John Philippart.

The East India military calendar: containing the services of ..., Volume 1 online

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Sainsapatam in the memorable campaign of that year. The selec-
tion of the Lieut.-Col. to fill eventually the appointment of the assist,
to the aud.-gen* having been communicated to the Hon. the Court of
Directors, they were pleased to direct in 1801 that he should succeed
to the responsible situation of aud.-gen. to this presidency, on the oc-
currence of any vacancy in the department. The several occasions,
however, which the administration of this presidency has had to avail
ilself of the experienced talents and acquirements of that officer,
have interrupted his succession to the principal charge of either of the
two above-mentioned offices in the immediate line of his profession, —
in view to which he had thus successively been selected, — ^and in both
of which he was eminently qualified to promote the public service.
Having accompanied the committee of government that proceeded
to Malabar in the year 1797, the knowledge which Col. W. thence
acquired of the state of afiairs in that province^ joined to his conci*
liatory character, led to his being nominated a member of the com-
mission that was formed for regulating the afiairs of Malabar, at a
crisis which demanded the selection of servants of approved jodg-
ment and talents. On the abolition of the commission, Lieut. CoL W.
returned to this presidency, and would have succeeded to the office
of aud.-gen*, pursuant to his nomination to that situation by the Hon.
Court, had not the course of events called for the exercise of his tried
abilities in promoting the national interests in a more active and deli-
cate scene of operation. The Baroda slate having solicited the interpo-
sition of the Hon. Company's favour and authority in extricating the
government firom the various difficulties and distresses under which it



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156 TH£ EAST IKDIA

then laboured, this officer proceerded to the northward in 1802 ; and in
the short warfare which ensued, Lieut.-Col. W/s services attracted the
thanks of his Exc. the most noble the Gov.-Gen. in council, " for the
judgment and address which he manifested in the conduct of the ne-
gociations with the minister Rourba, and for Maj. Walker's distin-
guished exertion of military talents in the contest in which he was un-
avoidably engaged with the superior force of Mulbar Rao Guicow/'
Having successively engaged in the reduction of the active and dan-
gerous opposition that immediately distracted the Guicawar state, the
attention of Lieut.-Col. W- has for these last seven years been sedu-
lously devoted, in his capacity of resident at Baroda, in co-operating
with the administration of the Guicawar government towards the re-
storation of its affairs ; after the attainment of which important ob-
ject, he is now returning to his native country, with the regret of his
own government at the loss of his able assistance, with the distin-
guished approbation of the Gov.-Gen. of India for the eminent ser-
vices he has rendered, and the general good wishes of his sovereign
and subjects in the Company of the Hon. Company's ally, at the
court of which he had thus long and usefully resided/'

In the beginning of the year 1809 Lieut.-Col. W. embarked in
the Earl St. Vincent, and proceeded as far as Point de Galle on his
passage, from which he was induced to return to Bombay in conse-
quence of a requisition from the Gov.-Gen. Lieut-Col. W. again
entered Katty war at the head of a British force of more magnitude
than the former, and was joined, as he had been on the first occasion,
by the Guicawar army. On the 17th June the detachment took the
fort of Kandader. On the 7th July, a practicable breach having
been effected, the fort of Mallia was carried by assault, after an ob*
stinate resistance.

The general orders by the Com.-in-Chief on this occasion expressed
the '^ highest gratification, and congratulated the army on an achieve-
ment so distinguished by judgment, decision, zeal, and intrepidity,
and so highly creditable to the troops engaged. The Com.-in-Chicf



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ICILITARY CALBNDAR. 157

begs to distribute his praise and gratitude to Lieut.-CoL Walker, Maj.
Mahony, and the officers and men, for their spirited, gallant, and
energetic conduct on this arduous enterprise/^ — ^The following is an
extract from the government orders on the same event : — ** In thus
narrating the circumstances that attended the reduction of the fort of
MalKa, the Gov. in council affords the most satisfactory testimony
to the able disposition that had been planned by that judicious and
experienced officer Lieut.-Col. Walker, and to the promptitude, vi-
gour, and bravery by which that plan was carried into effect by that
gallant detachment under that officer's command, which has added
another conspicuous exploit to those which have already distinguished
the zeal andintrepidity of the Bombay army/'

Negociations ensued with the state of Kutch, which were ably con-
ducted and concluded by Capt. Greenwood, who was deputed by
Lieut-Col. W. for this purpose. On the 1st Oct. the piratical fort of
Positra surrendered to the detachment-
After having accomplished all the objects of government, and tran-
quillity being completely re-established, Lieut.-Col. W. obtained leave
to return to his native country. The following orders were issued by
the Governor in council : —

