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Denton Van Zan
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mons14

What you need to understand, this is not a private conversation between Mike and Peter - how can it be, as it is on a public forum ?

Truth be told, I think Mike is using my post(s) for his benefit, as he has no argument against Peter Q. & Ron. L.'s paper.

I call it the playing of the 'Get out of the debate free' card.

He's a worried man, methinks.

C.J.
Galloglas
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I find myself in the rare position of finding Mike Snook 2's most recent post on this subject to be entirely supportable, except for one thing.

Perhaps I ought to see a doctor!

The thing is, and it's just a supplementary thematic point really rather than one of rebuttal, that finding the Lock and Quantrill TMFH postulated theory fairly persuasive - as several here do - should not imply collateral support to their ZV 'decoy' theory - as many here don't. The 'decoy' theory is a very old carpet indeed from which not much more dust can be beaten, and, I find it difficult to see it as a reinforcing part of this TMFH thesis. Nor is the TMFH paper a particularly useful context within which to debate the blameworthiness of Durnford, for whatever he is being blamed for this time.
We also need to give due regard to the treatments of the same issue carried forward in their respective writings by John Laband and Ian Knight.

They have separately delivered their own enduring assessments over time and after 25-30 years of careful study. Though there was clearly more contemporary scholarship and depth of thought behind these assessments as they were first published they were at least congruent with the accepted or received wisdom of the time of their first publishing; which both John and Ian were at liberty to argue against had they felt persuaded to do so based upon their own research and consequent evaluation of the material examined.
Ian Knight has again more recently indicated his own assessment in his Zulu Rising book. As far as I can see (from Zulu Rising), Ian's readout as is usual for a person of his thoroughness takes account of multiple sources but as far as any map 'evidence' is concerned is probably more influenced by an appraisal of the similar maps in the Durnford Papers, rather than from any fresh re-visiting of the Killie Campbell maps in preparing Zulu Rising. Zulu Rising footnotes also appear to indicate - though do not categorically state - a degree of influence from earlier work done by FWD Jackson and Julian Whybra on those Durnford maps.
Time-wise Zulu Rising was evidently also being finalised well before TMFH was made generally visible. Consequently, ZR could not reasonably be considered as if it were attempting to address the TMFH thesis. In other words, it does not attempt to comment upon the TMFH thesis as such. So, the extent to which John and Ian might be influenced by the TMFH paper is an open issue and, I suspect, is hardly likely to find expression here.

Whether or not the TMFH thesis will gain traction over time remains to be seen. However, it is at least as credible as previous assessments centred upon Raw and Mabaso and - I believe - much moreso. A revision of the TMFH paper so as to discard much of its diverting clutter and indulgence in side issues would no doubt improve the quality and acceptability of its main arguments and conclusions. Or, they would at least become more easily discernible.

Meanwhile, it is also good to see Mike Snook 2 back.

G
Mel


Joined: 31 Aug 2005
Posts: 345
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G
Good points made. However, you talk as if this thesis is, somehow, new.

Ron and Peter have always run the decoy theory alongside the premise of the missing five hours. It started in ZV, was much debated on this forum and is, again mentioned in this paper.

ZV page 169 "six miles away to the south east his (Ntshingwayo) remaining decoys continued to play hide and seek with Chelmsford......
........... The time was approximately 7.30am. The battle for Isandlwana camp had begun.

The decoy theory is, again, mentioned in this paper. That is Ron and Peter's underlying main thrust. It's not the location of the point of contact. The point of contact ("x") is needed to support the decoy theory. The impi needs to be shown to have already left the valley at the point of contact otherwise the decoy theory collapses.

Ian has had, therefore, plenty of time to appreciate the concept of TMFH and I am suprised he has not included a more firmer rebuttal in ZR.

Bearing in mind certain guarantees made in this thread, I don't see why Mike could not, now, be a much needed part of this discussion.

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Peter Ewart


Joined: 31 Aug 2005
Posts: 1797
Location: Near Canterbury, Kent, England.
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Galloglas/Mel

Although I've only read it through hastily once and will have to wait a little longer before I get the chance to consider it in detail, your posts do invite the possibility of a promising discussion.

Before going further, I was going to point out to Mel that Ian Knight does, in fact, set out his position on the location of Raw's discovery and the early movements of the amabutho in far more detail that I had indicated in one of my posts of 1st October. He also acknowledges that other viewpoints on this have been aired (in addition to the decoy theory, that is). I thought I had retracted my statement about this in my posting of the other day and was about to refer you to this, Mel, but then couldn't find it. Puzzled, I realise now that when I redrafted my post after having lost a chunk of it, I inadvertently omitted a whole para.

So, for the record, Ian does, in fact, provide a very full explanation of his position on the discovery of the impi and the "to-ing and fro-ing" in a very detailed footnote on pp642/3/4. It may not be what those homing in on "x" want to see, but Ian opines that the eye-witness accounts do describe a feature which resembles the Ngwebeni valley behind Mabaso rather than a less significant undulation of the upper reaches of the Ngwebeni. He concludes a lengthy explanation of his thoughts thus:

"I am firmly of the opinion that no attack had been deliberately launched before the encounter with Raw's men, that the Zulu army was largely concealed behind Mabaso, and that Raw's men, pursuing foragers, had ridden up onto the south-western slopes of the hill before spotting the army below them."

