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mikehm

No. 11 British Field Hospital in the Second Boer War

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Dear All,

 

There is an amount of confusion surrounding the question of the services of this unit, as the following units existed, and served in South Africa during 1899-1902:

  • No. 11 General Hospital, Kimberley - under the command of Lt. Col. M. D. O'Connell, RAMC
  • No. 11 Stationary Hospital - under the command of Major D. R. Hamilton, RAMC
  • No. 11 Brigade Field Hospital - under the command of Major John Brew Moir, RAMC
  • No. 11 Field Hospital (RAMC) - under the command of Lt. Col. D. L. Irvine, RAMC
  • No. 11 British Field Hospital - initially under the command of Lt. Col. Sidney Herbert Carter, RAMC, and latterly under the command of Major John Kearney, RAMC

Having drawn almost a complete blank from traditional (to me) sources, I wonder if someone here might have some information on the service of the last-mentioned unit, which was formed in India, included officers from both the RAMC and the ISMD, and served in the Tirah Expedition as well as in South Africa.   I learn from an on-line article about the Indian Ordnance Department that "The transport Henzada with No.3 field medical stores depot, No. 11 British field hospital, and Ordnance field park . . . left Calcutta, 20th September (1899) and arrived on October 14th 1899 at Durban."   Members of the unit received Queen's South Africa Medals with clasps for the Defence of Ladysmith and Laing's Nek as well as for Belfast, Elandslaagte, Transvaal, Orange Free State, Cape Colony and Natal.

 

Can you help fill out the picture, or suggest sources I might consult?   I have recently acquired the medal of Pte. Henry Lane, 1/DCLI, who was a member of this unit, and served with it during the Defence of Ladysmith and the engagement at Laing's Nek.

 

ATB

Mike

Edited by mikehm

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Alas, it seems I must be persona non grata - I have not received the requisite authorisation e-mail to gain access to the site.   Shame. :(

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It seems I am not welcome.   Still no reply to my application to join after a fortnight.   If SKS who is a member would like to ask the question for me, I would be most grateful.

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I take it back!   I have just had an e-mail from the webmaster. I'm in!

 

Edit: I posted this a week or so ago - not sure why it appears only just to have been posted!

Edited by mikehm
Crogglement.

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I have in the last several years become a member of a group which re-enacts a Canadian Casualty Clearing Station, part of the 3rd Cdn Field Hospital, 1914-18, and am developing an interest in the CAMC and RAMC.  I know we had one unit in the 2nd Boer War - the senior Matron of the CAMC was a veteran of that conflict - so I would be interested in any informatioin on medical service in SA too.

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Good Afternoon Peter......

The units was the 10th Canadian Field Hospital, here is some information.......

Mike

Canadian Field Hospital, A.M.C.
 


Again, at the close of the year. His Majesty's Imperial Government signified their acceptance of further Canadian aid in South Africa, by M.O. 2, 1902 the services of a Medical Unit and 8 nursing sisters were accepted, and instructions issued to raise a Field Hospital complete with its transport and horses.


2nd Regt., Cdn. Mtd. Rifles War Diary Account of CFH.

 

The work of the regimental medical staff and detachment of 10th Canadian Field Hospital, now attached, deserves special mention. Surgeon Major Devine was Acting P.M.O. for the two columns, and the ambulances were situated towards the rear and about the centre of the two columns. In all 200 casualties occurred in our force, and the wounded were dressed and attended to under as severe a rifle fire and a heavier shell fire than any other portion of the camp was exposed to. One patient was killed while his wound was being dressed, and several others received fresh wounds. At least twenty shells fell within a radius of 10 yards of the ambulances, and four of the mules of the Canadian section were killed. Had the shells exploded the Field Hospital would have been blown out of existence. The work of Surgeon-Major Devine, Surgeon-Major Duff and Lieutenant Roberts, and the excellent control and arrangement of the Field Hospital work for the two columns by Surgeon Major Devine, were specially noticed by the O.C, column.


10th CANADIAN FIELD HOSPITAL ARMY MEDICAL CORPS.


Before the organization of the 2nd Regiment Canadian Mounted Rifles, was completed, authority was received from the War Office to raise a Field Hospital Company for service in South Africa.


Orders were accordingly issued on January 3, 1902, for the organization of a Field Hospital Company', under the command of Lieut.-Colonel A. N. Worthington, A.M.S. to be designated the 10th Canadian Field Hospital Company, A.M.C. to be clothed as Imperial Yeomanry, and complete for war in personnel, equipment, and transport.


ESTABLISHMENT.


The establishment was as follows:—

Field Hospital Staff—

 

1 Lieutenant-Colonel. 1 Captain.
1 Major. (Second in Command). 2 Lieutenants.

(a.) Ward Section:—

 

1 Warrant Officer, Chief Ward Master. 1 Corporal, 2nd Cook.
1 Sergeant, Assistant " " 1 Sergeant, Pack store clerk.
1 " Steward. 1 Private, Assistant Pack store clerk.
1 Corporal, 2nd Steward. 1 Corporal, clerk.
1 Sergeant, Compounder. 1 Sergeant; Supernumerary.
1 Corporal " 23 Privates, Ward Orderlies.
1 Sergeant, Cook.

