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Any body Original topic Orders re Isandlwana discovered 2001
Andrew Bush


Joined: 03 Sep 2005
Posts: 66
Location: Melbourne Australia
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Going on from my original topic Orders re Isandlwana discovered 2001


Has anybody on the forum actually seen these orders at the Royal Engineers Museum apart from Adrian Greaves because again on page 123 Adrian states that the order issued to Durnford
discovered over 100 years later which I presume are the same batch of documents clearly states he was not ordered to take command of the camp.

Does anyone know where these documents were originally found, how, who etc or have they always been at the Royal Engineers Museum and has anyone else looked at them apart from Adrian.

The other reason why I am asking is I believe in, “How can a man die better” the author clearly believes the order that Durnford was to take command of the camp.

How can 2 authors have so differing views?

Forgive me from going on but after reading many books on the AZW over the past 15 years and then visiting Zululand in September 05 and seeing the topography and talking to local people I feel as though I know very little about the subject?

Regards

Andrew

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Martin Everett


Joined: 01 Sep 2005
Posts: 784
Location: Brecon
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Dear Andrew,

I have seen sight of these documents, but the originals are the part of the Royal Engineers Museum collection - so please discuss it with them - you are going to get the accurate answer from them.

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Mike Snook


Joined: 31 Aug 2005
Posts: 130
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Andrew

Please read pages 88-89 again. You are attributing to me something I did not say.

Regards as ever

Mike
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Dawn


Joined: 31 Aug 2005
Posts: 610
Location: Auckland, New Zealand
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Mike,
Just received your book today. I'm delighted. Especially when Lt Pope is on the first page of the prologue. Can't wait to get into it. Razz

Just dived to pgs 88-89 to see what the fuss is about and you're right, Mike, that's not what it says. My interpretation is that Durnford should have taken command of the camp in terms of his rank but without specific orders, he didn't. End of story.

Dawn
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Mike Snook


Joined: 31 Aug 2005
Posts: 130
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Hi Dawn

I hope it's not too tired after its long journey!!

Regards as ever

Mike
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Dawn


Joined: 31 Aug 2005
Posts: 610
Location: Auckland, New Zealand
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Mike
It arrived in perfect condition, suberbly wrapped by the good people at the museum and I even got a plastic bag with the museum emblem on it and a free pen. Actually I don't know if the pen was left inside by accident, but it writes extremely well.

And I think that it's me that going to be tired after spending the whole weekend reading it. Good thing it arrived on a Friday!

Dawn
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Andrew Bush


Joined: 03 Sep 2005
Posts: 66
Location: Melbourne Australia
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So even though Chelmsford threatened to relieve Durnford of his command if he did not follow his direct orders, (actually seen in writing) are you saying he should have taken command, I say not regardless of his rank.

Regards,

Andrew

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Dawn

End of story ?

Andrew

Although I haven't obtained Mike Snook's book yet, he did write a detailed posting in the book forum on this site, on the first page of the topic with the same heading as his book, started by myself, explaining the subject of command at Isandlwana camp very clearly.

You probably already seen it, but the reply does answer you're question (to Mike ?) concerning this specific point.

I'm not getting involved though, until I've re-read my books and also read the new books (still to arrive), as I think people are fed up with my constant objections, which I'm having difficulty backing up.

Mind you, in the immortal words of a well-known film character - " I'll be back ! "

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Dawn


Joined: 31 Aug 2005
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End of story? Well, for your sake, thank goodness it is the end of that particular story. If Durnford had taken command of the camp, then Chelmsford would have considered himself well justified for blaming Durnford for its fall.

Andrew

Which part of Durnford's earlier orders would Durnford applied when he arrived at the camp? The order I think you are refering to is the one on 14th Jan when Durnford was going to cross the Tugela. These start "unless you carry out the instructions I give you, it will be my unpleasant duty to remove you from your command". However the same also says "I am quite ready to give its commander every latitude, and would certainly expect him to disobey any orders he might receive from me, if information obtained showed that it would be injurious to the interests of the column under his command".

When Durnford arrived in camp, his instructions were "you are to march to camp at once with all the force with you." No order to take command of the column. So when he arrived in camp, it could be said he obeyed this command from Chelmsford. He had no other orders to take command.

However, he could also have obeyed the second part of Chelmsford earlier instructions about information being injurious to the column under his command. Zulus had been seen, shots fired, the troops had fallen in, and Chelmsford was long gone. Maybe he decided things were injurious and therefore he had some latitude.

In his subsequent actions, it could be said that he was obeying all of Chelmsfords commands to the letter. He didn't take command because he wasn't ordered to and he acted in defence of the column of which he was in command i.e.. No.2 column. And, by default, he would also be acting in defence of half of No.3, whether or not he or Pulleine was in command.

Dawn
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Dawn

You must know by now that anything to do with Isandlwana is never really the 'end of story'.

No matter how accurate it is, or appears to be, someone else will have a different opinion.

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Dawn


Joined: 31 Aug 2005
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Location: Auckland, New Zealand
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And opinions are like noses...everyone's got one.

However, I don't see anyone's elses opinion on this one, so maybe it is end of story.

Dawn
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Dawn

There is one example about Isandlwana that I really thought was a 'solid' aspect of the whole incident - the location of the Zulu army when it was discovered by the horsemen.

However, after the marathon topic on the old forum questioning this very subject, I found it absolutely fascinating to think there may be an alternative. So, even the discovery of the Zulu army isn't 'end of story'.

With regards to Durnford and the camp at Isandlwana, well, yes, I've an opinion about why he didn't assume command, but learning from previous topics, I'm going to at least build up a bit more knowledge about the events from my books, before making any more attempts at trying to argue the case.

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Dawn


Joined: 31 Aug 2005
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The end of story bit is that Durnford didn't take command of the camp.

If anyone can prove otherwise...

As for his reasons, well, we'd be here all day.

Dawn
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Julian whybra


Joined: 03 Sep 2005
Posts: 436
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Andrew
The orders you refer to were not discovered by Adrian Greaves. They were found glued together by age, weather, and perhaps blood by David Jackson in 1955. He was able to read a small section of them but was unable to peel them apart without causing damage and so was uncertain of their content or value. He basically kept quiet about them for 35 years - it took the museum that long to get around to separating them. He and I went to see the orders a few days after they were separated in 1989, examined them carefully, and wrote an article on them, entitled 'The Durnford Papers', reproducing the text correctly (!) which was published in 1990 in Soldiers of the Queen. The article is referred to in a number of works in the 1990s and 2000s including Ian Knight's 'Zulu' and was put on display with the Durnford Papers at the RE Museum in its Red Earth Exhibition at which I and Ian Knight were guests of honour. Beverley Williams, Asst curator at the RE Museum, Chatham, is able to verify everything I have written above.
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Andrew Bush


Joined: 03 Sep 2005
Posts: 66
Location: Melbourne Australia
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Thanyou Julian,

Is there anyway I can get a copy of the article 'The Durnford Papers'

Kind regards,

Andrew

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Any body Original topic Orders re Isandlwana discovered 2001
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