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The last great cavley charge 100 years ago. Options
Tovarish
Posted: Wednesday, November 1, 2017 12:22:40 AM

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Location: Booligal, New South Wales, Australia
The Battle of Beersheba was commemorated yesterday, 100 years since to charge by the Australian Light Horse.

The charge is considered to be the last great cavalry charge in WWI, capturing Beersheba from the Ottoman Turks who had held this country (Palestine) for the previous 300 years.

Our Prime Minister commemorated in Israel the bravery of the 4th Brigade and our Australian Light Horsemen and their horses The Walers, name

so because they came from New South Wales.

The Walers were sourced for the Australian Light Horse and the Indian Mounted army, for their stamina and endurance in harsh climates.

Most Stations bred their own horses with a Foundation Stallion, usually the English thoroughbred with station mares of mixed breeds.

As much as I love the English Thoroughbred horses they are a fast but soft breed and extremely highly strung and were our classed by the

Australian horses.

Most of the Light Horse men were country or farm men used to riding all day and shooting ferals from their mounts, so very adaptable to their purpose.

The sadness of this victory came when the Aussies could not bring their gallant horses home, for contamination and bio-security reasons.

Many of the men opted to put their horses down rather than leave them in the hands of the local population who had shown their lack of

regard for animals and their future care.


http://www.awmlondon.gov.au/battles/beersheba
TheParser
Posted: Thursday, November 9, 2017 4:49:34 AM
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Tovarish wrote:


Many of the men opted to put their horses down rather than leave them in the hands of the local population who had shown their lack of

regard for animals and their future care.






Very interesting and informative post.

Thanks.


*****

That one sentence really speaks volumes to me.
Jyrkkä Jätkä
Posted: Thursday, November 9, 2017 5:24:34 AM

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Thanks, Tov!

Let's not forget The Charge of the Light Brigade. It was a charge of British light cavalry against Russian forces during the Battle of Balaclava on 25 October 1854 in the Crimean War.

Tennyson wrote a poem of the charge only after six weeks after the event.


The Charge of the Light Brigade
Alfred Lord Tennyson, 1809 - 1892

Half a league, half a league,
Half a league onward,
All in the valley of Death
Rode the six hundred.
“Forward, the Light Brigade!
Charge for the guns!” he said:
Into the valley of Death
Rode the six hundred.

“Forward, the Light Brigade!”
Was there a man dismay’d?
Not tho’ the soldier knew
Some one had blunder’d:
Theirs not to make reply,
Theirs not to reason why,
Theirs but to do and die:
Into the valley of Death
Rode the six hundred.

Cannon to right of them,
Cannon to left of them,
Cannon in front of them
Volley’d and thunder’d;
Storm’d at with shot and shell,
Boldly they rode and well,
Into the jaws of Death,
Into the mouth of Hell
Rode the six hundred.

Flash’d all their sabres bare,
Flash’d as they turn’d in air
Sabring the gunners there,
Charging an army, while
All the world wonder’d:
Plunged in the battery-smoke
Right thro’ the line they broke;
Cossack and Russian
Reel’d from the sabre-stroke
Shatter’d and sunder’d.
Then they rode back, but not
Not the six hundred.

Cannon to right of them,
Cannon to left of them,
Cannon behind them
Volley’d and thunder’d;
Storm’d at with shot and shell,
While horse and hero fell,
They that had fought so well
Came thro’ the jaws of Death,
Back from the mouth of Hell,
All that was left of them,
Left of six hundred.

When can their glory fade?
O the wild charge they made!
All the world wonder’d.
Honor the charge they made!
Honor the Light Brigade,
Noble six hundred!



In the beginning there was nothing, which exploded.
Romany
Posted: Thursday, November 9, 2017 3:24:32 PM
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JJ - Funny, isn't it, how so much of the language in that poem has entered into the English language? Even people who don't know the poem will declaim: -

"Theirs{ours} is not to reason why, theirs[ours] but to do or die"
"Canon to the right of us, canon to the left of us"
"Into the valley of death rode the 600"
etc.