(b.) Transport Section:—


1 Company Sergeant-Major. 1 2nd Corporal.
1 Sergeant. 17 Drivers and batmen.
1 Corporal.

Horses:—

 

8 Riding. 21 Draught.

CONDITIONS OF SERVICE.
 

The conditions of service were as follows:—

 

Terms of service: 12 months, or until the termination of the present war in South Africa.


Pay:

 

Cavalry rates, from date of enlistment until the day prior to embarkation, and Imperial Yeomanry rates from and inclusive of date of embarkation.

 

Age:

 

Not under 20 years nor over 40.
 

Standard, for Ward Section:

 

Not under 5 ft. 5 in. in height; not to weigh more than 185 pounds.

 

Standard for Transport Section:

 

5 ft. 4 in. light weights to be preferred and for all a chest measurement of not less than 34 inches.'
 

Medical requirements:

 

To be medically fit according to Regulation’s.'
 

Qualifications For Ward Section:

 

To be trained members of the Army Medical Corps specially recommended for their technical proficiency and good character and sobriety by their Commanding Officer.

 

For Transport section:

 

May be members of other militia Corps, but members of the Army Medical Corps who prove knowledge of driving and keep of horse and horsemanship will be preferred.' Preference will be given to men who have had previous service in South Africa, and to single men. Married men and widowers with children will be accepted, conditional on no separation allowance being issued.'


The pay authorized was as follows:—

 

' Up to and including the day prior to embarkation for South Africa, ordinary Cavalry rates of pay and allowances will be drawn, except separation allowance.'
 

'From date of embarkation the rates of pay will be on the following scale, which will be inclusive of good conduct pay:—


Chief Ward Master—Warrant Officer........ $2.19.
Company Sergeant Major.......................... $1.94.
Sergeants................................................... $1.70.
Corporal appointed paid lance sergeant... $1.58.
Corporal and paid lance corporal.............. $1.46.
Privates and drivers................................... $1.21.


RECRUITING.

 

Recruiting was conducted as follows:—

 

In Ontario, commencing January 8, at London, Hamilton, Toronto, Ottawa and Kingston. In Quebec, commencing January 8, at Montreal. At St. John, N.B., Halifax, N.S.. and Charlottetown, P.E.L, commencing January 9.


COMMISSIONS.
 

The appointments to commissions, made with the approval of the Right Honourable the Secretary of State for War, were as follows:—


In Command:

 

Lieut.-Colonel A. N. Worthington, A M.S.
 

Major:

 

Major G. Carleton Jones, A.M.S.
 

Captain:

 

Captain H. D. Johnson, A.M.S.
 

Lieutenant:

 

Lieut. J. A. Roberts, A.M.S.

Lieut. E. Treniayne, A.M.S.
Lieut. (.Supernumerary) P. Weatherbe, A.M.S.


 

 

 

 


Departure of the 10th Field Hospital, A.M.C.
 

On January 14, the Troopship Manhattan sailed for Capetown, having on board "D," "E" and "F" Squadrons, and No. 4 Troop of "A" Squadron, 2nd Regiment Canadian Mounted Rifles.

Following; is the Marching Out State, 10th Field Hospital:—

 

Field Officers 2
Captains 4
Subalterns 15
Sergeants 23
Trumpeters and Buglers 6
Rank and File 404
Horses 513


Including 2 Field Officers, 1 Captain, 2 Subalterns, 1 Sergeant and 3 men of the Staff.

Following is a list of Officers who embarked:—

 

Major W. H. Merritt, (In Command).
Surgeon-Major H. R. Duff.
Capt. J.H. Elmsley. J.F. Macdonald. P.E. Thacker. I.R. Snider.
Lieut. R.H. Ryan. W. R. Marshall. A.F. Ashmead. T.F. Homer Dixon. Bruce Carrutliers. R. F. Markham. G.B. Mackay. E.P. Clarkson. H. G. Brunton. G.W.M. Farrell. H.J. Lambkin. J. D. H. Graham. A. H. Gault. W. Rodden, (Acting Quartermaster). Veterinary Lieut. A. E. James.

The Troopship Victorian was not ready until January 28, on which date she sailed for Capetown, having embarked the remaining half of the regiment and the Field Hospital Company.

FOLLOWING IS THE MARCHING OUT STATE.

 

10th Canadian Field Hospital, A.M.C.:
 

Field Officers 2
Captain 1
Subalterns 3
Warrant Officer 1
Sergeants , 8
Rank and File 47
Total , . . 62
Horses 30

 


10th Canadian Field Hospital, A.M.C.

 

During the voyage out and home, the 10th Field Hospital has been with the regiment. While engaged in active operations in the field, a detachment of the Field Hospital has been attached to the regiment, and I have thus been enabled to closely watch its work. In my report on the fight at Boschbult I brought to the notice of the General Officer Commanding the splendid work performed by the detachment there, and the same consistent good work has characterized this detachment and the whole of the hospital throughout its service. Lt.-Col. Worthington and all ranks of his command have every cause to be proud of the reputation they have gained in South Africa.


