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TOPIC: The disabled volunteer, Brabant's Horse

The disabled volunteer, Brabant's Horse 3 months 2 weeks ago #64002

  • BereniceUK
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"An interesting story of a New Zealand Volunteer for South Africa has come to us (says the "Daily News") from Somersetshire, where the Volunteer has family connections. When the call for Volunteers was made, he was employed in a New Zealand store, and applied for enrolment in the third contingent. He spent ten days in the Rough Riders' camp, passed the doctors' and the riding and shooting tests, was sworn in, and measured for a uniform. At nearly the last moment, however, a rejected applicant betrayed a secret disqualification - the Volunteer had a glass eye. The doctor could not, or would not, see that the eye was artificial, but on a direct question the truth was confessed, and the candidate was rejected. On the fifth contingent being formed, he again sought admission, but being recognised by the Colonel he was refused. He was determined, however, to go to the front, and with a companion worked his passage on the steamer Fernfield to East London. Here the two men, with twenty other New Zealanders who had gone over in the trooper in charge of houses, joined Brabant's Horse, and within a few days they were drilling at Bloemfontein, and soon after started for the front. The man with the glass eye has since been in a number of engagements, and has been down with pneumonia and pleurisy. For his gallantry in bringing in a wounded soldier, he has been promoted; and up to the present neither General Brabant nor any of his officers appear to have discovered that he has any disability for campaigning."

The Bath Chronicle, Thursday 31st January 1901
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The disabled volunteer, Brabant's Horse 3 months 2 weeks ago #64043

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That is an amazing story.

What a shame he is not identified.
Dr David Biggins

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