7. THE REGIMENT MARCHES TO MEEAN MEER
10 Dec 1861. Everything being ready, camp equippage, carriage etc etc.
for the march, tho' I have had onerous duties to perform in getting together
the arrangements during the past month, I flatter myself that no reasonable
complaint can be made against me on that score but that the march has been
greatly facilitated by my exertions. Tomorrow we leave Benares at 2 a.m.
11 Dec 1861. The Regiment moved off this morning in good order, the strength being as subjoined, for Allahabad thence to proceed by rail to Shekoabad, near to Agra and to continue our march from thence to Meean Meer in the meantime to leave all our camp equippage at Allahabad for the 92nd Highlanders who are to take up our quarters at Benares, and we to receive in exchange their camp equippage which will be left by them at Shekoabad.
Strength of 19th Foot leaving Benares.
Officers 30 - Men 742 - women 40 - children 52 - Hospital Assts 4.
(In these numbers the companies at Dacca are of course not included they being ordered to follow up our rear under command of Major Jennings)
40 elephants - 115 carts drawn by 406 bullocks (not including the carriage for Commissariat stores etc.).
680 camp followers or about 1,000 including their families.
18 Dec 1861. Regiment arrived at Allahabad and encamped on the maidan near the Fort and adjacent to the Railway terminus for goods where we had to await the arrival of the 92nd Foot at Skekoabad and to relieve each other by detachments of which the following is the distribution.
First detachment under Captain Massy 19th Foot, proceeded on the 27th Dec 1861 from the above mentioned terminus to Shekoabad, consisting of 9 Officers - 178 men - 10 women and 6 children with 164 camp followers and 2 horses and 16 truck loads of baggage.
28 Dec 1861 - 2nd Detachment under Captain Bayley 19 Foot, consisting of 6 Officers - 185 men - 7 women and 10 children with 138 camp followers and 8 bullocks proceeded this day to the same destination and from the same station, there being also attached 8 Truck loads of baggage.
30 Dec 1861 - 3rd detachment of 5 Officers - 192 men - 9 women and 15 children together with 202 camp followers - 2 horses and 6 bullocks all under charge of Major Chippindale moved off today from same place to same encampment.
Accompanying this detachment were also 11 wagon loads of luggage.
31 Dec 1861. 4th detachment under the personal command of Colonel Mundy CB moved off today for Shekoabad from same station comprising 10 Officers - 187 men - 14 women - 21 children - 76 camp followers - 4 horses and 8 loads baggage, the whole of the above detachments arriving at their destination without an accident - the 92nd Foot relieving us in a similar manner.
3 Jan 1862. Everything being in readiness to move from Shekoabad tho' the camp equippage was greatly inferior to what we had left at Allahabad for the 92nd Regt (which together with our new description of carriage is as below) the Corps started early in the morning for Agra and encamped that evening at Ferozabad distant 12 miles and 4 furlongs.
Strength of Regt moving from Shekoabad
|1 Commisariat Serjeant|
4 Hospital Assistants and 680 native servants.
The amount of camp equippage, carriages etc being also as under
61 double pole tents
11 Staff Serjeants tents
338 camels and 125 carts, drawn by from 2 to 6 bullocks each, the Officers finding their own tentage.
5th Jan 1862. Regt arrived this morning at Agra and encamped on ground near the Bridge on river where it halted, this day being Sunday.
Subjoined is a copy of the route showing the distance of each day's march from Shekoabad.
|Shahabad||Kolteentchoa||8||-||Markinda & Amlah|
|From Benares to Allahabad||75||-|
|By rail from Allahabad to Shekoabad||150||-|
|Total rail & march||739||2|
19th Jan 1862. Sunday - This day the Regiment arrived at the Great
Mogul City, Delhi and encamped near the walls outside the Adjmeer Gate and
remained there two or three days being specially retained by the Brigadier
Christie for the purpose of Brigading with the 82nd Foot, Royal Artillery,
Native Infantry and Native Cavalry. Delhi is approached from the Meerut
side of the river Jumna on whose banks the city is built by a bridge of boats
and is virtually surrounded with a fortified wall, and a deep ditch; there
are several entrances to this City through gates designated as follows, Cashmere,
Adjmeer, Lahore etc etc but these are situated on the west side, and to the
opposite to the river. When the Corps arrived here, the ruins caused
by the recent siege were not cleared away and there were sufficient evidences
to shew that the siege had been a determined one. Delhi is not at all
a badly formed City as regards the public roads and which are generally kept
clean. Within the walls the heat of the hot season is almost intolerable
to European residents and the natives that they are accustomed to such fiery
air nevertheless are glad to ensconce themselves in shady places. Here
they are building a stone bridge to span the Jumna for a railway.
3rd Feb 1862. This day being Monday the Regiment marched into Umballa and halted there for three days. Umballa, so called the model European station in India, lays upon a level tho' at a distance to the East of it the hills or low range are distinctly observable to the eye. Here are built large and commodious barracks similar to those at Meean Meer.
6 Feb 1862. This morning the Regt started from Umballa and arrived at Mogul-ke-Seria about 7 am. At this encampment were caught five native thieves who after receiving a good whipping with the cat o nine tails were made over to the native police and sent on to Umballa.
15 Feb 1862. Regiment arrived at the Military station of Jullunder, a pretty and well laid out cantonment and halted one day.
21 Feb 1862. Today Friday, the Regt marched into Umritsar and marched again on the morrow when it encountered a heavy dust storm such as are prevalent in the Punjab.
24 Feb 1862. Arrived at Chubeel and on the same day the 25 Feb 1862 reached Meean Meer under a burning sun, the Regt following in my track early in the morning.