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TOPIC: Cairncross, Charles. Lt

Cairncross, Charles. Lt 5 years 2 months ago #28537

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Served: Staats Artillerie.
Dr David Biggins

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Cairncross, Charles. Lt 1 month 2 weeks ago #69508

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This taken from Cairncross family website;
"One of the medals in the group is the Anglo-Boere Ooriog, 1899-1902, awarded to those who fought in the Boer forces. This medal is to Charles Cairncross, a lieutenant in the Johannesburg Staatsartilerie, and then 53 years of age. He was captured by the British in 1900. Among the British forces was his son Archibald, serving with the British South African Police. Father and son actually met on the battlefield. This Archibald had other noteworthy experiences. He was among the British troops who relieved Mafeking in May 1900, taking some Boer prisoners of war, of whom two were cousins of Archibald, William and John Cairncross, burgers of the Transvaal Republic. But the most amazing experience which befell Archibald was that within the space of half a dozen months he was personal body-guard (with others) to both the leading South African personalities of last century - President Kruger and Cecil Rhodes.
In 1895, at the age of 20, Archibald went up to Pretoria from the Cape and joined the Pretoria Staatsartillerie, being drafted shortly afterwards to the Presidents personal guard. He tells the story of falling asleep at his Post one night and being wakened by the President himself, who offered him the choice of immediate punishment or Court Martial. Archibald chose the former and the President gripped his biceps for a second with his hands; but such was the President’s strength that for several days Archibald was hardly able to use his arms. Immediately after the Jameson Raid, in January, 1896, Archibald and other recruits whose loyalty was suspect, were summarily dismissed, and he made his way to Bulawayo, arriving there just in time to enlist in the Matabeleland Mounted Police, for service against the Matabele. The war ended after Mr Rhodes had conferred with the Matabele chiefs in the Motopos; and on one occasion during the interviews Archibald was a member of Mr. Rhodes bodyguard. No other instance is known to me of anyone serving as bodyguard to both these great personalities."
"The Anglo-Boere Oorlog medal (18P91902) of Charles Cairncross, who died in 1928, was issued in 1955 -53 years after the event"

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Cairncross, Charles. Lt 1 month 2 weeks ago #69523

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Many thanks, Jon. A great addition.
Dr David Biggins

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