Jump to content
Great War Forum

Remembered Today:

Sign in to follow this  
Matt Dixon

1st Kings African Rifles

Recommended Posts

Matt Dixon

Does anyone know of the movements of the 1st Kings African Rifles round about the 19th February 1917? Trying to research one of their men.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
paul guthrie

That's Idi Amins regiment. Tim Tawney sometimes works with the Noyes and Flanders Tours. Every time he mentioned KAR, I would pipe up with, " isn't that idi Amins' regiment"? It got to him.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Matt Dixon

Can't even begin to imagine why!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
tintin1689

No! Idi Amin was 4th Battalion - Uganda Rifles, 1st Battalion are Central African Rifles - from Malawi

You need to be careful with KAR battalions as they duplicate like the TA in wartime - 1st Bn had 1/1st, 2/1st, 3/1st and 4th/1st so your man could be in one of four places

You will need to have a look at Moyse-Bartlett's history of the KAR, I am afraid the books I have are not that specfic. The Naval and Military Press haveit and I am sure there is one in the National Army Museum library

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
paul guthrie

Be damned! Good thing Tim didn't know that! Do you remember when he took hostages and demanded the Queen come? She didn't but govt sent people to talk to them. Upon arrival they see Big Daddy about 300 lbs in a sedan chair carried by the hostages. He says, this is the new white man's burden! Pretty good.

You just can't get by making a mistake with this bunch!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
tintin1689

I remember that well, very,very scary man beneath the jester AND he wanted to marry Princess Anne

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest Howard Ray

The National Archives at Kew have the War Diaries of most regiments of Kings African Rifles for 1916 to 1918 (see WO 95/5318 to WO95/5369). There is also a document on the 1st KAR for Jan/June 1917 by Col Barton under ref CAB 45/22.

I read a few of these diaries over 3 hours on Friday in seeking an answer to my own problem. What is the name of your guy - I may just have seen his name in passing?

One for you. Do you know whether there is a record anywhere of British NCOs who served with the KAR? I know my guy served between 1913 and 1919 but I do not know when or with what regiment ot battalion.

If anyone can help please let me me know.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest Pete Wood

For your interest (?), I recently purchased (from a forum member) a MiD certificate for a Captain Ronald Madoc Tierney Rose, of 2/3 York and Lancaster Regt who was attached to the King's African Rifles.

The certificate says he was mentioned in a despatch by Smuts on 22.11.16.

The certificate is dated 1.3.20 and signed (facsimile, I'm sure) by Winston S Churchill.

Major RMT Rose was KiA 18.9.16 and is buried in Morogoro cemetery.

If anyone can please tell me which Battalion of the KAR my man was attached to, or any more about the action for which he was mentioned in despatches, I would be most grateful.

post-5-1075642670.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
bushfighter

Pete

I'm over 6 years late, but here is the information you want on Captain Rose:

THE MGETA RIVER, GERMAN EAST AFRICA

19th -24th September 1916.

On 1st September 1916 General Smuts’ British forces were south of the Central Railway that ran from Dar Es Salaam to Lake Tanganyika. By now the South African mounted troops and infantry were becoming worn out by the terrain, climate, disease, wet weather and the failure of the supply chain which General Smuts took little interest in. 3KAR, in the 2nd East African Brigade of General Hoskins’ 1st East Africa Division, was coming into its own and tackling the conditions well, as was the Gold Coast Regiment which was also in that Division.

The Germans decided to make a stand on the Mgeta River that runs eastwards from Kisaki, south of the Uluguru Mountains. On 18th September 1916 Lt Col T.O. Fitzgerald, CO of 3KAR, received orders to move from Nkessa’s Village on the Duthumi River and cross the Mgeta about 13 miles east of Kisaki, and then work west along the south bank of that river to make contact with the enemy. The Gold Coast Regiment was to follow in support a few hours later but was to stay on the north bank of the Mgeta. This operation was scheduled as a “demonstration” to assist the operations of Major-General Brits’ 2nd South African Mounted Brigade that had established a bridgehead across the Mgeta five miles east of Kisaki.