Conclusion.—To the loyal and united co-operation of all ranks the successful issue of the work of the regiment during its 7 months' service is wholly due. Where such unanimous co-operation exists, it is very difficult to single out individuals for special mention, and it is therefore with a good deal of diffidence that I submit to your notice the names of the following officers and N.C.Officer's (in addition to those already mentioned in my Boschbult report. Appendix Al) for good service:—


*Major G. W. Cameron D.S.O., Acted as 2nd in command while regiment


*Capt. J. D. Moodie, was in the field.
 

" J. H. Elmsley, For continuous good service.
" J. E. Leckie, D.S.O. For continuous good service.
" Adjt. F. Church & Lieut, and Qr. Mr. J. Graham, Special good work in organization of regiment and during its service in the field.
* " C R Tryon & J. Richards (DCM.)

 

I command of their respective Squadrons during absence on account of illness of their captains.


" A. F. Ashmead, F. Homer Dixon. H. J. Lambkin, for continuous good service.

Qr. Mr. Sergt. F. E. Harris (Orderly Room Clerk).
*Transport Sgt. D. C. Forster Bliss (Acting R. S. M., Left Wing).
*S.S.M. W. A. Dyer.
* " P. G. Routh. (D.C.M.)
* " R. W. Stayner.
* " A. F. Woodhouse.
* " J. Brooker.
* " M. Docherty.
Hospital Sgt. J. K Niven.
Farrier Sgt. W. W. Milligan.
Sergt. A. Milne.
" R. F. Morkill.

 

In closing this report I desire to express my appreciation of the courtesy at all times extended to my Officers and men by Major-General Walter Litchener, Colonel Cookson, and their respective Staffs, which will always be plesantly remembered by the regiment.

 

Attached herewith are the following:—

Appendix "A"—Extracts from Staff Diary, re special
events,

 

A. Copy of despatch to O.C. Cookson's column after Boschbult.
B. Captain R. E. G. Leckie's report on Night March.
C. Lieut. Ryan's report on escort duty with General Walter Kitchener.
D. Killed in action or died of wounds or disease.
E. Wounded in action.
F. List of officers, N.C. officers and men returned on Winifredian.
F1. List of officers, N.C. officers and men left on command in South Africa.
F2. List of N. C. officers and men invalided home.
F3. List of N.C. officers and men discharged in South Africa.
F4. List of officers, N.C. officers and men left in South Africa sick.

I have the honour to be. Sir, Your obedient servant,

 

T. D. B. EVANS, Lt. Col., Commanding. 2nd Can. Mtd. Rifles.
 


REPORT ON THE SERVICE OF THE 10th FIELD HOSPITAL

 

From the Officer Commanding the 10th Canadian Field Hospital A.M.C., to the Adjutant General Officer


Sherbrooke, August 20, 1902.

 

Sir,

 

I have the honour, in compliance with instructions received from you, to submit my report on the Organization and Equipment of the Field Hospital under my command, and its service in South Africa.


Concentration.

 

All recruits were moved to Halifax on January 11, two days after enlistment, and comfortably quartered in the Armoury. The time prior to embarkation was devoted to the distribution of clothing and equipment; drill (stretcher and company) and tent pitching. Two men not likely to make efficient soldiers were struck off the strength of the company, and their places filled. The requisite number of horses for transport were drawn from the 2nd Canadian Mounted Rifles. Inspection and Parades.

 

On January 14 the General Officer Commanding, accompanied by His Honour the Lieutenant Governor, visited the Armoury and inspected the company, expressing himself as highly satisfied with the appearance and physique of the men, and their movements on parade. Two Church parades were held (January 19 and 26) when the company was escorted to Divine service by No. 1. Bearer Company, the Bugle Band of the 63rd Regiment and the fife and drum band of the 66th Regiment. On Januai'y 20, a Medical inspection of all ranks was held and anyone not showing signs of any recent successful vaccination was re-vaccinated. On January 24 the Director General Medical Services inspected the Field Hospital Company, visited the orderly and barrack rooms, and addressed the officers and men. The same afternoon the company with the 2nd Canadian Mounted Rifles paraded the streets of Halifax. Before sailing a statement of the expenditure of the emergency fund and the remaining balance was given to the Government agent.

 

 


Embarkation.

 

All stores and equipment were loaded on January 25, horses on the 27, and on January 28, the Canadian Field Hospital with the 2nd, C. M. R's embarked on the ss. Victorian for South Africa


Voyage to South Africa.

 

Cold and stormy weather was experienced for the first few days after which the voyage was most pleasant and uneventful.


Instruction.

 

The Medical Officer of the 2nd, C.M.R. being in medical charge of the ship and ship's hospital by order of the O.C. troops, the Field Hospital Company had very little departmental work to do. A few men from the ward section were detailed daily as hospital orderlies and for other duties as required. The transport section, under Sergt.-Major Gill, attended to the horses during the voyage and arrived in Durban without losing an animal. All men not on duty were put through physical drill and hospital work daily, and one or two hours devoted to instruction of officers. Fire alarm and boat drills were also attended.


Sickness.

