British Foreign Policy 1815-65

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A letter from William Pugsley in Cawnpore to his mother, 8 November 1857

This letter appears with the kind permission of David Eastaff. Copyright, of course, remains with him. Mr Eastaff has a number of queries about the letter which may be found here, along with the original notes that Mr Eastaff sent. If any reader is able to help, please contact him directly.

In this typed version, the original spelling and (lack of) punctuation is retained. The symbol / denotes the probable end of a sentence. The correct spelling of some of the words is added in square brackets. The pictures are hot-spots for larger images.

Cawnpore letterCawnpore November "th"8, 1857

Dear Mother it is with great pleasure that I write you this few lines hoping it may find you all in good health as it leaves me at present thank God for it but I have had many narrow Escaps since I left Culcutta / we left Culcutta on the 26 of September and then we Came as far as Alahabad / that is bout 5 hundred mils by bullick train and then e had to walk the rest / to you that is 120 mils further / and last Saturday we herd that the Enemy ware in front of us / and on Saturday we marcht 24 miles / and on Sunday morning we Startead again at 5 Oclock in purecout [pursuit] of the Enemy in the jungle / and we came up with them about 2 Oclock in the afternonn after marching 28 mils that morning / and then the action began / the balls flew about my head lik an ale [hail] Storm / and we peaperd [peppered] it into them as weel [well] / when the action began we ware onely 650 of us altogether with 2 brass Canons / and the Enemy ware 4000 of them and had 3 brass Cannons / and battel began about 2 in the affternoon and it Ended about 5 in the Evening when we drove them Clean out of the place and took thare 3 Canons from them and a lot of horses and difrent [different] outher things / altogether we had 27 kild and 63 wounded and the Enemy had 528 kild and 12 hunderd wounded / in our company we had 1 Man kild and 5 wounded / our Cawnpore letter Captain ware shot through both thighs but he is geting better again / the name of the place whare the battel ware fought ware Khugaa [?] / but I am happy to tell you that I Came off without a Scratch thank god for it is an afful [awful] thing to go over the battel fild [field] after it is over but I am hapy to think I have had a look at the vilens [villains] to Reveng my poor Countery men that has been so barbesely [barbarously] murderd by them / there is not a uripean [European] dweling nor a Church in the hole [whole] Countery but whas has been Entirely Destroyed / and whare we are now is whare Cawnpore letterthey took all the poor women and Children ware taken and most barbesely murderd / to the same place we have Erected a galis [gallows?] and thare is 3 only hung thare Every Day what they tak [take] prisiners [prisoners] / we are going further up the Countery in a day or so to Lucknow with Sur Colen Cambel [Sir Colin Campbell] / and when that is take it will Soon be over / it is moor [more] than pen Can do to Describe it all but I hope I Shall live to Come home and then I Shall be abel [able] to tell you all about it / I have never recivead [received] any letter from you yet but I hope you are all well / I Supos [suppose] you have heard all about the war eer Since It began / I hope I Shall Come home and See you all yet but if I am Kild I hope we shall all meat [meet] aogain [again] in Heaven it will be in defence of my queen and Countery / and now I don't think I have aney [any] thing to Say at present So I must Conclude with my love to all and I Remain your Ever Affictonate [affectionate] Son

Wm Pugsley

I will Rite again Soon
Good by Good [God] bless
you all

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