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The San Francisco call. [volume] (San Francisco [Calif.]) 1895-1913, October 21, 1899, Image 1

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Dundee, Natal, the Scene of the First
Big Battle in the Present War,
and the Losses on Both Sides Are
Very Heavy— General Symons
Badly Wounded.
GLENCOE CAMP, Oct. 20, 2:50 p. m.— After eight hours of con
tinuous heavy fighting, Talana Hill was carried by the Dublin
Fusileers and the King's Rifles under cover of a well-directed
artillery fire by the Thirteenth and Sixty-ninth batteries. The
Boers who threatened the British rear have retired.
The fight was almost an exact counterpart of that of Majuba
Hill, except that the positions of the Boer and British forces were
reversed. General William Symons was severely but not danger
ously wounded. General Yule assumed command. General Symons
was shot through the thigh, but no bones were broken. He is
GLEN CAMP, Oct. 20 (After- i
noon). — Tho battle to-day has |
be^-n a brilliant success. The j
Boers got a reverse which may j
possibly, for a time at any rate. j
check all aggressive action. The
British artillery practice In the early part
of the day decided the battle. The seizure j
of Dundee Hill by the Boers was a sur
prise, for although the pickets had been
exchanging phots all night, it was not un
til 8. shell boomed over the town Into the j
camp that their presence was discovered.
Then the shells came fast. The hill was j
positively alive with the swarming Boers; ;
still the British artillery got to work with j
magnificent energy and precision.
The batteries from the camp took up \
positions to the south of the town and !
after a quarter of an hour's magnificent]
The San Francisco Call.
firing silenced the guns on the hill.
The correspondent could pee shells drop
ping among the Boer pints with remark
able accuracy and doing tremendous ex
ecutlon, for the enemy were present In
very large numbers and In places con- j
: bly exposed.
By this time the enemy held the whole
of the hill behind Smith's farm and the
Dundee k<>pj<?. right away to the south, '
in which the British infantry and cavalry
moved at once.
The fighting raged particularly hot at
the valley outside the town. Directly the;
<i firing General Symons '
ordered the infantry to move on t!.'
Bitlon. The infantry charge was magnu
cent. The way the King s Royal Rifl» s
and the Dublin Fusileers stormed the po
sition was one of the most splendid sights j
ever seen. The firing of the Boers was
not so deadly as might have been ex
pected from troops occupying Fuch an ex
it position, but the Infantry lost
heavily going up the hill, and only the
consummately brilliant way in which
Symons bad trained them to
lighting of the kind saved them from be
ing swept away. Indeed, the hill was al
most inaccessible to the storming party
and nny hesitation would have lost the
day. The onemy's guns, so far as the
correspondent could see, were all aban
. f>r the Boers had no time to re
move them A stream of fugitives poured
down the hillside into the valley, where
the battle wont on with no abatement.
General Sj'mons was wounded early in
Continued on Second Page.
Talana Hill— The Kings Royal Rifles and the Dublin Fusileers Attacking the Position of
the Boer Artillery.
In "Shamrock Weather" the Amer
ica's Trophy Defender Again
Sails Away From the Irish
NEW YORK, Oct. 20.— Put away the (
cup and turn the key: cast it
away even, for there will be time
enough to mold another before the
lock need be turned again. Twine
garlands around the trophy, but scatter
about it ashes, for once more it is an urn
for ashes for hope, not the chalice of
victory which Sir Thomas Llpton had
hoped to lift.
Beaten at every point of sailing and in
every* sort of weather, there can be no
further doubt that the Shamrock is not
in the Columbia's class. One lone doubt
that remains is whether there is any such
thing as "Shamrock weather." That
which was apportioned to her to-day was
popularly regarded as the kind in which
the broad-beamed Irish cutter would show
to greater advantage than ■ her narrqw
waisted competitor. But from the start
to finish, throughout the wild dance to
the outer mark, and throughout the dip
ping and rearing spray-beaten thresh to
windward there never was a time that su
periority of the Herreshoff racer was not
"We might as well wait until Herres
hoff retires from yacht-building," said a
discouraged British yachtsman as he
closed up his binoculars and placed them
In their case. "There seems to be no use
in our building challengers so long as he
continues to build defenders."
Clean-cut as was this victory of to-day
j It was even more glorious as a spectacle.
Imagine two superb racing yachts sway
ing and staggering before a wind which
had the weight of half a gale in It, their
swollen sails threatening each moment to
bid farewell to creaking boom and buck
ling spar. Picture, If you can, the stream
of foam which came . boiling about the
flying yachts as, driving before the wind
and sea, they. rose buoyantly to the swells
to sink stern first Into the sloping val
leys that came racing after them. Then
home again with flat; sails, as taut as
drumheads and lee scuppers knee deep
In foam, one i straining spar and shroud
and sail and stay in a terrific effort to
keep the vantage gained, the other as
desperately striving to overcome the lead.
It was well worth the ten misspent days
the excursionists had squandered on these
.other lifeless efforts "at racing, and which
proved to be little more than days of fog
and calm and drift.
Straight out of the north a lively wind
was blowing when the two yachts arrived
off the lightship. The wind had a twenty
mlle-an-hour gait and the Shamrock, as
she dipped her green hull Into the sea, had
a now-or-never look about' her. It was
wind that Sir Thomas had been looking
for, and in it all realized lay the Sham
rock's last, long, lingering hope of taking
away the cup. In all other sorts of
weather she had been weighed and found
wanting. It remained to see what she
could do In wind of the kind that was
blowing to-day. •"■
The start was at the lightship and the
course was a fifteen-mile run to leeward
and a beat back to the finish line. Both
boats were standing to the northward
under mainsail and Jib when the prepara
tory gun was fired. The wind was then
too bri3k for tho yachts to show club top
sails, but their working topsails were up
in stops and ready for setting. The Sham
rock's was ; sheeted . home three minutes
after the preparatory gun was heard, the
Columbia setting her staysails four min
utes later.
