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Andrew M. Campbell, 3rd NSW Mounted Rifles - k.i.a. at Mandesfontein 21.5.1901 3 months 2 days ago #77466

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The tablet was originally placed in the Presbyterian Church, Wilcannia, New South Wales, and after the church's closure it was added to the town's war memorial. It was unveiled as part of the 2017 Remembrance Day service by retired Lieutenant-Colonel John Leggett, Wilcannia-born, who rose through the ranks of the army after attending the Royal Military College, Duntroon, served as a military observer with the UN in Lebanon and Syria in 1982-83, and as a civilian served with a UN mission in the former Yugoslavia, 1992-93.

Wilcannia, in north-western New South Wales, used to function as an inland port on the River Darling.

My thanks to Chris Elliott for sending me the photos, and for the transcriptions, and also to Lieutenant-Colonel Leggett.

....The last contingent from here [Wilcannia] consisting of Edgar Simpson, Andrew Campbell, Charlie Allison, Tom. Stevenson, and Jack and Don. MacIntyre has arrived at Port Elizabeth safe and well. They were to go to Capetown, but the plague having broken out they were ordered to Port Elizabeth, where they disembarked and are now at the front in the Eland's River district. We have no doubt they will bear themselves as bravely as their predecessors. On the way over a fire broke out in the hold of one of the vessels, but after a day and a half it was extinguished.
Western Grazier, Saturday 18th May 1901

....DEATH OF TROOPER CAMPBELL. - A pang of regret was felt throughout the town when it was known that Trooper Andrew McKenzie Campbell, youngest son of Mr Norman Campbell, who left for South Africa about three months ago with the N.S.W. Imperial Bushmen for South Africa, had been killed in action while skirmishing at Mandesfontein. Yesterday Mr Fletcher, P.M., received a telegram from Colonel H. D. Mackenzie, Victoria Barracks, Sydney, asking him to kindly intimate to Mr Campbell that his son had been killed. Deep sympathy is felt with Mr and Mrs Campbell in the loss of their son, who was a promising young man about 18 years of age.
Western Grazier, Saturday 15th June 1901


WILCANNIA, Monday.......
....Flags were hoisted at half-mast here on Saturday on receipt of the news that Trooper Campbell, of Wilcannia, a member of the last New South Wales Contingent, had been killed in action at Mandcsfontein. General sympathy is expressed with the deceased's parents. The preparations made for welcoming several members of the First Bushmen's Corps, who recently returned by the Morayshire, will be greatly modified in consequence of the news.
....Trooper Campbell was the son of Mr Norman Campbell, of this town. Mrs Campbell, Andrew's mother received 2 letters, one from S F Stokes, Captain N.S.W. Mounted Rifles, and another received from Lieutenant Palmer, who commanded the troop in the engagement which resulted in the deaths of Troopers Campbell and fellow trooper Tenant. From these letters it was understood that the squadron was ordered on a reconnaissance up a valley and a troop was detached to guard the left flank. A scout was detailed on the right front of this troop, and it came out after, he passed by some Boers who were dressed in khaki and were mistaken by him for some of his own troop. Seeing the scout pass safely ahead, the troop followed and were fired on at close range by the Boers. As there was no cover the order was given to retire, but by this time Trooper Campbell's horse had been shot under him, and he had been mortally wounded by a shot in the upper part of the thigh, covering a main artery. Sergeant Sutton brought Trooper Campbell away on his horse, he himself being shot in two places. Surgical aid arrived too late to save Trooper Campbell's life. The lieutenant spoke highly of Trooper Campbell's conduct as a soldier.
....Captain Stokes wrote: Your son was called away on the 21st May while gallantly maintaining a position at which he with his troop was suddenly surprised by an overwhelming number of the enemy a few miles south-east of Bethel, and subjected to an intensely heavy fire at very close range. Your gallant son was esteemed by me and fellow-officers and men as one of those upon whom we could rely on under any circumstances, and his memory will always carry with it the example of a noble and heroic soldier of whom Australia may feel proud.
The Barrier Miner, Monday 17th June 1901

WILCANNIA, Wednesday.......
....The ceremony of unveiling a memorial tablet to the late Trooper A. M. Campbell of Wilcannia who was killed in South Africa was performed during a service at the Presbyterian church this morning. The ceremony was impressive, the Mayor making an effective speech.
The Sydney Morning Herald, Thursday 2nd January 1902

In Memory of Trooper Campbell.

....A tablet was unveiled at the Presbyterian Church on New Years Day by Mrs J. M, Byrnes, Mayoress, sacred to the memory of Alexander McKenzie Campbell, who was slain in South Africa whilst undergoing his "baptism of fire." The tablet bears the following inscription :—

In Memory of
Andrew M Campbell, late of 3rd Regiment
N.S.W. Mounted Rifles.
Killed in action in South Africa 21st May,
Aged 19 years.
"He did his duty."

....Corporal Tom Swainston, 3rd Waikato Regiment, Sergeant John McCready, Wollongong Rifles, Sergeant A. G. Leer, N.S.W. Permanent Artillery, Corporal Frank Oliver, Auckland Defence Force and Wanganui Yeomanry Cavalry were present, also Troopers C. Stevenson and J. Wilkinson, who have lately returned from South Africa. The Rev. J. Macandrew addressed the assemblage from the text "Blessed be The Lord my strength who teacheth my hands to war and my fingers to fight." The rev. gentleman was at his best and told how soldiers with all their rough surroundings could be Christians. With Havelock, Gordon, and others we do not lack example. The Mayoress drooped the flag coverlng the slab and told in gentle voice how pleased she was to have the opportunity of paying a small tribute to the memory of the gallant young soldier. The Mayor also stated that he had known young Campbell from his boyhood and expected great deeds had his life been spared. "Onward, Christian Soldiers" was sung, the ceremony terminating with "God Save the King," the congregation dispersing to the "Dead March". Miss Leer kindly presided at the organ, and Mr Tom Swainston explained that what was at first intended to be a small matter amongst a few friends, had grown into something larger, a number of old "squaddies" in the town insisting on contributing. Wilcannia has sent many gallant young fellows to the war, but Trooper Campbell is the only one fatally injured.
Western Grazier, Wednesday 8th January 1902
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Andrew M. Campbell, 3rd NSW Mounted Rifles - k.i.a. at Mandesfontein 21.5.1901 3 months 2 days ago #77468

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"1702 Pte. A.M.Campbell" of the 3rd NSWMR served with E Squadron of that Regiment. He was born 1881 in Menindee NSW and he was originally remembered on a memorial tablet in the Presbyterian church Wilcannia, NSW, on 1/1/02. In the Australian Town and Country Journal of 9/3/1901 is a group pic of E Squadron, 3NSWMR with "1702 Pte A.M.Campbell" identified as no.5. Trying to get a better close-up, I did the best I could do ....

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