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    “They reached Gannahoek, following the tracks of mounted horses, and Smuts nearly surprised a column of Bedford and Winterberg DMT and a section of Nesbitt’s Horse resting in a sheltered spot.


    Capt Welshman, out scouting on a hill, spotted the Boers creeping into position and fired a warning shot. Lieutenant SA Callaghan made up for his tardiness when he took up a position on a hill and drove the Boers back.


    Trooper AC Bates was killed in the first volley, but Tprs Allan and P Nel, who was wounded in three places, showed exceptional pluck and saved the patrol that was in a tight corner. 

    Lieutenant Callaghan received a mention in despatches for ‘coolness and good disposition in repulsing the enemy at Gannahoek’. Tpr Nel’s citation read ‘although wounded in three places, he still fought and rendered valuable service’.


    Reitz described it more casually in “Commando”, saying that they rode up the gorge and saw an English foraging party going off. Ben Coetzee killed a member of the troop, a local farmer called Brown, and the rest of the patrol raced off.”
    “General Jan Smuts and his Long Ride” by T & D Shearing, p65

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