 

On January 30, Corporal Baird was sent to hospital with a severe attack of appendicitis, which lasted, owing to a relapse, throughout the voyage. A few mild cases of small-pox and measles occurred, the former being of the type prevalent throughout Canada at the time, and occurred among men who had not recently been vaccinated, nor showed signs of successful vaccination. The cases were quarantined in a secluded portion of the ship and every precaution taken to prevent the spread of the disease. In this respect we were most fortunate as some of the cases were not at once recognized and the vaccine on board (a very limited supply) was marked 'good only until January 28.' (The day of embarkation). By order of the O.C. troops, a medical board was assembled on February 2, the date of appearance of first case, and on its recommendation all blankets likely to have been in contact with those of the infected man, or in the vicinity of his quarters, were thrown overboard, and all other blankets with kits and hammocks disinfected—in fact every possible precautionary measure was taken and a daily medical inspection held.


On February 19, by order of O.C. troops a medical board was assembled to examine and report on invalids. It was recommended that three 2nd C.M.R. men unfit for service be invalided home from Cape Town— Privates: No. 237 Private Dowling, 895 Lake, 773 Williams.


On arrival at Cape Town February 21, the medical landing officer came on board and ordered a revaccination of all ranks (in 3 places) irrespective of recent vaccination. He also had the small-pox patients removed to quarantine and the other sick to Woodstock hospital. The ship then proceeded to Durban.

 

Durban.

 

Arrived at Durban on evening of 24th, and moved to the dock following morning. Here another medical inspection was ordered by Colonel McCormack, P.M.O. Durban, and a medical board assembled to report on equipment of Canadian Field Hospital. The board pronounced the equipment most complete and satisfactory. Orders were here received to entrain with 2nd C.M.R.'s and proceed to Newcastle. This was done at 9 p.m. Lieutenant Tremayne and several orderlies being left behind to bring on stores and equipment, which was promptly done.

Newcastle.

 

Arrived at Newcastle 10.30 a.m. February 27 and by order of Surgeon General Cleary, P.M.O. Natal, went into quarantine camp at Fort McCready for 2 weeks. While at this point a few hospital tents were pitched for the reception of sick of 2nd C.M.R.'s. The camp was visited by General Lord Kitchener, and staff. He said he had given instructions that the C.F.H. was to accompany the Canadian troops in their South African operations. General Burn-Murdock and Surgeon General Cleary also visited the camp, the latter authorizing a board on the hospital equipment. Corporal Morris, left behind at Cape Town on account of sickness, was here detailed to assist the paymaster C M.R. at that point with the hospital pay rolls. On Saturday March 8, quarantine was raised. On the 14th orders were received to be in readiness to trek to Volksrust, Transvaal, consequently on the following morning all patients were transferred to the XIV Genl. Hospital, Newcastle. The route was through Langs Nek by Ingogo, and was a severe test on men and horses, and clearly demonstrated the inability of two horses to draw a Canadian Ambulance through hilly country. On the 18th the hospital entrained at Volksrust and proceeded to Klerksdorp in the Western Transvaal. Arrived March 20. At this point the hospital was inspected by Genl. Wilson P. M. O. Army, with Colonel Dallas-Edge, Lt. Cols. Pike and Porter R.A.M.C. During the following days a few sick were received from the Detail Camps and it was decided to divide the hospital into two sections, in case orders were received to that effect. On the 22nd I was asked to send a section of the hospital with Genl. Walter Kitchener's force and detailed the following officers, non-commissioned officers and men, under Major Jones, for that purpose.


Ward Section.

 

Lt. Roberts. Sergt. Major Porter. Sergt. Ferrier. Corpl. King. Pts. Gunn. Jubien. Snider. Soulia. Wyatt. Keough. Henderson.

Transport Section.

 

Sergt. Byrne. Corpl. Donaldson. Pts. Barrett. Eby. Cooke.


With 4 Ambulance Wagons, 2 with 4 horses each, 2 with 6 mules each; 1 water cart, 6 mules; 1 mule wagon. 2 Hospital Tents, 4 Bell tents and the requisite hospital equipment. This constituted the left section of the Hospital.


The remainder, as follows, I retained with the Headquarters.

 

Capt. Johnson, Company Officer and paymaster.
Lt. H. E. Tremayne, Quartermaster.
Lt. P. Weatherbe.

 


Ward Section.

 

Sergt. Perry, Roue, Adams, Haut, Mckee; Corpls. Baird, Barnes,
McMillan, Bigger, W.E. Mcdonald, Collings; Pts. Morgan Zimmerman, Sealers, Wickson, McLaughlin, G.E. McKenzi, Law, Dunk, Latta, Pittman, Cockburn, Matley, N.O. Price, O.G. Price, Marrow.


Sergt. Morrison (afterwards joined from Hospital, Cape Town). With 8 wagons, 12 hospital tents and balance of equipment.


On March 20, the left section joined general Walter Kitchener’s force. The headquartes remained at Klerksdrop, taking in a few sick from detail camps until march 26, when P.M.O. army, in response to a telegram from Colonel Kekewich for 50 beds, ordered it to Vaalbank, on the Lichtenberg blockhouse line, 40 miles away.

