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THE BOER PEOPLE It is impossible to appreciate the South African problem and the causes which have led up to the present war between the British Empire and the Boer republics without some knowledge, however superficial, of the past history of South Africa. To tell the tale one must go back to the beginning, for there has been complete continuity of history in South Africa, and every stage has depended upon that which has preceded it. No one can... more...

PREFACE TO THE FINAL EDITION. During the course of the war some sixteen Editions of this work have appeared, each of which was, I hope, a little more full and accurate than that which preceded it. I may fairly claim, however, that the absolute mistakes made have been few in number, and that I have never had occasion to reverse, and seldom to modify, the judgments which I have formed. In this final edition the early text has been carefully... more...

CHAPTER I STEAMING SOUTH R.M.S. 'Dunottar Castle,' at sea: October 26, 1899. The last cry of 'Any more for the shore?' had sounded, the last good-bye had been said, the latest pressman or photographer had scrambled ashore, and all Southampton was cheering wildly along a mile of pier and promontory when at 6 P.M., on October 14, the Royal Mail steamer 'Dunottar Castle' left her moorings and sailed with Sir Redvers Buller for the Cape. For a... more...

THE EVE OF WAR The next six weeks will be an anxious time for the British Empire. The war which begins as I write between three and four on Wednesday afternoon, October 11th, 1899, is a conflict for supremacy in South Africa between the Boer States, their aiders and abettors, and the British Empire. In point of resources the British Empire is so incomparably stronger than the Boer States that there ought to be no possibility of doubt about the... more...

CHAPTER I ON THE EDGE NEWCASTLE, NATAL, Thursday, October 5, 1899. Late last Sunday night I found myself slowly crawling towards the front from Pretoria in a commandeered train crammed full of armed Boers and their horses. I had rushed from the Cape to quiet little Bloemfontein, the centre of one of the best administered States in the world, where the heads of the nation in the intervals of discussing war proudly showed me their pianos, their... more...


MAPS TO VOLUME I. Pains have been taken to embody in the maps all topographical information existing up to date. A very considerable amount of valuable triangulation has been executed over portions of South Africa, but no systematic detailed survey has ever been made by any of the South African colonies or states. Maps have, however, been compiled by both Cape Colony and Natal. The former has prepared and published a map extending north as far... more...

CHAP. I. Bethulie Concentration Camp, August, 1901. Wednesday, August 21.—Arrived station 8.30 a.m. (from Bloemfontein); tedious delay; no pass to village obtainable, official in village for breakfast; number of refugees in same train, among them a sick girl, with fever: "Pappie, Pappie, ach mij ou Pappie!" ("Daddy, daddy! O my dear daddy!" Thus she cried whenever she was touched, as they carried her out of the train, and lifted her on to... more...

CHAPTER I Outbreak of the war—The Transport Service and despatch of Army Corps from Southampton—Departure of a Naval Brigade from England and landing at Capetown and Durban—I join H.M.S. Philomel. During a short leave of absence in Scotland, after my return from Flag-Lieutenant's service in India with Rear-Admiral Archibald L. Douglas, that very kind friend, now Lord of the Admiralty, appointed me (5th October, 1899) to the... more...

CHAPTER I THE WAY TO THE BOER COUNTRY Immediately after war was declared between Great Britain and the Boers of the Transvaal and the Orange Free State, the two South African republics became ostracised, in a great measure, from the rest of the civilised world. The cables and the great ocean steamship lines, which connected South Africa with Europe and America, were owned by British companies, and naturally they were employed by the British... more...

THE REVENGE OF THE MOORS. For more than three centuries the trading nations of Europe were suffered to pursue their commerce or forced to abandon their gains at the bidding of pirates. From the days when Barbarossa defied the whole strength of the Emperor Charles V., to the early part of the present century, when prizes were taken by Algerine rovers under the guns, so to say, of all the fleets of Europe, the Corsairs were masters of the narrow... more...