1899 - Kimberley siege day 42 (33%). Ladysmith siege day 24 (20%). Mafeking siege day 44 (20%). Battle of Enslin (or Graspan). Successful sortie from Kimberley. General Buller arrives at Maritzburg. Colonel Holdsworth attacks Boer laager at Deerdepoort.
1901 - Further Canadian contingent accepted.
1904 - "Responsible Government Association" formed in the Transvaal.
Enemy fired 15 shells at the Premier Mine Fort from the works near Jacob’s Farm early this morning; they have found the range very well, and dropped 4 shells into the fort, luckily without doing any damage.
Reconnaissance this morning details of which will be found in a separate report. Portions of most of the troops in Kimberley were employed also in the armoured train, and the Beaconsfield Town Guard. We had 6 men killed and 27 wounded – including Lt Col Scott Turner, Captain Hickson Mahony and Capt Bowen of Kimberley Light Horse. We obtained very accurate information as to the strength and position of the enemy – and he must have lost heavily; we took 28 prisoners and may be able to obtain some useful information from them.
The shells made by the De Beers Company are a success in every way. It is a wonderful performance on the part of their engineering staff; 6 of these shells were fired during the reconnaissance this morning.
Capt Robertson Kimberley Light Horse went out this afternoon to the scene of this morning’s fight, under a RedCross Flag, and exchanged the dead body of one of the enemy killed for 2 of ours left on the field. He was well received.
I instructed him to offer medical aid for their wounded to the Boer Commandant, but he was informed that they had a doctor in the laager.
Enemy is evidently most anxious to destroy the Railway; 2 culverts on it near Wimbledon, and 1 near Dronfield were blown up this afternoon.
Almost a blank as far as fighting goes. It is said that General Hunter went out under a flag of truce to protest against the firing upon the hospital. There were no shells to speak of till late afternoon. Among the usual rumours came one that Joubert had been wounded in the mouth at Colenso. The Gordons held their sports near the Iron Bridge, sentries being posted to give the alarm if the Bulwan guns fired. "Any more entries for the United Service mule race? Are you ready? Sentry, are you keeping your eye on that gun?" "Yes, sir." "Very well then, go!" And off the mules went, in any direction but the right, a soldier and a sailor trying vainly to stick on the bare back of each, whilst inextinguishable laughter arose among the gods.
1899 - From the letters writer by Lt Col Park in Ladysmith
Still drifting along. It was officially published in orders yesterday that Hildyard was at Estcourt on 20th, and Sir C. Clery at Maritzburg, and that fresh troops were daily arriving at Durban and being pushed forward as fast as possible. That is the first really authentic news we have been given, and as that was five days ago it should not be long before we hear of the force advancing. I have just been for my second outing this month - a walk into the town - and met one or two of the headquarter staff, who said that there really was very little news, but that what there was was good. Buller is keeping his movements very dark, and there is no news at all of him. We had another very heavy thunderstorm last night with a tearing wind; but the tents stood it all right, and there is a lovely fresh breeze and bright sun today, which have quite dried us up again.
1899 - From the diary of Trooper A J Crosby, Natal Carbineers
Horseguard 12.15 to 2.45. Parade at 3 usual exercise inspection of arms at 9 o’clock. Cricket match between our men and N.M.R. Won by an innings and 43 runs. On parade at 5.45 for piquet. On watch 9.30 to 11.30.
1899 - From the diary of Miss Bella Craw in Ladysmith
A month today will be Christmas Day. I wonder if we will be relieved then! What a miserable time it will be if we are not as provisions for man and beast are getting less and less. The men are on quarter rations now, half a loaf of bread, a quarter of a lb. of meat, and the same of meal, a day. If it is that now what will it be in a month. We hear today pack horses are to be turned loose, all thin and useless horses are to be shot. Today has been quiet. This afternoon I went for a ride by myself and then realised what a very limited space we have. I rode to the foot of the Red Hill, then out to the Cemetery, then through the Poort and had a chat with Mr. Francis. While I was talking to him, we heard the familiar boom of Long Tom and the shell burst near Mr. Murray's house on the Hill, I thought I had better get home. Wilfrid has another relapse of fever, not so bad this time.
Two of the 9 wounded Liverpools have since died of their wounds and another scarcely expected to recover.
1899 - Diary of the siege of Mafeking by Edward Ross
Saturday, 25 November
Another quiet day. I suppose the enemy began to find out that their shells are not doing as much damage, and they are only wasting powder and shot.
We have had very few shells and very little sniping. About 50 Fingoes went out last night for the purpose of worrying up the Boers, but they returned and did not do any damage. They reported that the enemy were too wide awake; they have not forgotten the bayonet escapade.
B.P. is always up to something or other. Today he has had two or three megaphones (large size speaking-tubes) made, and they were tried this afternoon and evening down the streets. They were a great success, as the speaking could be distinctly heard from anything between 900 to 1 000 yards.
I had a conversation with Colonel Walford this evening. He considers that relief should be here in about three weeks. Oh, let it be soon.