Boer War and related events




Caution: The attached chronology was developed for personal use and is unedited and unchecked. Some dates are from multiple sources and are believed to be reliable (where indicated). Others have been obtained from a single source and remain unconfirmed, especially those that have not been relevant to the research in hand at the time. There may also be errors committed by the author.  Some entries will be meaningless to most readers and relate to private histories. [The dates that have been used elsewhere (eg in book drafts and papers),  have usually been confirmed where possible.]


The chronology is offered here despite the reservations because it is more comprehensive than any known published version and may therefore be useful.


Sources: Many entries show the source(s). The most common are: TP (Thomas Pakenham: The Boer War), Oxf Hist (The Oxford History of South Africa, 2 vol ed Wilson and Thompson), W or Warwick (Peter Warwick: Black People and the South African War 1899-1902), FP (Fransjohan Pretorius: The Anglo-Boer War 1899-1902) and Cd (British Parliamentary Paper (‘Command paper’)).  ‘WO’, ‘FO’ and  ‘CO’ are references to folders in the British Archives, respectively War Office, Foreign Office and Colonial Office. Many other sources were used and are not necessarily noted.  I welcome corrections – please advise. (See email address on this page.)





Dutch establish first permanent white settlement at Table Bay (Cape Town) under Jan v Riebeeck


First Conradie arrives (Conradi or Conrad˙)


200 Huguenots settle at the Cape


Swellendam gets Drosdy (magistrate)


Graaf-Reinet gets Drosdy (magistrate)


Britain occupies the Cape, taking over from the Dutch, until 1802




Uitenhage gets Drosdy


The British again occupy the Cape – by military invasion.


Trade in slaves banned


British settlers arrive in substantial numbers at PE to settle on the eastern frontier.


Governor D’Urban cooperates with frontier settlers to annex 100 wide strip of Xhosa land – repudiated by Colonial Secretary TP p15,16

May 1833

British Parliament legislates to set slaves free from 1 Dec 1834. Oxf Hist p 309. Compensation offered, payable in London Davenport p 33 (TP gives 1834 p 16)

1 Dec 1834

Slaves freed, but apprenticed to their masters for 4-6 yrs. Oxf Hist p309


Great Trek era ‘in order to escape from the restraints of British rule.’


Retief’s trek establishes the Republic of Natal (after Retief’s death)

1843 or 1845

Britain annexes Natal (ex Zululand) and administers it as a province of the Cape Colony. (Warwick gives date as 1843. p7) (Oxford DNB web site confirms 1843 – see File 1 Misc) (Conan Doyle gives 1845)


Britain annexes the land between the Orange and Vaal Rivers and the Drakensberg. Lilydale becomes British territority

15 April 1852

Sand River Convention recognised the right of those persons {who had moved north of the Vaal} to … govern themselves without any interference on the part of the Queen’s Government.


In the next few years, three groups north of the Vaal and south of the Limpopo River combine to form the South African Republic.


At the Bloemfontein Convention, Britain reverses annexation of the Orange River Colony (on the grounds of expense) and the Orange Free State is born. Lilydale is now in a Boer republic.


First president of the South African Republic elected.


Diamonds discovered (Hopetown?, Kimberley?)


Canada formed. Lord Carnarvon is British Colonial Secretary


Basutoland annexed by Britain with consent of Basutos seeking protection from Boers


Diamond fields annexed. Lilydale becomes British territory again


Cape Colony granted ‘responsible government’ Oxf Hist p 272

22 Dec 1874

Charlotte Frederica Augusta Mathewson born (on Lilydale?)



12 April 1877

South African Republic annexed by British under Sir Theophilus Shepstone Oxf Hist p296  (TP gives date as 1879 p18)


Britain defeats Zulus Warwick p 8


S J du Toit founds Afrikaner Bond in Paarl


Insurrection, leading to defeat of the British at Majuba in the next year.

