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THE MASSACRE OF CAWNPORE,…

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THE MASSACRE OF CAWNPORE, BY AN EYE-WITNESS. The following account of the Cawnpore massacre, by Mrs. Murray, the wife of Sergeant-Major Murray, was first published by the Inclian Empire. Mrs. Murray is now in Calcutta, and is ready to answer any ques- tions :—" Long before the mutiny broke out at Cawnpore there was a report that the old muskets would be super- seded by the Enfield rifles that the cartridges of the new guns were prepared with hogs' lard and cows' grease that the time had arrived when the Govern- ment was going to Christianise its subjects that the new cartridges were the preparatory steps to attain that object, and a thousand and one such reports which I have neither time nor patience to relate, but all calcu- lated to inflame the mind of the ignorant people. News of all sorts were flying from one end of the sta- tion to another. There was not a report ever so absurd which was not firmly believed by the populace. UUMOCKS OF REVOLT RIDICULED. Things were fast assuming a very unfavourable ,),8- pect. The loud cries of discontent on a sudden changed into a sort of sullen reserve; everything looked suspicious; at this time an old havildar, whose pension paper was sent to the Commander-in-Chief for confirmation, went up to the General and informed him that the whole of the Native army was perfectly disaffected, and was rife at the slightest pretext to break out into open rebellion. He therefore suggested, as a precautionary measure, to destroy the whole of the powder in the magazine, keeping only as much as would be necessary in case of a protracted siege. The man was rewarded with imprisonment for his trouble on what ground this step was taken was better known to him who ordered his arrest. Next followed General Wheeler's khansamah, who was arrested for having in- formed him that the army was disaffected, and that unless he changed his policy he would bitterly repent of what he was about. A third, who was a Sepoy, was taken up while fast asleep in his line, for no other fault than that of his having spoken something seditious in the bazaar. NANA SAHIB-THE OUTBREAK. About this time Nana Sahib visited Cawnpore. He called upon the General, and on being asked as to the object of his visit he said he had heard that there was to be a disturbance in the cantonment, and he had come down to render him assistance. What further passed between him and the General no one could say N ana halted at the station only a few days, and then all of a sudden left the place for Bhithoor. Just after his departure the 2nd Cavalry mutinied. It was at midnight, on the 4th of June, 1857, that the bungalow of the riding-master was set fire to; he escaped with his life providentially. The whole of the 2nd Cavalry, with one regiment of Native Infantry, marched off to- wards Nawabgunge, looted the treasury, and was mak- ng away to Delhi, and had actually gone off about 12 miles from the station when they were met by the Nana's men, who told them that the King of Delhi would not receive them unless they made a practical demonstration of their hatred towards the accursed Feringhees, which would not ol\1y entitle them to double pay offered by the King of Delhi, but would gain them the favour of all good men. At this they re- turned to Cawnpore, accompanied by their new friends, when the rest of the regiments, which had up to this time, in other respects, remained faithful, joined the mutin- ous cofps as if it were by a common consent, and they all in a body went up to Nawabgunge, about three Unties from the station, looted the remainder of the trea- slere, and secured all the guns and ammunition. This was on the 5th of June. On the 6th the Christian por- tion of the town were ordered to go into the entrench- ment, which was no other than an old hospital belong- ing to a European regiment. The civil, military, merchants, tradesmen, clerks, drummers, pensioners, — in fact, all the men composing the Christian part of the population,—went into the entrenchment. HOSTILITIES GENERAL—TAKING TO THE ENTRENCHMENTS. From the 7th of June the mutineers commenced cannonading the garrison. They brought all the 24- pounders from the magazine, erected four batteries on the four sides of the entrenchment, and commenced pouring in balls like rain. They also brought mortaril, but the shells being filled with powder only, could scarcely do any harm. The first three or four days they were incessantly firing in the entrench- ment, but after that time they fired only at a stated hour. The people in the entrenchment were half dead through fear, particularly the ladies, but after three or four days, when they got used, perhaps, to that mode of life, they did not care for the booming of a cannon. There could not have been less than a thousand souls in the entrenchment, including women, children, and men of all classes and ranks, and the rebels outside were ten times that number of this number 5,000 or 6,000 were regular disciplined men from the ranks of the native army, one portion composed of the Nana's men, and the rest were budmashes of the town, and villagers whom prospect of plunder had attracted into the station. All the public and private property out- side the garrison was looted. The conveyances belong- ing to the gentlemen of the station were taken and made use of by the heads and leaders of