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Major General Henry Leslie Grove)

Given by Brigadier G.L. Pollard

Xerox and TS copy of the autobiography of Henry Leslie Grove, Major-General in the Madras Staff Corp. (Retired). 75pp. Xerox, 48 pp. TS.

Born 1829; entered the 80th Foot 1845, and taken for interview with Court of Directors of H.E.I.C.S. in London.

Sailed for India in the Madagascar February 1846; voyage of 96 days; anchored in the Madras Roads, 4 June 1846; describes how letters came to ship from the Master Attendant of the Port by catamaran.

Life as a young gentleman cadet at Palaveram, with visits to friends resident near Madras as Collector; journeys to Point Calymere; Robert Cotton, the Judge and other individuals; passes time in learning to ride and shooting; mentions a Masaldu who became Curator of the Madras Museum.

Tranquebor, attached to 45th Regiment as 4th Ensign; Tangire; Vallane; and Trichinopoly cohere he was drilled as an ensign and coached in language; got command of a company at 17; details about living, training and guard duties; friendships.

Goes on leave to Madura; kindness of cousin who was Chief Secretary to Government in Madras; marches to Tanjore Collectorate; to Negupatam; learns Tamil.

1850. Regiment moves to Secunderabad in the Nizam’s Dominions; describes journey; takes leave and goes shooting, very inexperienced; learns Telugu.

1851. His cousin Sir Henry Montgomery tells him of intention to create a new department called the Public Works Department, and advises trying to join; does so and eventually gazetted to be 2nd Assistant Civil Engineer in Godavery District under Colonel A. Cotton, R.E. At Drolaitarran: sent to assist Lt. Haig in building aqueduct across a branch of Godavery; later goes with Cotton on to Coringa Canal; passes examination in Telugu, surveying and civil engineering and becomes lst Assistant Civil Engineer; works for Major Fred Cotton (brother of Colonel A. Cotton); sent with Lt. Haig to explore the Upper Godavery for navigational purposes; sent to take charge of irrigation works at Madapollyam.

1857. Offered post by Lord Harris, Governor of Madras, (through influence of his cousin) as Officiating Assistant Agent to the Governor at Kurnool; describes duties there; sends for his sisters who are orphaned; mutiny begins; sisters and brother arrive in Madras, and wait for two months there as not safe to travel; they arrive; mutiny alarms from time to time – two uprisings 70-90 miles away which were put down; second brother arrives in army and posted through influence to Kurnool; sends brother Robert to Coonoor to a coffee planter; sister marries at Bellary; while here hears from William Robinson, Inspector General of Police, who had been appointed to reorganize the police system of Madras Presidency, asking him to be one of his superintendents; trains at Chittore; posted to Vellore where tries against great opposition to change police system; plot against his proposed changes; returns to England with captaincy after nearly 15 years on sick leave; visits prisons and discusses methods in England and Ireland.

1862. Marries Miss Scott; returns to Madras on Mooltan; sent to Chicacole as acting Principal Assistant Collector and Magistrate; sails to Brinlipatam to miles from Chicacole with wife, carriage and pair etc; arrives Chicacole and takes over; describes English residents; chief is Gordon Forbes who resents a military man being appointed.

1864-65. Senior Assistant Collector and Magistrate of Vizagapatam District; more jealousy at the appointment of a military man.

1865. Ootacamund on leave; becomes Superintendent of recently created army schools, Bangalore HQ; later devises a scheme for the education of the men and children of the native army.

1870. Wife and children return to England; he also returns; finds homes for three children and returns with two; makes HQ at Coonoor; brother Robert also there; wife returns to England with six children; Franco-Prussian war on; accounts of their illnesses; Pollard returns to England on leave.

1878. He returns alone; in 1879 his wife dies; returns home and forfeits pension; account of family; one boy goes to Sandhurst, posted to Devons – goes to Jhansi 1888, and later posted to 8th Bengal Cavalry; second boy joins Bengal Cavalry; not happy; both have accidents and return, home on sick leave; children marry and son dies. Ends.