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Did British Troops Have to return home? 2 months 3 weeks ago #73474

  • Dennis Morton
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My Grandfather, Private John Dean Morton (service number 4706) of the 2nd Royal Lancaster Regiment (Kings Own) shipped to South Africa on December 2, 1899 aboard the Dilwara. He arrived South Africa December 25, 1899.
He married in South Africa in May 1902.
Were troops allowed to stay behind? Or perhaps he returned to South Africa after demob? Any ideas? Thanks You.

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Did British Troops Have to return home? 2 months 3 weeks ago #73477

  • Moranthorse1
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Hi Dennis,
I have just finished reading a book titled "Lincolnshire Lads On The Veldt" which contains a series of letters sent home by the Stennett brothers who served in South Africa with the Lincolnshire Regiment. In their letters they mention several times that NCOs were coming round the men asking if anyone would like to stay over in SA. One of the brothers actually did and worked on a police farm making a nice living for himself.
I also have a QSA medal pair to a Private Payze of the Welsh Regiment who was wounded at Driefontein and he also married a lady who was South African born after buying his discharge. He remained in SA and had 5 children.
I think staying over would have been encouraged in order to populate South Africa with British subjects as happened elsewhere in the days of empire.
I hope this is helpful and sure other more learned members of the forum will be able to expand on this thread.
Cheers,
Steve

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Did British Troops Have to return home? 2 months 3 weeks ago #73479

  • Dennis Morton
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Thanks Steve. That really helps.
I have just read The Scramble For Africa; so that makes perfect sense - encouraging British subjects to be apart of Britain's empire. Thanks again. Incidentally the woman he married in 1902 died ten years later. They had no children. He remarried a Boer and they had five children (including my dad born in 1918).
Take care
Dennis

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Did British Troops Have to return home? 2 months 3 weeks ago #73486

  • djb
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Dennis,

I am not sure of the numbers but it is clear from the medals rolls that if it came time for soldiers in the Imperial forces to leave the Army whilst they were in South Africa, most returned home to England for their discharge but a good number decided to take their discharge in SA. I have always presumed that those who were discharged in SA probably stayed in SA or perhaps moved to Australia, New Zealand, Canada or wider afield.

We certainly see a few soldiers who had left the Imperial regiments in SA and joined up to fight with local SA units.

Best wishes
David
Dr David Biggins
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Did British Troops Have to return home? 2 months 3 weeks ago #73492

  • Frank Kelley
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A particular soldier could take discharge in South Africa if he wished to do so, but, it would depend upon where he was in terms of his service engagement, if he still had liability to actually complete , lets say, for example, another year, then he could leave upon payment of a sum determined by the Army, another way to go, would to be transferred to an SAMIF unit.
By far the most common way, as was the case with Private Morton, would be to simply complete service liability with the colours and then service out Reserve liability in South Africa, which was something many chose to do.
Morton's regiment formed part of the Imperial Garrison in South Africa post Vereeniging and I note that he transferred to the reserve upon the 21st of February 1903 before his discharge upon the 31st of March 1907, with his settlement made by the Officer Paying Army Reserve and Pensions, Pretoria.



Dennis Morton wrote: My Grandfather, Private John Dean Morton (service number 4706) of the 2nd Royal Lancaster Regiment (Kings Own) shipped to South Africa on December 2, 1899 aboard the Dilwara. He arrived South Africa December 25, 1899.
He married in South Africa in May 1902.
Were troops allowed to stay behind? Or perhaps he returned to South Africa after demob? Any ideas? Thanks You.

The following user(s) said Thank You: BereniceUK, Dennis Morton

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Did British Troops Have to return home? 2 months 3 weeks ago #73493

  • Elmarie
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Dr Alex Frew 1903 When the British side toured South Africa in 1903 the first rugby test match was played at the Wanderers in Johannesburg on a Wednesday, the 26th of August.
Full names: Alexander Frew
Date of birth: 24 October 1877
Place of birth: Newmilns, Ayrshire, Scotland
School: Spiers School, UK
Date of death: 29 Apr 1947 (Age 70)
Anglo-Boer War: Dr Alex Frew had come to SA during the war to take up an appointment at the Orange River Concentration Camp. He stayed on in SA after the war had ended.
Elmarie Malherbe
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