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DateOriginal Topic
9th October 2003Logistics in the Zulu War
By David
Having spent some time going through most of the discussion documents on this excellent site, I am still trying to find some more specific information about the whole logistic process before and during the Zulu War and on to the Boer Wars. I have a number of books including Wasing of the Spears and Rorke's Drift etc, which all have small amounts of information. I have also been to all the websites mentioned throughout with again limited success.
The sort of thing I am looking for are:
the dimensions of wagons and how many oxen drew them;
how much could the wagons carry?
Where did they get fresh water from and how much did they carry? etc

Sorry to be so long-winded, but trying to get as much information as possible.
Any sensible suggestions (!) will be very welcome.
Thanks
DateReplies
9th October 2003Mike McCabe
You should try finding a copy of 'Eyewitness in Zululand' by Ian Bennett. It draws on articles written by Assistant Commissary Dunne (of Rorke's Drift) and provides interesting insights into logistics - set in the context of a very readable overview of those parts of the Zulu and First Boer Wars in which Dunne participated. It's out of print (sadly) but second hand copies can usually be found on the US Amazon site - some very much over-priced it seems to me.
10th October 2003David
Thanks Mike. I will try this.
10th October 2003Peter Ewart
David

I'll second Mike's recommendation of Bennett's work on Dunne. There are four copies at present available through abebooks.com but I, too, was taken aback a bit by the prices. Although out of print, I hadn't realised they now fetch quite such a premium. Cheapest copy on offer is 25, dearest 45. Must be getting scarce.

More technical detail - mostly on engineering and defence works rather than transport - is available in "A Widow Making War" which publishes the Wynne diaries (coastal column/Eshowe etc).

Transport & logistical problems are gone into repeatedly in "Lord Chelmsford's Zululand Campaign, 1878-79" (Ed., J. Laband, Army Records Soc., 1994) although not necessarily as detailed as dimensions and capabilities etc., of wagons. Excellent bibiography & source notes, though (almost the whole point of this book).

You'll find that from time to time articles useful to your studies will have appeared in the AZWHS Journal and the Journal of the S. African Military History Society.

Peter
10th October 2003David
Thanks Peter,
I have ordered a copy of Eyewitness... from my library so hopefully won't have to pay the exorbitant prices. I have found some good info in Washing the Spears as well, so maybe I am getting there.
How do I go about getting hold of your reference "Lord Clemsford's Zululand Campaign"? Are the Army Records Soc. in book format that would be available through the normal library system do you think?
David
11th October 2003A M Banks
David,
As the home of British military logistic history, why not try the Royal Logistic Corps Museum in Deepcut, UK? The curator, Sue Lynes, will be able to point you in the right direction.
Hope this helps,
Andrew
12th October 2003David
Thanks Andrew.
I am familiar with the museum and am in the process of arranging a visit. I have not seen it in its new form yet, but I have heard it is very good.

David
12th October 2003David
Thanks Andrew.
I am familiar with the museum and am in the process of arranging a visit. I have not seen it in its new form yet, but I have heard it is very good.

David