, At five minutes, to 11 came the •warning
gun, and ■ the racers . headed for the line,
both Jockeying for position j and neither
gaining any decided advantage. The star t^
,_■ — - . 1
ing gun was fired, and the Shamrock
Stood across the line showing mainsail,
working topsail, jib and staysail. The
challenger crossed at 11:00:34. followed
one minute and one second later by the
defender. The Shamrock lowered her spin
naker to starboard as she crossed the line,
but Captain Hogarth did not get it set
until full half a minute after the Colum
bia's went swelling to the wind. On the
other hand the Columbia had not set her
working topsail, while that of the Sham
rock was gradually drawing that vessel
away from the Columbia.
Meanwhile the Shamrock's spinnaker
was giving trouble, the sail hanging in '
stops a dozen feet or more from the top- j
mast head. This ndvnntage was evened |
by the queer capers which the Columbia's j
spinnaker cut. The pole sremed "to be too ;
light for the great weight of the wind i
which the sajl was carrying, and it fre
quently tipped at an angle so sharp that ■
it seemed as though the spar would be up
ended. Once it went so high Into the air
that it looked as though the pole had i
been broken or that the crew were making
efforts to take In sail. Despite all the
handicaps of tipping booms and the ab
sence of gaff topsail, the American boat ,
continued to overhaul the Shamrock, j
Then the Columbia broke out her topsail,
and soon afterward the Shamrock's men >:
were afforded the same old familiar view
of the Columbia's stern which they had
so often looked upon before.
The wind held strong and true, and the |
run down the wind was as pretty a j
yachting scene as was ever witnessed, j
The excursion fleet toiling along on either i
beam had all it could do to keep pace i
with the winged racers. The gallant j
American was still in the van as the two I
THE following table Mrlves the wlitntnsr yachts In the internation
al contest" for the America* cup. and the time occupied by each
In ernluit over the coarse. It will be observed that the time
• mnde by the Columbia In the l:i»t two races of the Merles) of
1800 compares very favorably with that of pa.it years*, having been
excelled on but three occasional
* lSsl_Amer.ca.. ..;..................... H.M.S. I
+ is.-.! America 8:34:OO *.
+ IS7O— Muprle 3:58:21 *-
-X ISTl— Columbia 0:10:41 *
* Columbia . . 3:07:41 ♦
* Livonia .......7...;................ 4:02:25 *
* Sappho ................ 5:30:02 *
Sappho 4:10:17
. 187O— Madeline :.. 5:23:54 j,
J Madeline 7:1S:4« ■+
1881 — Mischief... 4:17:00 if
Mischief 4:54:53 jj.
£ ISBs— Puritan ..........:. 6:00:05 34.
Puritan ......'.........1.' 5t03:14 *■
+ 1880 — Mayflower 5:26:41 *
■¥ Mayflower 0:40:10 *•
* Volunteer '.. ...........•..../ - 4:53:18 ?
* Volunteer . ... 5:42:56
£ Vigilant '. .......... ... 4:05:47 +
-ft VlKllunt 3:25:01 ♦
I-K Vlgfllant 3:24:29 *
* 1805— Defender 4:50:55 *
*' Valkyrie 111......... 3:55:00 ■*
J Defender ... 4:43:43 +
+ 1890^-Columbia 4i53:53 *
* Columbia 3:37:00 *
f Columbia 3i3»i00 *
* *
*••••*••*••••••***•* ****** •••••••••*^*jg
neared the turning point. The jib which
the Shamrock had been carrying had been
replaced by the largest in her sail locker,
and for a time it seemed as though the
Irish cutter wnuld hold her own. but not
for long. In spite of the change of can
vas, in spite of everything that Captain
Hogarth could do, the Columbia steadily
drew away from the Irish cutter. Near
ing the outer mark both made prepara
tions for turning it. the Columbia taking
In her spinnaker as she brought the buoy
broad off hnr starboard bow. the Sham
rock doffing hers half a minute later.
Luffing around the point, the Columbia
stond away on the starboard tack, fol
lowed seventeen seconds later by the
closely pursuing Shamrock.
The r^ad home \\,is the road of the
rough, and Irrimediati ly after heading into
the wind both yachts began a lively dance
over the tumbling sens. The defender
was under mainsail, jib and staysail. The
Shamrock, under the same sail, carried
a working topsail in addition. She took
that in at 12:34. the strain being too great
for her rigging. Over the decks of both
r utters the spray flew in sheets, and the
lower edges of their mainsails were kept
(inrk with flying- clouds of spray.
No need to tell here of how or when the
two boats tacked or how often they -went
about in thru long thresh back to the fin
ish line. Sufficient to say Thar whenever
one altered her course the other followed.
Tacks v,ere frequent and at irregular in
tervals, but each time the Shamrock
spilled the wind out of her sails, spun
around upon her heels and filled on the
other tack her crew saw the Columbia
still farther in the lead.
The Columbia gradually widened the
gap. steadily outfooting and outpointing
the Shamrock, and despite that vessel's
brave showing it became apparent that
she was not to win. This became so evi
dent as the two neared the finish line
that the conclusion of the contest was
robbed of all the sensational features
which mark a closely contested event.

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