They either loved fighting, hated the British, or had high hopes of future rewards from their employers (and frequently all these motives were present at once). Back in the eastern Transvaal, the Irish brigaders were suffering. Col. C.A. The 27th Regiment of Foot discussed earlier, reappears during the Basuto War of the mid-1880s, together with the 6th Inniskilling Dragoons. On Wednesday 11 October, in a severe thunderstorm, the brigade crossed into British territory. Farmers trusted them to such a degree that they would leave their houses and cattle in their charge whilst they set out with their produce for Cape Town. Soon the Irish commando was ensconced on Pepworth Hill overlooking the besieged garrison town of Ladysmith, where there were members of the Irish Fusiliers, the Irish Regiment, the 5th Royal Irish Lancers and some of the Dublin Fusiliers, all of whom were very eager to get their hands on the ‘flying Fenians’ of MacBride’s Brigade. Eventually totalling a strength of just under 500 men of all ranks, it first served with the Colonial Division and was present at the siege of Wepener and operations around Lindley and Fouriesburg. After the capture of Mega in 1941. The Cape Town Irish Rifles may be said to represent the first predecessor of the South African Irish Regiment, in so far as it was the first indigenous South African unit with a distinct ethnic Irish component. The O' NEILLS of ULSTER are the oldest traceable family left in Europe. After some time at Amirya, the unit proceeded to Mersa Matruh on 23 May and remained in the vicinity until October. Colonel Blake became more distant from the unit and Major MacBride, his number two, increasingly became the de facto leader. Unlike MacBride and his men, Lynch had taken out Transvaal citizenship only after the war had broken out, thus laying himself open to this treason charge. Geni requires JavaScript! This precedence, however, may be elevated if a claim to an earlier date of establishment is officially recognized. In this form it returned to North Africa as a component of 6 South African Armoured Division, later serving in Italy. In recognition of its services during World War 2 the Battalion received the following battle honours: These honours were not awarded immediately upon publication of the official order, as was the case with other infantry battalions, because, at the time of publication, the unit was an artillery regiment and, as such, did not carry any Honours. Irish emigrants from the Midlands, Wexford and many counties of Ireland arrived in Argentina mainly from 1830 to 1930, with the largest wave taking place in 1850–1870. It is as well they did not fight alongside each other. It is also common in Africa and South America. An Irish Regiment leaving Johannesburg Aug/Sept 1914, Irish Regiments in the British Army Serving in South Africa, All the regular units of Irish origin in the British Army have served for a period of time in South Africa. So, too, did the 1903 Paris wedding of MacBride and Maud Gonne, who were married under the brigade’s flag by the brigade’s chaplain. Elements of the Irish Guards were to participate in the latter phases of the Anglo-Boer War, as components of a composite Guards Mounted Infantry unit. The Top 100 Surnames in Ireland. On Saturday, 29 January 1921, at Milner Park, Johannesburg, the South African Irish Regiment was presented with the King's Colour by Prince Arthur of Connaught, the (then) Governor-General of the Union of South Africa, in recognition of its service in German South West Africa. Nineteenth-century South Africa did not attract mass Irish migration, but Irish communities were to be found in Cape town, port Elizabeth, Kimberley, and Johannesburg, with smaller communities in Pretoria, Barberton, Durban and East London. ('Who will separate us?'). Slightly after the famine, but my great-great-granny was a Kennaway girl, a group of Irish girls, supposedly over 18, but granny was 16, who sailed aboard the ‘Lady Kennaway’ to South Africa in 1857. Despite the attraction of the new brigade, some Irish, in the words of the Irish pro-Boer campaigner Michael Davitt, ‘have the good sense to remain with their Boer officers’. During the Zulu War of 1879, the 88th Regiment of Foot (Connaught Rangers) was involved, whilst the 94th Regiment of Foot (later 2 Bn Connaught Rangers) served in the First South African War of Independence of 1880-1881. There were two sets of fathers and sons. Welcome