March 28, 2012

Pictures of the Royal Navy added to the Pictures Page

The Royal Navy didn't limit itself to patrolling the coast of Zululand but took part in any major battle on the ground. The Naval Brigade was made up of Sailors and Royal Marines who fought like the regular troops. They also manned many artillery pieces and gatling guns.

H.M.S. "Active"

Sailors from H.M.S. "Boadicea" (or possibly H.M.S. "Shah") with Royal Artillery personnel

Naval Brigade detachment with sailors and Royal Marines from H.M.S. "Active"

March 27, 2012

Historic battle "Death of the Prince Imperial" by alexandre dumas

Alexandre dumas (a.k.a. warlordharry on youtube) made a new historic battle with the mission to save the french Prince Imperial who was killed in the Anglo-Zulu War. The following excerpt deals with the unfortunate events that lead to the death of the Prince Imperial at the hands of Zulu warriors.

Opposed to the Imperial Mounted Infantry Troopers shown in video the prince was accompanied by troopers from the Natal Horse who probably wore black uniforms quite similiar to the Natal Mounted Police. (The Natal Horse will be a functional unit in the game but haven't been created, yet.)

Colenso, Frances E.: History of the Zulu War and its origin. Picadilly: Chapman & Hall Ltd., 1880, pp. 417.

" EARLY in April the South African community was greatly impressed and interested by the arrival of the young Prince Imperial, who came out to Natal to take his share in the fortunes of war, and to see something of active service against the Zulus. The colonists were not a little gratified by the fact of this young hope of an illustrious house having come to fight for and with them against their dreaded foes; yet amongst them all there was hardly one, great or small, gentle or simple, whose second thought was not one of sincere regret that he, who, besides being of such importance in the future of Europe, was also his widowed mother’s only son and sole comfort, should be allowed to risk his life in a savage warfare. 

Many a thought of kindly sympathy was directed from Natal towards that royal mother for whom English men and women have always had so sincere a feeling, whether in prosperity or adversity; and many a warm-hearted woman’s eyes filled with tears at the sight of the gallant youth, and at the very thought of what his loss would be to her who remained to pray for him at home, the home which she had found amongst our countrymen in England. On every side anxious hopes were expressed that the Prince would be carefully guarded from danger, and not allowed needlessly to throw away his precious young life; all these hopes and anxieties were redoubled when he arrived, and, by his winning ways and gallant bearing, won the hearts of all who came in contact with him.

Had Natal been asked, he would have been sent straight home again instead of across the borders, and yet it would have been hard to resist and thwart the eager wish to be of use, to work, and to see service which characterised him throughout his short campaign, and which, combined with gentleness and humanity as it was, proved him to be a true soldier to the heart’s core. Since he had come to Natal he could not, of course, be kept away from the front, and the day he left ‘Maritzburg good wishes from all classes attended him along the road. It was thought, indeed, that in all human probability he was safe, except in the event of some such battle as would make the chances equal for all, from general to drummer-boy. “At all events,” it was said, ” Lord Chelmsford will keep him by his side.” 

Others, again, opined that the General would find it no easy task to restrain the eager young spirit that scorned to be treated with more care than others of his age. But this doubt was answered by one who knew the Prince, and who said that he was too good a soldier ever to disobey an order. Throw himself in the way of difficulty and danger he might wherever possible, but any distinct order would be promptly and fully obeyed.  For some little time the Prince acted as extra aide-de-camp to Lord Chelmsford, and accompanied him in that capacity to Colonel Wood’s camp at Kambula, and back to Utrecht. Colonel Harrison, B.E., was also of the party, and during the journey very friendly relations were established between him and the Prince, which lasted to the end, and were drawn closer by the former’s careful attendance during an indisposition which befell the latter. 

