'Ibeaka'

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'Ibeaka'

Postby Trader Horn » 13 Aug 2011 12:44

Good-day. Does anyone recognise this name 'Ibeaka' ? I have come across it in the unpublished journal of a member of the Naval Brigade from HMS Active who records "On reaching East London, we landed in surf boats . . .We reached Ibeaka and from there we were out on flying column". Any suggestions?
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Re: 'Ibeaka'

Postby Isandlwana » 13 Aug 2011 14:28

Trader Horn,

Try spelling it as 'Ibeka', it is in the Transkei, not too far from Grahamstown, I believe, but I'm away from my books and maps at present on a deployment.

John Y.
Not theirs to save the day but where they stood, falling, to dye the earth
with brave men's blood for England's sake and duty...
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Re: 'Ibeaka'

Postby Keith Smith » 13 Aug 2011 22:47

Trader

Ibeka was a small trading station on the Butterworth-Idutywa road in the Transkei. For what it is worth, here is my own description of the battle which took place there during the Ninth Frontier War:

A village had not yet developed on the site and it was occupied only by Barnett’s house, shop and stables. Ibeka lies some 10 kilometres north-east of Butterworth on the Idutywa road. Sarhili’s Great Place, Holela, was about the same distance away to the south-east. Griffith [in command] left a description of the shop and its surrounds:
‘It is sufficient to say that the Ibeka post consists of a trader’s house, shop, and out-offices, built of brick, and roofed with corrugated iron, and with a piece of ground, about 80 yards square, enclosed by a sod bank about 3 feet 6 inches high and a ditch 3 feet deep.’
On the afternoon of 29 September [1878] a huge Gcaleka army, said to number 7,000 to 8,000, appeared before the Ibeka post. It was manned by a mere 180 Frontier Armed and Mounted Police [FAMP] but was supported by 2,000 Mfengu. Three guns and a rocket tube were under the command of Sub-Inspector Cochrane.
The Mfengu were led by Sub-Inspector Allan Maclean of the FAMP. Under him were several Mfengu chiefs, including one whose name will become familiar to the reader, the senior Mfengu chief Veldtman (or Veldtmann, Feldman) Bikitsha. The small size of the enclosure round the buildings suggests that the FAMP manned the sod wall while the Mfengu took station outside.
After some initial skirmishing, in which Veldtman was prominently successful, the Gcaleka attacked the post directly and en masse at about 3 p.m. ‘in a perfect cloud of skirmishers.’ The guns and rocket tube opened up and when the enemy came within rifle range, the FAMP inflicted a withering fire. The Gcaleka were checked, at which point the Mfengu again drove them back.
While the defenders were taking a brief rest, a second huge force appeared out of the nearby Qora River gorge to the east and marched directly at the post. The artillery opened fire but seemed not to be effective and the Gcaleka continued advancing until they disappeared behind a ridge some 800 metres away. Griffith ordered the guns to be laid for the top of the ridge, which had been evacuated by a vedette a short time earlier. As soon as the Gcaleka appeared on the top of the ridge the guns opened fire but ‘owing to their great numbers and to the configuration of the ground they succeeded in turning our flank before the guns could be turned on the main body.’ A gun was rapidly moved into a better position from where it could rake the advancing column. When the gun opened up the Gcaleka were ‘thrown into disorder’, at which point Maclean led his Mfengu in another attack, driving the column back down the ridge.
While this action was taking place, the earlier column re-grouped and attempted to threaten the right flank of the post. It was repulsed by Chief Veldtman who drove them back with about 400 Mfengu, having earlier occupied a stone enclosure near the Butterworth road, from which he launched his attack. The prophetess Nita was killed here while leading her division, the body being decapitated by the Mfengu. Cunynghame was shown the head, kept in a sack of lime, when he later visited Ibeka …
A gun and the rocket trough were redeployed to the right face of the post, supported by another 300 Mfengu, and directed their fire on to a body of Gcaleka threatening that side. ‘This gun alone,’ reported , ‘fired 18 rounds before the enemy began to retreat’.
A last futile attempt was made by a small reserve of the Gcaleka to attack the front of the post again but it was quickly repulsed by artillery and rifle fire by the FAMP, after which the whole Gcaleka force withdrew.
The action, which had begun about 3 p.m., ended about 6.30 p.m., during which time the guns fired 43 shrapnel and 9 plain shells, and 37 9-pounder rockets. Laconically, Griffith reported that one gun had to be taken out of action because ‘the trail (of colonial manufacture) and which had given way on a previous occasion, broke down altogether after the fifth round’. It was almost certainly the same gun which had failed at Gwadana three days earlier, and which had been hastily repaired.
The British defenders had only one European casualty, who was ‘slightly contused in the neck by a musket bullet.’ The Mfengu lost six men killed and six wounded.

