has aroused the cupidity and excited the ambition of the Boers, causing them to array themselves against the growth of communities whose importance has been increasing so fast as to threaten the rule of the caste that has held the Transvaal with an iron hand.

A Plea Unworthy of Consideration

The very plea of the Boers that the English speaking people are too numerous to trust with the right of suffrage and too rich to be allowed a share of self-government, and that the discovery and developments of mines of gold and diamonds, the most concentrated and attractive forms of the wealth of Nature, is unworthy not only of deference but of consideration. It is opposed to the spirit and substance of the surprising realizations of the century that have made it the most memorable epoch in the history of man in the appropriation of the resources of the earth he inherits. Never until now has mankind had the labor and capital, the courage, the machinery, the intelligence, or the tools provided by marvelous inventions—the conquering capacity to give the gigantic continent of Africa—nearly 12,000,000 square miles—into the hands of the people who need room for industry, thus making an addition to the good land available for the lucrative employment of countless millions through the coming ages.

A Magnificent Project

There is one people, and one only on earth, that has the ability and the purpose, the will and the force, the experience and the energy to make this gift to mankind, and that power is the British Empire. Whatever the resources or the ambition or the faculties of other great nations, none with the exception of Great Britain is so situated as to make it possible to do this. British influence and territory, from the Cape of Good Hope to the mouth of the Nile, are interrupted by a space less than 600 miles, and 480 miles of that are navigable water! The British have thousands of miles of railroad there now, and the work to pierce Africa with lines of steel, on the lines of longitude, is under way. Less than the cost of the war caused by the obstruction of English enterprise in Africa by the boorishness of the Boers would have completed a safe and magnificent highway from Cape Town to Alexandria. After all, war will not stop, but will promote that project. The study of the war history will so advertise the marvels of Africa that the money will be found to build the road and its branches from the Mediterranean to the South Sea, and that speedily; and this will be recorded as one of the mightiest works of man—one that profoundly interests all nations and all races.

England cannot Give up Africa

England cannot afford to give up Egypt or South Africa, and, of course, will not do it, for there she fights for India, and for every form and feature of her imperialism. The world could not afford to have her give up Africa. If she was weak enough to be willing to do it, that weakness would mark her decline and declare her fall. The British Empire is the chosen instrument of Providence that rough-hews the ends of the earth, and that includes the conquest of Africa, for the sake of mankind. That Empire is the only one that has the enabling equipment to do the work, and the advancement will be the achievement of one of the proudest and most beneficent of all victories of men for man.

A great deal of the journalism of the world is wickedly and wretchedly wrong and extremely misleading in its treatment of this superb and lofty theme. The Boers have been cruelly deceived by interludes of feebleness displayed in the government of England, permitting a halting interference with the perpetuation of the policy that has made the British Empire what it is. It was this unfaithfulness that sacrificed Gordon at Khartoum. It is the same sort of moral malady, a choice of that which is inadequate, that would have surrendered the Philippines to an impostor and prevented the expansion of American commerce in Asia.

The Boers are men of strength and generously sustained with many virtues, but they have had the misfortune to be trained in narrow ways and are forced by deplorable circumstances of environment to fight for a cause without hope, for it is one that is against the courses of the stars and the irresistible currents of the forward movements of our generation—against the mastery of the world by man for man's own sake. This awful war is the bitter fruit of a want of candor among the nations and the races that have enlightenment, and of the incapacity of the obstructionists in South Africa to resist the blandishments of the crude vanity and the criminality of the tyranny that is based upon the ignorance whose violent presumption sheds the blood of heroes, but may not change the majestic progress of the twentieth century, in which all the living nations and vital people, the Boers and the British, shall participate—for it is duty and destiny.

Opinions of the Canadians

The substantial unanimity of the Colonial people in the support of the British Empire in asserting the rights of British civilization in South Africa as imperative, is an impressive circumstance and shows the solidity of the people of English speech—when the intense advocacy of the independent nationality of Ireland is eliminated—in support of the African policy of the British government. In the Dominion the contention between the party of the Administration and that of the Opposition is whether the one or the other has been the more zealous and practical friends of the Empire. There is not as much diversity of opinion and heat of political friction in British Africa over the continuance of the colonial system, supplemented by conquest, if needful, in the African crisis of the Empire, as there is in the United States in applying to the Philippine Archipelago, the great principles of the fathers that the Republic shall grow continuously as the generations come and go. The people of the United States, however, can better afford to refrain from accepting the goods the gods have provided for them in Asiatic waters and for the expansion and cultivation of our commerce with Asia and the increase of our puissance on the Pacific—than England can to be balked, beaten and discredited in Africa, which is the land of the great hereafter of Europeans, next to Europe itself.

The people of the United States can put aside their sublime opportunity of gaining at a stroke advantages on the greater ocean of the globe, that any other people would consider it irrational and suicidal to abandon, and yet go on, though it would be a collapse of ambition for Americans to acquiesce in conservative stagnation instead of moving on ever westward. They have possessions on and in the Pacific, including the states of California, Oregon and Washington, the territory of Alaska and the Aleutian, Hawaiian and Philippine Islands, greater than any other people. Why should they be bounded in enterprise in the way all the stars have led, any more than eastward whence comes the light of day? England can no more consent to give up Africa than yield India, Egypt, Malta, Gibraltar, Ireland, Scotland, Wales and the Isle of Wight. Indeed the greater growth of England's hereafter is in Africa, or the end of her greatness and the grave of her glory is there.



The Battle of Majuba Hill.

Lord Rosebery's Reflections

The Earl of Rosebery, under date of October 11, 1899, wrote that he could speak "without touching politics, for a situation had been created beyond party polemics, and it was needless to discuss how we could best have attained our simple and reasonable object of rescuing our fellow-countrymen in the Transvaal from intolerable conditions of subjection and injustice, and of securing equal rights for the white races in South Africa, for an ultimatum has been addressed to Great Britain by the South African Republic which is in itself a declaration of war."

Lord Rosebery continued that the people would close their ranks and relegate party controversy to a more convenient season, and there was in addition this to say: "Without attempting to judge the policy which concluded a peace after the reverse at Majuba Hill, I am bound to state my profound conviction that there is no conceivable Government in this country which could repeat it."

In a speech at Bath, unveiling the mural tablets to the Earl of Chatham and William Pitt, Mr. Gladstone's brilliant lieutenant and successor said of the Boer ultimatum, it was such as, he thought, the proudest empire in the world would have hesitated about sending. But since the commencement of the war the Boers had engaged in the strange policy of issuing decrees of annexation of British territory, which were, apparently, desirable additions to the Republic of the Transvaal.

Lord Rosebery's Speech at Bath

There had been a great misunderstanding about the Majuba Hill transaction. It was a mere skirmish, and concurrently with that there was an attempt on the part of the then Government to settle peaceably the issue in the Transvaal. Now, whatever they might think of the result of that attempt, the thing in itself was a sublime experiment. Mr. Gladstone, with his overpowering conviction of the might and power of England, thought that she could do things which other nations could not do, and, therefore, endeavored to treat with the Boers after the reverse which took place. We knew how Mr. Gladstone's magnanimity was rewarded. He (Lord Rosebery) felt a deep misgiving at the time in respect to this course of policy, and his fears had been realized in the result. The Boers had regarded that magnanimity as a proof of weakness, and they rewarded Mr. Gladstone's magnanimity with a deliberate and constant encroachment on the terms of the settlement. Then there came the discovery of gold. If they might judge from all that they had read, the income secured by the discovery of gold produced great corruption in the Transvaal. The bill of salaries—public salaries in the Transvaal—amounted, on a calculation, to about £40 a head of the population, and it could not but be considered that that was a liberal allowance for the working of so simple a republican Government. The Jameson raid was not merely a deplorable incident from a diplomatic point of view, but it was also the symptom of a deplorable state of things. They might be quite certain that no English gentleman would have engaged in what might be called a filibustering raid had it not been for the strong cry of distress that proceeded from within the Transvaal.

But it was unfortunate from many points of view. In the first place, it gave the Transvaal Government very much the best of the argument. They had then a great grievance to complain of, and we in those circumstances could not urge those grievances of which our subjects had to complain. In the meantime, almost all the taxation of the country was drawn from our fellow-countrymen—the very people who were not subjects of the Transvaal. Our fellow-subjects combined in vain for the most elementary form of education. They were losing face, so to speak, in the eyes of the natives and of the world at large. And the most important element of all was beginning to attract attention—which was that with the money derived from the gold the Transvaal Government was gradually piling up a great military power, armed to the teeth. That was a standing menace to to our dominion. If it had continued we should have had to consider whether we who rule so many nations were to become a subject nation in our turn in South Africa; and had we become a subject nation, or remained even in the position in which we were, it was scarcely possible to doubt that we should have lost South Africa itself.

The Sting of Majuba Hill

Nothing has happened showing more distinctly than Lord Rosebery's utterance, the sting that has rankled in England of the unfortunate campaign that closed in the surrender at Majuba Hill; and the history of that event, with the influential circumstances before and after, has been obscured rather than cleared by the strenuous spirit of controversy on both sides. Every point is contested except the defeat of the British. The Boers claim that 120 of their riflemen assailed the British soldiers and made prisoners of them, though they were 600 strong. The British version is that they were caught in an untenable position and overwhelming forces, outnumbering them four to one, were their assailants. There is bitter feeling in the British Army on the relative responsibilities of disaster, and the reinforcements sent from England, arriving at Cape Town soon after the battle were in a desperate state of dissatisfaction with the peacemaking that followed, and felt themselves not only aggrieved but insulted. The Gordon Highlanders at Majuba Hill A despatch from Bombay about the embarkation to take part in the present Boer and British war of the Gordon Highlanders, contained the following: "The stern, grim Highlanders were curiously quiet. Every Englishman who saw them knew the reason. The Gordons are one of the finest regiments in the army. They have a splendid fighting record. But in the last Boer war a strong detachment of the Second Battery broke and turned on the bloody hill of Majuba. It was an inexplicable occurrence, for the men were bronzed veterans who had just fought their way through Afghanistan and made the famous march with Lord Roberts from Kabul to Kandahar. The regiment has brooded over the stain for nineteen years. No man has ever dared to mention Majuba before a Gordon Highlander. Everyone who saw them embark this morning knew what their rigid faces portended. Their chance had come. This time there would be no mistake. Highlanders have long memories and the 'Gay Gordons' are in the mood to allow themselves to be hewn to pieces rather than take a single step backward before the Boers or any other foe."

An Eyewitness About Majuba Hill

John Boyd of Galt, who was of the Gordon Highlanders Regiment for 21 years, regards this as a "foul aspersion." He says of his old regiment:

"Its reputation can dispense with both personality and egotism. Its deeds speak for themselves, and at Majuba Hill the bonnie Gordons upheld their honor and glory. I was there, and I know that I speak truth. As distinctly as if the events took place yesterday, I remember all that occurred on that awful night, when 121 Gordon Highlanders braved thousands of enemies in ambush. I am not exaggerating. Hundreds of Boers were concealed on the hill, while 2000 lay hidden across the nek, and pitted against such overwhelming odds were 100 Highlanders, and barely 300 other troops.

"And the writer of that London dispatch says that we 'broke and turned'; that, in short, we retreated. Let me tell you that of the 121 Gordons, 60 were killed or wounded, and 27 were taken prisoners. And these men who fought against fate, yet who—I solemnly declare—stood their ground to the last, are accused of showing the white feather. Dead men tell no tales, nor can they defend themselves from such calumnies. But how, I ask, could they play the craven when one-half were stark and stiff, dying, as they had lived, for their country? And of the handful who escaped the Boers and their bullets all were on the hill when morning broke. I was one, with a wounded comrade at my side.

"I am not in the habit of talking of what I have or have not done, nor do I proclaim from the housetops the Gordons' enviable past. But I was with them at Majuba Hill; in spirit I am with them now; and the man who says that the Ninety-second ever disgraced its colors or its Queen, does the regiment a grievous wrong, and himself a greater one."

The claims of Great Britain to sovereignty in the Orange Free State were withdrawn in 1854, and this seemed to give additional force to the annexation of the Transvaal in 1877, and that, it must be admitted, was in a sense a mistake, because it was done under the impression that the Boers really desired it. That was evidently an error when the time came for the fulfillment of the policy, but what amount of demagogy occurred in the meantime to change the sentiments of the ruling class of the Transvaal is a matter of doubt; and there are other difficulties that do not necessarily enter into the consideration of the subject.

Proclamation of President Steyn

The proclamation of President Steyn of the Orange Free State entering unreservedly into an alliance, defensive and offensive, with the Transvaal Boers, states with vehemence the principles contended for and the attitude assumed in antagonism with the British during the present conflict. President Steyn said that the Orange Free State was bound "with the sister republic not only by ties of blood, of sympathy and of common interests, but also by formal treaty, which has been necessitated by circumstances. This treaty demands of us that we assist her if she should be unjustly attacked, which we unfortunately for a long time have had too much reason to expect;" and President Steyn added:

What the Proclamation Charges

"Our own unfortunate experiences in the past have also made it sufficiently clear to us that we cannot rely on the most solemn promises and agreements of Great Britain when she has at her helm a Government prepared to trample on treaties, to look for feigned pretext for every violation of good faith by her committed. This is proved among other things by the unjust and unlawful British intervention after we had overcome an armed and barbarous black tribe on our eastern frontier, as also by the forcible appropriation of the dominion over part of our territory where the discovery of diamonds had caused the desire for this appropriation, although contrary to existing treaties. The desire and intention to trample on our rights as an independent and sovereign nation, notwithstanding a solemn convention existing between this State and Great Britain, have also been more than once and are now again shown by the present Government by giving expressions in public documents to an unfounded claim of paramountcy over the whole of South Africa, and therefore also over this State."

OCTOBER 21, 1899.

(From Photo by H. Johnstone)

The Orange proclamation charges that it is the discovery of gold mines in the country that causes the claims made upon the Republic, and adds:

"The consequence of these claims would be, moreover, that the greater part of the power will be placed in the hands of those who, foreigners by birth, enjoy the privilege of depriving the country of its chief treasure while they have never shown any loyalty to a foreign government. Besides, the inevitable consequence of the acceptance of these claims would be that the independence of the country as a self-governing, independent sovereign republic would be irreparably lost."

Boers not Capable of Modern Mining

This statement does not seem to be made in the fullness of candor. The Transvaal people are not capable of working gold mines by the modern methods. They are essentially the masters of cattle ranches and of farming in an extensive and rather rude way. Their country is much like Western Kansas, New Mexico and Colorado in some respects; and the interest they have taken in the gold mines has been not to get the gold by digging for it. They have neither capital nor labor to put into the mining operations, but they have insisted upon their pre-eminence in authority and profited through the taxation of the gold product and of the accumulations of property by the British, and held the immigrants to the gold region to be intrusive and a disagreeable and troublesome people who must be subordinated, because they were adequate in the business of mining, the methods of which have become exceedingly complicated. Unquestionably the Boers have got more gold than they would have acquired if they had worked the mines for themselves. The Newcastle Chronicle, one of the most important provincial papers of England, because it is assuredly representative of the public opinion of the country, says plainly in reply to the proclamations of the Boers and of the President of the Orange State:

Newcastle "Chronicle" on the War

"We are fighting to prevent men of British blood from being treated as 'helots' on British territory by a sordid oligarchy which British arms saved from extinction and British generosity endowed with autonomy.

"We are at war for the purpose of preventing our brethren in South Africa from being taxed without representation; from being placed under the control of courts whose judges take their orders from a corrupt Executive; from being refused the right to carry arms while their oppressors flourish theirs with insolent brutality; from being compelled to contribute to schools in which English is treated as a foreign tongue; in short, from being denied the elementary rights of self-government in territory undoubtedly British.

"We ask no privilege for ourselves that we would not give to the Boers, but we will not submit to be ostracized and domineered over in our own dominions.

"We cherish no revengeful feelings.

"The British flag is the herald of mercy as well as might.

"But we will have justice for our countrymen and control of our own Empire, come what may."

The language of President Steyn as to gold mines is: "The British Government, now that gold mines of immense value have been discovered in the country, make claims on the republic, the consequences of which, if allowed, will be that those who or whose forefathers have saved the country from barbarism and have won it for civilization with their blood and tears, will lose their control over the interests of the country to which they were justly entitled according to divine and human laws."

The First Right to the Transvaal Gold

The British resent as the greatest injustice the accusation that they are fighting expressly for the diamond and gold mines, that, indeed, are already the property of the English speaking people who discovered and developed them. As the claim of proprietorship is made by President Steyn, it amounts to the announcement of the confiscation of this property if the Almighty, whom they call upon so familiarly, gives them the victory they solicit in their prayers. If we must go back to the beginning, the aborigines have the first right to the precious stones and metals, if the rights of discovery, investment and labor are to be absolutely disregarded. There is an unyielding spirit on both sides, and war has been in the air and unavoidable ever since that English aberration which the Earl of Roseberry called the "sublime experiment of Mr. Gladstone in magnanimity" after the Majuba Hill defeat of the British. There is no question that the fight must be fought out. The issues are racial and radical.

The war that ended in the magnanimous policy after the defeat at Majuba Hill began with the Boer's resistance to taxation. They are as determined not to be taxed by others without representation as they are to tax others and refuse representation, because they have the power to do it or make war. Having subjugated and in a great measure enslaved the natives, it seems to be the temper and the passion of their lives to treat the English as inferiors and forbid them to exercise local authority, or assert that they have rights beyond those of paying for being on the ground.

The Broukhorst Spruit Affair

The first of the war, when the English assumed to have annexed the Transvaal, was caused by the seizure of a Boer wagon. A great wagon and a string of oxen are to the Boer almost sacred objects, and his sense of propriety of an immense structure on wheels drawn by ten long-horned oxen, propelled with a whip, the handle as long as a fishing pole, is something extraordinary. The Boers rose at once and took the wagon from the Sheriff, resisting what the Uitlanders have been resenting. They had suspected trouble was ahead and prepared for it, collecting ammunition and storing it in their wagons. A portion of the Ninety-fourth British Regulars was stationed at Leydenburg, north and east of Pretoria, and ordered to go to that city, The Boers came to the warlike resolution to oppose the march of the British, and ordered them to halt, with the placid purpose of discussing an accommodation, but the commander of the detachment of the Ninety-fourth had his orders and proceeded. A fight ensued, and the British, after suffering severe losses, were surrounded and surrendered. This was the Broukhorst Spruit affair.

The Laing's Nek

Mr. Gladstone was at the time too deeply interested in Irish affairs to give much attention to those in Africa, and Sir George Colley, who had been appointed High Commander over the Transvaal and Natal, took charge of the leading responsibilities. Sir George had visited Pretoria in 1875, and thought public opinion favorable to British rule over the Transvaal. When he heard of the Boers fighting for their wagons to be free, he collected available troops and led them into the difficult country encountered in advancing from Natal to the Transvaal. The Boer forces upon Natal territory commanded the pass across Laing's Nek. In January, 1881, Sir George attacked the pass and fought on the precise plan followed by the British officers in the present war. First he used the artillery, shelling the Burghers, followed it up by an infantry attack straight in front, while the mounted men made flank diversions. The Boers stood shelling as well then as recently, met the assaults in front with a deadly fire, and soon stood off the mounted men, endeavoring to turn the flanks. The Boers were very successful in picking off the gunners of Sir George's artillery, and his attacks proved failures all around.

Majuba Hill

The Burghers thought the British would have to surrender, but they managed by great exertions to recross the Ingogo River and returned to their camp at Mount Prospect. Both sides were of the judgment after the conflict that serious business was on hand, and there was an informal and perhaps an involuntary suspension of hostilities, with a great deal of talk about making peace. Sir Evelyn Wood was on his way to take command, and Sir George Colley concluding not to wait for him, made a rush for the summit of Majuba on the night of February 26th, 1881, and, dragging artillery, reached the table-land at the top, after excessive exertion. The plateau contains about four acres, curiously surrounded by a confusion of rocks, and in the center is a considerable depression. It seemed that the capture of the mountain was a decisive success, as the British forces had turned the position of their enemy. The Boers were greatly surprised, their camp was overlooked by the English. One doesn't always have an advantage over an enemy when he gets into a high place, and it happened that the ground was well suited to the peculiar tactics of the Boers. Instead of retreating, there was a call for volunteers to attack the British, and the matchless riflemen of the Transvaal were ardent and energetic in undertaking the seemingly desperate but really rather simple task before them. They took shelter behind the rocks, and, by rushes and dodges reached the fringe of stones that were like a framing beam around the plateau of four acres at the top with the depression in it, and then it appeared the British were entrapped in their position that they had sought, believing that it was one that commanded the situation. The fringe of rocks became a ring of fire. Sir George was killed and his troops defeated as decidedly as Braddock's regulars were by the French and Indians near Pittsburg.

The camp of Sir George at Mount Prospect is distinguished now for the cypress trees that surround his grave. After his fall there was no intelligent resistance by his forces. They were simply shot down by the Boers from their ambuscade in the tumbled rocks, until the slaughter was terminated by a surrender.[1]

Terms of Settlement

This called Mr. Gladstone's attention to the conditions in South Africa, and it was his understanding that the majesty of England was so great that she could afford to do anything that he thought was right. The President of the Orange Free State became useful as a mediator, and terms of settlement, to which Mr. Gladstone and Mr. Kruger, then Vice President of the Transvaal, with some minor disagreements omitted, were signed on the 24th of March, subject to ratification by the Transvaal Volksraad; and Sir Frederick Roberts, with reinforcements, met peace men at Cape Town. Mr. Kruger, Pretorius and Joubert had a good deal of trouble to carry the terms of settlement in the Boers' representative Assembly, for they had conceived ideas of sovereignty, and their successes appeared to warrant them in extensive assertions of themselves. They were very pressing for further concessions from Mr. Gladstone, and had a list of points of their dissatisfaction with the protocol that had been signed. The leading objection they made was the reference of foreign affairs to British supervision; Mr. Gladstone, however, insisted upon that. It was the Boers' idea the British should have nothing to do with the Transvaal, that there was to be no interference in any form with the legislation of the country, whether it was about foreign or domestic affairs. The negotiations were terminated by a continuation of the truce, and the gold discoveries and increasing importance of the Uitlanders caused a succession of difficulties and exasperations, culminating at last in the Jameson Raid, and, after an intermission of disquietude, the war that is on.

When the death of Sir George Colley, the High Commissioner in Southeastern Africa, occurred on Majuba Hill, it developed upon Sir Evelyn Wood to become Governor of Natal, and his Chief of Staff was Sir Redvers Buller. It was a very distasteful task that Sir Evelyn Wood and Sir Redvers Buller had, to talk peace in the shadow of British defeat, but they did their duty in that respect. In the course of the adjustments Sir Redvers and Mr. Kruger, President of the Transvaal, met personally, but the negotiations were fruitless until President Rand, of the Orange Free State, exerted his mediating capacity and won great reputation as a peacemaker.

[1] The British force at Majuba Hill numbered 554, of whom three companies, 180 rifles, were of the 92nd Highlanders, two companies, 170 rifles, of the 58th Regulars, two companies, 140 rifles, of the 60th, and 64 rifles of the Naval Brigade. The men carried 70 rounds of ammunition, three days rations, great coats and blankets. General Colley made this move hastily, and if he had perfected any plan in connection with it, it was never known except that when he found the top of the hill was greatly exposed to the fire of the Boers, and that they had the advantage of position, he repeatedly said to the men that he only wanted them to hold it "for three days." He said to one of the officers that he meant to return to the camp at Mount Prospect. The idea upon which he acted seemed to be that his position on top of Majuba Hill gave him command of the pass through which he desired to make his way, and he meant to return to the camp and conduct in person the movement which he believed to be feasible when he called upon the detachment he accompanied up the hill to make the desperate effort to get there. The plateau he had fancied was a place of security and command, was larger than he expected. It was nearly a mile in circumference, and as soon as the Boer riflemen took their positions to attack the British it was shown to be utterly untenable and the fight from first to last was a massacre of the British. The story that artillery was taken up the mountain is a mistake; 200 men were detached to keep open communication with Camp Prospect, leaving 354 to make the fearful climb and place themselves in a helpless situation exposed to the Boer marksmen in possession of piles of rocks from which they could pick off their enemies. The heart of the position was searched by a rifle fire from a ridge at the northwest angle. There was time after reaching the top of the hill to have used the rocks to throw up a barricade and shelter some of the men, but it was the order of Sir George Colley, the Commander, that the troops should rest, and they were resting when the fire and slaughter began. Major Wright says that when the first shot was discharged by the British, it was ordered by General Colley; the Boers galloped back to their camp with the news. Immediately all the camps were like wasps' nests disturbed, and it really was an imposing sight to see, that Sunday morning, all turn out, fires lighted for breakfast, and then a morning hymn sung; after which all the wagons were inspanned, and the Boers turned out for battle. A storming party of about 200 men immediately rode under the second ridge. By crossing round under the naval brigade's position they could do it without being seen. There they left their horses, and climbed up right under the hill, where we could not see them without going to the very edge of the hill, and exposing ourselves entirely to the fire from the two ridges. In this position we remained till about twelve noon, the Boers climbing towards us step by step, and I may almost say unsuspected by any but Hamilton and myself, who could see them. Twice I went to the General and told him we couldn't hold our position with so few men if any serious attack were made. All he said was, 'Hold the place three days.'"

The Commander of the Boers, General Schmidt, told Major Douglas and Captain Cunyngham that he "had 2000 rifles in the attack." The regimental records of the Gordon Highlanders contain this:

"About one P.M.," says Wright, "we saw some heads appearing over the top. The 92nd rushed forward in a body and drove them for the moment back—we lost about fifty killed and wounded. Then, strange to say, the word to 'cease fire' came distinctly to where Hay and I were, and immediately after, 'retire.' We all ran back to the ridge in the middle of the hill, which allowed the Boers to gain the hill. Then came the murder! In the meantime more Boers came up, round where the navy men were, and began to fire into the hospital, and so took us in rear. Hamilton and I both went to the General and asked to be allowed to charge."

"Wait," he said, "send a volley or two first; I will give the order!"

"Hamilton then said to me, 'Let's call on the 92nd, and charge on our own account. Are you ready, Harry?'"

"I answered, 'Yes,' drew my sword and laid it beside me."

"Macgregor (I think it was he) came up then and said, 'We've got to die now.'

"Just then I heard the General say, 'Retire in as orderly a manner as you can,' when they all jumped up and ran to the rear. Hay and I and two men of ours remained where we were, all using rifles and firing our best.

"Macdonald still held his position and would not budge, neither would we. About a quarter of an hour or twenty minutes after the retirement, no firing had been going on from the rest of our troops, which neither Hay nor I could understand, as we thought by 'retiring' it was meant to hold the brow on the east side, where the 58th were posted.

"We were now being sorely pressed, hiding our bodies behind stones, and for another five minutes the unequal combat went on. Then Hay said, 'The battle 's over; we can't fight a multitude; let's try and get away.'

"So off we four started in the direction which the others had previously taken, under a most awful volley from the Boers on the navy side and the ridge where we had been latterly firing at the enemy only twenty yards distant. Both the men were killed. Hay was shot in the leg and arm, and I was hit in the foot and turned head over heels. I had to crawl on my stomach a yard or two back to get my rifle, and so lost Hay, who got under cover somewhere."

General Colley was killed soon after giving the order to fire, by a bullet that struck just over his right eye and 'made an enormous hole at the back of his head.' The Highland account is that the General was waving a white handkerchief when shot down. It is presumed he had despaired of success or of withdrawing the men, and was anxious to save them by surrender. His movement had been so venturesome and so awkwardly handled that when the General fell there was a great deal needing explanation of the strategy of the operation and no one living knew anything about it. It has been thought that General Colley, already beaten twice by the Boers, was dazed upon realizing that his expedition was a murderous failure; and it is believed that while endeavoring to take care of the men, he exposed himself purposely to secure death."

Of the Highlanders in the fight (two companies) 33 were killed and 63 wounded. Colonel Napier says:

"Although stationed some miles from Majuba Hill, I was able, with the aid of a telescope, to see some portions of the engagement, and I afterwards made a careful study of the ground and positions occupied. The disaster was the result of a series of inexcusable blunders in the art and practice of war. In the first place, there was nothing to gain and everything to lose by premature action. There was no question of the enemy being reinforced, taking the offensive, or even shifting their position; while, on the other hand, General Colley's strength might have been doubled within twenty-four hours' notice by moving up troops from Newcastle. In fact, General Wood had himself gone down to Newcastle to bring up other regiments, and it was during his absence that the Majuba disaster occurred. Moreover, it was almost universally known in camp that General Wood had desired that no offensive movement was to be undertaken by his second in command till his return. General Colley staked his all in occupying a position the extent and nature of which were unknown to him, while its distance from Laing's Nek deprived it of any value, it being out of rifle range of the Boer lines. The General had neglected to provide himself with mule guns, which might have been used from Majuba heights with good effect as a covering fire to an infantry attack from below. As it was, General Colley, after a hard and exhausting night march, found himself in an untenable position, with a handful of men, composed of detachments of four distinct corps. He had actually lost his supports and separated himself from his reserve ammunition. When day came no systematic steps were taken either to hold the hill or effect a retreat, although he had four or five hours of daylight before an attack commenced."


The President of the South African Republic.

Birth, Education Etc.

Stephanus Johannes Paulus Kruger, President of the Transvaal—the other side of the Vaal River, is the name of the country—was born in the Cape Colony, October 10th, 1825. It is the commendation of the naturalist Mr. Distant, that Mr. Kruger has a "very large amount of natural wisdom," which is the softer way of saying that he is not an educated man, but one of the statesmen of Nature. He is, on the authority already quoted, "undistinguished in appearance," but has "a prodigious memory;" and "a weakness in resisting flattery and adulation which is not good for him," because, as his will is so pronounced and his authority so absolute, he is perpetually surrounded by the representatives of the rascalities in a strange variety of "concessions." The flattering description of this historical personage is that he is "very pious and self-reliant, which is provocative of bigotry and hot temper," and he is also "a rough diplomat of no mean rank."

A Story Picture of President Kruger

In Fitzpatrick's "The Transvaal from Within" we find this strongly drawn picture of Mr. Kruger:

"To an English nobleman, who in the course of an interview remarked, 'My father was a Minister of England, and twice Viceroy of Ireland,' the old Dutchman answered, 'And my father was a shepherd!' It was not pride rebuking pride; it was the ever-present fact which would not have been worth mentioning but for the suggestion of the antithesis. He, too, was a shepherd, and is—a peasant. It may be that he knows what would be right and good for his people, and it may not; but it is sure that he realizes that to educate would be to emancipate, to broaden their views would be to break down the defences of their prejudices, to let in the new leaven would be to spoil the old bread, to give unto all men the rights of men would be to swamp forever the party which is to him greater than the State. When one thinks on the one-century history of this people, much is seen that accounts for their extraordinary love of isolation, and their ingrained and passionate aversion to control; much, too, that draws to them a world of sympathy. And when one realizes the old Dopper President hemmed in once more by the hurrying tide of civilization, from which his people have fled for generations—trying to fight both Fate and Nature—standing up to stem a tide as resistless as the eternal sea—one sees the pathos of the picture. But this is as another generation may see it. To-day we are too close—so close that the meaner details, the blots and flaws, are all most plainly visible; the corruption, the insincerity, the injustice, the barbarity—all the unlovely touches that will by and by be forgotten, sponged away by the gentle hand of Time, when only the picturesque will remain."

Paul Kruger at ten Years

In 1836 a company of trekkers about 300 strong, the second that crossed the Orange River, was under the command of Hendrick Potgeiter and attacked by native warriors, twenty-five trekkers were killed, but the main body were warned and forming a laager of wagons with barricades of thorn bushes. They were able to beat off the assailants. Paul Kruger, a boy of ten years, was one of the defenders.

Henry M. Stanley, M.P., the famous African explorer, writing at Pretoria in November, 1897, gives a graphic sketch of President Kruger, "fully dressed in the usual black suit and little old-fashioned top hat, smoking on the veranda of his house." This was the first glimpse Mr. Stanley had of the great ruler upon whom he was calling, and the historical correspondent was shown into the spacious saloon, finding opposite to him "a large and coarse oil painting" of Kruger. Stanley says in his striking and unreserved way:

Not a Bad Likeness of President Kruger

"The history of the painting I do not know, but as it is permitted to be hung so prominently in the reception room, it is to be presumed that the President and his friends regard it as a faithful likeness, and are consequently proud of it. This small fact proved to be the ABC of my study of the man of destiny of South Africa. It was clear that neither Kruger nor his friends knew anything of art, for the picture was an exaggerated reproduction of every defect in the President's homely features, the low, narrow, unintellectual brow, over small eyes, and heavy, massive expanse of face beneath. The man himself was almost beautiful in comparison with the monster on the canvas, and I really could not help pitying him for his innocent admiration of a thing that ought to be cast into the fire. But presently the President spoke—a mouthful of strange guttural sounds—in a voice that was like a loud gurgle, and as the great jaws and cheeks and mouth heaved and opened, I stole a glance at the picture, and it did not seem to me then as if the painter had libeled the man. At any rate, the explosive dialect so expanded the cheeks and widened the mouth, that I perceived some resemblance to the brutal picture."

Mr. Stanley made his call, according to information about the habits of the great natural statesman, very early, but the President of the South African Republic had already prepared himself for the day by reading a chapter of the Bible, and when he remarked to his visitor, "What I have said shall be done," Stanley naively remarks he discovered in the manner of the words, "When I learned how he had been engaged, I knew he had been infected with the style of the Pentateuch," adding, "He has fully arrived at that stage of life that made Mr. Gladstone so impossible in the Cabinet. There is abundance of life and vitality in the President, but he is so choleric that he is unable to brook opposition. Any expression suggesting him to be mistaken in his views or policy arouses his temper, the thunderous gurgle is emitted, the right arm swings powerfully about, while the eyes become considerably buried under the upper eyelids, I suppose from the photograph of him now on sale at Pretoria, which represents his eyes looking upward, he fancies this to be his impressive gaze. He receives a stranger with the air of a pedagogue about to impress a new pupil, and methodically starts to inculcate the principles of true statesmanship; but soon heats himself with the dissertation, and breaks out in the strong masterful style which his friends say is such a picturesque feature in his character, and his critics call the 'humbug pose'. If by the latter is meant the repetition of stale platitudes, and the reiteration of promises which will never be carried out, I fear I must agree with the critics."

His Appearance and Manners

Mr. Stanley continues: "In appearance he is only a sullen, brutal-looking concierge, dressed in old-fashioned, ill-made black clothes. He appears to know absolutely nothing outside of burgherdom; he has neither manners nor taste; his only literature seems to be limited to the Bible; he has no intrinsic excellence of character that should appeal to the admiration of the public; but what he does know, he knows well. He knows the simplicity of his rude and bearded brethren of the veldt; he can play upon their fears and their creed, with perfect effect, and it is in the nature of his ill-conditioned personality to say 'no.' All the rest has fallen to him because he is so stubborn, so unyielding, and others so vacillating and so pitifully weak.

The Boer of Boers

"I do not suppose there are any people in the world so well represented by a single prominent man as the Boers of South Africa are by Mr. Kruger. He is pre-eminently the Boer of Boers in character, in intellect, and in disposition, and that is one reason why he has such absolute control over his people. His obstinacy—and no man with a face like his could be otherwise—his people call strength. Age and its infirmities have intensified it. His reserve—born of self-pride, consciousness of force—limited ambitions, and self-reliance, they call a diplomatic gift. His disposition, morose from birth, isolation fostered by contact with his kind, is unyielding and selfish, and has been hardened by contempt of the verbose weaklings who have measured themselves against him."

Mr. Howard C. Hillegas is a singularly specific writer, and in his instructive volume, "Oom Paul's People," is careful to say, and it is a point worth making, that the President is "less than five feet seven inches in height, body large and fat, legs thin and short, eyebrows bushy, white and projecting half an inch. * * * When he smiles the big fat circles above his cheeks are pushed upward, and shut his small gray eyes from view. When pleased the President generally laughs hilariously, and then his eyes remain closed for the greater part of a minute. Mr. Kruger's nose and mouth are the chief features of his face. Both are more extensive than his large face demands, but they are such marvels in their own peculiar way as to be distinguishing marks. The bridge of the nose grows wide as it goes outward from the point between the eyes, and before it reaches the tip it has a gentle upheaval. Then it spreads out on either side, and covers fully two inches of area above his upper lip. It is not attractive, but in that it follows the general condition of his facial landscape.

"The mouth is wide and ungainly. The constant use of a heavy pipe has caused a deep depression on the left side of his lower lip, and gives the whole mouth the appearance of being unbalanced. His chin is large and prominent, and his ears correspond relatively in size and symmetry with his face. When in repose his features are not pleasant to look upon, but when lighted up by a smile they become rather attractive, and generally cause his laughter to be contagious among his hearers.

