UBC Theses and Dissertations

UBC Theses Logo

UBC Theses and Dissertations

Army service and social mobility : the Mahars of the Bombay Presidency, with comparisions with the.. 1985

You don't seem to have a PDF reader installed, try download the pdf

Item Metadata

Download

Media
UBC_1986_A1 B39.pdf
UBC_1986_A1 B39.pdf [ 17.07MB ]
Metadata
JSON: 1.0097235.json
JSON-LD: 1.0097235+ld.json
RDF/XML (Pretty): 1.0097235.xml
RDF/JSON: 1.0097235+rdf.json
Turtle: 1.0097235+rdf-turtle.txt
N-Triples: 1.0097235+rdf-ntriples.txt
Citation
1.0097235.ris

Full Text

ARMY SERVICE AND SOCIAL MOBILITY: THE MAHARS OF THE BOMBAY PRESIDENCY, WITH COMPARISONS WITH THE BENE ISRAEL AND BLACK AMERICANS By ARDYTHE MAUDE ROBERTA BASHAM M.A., The U n i v e r s i t y of Manitoba, 1975 A THESIS SUBMITTED IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF DOCTOR OF PHILOSOPHY i n THE FACULTY OF GRADUATE STUDIES (Department of H i s t o r y ) We accept tb*is t h e s i s as conforming to the r e q u i r e d standard THE UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA November 1985 Copyright Ardythe Maude Roberta Basham, 1985 In p r e s e n t i n g t h i s t h e s i s i n p a r t i a l f u l f i l m e n t o f the requirements f o r an advanced degree a t the U n i v e r s i t y o f B r i t i s h Columbia, I agree t h a t the L i b r a r y s h a l l make i t f r e e l y a v a i l a b l e f o r r e f e r e n c e and study. I f u r t h e r agree t h a t p e r m i s s i o n f o r e x t e n s i v e copying o f t h i s t h e s i s f o r s c h o l a r l y purposes may be granted by the head o f my department o r by h i s or her r e p r e s e n t a t i v e s . I t i s understood t h a t copying or p u b l i c a t i o n of t h i s t h e s i s f o r f i n a n c i a l g a i n s h a l l not be allowed without my w r i t t e n p e r m i s s i o n . Department o f The U n i v e r s i t y of B r i t i s h Columbia 1956 Main Mall Vancouver, Canada V6T 1Y3 DE-6 (3/81) ABSTRACT: Army S e r v i c e and S o c i a l M o b i l i t y : The Mahars of the Bombay Presidency, with Comparisons to the Bene I s r a e l and to Black Americans. A number of h i s t o r i a n s have a s s e r t e d that m i l i t a r y s e r v i c e has been an avenue of s o c i a l m o b i l i t y f o r disadvantaged peoples i n m u l t i c u l t u r a l s o c i e t i e s but few d e t a i l e d i n v e s t i g a t i o n s sup- p o r t t h i s a s s e r t i o n . T h i s t h e s i s does so by d e s c r i b i n g the r e l a t i o n s h i p between army s e r v i c e and s o c i a l m o b i l i t y i n the case of the Mahars, an untouchable community of Western Ind i a , who are compared with the Bene I s r a e l , an Indian Jewish community, and b l a ck Americans. The t h e s i s d e s c r i b e s and analyses the s i m i l a r i - t i e s and d i f f e r e n c e s i n the s o c i a l s t a t u s and m i l i t a r y e x p e r i - ences of each community, and assesses the impact of m i l i t a r y s e r v i c e on t h e i r s o c i a l and economic s i t u a t i o n s . The Mahars and the Bene I s r a e l served i n the Indian Army up to 1893, when both groups were d e c l a r e d i n e l i g i b l e f o r e n l i s t - ment. The reasons f o r t h i s , and the s t r u g g l e of the Mahars to r e g a i n t h e i r m i l i t a r y e l i g i b i l i t y , are examined and compared with the r e l e v a n t p e r i o d f o r American b l a c k s , the century from the U n i t e d S t a t e s C i v i l War to the beginnings of the C i v i l Rights movement i n the 1950s. Comparative m i l i t a r y pay and b e n e f i t s , the g e n e r a l e f f e c t s of r a c i a l and caste p r e j u d i c e , the " M a r t i a l Races" theory, the r e l a t i o n s h i p between m i l i t a r y s e r v i c e and c i t i z e n s h i p , and the s t a t u s of s o l d i e r s i n t h e i r n o n - m i l i t a r y environments are d i s c u s s e d at l e n g t h i n order to support the t h e s i s that the Mahars b e n e f i t e d most from m i l i t a r y s e r v i c e . They r e c e i v e d economic b e n e f i t s , e d u c a t i o n a l o p p o r t u n i t i e s , l e a d e r s h i p experience, enhanced s o c i a l s t a t u s , and improved access to o f f i c i a l channels. Consequently, they p e r i o d i c a l l y a g i t a t e d f o r r e s t o r a t i o n of the r i g h t to e n l i s t , something they d i d not f i n a l l y achieve u n t i l 1942. The Bene I s r a e l had no r a c i a l or c a s t e stigma to overcome, and were l e a s t a f f e c t e d by the l o s s of m i l i t a r y employment. A c c o r d i n g l y , they made l i t t l e e f f o r t to r e g a i n e n l i s t m e n t s t a t u s . While American b l a c k s de- r i v e d s i m i l a r b e n e f i t s , these were not of c r u c i a l importance f o r improvement of the p o s i t i o n of the e n t i r e b lack p o p u l a t i o n ; m i l i t a r y s e r v i c e was, however, important i n j u s t i f y i n g c l a i m s to p o l i t i c a l e q u a l i t y . Whites r e i n f o r c e d t h e i r dominance with p s e u d o - s c i e n t i f i c b e l i e f s i n t h e i r innate r a c i a l s u p e r i o r i t y which they used to l i m i t the p a r t i c i p a t i o n of the Mahars and b l a c k s i n the m i l i t a r y . But r e c o g n i t i o n as s o l d i e r s had symbolic as w e l l as p r a c t i c a l value i n s t r e n g t h e n i n g the claims of Mahars and b l a c k s to equal s t a t u s i n other areas. Primary sources used f o r the t h e s i s i n c l u d e government documents from the N a t i o n a l A r c h i v e s of I n d i a , the Maharashtra S t a t e A r c h i v e s , the U n i t e d S e r v i c e s I n s t i t u t i o n of I n d i a , and the I n d i a O f f i c e L i b r a r y . Regimental and other m i l i t a r y h i s t o r i e s , i n t e r v i e w s , and a v a r i e t y of c u l t u r a l h i s t o r y sources, as w e l l as the standard monographic m a t e r i a l s , have a l s o been used. P r o f e s s o r P. Harnetty i v TABLE OF CONTENTS GLOSSARY v i i i ABBREVIATIONS x i ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS x i i INTRODUCTION 1 Chapter I. ORIGINS AND SOCIAL STATUS 8 I I . EARLY MILITARY HISTORY 24 The Mahars 24 The Bene I s r a e l 42 American Blacks 44 I I I . PROFESSIONALISM AND PREJUDICE: MILITARY SERVICE IN THE LATE NINETEENTH CENTURY 59 The Indian Army 60 R a c i a l T h e o r i e s : M a r t i a l Races and the "Gurkha Syndrome" 74 The American Army to 1900 87 Comparison of American and Indian Armies, c. 1865-1914 100 Summary 105 IV. COSTS AND BENEFITS OF MILITARY SERVICE 114 The Indian Army 115 The American Army 155 S o c i a l S tatus and M i l i t a r y S e r v i c e 163 V. FIGHTING FOR THE RIGHT TO FIGHT: THE INDIAN ARMY, 1893-1942; THE AMERICAN ARMY, 1918-1945 187 The Mahabaleshwar Committee and Army Re o r g a n i z a t i o n 187 The P e t i t i o n s . . 207 World War I and the 111th Mahars 214 Dr. Ambedkar and Others: Support f o r Mahar Enl i s t m e n t 218 World War II and the Mahar Regiment 221 Black Americans i n Two World Wars 224 V VI. MILITARY SERVICE TODAY 240 The Indian Army 240 The American Army 251 Conclusi o n s 255 CONCLUSIONS 262 BIBLIOGRAPHY 272 Appendix A. NAME AND CASTE IDENTIFICATION 292 B. MILITARY APPOINTMENT OF KAMALNAC WITNAC, JEMADAR, 1847 302 C. MONTHLY COST OF A REGIMENT OF NATIVE INFANTRY . . . 304 D. RANKS IN THE INDIAN ARMY 306 E. DAPOLI SCHOOL DISPUTE 308 Part 1 308 Part 2 311 F. PETITIONS FOR RE-ENLISTMENT 315 Part 1, Walangkar P e t i t i o n 315 Part 2, Crewe P e t i t i o n 322 Part 3, P e t i t i o n of 1921 335 G. QUESTIONNAIRES DISTRIBUTED BETWEEN APRIL- AUGUST 1980 338 Part 1, Q u e s t i o n n a i r e f o r Former S o l d i e r s of the Mahar Community 338 Part 2, Q u e s t i o n n a i r e f o r People having Ancestors i n the Army 339 v i TABLES I. D i f f e r e n t i a t i n g S o c i a l F a c t o r s 18 I I . Breakdown of Bombay I n f a n t r y by Caste and Year . . 65 I I I . Breakdown of Bombay I n f a n t r y by Country and Year . 66 IV. Bombay Army R e c r u i t i n g , 1848-52 68 V. Comparative S e r v i c e C o n d i t i o n s , American to Indian Armies, c. 1865-1914 103 VI. Medals Issued to Bombay Army, 1890-1900 120 V I I . S a l a r y Range of Madras Pensioners i n C i v i l Employment 130 V I I I . F i n a l M i l i t a r y Ranks of Native Normal School Attendees, 1858 147 IX. School Attendance of Regimental G i r l s of the 25th Native I n f a n t r y , Sholapur, 1863 . 152 X. Age and Caste D i s t r i b u t i o n of Regimental G i r l s of the 25th Native I n f a n t r y , Sholapur, 1863 . . . . 154 XI. Length of S e r v i c e i n Years f o r Promotion to Commissioned and Noncommissioned Ranks, Bombay I n f a n t r y 204 XI I . Rates of Promotion to Commissioned and Non- commissioned Ranks, Bombay I n f a n t r y 205 v i i MAPS 1. Map of the Bombay Presidency 9 2. Map of I n d i a 61 GLOSSARY Ba l u t e d a r : a v i l l a g e o f f i c e r or servant r e c e i v i n g a share of the crop, e t c . (Wilson, p. 56) Bara khanna: " b i g dinner"; a l a r g e , formal meal or banquet B a t t a : an e x t r a allowance made to . . . s o l d i e r s . . . when i n the f i e l d , or on other s p e c i a l grounds. (Hobson-Jobson, p. 72) B h i s t i e : w a t e r - c a r r i e r C h a k k i l i y a , Chuckler: tanner or cobbler c a s t e of South I n d i a , corresponding to Chamar or Mochi. Chuprass: a badge-plate i n s c r i b e d with the name of the o f f i c e to which the bearer i s attached. The c h a p r a s i (chuprassy) i s an office-messenger . . . b e a r i n g such a badge on a c l o t h or l e a t h e r b e l t . (Hobson-Jobson, p. 220) C u t c h e r r y : an o f f i c e of a d m i n i s t r a t i o n , a court-house (such as a C o l l e c t o r ' s or M a g i s t r a t e ' s o f f i c e ) (Hobson-Jobson, p. 287) D a c o i t : a robber belonging to an armed gang . . . to c o n s t i t u t e d a c o i t y , there must be f i v e or more i n the gang. (Hobson- Jobson, p. 290) Dipmala: a lampstand to h o l d s e v e r a l small saucer-shaped lamps (dipa) Dooly: a covered l i t t e r or s t r e t c h e r c a r r i e d by 2 or 4 men F e r i n g e e : "European," probably d e r i v e d from P e r s i a n Gurudwara: a S i k h temple H o l i : a s p r i n g f e r t i l i t y f e s t i v a l , c e l e b r a t e d i n March i n n o r t h I n d i a J a t i : subcaste; a d i v i s i o n , u s u a l l y endogamous, of a l a r g e r c a s t e or o c c u p a t i o n a l group. For example: the Mahar caste i s s u b d i v i d e d i n t o a l a r g e number of j a t i s (Mar. zata) which do not intermarry. The t r a d i t i o n a l number i s twelve and a h a l f ; i n f a c t at l e a s t f i f t y c o uld be i d e n t i f i e d , though no more than a dozen would be found i n any one d i s t r i c t . (Robertson, pp. 49-50) i x Jawan: l i t e r a l l y "youth," now a p p l i e d to s o l d i e r s , i n the way one might r e f e r to "our boys i n uniform." I d i d not f i n d any s o l d i e r s or e x - s o l d i e r s using t h i s term f o r themselves, how- ever . K a j i : c h i e f p r i e s t or judge (a Muslim t i t l e adopted by the Bene I s r a e l ) — K e h i m k a r , p. 47. Karkun, Karkoon (Mar.): a c l e r k , a w r i t e r , a r e g i s t r a r ; . . . i n f e r i o r revenue o f f i c e r . . . under the . . . d i s t r i c t c o l l e c t o r (Wilson, p. 261) K u l k a r n i : v i l l a g e r e g i s t r a r and accountant, [who] keeps accounts between the c u l t i v a t o r s and the government (Wilson, p. 300) Lakh: one hundred 1 thousand Mazhbi, Muzbee: "a c l a s s of Sikhs o r i g i n a l l y of low c a s t e , " u s u a l l y descendants of converts from the sweeper caste (Hobson-Jobson, p. 606) Pa r a i y a , P a r i a h : "a low caste of Hindus i n Southern I n d i a . . . one of the most numerous cas t e s . . . . i n the Tamil country"; l o o s e l y used as a synonym f o r "outcaste" or "untouchable". (Hobson-Jobson, p. 678) Parwari: a term p o s s i b l y meaning " h i l l men", or p o s s i b l y s i g n i f y - ing d w e l l e r s o u t s i d e the v i l l a g e w a l l s . Used to designate Mahars i n the m i l i t a r y . P a t i l , p a t e l : the head man of a v i l l a g e ; f o r m e r l y h e r e d i t a r y , o f t e n granted as a reward f o r s e r v i c e ; u s u a l l y with revenue, p o l i c e , and j u d i c i a l powers Pundit, P a n d i t : a man le a r n e d i n S a n s k r i t l o r e (Hobson-Jobson, p. 740) Pu r d a s i , p a r d e s h i : l i t e r a l l y " f o r e i g n e r " ; i n the Bombay Army, a s o l d i e r from N. I n d i a . Many s o - c a l l e d " p a r d e s h i s " were n a t i v e s of the Presidency although t h e i r f a m i l y o r i g i n s were i n North I n d i a . R e s s a i d a r : a n a t i v e s u b a l t e r n of i r r e g u l a r c a v a l r y , under the Ress a l d a r . (Hobson-Jobson, p. 761) Ressaidar, R i s a l d a r : the n a t i v e o f f i c e r who commands a r e s s a l a (troop) i n . . . regiments of " I r r e g u l a r Horse." (Hobson- Jobson, p. 762) Ressaldar-Major: s e n i o r r e s s a i d a r of a c a v a l r y regiment (equiva- l e n t to Subadar-major) X Rumal: l i t e r a l l y a handkerchief; a l s o a p p l i e d to a c l o t h t y i n g up a bundle. Papers i n the Kolhapur S t a t e A r c h i v e s are s t o r e d i n " r u m a l s " — a set of documents wrapped i n heavy c o t t o n c l o t h t i e d up at the top. Rupee: b a s i c u n i t of currency i n I n d i a ; one rupee e q u a l l e d 16 annas; one