South Africa
Nature of the Boer War
Mafeking township
Relief of Mafeking
at Mafeking

Maffra, Victoria, Australia
News of Mafeking's relief
Weekend celebrations
Mafeking Hill Park

List of servicemen 

Boer War



































Page modified 27/01/2012                    

Mafeking (South Africa), the Boer War (1899-1902) and Maffra's connection

[Note: this is not a history of the Boer War but an explanation of Maffra's association with it]


     The photographs below are held in the collections of the Stratford & District Historical Society and the Maffra Sugar Beet Museum.  Text has been supplied courtesy of Stratford Society.
     An individual's rank is indicated here at the time the photograph was taken; that rank may have changed later.

Standing: Private Weir & Private Tweedie
Seated: Private J. Beecher & Private

     These men served in the Boer War in the Second Victorian Contingent.

     William Weir was invalided back to Australia, arriving in June 1901.
     James Tweedie was promoted to Corporal in March 1901.  He was killed in action during the First World War.
     Private Beecher's brothers also served in South Africa, joining the Third Victorian Contingent (see below).
     William Cochrane was promoted to Lance Corporal in August 1902.  On his return to Australia he was appointed commander of a troop at Wangaratta.  He returned to South Africa in the Fifth Contingent as a Lieutenant and remained there to join the Australian Commonwealth Horse.  He finally returned to Australia in August 1902.

     They were all known to be members of the Victorian Mounted Rifles but are not wearing the appropriate uniform for that group.  In all probability this photograph was taken in South Africa with the men wearing their battle dress.

SDHS photo

Standing: Private H. Beecher, Private A.
                 Beecher, Private Jones

Seated: Sergeant Pruden

     These Stratford men were members of the Bushman's Corps which formed the Third Victorian Contingent.

     Shoeingsmith Henry Beecher was invalided back to Australia, arriving in May 1901.
     Sergeant David Pruden was was killed in action at Kosters River in the Transvaal on 21st July 1900.  He is buried in the nearby Rustenburg Cemetery; a memorial tablet is situated in the Stratford Mechanics' Institute.  The portrait (below left) shows him as a young man wearing the uniform of the Victorian Mounted Rifles while the card below celebrates his memory.



Photos: L, SDHS; below L, SDHS; below, MSBM