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In Memory of Chief Yeoman of Signals George Smith, DSM, Royal Navy 1904-28 (Part 4 of 7)



1. Naval Service Record 1904-28

2. North Russian Expeditionary Force 1919

3. HMS Vanquisher, Baltic Cruise 1921

4. HMS Curlew, America & West Indies 1922-25 (here)

5. Point Honda Disaster 1923

6. HMS Durban, China Station 1926-28

7. Royal Naval Shore Signal Service 1929-48

his son, Ordnance Artificer George Smith

son-in-law, Lt Cdr (A) James Summerlee MID, RN

as Chief Yeoman of Signals, at Niagara Falls 1924  (click to enlarge)   return to inter-war, 1918-1939

by his grandson, Gordon Smith,

My grandfather appears to have been the "official" ship's photographer. His original captions are included (with added notes in brackets.)


Dating the photographs has not been easy, and it has not been possible to link them to HMS Curlew's movements.
Key: * - estimated from itinerary dates.






HMS Curlew, as originally built, at speed (Alister Greenway)


Most of the (incomplete) movements are from The Times archives, for which I am grateful. Dates reported in the press included "planned", "due", arrived and departed. Plans change, due dates move, and neither may always agree with reported actuals. In addition, dates from the photographs (in brackets) also may not match. However, the general movements of CURLEW can be followed in outline.





7 September - returned from China where she was relieved by newly-completed DESPATCH




24 November - recommissioned (Capt L Stanley Holbrook MVO) at Devonport for North American Station. Due to leave soon as she is ready for Bermuda to relieve CONSTANCE

(Christmas - at Bermuda)




16 January - left Bermuda for Antigua

20 January - arrived Antigua

21 February - left Demerara (Georgetown, Guyana) for Trinidad

22 February - arrived Trinidad

7 March - left Trinidad

21 March - left Demerara for Trinidad

22 March - arrived Trinidad

28 March - left Barbados for Bermuda

25 May - left Bermuda around this date

(5 June - passed through Panama Canal)

8 June - arrived on Pacific side


23 June - "The light cruiser CURLEW, Captain L. Stanley Holbrook, M.V.O., of the 8th Light Cruiser Squadron, completes today the first stage of her six months' cruise in the Pacific, and leaves San Pedro, California, for Astoria, Oregon. An outline of the cruise was published in The Times on May 17, and the places to be visited, with dates of call, are now furnished. The cruiser will leave Astoria on June 30, carrying out the following itinerarv:- Prince Rupert, B.C., July 2-5. Esquimalt, Vancouver Island, July 7-21;- Vancouver, July 21-27 ; Honolulu, August 4-11; Washington Island, August 14; Fanning Island, August 15; Christmas Island, August 16-17; other ports in the Sandwich Islands will be visited between August 21 and 31, when the CURLEW will return to the Californian coast. She is not due to re-pass the Canal until October."


23 July - arrived Vancouver

(c 26 July - President Harding's visit to Vancouver)

5 August - arrived Honolulu

(16 August - Washington Island., Line Islands, now Teraina island, Kiribati, south of Hawaii)

25 August - arrived Honolulu

7 September - "after visiting several Pacific islands, due to arrive today at San Francisco and remain until 12 September. Been on Pacific side since 8 June, only ports to visit before returnIng through Panama Canal are Santa Barbara and San Diego"


(9 September - seven United States "Clemson" class destroyers went ashore in poor visibility on the West coast and my grandfather had photographs of them in his collection - see U.S. Navy's Disaster at Point Honda)


11 September - left San Francisco

3 October - left Balboa, Panama

11 October - due to return to Bermuda, absent from base for 4 1/2 months




24 January - arrived Minatitlan, Pacific coast of Mexico

8 March - arrived Port au Prince, Haiti (football match in Haiti)

11 March - left Port au Prince for Jamaica

5 April - arrived British Guiana (Guyana)

(10 April - at Demerara, British Guiana)

14 April - left British Guiana for Trinidad

(3 May - at Hamilton, Bermuda)

23 July - arrived Trinidad

29 July - "rebel action in San Paulo, Brazil. Has just been ordered to proceed to Brazil from Trinidad"

(10 August - Barbados)