to South African Ancestry: We would suggest that first time visitors to the South African Ancestry website first do a search on the surnames that you are researching to see what records are available on the South African Ancestry database. Authority was granted by Defence Headquarters and Lt Col Brennan, VD (Volunteer Decoration), was appointed as Commanding Officer, with Maj Twomey as Recruiting Officer. It was denounced by one member of MacBride’s outfit as ‘fifty or sixty soreheads, greasers, half-breeds and dagos…a gang of hobos’. The Irish fought at the battles of Diamond Hill on 12 June and Dalmanutha on 27 August, but most of the time they harassed the British advance, most notably when they held the town of Belfast for several hours under heavy fire. The Irish commando was in the van of the Boer army when the town of Newcastle was occupied and looted. Hugenot Surnames All materials on this page are used with the kind permission of Pat Traynor. Brennan seated in chair and Capt (later Major) G.Twomey standing right. The South African Irish Regiment was a unit within 4 South African Infantry Brigade in Col Skinner's Northern Force and embarked from Cape Town on 21 December 1914. These men had a thorough knowledge gained from experience of all the roads, mountain passes, fords through rivers as well as a knowledge of the dialects spoken in the country. The Table shown here gives a listing of the 100 most commonly names found in Ireland and their meanings. But MacBride had enemies and when news reached camp that a second and rival Irish Transvaal Brigade was being formed in Johannesburg by a newly arrived Irish-Australian called Arthur Lynch, some members of the original Irish commando went over to the new unit. (5), Autonomous South African Units shaped by Irish Influences. The Freedom of the City has been conferred upon the South African Irish Regiment by both the Johannesburg and Barberton Municipalities, in the former case cementing the long and close ties between the city and the Regiment. (ORIENTAL - 1841 M... ----------------------------------------------------------------- It's important to understand what's covered instead of assuming that every Web site and source is complete for every year and every name. Nevertheless, authority was granted for the formation of an artillery unit, to be designated 22 Field Regiment (South African Irish) South African Artillery. It is now common in South Africa. Each index and source covers a different time period. On 11 February 1915, the Northern Force came under the command of Gen Louis Botha. This unit was later engaged in the operations at Brandfort and in the surrounding regions. At the outbreak of World War 1 in August 1914 three officers met at the Irish Club in Johannesburg with a view to raising an Irish regiment from among the citizens of Johannesburg and its environs. This name was adopted in the 17th century by Wesselius Praetorius as a Latin translation of his previous surname Schulte. Although the first record of British Army units serving in South Africa cites the 78th Regiment of Foot (later 2 Bn Gordon Highlanders), who were landed at Simons Bay on 10 June 1795, the Irish were not far behind. Such a unit was formed in June 1946 and operated until 31 December 1959 as an artillery regiment, its members (drawn from ballots residing in Johannesburg) wearing the gunners' insignia. It is now common in South Africa. At a later date, a new badge minus the crown was produced in Pretoria, to be worn by all non-commissioned ranks, officers continuing to wear the original badge, minus the crown, which was of silver. These relay Dragoons protected their houses from runaway slaves and their cattle from beasts of prey. South African last names have a totally unique story. The records say the women from Dublin were obtained from “the usual sources”, which I … 7. Nelson is a western name, Rolihlahla is an African name and Mandela is derived from his clan, Madiba. Others, however, were determined not to vacate the town without a struggle and one of the fiercest firefights was in Orange Grove as the British army pressed the retreating Irish from street to street. We know the names of ninety-one casualties in the Irish commandos, thirty-one of whom were killed, twenty-three wounded and twenty-seven made prisoners-of-war. The original motto of the Regiment in 1914 was that of the Royal Irish Rifles (later the Royal Ulster Rifles), 'QUIS SEPARABIT?') This