Whilst at Kambula the General reconnoitered the Indhlobane Mountain on May 4th, and on return to camp was joined by the Prince Imperial, when, to show him the defence of a laager, the alarm was sounded. In three minutes every man was at his allotted post, and an inspection of the camp, with its double tier of rifles ready for work, was made by the General and staff. Next day the camp was broken up, and the column moved to about a mile from the White Umvolosi, near the Zinguin range Lord Chelmsford and staff, with the Prince, proceeding to Utrecht.  On May 8th, the General, having appointed Colonel Harrison, R.E., Assistant-Quartermaster-General of the army, and Lieutenant Carey, 98th Regiment, Deputy-Assistant-Quartermaster-General, requested the former ” to give some work to the Prince Imperial, as he was anxious for it, and did not find enough to do in the duties of an extra aide-de-camp.” This request was a verbal one, and the words used may not be letter for letter, but of the purport there is no doubt; and such a request from the Commander-in-Chief was, of course, an order which was immediately carried out.

The Prince was directed to collect and record information respecting the distribution of troops, location of depots, and the like, and he worked hard at this for some days. Lord Chelmsford shortly afterwards left for Newcastle, but before his departure Colonel Harrison suggested that it would be advisable, during his lord- ship’s absence, to make a reconnaissance into Zululand, on the borders of which they had been hovering so long, so as to determine the exact line of route which the columns ought to take in the impending invasion.  Lord Chelmsford accepted the suggestion, asking Colonel Harrison to take the Prince with him on the expedition, and appointing an intelligent officer to accompany them. The reconnoitering party started with a strong escort, and reached Conference Hill on May 13th. Here they were joined by Colonel Buller and 200 horsemen, and were engaged on their reconnaissance till May 17th, bivouacking at night with horses saddled and bridled, and marching at dawn, scouring the country, and sweeping Zulu scouts before them. The Prince was delighted with the life, the simple fare of the officers his comrades cooked by themselves at their camp-fire, the strange country, the sight of the enemy, the exhilarating gallops over the grass up hill and down dale after fleet Zulu spies, the bivouac under the star-lit heavens.

All this pleased him immensely; as he told Colonel Harrison: ” Made him feel that he was really doing soldiers’ work such as he had never done before.” Always anxious to be of use, he made most careful and copious notes and observations on all they saw or did.  On the 17th the party returned to Conference Hill, Colonel Harrison and Colonel Buller having arranged for a combined and further reconnaissance of the country from that place and Brigadier-General Wood’s camp; but as the special duty to which the Prince and the intelligence officer had been assigned was over, Colonel Harrison would not allow them to accompany him farther, but directed them to return to Utrecht. They obeyed; but, on the 18th, after Colonel Harrison had started on his expedition and was already in Zulu- land, he was surprised by the appearance of the Prince Imperial, who had galloped all the way from Balte Spruit by himself to overtake him, bringing with him the permission, for which he had sent a messenger to Lord Chelmsford, to go on the new reconnaissance. The party now consisted of Colonel Harrison, the Prince, Lieutenant Carey, one officer and five men Bettington’s Horse, and one officer and twenty men Natal Native Horse (Basuto). The escort would have been stronger, but that the junction with Colonel Buller from Wood’s camp was looked for to add to it. The first day was occupied in searching the country as before, and in looking out for Buller; and the party bivouacked at night with vedettes and sentries posted all round, as Zulus had been seen on the hills, although they did not molest the reconnoitering party.

On the following day (the 19th), whilst exploring a deep rough valley, the party was suddenly confronted by a number of Zulus, who came down the hill at one side of the donga, and spread out in the usual way in two wings or horns, in order to overlap or outflank it, firing as they advanced. The officer in command of the advance at once put spurs to his horse and rode straight up the hill at the weak centre of the Zulu detachment, followed by the rest of the party. They pushed right through the centre of the Zulus, and the horns at once broke away, and escaped among the rocks with some loss. Smaller bodies of Zulus were met with subsequently, but did not attempt to try conclusions with the horsemen, who were obliged to keep on the move the greater part of the night, as the enemy was all around them.  

Next morning they reached Conference Hill, without meeting Colonel Buller; Colonel Harrison and the Prince proceeding to Utrecht to report to Lord Chelmsford.

