Basically, the whole of the Boer war topic for Edexcel.

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The Outbreak of the Boer War
There was a lot of unrest in 19th Century South Africa; Imperialism alongside the Scramble
for Africa resulted with unrest and resentment among most inhabitants.
The Colonisation of South Africa
17 Century Dutch invaded Cape, migrated and clashed with Bantu Tribes.
Napoleonic Wars of 18th & 19thC Britain seized Cape as a strategic move as a stop off port
to India.
Some Britons resettled there -Boers resented this, especially with the abolition of slavery
in 1833.
Boers left the British controlled area and set up NATAL.
Britain annexed Natal in 1840, so the Boers set up two new states: Transvaal & Orange
Free State.
As the British tried to unite the four white states to suppress the Zulus. This resulted with
the Zulu War 1879-80.
Boers agreed to fall under British rule for support because they couldn't finance defence.
British eventually managed to defeat the Zulus.
The First Boer War
With the Zulu threat removed, the Boers wanted their independence back however as
this war cost Britain so much money and 1,329 casualties, Gladstone (Liberal) was
reluctant to grant this.
Yet as the Boers had defeated 400 Brit troops at Majuba Hill in 1881 (1st Boer War,) the
Boers believed their show of strength had paid off however this was not true.
Gladstone's government was meant to grant the Boers independence eventually but
Kruger (Transvaal President) did not believe this, so as his ideology got more popular-
more people believed in standing up to Britain.
The Discovery of Gold
Vast gold deposits were discovered in Witwatersrand of the Transvaal in 1886.
By 1898 over 27% of the World's gold deposits originated from here and millions of
British Capital had been invested here.
This made the Transvaal much more important. It was the richest state in South Africa.
European and mainly Brit migrants fled here ( gold-rush). These were labelled as
As Kruger rejected Uitlander's request for rights i.e. voting, and when Kruger kept moving
the amount of years uitlanders had to wait to become citizens, they asked British for
British High Commissioner SIR ARTHUR MILNER used this as an excuse to invade the
Transvaal. ­ Supported by British Colonial Secretary JOSEPH CHAMBERLAIN.
The Transvaal becoming so rich was a threat to the British Empire, with such wealth-
Kruger could manage to take over the rest of S Africa.
As the Transvaal bordered with The Cape, British sent troops to South Africa and Kruger
threatened to declare war if they were not withdrawn.
Troops stayed and war was declared in October 1899.
Kacper K

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The Outline of the Boer War
Brief summary of the Second Boer War
Boer Offensives
1. Smallest & least important- Mafeking
Colonel Baden-Powell's small Br force held out against Boer commandos until May 1900
2. More important centre- Kimberley
British troops & Cecil Rhodes were cut off by Boer force under General Cronje
3.…read more

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Cronje surrounded and 4000 Boers forced to surrender at Paardeberg.
27th February 1900.
28th February Buller relieved Ladysmith after a well-planned methodological
British were learning rapidly.
Buller's successes are often overshadowed by his failures yet he proved his competence
later at the out-maneuvering the Boers in Natal where there was a more difficult
terrain than Roberts' in the West.
Roberts captured OFS capital, Bloemfontein in March.
Serious shortages of provisions and equipment.…read more

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The Course of the Boer War 1899-1902
The Anglo Boer War was fought by Britain and her Empire against the Boers. The Boers
were comprised of the combined forces of the South African Republic and the Republic of
the Orange Free State. The Boer Republics declared war on 11th October 1899 and the
conflict ended on 31st May 1902, duration of 2 years and 8 months.…read more

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The Impacts of the War
Reporting the Boer War
The Boer War sparked a press revolution. The mid-nineteenth century witnessed an increase
of sales of Penny Daily such as the Daily Telegraph launched in 1855.…read more

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War Correspondents
Most were generally uncritical of the War effort and often put out false information
to try and help Britain- by e.g. portraying Boers as cruel and heartless.
Winston Churchill- Reporting for the MORNING POST increased his fame, he
exploited his own capture and escape from the Boers in 1899. He was pro-war
however he gave honest accounts of defeats, deaths, injuries and qualities of
Bennett Burleigh- Reporting for DAILY TELEGRAPH criticised the army after
the Black Week.…read more

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Millicent Fawcett, Leading Suffragette was asked by the government to go to South
Africa and report the camp conditions following Hobhouse's reports.
Fawcett and her Comission approved Hobhouse's observations.
Recommended rations, hygiene and medical care to be improved in the camps,
administration should be done by civilians not military authorities.
Eventually, death rates fell to 6.9% and eventually to 2% FROM 34%.…read more

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Support and Opposition for the War
The majority of the British public, press, and politicians were pro-war. Yet a small group of
radicals took a very public and unpopular stance against the war. As reports of
concentration camps and British barbarity emerged, support declined.
Supporters pro-war Opponents pro-Boer
Politicians Conservative Party (in Power) ­ Section of Liberal Party including
mainly Imperial Secretary & David Lloyd-George who was a
Birmingham Tory MP Joseph famous opponent of the War.…read more

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British Imperialism and National Efficiency
Many Britons at the time of the Boer war were united in the view that to remain one of the
World's great powers, Britain had to maintain her Empire.
Support for the Empire as a result of the War
Patriotic and pro-Empire songs and poems were written such as Land of Hope and Glory
by AC Benson 1902.
Magazines such as Boy's Own Paper or the Union Jack were published to promote
patriotism and pride in the Empire.…read more

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Army Reform and Social Reform
The Boer war resulted with two major reforms being implemented in Britain. The defeats
Britain had suffered prompted Lord Salisbury (Tory PM 1902) to ask Lord Esher to
recommend improvements to the army. Later Richard Burton Haldane (Secretary of State
for War under Liberals) was to make further crucial reforms.
National efficiency argument contributed to Liberal's decision to pursue with Social Reforms
which increased state role in health and welfare of its citizens.…read more


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