26 August - arrived Halifax, Nova Scotia

6 September - left St George's Bay (between Nova Scotia and Cape Breton Island) for Quebec, Canada

8 September - arrived Quebec

9 September - left Quebec for Montreal

10 September - left Wistaria (British Columbia? - possibly error for "left with sloop WISTERIA") for St Johns, Newfoundland

mid-September - arrived Montreal

(14 September - visit to Niagara Falls)

2 October - (Capt Stanley Holbrook MVO) due to leave Montreal today after 3 weeks

2 October - arrived Bermuda

24 October - due to visit Baltimore




(3 January - arrived Key West, Florida)

10 January - left Key West with CONSTANCE

13 January - arrived Belize, British Honduras (Belize) with CALCUTTA (flag), CONSTANCE and CAPETOWN

16 January - left Belize with CALCUTTA, CONSTANCE and CAPETOWN for Jamaica

(18 January - entering Jamaica)

30 January - arrived Port of Spain, Trinidad with CALCUTTA, CONSTANCE and CAPETOWN

10 February - 8th CS due to leave Trinidad for various ports. CURLEW to Martinique

13 February - left Martinique

14 February - 8th CS due to arrive Barbados

(17 February - SS Canadian Navigator destroyed by fire at Barbados)

21 February - 8th CS due to leave Barbados. CURLEW to Dominica instead of Nevis

21 February - arrived Dominica

(22 February - visits in Dominica)

end of February - 8th CS return to Bermuda

11 April - at Bermuda under repair

20 April - repairs due to complete. (Going to South America in July to meet Prince of Wales.)


9 May - "In view of the CURLEW, Captain H. D. Bridges, D.S.O., being under orders to proceed to South America in July to meet the Prince of Wales on his arrival from Africa in the REPULSE, she will not take part in the visit of certain ships of the Eighth Cruiser Squadron to ports in the St. Lawrence. The CURLEW will, however, accompany the CALCUTTA, flagship of Vice-Admiral Sir James Fergusson, and the CONSTANCE, Captain C. V. Robinson, to Halifax. Leaving Bermuda on June 6, she will be off the Nova Scotian port from June 11 to 15. She will then return to Bermuda, arriving on the 18th, and on July 4 will leave for South America. She is due at Pernambuco from July 15 to 20 and Montevideo on July 27. The Prince will embark in the CURLEW from the REPULSE on August 7, and proceed in her to Montevideo and Buenos Aires." (for full account of the Prince's tour of Africa and South America)


6 June - four cruisers of 8th CS leave Bermuda for annual summer cruiser to Canadian ports. Goes to Halifax

9 June - arrived Halifax with CALCUTTA, CONSTANCE and WISTERIA

11-15 June - due to be off Halifax

18 June - arrived Bermuda

4 July - left Bermuda for Pernambuco

20 July - left Pernambuco (was due to be there 15-20 July)

27 July - due to arrive Montevideo

7 August - Prince of Wales to embark from REPULSE and proceed to Montevideo and Buenos Aires

17 August - arrived Buenos Aires


8 September edition - Photo (undated) - "OFF MONTEVIDEO.-The Prince of Wales receiving a Uruguayan deputation on board the Curlew on arrival at Montevideo, the first place of call in his South American tour. He stayed two days in the Uruguayan capital before proceeding to the Argentine."


1 October - returning home from South America with REPULSE, conveying Prince of Wales, expected at Devonport on 15 October

8 October - due to call at St Vincent (presumably Sao Vicente, Cape Verde Islands)

12 October - due to touch at Funchal, Madeira island

15 October - due to arrive Devonport and recommission to return to 8th CS under Capt H D Bridges and with Portsmouth crew




28 October - left Devonport for Bermuda (reported 14 September eidtion - "to carry relief half-crew for MALABAR, depot ship at Bermuda")


The Photographs

*possibly 1922 - December 22nd Atlantic.
Taken from foretop control by your humble


Christmas 1922 - Bermuda, Water polo
1923 - (dad) Bermuda

(Bermuda - 1923)

