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July 31, 1912.
[By W. A. GLEAVE.]
Buller's Return.—Enthusiastic Welcome.—Speech at the Mayor's Banquet.—The Freedom of the Borough.—Sir Redve Royal Canadians.—" Klne of the Old Stock."—A Striking Incident.
to his Troops.—Arrival of the
With the formal annexation of the Transvaal it was thought at home that the end of the war was in sight, but unhappily such was far from being the caoe. With the rout of the Boer main armies the campaign entered on a new phase, the enemy resorting to harassing guerilla tactics, which for a time met with signal suoc-'ss. We shall not soon forget the prowess of De Wet and his trusty followers. It was, however, merely a case of uselessly prolonging the agony. The Boer hopes of inter-vention by the powers were doomed to disap-pointment, and sheer desperation alone provoked the continuance of the unequal struggle. The Boer losses could not be replaced, but every gap in the British ranks was quickly filled up, and fresh luttalions of troops continued to leave Southampton to take part in Lord Kitchener's great sweeping movement, which ultimately brought hostilities to an end. Towards the close of the year 1900 many of the officers who had had commands in the larger operations returned to England—notable amongst the number being General Bailor and later, Lord Roberts.
Like Sir Ciecrgc White, General Sir Redrew Buller had an enthusiastic luynecoming. Ho arrived at Soutluunpton on the Dunvegan Castle on the evening of Nov. lOUi, 1900. He had a great reception on landing at the Docks and proceeding to Radley's Hotel (now tlie site of tho R.M.S.l*. Company's office), where lie spent tho night. By special invitation he Attended tire Mayor's banquet at the South Western Hotel, where on the call 1 of Alderman (now Sir) George {Hussey lus 1 .health was heartily drunk to the accompaniment of musical honours.
Sir Bed vers made a characteristic response. He had maintaimd all his life, he said, tliat there was one reason that made it dfiairaXile for an Englishman to leave England, and that was the pleasure it gave him to return homo again. The OencraT^Wtrcspouding, by n-quest, to the least of the Navy, An my, and Beteu ve forces. "I have," he said, "been serving now for nearly twelve months with England in arms, with England putting forth her Ik**, strength, to assert dominion to which, whether by right of conquest, or by right of purchase, or by right of treaty, she was alwdutely and dually entitled. For ten montlis I have been in the middle of thaf dispute. and. I can say that new in the past period of England's histisy has England been represented by more gallant men: WJietlier they were Navy, Army, or Volunte-ers it was all the same. They were fighting for a com-mon objext: they were equally brave, and were equally willing to lay down their liws for Uia old country. One of the leason* that made these nuti willing to do Ami if needs l*e die, was that they knew that the people in the old ct^mtry at homo were looking after
them, and that is really the secret of the | long strength of a ration. In the desire to support, the men at the front Southampton has not been behind."
After expressing his thanks to tho company for the heartiness of his welcome, and the way they had »tood by the troops at the front, Sir Red vers returned to his hotel, where he was serenaded for several hours. In response to demands for a speech he at length appeared at one of the hotel windows,. but lus words were drowned by the cheers of the crowd.
The town at night presented a brilliant appearance. Mt\si of the tradesmen had decorated their establislimcnts, while tho' principal hotels were resplendent with coloured flags. 'Welcome to the saiiour of Natal" formed the phraseology of more than one illuminated de-vice, and it was not until midnight that tho multitude dispersed.
Tlie following day the freedom of the borough was conferred on the gallant General, in tho Hartley Hall, the arrival of Sir Red vers being heralded by the ringing of the bells of Holy Rood. Inside the Hartley the scene was an inspiring one. A distinguished gathering was there to pay tribute to one of the bravest men who had ever filled a soldier's uniform.
Tl»e Mayor voiced the feelings of the as soniblage when he said how proud Southampton was to confer its frVeelotn on such a distinguished soldier of the Queen.
After signing the Freeman's Roll Sir Redvors recalled the circumstance that exactly thirteen months had elapsed since he embarked for South Africa. He drew a vivid word picture 1 of his journey home, describing how after loarv-JUg--Madcria eacli day became more peaceful and placid, and in pointing a simile hoped that from that time onward such would bo their experience until the end of the war. He went on to express the hope—a hope that is, happily, gradually being fulfilled— that the war would have the result of producing a liappy, prosperous, and peaceful South Africa.
as I live I shall try to prove myself
worthy of the honour you have paid me."
On behalf of the Chamber of Commerce Mr. J. T. Hamilton, the president, subsequently presented an appreeiatory address to the General, associating the Chamber with the hearty congratulations of the citizens upon his safe return from South Africa. The address pro-
"The chivalry you displayed in electing to defend Natal, and the heroic persistence which characterised your iepcat«l ami finally successful efforts to relievo Ladysmith, appealed
pitals. In fact they had "all work and no glory." Four of their number were told off to do duty at Langmsn'e Hospital, whore Dr. Cenri* Doyle labouml, while the nut went ,to No. 10 General Hospital. After his experience of South Africa he would never complain of the F.nglish climate again. The flies were terrible. If they put down a cup of tea on the table, Wore they could drink it a dozen ftice would bo drowned in it, and il they left a" piece of bread ou the ground a swarm locusts soon gathered round it. Amongst thov | patients they attended were many Boers, to huao pluck he bore generous tribute.
by day with the fervent hope that you would save the gallant garrison. Wo are glad to recognise that through the indomitable courage of the officers and men under your skilful leadership; Natal was saved from being completely oveiTun bv the Boer invaders."
