July 2021

I’m often asked if there’s more to discover about the war in Africa – hopefully these newsletters are evidence of what more there is to discover. However, for this one, I’ve included some more obscure data sources which cover the war years. The conflict had wide-reaching tentacles.

First, an update on the Uncommemorated Project from CWGC. As part of the next steps, CWGC are looking for a Field Researcher to be based in Nairobi – see the website for details including job description.

Three talks on the war in Africa delivered at the British Military History Conference organised by National Army Museum, Western Front Association and British Commission for Military History. Talks are by Anne Samson, Ian van der Waag and Rob Johnson.

Some war time Pathe footage involving South Africans (not all years are correctly annotated)

Lists of plants and other relevant botanical info known around World War 1 in East Africa (Amani Research Institute)

Malaria in World War 1 – more than East Africa, includes statistics

Medical services in Northern Rhodesia during World War 1 by Cripwell

Domestic equines in Tanzania – including use in World War 1

Interested in the weather in Africa during the war years? This might be of help – list of weather stations across Africa; links to documents

Kionga Triangle stamps from 1916; and a postal history of German stamps in East Africa

Other Portuguese documents covering the war in Africa

Medals for those who served in East Africa

Livingstone Police Memorial

One of our members is looking to find a new home for their history collection. The recipient(s) are asked to cover the postage/delivery costs from Canada. If you are interested in the collection please let me know.
Africa books - GWAA

June 2021

A somewhat eclectic collection of bits this month.

Beit Al Amani or Zanzibar Museum – before (2011) and after (2018). The Museum was built as a memorial to those who lost their lives in WW1.

Frank Cundall’s Jamaica’s part in the Great War – includes involvement in East Africa.

p258 on has information on Australians who served in Africa during the Great War. Matthew Smith, The Relationship Between Australians and the Overseas Graves of the First World War (2010)

Force Publique medals issued 1926 commemoration of Cameroun, Tabora and Ruanda

Belgian Congo in the 1914-1918 war (Portuguese)

Selection of diary accounts including some from Africa

HMS Talbot in East African waters

Although this does not deal with mapping during the war years, the pre and post war mapping information may be of use for those interested in maps of East Africa.

May 2021

It’s been a quiet month, relatively speaking…

In case you haven’t seen the CWGC report into the Inequalities of Commemoration, this was released on 23 April. If you’ve only read the press reports on the issue, it is worth reading the report and especially the CWGC response regarding future action. The report shows the diversity of Africa and decisions made at the time and is grounded on documentary evidence.

Natal military sites of interest – some cover World War 1

Where are the guns?
This question seems to be doing the rounds again. Here is some a posting on a Konigsberg gun (there’s more in April 2019), The May Jackson, a screw-gun in Northern Rhodesia (The Northern Rhodesia Journal has an article and Tim Wright has also written about it – you can sign up for a free account if you don’t have one. There are numerous articles available on the First World War in Africa.) the May Jackson’s current location in Zambia needs confirming. If you have an idea please let us know.

The team in Tsavo are doing more trips. Dates are: The dates are as follows (all Fri, Sat and Sun):
• June (25th, 26th and 27th).
• July (23rd, 24th & 25th)
• Aug (27th, 28th & 29th) -provisional.
For further details, contact Tom Lawrence or James Willson.

The list of names of people involved in WW1 in Africa has been tidied up and renamed to better reflect its contents. It now contains over 38,500 names from all theatres with more being added. Belgian and German details still need to be finalised while Portuguese names are starting to feature. A couple of legacy sheets remain under In Memory – these names are slowly being added to the main database which covers the whole of Africa.
If you have names which are not on the list and are happy to share the info, please email me.
Similarly regarding the Bibliography of books, articles, chapters etc. These lists are in the process of being checked and tidied still.