anna e q u a l l e d 4 p i c e or p a i s a Ryot: "an i n d i v i d u a l occupying land as a farmer or c u l t i v a t o r " ; a peasant farmer. (Hobson-Jobson, p. 777) Sanad: a grant, a diploma, a c h a r t e r , a patent . . . [ i s s u e d ] under the s e a l of the r u l i n g a u t h o r i t y . (Wilson, p. 460) Old c h a r t e r s were o f t e n engraved on copper p l a t e s . In modern times, the Maharajah of Kolhapur had f a c s i m i l e s of important documents engraved on s i l v e r p l a t e s ( l e t t e r to L. J . Mountford, 14 August 1917; Rumal #30, 1917, l e t t e r #6180-81). Sepoy, S i p a h i : P e r s i a n " s o l d i e r , " g e n e r a l l y a p p l i e d to i n f a n t r y p r i v a t e s . S o l d i e r s today s t i l l use the term, although "jawan" i s the o f f i c i a l d e s i g n a t i o n . Sowar: an Indian c a v a l r y trooper Sowkar, saukar: a banker, a d e a l e r i n money and exchanges, a merchant i n g e n e r a l (Wilson, p. 453); a moneylender S i l l a d a r i : a system of i r r e g u l a r c a v a l r y i n which each trooper p a i d f o r h i s own mount S h e r i s t a d a r , S a r i s h t a d a r , H.: a r e g i s t r a r , record-keeper, ap- p l i e d e s p e c i a l l y to the head n a t i v e o f f i c e r of a court of j u s t i c e or c o l l e c t o r ' s o f f i c e . (Wilson, p. 467) Ummedwar, Umedwar: an expectant, a candidate f o r employment, one who awaits a favourable answer to some r e p r e s e n t a t i o n or request (Wilson, p. 532) Watandar: the h o l d e r of a h e r e d i t a r y r i g h t , property, or o f f i c e , w ith the p r i v i l e g e s and emoluments attached to i t (Wilson, p. 557) Zata: Marathi term f o r " j a t i " x i ABBREVIATIONS AGCT - Army General C l a s s i f i c a t i o n Test, used by the U.S. Army to grade r e c r u i t s on t h e i r o v e r a l l education; o f t e n e r r o n e o u s l y assumed to be an " i n t e l l i g e n c e " t e s t . G. I. B i l l - The G.I. B i l l of Rights i s the popular name f o r the Servicemen's Readjustment Act of 1944, which p r o v i d e d s p e c i a l a s s i s t a n c e f o r veterans of World War II (En c y c l o p e d i a Ameri- cana) . H. E.I.C. - Honourable East I n d i a Company I. O.L. - I n d i a O f f i c e L i b r a r y I.E.S.H.R. - Indian Economic and S o c i a l H i s t o r y Review M.S.A. - Maharashtra State A r c h i v e s N.A.I. - N a t i o n a l A r c h i v e s of I n d i a N.I. - Native I n f a n t r y U.S.I. - United S e r v i c e s I n s t i t u t i o n ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS The author wishes to acknowledge with g r a t i t u d e the a s s i s - tance of many people and i n s t i t u t i o n s with the r e s e a r c h and p r e p a r a t i o n of t h i s t h e s i s , p a r t i c u l a r l y the f o l l o w i n g : The S h a s t r i Indo-Canadian I n s t i t u t e , f o r f i n a n c i a l support, and Mr. P. N. Malik i n New D e l h i f o r advice and p r a c t i c a l a s s i s t a n c e . The U n i v e r s i t y of B r i t i s h Columbia, e s p e c i a l l y Pro- f e s s o r Peter Harnetty and the departments of H i s t o r y and A s i a n S t u d i e s . The N a t i o n a l A r c h i v e s of Ind i a , the Maharashtra S t a t e A r c h i v e s , the Un i t e d S e r v i c e s I n s t i t u t i o n and C o l o n e l Pyare L a i , S h r i Vasant W. Moon of Bombay, and many others i n I n d i a . The o f f i c e r s and men of the Mahar Regiment. Ms. C a r r i e Hunter, Ms. Sara R. Lee, and e s p e c i a l l y Mrs. N. P a t t i Kenny, f o r t h e i r work i n p r e p a r i n g the t h e s i s . My husband Robert f o r p a t i e n c e and support' over many years. 1 INTRODUCTION The p r o f e s s i o n a l standing army i s an important f e a t u r e of every modern n a t i o n s t a t e . The p r o v i s i o n of manpower f o r such an army e n t a i l s c e r t a i n o b l i g a t i o n s from the c i t i z e n s of that s t a t e , and may o f t e n confer c e r t a i n b e n e f i t s on those who serve i n the m i l i t a r y . M i l i t a r y s e r v i c e may be p e r c e i v e d as an onerous duty to be avoided i f p o s s i b l e , as a p r i v i l e g e to be fought f o r , or as an o b l i g a t i o n which i s not n e c e s s a r i l y welcomed but i s accepted as a necessary concomitant of c i t i z e n s h i p . For many disadvan- taged groups a l l three of these f a c t o r s may operate. M i l i t a r y s e r v i c e i s c e r t a i n l y onerous i n many cases, p a r t i c u l a r l y i n wartime. I t may seem e s p e c i a l l y hard to men of poor or otherwise disadvantaged c l a s s e s , who may o f f e r t h e i r s e r v i c e s f r e e l y or be c o n s c r i p t e d , thus b e a r i n g a share of the n a t i o n a l defense burden, yet f i n d that i n c i v i l l i f e they are denied some of the p r i v i - leges and b e n e f i t s of c i t i z e n s h i p f o r which they have fought. However, m i l i t a r y s e r v i c e , p a r t i c u l a r l y i n modern s o c i e t i e s , does confer c e r t a i n b e n e f i t s i n terms of education, s p e c i a l i z e d t r a i n - in g , sometimes p r e f e r e n t i a l access to c e r t a i n types of employment and education i n c i v i l l i f e , and an i n c r e a s e d s o c i a l s t a t u s . T h e r e f o r e , there are numerous in s t a n c e s of u n d e r p r i v i l e g e d or depressed c l a s s e s f i g h t i n g very hard f o r the r i g h t to be admitted to the m i l i t a r y as combatants. Most armies have accepted men and sometimes women of low c l a s s as noncombatants, menials, camp f o l l o w e r s and i n other support r o l e s . However, i t i s sometimes 2 o n l y with great d i f f i c u l t y that these people win the r i g h t to be accepted as combat troops and earn whatever s t a t u s and p r i v i l e g e s accrue t h e r e t o . U l t i m a t e l y , the r i g h t to serve i n the m i l i t a r y i s ( i n a democratic s o c i e t y ) i n d i s s o l u b l y l i n k e d with the r i g h t s of f u l l c i t i z e n s h i p . A recent statement, w r i t t e n about women and the m i l i t a r y , a p p l i e s with equal f o r c e to many other m i n o r i t i e s or depressed c l a s s e s . And when i t comes to r e s p o n s i b i l i t i e s , none i s high e r - or more glamorous - than the n a t i o n ' s s e c u r i t y . The r e s p o n s i b i l i t y f o r the s e c u r i t y of the country i s the essence of governing and i t i s a r e s p o n s i b i l i t y from which [women] are t o t a l l y excluded. [White] men w i l l t o l e r a t e [women] i n the armed f o r c e s , but not i n the area that counts - combat. They can help, but they cannot share, and u n t i l they can, [women] w i l l be . . . f u l l c i t i z e n s i n name only.1 T h i s d e s c r i b e s e x a c t l y the s i t u a t i o n of many m i n o r i t y groups, and e x p l a i n s why m i l i t a r y s e r v i c e has had a s i g n i f i c a n t r o l e i n t h e i r e f f o r t s to improve t h e i r s t a t u s . The o b j e c t of t h i s study i s t h r e e f o l d . The p r i n c i p a l concern i s to examine i n some d e t a i l the m i l i t a r y h i s t o r y of the Mahars of western I n d i a and to ask why m i l i t a r y s e r v i c e was very important to t h i s community, what b e n e f i t s they r e c e i v e d or hoped to r e c e i v e from m i l i t a r y s e r v i c e , and why at c e r t a i n times they were r e f u s e d admission to the m i l i t a r y . For purposes of compari- son the m i l i t a r y h i s t o r y of the Bene I s r a e l , a l s o of western I n d i a , w i l l a l s o be d i s c u s s e d . By thus comparing an Indian "untouchable" community with another Indian community which i s s o c i a l l y " c l e a n " but somewhat i s o l a t e d by r e l i g i o u s and c u l t u r a l f a c t o r s , i t i s p o s s i b l e to see how m i l i t a r y s e r v i c e may be d i f - 3 f e r e n t l y p e r c e i v e d and have d i f f e r e n t e f f e c t s based on s o c i a l f a c t o r s . L i kewise i t w i l l be p o s s i b l e to note what s i m i l a r i t i e s are found i n both cases. Some r e f e r e n c e w i l l a l s o be made to the m i l i t a r y experiences of other low-status groups, p a r t i c u l a r l y b l a c k Americans. A comparison between the Mahars and another Indian low caste community having m i l i t a r y experience would be u s e f u l , but was not p o s s i b l e f o r v a r i o u s reasons. Although other low caste Indians were r e c r u i t e d from time to time, no other "untouchable" community had such a long and unbroken p e r i o d of m i l i t a r y s e r v i c e ; nor d i d any other d e l i s t e d community, that i s , one which l o s t i t s r i g h t to e n l i s t , engage i n such a long and determined e f f o r t to r e g a i n access to m i l i t a r y s e r v i c e . The Bombay Army had, f o r i n s t a n c e , r e c r u i t e d Mangs and Ramoshis p r i o r to 1893, but n e i t h e r group appears to have made any p r o t e s t a g a i n s t t h e i r d e l i s t m e n t , p o s s i b l y because so few were a f f e c t e d . Two other low cas t e groups with s i g n i f i c a n t m i l i t a r y experience were the Madras (Queen V i c t o r i a ' s Own) Sappers and Miners, r e c r u i t e d from n a t i v e C h r i s t i a n s and v a r i o u s "untouchable" and low cas t e s , and the Mazhbi Sikhs, r e c r u i t e d i n t o separate regiments between 1857 and 1932. These two groups d i f f e r e d from the Mahars i n important ways. The Madras Sappers and Miners never changed t h e i r caste composition so low caste Madrassis never had to d e a l with the l o s s of m i l i t a r y o p p o r t u n i t i e s . There i s some evidence that "men who served i n Queen V i c t o r i a ' s Sappers and who by o r i g i n were ou t c a s t e s made themselves i n t o a new s u b d i v i s i o n . . . c a l l i n g themselves 'Quinsap' and marrying t h e i r sons o n l y to Quinsap 4 g i r l s . " 2 I f t r u e , t h i s s u g g e s t s t h a t m i l i t a r y s e r v i c e , r a t h e r t h a n e l e v a t i n g t h e s t a t u s o f a l l P a r a i y a s o r C h a k k i l i y a s , c r e a t e d a new somewhat h i g h e r c a s t e , a phenomenon w h i c h d i d n o t o c c u r among t h e Mahars. As f o r t h e M a z h b i S i k h s , i n s o f a r as m i l i t a r y s e r v i c e a f f e c t e d them, i t h e l p e d t o r e d u c e t h e p r e j u d i c e shown t o w a r d s them by o t h e r S i k h s , b u t t h i s was t r u e o n l y f o r t h o s e i n d i v i d u a l s o r f a m i l i e s w i t h m i l i t a r y s e r v i c e ; i t was n o t g e n e r - a l i z e d t o a l l M a z h b i s . 3 T h i s community d i d n o t engage i n any p r o l o n g e d o r o r g a n i z e d a g i t a t i o n f o r r e - e n l i s t m e n t , p o s s i b l y due t o r e l u c t a n c e t o draw a t t e n t i o n t o t h e i r low s t a t u s w i t h i n t h e l a r g e r S i k h community. M i l i t a r y s e r v i c e i n most c a s e s c o n f e r s c e r t a i n b e n e f i t s . T h e s e i n c l u d e a c c e s s t o e d u c a t i o n w h i c h i s s e c u l a r and f r e q u e n t - l y p r a c t i c a l i n n a t u r e , a c c e s s t o government a u t h o r i t i e s , d e v e l - o p i n g a t r a d i t i o n o f m i l i t a r y s e r v i c e ( w h i c h i s , i n most c u l t u r e s , r i g h t l y o r w r o n g l y c o n s i d e r e d t o be o f h i g h e r p r e s t i g e t h a n t h e t r a d i t i o n o f m e n i a l and sometimes d i r t y w o r k ) , a c c e s s t o a r e s p e c t a b l e f o r m o f employment, and a c e r t a i n d e g r e e o f f i n a n - c i a l s e c u r i t y . Of s e c o n d a r y i m p o r t a n c e i n some i n s t a n c e s a r e improvements i n t h e p r o s p e c t s o f o b t a i n i n g l a n d , b e t t e r t r e a t m e n t i n l o c a l c o u r t s , and t h e u n m e a s u r a b l e a s p e c t o f p e r s o n a l s a t i s - f a c t i o n . The m i l i t a r y e x p e r i e n c e o f t h e Mahars and t h e Bene I s r a e l w i l l be c o n s i d e r e d i n d e t a i l , u s i n g b o t h p r i m a r y and s e c o n d a r y s o u r c e s ; an o v e r v i e w o f t h e m i l i t a r y e x p e r i e n c e o f b l a c k A m e r i c a n s , u t i l i z i n g s e v e r a l modern s t u d i e s , p r o v i d e s a b a s i s f o r c o m p a r i s o n . The Mahar o r o t h e r u n t o u c h a b l e o r l o w - c a s t e man s e r v i n g i n 5 the n i n e t e e n t h - c e n t u r y Bombay army occupied a p o s i t i o n which encouraged e f f o r t s to improve h i s s o c i a l s t a t u s v i s - a - v i s caste Hindus; l o y a l s e r v i c e under the B r i t i s h j u s t i f i e d c l a ims to equal access to government s e r v i c e s and employment. By l a t e i n the century, many Mahars had come to b e l i e v e that s e r v i c e over a long p e r i o d of years and i n many campaigns had earned them, as a community, c e r t a i n p r i v i l e g e s and had c r e a t e d on the p a r t of the government an o b l i g a t i o n to allow them to continue i n m i l i t a r y s e r v i c e . The government was w i l l i n g to e s t a b l i s h s p e c i a l r e l a - t i o n s h i p s with c e r t a i n communities, n o t a b l y the Sikhs and the Gurkhas, which had been designated " m a r t i a l r a c e s " and were co n s i d e r e d to be of e x t r a o r d i n a r y value as s o l d i e r s , but i t d i d not