28 Feb 1881

Battle of Majuba. Gen Colley killed

21 March 1881

Treaty of Peace signed between Kruger and Sir Evelyn Wood, the British general. Kruger accepts suzerainty (internal/external split)

18 May 1881

Birth date of Johannes Rossouw Conradie


Pretoria Convention extends meaning of suzerainty


Germany establishes a trading post in what is now Namibia


London Convention removes most of the extensions of Pretoria Convention, restoring Peace Treaty terms. Suzerainty not specifically addressed, but ‘it is a cardinal principal of that settlement that the internal government and legislation of the South African Republic shall not be interfered with.’ (FO 2/266 p242)


Germany annexes South West Africa (currently Namibia)


Gold discovered in Southern Transvaal on the Witwatersrand (Warwick p1, 8, Keppel Jones in TC p3, also Ensor in TC)


Zululand annexed, incorporated into Natal 10 yrs later Warwick p8

April 1887

Assertion of suzerainty. JS Marais in TC p82

28 Oct 1891

Alexander Mathewson  (great grandfather) (who acquired Lilydale) dies and is buried on Lilydale having sired 14 offspring (Charlotte was 8th)

3 Jul 1894

Crown lawyers opine that suzerainty has been abandoned (FO 2/266)

June 1895

Unionists come to power in UK under Salisbury. Chamberlain new Colonial Secretary.

29 Dec 1895

Jameson Raid commences

2 Jan 1896

Dr Jameson’s raid fails at Doornkop west of Jhb (Ensor in TC)

26 Mar 1886

Lord Selbourne’s memo for Salisbury: TVL will dominate SA. Will it be  in or out of Empire? Advocates acquisition of Delagoa Bay.


After Raid, the South African League is formed to advocate for British intervention in the Tvl Oxf Hist p 318


Marthinus Steyn elected President of OFS – inclined towards TVL OxH


Milner appointed High Commissioner


New mutual assistance treaty betw OFS and TVL with committee to make recommendations about a federal union.


Kruger dismisses TVL Chief Justice J G Kotze OxH p 318


Kruger re-elected president

23 Feb 1898

Milner despatch: Things will get worse. 1st mention of war option.

Mid 1898

Smuts appointed TVL Attorney General  TP p42-3


TVL repudiates suzerainty OxH p322

14 Oct 1898

Cape Election: Government of Sprigg, Rhodes’s successor defeated. WP Schreiner becomes Prime Minister.

18 Nov 1898

Milner arrives in London on ‘working holiday’ TP p30-31

22 Nov 1898

Meeting in London between Milner and Chamberlain during Milner’s working holiday TP p 31 Subject: Case for working up a crisis.

Dec 1898

ZARP Jones shoots drunken Edgar TP p51

23 Dec 1898

Smuts surprised by comments by Fraser  TP p 44

24 Dec 1898

Protest meeting in JHB – petition signed – 5000 signatures


Gen Butler rejects petition








De Beers responsible for half the Cape Colony’s exports. Warwick p8

25 Jan

Milner leaves for S A – from TP p 34

25 Jan

Gen Butler writes to Colonial Office on reasons for rejecting 1st petition


Fitzpatrick circulates new petition – 21,000 signatures.


Kruger/Smuts offer Deal to miners – thwarted by Fitzpatrick

31 Mar

Fitzpatrick presents petition to Milner – they share strategies.

5 April

Milner to Selbourne: Vitriol TC p 96,7


Cape, with OFS support, suggests a conference to thrash out issues. OxH p323 Milner rejects the suggestion.

4 May

Milner’s ‘helots’ telegram TC p 97

17 May

Milner letter ‘if I fail with Kruger’ Kruger will climb down if forces increased. TC p 98

31 May – 5 Jun

Failed peace conference in Bloemfontein. Ensor in TC p55, TP


Buller secretly appointed to command British Army in SA in event of war. WTS p 65 (‘Some time in June’)

16 June

Milner calls for large increase in forces in Natal – see telegram on File

12-23 June

Gen Butler issues warning despatches to War Office WTS p50-51

24 June

Milner rebukes Butler WTS p 52

27 June

Lansdowne instructs Butler to support Milner WTS p 52


Chamberlain’s Birmingham speech to sway public opinion. See TC p 88 for extracts

4 July

Butler resigns; Milner accepts WTS p 52

18 July

Kruger offers a compromise including a seven year franchise, fully retrospective.

