Lord Kitchener in London | London Historians’ Blog

Broome House, near Canterbury.

Broome House, near Canterbury.

A guest post by Dr Anne Samson, London Historians Member.

The name Kitchener does not tend to trigger thoughts of London. Invariably, it’s the poster “Your country needs you” which comes to mind or the Second Anglo-Boer (South African) war of 1899-1902 with concentration camps and farm burning in South Africa or Kitchener’s New Armies and…

Kitchener in his pomp, 1910, aged 60, by Bassano. NPG, London.

Kitchener in his pomp, 1910, aged 60, by Bassano. NPG, London.

Source: Lord Kitchener in London | London Historians’ Blog

‘Heimat’ in a Suitcase: Flight and Exile of the Herzberg Family | Leo Baeck Institute London

‘Heimat’ in a Suitcase: Flight and Exile of the Herzberg Family

Today we would like to invite you to have a glimpse into the private rooms of Haus Herzberg. The photographs you see here are an extract from an album that contains images of the Herzberg family home in 22 Richard-Wagner-Straße, in the German town of Hanover. The pictures were taken in the 1930s, before the Herzbergs had to flee Germany to escape the Nazi Regime. The beautifully bound red leather album contains an array of photographs showing…

Source: ‘Heimat’ in a Suitcase: Flight and Exile of the Herzberg Family | Leo Baeck Institute London

“Frankly, I enjoyed the war.” Totally crazy story of Victoria Cross hero

Wiart in Cairo, Egypt in 1943

Wiart in Cairo, Egypt in 1943

“We’re going to have to ditch, sir, prepare for a landing on water!” was the last thing that the “Unkillable Soldier” Major-General Adrian Carton de Wiart VC heard from the cockpit of the Wellington bomber that was supposed to be…

via Frankly, I enjoyed the war. Totally crazy story of Victoria Cross hero who tore off his own fingers, lost an eye, was shot in the head & still went back for more

On this day: the murder of Hulda Stumpf | In Times Gone By…

American missionary Hulda Stumpf was murdered in Kijabe, Kenya on the 3rd of January, 1930. Stumpf, who had spoken out in opposition to Female Genital Mutilation, a widespread and often life-threat…

Source: On this day: the murder of Hulda Stumpf | In Times Gone By…

John Buchan 1: Proving his Worth to the Secret Elite.

johnbuchanThe next four blogs will concentrate on the Scottish novelist John Buchan.  Both of us knew of him in different ways. Like Jim, Buchan was an alumnus of Glasgow University. Gerry has recently direc…

Source: John Buchan 1: Proving his Worth to the Secret Elite.

ZULU: DEATH AND REDEMPTION IN THE AFRICAN SUN | The Deadliest Blogger: Military History Page

On 11 January 1879, a British Army crossed the Buffalo River, the boundary between the British Natal province and the independent native African kingdom of the Zulus. After the refusal by the Zulu king Cetshwayo of an insulting British ultimatum, a British army prepared to march on the Zulu capital, Ulindi; with the goal of defeating and annexing the Zulu kingdom.

The Zulu War of 1879 was not officially sanctioned by the government of British Prime Minister Benjamin Disraeli. It was instead the work of an ambitious colonial official, Sir Henry Bartle Edward Frere, High Commissioner for Southern Africa. In an effort to compel the various states of South Africa into a British confederation (which would be comprised of British-run Cape Colony and Natal, the Boer republics: the Transvaal and the Orange Free State), Frere had initiated a policy of annexation of local…

Source: ZULU: DEATH AND REDEMPTION IN THE AFRICAN SUN | The Deadliest Blogger: Military History Page

Bizarre Dinosaur-Fish, the Coelacanth | Theory Of Irony

The South African naturalist and self-taught museum curator, Marjorie Courtenay-Latimer (1907 – 2004), was something of an odd duck.  She pursued an obsessive compulsive fascination with fish to such an extent, that she begged bemused fishing boat captains to phone her if by chance they should reel in any strange species.  So it happened, one day back in 1938, Ms. Courtenay-Latimer came to recall, “I saw a blue fin and, pushing off [a pile of aquatic entrails], the most beautiful fish I had ever seen was revealed….It was five feet long and a pale mauve blue with iridescent silver markings.”  She immediately wrote to rock star-ichthyologist, Dr. J.L.B. Smith of Rhodes University, who as fate would have it, was away on vacation sunning his dorsal fin.  Meanwhile, in a desperate and futile attempt to preserve the rapidly decomposing carcass she wheeled it around from morgue drawer, to meat locker and finally to a taxidermist.  Courtenay-Latimer stunned Dr. Smith upon his return, since her description violated the laws (then known) to science.  She seemingly stumbled upon an extinct beast that long…

via Bizarre Dinosaur-Fish, the Coelacanth | Theory Of Irony.

The black Victorians: astonishing portraits unseen for 120 years | Art and design | theguardian.com

The African Choir were a group of young South African singers that toured Britain between 1891 and 1893. They were formed to raise funds for a Christian school in their home country and performed for Queen Victoria at Osborne House, a royal residence on the Isle of Wight. At some point during their stay, they visited the studio of the London Stereoscopic Company to have group and individual portraits made on plate-glass negatives. That long-lost series of photographs, unseen for 120 years, is the dramatic centrepiece of an illuminating new exhibition called Black Chronicles II.

“The portraits were last shown in the London Illustrated News in 1891,” says Renée Mussai, who has co-curated the show at London’s Rivington Place alongside Mark Sealy MBE, director of Autograph ABP, a foundation that focuses on black cultural identity often through the use of overlooked archives. “The Hulton Archive, where they came from, did not even know they existed until we uncovered them while excavating…

Read more: The black Victorians: astonishing portraits unseen for 120 years | Art and design | theguardian.com.

WWI: The Smuts-Gandhi Agreement

Edinburgh Eye

On Tuesday 30th June 1914 the House of Commons had a routine sitting.

The Conservative MP for Knutsford, Alan Sykes, who had been commissioned a Deputy-Lieutenant to the Lord Lieutenant for Cheshire in 1910, rose to ask a question of the Under-Secretary of State for War about the Infantry Territorial battalions of Lancashire and Cheshire:

What percentage of the total enrolled number of officers and men of the Infantry Territorial battalions of Lancashire and Cheshire attended their annual camp this year in the Whitsuntide holidays, indicating what percentage attended for one week and what for the whole period, and giving comparative figures for the same battalions of their attendance at last year’s annual camp?

Harold Tennant, the Liberal Under-secretary of State for War, answered the Opposition question with specific percentages for 1914 and 1913, and said, when Sykes asked if the bounty of a pound had improved…

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