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1st Dumbarton Rifle Volunteers - Second Active Service Coy. Argyll & Suth. H. 7 months 2 weeks ago #67827

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On Friday last the men of the 1st D.R.V., who had been chosen to proceed to South Africa as member of the second active service company of volunteers attached to the Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders, the territorial regiment, paraded in the Drill Hall, Dumbarton, preliminary to leaving the town for Stirling Castle, where they are to be stationed for some weeks' training. The Dumbartonshire contingent numbered twenty-four, and were drawn from eight companies of the regiment. The names of the men are as follows, viz.: -
Private Keith, L (Yoker) Company.
Private J. A. MacDonald, H (Maryhill) Company.
Private H. Macfarlane, K (Kirkintilloch) Company.
Private W. M'Aulay (stretcher-bearer), G (Clydebank) Company.
Lance-Corporal A. B. Rankin, C (Dumbarton) Company.
Private A. Smith, H (Maryhill) Company.
Private J. Rae, G (Clydebank) Company.
Private J. Hayburn, C (Dumbarton) Company.
Private D. Phillips, C (Dumbarton) Company.
Private J. Welsh, E (Jamestown) Company.
Lance-Corporal J. Hosie, E (Jamestown) Company.
Sergeant R. Galbraith, D (Bonhill) Company.
Private S. Eval, L (Yoker) Company.
Private T. M. Stevenson (stretcher-bearer), G (Clydebank) Company.
Private J. Paxton, H (Maryhill) Company.
Private J. Brown, E (Jamestown) Company.
Private W. Melville, D (Bonhill) Company.
Private G. Crawford, E (Jamestown) Company.
Private P. M'Arthur, E (Jamestown) Company.
Sergeant D. Hair, L (Yoker) Company.
Bugler H. Macfarlane, H (Maryhill) Company.
Bugler H. Chalmers, C (Dumbarton) Company.
Private A. Campbell, B (Cardross) Company.
Private W. J. Miller, E (Jamestown) Company.

The men were met at the Drill Hall by Lieutenant-Colonel A. Denny, Captain and Adjutant Williams, and a number of other officers. Unlike the parade of the first active service company, now in South Africa, there was no swearing-in ceremony on this occasion. Most of the men had "taken the shilling" in January of last year. A spectator of the proceedings was Private Duncan, of C (Dumbarton) Company, who was a member of the first active service company. Private Duncan proceeded to South Africa, but after seeing some service was invalided home. The men having "fallen in," they were marched outside the Drill Hall, where they were photographed. Thereafter they marched to the Model Hall of the Leven Shipyard, where they were entertained to luncheon. Colonel A. Denny presided, and the other officers present were - Colonel Main, Captains Denny, Cockburn, Wedgwood, Rorke, and Leith; Lieutenants M'Leod, Davidson, M'Bride and Roxburgh; and Chaplains Alpine and Simpson of the 1st D.R.V.; and Captain Rogerson and Lieut. M'Millan of the local Artillery Volunteers. There were also present Messrs Peter Denny, John Ward, Henry Brock, A. M'A. Kennedy, and John Rankin. Apologies for absence were read from Provost MacFarlan and the Magistrates and Town Clerk. The Provost, who had an important business engagement, wrote saying it was a disappointment to him not to be able to be present, as he was, and always had been, a warm friend of the Volunteers. Major Henry Brock, who was in London, telegraphed: - "Much regret can't come to-morrow to join in good-bye to company." After lunch, the toast of "His Majesty the King," was given from the chair.

The Chairman then, in the course of a short address, said he, and he was sure they also, regretted very much the absence of Colonel J. M. Denny, the officer commanding the 1st D.R.V., who, on doctor's orders, was recuperating his health. When, however, the Colonel knew they were leaving that day, he wired him as follows: - "Tell my boys how deeply I regret my absence. Wish them every luck. I know they, like the others, will do our regiment credit." (Loud applause.) Continuing, the Chairman said they had volunteered for active service, and were now members of that famous regiment, the Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders. (Applause.) While that was true, no less were they members of the 1st D.R.V., and they would look forward to seeing them doing their duty, as he knew they would do it, in South Africa, and coming back at a very early date. Last year, when they sent out their first active service company, none of them had any idea that the war would be so prolonged, but there they were, and they were asked to send out a second contingent, and for that second contingent no less than forty-five volunteered, out of which they had been chosen. (Applause.) They heard a great deal of this war, and the skill, the natural skill, of their country's enemies. No doubt they were skilful, no doubt we were handicapped by the lack of intimate knowledge they had; no doubt we were handicapped by the fact that, at least in Cape Colony, probably one half of the people were more friendly to them than they were to us; but he had not the slightest doubt that we would come, that in fact we were coming out at the large end of the horn. (Applause.) If we were being chased instead of chasing as we were, we without any doubt would get quite as much credit as De Wet, Botha, or the others. They must remember that, in the earlier stages of the war, when we were in and they were out, they could not possibly take us, but it was quite the reverse when they were in and we were out. So he trusted at a very early date to see them back. He simply expressed the wish of all volunteers and friends when he said he wished good luck to them, safe journey out, good warm time when at it, and a safe journey home. (Loud applause.)

