Blue Flower

176 East of Grahamstown: The Battlefield of Draaibosch, 1877 Komga



The memorial is a rectangular column built of rounded local stones on a stepped plinth and with a triangular pediment. A bronze plaque, inscribed in English and Afrikaans was mounted on the north face of the memorial. A transcription of the English text of the plaque is provided below:

"It was here, during the First Battle of Draaibosch on 29th December, 1877, at the beginning of the Ninth Kafir (sic) War of 1877-78 that
Major Hans Garrett Moore (Connaught Rangers) while commanding a patrol of Frontier Armed Mounted Police and courageously assisted
by Sergt. D. Harber and Cpl. J. Court of that force, performed the deed of bravery which won for him the first Victoria Cross to be
earned on South African soil.

Erected in collaboration with the Historical Monuments Commission."

The memorial at Draaibosch was unveiled on 21st February 1957 by Cpl. Court's younger brother, Captain Oakley H. (Squash) Court, ex C.M.R., then aged ninety, who lived in East London and who passed quietly to his rest there on Sunday 28th July 1963, at the age of 95.

Information and copies of reference texts provided by Carl Vernon of Bonza Bay, East London, September 2014.


de Villiers, M. A. M. A Pot-Pourri of Komga History. Published Privately. 1989. pp 10

Komga Centenary Brochure: 1877 - 1977. History of Komga, 1977 pg 9.

Newey, A. F. (Tod) Draaibosch. The Coelacanth - Journal of the Border Historical Society. Vol 12, No. 1. April 1974. pp 27 - 34.

Submitted by William MARTINSON

Bronze plaque and NMC badge have both been stolen (William MARTINSON 2014).

All truncated references not cited and linked below are those of Joanna Walker's original text and cited in full in the 'Bibliography' entry of the Lexicon.