Born: 1876, Mutton Hall, Wetherden, Suffolk.

Died: 11th January 1901; age 24; Died of Enteric Fever, at Zeerust, Ngaka Modiri Molema, North West Province, South Africa.

ENTERIC FEVER – Enteric Fever (eneterica serotype bacteria) was a rampant bacterial infection during the South Africa Boer War – 1899 – 1902.

This systemic disease, now known as Typhoid Fever, from the bacterium Salmonella typhi, is characterised by fever and abdominal pain. The disease is spread via the lymphatic system and can affect other parts of the body, or even the whole body. The symptoms usually developed a week or two after a person had became infected bringing on a high temperature, headaches, coughs, lethargy, aches and pains, lose of appetite, sickness and diarrhoea. After 2 – 3 weeks intestinal bleeding.

Enteric Fever was originally thought to be spread via dust storms and flies.

Human carriers with acute illness can contaminate the surrounding water supply through their faeces, which contains a high concentration of the bacteria. The polluted water supply can, in turn, taint the food supply. Enteric (Typhoid) Fever is then contracted by drinking, or eating the contaminated food or water. This bacteria can survive for weeks in water or dried sewage.

In 1897, an effective vaccine was developed by Almroth Wright and William Leisman, at the Army Medical School, Netley. At the time of the Boer War, the new inoculation had many side effects, and soldiers refused the voluntary immunisation. The inoculation was still voluntary in August 1914, when Great Britain entered the First World War. 

Residence: Mutton Hall, Wetherden, Suffolk.


Rank: Private; Service Number: 6773.

Regiment: 43rd Company, Imperial Yeomanry, 12th Battalion, South Africa Field Force.


Clasps Awarded: Cape Colony, Orange Free State & Transvaal + South Africa 1901 medal.


Relatives Notified & Address: Son of James Ballam, of Mutton Hall, Wetherden, Suffolk.




1881   Mutton Hall, Wetherden, Suffolk.


James was 4 years old and living with his parents, siblings & father’s former family housekeeper.

James Ballam, 45, a Farmer of 200 acres – employing 8 men & 4 boys, born Elmswell, Suffolk.

Eliza Ballam (nee Taylor), 48, born Stowupland, Suffolk.

Jane Ballam, 10, born Tostock, Suffolk.

William Ballam, 8, born Tostock.

Sophia Linge, 76, an Annuitant, born Haughley, Suffolk.

1 dairymaid.

1 housemaid.


1891   Framlingham College, Framlingham, Suffolk.


James 14 years old, a Scholar and Boarder at the school. Headmaster – 38 year old, Oliver Digby Inskip – Clerk in Holy Orders.


James was educated at Framlingham College entered 1889 – left 1892.


Framlingham College information courtesy of Kate – archivist – https://www.framlinghamcollege.co.uk/


Probate to Edward John Clarke Ballam – uncle, a threshing engine-proprietor.


James is also remembered on the chapel war memorial at Framlingham College, and on a private memorial in the chancel at St. Mary’s Church, Wetherden, Suffolk.

James was laid to rest near a fellow Old Framlinghamian, 24 year old, Allan Blomfield Flowerdew, a farmer’s son, of Billingford Hall, Norfolk. Alan was ranked a Private, of 43rd Company, Imperial Yeomanry, 12th Battalion, he too died from Enteric Fever, at Zeerust, 28th March 1901.


Bury Free Press – 9th November 1901 – MEMORIAL TO TROOPER BALLAM AT WETHERDENA memorial tablet has recently been fixed in the chancel of Wetherden Church to the memory of Trooper James Ballam, who went out to South Africa with the 43rd Company Imperial Yeomanry, and died at Zeerust from enteric fever. The tablet, which is of Gothic shape, is executed in white statuary marble, mounted upon a black marble ground, the inscription being as follows:- “Scared to the memory of James Ballam, of the 43rd Company Imperial Yeomanry, who died on the 11th January, 1901, of enteric fever, at Zeerust, South Africa, aged 24 years, youngest son of James Ballam, of Mutton Hall.” The tablet adjoins one erected to the memory of Capt. Marshall (formerly of Haughley), who died of fever at the Monastery of St. George, Balaclava Heights, in September 1855.




The Boer War.

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