The Australian Boer War Memorial
Anzac Parade Canberra
|Captain Samuel Hubbe MID|
Samuel Grau Hubbe was born in 1848 and was a surveyor by profession. He was commissioned as a lieutenant in the Adelaide Rifle Volunteers, No. 1 District (Adelaide and suburbs) in 1885 but resigned in 1889. He later joined the 3rd (South Australian) Bushmen's Contingent to South Africa in the Boer War as the Captain commanding the unit. Hubbe was selected to command because not only had he previously commanded a militia unit, but also because he had had thirty years' experience in crossing the dry centre of Australia, between Kalgoorlie and Charleville, surveying and finding stock routes, and clearing land. The Third Bushmen's Contingent saw action in the operations in Western Transvaal between from June 1900. Hubbe was killed near Ottoshoop on 12 September. He had been checking his squadron at the end of the day to make sure no one was missing when he was hit by a stray bullet from a distance of 2,000 metres. He was buried at Malmani. Hubbe was posthumously Mentioned in Despatches on 16 April 1901.
His death was reported in the Advertiser (Adelaide, SA : 1889 - 1931) on Saturday 15 September 1900 then Thursday 1 November 1900 in these terms.
The following telegram, was received by Lord Tennyson (Governor of South Australia) from Lieutenant Ives, South Australian Bushmen, Cape Town, dated September 13:- "Captain Hubbe killed to-day in action at Ottoshoop. Loss much regretted by all troops here."
Regimental Quartermaster - Sergeant Rundle, a member of the South Australia Bushmen Contingent, in a letter dated Mafeking, September 15, thus describes the engagement in which. Captain Hubbe lost his life:- "We had a. most glorious charge on September 12 Our brigade was out engaging the enemy for some time, when the South Australians got an order to charge and take a kopje, which we **id under a murderous hail of bullets, the troops were lined up, and the order was given by our captain. 'Charge!' and with a wild Australian yell from-all hand we went at a gallop across the open veld for about three-quarters of a mile. You could not hear a word spoken for the booming of the cannon over our heads from our own men, the cracking of the explosive bullets fired by the enemy, also the Mausers and Martinis. We held the position we took for some time (about an hour),then an order came to retire, winch was very reluctantly obeyed. We had to go back, as night was coming on. We got back with the loss of only one horse killed. Two men were slightly wounded, and two injured from horses falling. Captain Hubbe went back and brought in one man (who had given his horse to a wounded comrade) behind him 0n his horse. Sergeant Gay went back for another, and I went back for a third. We halted and put a few more volleys, and then lined the men up. We were just about to start for home when our poor old captain got a bullet through his heart. He fell from his horse, exclaiming, 'I've got it', and died almost immediately. We brought him in and buried him in the little cemetery at Malmain, and have erected a headstone over his grave and there he rests, poor old man."
The South Australian Register Friday 19 October 1900 noting. His Excellency the Governor has received the following letter from Lieut-General Sir Frederick Carrington, commanding the Rhodesian field force:- "Bulawayo. September 17.- Sir- I have the honour to enclose herewith a copy of an order issued by me relative to the death of Capt. S. G. Hubbe, South Australian Contingent. Captain Hubbe's death occurred while covering a retirement into Ottoshoop, and he was struck by almost the last shot fired. It is with the deepest regret that I send you the news. Capt. Hubbe's death deprives the force of a very valuable officer. I have, &c." The ostler referred to reads:- 'The Lieut. General has learned with great regret the death in action, ' near Ottoshoop, on September 12, . ..of Capt. S. G. Hubbe, South Australian Contingent. Capt. Hubbe commanded his squadron well, both in camp and in the field, and the loss of this gallant officer will be keenly felt throughout the forces.'' On Thursday Col. Stuart received the following from Major Arthur B. Baker, of the staff of the Rhodesian Force:- 'Ottoshoop, Transvaal.- Sir- I have the honour to inform you that, in accordance with the usual custom, the effects other than those reserved of the late Capt. S. J. Hubbe, of the South Australian Bushmen Corps, have this day been submitted to public auction, and realized the sum of £58. This amount is far beyond the real value of the articles, the keen competition and the high prices obtained being due to the purchasers' desire to possess themselves of mementoes of the late captain. The sale was very ably conducted by Lieut. Mair, of the Tasmanians, assisted by Lieut. Maur, of the South Australian Bushmen's Corps. Immediately the late Capt. Hubbe's affairs are adjusted the above amount will be forwarded to His Excellency Lord Tennyson, to be handed by him to the friends of Capt. Hubbe.