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Major F D Baillie 4th Hussars
Jun 02, '21

Major Frederick David Baillie

Late of the Queen’s Own 4th Hussars

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The most expensive Britains figure I have! I paid £24 for it in the early 2000s. A CIV (City Imperial Volunteer) figure painted wrongly by Britains in 1908. It subconscious represents Major F D Baillie at the siege of Mafeking.

The siege of Mafeking still stands as one of the British Military's high achievements, especially during the depths of the badly handled Boer War. The successful defence and relief were a shot in the arm for the British public which had become all too used to defeats and reverses in South Africa. Leading the heroic defence of Mafeking was the Colonel Baden-Powell, whose ingenious new methods of keeping the defence going - such as an armoured train, a salvaged cannon, fake barbed wire - were to become part of his legend. Enduring the siege with Baden-Powell was the correspondent for the Morning Chronicle, F.D Baillie, a late major in the 4th Queen's Own Hussars; who wrote a day-by-day account of the siege from behind the defences. This edition benefits from numerous illustrations from the newspaper clippings of the time.

MAFEKING A Diary of the Siege









Prefatory Note

I must crave the indulgence of the public for producing a more or less rough form of diary in the form of a book, and it is only the interest which they have manifested in Mafeking which has induced me to do so. To the proprietor of The Morning Post I am indebted for his kindness in allowing me to re-publish the diary in book form. To the proprietors of The Daily Graphic I am indeed grateful for the sketches with which they have allowed me to supplement my diary. Such as it is, I dedicate it to all members of my dear old regiment, past and present. Four of us were serving there: myself, and Private Brierly, B squadron, now B.S.A.P., Private Williams and Private Lambart, D squadron (the former now sergeant), Protectorate Regiment, while the adjutant of the I.L.H. portion of the relieving force was Captain Barnes, also B squadron. These are only matters of regimental interest, but as the publication is dedicated to the regiment, I feel justified in giving these details.

F. D. BAILLIE, Major,

late 4th Queen's Own Hussars.

Siege of Mafeking

The siege of Mafeking was a 217-day siege battle for the town of Mafeking (now called Mahikeng) in South Africa during the Second Boer War from October 1899 to May 1900. The siege received considerable attention as Lord Edward Cecil, the son of the British prime minister, was in the besieged town, as also was Lady Sarah Wilson, a daughter of the Duke of Marlborough and aunt of Winston Churchill. The siege turned the British commander, Colonel Robert Baden-Powell, into a national hero. The Relief of Mafeking (the lifting of the siege), while of little military significance, was a morale boost for the struggling British.

British military staff at Mafeking


It was the smallest and dirtiest Queen's Birthday parade I have ever attended; nine all told, but "mony a little makes a muckle." We ran down to Taungs, where one way and another we were detained some twelve hours. I didn't mind. The Royal Welsh Fusiliers were there, and I found several old friends and acquaintances--Gough Radcliffe, R.H., Cooper (Royal Fusiliers), Broke Wright, R.E., the former railway staff officer. So into a cattle truck we jumped with one of the Welsh Fusiliers and some men and arrived at Kimberley 7 o'clock next morning, where I called on Sir C. Parsons, and had fish for breakfast at the hotel. Thus my journey was practically ended. It transpired that Vryburg was held by some half dozen of our forces, and that the remainder of the garrison was only sixty loyalists from the town population. It did not seem a large garrison, but apparently it was good enough. There was rather a curious coincidence at dinner at Orange River. I saw a man whose face I thought I knew, but I was mistaken; it was his likeness to his brother which misled me. He turned out to be Tom Greenfield's brother, who was down here sick, and to whom I had wired to meet me at Fourteen Streams, so that I could give him news of Tom. However, I struck him on the next river or so, so it didn't much matter.

It was sad to pass the Modder River and see our cemeteries--all English; so we passed on to Cape Town. And how jolly it was to see old friends; besides, we were able to tell our Mafeking people, womenfolk, good news of their husbands.

Three pleasant days there, and then everybody came to see us off by the Norman, which we nearly missed. The voyage passed without much incident. Everybody on board was more or less personally interested in the war, and there were a good many Boers and pro-Boers on board. On Saturday, short of Madeira, the Briton signalled the news of the fall of Pretoria. Tremendous rejoicings on board on the part of the British, while the Dutch were correspondingly depressed and seemed rather sad; some of them wept into the sea.

The further I got from the seat of war the less animus I felt. So to Madeira, where we arrived about midnight, and the news was confirmed with particulars. We got many newspapers. On to Southampton--more victories; many valuable officers killed. It is really sad to take up a newspaper; one sees friends killed in every fight. Thus we arrived in London at 9.15 on the 15th June, having left Mafeking 11 a.m. the 20th May.


Robert Baden-Powell, 1st Baron Baden-Powell

Lieutenant General Robert Stephenson Smyth Baden-Powell, 1st Baron Baden-Powell, OM, GCMG, GCVO, KCB, KStJ, DL (22 February 1857 – 8 January 1941), was a British Army officer, writer, founder and first Chief Scout of the world-wide Scout Movement, and founder, with his sister Agnes, of the world-wide Girl Guide / Girl Scout Movement. Baden-Powell authored the first editions of the seminal work Scouting for Boys, which was an inspiration for the Scout Movement.

