THE ‘BRITISH-IMPERIAL’ MODEL OF ADMINISTRATION: ASSEMBLING THE SOUTH AFRICAN CONSTABULARY, 1900 – 1902

Scott C Spencer

Abstract


With the end of the South African War believed to be in sight, British policy
makers in South Africa created the South African Constabulary (SAC) in late 1900
to provide law and order over the new Transvaal and Orange River colonies. By
1900, policy makers no longer simply exported ‘English’ or ‘Irish’ models to the
colonies but sought guidance from existing institutions throughout the British Isles
and Empire in a single ‘British-Imperial’ model of administration. Those policy
makers and the new corps’ senior officers turned to the imperial policing network
for ideas, methods, and particularly personnel to assemble the SAC, recruiting ten
thousand officers and constables from across the British Isles and Empire. When it
disbanded eight years later, SAC veterans used the imperial policing network to take
up new positions in police forces throughout the British Isles and Empire. This
‘British-Imperial’ model implemented a ‘best practices’ form of administration in
which the men (and, very occasionally, women) who carried these practices enjoyed
superior importance.


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DOI: https://doi.org/10.5787/41-2-1070

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Copyright (c) 2018 Scott C Spencer


ISSN 2224-0020 (online); ISSN 1022-8136 (print)

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