In his despatch of 2nd April 1901 Lord Roberts says: "To do justice to the excellent work done by the Army Service Corps during the war, and to give lengthy details of the magnitude of the task assigned to this department, are beyond the limits of a paragraph in a despatch.  It is, however, estimated that since the war began, and up to the 30th October 1900, the approximate number of rations issued to the army operating from the Cape Colony north of the Orange River has been:

  Nr of rations Approx tonnage
Soldiers and natives 45,000,000 90,000
Animals 20,000,000 100,000


The strength has been approximately-

  Nr Req'd daily tons
Soldiers and natives 179,000 358
Animals 93,000 465

 

Lord Roberts points out the difficulty of getting up supplies by trains, and says, "Again the supply of the army after leaving Bloemfontein was a matter of very grave anxiety, and it was only by the devotion and zeal of the Army Service Corps officers that the supplies were brought from the rail-head to the troops in sufficient time to supply their daily wants".  After mentioning the fact that until September 1900 the army was dependent on 95 old engines, while the Orange River Colony and Transvaal found in peacetime 250 engines were necessary for their daily use, Lord Roberts says: "In the above I have only referred to the work done in supplying the troops based on the Cape Colony.  The Natal Army has reason also to be entirely satisfied with the manner in which it has been supplied, and the occasions have been rare when any portion of this army have had anything but full rations.  These services reflect the greatest credit on Colonel W Richardson, CB, and Colonel E W D Ward, CB, directors of supplies, and the Army Service Corps serving under them". 

General Buller in his final despatch, under "Supply", speaking of Colonel Morgan, ASC, says: "Has been throughout in charge of the supply of the Natal Field Force.  In addition to undertaking the extremely onerous duties of supply, he also charged himself with the supervision of the Natal Field Force canteen, an institution which proved the greatest possible boon to all officers and men, and which, under his able direction, supplied the best possible goods at the lowest possible rates.  Colonel Morgan's arrangements for it were admirable, and will, I hope, be made a model for use on any future occasion.  The advantages to the soldier of being able to spend his money regularly on luxuries, which afford him a change from his daily rations, however good that ration may be, are indescribable".  Every one who had friends in the Natal Field Force has heard the praises of Colonel Morgan's canteen.

An admirable account of the work of the Army Service Corps, instructive alike to soldiers or civilians, is found in Sir Wodehouse Richardson's ' With the Army Service Corps in South Africa.' London, 1903.

If any lesson is to be learnt by the Army Service Corps, it is that they must use all legitimate influence to see that the escorting of convoys be not considered a matter of form.  It is just possible that the mobility of the army and its power for striking hard and fast were seriously diminished by the loss of the convoy on 13th February 1900; indeed this is borne out by many witnesses before the War Commission.  Other convoys were lost, but this was an example of the inadequacy of an escort having serious results.  Nothing seems to encourage an enemy more than the knowledge of the fact that he has stolen his opponent's dinners.  Of course the difficulty of conveying and guarding supplies by waggon to outlying towns and posts was inconceivably great, and indeed it was found necessary to evacuate many towns because the convoys to them could not be protected.  In what is absolutely their own department the Corps seem to have had little to learn, even at the commencement of the campaign.

In addition to honours conferred on Colonel Richardson, Colonel Ward, and the other principal officers, the mentions gained by the Corps in the chief despatches are as follows:—

By Sir George White— Despatch of 2nd December 1899; 1 officer and 1 NCO and men.  Despatch of 23rd March 1900; 4 officers and 15 NCOs and men.

In speaking of Colonel Ward Sir George White said: "As the siege continued and the supply difficulties constantly increased, Colonel Ward's cheerful ingenuity met every difficulty with ever fresh expedients.  He is unquestionably the very best supply officer I have ever met, and to his resource, foresight, and inventiveness the successful defence of Ladysmith for so long a period is very largely due". 

  Officers NCOs and men
General Buller - 30 March 1900 31 18
General Buller - Final Despatch 30th March 1900 26 35
Lord Roberts - 31st March 1900 8 2
Lord Roberts - Final Despatch 55 78
Lord Kitchener - Various despatches 16 10
Lord Kitchener - Final Despatch 24 46

 

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(661 Records)

 Surname   Forename   No   Rank   Notes 
AbbeyW13661DriverDemise: Died of disease 20 Apr 1901
Place: Kroonstad
Source: In Memoriam by S Watt
AbbottAugustus Wathen John FrederickLieutenantBorn November 16, 1873, and joined the Army Service Corps in 1901. He served in the Boer War in 1899-1900 (QSA with three clasps).
AldridgeA12671Sergeant33rd
Demise: Died of disease 22 Oct 1901
Place: Bloemfontein
Source: In Memoriam by S Watt
AldworthE J14095DrQSA (4)
Source: List of QSAs with the clasp Elandslaagte
AllenH14515Driver9th
Demise: Killed accidentally 02 Jan 1901
Place: Cape Town, Maitland
Source: In Memoriam by S Watt
AllnuttA W6399Colour Sergeant MajorDemise: Died 28 Jun 1902
Place: De Aar
Source: In Memoriam by S Watt
AndersonC / A5990Private38th
Demise: Died of disease 27 Mar 1900
Place: De Aar
Source: In Memoriam by S Watt
AndersonJohnLieutenant and QMANDERSON, JOHN, Lieutenant, was born in Morayshire, 17 October 1852, son of John and Annie Andlerson, of Forres, Scotland.  He was educated at Public School, Rafford, Forres.  He served in the Royal Scots Greys for 13½ years: exchanged to Army Service Corps 29 August 1896, as Quartermaster, and served with it for 20 years.  He served in the Matabele Rebellion, 1896, as Assistant Supply Officer (Medal); was Assistant Controller, BSA Company, 1896-1900.  He served in the South African War, 1899-1902, employed as Supply Officer, Rhodesian Regiment October 1899 to May 1900; with the Rhodesian Field Force, May to October 1900, and with the South African Constabulary, October 1900 to May 1902; was present in operations in the Transvaal, 1900-2.  He was mentioned in Despatches [London Gazette, 10 September 1901], received the Queen's Medal and four clasps; the King's Medal and two clasps, and was created a Companion of the Distinguished Service Order [London Gazette, 26 June, 1902]: "John Anderson, Honorary Lieutenant and Quartermaster, Army Service Corps.  In recognition of services during the operations in South Africa".  The DSO was presented by General Lyttelton 25 March 1903.  He was DAAG, General Carrington's Rhodesian Field Force, May to October 1900; joined the South African Constabulary 23 October 1900, as Controller, with rank of Lieutenant Colonel.  Lieutenant Colonel Anderson retired from the Army in 1905, and in 1906 from his appointment as Controller, South African Constabulary.  Lieutenant Colonel Anderson married, 19 August 1878, at Dundalk, Philippa Charlotte Taylor, daughter of Henry Taylor, of Portsmouth. Their children were: John, born in 1882; William, born in 1885 (Lieutenant, 6th South African Infantry; killed in action 10 August 1916, in German East Africa); Hannah and Violet.
Source: DSO recipients (VC and DSO Book)
AndersonNelson GrahamLieutenantANDERSON, NELSON GRAHAM, Lieutenant, was born 14 September 1875, youngest son of Major General R P Anderson.  He entered the Army, from the Militia, as a Second Lieutenant in the Royal Sussex Regiment 6 June, 1896.  He was transferred to the Army Service Corps 2 January 1899; became Lieutenant 20 September 1900, and Captain 1 January 1901.  He served in the South African War from 1899 to 1902, and was present at the Relief of Ladysmith, including operations on Tugela Heights (14 to 27 February); operations in the Transvaal, west of Pretoria, July to 29 November 1900; operations in Cape Colony, north of Orange River; operations in the Transvaal 30 November 1900 to March 1902; operations in Cape Colony, March to 31 May 1902; operations in Orange River Colony, March, 1902.  He was mentioned in Despatches [London Gazette, 8 February 1901]; received the Queen's Medal with five clasps, the King's Medal with two clasps, and was created a Companion of the Distinguished Service Order [London Gazette, 27 September 1901]: "Nelson Graham Anderson, Lieutenant, Army Service Corps.  In recognition of services during the operations in South Africa".  The Insignia were sent to the GOC-in-Chief in South Africa 2 March, 1902; invested by the King 18 December 1902.  He again saw active service on the North-West Frontier of India in the Zakka Khel Expedition, 1908 (Medal and clasp), and was specially employed in Somaliland 16 December 1908 to 13 January 1910; as Assistant Director of Supplies and Transport, receiving mention in Despatches [London Gazette, 17 June, 1910], and the Medal and clasp for the campaign in Somaliland, 1908 to 1910.  He was promoted Major 23 October 1912, and was employed from 10 January 1913, until the outbreak of the European War, as DAQMG, 5th Division, Irish Command.  In the Great War he served as DAA and QMG, 5th Division, BEF, 5 to 26 August 1914; AA and QMG, 5th Division, 27 August 1914, to 13 July 1915; was promoted Brevet Lieutenant-Colonel 18 February 1915; AQMG, 7th Army Corps, 14 July 1915, to 4 August 1916; DA and QMG, 1st Army Corps (Temporary Brigadier General) 5 August 1916 to 28 February 1919.  He became Brevet Lieutenant Colonel 18 February 1915; Lieutenant Colonel 16 April, 1917; Brevet Colonel 1 January 1917.  He was mentioned in Despatches six times; created a CMG in 1916 and a CB in 1918.  Brigadier General Anderson married, in 1914, Fanny, youngest daughter of  William Scott, of Hampden House, Ibrox, and widow of H Herbert Harley.
Source: DSO recipients (VC and DSO Book)
AnsellA8143Corporal WheelerDemise: Died of disease 30 Jan 1902
Place: Kroonstad
Source: In Memoriam by S Watt
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