This historic book may have numerous typos and missing text. Purchasers can download a free scanned copy of the original book (without typos) from the publisher. Not indexed. Not illustrated. 1901 edition. Excerpt: ...a low ridge, called Brakfontein, and a small detached hill named Vaalkranz. Buller's idea was that if he could seize this small Vaalkranz, it would enable him to avoid the high ground altogether and pass his troops through on to the plateau beyond. He still held the ford at Potgeiter's and commanded the country beyond with heavy guns on Mount Alice and at Swartz Kop, so that he could pass troops over at his will. He would make a noisy demonstration against Brakfontein, then suddenly seize Vaalkranz, and so, as he hoped, hold the outer door which opened on to the passage to Ladysmith. The getting of the guns up Swartz Kop was a preliminary which was as necessary as it was difficult. A mountain battery, two field guns, and six naval twelvepounders were slung up by steel hawsers, the sailors yohoing on the halyards. The ammunition was taken up by hand. At six o'clock upon the morning of the 5 th the other guns opened a furious and probably harmless fire upon Brakfontein, Spion Kop, and all the Boer positions opposite to them. Shortly afterward the feigned attack upon Brakfontein was commenced and was sustained with much fuss and appearance of energy until all was ready for the development of the true one. Wynne's Brigade, which had been Woodgate's, recovered already from its Spion Kop experience, carried out this part of the plan, supported by six batteries of field artillery, one howitzer battery, and two 4.7 naval guns. Three hours later a telegram was on its way to Pretoria to tell how triumphantly the burghers had driven back an attack which was never meant to go forward. The infantry retired first, then the artillery in alternate batteries, preserving a beautiful order and decorum. The last battery, the Seventy-eighth, remained to receive the...
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Arthur Conan Doyle is one of the best loved writers in the English Language, mainly for his Sherlock Holmes character, but he also wrote historic non-fiction, adventure, other detective and mystery, and personal stories, all to great acclaim.
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