Cuddio Rhestr Erthyglau

19 erthygl ar y dudalen hon

I THE WAR.

THE ATTACK ON T -T i

Newyddion
Dyfynnu
Rhannu

THE ATTACK ON T -T i FULL DETAILS. i RP, Ladyssuth, January 6th. i.<e enemy to-day made a determined effort to capture two lK»itions--Caraar's Camp and Wagon l't,e lu,'ter a lofty eminence to the soatb-weet .fc,!? Possession of winch would have brought them within rifle range of 'olio town. uffi&ar e Camp was held by the 1st Battalion of the Manchester Regiment. The positiou was separated from that of the Boers by a rocky rn.vine. In the early hours of the morning, under cover of the uess, the Heidelberg commando suc- ceeded in evading our pickets, making their WILY. through the thorn-bush, and reaching the foot of the slope. At haif-past two the alarm was raised by onr sentries, but before the full extent of the danger could bo realised, the outlying sangarg had been ] rushed, and their defenders slain. j Heaving the firing, two companies of the Gordon Highlanders went to the assistance of tbe Alan- Chester Regiment. It was t3 iirst thought that the Boers were concentrating on the southern slope, where they had already secured a footing on the plateau. Here, however, their advance was checked by the steady volleys of our Infantry and the deadly fire of an automatic gun. -JJ'eVt*'entmt ^mt"rll'he went out, to see if any aid was needed by the troops stationed on the ridge near the town. He was unaware that the enemy bad aiready captured the breastworks, and called cut "Sergeant!" lie received the reply, Here I am, sir!" and then suddenly disappeared from sight. Captain Carnegie, suspecting a ruse, ordered the Gordons to fire a volley and charge. The enemy thereuppn fell back precipitately, leaving behind them the officer whom they had captured with so much presence of mind. The Lieutenant was quite unhurt. By tins time was evident that the camp was being assailud both on the left flank and on the I front. By daybreak reinforcements of the Gordon Highlanders and the Iliflo Brigade had been binrried ] up U to the fighting line. Lieut. Colonel Dick- Cunyngham, who was leading the Gordons oat. of camp, feli mortally wounded, being hit by a stray bullet whiie still close to the town. The 53rd Battery of Field Artillery, under Major Abdy, crossed the Klip River, and shelled the ridge and the reverse slope of the front position, where the enemy were lyiug among the thorn bushes. lite shrapnel, which flew over our Jlead, did terrible execution. It effectually held the Boers in check, and rendexed it impossible for them to send reinforcements to their men through the ravine. The enemy fought throughout with the most stubborn courage, being evidently determined to take the camp or die in tho attempt. Their six-inch gun on Umbulwana Mountain ani its smaller satellites, threw over one hundred shells at Major Abdv's batf.erv, and at the troons on the hill. Our men, howeyor, were not less gallant and resolved, and the enemy were pressed back step by step until, at longth, those who were left of them brokq and fled in utler disorder. A terrific storm of rain and hail, Hocompanied by peals of thunder, had burst over 'the camp during the lighting, and served to swell the streams into raging torrents. In their efforts to escape, numbers of the enemy flung themselves into the current, and were swept, av/av. The struggle in this part of the field was now at an end. The final was a terrific fusillade nIJ along the li: e, the crash of which almost drowned the incessant thunder above. Meanwhile, a more exciting contest was in pro- gress in the direction of Wagon Hill. At two o'clock a storming party furnished by the Harri- sniith commando crept slowly and cautiously aloug a donga in the valley which diyides our posts from their camp. A few well-aimed riflo shots killed our pickets. Takilig advantage of every iuoh of cover, they j then gradually reached the crest of the height. Here the Light Horse were posted, but were forced to retire before the Free Staters' advance, there being no breastworks for defence on the western shoulder of the hill. With little to impede thoir progress, the enemy came to an emplacement, wncro they surpiised the working parties of the Gordon Highlanders, Sappers, and 60th Rifles. j Lieutenant Digby Jones, R.E., collecting a hand- ful of men, made a gallant effort to hold the position; but nilmbai-p, wei-e against them, and after a stubborn resistance, they were driven back, and the enemy got possession of the summit. Even then, however, the Free Staters were afraid to venture far, or to face the heavy tHe from tne 8angar. It was hero that Lieutenant 'Mncnr.ghi.eu and thirty of the. Gordon Highlanders were taken prisoners, though not till every man of them was wounded. At five o'clock Colonel Edwards, with two a<Hat\r°oH Horse, arrived on the scene, M- St- Bacter-V K°yal Field Artillery, under »301 Blowitt, came into action, preventing the storining party being reinforced froui the Boer camp. At the sume time the 18th Huaxars and 5th angers checked the movement from the Spruit on our right flank. Nevertheless, our position at this point had be- come critical. Our men had retired for cover behir¡cl the northern slope, while the enemy had made their way into the pass dividing them from the hill. Major Biiwen rallied a few of the Rifles, but fell while leaning them to the charge. His example was at once followed by Lieutenant Tod, bat he met with the same fate. The enemy were making pood the footing they had already secured in the emplacement, when Major M Wallnutc, calling the scattered Gordons together, charged in and drove them back. Having thus cleared the ground, he joined Lieutenant Digby Jones in the newly-prepared emplacement 011 the western shoulder. A pause ensued for the time, but the Boers were not finally beaten. Taking advantage of the storm that was now raging, they essayed to capture the position by another rush. Three of their leaders reached the parapet, but were shot down by Lieutenant Digby Jones am! Major Wallnutt, the latter of whom also foil. The renewed check effectually discouraged the assailants, and the deadly duel was now practically at an end. Nevertheless, small parties of the braver spirits kept up a murderous fire on oil- men from behind the rocks. The moment had evidently arrived to strike tho final blow, and Colonel Park quickly issued the necessary orders. Three Companies of the Devonshire Regiment, led by Captain Lafone, Lieutenant Field, and Lie-n- tenant Masteraon, made a brilliant charge across the open, under a terrific fire and fairly hurled the enemy down the hill at the point of the bayonet, in the course of the struggle Captain Lafone and Lieutenant Field were killed, and Lieutenant Mss- terson received no fewer than ten wounds. This was the fitting close to a struggle that had lasted sixteen hours, during which evety rifle and gun had been brought to bear. Our position was now secure. The attacks on the north ar.d east had also been repulsed, and the grand assault had failed all along the line. The Boers lost heavily, and admit that the en- gagement was the most severe blow their arms had sustained since the opening of the Campaign. They were confident of their ability to cr.ptnre the town, and had called up reinforcements from Coienso to assist at the expected victory. Our own losses arc, I re,.ç et to report, also con- siderable. Lord A va was mortally wounded cr.rlv i ¡ in the morning while accompanying Colonel Ian Hamilton to the scene of action. I The garrison can now awa.it the coming of relief with renewed confidcnce. LIURBAN, January 16th. The list of casualties among the various corps of Natal Volunteers, in the fighting at Ladysmith on the 6th inst., has only just been published, The Imperial Light Itorse suffered heavily, losing twenty-four killed and twenty-five wounded, while the Natal Volunteers lost six killed.

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