'Royal Engineers repairing a railway destroyed by Boers, South Africa', 1900.
© National Media Museum / Science & Society Picture Library
One of a boxed set of stereoscope photographs produced for sale to the general public by a profesional firm of photographers, Underwood and Underwood. The Second Boer War (1899-1902) was the first war to be covered comprehensively by both film and still photography. This was the result of improved technology in both photographic equipment and printing techniques. The Boers used guerrilla tactics very effectively, particularly after mid 1900 when the numerical superiority of the British militated against fighting set-piece battles. Sabotage of railways and bridges disrupted communications, as in this case near Kroonstadt. The British responded by adopting a scorched earth policy and interning the Boer population in concentration camps.