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The Refights
The Re-fight of Magersfontein, 11 December 1999

Coming soon to this URL...

"Schiet, kerels, schiet!" was the words used by General Cronje when he and his party of six adjudants encountered a party of nearly 100 men of the Highland Brigade, led by Lieutenant Wilson, of the Seaforths, and Sergeant Frazer, of the Black Watch, who was rapidly climbing up the reverse of the hill to take the Boers in the rear from the crest. Beside Cronje and his adjudants there was not a soul on that side of Magersfontein Hill. So sudden and fierce was the fire of these seven rifles that the assaulting force, ignorant of the great chance within its reach, checked, and began replying to the fire. But this made the difference, and this mere chance was now destined to turn the scale against the Highlanders.

Such are the fortunes of war. The battle of Magersfontein, 11 December 1899, resulted in a major reverse of the British force dispatched to relieve Kimberley, costing them some 971 casualties, and leading to a lot of controversy.

Some of this controversy are to be repeated, as the British are given another chance at defeating the Boers at Magersfontein... Now, exactly a century later, 11 December 1999, and at Magersfontein, history are set to be changed, when members of the Peninsula Wargames Group stage a refight between Boer and Brit, in the form of a miniature scale wargame. The opening pieces and moves are set, the rest, including the result, open to chance, and the skill and daring of the assuming 'Generals'.

Will Magersfontein be yet another set-back for the British? Will the Boers overcome the odds once again and stop the British advance in its tracks?

Only time will tell...at least until after the refight of the battle of Magersfontein!

In the meantime, some pictures of the re-fight:

The British columns advancing towards Magersfontein in the distance, 02h00.

The Boers awaiting the British attack in their trenches at the foot of Magersfontein Hill.

The right wing of the Boers in their trenches.

The left wing of the Boer defences.

The British Columns get lost in the dark.

Some British battalions find each other in the dark and form a continuous column.

The British column unknowingly exposing their flanks to the Boers defences.

The first murderous volley from the Boer defences hitting the exposed British flank.

The Boer right wing opening fire.

The Higlanders forming up in the dead ground some 800 yards from the trenches.

An actual picture of the view from Magersfontein Hill facing south-east showing the dust storm that interrupted the game.
Full account to follow soon....


For more information contact Johan Schoeman at johan@veridical.co.za, Cell: 072 409 6271

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