Tov:-when I first read the statistics of how many British horses were left behind and were subsequently butchered I never returned to the subject again.

Yet my Great Grandfather (reported Missing Believed Dead,) turned up 6 months after the War bringing with him a half-wild Arab stallion called Satan?
Tovarish
Posted: Tuesday, November 28, 2017 9:20:32 PM

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The great love of horses is ingrained in Australians and in the era of men fighting in WWI could possibly have been greater than it is today, there are many true stories

about our horses over the years but possibly none that touches the heart more than 'Bill the Bastard'.

https://billthebastard.org/history-bill-bastard/
Romany
Posted: Wednesday, November 29, 2017 5:56:52 AM
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Location: Brighton, England, United Kingdom

"Bill the Bastard"? Now you've roused my curiosity, Tov. Do tell.
progpen
Posted: Wednesday, November 29, 2017 8:10:37 AM

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Tovarish wrote:
The great love of horses is ingrained in Australians and in the era of men fighting in WWI could possibly have been greater than it is today, there are many true stories about our horses over the years but possibly none that touches the heart more than 'Bill the Bastard'.

https://billthebastard.org/history-bill-bastard/


Holy cow. That was a hell of a horse.

Nolite te bastardes carborundorum
Tovarish
Posted: Wednesday, November 29, 2017 6:37:42 PM

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The whole story gives me goose bumps.
Hope123
Posted: Wednesday, November 29, 2017 7:02:11 PM

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Thanks for the look back into history, folks. I finally was able to open the links.

Edited - the horse to me is the most glorious animal. Graceful, smart, powerful... I have pix of my siblings and me sitting on top a huge grey draught horse when we were not much more than toddlers. They were the work horses on the farm.

It is not the strongest of the species that survive, nor the most intelligent, but the one most responsive to change.
Tovarish
Posted: Thursday, November 30, 2017 7:42:11 PM

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The men of the WWI era would have used horses for most work and transport, it goes without saying they were good horsemen, my father was in the Light Horse as well as being a farmer.

We had a blacksmith shop on the farm where he forged shoes and hot shod all the horses, I had the job of pumping the bellows to the forge, not so easy when your little legs

came off ground when the bellows regained air.

My dad was driving horse team of six and eight horses as a small boy for most farm work and haulage.

The connection with all breeds of horses was normal.

In the Charge of Beersheba, the courage of the men and their horses won the battle.

My Grandfather was in the AIF in France and Belgium in WWI.
progpen
Posted: Friday, December 1, 2017 8:10:54 AM

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Location: Minneapolis, Minnesota, United States
Tovarish wrote:
The men of the WWI era would have used horses for most work and transport, it goes without saying they were good horsemen, my father was in the Light Horse as well as being a farmer.

We had a blacksmith shop on the farm where he forged shoes and hot shod all the horses, I had the job of pumping the bellows to the forge, not so easy when your little legs

came off ground when the bellows regained air.

My dad was driving horse team of six and eight horses as a small boy for most farm work and haulage.

The connection with all breeds of horses was normal.

In the Charge of Beersheba, the courage of the men and their horses won the battle.

My Grandfather was in the AIF in France and Belgium in WWI.


Family history like that has always impressed the bejeezus out of me. My own family history has always been mired in secrets and silence (not the mysterious secrets and silence, but the family infighting secrets and silence).

Nolite te bastardes carborundorum
Tovarish
Posted: Saturday, December 2, 2017 12:05:21 AM

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Location: Booligal, New South Wales, Australia
Oh, Progpen, we can choose our friends but we cant choose our relatives, dont worry we all have our cameos of disfunction and rellies we have struck off the Christmas card list.

My family connection was always with my father and my fathers side of the family, and that just happens to be the horse side of my life, this apple didnt fall far from that tree.
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