South African War Memorial

Related to City Art
An old cannon rests on two sandstone blocks in a park. Behind it is a pavilion surrounded by benches, on which people sit.
An old cannon rests on two sandstone blocks in a park, facing the viewer. Behind it is a sandstone monument with a plinth and a stone ring.
Close view of part of an old metal cannon.

An artillery gun and a sandstone cairn, erected in memory of those who fought in the Boer War.

Artist: Unknown

Artwork description

This memorial was erected by the South African Soldier’s Association in memory of the volunteers who fought in the Boer War (South Africa, 1899–1902). It is located on the northern side of Observatory Hill Park, near the rotunda.

The memorial is a square, sandstone cairn with curved arms and a paved enclosed semicircle at its base. In front of the cairn, mounted on sandstone blocks on a concrete platform, is a restored artillery gun, a relic of the Boer War.

On the cairn is a bronze bas-relief plaque, which lists details of the volunteers who fought in the war. The inscription lists 17 senior officers by name, rank, regiment and date of enlistment. It also commemorates 327 other officers, 6,000 other ranks, 14 nurses and 5,877 horses lost in the conflict.


The memorial may have been designed and sculpted by Gilbert Doble, who produced a number of other war memorials including Winged Victory at Marrickville, and the Evans memorial at Bathurst.

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