Couldn't be clearer. I was keen to correct an impression I had given in one of my posts on Zulu Rising the other day that the author had not gone into quite as much detail on this point as I had expected him to. Then I saw he had done so in this footnote. Thanks to Mel, I've now realised that my immediate attempt at correcting my statement had been stillborn, so I am relieved to put that right now.

Mel is probably right in that L&Q require the "x" position to be accepted in order to support the decoy theory, as well as the earlier start to the battle, although I tend to look at it in isolation, as I am entirely unconvinced by any decoy theory but am interested to see whether the available sources may point to a location of the "Raw clash" at a spot further west than the Ngwebeni valley behind Mabaso - and that's all. Is that a viable possibility, Peter Q? I have yet to go through the piece with a fine toothcomb, though, as the time has not yet been available. So my position, if I do agree with the "x" hypothesis (perhaps a bit more than a hypothesis) would have to follow the "so what?" position of Mel, in that very little is changed by the different location of Raw's clash. Unless, of course, we accept that such a finding suggests the battle was therefore demonstrably going to take place that day (but without a decoy involved!) and that possibly Durnford's men's foray along the top did not provoke an attack for which the British found themselves unprepared.

Incidentally, could the force secreted behind the ridge "x" not have remained concealed there until the next day?

Like Galloglas, I also found the piece a little cluttered and in need of a bit of tidying up. Perhaps it will be clearer when I get a chance to have a really thorough go at it.

Peter

P.S. I'd also strongly suggest that this paper is read in conjunction with Keith Smith's Discovery of the Zulu Impi, in his Studies in the Anglo-Zulu War (2007) to see where Keith & Peter & Ron concur and differ, largely on their respective interpretations of most of the same sources (the eye-witness accounts from both sides, the same four maps with marks and annotations, etc., etc).


Last edited by Peter Ewart on Mon Oct 11, 2010 9:21 pm; edited 2 times in total
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Mel


Joined: 31 Aug 2005
Posts: 345
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Peter
Thanks for that clarification. As I said earlier, I have reserved ZR for poolside reading next week so I was basing my comment on your 1st Oct post. I have now hastily read Ian's notes and he does, indeed, firmly refute the notion that the Impi had launched an attack before the discovery. Apologies, Ian. Embarassed
So, there you go!?

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Peter Ewart


Joined: 31 Aug 2005
Posts: 1797
Location: Near Canterbury, Kent, England.
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Mel

The blushes are mine for misdirecting you and anyone else. Happy hols - but don't ruin the book by spilling beer or suntan lotion all over the pages!

P.
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Galloglas
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Mel,

This is not sent in any carping spirit and merely reflects the problem of trying to draw comparisons between the TMFH thesis and others due to TMFH being packed with so many issues that need not really be there.

The bit that I would consider 'new' is that part of the TMFH argument based upon interpretation of the Killie Campbell map sheets, and the attributions of marked detail to Wood. That is, the argument that the Zulu main force was probably discovered already configured for a deliberate attack, and by observation or some form of close contact with elements of it in a very different place to that associated with the Raw-Mabaso assessment, usually thought of as being at least a mile further to the northeast and on the heights above the deeper Ngwebeni valley. In terms of these KC maps, in the area on higher ground above the one that Penrose and Anstey have marked with a succession of 'a' markings along the riverline. My thoughts are that Wood was probably also already influenced by other detail provided to him in the UK by Anstey/Penrose and referred to by Col EH Steward in his pre-amble to the Mehlokazulu statement in the RE Journal. Whilst Wood may well have taken note of what was said by other informants in visiting the Isandlwana area several of those listed in TMFH would have been 'hearsay' informants rather than credible eye witnesses in their own right.

So, stripping away the undergrowth and multiple side issues, the novelty and potential significance of this TMFH item, for me at least, would lie in proper interpretation of these KC maps against the most relevant and significant collateral. On balance, the TMFH piece is only partly successful in delivering what ought to be its main effort. This is all very arguable, I agree.

G
Keith Smith


Joined: 30 Aug 2005
Posts: 540
Location: Northern NSW, Australia
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G and Peter E.

My paper on the discovery of the Zulu impi was written in response to that written by Julian and David Jackson, both papers being based upon two maps in the Durnford papers in the RE Museum, Chatham. My original paper was published as 'Isandlwana: The Discovery of the Zulu Army', Journal of the Anglo-Zulu War Historical Society, December 2004. It was subsequently updated for my Studies publication after finding the two maps in Durban, and a subsequent paper on them called 'The Annotated Maps of Isandlwana', in Soldiers of the Queen, September 2007. (That paper is to be found in the Pot Pourri section of the RDVC site.) I should add, to be clear, that I have never subscribed to the 'decoy' theory.