From the foregoing dates until the declaration of peace, June 1, the left section and headquarters of the hospital were separated. The former, attached to Col. Cookson’s column, under General Walter Kitchener, participated in all the ‘drives’ and engagements of that officer, receiving all sick and wounded in camp and on trek, and transferring them to Klerksdorp. During the Boschbult fight at Harts River, the following were present with Cookson’s Column, and the wounded under a heavy shell fire in which 8 horses were killed on the ambulances, won praise of all present. The four as fallows:- Lieut. Roberts, Sergt. Gunn, Pts Henderson, Eby, and Cook.


Lieut. Roberts particularly distinguished himself, and to his skill and energy a great deal of the comfort of the sick was due. He received able assistance during the engagement from Surgon Major Duff, of the 2nd C.M.R’s. The fallowing morning the wounded were sent back to the main body of Kitchener’s force and given in charge of Major Jones, who, ably assisted by Sergt. Ferrier, attended to their wants and dressings and had them transferred to Klerksdorp.


In these various drives the mobility of the Canadian Field Hospital was clearly demonstrated as well as the endurance of the men and horses. I append the following report received later on from Lieutenant-Colonel Porter, R.A.M.C., P.M.O. Kitchener's Force. He also spoke to me personally in the highest terms of Major Jones' command, and also of Lieutenant Roberts and the non-commissioned officers and men with him at Harts River. From the P.M.O. Kitchener's Force, to the O.C. Canadian Field Hospital.


Klerksdorp, June 13, 1902.


Sir,

 

I have the honour to inform you that the section of your hospital which was attached to No. 1. column of this force during the recent operations in the Western Transvaal was highly efficient and I take this opportunity of expressing my thanks to all ranks for the zealous manner in which they performed their duties, often under great difficulties. The G.O.C. several times expressed himself to me as highly satisfied with the state of efficiency of the hospital and particularly was he struck with the manner in which all ranks behaved during the action of Boschbult under a very heavy fire and the way in which the wounded were dealt with and cared for after the action. I will take the first opportunity of bringing the matter to the notice of the P. M.O. army, who I am sure will be gratified to know that the hospital has done such good work and met with the high appreciation of General Walter Kitchener.


I wish you to convey my thanks to the officers, N. C. O's and men for their good work during the last three months and my appreciation of the manner in which they all performed their several duties.


I have the honour to be, sir. Your obedient servant,


(Sgd) R. PORTER,

Lt.-Col. R. A.M. C, P.M.O.

General Walter Kitchener's force.


The headquarters at Vaalbank from March 28 to June 18 were receiving the sick and wounded from the various columns operating in that district under Colonel Kekewich, especially Grenfells and Von Donops, and all convoys between Klerksdorp and Lichtenberg, attending in the short stay there over 1,000 patients, many of whom had to be transferred to Klerksdorp, 40 miles. Situated within a few hundred yards of several block houses the experience was most trying, as hardly a night passed without continued sniping ; at times the firing being quite heavy, and on a few occasions bullets fell within the hospital lines among the tents. This necessitated entrenchments and stone fortifications being thrown up around the hospital, and the avoidance of fires and lights at night. In the construction of these fortifications and in many other labours we were ably assisted by details from the Border Regiment and Scottish Horse, sent by Colonel Ovens the Camp Commandant. This officer with his Adjutant and Medical Officer (Lieutenant Chopping) were most kind and considerate in every particular regarding the welfare of the hospital and its sick.


The work at this point was at times extremely difficult as frequently two medical officers were on the road to Klerksdorp with sick convoys at the same time, and as many as 60 and 70 sick being removed at once, it necessitated the sending of many orderlies, leaving the hospital continually short handed, as three days were generally allowed for the 80 mile trip. Here Captain Johnson, Lieutenants Tremayne and Weatherbe were indefatigable in their work and of the greatest assistance in every particular. The non-commissioned officers and men also worked with a will and it was frequently necessary to employ the transport section in hospital as ward orderlies.


After the fight of Grenfells and Von Donops Columns under Colonel Kekewich on April 11 at Rooival, the sick and wounded (80) with 34 wounded Boer prisoners were brought to hospital, many requiring operative treatment.


The following report from Lt. Col. Pike to the D.A.A.G. Genl. Willson is most satisfactory:—

From P.M.O. Klerksdorp, to D.A.A.O. Klerksdorp.

 

June 17, 1902.
 

Sir:

 

I have the honour to bring to your notice the most excellent manner in which the headquarters of the Canadian Field Hospital have done their work while at Vaalbank from March 29 to June 15 1902. During this period they have treated over 1,000 cases. The work was most difficult as they had to receive great rushes of sick and wounded from columns operating in their neighbourhood, and on every occasion these were met to the comfort of the patients and the credit of the Canadian Field Hospital. I trust that you will forward this letter to the proper authorities as Col. Worthington and his staff have carried out their duties, in that isolated position, in an exemplary manner.


I have the honour to be, sir, Your obedient servant,
(Sgd) W. WATSON PIKE, Lt.-Col

 

R A. M. C.
S. M. O.,
Canadian Field Hospital.

 

I beg to forward this report from the P.M.O. Klerksdorp on the excellent work done by the Canadian Field Hospital while in this district.