was not helped by the Boer army’s democratic structure and cavalier attitude to military discipline. Irish journalists worked on major newspapers and often edited them, the most important being Frederick St. Leger, founder and editor of the Cape Times. The Irish commando protected the guns on Pepworth Hill but also indulged in some fairly foolhardy horse-rustling activities on the British perimeter. The new combined Irish force now moved to the front line in the Orange Free State. HONORARY COLONELS, COMMANDING OFFICERS AND REGIMENTAL SERGEANT MAJORS Honorary Colonels. However, it should be remembered that the Irish military tradition with regard to the British was in the shape of a two-edged sword. A third of the Cape's governors were Irish, as were many of the judges and politicians. The casualties of the South African Irish were heavy, and included among its number the OC, Lt Col Dobbs; only 140 men escaped the disaster. Morale at this time was excellent. Some of the most popular Irish surnames in the US, explained By 1896 there were about 1,000 Irish living in the mining settlement of Johannesburg as well as others in Pretoria and in more far-flung dorps, such as Middelburg where Griffith edited the precursor to the United Irishman. As one would expect, a fair number of those in British colonial service in the sub-continent were Irish. Tempers frayed. Up to this point, the Irish contribution to the British military effort in South Africa had been discussed, whether this contribution was in the form of Irish units forming part of the regular British military establishment or autonomous ('colonial') units, as in the case of Driscoll's Scouts. Hence, the unit was in action three months after it was raised. Born: 23 Jul 1927 Died: 09 Aug 2017 Basil Daniel Vivian Hearne, Forever in our hearts dad! Cmdt Twomey decided that, in remembrance of the time when the Regiment was an Artillery unit, the top left handcuff button on the khaki jacket should be a chrome South African Artillery button. The Irish had fought well in the war. However, a green shamrock cloth patch was worn on the left-hand side of the hat or helmet. The South African Irish Regiment was allied in 1940 to the London Irish Rifles, and after the war, former prisoners-of-war met their comrades in London. But not all the Irish brigaders had left. However, despite this constantly changing complexion (which now, one assumes, has ended, with the firm establishment of the Regiment as an infantry unit in 1960) the echoes of the Irish tradition in South African military history remain a consistent feature of the Regiment's history. There were those with horses under Major MacBride and Captain McCallum and there were the ‘foot sloggers’ under Captain O’Connor and Lieutenant Ryan. They were Maj George Twomey, Capt J. Jeoffreys, and a Capt MacDonald. With the close of the SWA Campaign Active Citizen Force regiments were not permitted to proceed, as such, to other theatres of war. O’Connor 89%, Connor 9%, Connors 2% 5. He also won the first road race between Johannesburg and Pretoria. It is a matter of some pride to the Regiment that Maj Twomey's son, Cmdt C.A. (Please note that variants of the same surname are shown together with the percentage of the total. The Irish-English section, containing over 7,000 entries, gives the original form of the surname and its precise meaning, then its English equivalent and the former and present location in Ireland. Moreland, MC, trained at Premier Mine, being brigaded with the Imperial Light Horse and Pretoria Regiment. Ⓒ 2020 by Intellectual Reserve, Inc. All rights reserved. A third of the Cape's governors were Irish, as were many of the judges and politicians. Search each of the Websites and sources listed under the state(s) where your ancester lived. Driscoll, DSO, commander of Driscoll's Scouts during the Anglo-Boer War 1899-1902. In this form, it was involved in controlling the disturbances of 1960-1961 in South Africa. Presentation photograph to Mrs Louis Botha, Honorary Colonel of the Regiment. Garrisoning four towns besieged by the Boers, the regiment also incurred many casualties in the course of the battle of Bronkhorstspruit. Towards the end of the War Lynch's section was in action in the Barberton and neighbouring regions. According to Military Archives, the date of the formation of the unit is 1 December 1914. War service units were created for East Africa and Europe, and the South African Irish