Published: Edinburgh, 1879
Stock Number: #9478/1
153 pages, recent half red calf and brown paper sides
Mendelssohn 1:810-1. 'The tour taken by the vocalists extended over six months, during which they visited twenty-four of the more important towns and villages in South Africa.' Kennedy was an observant traveller and writes interestingly of the places they visited. As the year was 1879, the year of the Zulu war, his comments on Natal are worth dwelling on. Discussing the aftermath of the war he says, 'In Maritzburg, at nine o'clock each night, a bell rings, the signal for the natives - man, woman and child - to leave the streets and retire to their homes.' And, 'Many a home in Pietermaritzburg has been made sorrowful by this Zulu War. It seemed to us that nearly every other man we met had a crape band on his arm, and great numbers of ladies were clad in mourning. While we were here, the Maritzburg Carbineers arrived from the front. Half of the corps had been at Isandhlwana, and perished at the base of its tall dark rock. Will the full story of that dreadful battle ever be written? We had presented to us a ragged book of MS music from Isandhlwana, its pages covered with blood and dirt, and many of them trampled beyond deciphering - a ghastly memorial of the struggle. The war has not been an unmixed blessing to the colony in any way. Hotel proprietors, transport riders and owners of cattle have all reaped a rich harvest, but shopkeepers have confessed to me that they have been sorely distressed by the prevailing high rates of transport.'