 Lord Chelmsford now informed Colonel Harrison that “ He was to consider the Prince Imperial as attached to the Quartermaster-General’s staff for duty, but it was not put in orders, in consequence of the Prince not being in the army. ” The Prince lived, as before, with the General’s personal staff, and Colonel Harrison, there- fore, only saw him when he came for work or orders, which was very frequently.
On May 25th the head-quarters having been established at Landman’s Drift the Prince, having called for work as usual, was directed to prepare a plan of a divisional camp. That evening Colonel Harrison was spoken to by Lord Chelmsford, because the Prince Imperial had gone outside the lines without an escort, but replied ” That the work he had given the Prince to do referred to the camp inside the outpost lines.” The General then told Colonel Harrison “ To take care that the Prince was not to go out without an escort when working for him, and in the matter of escort to treat him, not as a royal person, but the same as any other officer, taking all due precautions. ”  

Colonel Harrison then said that ” He would see the Prince, and tell him he was never to leave the camp without a suitable escort, and that he was to apply to him for one when it was wanted; ” and Lord Chelmsford replied that “ That would do. ” 
The same day Colonel Harrison saw the Prince, and told him this, and to make the matter quite sure, he then and there gave him the instructions in writing.
He next directed him to make a map of the country, from the reconnaissance sketches of Lieutenant Carey and others. This work the Prince executed very well, and so eager was he for employment, so desirous to be always up and doing, that he went, not once or twice, but often every day to Colonel Harrison’s tent asking for more.  

On the 28th of May, head-quarters were at Kopje Allein, and on that and the two following days reconnaissances were pushed far into the enemy’s country, but no enemy was seen. Small parties, even single officers, rode about unmolested all over the district round, and went beyond the spot where so sad a scene was shortly afterwards enacted.
On the 31st of May the Prince went to Colonel Harrison’s tent with a report which he had written, and, as usual, asked for some more work. He was told that the army was to march next day, and that he might go out and report on the roads and camps for the day following; with which instructions the Prince was greatly pleased. Next day the 2nd Division (with which were Lord Chelmsford and the head-quarters’ staff) were ordered to march towards Ulimdi; Wood’s column being in advance some miles, on the other side of the Blood River, on a road which would take it out eventually on the line of march of the head-quarters’ column. Lieutenant Carey, whilst conversing on duty matters with Colonel Harrison, expressed a wish to go out with the Prince, as he desired to verify a sketch he had made on the previous day; and, although Colonel Harrison had intended to ask one of the General’s personal staff to accompany the Prince, he said, when Lieutenant Carey volunteered to go: ” All right; you can look after the Prince ! ” 

At the same time he told Lieutenant Carey to let the Prince do the work for which he was going out, namely, a detailed report on the road and the selection of a site for the camp. Lieutenant Carey was known to Colonel Harrison as a cautious and experienced officer, who had been frequently out on patrol duties with Colonel Buller and others, who was acquainted with the nature of the work he had to do, the precautions to be taken, and the actual ground to be gone over; and there was every reason to believe that he thoroughly understood his position, and would make, as he had done before, the proper arrangements for an escort.  

On the morning of the 1st, Colonel Harrison, hearing that no escort had arrived at the hour fixed for the departure of the reconnoitering party, went over to General Marshall’s tent, and obtained from him the order for the number of men he thought sufficient ” six Europeans and six Basutos; ” and, having informed Lieutenant Carey of this, he rode off to attend to his own duties superintending the march of the army, inspecting the fords, and moving on in advance (in company with Major Grenfell) to select the site for watering-places and the next camp. On a ridge in front of the column Colonel Harrison and his companion presently found the Prince arid Lieutenant Carey halted with the European troopers only, and heard from them that they were waiting for the Basutos, who had not joined them in camp; but some were now in sight on the hillside flanking the line of march, and moving in a direction which would bring them upon it a little in advance of the spot where the party was waiting.  

As Lieutenant Carey had been already over the country, he was asked by Colonel Harrison to point out the place where the water supply for the next camp was, and the whole party rode slowly along a donga towards the supposed stream or ponds. Colonel Harrison did not think the water sufficient for their purpose, and rode back to the high ground, where he was rejoined by Major Grenfell, who told him that the Prince’s party had just discovered a better supply a little farther on. There was a ridge in front of them which they considered marked the end of the day’s march, and the officers dispersed to attend to their own duties, not imagining for an instant that the reconnoitering party would go on without the Basutos, who, from their wonderful power of sight and hearing, and quickness at detecting the approach of danger, were always regarded as essential to an escort.  