"The thin line of beard which runs from ear to ear combines with the hair on his head in forming what is not unlike a white halo around the President's face. The lines in the man's face are deep, irregular, and very numerous."

His Daily Life and Family

It is said this great man takes particular care of his health which is an affair of international importance. He rises at half-past five and drinks several cups of "intensely black coffee," and smokes several "full pipes of very strong tobacco," reads the Bible for half an hour, and goes to work.

Mrs. Kruger is the President's second wife, the niece of his first wife. The first wife had one child, who is dead, and the second wife is the mother of sixteen children, nine of whom are dead. Two sons are living, one acting as the President's private secretary, the other one in a responsible government position, and the President has a son-in-law, Captain Elopp, described as several times a millionaire, living in a $250,000 house.

In his proclamation after the Jameson Raid, President Kruger said: "I am inexpressibly thankful to God that the despicable and treacherous incursion into my country has been prevented, and the independence of the republic saved, through the courage and bravery of my burghers."

The famous telegram from the Emperor of Germany to Oom Paul is highly prized by the President. It is considered a priceless treasure, and runs as follows:

"Received January 3rd, 1896. "From William I.R., Berlin.

"To President Kruger, Pretoria.

"I tender you my sincere congratulations that, without appealing to the help of friendly powers, you and your people have been successful in opposing with your own forces the armed bands that have broken into your country to disturb the peace, in restoring order, and in maintaining the independence of your country against attacks from without. "WILLIAM I.R."

President Kruger's Grand Passion

President Kruger's grand passion is hatred of the British, and he holds them in such distrust and contempt that he refuses to see the accredited correspondents of the principal London newspapers, but will see an American newspaper man, emphasizing the reason why by the statement that "they do not lie" about him and that the English do, and he desires Americans to hear the inside of things from himself. The first thing he asked the author of "Oom Paul's People," himself an American newspaper correspondent, whose valuable letters were published by Appleton & Company, was, "Have you any English blood in your veins?" This was delivered in the Boerish dialect, and the correspondent had been told the President always opened a conversation by inquiring as to the health of the person introduced, and this time he got the answer back that the English blood was abundant and good. This was considered a portentous joke, and struck Oom Paul as extraordinarily funny. The story of the expression of his delight is useful in its disclosure of character. Then the correspondent was informed the old statesman was in a better humor than he had been seen for some time, and that anything could be got out of him. An extremely interesting conversation followed.

The majority of the people of the United States have accepted the newspaper celebration of President Kruger as a wonder in courage, diplomacy, integrity, piety, and all that makes up excellent manhood. The record of his duplicity, cunning, evasiveness and crooked selfishness is practically excluded from those journals, and even headlines that approximate to the truth are confined to a few papers that care for international commentary. It is supposed that our local market for intelligence desires a constant flavor of Boerdom.

Fair Summaries of Both Sides

The collection of historical matter—"The Transvaal from Within"—is in terms and tone very persuasive that it has unusual merit as truthful—giving from the records fair summaries of both sides of disputed questions, whether they are commercial, political, racial or personal. The author is Mr. J. P. Fitzpatrick, the publisher Mr. William Heineman, London, and the work is brought well up to date. It opens with a note that shows a spirit of consideration for all that is admirable; and it is the desire of the author of this book that it should apply thoroughly. We quote:

"It has been found impossible to avoid in this book more or less pointed reference to certain nationalities in certain connections; for instance, such expressions as 'the Boers,' 'the Cape Dutch,' 'the Hollanders,' 'the Germans,' are used. The writer desires to say once and for all that unless the contrary is obviously and deliberately indicated, the distinctions between nationalities are intended in the political sense only and not in the racial sense, and if by mischance there should be found something in these pages which seems offensive, he begs the more indulgent interpretation on the ground of a very earnest desire to remove and not to accentuate race distinctions."

A HUMANE AND DARING DEED. Lieutenant L. R. Pomeroy, when retiring to shelter at the battle of Ladysmith, November 3, 1890, saw a wounded and dismounted trooper needing help; and regardless of bullets and shells flying around, assisted his comrade to mount behind him and carried him to safety. Such are the deeds that win the Victoria Cross.
Lieutenant L. R. Pomeroy, when retiring to shelter at the battle of Ladysmith,
November 3, 1890, saw a wounded and dismounted trooper needing help;
and regardless of bullets and shells flying around, assisted his comrade
to mount behind him and carried him to safety.
Such are the deeds that win the Victoria Cross.


The first chapter of the inside history opens with this searching paragraph:

"When, before resorting to extreme measures to obtain what the Uitlanders deemed to be their bare rights, the final appeal or declaration was made on Boxing Day, 1895, in the form of the manifesto published by the Chairman of the National Union, President Kruger, after an attentive consideration of the document as translated to him, remarked: 'Their rights. Yes, they'll get them—over my dead body!' Volumes of explanation could not better illustrate the Boer attitude and policy towards the English-speaking immigrants."

A Few Facts of History

President Burgess, the predecessor of Kruger is described in this work as leaving the Transvaal "brokenhearted by the cruelty and mean intrigue, the dissensions among and disloyalty of the people." He left a statement denouncing Kruger for his intrigues to secure the presidency for himself, and charges and proves Kruger to have been a leader in breaking promises and betraying where he had promised support. When the Transvaal was annexed after President Burgess' pathetic retirement before the rising tyrant, Kruger calmly took office under the British government, and resigned the dignity and emolument only when refused increased remuneration for which he repeatedly applied. The English authority during this time was undermined by rumors incessantly circulated among the sentimentalists of English statesmen, and having some foundation that the Transvaal would be given up. This was preparing the way for trouble, and the weakness displayed in England was met by what amounted to a conspiracy in the Transvaal. Kruger's point was an artful though crude demagogy of violence against taxation.

It was about taxes that the first English war was finally started, and the Majuba Hill incident was preliminary to a complacent accommodation, glossed in England as magnanimity and exalted expression of the overwhelming power of Great Britain, but perfectly understood in the Transvaal to mean that the British Empire was whipped and could be kicked about at the pleasure of the powerful President.

Outrages Perpetrated by Boers

It was during the war leading down to this inglorious surrender and false peace, that many murders were committed by Boer assassins, who used white flags and Red Crosses to lure victims. A few incidents of this treachery are thus specified:

"There was the murder of Green in Lydenburg, who was called to the Boer camp, where he went unarmed and in good faith, only to have his brains blown out by the Boer with whom he was conversing; there was the public flogging of another Englishman by the notorious Abel Erasmus because he was an Englishman and had British sympathies; and there were the various white flag incidents. At Ingogo the Boers raised the white flag, and when in response to this General Colley ordered the hoisting of a similar flag to indicate that it was seen, a perfect hail of lead was poured on the position where the General stood; and it was obvious that the hoisting of the flag was merely a ruse to ascertain where the General and his staff were. There was the ambulance affair on Majuba, when the Boers came upon an unarmed party bearing the wounded with the Red Cross flying over them, and after asking who they were and getting a reply, fired a volley into the group, killing Surgeon-Major Cornish."

These are facts of history, and the Boers have played the same savage game in all their wars with the English. The policy of Kruger has from the first been engineered to exclude immigrants, to repel all foreigners especially held in abhorrence by the Transvaal government, and constantly denied civil rights associated with civilization.

After a naturalized subject "shall have been qualified to sit in the Second Volksraad for ten years (one of the conditions for which is that he must be thirty years of age), he may obtain the full burgher rights or political privileges, provided the majority of burghers in his ward will signify in writing their desire that he should obtain them, and provided the President and Executive shall see no objection to granting the same! It is thus clear that, assuming the Field-cornet's records to be honestly and properly compiled, and to be available for reference (which they are not), the immigrant, after fourteen years' probation during which he shall have given up his own country and have been politically emasculated, and having attained the age of at least forty years, would have the privilege of obtaining burgher rights should he be willing, and able to induce the majority of a hostile clique to petition in writing on his behalf, and should he then escape the veto of the President and Executive.

The Copingstone to Mr. Kruger's Chinese Wall

This was the coping-stone to Mr. Kruger's Chinese wall. The Uitlanders and their children were disfranchised forever, and as far as legislation could make it sure, the country was preserved by entail to the families of the "Voortrekkers." The measure was only carried because of the strenuous support given by the President both within the Raad and at those private meetings which practically decide the important business of the country.

The great statesman Kruger, when asked just to "open the door a little" to outsiders, began an address in a village near Johannesburg by saying, "Burghers, friends, thieves, murderers, newcomers and others." The particular propriety of this was that for a long time Kruger could not be persuaded to visit Johannesburg. He hated the flourishing, stirring and steadily increasing city, and mistrusted the people, because he knew that his methods could not for a great while be submitted to by an enlightened community. He relaxed his vigilant attitude of hostility at last so far as to become the guest of the people of the city, and when he was civilly treated, and the fact that the Johannesburgers had been handsome in entertainment, he reviled them as "a set of lick-spittles."

The Wise Man's Treatment of the Natives

The style of the wise man's treatment of the natives appears in this:

The "April" case was one in which an unfortunate native named April, having worked for a number of years for a farmer on promise of certain payment in cattle, and having completed his term, applied for payment and a permit to travel through the district. On some trivial pretext this was refused him, his cattle were seized, and himself and his wives and children forcibly retained in the service of the Boer. He appealed in the nearest official, Field-cornet Prinsloo, who acted in a particularly barbarous and unjustifiable manner, so that the Chief Justice before whom the case was heard (when April, having enlisted the sympathy of some white people, was enabled to make an appeal), characterized Prinsloo's conduct as brutal in the extreme and a flagrant abuse of power perpetrated with the aim of establishing slavery. Judgment was given against Prinsloo with all costs. Within a few days of this decision being arrived at, the President, addressing a meeting of burghers, publicly announced that the Government had reimbursed Prinsloo, adding, "Notwithstanding the judgment of the High Court, we consider Prinsloo to have been right."

A Misleading Reputation

President Kruger has had provided for him a reputation that is astonishingly misleading. His part in public affairs has been one of vehement and vindictive self-assertion, participation in intrigue for office and for salaries—the constant intrusion of his personality in the rudest and most selfish ways into everything that concerns the state, disregarding the law, and with complete indifference to the rights of all persons except those who recognize him as their master. Abstaining himself from intoxicating drinks, he has long sustained a liquor ring in dispensing horrible drinks at scandalous profit. Given to self-praise for lofty purity in matters of state, he maintained a dynamite ring that cut off a large revenue, seemingly for no better reason than that his friends—his sycophant friends—were of it, and he has stooped to studied interference between employers and employed, that he might break up reasonable relations, believing himself in a position to profit by agitations; and in this insidious proceeding he has used secret service funds in the organization of hostilities for the embarrassment of employers, not because they had wronged the laboring man, but for the reason that they were not on their knees to him.

All this the world has accepted as manifestations of virtue, domestic kindliness and the religious sensibilities that are always in the public eye, that the multitude may gaze upon the goodness of the great and good man. The sincerity of his character as a professor of piety is not doubtful, but he carries into that, as into everything else, an ostentatious egotism, that among some nations and peoples is regarded as unbecoming a Christian statesman. It is fair to say of him that the one thing in which he seems to have profound convictions in addition to his self-esteem and hatred of English-speaking people, is in his devotion to the doctrines of the Old Testament. He does not seem to have made the acquaintance of the New Testament.

Racial Prejudices, Racial Hatreds

He has sought to keep apart the merchants and the miners, fearing their united power might interfere with his characteristic proceedings. He has lost no opportunity to promote belligerency among white laborers, and utterly and always ignores the rights as men of the natives. When intriguing with organized labor he has shown all the surface indications of partnership in carrying on, as the inside historian Fitzpatrick says, "an anticapitalist campaign with the Government press," and also "fostering the liquor industry with its thousands of reputable hangers on"; and more than all, he has without hesitation or variation flagrantly indulged racial prejudices and incited racial hatreds in South Africa, the most deplorable and dangerous possible use of power, and he has found constant consolation and been greatly sustained in his public pursuits by the hatred of the Whites against the Black and Brown people. But his favorite investment and educational enterprise is in arousing the animosities of the Boers against the British, that they may be at the same altitude with his own.

It is to the rough violence of President Kruger, his disregard of the laws, studied demoralization of his own courts, that he has repeatedly, recklessly overruled with sheer brute force—his heedless refusal to aid in the prosperous development of his own country, his gross and violent opposition to progress of all kinds—to the extension and protection of legitimate industries, and steadfast cares for those that are illegitimate, and sinister participation in corrupting schemes surrounded and inspired by the noisy congratulations of his habitual flatterers—all this afflicting him with the elephantiasis of conceit. It is to that and his effusion of arrogance to which we trace with certain steps the remote sources and the rampant rushing of the war, that is so destructive and wanton. There is no good in it, unless it involves the downfall of the Kruger tyranny, an example of individual caprice of a type of ruthless misgovernment, not surpassed in the self-indulgence of those who rule the barbarous tribes of Africa or sit on the gaudy thrones of Asia.

Illustrating Specifications

So much accusation must for full effect be illustrated by specifications. In 1897 the Burghers, the ruling class behind President Kruger, had heavy losses from the ravages of Rinderpest and there followed a great work of benevolence in the shape of purchases by the Government of a multitude of mules, to take the place of the oxen that had perished; and there was associated with this, provision made in "mealies," the corn of the country, to save the alleged starving. Under a form of favoritism by a Government that was the personal property of Mr. Kruger, anything could be done under the pretense of saving the rulers of the land said to be suffering by pestilence and famine. Government officials were greatly interested in the contracts for the salvation of the people. The historian Fitzpatrick says: "The notorious Mr. Barend Vorster, who had bribed Volksraad members with gold watches, money and spiders, in order to secure the Selati Railway concession, and who although denounced as a thief in the Volksraad itself, declined to take action to clear himself and was defended by the President, again played a prominent part. This gentleman and his partners contracted with the Government to supply donkeys at a certain figure apiece, the Government taking all risk of loss from the date of purchase. The donkeys were purchased in Ireland and South America at one-sixth of the contract price. The contractors alleged that they had not sufficient means of their own and received an advance equal to three-quarters of the total amount payable to them; that is to say, for every £100 which they had to expend they received £450 as an unsecured, advance against their profits."

Investigation of this scandal was hushed up, but the money payable under the contracts was all exacted and all lost. There is nothing to show that the people got any good of it. The shippers of mules persuaded the majestical President that the health of those animals demanded the ventilation of the upper decks, and that the vessels might not be topheavy there must be double cargoes, mules for the bereaved Boers on top, and food for the famine-stricken, none of whom were in actual want, carried in the hold as ballast. Here was a double stroke of the ingenuity of contractors, and the profit was swollen accordingly.

Free and Independent Krugerism

The benevolent President was a fierce defender of the money makers by this transaction. There are a few figures that indicate the scientific political economy by which the formidable President wins the affections of the populace and guards his free state from harm. His particular friends are in office, of course, and they have fixed salaries to a great extent. It shows the progress made by the Government, that the amount of those salaries was twenty-four times as great in 1899 as in 1886, having risen from £51,831, 3s. 7d., to £1,121,394, 5s. This is the revenue that goes to the promotion and perpetuation of free and independent Krugerism.

MEMBERS OF THE FIRST VOLKSRAAD, S.A.R. J. W. VanDerryst (Bode), S. P Dutoit, A. K. Loveday, J. H. Labuschagne, J. G. G. Bassle (Stenographer), A. J. Havinga (Ass. Bode). B. J. Vorster, J. P. Goetser, L. Botha, J. DeGleroq, J. L. VanWiok, A. Bieperink. D. I. Louw, I. K. DeBeer, P. I. Schutte. W. J. Fogkens, Sec., A. D. Wolmarans, F. G. H. Wolmarans, H. M. S. Prinsloo, J. P. Meyer, J. DuP. DeBeer, J. H. De LaReis.
J. W. VanDerryst (Bode), S. P Dutoit, A. K. Loveday, J. H. Labuschagne, J. G. G. Bassle (Stenographer), A. J. Havinga (Ass. Bode).
B. J. Vorster, J. P. Goetser, L. Botha, J. DeGleroq, J. L. VanWiok, A. Bieperink. D. I. Louw, I. K. DeBeer, P. I. Schutte.
W. J. Fogkens, Sec., A. D. Wolmarans, F. G. H. Wolmarans, H. M. S. Prinsloo, J. P. Meyer, J. DuP. DeBeer, J. H. De LaReis.

PRESIDENT KRUGER AND HIS CHIEF ADVISERS IN THE WAR. A. Wolmarans, F. W. Reitz (State Secretary), S. M. Berger, J. M. H. Kock, Com. Gen'l P. J. Joubert, President S. J. P. Kruger, P. J. Cronje (Supt. of Natives).
A. Wolmarans, F. W. Reitz (State Secretary), S. M. Berger, J. M. H. Kock,
Com. Gen'l P. J. Joubert, President S. J. P. Kruger, P. J. Cronje (Supt. of Natives).

President Kruger's Nepotism

The law forbids the sale of liquor to the natives, and yet they are to an astonishing degree habitually drunk on the Rand, and the cost of labor in the great mines is largely increased by the disabilities of men a great part of the time under the influence of liquor, and the men themselves perish at a shocking rate. We quote again the historian Fitzpatrick: "The fault rests with a corrupt and incompetent administration. That administration is in the hands of the President's relations and personal following. The remedy urged by the State Secretary, State Attorney, some members of the Executive, the general public, and the united petition of all the ministers of religion in the country, is to entrust the administration to the State Attorney's department and to maintain the existing law. In the face of this, President Kruger has fought hard to have the total prohibition law abolished and has successfully maintained his nepotism—to apply no worse construction. In replying to a deputation of liquor dealers he denounced the existing law as an 'immoral' one, because by restricting the sale of liquor it deprived a number of honest people of their livelihood—and President Kruger is an abstainer!

"The effect of this liquor trade is indescribable; the loss in money, although enormous, is a minor consideration compared with the crimes committed and the accidents in the mines traceable to it; and the effect upon the native character is simply appalling."

This is a shocking indictment, and the history in it has been hidden under a boisterous sentimentalism, to the effect that the eccentricities of monstrous vulgarity should be accepted as the graces of supernaturalism of true natural greatness.




The Boers and British Gold and Diamonds.

Solomon's Ophir

Solomon obtained his supplies of gold, it is believed, from the Transvaal. There is something more in this than imagination and conjecture. There are two excellent harbors on the South African coast that confronts the Indian Ocean, and in Solomon's great days he was a "sea power" there and his ships were on the Mediterranean and the Red Sea, so that his connection with African gold mining is not at all improbable. The Transvaal mines are neither remote nor inaccessible from the best ports on the coast of Eastern Africa. Solomon obtained the "gold of Ophir," and it was by making "a navy of ships in Ezion-Geber, which is beside Eloth, on the shore of the Red Sea, in the land of Edom. And Hiram sent in the navy his servants, shipmen that had knowledge of the sea, with the servants of Solomon. And they came to Ophir and fetched from thence gold * * * and brought it to King Solomon." The visit of the Queen of Sheba to Solomon in his glory is testimony of the familiar splendor of his fame in Africa.

How the Gold was discovered

The Leydenburg gold fields were first made definite and certain in the public eye by the writings of a German explorer, Herr Carl Mauch, which attracted adventurers from California, New Zealand and Australia. In February, 1875, the official reports in Pretoria stated that notice was given to the Landrost of Leydenburg of the discovery of alluvial gold between thirty and forty miles eastward of that town, which is situated 5,825 feet above the sea. In 1873 the Postmaster-General at Pretoria received a letter from the Landdrost of Leydenburg and with it two ounces and a half of gold. This had been found on a farm thirty miles from Leydenburg. Other gold discoveries were soon made and among them nuggets in the walls of mud houses. A letter was published in the "Transvaal Advocate" giving interesting incidents of gold finding. We quote as follows:

Reports About Early Gold Finds

"In the bed of a spruit running through the farm (Hendricksdale) alluvial gold was found in sufficient quantity to justify the opinion that it was present in paying quantities, and this opinion was confirmed from day to day by the following facts:

"1st. Messrs. McLachlan, Palmer and Valentine, with two Kaffirs, and without proper appliances, found in fourteen days the first sample of two ounces, among which is a nugget the size of a half sovereign, somewhat longer, but more flattened.

2nd. Mr. Valentine with two Kaffirs found and sent to the cashier of the Standard Bank of Natal a second sample of above two ounces, in which was a nugget as large as a middle sized bean.

"One of the farms distinguished by gold, that of Erasmus and Mullers, was at this time hired for thirty years at £200 per annum.

"Among these hills are caves, in one of which one might travel underground for hours, and here, in olden times, the natives sheltered themselves and cattle in many an inter-tribal war. Skulls and bones of men and cattle are found, and tradition, whether justly or not, brands the occupiers as cannibals. Near some of the southern sources of the Um Saabi, or Sabea, is the Spitz Kop, 100 feet high, under which the first gold in the district was found, and the gold district was in early times supposed to be about fifty miles long by eight broad, and six or eight farms were known to have gold upon them. The gold was found about three feet below the surface, the upper layer being red clay; then large gravel quartz in fragments, limestone and a cindery fused substance, like slag from a smelting furnace, but softer; below this is a soft black soil, which when put in the box reminds one of a mixture of tar and oil, and with this a soft white clay is found. The quartz when pounded proved also to have gold in it, and so did the cylinder layer, and the stones of which the cattle kraal was built contained gold. The best finds were usually under or between the large boulders.

The Most Interesting Specimen

"The latest testimony I can give is that I saw thirty-one ounces of gold a day or two ago brought from McMc and Pilgrim's Rest, and that one of my friends not long ago sent 145 ounces home. But to me the most interesting specimen was a half ounce obtained from the country to the southeast of Matabeleland, probably about half way between Hartley Hill and the ruins of Mazimboeye Zimboae—or Zimbabye—of Herr Mauch, in which direction I have reason to believe that alluvial fields as rich as and more extensive than those of Leydenburg await the coming of the explorer who shall unite to skill in prospecting patience, perseverance and tact in dealing with the various native tribes, whose friendship must be cultivated and assistance gained before the richest of all the districts of Southeastern Africa shall be ready to surrender its treasures to the enterprise and industry of Europe."

United States Consul Macrum writes from Pretoria to the State Department in regard to the gold production in South Africa in 1897 and 1898:

"The Rand has at last reached and surpassed the marvelous output of 400,000 ounces of gold as the production for a single month of twenty-eight working days. Every twenty-four hours, then, witness the recovery of 14,250 ounces of gold, worth rather over £50,000 ($243,325). The Rand total comprises only the output of mines along a stretch of some thirty miles of country. With this statement for the month of October, the gold winnings of the whole Republic for the ten months of 1898 amount to 3,700,908 ounces. At this rate the total for the whole of 1898 would be over four and a half millions.

Gold Production of South Africa in 1897 and 1898

The value of the October 423,000 ounces is £1,500,000 ($7,299,750), which may be compared with £11,653,725 ($56,162,743), the value for all in 1897, and £12,208,411 ($59,412,232), the value of the gold production of the United States in the same year. Although the combined mines of Colorado, California, Dakota, Montana, Nevada, and Alaska put out more gold last year than did the South African Republic, it is not likely that the Transvaal will take second place this year. Deep levels continue on the upgrade, as their production in October was 106,426 ounces—the first time that the hundred thousand has been exceeded. The average price of the September production was £3 16s. ($18.42) per ounce."

The yearly aggregate for eleven years was:

                     Ounces.                      Ounces.

  1888 ..........    208,122   1894 ..........  2,024,162
  1889 ..........    369,577   1895 ..........  2,277,685
  1890 ..........    494,819   1896 ..........  2,279,827
  1891 ..........    729,238   1897 ..........  3,034,678
  1892 ..........  1,210,869   1898 ..........  3,700,908
  1893 ..........  1,478,477

The price of gold is a few cents less than $18.50 per ounce. The figures $18.42 often occur. Consul Macrum sent from Pretoria December 31, 1898, a report of the gold production of the South African Republic—the Transvaal—saying:

"It must be remembered that this has been a remarkably dull year, so far as ordinary business is concerned, and the mining companies, it is freely said, are not working up to their full capacity; but, nevertheless, the production and profit have been greater this year than ever before. When the differences that are said to exist between the Government and capital have been removed or adjusted, the Transvaal, it is predicted, will see a most wonderful boom."

But it must be taken into account that the Boer has a soul above booms.

A Clear and Impartial Statement

Mr. O. P. Austin, Chief of the Bureau of Statistics of the Treasury Department of the United States, gives an admirable, impartial and clear statement of the matters of A clear and first importance in the Transvaal. A few official, Impartial indisputable figures and simple facts put the Statement question of the right and wrong of the bloody war in South Africa in the right way and yield the correct answer unmistakably. He says:

"The laws of the State are enacted by a Parliament of two chambers, the first or higher chamber enacting a large share of the laws independent of the lower house, which only originates measures relating to certain subjects of administration, and which cannot become laws without the approval of the upper house. Members of the first chamber are elected from and by the first-class burghers, who comprise only the male whites resident in the Republic before May, 1876, or who took an active part in the war of independence in 1881 or subsequent wars, and the children of such persons over the age of sixteen. This condition would deprive persons natives of other countries of becoming "first-class burghers," and thus obtaining the privilege of participating in the election of the President or the house which enacts the most important of the laws and has a veto power upon all measures originating in the lower house. The second-class burghers may become members of and participate in the election of the second chamber, the second-class comprising the naturalized male alien population and their children over the age of sixteen. Naturalization may, according to the Statesman's Year Book, 1899, "be obtained after two years' residence and registration on the books of the field cornet, oath of allegiance and payment of £2, and naturalized burghers may by special resolution of the first or higher chamber become first-class burghers twelve years after naturalization."

Boss and Caste Government

This is the rarest combination known of Boss and Caste Government. It is an unrestrained despotism designed to perpetuate itself by favor and force, regardless of everybody not of the ruling race and condition, and the Englishman who would give up his rights in the Transvaal as a British subject for the privilege of ultimate participation in the government, even of his own town, if that town contained ten Englishmen to the people of all other nationalities, would have to be "a man without a country" for seven years. It was at this point that Mr. President Kruger stood fast, peremptorily refusing the reduction of the period of probation even two years—leaving it five, and yet the probability is a very large number of the naturalized citizens of the United States who would regard such a restriction in this country as a bitter and remorseless discrimination against the foreign born, are sympathizing with the unrelenting attitude of the Boers upon this subject. Apply to this condition of things in the Transvaal the facts and figures following:

Facts and Figures

The area of the Republic is 119,139 square miles; the white population, according to the State Almanack for 1898, is 345,397, and the native population, 748,759. The seat of government is Pretoria, with a white population of 10,000. The largest town is Johannesburg, the mining center of Witwatersrand gold fields, having a population within a radius of three miles, according to the census of 1896, of 102,078 persons, of which number 50,907 were whites, 952 Malays, 4,807 Coolies and Chinese, 42,533 Kaffirs, and 2,879 of mixed race. One-third of the population of the Republic is estimated to be engaged in agriculture, the lands of the Republic generally, outside the mining districts, being extremely productive, and the demand for farm products in the mining regions very great, even in excess of the local products at the present time."

It does not in the least soothe the Boers that they have a good market for their farm products, for which they are indebted almost exclusively to English enterprise in great feats of engineering, in the application of the most modern methods of mining, and to immense investments, in the cheapening of transportation, and extending the capacities and facilities of the poor as well as the rich, for swift and easy communication with neighbors.

Boer Prejudice and Intolerance

The chief care, concern and anxiety of the Boer is that a government of the people must not by any chance be established in Transvaal. It is the elementary principle of the Boer disposition and government, that there are no real "people" except Boers, who place the Hottentot, the Englishman, the Zulu and the Kaffir, the American, the German and the Frenchman on the same level. He will have none of them except in the capacity of subordinates, and when it suits his humor, servants of the established class that dominates. The native population is double that of the number of whites, but that does not concern the Boer. His Republicanism takes no account of people with darker skins than his own. In the most important part of the Transvaal, the Boers themselves are in a pronounced minority, if we take into account only the white folks. The Boer capital, Pretoria, has a white population of 10,000; the white population of Johannesburg is 50,907; and the great political task and vindictive occupation of the Boers of Pretoria, the political capital of the alleged free country, is that the select few of the 10,000 whites in that town shall rule it and Johannesburg also at their pleasure, and according to the obstinate caprices of their will. There were 50,000 whites in Johannesburg, and the argument the Boer advocates have advanced in America is that the whites of that city, five times as numerous as those of Pretoria, must not be allowed even the shadow of the right of suffrage, because they would outvote the chosen people who have taken the course of government upon themselves in the political capital. It is this insistence upon an atrocious inequality that is the elementary cause of the war. Such an oppression becomes an intolerable condition, and there is no cure for it but the sword. Of course, it has been a characteristic of this situation that it is associated with a systematic tyranny at once insulting and extortionate. The "Dog in the Manger" The Boer policy is moderately described as that of the "dog in the manger." The 50,000 white people of Johannesburg, are disfranchised, first, because they under the rule of the majority would be at least their own rulers and exercising an important influence in the government of Johannesburg, would impair the authority and destroy the prestige of the oligarchy at Pretoria. We do not urge the fact that this majority at Johannesburg are also the creators and possessors of the greater wealth of the Transvaal. Property has the right of recognition as the result of investment and industry, but it is not necessary that to protect itself it must have political advantages out of proportion to the number of the electors who are the property holders. So the argument for the enfranchisement in a reasonable time of the Uitlanders of Johannesburg rests primarily and safely upon the proposition that they could cast a majority vote, and we do not need to call in the merits of the property qualification or the question whether the natives have by possibility any rational right to consideration because about sixty years ago they were crowded out of their hunting grounds by the Boers, seeking a country where they could own labor and assert mastery over all others, instead of being second in importance as a people to the English of lands further South.

The Commerce of the Transvaal

The Johannesburghers are not merely disfranchised; they are, by a vengeful and grasping minority, excluded from the right to protect themselves in persons and property. It is a great fault in them that they did not arm themselves and march to Pretoria to receive and reinforce the Jameson raiders as deliverers. They are justly punished for this sin of omission. The statistician of the United States Treasury Department says: The gold mines are now the most productive in the world, and have already turned out gold to the value of more than $300,000,000, and, according to the estimate of experts, have still $3,500,000,000 'in sight.' The commerce of the South African Republic, while naturally great because of the large number of people employed by the mining industries, cannot be as accurately stated as that of states or divisions whose imports are all received through a given port or ports. Foreign goods for the South African Republic reach it through several ports—Cape Colony, Natal, Lourenco Marquez, and in smaller quantities from other ports on the coast. The total imports of 1897 are estimated at £21,515,000, of which £17,012,000 were from Great Britain, £2,747,000 from the United States, £1,054,226 from Germany, and the remainder from Belgium, Holland and France."

All this does not help the Boer as a politician. He is devoted to the rule of the minority and the exercise of his will in commanding others, native and foreign, black and white, and trampling them into the place he has assigned them. This he calls liberty, and for that sort of liberty he has a portentous passion that he is absolutely sure is sanctified.

Mr. Howard C. Hillegas, in his book "Oom Paul's People," D. Appleton & Co., holds the Boers to be a nation, and his pages are full of highly colored partiality for their cause. The diamond mines, he says, "have yielded more than four hundred million dollars worth of diamonds since the Free State conceded them to England for less than half a million dollars."

He does not condescend to consider the proposition that if the cession had not been made, the find of diamonds would not have occurred, or if it had, and the Boers undertaken to work the mines, their success would have been small in comparison with the remarkable results produced by the Uitlanders.

Mr. Hillegas in his story of the gold mines sheds light upon the character of the people of the Orange State as well as the Transvaal. He says:

"In 1854, a Dutchman named John Marais, who had a short time before returned from the Australian gold fields, prospected in the Transvaal, and found many evidences of gold. The Boers fearing, that their land would be overrun with gold seekers, paid £500 to Marais and sent him home after extracting a promise that he would not reveal his secret to any one.

"It was not until 1884 that England heard of the presence of gold in South Africa. A man named Fred Stuben, who had spent several years in the country, spread such marvellous reports of the underground wealth of the Transvaal, that only a short time elapsed before hundreds of prospectors and miners left England for South Africa. When the first prospectors discovered auriferous veins of wonderful quality on a farm called Sterkfontein, the gold boom had its birth. It required the lapse of only a short time for the news to reach Europe, America and Australia, and immediately thereafter that vast and widely scattered army of men and women which constantly awaits the announcement of new discoveries of gold was set in motion toward the Randt.

The First Stamp Mill

"The Indian, Russian, American and Australian gold fields were deserted, and the steamships and sailing vessels to South Africa were overladen with men and women of all degrees and nationalities. The journey to the Randt was expensive, dangerous and comfortless, but before a year had passed almost 20,000 persons had crossed the deserts and the plains and had settled on claims purchased from the Boers. In December, 1885, the first stamp mill was erected for the purpose of crushing the gneiss rock in which the gold lay hidden. This enterprise marks the real beginning of the gold fields of the Randt, which now yield one-third of the world's total product of the precious metal. The advent of thousands of foreigners was a boon to the Boers, who owned the large farms on which the auriferous veins were located. Options on farms that were of little value a short time before were sold at incredible figures, and the prices paid for small claims would have purchased farms of thousands of acres two years before. * * *

"Owing to the Boer's lack of training and consequent inability to share in the development of the gold fields, the new industry remained almost entirely in the hands of the newcomers, the Uitlanders, and two totally different communities were created in the Republic. The Uitlanders, who, in 1890, numbered about 100,000, lived almost exclusively in Johannesburg, and the suburbs along the Randt. The Boers, having disposed of their farms and lands on the Randt, were obliged to occupy the other parts of the Republic, where they could follow their pastoral and other pursuits."

Elsa Goodwin Green, a lady who volunteered as a nurse and served in the hospital at Pretoria, where forty of Jameson's wounded raiders were cared for, writes of "Raiders and Rebels in South Africa," and says of the gold question:

"In the year 1885 gold was found in the reefs underlying the Witwatersrand (Whitewater's strand). Miners, prospectors and capitalists soon gathered together—drawn by the magnet gold—and a fine town, Johannesburg, sprang rapidly into existence. The progress of this town with its rich reefs—gold-bearing—excited a large amount of curiosity, felt by the world in general.

"With the rapid development of the mining industry and the influx of strangers, a certain amount of friction sprang up between the two races—viz., the Boers and the ever-increasing Uitlander population. A repressive legislation was persevered in, to prevent the still growing majority of newcomers from predominating or participating in affairs of the Republican States.

"This rush of men with capital to the Randt meant undreamt of prosperity to the Boers, who found a ready market for horses, cattle and farm produce. Railways and telegraphic communication further developed the land.

"Though the foreigner and his money were welcome to the Boer, yet he was persistently denied a voice in the government of the community—a vote even in matters most concerning himself—indeed all rights as a citizen. Heavy duties were imposed on the articles most necessary to the development of the mining industry. Monopolies were often unjustly obtained by those having interest with the Government. Concessions were granted only after large consideration to a Government not wholly free from a taint of bribery."

South Africa is not only a land of gold. It is even more famous for its diamonds; and the richest mines in the whole world for these precious stones are located in that country. Some of the most fabulous stories have been told by travelers of their experiences in the early mining days of South Africa, and such books as "King Solomon's Mines," and others have served to awaken a lively interest and induce adventurous spirits to go to that land.

Diamonds for Toys

The use the Boers had for diamonds when they took their wagons and oxen and moved north from Cape Colony 700 miles, to find a country where they could subjugate the natives and live in a Paradise of Great Game, was to amuse their children with the pretty stones,—certain glittering pebbles that sparkled as the young Boers, without the least comprehension of the prodigality of Nature, rolled on the grass and sand. If it had not been for the revelations of the riches of Africa by travelers from foreign lands, the Boer boys would still have had a monopoly of diamonds for toys, and but a dim consciousness of their bucolic magnificence. Boers are very queer people. Their idea of a next-door neighbor is that he must keep his hut and wagon at least three miles away. A closer approach makes a crowd; the air and the soil become impure, and the Boer is stifled in the midst of his own splendors. He is the most conservative citizen in the world. He estimates his own inherent, individual imperialism so extravagantly, that the rights of men without big wagons with tents on them, and long strings of oxen with long horns, fade into speculative insignificance. The Boers did not believe in diamonds—for they are not decorators of their persons—until they found others making money by mining them, and even then they only took a feeble interest in the work and were willing to rent a few square miles of each of their farms to those who were, with labor and capital, seeking the beautiful crystals. The Boer talent, according to the testimony of their lives, was in the multiplication of cattle, the shooting of wild beasts good to eat, occasional encounters with lions, and hunting parties that pursued the hippopotamus in the marshy lakes. As a matter of military science, they were educated in making forts out of their big wagons to repel the black warriors opposed to invasion by the drivers of horned cattle and dwellers in houses on wheels.

