Provisioning the Empire: British military foodways during and after the South African War

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  • Provisioning the Empire: British military foodways during and after the South African War

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Title


Provisioning the Empire: British military foodways during and after the South African War

Subject

S2-3, Empires, oral

Description

Abstract:

Napoleon Bonaparte famously remarked that “an army marches on its stomach”. This not only holds true for fighting soldiers, but includes all the administrators, contractors and low ranking laborers involved in the quest for control. Thus, without a steady supply of food, growing Empires cannot sustain their power. Provisioning of military and other personnel associated with the expansion of the British Empire during and after the South African War (1899-1902) has received little scholarly attention. From 2006 to 2008, the National Museum Bloemfontein excavated a midden outside Bloemfontein that contain refuse of British soldiers, officers, engineers and local laborers, employed to rebuild infrastructure after the war. In this paper, I will address the issue of military food supply and its impact on local patterns of animal exploitation through a combination of archival and preliminary zooarchaeological research. Contemporary faunal assemblages from a military outpost, town residence and farmstead also provide useful comparisons to characterize the British Empire’s food supply strategies during this time.

Authors:

ANTONITES Annie R.1,2

Affiliations

1 Yale University, Department of Anthropology, 10 Sachem Street, New Haven, Connecticut 06520, USA. annemari.raath@yale.edu
2 National Museum Bloemfontein, Archaeology Department, P.O. Box 266, Bloemfontein, 9300, South Africa

Creator

Antonites, Annie R.

Date

August 2010

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Citation

Antonites, Annie R.. " Provisioning the Empire: British military foodways during and after the South African War ," in BoneCommons, Item #934, http://alexandriaarchive.org/bonecommons/items/show/934 (accessed August 9, 2020).