I hope this is the proper place to post this.
I recently bought a Mauser that was brought to Canada by a veteran of the war.
The rifle is in exceptional condition and came with quite the story of how it was captured.
Whether it's true I can't say, but according to the chap who sold it to me it was captured from the Armoury in Pretoria when it fell to the British.
The rifle was issued/sold to a Burgher because the initial "K" is carved into the stock.
So what happened to "K" that the rifle would be in the armoury in June 1900?
That is if the story is true...
This is probably a long shot, and I think I know the answer already.
But did the ZAR record the serial numbers of the rifles that were purchased or given to the Burghers and who the burgher was?
And if they did where could those records be obtained?
As far as I am aware, there was no record kept of Mauser rifles issued/provided to Burghers. Some years ago, Boer Mauser rifles and carbines were quite widely encountered here in Australia. An elderly former member of the NSW Citizen's Bushmen told me many, many years ago that his comrades usually brought back four or five Boer Mausers; for sale on the waterfront at more than five pounds each!
Some of the Boer Mausers I encountered in the 1970's onwards had stock carvings; names, places - some rustic and some very well done. I did source a copy of Kaplan's ABO roll and tried to reconcile certain stock-carved names against names on the roll. To not much luck, I can say. At least I tried. Virtually all such Mausers had mixed serial numbers on action and bolt. My opinion is that such examples were probably field captures or surrenders; "Bolts in one heap and rifles in the other". Meaning that the rifle(s) in question were immediately out-of-action if someone changed his mind.
Many thousands of Boer rifles of many patterns were captured/surrendered during the campaign. I attach a pic taken at Cape Town and taken from "After Pretoria, the Guerilla War" Vol 3 page 422, (publication date Feb., 1901).
Noted in the foreground are Martinis, shotguns, a couple of Winchester lever-action rifles, apparent muzzle loading types and at least one Mauser. In the background are horizontally stacked thousands of rifles; Mausers, from the look of the visible butt-plates. To conclude, some time ago, QSAMike contributed a post about a Boer Mauser reportedly sourced from the arsenal at Pretoria. I tried to find it. No luck. Perhaps Mike could assist here? In any case, I suggest you gather all the information you can about the background of the Boer Mauser in your current custody and record it.