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10th April 2004Smith-Dorrien.
By Bernie Drummond.
I have been fortunate enough to be loaned an omnibus edition of The Illustrated London News of 1879. The edition dated 24th of May contains two sketches of sailors from HMS Shah defending a position at Ginghilovo,(Their spelling.) In the accompanying article they thank Sub-Lieutenant Smith-Dorrien R.N. for the sketches. Would John Young or anyone know if this Officer was any relation to Horace Smith-Dorrien. the suvivor of Isandhlwana? I also wonder what part Horace played in the rest of the war against the Zulu Nation.
10th April 2004Peter Ewart

He was a brother, Sub-Lieut. (later Rear Admiral) A.H. Smith-Dorrien. JY will pobably be able to fill in a bit more, and perhaps also on the other naval brother!

After escaping Isandlwana, Horace went down with fever at Helpmekaar & was transferred to hospital at Ladysmith. Still very weak in May, but aware of plans for the imminent second invasion, he absconded from the hospital on the eve of his proposed return to England & joined Chelmsford's column, recovered his strength & crossed at Landman's Drift. Later switched to Wood's Flying Column & was involved in the to-ing and fro-ing of transport duties between Fort Newdigate & Landman's Drift. Present at Battle of Ulundi, then more transport duties, then home.

10th April 2004John Young

As Peter says it was Horace's brother, Arthur. Arthur was one of the landing brigade from H.M.S. Shah. Arthur did quite a few sketches which landed-up at the 'I.L.N.' His originals are held at the National Maritime Museum, Greenwich, south east London.

According to David Smith-Dorrien, Horace's last surviving son, who I interviewed in 1991 & 1992, Arthur committed suicide by throwing himself in front of an express train, having been misdiagnosed that he was suffering from cancer.

Just to correct Peter's posting slightly, Horace was in Bellairs' laager during Battle of Ulundi, so effectively he did not take part in the action.

I will be recounting Horace's biography in a lecture at the Royal Engineers Museum, Chatham, during their 1st World War weekend in November.

John Y.
10th April 2004Ron Sheeley
Re. A. H. Smith-Dorrien
In my collection, I've got a cabinet photo of Commander Arthur H. Smith-Dorrien if anyone would like a scan. Just give me an email request to my personal address, and I'll send you the scanned image. Ron Sheeley
11th April 2004Bernie Drummond.
Thank you Peter and John, what a family, and what a sad end for Arthur. I have just read a biog called The Full Monty,(of Alamein of course,) and the author, is quite critical about
the conduct of General Horace Smith-Dorrien during the retreat from Mons in August 1914.
I did wonder what John Y would have thought of the author Nigel Hamilton's charge of 'insubordination, against General Horace ?
11th April 2004Peter Quantrill
The family have recently been fortunate enough to inherit a silver pumpkin teapot. On the base are engraved the words:
"Fanny Swindley, From R.A. and M.A. Smith Dorrien 1845."
Would anyone know if there is a connection with the AZW Smith - Dorrien's?
11th April 2004John Young

I'm afraid I can't comment without seeing the context in which he has made his statement.

John Y.
11th April 2004Peter Ewart

They would appear to be his parents. His father was Colonel Robert Algernon Smith-Dorrien (16th Lancers, 3rd Light Dragoons & Hertfordshire Militia) and his mother Mary Ann. Neither his own memoirs nor his biographer reveal her maiden name, although this shouldn't be too difficult to discover (if JY doesn't already know it!)

Neither the index to his memoirs nor that in the biography contain a Swindley, although once again some research should uncover her identity.

"The family" would appear to be very fortunate and a certain author suitably excited?!

12th April 2004Peter Quantrill
Thank you for that response.My wife will be delighted as Fanny Swindley is related. The research must now begin as to the occasion and reason for the presentation.