1 Aug

Milner invites Tvl to appoint delegates to discuss effectiveness of Tvl offer WTS p76

15 Aug

Without rejecting the demand for a joint review of 7 yr offer, Tvl offers to make a further concession: a five year franchise. WTS p 76. See terms TC p 90

17 Aug

Milner asks Tvl to appoint delegates nevertheless and says new offer will be considered on its merits. WTS p77

21 Aug

Tvl offers 5 year franchise in return for an end to suzerainty and reassurance there will be no further interference in internal affairs. See terms TC p 91

Late Aug

Two battalions of British forces land in Natal. GOC Natal is General Penn-Symons. P95

24 or 25 Aug

Chamberlain decides war is inevitable and begins to take the lead in bringing it on.

26 Aug

Speech at garden party shows turn of mind. TC p 92 (Highbury speech)

28 Aug

Chamberlain rejects latest offer WTS 77 See copy TC p93

2 Sept

Tvl assumes joint inquiry of 7 year offer is still on and asks for proposals regarding time and place, assuming ‘that it is not intended to interfere in internal affairs’. WTS p 77

2 Sept

Chamberlain calls for Cabinet meeting. Memo to Cabinet. OxH p 324

8 Sept

British Cabinet decides to send 10 000 troops to Natal including the 2000 sent in Aug. P96. The Cabinet is persuaded that in the face of such force, Kruger will back down and not fight. The reinforcements will include 5500 from India.

8 Sept

Chamberlain informs Boers that Britain cannot now go back to his own proposals which 19 Aug ‘were a substitute’ WTS p78 Demands withdrawal of conditions.

16 Sept

Tvl, via Reitz asks Britain to abide by its own proposal and ‘cannot understand …’ WTS p 78

16 Sept

Gen White and Cols Hamilton and Rawlinson sail for Durban via CT to take command of the larger force in Natal.

17 Sept

Troops in India embark for Natal.

17 Sept

Transvaal Executive rejects British demands TC p77

28 Sept

Transvaal forces mobilised

2 Oct

OFS forces mobilised

7 Oct

White lands at Durban and takes command of forces in Natal. Reinforcements disembark over next 2 days.

9 Oct

Ultimatum delivered by Reitz to Conningham-Greene.  Britain decides to send the Army Corps of 50 000 men under General Sir Redvers Buller.

11 Oct 1899

OUTBREAK OF WAR Ultimatum expires at 5pm (Times Ch VI)

14 Oct

Kimberley and Mafeking besieged.

14 Oct 1899

Buller sails from Southampton on Dunottar castle ahead of the Army Corps he was to lead. Winston Churchill is on board.

19 Oct

Belmont occupied by V D Merwe and 300 Fauresmith burghers

20 Oct

Battle of Talana Hill outside Dundee, British victory but Boers simply ride away. Gen Penn Symonds mortally wounded, significant British losses and prisoners.

21 Oct

Battle of Elandslaagte near Ladysmith. Gen French defeats Commandant Kock. British cavalry butcher Boers with lance and sword. Boers not killed are captured.

30 Oct (Mon)

White’s forces suffer major defeat at battles of Ladysmith (Modderspruit) and Nicholson’s Nek. British casualties are 1272 (Pakenham p155), killed, injured and captured.

30 Oct

Buller arrives in Cape Town – disembarks the next day

3 Nov

Ladysmith besieged (about 12 000 British trapped)

4 Nov

Boers cross Orange River and invade North Eastern Cape Colony.

9 Nov

First troop ship of Army Corps (47 000 men), Roslin Castle, arrives in Table Bay P163


First casualties on West front: Col Gough’s reconnaissance. T Ch VI

12 Nov

Roslin Castle docks in Durban and discharge of Army Corps commences

14 Nov

Joubert crosses the Tugela at Colenso with 2,000 men.

15 Nov

Churchill captured nr Estcourt in the incident with the train.

21 Nov

Methuen crosses Orange River (P180)

22 Nov

British attack Joubert at Willow Grange, Natal. Inconclusive and British suffer 86 casualties vs 1 Boer killed by lightning in a storm (P)

22 Nov

Buller leaves for Natal. He had decided to send 1/3 Army Corp to Natal under his own command. The rest under Methuen (in the West) and Gatacre (in the centre) to advance north through the Cape

23 Nov

Battle of Belmont (G&P) Methuen vs Prinsloo

25 Nov

Kgatla, a Tswana tribe, attack a Boer encampment at Derdepoort on the Marico River and Bechuanaland border with British participation and encouragement. Twenty Boers killed, incl 2 women. 17 women and children captured and taken by the Kgatla to their capital, Mochudi, in Bechuanaland. Warwick p 40

25 Nov

Joubert decides to retreat to Tugela River. He is injured the next day in an accident and Botha takes command in Natal. He fortifies the Tugela.

