on the veld, a mile beyond the Company's washing machines. Shortly
after the opening of the siege I had stock taken of the contents of
outlying magazines and brought to light three and a half tons of
good black powder of various grain. This discovery was of much service,
for it enabled the garrison to respond more frequently to the fire of
the Boers, and made the construction and use of " Long Cecil" possible.
first, the shells cast in our foundry were not all perfect, and the
bursting of some of them led to greater care in testing all under
hydraulic pressure. Ring shells made by De Beers are shown on page 280.
Rings with jagged or saw-toothed edges were first cast; these were
stacked one over another in the mould, and the outer shell cast around
them. When the bursting
charge of powder exploded, these rings were broken into a hundred pieces and thrown in all directions.
Boers evidently resented the firing of " Long Cecil," for on the 24th
of January they kept up a fierce cannonade, throwing about five hundred
shells into Kimberley. A French officer, who was at Kampfersdam during
a part of the siege, says that " Long Cecil " did good practice, and
with one shell killed seven Boers, only two less than the Boers killed
with eight thousand shells. The heavy and continuous firing which took