Regiment was formed, together with elements from other units, into the composite 9 South African Infantry ('Sportsmen's') Battalion. Soon the Irish lads were safe, but bored, in the mountains of the nearby Biggarsberg. One authority states that: 'Until the 20th February 1799 when it embarked for India, it is recorded that the appearance of the men was especially commented on. At the battle of Modderspruit, the Irish commando lost several men, including the eighteen-year-old Tommy Oates from Killarney, whose father was also in the unit. In 1891 the unit was absorbed into the Duke of Edinburgh's Own Volunteer Rifles as 'H' (Irish) Company. COETZEE Afrikaans. Other formations, such as Militia, Volunteers and Yeomanry have also seen service in South Africa either as units or as reinforcements for the regular forces, especially during the Anglo-Boer War of 1899-1902. 1. An Irish surname, a variant of Crosbie. South Africans' Geni Landing Site. The visit to Ireland in April 1900 of Queen Victoria had for a while dampened the Irish pro-Boer cause, but by mid-summer, the Boer colours were to be seen all over Dublin. There were the retailers, their profession dominated by Ulster Protestant-owned chain stores such as John Orr , William Cuthbert and R. H. Henderson - well-known names even today. Divided into two sections of 100 men each, led by Cols Blake and Lynch, it comprised mainly Irish Americans, whose motives varied widely. The Irish in South Africa played an important part of the European history and development of the country. This was one of a handful of foreign commandos raised to support the Transvaal and its sister republic, the Orange Free State. Finally on Sunday, 23 September 1900, they reached Komatipoort and the Mozambique border. Whether you're looking to trace your family crest or trying to trace your roots, we've got you covered. Cochran, who succeeded Lt Col Dobbs, was wounded. Later the Scouts formed part of 8 Division and were part of the force concentrated to oppose the incursions into the Cape Colony by the forces of Gen Smuts. In July the Brigade moved to Barberton for further training and, after being fully motorized, proceeded via Durban to Kilindini on the Llanstephan Castle. Here they faced Lord Roberts’ army of 45,000 men. Regardless of where your family immigrated; if you had a branch in South Africa, it’s history and records are worth exploring. When peace came in May 1902, most of the Irish had little choice but to make their way to Europe or America, where MacBride’s men had preceded them. MacBride and Blake took their unit to Johannesburg, where they were joined by fifty-eight members of an Irish-American ‘ambulance corps’ from Chicago and New York. On 1 January 1960, the Regiment reverted to its original infantry role and regained its old title, 'The South African Irish Regiment.' 2016 Family History is a new, free Irish genealogy education website, brought to you by the National Archives and site is aimed primarily at secondary school students, but can be used by anyone with Irish ancestors to learn how to use the multiplicity of online sources now available for family history. In one particular action at Wepener, in which Driscoll's Scouts assisted the Cape Mounted Riflemen, the Scouts had an adventurous and hazardous ride across open ground from their bivouac, being exposed to the concentrated fire of two Maxim machine guns, a pom-pom, small arms fire and, at the end, to a barrage of shells from a field gun, during their entire four kilometre ride. Irish Genealogy Services was set up and is run by a full time, Irish based professional genealogist with a background in Irish heritage (see About). Sergeant Majors Brehem, Foster and Owen with Italian prisoners. But the game was up and by mid-September 1900 MacBride could hardly control his men as they moved over the great escarpment and down into the hot and humid lowveld. Place names in South Africa include: Upington, Portevill, Caledon, Cradock, Sir Henry Lowry's Pass, the Biggarsberg Mountains, Donnybrook and Belfast. Irish Argentines are Argentine citizens who are fully or partially of Irish descent. On 26 December 1914 outposts of the South African Irish came into contact, and conflict, with German patrols. The motto echoes the history of the Royal Irish Fusiliers the First Battalion of which were known as the 'Faugh-a-Ballaghs', an honorary title conferred upon them during the Peninsular War (1809-1812). F.H. were brought