concede that s i m i l a r r e l a t i o n s had been e s t a b l i s h e d a l r e a d y with the s o - c a l l e d "non-martial r a c e s . " The Bene I s r a e l of western I n d i a , who were never considered "untouchable" but a l s o have never been a p a r t i c u l a r l y w e l l - t o - d o community, seem to have found m i l i t a r y s e r v i c e of value as i n d i - v i d u a l s , but i t was not as c r u c i a l to them as i t was to the Mahars. They were, however, d i s a p p o i n t e d and h u m i l i a t e d at being r e f u s e d access to the m i l i t a r y . The s i t u a t i o n f o r American b l a c k s i s i n many ways much more comparable to that of the Mahars. American b l a c k s served i n every war fought by the United S t a t e s from the R e v o l u t i o n a r y War up to the Vietnam War and continue to serve i n the m i l i t a r y i n l a r g e numbers. However, f o r much of t h i s time o n l y very l i m i t e d numbers of b l a c k s were accepted as combatants; they were f r e - q u e n t l y denied access to o f f i c e r t r a i n i n g and t h e r e f o r e i f they 6 served as combatants at a l l d i d so onl y i n the ranks. Even when t h e i r r o l e as combatants was accepted they served i n segregated u n i t s u n t i l very r e c e n t l y . The f a c t that American b l a c k s under these circumstances continued to a g i t a t e f o r s e r v i c e i n the m i l i t a r y i n d i c a t e s t hat they b e l i e v e d i t was important to j u s t i f y t h e i r c l aims to f u l l c i t i z e n s h i p by being w i l l i n g to shed blood i f necessary. Many b l a c k s f e l t most keenly the i n j u s t i c e of t h e i r having been as w i l l i n g as any white men to serve t h e i r n a t i o n , to r i s k t h e i r l i v e s , and indeed to l o s e t h e i r l i v e s , and yet i n c i v i l l i f e s t i l l to be denied the f u l l p r i v i l e g e s of c i t i z e n s h i p . Although these groups d i f f e r e d i n s o c i a l o r i g i n s and i n the exact nature of t h e i r m i l i t a r y experience, m i l i t a r y s e r v i c e has been an important f a c t o r a f f e c t i n g t h e i r s o c i a l and economic s t a t u s . For the Mahars and f o r black Americans, the i s s u e of equal and e q u i t a b l e access to m i l i t a r y s e r v i c e continues to be important; to t h e i r r e s p e c t i v e governments, que s t i o n s of e t h n i c / racial/communal balance i n the armed f o r c e s continue to be impor- tant i n m i l i t a r y p l a n n i n g . O r i g i n s , m i l i t a r y experience, and s o c i a l impact of m i l i t a r y s e r v i c e on these three groups w i l l form the main p a r t of t h i s study. Author's Note: For the sake of s i m p l i c i t y and c o n s i s t e n c y , the terms "Mahar" or "Parwari" and "black American" or "black" have been used through- out f o r these r e s p e c t i v e groups, except i n qu o t a t i o n s from 7 sources which use other terms. No p o l i t i c a l i m p l i c a t i o n s are intended, nor does the author int e n d any o f f e n s e to anyone who p r e f e r s another usage. Footnotes 1. R i c h a r d Cohen, "Sharing: The P o l i t i c s of the Shopping L i s t , " Ms., v o l . X I I I , no. 2, August 1984, p. 75. 2. P h i l i p Mason, A Matter of Honour: An Account of the Indian Army, I t s O f f i c e r s and Men"̂  (Harmondsworth, England: Penguin Books, 1976), pp. 147-149. 3. Indera P. Singh, "A S i k h V i l l a g e , " i n T r a d i t i o n a l I n d i a : S t r u c t u r e and Change, ed. M i l t o n Singer ( P h i l a d e l p h i a : The American F o l k l o r e S o c i e t y , B i b l i o g r a p h i c a l S e r i e s , V o l . X, 1959, pp. 276-280. 8 CHAPTER I ORIGINS AND SOCIAL STATUS The Mahars The Mahars, the l a r g e s t untouchable c a s t e i n Maharashtra, are " s a i d to be a composite r e s i d u e of the a b o r i g i n a l t r i b e s d i s p o s s e s s e d by the s u c c e s s i v e waves of Aryan and post-Aryan i n v a d e r s . " 1 They make up about nine percent of the present p o p u l a t i o n of Maharashtra; estimates f o r the l a t e n i n e t e e n t h century vary, but f a l l w i t h i n the range of three to f i v e percent i n the c o a s t a l areas and up to twenty percent i n the i n l a n d d i s t r i c t s of Vidarbha and B e r a r . 2 Estimates of the t o t a l number of Mahars i n 1901 range from one m i l l i o n to 3 m i l l i o n , 3 p o s s i b l y r e f l e c t i n g d i f f e r e n c e s i n the area c o n s i d e r e d (Bombay Presidency o n l y or a l l Marathi-speaking a r e a s ) . There seems to be g e n e r a l agreement t h a t , whatever t h e i r exact numbers, they were and are the l a r g e s t untouchable c a s t e of Maharashtra, second o n l y to the Marathas i n number. Alexander Robertson, who knew them w e l l from many years as a missionary, found the Mahars r e s i d e n t as f a r n o r t h as the Satpura H i l l s , as f a r east as Bhandara d i s t r i c t , and as f a r south as southern R a t n a g i r i , with the l a r g e s t p o p u l a t i o n around Nagpur, and observed t h a t : I t i s l i t e r a l l y t r ue that there i s a Mahar qu a r t e r i n every v i l l a g e w i t h i n the bounds of that t e r r i t o r y where the Marathi language i s spoken; and the Mahar i s thus l o c a t e d not because there are menial d u t i e s to be SOURCE: A n i l S e a l , The Emergence of Indian N a t i o n a l i s m . Cambridge: The U n i v e r s i t y Press, 1968, p. 65. 10 performed i n every v i l l a g e , but because the very o r g a n i - z a t i o n of the v i l l a g e community would be i n e f f e c t i v e u n l e s s the d u t i e s of the Mahars were performed and unless the p r i v i l e g e s of the Mahars were conserved.4 Based on p o p u l a t i o n d e n s i t y , c a s t e d i v i s i o n s , and occupa- t i o n a l p a t t e r n s , Robertson c o n s i d e r e d Nagpur to be the centre of the Mahar people, and r e l a t e d both the name of the c i t y and the common Mahar a f f i x "nak" to the Naka people, the presumed ances- t o r s of the Mahars. An a l t e r n a t i v e d e r i v a t i o n of "nak" may be from a t r i b a l totem animal, the cobra or p o s s i b l y elephant.^ Other names a p p l i e d to the Mahars a l s o suggest a t r a d i t i o n of a b o r i g i n a l ownership: bhukari, a term a p p l i e d to them by the Mangs (another untouchable c a s t e ) , may mean "dweller on," or " t i l l e r of the land"; parwari, v a r i o u s l y i n t e r p r e t e d as " h i l l men" or "dwellers o u t s i d e the v i l l a g e , " may a l s o d e r i v e from the Greek p a r u a r o i and may r e f e r to the r i g h t to gather g r a i n l e f t on the t h r e s h i n g f l o o r ; and dharaniche puta or "sons of the s o i l , " a term used i n the Ahmednagar d i s t r i c t . ^ I t has been argued that the name "Maharashtra" i s d e r i v e d from Mahar-Rashtra, or "the country of the Mahars," on the analogy of Gujarat from Gujar and Rashtra and Saurashtra or Surat, from the Sauras. An a l t e r n a t i v e etymology e x p l a i n s Maharashtra as Maha Rashtra or "the great country. I f the Mahars were once an e t h n i c a l l y d i s t i n c t people of non-Aryan or pre-Aryan o r i g i n , they are no longer d i s t i n g u i s h a b l e on the b a s i s of p h y s i c a l appearance from Marathas, Kunbis, and other c a s t e s l i v i n g i n the same areas. The most probable e x p l a - n a t i o n i s the obvious one: i n t e r m a r r i a g e or c o h a b i t a t i o n over many g e n e r a t i o n s . Some Mahars i n Gujarat had Rajput surnames 11 such as Chauhan and S o l a n k i , p o s s i b l y i n d i c a t i n g mixed blood, while other Mahar or Dheda f a m i l i e s were h e r e d i t a r y servants of landowning f a m i l i e s and claimed to be r e l a t e d to them.^ S i m i l a r - l y , Mahars i n Berar might be addressed as "brother" by Marathas and Kunbis.^ Many surnames are used by Mahars as w e l l as Marathas and Kunbis, i n c l u d i n g Bhonsle, Jadhava, Gaikwad, Pawar, Shinde and Thorat; others are shared by Mahars and B r a h m i n s . 1 0 Nothing to be found e i t h e r i n w r i t t e n sources or i n the author's p e r s o n a l experience suggests that Mahars can be d i s t i n g u i s h e d from Marathas or Kunbis on the b a s i s of appearance; a l l tend to be d e s c r i b e d ( u n f l a t t e r i n g l y ) as short, dark and homely. At l e a s t one l i t e r a r y source i n d i c a t e s the ease of "passing": K i n c a i d ' s t a l e of a Mahar e n l i s t i n g i n the army as a Maratha by wearing Maratha e a r r i n g s and sectmark.H Personal o b s e r v a t i o n s suggest that i n d i v i d u a l v a r i a t i o n s f a r outweigh any d i f f e r e n c e s i n complexion or f e a t u r e s on a c a s t e b a s i s . The t r a d i t i o n a l r i g h t s and d u t i e s of the Mahars as p a r t of the v i l l a g e o r g a n i z a t i o n may w e l l represent s u r v i v a l s from a time when they owned the land. The d u t i e s i n c l u d e a c t i n g as watchmen, gatekeepers, messengers, p o r t e r s , boundary r e f e r e e s , and guides.-'- 2 T h e i r testimony was v i t a l i n boundary and revenue d i s p u t e s , and as messengers they o f t e n c a r r i e d l a r g e sums of money to the d i s t r i c t t r e a s u r y . T h e i r r e l i g i o u s d u t i e s i n c l u d e d , i n many p l a c e s , l i g h t i n g the f i r s t H o l i f i r e s , and guarding the s h r i n e of the v i l l a g e goddess M a r i a i (probably a p r i m i t i v e p l a c e - d e i t y ) . They were r e s p o n s i b l e f o r removing dead c a t t l e (but not dogs or p i g s ) from the v i l l a g e , and s u p p l y i n g f u e l f o r crema- 1 2 t i o n s . 1 - * In r e t u r n they were watandars and b a l u t e d a r s of the v i l l a g e , h o l d i n g a share of the v i l l a g e lands and r e c e i v i n g v a r i o u s payments i n k i n d . Payments i n k i n d , i n c l u d i n g the c a r - casses of dead c a t t l e , l e f t o v e r food, and c l o t h i n g from corpses taken f o r cremation, though c e r t a i n l y of value, o f t e n i n v o l v e d r i t u a l d e g r a d a t i o n . From the p o i n t of view of caste Hindus, even h a n d l i n g , l e t alone e a t i n g , dead cows was and i s one of the most p o l l u t i n g a c t i v i t i e s imaginable; t h i s alone would j u s t i f y (from the Hindu standpoint) c o n s i d e r i n g the Mahars untouchable. Other d u t i e s and payments, while not degrading i n t h i s way, bound the Mahars economically to the v i l l a g e , while not guaranteeing an adequate l i v e l i h o o d . The t r a d i t i o n a l " f i f t y - t w o r i g h t s " of the Mahars (probably an i d i o m a t i c e x p r e s s i o n f o r a l a r g e but i n d e t e r - minate number) had come, by the l a t e n i n e t e e n t h century, to be regarded not as p r i v i l e g e s , but as "chains, b i n d i n g them to s p e c i f i c occupations, s p e c i f i c r e l a t i o n s with non-Mahars, and s t r i p p i n g v o l u n t a r i n e s s from any act, 1 , 1 5 and p e r p e t u a t i n g t h e i r i n f e r i o r s t a t u s i n the v i l l a g e community. In b r i e f , the Mahars i n the l a t e n i n e t e e n t h and e a r l y t w e n t i e t h c e n t u r i e s occupied an ambiguous p o s i t i o n i n v i l l a g e s o c i e t y : untouchable and r i t u a l l y degraded, yet performing func- t i o n s v i t a l to the community; bound to the v i l l a g e economy, but f o r c e d to l i v e o u t s i d e i t s w a l l s ; p o p u l a r l y regarded as d i r t y and quarrelsome, yet p r o v e r b i a l l y f a i t h f u l and trustworthy. The Bene I s r a e l are one of three s u b - d i v i s i o n s of the Indian Jewish community, the other two being the Cochin Jews of K e r a l a and the Baghdadi Jews. The o r i g i n s of the Bene I s r a e l and 13 the Cochin Jews are almost e q u a l l y obscure, although the Cochin Jews have a t r a d i t i o n that t h e i r a ncestors a r r i v e d i n the f i r s t c entury A.D. immediately a f t e r the d e s t r u c t i o n of the temple. 1^ The Bene I s r a e l b e l i e v e they are descended from the Ten Lost T r i b e s of I s r a e l 1 ? which would p l a c e t h e i r a r r i v a l i n Ind i a around 700 B.C. Another and more l i k e l y t r a d i t i o n t r a c e s t h e i r o r i g i n to a m i g r a t i o n of about 175 B.C. 1^ The Bene I s r a e l have a l s o adopted as t h e i r own an o r i g i n myth which resembles that of the Chitpavan Brahmins. A c c o r d i n g to t h i s t r a d i t i o n both groups descended from seven couples who were shipwrecked on the coast l i n e near Bombay. I t i s unclear whether both groups adopted an o r i g i n myth from the same source or whether one group copi e d the other and i f so which a c t u a l l y came f i r s t , or i f i n f a c t there may be some c o n n e c t i o n . 1 ^ There i s no doubt that the Bene I s r a e l have been s e t t l e d i n I n d i a f o r at l e a s t s i x t e e n c e n t u r i e s . T h e i r o r i g i n a l s e ttlements were i n the c o a s t a l d i s t r i c t s of Kolaba and Thana. Throughout most of what i s known of t h e i r h i s t o r y i n I n d i a the Bene I s r a e l were a r e l a t i v e l y poor community. They seem never to have numbered more than f i f t e e n thousand i f indeed there were ever as many as t h i s . 