" Bombay Castle^ Jan. 23, 1810.
" The Hon. the Gov. in council is pleased to permit Lieut-Col.
Walker to proceed to England, with the option of retiring from, or
returning to, the service at the expiration of his furlough. The sen-
timents of government on the high professional character and distin-
guished merits of Lieut.-Col. Walker were expressed in the orders
dated the 19th Jan. 1809, on the occasion of that officer's former em-
barkation for Europe. The communication of the wishes of the Rt
Hon. the Gov, Gen. that the residence of Col. Walker in this country
might be prolonged, for the purpose of carrying into effect an arrange-
ment of great political importance, determined the Lieut..Col. to re-
turn to his station, and to reassume the functions of his office. Having
immediately entered upon the delicate duties committed to his able



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158 THE EAST INDIA

management, the progress of his negodations, and the success of his
measures, have been marked by that judgment, ability and address^
of which he has afforded so many decided proofs, at the same time
that the reputation of the British arms has been maintained and ex-
tended under his approved mihtary talents and skill, in a degree that
has already attracted the distinguished approbation of the Right Hon.
the Gov.-Gen. The Gov. in council, therefore, in announcing Lieut-
Col. Walker's ultimate return to his native country, embraces the op-
portunity of renewing the expression of the obligations of the govern-
ment for the important services which have already received its cordial
and unqualified testimony, and which have been enhanced by the emi*
nent and substantial benefits that this presidency has derived from his
protracted residence in India.''

Lieut.-Col. Walker arrived in England 9th July 1810, and on the
24th June 1812 he retired from the service. In 1822 he was ap-
pointed, by the Court of Directors^ Gov. of St. Helena, with the rank
of Brigadier-General.



LIEUTENANT-COLONEL GERVASE PEJ^NINGTON.

(Bengal Establishment.)

This ofiiqer was appointed a cadet on the Bengal establishment in
1782, and arriving in India in July following, commenced his mili-
tary career in the artillery at the practice-ground at Dum Dum. In
1784, he served under Col. Sir John Cummings, then in command
of the temporary brigade, so called on account of having been formed,
in addition to the fixed subsidiary force provided according to treaty
with the Newaub, for the express purpose of protecting the N. W.
frontier of the Newaub's dominions firom the predatory incursions of
the Siks, who, annually, with large bodies of horse, levied Contribu-



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MILITABY CALENDAR. 159

iioDs or laid waste the country. In this brigade Mr. Pennington con-
tinued to serve until early in 1786, when, in consequence of a new
organization and partial reduction of the army, he was struck off,
with inany others of all ranks, to the half-pay list, on which he re-
mained till 1788, when being brought on the effective strength, he
rejoined the reg. of artillery, then on its practice-ground at Dum
Dunu In 1791 he was again appointed to the army of observation
on the Newaub's frontier, with which he served until the close of
1793, and was in that year promoted to lieut. In 1794, having
volunteered his services, he embarked with the force furnished from
the Bengal army for the reduction of the isles of France and
Bourbon.

In 1796, the government of Bengal having found it expedient
lo relieve the subsidiary force, then composed of troops from the
Madras presidency in the Nizam's dominions, a brigade of the Ben-
gal troops, with the artillery in which Lieut. Pennington served, as-
sembled at Midnapore, the rendezvous, in December, whence it
marched in the following Feb., and arrived at its ground of encamp-
ment, near Hyderabad, the capital of the Nizam's dominions, in June,
after a march of between nine hundred and a thousand miles. The
Bengal subsidiary force was commanded by the late Col. H. Hyndman,
of the Bengal service, who so effectually directed its operations in
the reduction of Perron's army, near that capital, when eleven thoui-
saod men laid down their arms, surrendering fifty-five pieces of
field-ordnance, and seventy-four European ofiicers, prisoners of war,
to a force under six thousand.

At the close of 1798, the health of Lieut. P- being much impaired^
he, by the advice of his medical friends, left Hyderabad,, and pro-
ceeding to the sea-side, availed himself of an opportunity, which
then offered, of visiting Bengal, where intelligence having arrived
of the war with Tippoo, in which the Bengal brigade, then at Hydera-
bad, was to be employed, * he re-embarked in a merchant-ship for
Madras ; but which ship, being captured by the French frigate La
Forte, he became a.prisoner, with the loss of his baggage. From



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IGO THB BAST INDIA

this situation being released by Capt. Cooke, of the Sybelle, who
captured the La Forte, he arrived at Madras in time to join Col.
Readers division on its march to Seringapatam.