(on reverse) To Mrs E Smith, 39A James St, Devonport, England – My Dear E. Just one of my PCs (post-cards) to let you know that I have just received the parcel of handkerchiefs & pencil for which thanks very much, also to George for the sacrifice. Sorry to rob him of it, so will see what I can pick up for him down South in return for it. The box smelt very nice, some style now what. This card is one of a series of 3 I took of the ship, selling very well too. Fondest love dear to all yours to the end. George XXX. PS The destroyer is the Patriot (Canadian Boat)


(possibly Bermuda area - 1923) HMCS Patriot in tow of Curlew during evolution “take in tow”. You’ll see Ted Edsell on forecastle through a glass


3 May 1924 - Hamilton Bermuda (all of it). I took this bunch of photos last Sat


Bermuda Dockyard from Grassey Bay. Cross marks where we are now laying alongside our usual billet. Quite an interesting outlook isn’t it. What you see is nearly all of it.

Bermuda Dockyard from ship looking south. This is all I can look at all day, so when you see Curlew arrived. Bermuda, this is it? (PS) Am afraid its rather a dark print, but there’s only one left until I do some more

HMS Curlew's Rugby Team
HMS Capetown’s Rugby Team

Rugby scrum up, B.A.A. Ground Hamilton, Curlew v Capetown, 3 pts each


Cenotaph during the afternoon (Bermuda with Cabinet Building behind - little changed from recent images)
Ship from roadway where photo of Cenotaph was taken (Bermuda)(now used by cruise ships)
*including February/March 1923

Public Buildings, Georgetown, Demerara


Group I took of the party at Better Hope Sugar Estate, Demerara. Cut from 1/2 plate

including February/March 1923, April & July 1924, January/February 1925

General view of the pitch lakes, 110 acres. The part that looks white is just water that has collected in the different pits after they have been dug out. Trinidad


View of gorge, two hours hard climbing in the burning sun to get this one. Native boys carried the camera & plates though. The slopes are covered with cocoa trees & limes. Trinidad

*June 1923 to end of year

5 June - HMS Curlew in Gaillard Cut, Panama Canal. One I copied from that large one I sent you some time ago. Am getting quite hot at copying
HMS Curlew, Gatun Locks, Panama
PACIFIC CRUISE 1923 - continued
US & Canadian West coast

Columbia Highway, Mr Boothe, Attorney & Barrister at Law (believed Columbia River Highway along Oregon-Washington State border)


*possibly June - Court House Square, Seattle


*7-21 July - Esquimalt Dockyard from upper bridge (Note the activity of maties), Vancouver Island, BC


*21-27 July


c 26 July 1923

In June 1923, President Warren Harding went on a cross-country "Voyage of Understanding," to meet ordinary people and explain his policies. He became the first president to visit Alaska but while travelling south through British Columbia and Vancouver - when these photos were taken - became seriously ill. Within a week he had died in San Franciso, aged 57



Marines and Curlew Bluejacket guard of honour, Stanley Park, Vancouver. USS Hendersons band lining up for march back, President Hardings visit


President Harding speaking at Stanley Park, Vancouver, one week before he died


President Harding walking between the lines after speech. Couldn't get a better view owing to pressmen pushing and crushing

PACIFIC CRUISE 1923 - continued

*4-11 August - Pineapple plantation, Honolulu


*4-11 August - Surfriding at Waikiki, Honolulu


16 August - after coconuts at Washington Island, Pacific Ocean. Awfully rude aren’t I. Rase in centre sat down. Middle of Pacific after Honolulu

16 August - got about 2 pints of milk out of that coconut, Washington Is (now Teraina island, Kiribati)
*January/February 1924

Minatitlan from Aquila to wharf

Some of the houses, Minatitlan, Mexican Pacific Coast (note the washing drying on the grass)


That's me in the Panama. On the move after a fresh beach


Luncheon. Notice the towel I put round that rude Geo

8 March 1924

President of Haiti in bowler & pince nez

Curlew's Football Team before the match with Haiti Sunday 8th March 24 (dad on left)


Curlew v Haitians at Port au Prince
including 10 April 1924

View of wharfs & Market Pier taken from ship alongside Bookers Wharf, Demerara, 50th/11