2 ^ T h e i r most c h a r a c t e r i s t i c occupa- t i o n was as o i l p r e s s e r s , and because they observed the Saturday Sabbath they were known as "Shanwar T e l i s , " that i s "Saturday o i l men." Some owned land and i t i s s a i d by Kehimkar that Bene I s r a e l who farmed land would employ Marathas as l a b o u r e r s but not Mahars or Mangs who were co n s i d e r e d to be " u n c l e a n . " 2 1 Some l e a d i n g Bene I s r a e l f a m i l i e s h e l d p o s i t i o n s under v a r i o u s n a t i v e 14 r u l e r s and h e l d grants of land f o r s e r v i c e . For i n s t a n c e , a c e r t a i n Aaron C h u r r i k a r was appointed Nayek or commander of a f l e e t by Khanoji A n g r i a e a r l y i n the seventeenth century. He r e c e i v e d a grant of Inam land which was s t i l l i n p o s s e s s i o n of h i s descendants l a t e i n the n i n e t e e n t h century. The p o s i t i o n of commander of the f l e e t was h e l d by t h i s f a m i l y u n t i l about 1793. 2 2 For a c o n s i d e r a b l e p e r i o d of time the Bene I s r a e l were i s o l a t e d from other Jewish communities and a p p a r e n t l y l o s t much of t h e i r Jewish c u l t u r e . However, i n the ei g h t e e n t h century, a Cochin Jew, David E z e k i e l Rahabi, v i s i t e d the Bene I s r a e l commu- n i t y and taught the fundamentals of Jewish observance. He was the f i r s t of s e v e r a l teachers from Cochin who i n s t r u c t e d the Bene I s r a e l i n proper r e l i g i o u s forms. The Bene I s r a e l have adopted many customs from t h e i r Muslim and Hindu neighbours. The name Bene I s r a e l was probably adopted to r e p l a c e the term Yehudi f o r Jew which was co n s i d e r e d o f f e n s i v e to Muslims. Although as f a r as i s known the Bene I s r a e l were never persecuted i n I n d i a , they would c e r t a i n l y have found i t p o l i t i c to be on good terms with t h e i r nearest neighbours and t h e r e f o r e to a v o i d customs which would be o f f e n s i v e . A r e f l e c t i o n of the Hindu j a t i system i s to be found i n the d i v i s i o n of the Bene I s r a e l i n t o Gora and Kala p o r t i o n s . The Gora or white are those who b e l i e v e that they are of pure Jewish descent, whereas the Kala are the o f f s p r i n g of marriages between Bene I s r a e l men and non-Jewish women. In p o i n t of f a c t there i s l i t t l e observable d i f f e r e n c e between the two communities. The d i f f e r e n c e s are probably due more to t r a d i t i o n 15 than f a c t , and i n modern times t h i s d i s t i n c t i o n has become of l e s s importance.23 The t h i r d Jewish community of any s i g n i f i c a n c e i s that of the Baghdadi Jews. These emigrated from Iraq i n the l a t t e r p a r t of the e i g h t e e n t h century and l a t e r , and tended to move i n t o e n t r e p r e n e u r i a l areas much as the P a r s i s d i d . The best known Baghdadi f a m i l y was the Sassoon f a m i l y of Bombay which became extremely wealthy i n the t e x t i l e i n d u s t r y and was noted f o r c h a r i t a b l e works. The Baghdadi Jews, although r e c o g n i z i n g the Bene I s r a e l as f e l l o w Jews, always h e l d themselves somewhat a l o o f and c o n s i d e r e d the Bene I s r a e l to be d e f i n i t e l y beneath them s o c i a l l y . The two communities have never i n t e r m a r r i e d to any extent.24 During the B r i t i s h p e r i o d the Bene I s r a e l moved i n l a r g e numbers to Bombay and b e s i d e s e n l i s t m e n t i n the army, which became an important new p r o f e s s i o n f o r many Bene I s r a e l , many took up s k i l l e d trades and c l e r i c a l and other government p o s i - t i o n s at a low to medium l e v e l . 2 5 Through contact with C h r i s t i a n m i s s i o n a r i e s , the more prosperous Baghdadi Jews, and American and E n g l i s h Jews, the Bene I s r a e l became much more conscious of t h e i r Jewish i d e n t i t y and of t h e i r t i e s with c o - r e l i g i o n i s t s i n other c o u n t r i e s . O v e r a l l the Bene I s r a e l have been able to assume the s t a t u s of a c a s t e s i m i l a r i n s o c i a l rank to the Marathas; I s r a e l s t a t e s that " i n Kulaba D i s t r i c t the Bene I s r a e l had e x a c t l y the same s t a t u s as the Muslims, and t h i s was c e r t a i n l y not low."26 They have not s u f f e r e d from d i s c r i m i n a t i o n to any marked extent and have g e n e r a l l y f u n c t i o n e d q u i t e w e l l as a j a t i or sub-caste 16 w i t h i n Hindu s o c i e t y , though m a i n t a i n i n g a separate, non-Hindu c u l t u r a l i d e n t i t y . There i s no u n c e r t a i n t y about the o r i g i n s of black Ameri- cans, whose an c e s t o r s were brought to the Americas as s l a v e s i n the seventeenth and ei g h t e e n t h c e n t u r i e s . (The i n t e r n a t i o n a l s l a v e trade o f f i c i a l l y ended i n the e a r l y n i n e t e e n t h century.) They are t h e r e f o r e an immigrant group, r a c i a l l y d i s t i n c t from the dominant white p o p u l a t i o n . White Americans are of course a l s o an immigrant p o p u l a t i o n , and i n f a c t many black Americans can c l a i m a much longer "American" a n c e s t r y than many whites. However white Americans were able to preserve t h e i r languages, r e l i g i o n s , and c u l t u r e s , at l e a s t at home or i n e t h n i c communities, while b l a c k s were f o r c e d to abandon most of t h e i r own h e r i t a g e and adapt to the European-derived c u l t u r e of t h e i r masters. Although A f r i c a n s l a v e s were o r i g i n a l l y imported to do the hardest and d i r t i e s t kinds of work, were g e n e r a l l y denied access t o e ducation and many forms of employment, and even as freedmen were s e v e r e l y r e s t r i c t e d i n t h e i r a c t i v i t i e s , n e v e r t h e l e s s they d i d f u l f i l l extremely important f u n c t i o n s i n the o v e r a l l economy. Not o n l y as f i e l d workers on p l a n t a t i o n s , but as domestic s e r - vants, s k i l l e d a r t i s a n s , and e v e n t u a l l y i n every occupation where they c o u l d f i n d any k i n d of opening, black men and women pr o v i d e d much of the labour of b u i l d i n g a new country. By the e a r l y n i n e t e e n t h century, f r e e b l a c k s (many a c t u a l l y of mixed parentage) were a s i g n i f i c a n t c l a s s i n many s t a t e s , and formed the nucleus of a "black b o u r g e o i s i e " i n c l u d i n g business people, c l e r g y , and p r o f e s s i o n a l men and women: on a small s c a l e to be 17 sure, but s t i l l a c l a s s with some economic and p o l i t i c a l i n f l u - ence . In both a b s o l u t e numbers and percentages, b l a c k s i n the U n i t e d S t a t e s occupy a roughly analogous p o s i t i o n to that of the Mahars. Blacks are now estimated to make up about ten percent of the American p o p u l a t i o n , and are the l a r g e s t " v i s i b l e m i n o r i t y . " In 1850, the t o t a l p o p u l a t i o n of the United S t a t e s was over 23 m i l l i o n , with 3,200,000 being s l a v e s . Ten years l a t e r the Con- f e d e r a t e S t a t e s had about 9 m i l l i o n people, over 3.5 m i l l i o n of them blac k , while the North had about 22 m i l l i o n t o t a l . The f r e e b l a c k p o p u l a t i o n can be estimated at perhaps one-half m i l l i o n , g i v i n g a t o t a l b l ack p o p u l a t i o n of n e a r l y 4 m i l l i o n out of 31 m i l l i o n t o t a l . S e v e r a l southern s t a t e s had very l a r g e black p o p u l a t i o n s ; b l a c k s were a m a j o r i t y i n South C a r o l i n a and M i s s i s - s i p p i , and n e a r l y h a l f the p o p u l a t i o n of L o u i s i a n a and Alabama. Some areas of the deep South were 70-90 percent black.27 Blacks were, t h e r e f o r e , very unevenly d i s t r i b u t e d , r e f l e c t i n g the f a c t t h a t s l a v e labour was economically most important i n the c o t t o n b e l t . The r a c i a l s t r u c t u r e and d i s t r i b u t i o n of the American p o p u l a t i o n has changed c o n s i d e r a b l y s i n c e the mid-nineteenth century, with important f a c t o r s being the opening of the American West to settlement, m i g r a t i o n from r u r a l areas to urban- i n d u s t r i a l c e n t r e s , and l a r g e - s c a l e European immigration. These three groups share c e r t a i n c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s , but d i f - f e r i n other ways. The Mahars are an indigenous p o p u l a t i o n , r a c i a l l y i n d i s t i n g u i s h a b l e , f i l l i n g v i t a l r i t u a l and s o c i a l r o l e s , but s o c i a l l y and economically depressed. The Bene I s r a e l , 18 while not t e c h n i c a l l y an indigenous group, are l o n g - e s t a b l i s h e d and a l s o not r a c i a l l y d i s t i n c t . They have no r i t u a l l y p r e s c r i b e d r o l e i n s o c i e t y , nor have they s u f f e r e d from s o c i a l or economic d i s c r i m i n a t i o n . Black Americans, as an immigrant group d e l i b e r - a t e l y imported to perform menial work, are both r a c i a l l y d i s t i n c t from the dominant c u l t u r e and have been su b j e c t e d to extreme d i s c r i m i n a t i o n . As Table I shows, Mahars and black Americans have more f a c t o r s i n common than e i t h e r group with the Bene I s r a e l . The most s i g n i f i c a n t d i f f e r e n c e i s i n r a c i a l d i f f e r e n t i a t i o n ; f o r black Americans, t h e i r r a c i a l i d e n t i t y has been an outward and immutable s i g n of the i n f e r i o r s t a t u s assigned to them. The Mahars c o u l d more r e a d i l y attempt to change t h e i r s t a t u s by adopting an o c c u p a t i o n and l i f e s t y l e a p p r o p r i a t e f o r a h i g h e r s t a t u s . TABLE I DIFFERENTIATING SOCIAL FACTORS S o c i a l 1 f a c t o r s I Group 1 R a c i a l l y 1 D i s t i n c t I F u n c t i o n a l l y I necessary 1 s o c i a l r o l e s I Depressed Socio-Economic Status Mahars 1 No 1 Yes 1 Yes Bene I s r a e l 1 No I No 1 No Black I Americans 1 Yes | Yes | Yes Although both communities have a tenuous m i l i t a r y t r a d i - t i o n extending some c e n t u r i e s e a r l i e r , f o r the Mahars and Bene 19 I s r a e l , the p e r i o d from 1800 to 1893 saw t h e i r h i g h e s t l e v e l of p a r t i c i p a t i o n i n the m i l i t a r y . T h i s p e r i o d was a l s o marked by an i n c r e a s e d p r o f e s s i o n a l i z a t i o n and modernization of the armies of I n d i a i n terms of t r a i n i n g , equipment and o r g a n i z a t i o n . The l o s s of access to the m i l i t a r y t h e r e f o r e came j u s t when m i l i t a r y s e r v i c e was becoming more a t t r a c t i v e i n terms of pay and p r o f e s - s i o n a l s t a t u s . Both communities were among the "non-martial r a c e s " removed from r e c r u i t i n g r o l l s i n 1893, although not f o r the same reasons. The Mahars a g i t a t e d long and hard f o r the r i g h t to e n l i s t , whereas the Bene I s r a e l , a f t e r an i n i t i a l p r o - t e s t , seem to have dropped the i s s u e of army s e r v i c e . With the formation of the Mahar Regiment i n 1942, the Mahars f i n a l l y achieved the r i g h t to serve as s o l d i e r s . Since Independence, at l e a s t i n theory, e n l i s t m e n t i s open to anyone from any community who meets r e q u i r e d standards; c a s t e , r e l i g i o n , or e t h n i c back- ground are not supposed to be r e l e v a n t f a c t o r s . American b l a c k s have a somewhat s i m i l a r p a t t e r n of m i l i t a r y s e r v i c e . Black men, or as the term then i n use was, " f r e e men of c o l o r " served i n v a r i o u s c o l o n i a l m i l i t i a s p r i o r to the American R e v o l u t i o n . Freed b l a c k s and p o s s i b l y some s l a v e s fought i n the American R e v o l u t i o n . Free b l a c k s fought on both s i d e s d u r i n g the American C i v i l War. The r e g u l a r standing army e s t a b l i s h e d by Congress i n 1866 p r o v i d e d a l i m i t e d number of a l l - b l a c k r e g i - ments. Between 1866 and 1914, p a r t i c u l a r l y d u r i n g the Indian Wars of the l a t e 19th century, these regiments p l a y e d an a c t i v e and important r o l e i n American m i l i t a r y a c t i o n s . However, f o r many years, indeed up u n t i l the Second World War, t h e i r p a r t i c i - 20 p a t i o n was very l i m i t e d both i n terms of the number who were e n l i s t e d and i n terms of t h e i r access to combatant r o l e s and to o f f i c e r s t a t u s . L i k e the Mahars, black Americans c o n s i d e r e d s e r v i c e i n the m i l i t a r y to be an extremely important i s s u e f o r them and they fought very hard, not o n l y to be admitted to the m i l i t a r y , but to be admitted on equal terms and to be allowed to compete on t h e i r own m e r i t s . These three communities, t h e r e f o r e , d i f f e r c o n s i d e r a b l y i n t h e i r numbers, o r i g i n s , and s o c i a l s t a t u s . A l l three have used m i l i t a r y s e r v i c e to improve or c o n s o l i d a t e t h e i r p o s i t i o n , e i t h e r i n d i v i d u a l l y or c o l l e c t i v e l y . In the cases of the Mahars and