 

From all I have heard from different officers, I entirely agree in Col. Pike's remarks.
 

(Sgd.) M. WILLSON, Maj. Genl.
Klerksdorp, 17/6/02.

Commanding W. Johannesburg.

Lt.-Col. Pike was at all times most kind and considerate to the members of the C.F.H. and was at great pains to do everything for its comfort and make its work as agreeable as possible.


In fact the hospital received nothing but courtesy from all members of the R.A.M.C. it was fortunate enough to meet. From the time of the arrival of the Canadian Field Hospital in the Western Transvaal, shortly after Gen. Methuen's disaster, it received a large majority of the sick and wounded of all columns operating in that district. Evacuation Hospital at Vaalbank.—On June 14 orders were received from the P.M.O. army, to evacuate the hospital at Vaalbank. As this order was anticipated everything was in readiness and the day previous was devoted to decorating the graves of those who had died in hospital (British, Boers and Natives). On the 15th the hospital left Vaalbank at 9 a.m. and joined the left section of Gen. Walter Kitchener's camp at 6 p.m. On the 17th the C.M.R. started for Krugersdorp preparatory to entraining at Elandsfontein for Durban. As no orders reached the C.F.H. it remained behind. Put leaving 36 hours later caught up with the regiment and arrived at Elandsfontein simultaneously. The trek was made in remarkably good time (130 miles) from Wednesday night to five o'clock Sunday afternoon.


At Elandsfontein orders were received from the P.M.O. army, that all the hospital equipment was to be returned to Canada, consequently all horses and mules were returned to Remount. All other equipment was loaded on trucks with C.M.R. stores to be sent to Pretoria. Orders being received to entrain the following day to proceed to Durban and embark on SS. Winifredian, the requisite number of trucks were obtained from the R.S.O. and the company entrained with the left half of C.M.R. under Major Cameron.


On the way to Durban one railway truck containing one ambulance and other stores was detached from the train and left behind. The remainder of the wagons were transferred to Ordnance, Durban, as no time was given for loading them, on the understanding that if they were not taken over by the Imperial Military Railway they were to be send by SS. Cestrian the following week. Fortunately the hospital stores (medical and surgical) were embarked as no other hospital provision had been made by the authorities. On landing at Halifax these stores were checked to Ottawa.


Pay.

 

The officers received pay at R.A.M.C. rates and the N. C. O's. and men at Imperial Yeomanry rates. On leaving Elandsfontein a telegram was received from the paymaster " S " Branch. Cape Town, saying that the colonial paymaster would proceed to Durban to settle all accounts before leaving. He did not arrive and an advance of £500 was drawn to pay the men. This was done as far as possible as pay rolls submitted to paymaster Halifax on arrival in Canada show.

Return Voyage.

 

By order of the P.M.O. Natal, I assumed medical charge of the ship and ship's hospital during the return voyage. Very few cases of any severity were admitted to hospital and no invalids were embarked. The health of the troops was very good.


Medical Board on Disability.

 

Though no orders were received from the Imperial authorities, after consultation with the O.C. troops, and on his authorization, a Board was held to report on all officers, non-commissioned officers and men likely to claim compensation for disability, the result of injuries and sickness received or expeiienced while on active service. The Board was composed of myself, Surgeon Majors Devine and Dufif, and the report made in duplicate, one copy being submitted to O. C. troops, and one to the D. G. M. S. Canada. The Board had no authority to assess damages, and its report was intended simply as a primary record of all injuries and sickness.


Red Cross Funds.

 

No funds were given the hospital by the Red Cross Society of Canada as was done with other Canadian organizations, nor were any of its funds given to any member of the same. A small amount di'stributed among our own sick would have been very acceptable, as several were absolutely without funds, and had to be left so on our return, owing to the fact that we were rushed to Durban and embarked before the pay-rolls could he arranged.


Disdandment of Field Hospital.

 

On arrival at Halifax July 22, the company was disbanded, the members receiving railway transport and meals for their various destinations.


 

 

 

NOMINAL ROLL OF MEN GRANTED DISCHARGES IN SOUTH-AFRICA



Sergt. R. Y. Parry.
Corpl. A. S. Donaldson.
Corpl. M. M. Lougee.
Private E. D. Carmen.
Private R. Cook.

 

The first four received very good situations; the last, Private Cook, returned to England.

NOMINAL ROLL OF SICK LEFT IN SOUTH AFRICA

Officers:

 

Major G. C. Jones, since returned.
Lieut.: Philip Weatherbe.

 

Corporals:

 

T. F. McMillan.

Ed. Sweet.

A. W. Robinson.

P. Keough, (with Major Jones.)
 

Privates:

 

W. Barrett.

F. A. Dunk.

A. B. Morgan.

Jas. McKillop.

O. O. Price.
E. A. Searles.

G. E. McKenzie.

Wounded in action, Corporal Gunn—gun shot wound, Boschbult fight, fully recovered.


NOMINAL ROLL OF THOSE EMBARKED JUNE 28, ON SS. WINIFREDIAN.

Lt. –Col.: A. N. Worthington.


