Dr. Tian Schutte, 12 February 2022
Tian spoke about the guerrilla struggle during the Anglo-Boer War.
In the 1890s the ZAR started to build a railway to Mozambique with much help from the Portuguese.
It seemed as if the English were waiting for the railway lines to be finished before they started the war. In a war mobility is very important − for the transport of troops, food as well as of horses and of ammunition. Trains played a major role in this enterprise.
Some of the photographs show trucks full of canned food ("bully beef") and coal from England, as well as fodder for the horses (especially from South America that distributed the seeds for khaki bush and cosmos in SA). One photograph shows cannons being brought inland.
The talk was illustrated with photographs of blown-up trains − locomotives and carriages – tracks and bridges. Some of the farmers who worked on the mines were able to implement dynamite. One of the photographs show that in Colenso the bridge was virtually destroyed and the English erected a temporary structure to serve as a bridge.
Some of the foreigners who helped the Boers were Italians and one was a Scot, Jack Hindon. In Hindon's corps there were Dutch, Germans and possibly also Swedes.
Later, the English burnt down the farms where bridges were blown up.
The talk was very interesting and informative and thoroughly researched.
A grave in the grass
Peet Coetzee, 12 February 2022
Afterwards, Peet Coetzee (co-author of the book "Treinvernielers") briefly talked about the death of Combat General
H R Lemmer, in a talk titled A grave in the grass.
He illustrated the three days before the general’s death with a map and a photograph of the grave − showing only stones laid flat in the grass.
A memorial for Lemmer will be erected in the near future.