The above extract is taken from my book The Wedding Feast War. I have a photograph of what remains of the place, which I would be happy to share with anyone who is interested.

KIS
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Re: 'Ibeaka'

Postby roconn » 29 Sep 2011 22:57

Keith:

Your Book "the Wedding Feat War" from where is it sold and.... of course how much?

I would be happy to have a copy of the picture if your offer is still good.

regds
roconn


Keith Smith wrote:Trader

Ibeka was a small trading station on the Butterworth-Idutywa road in the Transkei. For what it is worth, here is my own description of the battle which took place there during the Ninth Frontier War:

A village had not yet developed on the site and it was occupied only by Barnett’s house, shop and stables. Ibeka lies some 10 kilometres north-east of Butterworth on the Idutywa road. Sarhili’s Great Place, Holela, was about the same distance away to the south-east. Griffith [in command] left a description of the shop and its surrounds....


above extract is taken from my book The Wedding Feast War. I have a photograph of what remains of the place, which I would be happy to share with anyone who is interested.

KIS
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Re: 'Ibeaka'

Postby alan.goss » 22 Nov 2013 21:19

SIr, I have a document written by a family member - EC Goss who was at Ibeka when the trouble started. A fascinating account . His father Michael Goss and his uncle James Andrew Goss ( my gggrandfather) were both killed.

If the offer of the photograph still stands - I'd certainly appreciate a copy.
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Re: 'Ibeaka'

Postby Keith Smith » 01 Dec 2013 00:37

Alan

I haven't been on this site for a little time and seem to have missed your post. I would be very interested to see a copy of your relative's (E.C. Goss) letter about Ibeka. If you can let me have your email address, I will happily let you have my photograph of what remains of the site.

KIS
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Re: 'Ibeaka'

Postby Keith Smith » 01 Dec 2013 00:55

Alan

I really should have referred to my own book before posting my last. The following is drawn from p. 131 of 'Wedding Feast War':

On Sunday 21 October, Hook was advised that a Gcaleka force was in sight ‘advancing towards the camp in numbers’. He posted the Mfengu on the ridge in front of them, with a piquet of FAMP. There followed several skirmishes, which ended when the Gcaleka withdrew, leaving sixty-seven dead on the field. Hook’s own losses amounted to two Europeans killed and one slightly wounded. Of the Mfengu, two of their officers, brothers named William and Michael Goss, were killed, with nine Africans, and twenty-one wounded. On 22 October, Griffith joined Hook in the latter's camp on the Lusize.


The 'Hook' referred to in the above quote is D.B. Hook., from whose book 'With Sword and Statute' I took the information in my own. Here are a couple of direct quotes from Hook in which the Goss brothers are mentioned:

It was there that I became closely acquainted with the two brothers Goss, who were store-keeping at Idutywa, not far from Nglaglakaxo. I had known these two when they were troopers in the Police in Queenstown.
(p. 148)

There was some severe fighting, and there were a number of casualties on either side; two European officers, named
Goss, being killed in a gallant attempt to dislodge some Galekas who had taken refuge in a densely-wooded ravine.
Eventually the Galekas were driven off.
(p. 242)

Our loss in native forces was two officers and about forty Fingoes killed, apart from wounded, the two brothers Goss,
whom I previously referred to, being slain; they died gallantly fighting they were both Captains. I gave them deep graves and the Prayer Book service, poor fellows; that was the service that I had to do for them.

These two gallant young men were both of mixed English and Dutch descent, and hailed from Cradock, in the Cape Colony. They were splendid horsemen, and Michael Goss was a most capable man with what we in the Cape call the "fists";
(p. 244)

KIS
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Re: 'Ibeaka'

Postby alan.goss » 12 Mar 2014 12:16

Sir,

We seem to be missing each other. email is torchza @ gmail . com

The brothers you mention were the sons of an 1820 settler - Michael William and James Andrew. Michael was the father of EC Goss who wrote the account I have. The brothers were buried near to the place they fell and I also have letters regarding their grave site. Apparently there was a photograph of the grave site sent to the War Graves Commission in 1939 but as yet I have been unable to trace a copy -
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Re: 'Ibeaka'

Postby British Kafferia » 30 Jul 2014 21:25

http://www.eggsa.org/library/main.php?g ... &g2_page=2

Have you looked into this at all?
Hope it helps.
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