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Category: Smith’s work in Africa, including the Second Anglo-Boer War

These papers cover the time Smith spent in South Africa, as part of the Army Veterinary Department serving in the Second Anglo-Boer War from 1899-1902.There are letters written from Smith to his wife, which cover his arrival in South Africa and his movements around the various fields of battle until June 1900, when Smith started an official war diary and was stationed at Pretoria and then Kroonstad, managing Field Veterinary Hospitals. The papers record a great deal of detail about Smith’s day to day experiences. The letters provide more information about the battles, conditions, scenery, and humorous anecdotes, whereas the diary records Smith’s professional activities and responsibilities and reports on facts and figures of the hospitals.

20 – Letter to Mary Ann Smith from Frederick Smith, Oct 1900

This is only one page of a letter, the rest of which has been lost. In this letter, Smith writes on the following subjects: cooking rice and bread pudding; supply of food; chickens; cats; requesting tobacco. 11 Oct – the anniversary of Kruger’s declaration of war.

21 – Letter to Mary Ann Smith from Frederick Smith, 29 Oct 1900

This is only one page of a letter, of which the rest has been lost. It has sections redacted in black ink, which are assumed to be on personal subjects and not related to Smith’s work in South Africa. The letter is undated, but Smith mentions the death of Prince Christian Victor, which occurred on the 29 October 1900. In this letter Smith writes on the following subjects: the recent death of a fellow officer [Major Hanwell?]; the death and mourning of…

22 – Undated partial letters to Mary Ann Smith from Frederick Smith, c. Jul-Aug 1900

These are three folios from separate letters from Smith to his wife. None of them include salutations or valedictions, and it is unclear when they date from. It is possible that they are pages from letters catalogued earlier in this file. Partial letter marked ‘3’ – Smith writes on the following subjects: Smith occupying a house;…

Frederick Smith’s Official War Diary Book B – 22 Sep 1900 to 14 Jan 1901

Diary entries include: The diary starts on p10 of the volume commencing on 22 Sept 1900, when Smith is stationed at Kroonstad. Smith leaves Kroonstad for Bloemfontein on 18 Dec, where he stays for one week, leaving for Cape Town on 25 Dec where he arrives on 27 Dec. There are diary entries for most days. This volume chiefly relates Smith’s daily work managing the care of horses used by the Armed Services, via the set up of Field Veterinary Hospitals…

Frederick Smith’s Official War Diary Book C – 15 Jan 1901 to 26 Feb 1901

Diary entries include: This volume starts with a continuation of the entry for 14 Jan 1901 from the preceding volume when Smith is stationed in Cape Town. There are diary entries for most days.The volume chiefly relates to Smiths daily work overseeing the allocation of staff and resources to the various veterinary hospitals and remount depots in the vicinity of Cape Town. Locations mentioned include: …

Frederick Smith’s Official War Diary Book D – 27 Feb 1901 to 10 Jul 1901

At the time of writing this diary, Smith is stationed in Cape Town except for a three month period (March-May) when he seems to have been based in the Kimberley area. The volume ends on 10 July 1901. There are diary entries for most days except for the period from 24 April – 22 May when Smith has injured his right arm (as he explains on 22 May). The volume chiefly relates to Smith’s daily work overseeing the allocation of staff and resources to the various veterinary hospitals and remount depots in the vicinity of Cape Town. Locations mentioned include: …