May 2018

Changes to Imperial War Museum document and library ordering

Thanks to Warwick Hojem for this little gem: The first South African train driver into GSWA in 1915.

Another little gem came through a contact in Kenya – a video exploring the African view of the war. It’s recorded by Josephine Niala and features GWAA member James Willson (Guerrillas of Tsavo). Knowledge of the wars in Africa is spreading…

Kathy Munro writes about the Durban War Memorial
and Peter Dickenson on Western Front VC winner, Reginald Hayward

Last month I mentioned Kevin Patience’s new book but forgot to include the details. They can be found here

For those interested in the West African campaigns and who can read French, Memoires des Hommes has scanned diaries for each of the campaigns. There are also diaries or accounts of the African cavalry who served in Europe.
There are some basic helpful maps of the various campaigns on Weapons and WarfareSouth African sculpture and artist has an exhibition on the Carrier of World War 1 in London and the US: Tate 11-15 July 2018 and Park Avenue Amory 4-15 Dec 2018. Some time ago he spoke to Denis Hirson about a previous exhibiton.

Some photos of the crew of zeppelin L-59 can be found at (3 in all). Weapons and Warfare include a bit on the German doctor Max Zupitza who had served in GSWA who was a member of the L-59 crew.

The National Army Museum have created some resources for teaching the East Africa campaign. Thanks to Away From the Western Front for bringing it to attention.

Another photo here – how genuine do you think this photo/print of a British armoured care in East Africa is?

Away From the Western Front newsletter contains a short write-up on the Pike Report which was transcribed as part of this project. There is also an appeal for a current military regiment to be involved in a discussion on how medical aspects compare between WW1 and today. Please get in touch if you can help.

Conference in South Africa
The GWAA is co-hosting a conference at Unisa, Pretoria, South Africa on 12-13 November 2018 on the aftermath of the Great War on southern Africa. You can see the call for papers here. Please share with anyone you think might have an interest – they don’t have to be an historian.

Centenary publication
Invitations have been sent inviting a range of people interested in World War 1 in Africa to contribute a piece on why the war in Africa should be remembered. If you have not received an invitation and would like to contribute a thought piece, please get in touch.

Finally, as many of you (especially UK based) know data protection is being more stringently reinforced from 25 May 2018. One of the big changes is that you, the recipient of information, need to opt in to receive this and I’m meant to get each of you to authorise being a member of GWAA. However, I am not going to do this as the forum aspect of the site has been removed for some months now and it is only the newsletter which goes out anonymously to people across the globe, a number who are not affected by the UK/EU legislation.
If you do have objections to being on the mailing list, please let me know by email or unsubsribe.
I also need to let you know how the data GWAA holds is used.
The only data held is that which you have supplied on registering to receive the newsletter (all previous data entered when the forum was active has been deleted). Your personal information amounts to a username chosen by yourself and an email address. Your email is used for sending the newsletter and where appropriate for email correspondence. Your details will not be shared with others unless you give permission for them to be shared. This provides a little challenge for groups/networks such as ours where sharing information around a topic is how we discover new things. HOwever, GWAA has always maintained the practice of checking whether people want to be put in contact with others unless it is known the recipient has no objection to having their details released to others so there is no new departure in practice here.
If you have any concerns about data protection, GDPR as it’s known in the UK, please do not hesitate to get in touch.
GWAA, itself, does not use cookies or any other such tracking systems although the mailsystems may do so, these are Mailchimp and an email subscriber system by Icegram

March 2018

Further to the Australian naval Pioneer which was mentioned in February, another article on the same ship has come to light.

Continuing with the shipping theme, Kevin Patience’s new book on Ship Wrecks is available. This includes information on Konigsberg and Pegasus both sunk during World War 1.
Kathleen Satchwell opens the window on The Union-Castle Line which provided many of the ships which transported troops to and from Africa during World War 1.

Roads to the Great War published an article from the UK Foreign Office on World War 1 in Africa.

There is a mention of a YMCA Swahili phrase book used in East Africa during the war courtesty of Languages and the First World War.

In case you missed it back in 2016, Ed Yorke writes about carrier life in Northern Rhodesia.

Ann Crichton-Harris has alerted me to the fact that the Illustrated War News is freely available for 1914-1918.

Commonwealth War Graves Commission has been doing some innovative filming of memorials in East Africa. The collection below documents some of what they were doing.
renovations of memorials in East Africa
The use of technology in restoring memorials.
To see the image, click on the video
Daily Nation report
A snippet on Wavell‘s memorial
Images of the Dar memorial

February 2018

The Commonwealth War Graves Commission spent 2017 making some changes in Africa as recorded in their report and 2018 promises to be just as busy.
You can follow Juan Maree on Twitter to see what is happening in Southern Africa.

The inspirational FC Selous (Legion of Frontiersmen)

Blockading German East Africa – an Australian link See more under Naval

Recent books and discovered publications including Africa and World War 1
Sideshows of the Indian Army in World War 1 by Harry Fecitt – The paperback version was released in January 2018.

The Unknown Fallen: The Global Allied Muslim Contribution in the First World War by 1914-18 Forgotten Heroes was also published in January. It is an introduction to Muslim involvement in the war without the politics. There are three sections on Africa and as with Harry’s book, it opens up aspects of the global war little considered before (US, China, Russia).

Thanks to Ann Crichton-Harris for bringing After the First World War by Quentin Holbert (History Today, Jan 2018) to attention. Ann is the author of 17 Letters to Tatham available from GWAA.

MA Dissertation on the expansion of the KAR 1914-1918 (1966)

Anyone looking for UK Cabinet Papers concerning World War 1 in Africa can access them online through the History Lab (has other correspondence too USA and UK including WW2)

With a British Library user card/log-in you can now access some African newspapers online. Papers covering the war years include: Gold Coast Leader (1914-1918); Gold Coast Nation (1914-1918), Gold Coast Independent (June 1918- ), East African Standard ( – Oct 1915), Leselinyana La Lesutho (1914-1918), Nyasaland Times (1914-1918), Beira News and East Coast Chronicle (Sep 1917 – ), Beira Post ( – Aug 1917), O Africano (1914-1918), Luderitzbuchter Zeitung (1914-1918), Swakopmunder Zeitung (1914-1918), Lagos Standard (1914-1918), Lagos Weekly Record (1914-1918), Nigerian Chronicle ( – Mar 1915), Nigerian Pioneer (1914-1918), Nigerian Times (1914-1918), Colony and Provincial Reporter (1914-1918), Sierra Leone Guardian and Foreign Mails (1914-1918), Sierra Leone Weekly News (1914-1918), Ilanga Lase Natal (1914-1918), Imvo Zabantsundu (1914-1918), Indian Opinion (1914-1918), International (Sep 1915 – ), Izindaba Zabantu (1914-1918), Mafeking Mail and Protectorate Guardian (1914-1918), South African Outlook (1914-1918), Tsala Ea Batho ( – Jul 1915), Uganda Herald (1914-1918), Livingstone Mail (Jan 1916 – ), Buluwayo Chronicle (1914-1918), Rhodesia Herald (1914-1918)