North Lincoln Sphinx

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The North Lincoln Sphinx was a newsletter recording the activities of the officers and men of the Second Battalion of the 10th North Lincolnshire Regiment of Foot. The newsletter was "PRINTED AT THE REGIMENTAL PRESS" in Grahamstown and Keiskammahoek.

The North Lincoln Sphinx was reprinted by the State Library, Pretoria, 1968.

It was originally printed for private circulation only and was compiled by the Officers and Men of the North Lincolnshire Regiment of Foot.

In 1858 George Phineas Gordon invented the Franklin press, which is also known as the Gordon Jobber. It's possible the North Lincoln Sphinx was printed on this portable machine.

The front page masthead consisted of a drawing of an Egyptian Sphinx with the French motto: "Nous Travaillerond en l’ Esperance" - (We will work in hope.)

VOL. 1. NO. 1. was headed CURRAGH CAMP IRELAND and is dated 1st JANUARY 1860. Inside this first edition it was sub-titled GRAHAMSTOWN, SOUTH AFRICA, 4th AUGUST, 1860., and carried the following explanation: “It was originally intended that the first number of the North Lincoln Sphinx, should have made its appearance with the Ides of January; but the move of the Regiment from Ireland to the Cape of Good Hope, effectually prevented that intention from being carried out; and it was not until July that we had consummated our arrangements and placed the manuscripts in the printer’s hands.

“These circumstances will account for the two dates, under which the present number appears.

“The first five pages contain the matter that was to have been printed at the commencement of the year, and the remainder is a chronological record of the principal events in the History of the Second Battalion from its formation, to the 1st of August 1861, with a brief notice of such occurrences as may have differed from the ordinary routine of our life, during the four months and a half of our residence in Cape Colony.”

VOL. 1. NO. 2. of the newsletter was published more than nine months later, on September 15, 1860.

“The second number of our paper has now struggled into existence and we have endeavoured to make it palatable, - we dare not say instructive, - to our readers: - but we are unskillful cooks, - without even a pretension to comparison with the Soyers of literature, - and our plats, we confess, require to be largely seasoned with the sauce of indulgence.

“Our hands, taught to wield the sword, are awkward in the use of the pen; but remembering the moral contained in the story of Columbus and the egg, let them come forward to encourage and assist us with their contributions.”

Copies of the newsletter were sent all over the world to wherever the British military forces were stationed.

The last copy of Volume 1 was dated December 10, 1862, No 14.


The North Lincoln Sphinx, Vol. 1. (Nos. 1-14: 4th August, 1860 to 10th December, 1862).

For more information about the Franklin Press, go to: