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DateOriginal Topic
2nd May 2003Book Request
By Justin
Could anyone help me with any information on the whereabouts of any copies of 'With the Irregulars in the Transvaal and Zululand' by W.H. Tomasson 1881.
I guess it would be too much to hope that this book has ever been reprinted and I presume it would be almost impossible to purchase a copy anywhere but I was thinking of contacting the local library and trying to get a copy on their library loan scheme and it would be useful to be able to give them a location of a copy.
Ever since I first read accounts of Buller's volunteer units I've been fascinated by these troops.

Many thanks for any help in advance.

2nd May 2003Peter Ewart

It wouldn't be impossible to buy a copy but it might just depend on how deep is your pocket!

There is a first edition for sale at "Collector'sTreasury", whose address is 244 Commissioner St., Jo'burg. At $US 3500 (a snip at less than 2200) you'll probably want to snap this up straight away!

There is also definitely a copy at the British Library where it's "shelf mark" is 9061.b.19, so if you can get to London you'll be able to read it there.

Might also be worth trying Aldershot Public Library, whose collection of military works (in their ref section) is extensive, nothwithstanding the "irregular" nature of the work. If a public library of this sort had it you'd have a much better chance of inter-library loan.

Good luck

3rd May 2003Justin
Hi Peter

Thanks very much for your suggestions, I'll look into these.
As to buying the book- The price is a bit steep for me! (although to a collector of original books I'm sure it would be a great find) To be honest I'm more interested in collecting medals to the irregular forces and I'd just love to read this book.

Thanks again
4th May 2003Peter Ewart

Yes, the price is a bit steep, isn't it?!!! Can't believe there are many who could afford that sort of figure but, as you say, for the collector looking for that particular volume, no doubt it is the right price.

Incidentally, it looks as if the Naval & Military Press are in the middle of quite a reprinting spell at the moment, as their recent catalogues have increasingly contained quite a few reprints organised by themselves - especially regimental histories etc., for which the originals attract very high prices, and I would imagine that they have a good long think about the potential medal-collecting market for these books before deciding which ones to reproduce. Perhaps N & M would consider the possibility of reprinting the "With the Irregulars"?

4th May 2003Julian Whybra
Re the British Library copy and also a copy at Cambridge University Library - tese can be obtained through your local library lending service. The charge is 2.50 to obtain any book from one of the copyright libraries (and you may be restricted to reading it in your local library if it's a rare item). It takes about 4-6 weeks for the process to work, but, work it does! What a truly wonderful library system we have in the UK!
7th May 2003David Glynne Fox
Hi Justin,
Like you, I too have been searching for a copy of Tomasson's book, but so far with no success. I do pay a lot of money out at times for books and medals, but I hadn't quite bargained on over two grand!! As a matter of interest, you may like to know that Tomasson himself is buried only a mile or two my from home in Nottingham. He is at Redhill Cemetery, see also Keynsham Light Horse section on this site.