Stumbled upon some footage of the 25th Royal Fusiliers (Frontiersmen) during the East African Campaign of World War I. View it here.
The Fusiliers were recruited out of the Legion of Frontiersmen, a British and Commonwealth paramilitary organization founded at the turn of the 20th Century by the adventurer and eccentric romantic Roger Pocock.
Frederick Courteney Selous, perhaps the greatest of African hunters, served with the “old and the bold” as they were known — a motley but hardy collection that included big-game hunters, a British millionaire, cowboys, an circus clown, an opera singer and other colorful chaps from across the Empire. It all sounds like great swashbuckling fun, but it was actually a miserable campaign, riddled with disease and hardship and some sharp fighting, including a battle that took the life of Selous.
It’s great to see this kind of vintage film, a glimpse of wild times among the Frontier Partisans.