The Australian Boer War Memorial
Anzac Parade Canberra

 
 
Private Christian Thomsen

Ancestor Details

Name of Ancestor: Christian Albert Thomsen

Ancestor's date of birth: 12/02/1884

Ancestor's date of death: 12/04/1960

Cause of Death: Not stated

Service and Life Before the Boer War: School

Service Number: 155

Colony or State of enlistment: QLD, Place of Enlistment: Brisbane

Unit: 6th Queensland Imperial Bushman

Rank attained in Boer War: PTE, Date Effective: On enlistment

Highest Rank attained (if served after war): No record of post Boer War service

Murray Page: 513

Contingent: Sixth Queensland

Ship: Victoria, Date of Sailing: 04/04/1901

Memorial details: Detail not provided

Decorations: Queen's South Africa Medal with Orange Free state, Transvaal, South Africa 1901 and South Africa 1902 clasps.

Personal Characteristics: Enlisted when under age, he was a bugler. He also played the cornet and trumpet. Murray Recordes show this soldier as - Thomson, Thomas Christian, he combined his brothers name and his so he could join, as he was under age.The spelling of the surname could be due to officer error in recording his surmane. Queensland records show his name as Thomsen.

Reasons to go and fight: Must have been keen - he was under age.

Details of service in war: May 1901 - April 1902 in eastern Transvaal and Free State. The 6th QIB served side by side with the 7th New Zealand contingent during the greater part of 1901 and the first 3 months of 1902. New Zealand's Seventh Contingent, reached South Africa in May 1901. Within twelve days of landing it had its first significant clash with the enemy. It had some success with dawn raids on Boer laagers (camps), which were an important feature of British tactics in the latter part of the war. By late 1901 the number of Boer guerrillas who were still active had been substantially reduced, though thousands of the most determined and effective fighters were still in the field. In an effort to crush the remaining Boer forces, and in response to criticism of their policies, the British military and civilian authorities in South Africa adopted a new three-pronged strategy. First, Boer civilians were no longer to be rounded up and placed in unsanitary concentration camps, where thousands had died of disease. Instead they were to be left in the countryside, where the guerrillas would have to take responsibility for them. Second, protected areas were established which were guarded by lines of blockhouses linked by barbed wire entanglements. By the end of the war, more than 8000 blockhouses had been built in lines which stretched 6000 kilometres across South Africa. Finally, 'new-model' drives were organised, in which British columns established a cordon of men right across an area and then moved forward sweeping the Boers ahead of them towards blockhouses. At the beginning of February 1902, the Seventh Contingent formed part of one of the elite mounted columns employed in the new-model drives.

Service and life after the Boer War: On return from the Boer War (17 June 1902 on the SS Devon) he was the Secretary or Treasurer of the Boer War Association [Qld] in Brisbane until the 1950s.

Descendant Details

Name of Descendant: Brigadier Paul Buckley, Melba ACT
Relationship to Ancestor: Grandson

Name of Descendant: Simon Dean, Nundah QLD
Relationship to Ancestor: Great Grand Son

Name of Descendant: Glenn Christian Thomsen, Hamilton QLD
Relationship to Ancestor: Grandson

Name of Descendant: Nicole White, Wavell Heights QLD
Relationship to Ancestor: Great Grand Daughter

 


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RUSI of NSW Boer War Battlefields