The Boer War took place between 1899 and 1902, just 15 years before the start of the First World War. Some 180,00 Britons , mainly volunteers , travelled 6,000 miles to fight and die in boiling conditions on the veld and atop ‘kopjes’. Of the over 20,000 who died more than half suffered enteric, an illness consequent on insanitary water. This book is an informative research guide for those seeking to discover and uncover the stories of the men who fought and the families they left behind. It looks in particular at the kind of support the men received if they were war injured and that offered to the families of the bereaved. Some pensions were available to regular soldiers and the Patriotic Fund, a charitable organisation , had been resurrected at the beginning of the conflict. However for those who did not fit these categories the Poor Law was the only support available at the time.
The book explores a variety of research materials such as: contemporary national and local newspapers; military records via websites and directly through regimental archives; census, electoral, marriage and death records; records at the National Archives including the Book of Wounds from the Boer War, the Transvaal Widows’ Fund and others.