General – John De la Rey

General John De la Rey.
He operated in the Free State with considerable success, was one of the most enthusiastic leaders in the army, and his confidence in the
Boers’ fighting ability was not less than his faith in the eventual success of their arms. De la Rey was born on British soil, but he had
a supreme contempt for the British soldier, and frequently asserted that one burgher was able to defeat ten soldiers at any time or place.
After hostilities commenced, and it became necessary to have more generals, six other names were added to the list of assistants of
Commandant-General Joubert—those chosen being Sarel Du Toit, Hendrik Schoeman, John De la Rey, Hendrik Snyman, and Herman R. Lemmer. The selections which were so promiscuously made were proved by time to be wise, for almost without exception the men developed into extraordinarily capable generals. John De la Rey was the only one of the generals who was unable to speak the English language, but he
understood it well enough to capture a spy whom he overheard in a Free State hotel. De la Rey was a Transvaal general, and when the
retreat from Bloemfontein was made he harassed the enemy greatly, but was finally compelled to cross the Vaal into his own country, where
he continued to fight under Commandant-General Botha.
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