Rorke's Drift

A modern rendition of the battle by American artist Keith Rocco deals with various aspects. It shows the store house in the background with its thatch roof intact. Bromhead is in the centre firing his pistol at a prominent warrior who is adorned in Zulu ceremonial tassels which were probably not actually worn in battle. Commissary Dalton, who was a driving force in the defence, carries ammunition boxes and storekeeper Louis Byrne offers a drink to Corporal Scammell of the Natal Native Contingent. Byrne was shot dead immediately after this act of kindness. The wheeled water barrel can be seen on the right; this was brought into the perimeter with great difficulty to help the thirsty defenders. In front of that, on the extreme right is Chaplain Smith who acted with great bravery throughout.

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by Stephen Luscombe