Marshall's Horse

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Marshall's Horse
Active 1899 - 30 October 1902
Country  South Africa
Branch British Army
Type Horse Regiment
Major George Marshall

Marshall's Horse was a South African cavalry unit deployed in 1899 at the start of the Second Boer War, to provide military support for the British campaign. The Unit was created from the Uitenhage and Grahamstown Volunteers. They formed in Grahamstown and consisted of 244 members. On 17 October 1900, as part of Major General Barton's column, six members of Marshall's Horse were cut off by Boers whilst collecting supplies near Frederickstad. By June 1901 their numbers were reduced to 120. On 30 October 1902 the unit was absorbed into the Cape Police.

The commanding officer was Major George Marshall.

Second Boer War[edit]

Officers of Marshall's Horse, 1899. (back row of three) Lieut D G Tennant. Capt H B Capstick, Lieut F A Woodcock; (middle row, left) Lieut B L E Jay, Lieut J D Forbes; (middle row, right) Lieut S H Godwin, Lieut F H Nek, Capt H Gethin; (front row of 6) Lieut G H Hull. Capt E G Booth, Hon Major H T Tamplin, Capt G Marshall (Officer Commanding), Capt & Adjt F A Saunders, Capt J R MacAndrew.

Members of Marshall's Horse may have been involved in the Relief of Mafeking against the Boer's Siege of Mafeking as well as the Battle of Elandslaagte. They were involved in combat at Thaba Nchu under General Ian Hamilton an event related in Winston Churchill's Ian Hamilton's March. They also fought at Israel's Poort on 25 April 1900. Captain Gethin (pictured above) was killed that day. Marshall himself was wounded. Lord Roberts mentioned their performance in dispatches.

In the march on Pretoria John Stirling wrote in his book The Colonials in South Africa, "Marshall's Horse frequently took a prominent share of the work. On 5th June at Schippen's Farm, for example, they had 1 killed and 5 wounded. They were engaged at Doornkop, south-west of Johannesburg, on 29th May, and in the Battle of Diamond Hill, east of Pretoria, on 11th, 12th, and 13th June, and had slight casualties in both actions. In the latter part of August and during September Marshall's Horse was employed about Krugersdorp and in the Gatsrand, and frequently had fighting and rather heavy casualties. In October, November, and December they were with Barton in the Frederickstad district, and on 18th October a foraging party got into a nasty place - when Marshall's Horse lost 2 killed and 4 wounded. The corps took part in the very severe fighting which Barton's force had between 20th and 25th October, which resulted in the total defeat of the force opposed to him. Marshall's Horse had Lieutenant Mullins and 2 men wounded."

Marshall's Horse would be called back to protect Cape Colony when it was attacked in late 1900.


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