Educated at Charterhouse School, Baden-Powell served in the British Army from 1876 until 1910 in India and Africa. In 1899, during the Second Boer War in South Africa, Baden-Powell successfully defended the town in the Siege of Mafeking.

Several of his books, written for military reconnaissance and scout training in his African years, were also read by boys. In August 1907, he held a demonstration camp, the Brownsea Island Scout camp, which is now seen as the beginning of Scouting. Based on his earlier books, particularly Aids to Scouting, he wrote Scouting for Boys, published in 1908 by Sir Arthur Pearson, for boy readership. In 1910 Baden-Powell retired from the army and formed The Scout Association.

The first Scout Rally was held at The Crystal Palace in 1909. Girls in Scout uniform attended, telling Baden-Powell that they were the "Girl Scouts". In 1910, Baden-Powell and his sister Agnes Baden-Powell started the Girl Guide and Girl Scout. In 1912 he married Olave St Clair Soames. He gave guidance to the Scout and Girl Guide movements until retiring in 1937. Baden-Powell lived his last years in Nyeri, Kenya, where he died and was buried in 1941. His grave is a national monument.,_1st_Baron_Baden-Powell

Armoured Train

An armoured train is a railway train protected with armour. Armoured trains usually include railroad cars armed with artillery, machine guns and autocannons, some also had slits used to fire small arms like pistols and rifles from the inside of the train, this feature was especially prevalent in earlier versions of armoured trains. For the most part they were used during the late 19th and early 20th centuries, when they offered an innovative way to quickly move large amounts of firepower. Most countries discontinued their use – road vehicles became much more powerful and offered more flexibility, and train tracks proved too vulnerable to sabotage as well as to attacks from the air. However, the Russian Federation used improvised armoured trains in the Second Chechen War of 1999–2009.

Early History

Armoured and armed trains saw use during the 19th century in the American Civil War (1861–1865), the Franco-Prussian War (1870–1871), the First and Second Boer Wars (1880–1881 and 1899–1902). During the Second Boer War, Winston Churchill, then a war-correspondent, was travelling aboard an armoured train on 15 November 1899, when a Boer commando led by General Louis Botha ambushed the train. The Boers captured Churchill and many of the train's contingent, but many others escaped, including wounded soldiers who had been carried on the train's engine.

Second Boer War

The Second Boer War (Afrikaans: Tweede Vryheidsoorlog, lit. "Second Freedom War", 11 October 1899 – 31 May 1902), also known as the Boer War, the Anglo-Boer War, or the South African War, was fought between the British Empire and two independent Boer states, the South African Republic (Republic of Transvaal) and the Orange Free State, over the Empire's influence in South Africa. The trigger of the war was the discovery of diamonds and gold in the Boer states. Initial Boer attacks were successful, and although British reinforcements later reversed these, the war continued for years with Boer guerrilla warfare, until harsh British counter-measures including a scorched earth policy brought the Boers to terms.

Frequency and Resonance

I met Hamish Fraser in 1968 when I was aged 13. George Gush recommend him as I keen to expand my knowledge of wargames. Hamish was South African by birth but Scottish by heritage and he lived with his mother at 27 Ramsgate Road, Margate, Kent.

I help him with his Bayonet Journal and wargames.

Bayonet Publications

Published in Margate by Hamish Fraser editor of Bayonet, the Journal of the Horse & Musket Society. No copyright date is given but they seem to date from c.1970-72

1 World War One

2 The English Civil War (by Mike Wall). 22 pages, 12 of which are rules, the rest being details on organization. No figure scale given but suggested unit size of 42 men per infantry regiment indicates 1:20 or thereabouts.

My First Publication

In 1979 I was seriously ill and whilst recovering I went to an 350th anniversary exhibition in Den Bosch. I then translated a Diary of the Siege of 1629 from Dutch to English, selling 50 copies!

Dutch to English, selling 50 copies!

Dutch Connection

Beginning in ‘73

I was camping in Canet-del-Mar outside of Barcelona, España when a Dutch guy said that Dutch was too difficult to learn! I accepted that as a challenge.

I was learnt Dutch and worked there 1976 and 1978 was my second natural language. During my stay I picked this book.

Johannes Meintjes

De Boerenoorlog in beeld

Foto's en tekeningen van de Tweede Zuidafrikaanse vrijheidsoorlog (1899-1902)


Nederlands, 172 pagina's, Fibula-Van Dishoeck, Haarlem, 1978

Baden-Powell Connection

Little did I know that Baden-Powell (the Founder of The Scouts) built his retirement home here in Folkestone for him and his wife. Milden House, on the Leas – a place I've walked past many a time and never knew.

Young Winston

Winston Churchill serve in the 4th with Major Baillie.

Toy Soldiers

Circa 1990 I produced 300 Britains recast figures including an CIV relief column! Mirroring that original Britains wagons set.

One of over 40 moulds - I called them Memory Fossils

Britains are Best

Same Age


Jun 02, '21
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