Bookplate of Walter Howorth Greenly to front pastedown; signed "WH Greenly / 12th Royal Lancers" on front free endpaper.
The previous owner of this volume, Walter Howorth Greenly (1875-1955) was an ambitious young cavalry officer during the Anglo-Boer War, who served as adjutant of the 12th Lancers, winning a DSO. His rise through the officer ranks was swift, and by November of 1916 he was commander of the 2nd (Cavalry) Division. However, recognising that command of a cavalry division was a dead-end in the new reality of trench warfare with sophisticated weapons, Greenly successfully sought a senior post in the infantry, gaining command of the 14th (Light) Division, at which point his career faltered. His entry into a new kind of fighting exactly coincided with the thrust of the German Spring Offensive of 1918. Losses were severe, and John Bourne, editor of "Douglas Haig: War Diaries and Letters", quotes Field Marshal Sir Douglas Haig as stating that "Greenly ... went off his head with strain." Bourne further observes that Greenly's Who's Who entry makes no mention of his command of 14th Division.
Demy 8vo; black cloth sides with gilt-lettered red cloth back; pp. xix + (i) + 462; numerous plates, folding maps, battle plans and panoramas (all present) and endpocket freehand sketches (all present). Moderate wear to cloth (backstrip splitting along upper joint) and boards a trifle bumped; upper hinge starting; some creasing to fore-edges; moderate foxing, which is somewhat more pronounced in the endpapers and outermost leaves. (Hackett pp. 105, 148; Mendelssohn I, p. 617)
'An account of French's cavalry operations excluding the campaign in Natal. Chapters relate to Colesberg operations, the relief of Kimberley, operations to the fall of Bloemfontein and Pretoria, and the campaign in eastern Transvaal to November 1900. The narrative is preceded by an informative introduction relating events to the investment of Ladysmith. Among appendices are observations on cavalry, notes on reconnaissance, on transport and remounts in war. The volume is liberally illustrated with folding maps, panoramas and plates. Loose sketches are contained in a separate pocket.' - Hackett: South African War Books - An Illustrated Bibliography. 'Few works on the war have been prepared with such thorough attention to detail, and every chapter is accompanied, at its conclusion, by a series of plans, maps, and illustrations of an elaborate nature. The appendices consist of articles on "Cavalry," "Reconnaissances," "Remounts," and "Transport." The volume was written by a gentleman who was not a soldier by profession, and belonged to the somewhat hotly abused class of "capitalists and mining magnates."' - Mendelssohn.
- Size: 8vo