Archive / Papers / De Wend Papers


Given by G. H. Hunt

Microfilm No. 7

Extract from the United Services Magazine for 19? pp. 404-441. Letters concerning the 44th Regiment during the retreat from Cabul (sic) in the lst Afghan War. (From MSS kindly lent by Mrs. de Wend.) The letters are signed by several officers including James Douglas de Wend and give details of the fighting and casualties, and statements taken from soldiers.

Given by Mrs. I.C. Greenwell

Microfilm No. 9

Captain J. Douglas de Wend, 44th Regiment. MSS journal. 2 vols.

Volume I:

  • 8 February 1820. Sandhurst; June 1823, passes examination for a commission, second in list of nine; leaves Sandhurst December 1823; Isle of Wight.
  • 19 January 1825. Sails for Bengal on the Bridgewater; detailed description of voyage – ship, wind, latitude, fauna, and the crew. 25 May 1825. Weigh anchor at Sangor on the Hooghly; description of the natives; 29 May, arrives at Fort William, Calcutta.
  • 10 June 1825. Gets into debt to pay for camp equipment and stores in order to go to Arakan. Description of Fort and of the force held there; orders received not to proceed to Arakan as numbers dying through ill-health.
  • August-September 1825. Goes to Dum-Dum; mortality in Calcutta increasing – cholera; news of Burmese war; detailed description of Calcutta, and its inhabitants and their customs, dress, women, characteristics (very unfavourable); news of Sir Archibald Campbell and Burma war; armistice.
  • October 1825. Sails for Arakan, details of voyage; joins 44th Regiment for first time in the Fort there; description of Arakan and country; great illness.
  • December 1825. Mortality rate described.
  • 14 January 1826. Embarked with the Regiment for Ghazeepore via the Sundarbans; description. In February goes to Comercolly; Bogwangola; Rajahmahal; Bengalpore. In March at Monghyr; descriptions of buildings and ruins; Brahmans; inhabitants and their characteristics; detailed description of Patna; Dinapore; Buxar (near Chowsar).
  • April. Arrives in Ghazeepore; description. September, goes to Chunar to take command of the Detachment.
  • January 1827. Back in Ghazeepore; further detailed description of ruins, city and gardens (Rosewater). October, goes to Benares – very long detailed description; marches and arrives at Chunar; description of Chunar; is deputed as officer on guard over the Mahratta, chief Trimbuk Jee Danghi who is imprisoned there; description of him and imprisonment.
  • November 1828. Leaves Ghazeepore with Regiment for Cawnpore where they had just laid foundation of church; abandons march through illness and goes by river; goes into camp.
  • February 1829, good shooting. 14 May 1829, received letter from a friend with a detailed description. of Ootacamund.
  • February 1830. Goes on leave; shooting trip to Kanouge and Maddegunge in Dude; meets King of Dude. May 1830, detailed description of Cawnpore.
  • February 1831. Goes on leave, shooting about 30 miles from Cawnpore.
  • January-March 1832, shooting diary. 31 March 1832, goes to fair at Betoor ? Peshwa Bajee Roa, a pensioner, lives there.
  • February 1833. Goes on leave; Serajpore and Cuwrah’s ruins described (S.W. bank of river 45 miles N.W. of Allahabad, 93 S.E. of Lucknow).
  • 7 February 1833. Arrive at Allahabad; town described – just beginning to increase and improve from the permanent station of the Sudden Mofussil Commission; forts described; goes on tour from there; Manionah Gurh, ‘the prettiest village in India’; Rewah; Chalmiree; Hattie; Diggery, etc.; fortress of Kaiinghur; detailed description of Baudah, tank being constructed; Pepperindak; Chilla Taora; Selawra; Roudpoor; Kudjwa (ruins of town and indigo factory); Chundapurba; Rameypoor; joins regiment at Cawnpoor.
  • 17 March 1833. Further tour of Upper Provinces with Major Gray and Lt. Codd; Poorah; Arrowl; Meer an-ka-Serai; ruins of tombs, environs of Kanouja and coins described; Gorsai Gung; Chupper ak Mhow; Bow Gong; Mynepooree, capital of district, 62 miles east of Agra, a civil and military station; Kalour, Marie, Firozabad; Omeidpoor, where the people are reputed to poison horses.
  • 2 April ? 1833. In Agra ‘pitched our camp at the compound close to the gateway on the western front’; adulation of the Taj, and a description; description of other tombs etc. around; history of the city; Secundra described; Fatehpur Sikri whom he does not describe as Bishop Heber has done so; quotation from the Northern traveller on the history of Agra.
  • 5 April 1833. To Sydabad; Hattras, a prosperous place; stayed in a bungalow belonging to an indigo planter; history and description; to Sarsnee, stayed in a ruined house of an indigo planter; other forts described before the Company built; to Coel near Allighur; descriptive history of the war against Scindia, Fleury, and General Perron by Lord Lake carried on in this part of the country in 1803 etc. (Mahratta war?); to Soamnah, Bolundshur, Golantee, Haupper, Karkoudah, (Company has a stud for breeding horses).
  • 15 April 1833. Meerut: detailed description of the military lay-out of encampment, the church and the situation; to Katowlee – more kindness from a native than ever before received. 18 April, Muzaffarnagar, temperature in the 90s; 20 April, to Jerassu(?), good camp site but raided by thieves during the night. 21 April, to Jawallapoor and on to Hurdwar; plague of flies; description of temples at Hurdwar; detailed description of the Koombh-ha-Meia (great fair). 23-24 April, continuing journey; camp at Meahwallah – encircled by fires to keep off the tigers. 25 April, to Deyrah, capital of Dhoon ar Dhoon. 26 April, on to Ragepore – detailed account of the scenery and people, shortage of food and coolies; detained because necessity of sending back to Deyrah for food etc.
  • 2 May 1833. Reach Landour 7,000 feet above sea level. 4 May, to Faidee; description of party and journey, method of carrying belongings in baskets, scenery etc.; delayed by rain. 6 May, description of hill villages, stone houses very dirty as are the people. 7 May, continue journey up the valley of the Ganges; gives description of the scenery, animals, plants, people, names of villages and rivers crossed, prevalence of goitres amongst the people of the hill villages; meet with a party of Tartars, describes them, their clothes and their dances; view of avalanches on the other side of the Ganges. Entry for 18 May includes account of the same trip made by Captain Hodgson in 1817; description of the village of Harsala, the buildings and their decorations, the terraced cultivation etc.
  • 1 June 1833. Religious dancing ceremony at Kursala village, customs and appearance of the people. 4 June, arrived at Nangongong village and learnt of the oppression of the people by the Rajah. Daily entries describing the scenery and tracks over mountain ridges and valleys, the food they were able to get and the weather they had. 10 June, arrives at Godonggong; received their letters from the regiment. 11 June, arrives at Mipouri and tries to arrange accommodation in a bungalow; writes letters for Calcutta and has an attack of fever. 21 June, gives a geographical description of the Province of Kumaon, the river Ganges and its tributaries, and the numerous temples and sacred places on the Ganges. 23 June, move into bungalow; day to day account of activities at Godonggong. 29 June, monsoon weather; deaths from heat before the rains.
  • 28 August 1833. Leave station; details of journey – Saharunpore by way of Deyrah, Shore Chokee, Keree; description of the botanical gardens at Saharunpore; Dr. Falconer superintendent.
  • 4 September 1833. Journey to Meerut. 5 September, story of the Begum Samroo, sees grave of Ensign Peter Martin. 6 September, to Kuttowlie and return to Meerut.