After the fall of that capital, the army was broken up in divisions,
when Capt. P., having been promoted by brevet in the preceding
January, served with that division, which, under the command of
Col. Dalrymple, pursued Doondia Cawn, and attacked the hill
fortress of Chitteldroog, at that time supposed by the natives to be
impregnable. Doondia was twice over taken, suffering each time
considerable loss, and Chitteldroog surrendered.

Capt. P. having returned to Bengal at the close of the Mysore war,
he was appointed aid-de-camp to Maj-Gen- G. Deare, whom he
joined while in command of a division of the army, for the expul-
sion of the Arracanese, who had made an irruption into Bengal on its
S. E. frontier.

In 1803 this officer was promoted to capt.-lieut. in the art., and
the following year, continuing in his capacity of aid-de-camp, he
served with Maj.-Gen. Deare, who was charged during that cam-
paign of the Mahratta war, with the defence of the frontier Ijring
between the Soane and the Jumna.

In 1804, Maj.-Gen. Deare having retired from the army, Capt.
Pennington was permitted, on his own request, to join the grand army,
then under Lord Lake, and at the siege of Burtpore, when covering
the retreat of a column, after the last assault of that place, he was
severely wounded by grape-shot in the head and shoulder.

In 1805, this officer, though not yet promoted to full captain, was no-
minated by Lord Lake to the command of the art. with the grand
army, then under his Lordship's personal command, with permission
to select from the art. those officers he preferred to serve under him.
In this situation he remained till the termination of the war in Feb.
1806, when he was appointed to the command of the experimental
troop of horse art-, and in the same month was also promoted to the
rank of capt. of art- In 1809 Capt Pennington commanded the horse
art. with the army serving on the Settiedge or Hesudrus, under the com*



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MILITARY CALENDAR. l6l

mand of the late Lieut-G^n* St. Leger, and at the close of Uiat year,
it having been deemed expedient to increase the horse art. to three
troops, Capt Pennington was, bj a special order of government, ap-
pointed to the command of that corps, on its augmented establish-
ment.

In 1810 Capt. Pennington was promoted to the rank of Maj. by
brevet. In 1814 he was appointed to the command of all the art.
in the division serving under Maj.-Gen. Gillespie, in the m6untain
war with the Ghoorkas, and at the siege of Callinger,* where the maj-
gen. was killed. After the reduction of Callinger, Maj. Pennington
was withdrawn from the mountains, to join with his horse art. the
army of observation, formed on the Jumna, under Maj.-Gen. Sir W.
G. Kier. In 1817 he commanded the horse art. at the siege of Hatt-
rass, which was taken possession of, with thirteen other forts of no
inconsiderable strength, in the course of that year ; and in Oct. fol-
lowing he joined, with his whole corps, after a march of twenty days,
the grand army, formed at Secundra, for the Pindarry war, under
the personal command of Lord Hastings, with which he served to the
termination of that campaign in 1818.

In Sept. 1818, government having deemed it expedient to augment
the horse art. to a brigade, composed of six troops, with one rocket
troop, Maj. Pennington was promoted to the rank of Lieut.-Col. and
appointed to the command of that corps. In 1819* finding his con-

* On this oecasion Major PenniDgtoo received the following letter : —

^^ Sir, — ^The zealous, able, and most useful assistance afforded by you, to the late and
ever-to-be lamented Maj.-Gen. Gillespie, both prior to and at the attack of Callinger, hav-
ing been made fully known to the Right Hon. the Com.-in-Chief, I have great pleasure in
obeying hb Exc.'s commands, to convey to you his particular thanks for your voluntary and
highly meritorious services, in superintending and directing an arduous department to which
ydu was not publicly or regularly attached,' in addition to the duties of your own more im-
mediate and important command; and to acquaint you that the proofs afibrded on this occa-
sion of your talents, gallantry, and exemplary zeal, are duly appreciated^ and will not fail to
be held in recollection by the Right Hon. the Com.-in-Chief. It is his Exc.'s wish, that as
long as you remain in Col. Mawby's camp you will retain the general command of the whole
artillery in it, which will be communicated to Col. Mawby.

(Signed) G. H. PAGAN, Adj.-Gen."