Captain: H. D. Johnson.
 

Lieutenants:

 

J, A. Roberts.

H. E. Tremayne.

D. A. Whitton.

L. Drum.

 

 

 

Sergt. Majors:

 

S. J. Porter.

Geo. Gill.
 

Sergeants:

 

J. F. L. Roue.

W. A. McKee.

G. C. Ferrier.

Chas. Adams.

Thos. Byrne.
Rual Huot.

J. H. Morris.
 

Corporal:

 

W. F. Collings.

D. H. Baird.

J. L. Biggar.
 

LanceCorporal:

 

E. C. Barnes.

F. J. Cunn.
 

Private:

 

H. Brennan.

J. W. Cockburn.

M. D. Eby.

E. P. Green.

Jas. Henderson.
D. M. King.

A. F. Jubien.

J. G. Johnson.

W. V. Law.

E. E. Latta.

W. E. McDonald.
A. McLachlan.

F. R. McMulkin.

K. J. McKenzie.

F. G. Morrow.

R. Matley.

F. Wyatt.
W. J. Perrin.

M. Pitman.

C. W. Springford.

W. A. Smith.

P. O. Soulis.

E. Wickson.
J. M. Zimmerson.

B. K. Snider.

Deaths.

 

I regret to announce the death of Private N.O. Price, of St. John, N.B., previously reported to 'Casualty', Cape Town. He was admitted to hospital at Vaalbank May 25, suffering from enteric, and transferred to 32nd Stationary Hospital May 29, where he died June 8. During his illness he was visited daily by some officer of the C. F. H. This man, a qualified medical practitioner, was most conscientious in his duties and a zealous worker. He was decidedly one of the best medical orderlies in the company. He was buried at Klerksdorp, his comrades voluntarily subscribing to a stone which was erected to his memory. His death was regularly reported to the proper authorities.


Equipment.
 

Horses.

 

On the subject of the superiority or durability of the Canadian horse in South Africa, very little can be said. After a long sea voyage they have generally arrived in a poor condition, and been rushed to the front, at a high altitude, before recuperated. Even under these adverse conditions, with insufficient food, they have proved as durable as any others, and would I think, owing to their natural hardness, prove superior if given two or three months time after landing to become acclimatized.


Harness and Saddlery.

 

The harness as supplied was most useful and durable, and no bad effects were experienced with the light collars. The saddlery was of excellent pattern (Colonial) but badly stuffed.


Transport Wagons.

 

The Canadian transport wagons convertible into ambulances, were really the distinctive feature of the equipment and most favourably commented upon by the various boards assembled to pronounce on the utility of the hospital; in fact by every one, more especially the sick conveyed in them. Strong but light running, with an upper tier of stretchers, they carry 4 lying down and 2 sitting up cases. The detachable galvanized iron tank, holding 8 gallons of water, were most useful, especially as they could be placed on a tripod over a fire and the water boiled, or could be filled while in camp, with sterilized water, as was generally the case, from a Forbes sterilizer. The lightness of these wagons as compared with the regulation English pattern can be realized from the fact that we frequently carried 4 lying down and 2 sitting up cases from Vaalbank to Klerksdorp, a distance of 40 miles in 12 hours, with 2 horses, and that in the 4 stretchers used there is a saving of over 60 pounds, a Canadian stretcher weighing 15 pounds to the regulation 34.


Water-cart.

 

The Canadian water-cart is also an improvement on most others seen on service; having an additional number of taps, it allows several buckets being filled simultaneously. The opening on top is also provided with a screen, which prevents a certain amount of dirt entering, and the cover closing somewhat similar to that of a port-hole of a steamer is also of advantage. A tap on the bottom of the body of the cart is a new feature and readily allows of thorough cleaning out.


Hubert tent.

 

The Hubert tents, 16 in number, with which we were supplied, were most admirably adapted to the climate. The tent proper. Khaki in colour, with a fly of white canvas, is a great relief from the glare of the sun. Readily ventilated, it is cool during the hottest day and warm on winter nights. They stood the storms as well as any others. The tarpaulin flooring allows of the tents being kept much more cleanly and orderly than could be otherwise done, and prevents dampness.

Plan of Encampment.

 

Although subject to variations according to inequality of ground &c., I would submit the enclosed plan of encampment as commending itself for general adaptability, compactness and picturesqueness. Arranged in the form of crosses with flies meeting (except in the central compound, which can be covered separately with a rectangular fly suspended from pins of approximating ridge poles,) they comprise one cross, 8 ward?, capable of holding from 64 to 80 patients, according to the use of beds or stretchers, and two smaller crosses of 4 wards each. With the doors rolled up one can see through the four wards at once, while from a convenient desk in the central compound, the ward-master can readily overlook the 8 wards at a glance, superintend the work of the orderlies and the conduct of the patients. In one corner of this compound can be placed a Forbes sterilizer, from which hot and cold sterilized water is at all times available; in another corner, or rather outside for safety, is an acetylene gas plant, from which tubing conveys the gas through the tents to lights of 30 candle power each.