President Kruger

President Kruger is a power, because he is representative of his people. He is a great chief for the reason that a big savage becomes a leader and the headman of a tribe on account of his superior strength. In his youth he was the swiftest and longest winded runner and the champion rifleman in his part of the country, and it is the favorite tradition of his admirers that once when a youth he was pursued by a lion, and the brute incontinently ran away when the man of destiny turned upon him and looked him in the eye. His attitude towards gold is a distinction in which those who celebrate his virtues take special pride. It is well known that his capital city, Pretoria, is built on a gold mine, and a few years ago there was a revolutionary proposition made in Mr. Kruger's alleged parliament—even that of opening the neighboring land to prospectors seeking gold! The powerful President crushed out the insidious proposal.

"The Transvaal and the Boers," an interesting volume by William Garrett Fisher, says of the pre-eminence of Mr. Kruger in the official decision settling this matter that the great and good man said, with the wisdom inherited from generations of ancestors who had studied the encyclopedias of Nature:

"Stop and think what you are doing before you open fresh gold fields. Look at Johannesburg, what a nuisance and expense it has been to us! We have enough gold and gold seekers in this country already; for all you know there may be a second Rand at your very feet."

These momentous words in the aid of higher destinies were addressed to the Volksraad, and there was no more countenancing the idea of digging for gold.

Gold Found in 1854

In 1854 there was a find of the obnoxious yellow metal in the Boer country, but it was hushed up on the great principle announced with such simple sublimity by the grand old President when the horrors of prosperity broke in upon the contentment of his people and caused the "nuisance" at Johannesburg, where fifty thousand white men rushed in and gave the Boers more trouble to make them "servants of servants" according to the curse of Cain than millions of blacks had done, whose lives were ordered upon even more primitive and economical lines than presented by the secondary rulers of the golden lands.

However, it cannot be denied that from the standpoint of the Boers, the British are not to be tolerated when they assume that they have "certain inalienable rights," for they make themselves an abomination, obstreperous in the preliminaries of their educational reduction to the condition of the serfs of semi-barbarians. The objection undoubtedly is good against the British that they are fond of lands where gold is found, and they obstinately support the yellow metal as the standard of value, notwithstanding that they are by their ubiquitous commerce and enduring egotism forcing the yellow metal as the true standard upon the great nations of the earth.

Diamonds do not play the great part in the forces that form governments and shape the destinies of peoples in South Africa or elsewhere, that gold does. While the precious stone is useful in the arts, excellent as a tool, and adorns beauty with the beautiful in the highest degree, it does not find its way diffusively into the service of the people generally. Diamonds are not a popular production They are for a class and not for the mass. The four hundred million dollars worth of glittering stones picked up and dug up in South Africa within a few years, have not affected the measure of value. The finding of gold in such quantities as to over-pass largely and permanently the consumption of it, affects the money standard by which is valued all that the fields and shops produce; that is, all that comes of perseverance in toil that is productive.

Diamonds of not so great importance is Gold

Mines of diamonds attract labor for immediate returns—only as they can be sold for gold or silver, which have functions that make up power in purchasing food and raiment and in construction, the carrying out of enterprise that causes the activities both of capital and labor, putting the two in harmonious relations. Diamonds in Africa have aided commerce, increased exportation and importation, indirectly helping the people at large, but they have not competed with gold in the political potentialities. They are found, when their stories are written, to be rather romantic than historical. Their is a fascination in the relation of the finding of South African diamond mines equal to the charms of fiction. One would have thought the old Dutch settlers should have had special qualifications for seeking and securing and appreciating diamonds as one of the gifts that are gracious, for the African stones have to find the world at large by way of Belgium and Holland, and are not ready to be known to fame until they have been cut in Amsterdam.

Boyle's Statement

In Boyle's delightful history "To the Cape for Diamonds," he says of the diamond fields:

"Old Dutch residents of Cape Town appear to have been quite astir upon the matter on several occasions; but as years passed on, the ancient rumor died away. Men had to search back for memories long buried when Governor Woodhouse set the Colony agog by exhibiting the "Hopetown" diamond in 1867. That Bushmen, Corannas and other tribes of low condition used the gem mechanically from immemorial time seems to be quite ascertained. They still remember how their fathers made periodical visits to the rivers of West Griqualand, seeking diamonds to bore their "weighting stones." The rediscovery, however, took place in 1867. At that date a shrewd trader named Niekirk, passing through a country forty miles or so west of Hopetown, saw the children of a Boer called Jacobs playing with pebbles, picked up along the banks of the neighboring Orange. Struck with the appearance of one among their playthings, Niekirk told Vrouw Jacobs that it reminded him of the white shining stones mentioned in the Bible. As he uttered the words, an ostrich-hunter named O'Reilly chanced to pass the doorway of the house. He overheard, entered, and was also impressed. Vague ideas of a diamond—which none of the three had ever seen—passed through their minds. They tried the pebble upon glass, scratching the sash all over, as I have seen it at this day. A bargain was struck. O'Reilly took the stone for sale, and each of the parties present was to share. At Capetown, upon the verdict of Dr. Atherstone, Sir P. E. Woodhouse gave £500 for it. The news spread fast. At the moment of this discovery, there was something exceeding a panic in the colony, Wool, its staple product was at a hopelessly low quotation. A murrain was thinning the sheep. Never had merchants known such a time of anxiety, and no hope was visible. The story of the trader, corroborated by actual inspection of his treasure thus excited more active stir than it would have made at any other time. People began to study every foot of the ground. Then other stones turned up, the most of them bought from natives, in whose hands they had lain for many years, perhaps centuries. In 1868 several were picked up along the banks of the Vaal about Pniel, and then the rush began. But as yet it was mere surface seeking.

"Star of South Africa"

Early next year a Hottentot shepherd named Swartzboy, brought to Mr. Gers' store, at the Hook, a gem of eighty-three and a half carats, the "Star of South Africa," wide famed. In Mr. Gers' absence, his shopman did not like to risk the £200 worth of goods demanded. Swartzboy passed on to the farm of that same Niekirk above mentioned. Here he demanded £400 which Niekirk ultimately paid, receiving £12,000 from Messrs. Lilienfeld the same day. The diamond was passed to Cape Town, and all the colony rose. But not for twelve months more did "digging" begin. On January 7, 1870, Captain Rolleston and his party washed out their first diamond at Pniel, on the lands claimed by the Berlin Mission. Within three months, there were five thousand people digging there.

The Earliest Discoveries

South African diamond fields henceforth were established; but of such "pockets" as Dutoitspan and New Rush none yet had any inkling. The fields were established as a fact in the colony, but none yet at home. Mr. Harry Emmanuel sent out a professed expert, Mr. Gregory, to report upon them, and his foolish haste in discrediting their wealth caused serious loss to English merchants. The diggers only laughed, and showed each other their glittering prizes. Mr. Coster, of Amsterdam, came out, and he also went back incredulous. But the diggings grew and grew. The necessity of some system of government amongst the crowd became apparent. The Orange Free State claimed jurisdiction over the larger space, and the Transvaal Republic exercised rights over the remainder. Practically there was no government at all.

The earliest report, in writing of discovery, is a letter addressed by Mr. Parker to Mr. Webb. However it be, Mr. Parker was not long in acquiring very great influences. All the camp yielded authority to him, and passed the title of President which he affected. He met the chief of the South African Republic upon such easy terms of equality that the latter hastily fled to realms where his supremacy was uncontested.

The First Dry Diggings

In December, 1870, the dry diggings first were heard of. Hitherto the search for diamonds had been only carried on by river banks, and the gems discovered there had been washed down in ancient floods from some kopje, or dry mine now perhaps worn away. In two years of such digging in a score of places, the yield had not been greater than 300,000 pounds, as Mr. Webb computed. This is indeed an astonishing figure, all circumstances considered, but the time draws near when the same amount will be returned as the monthly average in Custom House reports at Cape Town. In December then, it was whispered that the children of Dutoit, a Boer living at Dorsfontein—so well known by the name of Dutoitspan—were in the habit of picking up diamonds on their father's farm. To those who believed the rumor, it was evident that diamond digging was henceforth to enter on a novel phase. The gem would be sought in the bed where nature created it. But few believed—not till the end of January did the crowd put faith. About that time the farm was "rushed," an expressive word, though sinister to the ears of a landed proprietor nowadays. It signifies that diggers swarmed to the spot in such throngs as to render merely foolish any resistance a proprietor might meditate. But the simple Boer who owned Dutoitspan never dreamed of such a thing. He only sat in, staring, amazed at the endless train of carts and wagons and foot travelers that filed past him.

Conditions Under Which Diamonds are Found

Diamonds in South Africa are found in a limy, chalky grit, bound together in smaller or larger lumps, from the measure of a foot ball to that of a pea. The grit is very dry and of considerable hardness, so that a heap of it looks like shingle on the sorting board. I do not understand that the diamond is found under those conditions anywhere else. It is discovered in a limy stratum at the Brazils, I find, but rarely, and always waterworn. The river beds are the treasure houses there. In India, for the most part, it seems to have been the same case; though at one large field, five days' journey from Golconda, the diamonds were hooked out from crevices of the rock. "In the neighborhood of the mines," says Tavernier, "the earth is sandy, covered with rocks and thickets; something like the environs of Fontainebleau. In these rocks there are many veins, sometimes half a finger wide, and sometimes double of this. The miners have short iron instruments, hooked at the end, which they thrust into the veins, and so drag out the sand or earth collected there. This earth they load into convenient vessels, and therein are the diamonds found. No one reading this description can doubt that the jewels were lodged in the crevices by water power."

The Vaal and the Orange Rivers, the Mod and the Riet, all contain diamonds, waterworn for the most part. Hundreds or thousands of years have these lain grinding mid the pebbles, brought, I should take it, from some diamond kopjes, washed away and vanished which stood beside the stream. There is not the mark of water on a single stone at the dry diggings.

The foremost quality of the Cape diamond which attracts attention is its freedom from the coat or skin which wraps the stone [Transcriber's note: the chapter ends abruptly here.]


The Cause of War.

The English Blue Books treat the controversy that resulted in the war officially, impartially and exhaustively. The full dispatches are given, and all that the Boers had to say is fairly presented with unquestionable authenticity. What President Kruger stated in his conferences with Sir Alfred Milner, the British High Commissioner in South Africa, is given in his own language, as faithfully put down as the dispatches of Mr. Chamberlain or those of the High Commissioner Milner. The British Blue Book is made a perfect History for both sides and bears the closest scrutiny of a hostile opposition in parliament as accurate.

Conference With President Kruger

June 14, 1899, High Commissioner Sir Alfred Milner wrote from "Government House, Cape Town" to Colonial Secretary Chamberlain a report of his conferences with President Kruger at Bloemfontein. On the way to meet the President of the South African Republic, the British High Commissioner was the guest of President Steyn, of the Orange Free State. The conference with President Kruger was interpreted and reported with the greatest care. It is not given verbatim in all instances, because there was a great deal of repetition, but there is nothing important omitted, and the actual words of both gentlemen were officially reported and printed. The importance of these conferences was perfectly understood, and the official record has not been and will not be questioned. It was upon these conferences that the issue of peace and war hinged. The Cause of Many Points of Difference The President stated at the first meeting that he preferred the British High Commissioner should speak first, and the Commissioner, writing Mr. Chamberlain, said that in his personal opinion, "The cause of many points of difference, and the most serious, was the policy pursued by the South African Republic towards the Uitlanders, among whom many thousands are British subjects. The bitter feelings thus engendered in the Republic, the tension in South Africa, and the sympathy throughout the Empire with the Uitlanders, led to an irritated state of opinion on both sides which rendered it more difficult for the two Governments to settle differences amicably. It was my strong conviction that if the South African Republic would, before things get worse, voluntarily change its policy towards the Uitlanders, and take steps calculated to satisfy the reasonable section of them, who after all are the great majority, not only would the independence of the Republic be strengthened, but there would be such a better state of feeling all round that it would become far easier to settle outstanding questions between the two Governments.

The President's Objection to the Franchise

"The President, in coming to the Conference, had made a reservation as to the independence of the Republic. I could not see that it was in any way impairing that independence for Her Majesty's Government to support the cause of the Uitlanders so far as it was reasonable. A vast number were British subjects, and in similar circumstances we should in any part of the world, even in a country not under conventional obligations to Her Majesty's Government, be bound to make representations, and to point out that the intense discontent of our fellow-subjects stood in the way of the friendly relations which we desired to exist between the two Governments."

By Gradual Co-operation all Would be Burghers

The President objected to granting the franchise which he was assured by His Excellency, the Commissioner, was the main point, because he said if it was done "to any large number of aliens," the result would be "immediately the outvoting of the old burghers." The High Commissioner went so far as to say that it "would not be reasonable to do that," and he endeavored to explain the matter to the President, saying: "At present the Uitlanders had no effective voice whatever in the legislation, the existing form of oaths was offensive and unnecessary, and by taking it a British subject at once lost his nationality, and yet had to wait twelve years, or, under the President's latest proposals, seven years, before he could become a full citizen of the Republic. It was perfectly possible to leave the old burghers in such a position that they could not be swamped, and yet to give the numerous foreign population—to whom, after all, the Republic owed its present position—some share in the work of government, so that they could give the Government the benefit of their knowledge and experience. In this way the time would come when, by their gradual co-operation, instead of being divided into separate communities, they would all be burghers of one State."

The President indicated "a strong dislike of every proposition of the kind," and proceeded to assail a petition that had been sent from Johannesburg to the British Government praying for a redress of grievances, and alleged to have been signed by 25,000 people. This petition was like a red rag to the Boer bull all through the conferences. The British High Commissioner, when the President had expressed his feeling about the petition, informed him that that document did not change anything. The character of the petition was not especially to be considered, but he (His Excellency the Commissioner) based his statements "on a careful study of the conditions."

Qualifications for Citizenship

At the second meeting the President talked about the strengthening of the British garrison at the Cape, and referred to other military preparations of the English, of which mention had been made in the newspapers. The Commissioner denied the accuracy of the press in that particular; and then the President returned to the petition from Johannesburg to Her Majesty the Queen, and said the English proposition to "enlarge the franchise of the strangers" would do away with the independence of the Republic, and he added, "would be worse than annexation." His Excellency, the Commissioner, remarks that the President was "reluctant to come to close quarters" on the franchise proposition, but at last asked for a proposal of that which would be satisfactory to the Uitlanders and the English Commissioners, who said: "I proposed that the full franchise should be given to every foreigner who—

(a) "Had been resident for five years in the Republic.

(b) "Declared his intention to reside permanently.

(c) "Took an oath to obey the laws, undertake all obligations of citizenship, and defend the independence of the country.

"The franchise to be confined to persons of good character possessing a certain amount of property or income."

Finally it was proposed that a small number of new constituencies should be created. That which was vital in the plan of peace, Sir Alfred said, "was the simplification of the oath and the immediate admission to full burghership on taking it. Knowing as I do the feeling of the Uitlander population, and especially of the best of them, in these points, I felt and feel that any scheme not containing these concessions would be absolutely useless. The most influential and respectable sections of the Uitlander community feel strongly the indignity and injustice of asking them to denationalize themselves for anything less than full burghership—which in the South African Republic carries with it, de ipso facto, the right to vote for the First Volks Raad and the President. They will not accept citizenship of the Republic on any other terms." And Sir Alfred continues: "The President at once objected very strongly to my proposal, saying that it would immediately make the Uitlanders a majority of enfranchised burghers, who by the constitution formed the sovereign voice, and so controlled all legislation."

Milner's proposition Absolutely Fair

The President was evidently alarmed by the idea that a majority of the Europeans might, under the proposition urged by the British Commissioner, become the rulers of the land, and he stuck to his objection after it was explained that the new burghers who would appear, if the franchise arrangements were made, could have only a minority of seats in the first Volks Raad, and therefore they could not control the State. In fact, the President was not in favor of allowing the Uitlanders any political power whatever without a long intermission after the abandonment by the Uitlanders of their rights as British subjects. The proposition of Sir Alfred was absolutely fair, reasonable and moderate. Its acceptance would have prevented war. There was time given by the Commissioner to the President for full consultation and consideration—that is there was no effort to rush him. Sir Alfred says in his communication to the Colonial Secretary Chamberlain, that he felt here he "had reached the crucial point," and he alleges that the Boer President endeavored to make the matter one of bargaining, wanted to talk away from the real issue, and desired to speak of what he called "grievances," wandering far from the main matter, which was in its simplicity whether the great community of Johannesburg and the surroundings in the gold mines, constituting a very large majority of the Europeans and white men in the Transvaal, should have any representation at all in the Volks Raad.

Self-Government desired by all

President Kruger at the fourth meeting of the conference presented what he styled a "Complete Reform Bill," full, as Sir Alfred says, of "elaborate restrictions." Subsequently Sir Alfred drew up a paper showing what those restrictions were, and that this reform bill consisted of traps and catches, and was a careful, studied evasion, expressive of a fixed resolution to make no concessions whatever to the majority of the white population of the country. Sir Alfred says: "I pointed out that His Honor's proposal differed absolutely from mine, in that it did not provide for an immediate, or even an early, enfranchisement of people who might have been in the Republic for many years, and it made no provision for an increase in the number of seats in the Volks Raad. I, therefore, in view of the improbability of our arriving at a settlement on this basis, suggested that the President should consider whether there was any other way, apart from the franchise, of giving the Uitlanders some powers of local self-government, such as were suggested by Mr. Chamberlain in February, 1896. The President, however, was, if possible, more opposed to this than to my previous proposal. He maintained that the municipality of Johannesburg had already as great powers as could properly be entrusted to it, and said it was no use speaking about self-government, as his people would be absolutely against it."

Lapse of Citizenship

Sir Alfred further stated, as to President Kruger's plan: "Under the plan no man not already naturalized, even if he had been in the country for thirteen or fourteen years, would get a vote for the First Volks Raad in less than two and a half years from the passing of the new law. No considerable number of people would obtain the vote in less than five years, even if they got naturalized; but the majority would not naturalize because the scheme retained the unfortunate principle, first introduced in 1890, by which a man must abandon his old citizenship for a number of years before getting full burgher rights."

Immediate Representation Wanted

President Kruger added to his proposition a scheme for a few new seats. Of this Sir Alfred remarks: "I have an open mind as to the number of new seats for the Gold Fields, and for that reason did not attempt to lay down any definite number of my own proposal. I think three is decidedly too low. Under this proposal the enfranchised newcomers might, not immediately, but after the lapse of several years, obtain five seats in the First Volks Raad. Add, perhaps, two for other constituencies, in which they would in time become the majority, and they would be seven out of thirty-one. By that time they would be a vast majority of the inhabitants, and would contribute, as they indeed already do, almost the whole revenue. Under these circumstances less than one-fourth of the representation seems a scanty allowance. But the great point is, that even this limited degree of representation is still a long way off. My aim was to obtain some representation for them immediately. In my view, the First Volks Raad has already been too long out of touch with the new population, with whose most vital interests it is constantly dealing, and not dealing wisely. Every year that this state of things continues increases the tension and the danger. I do not assert that the mistakes made are due to ill-will. I believe they are due to want of knowledge. If representatives of the new population could make their voices heard, if they could come in contact with the representatives of the old burghers on an equal footing in the First Raad, they would, without being a majority or anything like it, yet exercise an appreciable influence on legislation and administration."

Justice Would Have Prevented Intervention

There is no question of the entire reasonableness and truth of this. In his talk with President Kruger Sir Alfred said of the Uitlanders: "A vast number of them are British subjects. If we had an equal number of British subjects and equally large interests in any part of the world, even in a country which is not under any conventional obligations to Her Majesty's Government, we should be bound to make representations to the Government in the interests of Her Majesty's subjects, and to point out that the intense discontent of those subjects stood in the way of the cordial relations which we desire to exist between us. I know that the citizens of the South African Republic are intensely jealous of British interference in their internal affairs. What I want to impress upon the President is that if the Government of the South African Republic of its own accord, from its own sense of policy and justice, would afford a more liberal treatment to the Uitlander population this would not increase British interference, but enormously diminish it. If the Uitlanders were in a position to help themselves they would not always be appealing to us under the convention."

When the conference was about to close President Kruger said: "Our enfranchised burghers are probably about 30,000, and the newcomers may be from 60,000 to 70,000, and if we give them the franchise to-morrow we may as well give up the Republic. I hope you will clearly see that I shall not get it through with my people."

Further along, when President Kruger insisted upon it that the too numerous newcomers would end the Republic, Sir Alfred asked what the President meant by "outvoting in the Volks Raad," and the President answered: "I mean this; that if they are all enfranchised then they would at once form the majority of the whole population, and the majority of the enfranchised burgher, according to our law, must be listened to by the Volks Raad; since in a republic we cannot leave the sovereign voice out of account. Then if they once get the vote, and the majority come to the Volks Raad saying that the members of the Raad should be in proportion to the number of electors, the Volks Raad would be all up with them."

Ireland and The Transvaal

Sir Alfred and President Kruger in course of conversation had an outing on "the Irish question," the President saying: "I say that by taking the oath of naturalization, whereby they become entitled to elect members for the Second Raad, they become lawful burghers, and at that moment they get more than they get in their own country. In their own country they cannot, within such a short period, choose ministers, magistrates, or similar officials; but they do this with me, and are they not to be regarded as full burghers because they cannot yet elect certain officials? The only difference is that they cannot yet exercise the full franchise. In England, for instance, the Irish also have not their own administration."

His Excellency.—"Yes, they have."


His Excellency.—"The Irish have always sent a full number of representatives to the Imperial Parliament, even in excess of what was due to them on a basis of population. If we were to apply the Irish principle to the South African Republic the Rand would send about fifty members to the First Volks Raad."

The conference came to nothing. President Kruger asserting to the last substantially, that if the English-speaking people whom he styled the "strangers" and the "newcomers," got any political rights at once, no matter how restricted, it would put his "blood-bought country into the hands of strangers."

Grievances of the Uitlanders a Burning Question

Mr. Conyngham Greene, Her Majesty's agent at Pretoria, wrote to the State Secretary of the South African Republic June 26, 1899, that Sir Alfred Milner "desires me to say that, as he pointed out to the President at Bloemfontein, he considers that the question of finding a remedy for the grievances of the Uitlanders is the burning question of the moment, and that this has to be disposed of before other matters can be discussed. The adoption by the Government of the South African Republic of measures calculated to lead to an improvement in the position of the Uitlanders would so improve the general situation that outstanding differences between the two Governments could be considered in a calmer atmosphere, and would be more capable of adjustment. Under these circumstances, it might be possible to devise a scheme for referring at least a certain number of differences to arbitration. But as the Government of the South African Republic has not seen its way to meet Her Majesty's Government on the question of primary importance, the High Commissioner can see no use in approaching the delicate and complicated subject of arbitration at the present time. Over and above this, His Excellency does not consider the scheme now proposed to be a practicable one. To make no mention of other objections, the constitution of the suggested Arbitration Court, which would leave every decision virtually in the hands of a President, who, it is provided, shall not be a subject of either of the arbitration parties, does not conform to the fundamental principle which, as Sir Alfred Milner more than once stated at Bloemfontein, Her Majesty's Government would regard as a conditio sine qua non to the acceptance of any scheme of arbitration."



What Mr. Chamberlain Wrote

Mr. Chamberlain, Colonial Secretary, writing July 27, 1899, to Sir Alfred Milner, says:

"Besides the ordinary obligations of a civilized Power to protect its subjects in a foreign country against injustice, and the special duty arising in this case from the position of Her Majesty as the Paramount Power in South Africa, there falls also on Her Majesty's Government the exceptional responsibility arising out of the Conventions which regulate the relations between the Government of the South African Republic and that of Her Majesty. These Conventions were granted by Her Majesty of her own grace, and they were granted in the full expectation that, according to the categorical assurances conveyed by the Boer leaders to the Royal Commissioners in the negotiations preliminary to the Convention of 1881, equality of treatment would be strictly maintained among the white inhabitants of the Transvaal.

"It may be well to remind you what those assurances were, as detailed in the Blue Book of May, 1882. At the Conference of the 10th of May, 1881, at Newcastle, there were present: Sir Hercules Robinson (President), Sir Evelyn Wood, Sir J. H. De Villiers, Her Majesty's Commissioners; and, as Representatives of the Boers, Mr. Kruger, Mr. P. J. Joubert, Dr. Jorissen, Mr. J. S. Joubert, Mr. DeVilliers and Mr. Buskes.

"The following report of what took place shows the nature of the assurances given on this occasion:

"239. (President).—'Before annexation, had British subjects complete freedom of trade throughout the Transvaal; were they on the same footing as citizens of the Transvaal?'

"240. (Mr. Kruger).—'They were on the same footing as the burghers; there was not the slightest difference in accordance with the Sand River Convention.'

"241. (President).—'I presume you will not object to that continuing?'

"242. (Mr. Kruger).—'No; there will be equal protection for everybody.'

"243. (Sir E. Wood).—'And equal privileges?'

"244. (Mr. Kruger).—'We make no difference so far as burgher rights are concerned. There may perhaps be some slight difference in the case of a young person who has just come into the country.'

"At the Conference of the 26th of May, 1881, at Newcastle, there were present: Sir Hercules Robinson (President), Sir E. Wood, Sir J. H. DeVilliers, Her Majesty's Commissioners; and, as Representatives of the Boers, Mr. Kruger, Mr. J. S. Joubert, Dr. Jorissen, Mr. Pretorius, Mr. Buskes and Mr. DeVilliers.

"At this meeting the subject of the assurances was again alluded to as thus reported:

"1037. (Dr. Jorissen).—'At No. 244 the question was, 'Is there any distinction in regard to the privileges or rights of Englishmen in the Transvaal?' and Mr. Kruger answered, 'No, there is no difference;' and then he added, 'there may be some slight difference in the case of a young person just coming into the country.' I wish to say that that might give rise to a wrong impression. What Mr. Kruger intended to convey was this: 'according to our law a newcomer has not his burgher rights immediately.' The words 'young person' do not refer to age, but to the time of his residence in the Republic. According to our old 'Grondwet' (Constitution), you had to reside a year in the country.'

The Whole Spirit of the Convention disregarded

"In spite of these positive assurances, all the laws which have caused the grievances under which the Uitlanders labor, and all the restrictions as to franchise and individual liberty under which they suffer, have been brought into existence subsequently to the conventions of Pretoria or London. Not only has the letter of the convention of 1884 been repeatedly broken, but the whole spirit of that convention has been disregarded by this complete reversal of the conditions of equality between the white inhabitants of the Transvaal which subsisted, and which, relying on the assurances of the Boer leaders, Her Majesty believed would continue to subsist, when she granted to it internal independence in the preamble of the convention of 1881, and when she consented to substitute the articles of the convention of 188 for those of the previous convention.

A Statement by Kruger

"The responsibility of Her Majesty's Government for the treatment of the alien inhabitants of the Transvaal is further increased by the fact that it was at the request of Her Majesty's High Commissioner that the people of Johannesburg, who in December, 1895, had taken up arms against the Government of the South African Republic to recover those equal rights and privileges of which they had been unwarrantably deprived, permitted themselves to be disarmed in January, 1896. The High Commissioner's request was made after the issue by President Kruger of a proclamation in which he stated: 'And I further make known that the Government is still always ready to consider properly all grievances which are laid before it in a proper manner, and to lay them before the Legislature of the country without delay to be dealt with.' Unfortunately, the assurances conveyed in this proclamation have been no better observed than the assurances of 1881. Not only have no adequate or genuine reforms been introduced up to the present time, but the conditions and the general atmosphere in which the Uitlanders have to live have become more difficult and irksome to free and civilized men. Fresh legislation has been passed in a repressive and reactionary direction, and the administration of justice itself has been made subservient to the control of the Executive Government."

Every word of this is amply supported.

Orders from Mr. Chamberlain

August 1st Mr. Chamberlain telegraphed Sir Alfred Milner: "I now authorize you to invite President Kruger to appoint delegates to discuss with our question whether reforms, which the Volks Raad has passed, will give immediate and substantial representation of Uitlanders, and if not, what additions and alterations will be necessary in order to secure this result. If invitation is accepted our delegates would not be precluded from raising any point calculated to improve measure; and you will instruct them to press for early report, which on the points mentioned ought not to be difficult."

Also: "My telegram of the 31st July. We must confine proposed joint inquiry, in the manner suggested in that telegram, to question of political representation of Uitlanders. You should, however, let President Kruger know through Greene that you will be ready, at the conclusion of inquiry, to discuss with him, not only the report of the inquiry, and the franchise question, but other matters as well, including arbitration without introduction of foreign element."

Petition From Natal

This petition was signed by 6,336 "loyal colonists of Natal, July 10, 1899: "Your Majesty's petitioners, being British subjects resident in the Colony of Natal, wish to express their sympathy with those thousands of their fellow-subjects in the Transvaal Republic, whose petition Your Majesty has been graciously pleased to receive.

"That men of British origin, engaged in industry of vital concern to the prosperity of all South Africa, should labor on sufferance under unjust laws partially administered; that they should contribute nearly the whole revenue of the State and have no voice in its disposal; that, while themselves rigorously designed, they should have to watch the fruits of their labor being applied to swell the military strength of the class which holds their liberties and even their lives at its disposal; this is a position repugnant to our sentiments.

"Moreover, it is a source of unrest, insecurity, and injury to business throughout Your Majesty's South African possessions.

"In all these possessions the rule is absolutely equal rights for the Dutch-speaking and English-speaking population; in the Transvaal Republic alone are the latter denied not only equal rights, but political rights altogether.

"From this contrast springs an intense race-feeling, which tends increasingly to divide and embitter all South Africa."

Views of Mr. Baynes

Mr. Baynes, of the Natal Parliament, is reported in the Natal Times, July 20, 1899: "He had said before, and he would say again, that keenly as he and all true Englishmen felt the defeat of those gallant British soldiers fighting at the command of their country in the war ending at Majuba, the Dutch then had right on their side and it was nothing but right that right should prevail. As a result of that battle he had hoped that the British blood there shed together with the magnanimous act of the British Government, as exemplified in and by the deed of retrocession, would have sufficed to have washed away all the bitterness of the past, and evoked forgiveness for all wrongs suffered, and that the two dominant races in South Africa would thereafter live together in peace and happiness, and in the process of time by inter-marriage, by mutual esteem, and by the uniting influence of the principle of self-preservation, become one people, ennobled by the struggles and sufferings of the past, each the better for the influence of the other, forming a people and country that would become the admiration and envy of the world. Any immediate prospect of such a consummation had been hopelessly deferred and blighted by the action of the Transvaal Government in refusing the continuance of the principle of equal rights to all Europeans alike within their borders. It was because he feared that the continued refusal of those rights must sooner or later bring about a war too fearful to contemplate, a war that might, and probably would, overthrow the independence of the Transvaal Republic, that he urged upon that Assembly to unanimously adopt the motion under consideration, in the hope that such an expression of opinion made by that Assembly might receive favorable consideration by His Honor the President, the Volks Raad and the burghers of the Transvaal. Equal rights and privileges would give the only sure foundation on which the Republic of the Transvaal could be established, and the only foundation on which the independence of the country could continue. Let these privileges be denied to Europeans now, and perpetual race hatred and strife, anarchy or tyranny, or war, too dreadful to contemplate, must result. With the same purpose of endeavoring to avert such a calamity, he moved the resolution standing in his name."

The motion was one of sympathy with and approval of the action of the British Government in endeavoring to secure equal rights and privileges for all Europeans in South Africa. The resolution was carried without a single dissentient.

Resolutions of the House of Commons of Canada

The House of Commons of Canada, July 31, 1899, adopted the following:

"1. Resolved, That this House has viewed with regret the complications which have arisen in the Transvaal Republic, of which Her Majesty is Suzerain, from the refusal to accord to Her Majesty's subjects now settled in that region any adequate participation in its government.

"2. Resolved, That this House has learned with still greater regret, that the condition of things there existing has resulted in intolerable oppression, and has produced great and dangerous excitement among several classes of Her Majesty's subjects in Her South African possessions.

"3. Resolved, That this House, representing a people which has largely succeeded, by the adoption of the principle of conceding equal political rights to every portion of the population, in harmonizing estrangement, and in producing general content with the existing system of government, desires to express its sympathy with the effort of Her Majesty's Imperial authorities to obtain for the subjects of Her Majesty who have taken up their abode in the Transvaal such measure of justice and political recognition as may be found necessary to secure them in the full possession of equal rights and liberties."

A Characteristic Article

The Boer organ, The Rand Post, December 28, 1898, had an article on "The Rebellion," which was very abusive of the petitioners, whose paper sent to the British Government, so greatly irritated President Kruger, who described it as "the lying and libelous petition"; and we quote:

"The hand on the rudder! It is more than time! Now once for all, an end must be put to such exhibitions as that of Saturday's, by reason of which the English Government will contend is not capable of exercising authority, not in a position to insure the safety of personal property. In the interests of the country such little upheavals must be vigorously suppressed. From henceforward public gatherings of a semi-political character in Johannesburg must be absolutely forbidden and prevented, because here (in Johannesburg) such gatherings lead to confusion and disorder. The 400 or 500 policemen are sufficient to exercise authority, and especially to prevent such open-air gatherings, and to prevent further flag waving by English ladies taking place before the door of the English Consulate. Mounted police can and must disperse such gatherings, and, if necessary, there must be some shooting done. Nobody should find that in any respect very terrible. In other countries that happens now and then, and the public well know beforehand that taking part in such gatherings is forbidden, and that force can be used for dispersing such gatherings. Those who then take part in them do so at their own risk. The Government must not proceed further under a Commandant who is hooted by the burghers, but appoint a Commandant who will have the esteem of the burghers. Commandants of neighboring districts should also be in complete readiness with their burghers. Immediately anything happens, the Government must take vigorous action. The Government must show that it is master of this town, and not unsuccessful men of business, and cowardly political wire-pullers, who shelter themselves behind the guns of Her British Majesty, not the men who in their quality of British subjects, and under cover of lying petitions bring to light their hatred of the Boer. To this Johannesburg Rebellion an end must be put once and for all. The well-meaning portion of the population, a very considerable part, wishes nothing else. Let us shoot down a pair of these wire-pullers, and thereby spare ourselves a formal war."

A Whole History of Outrages

This is expressive of the venomous intensity of the press of the Boers. In the same article there are very broad hints to President Kruger that he had been going too far in the conciliation of the British. There are in the Blue Books many instances of personal outrage, violence, insult, oppression and murder, with a view to the intimidation of the "strangers," the "newcomers," those who were crowding themselves into "the blood-bought land" from mere sordid motives of course in gathering gold and diamonds, and being more numerous than the Boers, and having more money and fixed property, were even not content with the simple office of the payment of taxes and submission to the Boers as an inferior caste. In order to emphasize this spirit of exclusion of those who were actually representing the progress of civilization, and doing vastly more than the Boers ever did to improve the country and make it prosperous in all the ways of advanced civilization, a fort was erected and so located as to bring the business centre of the Uitlanders directly under the guns of the Boers, who not satisfied with the menace of personal outrages and the denial of public rights, had to have a fort from which they could fire into the city, in which their policemen were constantly guilty of extraordinary brutalities. There is a whole history of these outrages that would make good reading for sentimentalists.

The policy of the Boer President and people in the negotiations that had so unhappy a termination was, throughout, marked with all the worst characteristics of the Boer race. The President of the South African Republic had promised in London, where he appeared as the head of a commission when the British attempted the alleged sublime policy of magnanimity in refraining from pushing the war, after the miserable slaughters and skirmishes culminating in the Majuba Hill insanity and massacre—that the Government of the "Republic" would be most considerate in protecting the rights of the British subjects in the Transvaal. Doubtless it was the remembrance of his responsibilities thus undertaken that aroused the violent spirit in the Boer Dictator when he met the British High Commissioner, Sir Alfred Milner, in the Bloemfontein conferences—so that he vehemently denounced the true petitioners of Johannesburg as falsifiers in appealing to the British Government for belated protection. It was the pleasure of President Kruger, who had himself in London promised his protection, that those who told the plain truth as to the oppression of the European people were "libelous liars." The Dictator, whose official title was that of President, and who undertook to be the representative of the implacable, domineering spirit of the Boer minority in the Transvaal, in his personal declarations disregarded all civilized amenities, and grossly insisted upon the humiliation of England in the very matter of which she has been most justly proud and won the highest regard of all enlightened peoples, and that is, of seeing at whatever cost that British subjects shall be respected everywhere in their personal rights.

