He fought one brisk
action with Hertzog's commando at Kloof, and then, making his way
across the colony, struck the railway line again at Edenburg on
December 7th, with a train of prisoners and cattle.
Rundle also had put in much hard work in his efforts to control the
difficult district in the north-east of the Colony which had been
committed to his care. He traversed in November from north to south
the same country which he had already so painfully traversed from
south to north. With occasional small actions he moved about from
Vrede to Reitz, and so to Bethlehem and Harrismith. On him, as on
all other commanders, the vicious system of placing small garrisons
in the various towns imposed a constant responsibility lest they
should be starved or overwhelmed.
The year and the century ended by a small reverse to the British
arms in the Transvaal. This consisted in the capture of a post at
Helvetia defended by a detachment of the Liverpool Regiment and by
a 4.7 gun. Lydenburg, being seventy miles off the railway line, had
a chain of posts connecting it with the junction at Machadodorp.
These posts were seven in number, ten miles apart, each defended by
250 men. Of these Helvetia was the second. The key of the position
was a strongly fortified hill about three-quarters of a mile from
the headquarter camp, and commanding it.