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PT-Long_Tom_Gun_Shortened-1900
Long Tom Gun being shortened

TODAY IN KIMBERLEY’S HISTORY 10 FEBRUARY

UPDATE: 10/02/2017

10 February 1887, St Alban’s Anglican Church consecrated.
10 February 1900, Funeral of George Labram.

Pictured is a Long Tom gun used by the Boers; the barrel of Long Tom being shortened in the Pretoria workshops – this is the gun that came to Kimberley; and Kamfersdam Mine tailing from where Long Tom fired into Kimberley.

DID YOU KNOW

From the Siege of Kimberley diary of Winifred Heberden

Feb 10th.

This morning there was comparative peace till just before breakfast, when it began hotly again, and the shells fell 50, 80, and 100 yards from us into the Market Square. And again, further off, as the gun turned round. Shells then fell by the Mounted Camp, cut a horse belonging to the ambulance driver in two, and did no end of damage to different buildings.

PT-Long_Tom_Gun-1900

Long Tom Gun

There was peace again at lunch time for an hour, during which time people rushed up to the soup kitchen and rushed off again with their share. The shops have all been closed for the last few days, and whilst shelling is going on the streets are utterly deserted though crowds of men and little boys are lurking behind walls at the time of the report, who dash out to examine the damage done after the fall of the shell, and to pick up the inevitable pieces.

All afternoon we have been horribly bombarded, and some women are half frantic, though the majority are wonderfully ‘game’. It is noticeable that those who are unable to eat horse-flesh, either from prejudice, or real dislike, are the most nervous and unstrung for these cases are living practically on mealie ‘pap’, tea, bread, and siege soup – and not much of these either, and such poor diet seems bound to pull them down mentally and physically.

After dinner there was a lull, and Jack decided to ride down to Beaconsfield to try and get us rooms out of the line of fire of the 100-pounder, and in a comparatively safe position from the smaller guns.

He was particularly lucky, and found just the right place or, rather, one that, after the hotel, would be heaven; though it stood not far below the Sanatorium. We are to go into this house to-morrow with two other people and their children living here, as there are three rooms to spare.

PT-Kamfersdam_Mine-1900

Kamfersdam Mine

At 8 o’clock this evening the funeral of Mr Labram took place and to the horror and disgust of everyone, the body was just leaving the hospital when boom went the big gun and a shell dropped close to the poor remains.

In some marvellous way information of the time of the funeral had been carried out to the enemy and they took this fiendish means of showing their hatred of anything connected with De Beers. They would know, of course, that an immense crowd would attend the funeral, particularly Mr Rhodes, and the De Beers people.

Whilst the sad service was being held at the cemetery another shell fell close by, and so on about every 15 minutes till Sunday arrived. They seem to respect Sunday. But they cannot respect a funeral.

Notes: Winifred was staying at the Grand Hotel on Market Square; the Mounted Camp was on Kenilworth Road; the cemetery where Labram was buried is Gladstone cemetery; the Sanatorium is now the McGregor Museum.

10 February 1887, St Alban’s Anglican Church in Gladstone (De Beers) consecrated.

DID YOU KNOW
Winifred Heberden’s Siege Diary – Feb 10th 1900.

This morning there was comparative peace till just before breakfast, when it began hotly again, and the shells fell 50, 80, and 100 yards from us into the Market Square. And again, further off, as the gun turned round. Shells then fell by the Mounted Camp, cut a horse belonging to the ambulance driver in two, and did no end of damage to different buildings.

There was peace again at lunch time for an hour, during which time people rushed up to the soup kitchen and rushed off again with their share. The shops have all been closed for the last few days, and whilst shelling is going on the streets are utterly deserted though crowds of men and little boys are lurking behind walls at the time of the report, who dash out to examine the damage done after the fall of the shell, and to pick up the inevitable pieces.

All afternoon we have been horribly bombarded, and some women are half frantic, though the majority are wonderfully ‘game’. It is noticeable that those who are unable to eat horse-flesh, either from prejudice, or real dislike, are the most nervous and unstrung for these cases are living practically on mealie ‘pap’, tea, bread, and siege soup – and not much of these either, and such poor diet seems bound to pull them down mentally and physically.

After dinner there was a lull, and Jack decided to ride down to Beaconsfield to try and get us rooms out of the line of fire of the 100-pounder, and in a comparatively safe position from the smaller guns.

He was particularly lucky, and found just the right place or, rather, one that, after the hotel, would be heaven; though it stood not far below the Sanatorium. We are to go into this house to-morrow with two other people and their children living here, as there are three rooms to spare.

At 8 o’clock this evening the funeral of Mr Labram took place and to the horror and disgust of everyone, the body was just leaving the hospital when boom went the big gun and a shell dropped close to the poor remains.

In some marvellous way information of the time of the funeral had been carried out to the enemy and they took this fiendish means of showing their hatred of anything connected with De Beers. They would know, of course, that an immense crowd would attend the funeral, particularly Mr Rhodes, and the De Beers people.

Whilst the sad service was being held at the cemetery another shell fell close by, and so on about every 15 minutes till Sunday arrived. They seem to respect Sunday. But they cannot respect a funeral.

From Kimberley Calls and Recalls on Facebook By Steve Lunderstedt

Aeon Computer Kimberley

About Steve Lunderstedt

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