b l a ck Americans, m i l i t a r y s e r v i c e o f f e r e d a way out of a s e r v i l e or depressed s t a t u s . For the Bene I s r a e l , m i l i t a r y s e r v i c e o f f e r e d p o l i t i c a l s e c u r i t y r a t h e r than s o c i a l advancement under n a t i v e r u l e r s , while under B r i t i s h r u l e the army was one of s e v e r a l new trades or p r o f e s s i o n s . For b l a c k s , the C i v i l War and i t s p o l i t i c a l aftermath marked both t h e i r emancipation and the b eginning of t h e i r p a r t i c i p a t i o n as c i t i z e n s i n a r e g u l a r army. For the Mahars and Bene I s r a e l , the B r i t i s h conquest of I n d i a o f f e r e d new o p p o r t u n i t i e s , with m i l i t a r y s e r v i c e one of the most important. R a c i a l p r e j u d i c e set l i m i t s on b l ack achievements i n the m i l i t a r y as i n other areas, while the changing demands of i m p e r i a l r u l e and B r i t i s h r a c i a l t h e o r i e s u l t i m a t e l y f o r c e d "non- m a r t i a l " groups such as the Mahars and Bene I s r a e l out of the army. The ways i n which these groups used, or attempted to use, m i l i t a r y s e r v i c e , and the o f t e n c o n f l i c t i n g a t t i t u d e s of those 21 who s e t m i l i t a r y p o l i c y t o w a r d s t h e i r a s p i r a t i o n s , f o r m t h e main s u b j e c t o f t h i s s t u d y . Footnotes, Chapter I Sunanda Patwardhan, Change Among Indian's H a r i j a n s : Maharashtra - A Case Study (New D e l h i ; O r i e n t Longman L i m i t e d , 1973), p. 29. Alexander Robertson, The Mahar F o l k : A Study of Untouchables i n Maharashtra ( C a l c u t t a : Y.M.C.A. P u b l i s h i n g House, 1938), 44-45. I b i d . , p. 47. I b i d . , p. 44. I b i d . , pp. 46-47, 51. I b i d . , p. 53; Dr. Gustav Oppert, The O r i g i n a l I n h a b i t a n t s of I n d i a (Madras: n.p., 1893; r e p r i n t ed., New D e l h i : O r i e n t a l P u b l i s h e r s , 1972), p. 93. R. V. R u s s e l l and H i r a L a i , The T r i b e s and Castes of the C e n t r a l P r o v i n c e s of I n d i a , v o l . TV (N.p.: C e n t r a l P r o v i n c e s A d m i n i s t r a t i o n , 1916; r e p r i n t ed., Oosterhout N.B. - Netherlands: A n t h r o p o l o g i c a l P u b l i c a t i o n s , 1969), p. 130. Loc. c i t . Robertson, The Mahar Fo l k , p. 17. I b i d . , p. 54. C. A. K i n c a i d , "The Outcaste's S t o r y , " The A n c h o r i t e and Other S t o r i e s (London, Bombay: Humphrey M i l f o r d at the Oxford U n i v e r s i t y Press, 1922), pp. 154-55. Robertson, The Mahar Fo l k , p. 18. I b i d . , pp. 20-24. I b i d . , p. 27. Robert J . M i l l e r , "Button, Button . . . Great T r a d i t i o n , L i t t l e T r a d i t i o n , Whose T r a d i t i o n ? " , A n t h r o p o l o g i c a l Q u a r t e r l y 39 (January 1966):32. S c h i f r a S t r i z o w e r , The C h i l d r e n of I s r a e l : The Bene I s r a e l of Bombay (Oxford: B a s i l B l a c k w e l l , 19/1), pp. 89-90. 23 17. R. A. Schermerhorn, E t h n i c P l u r a l i t y i n I n d i a (Tucson, A r i z o n a : U n i v e r s i t y of A r i z o n a Press, 1978), p. 240; The Gazetteer of Bombay C i t y and I s l a n d , v o l . I (Pune: The Government Photozinco Press, 1977; f a c s i m i l e ed. o r i g . pub. Bombay: The Times Press, 1909), p. 247, n. 3. The "Ten L o s t T r i b e s " of the kingdom of I s r a e l were c a r r i e d i n t o c a p t i v i t y by the A s s y r i a n s under Sargon I I , c. 740-700 B.C. The other t r i b e s were the Southern kingdom of Judah. 18. Haeem Samuel Kehimkar, The H i s t o r y of the B e n e - I s r a e l of I n d i a ( T e l A v i v : Dayag Press L t d . , 1937), p. 52. 19. I b i d . , pp. 15-16. 20. Rev. J . Henry Lord, The Jews i n I n d i a and the East (Kolhapur: M i s s i o n Press, 1907; r e p r i n t ed., Westport, Conn.: Greenwood Press, P u b l i s h e r s , 1976), app. I, pp. 1-2. Gives a t o t a l of 14,889 Jews i n the Bombay Presidency i n 1901. 21. I b i d . , p. 93. 22. I b i d . , p. 79. 23. Schermerhorn, E t h n i c P l u r a l i t y i n I n d i a , pp. 244-245; St r i z o w e r , The C h i l d r e n of I s r a e l , pp. 27-28. 24. S t r i z o w e r , The C h i l d r e n of I s r a e l , p. 47; Schermerhorn, E t h n i c P l u r a l i t y i n I n d i a , p"p. 245-246. 25. Bombay C i t y G a z e t t e e r , v o l . I, pp. 248-249. 26. Benjamin J . I s r a e l , ' "Bene I s r a e l Surnames and T h e i r V i l l a g e L i n k s , " i n The Bene I s r a e l of I n d i a : Some Studie s (New York: Apt Books, Inc., 1984; by arrangement with O r i e n t Longman L t d . , I n d i a ) , p. 123. 27. A l l a n Nevins and Henry S t e e l e Commager, A Pocket H i s t o r y of the U n i t e d S t a t e s (New York: Washington Square Press, Inc., 1963), pp. 200-201, 222. 24 CHAPTER II EARLY MILITARY HISTORY A l l three of the communities under d i s c u s s i o n have had a h i s t o r y of m i l i t a r y s e r v i c e extending back more than two centu- r i e s ; counting t r a d i t i o n s and f o l k b e l i e f s , a m a r t i a l t r a d i t i o n of s o r t s can be t r a c e d even f u r t h e r . T h i s e a r l y m i l i t a r y h i s t o r y can be d e s c r i b e d as a d v e n t i t i o u s : i n d i v i d u a l s or s m a l l groups responding to an immediate need and seeking i n d i v i d u a l rewards, r a t h e r than p a r t i c i p a t i o n i n a formal, permanent m i l i t a r y o r g a n i - z a t i o n . There i s a l s o c h a r a c t e r i s t i c a l l y a one-sided r e l a t i o n - s h i p ; m i n o r i t y or subordinate groups are p e r m i t t e d to serve i n the m i l i t a r y when, and o n l y when, i t i s i n the i n t e r e s t of the dominant group to permit t h i s . The Mahars Even d i s c o u n t i n g the c l a i m of the Somavanshi z a t a (the l a r g e s t s u b d i v i s i o n ) of the Mahars to have fought with the Panda- vas i n the Mahabharata War,l there are a number of long standing t r a d i t i o n s among the Mahars of m i l i t a r y and other s e r v i c e s per- formed f o r l o c a l r u l e r s . Robertson mentions s e v e r a l copper p l a t e Sanads s a i d to e x i s t c o n f i r m i n g the e x i s t e n c e of Inams granted to p a r t i c u l a r Mahar f a m i l i e s or to v i l l a g e groups. One such, which Robertson was not able to see h i m s e l f , was owned by a f a m i l y near Purandhar i n the Poona d i s t r i c t . T h i s records the grant of s e v e r a l v i l l a g e s to a Mahar of Purandhar v i l l a g e named Baharnak 25 Bangale. Baharnak 1s s e r v i c e s i n c l u d e d p r o v i d i n g human s a c r i f i c e s f o r the k i n g of Bedar to f a c i l i t a t e the b u i l d i n g of the f o r t of Purandhar, v a r i o u s works of c o n s t r u c t i o n , and a l s o m i l i t a r y sup- p o r t i n p u t t i n g down two r e v o l t s . 2 The f a m i l i e s which owned these copper p l a t e s were r e l u c t a n t to allow o u t s i d e r s to examine them. Robertson was able to borrow and photograph one p l a t e b elonging to the Mahars of Koya near Ahmednagar, but found the language to be i n d e c i p h e r a b l e . The Purandhar p l a t e was t r a n - s c r i b e d f o r Robertson by a Mahar f r i e n d . The e x i s t e n c e of these p l a t e s can f a i r l y be assumed, but t h e i r a u t h e n t i c i t y has not been e s t a b l i s h e d . In more recent times, however, there i s l i t t l e doubt that Mahars d i d serve as f o o t s o l d i e r s , scouts and p o s s i b l y as s p i e s f o r the seventeenth-century Maratha r u l e r S h i v a j i . Sarkar notes that under S h i v a j i f o r t s and outposts were normally p l a c e d under three o f f i c e r s of equal s t a t u s drawn from d i f f e r e n t c a s t e s , g e n e r a l l y two Marathas and one Brahmin. The quartermaster was normally a Kayastha while the environs of the f o r t were guarded by men of Parwari and Ramushi c a s t e . T h i s m i l i t a r y duty resem- b l e s the t r a d i t i o n a l duty of the Mahar as a v i l l a g e watchman except t h a t i n t h i s case the Mahars (Parwaris) were being em- p l o y e d to guard m i l i t a r y i n s t a l l a t i o n s . 3 I t i s a l s o very l i k e l y t h a t they were expected to keep watch on the comings and goings of the other o f f i c e r s of the f o r t and r e p o r t any s u s p i c i o u s behaviour d i r e c t l y to S h i v a j i or to h i s immediate l i e u t e n a n t s . Another t r a d i t i o n d e s c r i b e s the s e r v i c e s of Shivnak or Shibnak Mahar i n the r e i g n of Rajaram. T h i s Shivnak r a i s e d a Mahar u n i t 26 and o f f e r e d i t i n support of Rajaram (1689-1700) and l a t e r Shahu (1707-49), descendants of S h i v a j i . In r e t u r n he was granted Kalambi v i l l a g e as a g i f t . H is grandson, a l s o Shivnak, p r o v i d e d m i l i t a r y s e r v i c e to the Peshwa, Sawai Madhavrao. Shivnak i s a l s o c r e d i t e d with saving the l i f e of Pureshwarambhau Patwardhan at the b a t t l e of Kharda i n 1795. The Peshwa's Brahmin a d v i s o r , H i r o j i Patankar, was s a i d to have t o l d other commanders who o b j e c t e d to Shivnak's presence i n t h e i r camp that i n warfare there should be no concern f o r c a s t e . Shivnak's descendants s t i l l owned land i n the S a t a r a d i s t r i c t u n t i l q u i t e r e c e n t l y and q u i t e p o s s i b l y s t i l l do.4 Nagnak Mahar, probably a contemporary of Shivnak Mahar the e l d e r , had been a P a t i l i n the S a t a r a area but had l o s t h i s r i g h t s . He took a band of Mahar s o l d i e r s and captured the f o r t of V a i r a t g a d h from the Muslims, p r e s e n t i n g i t to the k i n g who i n r e t u r n r e s t o r e d h i s r i g h t s as P a t i l . 5 Whether or not these i n c i d e n t s are h i s t o r i c a l l y t r u e , they are widely accepted by the Mahars as p a r t of t h e i r t r a d i t i o n , and now form p a r t of the o f f i c i a l h i s t o r y of the Mahar Regiment. The Mahars can and do draw on t h i s t r a d i t i o n , l i m i t e d as i t i s , to prove t h a t they are capable of courage, l e a d e r s h i p , and l o y a l t y . C o n s i d e r i n g these s t o r i e s of m a r t i a l achievements along with other aspects of Mahar t r a d i t i o n , there i s a d e f i n i t e im- p r e s s i o n of the Mahars as a separate group a l l y i n g themselves with the r u l i n g power of the time, whether Muslim, Maratha, or Brahmin, 6 and of a w i l l i n g n e s s to look beyond the t r a d i t i o n a l s o c i a l order f o r ways and means to b e t t e r themselves. True to 27. t h i s p a t t e r n , when the B r i t i s h e s t a b l i s h e d themselves (as the Honourable East I n d i a Company) as a s i g n i f i c a n t power i n Western I n d i a , the Mahars w i l l i n g l y took s e r v i c e under them. The Mahars were doing the same t h i n g other c a s t e s or communities had done i n attempting to a l l y themselves with the currently-dominant group. In p r e v i o u s attempts, the low s t a t u s and poverty of the Mahars had made c o n s o l i d a t i o n and maintenance of t h e i r gains d i f f i c u l t . As they e s t a b l i s h e d themselves as r e t a i n e r s of the B r i t i s h , as domestic and p e r s o n a l servants and as s o l d i e r s , they had reason to b e l i e v e that the customs ( b e e f - e a t i n g , h a n d l i n g c a r r i o n , l a c k of r i t u a l p r o h i b i t i o n s ) which d e l i n e a t e d t h e i r low s t a t u s as Hindus would make them e s p e c i a l l y v a l u a b l e to the B r i t i s h . From the Mahar p e r s p e c t i v e t h i s was a unique o p p o r t u n i t y to prove themselves without being handicapped by t h e i r r i t u a l l y - d e g r a d e d s t a t u s . Mahar m i l i t a r y s e r v i c e under the B r i t i s h began q u i t e f o r - t u i t o u s l y i n the 1740s. The East I n d i a Company orga n i z e d the l a b o u r e r s employed on the f o r t i f i c a t i o n s of Bombay i n t o r e g u l a r bodies of sepoys f o r defense. The men o r d i n a r i l y served as l a b o u r e r s at l a b o u r e r s ' pay but were o b l i g e d to take up arms i n case of a t t a c k and were then p l a c e d on m i l i t a r y pay s c a l e and under m i l i t a r y d i s c i p l i n e . T h i s e a r l y q u a s i - m i l i t a r y f o r c e was p l a c e d under the command of one Gumbajee P u t t o j e e as t h e i r con- ductor and was d i v i d e d i n t o four companies of two hundred and s i x t e e n men each. Each company c o n s i s t e d of one Subadar, four "Jumbledars," e i g h t " S i r Naiques," four c o l o u r bearers, one trum- p e t e r , one b e l d a r and two hundred p r i v a t e s . 