Bookers Wharf, Demerara, where we had a very pleasant 14 days secured alongside this wharf, taken from foretop


Loading up with 10 gallon barrels of rum for the rum runners - cost of 10 gallons $80. 900 barrels were taken from Bookers Wharf ahead of ship, Demerara
10/4/24. Taken with the old 1/4 plate


One of the rum running schooners waiting to load up with rum alongside Bookers Wharf, Demerara

including March 1923, August 1924, February 1925

10 August 1924 - Mule tram cars, Barbados
"Canadian Navigator" on fire at Barbados, taken from bridge (built 1919, 3,099grt, lost due to explosion and fire 17 February 1925)
including Halifax August 1924, June 1925

*possibly Sept 1924 - Exploding depth charges off Newfoundland fishing banks. Exposure 350/4.5

Aurora & Canadian Royal Naval Barracks, Halifax from our upper bridge. All this part was blown up by the explosion in 1917 (HMS Aurora, Arethusa-class light cruiser, launched 1913, put into Care & Maintenance at Halifax in June 1922, sold for breaking up 1927)



Three men from HMS Curlew appear to have died during this commission, all in 1924:

Ordinary Seaman Henry L TRUE, J 102934, 16 February, illness

Able Seaman James FAUX, J 103187, 1 September, illness

Stoker 1c Henry J EASEN, K 60457, 18 November, accidentally killed falling into drydock, but location not known (probably Bermuda)


The photographs are not dated, but one identifies the location as St George's, N.F, (Newfoundland). Another as just St George's Bay. The ship's itinerary includes a stay in St George's Bay (between Nova Scotia and Cape Breton Island) which ended on 6 September.


In 2009 and through the wonders of the internet, this has been identified as the funeral of AB Faux by his nephew, Rod Faux, for which my thanks. He was a month short of his 21st birthday at the time of his death.


Waiting for the body to come ashore at St George’s Bay


Guard of honour outside the church at St George’s, N.F.
Service around the grave. Raining
14 September 1924

General view of American & Horseshoe Falls from Niagara Park, Sunday


Taken on the lip of the Horseshoe Falls Canadian side. Sunday

*3-10 January 1925

Wharfs at Key West just before going alongside Sat Jan 3rd - Florida

 New American Minelaying Destroyer coming alongside
jetty ahead of us at Key West. Took this one for the
Capt to send to Admiralty (USS Maury, DD 100,
launched 1918, converted to fast minelayer DM 100
in 1920, sold 1931)
*13-16 January 1925

Main street Belize


Canal Belize from Fire Station Float

including 18 January 1925

18 January 1925 - 8th C S entering Jamaica, Sunday afternoon


Finish of the aquatic Derby, Bournemouth Baths, Jamaica (50th/11)


One of our fruit women onboard at Jamaica (25th/11)
*c 22 February 1925

 Ship & Botanical Gardens, Dominica from hill overlooking town of Roseau

Taken in botanical Gardens, Dominica

As part of his tour of South America, the Prince of Wales took passage in HMS Curlew from Montevideo to Buenos Aires - *August 1925

click for The Times account of the tour in Africa and South America


Onboard inspection



After HRH had left at Monte Video


(Prince of Wales in bearskin, not known if Montevideo or Buenos Aires)


Stern view of a few of the people waiting to come aboard at
Monte Video (probably photographed from the signal bridge)


Inside Darsena Norte, Buenos Aires

Anyone's guess



From the "Time's" Archives

16 October 1925






"The Prince of Wales is to arrive in London at 3 o'clock this afternoon after his African and South American tour. We give the arrangements for his reception and a plan of his drive from Victoria Station to Buckingham Palace on the following page. An account of the Prince's memorable Journey appears below, and a map on page 16 shows his route in detail. Page 18 is entirely given up to photographs taken during the tour, including two, which reached London yesterday, of the last stage in South America.