25 Nov

Battle at Graspan/Enslin – Methuen G&P

28 Nov

Delarey changes tactics at Modder River battle – Methuen wounded G&P

9,10 Dec

Gatacre’s advance to and defeat at Stormberg



10, 11 Dec 1899

Methuen’s advance to Kimberley halted at the battle of Magersfontein. Unexpected trenches.

15 Dec

Buller defeated in battle of Colenso. Roberts’s son Freddy killed.

16 Dec

Roberts appointed to replace Buller as CinC in South Africa, and Kitchener appointed as his Chief of Staff.

22 Dec

Boer reprisal against Kgatla for Derdepoort attack. 150 Kgatla killed, 3 Boers die. Warwick p42

22 Dec

Roberts sails from Southampton

31 Dec

Britain suffered 700 dead, 3000 wounded and 2000 taken prisoner since Oct. Large no hemmed in in sieges (12000 at Ladysmith, 1000? at Kimberley, 500 at Mafeking.  Public shaken. P







10 Jan

Roberts arrives in Cape Town

23,24 Jan

Battle of Spionkop, More than 1800 casualties combined.

11 Feb

Roberts’s great flanking march commences from Modder River Station.


Kimberley relieved by French

18 Feb

Cronje trapped by British under Kitchener at Paardeberg – savage fighting. 10 day siege ensues RK

27 Feb

Cronje and 4000 men surrender at Paardeberg RK


Roberts issues conciliatory proclamation – I Cd 426

28 Feb

Dundonald (?) rides into Ladysmith – end of siege Times H

3 March

Buller’s formal entry into Ladysmith

13 March

Bloemfontein falls to Roberts BN p161, RK p267, FP p24

15 Mar

Roberts offers a return to farms for Boers laying down arms. Proc III Cd 426

17 Mar

Boer council of war in Kroonstad at which de Wet expounds new approach.

27 Mar

Commandant-General Piet Joubert dies of illness in Pretoria (J&S)

31 Mar

Sannah’s Post ambush of Broadwood by De Wet.

9 Apr

Roberts proclaims martial law in NE Cape Proc VIII Cd 426

8 May

Buller moves into extreme north-east corner of OFS before entering Tvl

12 May

Roberts takes Kroonstad

17 May

Mafeking relieved – huge celebration in UK. See Gardner Mafeking p 185

24 May

OFS annexed, becomes Orange River Colony ( Cd 426, J&S p182, GF-B p59, FP p25) Proc XI

27 May

Roberts crosses Vaal TP 435, GF-B p59

31 May

Roberts hoists Union Jack in Johannesburg and declares martial law in entire OFS Proc XII Cd 426.

4 Jun

De Wet captures supply convoy en route to Heilbron (FP p27)

5 Jun

Roberts occupies Pretoria  J&S p183, RK p315 {6 Jun - Eeden paper}

7 Jun

De Wet overruns garrison on rail line north of Kroonstad. Roodewal (FP p27)

11 Jun

Roberts launches attack on Botha at battle of Diamond Hill, 25 miles east of Pretoria. (FP p29)

12 Jun

Buller enters Transvaal

12 Jun

Hamilton breaks through at Diamond Hill FP p29

16 Jun

Farm burning commences as a matter of policy under Roberts (Cd 426,FP p28, J&S p191) Proc XIX. Farms near scenes of sabotage burnt. De Wet’s farm destroyed.

19 Jun

Collective punishment extended – locals to pay for damage by Boer fighters. Cd 426 Proc XX

7 Jul

Bethlehem taken after engagement lasting 2 days. (FP p28)

9 Jul

600 Boer women and children expelled by rail from Pretoria and sent to Boer commando’s JCO p 43

11 Jul

De la Rey has victory at Silikaatsnek W of Pretoria FPp31

15 Jul

De Wet escapes from Brandwater basin (FP p28 ‘with 2000 men’) Start of 1st De Wet Hunt.