to South Africa as slaves. The following Irish units served: 1 Bn Connaught Rangers 1 and 2 Bns Royal Dublin Fusiliers 1 Bn Royal Irish Regiment 1 Bn Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers 1 and 2 Bns Royal Irish Fusiliers 2 Bn Royal Irish Rifles 1 and 2 Bns Leinster Regiment 1 Bn Royal Munster Fusiliers 8th (Kings Royal Irish) Hussars 6th Inniskilling Dragoons 5th (Royal Irish) Lancers 45th (R Irish Hunt) Imperial Yeomanry 46th (Ulster) Imperial Yeomanry Corps support units (Artillery, Engineers, Medical) In 1900 Queen Victoria duly authorized the wearing of the shamrock on St Patrick's day, due to the tremendous public sentiment generated by the gallantry of the Irish troops in the war. When the British army was mopping up after the insurrection, they found rifles with Boer carvings on their butts. South Africa had not witnessed mass Irish immigration, nonetheless, in the mid-1890s, Dublin Castle officials noticed that numbers of advanced Irish nationalists were making for the unsettled South African, or Transvaal, Republic. Irish commando members fought in the battles of Spion Kop and Vaal Krantz, as well as in the final battle of Tugela Heights when Buller’s army, with its 5th (Irish) Brigade, broke through and relieved Antrim-born General Sir George White in Ladysmith. Indeed, they provided its first Magistrate, Capt Durnford, and many years afterwards supplied the Governor, Col MacLean. South Africa Online Genealogy Records This chart shows links to countrywide collections. some links lead to articles about immigration. Please enable JavaScript in your browser's settings to use this part of Geni. The unit was designated as the First South African Irish but, in fact, a Second Battalion was never formed, for men intended for this Second Battalion were drafted to the First. Join Geni to explore your genealogy and family history in the World's Largest Family Tree. Pro-Boer demonstrations were held, pro-Boer rioting occurred, the flag of the Transvaal Republic—the vierkleur—was to be seen in Dublin, where for a period there even existed a no-go area at night for forces of the crown. Regrettably, there is very little information available concerning the Cape Town Irish Rifles specifically, but it is hoped that further research will produce additional information. Irish Genealogy Hub is a voluntary group dedicated to publishing FREE Irish ancestry records online for anyone with Irish roots or Irish family history. Others returned home but later came out to settle in South Africa with their families. MacBride was in overall command. The modern Irish-Argentine community is composed of some of their descendants, and the total number is estimated at 500,000–1,000,000. Blake's section distinguished itself at Pepworth, near Ladysmith, where it stood its ground under a hail of British shrapnel, dragging a great deal of ammunition up the hill. In 1843 two companies of the 45th and one of the 27th Regiment of Foot pitched camp on Maritzburg Hill, naming the hill Fort Napier after Sir George Napier, the Governor of the Cape. Filed Under: ... Ancestry / Genealogy The badge was produced locally and worn on the cloth patch, and also as collar badges, this comprised a brass shamrock upon which was stamped 'S.A. The surname Cloete was first found in Hessen, where the family was closely identified in the early period of history with the feudal society which would become prominent throughout Europe. It is of interest to note that the appellation 'Sportsmen's Battalion' was largely due to the influence of Maj Twomey, who was extremely active in South African sport and prominent in the South African Amateur Boxing Association, the South African Athletics Association, and the South African Olympic Games Association. Until the end of November the survivors served with New Zealand forces; after this date, they rejoined the decimated Brigade at Mersa Matruh. WELKOM CUZZINS! Secondly, one notes the chameleon-like character of the Regiment, changing from an infantry to an artillery unit, and then reconverting to an infantry unit once again. This was particularly true of those Catholics who, during the course of the 18th century served as 'soldiers of fortune' (the 'wild geese'), and were particularly prominent in the 'Irish Brigade' of the French Army. Note: this is only a listing of who is interested in which South African Irish came into contact and. 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