I must here acknowledge that my first inkling that the discovery might have taken place elsewhere than in the Ngwebeni valley was in a private discussion with Ron Lock in the home of Nikki van der Heyde in Durban nearly a year before ZV was published.

KIS
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Missing Five Hours
Chris


Joined: 01 Feb 2007
Posts: 180
Location: S.A.
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PQ
Posting answer here from Lt Raw thread

Thanks I have now printed your paper , checked "X" , and see that it is where I thought it was ( correct according to co-ords given , recent maps , and GE )

I have also printed Keith Smiths paper The Annotated Maps of Isandlwana ( purely for personal use and study )

Do you perhaps have a spatial reference for where the included photo ( Appendix D ) was taken from ?

I think one would need something like a surveyors wheel to check distance accurately -- or an accurate GPS

I also think that it would help to check heights / contours with an accurate altimeter. GPS is not very accurate in the Z dimension ( Altitude )

Splitting hairs perhaps -- I think that this is what one must do if one wants an accurate answer.

Question for Col Mike ( Snook not McCabe )
If I may ask -- when will you be visitng KZN next to do your newest "recce" Question


Question for Keith Smith
Many thanks for making one of your papers available in the "pot-pourri"
How might I go about obtaiing the others mentioned here Question

Also how might I obtain copies of the Durnford maps Question

Thank you all
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Keith Smith


Joined: 30 Aug 2005
Posts: 540
Location: Northern NSW, Australia
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Chris

My paper on the discovery of the Zulu army is to be found in my book Studies on the Anglo-Zulu War. A copy might still be available from the Brecon Museum.

As to the Durnford maps in the RE Museum, they are both made of cloth and are quite large. You can, if you wish, email the museum and ask them to let you purchase digital images but communications with them, I have found to my cost, are not good, nor are they likely to accede to such a request, but that should not deter you from trying. Otherwise, the only way would be to go to the UK and the museum yourself. I have had to do this many times over the last dozen years, at my own expense. I am afraid that that is the cost of serious research, as I am sure Martin Everett will confirm.


KIS
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Durnford Maps
Chris


Joined: 01 Feb 2007
Posts: 180
Location: S.A.
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Keith Smith wrote:

Chris
My paper on the discovery of the Zulu army is to be found in my book Studies on the Anglo-Zulu War. A copy might still be available from the Brecon Museum.

As to the Durnford maps in the RE Museum, they are both made of cloth and are quite large. You can, if you wish, email the museum and ask them to let you purchase digital images but communications with them, I have found to my cost, are not good, nor are they likely to accede to such a request, but that should not deter you from trying. Otherwise, the only way would be to go to the UK and the museum yourself. I have had to do this many times over the last dozen years, at my own expense. I am afraid that that is the cost of serious research, as I am sure Martin Everett will confirm.
KIS


Ahh OK

I will see if I can find a copy of your book in one of the local libraries here

Can we make a distinction between the maps that Durnford himself made ( For the boundary commission if I am not mistaken -- and others )
and
Those held at Chatham contained in the "Durnford Papers" -- actually done by Anstey and Penrose but annotated and given to Durnfords brother ( If I am not mistaken )

I am interested in the other maps , the ones that Durnford himself produced

When you say large -- what are the exact dimensions Question

When you say digital copy are you referring to scans or photographs Question

I am sure that people make a living by visiting the various UK archives helping "researchers" find the bits and pieces they need and making copies. So perhaps not a burning need to visit "old blighty"

I note that you have visited SA -- how else could one tread upon the ground -- and visit Kille Campbell -- although I am sure that Peter or Ron would have been happy to make copies of Anstey for you Question

BTW; I do have images of the Chatham maps -- the maps themselves are badly creased from being folded and are also patinated ( clour worn ) from the ravages of time and being folded away in some musty cabinet.

I leave the "serious" research up to you guys -- I just read the books Exclamation
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Jamie


Joined: 01 Sep 2005
Posts: 149
Location: Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
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If I may offer this link:

http://www.isandlwana1879.co.uk/index_files/Page3362.htm

Might be of assistance in trying to picture the scene!

Regards all,

Jamie

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Mel


Joined: 31 Aug 2005
Posts: 345
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G,
Couldn't agree more and I have, indeed, referred to the new annotation evidence in my previous posts on Sept 28th (6.44 pm) and Oct 3 (8.52am).

It's also the concept of the battle starting at 7.30am and then followed by the longest drawn out attack in Zulu history that I can't accept. Wish someone would explain it to me.

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Paul Bryant-Quinn


Joined: 14 Oct 2007
Posts: 543
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Out of interest, how far did each of the horns have to travel in order to effect their encircling movement (in miles, please ... Wink )
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Keith Smith


Joined: 30 Aug 2005
Posts: 540
Location: Northern NSW, Australia
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Chris

It seems I misunderstood your question. I have no knowledge of the maps which might have been drawn by Durnford while he was a member of the Boundary Commission. Perhaps the National Archives in Kew might assist?

KIS
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Missing Five Hours
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