24 Jul

De Wet withdraws to strong position in hills nr Reitzberg nr Vredefort

27 Jul

French occupies Middleburg Tvl FP p 29

29 Jul

Prinsloo trapped and surrenders with > 4000 men at Brandwater Basin (FP says this happened on 30 July – 4400 men. P28)

6 Aug

De Wet crosses Vaal at Schoemansdrift in the 1st De Wet hunt

10 Aug

450 women and 1550 children expelled from Johannesburg.

14 Aug

De Wet passes through Olifantsnek. End of 1st de Wet Hunt.

14-16 Aug

De la Rey’s siege of camp at Elands River fails FP p31

15 Aug

Roberts’s and Buller’s forces meet in E Tvl. Now 20,000 unite against Botha FP p29

21- 27 Aug

Battle at Bergendal. Botha, defeated, retreats towards Lydenberg. (FP p29)

28 Aug

Tvl and OFS Govs meet at Waterval Onder. Decide to send Kruger abroad (FP p29)

1 Sept

Roberts annexes Tvl (Cd 426, FP p29). (TP says this happened on 25 Oct p458 ‘six weeks after proclaiming it in Army Orders’)

11 Sep

Kruger leaves SA for Holland via Delagoa Bay (sails 19 Oct) – never to return. (J&S p185) (aboard Gelderland, Dutch cruiser sent to fetch him TP p458, RK p373)

18 Sep

Queen dissolves British Parliament for election

22 Sep

Formal announcement of establishment of ‘refugee camps’ JCO p48, FP p56

6 Oct

Buller takes leave of his troops and Natal Field Force broken up RK 373


Roberts appointed Commander-in-Chief of the Army, replacing Wolseley


Elections in UK fought on SA (before 12 Oct?), Unionist-Conservatives 402, Liberals 186, Irish Nationalists 82. Gov majority increased by 6 RK p372.


Salisbury reshuffles cabinet. Lansdowne to Foreign Secretary and St John Brodrick to Secretary for War.

20-25 Oct

De Wet and Liebenberg besiege Maj Gen G Barton at Frederickstad Station in W Tvl. Retreat when reinforcements arrive, leaving >=26 dead FPp30 BNp193

25 Oct

Roberts annexes Transvaal TP p458 (See 1 Sept)

End Oct

Buller leaves SA for UK. Subdued greeting in UK


Boer leaders meet at Cypherfontein near Zeerust and resolve to invade Cape and Natal (Pres Steyn, Louis Botha, De la Rey and Smuts). De Wet fails to get to the meeting in time but supports the strategy. TP (RKp381: Meeting in Pietersberg includes Ben Viljoen, Kemp, Beyers, not De la Rey) Two meetings?

1 Nov

Steyn rejoins De Wet at Venterstad FPp30

6 Nov

DeWet and Steyn’s laager surprised by Lt Col P le Gallais. Steyn and De Wet escape but 114 Boers captured and much material including the last of De Wet’s artillery FPp30 BNp195

23 Nov

Garrison surrenders to De Wet at Dewetsdorp. 408 British captured. FPp30

28 Nov

Roberts hands over to Kitchener at midnight.

3 Dec

De la Rey captures convoy of 126 wagons N of Magaliesberg on the way to Rustenberg FPp31 (TP477: 2 Dec, 118 wagons)

10 Dec

Roberts sails from Cape Town to arrive amid fanfare in Jan. (TP 485)

13 Dec

De la Rey and Smuts combine with Gen Beyers to defeat Gen RAP Clements at Nooitgedacht. Clements loses 332 killed or injured and 306 captured FPp31, BNp196, TPp477

14 Dec

De Wet breaks through encircling British at Springkaansnek nr Thaba ‘Nchu, ending 2nd ‘De Wet hunt’. FPp30

16 Dec

Kritzinger (with Scheepers) and Herzog invade Cape.  Kitchener's despatch (Times), RKp394, TPp486 (BN dates this 17 Dec p196) Milner fears uprising TP 486

27 Dec

Emily Hobhouse arrives in Cape Town

28-29 Dec

Ben Viljoen overwhelms garrison at Helvetia nr Machadodorp FPp31

31 Dec 1900

2nd Batt Coldstream Guards garrison Graaf Reinet







4 Jan

Milner appointed Governor of Orange River Colony and Major Hamilton Goold-Adams his deputy. Wikip (Pretyman was military governor before Goold-Adams and Milner (civilians) succeeded him.