28 Documents i n the P u b l i c Department D i a r y of 1757 l i s t twenty-three men as c a p t a i n s , each shown as commanding v a r y i n g numbers of men armed with v a r i o u s weapons: f i r e l o c k s , matchlocks, long swords, sword and t a r g e t , and bow and arrow.? I t seems l i k e l y that these c a p t a i n s each brought a contingent of kinsmen or neighbours, engaged them a l l as a body and acted as an i n f o r - mal leader and spokesman. The f a c t that the men brought t h e i r own weapons suggests that they were employed on the understanding that they would take up arms i f asked, and that they had some minimal degree of t r a i n i n g , i f o n l y as hunters or v i l l a g e watch- men. These " c a p t a i n s " do not seem to correspond to the v a r i o u s Subadars and Jumbledars. Four of the c a p t a i n s , commanding s i x t y - two men i n c l u d i n g themselves, are l i s t e d as " F r o s t s , " "Pharash or no c a s t e " and appear to be Mahars. Eleven, commanding 436 men, are "Moors" (Muslims) and the remaining seven c a p t a i n s and 150 men are "Gentoos" (Hindus). There were onl y e i g h t C h r i s t i a n s s c a t t e r e d among s i x d i f f e r e n t c a p t a i n s . The four " F r o s t " "cap- t a i n s " had o n l y men of t h e i r own "caste" while some of the "Moors" and "Gentoos" had mixed companies. Of the t o t a l of 648 men, 353 came from the "Maratta" country (presumably around Bombay) and 222 were from Surat and Gujarat. One Muslim had a co n t i n g e n t of 34 men from the t e r r i t o r i e s of the S i d i and two had sma l l groups from A n g r i a t e r r i t o r i e s . T h i s assortment of castes remained c h a r a c t e r i s t i c of the Bombay Army u n t i l the major r e o r - g a n i z a t i o n of 1893 to 1895. S p e c i f i c r e f e r e n c e s to Mahar m i l i t a r y s e r v i c e i n the Bombay Army between 1757 and 1797 are few, though u n t i l the a c q u i s i t i o n 29 of t e r r i t o r i e s above the Western Ghats i n 1802 the Bombay Army had p e r f o r c e to r e c r u i t from the c o a s t a l d i s t r i c t s around Bombay and c o u l d h a r d l y have avoided t a k i n g Mahars i n any case. At l e a s t one source g i v e s p o s i t i v e evidence of Mahar s e r v i c e ; E l p h i n s t o n e (the Governor of Bombay) quoted, i n correspondence with the Board of D i r e c t o r s , an e a r l i e r work which s t a t e d : i n the wars of Lawrence, C l i v e and Coote, i n the C a r n a t i c , the a b o r i g i n e s c o n s t i t u t e d by f a r the great m a j o r i t y of the sepoys . . . I t was they (the Purwaris of the Bombay Army) who, i n the siege of Mangalore [1783-84- aut h o r ] , together with . . . the 42nd Highlanders under C o l o n e l Campbell, defended that f o r t r e s s f o r s i x months . . .8 The Bombay regiment i n v o l v e d , the 8th Bombay Native I n f a n t r y , was designated a Grenadier regiment and awarded the b a t t l e honour "Mangalore" i n o f f i c i a l r e c o g n i t i o n of t h e i r s e r v i c e , and was u n o f f i c i a l l y honoured as the 3rd B a t t a l i o n of the Black Watch.^ A number of r e f e r e n c e s to Mahar s e r v i c e are found i n the re c o r d of the 21st Regiment Bombay Native I n f a n t r y or Marine B a t t a l i o n . T h i s corps was r a i s e d i n 1776-77, " f o r the s e r v i c e of the M a r i n e " — t o p r o v i d e detachments f o r s e r v i c e i n the ship s of the Bombay Marine ( l a t e r Indian Navy). 1 (- ) The Marine B a t t a l i o n from a very e a r l y p e r i o d e n l i s t e d a l a r g e p r o p o r t i o n of Mahars or Parwaris. In 1776, when the corps was r a i s e d , the f i v e hundred Sepoys were to be a l l "Moormen" or Muslims. However, many of the Sepoys who e n l i s t e d were i n f a c t Parwaris and Mochis or Chamars. Some h i g h e r - c a s t e Hindus a p p a r e n t l y d i d e n l i s t i n the b a t t a l i o n but were c o n s i d e r e d u n s u i t a b l e because they f r e q u e n t l y o b j e c t e d to c r o s s i n g the sea, which was a problem s i n c e the Marine B a t t a l - i o n so f r e q u e n t l y served on board s h i p . For i n s t a n c e , i n 1812 30 Ragoojee Bhonsla, H a v i l d a r , who was s e r v i n g on board the Dart a g a i n s t p i r a t e s i n the Gulf of Cutch, was ordered to be promoted to Jemadar and t r a n s f e r r e d to an i n f a n t r y regiment. He was removed to the second b a t t a l i o n of the 7th Regiment of i n f a n - t r y . I 1 Again i n 1836 i t came to the n o t i c e of government that there were about 240 men i n the Marine B a t t a l i o n whose caste p r e j u d i c e s prevented t h e i r s e r v i c e a f l o a t . These men were then e i t h e r t r a n s f e r r e d to other regiments, removed to the Veteran B a t t a l i o n or pension l i s t , or d i s c h a r g e d . 1 2 The General S e r v i c e E n l i s t m e n t Act of 1856, r e q u i r i n g s o l d i e r s e n l i s t i n g i n the army to go wherever they were sent, was an attempt to f o r e s t a l l such problems; i t was a l s o an i n c i d e n t a l cause of the mutiny of 1857. Whether because of t h i s Act, or f o r other reasons, the Marine B a t t a l i o n came to be dominated by Mahars and Muslims. By 1877 the Marine B a t t a l i o n i n c l u d e d 685 men of whom 492 were Mahars and 188 Muslims. There were a l s o two Indo-Portuguese and three Jews or Bene I s r a e l . As l a t e as 1895, a f t e r Mahar recruitment had ended, there were s t i l l 185 Mahars (out of 824) i n the b a t t a l i o n . The Marine B a t t a l i o n was o f t e n on a c t i v e s e r v i c e when the r e s t of the Bombay Army was not. The Marine B a t t a l i o n went through a number of changes i n i t s c l a s s i f i c a t i o n and the d u t i e s a s s i g n e d to i t , as a marine b a t t a l i o n , as a pioneer b a t t a l i o n and as a r e g u l a r i n f a n t r y b a t t a l i o n , but i t was always s t a t i o n e d i n Bombay and always used to p r o v i d e detachments f o r the P e r s i a n G u l f and f o r e x p e d i t i o n s to Burma and f o r s e r v i c e on board s h i p . So i t d i d see very e x t e n s i v e s e r v i c e i n c l u d i n g overseas s e r v i c e , much more than any other regiment of the Bombay army, p a r t i c u l a r - 31 l y i n the l a t t e r h a l f of the n i n e t e e n t h century. Since the Marine B a t t a l i o n u s u a l l y s u p p l i e d s m a l l detachments of sepoys under a n a t i v e o f f i c e r , and t h e i r d u t i e s o f t e n r e q u i r e d a con- s i d e r a b l e degree of independent a c t i o n , t h e i r chances of earning s p e c i a l d i s t i n c t i o n were q u i t e h i g h . These f a c t o r s probably account fo r the l a r g e number of Mahars who gained p a r t i c u l a r r e c o g n i t i o n ; i t i s a l s o f o r t u n a t e that a b r i e f but f a c t - f i l l e d h i s t o r y of the b a t t a l i o n was p u b l i s h e d at a time when memories and records were s t i l l f r e s h . For i n s t a n c e , i n 1797 the V i g i l a n t was a t t a c k e d by four Sanganian p i r a t e v e s s e l s i n the Gulf of Kutch, and drove them o f f a f t e r a three-hour b a t t l e . F i v e marines r e c e i v e d promotions i n r e c o g n i t i o n of t h e i r s e r v i c e s on t h i s o c c a s i o n . The H a v i l d a r , Mandnack Esnack, was promoted to Jemadar. Two Naiks, Ruttonmet- tee Sonmettee and Nimnac Sownac were promoted to H a v i l d a r and p r i v a t e s Cosnack Subannac and Mandnac Caunnac were promoted to Naiks. Four of these f i v e men were Mahars, the f i f t h a Mochi or Chamar. In an u n r e l a t e d i n c i d e n t the same year, the b r i g V i p e r was a t t a c k e d by Joasmi p i r a t e s while at anchor o f f Bushire i n the P e r s i a n G u l f . The engagement was b r i e f but bloody, t h i r t y - t w o of the detachment of s i x t y - f i v e Marines being k i l l e d . A l l of the s u r v i v o r s r e c e i v e d a g r a t u i t y of one month's pay, and two, H a v i l d a r Soubannac Wagnac and Jemadar Sheik Gunny, r e c e i v e d a s i l v e r c h a i n and badge worth one hundred rupees.13 Another H.E.I.C. ship, the c r u i s e r Sylph, f a r e d worse i n a p i r a t e a t t a c k ; a l l but four of the s h i p ' s crew and the e n t i r e Marine detachment were k i l l e d i n hand-to-hand combat.14 In February of 1809 pensions were granted to the widows of the seven men of the Marine B a t t a l i o n who had been k i l l e d on board the Sylph, Lucknac Esnac H a v i l d a r , Calnac Downac Naique, and Roopnac Sonnac, Gonnak Gondnac, Balnac Jannac, Dewnac Bamnac and Bamnac Sonnac, S e p o y s , 1 5 a l l i d e n t i f i a b l e as Mahars from the "nak" a f f i x e d to t h e i r names. In September 1810 the c r u i s e r Aurora was captured by two French f r i g a t e s . The detachment of seventeen men of the Marine B a t t a l i o n on board the Aurora remained f a i t h f u l to t h e i r a l l e - giance d e s p i t e both p e r s u a s i o n and c o e r c i o n a p p l i e d to them to induce them to change t h e i r a l l e g i a n c e to France. The men i n - volved, ten Mahars and seven Muslims, were each promoted one rank. Each was a l s o to r e c e i v e a s i l v e r badge. When one of them, H a v i l d a r Dhunnac Dadnac, d i e d on duty i n the P e r s i a n Gulf i n 1820 h i s widow S a l l e e and c h i l d were granted a pension exceed- ing by one rupee what would o r d i n a r i l y have been given, although the widow was not i n t h i s i n s t a n c e e n t i t l e d to a pension under o r d i n a r y circumstances. I t was s p e c i f i c a l l y noted that t h i s grant was made i n r e c o g n i t i o n of h i s p r e v i o u s s e r v i c e on board the A u r o r a . 1 6 S o l d i e r s of the Marine B a t t a l i o n on o c c a s i o n served w e l l beyond the borders of I n d i a and i n an independent c a p a c i t y ; Subadar Balnak Tannak, a Mahar, i n 1817 went to New South Wales i n command of a guard over a c o n v i c t d r a f t to that colony, and h i s commanding o f f i c e r r e c e i v e d a l e t t e r from Governor MacQuarrie 33 commending the Subadar f o r h i s s a t i s f a c t o r y conduct of t h i s d u t y . 1 7 An i n t e r e s t i n g although not e s p e c i a l l y important episode i n the h i s t o r y of the Marine B a t t a l i o n o c c u r r e d i n 1815 when the East Indiaman N a u t i l u s encountered the American s h i p Peacock i n the S t r a i t s of Sunda. The c a p t a i n of the Peacock a p p a r e n t l y was unaware that a peace t r e a t y had a l r e a d y been signed between the two n a t i o n s and f i r e d upon the N a u t i l u s . In the ensuing a c t i o n Subadar E l i n a c Sonnac of the Marine B a t t a l i o n was k i l l e d and s e v e r a l other men i n c l u d i n g the commander, L i e u t e n a n t Boyce, were k i l l e d or wounded. "This i s probably the o n l y o c c a s i o n on which the Indian army has fought a g a i n s t Americans." x& Men of the Marine B a t t a l i o n a l s o served i n the F i r s t Bur- mese War, 1824-26. Commodore John Hayes commanding the company's brig-of-war V e s t a l p a r t i c u l a r l y commended H a v i l d a r Walnac Sumnac who had been s e r v i n g i n the rank ,of Subadar Major and Gunnac Seednac Naik who had been s e r v i n g as a Jemadar. Commodore Hayes' recommendation that they be confirmed i n these ranks was not accepted f o r a d m i n i s t r a t i v e reasons, but both men were r a i s e d i n rank one degree, the H a v i l d a r being promoted to Jemadar and the Naik to H a v i l d a r . Besides these men a t o t a l of one Jemadar and e i g h t noncommissioned o f f i c e r s and s i x p r i v a t e s who can be p o s i - t i v e l y i d e n t i f i e d as Mahars served i n the Burmese War along with three NCOs and four p r i v a t e s who can be i d e n t i f i e d as Muslim. There were another ninety-one p r i v a t e s , at l e a s t one-half to one- t h i r d of whom were almost c e r t a i n l y Mahars. The general conduct of the Marine B a t t a l i o n i n t h i s war was c o n s i d e r e d to be very 34 praiseworthy. The e n t i r e detachment were awarded medals and most of them, except f o r those employed on a t r a n s p o r t s h i p , r e c e i v e d an a d d i t i o n a l B a t t a of one-quarter rupee per day f o r the d u r a t i o n of t h e i r s e r v i c e . Another s u r v i v o r of the Aurora, Downac Muckin- nac, who had by 1826 reached the rank of Subadar, d i e d i n h o s p i - t a l as a r e s u l t of i l l n e s s c o n t r a c t e d i n Burma, and as i n the e a r l i e r case of Dhamnac H a v i l d a r , h i s widow was granted a s p e c i a l pension of one rupee more than she would have r e c e i v e d had she been e n t i t l e d to pension under o r d i n a r y c i r c u m s t a n c e s . 1 ^ Between 1838 and 1858 detachments of the Marine B a t t a l i o n served i n a number of campaigns i n c l u d i n g the capture of Aden i n September of 1839, the defence of the Hyderabad (Sind) r e s i d e n c y p r i o r to the b a t t l e of Meanee, other campaigns i n Sind i n the e a r l y 1840s and the Opium War i n China 1840-42. S e v e r a l Mahar s o l d i e r s of the Marine B a t t a l i o n again won s p e c i f i c mention f o r v a r i o u s deeds. Subadar-Major Jannac Nownac Bahadur was i n v e s t e d with the Order of B r i t i s h I n d i a ( e s t a b l i s h e d i n 1837) i n October 1845. In May 1851 the company s h i p F a l k l a n d s sank on a voyage to K a r a c h i . A Marine p r i v a t e , Babnac Deepnac, who was on s e n t r y duty over the t r e a s u r e chest, stayed at h i s post u n t i l the s h i p went down under him, and then managed to save the bag of rupees. He was promoted to Naik. Marines served on the company steamers Feroze, Moozaffur, Berenice, Zenobia, and S e s o s t r i s d u r i n g the Second Burmese War 1853-54 and r e c e i v e d s e r v i c e medals. During the Second S i k h War some one hundred and ten men of the Marine B a t t a l i o n served i n the shi p s of the Indus F l o t i l l a 1848-49. In March of 1857 detachments of Marines from the Feroze, Semiramis, 35 Assaye, Ajdaha, V i c t o r i a , C l i v e and F a l k l a n d served under Li e u t e n a n t - G e n e r a l S i r James Outram at the t a k i n g of Mohumra i n P e r s i a . Lance-Naik Babmac Sumnak was k i l l e d ; H a v i l d a r Ragnak Esnak and P r i v a t e Lucknak were wounded. 