England's Determined Protection of Her Subjects

Mr. Chamberlain was well within the line of established truth when he said, if the English Government had no rights in the Transvaal other than those arising from the duty of demanding plain justice from an independent government, be it republican or monarchy, the treatment of the Uitlanders at the hands of the Boers required remonstrance and demanded consideration. Of course, the logic of this statement was that if there was not a remedy for the great and bitter wrong inflicted upon one of the most important communities in the world, and far the most important in Africa, the British Empire would have to interfere. The claims of England that British subjects should be respected in personal rights have been many times vindicated, and the fact that the whole world knows the high principle and firm policy of the British in the determined protection of its subjects is one of the glories of the Empire. The President of the South African Republic flinched from his own word of honor and responsibility given in London, and rudely asserted that the majority of Europeans in the Transvaal had no rights he was bound to respect. He did not use precisely that form of speech, but it was that substantially, and the meaning of it was that the English-speaking population that had sought the Transvaal because there were there the greatest gold discoveries ever made were to be treated by the Boers as exactly on a level with "niggers." It was the President's persistent assumption and unconcealed purpose that the minority of the people of the Transvaal he controlled must be supreme over two majorities,—one the natives who had precedence of the Dutch in possession of the country, and the other the newcomers who were there on the business of civilized mankind—the Boers being a semi-barbarous minority between the two—holding with a small fraction of the population a half-way fortification from which to order and command. President Kruger wandered constantly in his conferences from the discussion of the franchise, showing an imperious temper and an inordinate and reckless, domineering propensity.

A Reasonable and Just Proposal

The proposal made by the British Commissioner for a settlement of difficulties was plain, reasonable in all respects, singularly careful of all the just susceptibilities of the Boer Government. It consented to the maintenance of the dominance of the minority, except in requiring respect for personal and public rights accorded to individuals in all civilized governments,—and in the declaration of the strict rights of British subjects consent was given to the theory of the utter independence of the Boers. There was a careful limitation here, so that even the vanity of the semi-barbarians, who asserted that they were and must be always the exclusive rulers, was not to be suddenly and in a hostile sense disturbed. There was much conceded merely to save the excessive and savage self-esteem of the Boers, who, however, positively refused justice and demanded without mitigation exercise of a despotism so unwarranted and wicked as to be intolerable to civilization. The Boer statements, soliciting sympathy, circulated in the United States have dwelt upon the assertion that the British subjects, who meant to reside permanently in the Transvaal, refused to become citizens of the South African Republic on any conditions. This way of putting the case was misleading, and purposely so. The British subjects did not agree to renounce their character as subjects, until assured they could be citizens of the South African Republic so far, and that the large majority of the Europeans, the white men in the Transvaal, might have a small minority of representation in the Volks Raad, and this upon the belief that if a very few members of that body who knew the truth of the conditions were able to speak it in public and officially, there would be a mitigation of the remorseless tyranny under which the Uitlanders had been suffering.

Boers Positively Refuse Justice

The Boer President refused to think of this, on the precise and often expressed ground that the Uitlanders were a large majority of the people, and there could be no safeguards for the Boer Government if these outsiders and strangers were permitted to have any political rights whatever. The President held indomitably that the "newcomers" and "strangers" should not occupy and possess the country to any degree by force of numbers or merit of industry and property. They were in the "blood-bought land"—that is truthfully applied, especially the native blood, and British blood had been shed copiously, and the land was bloody enough in that sense; but the condition of English-speaking people and all white immigrants in the gold fields, the richest in the world, and the diamond fields, also the richest ever known—the whole output amounting to more than one hundred millions of dollars a year—should be abject submission to an extortionate, tyrannous and brutal caste that respected no human rights and revelled in selfishness, sordidness and personal and racial insolence. Mr. Kruger's Views on the Question The initial point at which President Kruger stood through these negotiations, in which he had ample and honorable opportunities to make peace, was that the great communities of English-speaking people were composed of strangers and aliens who must be inferiors. This amounted to a presumption, officially and peremptorily and continuously asserted, that the Boers must, though a minority, and because they were a minority, be consecrated by "blood" a ruling caste, a caste whose authority it was impious to dispute, and that they must have confided to them exclusively and forever commanding powers held sacred over the natives they had enslaved; and the English-speaking people they taxed, assessed and restricted, insulted and humiliated with ostentation at their sovereign, savage pleasure. It is a mild and gentle form of expression to say that the behavior of the Boers has been that of a barbarous tribe, and that their conduct has had a nearer correspondence with Zulu savagery than with Christian civilization, and totally lacks the kindliness of the Hottentot. The Boers forced the war with England in the spirit of haughty, tribal, class, racial, contemptuous hostility, and would have it so throughout the Conferences.

The English Language not Permitted

After the Conferences between the British Commissioner and Governor of South Africa, Sir Alfred Milner and President Kruger, the peace-making efforts lacked acute interest, but were perseveringly continued. The latest concession of the Boers was that if the "people"—and by the "people" were meant the burghers of the Transvaal—approved, and the Government would try to get them to do so, a "retrospective five years' franchise" would be granted, and the amount of it was that of two-thirds of the white men of the Transvaal were to have one-fourth of the representation in the Volks Raad, but by no possibility, it was a little later explained, could the English language be permitted in that august body—the barbarous jargon of the Boers being the official language and the only tongue to be spoken. The President of the Orange State, as the gravity of the situation increased played a raucous second fiddle to President Kruger, and busied himself against the English, constantly professing friendliness to excess, working upon the line of securing the acceptance of an impossible complacency by the majority of white men in the Transvaal, in reference to the policy of their own subordination. That sort of submission is not according to the inheritance of the blood or the antecedent history of the English-speaking race, and the Uitlanders were not effusive with satisfaction even at the last Boer effort to make peace by offering a fractional representation in a body while they must listen to an unknown tongue and not be permitted to speak in the "Republican" parliament the language of the majority of the tolerably white men dwelling in the territory of the Republic.

The utility of the hysteria of the President of the Orange State was in the warning his frequent and voluminous impracticable suggestions gave, that peace could only be preserved by another case of sublime magnanimity like that of Mr. Gladstone, whose Christian benevolence had given the Boers confidence in their own invincibility and also in the timidity of the British, who were supposed to be most happy when dealing in generosities toward enemies in arms and victorious over the generous. Suddenly the peace-maker, President of the Orange State, snatched the British gold in transit, arrested or expelled British subjects by countenancing and justifying a panic that led them to take flight from his peaceable State, at the same time commandeering the burghers in force, assuming that this was done in a purely pacific way; and on the fourth of October this man of peace wrote to Sir Alfred Milner that he must urge the "urgent necessity of intimating to me without further delay whether Your Excellency sees your way clear to give effect to these my views and wishes."

The President of the Orange Free State as Peace Maker

It will be remarked that there is found in the Orange President's literature the same sort of note that Aguinaldo was in the habit of putting in his proclamations expressions of his intense passion for pacification when he was plotting the burning of Manila and the massacre of the American army. President Steyn had just stated that the South African Republic would not "make or entertain proposals or suggestions unless not only the troops menacing their State were withdrawn further from their borders, but an assurance given" that all increase of British troops in South Africa would be stopped and those on the water not landed "or as far removed as can be from the scene of possible hostilities;" and then if the Orange State President was to do anything more for peace he must now—this was the evening of October 5th—"if this preliminary but absolutely essential matter can be regulated between this and to-morrow." This shows that the professional presidential pacificator had received due notice of the purpose of the Boers to rush a declaration of war.


The Boer Declaration of War and the
Gathering of the Armies.

Both sides Surprised

When the Republic of South Africa and the Orange Free State, after a conspiracy of the two Presidents, rushed their armies into what they believed a campaign of conquests, the surprise of the Boers and their allies that they gained so few and small advantages after elaborate preparations and careful openings of their opportunities in striking first, was as at as that of the British that they, indifferently provided and hastily thrust into hot places, could not march headlong in solid columns, storming fortifications, to easy victories.

THE LAST LETTER HOME. An incident at Ladysmith.  Red Cross Nurse writing a message of love from a dying soldier.
An incident at Ladysmith.
Red Cross Nurse writing a message of love from a dying soldier.


The Boer ultimatum, ordering the British to flee, for waiting on the frontiers would be regarded a "declaration of war on the part of Her Majesty's Government," and that within forty-eight hours, was promulgated on the 9th of October. The material part is in the following words, as per Associated Press report:


which is signed by F. W. Reitz, State Secretary, is as follows:

"Her Majesty's unlawful intervention in the internal affairs of this republic, in conflict of the London convention of 1884, by the extraordinary strengthening of her troops in the neighborhood of the borders of this republic, has caused an intolerable condition of things to arise, to which this Government feels itself obliged, in the interest not only of this republic, but also of all South Africa, to make an end as soon as possible, and this Government feels itself called upon and obliged to press earnestly and with emphasis for an immediate termination of this state of things and to request Her Majesty's Government to give assurances upon the following four demands:

"First—That all points of mutual difference be regulated by friendly recourse to arbitration or by whatever amicable way may be agreed upon by this Government and Her Majesty's Government.

"Second—That all troops on the borders of this republic shall be instantly withdrawn.

"Third—That all reinforcements of troops which have arrived in South Africa since June 1, 1899, shall be removed from South Africa within a reasonable time to be agreed upon with this Government, and with the mutual assurance and guarantee on the part of this Government that no attack upon or hostilities against any portion of the possessions of the British Government shall be made by this republic during the further negotiations within a period of time to be subsequently agreed upon between the Governments, and 'this Government will, on compliance therewith, be prepared to withdraw the armed burghers of this republic from the borders.

"Fourth—That Her Majesty's troops which are now on the high seas shall not be landed in any part of South Africa."

To these demands is appended the definition of time limit for a reply:

"This Government presses for an immediate and affirmative answer to these four questions, and earnestly requests Her Majesty's Government to return an answer before or upon Wednesday October 11, 1899, not later than 5 o'clock P.M.

It desires further to add that in the unexpected event of an answer unsatisfactory being received by it within the interval, it will, with great regret, be compelled to regard the action of Her Majesty's Government as a formal declaration of war, and will not hold itself responsible for the consequences thereof, and that in the event of any further movement of troops occurring within the above mentioned time, in a nearer direction to our borders, this Government will be compelled to regard that also as a formal declaration of war. I have the honor to be, respectfully yours,

State Secretary."

To the above, Great Britain replied that the demands were such as could not be discussed, and instructed the British agent to apply for his passport, which he did.

On the following day, October 11th, the proclamation of war was formally issued at Pretoria, the Boer capital, and the Orange Free State openly took its place as an ally of the South African Republic, appointing General Petrus Jocobus Joubert Commandant-General of its forces. Both the Transvaal and Free State Boers promptly invaded Natal and took strong positions.

Centers of combat quickly Defined

The object was to overrun South Africa, raising the Dutch in revolt, and driving all foes seaward, before the slender British garrisons could be reinforced from England. Thus the war began with surprises on both sides, for the outposts of the English met the onslaught of the Boer columns whose movements were extraordinarily rapid as they were nearly all mounted men, with a hearty appetite for coming to blows. The flood of Boer riflemen on horseback well supplied with artillery, largely living on the country that was to have swept the British into the towns by the sea to meet their incoming transports, was soon arrested. The centers of the cyclones of war were quickly defined.

The British were astonished to meet in the Boer armies evidences of well studied campaigning, thorough armament and generalship in the leaders, and in finding that what was understood to be irregular forces in thin lines of skirmishers were masses of an army of 50,000 men. The British were still more thoroughly surprised on finding themselves hard pressed, than the Boers were that the momentum of the advance of the sweeping successes of which they had such broad expectations, had been suddenly stayed.

Important Decisions to Be made

If there had been no political considerations with respect to people of whose tendencies there were doubts to control the action of the British at the beginning of the war their military position would have been much bettered by yielding more ground in Natal, abandoning the positions that the Boers were abundantly able to surround and that were certain to need relief in a few weeks, a condition that would force the British armies to hasten advances on dangerous lines. The scenes of the first chapter of the war had been located by the establishment of arsenals and encampments that must be strenuously defended, if not destroyed, with losses irreparable for many days. The gravest consideration in the first weeks of the war were as to the choice between the better military and political positions. Naturally there was something of both given weight in the selections made. Rather than abandon additional Natal territory the British accepted the conditions in the midst of which they have repeatedly suffered severely, and their columns have been driven to accept the contingencies of extra hazardous operations and relief expeditions driven under the strain of perilous emergency. The British, as well as the Boers and Orange State armies underestimated the work they cut out for themselves. The mutual wonder has been that there was such hot work on both sides.

Early Days of the War

During the first weeks of the war the British were busy in securing transports and getting troops and supplies for the voyage of a month, and the news of the passing days was of the scenes of parting at the ports whence the regiments ordered to join the African army of the British, sailed; and next was the announcement of the arrivals of the famous organizations at the ports to which they had been ordered,—speculations as to the time required to put in motion the several columns for the relief of the besieged garrisons, and the meantime the gallantry of the beleaguered British and their style of defending themselves with dashing sorties deeply moved the public, and gave edge and points to attention. The encounters at this time were decidedly educational. The combatants were taught to respect each other. Innumerable war incidents gave zest to the reading of the current literature in which the journals paraded the names of the troop ships, the number of men with rifles, the names of the officers, speculations as to the days and hours the vessels would require to reach the seat of war, the places where the troops could be put ashore to the greatest advantage, the roads they must follow to the front.

Public Opinion

This was a period of confidence on the part of the British, mitigated only by occasional furtive suggestions of misgiving. It was almost universally held throughout the British Empire that the divisions on the way would be equal to the demands upon them. The arrival of Sir Redvers Buller to take supreme command was to be a signal for the display of imperial power—the auspicious beginning of the speedy end. It was reasonable that spectators not jealous of the British, and inclined to some form of hatefulness towards them, should accept the information and conclusions of the intelligence of the people of the dominant British Island. The general judgment of the world outside the British Empire—excepting the specialists in detailed knowledge who had made close studies of the shifting situation with growing apprehension of its seriousness, political as well as military—was that the war was to be charged to the account of the land greed of Englishmen, and their persecution of the religious and Republican Boers instead of to the fact that the Transvaal Republicans made up one barbary state, and the alleged Orange Free State another, in a lesser degree wanting in civility, and that these allies were resolute and aggressive in their determination to enslave both the original occupants of the soil and those who had within a few years developed its exceedingly great riches, and the worth to the world of the astounding revelation of the most precious stones and metals.

When we form the intimate acquaintance of the facts we find the friction between the strangely mixed races of the Transvaal was not caused by British expansionists, or occasioned by British aggression, but by the stolid abominable ambition of the Boer race—the same for whom Great Britain had broken the Zulu power in a war that was most expensive in blood and money. The trouble in Africa did not grow from the anxiety of the British for extensions of territory or of privileges. The Boers held all others to be according to the Gospel their inferiors, and the protestation of the British Government that there should be for the sake of peace a very moderate reform amounting to the insertion of an admixture of justice, according to all testimony denied disdainfully, in the administration of the laws, customs and habits of the caste of burghers.

Two Popular Illusions

The world so far as it has admitted daylight to aid the inspection of South African affairs has parted with two illusions: First, that the English made the war, second, that they were ready for it, and menaced the liberties of South African peoples when they landed two regiments of regular troops at Durban. It is demonstrated the Boers were the war makers and ready for war, holding the British in contempt for peaceableness under the buffetings to which they had submitted, and for their reluctance to take up arms to defend themselves. It was the Boers who declared war and were first in the field. They had a fixed policy for asserting themselves with increasing energy and ferocity, and they opened the grim game of war in logical accordance with their proceedings ever since England was so magnanimous after Majuba Hill. Their astonishment as to the misapprehensions manifest in the course of warfare thus far, is as great as that of the English at their miscalculations that would seem humorous if they were not most grave.


The First Bloodshed

The First Battle of the War

The first battle of the war was fought October 20th, eleven days after the ultimatum of the South African Republic. General White was at Ladysmith, where there was a large accumulation of stores, and General Symons at Dundee and Glencoe Junction. A Boer force under Lucas Meyers were in position on Talana Hill. General Symons attacked them. He was mortally wounded, 10 officers and 33 men killed and 200 wounded, but the Hill was carried, and though there has been much disputation as to the possession of the ground immediately after the conflict, and the comparative lists of casualties, British pride in the courage of their troops was justified, and the Boers realized they were confronted by soldiers who would not be satisfied for a day to act strictly on the defensive. The outlying position of General Symons was perhaps not worth the sacrifice of so many men to storm a hill that could not be held at the utmost more than a few days. It was necessary for the British to retire from the field of their dearly bought victory, and General Symons died in the hands of his enemies, while the wounded soldiers who could not be removed were captured. It is creditable to the Boers that they treated the dying General and the mangled men, with respect and kindness.

Battle of Elandslaagte

On the 21st of October, the day after the fight at Glencoe—Symon's fight—General French, second in command at Ladysmith, defeated the Boers, many from the Orange State, at Elandslaagte, a few miles north of Ladysmith. The losses were heavy, and a retreat from Glencoe, which was soon found to be inevitable, was made comparatively easy. The English forces that fought at Glencoe and Elandslaagte, united October 26th with the garrison at Ladysmith, and a week later were surrounded by a largely superior force under General Joubert, the better known of the Boer officers, whose movements were slowed down by the hard fighting he had found it necessary to do. It was the unity of the detachments that gained, in severe encounters, the first successes of the British, that justified the bloodshed where Generals Symons and French were conspicuously heroic. The garrison of Ladysmith was strengthened by the naval brigade that got in during the sortie of the 30th of October, and manned the guns of long range transported by railroad from the British cruiser, the "Powerful," which was at Durban. Lieutenant Edgerton, of that cruiser, at first handled the guns, and wounded by a shell died after a few days.

Hard Work on Both Sides

The hard work the Boers had to do in the first days of their appearance before completing the investment of Ladysmith, obstructed their plan of campaign, which was to beat back the British at all points in Natal and lock them up in Durban and Pietermaritzburg. The storm centers in the latest days of October, after three weeks of war, were Ladysmith, Kimberley and Mafeking; and the mobile masses of the Boers were held in check as the transports loaded with soldiers from England drew nigh. But the British were not the men to defend themselves in trenches only. They were too fond of going out to find and develop their enemies, and had to pay dearly repeatedly for the spirit of adventure with which they made themselves acquainted with the country occupied by those who knew it well.

General Buller Arrives

News that was distressing reached England from the seat of war on the last day of October. A squadron of the 18th Hussars was "cut off" and taken prisoners when in pursuit of apparently fugitive Boers. This was near Dundee. There was a sortie from Ladysmith under Colonel Carlton, who was also "cut off" and forced to surrender. He had been sent out in the night to "flank the enemy," a phrase of wide construction, and a broad road leading to destruction, unless one is certain of the location of the flanks and the main body too, of the enemy. On this occasion there was a stampede of mules with "practically the whole of the gun equipment, and the greater part of the small arm ammunition." This affair is known as the disaster of Nicholson's Nek. These 870 officers and men, after fighting nearly an entire day and exhausting ammunition, were surrendered, and their presence in Pretoria attested a great victory by the Boers, and increased Afrikander expectations and enthusiasm. The organizations involved were four and a half companies of the Gloucesters, six companies of the Royal Irish Fusiliers, and the 10th Mountain Battery. The British successes at Glencoe and Elandslaagte were due to the excellence of the soldiers and the devotion of the officers. The successes of the Boers that speedily followed were results of what the London Times calls "the humiliating truth—that in that difficult country of kopjes, our enemy more numerous, better informed and immeasurably more mobile, is able to act more swiftly than our forces in isolated attacks, as he is habitually able to choose better positions to defend."

General Buller arrived at Cape Town on the day of the Dundee disaster October 31st, and his conception of his first duty was the relief of Ladysmith. For that and collateral purposes there were three columns prepared for the advance. About 16,000 men were sent to Durban, where General Cleary soon had two whole divisions. General Gatacre was sent to Queenstown November 18th, to check a Free State incursion threatening Cape Colony, and Lord Methuen with the Guards and a Brigade of the line, and the Highland Brigade, moved on the way direct for Kimberley. It does not take scientific attainment in looking upon a map of the country to understand that the advantages of the position were remarkably with the Boers, and no one had any reason for surprise that all the British relief columns had "serious reverses."

The Strategy of the Boers

An English correspondent, evidently a trained observer, says of the strategy of the Boers: "Their plan has been simplicity itself. Establish a laager in a convenient position, detach a sufficient force to hold and strengthen a kopje, and await a British attack coming from a given direction. If the attack succeeds the detachment falls back on the main laager, and the game is repeated. Such are the tactics of the Boers. Their acquaintance with lyddite shell is said to have induced them to place less confidence in the rocky crests of the kopjes and to resort to trenches on lower ground, but the principle remains the same. So long as the campaign is waged in a country that provides an interminable series of defensible positions which are attacked in the way the Boers most ardently desire, while our troops are tethered to a railway, the game must apparently continue to be in the hands of the enemy."

Confronted by Clouds and Darkness

Sir Redvers Buller found clouds and darkness when he landed at Cape Town a week before his birthday, having made up his own staff irrespective of all suggestion of favoritism, and accepted all the responsibilities. There was before him the two Boer States, whose Presidents, and sympathizers in Natal, Cape Town and throughout Southern Africa, caused by the uncertainties of the British policy for many years, had made hopeful the schemes for the foundation of an Afrikander Nation. This would mean that all South Africa should be subjected to the mastery of the Boers, whose specific and especial policy would be to drive out Englishmen with all their capital, influences and improvements. The meaning of a great Boer nation could not fail to be a confederacy of inferior civilization, and to end the grand work the British have carried on, brightening the Dark Continent from the days of Moffat and Livingstone to those of Stanley and Rhodes. Sir Redvers Buller found the Afrikander movement held in suspense by the Mafeking, Ladysmith and Kimberley defenders, who were fighting fiercely to stand their ground until the relief columns could be gathered, formed, put in motion and strike. On all sides there were embarrassments of the gravest nature for the English.

Difficulties in Mobilizing the Troops

The public at large were occupied considerably in counting the number of soldiers that had sailed from England, computing the speed of the ships and fixing the dates of their arrival at the ports for which they were destined, and the concern was not great as to the mobility of the troops, the confinement of the columns to railroad lines easily interrupted, and the immense impediment in the indispensable stores heaped at the points of debarkation, as in our attack upon the Spaniards in Cuba we were overwhelmed at the point of embarkation. The army with which the British Commander-in-Chief moved in the direction of Ladysmith was about the same size as that under Major-General Shafter that scrambled aboard ship at Tampa and landed at Santiago.

As Sir Redvers Buller marched to attempt the passage of the Tugela River, he had to encounter the discouragements of the bloody repulses of both columns co-operating with him, and especially the depressing experience of Lord Methuen on the Modder River; and he had also at last to report as the others had done, a "serious reverse."


GENERAL LORD METHUEN, British Commander, Battle of Modder River. GENERAL SIR GEORGE WHITE, V.C., Commander British Forces, Battle of Ladysmith.
British Commander, Battle of Modder River.
Commander British Forces, Battle of Ladysmith.

The Boers Selected Their Time Judiciously

There is to be remarked a strong family likeness in all the combats unfortunate for the British—the desperate storming of fortified hills, the half blind flank movements, seemingly seeking to get into ambuscades—the columns by companies charging into zones of rifle fire, Mausers in the hands of marksmen; the vain hammering with artillery not all of the latest pattern and longest range—the certain, fatal, frontal advance, because there was no other way, as the ground lay, for the work required to be done; and there were, more than all, rivers booming between rugged banks, rocks serving the Boers for shelter and rests for their rifles, and a perfect exposure of the masses of the British to the searching fire of the expert riflemen. The Boers had selected their time for beginning the war, and judiciously placed it when the open country was green with grass for their ponies, and their forces were wafted about almost as swiftly as the winds,—while the British were fettered to lines of rails readily obstructed, and repeated misfortunes taught the limits of usefulness of armored trains, perils from the mad panic of green drivers with greener mules; the fact slowly learned by old soldiers that the rifles in hand often outranged the artillery, the next to impossible fording of rivers in the face of rifle fire, making the attempts an invitation to slaughter, no matter what the merits of the troops even if the best the world ever saw; and all the while the pressure of the bitter necessity of groping gallantly along the gloomy paths that, as we read in Gray's Elegy, "lead but to the grave," though they shine with glory.


The Magersfontein Battle.

Heavy Losses on Both Sides

Lord Methuen moved from the Orange River, November 23d. The objective point of his undertaking was the relief of Kimberley, the city of diamond mines. He had at the start a success that was described in glowing terms. Though the result has appeared in the study of the course of the combat, which gave him so much distinction, and caused an amount of applause that was at least disproportionate to that which was accomplished, was that the British lost 225 men, killed and wounded—a casualty list that would have meant a bloody skirmish in a war of very considerable proportions. The fighting was fierce on both sides, and heavy losses were considered matters of course. Napoleon's observation that one had to break eggs to make an omelette was much quoted as the correct philosophy of warfare.

The second stroke by his Lordship, in the course of this campaign, was at Graspan, and the sobering effect of it, though the claim of the British was that they had won a victory, did not pass away upon reading this telegram, dated at Cape Town, December 15th, giving mature information: "A visit to Simons Town hospital confirms the reports of the extraordinary gallantry of the marines at Graspan. They have 92 casualties out of a total of 183 in the fight. Many have three wounds and some four. Sixty per cent. of the officers and sargeants were hit." All the officers of the naval detachment but two were wounded. The correspondents wrote that they were on the way to Kimberley "fighting invisible foes," but moving on slowly and surely. It was plain that though the foe was invisible, they made themselves felt. The number of Boers in action at Graspan was estimated at 3,000, and by the time the slow movement reached Modder River the force of Boers was believed to be 8,000, showing the mobility of the fighters against the relief of Kimberley. They hastened from place to place and knew how and where to concentrate to be of efficiency in obstructing the British advance. The following week the numbers of the Boers at Magersfontein was believed to be possibly 16,000.

The Hottest Fight of the British Army

The British General described the fight of November 28th as one of the hottest and most trying in the annals of the British Army. He was careful not to claim a decisive victory, and his moderate language was the more impressive for the absence of reassuring assertion overdone. He said: "After Desperate hard fighting, lasting ten hours, the men without water or food under a burning sun, made the enemy quit their position." The London Times correspondent wrote: "The fire was the hottest recorded, and the results would revolutionize existing theories. It was effective up to 1,600 yards, but the casualties among the troops lying down were trifling, their losses being only thirty, though they were in an exposed position. It was found impossible to bring the ammunition reserve to the firing line." Much in these words is significant, and they should have conveyed a warning as to what revolutionary experience ought to teach; but the commander of the column did not seem to be teachable. He held on to existing theories. If it was impossible to bring the ammunition reserve to the firing line, it was an acknowledgment that no matter what the attacking force might be in front of an enemy armed with long range rifles, the attack must utterly fail upon the consumption of the cartridges the men were able to carry into action. This, of course, if an established proposition, would limit rigidly the force of an assault.

However, the Boers, on this occasion, withdrew in the night, and the British occupied the whole of the battlefield, and the column was said to be encouraged, and moved on according to the fashionable formula of the special dispatches, "slowly but surely to Kimberley." There was nothing in the advantage gained to awaken enthusiasm, and confidence began to fail. There was an atmosphere of misfortune in which the English armies were moving.

General Gatacre, December 10th, mentioned a "serious reverse" in attack that morning at Stormberg, where he had penetrated resisting the invasion of the north of Cape Colony by Orange State forces. The general had merely been "misled to the enemy's position by guides, and found impracticable ground." Also he had taken the precaution of marching all night to surprise the enemy, and was misguided by spies, so morning broke on him in the presence of the enemy, who were posted on "an unscalable hill." The British Empire owes his Lordship a memorable debt of gratitude because he did not immediately order an impossible charge! The troops that were exhausted in a long night's march to enter a trap at daylight should, according to prevalent tactics, have been rushed upon any hill that was crowned by the enemy, and "unscalable." How could General Gatacre have found out that the hill could not be scaled without attempting it with his men? He varied the strategy by retreating nine miles immediately, and complimented the enemy's gunners for the punishment they gave him, saying, "their guns were remarkably well served, and carried accurately 5,000 yards." This was disagreeable intelligence, but the general is reported to have had the satisfaction of shooting his false guide, and rested from his labors.

Lord Methuen's Failure

He had not the perseverance of Lord Methuen, who was enabled to wire truthfully that he had failed, December 12th, in assaulting the enemy's position at Magersfontein. It was there his Lordship met in full force General Cronje, who had been spending a few days intrenching himself after the fight on the Modder River. There was no effort on the part of the British officers to claim Magersfontein as a victory, though they did insist that the loss of the Boers was something frightful. The Highland Brigade was marched after the fashion of General Gatacre at Stormberg, so as to come right on the enemy just at the time and in the formation that they wanted to see him. It was, of course, during the darkness of early morning, after a very hard night for the men, that they entered the trap. The Boers had been waiting patiently and exercising their mobility in getting together so as to have a force of about 12,000 men. In that which immediately followed, the emergence of the troops from the strain of the march, General Wauchope seemed to believe his orders meant a massacre of his men, and it is the story of the battle whether strictly true or not, that will give it endless fame, that he called to the men not to hold him responsible, as he was obeying Lord Methuen's orders. He died on the field, and his son, near him, was wounded.

The Losses

The Highlanders composing his brigade were, it is told with a dreadful simplicity, in "formation of quarter column," with no time to deploy, and they could not, by anything known in military maneuvers, have been placed in better form for the enemy. The loss of the brigade was their brave and capable commander Wauchope, with about 700 men killed and wounded, fifty of them officers, seven-tenths of them Highlanders. This was the overture. There came after it a great deal of bombarding by the British of the Boer trenches, and the result was Lord Methuen retired to the Modder River, the retreat having been conducted in the official reports in an "orderly" manner. It will be noted that a considerable number of the Highlanders escaped, and that is accounted for by the fact that they were just a few minutes too early on the ground. They were quicker than expected according to the time table, and "bad light" saved those whose names were not found in the casualty lists. It was said that General Gatacre personally executed the false guides; but the trap for Lord Methuen immediately succeeding the affair at Stormberg was a case bearing such a close resemblance to the Magersfontein incident, where the guides were not accused of wilfully going on, that there rests a suspicion as to the criminality of the error that General Gatacre avenged. What the Dispatches Say The dispatches say in the case of the experience of Lord Methuen, "six miles had to be covered before the Highland Brigade could reach the Boer stronghold. It is not yet clear through what mischance the force which was led by guides came upon the Boer trenches so unexpectedly and so suddenly. Beyond question the Boers were aware of the approach of the British and had prepared to receive them." There were persistent reports that the Boers suffered heavy losses in the combat that opened with the fall of 700 Highlanders. Whatever were the casualties of the Boers, they must have been inflicted by the British Artillery which fired lyddite shells for several hours, and as nothing could be seen to positively show what the effect of the shelling was, there are evident exaggerations in the fancies about it. Reuter's Special Agency telegraphed from Modder River December 12th: "Twelve ambulances started early this morning under a flag of truce to collect the wounded and bury the dead. General Wauchope's body was found near a trench. He had been shot through the chest and in the thigh." The Boer General Cronje telegraphed that he estimated his losses in this engagement at 100 killed and wounded, and the British at 2,000. Rumors in the camp of the British placed the Boer loss at 700 at least. The Queen sent to the widow of General Wauchope a touching message expressing her deep sympathy, and paid a warm tribute to the general's qualities as a soldier and his services to the nation. Her Majesty referred to the fact that with a single exception, that of the Soudan, in every campaign in which he had taken part he had been wounded.

Sudden Change of Public Sentiment

The most hopeful of British military movements in South Africa, for a time, was that of the column of Lord Methuen, which was terminated by the decimation of the Highland Brigade. He was reported as steadily advancing, winning his way with dashing marches without heavy losses. His high qualities were mentioned with emphasis in all the newspapers—his stalwart physique, his cleverness, his kindliness, his courage, his intelligence; there was no praise too effusive for the adulation to which he was subjected. The fact that the Highlanders were put into a trap under his orders changed all this, and he is accused of madness. The orders that he gave on the field are described as those of a maniac; but his misfortune was quite like that which preceded it at Stormberg, and succeeded it at Colenso. Whatever is to be said of the disaster of Magersfontein, it must be recognized as typical and to signify either that the Boers were invincible or the methods of war as conducted by the British just at that period defective to helplessness. Four days later came the repulse of Buller's army, and the malady of disaster was manifest there also; so that it would almost warrant characterizing as a disease, a contagion, or a plague.

BOERS FIRING ON GENERAL FRENCH'S TRAIN EN ROUTE TO DURBAN. The excellent marksmanship of the Dutch of South Africa enables them to hit a man at the distance of a mile or more with their accurate aim.
The excellent marksmanship of the Dutch of South Africa enables
them to hit a man at the distance of a mile or more with their accurate aim.

TWO SIDES TO THE QUESTION. Boer or Briton?  A heated discussion on the crisis.
Boer or Briton? A heated discussion on the crisis.

The general destruction of the Boers by bombarding and the courage displayed by the British soldiers under trying circumstances, could not aid the British Empire to assert complacency, and there was a passing consternation that reflection over the monotony of misfortunes converted to indignation, and then the spirit of the people rose to the occasion. There was a general rally and hardening of resolution.

This sort of thing was, however, wired from the Modder Riveras late as December 13th: "Our lyddite shells fell always where the enemy was thickest; most awful havoc was inflicted by the Royal Horse Artillery, who under a hot fire of a raid by the Boer firing line are said to have filled the trenches with dead."

The Official Boer Account

Much has been said of the Boers on the Modder River blazing away several times in the night, shelling imaginary foes, and there is evidence that the continued use of the British Artillery, shelling Boer lines, and an apprehension of desperate sorties (because after the various storming parties of the British there was no calculating what they might undertake), did for several nights disturb the nerves of the Boers in their intrenchments, and caused them to open fire and continue to blaze with their Mausers and artillery into darkness until they expended a great amount of ammunition; and the British found considerable relief in the enjoyment of this evidence that they were still held in great respect by their enemies. The official Boer account, telegraphed from Pretoria, was this:

"Despatch riders from the field report that the Boers have taken a large quantity of booty, including 200 Lee-Metford rifles. two cases of cartridges, some quantities of filled bandoliers, and hundreds of bayonets. A large number of British retired from Tweerivieren, in the direction of Belmont. The loss of the British is very great. Heaps of dead are lying on the field. The wounded are attended to temporarily at Bisset's Farm. The Boers lost a considerable number of horses. The sappers and miners must have suffered severely, as many implements were found on the field. The slaughter on the battlefield yesterday cannot be described otherwise than sad and terrible. It was for us a brilliant victory, and has infused new spirit into our men to enable them to achieve greater deeds."

What the Battle Meant for Kimberley

The Magersfontein battle was of intense interest to the people of Kimberley, and a special service dispatch gives this account of what was seen and heard by the anxious inhabitants of that city:

"This morning the ceaseless roar of cannon and Maxims was heard here from 4.25 till 10.30. Riding out at 5.30 A.M. to a ridge beyond the racecourse, I saw shell after shell burst on the side of a sugar-loaf-shaped kopje standing alone to the left of Spitzkop.

"Great puffs of white smoke rose every now and them, appearing like the spray of breakers on a rocky shore. Presently a captive balloon ascended and descended out of sight. The roar of the guns as heard here was most impressive, and told plainly of a great engagement."

The British casualties at Magersfontein are—official total:

  Officers and men killed ......    82
  Wounded ......................   667
  Missing ......................   348

A Mafeking dispatch, January 3d, states "The Boers, despite repeated warnings, concentrated their fire during the last two days upon the women's laager and hospital. Children have been killed and women mutilated by the bursting of shells.

It was at this time reported in their towns that the Boers used explosive bullets. Surgeon Major Anderson authorized the statements that the wounds inflicted at Gambier fight were altogether different to previous experience in Egypt and in India, and that it was impossible they could have been produced by Martini or Mauser bullets, though, perhaps, they might have been caused by Snider ones, but from a scrutiny of the wounds made while dressing them in hospital here he has no doubt in his own mind that bullets of an explosive character were used by the Boers.

Captain Baden Powell deposed Wessels, chief of the tribe of the Baralongs, who had quarters at Mafeking. Wessels has lately been intractable. He spread false reports among the tribes that the military authorities were endeavoring to make the natives slaves.


Battle of Colenso—Defeat of General Buller.

"Tied by the Leg"

South Africa has several lines of railroads scoring the country with outline improvements, and there are many bridges easily broken, and then the iron lines are lost and the armies dependent upon them are, to employ a phrase common in England to describe immobility without imprisonment, "tied by the leg." South Africa is of enormous extent. It is, for example, 641 miles by railroad from Cape Town to Kimberley, and the country is diversified and divided by mountain ranges and rivers, and yet it is extraordinarily open but rugged, giving sharpshooters with long range rifles concealment and shelter, while the columns of an army on the march can hardly be missed by the eye or the rifle. The Boer wagons with oxen for motors are phenomenally slow, but the Boer on his pony with rifles and a supply of cartridges gallops fifty miles in a few hours, while Europeans with indispensable impediments, have hard work to cover one quarter of the distance in the same time. The war was rushed just in the season for the grass to feed the ponies. While the English statesmen were debating with the Boer President the details of fractional representation based upon restricted constituencies, the Transvaal Government used the money extracted from disarmed and unprotected Englishmen in preparing for war, and it was held that a British subject unwilling to be of a servile class and have the people speaking his language in the great city enslaved to the burghers, was in a sense irrational, a disturber, and one who would be a usurper, sordidly seeking to plunge the world into war. American and Boer revolutions Compared Our revolutionary fathers fought for representation, or rather against taxation without representation, but the Boers regarded it as an insult that the majority paying nine-tenths of the taxes should claim that it would be no more than fair to have one-sixteenth of the law-making power of the Transvaal Congress and none at all of the executive. The British did not prepare for war, but the Boers accused them of it, as the wolf accused a sheep of muddying the water when it was taking a drink down stream; and when the Boers were ready to fight they went at it and took the British unawares, at the same time charging them with responsibility for the conflict.

