S2A3 Biographical Database of Southern African Science

Drummond, Mr William Henry (vertebrate zoology)

Born: 1 August 1845, United Kingdom.
Died: 4 July 1879, Ulundi, Zululand, South Africa.

William Henry Drummond, trader, hunter, soldier and civil servant, was the son of William Henry Drummond, 7th Viscount Strathallan and his wife Christina Maria Hersey Drummond, born Baird. He undertook his first trek with a Boer transport rider in 1862, from Natal through the Free State to the Transvaal. From 1868 to 1872 he hunted and traded, mainly in Zululand, Swaziland and Tongaland. Having kept a journal, he transformed this into a book and upon his return to Britain in March 1875 had it published under the title The large game and natural history of South and South-East Africa: From the Journals of the Hon. W.H. Drummond (Edinburgh, 1875). It dealt mainly with hunting large mammals and game birds and was not primarily a zoological work. However, Drummond did read a paper before the Zoological Society of London in February 1876. He also edited a volume of articles by D. Leslie, which was published in Glasgow in 1875 as Among the Zulus and Amatongas.

He returned to KwaZulu-Natal to hunt, visited Cetshwayo and travelled to the White Umfolozi and Tongaland. During the Anglo-Zulu War (1879) he acted as interpreter, guide and advisor on Zulu customs on Lord Chelmsford's staff, and was killed in the battle of Ulundi.

List of sources:
Mendelssohn, S. South African bibliography. London, 1910.

Tabler, E.C. Pioneers of Natal and South Eastern Africa, 1552-1878. Cape Town: Balkema, 1977.

William Henry Drummond. The Peerage, at http://www.thepeerage.com/p66294.htm as on 2016-9-5.

Compiled by: C. Plug