Balfour Becomes Prime Minister (July 1902)
On the morning of 7 July, the Colonial Secretary reviewed the contingent of the West African Frontier Force brought to London for the Coronation. Under the watchful eye of their British officers and non-commissioned officers, the veterans of the Ashanti wars were marshalled in the Quadrangle of the Colonial Office. They made a brave show: white-turbaned Hausas in their flowing robes, and men of Sierra Leone and the Gambia with their gold-tasselled tarbooshes, scarlet and khaki tropical uniforms, and sandalled feet. On the stroke of noon Chamberlain stepped into the Quadrangle, impeccably attired in top-hat and frock-coat with a pink orchid in his buttonhole. Accompanied by the senior staff of the Office, he passed slowly down the dusky ranks, examining the unfamiliar uniforms and satisfying a still youthful curiosity with insistent questions. Then in ringing tones he harangued the troops, dwelling, in the approved style, on their loyalty to the King and telling them ‘that even now you may have some opportunity of seeing the King’s face before you return to your homes’.
KeywordsPrime Minister Conservative Party Glass Pane National Review Unionist Regime
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