Buller's Difficult Position

If Sir Redvers Buller comprehended the full extent of the dangers of the duties of his assignment, he made no sign. He might have had apprehensions that a pushing advance would mean, at best, delays for an indefinite period, but it seemed preposterous to sit down on a river with 18,000 men and watch the water glide away with the days and get news, perhaps, of the fall of Ladysmith, the place of the trial of strength of the combatants. He did wait long enough to cause comment in the press of his country to the effect that there was no break in the monotony of his camp beside the Tugela. This was equivalent to the old sarcasm in the American war, during the time that McClellan was making ready to move; "All is quiet on the Potomac." It was not the first appearance of General Buller in South Africa. He was with Sir Evelyn Wood after Majuba, and it was assumed his knowledge of the country would be valuable. The resources of the English Empire were at his command, but he was made to feel the want of time. He was where he could hear the thunder of cannon at Ladysmith day after day, but there was a river before him and beyond it the enemy in unknown numbers digging trenches, and they also occupied a position on the British side of the river, as was soon ascertained when the attempt was made in full force to pass it. The Boers were engaged in constructing rifle pits in the shape of the letter S, a double curve that gives occupants facilities for keeping out of raking shell fire, but making drainage difficult in rainy weather, and as the ground to cover was rough and the time to turn the tide that had been running against the British had come, if it was to be done before the fall of the besieged places, the General-in-Chief attempted to force the river and the first line of his report, after stating that he had moved in "full force" in the morning was to regret a "serious reverse."

A Possible Preliminary Demonstration

It was indeed serious. If there had been a chance to flank the position of the enemy, General Buller had not discovered it. The presumption is he had a force much stronger than the enemy would be in the open field, and one would think a violent cannonade at the bend of the river where there were two fords might have commanded attention in that quarter, and that there were British troops enough to make a demonstration that could be converted into a real attack at another point. In the report there is nothing about a pontoon train to put promptly two or three bridges across the Tugela, and no flanking operation seemed to be possible; but that movement should always be at the command of a superior force. Napoleon crossed the Alps to get behind the Austrians, who were furiously besieging Genoa, drew them out and defeated them. General Sherman flanked the Confederate army out of strong positions from Resaca to Atlanta, and his method was as simple as effective. Having the superior force, thirty per cent., probably more, he occupied the whole front of his antagonist and extended one of his flanks so as to overlap the line of the enemy; then swung a division or corps like a gate to strike the tip of the Confederate wing and crumple it up. When Joe Johnston, who had a great faculty for the business of war, was pressed by this flanking operation, he fell back to another position. The flanking compelled him to retire or to advance, and it was not his game to challenge a general battle with an army greatly stronger than his command. Rivers were not found an insurmountable obstacle in the American war at any time or place. At Fredericksburg the Americans laid pontoons across the Rappahannock in the face of the fire of Mississippi riflemen admirably posted in the cellars whose ventilating windows served as port-holes overlooking the river and the landing. New Conditions of Warfare It is to be said, however, that the firearms a generation ago did not have a range of a mile, even of half a mile, but the Confederate rifles were effective the whole breadth of the river. The material difference is that the Mausers of to-day have combined four times the range of our old "Springfields" with magazines of four metal cartridges in a "clip"; and one of the problems of the Boer and British war is as to the change made in and by the improvement of the small arms. It must affect the conditions of combats radically; and all the nations are going to the war school in South Africa.

Plan of the Fight

General Buller's report of the action in which he was discomfited is as noticeable for what it does not contain consecutively as for its communicativeness in some respects. He "moved in full strength," starting at four A.M. The first attack was at the left-hand ford, and a failure. The selection of that point for an assault is a curious one, as it was on ground two-thirds surrounded by a curve of the river, and exposed to fire on the front and both flanks. The general says the work could not be done there, but he does not say how soon he became convinced of that; and there was a second attack made on what may be best described as the right center. The British succeeded in occupying Colenso Station and the houses near the bridge. How great the expectations of the British general were to force a passage of the second ford, then assailed, we have to conjecture, for no two accounts agree, except—and this is between the lines—that the British army at last lost hope and heart. The plan was first to strike with the left wing, and when that had failed, with the right, supporting right and left with the center. The turn of the day was soon to be determined, and "at that moment" the general truly says—he means the crisis of the affair—he "heard" that two field batteries and also six naval guns, twelve pounders, quick fire, were "out of action," Hors du combat. The general adds that Colonel Long, who commanded the artillery, "in his desire to be within effective range, advanced close to the river. It proved to be full of the enemy, who suddenly opened a galling fire at close range."

Mistaken but Heroic Advantage

The general commanding does not appear to have been well informed. He must have been exceedingly ill supplied with intelligence that should have been commonplace, if he didn't expect to find the ground near the river full of the enemy, and there is a peculiarity in announcing the sudden opening of a galling fire at close range that one feels it to be needful to account for. The location of the battery was 800 yards from the bank of the river. This is stated by the correspondent of the Times, who adds the action of Colonel Long in advancing his guns was "mistaken but heroic," and this writer imparts definiteness to the situation when he tells that Long took his batteries into action "within 800 yards of the river to the left of the railway, and 1250 yards from his objective—a ridge situated beyond Fort Wylie." It was, therefore, "heroic" to go with artillery within three quarters of a mile of the "objective!" The consequence, the correspondent says, was "the guns were exposed to a perfect inferno of rifle and shell fire; officers, men and horses fell in rapid succession, but, nevertheless, the guns went on, unlimbered and opened a steady fire, causing that of the enemy to abate to an appreciable degree. In this position the batteries remained for an hour and a half."

Attack Fruitless

The specific statements appear to show that the correspondent had a better comprehension of the situation than the general. The correspondent says that the guns were fired upon with rifle and shell fire, but went on and opened a steady fire and remained there an hour and a half. What point of time of this hour and a half General Buller refers to in stating that at this "moment" he heard that the batteries were "out of action," is for investigation. Later on, we ascertain that the general had sent these guns "back." They must, therefore, have been turned from the fruitless attack on the left to help the one that seemed more hopeful on the right, but this couldn't happen in a moment. The artillery fire caused that of the enemy to abate, but at the distance of 1,250 yards from the objective the horses of the batteries were killed and so many of the men fell that the guns could not be served, and more than that, the ammunition could not be replenished.

This is the most striking example given in active service of the efficacy of the modern rifle. It overpowered the well-served artillery rapid-fire twelve-pounders. The exhaustion of the ammunition may be in part attributed to the activity of the batteries in the attack on the left. As the men were disabled, so that the guns could not be served, it was not worth while to forward ammunition, and dispatches state that at the time when the guns ceased firing, "twenty carts went to the rear with the wounded." This, of course, by grace of the Boers.

Boers Capture the Guns

A further statement is that the artillery detachment "doubled back," which means retreated without order and into a depression—a donga or ravine—where they "found they were protected from the enemy's fire, but exposed to the burning heat of the sun." General Buller and staff rode in that direction. Two of the staff were hit, and the General himself touched, when heroic efforts were made in which the only son of Lord Roberts fell in the act of rescuing the two guns that were restored to the British army. The presence of the Commander-in-Chief at the scene of the greatest danger is noted, but his resources must have been at the time exhausted. The correspondent we have just quoted covers a considerable lapse of time in these words: "At a late hour in the afternoon, while the men were lying without hope of succor under the rays of the still blazing sun, a strong party of Boers crossed the river.[1] Firing was stopped, and they surrounded the guns which had been taken to the donga for shelter, and captured the whole of them. This is positive, and appears to be at least as authentic as anything official. There is a great gap in the story of the battle that still is to be credited to the censor. A correspondent's letter, early wired, says the Boers crossed the river, and it would appear at this place, but other accounts say that they were intrenched on the British side of the river a little further to the right so extensively they could not be flanked, and they were so numerous they had been offensive and caused the Commander-in-Chief to refer to them as "oppressing his right flank," which was to threaten his retreat. General Buller and his staff are not referred to further than in their appearance in attempting to save the guns. Whether the British artillery and small arms were of as long range as those of the enemy, is one of the questions that rises up and will not down in this connection. The extent of the disaster to the British is emphasized by the knowledge that the guns captured and carried off by the Boers were not only 800 yards distant from the river, but had been, after the batteries had ceased firing, taken into the ravine which was used for shelter only—at least, that is one of the assertions that are made. Colonel Bullock, who attempted to reinforce the artillery and was driven into the ravine, and forced to surrender, but at the same time the men with him "managed to make good their escape in the confusion."

[1] They had a bridge behind a hill over the Tugela, bearing on Buller's right.

Why Were the Guns Lost

Another question forces itself upon the student of the situation as it existed at this time: Why could not the guns on the British side of the river, more than a furlong from the bank, be put under the fire of British marksmen and saved? Why were the Boers, who came over and swarmed around them safe, while the British had been crushed on that very spot by an "inferno" fire? The Boers could hardly have been in superior force and position on both sides of the river. Early in the action the British had captured Colenso and the houses near the bridge. That position should have offered advantages for those who could consider the propriety of remaining upon the defensive. General Buller certainly was wise in not sacrificing lives in attempts that he saw would for some cause be vain to bring off the guns; indeed, he should have desisted when beaten on the left. The life of Captain Roberts had been sacrificed in the attempt to recover the guns, but the long-range rifle in the hands of marksmen could have detained them on the ground where they were abandoned. If the position of the enemy was impregnable from the beginning, as is the conclusion in England, the commanding general should have known it and had the courage of his conviction to accept the defeat on the left as the end of the day's experiment. It was according to his reputation, however, to repeat the effort to force the river with increase of energy. But all depended upon the distance from the river that was to be passed—a battery could be in range of the Boer's position and not stricken with their rifle fire and put out of action. There was no eye that made and applied this measurement. It is another form of the question: At what distance is a self-cocking revolver a better weapon than a magazine rifle?

Buller's Explanation

The key to the intelligence of the further proceedings is that the Boers were strongly posted on the south side of the river and pressing at close quarters the right wing of the British army. General Buller explains his refusal to continue the effort to gain possession of the abandoned artillery and the men sheltered in the ravine of retreat, saying, "Of the eighteen horses thirteen were killed, and, as several of the drivers were wounded, I would not allow another attempt, as it seemed they would be a shell mark." This is definite, but not conclusive. The wounding of several drivers does not seem to have been important enough to change the fortunes of the fight; but the fact that, the general adds, he could not sacrifice life in a gallant attempt to force a passage, "unsupported by artillery," gives the reason, and a good one, for not attempting to "force a passage." The language implies that Buller was at the moment the battery was put out of action attempting to cross at the second ford—the one on the right. Of course, it was not possible to do that without the support of artillery, and it might be very difficult with the support of artillery. Conduct of the Men The general in one sentence refers to the intense heat, and adds that the conduct of the troops was "excellent," and says, in conclusion, "We abandoned ten guns." Right after saying he would not try to force a passage without artillery he remarked, "I directed the troops to withdraw, which they did in good order. Throughout the day a considerable force of the enemy was pressing on my right flank, but was kept back by the mounted men under Lord Dundonald." Though they were kept back, they were making themselves very disagreeable on General Buller's side of the river; and this happened, as exactly stated, under "the still blazing sun." One company of riflemen, half a mile away, with plenty of ammunition, if marksmen, could have made the abandoned guns too hot for the Boers to take away. The last line of the official report is, "We have retired to our camp at Chieveley." There was nothing else to do. The day was lost, and full particulars show the Boer position was impregnable. Buller had to make the attacks, and it was good generalship that gave up the assaults with a loss less than eight per cent. of troops engaged.

Fuller Accounts Needed

There is a great deal in General Buller's report that some day will have to be made more intelligible—if not to himself, in justice to the world at large. If the Boer position was impregnable, he ought not to have assaulted it, and he should have known the fact when he ceased fighting on the left. There are many indications that the first attack was more disastrous than has been reported, certainly more so than the official reports represent it, and the second effort, that on the right, according to the facts that have emerged from the turbid dispatches, was a palpable mistake; for the loss of the guns and the retreat five miles to the camp from which the army had moved in the morning, was in consequence of the second failure of the day, and the pressure, which General Buller noticed with grave concern, of the Boers on the right flank of the British. The mystery of that "pressure" is partially cleared through Laffan's Agency in these words: "The cavalry brigade had a very hot engagement. Lord Dundonal, who was in command, tried to take Lhangwana Hill on our extreme right. He found the hill occupied, by a strong force of Boers." This, of course, was on the British side of the river. Pressed All Along the Line A flanking attack was made on the Boers, but their lines "ran along some high ground to the right of the flanking party," and that prevented the capture of the hill. Lord Dundonald had a battery which shelled the Boers "until at mid-day" an order to retire was received. The battle was, therefore, going on on the right flank at the same time that it was taking place at the left hand, and, therefore, when the central movement was made by bringing up the artillery to the point where it was put out of action and the guns were captured, the British had been hard pressed all along the line, for Dundonald—we quote the correspondent—"was unable to carry out the order (given out immediately to retire) for another two hours, because as soon as the men began to move they became a target for the enemy's fire, and it was only under a continuous shell fire that the retirement was eventually effected." Here we have Dundonald, with his battery and his mounted men, attempting to carry the extreme Boer left and getting into the same shape that Colonel Long got the battery, which was to put themselves forward as a target of the Boer rifle fire, so that they could not get away for hours, if at all. The Boers dominated the whole field of battle. At this point, on the right wing the British losses were not very heavy, and the men were not discouraged, but fell back reluctantly. Bad Light and No Smoke The failures in other parts of the contested ground could not be remedied there, for, "owing to the bad light, it was impossible to see the Boers, and as they used smokeless powder, firing did not reveal their position." This "bad light" on the right flank comes in as a last and lamentable resort, when there was so much complaint of the intensity of the sunshine in other parts of the field; and it is a strain to try to understand the strange story that the Boers were obscure at all times and places and the British everywhere conspicuous. The loss of the cavalry brigade was "something more than 100 killed and wounded," but, as a writer on the spot says, this was not "tremendous."

Defeat Admitted

The soldierly character of General Buller is that of a man in full command of his faculties in extra hazardous situations. This has been shown in the Ashantee, Egyptian, Soudan and Indian fighting in which he has participated with great distinction. No other British officer has seen as much war in Africa as General Buller before his recent experience, and as his report of the reverse on the Tugela is read and examined line by line, it is seen the general felt he could afford better to take the blame on himself in full, with the exception of the placing of the batteries, than to make criticisms upon the conduct of any of the officers and men of his command; and he tells that he "heard," did not see, that "the whole of the artillery I had sent back," etc. The guns must have been used in the first attack on the left, and sending "back" was moving to the right. It is not in evidence that the batteries were exceptionally hurt until then, and there are accounts to show that they were not quickly put out of action, and so situated that they could not be helped to ammunition, nearly all the horses killed and the men wounded. The guns were not abandoned until after "continuous heavy firing we ran short of ammunition," and the men were "ordered under cover," but with "absolutely no thought of abandoning the guns, which were in no way disabled." There could be no more expressive admission of defeat.

Dazed by Defeat

As the case is critically examined, the magnitude of the British disappointment on the left, in the hook of the river, clearly amounted to a serious reverse. The general commanded the guns "back," and Colonel Long got with them too close to the river. The circumstances do not indicate that this movement was absolutely aggressive. The judgment of the general that nothing more could be done on the left was correct, but we can hardly appreciate the extreme surprise that he showed when the failure on the left was repeated with on the right; and it strikes one who strives to follow the changes of the engagement that the "pressure" from the Boers on the British right was the factor that determined General Buller to give the order to retreat. The explanation of this is that in the afternoon the situation of the British army was more critical than has been admitted, and yet General Buller had more than 15,000 neither killed, disabled nor captured. It must be true that the defeat added to the series of serious reverses of which it was the culmination, affected the army, so that the general was impressed there might be in the conditions the elements of a far greater disaster, and he took on himself more blame than was his share of the responsibility for the issue. If this is controverted, he must himself have been profoundly affected and awed, if not dazed, by the immense disappointment of the day, during which the three British attacks were successive demonstrations of an impracticable undertaking; and late in the day, the four o'clock march in the morning, the intense heat, the extreme exertion, and the discouraging results of all encounters with the enemy "took it out" of the British army for the day, until it was the belief of the general, whose fame has been that of coming out under desperate circumstances with striking achievements, that there would be more certainly risked than possibly gained in further efforts to save the guns and hold the field, and hence the order to return to camp.

Startled and Disturbed but Haughty

The call for Lord Roberts and Lord Kitchener to save the campaign, the refusal of risks until Lord Roberts arrived, is based upon information that the War Office and the Commander-in-Chief have not shared with the world at large. The defeat of the army of General Buller in attempting to cross the Tugela River for the relief of the strenuously besieged city of Ladysmith was in the positive likeness of the preceding reverses of the British arms on three other lines and, therefore, more startling and disturbing to the people of Great Britain and the Greater Britain, but they met the renewed and increased demands upon them with a gloom that was haughty, and a resolution that did not falter, for they knew it was in the issue to lose or gain an empire. The official figures of British casualties in the Battle of Colenso were, officers killed 5, wounded 36; men killed, 145, wounded 751; missing, officers 21; men 332. Total, 1,290—about eight per cent.

Buller Attacks

The Boer account of the battle dated Colenso, December 15, 1899, said:

"At dawn to-day the long-expected attack by the British was made. Commandant Pretorius, with the artillery, gave the alarm that General Buller's Ladysmith relief column was advancing on the Boer positions close to the Tugela and Colenso, and was in full battle array.

"The centre consisted of an immense body of infantry, while the flank was formed by two batteries of artillery. On each side were strong bodies of cavalry supporting the troops.

"The Boer artillery preserved absolute silence and did nothing to disclose their position. Two batteries of British artillery came up within rifle range of our foremost position, and the Boers then opened fire with deadly effect. Our artillery next commenced operations, and, apparently, absolutely confused the enemy, who were allowed to think the bridge open for them to cross the river.

"The British right flank meanwhile attacked the southernmost position held by the Boers, but our Mauser rifle fire was so tremendous that they rolled back like a spent wave, leaving ridges and ridges of dead and dying humanity behind them.

"Again the British advanced to attack, and again they fell back, swelling the heaps of dead. The cavalry charged up to the river, where the Ermelo commando delivered such a murderous fire that two batteries of cannon had to be abandoned. So tremendous a cannonade has seldom been heard. The veldt for miles round was covered with dead and wounded.

"The result of the engagement was a crushing British defeat. Nine cannon were captured and brought across the river.

"The official returns of the Boer losses were thirty killed and wounded."

"A Crushing British Defeat."

All this about a combat in which the British losses, the names of the killed, wounded and missing given, assuring accuracy were one per cent. of Buller's men in action were killed. One wonders what words the Boers will have left to use if they do win a great battle. The British account is in some respects less florid than that of the Boers. We quote the account least picturesque of the correspondents:

A British Account

"The Dublins and Connaughts advanced magnificently against the almost overwhelming fire, men falling at every step. As they approached the river the enemy's fire seemed to redouble. Every time a company rose to its feet to advance there was a perfect crash of musketry, and the plain all round them became a cloud of dust spurts. It seemed wonderful that any man could survive it. And yet there was nothing to tell where the enemy lay concealed. Not a single head even was visible; nothing but a long line of smoke, scarcely visible, and the incessant crackling roar. The batteries sent shell after shell wherever they could distinguish the line of the trenches, but they failed to silence the terrible fire. At last our men reached the river, but where there should have been a ford there was seven feet of water. The few who tried to cross it, overcome by the weight of rifle and ammunition, were drowned. The rest lined the bank, and poured in a tremendous fire on the still almost invisible enemy. Then came the general's order to retire."

A letter from General Buller's camp, showing that the British army, on the way presumably to relieve Ladysmith, consisted of twenty-three battalions (23,000 men), says, "It is not to be expected that a single battalion had 600 men in the firing line. Many barely had 400. I am making a generous calculation by allowing 500 men per battalion."

The press states Buller had 30,000 men, including the sick, camp guards, camp duties, lines of communication troops, standing pickets and standing posts, permanent signallers, clerks, orderlies, cooks, bakers, butchers.

A Foredoomed Failure

Then come the deductions made on the field escorts, flag signallers, orderlies, detached flankers, ammunition bearers, stretcher bearers, fall-outs, and Buller's attacking force was 10,000 infantry, 700 sabers and 48 guns. It requires infantry to take a position, and it is the drill book defined principle that an attack to have a chance of success must be four assailants to one defender. The Boers could put as many in the trenches as the British could send against them, and, therefore, the assault was a foredoomed failure.


The Siege of Ladysmith.

Location of Ladysmith

The siege of Ladysmith began November 2, 1899, the third day after the British disaster at Nicolson's Nek, that is, the affair in which six companies of the Royal Irish Fusiliers marched out with four companies of the Gloucestershire regiment to seize the Nek, seven miles northwest of Ladysmith, and they were caught, the mules stampeded with artillery and ammunition, and the Fusiliers and supports were penned, and there were next day empty camps and the British Empire was shaken. The town of Ladysmith is 169 miles from Durban, 3,285 feet above the level of the sea, and is the chief town of the Klip River division of the Klip River country in Natal; it is on a tongue of land formed by the Klip River. There is a sheltering semi-circle of hills. The position of General White, the British commander, is out of town on the hill tops that overlook Ladysmith. The town hall in this place is of the Doric style, and cost $30,000. It is of blue whinstone and white freestone. The town is an important railway center, and has shops for railway repairs. The distance from Colenso where Buller was checked is only sixteen miles. Dundee is distant forty-seven and a half miles; Glencoe forty-two miles; Estcort fifty-three miles. When General Symons won the fight at Dundee and was mortally wounded, he ordered that he and other wounded be placed in hospitals and his column marched to Ladysmith. General Symons had won the field, carried a very strong position brilliantly but with heavy loss, and retreated before the rushing reinforcements of the Boers. General Yule set out with the able-bodied troops—four battalions of infantry, three batteries, and a small body of the 13th Hussars. By daybreak they were nine miles away in the hills. At 2 P.M. they had reached Beith, subsequently passing unmolested through the rocky defiles of Waschbank, emerging safely on the third day into the open country. General White, finding a Boer attempt would be made to cut off Yule, sallied forth and drove the Boers from their position on a hill 8,000 feet high. Timely Arrival of Naval Brigade While General White was out fighting, the Naval Brigade, that has done so much to assist the British defence of Ladysmith, arrived. General White reported 3 P.M., October 30th:

"I sent No. 10 Mountain Battery with Royal Irish Fusiliers and Gloucester Regiment to take up a position on the hills to clear my left flank. The force moved at 11 P.M. last night, and during some night firing the battery mules stampeded with some of the guns, which, however, I hope to recover. The two battalions have not yet returned, but are expected this evening."

First Serious Reverse

This was the first notice of the disaster. At 11.35 P.M., October 30th, General White sent his announcement of the first "serious reverse," in these terms:

"I have to report a disaster to a column sent by me to take a position on hill to guard the left flank of the troops in these operations to-day.

"The Royal Irish Fusiliers, No. 10 Mountain Battery, and the Gloucester Regiment were surrounded in the hills, and, after losing heavily, had to capitulate.

"I formed the plan in carrying out which the disaster occurred, and am alone responsible for the plan.

"No blame whatever attaches to the troops, as the position was untenable."

The Excitement in London

The excitement and depression in London about this news was representative of that throughout the empire, and it was astonishing in its degree. The Boers hastened to close around Ladysmith and cut off railroad and telegraphic communication, and very soon had connected railway tracks giving themselves free run into Natal and communication with Pretoria. In the gloom of these inauspicious incidents the siege of Ladysmith began, forcing the policy of relief of places in the most difficult country to prevail, and making costly combats certain, and scattered operations, according to ordinary judgment, necessary. It is a question that will long be discussed whether it would have been better to destroy the stores at Ladysmith and withdraw the troops to Colenso, or even further, for concentration and movement with one irresistible column, but this is all speculation. The siege of Ladysmith is a stirring chapter of history forever.

Distribution of Forces

Sir George White's official report was forwarded by Sir Redvers Buller from Cape Town, under date of November 9th. Sir George took command of Natal forces October 7th, and he says:

"The information available regarding the positions occupied by the armies of the two Dutch Republics showed the great bulk of the forces of the Orange Free State were massed near the passes of the Drakensberg mountains, west of Ladysmith. The troops of the South African Republic were concentrated at various points west, north, and east of the northern angle of Natal."

THE TREACHERY OF A WOUNDED DERVISH. An incident in the Soudan War 1898.
An incident in the Soudan War 1898.

THE LAST STAND OF THE KHALIFA'S STANDARD BEARER. A thrilling incident in the late Soudan war. "That one man, alone, was standing alive, holding his flag upright a storm of lead sweeping past him--his comrades dead around him."
A thrilling incident in the late Soudan war. "That one man, alone,
was standing alive, holding his flag upright a storm of lead sweeping
past him—his comrades dead around him."

October 10th, the Boer war ultimatum was received. Sir George desired to withdraw the troops from Glencoe, but the Governor of Natal said, "Such a step would involve great political results and possibilities of so serious a nature that I determined to accept the military risk of holding Dundee as the lesser of two evils. I proceeded in person to Ladysmith on October 11th, sending on Lieutenant-General Sir William Penn Symons to take command at Glencoe.

"The Boers crossed the frontier both on the north and west on October 12th, and next day the Transvaal flag was hoisted at Charlestown. My great inferiority in numbers necessarily confined me strategically to the defensive, but tactically my intention was and is to strike vigorously whenever opportunity offers."

Sir George states that it was Sir W. P. Symons' intention to make a direct attack on the enemy's position under cover of a small wood and of some buildings, and continues:

Symons' Death and Victory

"At 8.50 A.M. the Infantry Brigade were ordered to advance. The ground was open and intersected by nullahs, which, running generally perpendicular to the enemy's position, gave very little cover. At 9 A.M. Sir W. P. Symons ordered up his reserves, and advanced with them through the wood at 9.15 A.M. At 9.30 A.M. the Lieutenant-General was, I regret to report, mortally wounded in the stomach, and the command devolved upon Brigadier-General Yule.

"About 11.30 A.M. the enemy's guns were silenced and the artillery moved into a range of 1,400 yards and opened a very rapid fire on the ridge over the heads of our infantry. This temporarily brought under the enemy's rifle fire, and enabled our infantry to push on. The ground in places was so steep and difficult that the men had to climb it on hands and knees; but by 1 A.M. the crest was reached, and the enemy, not waiting to come to close quarters, retired."

The loss of a detachment followed, and Sir George says:

"The Boer force engaged in this action is computed at 4,000 men, of whom about 500 were killed or wounded. Three of their guns were left dismounted on Talana Hill, but there was no opportunity of bringing them away."

Elandslaagte and Engagements

In his account of the Elandslaagte engagement, Sir George details the fight and closes:

"Our men worked forward in short rushes of about fifty yards. Many of the Boers remained lying down, shooting from behind stones until our men were within twenty or thirty yards of them, then sometimes ran for it and sometimes stood up and surrendered. These latter individuals were never harmed, although just previous to surrendering they had probably shot down several of our officers and men.

"At length the guns were reached and captured, and the end of the ridge was gained, from which the whole of the enemy's camp, full of tents, horses and men, was fully exposed to view at fixed sight range. A white flag was shown from the centre of the camp, and Colonel Hamilton ordered the 'cease fire' to be sounded. The men obeyed, and some of them moved a short distance down the hill towards the camp. For a few moments there was a complete lull in the action, and then a shot was heard, which was followed by a deadly fire from the small conical copje to the east of the camp, and by a determined charge up hill by some thirty or forty Boers, who effected a lodgment near the crest line within fifteen or twenty paces of our men, who fell back for a moment before the fierce suddenness of this attack. Only for a moment, however, for our fire was at once reopened, and, reinforced by a timely detachment of the 1st Battalion Devonshire Regiment, they charged back, cheering, to the crest line, when the remnant of the Boer force fled in confusion towards the north.

"The 1st Devonshire Regiment charged with fixed bayonets, and the cavalry squadrons went through and through the retreating enemy. Sir George White estimates the Boer losses at over 100 killed, 108 wounded and 188 prisoners."

Closing in of Ladysmith

The close of the General's report is full of significance:

"Reverting to my action at Rietfontein on October 24th, I may mention in general terms that my object was not to drive the enemy out of any positions, but simply to prevent him crossing the Newcastle road from west to east and so falling on General Yule's flank. This object was attained with entire success, the enemy suffering severely from our shrapnel fire, which was very successful in searching the reverse slopes of the hills on which he was posted. Our own loss amounted to one officer and eleven men killed; six officers and ninety-seven men wounded, and two missing. The details of this action, as well as the various plans and returns, which should accompany a despatch, will be forwarded later; but I am anxious that this report should be sent off at once, as it is very doubtful whether any communications by rail with Pietermaritzburg will remain open after to-day."

Defences of Ladysmith

The story of constructing the fortifications of Ladysmith is very handsomely told in a letter dated November 21st:

"The defences were incomplete, and it was felt that the enemy, if determined, could make an impression upon every section. Probably the civilian population had not realized this, but it was obvious to those concerned in their construction; and if it had not been for the moral effect of the naval guns it is doubtful if the defences would have been finished in time to meet the assault when it was made. The devotion with which the sailors drew and returned the enemy's fire while all other troops were engaged in building breastworks stands unprecedented. The first three days their guns had little or no parapets, and the men had to stand to in the open. The luck of the British service was with them, for, though the ground round the guns was furrowed and plowed in every direction, no appreciable damage was done to any group. With the naval gunners drawing the fire it was possible for the men to work at day on some of the posts. But on others nothing could be done except at night, and the men, as soon as they were relieved from holding the crest lines, were forced to exchange rifle for pick and shovel and to spend the night intrenching. But each twenty-four hours that the Boers delayed the assault saw the safety of Ladysmith increase, until, by November 7th, those responsible for the line of defences were confident that we could hold our own. But after the experience of November 9th, the Boers have made no further attempt to reduce Ladysmith by storm.

A Narrow Escape

There were eleven miles of defences. This early incident of the siege is told:

"Colonel Ian Hamilton and staff, including Lord Ava and Colonel F. Rhodes, escaped a serious burst by a few moments. They were about to have breakfast when a shell from the Peppworth battery entered the plinth of the house and, passing into the cellar, burst under the breakfast table. The force of this explosion drove the floor planks of the room through the ceiling and roof."

The famous war correspondent, G. W. Stevens, who died of fever in Ladysmith during the siege, gave at a dash a diagram and picture of the city that will be memorable for British valor and the tenacity of the Boers, and the proof that the former are as fierce on the offensive as they are firm on the defensive, and Ladysmith will be fixed in history as a spot that was for months the pivot upon which events that effected the destiny of nations turned. This paragraph is an outline drawing of the correspondent whose reputation was won in adventures of hardihood, personal bravery in going to the fire lines where history is made, and a rare talent for rapid and vivid pencillings by the way:

Surroundings of Ladysmith

"If the reader will bear in mind what a horse's hoof inverted looks like, he may get a mental picture of Ladysmith and its surroundings—the heels of the horseshoe pointing eastward, where, five miles off, is the long, flat top of steep Bulwaan, like the huge bar of a gigantic horseshoe magnet, The horse's frog approximately represents a ridge, behind which, and facing Bulwaan, but separated from it by broad stretches of meadow, with the Klip River winding a serpentine course through them, between high banks is Ladysmith town. Between the frog and the horseshoe lie our various camps, mostly in radiating hollows, open either to the east or west, but sheltered from cross fires by rough kopjes of porphyritic boulders that have turned brown on the surface by exposure to sunshine. Bushy tangles of wild, white jasmine spring from among those boulders with denser growth of thriving shrubs, bearing waxen flowers that blaze in brilliant scarlet and orange."

Preparations for the Siege

The Natal Witness has contained striking accounts of the situation in Ladysmith. "The people cut off in the town, having been notified that Joubert would begin the bombardment in a day or two, sought places of safety. The Royal Hotel people flitted to the deep, rocky ravine through which the Port road runs towards the camp. In the bottom of the ravine, with precipitous banks on each side of the high stone viaduct, used once for the conveyance of water to the town, towards the mouth of the ravine, a well-protected little camp was formed, and here the Royal continued to cater for such of its guests as thither went. The Railway Hotel closed. Mr. and Mrs. Chisnall, of the Crown Hotel, did better than the others. They kept their hotel open, and, not too much afraid of shells, which never came, continued to do their best for their clients, despite shrinkage of supplies. Along the bottom of the ravine, already referred to, were numerous tents, people—men and women—took up their abode amongst the trees and rocks, and several individuals found holes amongst the rocks on the sides of the ravine into which they could stow a few of their possessions, and crawl into, themselves, when the shells began to whistle overhead.

Caves Excavated for Families

"In the clay banks of the ravine caves were excavated. Many of these places showed there had been no lack of energy and ingenuity employed in their preparation. Narrow entrances opened into cavities large enough, some of them, for a dozen people to stand upright in at one time, and into these interiors had been brought bedding, seats, food and cooking appliances. Some folks, less energetic or less apprehensive, contented themselves by scooping out the banks so as to have a few feet of covering over their heads. Into one of these scooped-out terraces were set two long garden seats, and on these the father and mother and a big family of little children intended to sit in a row when the shells began, with their backs firm against the earthen wall behind, and their eyes upon the Klip River below. Within a distances of less than half a mile between twenty and thirty such places had been prepared.

"Monday, November 7th, the bombardment began. Early in the morning Boer shells were whistling overhead, banging and crashing as they reached the earth, from end to end of the town. There is a glorious uncertainty about Boer shells. Whether their erratic course is due to deliberation or merely the result of poor gunnery, I cannot pretend to decide. But the fact remains that the shells from the Dutch positions fell in the most unexpected places.

"Some fell near the camps by the river, and some caused considerable alarm to the cave-dwellers by alighting near their cool retreats. Others, again, went far over Ladysmith, striking the bare hills, causing a loud report and a cloud of dust, and that was about all. About 4 o'clock in the afternoon, the shelling was heavy. Shrapnel came from Umbulwan, and the shells bursting over the town; the bullets, iron segments and shot rattled on the housetops at times like hail. From 4 o'clock to 4.20 twenty-two shells came from the Boer guns, but taking the entire day the number of shells would not average one every two minutes."

Town Hall Struck

"Shelling by the enemy's smaller guns started before 8 o'clock (November 22d), but the backyards of houses in the vicinity of Port road west, was the designation of the missiles. "Slim Piet" chimed in after breakfast, with no respect for the Red Cross. After sending a few into the centre of the town, he succeeded in striking the right wing of the Town Hall, which has all along been the office of the town clerk. The bomb—a 94-pounder—entered the roof, crashed through the ceiling, and thence against the back wall of the wing. Here it encountered a well-constructed stone wall about two and a half feet thick. The resistance was tremendous, but a portion of the wall gave way with the explosion, which wrecked the inside of the office, smashed every pane of glass, and threw splinters in every direction. The most remarkable thing about this was that at the moment several soldiers belonging to the Hospital Corps were engaged at breakfast under what was considered the friendly shelter of the wall. When the partition wall gave way they were literally covered with the falling debris, and many received bruises and scratches, but not one was severely wounded.

Patients Removed

"A huge cloud of dust rose high above the building, intermingled with the smoke, which issued forth from the windows. About fifty patients were inside the Town Hall at the time, and these were immediately removed into a large excavation adjacent to the building. A stone weighing about seventy pounds was thrust from the wall a distance of about 100 yards. The "Powerful" men's reply to this bomb of "Slim Piet's" was a plugged shell, which had the desired effect of silencing him for a few hours. The other Boer guns kept taking hot shots. One of these from Lombard's Kop struck and exploded on the top of a partially built house, which was being used as the kitchen for the Natal Police Field Force. Trooper Duncanson, who was at work there, was hit on the right side by portions of the shell, and died almost immediately. Then there was a cessation until dusk, when "Long Tom" sent half a dozen shells into Ladysmith very close to the Town Hall. "Night cometh on apace," and soon all was wrapped in darkness. The elements went to war; thunder and lightning, rain, and a half gale prevailing. Heaven's artillery seemed to mock the puny thunders of man's more deadly weapons. The Boers started firing at 10.40 P.M., and our guns, which must have been trimmed and ready, responded with alacrity.

"To date (25th November), the Boers have on three occasions shelled the town and camp at night. In the quietness of the night the noise of the shelling—the firing of the guns and the bursting of the shells—was awful in its volume and intensity."

