Black and White Budget, Transvaal Special, No. 12, Vol. 41, December 30th 1899

Dec 30,1899! BLACK AND WHITE BUDGET 5 A happy Christmas to the brave soldiers in South Africa !Our festivities at home will be saddened by thinking of their sufferings, but brightened by recalling their bravery. A p riv ate of theist Kin g’s Royal Rifles tells a peculiar incident of the light at Glencoe. “We wore picked off one by one, and worse than that we had a flat piece of ground to get over right in the open,” he writes. “Our men were dropping down wounded, and our Colonel thought they were retiring. He turned round, revolver in hand, and said that any man retiring under the Boer fire he would shoot. Almost immediately lie received a bulletin the heart and fell never to getup anymore.” This was Lieutenant- Colonel R.H. Gunning. The pluck o f wounded British soldiers is proverbial, and it has always been the same. “Your countrymen,” said a Belgian lady to Sir Walter Scott immediately after Waterloo, “are made of andiron, not o f flesh and blood. I saw a wounded Highlander stagger along the street supporting himself by the rails, and said to him,“ I ’m afraid you are severely hurt.‘ I was inborn Lochaber,’ answered the poor fellow, ‘and I do not care for a wound ’but ere I could complete my offer of assistance he sunk down at my feet a dying man.” There is a good story going the rounds about General Gatacre’s connection with the 77th AFoot. soldier was being flogged for some serious offence, and was screaming a good deal. Ensign Gatacre shut his eyes and turned white in the face, remarking afterwards to his colour-sergeant, “If I see much more of this I’ll sellout. The non-com. replied, “You ’ll get used to it in time, sir.” “Used tito !”answered the future General,“ I’m sure I never shall.” Fortunately lie did not have to, for flogging in the Army was soon after abolished. A cor resp o n dent breaks into inverse protesting against irresponsible criticism of our Commander- l-Chief in South Africa:— Redvers Buller has gone away In charge of a job to Table Bay In what direction Redvers goes Is a matter that only Buller knows. Whatever you think, whatever you feel, Give a chance to the atMan the Wheel. I flie’s right ,he’ll pull u s through I flie’s wrong lie’s better than you .In any event you might well do worse Than shut your mouth and open your purse. Infighting a defensive campaign, without coming to close quarters, the Boers, of course, have chosen their only sate course. This was the way the Romans fought against Hannibal, who was anxious for a stand-up fight, and found it denied him for a considerable period by his mobile foe. Under present-day methods such a style of tactics can only have one result, as, owing to the elaborate methods of communi­cation, it is difficult long to evade a foe. The Boers will probably use wire entanglements extensively to stop the rushes of the British. It was used by the Confederates in the American Civil War with great advantage to themselves. “The Boers have sworn death to all British Lancers,” says someone in a private letter, in speaking of the Lancers’ charge at Elandslaagte. Well, the Lancers will only be too glad to seethe enemy as often as possible. When the Duke of Cornwall’s Light Infantry, the 2nd Battalion of which is at the Cape, were fighting the American Colonies, they surprised and cut to pieces W ayne’s Brigade at Brandywine Creek. The Americans, therefore, vowed to give them no quarter. The Cornwalls expressed their gratification, and in order that the enemy might make 110 possible mistake, mounted red feathers. This gave them their nickname, “The Red Feathers.” The sole fear o f the soldiers who are outgoing late is that the war will be over before they arrive and have a chance to win a medal. Among the privates of a Lancashire regiment are two sergeants who have forfeited their stripes that they might Ago. few weeks ago 130 mobilised Reserves of the 5U1 Dragoon Guards were paraded at Colchester and informed that only 100 could betaken to South Africa. When a call for volunteers was made the whole lot stepped forward. Eventually lots had to be drawn, and the unfortunate thirty who drew blanks were greatly upset. Some readers will probably be interested to know that the 2nd Rifle Brigade, now in Natal, was at Waterloo. During the desperate charges of the French .cavalry each English regiment threw itself into nearly a solid square, which the horsemen entirely failed to penetrate. During one of these occasions the Duke ofW ellington was near, and he took temporary refuge in the 2nd Rifles’ square, calling out ashe did so, “Lookout, Rifles, or by Heaven, you’ll be cut to pieces !”The Rifles, however, survived the attack, and several more like it, too, before the day was over. The 2nd Battalion Bedfordshire, who are going outwith the Sixth Division, are very glad lobe able to do so. They are called the “Peacemakers,” because it is said that they have no battle honours 011 their colours. But this is a distinct libel, forever since they were raised in 1688 they have taken part inmost of England’s battles. They were at Namur, Blenheim, Ramillies, Oudenarde, Malplaquet, and sco-es of smaller conflicts. Therefore, let it be thoroughly understood that, though they are the “Peacemakers,” the Bedfords are of the energetic and warranted-never-to-retreat description. At the Modder River, some Boers in a farmhouse, after hoisting the white flag, allowed a section of the Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders to pass and then commenced to fire on them. aBut second section of the same regiment was upcoming at the time and witnessed the dastardly act, and they at once stormed the house and bayonetted the traitors to a man. This reminds one of the Battle of Assaye, of which the Duke of Wellington said :“We took their (theM ahrattas’) guns, which were in the first line, and were fired upon by the gunners afterwards, who threw themselves down pretending to be dead, and then rose up again after our men had passed but they paid dearly for the freak. The 19th cut them to pieces.” The 19th, or ist Yorkshire, is fighting at the Cape now.
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