Author Topic: Pte T. Whittaker 1st Bn  (Read 2649 times)

Offline themonsstar

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Pte T. Whittaker 1st Bn
« on: May 23, 2017, 07:03:31 AM »
I was at a militaria fair the other weekend and bought some militaria to a Pte T.Whittaker  Manchester Regt. On doing research I found there were two T.Whittaker in the 1st Bn. He says in the letter he pick them up at the Battle of Bergendal Farm which was an action the 1st Bn was involved in August 27 1900.

The two Pte T.Whittaker were:
2226 Pte Thomas Whittaker
5505 Pte T.Whittaker

The Letter:

This Boer shell & the smaller shell that is fired from a Nordenfelt Maxiem was found by me after the battle of Bergandal, just outside the Boer Farm and about 30 yds from their main position which was held by ZARPs* The gun was fired from inside the farm and was claimed by the Rifle Brigade* Pte T.Wittaker Manchester Regt

*ZARPs: Zuid-Afrikaansche Rijdende Politie 
* 2nd Bn Rifle Brigade

 The battle of Bergendal  took place in South Africa during the Second Anglo-Boer War.The battle will be remembered as the last set-piece battle of the war, although it was still to last another two years. It was also the last time that the Boers' four 155 mm Creusot Long Tom guns were used in the same battle.

1st Bn Manchester Regt
27th August 1900
The Attack on Bergendal Farm
26th Aug 1900
Sunday. We moved off from Geluk about 9am, 7th Brigade leading, the battalion forming part of the left flank guard. About 12 noon we come under fire near Waai Kraal, the battalion being on the left flank of the Devon Regiment, where we remained the rest of the day. “G” and “I” Companies were engaged, the rest supporting and forming the left flank guard force.
We occupied the ridge facing east where Boers were in position but gained no ground, and were under fire all the time owing to the ground sloping very gently back. Bivouacked on our own ground, “C”, “D”, “F” and “H” forming pickets and entrenching themselves facing the Boers.
At 3 am on the 27th , a Boar patrol come on our picket line and fired on us, the bullets landing in the battalion bivouac. All then stood to arms and extended, our pickets returning the fire.

4999 Pte William “G” coy
3130 Pte Fisher “G” coy
7019 Lance-Corporal Munro “I” coy
5073 Pte Spencer “B” coy
4535 Pte Scott “D” coy
5389 Pte Walsh “D” coy
7069 Pte Holmes “I” coy
3169 Pte Ratcliffe “G” coy
5011 Pte Jackson “G” coy
4377 Pte Parsons “G” coy
7053 Pte Wood “I” coy
Rounds expended 10,751

27th Aug 1900
Held same position, and also took up a mile extra ground to our left with “A”,”B” and “C”. Received order about 11 am to withdraw all advanced line except observation posts; did so, and had several casualties during the withdrawal. Almost at once ordered to re-occupy the line, and did so exception of that part which had been held by “F” company, which faced Boer trench at 500 yards. More casualties during this movement. Meanwhile rest of force moved behind us to north, and attacked Bergendal Farm, where Boers had strong position with guns. 2nd Rifle Brigade and 1st Inniskilling Fusiliers formed attack.

1st Gordons Highlanders were escort to guns, 1st Devon’s being in support of attack, but not in action to speak of. The 2nd Rifle Brigade lost one officer and 10 men killed and 68 wouded (3 officers included). The Inniskillings had only 17 casualties, all wounded.
A pom-pom and a lot of prisoners were taken, a dozen dead Boers being left on the kopje. We watched action from our position. Our shelling was terrible, meanwhile, we were unable to collect some of our wounded men, but eventually got them in after dark, and we then joined the force at Bergendal Farm.
Through some mistake in orders it was quite 10 pm before all were in.
5170 Van Dort “B” coy
4179 Hoffmann “D” coy
4965 Roscoe “F” coy
4662 Ives “F” coy
7139 Stirling “I” coy
2429 Sergeant Richmond “C” coy
4712 Lance-Corporal Chaundy “C” coy
2895 Pte Pilkington “F” coy
3439 Pte Clarke “F” coy
4990 Pte Toole “G” coy
Missing (prisoners)
Privates Russell,Thorpe,Niblick and Claber “H” company, these men were carrying blankets from “H” company waggon to their own on picket, but owing to the darkness they walked through our trenches into the Boer lines. The Boers condemned the blankets to be burned at once
« Last Edit: May 23, 2017, 07:08:43 AM by themonsstar »

Offline themonsstar

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Re: Pte T. Whittaker 1st Bn
« Reply #1 on: May 23, 2017, 07:10:21 AM »
Last bits

Offline themonsstar

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Re: Pte T. Whittaker 1st Bn
« Reply #2 on: May 23, 2017, 04:52:30 PM »
Nordenfeld Maxim

Offline themonsstar

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Re: Pte T. Whittaker 1st Bn
« Reply #3 on: May 23, 2017, 04:57:24 PM »