The plan of encampments in cross formation is readily changeable as regards the number of tents employed. In this plan the larger cross is available for medical or surgical cases, according to their respective predominance. With the eight tents available as surgical wards, one smaller cross of four can be used for enteric and dysentery cases, and the last for other ailments, convalescents and 'up' medical cases. All are easy of access from the officers and ward section lines, the operating tent and dispensary, and the horselines are well out of the way. The dispensing and medical equipment is most excellent and compact. The medicines, mostly in 'Tabloid' form, were specially packed for us by Messrs Chandler & Massey, of Toronto, in panniers and boxes of their own construction, which are quite equal to those of the regulation pattern, their sterilizing chest being most complete. These articles were satisfactorily commented on by inspecting officers. With a field hospital constructed on these lines, the transport section and disengaged ward-orderlies can be utilized during or after an engagement (preferably the fatter, as their continued presence on the firing line is of doubtful use) for the same purpose as a Bearer Company, thus doing away with the latter.


Acetylene Gas Plant.

 

This apparatus in standing camp was most useful. The 'Colt' Generator, with sufficient calcium carbide for several months use was carried on trek without inconvenience or injury. It is very easy of arrangement and quickly got into operation; the gas is conducted through the tents by rubber tubing suspended from the ridge poles and gave as many as 30 candle power lights as were required.

Forbes Sterilizers.

 

These machines 2 in number, were most admirably suited to our purpose, giving hot and cold sterilized water at all hours. They have a daily capacity of 30 gallons each.


X Ray plant.

 

The want of an apparatus was much felt while at Vaalbank where it could have been used to advantage.


Extract from Orders by Colonel Evans, C.B., 16-6-02.


'The O.C. 2nd C.M.R. desires on behalf of the regiment to express its regret at separating from the detachment of the field hospital. They have seen hard work together, and the excellent service performed by this detachment will always be remembered by all ranks of the regiment.'


Extract From Brigade Orders. Colonel Cookson's Column, 3-6-02.

 

"The G.O.C. having been appointed commander of the Western Transvaal for receiving the surrender and arms of the burghers (the command falls on Col. Cookson), has asked the O C. to convey to all ranks his appreciation of the good service performed by them whilst under his command, and his best wishes for a safe return to their homes in Canada.'


Personnel: I cannot speak too highly of the officers, non-commissioned officers and men under my command.


During the voyage out Corpl. Donaldson and Pte. Springford did excellent work in hospital under the M.O. 2nd C.M.R. in connection with the small-pox and measles epidemics, and the O.C. troops was pleased to very favourably mention them in dispatches, a copy of which was forwarded to the D.G.M.S.

Copy of Orders by Lt.-Col. Evans, C.B., Commanding Troops, SS. Victorian.


'The officer commanding troops SS. Victorian, desires to express his great appreciation of the services of Corpl. Donaldson and Pte. Springford during the small-pox and measles epidemics on the voyage. The excellent work performed by this N.C. Officer and man reflected great credit upon themselves and the 10th Canadian Field Hospital.'


By order, F. CHURCH, Captain and Adjutant, 25th February, 1902.


Major Jones and the detachment under him did excellent work, as Lt.-Col. Porter's report shows, Lieut. Roberts being particularly conspicuous in the Boschbult fight. In this action Corpl. Gunn and Ptes. Henderson and Eby are also deserving of the highest praise on account of their good work. With the head-quarters it would be hard to particularize. Capt. Johnson, as company officer and paymaster, was indefatigable in his company as well as ward work, and Lieuts. Tremayne and Weatherbe did most excellent work, being almost continually on road with sick convoys.


The following are deserving of mention on account of close attention to duty and general good work:- Sergeant Roue, Ferrier, Corporal Collings, Lougee, Barnes, Private Soulis, Springford.


Corporal Baird, in the capacity of dentist, did good work, but illness prevented his remaining with the hospital continuously, I had not one bad man in the lot; all worked exceptionally well, and while, as I say, it is hard to especially mention anyone in particular, I cannot overlook the hospital cook, Sergt. Huot, who was ready at all hours, day or night, with his comforts for the sick, to which fact I think I am not wrong in saying a great deal of the success of the hospital was due. A number of the ward orderlies were qualified medical practitioners and medical students, and were of the greatest assistance on account of their professional training, and I am sure that their experience in South Africa, though in subordinate positions, will be of greatest benefit to themselves and to the Canadian Militia Army Medical Corps, in which organization. I trust the department will see fit to commission them as occasion arises.


I have the honour to be, sir,
Your obedient servant,

 

A. N. WORTHINGTON,
Lieut.-Colonel, A.M.S.

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Excellent!  Thansk for sharing this, Mike.  I'll steal it to share with my unit.

Hi Peter

ESPECIALLY THE RATES OF PAY PER DAY.......

I have the Pitman medal in collection.......

Mike

 

 

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Yes, well a dollar was worth a dollar back then.  

And on a tangentially related note, I have just come across a WWI lad who got stoppage of field allowance and a fine of 25 cents per diem for the 78 days he spent in a hospital in France with VD, in 1917.  But, as a military doctor friend of mine pointed out, nobody shot at him for 78 days either and, she says, it is alleged that one actually paid more in some brothels for the girls with VD!  Intriguing notion!

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