Struben's Scouts were a Natal unit and were commanded by Lt Robert Henry Struben.
Raised in 1900, the Scouts were attached to 11 Division of the British Army. The Scouts operated in the Transvaal, including actions near Johannesburg and Diamond Hill. Operations in the Transvaal, east of Pretoria, including action at Belfast. Operations in Cape Colony and Orange River Colony.
Typically they received QSA (5) CC OFS Joh DH Belf.
The unit was linked to William Charles Marinus Struben. CMG (1900); born 12th May, 1856; son of Captain Struben, of Pretoria; married 1882, Helen, daughter of A K Murray. Served in Zulu War (1879-1880), Boer War (1880-1881), South Africa (dispatches for the Natal Guides; medal). Robert Henry Struben was the son of Mr Henry Struben who was involved in the discovery of the Witwatersrand Goldfield in 1884.
In Buller's farewell speech, he said:
"Some said I had no intelligence department. I believe I had a remarkably good one, and I am thankful to the man who began it—the Hon. T. K. Murray, who came forward and started it; and he was followed by Mr. Struben, the Allison, Whipp, and Henderson families, all local men. And when the history of the war comes to be written it will be found that no General received better information than I did, and I got it from the colonists of the districts I passed through. I am grateful to be allowed to speak in my own defence. No matter what English papers or German critics say, the people who live on the spot know best, and the people of Natal agree with me, that if General Hildyard and his men had not been in Estcourt on the 22nd November, the Boers would have taken Marilzburg. It would have been a terrible calamity, and if I had been sitting still in Capetown, though I would not have cared a sixpence for the critics, I would have felt thoroughly ashamed of myself."
For a Natal unit, there is very little about them in the Natal Volunteer Record.
Medal roll WO100/276p187-188 refers.
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