7 Jan

Botha and Viljoen fail to breach eastern corridor BN p198


Speculatively, time of Conradie’s recruitment by Kritzinger (Shearing)

22 Jan

Queen Victoria dies

24 Jan

Hobhouse arrives in Bloemfontein. 1st exposure to a camp.

28 Jan

Kitchener’s first great drive commences to clear E Tvl highveld. Under Gen French. Lasts till April. Scorched earth policy devastates prosperous region. FPp32


Roberts takes up appointment as C-in-C of the Army.

Cape reacts to invasion: Martial law, recruitment of militia TPp486

3 Feb

Kitchener authorises Col H Bottomley to assist Zulus to seal the Zululand border and raid Boer cattle and other property in the region. Stridently opposed by the Natal civil administration, but Bottomley proceeds Warwick p87

6 Feb

Botha attacks Maj-Gen Smith-Dorien at Chrissiesmeer FPp32

8 Feb

De Wet invades Cape TP 493 (FP 30 suggests 10 Feb) (Kitchener: ‘On 11th it became evident the enemy had succeeded in crossing into the Colony’ rep 8th Mar – see Times


Kitchener makes peace overture to Botha via his wife.

28 Feb

De Wet returns to OFS FPp30

28 Feb

Kitchener and Botha meet in Middelburg to discuss peace. FPp32 Milner opposed to peace TP 491

28 Feb

Milner leaves Cape Town, transferring his office to the Tvl (Jhb?)

7 March

Second meeting of Botha and Kitchener  - 10 pt plan discussed TP 491


Kitchener proposes policy of progressively harsher measures to London.

16 Mar

Botha rejects 10pt plan – Boers unwilling to concede independence.

8 Apr

Plumer occupies Pietersberg. CW p 197


Many Zulus raid E Tvl under Bottomley’s scheme. See 3 Feb. Warwick p88

8 May

Milner and Emily Hobhouse sail to London on same ship ‘Saxon’

10 May

Brief meeting of Transvaal leadership south of Ermelo. Decide to ask British for permission to send an emissary to Kruger or an armistice to decide policy  – Kitchener refused both. Steyn furious with Tvl. RK p431

About 23 May

Plumer and Rimington flatten the village of Bethal. CW p 202

24 May

Milner and Hobhouse arrive in Southampton

29 May

At Vlakfontein south of Magaliesberg, Kemp fires veld and attacks, firing from saddle,  exacting 166 caualties RK p433, see also ref in BN p205

12 June

Muller with 100-130 burghers routs 350 Victorians at Wilmansrust on Middleburg Ermelo road RK p 435, CW p205, BV p378

20 Jun

Boer leaders, demoralised by scorched earth and hardship of commandos and families, meet at Waterval nr Standerton. Resolve nevertheless to continue war. FPp32

Late Jun

Hobhouse at Balliol

6 July 1901

Scheepers torches buildings in Murraysburg

11 Jul

Steyn narrowly escapes capture at Reitz by riding away alone in his nightshirt. His whole staff, all papers and money captured by Broadwood. RK p437 who dates this 10 July.

28 Jul

Gen Elliot devastates western Free State in a great drive from the Vaal to the Modder river – until 10 Aug.  CW p 216

7 Aug

Kitchener threatens to deport leaders if they do not surrender by 15 Sept –ignored by Boers FPp32

14 Aug 1901

Kritzinger defeated by French at Ruiterskraal near Venterstad


Ladies Committee under Millicent Fawcett arrives in South Africa to visit camps

3 Sep

Smuts enters Cape Colony RK p440

5 Sept 1901

Cmdt Lötter and commando captured at Paardefontein, Cradock district

17 Sep

Capt Gough loses 285 MI and 2 guns to Botha at Blood River Poort

25 Sep

Severe fight at Mt Itala betw Botha’s men and British. Both sides lose heavily and both withdraw. RK p447 Botha also repulsed at Fort Prospect. RK 448

30 Sep

Kekewich’s camp on Rustenberg-Zeerust road attacked by De la Rey – 200 British killed or wounded, 60 Boers. RK p452.


Botha’s repeated attempts to invade Natal fail FP p 34 RK p448. However huge troop concentrations sent to capture him leave other areas vulnerable.