2 0 A detachment of the Marine B a t t a l i o n again won p a r t i c u l a r d i s t i n c t i o n d u r i n g the Mutiny. The detachment had been s t a t i o n e d at Multan. The Naik and s e v e r a l p r i v a t e s had been assigned to guard the t r e a s u r e chest which was i n the house of the A s s i s t a n t M a g i s t r a t e and Port O f f i c e r L i e u t e n a n t H o l t of the Indian N avy. 2 1 The house was a t t a c k e d by a p a r t y of mutineers of the 67th and 69th Bengal Native I n f a n t r y and the Marines were able to r e p u l s e the a t t a c k . The detachment c o n s i s t e d of Naik Jannac Dhonnac who was promoted to H a v i l d a r , P r i v a t e s Aumnac Jannac, Bicknac Sonnac, Gondnac P i t n a c , Balnac Jannac, and Bicknac Coottennac a l l pro- moted to Naik, and P r i v a t e s Balmater Rammater, Balnac Dhurumnac and Ramnac Babnac promoted to Lance-Naik. H a v i l d a r Jannac Dhonnac and Lance-Naik Ramnac Babnac a l s o were awarded the Indian Order of M e r i t , T h i r d C l a s s . 2 2 Men of the Marine B a t t a l i o n d i d not always d i s t i n g u i s h themselves. Commander M. 0. Stephens, a Royal Navy o f f i c e r commanding the H.E.I.C. s h i p Semiramis i n 1852, was extremely d i s s a t i s f i e d with the conduct of twelve of s i x t e e n men of the Marine B a t t a l i o n r e c e n t l y s e r v i n g under him. The s i x t e e n men i n c l u d e d f o u r t e e n Mahars, one Chamar, and one Anglo-Indian. Charges l e v e l e d a g a i n s t these men i n c l u d e d h a b i t u a l bad conduct, r i o t o u s conduct, an attempt at f e i g n i n g i n s a n i t y , l o s i n g p a r t s of t h e i r uniforms, b r i n g i n g f a l s e complaints and g e n e r a l i n s u b o r d i - 3 6 n a t i o n . Commander Stephens had P r i v a t e Lucknac Cannae punished with one dozen lashes with the cat f o r disobedience, and the other marines "misconducted themselves i n a most marked and i n s u b o r d i n a t e manner by openly q u e s t i o n i n g the p r o p r i e t y of one of t h e i r corps being flogged."23 Although the marines do not appear to have conducted themselves very s a t i s f a c t o r i l y , Command- er Stephens was a l s o at f a u l t i n attempting to enforce the s t a n - dards of d i s c i p l i n e customary i n the B r i t i s h Navy upon men who, f i r s t of a l l , were not s a i l o r s but s o l d i e r s , and secondly were not accustomed to the b r u t a l p h y s i c a l d i s c i p l i n e then imposed i n the B r i t i s h Navy. A c c o r d i n g to r e g u l a t i o n s i s s u e d by the Gover- nor i n C o u n c i l i n 1810, d e f i n i n g the d u t i e s of marine sepoys, c o r p o r a l punishment was not p e r m i t t e d i n the case of noncommis- sioned o f f i c e r s ; p r i v a t e s c o u l d be punished with a " r a t t a n . " I t seems probable that the marines were r i g h t i n q u e s t i o n i n g the use of the cat.24 An i n t e r e s t i n g and somewhat unusual episode i n the h i s t o r y of the Marine B a t t a l i o n o c c u r r e d i n 1865 when Dr. David L i v i n g - stone r e c e i v e d p e r m i s s i o n from the government of Bombay to e n l i s t a number of sepoys to accompany him on h i s next e x p e d i t i o n to C e n t r a l A f r i c a . F o r t y men of the Marine B a t t a l i o n v o lunteered and twelve were e n l i s t e d , l e a v i n g f o r Zanzibar i n 1866. The twelve men were C o l o r H a v i l d a r Shaik Ahmad, Lance Naik Sheik Mullang and P r i v a t e s Khoada Bux, Esmall Khan, Shaik Curreem, Shaik Khan, Shaik Purun, Pandnac Ramnac, Jaynac Gunnac, Ramnac Lucknac, Bawajnac Gunnac, and Ramnac Bhewnac. The f i r s t seven of these were Muslims, the l a s t f i v e Mahars. L i v i n g s t o n e d i d not 37 f i n d t h a t the sepoys served him well.25 L i v i n g s t o n e considered t h a t the sepoys were c r u e l to the pack animals brought with them, th a t they were r e l u c t a n t to work but l i k e w i s e r e l u c t a n t to be sent home, and were generally, untrustworthy. In extenuation i t must be s a i d L i v i n g s t o n e was then g e t t i n g o l d and a p p a r e n t l y i n e f f e c t u a l as a l e a d e r . He a l s o c l e a r l y understood very l i t t l e about the sepoys s i n c e he was not even aware that they were not a l l Muslim. The episode, however, does not ca s t much c r e d i t upon the Marine B a t t a l i o n . Mahars a l s o served i n most of the Bombay i n f a n t r y regiments i n the n i n e t e e n t h century, but i t i s harder to determine the extent of t h e i r s e r v i c e f o r lack of evidence. However s c a t t e r e d r e f e r e n c e s do e x i s t which show Mahars s e r v i n g i n such campaigns as the T h i r d Anglo-Maratha War, the Second Anglo-Sikh War, and the Second Afghan War. For i n s t a n c e , d u r i n g the T h i r d Maratha War (1817-1819), two s o l d i e r s of the 1st b a t t a l i o n / 3 r d regiment, ( l a t e r the K a l i Panchwin or Black F i f t h ) , Bhowani Singh and Eknath Balnak, were promoted to H a v i l d a r f o r t h e i r z e a l and bravery d u r i n g the pur- s u i t of the defeated Peshwa B a j i Rao a f t e r the b a t t l e of K i r k e e . 2 6 One i n s t a n c e of Mahar bravery, d e s c r i b e d by I. A. E z e k i e l , o c c u r r e d d u r i n g the Second Anglo-Sikh War. U n i t s of the Bombay Army, i n c l u d i n g a company of Sappers and Miners, took p a r t i n the att a c k on the Khuni Burj (Bloody Bastion) at Multan on 2 January 1 8 4 9 . 2 7 A c c o r d i n g to E z e k i e l , a Mahar s o l d i e r , Mahadev Mis s a r , captured the enemy c o l o u r s and i n s p i r e d h i s regiment to press 38 t h e i r a t t a c k s u c c e s s f u l l y . Another Mahar s o l d i e r , Jannak Ramnak, a l s o d i s p l a y e d s i m i l a r v a l o u r ; both r e c e i v e d medals.28 i n a s i m i l a r v e i n , a p a r t y of t w e n t y - f i v e men under a Mahar, Ramjee Sindhay, p a r t of a regiment s e r v i n g i n Kathiawar i n 1826, h e l d o f f an a t t a c k by over four hundred enemy.29 Although s p e c i f i c d e t a i l s of these s t o r i e s c o u l d not be confirmed from o r i g i n a l m i l i t a r y sources, the presence of Bombay regiments dur i n g t h i s campaign i s well-documented. These and s i m i l a r s t o r i e s do form p a r t of the Mahar t r a d i t i o n . 3 0 An e a r l y o f f i c i a l n o t i c e of the appointment of a Mahar to a m i l i t a r y p o s i t i o n dates from 1847. T h i s i s a c e r t i f i c a t e (given i n Appendix B) of the grant of rank of Jemadar to Kamalnac V i t n a c dated the f i r s t day of June 1847 and e f f e c t i v e on January f i r s t of the same y e a r . 3 1 Two episodes from the Second Afghan War p r o v i d e f u r t h e r - examples of Mahar s e r v i c e . A h a l f company of the Bombay Sappers and Miners were present at the b a t t l e of Maiwand, J u l y 27th 1880. These men were the l a s t to leave the l i n e of b a t t l e , l e a v i n g behind L i e u t e n a n t T. R. Henn and f o u r t e e n Sappers dead. Of the fo u r t e e n , two, Balnak Yesnak and Chocnak, were Mahars.32 On 12th A p r i l 1881 Sepoy Bhewnac Ramnac saved A s s i s t a n t Doctor McMahon of the 61st Regiment and h i s servant from death by drowning. He was promoted to Naik and l a t e r awarded the bronze medal of the Royal Humane S o c i e t y . 3 3 The two most famous and best documented i n s t a n c e s of Mahar m i l i t a r y s e r v i c e of d i s t i n c t i o n are at the b a t t l e of Koregaon i n 1818 and at Dubrai, A f g h a n i s t a n 1880. The b a t t l e of Koregaon i s 39 i n t e r e s t i n g i n that i t appeared at f i r s t to be a somewhat i n s i g - n i f i c a n t engagement, but has s i n c e come to be considered a t u r n i n g p o i n t i n the T h i r d Anglo-Maratha War. The s u c c e s s f u l defense of Koregaon by a sma l l B r i t i s h - l e d f o r c e a g a i n s t a l a r g e army commanded by the Peshwa B a j i Rao h i m s e l f was a severe blow to Maratha morale, and has been c o n s i d e r e d an important f a c t o r c o n t r i b u t i n g to t h e i r u l t i m a t e d e f e a t . The events are simple enough. Ca p t a i n F. F. Staunton, commanding about 500 men of the 2nd B a t t a l i o n / l s t Regiment Bombay Native I n f a n t r y ( G r e n a d i e r s ) , about 250 A u x i l i a r y Horse under Li e u t e n a n t Swanston and a small a r t i l l e r y detachment of two s i x - pounder guns, l e f t S i r u r about 8:30 p.m. on the 31st of December 1817, a r r i v i n g at 10:00 a.m. the f o l l o w i n g morning, January 1st at the v i l l a g e of Koregaon near Pune. C a p t a i n Staunton r e c e i v e d a nasty shock when he encountered the army of the Peshwa, about 20,000 c a v a l r y and 8,000 i n f a n t r y with two heavy guns, formed up on the o p p o s i t e s i d e of the Bhima R i v e r . I t turned out l a t e r t h a t the Peshwa's army was to have l e f t Pune the day b e f o r e and had they done so, or had C a p t a i n Staunton a r r i v e d an hour l a t e r , the engagement would never have taken p l a c e . C a p t a i n Staunton determined to make a stand i n the v i l l a g e of Koregaon, which was (and s t i l l i s today) f o r t i f i e d with mud w a l l s , and took up p o s i - t i o n there, s e l e c t i n g the best s i t u a t i o n s he c o u l d f o r h i s two guns. In the meantime 3,000 of the Peshwa's Arab i n f a n t r y had a l s o occupied the v i l l a g e and had managed to g a i n c o n t r o l of the b e t t e r p o s i t i o n . C a p t a i n Staunton's small f o r c e was c o n t i n u a l l y i n b a t t l e without food or water u n t i l 9:00 p.m. when the Arabs 40 were f i n a l l y d r i v e n out of the v i l l a g e . At daybreak the f o l - lowing day Staunton's troops took p o s s e s s i o n of the enemy post and on the evening of that same day, January 2nd, Staunton gath- ered together h i s s u r v i v o r s , c o l l e c t e d h i s wounded and h i s guns, and began a r e t r e a t towards S i r u r . In h i s r e p o r t to L i e u t e n a n t C o l o n e l F i t z s i m o n , Commanding at S i r u r , C a p t a i n Staunton appeared under some apprehension because he had had to abandon h i s camp equipment and one of the gun tumbrels. He recorded heavy l o s s e s , L i e u t e n a n t Chisholm of the a r t i l l e r y and A s s i s t a n t Surgeon Win- gate of the Grenadiers having been k i l l e d and L i e u t e n a n t P a t t e r - son, a l s o of the Grenadiers, badly wounded. L i e u t e n a n t P a t t e r s o n l a t e r d i e d . L i e u t e n a n t Connellan and L i e u t e n a n t Swanston were a l s o wounded, f i f t y men of the Grenadiers and twelve men of the a r t i l l e r y had been k i l l e d , and a t o t a l of 113 wounded. Cap t a i n Staunton ended h i s r e p o r t with the comment: " I t i s u t t e r l y impos- s i b l e f o r me to do j u s t i c e to the merits and e x e r t i o n s of the European o f f i c e r s , non-commissioned o f f i c e r s , and p r i v a t e s , that I had the honour and good fortune to command on t h i s t r y i n g o c c a s i o n . T h i s a p p a r e n t l y i n s i g n i f i c a n t b a t t l e , which as noted proved to have major consequences, became a very important f e a t u r e of the regimental h i s t o r y of the Grenadiers. As long as the regiment e x i s t e d Koregaon Night continued to be an important r e g i m e n t a l c e l e b r a t i o n . Memorabilia of the o c c a s i o n were kept i n the regimental mess and s u r v i v o r s of the engagement were honoured at r e g i mental dinners and other o c c a s i o n s . 3 5 Government a l s o chose to commemorate t h i s b a t t l e by e r e c t i n g an o b e l i s k at the s i t e of the b a t t l e . The o b e l i s k s t i l l stands and on i t s face are 41 recorded the names of the o f f i c e r s and men who d i e d i n that engagement. T h i s i n c l u d e s a t o t a l of twenty-one Mahars.36 T h i s b a t t l e a l s o f e a t u r e s prominently i n the Mahar regimental h i s t o - r i e s and i n many accounts of the m i l i t a r y h i s t o r y of the Mahars, s i n c e i t i s probably the one o c c a s i o n on which the l a r g e s t number of Mahar s o l d i e r s are known f o r c e r t a i n to have d i e d , and to have d i e d i n a very g a l l a n t and d i f f i c u l t task. The i n c i d e n t at Dubrai i s m i l i t a r i l y unimportant but again has won c o n s i d e r a b l e a t t e n t i o n because of the g a l l a n t r y shown by the three men i n v o l v e d , Major Sidney James Waudby and P r i v a t e s E l a h i Bux and Sonnak Tannak of the 19th Bombay Native I n f a n t r y . On 16 A p r i l 1880, these three men along with a d a f f a d a r and two sowars of the 3rd S i n d Horse were defending a s m a l l outpost i n A f g h a n i s t a n . They came under a t t a c k by some 250 to 300 Ghazis. The S i n d Horse Sowars a p p a r e n t l y took to t h e i r h e e l s , l e a v i n g the post to be defended by Major Waudby and the two p r i v a t e s . These three h e l d o f f the a t t a c k as long as they could, k i l l i n g or wounding some t h i r t y of t h e i r opponents, and when t h e i r ammuni- t i o n was exhausted dashed out and were k i l l e d i n hand to hand combat. 