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The Second Boer War (1899–1902), which ended with the Treaty of Vereeniging and the conversion of the Boer republics into British colonies, involved large numbers of troops from many British possessions right across the world. This was the last great war restricted to Empire participants and ironically Australia’s first war as a nation, following Federation in 1901. Australians made up five per cent of all Commonwealth forces serving in South Africa during the war. This was a major contribution given the size of its population.

Gundagai’s Boer War Memorial, a white marble obelisk with small inset red marble columns and lead lettering is located in front of the imposing Court House right in the centre of Gundagai. It was designed by architects Nixon & Adams and constructed by Ross & Bowman from Sydney. The memorial was unveiled by Sir William Lyne, Governer of New South Wales, in 1902.

The monument, in addition to commemorating all local enlistees, is a memorial to the three local soldiers who died in the war:-

• Trumpeter C. A. Gilchrist,1st Australian Horse, died from enteric fever, at Kimberley, Cape Colony, 13th March 1900

• Trooper H. W. G. Marshall, B.S.A. Com Forces, accidentally shot at Fort Manzimyama, Rhodesia, 29th September 1900

• Sergt-Major G. A. Griffin, 1st Australian Horse, killed in action at Slingersfontein, Cape Colony, 16th January 1900. Griffin was the first person from New South Wales to die in the Boer War and those visiting Sydney can also see a large memorial tablet to his memory in the Sydney Town Hall.

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The front of the memorial features a bronze casting of a fallen soldier lying beside his horse under which the inscription “In memory of the Gundagai Soldiers who fell in the South African war”.


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