the insurrec- tion. The ranks of Majors, Colonels, and Generals were supplied by the senior non-commissioned officers of the mutinous army. INCIDENTS IN ENTRENCHMENT—CHILDREN FIRED UPON. With all their endeavours and firing they found that they could not much harm the garrison. They then attempted to take the place by storm, but as many times as they tried they were repulsed with a consider- able loss. With all their firing very few men were killed in the entrenchment, and those few not while they were doing sentry duty, but while drawing water from the fatal well in the entrenchment, which was in a most exposed part of the garrison. It was about this time that the old havildar, whom General Wheeler had confined on suspicion, and who was in the garrison, was killed by the bursting of a shell. A lady was also killed in the same way. But accidents like these were so rare that I scarcely remember beyond one or two instances in which lives were lost. When any one was killed it was the practice to stitch him in a bag and remove him at a late part of the night to a blind well which was close by. The accidents that too frequently occurred were while drawing water out of the well, After one or two deaths took place at the well people commenced sending little children to draw water thinking they would not be fired at; but the mild Hindoos and refined Mahommedans are not the men to spare a dog belonging to a Christian, and much more children. Many children were killed and wounded at the well while drawing water. Perhaps 12 days or a fortnight had not elapsed since we had entered the entrenchment when the roof of it, which was built of straw, caught fire by a shell and was burnt dbwn. A CLEVER AND UNLUCKY ORDER. Just after this occurence the soldiers one night, having consulted together, sallied out of the garrison disguised in black, and utterly spoilt one of the batteries which the rebels had constructed on the four sides of the garrison, spiked as many guns as they could lay their hands upon, and would have assuredly done more, but the General having heard of it, dis- approved the bold attempt, and immediately ordered the bugle to sound, when they all returned into the garrison. It is a remarkable fact that during- the whole period of our stay in the garrison not more than 30 soldiers were killed. To the best of my knowledge, there were lots of provisions in the garrison and if the General had only held out for 12 days or a fortnight more the whole of the garrison would have been relieved by General Havelock, who arrived at Cawn- pore just 12 days after the massacre. But no it was fated otherwise. THE GENERAL OVERRULES THE GARRISON. On the 23th of June Jacoby, or Jacobite, the watch- maker's sister-in-law, who was left behind and was in the hands of the rebels, came with a letter from Nana Sahib, offering terms of peace. Her brother-in-law and sister were in the garrison. She swore Nana was sincere in his piofession, and the General, as the drown- ing man grasps at a straw, swallowed down everything as Gospel truth. The whole garrison was against surrendering, and bitterly opposed the General when he seemed inclined to accept the offer. The soldiers be- came mad to hear that the General was going to accept the offer. They broke their guns in a rage, and openly exhibited every sign of insubordination, but to no pur- pose. The General accepted the terms, in the teeth of t universal opposition. Mrs. Wheeler herself opposed him, and begged of him not to do this, but to no pur- pose. He was firm and inflexible. The Nana had been his friend, and he could not see the reason why he could not trust him. THE FATAL COMPROMISE. The General wrote a warm letter of friendship and sent it off' by Jacoby's sister-in-law. A little while after the miscreant Nana arrived, and was immediately conducted to the General. Whatever was proposed at that moment the General agreed to, provided he was only allowed with the beleaguered garrison to depart in peace. Nana agreed to it, and to satisfy him took an oath that he would see them safely conducted to Alla- habad. After this the rebels outside rushed into the garrison. Their number was so great that there was hardly any place to stand. There could not have been less than 7,000 to 8,000 armed men surrounding the garrison and occupying every inch of ground. If they had wanted they could have crushed us in the garrison without using their weapons. After this the treasury chest was made over to the Nana, together with all the ammunitions which were in the garrison. N ana then ordered the necessary preparation to be made to leave Cawnpore, he having left the garrison to go and ar- range for boats. Every one packed up his things, and passed the night with feverish anxiety. Next morning a Sowar came and informed the General that there was not a sufficient number of boats available, and there- fore, instead of boxes, in which every one had packed Lii,) his things, a bundle of clothes could be only allowed to be carried by each man, which was forthwith pre- ptred, but, another Sowar coming in after a while com- municated to the General that, there not being room in the boats to stow so many bundles, it was decided by the Nana Sahib that they should depart as they were. MARCHING TO DEATH—THE HIDEOUS TREACHERY. The General, at this second message, at once ordered tie whole garrison to march out as they were. They were conducted towards the Ghaut by the Nana's men, who took them