The journey from which the Prince of Wales returns to-day is the fourth of his Empire tours. Like two of the other three, it has extended beyond the bounds of the Empire, to countries whose welcome has been as hearty as that given in the Dominions. The first tour, lasting from August to November, 1919, was through Canada, and included a visit to the United States. The second, to Australia and New Zealand, was begun in March and ended in October, 1920. In October, 1921, the Prince set out for India, and having continued his travels to Japan, returned in June, 1922. This year's tour, which started on March 28, was to West Africa and South Africa, and took in the three American Republics of Uruguay, Argentina, and Chile.


The battle cruiser Repulse, with the Prince on board, left Portsmouth under a heavy sky, but soon ran into the sunshine. Early in the voyage she met the Atlantic Fleet, on its wav home from the Mediterranean, and in the neighbourhood of Vigo passed between two lines of warships, three miles in length; a stately scene enlivened by the traditional salutes and the playing of ships' bands.




The Prince's first experience of West Africa was at Bathurst, the capital of the Gambia, which boasts itself the oldest though the smallest British African settlement. Only a day was available, and its hours were crowded. There were addresses to receive, greetings from the native chiefs of the Protectorate, and cheers from the whole (as it seemed) of the 100,000 population. Yet the Prince found time, between luncheon and a garden party, to motor in a hot sun over a good space of open country.


Another day and some part of its morrow were devoted to Sierra Leone. After the official welcome came a meeting with the people at Cotton Tree. The slopes of the hillside were occupied by a varied multitude, from paramount chiefs in the centre to Boy Scouts on the outskirts. The Prince caught glimpses of civilizing influence's in Sierra Leone on a drive to Fourah Bay College, at the laying of the foundation-stone of Government offices, at the opening of Freetown's first agricultural show, and perhaps also from the absence of mosquitoes at an entertainment at Government House.


The stay on the Gold Coast lasted almost a week. The Prince was the first person to step ashore on the new break-water at Takoradi, and the first to entrain on the Kumasi railway; his landing is to be commemorated by a tower. At Sekondi, on an umbrella-shaped dais, he took the homage of the chiefs, who sat around him under umbrellas of red, gold, and other rich colours. Good Friday was spent at Kumasi, where the head chiefs welcomed the King's son at a grand palaver amidst more magnificent umbrellas. The "talking drums." such as have spoken at Wembley, beat their salute; a golden sword was presented as a gift from All Ashanti; and then native dancers gave an entertainment. The former King Prempeb was a spectator of it all.


In this region and on his return journey to the coast the Prince saw the contrasts of the country; primeval forests and cocoa plantations, woods and aluminium deposits, vestiges of past warfare and evidences of present industry.


And so to Accra for Easter Sunday. This was indeed a memorable festival for the whole Gold Coast; since, after joining the British community in Divine service, inspecting the hospital, and going among the seething life of the native quarter, the Prince inaugurated at Achimota a university college, to be called by his name, where selected youths from every race and tribe may get such an education as will fit them to ensure and further the progress of British West Africa.




It was feared that plague at Lagos would prevent the arranged visit to Nigeria. So grave a disappointment was avoided by landing at Iddo for the journey to Kano, 700 miles in the interior. The Lagosians, nevertheless, saw the Prince. They lined the sea-front for three miles, and thousands waded far into the water, as the tender conveying his Royal Highness from the Repulse passed slowly to Iddo. And how they shouted! It was on the railway to Kano that the Prince drove the engine for 23 miles and received the proper pay, amounting to 10d.; but the value of the whole journey lay in the panorama it afforded of Nigerian scenery - the swamps, the forests, the bush lands, the plateaux, and the great River Niger.


Kano seemed familiar; it was so like the West African town at Wembley, but on a larger scale. As the Prince drove along the dusty lanes within the 13 miles of mud walls, groups of natives knelt at his approach in mute reverence. Later, on the Kano plain, was held a Durbar, where 20,000 horsemen led by the Moslem chieftains of the northern provinces gave a quasi-medieval display in which jesters, dancers, even lictors, mingled with chain-mailed cavaliers. The parade over, the Prince addressed the Emirs, who had been presented to him, and the people, recalling that during the war they had generously contributed to the common cause. A similar recollection occurred in his next speech, spoken, during a break in the return journey to the coast, at Ibadan, the populous centre of the palm kernel industry. Hither came the rulers of Jorubaland with their umbrella canopies: and here a wreath was laid on a war memorial of the Nigerian Regiment.


