King's Own Royal Regiment Museum

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Sergeant Arthur Jones of the 2nd Battalion, King's Own Royal Lancaster Regiment, was extra-regimentally employed during the South African War to the Atlantic island of St. Helena to guard Boer Prisoners of War.
These photographs are from an album he owned.


Photo Gallery

The Island of St. Helena and Boer War Prisoners page two

During the South African 'Boer War' 1899-1902 the Atlantic Island of St. Helena was used as a Prisoner of War camp.  Over five thousand Boer POWs were held on the island, camped on 'Deadwood Plain' and 'Broad Bottom'.  The first 514 POWs landed at St. Helena from the 'SS Milwaukee' on 14th April 1900, including General and Mrs Cronje and his military staff.  The General and his wife were accommodated in 'Kent Cottage'.  Further POWs arrived, 394 on board 'Lake Erie' in April 1900, 1099 on board 'Bavarian' on 1st May 1900, and the last ship was the 'Mongolian' which arrived with 649 Prisoners of War on 3rd February 1901.

More arrived in 1902 with 1050 on board the 'Orient' and others on board the 'Britannia'.  Peace came in June 1902 and this was followed with the return of the POWs, the first of which on board the 'Canada' on 26th June 1902.

Sergeant Arthur Jones, number 4507, of the 2nd Battalion, King's Own Royal Lancaster Regiment, was 'extra-regimentally employed' to St. Helena between 20th February 1901 and 3rd November 1902.  He obtained this album of photographs which includes over one hundred images.


Rural street scene, Jamestown, St. Helena.
Accession Number KO1466/10-011


View of Jamestown, St. Helena.
Accession Number KO1466/10-012


St. Helena.
Accession Number KO1466/10-013


The Boer General Piet Cronje who was held prisoner of war at Kent Cottage on the island of St. Helena from 1900.
Accession Number KO1466/10-014


Group of British soldiers and others on St. Helena.
From information kindly supplied by Reitse Keizer:
Sitting from left to right: Gerrit Reitzes Keizer (secretary, from Holland, born in 1873, in Peperga, Friesland, died in 1940 in Grand Rapids, USA; General P A Cronje (1836-1911); and his wife, Hester Susana Visser (1840-1903); Frans Jacob Labuschagne (Adjutant, (1848 Natal, died 22 Jan 1902 on St. Helena).
In front of them: Pieter Arnold Conje jr. (grandson); Charley (servant).
The soldiers behind are from the 4th Militia Battalion, the Gloustershire Regiment, who had been embodied on 11th January 1900 for service during the South African War.  They embarked for St. Helena on 2nd April 1900.  They provided guards for the Boer prisoners of war at Deadwood Camp and Broad Bottom Camp.  They also furnished the guard of Non-commissioned officers at Kent Cottage, over General Cronje and his family.
Accession Number KO1466/10-015


View of St. Helena.
Accession Number KO1466/10-016


View of St. Helena.
Accession Number KO1466/10-017


Jonathan in around 1900-02.
Jonathan is the sole survivor of three tortoises that arrived on St. Helena in 1882.  As a mature tortoise he at least 50 years old when he arrived on the Island, from the Seychelles, his minimum age now has to be around 176 years old.  He is the oldest inhabitant of St. Helena and is claimed to be the oldest living tortoise in the world.  He is owned by the St. Helena Government and lives in a specially built plantation on the governor's land, along with five other, much younger, tortoises (David, Speedy, Emma, Fredricka and Myrtle).  Jonathan has lived through eight British Monarchs and a staggering fifty prime ministers!
He remained nameless for the most part of his residence on St. Helena until named by Governor Sir Spencer Davis in the 1930s.
Jonathan is still alive and well in October 2009.
Accession Number KO1466/10-018


St. Paul's Church, St. Helena.
Situated in the country, on the hill at the back of Plantation House, the church is capable of accommodating about 500 people. 
Accession Number KO1466/10-019


Tented Prisoner of War Camp on St. Helena during the Boer War.
Accession Number KO1466/10-020

St. Helena and Boer War Prisoners page one
St. Helena and Boer War Prisoners page two
St. Helena and Boer War Prisoners page three
St. Helena and Boer War Prisoners page four
St. Helena and Boer War Prisoners page five
St. Helena and Boer War Prisoners page six
St. Helena and Boer War Prisoners page seven
St. Helena and Boer War Prisoners page eight
St. Helena and Boer War Prisoners page nine
St. Helena and Boer War Prisoners page ten

Images are copyright, Trustees of the King's Own Royal Regiment Museum.
 You must seek permission prior to publication to any of our images.

2009 Trustees of the King's Own Royal Regiment Museum