not by the route in which they had their battery (for the soldiers would have assuredly fallen upon their battery and would have turned their guns against them), but by another passage altogether. When the garrison reached the ghaut the men were ordered to go in the boats, to which they objected, un- 1 :ss the ladies and children were first accommodated. But the General, being assured that there was no harm hi it, that there was some breakfast prepared for the 1 idies and children, which as soon as they had taken t'aey would be put on the boat, the General got into a I oat, and then all the men followed his example. FIGHTING BRAVELY FOR LIFE. As soon as the main body of the men were thus separated from the women and children, they were fired at, but some of the soldiers having a few rounds of car- tridge which they had taken with them by stealth, returned the fire, and like so many desperate bull-dogs, jumped out of the boats and fought bravely against the fearful odds as long as their cartridges lasted. They then threw away their guns and were cut to pieces. One soldier jumped into a blind well, but was taken out and mangled by a host of ruthless barbarians. One boat having caught fire, was burnt with all its inmates, and any one attempting to escape the fire was made a tar- get mark by the armed multitude standing on the bank. The gentlemen who were left on the bank, or, at least, those who had not gone into the boat, were hunted from one place to another like dogs, and, on each man a thousand sabres flashing at a time, wives and children beseeching the multitude with folded hands and in pray- ng attitude to spare their husbands and fathers but to no purpose, the whole of the male portion of the garri- son were barbarously murdered by order of Nana Soor. My husband, William Murray, Band Sergeant of the 56th Native Infantry, was shot in the head. My brother met the same fate. His name was Hero. My two sons Alick and John fell by a tulwar. The women all, high and low, were stripped in the open air, a piece of blue cloth of hardly three cubits, and less than a cubit in breadth, was given to each woman, just to cover herself. THE MASSACRE OF THE INNOCENTS. Then followed the massacre of the children, and I can, without any exaggeration, confidently declare that no less than 300 of the innocent angels were destroyed, as it were by the spell of magiCi They were bayonetted, shot, dashed on the ground, and trampled under foot. One European boy, of about seven years, having es- caped from the hands of the Sepoys, came running and fell upon Nana's foot, and begged of him to spare his life and he would serve as a mehter. The boy had not lifted up his head from the foot before it was cut off by the express order of the Nana, and he flung the head away with his foot. My two grandsons, Robert and Charles, aged five and twelve years respectively, were cut down on the spot. (The mother then relates some horrible atrocities, which we will not repeat.) A GOOD SAMARITAN. When all the people were gone away I opened my eyes, and I found myself lying in the heap of dead bodies fearfully mangled. I tried to get up, but I could not, so I crawled and went near the water, and I drank some water. A fishwoman living on the ghaut having seen me took pity on me and used to supply me with gruel and other necessaries which she could afford, but her mother used to abuse me shamefully. I used to be lying near the river close to a bhatta, or the place where brick is baked. I was seen afterwards by some Sepoys, who threatened to shoot me. I told them they were welcome to do so, provided they shot me in the head, and thus got rid of a life which was insupportable but they went away without molesting me. Perhaps they felt loath to look at me, my sores were so fearfully bad and full of worms, IJNREVEALED HORRORS. Before I fell I remember to have seen several grown-up girls and young ladies taken away by the sowars and other men, but as many as were taken away there was not one who had not personal attraction—the best pass- port for her safety. They were taken towards the town, and to what indignities they were subjected is a mystery which will be only revealed on the day of judgment. They were afterwards brought and kept in the Assembly- house, but I do not know whether the whole of the number or only a part was brought back. The fugitives who had escaped from Furruckabad, and were coming down to Calcutta in boats, were stopped at Cawnpore, and were taken up and added to the inmates of the Assembly-house, the whole of whom were massacred on the arrival of General Havelock. There was not one spared to inform the world as to what had been perpe- trated on them. THE RESCUE—ARRIVAL IN CALCUTTA. On the arrival of General Havelock the cowardly mis- creants of Cawnpore disappeared like stars at dawn of day, and the Nana Koor disappeared like a comet. I was promptly attended to, my wounds were dressed, and I was forthwith sent to Allahabad, where, being put under medical treatment, my wounds got better, and I was sent down to Calcutta and here I am with five marks, which I consider the best evidence to confirm the truth of my statement, lip to this time I possess the piece of three cubits of blue cloth which was given to every one when the whole of the women were stripped, and which piece any one seeing will have some idea at least of the indignities offered to the ladies.

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