Polo, tennis, and dancing at Government House - in intense heat - provided the exercise the Prince desired when he came again to Lagos after this trip into the interior. The chief ceremony of his short stay was the laying of the foundation-stone of Lagos Cathedral. April was now far-advanced, and the visit to West Africa was ending. The effect of that visit was indicated by the Governor of Nigeria, Sir Hugh Clifford, in a message to The Times given to our Special Correspondent. After commenting on the unprecedented enthusiasm of the natives, Sir Hugh said:-


The Prince, ot course, Is himself; his personality would awaken enthusiasm anywhere. Nigeria. however, has stood forth also as an embodiment of British rule, and it seems to me that through him it bas received a striking testimonial while nothing could stimulate the spirit upon which the efficiency and the justification of our rule alike depend more vitally than his coming among us.




The voyage from West to South Africa took rather more than a week. On a morning of fog the Repulse was escorted by the flagship Birmingham and other vessels into Table Bay. Soon the mists gave place to warm sunshine, and the Prince landed at Cape Town under the fairest conditions. In the group that welcomed him, in addition to the Governor-General (Lord Athlone), the Princess Alice, and their family, were General Hertzog with members of the Union Cabinet, Sir Thomas Smartt, and General Smuts. Such a union of parties was but the prelude to an immense congregation of white people and coloured people - English, Dutch, Malays, Indians, and Chinese - in the beflagged streets. The presentation of civic addresses, on a platform in the middle of the Parade, was watched by many thousands; and the Prince's reply, caught up by the wireless, was listened to by many more thousands in distant towns and country districts. Johannesburg, heard it, a thousand miles away.


The Cape impressed the Royal visitor with the loveliness of its peninsula; it gave him diverse entertainment; and he entered thoroughly into the ways of the place and the people. From the abounding programme three events stand out conspicuously. First in order comes the installation of his Royal Highness as Chancellor of the University. To this ceremony he was conducted, in a tented wagon drawn by 12 oxen, by students strangely and wonderfully attired, who, with their fellows, lightened the gravity of the subsequent proceedings after the manner of students the world over. The second event also was associated with the University; with its new foundations at Groote Schuur. In laying the stone of the new building the Prince dwelt on the ideals of Cecil Rhodes, to whose house, near by, he had naturally been taken.


Rhodes (he said) knew no differences of race between the two great European strains which together made up the history of this splendid Union, and saw no barriers between that union of which he was only privileged to dream and the great commonwealth of nations within the British Empire.


This theme was further developed on the third notable occasion, that on which the Prince was the guest of the Union Senate and House of Assembly at a banquet at Parliament House. He pursued it, not only in his formal speech, ending with a sentence in Afrikaaans, but less directly and perhaps as effectively in private conversation with Dutch representatives. The Dutch population, as a whole, delighted to greet him in his movements about Cape Town and the neighbourhood.




Early in May the Prince departed from Cape Town on his travels up-country. At Stellenbosch, that very early and very Dutch settlement, he was dragged through the streets in a decorated landau by students of the University, and at Paarl was cheered by thousands of white and coloured school- children - the forerunners of many such gatherings. The first commando, composed of 160 English and Dutch farmers awaited him at Worcester station. These bodyguards were to be another familiar sight. So also, in the passage of the cream-coloured train through the south-eastern districts of the Cape Province, were the parties of villagers who had come long distances on the mere chance of "getting just a peep" at the Prince. The coloured minstrels who serenaded the train at Colesberg had been happily inspired, and went away enchanted with right royal praise of their melodies. Companies of ex-Service men - never forgotten by their "comrade " - were frequent. At last Port Elizabeth was reached. Having come through ostrich and sheep lands, the Prince was once more at the coast, in a town of a century's astonishing growth. Here he had his first great native welcome in South Africa, a welcome in which poetry from a native poet combined with music from native choirs.


For the next week the route was never very far from the sea. Amid the festivities of Grahamstown the Prince recalled the history of the 1820 settlers, of which he was again to be reminded when, after a golfing respite at Port Alfred, he reached King William's Town by way of Bedford and the chain of towns in the Great Fish River valley notable from the old Kaffir wars. Now came a series of meetings with Bantu chiefs and peoples.