Unhappily, however, such was the case. The party rode on until they came to a deserted kraal, situated some 200 yards from the river, and consisting of five huts, one with the usual small cattle enclosure. Between the kraal and the river stretched a luxuriant growth of tambookie grass, five or six feet in height, with mealies and Kafir corn interspersed. This dense covert, however, did not completely surround the kraal, for in front there was an open space, apparently used by the Zulus, judging from the ashes and broken earthen- ware strewn about, as a common cooking-ground.  

Here the party halted, and the Prince, having first sent a native guide to make sure that the huts were all uninhabited, gave the order that the horses should be off-saddled and turned out to graze. Some of them lit a fire and made coffee, while the Prince and Lieutenant Carey, after the latter had taken a look round with his glass, proceeded to make sketches of the surrounding country. It is said that the Prince’s talent with pen and pencil, combined with his remarkable proficiency in military surveying that great gift of recognising at once the strategic capabilities of any spot which distinguished the First Napoleon made his contributions to our knowledge of the country to be traversed of great value; and he never lost an opportunity of making himself of use in this and every other way.  

It was about 3 P.M. when the party halted at this deserted kraal, the Prince deciding that they should leave again in an hour’s time. That the Zulus had been upon the spot not long before was apparent from signs of freshly-chewed imfi (native sugar-cane) upon the ground, while a few dogs lingering about might have suggested that their masters were not far off. Before the hour was over, however, the native guide came in to report that he had seen a Zulu coming over the hill, and it was now thought prudent to retire, the Prince giving directions to collect and up-saddle the horses, followed by the order to “ Mount. ”  

Some of the men were already in the saddle, others in the act of mounting, when a sudden volley fired upon them from amongst the tall stalks of the mealies (Indian corn) which grew on every side, betrayed the presence of a numerous armed foe, who had returned unseen to those who were in temporary occupation of their kraals. The distance was not twenty yards, and the long grass swayed to the sudden rush of the Zulus, as with a tremendous shout, they charged towards the Prince and his companions. The horses all swerved at the suddenness of the tumult, and one broke away, its rider being shot before he could recover it and mount. The young Prince was riding a fine gray charger, a gray of sixteen hands, always difficult to mount, and on this occasion, frightened by the firing, it became restive and could not be controlled. 

Lieutenant Carey, apparently, had at this moment been carried by his horse in a direction which brought one of the huts between him and the Prince, of whose difficulties he was therefore unaware. From the moment of the attack no man seems to have known much of what the rest were doing; to gallop away was the only chance for life, and all hurried off, the Prince in vain endeavouring to mount his restive steed unaided. He was passed by Trooper Letocq : “ Depechez vous, s’il vous plait, Monsieur! “ he cried, as he dashed past, himself only lying across his saddle, but the Prince made no answer; he was already doing his utmost, and in another minute he was alone. He was seen endeavouring to mount his rearing charger, as it followed the retreat, while he ran beside it, the enemy close at hand. He made one desperate attempt to leap into the saddle by the help of the holster-flap; that gave way, and then he fell. 

The charger dashed riderless past some of the mounted men, who, looking back, saw the Prince running after them on foot, with the Zulus but a few paces behind him. Alas ! not a man turned back, they galloped wildly on, and carried back to camp the news that the gallant young Prince, for or with whom each of them should have died that day, lay slain upon the hillside where he had made his last brave stand alone. Two troopers fell besides one was struck down by a bullet as he rode away; the other was the man who had lost his horse, Trooper Rogers, and who was last seen in the act of levelling his carbine at the enemy. The native guide was killed as well, after a hard fight with the foe, witnessed to by the blood-stained and broken weapons found by his side next day. The fugitives rode on for some distance, when they met General Wood and Colonel Buller, to whom they made their report. From the brow of an adjacent hill these officers, looking through their glasses, could see the Zulus leading away the horses they had taken the trophies of their successful attack.  

