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The Attack on Cronje's Force at Vedute Drift near Paardeberg, 1900

Oil on canvas by Godfrey Douglas Giles (1857-1941), 1900.

On 17 February 1900, during the Boer War (1899-1902), retreating Boer forces led by Piet Cronje from the South African Republic were surprised at a crossing of the Modder River by Lieutenant-General French's cavalry brigade, which had arrived from Kimberley.

Accompanied by their families, the Boers chose to take up a defensive position on the north bank of the river. They successfully resisted a frontal attack by Major General Lord Kitchener on 18 February but lack of supplies and a continuing bombardment forced their surrender a few days later. Paardeberg was the first significant British victory of the war, with over 4,000 Boer prisoners taken.

'The Graphic' employed Giles, a veteran of the 1st Sudan War (1884-1885), as a special artist during the Boer War; he was present at the Relief of Kimberley and the later capture of Cronje.

NAM Accession Number

NAM. 1967-05-67-1

Copyright/Ownership

National Army Museum, Out of Copyright

Location

National Army Museum, Study collection

Object URL

https://collection.nam.ac.uk/detail.php?acc=1967-05-67-1