At King William's Town, at East London, and at Umtata he met them in their thousands. Many had made a several days' journey to hail the "Rising Sun," as they termed the Prince. The chiefs were attired in an infinite incongruity of European garments. The Prince wore the khaki or scarlet of the Welsh Guards. In his speeches he warned the natives against mistrust of authority, advised them to learn how to manage their own affairs through the council system, and encouraged them to appreciate education.


Nearly 3,000 miles were covered in the Cape Province. The next stage of the tour was the Orange Free State. Into Bloemfontein, the capital, the Prince rode at the head of a Boer commando of over 2,000, most of whom had been active foes of England in the South African War, and some, like their leader, had joined the De Wet revolt in 1914. They were pleased with the Prince's mounting the fine horse they had reserved for him, pleased with his friendliness and, above all, with his speaking to them in their own tongue.




From Bloemfontein the course was eastwards into Basutoland where on the flats above Maseru was a great clan gathering of the natives. The whole manhood of the country was present, and the sight of the 50,000 horsemen who turned their gaze on the slender figure in the scarlet of the Guards was most memorable. At Harrismith, having visited several rural centres, the Prince bade farewell to the Free State, thanking the inhabitants for a welcome spontaneous, real. and unaffected.


He was in Natal at the beginning of June, enjoying the Drakensberg crossing, and at Ladysmith showing a keen interest in every vestige of the siege and every site of a battle. Thence to Durban, almost hidden in flags and packed with shouting, singing people. The expressive loyalty of 23,000 Natal Indians, and the opening of a new graving dock, the second largest in the world, were signal incidents of the two days in Durban.


A contrast was afforded, on the Prince's crossing into Zululand, by the indaba and native dance at Eshowa. Another Zulu dance, but on a smaller scale, formed part of the Maritzburg programme, which included also the presentation of regimental Standards to the Natal Carbineers, reputed the oldest Volunteer Force in the Empire. Other pleasant spots in the "Garden Province" were visited in a day, after which some hundreds of bearded veterans of the Boer War gave earnest at Ermelo of the welcome awaiting the Prince in his progress through the Transvaal.


First, however, he went to Swaziland, gaining further insight into the native mind and customs. A wide circle was then made to the north so that Pretoria was reached from Pietersburg. Pretoria showed its determination not to be outdone in enthusiasm, and, as the Prince remarked in a speech, carried on what he had experienced throughout the Union. The parade of children was especially impressive. It was in response to an observation by Mr. Hofmeyr on the friends made in the Transvaal that the Prince confessed he had learnt more from wayside meetings and informal talks than from set speeches, and he was glad to have conversed with so many Transvaalers.




The weather was as cold in Johannesburg as the people were hearty. This is saying much, for the police had hard work to keep the zealous crowds within bounds. The Prince opened the University of the Witwatersrand, and received the honorary degree of Doctor of Laws; he went down a gold mine; and on June 23 kept his 31st birthday. Three days later he was at Mafeking looking at the memorials of the siege.


From Bulawayo the Prince drove to the Matopos. He stood by the grave of Rhodes at "The World's View." He saw, too, the ruins of Zimbabwe. Rhodesia gave him some shooting. At Salisbury and other points the Mashonas and natives from far afield came with their homage and dances. The Victoria Falls were a spectacle grander in their way than anything South Africa had yet shown him. At Livingstone he met the Barotse, and admired the discipline of the Northern Rhodesian native police. Broken Hill marked the northern limit of the tour.


The chief break in the return to Cape Town was at Kimberley, though there were several other halts. In the end the Prince had traversed over 13,000 miles of South African soil, nearly one-third of that distance having been by road. The voyage from South Africa to South America must have been a relief after so strenuous a time ashore. It was interrupted by two days at St. Helena, which allowed not only for a visit to Napoleon's tomb, but for an examination of the relics and records of the island, and, of course, Longwood.




