you are currently viewing: Discussion Forum


The Rorke's Drift VC Discussion Forum
(View Discussion Rules)


PLEASE NOTE: This forum is now inactive and is provided for reference purposes only. The live forum is available at

(Back To Topic List)

DateOriginal Topic
21st July 2004Identity of Soldiers
By Justin Young
Can anyone help me with the identity of a number of soldiers of the 90th Foot.

The soldiers names I'm looking for is the men who served as Wood's 'bodyguard' at Hlobane. Also I'm aware of men from the 1/24th, 80th and 3rd serving with the mounted infantry , were there also members of the 90th serving with one of these units also?

Many thanks
21st July 2004John Young

Henry Evelyn Wood apparently had a personal escort of eight men drawn from his own battalion - the 90th Light infantry. I believe they were distinct from the 1st Squadron, Mounted infantry.

The 90th's mounted infantry served in the 2nd Squadron, Mounted Infantry, under the command of Captain (local rank) Henry de Courcy Rawlins.

There is a photograph of the escort, which has appeared in a number of books, armed with Swinburne-Henry carbines.

The one obvious member of the escort is Private Edmund Fowler V.C. It is also feasible that one of the eight may, possibly be Bugler Alexander Walkinshaw D.C.M., I am basing that assumption on a distinct likeness between a later photograph of Walkinshaw, and the man standing in the middle of the group.

Two down - six to go!

John Y.
22nd July 2004Justin Young
Hi John

Thanks for the reply.
I'm sure your right about these two soldiers as the were both with Wood at Hlobane. With all the research you've done for 'They Fell like Stones' etc. I was pretty sure if anyone would know the identities of the other men you or Julian would.
Julian Whybra was kind enough to send me a copy of an article he did on the men of Number 1 Squadron some time ago and as there are no men from the 90th there, I presume that they were distinct, with all the other mounted men serving with 2nd Squadron as you say (which I have no details of).

2nd December 2004Julian Whybra
I'm putting the finishing touches to an article on the 2nd squadron IMI in the AZW and can confirm that Wood's detachment wasnothing to do with the IMI. They are quite distinct and a private arangement organized by Wood himself. Neither is there anything in the 90th's pay and muster records relating to Fowler/Walkinshaw or anyone else which would indicate any 'special duty'. Your search for the lost 6 will be very difficult but I'd be pleased to hear if you find them!