That evening Colonel Harrison was in his tent, engaged in writing orders for the next day’s march, when Lord Chelmsford came in to tell him ” The Prince is killed! ” and Lieutenant Carey soon after confirmed the dreadful, well-nigh incredible news. He said they were off-saddled at a kraal, when they were surrounded and fired into, and that the Prince must have been killed, for no one had seen him afterwards.  

Colonel Harrison asked the General to let him take a few men to the kraal, and see if, by any chance, the Prince were only wounded, or were hidden near at hand, but his request was not granted, and the testimony of the survivors extinguished all hope.  

Next day General Marshall, with a cavalry patrol, went out to search for the Prince, being assisted by scouts of the Flying Column. The bodies of the troopers were soon found, and shortly afterwards that of His Imperial Highness was found by Captain Cochrane, lying in a donga about 200 yards from the kraal where the party had halted. The body was stripped with the exception of a gold chain with medallions attached, which was still round his neck. Sword, revolver, helmet, and clothes were gone; but in the grass were found the Prince’s spurs and one sock.  

The body had eighteen assegai wounds, all in front, and the marks on the ground and on the spurs indicated a desperate resistance.  

The two white troopers were laid together beside a cairn of stones, which was erected to mark the exact spot where the Prince was found, and later in the day they were buried there, the chaplain on duty with the column performing the funeral service.  

But for the Prince himself a true soldiers’ bier was formed of lances lashed together and horse blankets, and, borne thus, the body of the noble lad was carried up the hill towards the camp which he had left the previous day so full of energy and life.  

The melancholy news was telegraphed throughout the colony, causing universal grief and consternation. Every heart was wrung with sympathy for the mother; and even those to whose homes and hearts the war had already brought desolation, felt their own grief hushed for awhile in the presence of a bereavement which seemed to surpass all others in bitterness and depth.  

What citizen of ‘Maritzburg will ever forget the melancholy Sunday afternoon, cold and storm-laden, when, at the first distant sound of the sad approaching funeral music, all left their homes and lined the streets through which the violet-adorned coffin passed on its way to its temporary resting-place. 
In Durban, too, the solemn scene was repeated; the whole colony being deeply moved at the sad and un- timely death of the gallant Prince. H.M.S. Boadicea, flagship of Commodore Richards, had the honour of conveying the body to Simon’s Bay, when it was transferred to H.M.S. Orontes with every possible mark of respect for conveyance to England.  

A court of inquiry was at once assembled by Lord Chelmsford, and reported that Lieutenant Carey had not understood the position in which he stood towards the Prince, and, as a consequence, failed to estimate aright the responsibility which fell to his lot; also that he was much to blame for having proceeded on the duty in question with a portion only of the escort; and that the selection of the kraal where the halt was made, surrounded as it was by cover for the enemy, and adjacent to difficult ground, showed a lamentable want of military prudence. And, finally, the court deeply regretted that no effort was made after the attack to rally the escort and to show a front to the enemy, whereby the possibility of aiding those who had failed, to make good their retreat might have been ascertained.  

Lieutenant Carey was then tried by court-martial and found guilty. The home authorities decided, however, that the conviction and sentence could not be maintained, and consequently ordered this officer to be released from arrest and to return to his duty.  

In justice to Lieutenant Carey it must be said that the Prince appears to have been actually in command of the party; Lieutenant Carey accompanied it, by permission, for the purpose of completing some of his own work, taking advantage of the protection of the escort to enable him to do so; he received no order about the command of the escort, or other instructions beyond the words, “ You can look after the Prince, ” which were evidently interpreted as advise him, but could scarcely warrant controlling his movements. 
The Prince’s written instructions from Colonel Harrison were lost with him.  

On dangerous duties pertaining to the Quarter- master-General’s Department in an enemy’s country the Prince Imperial should never have been employed; as long as he remained with the British forces he should have been retained on the personal staff of the General commanding. "

March 19, 2012

Preview for historic battles by alexandre dumas from twcenter

Just a short post to inform everyone that progress on the historic battles is being made. Alexandre dumas from TWcenter said that he'll be ready at the end of the month with six historic and six further fictious battles.
He also included a war wagon and added a new sound for the Martini-Henry rifles.
Here are some preview videos made by him.