In acknowledging tho address General Buller said he was an advocate of the change made some years previously when Southampton became the principal pi at for military embarkation in the South of England. Tho war had proved that there was no port which afforded as great advantages in that respect, and he trusted the trade and commerce of Southampton would always prosper.
Tho General had a great send-off from tho West Station. The local Volunteers joined in the demonstration, and Sir Resdvors left with very happy recollections of his brief sojourn
At Aldershot. aiul in London and Exeter, he was alio triumpliantly received.
Tiro Household Cavalry and Canadian contingent were heartily gieeted on their return from the fray. Many friends luwl journeyed to Southampton to meet them, and lie fore tho Canadians entrained they were paid a worthy compliment.«K«t SlcOwgw StewrL j — a)ld who was amongst thewe on the quayside, expressed a desiie to adekvsa the men, and with Colonel Otter's compliance, find off this happy U> the ]>ersonal n«4e, he ohaerved little speech : —
ight/h&ye done at the front
party of Hampshire Volunteer Engineers, on react ung I>url«sn served with the Natal Field • Force. They were attached to 37 Company of V the R.E.'s, and accompanied General Boiler in his advance, repairing railways and l»ridges, and keeping open the lines of communication. On one occasion they were nmrly uiptorcd by Boers at Vryheid, but a party of Lancashire^ ] mads a timely sppear^nev and drove the enemy
Mr. V. E. Arvher Burton was another Trojsa who saw active service. He was in Rhodesia , when tlvo war broke out, and voluntceered for twvioo with tha Bhodcaian Regiment under CoL ! Plumor, taking part in the operation* which led up to tho relief of Mafeking.
A splendid example of the loyalty of tl* troops was furnished at Netley Hospital on Christmas Day. A number of visitors took the "Tommies" a few extra luxuries on that oc* camion. One ward in particular contained men with shocking wounds—the worst cases imsgia* I able. As the party were about to leave thia particular ward one poor' fellow rose In his bed and said : We must do honour to the Queen, Miss." To a man they all rose from their beds, as far am they wore aide, and, coming \ to attention, joined in singing the National Antliem. The whole scene was meet touchingly
Passing on tluit whateve he was more tlian rewarded by tho reception Southampton had be*-n g«wd enough to give him. He felt a gratitude motV than ho could I express. , And then he—like the Greatheart he wad—whilst disdaining credit for liisown deeds, put in a generous word for the brave, loyal .troops who served under him. "Hard things have been said of the Army, of their .training, ami of the way operations have been carried out, but I believe wlieu the history of the war is fairly written and thoroughly understood, it will be found that the Army has liad far greater difficulties to contend with tlum any other army, oppose-d to an equally civilised enemy, has experienced." He spoke of the language difficulty, and enumerated otlier respects in which our tny»p* were liandicappud, but iu the long run they had Ixen overcome bv the valour and discipline of the Britiedi a#my. He declared with pride that no oilier nation co.ihl have sent out within a year be-, tween six and seven thousand miles, au expedition of the size that had bevn sent from England, or conducted the war in the manner it had In en can iiel thn ugh by. our troops. They might well be p'reud of that feat. In concluding, he said: It is a proud day for me to he enrolled as.a freeman of Southampton, and as
An unique se-ene was witnomkxl at tho Docks wlien tlie first detachment, numlxring 200 men, of B.P.'s" force*, eJfirially known as the Sooth African Constabulary, embarfted en the Oro-Lava. They were all in civilian dress. Soma wore fio.k nets and silk hats, while otlfra we n* arrayed in garments which contrasted. strangely with the object of tlieir voyage, but as they stood at attention to answer tho roll call they looked a fine body of "K en brings "i,\ al|a|)tft| foP t|H. *,.rk they were soon to |»erfoira. |
' "Royal Canadians. On the part of your contraries of the Southern Division I desire to give you a hearty welcome home, for home I hop6 it is in the hearts of nil of you. Though it is not ydOr particular home/ at any rate it is a home that feels home-like towaids you,
thai lias rejoited in your deed* and your" bravery ,wst ».» much as it-has done in that of our own people. There i* an old adagt
kino hame." Mer, this war has brought many jn hjj f(>f^ |>f 5 000 XVas enrolled, and bef.
kiiitt ol U» rl(jlit «.rt, kiiw „i)illg Uu,v undfrw'wil riding and rtwotiitg WW
kmc hame togethc of tlie old slock, kine of the old breed, and I am thinking that if in the future the Standard i* ever waved abi'ttd again, their will lie inony kino Li rally round that Standard, who will not coma hame till a' is qmet witliout .-umI tlie byraf are fu' within.' " ,
at Aldendiot.
Wat-011 CheyiH*, in describing tho various m,th"ds refuted to hy the *>ldier» at the front in unnding tlu-ir ragged elotlies, re-called how on ,*i«- a Tommy em the
uiwroli WW going in .1 deplorably Litt. cod ^
sWe. As was no cloth handy to maka a pafcli, in oidir to make himself r«*pfCtaM# ; lie naiewivwl tin- idea ,,f utilising a s-juare out Pr. I'm .is. wj»o was in charge of the South- ,,f a biscuit tin: He pierced- four
anipt 11 ainhiibnce minting* ut after I)r. I.amhr holes, and with the aid of striii^, fastened it on >. lift tin in, in dew 1 i hi 11% t{w- work t, ie^l even "more dudly dangers in the Ism
: rshed by tlnw wlio heard and saw him." Dlt. M RV1SS EXPKKIKNCKS.
of the South I)r. Lauder
(To be continued.)
nr VifAreii' .■rttfrhtfri'/i AK r ___.

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