Possibly for the first time since 1929, a gathering took place in London recently to commemorate and remember the Great War in East Africa. Just over thirty specialists on the campaign came together at The National Archives in Kew, London to share their knowledge of the little side-show which involved over twenty-eight countries, lasted longer than any fighting in Europe (5 August 1914 – 25 November 1918) and saw action on water, air and on land. In addition to the 250,000 odd troops, around one million carriers are estimated to have been involved as well as untold draught animals.
Talks covered most aspects of the campaign – Indian, Belgian and Danish involvement as well as Nyasaland, the Rhodesias, German mobilisation and prisoners of war/internees. Aspects of researching the campaign were also addressed – what The National Archives holds, Belgian archival sources at the Royal Military Museum and how to use medal citations. The map and document exhibition by The National Archives, enhanced with memorabilia from the Northern Rhodesia Police Association, and salvaged Pegasus and Konigsberg items stimulated much discussion over lunch and tea. Information on the talks and campaign can be found at http://gweaa.com. Thank you Dr Anne Samson (Co-ordinator, Great War in East Africa Association) for sending this – Editor.