Midnight Bombardment

A Ladysmith letter gives a thrilling account of a midnight bombardment: "To be awakened at midnight by a shower of ninety-four pound shells was a painful shock to the opinion we had formed of the good nature of the Boer Commander. Many people would not believe it, and concluded that they were victims of nightmare. But steel shells, with a bursting charge of melinite, do not encourage delusions.

"By the time half a dozen had rent the sky with terrific crash the town was awake, and silent figures in undress were flitting like uneasy ghosts about gardens and verandas. This was a new and unpleasant experience, very trying to the nerves. It had taken several days to get accustomed to shell fire between dawn and dusk. At first the flight of a shell turned one's thoughts to the caves in the river bank. But, after a time, when one began to realize how little damage was done, the instinct of Fate—more common among men of the East than of the West—asserted itself. The light of the sun and the presence of a crowd gave a sense of security. Everybody, unconsciously it may be, puts the question, "Why should a shell hit me rather than another?" In the solitude and shadows of the night this confidence in destiny is a sorry support. Each man thinks himself the sole target of the enemy, and feels that every shell is aimed at the pit of his stomach.

An Awe-Inspiring Cannonade

"The night was dark, and a solemn stillness was in the air, when suddenly the hills burst into intense and lurid life. The long black ridges kindled under a bright red flame. Then come the fateful moments. Scorching the deep blue sky, the shell rushes onward in seemingly interminable flight. During the day, amid the stir of life, this invisible, death-laden progress sounds short and sharp, like an arrow from a bow. The suspense is brief. But at night it sweeps alone like a meteor from horizon to zenith, and descends in a hissing curve like a white-hot bolt plunging into a fathomless sea. A second later and earth and air and sky are rent with the crash of bursting steel; a tongue of flame leaps upward, and the great amphitheatre of hills seethes with steel bullets and fragments of shell. For several nights the enemy kept up this awe-inspiring cannonade. The only result was to disturb one's slumber, and to drive women, children and a few nervous men to the caves."

Ladysmith Hard Pressed

January 6th the Boers made a desperate rush to storm Ladysmith, and the last heliographic message received at 3.15 P.M. by Sir Redvers Buller consisted only of the words, "Attack renewed. Very hard pressed." The sunlight then failed, and only a "camp rumour" that the Boers were defeated at 5 P.M., with a loss of 400 prisoners was forthcoming. At 2 P.M. on Sunday, another message reached Frere Camp with the news that the attack had been "repulsed everywhere with very heavy loss."

Attack in Force Repulsed

On the 6th "from 3 to 8 the Boers bombarded Ladysmith more heavily than at any time previously during the siege," the main attack was directed against Cæsar's Camp and Wagon Hill, a partially detached spur of the same feature about three-quarters of a mile west. The total extent of front assaulted was about three miles, and the Boer guns on Bulwana Hill and Lombard's Kop co-operated as soon as there was sufficient light. The attack commenced at 2.45 A.M. The first assault was repulsed before 9 A.M., although fighting was still going on when Sir George White's earliest message was dispatched—"The enemy were in great strength, and pushed their attack with the greatest courage and energy." How severe the struggle was is evident from the statement that "some of our intrenchments on Wagon Hill were three times taken by the enemy and retaken by us." At this point, specially exposed, Colonel Ian Hamilton commanded, and "rendered valuable services." Sir George White further reports that "one point in our position was occupied by the enemy the whole of the day; but at dusk, in a very heavy rainstorm," the Boers were driven out "at the point of the bayonet" by the 1st Devonshire Regiment. "The attack continued until 7.30 P.M."


GOOD-BYE, DADDIE. The little son of Piper-Major Lang of the Scots Guards bidding his father farewell
The little son of Piper-Major Lang of the Scots Guards bidding his father farewell


Correct casualty return, Ladysmith, January 6th:


  Officers as reported .........  13
  Rank and file ................ 135
      Killed ................... --- 148


  Officers as reported .........  28
  Rank and file ................ 244
      Wounded .................. --- 272
      Total killed and wounded ..... 420

Boer Version of Storming Ladysmith

The Boer version of their attempt to storm Ladysmith, January 6th, is as follows:


"A bold attack was made yesterday morning by the commandoes investing Ladysmith on the British fortifications on the Platrand Ridge. The operations that ensued were most exciting in their character. The storming parties were greeted, on reaching the edge of the rugged plateau, by a tremendous hail of shot and shell from the British artillery. No attempt was made, however, to hold the first line of schanzes, or stone breastworks, at the top of the hill, and these were promptly occupied by the Boer sharpshooters. At the next row, however, an exceedingly stubborn resistance was made, and with good effect, every inch of ground being most stubbornly contested. Conspicuous bravery was displayed on both sides.

"After ten o'clock the British artillery fire slackened perceptibly, but then ensued a most terrific individual contest among the riflemen for the possession of the ridge. At noon a heavy thunderstorm broke over the position, interrupting the battle for two hours. It seemed as though the heavenly batteries were using their best endeavors to create an even more terrific noise than the cannon and the rifles of the contending armies. Though the Burghers succeeded ultimately in gaining possession of most of the British positions on the western side of the Platrand they were finally obliged to retire from most of the ground they had occupied. The British losses were apparently severe, their ambulances being busy for many hours. The Boer losses were about 100 killed and wounded, the Free State contingents being the heaviest sufferers. Simultaneous attacks were made from the different outposts on all the British positions round Ladysmith.

Thrilling Arm's Length Encounters

"Operations are continued to-day on a smaller scale, but it is reported that as a result of one of the forlorn hopes one gun and two ammunition waggons have been captured."

    (via Lourenzo Marques, January 14th).

"Further details of the assault of Cæsar's Camp, on the Platrand, are most thrilling in their character. It is clear that the attack was most determined and the defence equally tenacious. The British were most strongly entrenched, and the walls of their redoubts were skillfully loopholed. The combat was so close that the rifles were frequently fired at arm's length between the opposing forces. It was, in fact, a hand to hand encounter in the grey dawn. The men on both sides are reported to have fought like demons, the horror and bewilderment of the scene presenting a picture without parallel in the experience of those who took part in the encounter."

PRETORIA, January 10th,
    (via Lourenzo Marques, January 14th).

"An official announcement has just been placarded to the effect that the Federal losses in Saturday's engagement were fifty-four killed (including three Free State and one Transvaal Field-Cornet) and ninety-six wounded.

Lord Duefferin's son, the Earl of Ava, was mortally wounded in the repulse of the Boers, and died January 11th.

The monotony of the siege was varied by several brilliant sorties, in one of which the Boers testified the British did "fine work." On two occasions Boer siege guns were captured and destroyed. A letter dispatched by a Kaffir, dated Ladysmith, January 21st, mentioned that "Buller's guns are eagerly watched shelling the Boer position with lyddite. As each shot strikes, dense volumes of brown smoke arise, the lyddite shells being thus quite distinguishable from ordinary shrapnel shells.

Fortifications Strengthened; Fever Abating

"Six Boer camps are visible between Ladysmith and Potgeiter's Drift, and bodies of the enemy have been observed riding towards the Tugela. They are evidently determined to offer a stubborn resistance to the advance of the relief column. They have given no indication of any intention to remove their guns, but have put new ones up recently and are still continually working at their fortifications.

"Since the 6th inst. our fortifications on Wagon Hill and Cæsar's Camp have been greatly strengthened, and Ladysmith is now practically impregnable.

"Doubtless owing to the dry weather, fever has abated in the garrison. The number of convalescents returning from Intombi camp exceeds that of the patients sent out.

"Our commissariat has been most ably managed during the siege, and our supplies are lasting splendidly. All the troops have a sufficiency of wholesome food. The heat is terrific, being 107 degrees in the shade at the present moment.

Insurmountable Obstacles

The surroundings of the now forever famous city of Ladysmith have been described as a crescent a horse shoe, and a soup plate with a big piece chipped out. It was named after the Spanish wife of General Sir Harry Smith in 1840. Before the Britain and Boer War it was a noted railway station on the great line to Pretoria and beyond. The siege lasted within two days of four months. Relief came on the last night in February. The besiegers held on after they knew Lord Roberts was successfully invading the Orange Free State, hoping that he might be repulsed, and they resisted with their accustomed energy the fourth attack by the army under Sir Redvers Buller, whose first advance and reverse was December 15th. His second general advance to force the Boer lines on the Tugela pivoted on Spion Kop, gallantly carried and held for some time, but evacuated January 26th. General Buller's third advance was on February 5th, but his attack was not pressed, for the obstacles were manifestly insurmountable except by a sacrifice too great to be considered.

Success at Last

February 20th, the fourth advance was made and a severe struggle occurred. The Irish troops distinguished themselves, especially, and the Welsh Fusiliers suffered the loss 252 men killed and wounded. General Buller recalled his battalions from the first position assailed, and put them in again in force on his extreme right and carried by storm Pieters Hill. Buller's artillery was very effectively used on this occasion. On the afternoon of February 28th the British commander ascertained that the ridges toward Ladysmith were unoccupied. Lord Dundonald dashed forward with two squadrons and galloped until there was a challenge. "Who goes there?" The reply was, "The Ladysmith relieving army;" and the cavalry had a great welcome from the thin and pale faced men of the garrison, whose cheers of joy were through physical weakness feeble. The Boers had been observed from Ladysmith hastening away in a continuous stream, trekking North.

The crisis of the siege was when General Joubert ordered that the town should be taken before January 10th. The supreme effort was made at 2 o'clock the morning of the 6th, and directed upon three positions—the one most exposed, the flat topped Hill, Cæsar's camp, crescent shaped, the interior facing the Boers' position—height of crest above the town near 800 feet. The Boers advanced on the two horns of the crescent and gained an advantageous position, which they held for seventeen hours. The fight on both sides was a soldiers battle; and the British success finally was credited correctly to the leadership of the company officers.

A party of sappers, with half a company of Gordon Highlanders, were placing a gun on the critical position, Wagon Hill, and made so much noise the Boers, stealthily approaching, thought for a time their movement was discovered. The British working party added sixty rifles to the defense, and so even was the balance in the combat, the repulse of the assailants was apparently due to the accident of this force having a special service at the point of danger.

An Extraordinary Hard Struggle

The Boer assailing party was 300 strong, led by de Villiers, and as they were creeping silently up the hillside, Lieutenant Mathias, of the British Light Horse, going down to visit his post, met them and had the presence of mind to turn back with them, and when a few yards from his own picket he rushed forward and gave the alarm. This was at 2.30 A.M. It was pitch dark and the defenders after a spell of indiscriminate firing were driven back. There ensued a struggle of extraordinary character, the flashing of the rifles giving the only light. Colonel Hamilton, in command of the defenders at the ragged edge, telephoned for re-inforcements. The first to arrive were two companies of Gordon Highlanders. At 4 o'clock four other companies were ordered and in the advance Colonel Dick Conyngham was mortally wounded by a bullet that had traveled over 3,000 yards. The re-inforcements did not get up a moment too soon. At daybreak the Boers were pushing more men up the water-way by which the first assailants had advanced and their augmented firing line sorely pressed the handful of Light Horsemen who were re-inforced at the most opportune moment by Colonel Edwards. The Boers displayed their deadly marksmanship, and the Colonel, two Majors and four other officers of the Light Horse were hit within a few' minutes. Lord Ava, Colonel Hamilton's orderly officer, was in this place mortally wounded. The British infantry fire could not dislodge the Boers. It was scarcely possible to see the assailants and to live.

Desperate Efforts

To effect a rush necessitated the passage of sixty yards of open. Major Mackworth, attached to the 60th Rifles, attempted to make the rush. He fell shot through the head. Captain Codrington, 11th Hussars, commanding a squadron of the Light Horse, went forward to find cover for his men. Thirty yards away he fell, and just had strength enough to wave the Light Horse back. Lieutenant Tod, with twelve men, attempted to rush the open. He was shot dead three yards from cover.

A terrible rain storm arose, something extraordinary even for Africa. At its height the indomitable Boers increased their efforts. Colonel Hamilton called for Colonel Park, who led three companies to clear the plateau. They were commanded by Lieutenant Field, leading, Captain Lafone's and Lieutenant Masterson's companies following in order. There were sixty yards of plateau to cross; a hundred Boer magazines waiting to sweep it. Three lines of naked bayonets scintillated against the hillside. Then the Colonel rose to his feet, and the three companies rose with him as one man. With a cheer that foretold success the Devons dashed forward. Colonel Hamilton, who was just below when this sudden attack was delivered, ordered up a dismounted squadron of the 18th Hussars, and the plateau was reoccupied.



A handful of Boers with desperate valor, appeared on the crest line suddenly and unexpectedly. They were commanded by de Villiers, who dashed for the emplacement of gun.

Major Miller-Wallnutt, the only regimental officer there, and a sapper were shot dead at the gun-pit. Fortunately the sappers who, with fixed bayonets, were stationed near the emplacement, stood firm. Lieutenant Digby Jones, who had commanded them with great gallantry since the night attack, led them forward, and shot de Villiers, falling himself a moment later with a rifle bullet through his brain. Lieutenant Denniss, R.E., went on to the crest-line to search for Digby Jones. He likewise was shot dead and fell beside his brother officer.

While the rain storm was raging and the Boers were advancing through the sluicing waters, there were shouts of "retire." Major Rice pushed forward his sappers again. A subaltern rallied the broken Rifles, and the Highlanders faced round. Then they swung back again with levelled bayonets, and the Boers went headlong down the slopes.

Great Suffering in the City

Ladysmith saved from assault, the besieged force endured great privations with heroic devotion, suffering from insufficient and in part loathsome rations, a bombardment that was steadily maintained and above all, fevers arising from hideously unsanitary conditions. General Buller's telegram, dated March 2d, and announcing the success of his fourth advance, was in these terms: "I find the defeat of the Boers more complete than I had dared to anticipate." While the casualty lists during his operations assumed very grave proportions, exceeding 20 per cent. of his effective force, nothing but generalship that was at once adventurous as against the enemy and conservative of his army, would have brought triumph without a far greater expenditure of blood.


The Relief of Kimberley—-The Turn of the
Tide of War Against the Boers.

The Difference in Positions of Roberts and Buller

The first intelligence from South Africa that plainly promised the success of Lord Roberts was that, after his arrival at the Cape, there was no news of what became of the British troops disembarked there, and the newspapers had to be content with the story of embarkations and the thunderous attrition of Buller on the Tugela. He was crossing and recrossing fords, storming kops and retiring from them, and the sound of the pounding of his guns stimulated the garrison of Ladysmith to hopefulness that the hand of help was night. There was no affectation of the solemnities of secrecy and mystery about Roberts. He gave out letters and dispatches occasionally that foretold nothing, and was busy. The transports from England stopped at the Cape instead of Dunbar, and the troops appeared and disappeared. Lord Roberts and Kitchener had maps, and were keeping books.

Sir Redvers Buller found himself committed to attack the invaders of Natal for the relief of Ladysmith and to fight an invisible foe. There has been no account that a British soldier not taken prisoner saw an enemy at the Battle of Colenso. Sir Redvers had no opportunity for maneuvers, the immediate demand upon him was the achievement of the impossible. The Boers were in a fortified enchanted castle, built of mountains, safeguarded by a river, itself an immense intrenchment. The situation of Lord Roberts was different. He was in command of the British Empire and before him was Africa and he was at liberty to choose the road by which to invade the Boer states. There was but one limitation upon his freedom to exercise his power. That was that he should conduct a White Man's War. The London Mail stated the case precisely in these words:

A White Man's War

"At the beginning of our campaign we firmly refused to allow men of color to help our arms. Powerful and well-equipped tribes on the border of the Free State clamored for an opportunity to pay off old scores on their hereditary foes, but Sir Godfrey Lagden kept them back. Native Indian rulers begged to be permitted to shed their blood and that of their armies for the Empress; but while gladly recognizing their generous loyalty, England declined their offers. Our splendid Indian soldiers, among the best mountain troops in the world, only waited a signal to do their utmost for us. But England felt that this was a white man's war, to be fought out solely between white men."

The use of the black man would have raised the black flag, and that was the reason why the Asiatic troops of England were not poured into Africa and the natives of Africa invited to get even with the most cruel of the master races. The weapon of race hate by which the Boers might have been exterminated was not drawn by the British whose preference of alternatives was to shed their own blood.

The Utmost Secrecy Preserved

A railway map of South Africa pointed out to intelligent people plainly the railway line upon which Lord Roberts could advantageously muster his men to strike the enemy in their homes. Some of the bridges were blown up, some of the rails removed, but the surveys remained. The engineers had marked out the eligible pathway. The Modder River, the scene of the early successes and final fatality of Lord Methuen, reappeared in the war correspondence. A letter from Modder River camp, February 18th, said all the soldiers worked like slaves and the generals of divisions carried out the campaign planned, without faltering or blundering and there was "the utmost secrecy," so that the common people, regimental commanders, and newspaper correspondents did not obtain the slightest inkling of what the immediate future was to bring forth. Even the senior officers, who were assigned the important duty of taking the Sixth Division from Modder River, had but a hazy idea of what they would have to do after the railway had landed their troops at Enslin siding. Consequently, the spies, with which this camp undeniably has been infested, were not only unable to help their paymasters, but, even by the absence of news of our movements, lulled the Boer commanders into fancied security.

Each Step Carefully Considered

The time when General Lord Roberts was ready to move was one of critical conditions. The second attempt to relieve Ladysmith by direct movements had just failed like the first, but with greater losses. The total cost of the second effort counted in men was 1,800. The plan of operations had been carefully concealed, and executed with energy, and as one of the expert writers put it, "there was no undue haste, and the troops were not brought under the enemy's rifle fire in close formation, or forced to attempt the passage of a river, of which the water level was not known, in face of a strongly intrenched position held by an unshaken enemy. Each step was carefully considered, and no unnecessary risk was run."

The fighting quality of the British troops was well illustrated, but the lines of the Boers remained unbroken and unshaken, and the strategic consequences of this failure were more serious than when the first experiment was tried. Still, Ladysmith heliographed January 27th, "We can hold on here." The initial move of Roberts in force was successful. The invisible and invincible foe in inaccessible trenches did not rise to the occasion. The blow that was struck had not been foreseen and the spot selected fortified by the enemy. There was a change described as magical. The magic was that of a free hand and a clear head, and the magician a general capable of generalship. All at once the British columns, cavalry, infantry and artillery were "mobile". The horses "got a move on". The wagons did not stall and tangle—the field guns, big and little, trundled along merrily. The long complained of cavalry materialized under General French, going out and seeking the enemy aggressively and rushing him wherever they found him. There was something new about this. Speaking of the brilliant promise of the advance of Roberts, a military correspondent said:

A Remarkable Cavalry Movement

"What is particularly interesting is the presence of General Kelly-Kenny's Division—the Sixth—in this quarter. It was beginning to be understood that General French had brought with him a number of his cavalry from the neighborhood of Colesberg, but the fact that the whole of the Cavalry Division is now under Lord Roberts' control, together with an Infantry Division, the headquarters of which were only a few days ago at Thebus, near Steynsburg, is distinctly surprising and gratifying. The movement must have been carried out with extreme secrecy, and is calculated to greatly disconcert Boer calculations."

Kimberley Relieved

The Cavalry Division of General French described as "a magnificent force of regular and irregular horsemen and mounted infantry, whose goal was Kimberley," covered twenty-six miles in twenty-four hours through a fearful heat, and few fell out even when the burning sun was succeeded by terrific tropical rain, accompanied by the continuous and blinding lightning. The road was soon like a morass, but French plodded doggedly on and reached the Modder River at Klip Drift just before midnight. That was business, and Lord Roberts entered Jacobsdal, February 15th. Kimberley was entered February 16th. This telegram was dispatched from that town while French was still invisible.

"At 2 o'clock this afternoon a heliograph message from a range of kopjes to the left of Alexandersfontein announced that General French's column was approaching. The enemy were immediately observed to be fleeing with their guns."

On the day before, the bombardment of Kimberley had been heavy, the Boers firing 100-pound shrapnel shells. Then they fled from their laagers for the first time. February 18th, the country all around the diamond city was cleared of them and Roberts telegraphed: "The engineers have started laying the rails on the line between Kimberley and Modder River. Several herds of cattle have been captured."

The movement of French was so rapid and had such important consequences that it produced an impression that it was a peaceable procession. This extract of a summary report will correct the misapprehension:

"The New South Wales Ambulance Corps, under Lieutenant Edwards, drawn by Australian horses, kept pace with the column and picked up many wounded. They were complimented by the brigadier as being the first ambulance to cross the Modder River.

"Between the Riet and Modder Rivers the enemy attacked our flanks. Our guns promptly opened from a hillside. While our gunners were driving the Boers back with heavy shell-fire, the column pressed on at full speed. Many horses died on the march from exhaustion.

"When we reached the Modder the enemy were found to be intrenched on the opposite side. The Horse Artillery opened fire with shrapnel and the Boers ran. We captured their tents, guns, oxen, wagons, and large quantities of ammunition. The ammunition was in boxes labelled 'Biscuits, Delagoa Bay'."

In this telegram from Roberts there is a trumpet-note of triumph:

"PAARDEBERG, February 19, 7.05 P.M.
    (Thirty miles east of Jacobsdal Camp).

"Railway to Kimberley will be ready to-day.

"Methuen proceeds with reinforcements at once, and a large amount of supplies will be forwarded by rail."

A London cable to Canada said:

"A very distinguished officer said to me last night, 'It is regarded as a suspicious thing to prophecy after an event, but 'Johnny' French was under me years ago in India, and when he was only a chubby lieutenant in the 19th Hussars I saw enough of him to know that there was in him the making of such a cavalry officer as would have delighted the soul of 'Stonewall' Jackson."

London fairly rang with praises of General French for days after Kimberley's relief.

Lord Roberts found time as he was gathering his force on the Modder River to transfer the fighting to the Boer States, to address, February 9th, this letter to Presidents Kruger and Steyn:

"In continuation of my telegram of Feb. 5th, I call your Honors' attention to the wanton destruction of property by the Boer forces in Natal. They have not only helped themselves freely to the cattle and property of the farmers without payment, but also have utterly wrecked the contents of many farmhouses. As an instance I would specify Wood's Farm, near Springfield. I would point out how very different has been the conduct of the British troops. It is reported to me from Modder River that farms within the actual area of the British camp have never been entered, nor have their occupants been molested. The houses and gardens have been left absolutely untouched."

The following from the other side of the world shows the cordial reciprocity of appreciation between Lord Roberts and the most remote colonies:

"SYDNEY, Feb. 8.

"Lord Roberts has sent the following telegram to the Governor of New South Wales:

"I had the great pleasure of personally welcoming the New South Wales battery of field artillery and wish to express to your Excellency my high appreciation of the patriotic spirit which led our fellow-subjects in Australia to send such a useful and workman-like body of men to assist in the work of restoring peace, order, and freedom in South Africa."

The Lieutenant-Governor has replied:


"Ministers fully appreciate your telegram, and concur in the earnest hope that peace, order and freedom may shortly be restored in South Africa under the British flag."

Lord Roberts has telegraphed to the Governor of Victoria a similar message to that which he has sent to the Governor of New South Wales.


BOER TACTICS. Alluring the English to death with a flag of truce.
Alluring the English to death with a flag of truce.

National Qualifications for Fighters

The Boer States maintained their invasion of the British Colony of Natal for 100 days, and made for themselves a military reputation that has astonished and instructed the armed nations of the earth. We of the United States have less to learn from them than others have, because we are mobile as they are, and their horsemanship and marksmanship with rifles are among our accomplishments. The Americans, also, are as individuals self-reliant, and that makes men competent to take good care of themselves and keep their heads clear and their hands steady when there is a life and death business to do. Our traditions of Indian warfare have informed our people that among the military arts and qualifications must be ranked the preservation of the lives of soldiers, that they may not by carelessness on their own part or wantonness of superiors be wasted—though the commanding officers must be sure that orders are obeyed, when the reason why is not stated. Our volunteers have in great measure and likeness the same capacities that have distinguished the Boers in the wonderful fight they made against the British. The fact is that as fighting men the Boers closely resemble in many respects the Confederate soldiers who in the great state and sectional conflict in this country, fought with surprising address and displayed such activities—that the infantry under Stonewall Jackson were jocosely, but with justice in the compliment implied, called the "Southern Cavalry." They covered the ground nearly as fast on foot as the Boers have on horseback, and they were men whose rifles were always to be respected. There have been no bloodier wars since the days of Napoleon than that which occurred among the people of the United States when they were construing their Constitution and having a trial of battle over it; and it is a subject of speculation very curious and of interest to people of inquiring minds, what effect upon our war it would have had if at the beginning both sides had been provided with the long range rifles and artillery that are now the necessary equipments of an army. Certainly the combats would have been radically changed, and what might have been the result is left to constructive imagination.

Roberts and Buller in Co-operation

The combination of movements with which Lord Roberts opened his campaign of invasion of the Orange Free State began by massing an army of nearly 50,000 men in a place where it was expected, and this happened to be where the enemy were comparatively weak. At the same time, Sir Redvers Buller's army was hammering hard on the Tugela and the thunder of his guns continued to be heard at Ladysmith, from the outer-guarding trenches of which, the explosion of British shells could be seen, announcing that the work of relief, if not progressing, was at least continued. It had long been known by the British officers that the Boers were constantly signalled of the arrival of troops at Durban, and able to correctly gauge the army under Buller's command. They were not so well informed promptly of the movements of troops from Cape Town, and had not believed in the speedy and eagerly swift advance of Roberts, whose reputation might have been known to them, of ability to make his men "keen," which was not the state of the troops whose fine edge had been removed by the "reverses" under Methuen, Gatacre and Buller. The first blow Roberts struck furnishes a fine military study on a large scale. Of course, it materially assisted in raising the siege of Ladysmith as well as that of Kimberley. The presence of the main body of the British army in the Orange Free State, the dispersion of the besiegers of Kimberley, and the capture of Cronje's army, made sure that the only hope of the Boers was in a rushing concentration of their forces, and the lines before Buller in Natal weakened at once.

Roberts' Public Utterances

An element in the character of Lord Roberts not generally familiarly known has been developed in his public utterances since he was commanded to save his country in South Africa. Before he sailed he consented to say something for the interviewer, which shows that he is abreast of the methods of talking to the people, and he said he had "entire confidence in the British soldier." He made a few terse remarks on meeting the Highlanders in Africa after they had suffered so severely in action, and said he had been with them in India and he was glad to see them around him, always wanted to see them when there was hard work to be done. He has repeatedly taken occasion to recognize the high spirit of the Colonial contingents, putting them in places that conveyed a compliment to their courage and effectiveness as soldiers, and he has ministered to their pride in his efficient reports. In announcing the surrender of Cronje, he hoped it was "satisfactory" to Her Majesty's Government, as it was on the anniversary of Majuba Hill. He especially and handsomely acknowledged the obligations of the army in that celebration of the anniversary to the Canadian contingent, "took a day off" to visit Kimberley and address the sickly and half-starved garrison in fitting terms, and dined with Mr. Cecil Rhodes, the strong man who represents British enterprise and ambition in South Africa.

In his correspondence with the Presidents of the Boer States which they opened, Lord Roberts has been courteous in form, but in substance aggressive and incisive. Born at Cawmpore, India, of Irish parents, he has the vivacity of his blood and a talent for saying as well as doing things. There is a statue of him at Calcutta which was decorated with flowers March 1st, and a cable was sent him from Cawmpore, "Your birthplace salutes you."

General Conditions Favoring the English

Sir Redvers Buller was not idle when the decisive movements of Lord Roberts were made, and at last his pounding away battered the Boer fortresses, and the Boer commanders, seeing it was too late to take Ladysmith, retreated even more rapidly than they had advanced. General Buller did not permit them to hold him with a thin line while they were making haste to abandon Natal to defend the Transvaal. The distance between the lines of operation by Roberts and Buller made the concentration of the British and Boer armies in their new relations and change of scene a matter of time. The mobility of the Boer mounted infantry and their use of inner lines of rails enabled them to get together and prepare for actions of increased seriousness and magnitude of results. The combatants were released from monotonous sieges by the relief of Kimberley and Ladysmith. The British have had such heavy losses and bitter lessons that, while rejoicing over the good fortune of their arms, they have not weakly acted upon the theory that the war was over when Cronje surrendered and they marched deeper into the hostile state.

What a Military Specialist Says

When the third effort of General Buller to relieve Ladysmith by way of the Tugela River approaches failed, the cleverest of the military specialists, writing for the London Press, said, February 10th: "We must now hope that the resources of Ladysmith will last until strong pressure can be brought to bear in another part of the theatre of war, and meanwhile Sir R. Buller is at least detaining in his front the best force the Boers have placed in the field. Whatever may happen in Natal, the further course of the war will not be materially affected. The terrible initial strategic mistake of abandoning a principal objective for a subsidiary operation still over-weights the campaign; but the time is at hand when its baneful influence will cease to fetter our action. The great issues of the war will not be decided in Natal."

That the Boers were sufferers in Natal to an extent much greater than they have reported is shown by a Boer correspondent with the Natal Commandos, dated February 8th, from Lorenzo Marques. He called attention to the necessity of more men and wagons for the prompt removal of the wounded from the battlefield. He states that the present arrangements are most inadequate. He suggests that volunteers should be invited to form ambulance corps at Johannesburg.

The Spion Kop Affair

After the battle of Colenso, and before the successful storming of Pieter's Hill, the public attention was excited and fixed with intensity for some days on the fighting about Spion Kop—the key to the Boer position which was assailed by General Buller, January 21st and 23d. The Kop was carried by a night attack which was a very daring and hardy movement, and abandoned only after a long and bloody conflict. The British began to climb the mountain an hour after midnight, and at 3 o'clock were challenged by a Boer sentinel. When this was done, they, as had been ordered to do, threw themselves flat on their faces and the Boer picket not more than fifteen in number and only thirty yards away, emptied their magazines into the darkness and fled for their lives. "One brave man alone remained" and was killed as the British flung themselves into the trench, "with a cheer that was heard by those who were anxiously listening in the camp below."

The Boers soon yielded their second line of trenches and the British attempted, having gained this much ground, to prepare themselves for the assault that they knew was coming with the daylight. It was very dark and, though they worked hard to protect themselves, found they had laid out their trenches so that they afforded very little shelter. Indeed they were enfiladed and raked on all sides; and it appeared the Boers had six guns ready for them. Two of them Maxim-Nordenfeldts and four other guns on a ridge, completely concealed from our batteries, but able to command them, as was shown by their dropping shells among them periodically during the day. The Boer riflemen followed their usual tactics. They were scattered all over the hill, lying wherever they found cover, and firing coolly and steadily all the time. "To our men they were as usual, practically invisible, and they were far too widely scattered for shell fire to have much effect upon them. At 8 their attack began. It was a most vigorous infantry attack, supported by a converging shell fire from three directions. For the first time in this war the Boer artillery was as deadly as their musketry. The Maxim-Nordenfeldts scoured first one side of the hill and then the other, raising great clouds of dust, and shell after shell bursting where our men lay thickest.

A Fierce Struggle

"This condition lasted three hours when the Boers advanced closer and closer, without giving our men a chance, and drove them out of their first line of trenches, but did not stay there long; for the second time we drove them back again at the point of the bayonet, and in one of the trenches this happened three times.

"Two British battalions came up as re-inforcements, and all the way up the men were under fire from the top and from sharpshooters in trenches and behind rocks on the flanks, yet they never wavered once. The climb took over two hours, and when they at last reached the summit they surrounded it and went up the last part with a rush and cheer. It was a stirring sight, and to those who watched it seemed that now, at any rate, the hill was ours. The only ominous thing was that not a Boer left the hill, and the ceaseless fire went on without even a break. This was 5.15, and things were not going well with the main attack."

Information had been given the British that there was a supply of water on the Kop, but that was a mistake, and the troops suffered greatly from thirst, and the rifle fire of the Boers never slackened. There was unusual energy and resolution on the part of the British, notwithstanding their disadvantages and losses, to adhere to the position they had gained in the night, and many valorous efforts, all in vain, to clear the Boers out of the way and overcome their fire, so that at last the various regiments and companies and battalions of the British force engaged, were very much mixed up. They were resolute, but between the darkness and the rough ground and the changes of position there was no little confusion. Six hundred Royal Engineers received orders to go up after nightfall in order to intrench the position, and a part of General Hildyard's Brigade bivouacked under Three Tree Hill, with orders to advance against the main ridge of Taba Myama at dawn. Colonel Thorneycroft, who was in the most critical position, was in ignorance of all this. The condition, in which his force was, has already been described, but besides this his men were suffering considerably from the effects of the day. "The losses had been heavy; his own men had lost 122 out of 194 who had climbed the hill, and the men, who had been under fire all day, although not in the slightest degree demoralized, were yet considerably shaken, and it was exceedingly doubtful whether they would be able to stand another such day's shell fire."

The Kop Retaken by The Boers

Each hour's fighting added evidence that the British could not sustain themselves on the Kop and retirement was judiciously ordered and began at 8.30 P.M., January 24th, and as the leading troops went down they met the sappers coming up. The descent was conducted with the utmost order and dispatch, but it was early morning before the last man was off the hill. With the failure to retain Spion Kop failed General Warren's attempt to cross the Spion Kop Taba Myama range, so, on the 25th, a withdrawal across the Tugela was ordered. It took the heavy transport wagons all day to cross the pontoons, and in the night the troops followed them.


Cronje's Surrender and the Occupation of Bloemfontein.

Cronje Hard Pressed

The main body of the British army on the Modder soon disposed of the reproach of immobility, and the Boers were disconcerted. They were not prepared for "leaps and bounds" to the front. It has been important in the history of Lord Roberts that his troops became confident and moved with alacrity. Cronje, finding himself getting into the air, confronting Roberts, made a long night march February 15th, and the British swung to the left in hot pursuit, some of the regiments outstripping the supplies; but there was no complaint of fatigue or short rations, or other commonplace troubles, though the rains were heavy and the winds cold. Cronje was driven to the precarious shelter of a river bed, where he formed a laager. Roberts shelled the Boer force and pushed regular approaches to insure victory and save life.

Cronje Capitulates

A gallant rush by the Canadians made the Boer position untenable in a strict military sense. There was a fusilade at 3 A.M. on the morning of the 15th, and the most dramatic incident of the eventful day was the appearance of a small white flag moving from the Boer laager to the British lines. It was understood by all who saw it to convey the tidings that Cronje had surrendered. A British officer advanced to meet the flag, and the bearer of it turned back disappearing behind the fortifications. For a few moments the flag-bearer reappeared, and at his side walked—as a correspondent present describes him—"a little, grizzly, old man." The word passed along the British lines, "That's Cronje." It was Cronje, and he was soon in the presence of Roberts, who invited him to take a seat. The Boer commander, when on his way to the British headquarters, was described as a "heavy shouldered, heavy bearded, heavy-lipped man, clad in farm-like garb, wearing a broad-brimmed felt hat and lumbering along on a little gray pony." He showed no emotion, accepted the situation with fortitude, and said he had had a very uncomfortable time. Between 3,000 and 4,000 prisoners marched out of the laager with Mrs. Cronje and her grandson. The prisoners said the onslaught of the Canadians had astonished them. They had been cooped up for ten days and suffered greatly. Cronje was treated with courtesy, and all his personal requests granted. As he desired, his wife, grandson and servants accompanied him. Considering the disparity in forces, he had made a great fight, and to have detained the powerful army of Roberts so long was the best service he could render his cause. The words in which Lord Roberts announced his victory were that Cronje and his force capitulated at daylight, February 27th. The dispatch was dated at Paardeburg, at 7.45 in the morning. Lord Roberts added the capitulation was unconditional, and Cronje was now a prisoner in his camp, and then said, "I hope that Her Majesty's Government will consider that this is very satisfactory, occurring as it does on the anniversary of Majuba."

A writer for the Journal says that Cronje was anxious to attempt to cut his way out of the river bed and seize a hill and oppose the idea of surrender to the last moment, but was overcome by a council of war, and that his theory about it was that, rather than lose men in storming the Boer position, Roberts would grant terms. However, when Cronje consented to a council of war, he must have known what the result would be. The scene on the inside of the laager is thus described: "The wrecks of wagons, carcasses of horses and cattle are strewn everywhere, not to speak of scores of corpses partially unburied. The Red Cross men who buried the dead and collected the wounded at Magersfontein, Belmont and Graspan declare they have seen nothing so awful as this terrible spectacle.

"A mute story is told by the fearful sight that Cronje had no alternative but to surrender unless he wished to see his camp converted into a wholesale shambles. Hundreds of dead bodies of both men and cattle were washed down through the British main camp when the river was flooded last week. It is impossible therefore to estimate how many actually fell in Cronje's last stand."

Cronje and Roberts Meet

The historical scene of surrender is thus described: "A group of horsemen then approached. On General Prettyman's right rode an elderly man clad in a rough, short overcoat, a wide brimmed hat, ordinary tweed trousers and brown shoes. It was the redoubtable Cronje. His face was almost burned black, and his curly beard was tinged with gray.