11 Oct 1901

Scheepers captured (ill) at Kopjeskraal

12 Oct 1901

Lötter executed at Middelburg, Cape

24 Oct

‘Severe fight’ at Groot Marico nr Zeerust between Van Donop’s column and Delarey and Kemp (Kitcherer, 28 Oct – see Times)

30 Oct

Botha defeats Benson’s column in E Tvl. Benson killed. FP p 34, RK 449 Of 178 with Benson in rearguard, 161 dead or wounded. Total British casualties 358. Boers lose 100 [CW dates this just after 25th Oct]


White mortality in the concentration camps peaks at 344 per k per yr


New great drive in E Tvl to capture Botha – 15, 000 in 6 cols under Maj-Gen Bruce Hamilton. Get 200 prisoners, much cattle and 1 gun.

20 Dec 1901

Johannes Rossouw Conradie captured at Wellwood nr Graaf Reinet (TDS, Smuts p128)

25 Dec

De Wet attacks British column on the crest of Groenkop on Tweefontein, betw Bethlehem and Harrismith FP p 33  348 Yeomanry and 25 natives killed or captured and the camp stripped RK p468


Black mortality in the camps peaks at 380 per k per yr


Fawcett Committee reports


Mines produce 53,000 ounces of gold.








‘New model drives’ introduced. RK Applied in wave after wave.

17 Jan 1902

JR Conradie tried at Graaf Reinet (docs). Scheepers sentenced there.

18 Jan 1902

Cmdt Scheepers executed at Graaf Reinet (TDS Scheepers)

25 Jan

Dutch offer to mediate. (check date)

25 Jan 1902

Ben Viljoen captured in an ambush nr Lydenburg BV p454

24 Feb

De Wet and Steyn nearly captured at Langverwacht CWp256

25 Feb

Col Andersen defeated at Yzerspruit in W. Tvl by De la Rey. FP p 35

27 Feb

OFS 800 Boers with huge herd of cattle, sheep, horses captured. CW 256, Meyer according to BN 206

5 March

Gen Bruce Hamilton arrives at Vryheid with a large force. Invites Zulus to send 250 men to assist him to clear Boers in the area. Many more Zulus arrive in response and participate in operations but month-long effort yields little result.  Prob Warwick

7 Mar

De la Rey defeats and captures Methuen at Tweebosch. FP p35

9 Apr

Boer leaders meet under British protection at Klerksdorp to discuss peace.

11 Apr

Boer leaders go to Pretoria to meet Kitchener

11 Apr

Boers lose at Roodewal Gen Kemp vs Grenfell, Kekewich, and Van Donop FP p 35

12 Apr

Kitchener meets Boer leaders in Pretoria. Boer proposals rejected.


Following tensions arising from Gen Hamilton’s operations, Boers raid and raze homestead of Chief of the Qulusi clan, Sikhobobo.

5 May

300 Qulusi impi attack Boer encampment at Holkrans, killing 56 of 70 Boers and suffering 52 deaths and 48 wounded.

15-17 May

60 Boer delegates meet at Vereeniging.

19 May

Boer proposals submitted to Kitchener & Milner – again rejected

21 May

New proposals drafted by Milner, Smuts and Herzog submitted to British Government.

29 May

Boer delegates meet again at Vereeniging

31st May 1902

Proposals accepted. Peace Treaty signed at Pretoria. War ends after 2 years and 8 months.

Late 1902

Royal Commission visits St Helena and grants lesser sentences to convicts

22 Dec 1902

Last ‘convicts’ leave St Helena bound for Durban or Cape Town.









6 Jan 1903

Conradie and others committed to Tokai prison (arrived on HMS Plessey)

21 Jan 1903

Last convicts but one (injured) leave Bermuda.

22 Mar 1903

Cape Colonial Parliament grants a general amnesty to all Cape rebels still in custody. TDS ‘Lotter’ p66. Conradie released on 26 Mar (Tokai records).


Milner resigns as Governor and High Commissioner


Transvaal becomes self-governing


Louis Botha elected first Transvaal Prime Minister


Orange River Colony becomes self-governing



27 Nov 1907

Abraham Fischer elected first Prime Minister of the Orange River Colony



27 Oct 1926

Emily Hobhouse dies. Her ashes are placed in the Vroue Monument in Bloemfontein.

3 Aug 1928

Johannes Conradie dies and is buried at Hopetown. Age 47









© Robert Eales

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