Y



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Ilg2 TILE £AST INDIA

stitntioa much impaired, by an miinterropted service of more than
tfairty<^8ix years, and having also suffered from three wounds, he pro-
ceeded on furlough to Eugland- In 1823 be returned to India. In
the bourse of his service Lieut,-CoL Pennington was twice appottnted
to the oflSice of paymaster, once to that of commissary of supplies,
and once to tlwit of conmiissary of ordnance ; but while holding these
offices he continued to perform his duty in the line*



LIEUTENANT COLONEL WILLIAM THOMAS,
(Bengal Establishment.)

This officer commenced his military career in 1795, at the age of
fifteen, having been appointed to a lieutenantcy in a reg. of foot, com-
manded by Col. (afterwards Gen.) Sir Robert Stuart, Bart., and was
subsequently removed to the Northumberland reg. of fencible inf ,
which he joined in 1796 at Jersey. In Aug. of the same year he
sailed for India, having been appointed a cadet, and reached Calcutta
16 Mar. 1797. Hp was immediately appointed ens. in the 2d batt.
5th reg. N. I., which corps he joined at Caunpoor in Aug. In Oct.
he was promoted to lieut. in the 2d batt. Ist reg. N. I. which he joined
at Futtehgurh, and immediately took the field with that division of
the army, under the late Lieut-Gen. R. Stuart, in order to form a
junction with the Caunpoor division, under the late Gen. Sir Jas.
Craig, with the view of deposing Vizier Ally, and of placing the
legitimate heir, Newaub Sandut Ally, on the throne of Oude, in pur-
suance of that chiefs treaty with the British government. This ser-
vice having been accomplished, the division returned to their canton-
ments. In Sept. 1798, the 1st reg. again took the field, and pro-
ceeded to Bareilly in RohDcund, to afford assistance to the governor



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MILITARY CALENDAR. iQS

of that province. The reg. marched from thence^ and joined the
remainder of the Futtehgurh division at the city of Caunpoor. The
political objects having been peaceably accomplished, the division
proceeded to form a junction with the field army, assembled W Anop-
sheher, under Sir J. Craig, with the view of opposing Zemaun Shaw,
the king of CabuKs threatened invasion of Hindostan. The grena*
dier companies of the army having been formed into two batts. Lieut
Thomas was appointed by Sir James adj. to the 1st batt. Zemaun
Shaw having retreated from the Attock, (to whidi river he had ad-
vanced in prosecution of his project) in consequence of disburbaaces
in his own dominions, the field army broke up, and lieut. Thomas
proceeded to join the 13th reg. at Benares. The 23d batt, having
been ordered to Azimghur, for the purpose of disarming «and disbands
ing some refractory baits, of the Oude government, Lieut. Thomas
applied and obtained permission to join it. In the early part of IpOl
the batt. was actively employed in the field against a refractory Ze-
mindar, named Ataur Sing, who, in his principal strong hold, Autro-
liah, maintained an obstinate siege of several weeks. The Pettah was
at length carried by assault on the 1st April, and Lieut. Thomas had
the honour of being one of the first to enter the place with the centre
column of attack. The enemy were dosely pursued through the towi^
to the ditch of the fort, which they evacuated during the night, having
suffered severely in their defence. The treiops immediately moved
against the fort of Hurrain, the next in consequence to Autroliah^
but the enemy were so thoroughly disheartened that they only stobd
one day's open batteries, and evacuated the place. In this manner
twenty-two strong holds were gained possession of, and delivered over
to the Newaub's officers. In 1803 Lieut. Thomas was detached from
Purtaub Ghur, with two companies, across^ the Jumna into the Bo-
galkund district, to repress some marauders in that quarter. Erom
this duty he was called upon to join a f6rce, collecting for the siege of
the fort of Chowkundic ; a breach having Jt)een effected, orders were
given for the assault, and Lieut. Thomas's detachment proceeded with
the storming colunm ; but the ditch presented such formidable ob-



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164 THE EAST INDIA

stacles, and ihe men, carrying the scaling ladders, having been all
killed or wounded by the heavy fire kept up from the garrison, the
signal was given to retreat; and the storming party received the
commanding officer's thanks, ^^ for their gallant though unsuccessful
exertions at the breach/' Capt. Graham, who led the party, fell
pierced with nine balls ! The place was subsequently evacuated
during the night.

