Topic: BW - WA
Boer War - Western Australia
Contingents sent, 1899 - 1902
In 1911, Lieutenant-Colonel P. L. Murray, produced a marvellous Boer War reference detailing all the contingents sent from Australia to South Africa, giving a brief history of the formation and finally, listing all the soldiers who saw service in South Africa with that unit. The book was called, Official Records of the Australian Military Contingents to the War in South Africa. It is now the standard reference and starting place for any person interested in pursuing information about Australian involvement in the Boer War.
Murray, P. L., Official Records of the Australian Military Contingents to the War in South Africa, p. 395.
Western Australia Prefactory.
Western Australia despatched six Contingents to the war, besides her quota of the Commonwealth Contingents. The first three, consisting of one Company each, were paid by the Colonial Government; the remainder by the Imperial ; and horses and saddlery were provided, as well as (in the earlier Contingents) regimental transport. The 4th Contingent consisted of one Company ; the 5th and 6th, of two Companies each ; and the two latter Contingents amalgamated in South Africa, One half-Company ("E") was contributed to 2nd Battalion, Australian Commonwealth Horse ; one Company ("D") to 4th Battalion, Australian Commonwealth Horse and one Squadron ("D") to 8th Battalion, Australian Commonwealth Horse.
The Camp for preliminary training and organization was at Karrakatta.
The first Contingent served with General Clements' Column near Colesberg and Orange Free State. With Major-General Button's Column on advance from Bloemfontein to occupation of Pretoria. With Colonel De Lisle's Column from capture of Pretoria to departure from South Africa, 13th December, 1900. Claimed as per medal roll for Johannesburg, Diamond Hill, Wittebergen, and Cape Colony.
The second Contingent was with General Pole-Carew's Column from advance from Bloemfontein to engagement at Belfast. With Colonel De Lisle's Column afterwards until departure. Claimed medal roll for Johannesburg, Diamond Hill, Cape Colony, Orange Free State, and Belfast.
The third Contingent did duty with General Carrington's Column through Rhodes* until after relief of Eland's River; subsequently with Lord Methuen's Column, and afterwards with General Plumer. Claimed medal roll, Cape Colony, Orange Free State, Transvaal, and Rhodesia.
The fourth Contingent served with General Clements' Column, including Wittebergen and Bethlehem. Medal roll for Wittebergen, Cape Colony, and Transvaal.
The fifth Contingent was with General W. Kitchener's Column in Eastern Transvaal; Natal, and Orange Free State ; with Colonel Campbell's and Colonel Wing's Columns in Eastern Transvaal. Medal roll for Transvaal.
The sixth Contingent served with General W. Kitchener's Column in Eastern Transvaal, Natal, and Orange Free State; with Colonel Campbell's, Colonel Benson's, and Colonel Wing's Columns in Eastern Transvaal. Medal roll for Transvaal.
The half unit in 2nd Battalion, Australian Commonwealth Horse, participated in the great "drive," terminating at the railway line near Vryburg, which practically brought the war to a conclusion.
Further Reading:Battles where Australians fought, 1899-1920
Citation: Boer War - West Australia, Contingents sent, 1899 - 1902, Outline