3KAR departed at 0030 hours 19th September but because of heavy mist that disorientated the guides it did not reach the Mgeta, which was four miles away, until 0630 hours. The river was in flood but luckily a waist-deep ford was found and the battalion was across the river by 0800 hours. An advance westwards was made and at 0900 hours a Schutztruppe picquet was located and driven in. Two and a half hours later the main enemy position was approached and incoming fire received. The bush was dense and the Germans were using scouts in trees to direct fire. 3KAR advanced a few hundred yards and reached a clearing that was impossible to cross due to intense enemy fire.

Lt Col Fitzgerald ordered his company commanders to dig-in where they were, and at around 1400 hours Captain R.M.T Rose was hit in the stomach whilst supervising the entrenching of his company. He died about 15 minutes later. A lull now occurred, allowing KAR scouts to go out a few yards where they discovered the German positions 200 yards away in a deep donga running down to the Mgeta. At 1700 hours a determined Schutztruppe attack was made that lasted an hour before it was finally beaten back. Lt Col Fitzgerald now used the hours of darkness to re-deploy his battalion into a perimeter bridgehead position with both flanks on the river. During the day he had lost one officer killed and 20 Askari killed or wounded.

Despite having constant land-line communications with Brigade Headquarters the battalion was not offered any artillery support from the many guns north of the Mgeta. It also became apparent that the South Africans, who should have made aggressive moves from their bridgehead, were not taking part in the battle. The three rifle companies of 3KAR were on their own. (The Official History states that a company of the Gold Coast Regiment crossed the Mgeta into the 3KAR bridgehead on 20th September, but neither the Gold Coast History nor the 3KAR War History make mention of such an event.)

On 20th September KAR patrols constantly searched for the enemy’s flanks and for his snipers who were as usual very active. 3KAR held its positions as did the Schutztruppe. On 22nd September a German gun fired a few shells into the perimeter but without causing damage. However that day a sniper killed native officer Adam Effendi. This was a heavy blow to the battalion as Adam Adetai Effendi had served for about 24 years in the unit and its predecessors, and he exercised a tremendous influence over the Askari. The following day Lieutenant H.B. Tupper-Carey was seriously wounded and five Askari were killed or wounded.

The Germans mounted an attack on the 3KAR perimeter on 23rd September but without conviction. This was perhaps a cover for the breaking of contact and a Schutztruppe re-location. On the following day the Gold Coast Regiment relieved 3KAR. The South Africans still had not joined the fight. Heavy rains now closed down the battlefield and 3KAR marched north to Tulo to rest and reorganize.

Captain Rose was first buried at the Brigade Camp at Nkessa’s Village with the KAR Mounted Infantry Company acting as the Firing Party, and later re-buried in Morogoro CWGC Cemetery. A promotion must have been approved before his death as the rank on his headstone reads Major. He was posthumously Mentioned in Despatches.

REFERENCES:

The King’s African Rifles by Lt Col H. Moyse-Bartlett

The Record of the 3rd Bn King’s African Rifles during the Great Campaign in East Africa 1914-1918.

The Gold Coast Regiment in the East African Campaign by Sir Hugh Clifford.

Official History, Operations in East Africa, August 1914 – September 1916.

The King’s African Rifles Mounted Infantry Company War Diary, September to October 1916.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
KONDOA

"Despite having constant land-line communications with Brigade Headquarters the battalion was not offered any artillery support from the many guns north of the Mgeta."

At this date, the guns capable of providing supporting fire at the range required were stuck at Ruvu River awaiting the completion of Sheppards Pass. The move forward from there of the larger guns did not occur until early October.

Roop

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Amgueddfa Corwen Museum

Pete and Bushfighter do I either of you object to me using this information in our Museum biography? Capt Rose is remembered on the Carrog Memorial and was the heir to the Rhggatt Hall estate. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
bushfighter

No objections whatsoever - please use whatever you want.   Harry

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Sign in to follow this  

×
×
  • Create New...