Lieutenant John Chard’s handwritten account of the Battle of Rorke’s Drift sells for £175,000 


Lieutenant John Chard’s handwritten account of the Battle of Rorke’s Drift – where a British garrison held off 4,000 Zulu warriors – sells for £175,000

  • Lieutenant Chard of Royal Engineers was one of 11 men awarded Victoria Cross
  • Account of the battle was auctioned at Bonhams in London on Thursday
  • The collection, sold by his family, was expected to fetch less than £50,000 

The handwritten account of the Battle of Rorke’s Drift by garrison commander Lieutenant John Chard has been sold for £175,250.

Lieutenant Chard of the Royal Engineers was one of 11 men awarded the Victoria Cross for their role in the defeat of more than 4,000 Zulu warriors by 135 British soldiers in South Africa in January 1879. 

The account of the battle, requested by Queen Victoria, was auctioned at Bonhams in London on Thursday alongside Lieutenant Chard’s other mementos.

The handwritten account of the Battle of Rorke’s Drift by garrison commander Lieutenant John Chard, pictured, has been sold for £175,250

The collection, sold by his family, was expected to fetch less than £50,000 but was sold for a total of £485,401.

Another highlight was the sword of honour awarded to him on his return to Plymouth, which went for £81,500.

The royal painting of the Battle of Rorke’s Drift (pictured). Lieutenant Chard of the Royal Engineers was awarded the Victoria Cross for their role in the defeat of more than 4,000 Zulu warriors there

The royal painting of the Battle of Rorke’s Drift (pictured). Lieutenant Chard of the Royal Engineers was awarded the Victoria Cross for their role in the defeat of more than 4,000 Zulu warriors there

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