"Lord Roberts walked to and fro in front of the cart until the Boer general arrived, when the British commander advanced gravely and kindly saluted the Boer commander. He then motioned General Cronje to a seat in a chair which had been brought for his accommodation, and the two officers conversed through an interpreter.

"Cronje's face was absolutely impassive when he approached Lord Roberts, exhibiting no sign of his inner feelings. Lord Roberts was surrounded by his staff when General Prettyman, addressing the Field Marshal, said:

"'Commandant Cronje, sir.'

MAJOR W. A. WEEKS, Charlottetown, P.E.I., Canada,
LIEUTENANT J. C. OLAND, Halifax, Company H,
CAPTAIN F. CAVERHILL JONES, St. John's, 3d Regt. Canadian Artillery,


"The commandant touched his hat in salute, and Lord Roberts saluted in return. The whole group then dismounted, and Lord Roberts stepped forward and shook hands with the Boer commander.

"'You made a gallant defence, sir,' was the first salutation of Lord Roberts to the vanquished Boer leader.

"General Cronje afterward breakfasted with the British officers."

Cronje's army was promptly sent to Cape Town as prisoners of war, accompanied by their gallant leader—"the Lion of South Africa"—whose heroism everywhere commanded respect.

The detailed report of Lord Roberts is as follows:

"PAARDEBERG, 11 o'clock Tuesday Morning.—From information furnished daily to me by the intelligence department it became apparent that General Cronje's force was becoming more depressed and that the discontent of the troops and the discord among the leaders were rapidly increasing. This feeling was doubtless accentuated by the disappointment caused when the Boer re-inforcements which tried to relieve General Cronje were defeated by our troops on Feb. 2.

"I resolved, therefore, to bring pressure to bear upon the enemy. Each night the trenches were pushed forward toward the enemy's laager so as to gradually contract his position, and at the same time we bombarded it heavily with artillery which was yesterday aided by the arrival of four six-inch howitzers which I had ordered up from De Aar. In carrying out these measures a captive balloon gave great assistance by keeping us informed of the dispositions and movements of the enemy.

"At 3 A.M. to-day a most dashing advance was made by the Canadian regiment and some engineers, supported by the First Gordon Highlanders and Second Shropshires, resulting in our gaining a point some 600 yards nearer the enemy and within about eighty yards of his trenches, where our men intrenched themselves and maintained their positions till morning, a gallant deed worthy of our colonial comrades, and which, I am glad to say, was attended by comparatively slight loss.

"This apparently clinched matters, for, at daylight to-day, a letter signed by General Cronje, in which he stated that he surrendered unconditionally, was brought to our outposts under a flag of truce.

"In my reply I told General Cronje he must present himself at my camp and that his forces must come out of their laager after laying down their arms. By 7 A.M. I received General Cronje and dispatched a telegram to you announcing the fact.

"In the course of conversation he asked for kind treatment at our hands and also that his wife, grandson, private secretary, adjutant and servants might accompany him wherever he might be sent. I reassured him and told him his request would be complied with. I informed him that a general officer would be sent with him to Cape Town to insure his being treated with proper respect en route. He will start this afternoon under charge of Major-General Prettyman, who will hand him over to the general commanding at Cape Town.

"The prisoners, who number about 3,000, will be formed into commandos under our own officers. They will also leave here to-day, reaching Modder River to-morrow, when they will be railed to Cape Town in detachments. ROBERTS."

LONDON, Feb. 28.—The Queen telegraphed General Buller:

"I have heard with the deepest concern the heavy losses sustained by my brave Irish soldiers, and I desire to express my sympathy and admiration of the splendid fighting qualities they have exhibited throughout these trying operations."

In her dispatch to Lord Roberts, following the announcement of the surrender of General Cronje, Her Majesty said:

"Accept for yourself and for all under your command my warmest congratulations on this splendid news."

Lord Roberts replied:

"All under my command are deeply grateful for Your Majesty's most gracious message. Congratulations from their Queen are an honor the soldiers dearly prize."

General Buller has telegraphed his thanks to the Queen for her telegram of "gracious sympathy and encouragement."

OTTAWA, Ont., Feb. 27.—Joseph Chamberlain cables to Lord Minto:

"LONDON, Feb. 27.—Her Majesty the Queen desires you to express to people of the Dominion her admiration of the gallant conduct of her Canadian troops in the late engagement, and her sorrow at loss of so many brave men.


The Governor-General received the following dispatch:

"LONDON, Feb. 27.—I desire to express congratulations on Cronje's surrender effected by gallant Canadian aid. Deep sympathy for Canadian losses. Am proud to have lived among them. LOUISE."

LONDON, Feb. 28.—Lord Roberts has forwarded an additional list of the British casualties during the three days' fighting at Paardeberg, showing twelve killed, eighty-two wounded and four missing, including seven officers and four Canadian privates wounded.

Up to this morning the total number of casualties was 12,834,—of which 2,319 were added during the last fortnight. Ten of the eleven Scotch regiments lost about 2,050, and eight of the Irish regiments, 2,000. Of nearly 200 Colonials the Royal Canadians lost 121 and the Victoria mounted contingent, 26. The casualties are classified thus:

Killed, 1,993; wounded, 6,838; missing, 3,173; disease, 830.

The following is quite in the spirit of Lord Roberts' famous report of satisfactory news on Majuba Day.

"At 3 A.M., to-day a most dashing advance was made by the Canadian Regiment and some engineers, supported by the 1st Gordon Highlanders and 2d Shropshires, resulting in our gaining a point some 600 yards nearer to the enemy."

It is officially stated that, if it had not been for peremptory orders to stop, the Canadians would have stormed the Boer laager itself on the morning of the surrender, and it was in evidence that they could have gained their point that caused the anniversary surrender of the Boers.

Kruger Willing to Compromise

The hurried appearance of President Kruger among his troops soon after Cronje's defeat, and his sudden willingness to compromise for the sake of peace, and utterances to that effect at Bloemfontein, causing his congregations to shed tears, make known his understanding that his cause in his opinion verged upon a collapse, but the faith was strong in him that the Lord would deliver him, and the aged President whose diplomacy has been the subject of so much admiration by those who indulge a specialty of disliking the British, was carried away by the thought that as his enemies had vindicated their military power and honor to some extent, they could therefore afford to make peace, and his experience in the war that closed at Majuba suggested that advances on his part might be attributed to a gracious condescension and result in peace making; and as he has been well advised of the general course of the press of Europe and America, he had a certain justification in feeling that his appeal for pacification would arouse the European nations at least to propose arbitration.

Kruger visits Bloemfontein

It was on March 6th, that Mr. Kruger started to visit the Free State laager, and a Pretoria dispatch announced that he made the journey "to arrange a compromise between the Transvaalers and the Free Staters." This showed a more serious disturbance of the relations of the allied states than had been made known, but the old President's shrewdness had not failed to warn him that the invasion of the Orange Free State threatened the existence of both the Boer States, and that if there was a chance for peace it would be necessary to be speedy in coming to the decision to make such offers as he might believe himself generous in formalizing with that certain vagueness that has been one of his strong points, enabling him to add sinister interpretations in the final construction of the principles of proposed protocols. He had not been at Bloemfontein many hours before his state of mind caused him to communicate pacific intentions to the British Government, and the understanding of the Premier and the Colonial Secretary was that the Transvaal President was of the opinion his cause was lost if he could not obtain time for negotiation.

There was an uprising in London when the Queen drove through the streets to Buckingham Palace, animated by the auspicious news from South Africa, and guided by her intuition that the people would be glad to see her; and the public enthusiasm surpassed all that has been witnessed, including her jubilee receptions. She is described as looking "old and worn, but her face radiant with happiness;" and the spectators shouted "Welcome home!" and followed her with "a mighty roar of cheering in which was an undertone of tenderness and affection." She has followed the course of the war with evident anxiety and intelligence, and Her Majesty's expressions of appreciation, good cheer and sympathy have been many, and full of womanly charm; and all this has been exercised in such times and ways and places as to demonstrate close relation to political tact. The ties between Her Majesty and her subjects were multiplied and strengthened by the thrilling vicissitudes of the war, while the Empire has had an attraction unknown until the African crisis came for the colonies; and the colonial contingents from Canada, New Zealand and Australia, have become the pioneers and missionaries of British Imperial confederation—a fact of world-wide and deep significance.

From Modder River to Bloemfontein

The march from the scene of Cronje's defeat at Modder River to Bloemfontein, the capital of the Free State, was interrupted by a number of minor engagements, resulting in considerable loss of life, but no serious halts were made. On Monday, March 12th, General French's cavalry arrived on the outskirts and demanded the surrender of the city, threatening bombardment if refused. Four A.M. Tuesday morning was named as the limit of time allowed for consideration. Meantime General Roberts arrived with the main army. A white flag was hoisted Tuesday morning, and a deputation of the Town Council, with Mayor Kellner, came out to meet Lord Roberts at Spitz Kop, five miles south of the town, making a formal surrender of the place.

Lord Roberts made a state entry at noon. He received a tremendous ovation. After visiting the public buildings, he went to the official residence of the President, followed by a cheering crowd, who waved the British flag and sang the British national anthem. They were in a condition of frenzied excitement.

President Steyn had the evening before moved the government of the Free State to Kroonstadt, 125 miles north of Bloemfontein, on the road to Pretoria.

In the afternoon, Lord Roberts led his army triumphantly into the city, established his headquarters at the President's house, where many wounded soldiers were also taken by his command, and at 8 P.M. sent the following dispatch to his Government, which was given out by the War Office the next evening:

"BLOEMFONTEIN, March 13, 1900.

"By the help of God and by the bravery of Her Majesty's soldiers, the troops under my command have taken possession of Bloemfontein.

"The British flag now flies over the Presidency, evacuated last evening by Mr. Steyn, late President of the Orange Free State.

"Mr. Frazer, member of the late Executive Government, the Mayor, the Secretary to the late Government, the Landrost, and other officials met me two miles from the town and presented me with the keys of the public offices.

"The enemy have withdrawn from the neighborhood, and all seems quiet. The inhabitants of Bloemfontein gave the troops a cordial welcome."

THE OBSERVATION BALLOON. Used by the British in observing the Boers' position. This balloon caused great annoyance to the Dutch and they tried in vain with rifle and cannon to puncture it.
Used by the British in observing the Boers' position.
This balloon caused great annoyance to the Dutch and they
tried in vain with rifle and cannon to puncture it.


The delay in the sending of this message is attributed to the field telegraphs not being connected with Bloemfontein on Tuesday evening.

Wherever Lord Roberts' dispatch was read, his reference to the "late" President Steyn and the "late" executive was immediately fastened upon as highly significant.

Overtures for peace had been made, by Presidents Kruger and Steyn, some days before the occupation of Bloemfontein, but the terms were not such as England would entertain, and the burghers were promptly informed by Lord Salisbury, that his Government would consider no conditions looking to the independence of the South African Republic or the Orange Free State, This reply caused bitter disappointment to the South African Presidents, and President Kruger cabled the following characteristic message:

"PRETORIA, March 13, 1900.

"The burghers will only cease fighting with death. Our forces are returning in good order to our first line of defense on our own soil. The Natal campaign was longer in our favor than we expected.

"The British will never reach Pretoria. The burghers, Steyn, Joubert and myself, as well as all others, are united. There are no differences. God help us."

The War Solely Defensive

Presidents Kruger and Steyn addressed to Lord Salisbury the following proposition:


"The blood and the tears of thousands who have suffered by this war, and the prospect of all moral and economic ruin, wherewith South Africa is now threatened, make it necessary for both belligerents to ask themselves dispassionately and as in the sight of the triune God for what they are fighting, and whether the aim of each justifies all this appalling misery and devastation.

"With this object, and in view of the assertions of various British statesmen to the effect that this war was begun and is being carried on with the set purpose of undermining Her Majesty's authority in South Africa, and of setting up an administration over all of South Africa independent of Her Majesty's Government, we consider it our duty to solemnly declare that this war was undertaken solely as a defensive measure to maintain the threatened independence of the South African Republics, and is only continued in order to secure and maintain the incontestable independence of both Republics as sovereign international States, and to obtain the assurance that those of Her Majesty's subjects who have taken part with us in this war shall suffer no harm whatever in person or property. On these conditions, but on these conditions alone, are we now, as in the past, desirous of seeing peace re-established in South Africa, while if Her Majesty's Government is determined to destroy the independence of the Republics there is nothing left to us and to our people but to persevere to the end in the course already begun.

"In spite of the overwhelming pre-eminence of the British Empire, we are confident that that God, who lighted the unextinguishable fire of love of freedom in the hearts of ourselves and of our fathers, will not forsake us, and will accomplish His work in us and in our descendants.

"We hesitated to make this declaration earlier to Your Excellency, as we feared that as long as the advantage was always on our side, and as long as our forces held defensive positions far within Her Majesty's colonies, such a declaration might hurt the feelings and honor of the British people.

"But now that the prestige of the British Empire may be considered to be assured by the capture of one of our forces by Her Majesty's troops, and that we have thereby been forced to evacuate other positions which our forces had occupied, that difficulty is over, and we can no longer hesitate to clearly inform your Goverment and people, in the sight of the whole civilized world, why we are fighting, and on what conditions we are ready to restore peace."

The Turning Point

The design of this communication was to influence the great powers to intervene and bring a pressure upon England to consent to make a fruitless sacrifice of blood and treasure, and put aside as irrelevant the British victories. The reply of Lord Salisbury was:


"I have the honor to acknowledge Your Honors' telegram, dated March 5th, from Bloemfontein, of which the purport is principally to demand that Her Majesty's Government shall recognize the 'incontestable independence' of the South African Republic and Free State 'as sovereign international States,' and to offer on those terms to bring the war to a conclusion.

Who Broke the Peace?

"In the beginning of October last peace existed between Her Majesty and the two Republics under conventions which were then in existence. A discussion had been proceeding for some months between Her Majesty's Government and the South African Republic, of which the object was to obtain redress for certain very serious grievances under which the British residents in South Africa were suffering. In the course of these negotiations the South African Republic had, to the knowledge of Her Majesty's Government, made considerable armaments, and the latter had consequently taken steps to provide corresponding reinforcements of the British garrisons at Cape Town and in Natal. No infringement of the rights guaranteed by the conventions had up to that point taken place on the British side.

"Suddenly, at two days' notice, the South African Republic, after issuing an insulting ultimatum, declared war upon Her Majesty, and the Orange Free State, with which there had not even been any discussion, took a similar step. Her Majesty's dominions were immediately invaded by the two Republics. Siege was laid to three towns within the British frontier, a large portion of two colonies was overrun with great destruction of property and life, and the Republics claimed to treat the inhabitants of extensive portions of Her Majesty's dominions as if those dominions had been annexed to one or the other of them.

Accumulating Military Stores

"In anticipation of these operations the South African Republic had been accumulating for many years past military stores on an enormous scale, which, by their character, could only have been intended for use against Great Britain. Your Honors make some observations of a negative character upon the object with which these preparations were made. I do not think it necessary to discuss the questions you have raised. But the result of these preparations, carried on with great secrecy, has been that the British Empire has been compelled to confront an invasion which has entailed upon the empire a costly war and the loss of thousands of precious lives. This great calamity has been the penalty Great Britain has suffered for having of recent years acquiesced in the existence of the two Republics.

"In view of the use to which the two Republics have put the position which was given them, and the calamities their unprovoked attack has inflicted on Her Majesty's dominion, Her Majesty's Goverment can only answer Your Honors' telegram by saying it is not prepared to assent to the independence either of the South African Republic or the Orange Free State."

The "Good Offices" of the United States

The plea for peace from the two Presidents was taken seriously by its authors, but there could not have been a reasonable expectation that there would be any business results. If there was a remote chance to open negotiations, the suggestion to the State Department of the United States, through our Consul at Pretoria, appeared the only possibility of an open door. The United States would gladly undertake to facilitate peace negotiations, and the Boer communications to this country were transmitted to the British Government, and our "good offices" were not rebuffed but respectfully declined. The British Premier confined himself to a courteous verbal expression. This was all that any sober-minded person expected. The Government of the United States gave evidence of its kindly spirit, and was treated with civility. The South African questions are too deep for settlement until military operations are conclusive. There was no intervention by a foreign power between Germany and France in 1870, or between Turkey and Greece, or the United States and Spain, and there will be no interference in the South African war. Either the Boers or the Britons are to be masters of South Africa.

There were not wanting, even during the period of Boer military successes, signs that the burghers of the two Republics were finding it difficult to serve together. The Orange Free State troops felt that they were having an amount of fighting to do greater than their share of responsibility. The invasion of the State caused at once dissatisfaction and consternation, and the surrender of Cronje caused a panic, but the Boers rallied and skirmished hotly to check Roberts. The Orange men were not united, and Lord Roberts had a popular welcome at Bloemfontein. One of the incitements of the peace proposals of the two Presidents was to arouse the drooping animosities of the Orange men. The foremost of the invaders to enter the Orange Capital were three newspaper correspondents, who were at first thought to be townsfolk, and when found out they were greeted cordially and conducted to a club, where they met Mr. Frazer, of the Executive Council, the Mayor and other officials. These they persuaded to take carriages and go to meet Lord Roberts.

The cavalry were closing up, and the newspaper men introduced the Orange men to the Commander-in-Chief of the British Army, meant the town would surrender. Lord Roberts entered—made his entry in state—and was warmly welcomed. Everybody appeared glad to see him, and the function was impressive and influential beyond the military pageantry. The first work of the Army of Occupation was to make the railroads available. Three trains were in motion March 15th, managed by British railroad men found in the ranks. Lord Roberts found much to do of a political nature, and issued a series of orders and proclamations, establishing military government on a pacific basis. President Steyn is referred to as the "Ex-President," and his part in bringing misfortune upon his country is discussed with reflections upon his policy. He strove to rally the Orange burghers, but they were down-hearted and largely depressed. The Transvaal Government were on firmer ground, and gave their attention to make ready the destruction of the gold mines with the City of Johannesburg, and the defense of Pretoria.

The Press on Mediation

The London correspondent of the Toronto Globe telegraphed of the peace proceedings of President Kruger:

"There are many explanations from American sources, but the action of the State Department is not understood here. Englishmen are asking what Americans would have said, not long ago, if the Madrid Government, in the hour of defeat, had proposed peace on the basis of Spanish retention of Cuba, Puerto Rico and the Philippines, and England had offered her services as a mediator."

But the United States Government merely conveyed a message, and the Standard (London) said:

"We are grateful to the Americans for their good offices, and we should be delighted to accept their assistance if it were possible. But this quarrel is our own, and we must settle it in our own way. We have no reason to complain of platonic and vicarious affection for intervention so long as every government is quite resolved to leave it to its neighbor to begin."

The Mail said:

"Englishmen are sufficiently acquainted with American affairs not to misinterpret the attitude of the Washington Cabinet. President McKinley has behaved to us with scrupulous fairness."

The text of Mr. Balfour's reply in the House to the question about the American mediation was in these terms:

"The United States Charge D'Affaires on March 13th communicated to Lord Salisbury a telegram from Mr. Hay: 'By way of friendly and good office inform the British Minister of Foreign Affairs that to-day he received a telegram from the United States Consul at Pretoria, reporting that the Government of the South African Republic requested the President of the United States to intervene with the view of cessation of hostilities and saying that a similar request has been made to the representatives of the European powers. In communicating this request I am directed by the President of the United States to express the earnest hope that a way will be found to bring about peace and to say that he would be glad in any friendly manner to aid in bringing about the desired result.'"


The First Contingent was composed of seven Companies, recruited from the various parts of the Dominion. The formation by Company and District was as follows:

A Company, British Columbia and Manitoba.

B Company, London, Ontario.

C Company, Toronto, Ontario.

D Company, left half, Kingston and vicinity; right half, Ottawa, Ontario.

E Company, Montreal.

F Company, Quebec.

G Company, New Brunswick and Prince Edward Island.

H Company, Nova Scotia.

Each Company consisted of 125 men, which, with the staff and officers, brought the total force up to 1019. The mobilization of the Contingent took place at Quebec, and on October 30th, 1899, the Sardinian, of the Allan Line, bearing Canada's initial quota of fighting men, sailed on her voyage to Cape Town. On the 13th, November the Sardinian was reported at Cape Verde Islands, having made a quick and uneventful passage to that point. From Cape Verde the steamer touched at no port till Cape Town was reached on November 29th.

First Contingent.


Commanding Officer.

Otter, Lieutenant-Colonel W. D., Canadian Staff, A.D.C., to His Excellency the Governor-General.


(2nd in command).

Buchan, L. (Lieutant-Colonel Royal Canadian Regiment of Infantry).

Pelletier, Q.C.C. (Lieutenant-Colonel Canadian Staff).

"A" Company, British Columbia and Manitoba.


Arnold, H. M.(Major 90th Winnipeg Rifles).


Blanchard, M. G. (Captain 5th Regiment C.A.)

Hodgins, A. E. (Captain Nelson Rifle Company).

Layborn, S. P. (Lieutenant Royal Canadian Regiment of Infantry).

"B" Company, London, Ontario.


Stuart, D. (Major 26th Middlesex Light Infantry).


Ross, J. M. (Captain 22nd The Oxford Rifles).

Mason, J. C. (Captain 10th Royal Grenadiers).

Temple, R. H. M. (2nd Lieutenant 48th Highlanders).

"C" Company, Toronto.


Barker, R. K. (Captain Queen's Own Rifles).


Marshall, W. R. (Lieutenant 13th Battalion).

Wilkie, C. S. (Lieutenant 10th Royal Grenadiers).

Lafferty, F. D. (Lieutenant Royal Canadian Artillery).

"D" Company, Ottawa and Kingston.


Rogers, S. M. (Major 43rd Ottawa and Carleton Rifles).


Lawless, W. T. (Captain Governor General's Foot Guards).

Stewart, R. G. (Lieutenant 43rd Carleton Rifles).

Caldwell, A. C. (Lieutenant Reserve of Officers).

"E" Company, Montreal.


Fraser, C. K. (Captain 53rd Sherbrooke Battalion).


Swift, A. E. (Lieutenant 8th Royal Rifles).

Laurie, A. (Lieutenant 1st Prince of Wales' Fusiliers).

Armstrong, C. J. (Lieutenant 5th Royal Scots of Canada).

"F" Company, Quebec.


Peltier, J. E. (Major 65th Mount Royal Rifles).


Panel, H. A. (Captain Royal Canadian Artillery).

Leduc, L. (Lieutenant Royal Canadian Regiment of Infantry).

Pelletier, E. A. (Lieutenant 55th Megantic Light Infantry).

"G" Company, New Brunswick and Prince Edward Island.


Weeks, W. A. (Major Charlottetown Engineers).


Jones, F. C. (Captain in 3rd Regiment C. A).

Kaye, J. H. (Lieutenant Royal Canadian Regiment of Infantry).

McLean, C. W. W. (2nd Lieutenant 8th Princess Louise's Hussars).

"H" Company, Nova Scotia.


Stairs, H. B. (Captain 66th Princess Louise's Fusiliers).


Burstall, H. E. (Captain Royal Canadian Artillery).

Willis, R. B. (Lieutenant 66th Princess Louise's Fusiliers).

Oland, J. C. (2nd Lieutenant 63rd Halifax Rifles).

O. C. Machine Gun Section.

Bell, A. C. (Captain Scots Guards) A. D. C. to the Major-General Commanding Canadian Militia.

Regimental Adjutant.

Macdonell, A. H. (Captain Royal Canadian Regiment of Infantry).

Battalion Adjutants.

Macdonell, A. H. (Captain Royal Canadian Regiment of Infantry).

Ogilvy, J. H. C. (Captain Royal Canadian Artillery).


Denison, S. J. A. (Captain and Brevet Major Royal Canadian Regiment of Infantry).

Medical Officers.

Wilson, C. W. (Surgeon-Major 3rd Field Battery).

Fiset, E. (Surgeon-Major 89th Temiscouata and Rimouski Battalion).

Attached for Staff Duty.

Drummond, L. G. (Major Scots Guards) Military Secretary to His Excellency the Governor-General.

Attached for Special Duty.

Drury, C. W. (Lieutenant-Colonel Royal Canadian Artillery), A. D. C. to His Excellency the Governor-General.

Lessard, F. L. (Lieutenant-Colonel Royal Canadian Dragoons).

Cartwright, M. (Major Royal Canadian Regiment of Infantry, A. A. G. at Headquarters).

Forester, W. (Captain Royal Canadian Dragoons).

Medical Staff for General Service.

Osborne, A. B. (Captain Canadian Army Medical Staff).


Pope, Miss Georgina; Forbes, Miss Sarah; Affleck, Miss Minnie; Russell, Miss Elizabeth.

Historical Recorder.

Dixon, F. J. (Captain Reserve Officers).


Almond, Rev. J.

Fullerton, Rev. T. F. (Hon. Chaplain 4th Regiment C. A.).

O'Leary, Rev. P. M.


Holmes W. H., Colonel-Sergeant, R. C. A.
Allan, H. S., 5th R. C. A.
Alliston, B. D., 90th Winnipeg Rifles.
Adams, J., Manitoba Dragoons.
Anderson, J., 5th R. C. A.
Armstrong, E., R. C. A.
Andrews, H., 5th R. C. A.
Barrett, R. J., 90th Winnipeg Rifles.
Barlow, R. H., 90th Winnipeg Rifles.
Beach, A. C., 5th R. C. A.
Berthour, W. H., 5th R. C. A.
Battson, A. S., 5th R. C. A.
Bonner, H. M.,5th R. C. A.
Boyce, A. W., 13th Field Battery, C. A.
Brooking, W., 5th R. C. A.
Carnagie, J., 90th Winnipeg Rifles
Carter, A., 5th R.C. A.
Campbell, R. B., Nelson Rifles.
Campbell, A., R. C. A.
Chisholm, A., 90th Winnipeg Rifles.
Clough, P., 90th Winnipeg Rifles.
Collins, J., Royal Canadian Dragoons.
Cook J., 90th Winnipeg Rifles.
Corbould, G. B., 5th R. C. A.
Cowan, H. J., Manitoba Dragoons.
Cornwall, F. J., 5th R. C. A.
Court, S. T., 5th R. C. A.
Crooke, M., Nelson Rifles.
Davies, J, E., Royal Canadian Dragoons.
Dickinson, F., 5th R. C. A.
Dickson, J. H., Nelson Rifles.
Dixon, W. J. G., 5th R. C. A.
Duncalfe, C. W., 90th Winnipeg Rifles.
Docherty, M., Royal Canadian Dragoons.
Edwards, H., 90th Winnipeg Rifles.
Fowle, W. F., 90th Winnipeg Rifles.
Findley, T. A., 90th Winnipeg Rifles.
Foord, F. N., 90th Winnipeg Rifles.
Finch-Smiles, F., 5th R. C. A.
French, J. P., 90th Winnipeg Rifles.
Gamble, C. W., 5th R. C. A.
Groves, C. E., 90th Winnipeg Rifles.
Greaves, P., 5th R. C. A.
Hammond, J. L., 90th Winnipeg Rifles.
Hanson, S. S., 5th R. C. A.
Hicks, H. P., Nelson Rifles.
Holeyoke, G. C. F., 90th Winnipeg Rifles.
Hughes, E. N., 90th Winnipeg Rifles.
Hutchings, George, 5th R. C. A.
Ingram, L., 90th Winnipeg Rifles.
Irvine, A. B., 90th Winnipeg Rifles.
Jackson, W., 5th R. C. A.
Johnson, H., 90th Winnipeg Rifles.
Jones, S. L., 5th R. C. A.
Jones, J. W., 5th R. C. A.
Kelly, E., Queen's Own Rifles.
Kennedy, D., 34th Ontario Battalion.
Lee, A. S., Nelson Rifles.
Leeman, R. W. J., 5th R. C. A.
Leamy, C. S., 5th R. C. A.
LeBar, V. E., R. C. R.
Listen, B., 90th Winnipeg Rifles.
Livingstone, J., 5th R. C. A.
Lohman, A. O., 5th R. C. A.
Martin, A., R. C. R.
Mackie, A. S., 5th R. C. A.
Matheson. K., 90th Winnipeg Rifles.
Maundrill, A., 5th R. C. A.
Mills, C. A., 90th Winnipeg Rifles.
Munro, A. E., 90th Winnipeg Rifles.
Moier, W. J., 36th Peel Battalion.
Moodie, W. H., Kaslo Rifle Co.
Moscrop, J., 5th R. C. A.
McCalmont, R. J., 5th R. C. A.
McIvor, D., Royal Canadian Dragoons.
McKeand, D. L., 90th Winnipeg Rifles.
McKenzie, H., Manitoba Dragoons.
McHarg, W. H., Rossland Rifle Company.
Northcote, J., 5th R. C. A.
Neibergall, H. F., 5th R. C. A.
Neil, G., 5th R. C. A.
Nixon, F. S., 36th Peel Battalion.
Nye, A. J., 5th R. C. A.
O'Brien, S. W., 5th R. C. A.
Odell, S. H., 5th R. C. A.
Parker, H. F., 90th Winnipeg Rifles.
Patterson, W. O., Nelson Rifles.
Patterson, C., R. C. R.
Perry, J. C., Royal Canadian Dragoons.
Rea, J. R., Nelson Rifles.
Rumsay, F., 90th Winnipeg Rifles.
Rush, F., Royal Canadian Dragoons.
Rorke, E. B., 90th Winnipeg Rifles.
Robbins, A. E., 90th Winnipeg Rifles.
Roberts, S. C., 90th Winnipeg Rifles.
Roberts, C. M., 5th R. C. A.
Sherlock, H., Royal Canadian Dragoons.
Sherris, J., R. C. A.
Scott, W., 5th R. C. A.
Sinclair, J. J. S., 5th R. C. A.
Smethurst, H., 5th R. C. A.,
Smith, James, 5th R. C. A.
Snider, C. H., 90th Winnipeg Rifles.
Soper, A. C. W., 90th Winnipeg Rifles.
Somers, J. H., 5th R. C. A.
Stewart, J., 5th R. C. A.
St. James, G., Royal Canadian Dragoons.
Stebbings, W. H. H., 5th R. C. A.
Talbot, A., 34th Ontario Battalion.
Thompson, C. C., 5th R. C. A.
Thompson, T., 90th Winnipeg Rifles.
Todd, J., 5th R C. A.
Vinnel, A. J., Royal Canadian Dragoons.
Whimster, P., Manitoba Dragoons.
Wallace, W., 5th R. C. A.
Wallace, G., 5th R. C. A.
Welch, W., 90th Winnipeg Rifles.
Western, T., Manitoba Dragoons.
Whilley, W. F., 5th R. C. A.
Wilkins, G. H., Kaslo Rifle Company.
Wilkie, O. J., 5th R. C. A.
Wyatt, H. R., 90th Winnipeg Rifles.
Ward, R., Royal Canadian Dragoons.
Wood, A. M., 5th R. C. A.


Davies, Colonel-Sergeant R., R. C. R.
Adam, S., R. C. A.
Adams, W. G., 7th Fusiliers.
Adair, A., R. C. A.
Anderson, A. H., 25th Elgin Battalion.
Andrews, E. C., 21st Essex Fusiliers.
Atkinson, D. H., 26th Middlesex Light Infantry.
Bredin, J., 38th Dufferin Rifles.
Bowden, R. B., 21st Essex Fusiliers.
Bethune, A., R. C. R.
Bollard, H. E., 28th Perth Battalion.
Barr, H. B., 21st Essex Fusiliers.
Barrett, P., 7th Fusiliers.
Baugh, E., R. C. A.
Beers, F. C., 21st Essex Fusiliers.
Berges, H., 38th Dufferin Rifles.
Biggs, J. C., 21st Essex Fusiliers.
Burns, W. J., 26th Middlesex Light Infantry.
Burrell, H., 26th Middlesex Light Infantry.
Burwell, A. E., 6th F. B. C. A.
Campbell, F. W., 30th Wellington Rifles.
Chapman, W. H., 7th Fusiliers.
Charman, A., R. C. R.
Coles, F. J., 7th Fusiliers.
Cole, A. E., 1st Hussars.
Corley, J. B., 30th Wellington Rifles.
Crockett, Samuel, 7th Fusiliers.
Craig, E. D., 21st Essex Fusiliers
Collins, W., 1st Hussars.
Dalgleish, A. D., 29th Waterloo Battalion.
Day, J., 26th Middlesex Light Infantry.
Donegan, J. A., 26th Middlesex Light Infantry.
Dolman, E. N., 21st Essex Fusiliers.
Donahue, H., 26th Middlesex Infantry.
Delmer, P., 26th Middlesex Light Infantry.
Duff, J. B., 26th Middlesex Light Infantry.
Edward, A., 22nd Oxford Rifles.
Evans, F., 26th Middlesex Light Infantry.
Farley, J. E., 25th Elgin Battalion.
Finch, C. E., 7th Fusiliers
Floyd, F. G. W., 7th Fusiliers.
Fox, W. H., R. C. A.
Foote, William, 29th Waterloo Battalion.
Gorrie, W. B., 26th Middlesex Light Infantry.
Graham, George, 28th Perth Battalion.
Greene, C., 26th Middlesex Light Infantry.
Green, W. J., 25th Elgin Battalion.
Gorman, F., 27th Lambton Battalion.
Hill, J. C., 26th Middlesex Light Infantry,
Herrick, J., 7th Fusiliers.
Hessell, F. W., 7th Fusiliers.
Hyman, W. J., 6th Field Battery, C. A.
Hennessy, J. T., 7th Fusiliers.
Inglemells, P. C., 1st Hussars.
Irvine, R., 19th St. Catherines Battalion.
Jell, A. P., 21st Essex Fusiliers.
Jones, M. L., 33rd Huron Battalion.
Johnston, K. G., 27th Lambton Battalion.
Kingswell, J., R. C. A.
Leonard, G. W., 22nd Oxford Rifles.
Little, R. H., 1st Hussars.
Little, G. B., 34th Ontario Battalion.
Lane, H., 22nd Oxford Rifles.
Lundrigan, J., R. C. A.
McBeth, G. W., 26th Middlesex Light Infantry.
McBeth, G. A., 7th Fusiliers.
McLaren, C. D., 7th Fusiliers.
McLean, M., 26th Middlesex Light Infantry.
McCalla, J., 19th St. Catherines Battalion.
McMahon, W. H., 26th Middlesex Light Infantry.
McMillan, D. C., 27th Lambton Battalion.
McMurphy, A., 26th Middlesex Light Infantry.
McLean, A. R., 38th Dufferin Battalion.
Marshall, A., 22nd Oxford Rifles.
Marentette, V. F., 21st Essex Fusiliers.
Merrix, A. E., R. C. R. I.
Moore, D. L., R. C. R. I.
Mullins, E., R. C. R. I.
Munro, G. H., 26th Middlesex Light Infantry.
Northwood, J., 21st Essex Fusiliers.
Nott, William, R. C. A.
Odium, V., 22nd Oxford Rifles.
Odium, G., 22nd Oxford Rifles.
Paddon, A. E., 21st Essex Fusiliers.
Phillips, G. R. S., 21st Essex Fusiliers.
Piper, T. J., 26th Middlesex Light Infantry.
Pinel. G. F., 7th Fusiliers.
Pert, E. W., 28th Perth Battalion.
Power, L., R. C. A.
Powell, L, 29th Waterloo Battalion.
Purcell, J. J., E. C. A.
Reed, W. G., 21st Essex Fusiliers.
Reid, D. A., 21st Essex Fusiliers.
Redee, C., 7th Fusiliers.
Robinson. J. B., 21st Essex Fusiliers.
Rae, A. H., 26th Middlesex Light Infantry.
Rorison, C. K., 21st Essex Fusiliers.
Sippi, G. R. B., 7th Fusiliers.
Smith. J., 22nd Oxford Rifles.
Scott, C. R., 27th Lambton Battalion.
Smith, R., 26th Middlesex Light Infantry.
Stanberry, F. G., 25th Elgin Battalion.
Stevenson, W. R., R. C. R. I.
Sutherland, J., 25th Elgin Battalion.
Taylor, E., 1st Hussars.
Taylor, G., 1st Hussars.
Thompson, H., R. C. A.
Trolley, F. H., 26th Middlesex Light Infantry.
Turner. F. W., 6th Field Battery.
Tutt, T., R. C. R. I.
Wardel, A. E., 7th Fusiliers.
Webb, A. B., 33rd Huron Battalion.
West, W., 7th Fusiliers.
Westaway, H., 25th Elgin Battalion.
Wells, James, 30th Wellington Rifles
Wheatcraft, A. H., 7th Fusiliers
White, G., 21st Essex Fusiliers.
White, W., 21st Essex Fusiliers.
Wilson, A. R., 33rd Huron Battalion
Wigham, R. D., 6th Field Battery, C. A.
Woodliffe, G. W., 7th Fusiliers.
Woodward, A. W., 26th Middlesex Light Infantry.
Wilson, H. R, 22nd Oxford Rifles.
Woodyatt, W. H., 7th Fusiliers.