The proceedings at the luncheon then terminated, and the company, headed by the regimental band, under Bandmaster Morrison, proceeded to march to the station. All along the route the streets were thronged with the townspeople, who accorded the soldiers a most enthusiastic send-off. Leaving the yard gates the Band struck up the stirring strains of "Britannia, the Pride of the Ocean," and the men stepped briskly forward. With a good-natured rush, however, the crowd swept in among the ranks and one after another the red-coats were hoisted shoulder high, while some of their rifles and kit bags were taken possession of and carried for them. As the station was neared the cheering grew louder, and the men were carried inside the gates amid a cheery and spontaneous demonstration of popular favour. Inside the station they had not long to wait, as in a few minutes their train steamed in. As they entered their reserved carriages the band played the Farewell March into which are introduced the strains of the "British Grenadiers," "The Girl I left behind me," and "Auld Lang Syne," and it was to the old, familiar cadences of the latter that the train steamed away, amid a wealth of waving hats, caps and handkerchiefs and continuous cheering.

Last Friday forenoon, the Vale of Leven contingent of the 1st D.R.V., who have volunteered for the front, left Alexandria Station, and had a good send-off. Jamestown E Company have contributed six men, namely, Lance-Corporal J. Hosie, Privates J. Brown, G. Crawford, P. M'Arthur, W. J. Miller, and J. Welsh. These under command of Captain Leith of E Company, and headed by a piper, marched from Jamestown to Alexandria via Bonhill, followed by a big crowd of friends. At Alexandria the Jamestown squad were joined by Sergeant Robert Galbraith and Pte. Walter Melvin of D (Bonhill) Company. The contingent proceeded to Dumbarton to join the other volunteers from the other companies.

The Lennox Herald, Saturday 16th February 1901

PRESENTATION TO PRIVATE A. CAMPBELL. - On Thursday evening, in Geilston Hall, a large number of the people of Cardross gathered to do honour to Private A. Campbell, who is a member of the second contingent of Volunteers for active service in South Africa. Major W. B. Thomson occupied the chair, and amongst others on the platform were Mrs and Miss Thomson, Mrs Murray, Moorepark; Captain Duncan, officer commanding B (Cardross) Coy., 1st D.R.V.; Lieut. Roxburgh, Captain M'Farlane, Helensburgh; Rev. Mr Maxwell, and Mr Peter M'Killop. During the course of the evening the Chairman called on Capt. Duncan, who in appropriate terms, on behalf of the members of B Company, presented Private Campbell with a handsome gold badge, suitably inscribed, and a valuable pocket-knife. Mrs Murray, on behalf of the natives of Cardross, presented Private Campbell with a purse of sovereigns, whilst Mr Cowie, in name of the members of the Literary Society, presented him with a volume of Burns' poems. The various presentations were made amid great cheering and enthusiasm. Private Campbell, in reply, tendered them all his heartfelt thanks, and referred to the many kindnesses which had been shown his comrades and himself since they enlisted under the noble colours of the Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders. He was quite sure they would all do their very best to follow in the footsteps of the first active service company. (Applause.) The remainder of the evening was spent in song, several local ladies and gentlemen sustaining an excellent programme. Miss Henderson very capably presided at the piano. After the meeting Private Campbell was carried shoulder high through the village to his home, the Helensburgh Instrumental Band playing selections en route. Altogether the proceedings were of a very enthusiastic character.

Helensburgh and Gareloch Times, Wednesday 27th February 1901

Lieutenant-Colonel A. Denny, presently in command of the 1st Dumbartonshire Rifle Volunteers, has received the following letter from the county men in the above company, viz.: -
Quagga Poort,
26th April, 1901.
Dear Sir, - I write you these few lines to let you know that the boys are in good health and spirits, although the latter is conspicuous by the absence in this part of the country; food fair. Some of the boys would not complain if they had the 1st D.R.V.'s rations for camp.

The life is, so far, beyond our expectations, as we have done very little roughing. We had a splendid journey up country, although fed on the inevitable biscuits and bully. We had the finest Company aboard ship for anything - rough or smooth - as we swept the boards at the sports and tug-of-war. We have been in the three capitals of the three Colonies, and we are now on outpost duty and train escorts every other day; the boys being fired on at Marm-Baths, but the Boers scattered on the approach of the train.

This is a splendid little station that we are at here, as we have the place to ourselves being situated about seven miles south-west of Pretoria, according to our compasses, which we have found to be correct on more than one occasion, when a dispute arose, and for which we have to thank you; also for the air pillows, as no more useful article is to be found in the country, some of the boys being offered tempting prices. As regards the filters, we have never been on the trek yet to use them very much, although to any water that is suspicious we apply the filter. The most of us have lost our D.R.V. badges, owing to their rarity in this country. I am sorry to say that Pte. W. Melville is again confined to hospital, through the injuries received to his knee in the collision at Peterborough.

The boys hope the Colonel is himself again, to whom they send their regards, not forgetting yourself, and Major Brock and Adjutant Williams. - I remain, yours (on behalf of the D.R.V. Second Section),
2nd V.A.S.C., A. & S. Highlanders.

The Lennox Herald, Saturday 1st June 1901
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