Volume II:

  • 7-11 September 1833. At Meerut; details of stay and news of regiment; details of plans for journey to Delhi where they stay at the bungalow of the Begum Samroo. 12 September, description of an aquaduct, constructed by Ali Murdan Khan, 120 miles long, which brings crater from the Jumna to power mills and irrigates land giving drinking water to Delhi; story of the Massacre of Delhi; description of old and new Delhi and its early history and legends. 14-16 September, spent in visiting tombs and temples in the district surrounding Delhi, detailed description of them and their history; having travelled by horse embark on 20 September for Cawnpore by boat, with ‘the fleet’; description of journey and towns called at; Fatehgarh Farrukhabad, the frontier town of Oude described; arrive at Cawnpore on 28 September and rejoin the corps after an absence of six months; ordered to march to Chinsura (Bengal).
  • 8 October 1833. Lord William Bentinck appointed Commander-in-Chief of the Army in India; leave to visit Lucknow; journey there described. 23 October, arrive Lucknow; to stay at the palace of Constantia and not Residency; met by elephants at city gate; breakfast with the Resident (Lowe) and the King of Oude; all ceremony carefully described, as well as the king’s dress, manners etc. and the company at breakfast; description of Contantia Palace built by General Martin; shown round Lucknow; detailed description of palaces and parks; history of Lucknow and present political significance. 31 October, returns to Cawnpore; has news of his brother’s death; has attack of fever from 6-10 November.
  • 12 November 1833. Ill again with cold and chest congestion; treated with leaches and bleeding. 27 November, letter.
  • 5 December 1833. March of the regiment to Chinsura planned for 6 December, postponed owing to severe storms. 7. December, march started but slow because of bad roads; description of the daily marches, bad weather, scenery, hunting etc.; description of Benares and the Christmas Day holiday; jungle fire; indigo factories; the scenery and cantonments at Berhampore; the towns of Moorshidabad and Cossimbazar, all three of which are very unhealthy.
  • History of Clive’s campaign and battle of Plassey which established British power in Bengal. Arrived at Chinsura 14 February 1834, a march of about 750 miles in 68 days with men, women and children and elephants, camels and horses. 26 March 1834. Granted home leave of 2 years; is taken ill.
  • 15 April 1834. Describes Hindoo festival of Doorya Pooja.
  • 1 May 1834. Obtains leave of 10 days to visit Calcutta; calls on friends and tries to obtain position ‘in charge of invalids’ for the journey to England. 9 May, returns to Chinsura.
  • 4 July 1834. Ill again with fever.
  • 1 August? Much sickness in Chinsura; extracts from the Modern Traveller describing towns in Bengal he has not visited personally and the history of the areas. 26 August, visits Baredal and sees tame fish.
  • 24 September 1834. Visits Calcutta again. 29 September, on return journey to Chinsura; calls at Serampore, a Danish settlement which he describes in detail. 30 September, description of small fresh water fish that appear in the rainy season.
  • 9 November – 3 December 1834. Making arrangements for voyage to England in Hashemy with young Bobby Halaham in his care. 4 December, sailing delayed a large cargo of indigo has to be loaded.
  • 18 January 1835. Captain of Hashemy dies, Chief Officer Stuart to take his place. 21 January, started voyage to England; details of voyage and ports of call; Cape of Good Hope on 25 March; St. Helena, 7 April – goes ashore and visits Napoleon’s tomb; account of St. Helena from O’Meara.
  • 9 April 1835. Sail; sight Land’s End 27 May; Falmouth 28 May.
  • A sketch of the history of India in ancient and modern times taken from British India; detailed lists of the various journeys ‘giving dates, towns, miles and remarks, also a summary of journeys made 2 February 1833 – 14 February 1834.