BOER WAR. Substantial series of letters and letter-journals by William Anderson, written during the Second Boer War, including a long account of the siege of Ladysmith; together with a photograph album
Lot 6
BOER WAR. Substantial series of letters and letter-journals by William Anderson, written during the Second Boer War, including a long account of the siege of Ladysmith; together with a photograph album
Sold for £1,875 (US$ 3,197) inc. premium
Auction Details
BOER WAR. Substantial series of letters and letter-journals by William Anderson, written during the Second Boer War, including a long account of the siege of Ladysmith; together with a photograph album BOER WAR. Substantial series of letters and letter-journals by William Anderson, written during the Second Boer War, including a long account of the siege of Ladysmith; together with a photograph album
Lot Details
BOER WAR
Substantial series of letters and letter-journals by William Anderson, to his mother and family in Scotland, written during the Second Boer War, including a long account of the siege of Ladysmith; together with a photograph album, the letters and journal comprising some hundred of pages, some out of order and possibly incomplete, 8vo, 1899-1900

Footnotes

  • The author, William Anderson, can be identified as a senior NCO serving in the 2nd Battalion, Gordon Highlanders, enlisting on 5 July 1869 (see the note: "31 years today since I Enlisted"). A good many of these letters, some written in indelible pencil and folded for delivery, appear to be the originals, written in the field; while others appear to be contemporary transcripts no doubt made by members of the family. Whatever the exact status of the manuscript, and its somewhat disordered state, it nevertheless provides a vivid account of the author's experiences, especially during the siege of Ladysmith itself. To take a typical entry: "28th Jany Sunday [1900]/ Another Sunday in this wretched place, last Sunday I wrote that we were all very sure of being relieved before this one, but here we are things nor further forward than they were two months ago. It was published in Orders today that Buller's troops had taken the Boer position during the day of the 24th, but that the Boers had rushed it at night again and retaken it, and our losses were estimated at 500 killed and wounded. From the scant news we have got we have no idea how the Boers were allowed to take the place but I should not be surprised, if it is not another blunder. The troops were likely fighting all day to get the hill, and then when night came on they[y] perhaps took things easy ... We had another terrible thunder storm last night. I had to hold on to my tent to keep it up, and the rain came down in torrents. A great many of the men's tents were blown down. 29th Jany/ We heard 2 or 3 guns down south this morning, but we have no idea what Buller is going to do again... Long Tom fired 10 shell today into town. 30th Jany/ A wet morning so everything is quiet, as we don't fight on wet days and Sundays in this part of the world. Today we enter on another phase of the siege, we are put on hard biscuits instead of bread, and there is no more food for the Cavalry horses, they have been turned out to graze and pick up their own food... It as pityful to see the Cavalry horses galloping about they did not know where to go. We have heard no news as yet as to what Buller intends to do, but the rumour is camp is that it will be about 6 weeks before we are relieved, if we can hold out that time...".

    The photograph album contains some fifty snapshots taken during the later stages of the campaign, featuring inter alia the Gordon Highlanders and Boer prisoners. The upper cover is inscribed: "Snap shots taken during South African Wars and in Natal India and Egypt/ Wm. A.". They match Anderson's narrative in being both unforced and unusually evocative of time and place. See illustration overleaf.
Activities
Auction information

This auction is now finished. If you are interested in consigning in future auctions, please contact the specialist department. If you have queries about lots purchased in this auction, please contact customer services.

Buyers' Obligations

ALL BIDDERS MUST AGREE THAT THEY HAVE READ AND UNDERSTOOD BONHAMS' CONDITIONS OF SALE AND AGREE TO BE BOUND BY THEM, AND AGREE TO PAY THE BUYER'S PREMIUM AND ANY OTHER CHARGES MENTIONED IN THE NOTICE TO BIDDERS. THIS AFFECTS THE BIDDERS LEGAL RIGHTS.

If you have any complaints or questions about the Conditions of Sale, please contact your nearest customer services team.

Buyers' Premium and Charges

For all Sales categories excluding Wine, Coins & Medals and Motor Cars and Motorcycles:

Buyer's Premium Rates
25% on the first £50,000 of the Hammer Price
20% from £50,001 to £1,000,000 the Hammer Price
12% from £1,000,001 of the Hammer Price

VAT at the current rate of 20% will be added to the Buyer's Premium and charges excluding Artists Resale Right.

Payment Notices

Payment in advance: by cash, check with banker's card, credit card, bank draft or traveler's cheque.

Payment at collection: by credit or debit card.

Credit card charges: a surcharge of 2% is applicable when using Mastercard, Visa and overseas debit cards.

Shipping Notices

For information and estimates on domestic and international shipping as well as export licenses please contact Bonhams Shipping Department.

Contacts
  1. Simon Roberts
    Specialist - Books, Maps, Manuscripts and Historical Photographs
    Bonhams
    Work
    Montpelier Street
    London, United Kingdom SW7 1HH
    Work +44 20 7393 3828
    FaxFax: +44 20 7393 3879
Similar items
LAWRENCE, NEWCOMBE and THE ARAB REVOLT Original field books and other papers kept by Lieutenant-Colonel Stewart Francis Newcombe during operations to destroy the Hejaz Railway in 1917, mostly July 1917 LAWRENCE (T.E.) Seven Pillars of Wisdom, a triumph, SUBSCRIBERS' EDITION, ONE OF 170 COMPLETE COPIES, S.F. NEWCOMBE'S COPY, [Privately Printed] for the Author by Manning Pike and H. J. Hodgson, 1926 Pair to Surgeon A.F.Mackay, Royal Navy, late City Imperial Volunteers, Frans David Oerder (Dutch, 1867-1944), circa 1902 Apies River Solomon J. Solomon (British, 1860-1927) Portrait of Mrs Patrick Campbell as Paula Tanqueray 1963 Fiat 1600S O.S.C.A. Fissore Coupé  Chassis no. 118SA 023930 Engine no. 118A.000