When, on August 14, the arrival of the Repulse was greeted by the guns and sirens of Montevideo, Uruguay might have been asking the Prince to forget he was in foreign parts. An enormous crowd welcomed him; there was an imposing military display; and here as elsewhere youth did its best to honour youth. Taranco House, a residence in the old town, was set aside for the visitor's use; but he had little leisure to spend in it.


A live-stock show and a ceremony at the Military Academy were two of the Prince's earlier engagements. Between the presentation of an address from the British Chamber of Commerce and a State dinner at Government House, followed by a gala performance at the Solis Theatre, he held a reception at the Parque Hotel. In the President's company he went to the Pantheon Nacional and laid a wreath on tho urn containing the ashes of Aetigas, "thinker, philosopher, soldier." The British Hospital, the National University, and the new Legislative Palace attracted him in their several ways. At the last he was received by the Presidents of the General Assembly and the Chamber of Deputies. At a luncheon of the Anglo-Uruguayan Reception Committee he expressed his thanks in Spanish.


"All Uruguayans, simple citizens as well as the official world, are charmed beyond words with the Prince, his democratic manner, simplicity, and graciousness." Such was the message which Senor Blanco, the Foreign Minister, asked our Special Correspondent to send to England.




From Montevideo the light cruiser Curlew bore the Prince up the estuary of the River Plate to Buenos Aires. President de Alvear met his guest on the quay and together they drove, in a carriage drawn by four black horses with gilded harness, through the crowded streets of the city. " Viva el Principe" shouted the onlookers, whose numbers almost overpowered the police and tested severely the crack regiments guarding the Plaza Colon. Nor did the shouting cease while the Prince was to be seen; it followed his visits to the harbour, factories, and suburbs. One day was spent in La Plata, and the chief business of another was a military review, at which the parade of 12,000 troops was led by detachments from the Repulse and Curlew with a Marine band playing "Hearts of Oak." This review lasted two hours; at its conclusion the Prince complimented the President on the military staff's magnificent display.


A review of a different kind was that of 50,000 national school children, who sang "God Bless the Prince of Wales" in English. The enthusiasm of the crowds, perhaps, reached its height at the races in the Hippodromo Argentino, though it had seemed nothing could be more tumultuous than the cheers and shouts that rang around the yacht in which the Prince was taken to the docks and given a glimpse of the trade and ocean traffic of the great port.


A stay at an estancia, where he rode, watched the roping of colts, and fraternized with the gauchos, made a restful interval in the festivities of Buenos Aires. Returning, the Prince spent some time among the British residents. He inspected ex-Servicemen on the Plaza Britanica, and in the Calle Ituzaingo unveiled a Scottish war memorial.


The Prince met still more of his countrymen on a 1,500 miles tour north of Buenos Aires; a tour full of fresh interests. There were the vast herds of the Argentine Mesopotamia, the sports and songs of the gauchos, the processes of turning livestock into meat extracts and soup cubes. There was also the fascination of wide horizons.




After the plains, the heights. The Andes were crossed, the Pacific slope descended, and Santiago of Chile reached. Here the Prince again found packed streets and a warm welcome from the Chileans and their President. The head of the Republic, at a Presidential banquet, referred in eloquent words to the days " when your sailors and ours together consolidated the independence of South America" In his reply the Prince said:-


It was my hope that my visit to Chile might have contributed to draw closer the bonds of amity which, for more than a hundred years, have united the two nations. I begin to fear that that is almost superfluous, but not entirely so, I hope, for I would like to think that my visit will set the seal on a century of unbroken cordiality and will initiate a new era of even closer collaboration.


These references to the past were reiterated on the visit to Valparaiso, when the ties of friendship with the Chilean Navy, dating from the time of Cochrane and O'Higgins, were renewed by the Prince's inspection of the Naval Academy and his welcome on board the Almirante Latorre.


Valparaiso was the last city on the long tour. The three Republics had been magnificent hosts, and to the three Presidents - President Serrato in Uruguay, President de Alvear in Argentina, and President Alassandi in Chile- the Prince offered his hearty thanks. The return journey to Argentina was delayed by avalanches in the Andes. Some days later than was anticipated the Repulse bore the Prince from the shores which had given him so wonderful a hospitality, and in which he had strengthened by his personality the links of national friendship.


revised 4/9/11