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Discussions related to the Anglo-Zulu War of 1879
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peterw


Joined: 30 Aug 2005
Posts: 865
Location: UK
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David

Welcome to RDVC. There was an awful row involving a frequent but anonymous former contributor so it's great to be able to address someone by their real name.

Peter
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Peter Ewart


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

Ditto from me, a very warm welcome to the forum and thanks for your contributions. (And also for magnanimously avoiding an awful row at home ... what's wrong with, say, "Grumpy"? Wink Wink Wink

Peter
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Dawn


Joined: 31 Aug 2005
Posts: 610
Location: Auckland, New Zealand
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Welcome, David

I'm not sure if it's mentioned in this thread somewhere, or on another post, but I since established that the only 'boy' on the Isandlwana battlefield at the time of the battle was Surgeon Shepherd's boy only known as "Green". Very little is known about this boy, not even his first name and how he came to accompany the Surgeon to Zululand. He was obviously not an enlisted man (boy).

There were also bugle boys but no 'drummer boys' as such.

One of the bugle boys was Daniel Gordon, and his enlistment number is 25B/1491. He enlisted in Dec 1875 at the age of 13 which would make his age at the the time of the battle as 16/17 (depending on his date of birth).

Dawn
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David Langley


Joined: 30 Nov 2012
Posts: 20
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Dawn, thank you very much. My understanding ot Line Infantry at the time of 1879 was that "The Drums" comprised 2 drummers [rank private, appointment drummer] extra 1d per day pay, for each of eight companies and one Drum Major = Sgt Drummer, plus a few "Boys" supernumerary, often clothed as drummers, and under training. Each drummer was expected to become proficient in drum, fife, and bugle. When the Drums paraded as such, one drummer carried the bass drum, about half played a drum [sometimes one or two tenor drums] and carried a slung bugle, and some carried the simple wind instruments "fifes" and also carried a slung bugle. Thus the drums were also a bugle band as required.

However, Light Infantry and Rifles appointed privates as Buglers, and when paraded they were the "Bugles" under the Bugle-Major.

The distinction extended to badges: except in tunic order [full dress] when drummers and buglers should have been indistinguishable regarding wings, braid etc., but in the second frock the drummers wore a drum badge, and the buglers a bugle.
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Julian whybra


Joined: 03 Sep 2005
Posts: 436
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Harrington attested 15.10.78 so was aged 12-16 by the time of Isandhlwana.
Richards - there are no records - must have been 12-16.
Gordon attested 6.12.75 and was at least 16.
McEwan attested 20.4.77 and was aged 15-16.
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The 'Boys' at Isandlwana
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