Campbell, Colonel-Sergeant J. S., R. C. R. I.
Allen, L., Q. O. R.
Anderson, F. T., 39th Norfolk Rifles.
Baldwin, John, 48th Highlanders.
Banton, T. H., 48th Highlanders.
Beattie, A., Q. O. R.
Black, N. D., 35th Simcoe Foresters.
Blair, F., 48th Highlanders.
Bird, B. M., Q. O. R.
Bingham, H. S., 35th Simcoe Foresters.
Blight, W. S., Q. O. R.
Brettingham, W. P. R., 12th York Rangers.
Brunton, H. G., 12th York Rangers.
Burkhart, F., 29th Waterloo Battalion.
Butler, W. B., 10th Royal Grenadiers.
Calvert, F. M., 10th Royal Grenadiers.
Callahan, H. A., 35th Simcoe Foresters.
Christie, D. H., 37th Haldimand Rifles.
Cassel, K. J., 13th Battalion.
Curtis, W. R., 31st Grey Battalion.
Coggins, A. E., R. C. D.
Coggins, H., 31st Grey Battalion.
Cuthbert, F., 10th Royal Grenadiers.
Davidson, J., 12th York Rangers.
Dangerfield, A., 10th Royal Grenadiers.
Day, E. C., G. G. B. G.
Dixon, H. W. A., Q. O. R.
Dunham, F. H., 48th Highlanders.
Eakins, G., Q. O. R.
Ellis, G. S., Q. O. R.
Fawcett, J. H., 12th York Rangers.
Findlay, J. H., 35th Simcoe Foresters.
Freemantle, A. H. O., 10th Royal Grenadiers.
Graham. T. H., 12th York Rangers.
Grant W H., 48th Highlanders.
Gray N., Sault St. Marie Rifles.
Haines, W., R. C. R. I.
Hector, F. T. D., Q. O. R.
Hendry, Murray, 13th Battalion.
Henderson, R. H., 35th Simcoe Foresters.
Hewett. W. H., Q. O. R.
Holland, W. C. S., 77th Wentworth Battalion.
Holland, J., Civilian.
Hodgins, E. W., G. G. B. G.
Hopeson, C. W., 48th Highlanders.
Hoskins, R. W., Q. O. R.
Hornibrook. T. L., 48th Highlanders.
Inglestrom, F., Q. O. R.
Ironside, G. M., Toronto Police.
Tones, N. J., 31st Grey Battalion.
Jordan, Joseph, Q. O. R.
Kennedy James, 10th Royal Grenadiers.
Kidner, R., Q. O. R.
Long, J. L., 10th Royal Grenadiers.
Lorsch, F. D., 48th Highlanders.
Love, William, 37th Haldimand Rifles.
Machin, H. A., 12th York Rangers.
Manion. W. T., 10th Royal Grenadiers.
Martin, G. F., 10th Royal Grenadiers.
Morley, N. L., 48th Highlanders.
Mitchell, J. A., 48th Highlanders.
Morse, T., R. C. R. I.
Middleton, H. J., 10th Royal Grenadiers.
McCall, A., Toronto Police.
McCosh, P., 35th Simcoe Foresters.
McCuish, D., R. C. R. I.
McGee, K., R. M. C., Cadet.
McGiverin L., Q. O. R.
McHugh, E., 10th Royal Grenadiers.
McKenzie, L. C., 48th Highlanders.
McLaughlin, R. H., R. C. R. I.
McNish, M., 48th Highlanders.
McPherson, D., 48th Highlanders.
Noble, D. A., 38th Dufferin Rifles.
Page, F. C., G. G. B. G.
Parry, C. E., R. C. D.
Bugler Pringle, R., S. S. Marie Rifle Company.
Perry, S., 10th Royal Grenadiers.
Preston, D. G., 44th Lincoln and Welland Battalion.
Ramage, J. H., 30th Peel Battalion.
Ramage, J. H., 346th Peel Battalion.
Rasberry, J., 77th Wentworth Battalion.
Rae, F. A., 34th Ontario Battalion.
Ridway, E. H., Q. O. R.
Robson, A., 13th Battalion.
Rogers, W. R., 44th Lincoln and Welland Battalion.
Rooke, W. J., Q. O. R.
Rorke, J. H., 31st Grey Battalion.
Ramsay, J. F., 48th Highlanders.
Rutherford, F. H., 13th Battalion.
Seager, John, Q. O. R.
Seymour, C., 10th Royal Grenadiers.
Sherritt, A. W., 38th Dufferin Rifles.
Simpson, G. C. M., 12th York Rangers.
Smith, J., 48th Highlanders.
Smith, G. M., 48th Highlanders.
Solari, J., 10th Royal Grenadiers.
Spence, J. D., 48th Highlanders.
Stewart, M. M., Q. O. R.
Button, J. H., 13th Battalion.
Thompson, G., R. C. D.
Thompson, W. F., R. C. R. I.
Tice, C., Civilian.
Tomlinson, C., Q. O. R.
Travers, W., 10th Royal Grenadiers.
Usher, J. F., Q. O. R.
Vanderwater, W. J., Q. O. R.
Van Norman, A. F., R. C. R. I.
Vicary, S., S. S. Marie Rifle Company.
Vickers, J. R., 10th Royal Grenadiers.
Wallace, T. G., 36th Peel Battalion.
Warde, S. M., Q. O. R.
Warren, W. C., 13th Battalion.
Warwick W. H., 13th Battalion.
Watson, R. G., R. C. R. I.
Weir, F. E., Q. O. R.
Wellar, E. T., 48th Highlanders.
Wilson J. A., 10th Royal Grenadiers.
Wilson, N. W., Q. O. R.
Whitehead, J., 48th Highlanders.
Wright, D. M., R. C. R. I.
Bugler Williams, D. F., Q. O. R.
Young, H., Q. O. R.
Young, A., Q. O. R.


Thompson, Color-Serjeant C. H., R. C. R. I.
Auger, E., G. G. F. G.
Ault, C. E., 14th Princess of Wales Own Rifles.
Bartlett, E. D., 43rd Ottawa and Carleton Rifles.
Benbow, H. A., G. G. F. G.
Bennett, A., P. L. Dragoon Guards.
Bolster, H. G., Cobourg Garrison Artillery, C. A.
Bolyea, A. W., 15th A. L. I.
Bradshaw, A. L. H., 16th Prince Edward Battalion.
Brady, W. S., 43rd Ottawa and Carleton Rifles.
Bull, E. W., Cobourg Company, C. A.
Burns, O. T., 43rd Ottawa and Carleton Rifles.
Burns, R., G. G. F. G.
Clunie, P., Civilian.
Cunnington, R., 15th A. L. I.
Carruthers, B., 14th Prince of Wales Own Rifles.
Cairns, J. S., 2nd Field Battery, C. A.
Chidlow, J., R. C. R. I.
Clarke, C. P., 43rd Ottawa and Carleton Rifles.
Clother, A., G. G. F. G.
Cluff, N. W. H., 43rd Ottawa and Carleton Rifles.
Cockburn, G. G., Cobourg Company C. A.
Coleman. J. D., 43rd Ottawa and Carleton Rifles.
Cotton, H., 43rd Ottawa and Carleton Rifles.
Cotterell, A., R. C. R. I.
Cram, J. A. C., 42nd Lanark and Renfrew Battalion.
Craig, C. E., 43rd Ottawa and Carleton Rifles.
Croft, F., 16th Prince Edward Battalion.
Croft, P. C., 42nd Lanark and Renfrew Battalion.
Cunningham, R, J., 20th Halton Rifles.
Chitty, L. M., 43rd Ottawa and Carleton Rifles.
Dalberg, R. P., K. C. R. I.

Des Lauriers, E., P. L. Dragoon Guards, deceased.
Deuchars, G. D., 43rd Ottawa and Carleton Rifles.
Donaldson, C. A., 41st Brockville Rifles.
Dunlop, E., 14th Princess of Wales Own Rifles.
Dunlop, J. R., 43rd Ottawa and Carleton Rifles.
Eagleson, S. H., 43rd Ottawa and Carleton Rifles.
Ellard, J. F. G., G. G. F. G.
Eley, D. M., 14th Princess of Wales Own Rifles.
Escobel, N., R. C. R. I.
Fleming. A. J., 43rd Ottawa and Carleton Rifles.
Floden, W. J., 47th Frontenac Battalion.
Foster, P. R., G. G. F. G.
Frye, C. E., 15th A. L. I.
Gallagher, J., 43rd Ottawa and Carleton Rifles.
Gibson, C. A., 15th A. L. I.
Gilmour, A. E., 43rd Ottawa and Carleton Rifles.
Graham, J. D. H., P. L. D. G.
Gilmour, W. J., R. C. R. I.
Haig, H. G., 2nd F. Battery, C. A.
Hatton, J., 14th Princess of Wales Own Rifles.
Hagan, J. R., 41st Brockville Rifles.
Hennessy, J., R. C. R. I.
Hulme, G. G., 15th A. L. I.
Holland, C., 16th Prince Edward Battalion.
Hugall, P., R. C A.
Jackson, C. E. E., 37th Haldiman Rifles.
Johnston, W., R. C. R. I.
Jones, H. H., 15th A. L. I.
Laird, A., late R. C. A.
Lamothe, G., 43rd Ottawa and Carleton Rifles.
Latimer, W. R., G. G. F. G.
Large, A. L., 15th A. L. I.
Lawrence, W. R., 59th Stormont and Glengarry Battalion.
Lewis, Z. R. E., N. W. M. Police
Living, J. F., 43rd Ottawa and Carleton Rifles.
Lynn, F., 15th A. L. I.
Lyon, G. R. D., 43rd Ottawa and Carleton Rifles.
Le Bean, L. P., G. G. F. G.
Macaulay, A., 43rd Ottawa and Carleton Rifles.
Martin, W. A., 43rd Ottawa and Carleton Rifles.
Martin, H., 43rd Ottawa and Carleton Rifles.
Mason, C. P., 43rd Ottawa and Carleton Rifles.
Matthews, A. J., 43rd Ottawa and Carleton Rifles.
Malloch, E. St. J., 43rd Ottawa and Carleton Rifles.
Major, J., 56th Grenville Battalion
Mills, W. W., 15th A. L I.
Mitchell, N., 42nd Lanark and Renfrew Battalion.
Morgans, E. F., 43rd Ottawa and Carleton Rifles.
Morrison, W. A., G. G. F. G.
Morin, J., G. G. F. G.
Morrison, E. F., 3rd Field Battery, C. A.
MacCullough, C., G. G. F. G.
MacRae, R. A., 43rd Ottawa and Csrleton Rifles.
McConnell, J. F., G. G. F. G.
McCormack, A. J., 14th Princess of Wales Own Rifles.
MacKay, R., 15th A. L. I.
McDonald, F., R. C. R I.
McFadden, F., G. G. F. G.
McLennan, J. A., 59th Stormont and Glengarry Battalion.
McCrea, J. M., 45th Victoria Battalion.
McNair, J., 15th A. L. I.
Padmore, D. T., R. C R. I.
Parr, W. B., 43rd Ottawa and Carleton Rifles.
Peters, A E., R. C. R. I.
Phillips, G., 15th A. L. I.
Prior, A., R. C. R. I.
Porteous. R. W., G. G. F. G.
Ritchie. W. G., 43rd Ottawa and Carleton Rifles.
Ross, W. J. H., Domn. Police.
Rowley, J., G. G. F. G.
Ross, A. L., 30th Wellington Rifles.
Schwitzer, W. C., 43rd Ottawa and Carleton Rifies.
Shillington, W. J. H., P. L. D. G.
Small, H. C., 42nd Lanark and Renfrew Battalion.
Smith, J. F., G. G. F. G.
Smith, W. A., 43rd Ottawa and Carleton Rifies.
Southey, E. C., 46th Durham Battalion.
Spence, C. T., 43rd Ottawa and Carleton Rifies.
Street, L. J., G. G. F. G.
Swan, N. W. D., 14th Princess of Wales Own Rifles.
Thomas, J. M., G. G. F. G.
Taylor, A. H., 43rd Ottawa and Carleton Rifies.
Thomas, C. T., G. G. F. G.
Thompson, R. R., 43rd Ottawa and Carleton Rifles.
Tilley, G., 49th Hastings Rifles
Turner, R. H., 41st Brockville Rifles.
Turpin, T. J., Cobourg Co., C. A.
Wall, A., 16th Prince Edward Battalion.
Walker, L. C., 16th Field Battery, C. A.
Wendt, W. G., 43rd Ottawa and Carleton Rifies.
Williamson, A. T. L., G. G. F. G.
Wood, F. H., 43rd Ottawa and Carleton Rifies.
Wright, H. O., P. L. D. G.


Young, Color-Sergeant A., R. C. R. I.
Allan, J., R. C. R. I.
Allan, C. E., 5th Royal Scots.
Ackerman, F., 9th Voltiguers de Quebec.
Adams, J. A., 8th Royal Rifles.
Allmand, W. W., 1st Prince of Wales Fusiliers
Aspell, T. J., 1st Prince of Wales Fusiliers
Bach, R. C., 1st Prince of Wales Fusiliers
Baugh, T. E., R. C. R. I.
Bailey, J., 2nd Regiment C. A.
Barry, C. H., Civilian.
Bigelow, J. A., late N. W. M. P.
Bolt, G. H., 3rd Victoria Rifles.
Byford, R., 1st Prince of Wales Fusiliers.
Byers, R. T., 3rd Victoria Rifles.
Carter, M., 2nd R. C. A.
Campbell. C., 1st Prince of Wales Fusiliers.
Canty, R., 8th Royal Rifles.
Carter, W., 2nd R. C. A.
Clarke, R. C., 2nd R. C. A.
Coates, H. W., 5th Royal Scots.
Cox, F., R. C. R. I.
Crotty, P., 8th Royal Rifles.
Curry, I., 5th Royal Scots.
Corner, F. G., 5th Royal Scots.
Dawson, A., 8th Royal Rifles.
Delaney, M. J., 8th Royal Rifles.
Downey, G., Civilian.
Doyle, T. H. M., 8th Royal Scots.
Durkee, A. A. 3rd V. Rifles.
Dynes, E. J., Queen's Own Canadian Hussars,
Erskine, F., 5th Royal Scots.
Fisher, H., 1st Prince of Wales Fusiliers.
Fowler, W., R. C. R. I.
Fisher, R. L., 1st Prince of Wales Fusiliers.
Fraser, H., 41st Brockvilie Rifles.
Frawky, W. M. C., 3rd Victoria Rifles.
Gamble, J., 5th Royal Scots.
Gardner, J., 5th Royal Scots.
Goodfellow, R., 5th Royal Scots.
Gorman, J. F., 3rd Field Battery, C. A.
Graham, R., R. C. R. I.
Greenlay, G., 54th Richmond Battalion.
Gunn, R., 5th Royal Scots.
Hill, J. K., 8th Royal Rifles.
Hale, W. J., 5th Royal Scots.
Hampson, G., 5th Royal Scots.
Hannaford, A., 5th Royal Scots.
Hawkins, J., 1st Prince of Wales Fusiliers.
Hayes, R., R. C. R. I.
Harding, E., no corps.
Hayward, H., 53rd Sherbrook Battalion.
Home, F., Queen's Own Canadian Hussars.
Hynes, P., 5th Royal Scots.
Irwin, F. B., 8th Royal Rifles.
James, A., 1st Prince of Wales Fusiliers.
Jones, F., 5th Royal Scots.
Jeffery, W., 5th Royal Scots.
Jeffrey, J. W., 3rd Victoria Rifles.
Kealey, M., 1st Prince of Wales Fusiliers.
Kelly, E., 1st Prince of Wales Fusiliers.
Leconteur, R., 8th Royal Rifles.
Lee, F., Queen's Own Canadian Hussars.
Lewis, C. E., 1st Prince of Wales Fusiliers.
Lester, C., Civilian.
Malin, J., 5th Royal Scots.
Marjin, H., 2nd R. C. A.
Martin, A., 2nd R. C. A.
Mead, D., 2nd R. C. A.
Middleton, F., 1st Prince of Wales Fusiliers.
Mitchell, H., 3rd V. R.
Moody, F., R. C. R. I.
Moore, T., D. Y. R. Canadian Hussars.
Molyneux, C. R., 5th R. S.
Murphy, D., 1st Prince of Wales Fusiliers.
Murray, W. R., 8th Royal Rifles.
Murdock, W. A. H., 2nd R. C. A.
McDonald, A., 5th R. C. A.
McCann, J., 8th Royal Rifles.
McGill, D. R., R. C. R, I.
McGoldrick, J., 5th Royal Scots.
McIver, W., 5th Royal Scots.
McLean, R. G., 5th Royal Scots.
McLeod, N. M., 3rd Victoria Rifles.
McQueen, A., 5th Royal Rifles.
Nash, T. B., 3rd Victoria Rifles.
Nickle, C. R., 3rd Field Battery, C. A.
O'Brien, J., 1st Prince of Wales Fusiliers.
O'Meara, J., 5th Royal Rifles.
Phillips, J., 5th Royal Scots.
Platt, J., R. C. R. I.
Pope, A., 5th Royal Scots.
Porter, W., 1st Prince of Wales Fusiliers.
Prince, R. H., 2nd R. C. A.
Price, G., Civilian.
Roberts, G. P., 2nd R. C. A.
Rupert, E., 85th Battalion.
Ryan, P., Civilian.
Richardson, F., Civilian.
Shaw, A. C., 3rd Victoria Rifles.
Shore, R. N., 3rd Victoria Rifles.
Sheehan, M., Queen's Own Canadian Hussars.
Stanning, W., 5th Royal Scots.
Swift, M., 5th Royal Rifles.
Sword, A., 5th Royal Scots.
Sword, D. C., 1st Prince of Wales Fusiliers.
Thomas, A. P., D. Y. R., Canadian Hussars
Thomas, G. W., 5th Royal Scots.
Travers. H. B., 25th Elgin Battalion.
Tregett, J., Queen's Own Canadian Hussars.
Tulloch, A. J., 5th Royal Scots.
Turner, A. J., 5th Royal Rifles.
Tweddell, W., 8th Royal Rifles.
Upton, S., 1st P. W. O. F.
Walker, H. H., 54th Richmond Battalion.
Walters, T. A., 5th Royal Scots.
Walters. J. H., 5th Royal Scots.
Wasdell. F., 3rd Victoria Rifles.
Wardle, A., 53rd Sherbrook Battalion.
White, A., 54th Richmond Battalion.
Wilkin, W., 5th Royal Scots.
Wilkins, A. W., 3rd Royal Rifles.
Williams, H., 53rd Sherbrooke Battalion.
Wright, P. E., Sth Royal Rifles
Wright, J., 8th Royal Rifles.
Yelland, J., 5th Royal Scots.
Youngson, J. S., 5th Royal Scots.


Lafleur, Col.-Sergt. L. E., R. C. A.
Arnton, C. S., Civilian.
Anthony, P., Civilian.
Atkinson, G., Sth Royal Rifles.
Barclay, C. N., D. Y. R. C. Hussars.
Bagot, A., 65th Mount Royal Rifles.
Bamford, W., 3rd Victoria Rifles.
Baldwin, C., R. C. D.
Bessette, W., R. C. A.
Beaupre, C., 5th Battalion.
Brown, H. I., Civilian.
Brown, H., R. C. R. I.
Brooker, L., R C. D.
Bouck, L., Civilian.
Bower, J. W., 93rd Cumberland Battalion.
Carbonneau, E., 65th Mount Royal Rifles.
Casey, J. E., 93rd Cumberland Battalion.
Champagne, M., 1st Field Battery C. A.
Chatel, A., 65th Mount Royal Rifles.
Cloutier, W., 80th Nicolet Battalion.
Chisholm, A. W., 62nd St. John Fusiliers.
Cooper, W., 62nd St. John Fusiliers.
Conley, F., 93rd Cumberland Battalion.
Cowgill, H., R. C. D.
Curphy, J., civilian.
D'Amour, J., 9th Voltigeurs de Quebec.
Demais, A., 9th Voltigeurs de Quebec.
Dolhec, L., 9th Voltigeurs de Quebec.
Donahue, F., late 6th U. S. Infantry.
Downing, W., 62nd St. John Fusiliers.
Duhamel, J. W., 56th Three Rivers Battalion.
D'Orsonens, G., 80th Nicolet Battalion.
Duberger, A., 1st Field Battery, C. A.
Dixon, W., R. C. A.
Desjardins, J. F., 65th Mount Royal Rifles.
Eite, William, R. C. R. I.
Fancy, J. G., civilian.
Forest, H., 61st Montmagny and L'Islet Battalion.
Gates, J. H., 93rd Cumberland Battalion.
Gingrass, J., 9th Voltigeurs de Quebec.
Grecia, J., 62nd St. John Fusiliers.
Gratton, E., 65th Mount Royal Rifles.
Harrison, R., and R. C. A.
Harvey, R., R. C. R. I.
Hennessy, B., R. C. R. I.
Harrison, Charles, 2nd R. C. A
Hill, J., 9th Voltigeurs de Quebec.
Hudon, J A., 65th Mount Royal Rifles.
Hunter, W., 62nd St. John Fusiliers.
Hubley, C., R. C. A.
Irwin, W., 93rd Cumberland Battalion.
Ivers, M., R. C. A.
Jette, G., 65th Mount Royal Rifles.
Jewell, T., 8th Royal Rifles.
Jobin, E., 9th Voltigeurs de Quebec.
Larue, L., 87th Quebec Battalion.
Lambkin, H. J., 8th Royal Rifles.
Lamotireaux, E., R. C. A.
Laverdure, E., R. C. A.
Lefebre, P. W., 9th Voltigeurs de Quebec.
Lescarbeau, T., 65th Mount Royal Rifles.
Lightbound, G. R., 3rd Victoria Rifles.
Levielle, L., 65th Mount Royal Rifles.
Lewis, O., 68th King's County Battalion.
Lemay, A., 65th Mount Royal Rifles.
Matheson, O., 12th Field Battery, C. A.
Medhurst, J., R. C. D.
Michau, L. C., 65th Mount Royal Rifles.
Monteith, J., 62nd St. John Fusiliers.
Montizambert, H., 3rd Victoria Rifles.
McEllhiney, J., 62nd St. John Fusiliers.
McNeil. J. D., R. C. A.
McCollum, G. H., R. C. R. I.
McDonald, J. E., 3rd Victoria Rifles.
McIntosh, W., R. C. A.
MacTaggart, J. W., civilian.
Mclaughlin, H. P., R. C. R. I.
McMillan, A., 1st Prince of Wales Fusiliers.
McMillan, E., 93rd Cumberland Battalion.
McDonald, R. D., R. C. A.
Orman, G., 93rd Cumberland Battalion.
Paquet, G., 87th Quebec Battalion.
Plammondin, J., 9th Voltigeurs de Quebec.
Polkinghorn, J., 62nd St. John Fusiliers.
Proulx, H., 65th Mount Royal Rifles.
Peppeatt, W., R. C. A.
Peterson, C. F., R. C. R. I.
Rae, J. P., civilian.
Raymond, J. W., 62nd St. John Fusiliers.
Remy, J., 65th Mount Royal Rifles.
Redmond, C., 62nd St. John Fusiliers.
Robertson, J. H., 62nd St. John Fusiliers
Roy, A., 89th Temiscouata & Rimouski Battalion.
Roberts, J. R., R. C. A.
Scott, J. A., 93rd Cumberland Battalion.
Sievert, J., 93rd Cumberland Battalion.
Soucy, A., R. C. A.
Smith, L., 62nd St. John Fusiliers.
Strong, F. B., civilian.
Sutton, G. J., 93rd Cumberland Battalion.
Sutherland, A., D. Y. R. C. Hussars.
Tapin, J., 65th Mount Royal Rifles.
Tattersall, H. C., 3rd Victoria Rifles.
Tessier, E., 65th Mount Royal Rifles.
Theriault, A., 9th Voltigeurs de Quebec.
Thompson, W. B., 93rd Cumberland Battalion.
Touchette, J., 65th Mount Royal Rifles.
Utton, F. W., R. C. R. I.
Vallee, L. C., 65th Mount Royal Rifles.
Walsh, J., 62nd St. John Fusiliers.
Warren, C., R. C. A.
Warren, W., R. C. R. I.
Wiseman, N., 9th Voltigeurs de Quebec.
Woodward, F., R C R I
Wylie, R. R., 2nd R. C. A.
Withy, B., R. C. A.


Charlton, Col.-Sergt. C., R. C. R. I.
Sheldon, Sergeant A., R. C. R. I.
Adams, George Frederick, 8th Hussars.
Addison, Joseph, 62nd St. John Fusiliers.
Aitkin, Joseph M., 71st York Battalion.
Anslow, Charles, 12th Field Battery, C. A.
Baker, Warren, R. C. R. I.
Bishop, William, 74th Battalion.
Boudreau, John, Charlottetown "E" Company.
Bowness, Ernest William, 82d Queen's County Battalion.
Burnside, James, 3rd R. C. A.
Brace, Nelson T., Charlottetown Engineer Company.
Brown, Herbert Henry, 82nd Queen's County Battalion.
Bryant, William, 3rd R. C. A.
Campbell, George, R. C. R. I.
Carney, John, 62nd St. John Fusiliers.
Chapman, George, 74th Battalion.
Chappell, Montrose C., 74th Battalion.
Coombs, F. W., 62nd St. John Fusiliers.
Cox, Reginald William, 82nd Queen's County Battalion.
Craig. Edward, 3rd R. C. A.
Creighton, Crandall, 74th Battalion.
Dillon, Artemus Robert, 82nd Queen's County Battalion.
Donahue, William Wallace, 3rd R. C. A.
Doyle, Andrew, 3rd R. C. A.
Dorion, Necy, Charlottetown Engineer Company.
Durant, Henry E., 74th Battalion.
Putney, John, 73rd Northumberland Battalion.
Dyas, Frank, 36th Peel Battalion.
Fahre, David J., 3rd R. C. A.
Ferguson, Daniel, 74th Battalion.
Flewelling, Ernest, R. C. R. I.
Foley, Richard Joseph, Charlottetown Engineer Company.
Foster, Minard, 62nd St. John Fusiliers.
Fradsham, Harry, R. C. R. I.
Furze, F. C., Charlottetewn Engineer Company.
Gaudet, L. S., 4th R. C. A.
Globe, A. R., 62nd Battalion.
Hallamore, William, R. C. R. I.
Hammond, Albert, 74th Battalion.
Harris, Benjamin, 12th Field Battery, C. A.
Harris, John Archibald, 82nd Queen's County Battalion.
Harris, Leroy, 82nd Queen's County Battalion.
Hartfield, Arthur S., 3rd R. C. A.
Haydon, Arthur, 62nd St. John Fusiliers.
Hessian, E., R. C. A.
Hine, Charles Herbert, Charlottetown Engineer Company.
Hubley, Russell C., 8th Hussars.
Irving, Walter H., 62nd St. John Fusiliers.
Jenkins, Charles Leonard, 3rd R. C. A.
Johnson, James, 62nd St. John Fusiliers.
Johnston, Joseph M., 62nd St. John Fusiliers,
Jones, Samuel, 71st York Battalion.
Keddy, Edward, R. C. R. I.
Keswick, George, 73rd Northumberland Battalion.
Kirkpatrick, F. A., 3rd R. C. A.
Kitchen, W., 12th Field Battery, C. A.
Lane, Walter, 82nd Queen's County Battalion.
Leavitt, Herbert, 71st York Battalion
Leslie, J. P., 4th R. C. A.
Letson, J., 62nd St. John Fusiliers.
Lord, Roland E., 82nd Queen's County Battalion.
Lutz, Ernest, 74th Battalion.
Lutz, John, 74th Battalion.
Matheson, J., 4th R. C. A.
McCain, F., 3rd R. C. A.
McCarthy, M. J., 4th R. C. A.
McRae, Frederick B., 82nd Queen's County Battalion.
McCreary, Patrick, 74th Battalion.
McDiarmid, John, 62nd St. John Fusiliers.
McFarlane, Bruce E., 71st York Battalion.
McKinnon. Hedley V., 4th R. C. A.
McLean, H. L., 4th R. C. A.
McLeod, John, 71st York Battalion.
McMullan, W., 8th Hussars.
Mellish, A. J. B., 82nd Queen's County Battalion.
Miller, H., R. C. R. I.
Morley, H. A., 3rd C. A.
Morrison, J., R. C. A.
Monroe, J. R., 73rd Northumberland Battalion.
O'Reilly. Joseph, 4th R. C. A.
Pascoe, J. B., 62nd St. John Fusiliers.
Pelky, A., 62nd St. John Fusiliers.
Penny, Roland, 62nd St. John Fusiliers.
Perkins, J. A., 71st York Battalion.
Pickle, J., 71st York Battalion.
Pringle, James, 71st York Battalion.
Quinn, M. James, R. C. R. I.
Raymond, W. J., 3rd R. C. A.
Rawlings. John, 3rd R. C. A.
Redden, H., R. C. R. I.
Riggs, William Alfred, Charlottetown Engineer Company.
Rodd, T. A., 82nd Queen's County Battalion.
Roberts, Arthur, 3rd R. C.
Russell, J., R. C. A.
Schofield, Allen, 62nd St. John Fusiliers.
Scott, J. B., R. C. R. I.
Scott, J., 3rd C. A.
Singer, L. M., 78th Colchester, Hants & Pictou Battalion.
Simpson, Alfred, 3rd R. C. A.
Simpson, Percival, R. C. R. I.
Small, J. E., 4th R. C. A.
Sprague, F. W., 3rd R. C. A.
Stanton, Leigh, 5th Royal Scots.
Stevenson, P. S., 71st York Battalion.
Stewart, Lorne, 52nd Queen's County Battalion.
Strange, E. H., 62nd St. John Fusiliers.
Swatridge, W. O., 3rd R. C. A.
Taylor, R. D., Charlotte Town Engineer Company.
Tower, Bradford G., 74th Battalion.
Turner, R. M., 62nd St. John Fusiliers.
Unkauf, W. C., 62nd St. John Fusiliers.
Walker, Frederick G., 71st York Battalion.
Walker, J. S., 82nd Queen's County Battalion.
Wallace, W. V., R. C. R. I.
Wanamaker, H. L., 74th Battalion.
Ward, G., R. C. A.
Ward, Robert, 73rd Northumberland Battalion.
Wayne, J. F., 82nd Queen's County Battalion.
Williams, Joseph, 62nd St. John's Fusiliers.
Williams, F., 62nd St. John's Fusiliers.
Wilson, John H., 71st York Battalion.
Withers, Frederick W., 3rd R. C. A.


Eustace, Col.-Segt. J. D., 63rd Halifax Rifles.
Adams, W. F., 63rd Halifax Rifles.
Anderson, J. H. N., 66th Princess Louise Fusiliers.
Atwater, James, 94th Argyle Highlanders.
Ackhurst, F. W., Halifax Bearer Company, C. A. M. S. C.
Binnett, G. B., 63rd Halifax Rifles.
Blaikie, H., 66th Princess Louise Fusiliers.
Borton, C. N., 66th Princess Louise Fusiliers.
Burgess, M., 93rd Cumberland Battalion.
Blair, S., 93rd Cumberland Battalion.
Bent, E. E., 68th King's County Battalion.
Brown, S., 93rd Cumberland Battalion.
Buchanan, K., 93rd Cumberland Battalion.
Bingay, L. W., 1st R. C. A.
Baugh, B., R. C. A.
Conrad, W., 1st R. C. A.
Coons, F., 2nd R. C. A.
Cleary, W., 1st Leinster Regiment.
Carroll, James, 66th Princess Louise Fusiliers.
Cameron, A. A., 63rd Halifax Rifles.
Chapman, F., 63rd Halifax Rifles.
Daley, F., 5th Royal Scots.
Dooley, F., 66th Princess Louise Fusiliers.
Drake, J., 63rd Halifax Rifles.
Duncan, J., 2nd R. C. A.
Dewers, F., 65th Prince
Defoe, J., R. C. A.
Elliott, W., 66th Princess Louise Fusiliers.
Embree, G., 93rd Cumberland Battalion.
Ewing, I., 63rd Halifax Rifles.
Ewing, D. H., 63rd Halifax Rifles.
Farrell, G. P., Durham Light Infantry.
Farrer, De B., 66th Princess Louise Fusiliers.
Ferguson, W. R., 93rd Cumberland Battalion.
Fillmore, W. A., 93rd Cumberland Battalion.
Fitzgerald, A. E., 1st R. C. A.
Forsyth, A., civilian.
Fraser, H. H., 66th Princess Louise Fusiliers.
Gallacher, J., 4th Battalion Manchester Regiment.
Grant, J. W., 66th Princess Louise Fusiliers.
Grimshaw, 66th Princess Louise Fusiliers.
Hancock, C., C. A. M. S. C.
Harris, J., 66th Princess Louise Fusiliers.
Harrison, G., 1st R. C. A.
Hartneth, J. W., 93rd Cumberland Battalion.
Hart, W. J., 63rd Halifax Rifles.
Halliday, J., R. C. A.
Huestis, G. J., 63rd Halifax Rifles.
Hire, J., 66th Princess Louise Fusiliers.
Hunt, G., civilian.
Hurly, J., 1st R. C. A.
Hoult, E., R. C. A.
James, George, civilian.
Johnstone, G., 63rd Halifax Rifles.
Jones, H., 63th King's County Battalion.
Kelly, J., 10th R. G.
Kennedy, John, R. C. A.
Keogh, P., 66th Princess Louise Fusiliers.
Keener, R. T., civilian.
Kilcup, E., 65th King's County Battalion.
Kirkpatrick, F., 66th Princess Louise Fusiliers.
Lewis, M., R. C. A.
Lenahan, J., 63rd Halifax Rifles.
Lindsay, A. C., N. W. M. Police.
Lindon, H., R. C. A.
Lockwood, A., 68th King's County Battalion.
Lowry, T. P., 66th Princess Louise Fusiliers.
Miller, C., 1st R. C. A.
Miller, R., 75th Lunenburg Battalion.
Munnis. M., 63rd Halifax Battalion.
Muir, F., 1st R. C. A.
Murray, N. G., civilian.
Murray, A., civilian.
McAldin, R., 66th Princess Louise Fusiliers.
McCallum, B., civilian.
McCollum, G. D., 93rd Cumberland Battalion.
McDougall, H. A., 5th Royal Scots.
McDonald, C., 66th Princess Louise Fusiliers.
McDonald, G., 66th Princess Louise Fusiliers.
McDonald, D. C., 1st R. C. A.
McLean, W. J., civilian.
McLean, J., civilian.
McNab, F., 63rd Halifax Rifles.
Neily, R L., 68th King's County Battalion.
O'Brien, E., 78th Colchester & Hants Battalion.
Oxley, William, 93rd Cumberland Battalion.
Osborn, D., civilian.
Oulton, H., 93rd Cumberland.
Parkes, F. S., 2nd R. C. A.
Patterson, A., 63rd Halifax Rifles.
Parker, A., 68th King's County Battalion.
Pollock, W. J., 66th Princess Louise Fusiliers.
Purcell, E. S., 66th Princess Louise Fusiliers.
Purcell, L. A., 63rd Halifax Rifles.
Pooley, C. F., C. A. M. S. C.
Regan, W. J., 68th Princess Louise Fusiliers.
Rector, R., 93rd Cumberland Battalion.
Roche, W., 66th Princess Louise Fusiliers.
Rose, J. E., 66th Princess Louise Fusiliers.
Rose, F., C. A. M. S. C.
Rolfe, J., 63rd Halifax Rifles.
Roue, J. F. L. C. A. M. S. C.
Ross, W. J., 1st R. C. A.
Robertson, A., 3rd Victoria Rifles.
Ross, R., 1st R. C. A.
Rudland, R., 1st R. C. A.
Reid, W., civilian.
Ryan, D. J., 66th Princess Louise Fusiliers.
Simmons, W., 66th Princess Louise Fusiliers.
Sloan, R., 1st R. C. A.
Stevenson, T., 1st Leicester Regiment.
Swinyard. W., R. C. A.
Steuart, G. W., 66th Princess Louise Fusiliers.
Taylor, F. A. E., 63rd Halifax Rifles.
Tester, S., 2nd R. C. A.
Trider, A., 1st R. C. A.
Trueman. W. E., 78th Colchester & Hants Battalion.
Walker, W. A., 66th Princess Louise Fusiliers.
Walsh, T. J., 66th Princess Louise Fusiliers.
Ward, E., 66th Princess Louise Fusiliers.
Walke, C. W. J., 66th Princess Louise Fusiliers.
Ward, G., 68th King's County Battalion.
Watson, J., R. C. A.
Woods. D., 63rd Halifax Rifles.
Wright, P., 63rd Halifax Rifles.
Zong, A. E., 66th Princess Louise Fusiliers.