Tag: Uitenhage

Joseph Petrus Hendrik Crowe VC.

Joseph Petrus Hendrik Crowe (12/01/1826 – 12/04/1876) earned his VC during the Indian Mutiny whilst serving under Brigadier General Sir Henry Havelock’s first relief force sent to relieve the defenders of Lucknow.

The Citation, recorded in the London Gazette of Issue: 22083, Page: 178, reads:

“78th Regiment, Lieutenant Joseph P. H. Crowe now Captain, 10th Regiment.

For being the first to enter the redoubt at Bourzekee Chowkee’, the entrenched village in front of the Busherut-gunge, on the 12th of August. (Telegram from the late MajorGeneral Sir Henry Havelock to the Commander-in- Chief in India, dated, Cawnpore, 18th August, 1857.)”

On 12 August 1857 at Boursekee Chowkee, the entrenched village in front of Busherutgunge, India, the redoubt was occupied by the enemy who were causing heavy casualties among the 18th Regiment. It was decided to take the place by storm, and the Highlanders dashed forward, Lieutenant Crowe being the first in, followed by his men. In less than a minute the redoubt was captured. Havelock’s column broke through to the Lucknow garrison on the 25th September 1857 but owing to heavy losses, 535 men killed or wounded, was too weak to withdraw. Therefore, the relieving force joined the original Lucknow defenders.

The grave of Joseph Crowe VC.

Grave site at Uitenhage MOTH Hall

Unfortunately, the grave of Joseph Crowe has always seemed to be in danger. Following his death on 12 April 1876, he was interred in the West Norwood Cemetery in grave 15,950, square 79. That grave was located in 1957 and renovated The original inscription read: .

J. P. H. Crowe, V.C.
10th Regiment
Died 12th April 1876
Lord, I believe

To which was added:

First South African born
Recipient of the Cross

In August 1976 his remains were exhumed and returned to South Africa where he was interred in the MOTH Garden of Remembrance, Uitenhage on 5 Feb 1977, following a quasi-military ceremony in St Katherine’s Anglican Church.

By 2011 the Moth Hall (Crown and Anchor Dinkie Di Shellhole) was up for sale and a new location for the grave was yet to be found, although it appears as if a buyer had not been found. Google Earth Co-ordinates are : 33° 46.083’S 25° 23.926’E. The VC was destroyed in a fire at his sister’s farm, and it is not known if an official replacement was issued.



*Update 25/03/2018*

In late March 2018 an offer was made for the former MOTH Hall and as a condition of the sale, the MOTH order would remove Crowe’s remains, the cannon and other items before any new owner took over the property. Port Elizabeth military history researcher Tim Bodill said his view was that the remains of Crowe and Nelson Mandela Bay’s two other VCs – James Craig, presently buried in St Mary’s Cemetery, and James Langley Dalton, in Russell Road Cemetery – should all be exhumed and re interred at Fort Frederick.  (http://www.heraldlive.co.za/news/2018/03/22/firm-offer-made-historic-moth-hall/)

**Update 20/11/2018**

An advert in a PE newspaper points to the exhumation of the grave but as yet no further information was available. 

Jospeh Crowe VC was finally reburied on Saturday, 24 Aug 2019 in the Heroes Acre section of the Jubilee Park Cemetery in Uitenhage.  

The grave of Joseph Crowe VC.

The grave of Joseph Crowe VC.

DRW © 2011-2020. Created 18 June 2011, Moved to blog 04/01/2015. Edited 17/05/2017, updated 25/03/2018. Burial site information courtesy of Jonathan Ossher, with thanks to Clive and Tim Emmerson, as well as Kevin Brazier, author of “The COMPLETE VICTORIA CROSS, A Full Chronological Record of All Holders of Britain’s Highest Award for Gallantry“. Photograph of Joseh Crowe’s grave courtesy of Ronnie Lovemore (June 2011).

Updated: 05/01/2020 — 13:44

The Basuto War Memorial in Uitenhage.

These photographs of the Basuto War Memorial in Uitenhage are courtesy of Ronnie Lovemore. The memorial may be found in Magennis Park,  Uitenhage.

The Basuto War is also known as the Basuto Gun War,  and the Memorial commemorates those who died in the Basuto Campaign from 1880-1882, and Morosi Mountain in 1879.

There are also 2 other plaques on the memorial which are available on request.

© DRW 2011-2018. Created 21/06/2011. Photo’s © Ronnie Lovemore. Moved to blog 05/02/2014

Updated: 06/01/2018 — 12:39

The Uitenhage War Memorial.

These photographs of the Uitenhage War Memorial are courtesy of Ronnie Lovemore.

Interesting enough it has plaques from both World Wars, as well as the Korean War and the Border War, There is also a plaque commemorating the sacrifice of “The Faithful men of the Native and Coloured Races…”. Images of the other plaques are available on request.


This memorial can be found at Google Earth Co-ordinates   33° 46.155’S, 25° 23.988’E.

© DRW 2011-2018. Created 11/06/2011. Photo’s © Ronnie Lovemore. Moved to blog 05/02/2014.

Updated: 06/01/2018 — 12:39

The Uitenhage Anglo Boer War Memorial

These photographs of the Uitenhage Boer War Memorial are courtesy of Ronnie Lovemore.

In early April 2015, the statute was vandalised by a group of uneducated thugs from the “EFF” who tried to set fire to it. The statue was reportedly not badly damaged but the plinth was blackened. It is doubtful that anybody will be brought to book for the vandalism. On the 6th of April the Horse Memorial in Port Elizabeth was badly vandalised by another group with the same affiliations. The statue of the soldier was knocked off the statue completely.

This memorial has been moved from its original position at   33°46.152’S,   25° 24.015’E  and now can be found can be found at Google Earth Co-ordinates   33°46.180’S  25°24.024’E.

© DRW 2011-2018. Created 11/06/2011. Photo’s © Ronnie Lovemore. Moved to blog 04/02/2014, updated 06/04/2015

Updated: 06/01/2018 — 12:41
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