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13th July 2005rorke's drift archeology?
By andrew hicks
I'm a student at USF ( Univesity of South florida) and have to present the archeological aspect of a specific battle. Is there any archeological information on the battle of Rorke's drift and have any excavations taken place? Thankyou in advance.
13th July 2005Mike McCabe
You should establish direct contact with Amafa KZN (Mr Barry Marshall) at
Using the telephone number shown, and making due allowance for differenvces in time zones. There has been some work on the substructure of the 1882 Otto Witt house (the hospital during the battle), which unveiled parts of the earlier 1879 building, including signs of fire scorching.
The site has been built upon seberal times since 1879 (church, post office, enclosure of British cemetery) and there is still not complete clarity on exactly where Zulu dead were buried - though three burial sites are are attributed and marked with monuments.
Though the on site work was conducted under the auspices of the Natal Provincial Museums Srrvice, Amafa are (constitutionally, and legally) the residual body in KZN, and you might quickly be directed to the Pietermaritzburg Office (which you could, of course approach directly). Work conducted is unlikely to have been digitised.
13th July 2005Mike McCabe
Amafa Heritage KZN has very broad-based remits and authorities. KZN was the only Province to elect to assume direct responsibility for its own heritage, though it does maintain a general working relationship with the National body (SAHRA). The broad position is one of complex circumstances, and a general shortage of public funding in competition with the many other liabilities that available resources muct meet (health, roads, schols, public infrastructure etc). So, if you were able (perhaps through USF) t asist Amafa in some material sense then they - pragmatically - might be more able to assist you. You would undoubtedly wish to be sure that corporate governance, accountability, and assurance issues were properaly addressed were any substantial material support to be envisaged over time.
Barry Marshall is personally a very busy man, working in challenging circumstances from the Ulundi office, and messages can takesome time to be replied to.
13th July 2005Mike McCabe
Abetter link may be:
Contact: Barry Marshall at 082-8201771, e-mail: [email protected]

13th July 2005Andrew Hicks
thanks mike for your advice. I'm very grateful and I'll give your contact a shot.
26th July 2005John Willis
I suggest you contact Dr Adrian Greaves of the Zulu War Historical Society. He has full details of the official archaeological survey at Rorke's Drift conducted by the S. African archaeologist Dr Lita Webley . Try him at
He is usually happy to supply anyone with such material.