The 33d Sept. 1804, this officer was promoted to a company, and
nominated about the same time by the Com -in-Chief, the late Lord
Lake, to form levies of recruits for the general service of the army-
In 1808 Capt. Thomas took his furlough to Europe; and in July
1812 embarked on board the Hon. Company's ship, Euphrates, on
his return to Bengal, the Court of Directors having conferred upon
him the command of the troops on board. The voyage proved
propitious to Cohimbo in the island of Ceylon ; but leaving that
port in prosecution of the voyage to Calcutta, the ship was wrecked
in the night of 1st Jan. 181S, on the ridge of rocks extending from
Dindia Head, and totally lost. The night being calm, the passengers
and troops were landed with but one casualty among the latter ; but
the greater part of the baggage was lost. The pas^ngers ex-
perienced the kindest treatment from the British residents at the
port of Matura, who promptly came to their aid, while sitting round
fires kindled by the natives on the beach, and conveyed them to
their houses. Capt. Thomas marched the troops to Matura, and
subsequently to Point de Galle, where he embarked on board the
Hon. Company's ship, Northampton, and landed at Calcutta 15th
March. He was immediately appointed by the Com.-in-Chief, to
take charge of, and discipline, 500 recruits for the European reg.
in fort William, and afterwards proceeded with them to Burhampoor.
In June 1814, this officer was promoted to Maj. by Brevet, and
obtained the regimental step l6th Dec. following; and, having com^-
manded the left wing of his batt. for some months at Etaweh, he pro-*
ceeded to the head-quarters at Agra-

The Nepaul war not having been brought to a conclusion, the 2nd



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mtlTART CALENDAR. l65

batt. ISth N. I. was ordered to march from Agra for the province of
Kamaoon in Nov., and early in Dec. arrived at Champownt, die
ancient capital of the province, and relieved the batt. 11th N. I.
which had been much reduced by sickness. Maj. T. was soon after-
wards detached with the left wing of his batt. to the advanced post
of Chowpakiah, on the right bank of the Kali, and relieved a grena-
dier batt* put hor$ de combat by sickness. Here Maj. T- remained till
the signature of the Ghoorka peace, when, having succeeded to the
command of his batt-, he returned to join the head-quarters at Cham-
pownt, where the right wing remained cantoned till Nov. 18X6, when
the corps descended the hills, and occupied the post of Meradabad
in Rohilcund.

The Snd batt. 130k reg. having been selected to form part of the
centre division of the grand army, under the immediate command oi
Lord Hastings, Maj. T. commenced his march from Meradabad
the latter end of Sept. ISl?, and reached the general rendezvous at
Seoundra, on the banks of the Jumna, on the 20th Oct., the day ap-
pointed, wlien upwards of 14,000 troops were at once assembled.
The division crossed the Jumna, on a Inidge of boats a few days after-
wards ; and while it advanced towards the Scind river, Maj. T.'s batt.
was left to cover the coostructicHi of a tile de pont by the principal
field-engineer, on the completion of which the batt. proceeded to
join the head-quarters, escorting treasure and grain for the army,
with which the detachment arrived on the 9th Nov. On the 18tli of
the same month a detachment was formed, designated the advsmced
guard of the army, under Brig. Philpot, consisting of a troop of horse
art., H. M. 24th dragoons, (he 3d reg. Ught cavalry, tour fort art.
guns, and the Sod batt. 13th reg. lliis detachment marched imme-
diately via Sumptur and Jhansi to Burwa Sangur, where it halted
from 34th Nov. till 3rd Dec-, observing the motions of Kurreem
Khans Dhurrah of Pindarries. These pursuing a rapid course to-
wards Narwar, the detachment proceeded by forced marches to the
Scind via Datteeuh, and reached Sonari Ghaut on the 7th. Here
the bag^^igie, wiUi the left wing of the 2od batt. 13lh reg., was left,



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166 .THE. EAST I^DIA

while the reoiaindar of the detachment xrossed the river, and pro-
ceedpd rapidly to Cheemud^^/a poaitioQcommandiDg the oolj road
fifom Narwar to Owalior. The iktaohmeDt proceeded on\«ard to
Narwar, the infantrjr keeping pace witk.the cavalry : when arriving
wilhib a few mileb of the place, it was. discovered that Kurreem Khan
had fled; and as. that chief was more closely pursued by the left
c^viiieii,. the d^achmeot oountomarched by Mustoorah to Cheemnck,
utere. it remained till recalled to head-quartera on 24th Dee. The
latter end of the following month this officer was again detached widt
his batt to cover A grand foraging party froin camp, and to overawe
^Qine ' forts from whence opposition had been experienced^ This
service having been satisfactorily accomplished, the corps proceeded
to Sumptur, and retieved the batt. in charge of the battering train at
lliat place, agreeably to orders received from head-quarters. Brig. -
Gien. Watson soon afterwards followed with two more niative batts.