3 7 T h i s e x p l o i t i s commemorated by a plaque p r e s e n t l y found on the w a l l of the Alexandra G i r l s ' School on Waudby Road i n Bombay. 3^ At t h i s time the Indian Order of M e r i t was not granted posthumously, but s i n c e E l a h i Bux and Sonnak Tannak were deemed to have earned the t h i r d c l a s s I.O.M., t h e i r widows were awarded the e q u i v a l e n t pension f o r a term of three years, i n a d d i t i o n to the o r d i n a r y f a m i l y pension due them. 3^ Even these sketchy records i n d i c a t e that Mahar s o l d i e r s not 42 o n l y served i n v a r i o u s regiments of the Bombay Army throughout the n i n e t e e n t h century, but some a t t a i n e d the s t a t u s of n a t i v e o f f i c e r s . On o c c a s i o n Mahar s o l d i e r s d i s p l a y e d q u a l i t i e s of courage and l e a d e r s h i p at a h i g h l e v e l . The Bene I s r a e l As mentioned p r e v i o u s l y the e a r l i e s t i n s t a n c e of the Bene I s r a e l s e r v i n g as s o l d i e r s i n v o l v e s members of the C h u r r i k a r f a m i l y . A c c o r d i n g to Kehimkar two members of t h i s f a m i l y served the A b y s s i n i a n r u l e r of J a n j i r a . In a b a t t l e with s o l d i e r s of Kanhoji Angrey they were captured and on r e f u s i n g to change a l l e g i a n c e were k i l l e d . Angrey a p p a r e n t l y was so impressed by t h i s evidence of f a i t h f u l n e s s that he appointed two other members of the f a m i l y , Samuel or Samaji and Abraham or A b a j i , to command h i s navy. I t i s a l s o thought that ancestors of s e v e r a l Bene I s r a e l f a m i l i e s were appointed as commanders of v a r i o u s f o r t s , i n c l u d i n g A v c h i t g a d f o r t , Sagadgud f o r t and o t h e r s . However, as Kehimkar concedes, documentary evidence of such appointments i s l a c k i n g and t h i s , t h e r e f o r e , must be c o n s i d e r e d a t r a d i t i o n r a t h e r than a proven h i s t o r i c a l fact.40 The Bene I s r a e l began to migrate to Bombay i n c o n s i d e r a b l e numbers a f t e r the c i t y and i s l a n d came i n t o B r i t i s h p o s s e s s i o n . They had h i t h e r t o been a f r a i d to enter Portuguese dominated t e r r i t o r i e s f o r fear of r e l i g i o u s p e r s e c u t i o n . The e a r l i e s t r e c o r d of m i l i t a r y s e r v i c e of the Bene I s r a e l under the B r i t i s h dates from about 1760. At or about that time, f i v e b r o t h e r s of the Divekar f a m i l y e n l i s t e d and r e c e i v e d commissions from W i l l i a m Hornby who was then Governor and Commander-in-Chief of h i s Majes- 43 t y ' s c a s t l e and i s l a n d of Bombay. These b r o t h e r s were I s s a j i H a s s a j i , S i l l a m o n H a s s a j i , Samaji H a s s a j i , E l l o j e e H a s s a j i and David H a s s a j i . They were a l l a p p a r e n t l y appointed to the rank of Jemadar and/or Subadar i n the middle 1770s to the e a r l y 1780s. Samaji or Samuel served i n the Second Mysore War and was taken p r i s o n e r and h e l d f o r some time. Kehimkar notes the m i l i t a r y s e r v i c e of a l a r g e number of other Bene I s r a e l , g i v i n g d e t a i l e d accounts of the s e r v i c e of t h i r t y - t w o and l i s t i n g over one hun- dred Bene I s r a e l who became n a t i v e o f f i c e r s . 4 1 T h i s was not an exhaustive l i s t i n g . Two n a t i v e o f f i c e r s whose s e r v i c e s should be s p e c i a l l y noted, p a r t i c u l a r l y as they are independently con- firmed, are Subadar D a n i e l j e e I s r a e l of the 16th Regiment of N a t i v e I n f a n t r y (Subadar D a n i e l K h u r r i l k a r ) and Subadar-Major Moosajee I s r a e l (Moosajee K o l e t k a r ) . Subadar D a n i e l j e e was com- manding a p l a t o o n e s c o r t i n g an opium convoy from Baroda to Ahmedabad i n A p r i l of 1830. The p l a t o o n r e p e l l e d an a t t a c k by a p a r t y of approximately four hundred B h i l s . The Subadar was p u b l i c l y thanked by C o l o n e l Kennet, r e s i d e n t at Baroda, and r e c e i v e d a g o l d medal f o r h i s conduct.42 i n J u l y 1857, Subadar- Major Moosajee, s e r v i n g with the 27th Regiment Native I n f a n t r y i n the rank of Jemadar and Native Adjutant, gave f i r s t i n f o r m a t i o n of a planned mutiny among some of the s o l d i e r s of h i s regiment.43 Although the B a t t l e of Koregaon does not f e a t u r e as promi- n e n t l y i n Bene I s r a e l t r a d i t i o n as i t does f o r the Mahars, a few Bene I s r a e l a p p a r e n t l y served i n the Bombay Grenadiers at that time. At a regimental dinner h e l d at Baroda i n 1846, Jemadar D a v i d j i I s r a e l Bahadur, who had j u s t completed forty-one y e a r s ' 44 s e r v i c e , was c a l l e d i n to r e t u r n the t o a s t o f f e r e d by the R e s i - dent of Baroda to the s u r v i v o r s of K o r e g a o n . 4 4 A very s t r i k i n g f e a t u r e of the Bene I s r a e l m i l i t a r y expe- r i e n c e was the hig h p r o p o r t i o n of Bene I s r a e l s o l d i e r s who became n a t i v e o f f i c e r s . In t h i s they d i f f e r from the Mahars, who won promotions indeed, but i n a p r o p o r t i o n s i m i l a r to t h e i r o v e r a l l r e p r e s e n t a t i o n i n the army. Not o n l y were the Bene I s r a e l over- represented as n a t i v e o f f i c e r s ; they a l s o seem to have h e l d many r e l a t i v e l y p r e s t i g i o u s p o s i t i o n s a f t e r r e t i r e m e n t , i n the p o l i c e or i n l o c a l a d m i n i s t r a t i o n . These d i f f e r e n c e s w i l l be f u r t h e r d i s c u s s e d i n l a t e r chapters. American Blacks The e a r l y m i l i t a r y h i s t o r y of b l a c k s i n the Americas d i f - f e r s from that of the Mahars and Bene I s r a e l i n important r e s p e c t s . Black men o f t e n , as s l a v e s , c o u l d be compelled to serve i n the m i l i t a r y , as l a b o u r e r s i f not as s o l d i e r s , whereas the Mahars and Bene I s r a e l seem to have o f f e r e d t h e i r s e r v i c e by c h o i c e . A l s o , while the Mahars and Bene I s r a e l seem always to have a l l i e d themselves with the r u l i n g power, s l a v e s c o u l d and d i d r e v o l t or f l e e , sometimes a l l y i n g themselves with Indian t r i b e s or attempting to form independent settlements of t h e i r own. The t h r e a t — a n d o c c a s i o n a l r e a l i t y — o f s l a v e r e v o l t i n f l u - enced white a t t i t u d e s toward black s o l d i e r s i n a way q u i t e unpar- a l l e l e d i n the Indian context. The v a r i o u s c o l o n i a l p o w e r s — F r a n c e , Spain, and B r i t a i n — d i f f e r e d i n t h e i r p o l i c i e s and a t t i t u d e s towards b l a c k s . Succes- 45 s i v e French and Spanish c o l o n i a l a d m i n i s t r a t i o n s i n L o u i s i a n a found i t expedient to use s l a v e s and f r e e men of c o l o u r to sup- plement the r e g u l a r troops and white m i l i t i a a v a i l a b l e to them. Between 1730 and 1740 both f r e e b l a c k s and s l a v e s p a r t i c i p a t e d i n French e x p e d i t i o n s a g a i n s t the Natchez and Chickasaw Indians. As McConnell s t a t e s i n h i s study: For the most p a r t both the enslaved and the f r e e d had given a good account of themselves and proved t h e i r l o y a l t y to the French. At the same time, they had ac- q u i r e d v a l u a b l e m i l i t a r y and d i s c i p l i n a r y e x perience. T h i s m i l i t a r y s e r v i c e p r o v i d e d an avenue to freedom f o r the enslaved. And f o r the f r e e , d e f i n i t e l y o r g a n i z e d i n t o a company with t h e i r own o f f i c e r s by the second Chickasaw war, there was the rewarding knowledge t h a t the government a l s o depended upon them f o r i t s defence a g a i n s t the common enemy.45 By the time L o u i s i a n a passed i n t o Spanish hands, Spanish i m p e r i a l p o l i c y i n c l u d e d p r o v i s i o n f o r m i l i t i a u n i t s to be orga- n i z e d among the f r e e people of c o l o u r , Negroes and Mulattoes, s u b d i v i d e d i n t o pardos ( l i g h t e r skinned Mulattoes) and Morenos (dark Mulattoes and Negroes). A number of f r e e men of c o l o u r fought f o r Spain a g a i n s t B r i t a i n i n 1779-81, performing c r e d i t - a b l y i n t h e i r " f i r s t experience a g a i n s t t r a i n e d European s o l d i e r s " 4 6 a n d earning commendations and promotions. Negro m i l i t i a m e n a l s o took p a r t i n the Cimarron War (aga i n s t runaway s l a v e s and t h e i r hideouts) and worked with other able-bodied male c i t i z e n s on the levees of the M i s s i s s i p p i . In 1799, i n t h e i r l a s t a c t i o n under the Spanish f l a g , they took p a r t i n an expedi- t i o n to F l o r i d a a g a i n s t an adventurer named Bowles. The French and Spanish a d m i n i s t r a t i o n s l e f t behind i n New Orleans a f a i r l y l a r g e , prosperous c l a s s of mulattoes who were European i n c u l t u r e , and who occupied an anomalous p o s i t i o n i n 46 the developing " c a s t e " system of the American South; r a c i a l l y they belonged to the "sla v e c a s t e , " but c u l t u r a l l y they i d e n t i - f i e d with the white " r u l i n g c a s t e . " The B r i t i s h c o l o n i s t s were c o n s i d e r a b l y more r e l u c t a n t to allow f r e e b l a c k s to bear arms. In very e a r l y c o l o n i a l h i s t o r y both f r e e b l a c k s and s l a v e s were o f t e n i n c l u d e d i n c o l o n i a l m i l i t i a u n i t s simply because every a v a i l a b l e man or boy was needed. P a r t i c u l a r m i s g i v i n g s were f e l t with regard to arming f r e e b l a c k s , f o r they were o f t e n viewed as p o t e n t i a l l e a d e r s or i n s t i g a t o r s of s l a v e r e v o l t s . The v a r i o u s c o l o n i e s q u i t e e a r l y took the step of b a r r i n g b l a c k s , both s l a v e and f r e e , from bear- ing arms. V i r g i n i a i n 1639, Massachusetts i n 1656, Connecticut i n 1661, and soon the other c o l o n i e s , a l l b a r r e d b l a c k s from m i l i t a r y s e r v i c e . T h i s , however, l e d white c o l o n i s t s to f e e l t h a t f r e e b l a c k s were being s p e c i a l l y favoured. A new p o l i c y t h e r e f o r e f r e q u e n t l y s t i p u l a t e d that f r e e b l a c k s must j o i n the m i l i t i a , but they were u s u a l l y allowed o n l y to serve as drummers, f i f e r s and trumpeters, road or highway l a b o u r e r s , or guards. They were not o r d i n a r i l y allowed to bear arms and serve as poten- t i a l combatants. However, these p o l i c i e s a l s o tended to f a l l by the wayside i n time of war. There were a number of occasions when c o l o n i s t s f a c i n g Indian a t t a c k s or a t t a c k s from the French allowed s l a v e s to bear arms and f i g h t a l o n g s i d e t h e i r white masters. For i n s t a n c e , South C a r o l i n a i n 1703 and 1715 allowed s l a v e s to f i g h t a g a i n s t Indian a t t a c k . Slaves were sometimes o f f e r e d t h e i r freedom i n r e t u r n f o r m i l i t a r y s e r v i c e . T h i s ended i n South C a r o l i n a i n 1740 a f t e r two s e r i o u s s l a v e i n s u r r e c t i o n s . 47 During the p e r i o d of the French-Indian Wars, b l a c k s were again p e r m i t t e d to serve i n the m i l i t a r y . 4 7 Many towns, unable otherwise to f u r n i s h t h e i r quotas, g l a d l y accepted a l l B l a c k s . To s l a v e s , the prospect of freedom, made enli s t m e n t i n the C o l o n i a l f o r c e s a t t r a c - t i v e ; f o r f r e e Blacks, the hope of e l e v a t i n g t h e i r low s o c i a l s t a t u s was the prime inducement. 48 These men served as s o l d i e r s , scouts, wagoners, l a b o u r e r s , and s e r v a n t s . They served i n unsegregated u n i t s and r e c e i v e d equal pay with whites. Slaves had to surrender some or a l l of t h e i r wages to t h e i r masters, and some were ret u r n e d to s l a v e r y at the end of the war. However, many s l a v e s d i d earn t h e i r freedom by s e r v i n g i n the armed f o r c e s . Very e a r l y i n the American R e v o l u t i o n black men j o i n e d the Minutemen and are known to have fought at the b a t t l e s of L e x i n g - ton and Concord. A black Minuteman named Salem Poor, along with at l e a s t three other black men, l a t e r j o i n e d Ethan A l l e n ' s Green Mountain Boys. Salem Poor a l s o fought at the b a t t l e of Bunker H i l l and other black men are known to have been present at that engagement. When George Washington was appointed Commander-in- C h i e f of the army of the C o n t i n e n t a l Congress i n June of 1775, he was not p l e a s e d at f i n d i n g b l a c k s i n the army under h i s command, and ordered r e c r u i t i n g o f f i c e r s not to e n r o l l "any s t r o l l e r , Negro or vagabond." T h i s order was r e i n f o r c e d and r e i t e r a t e d i n November of 1775: " n e i t h e r Negroes, boys unable to bare Arms, nor o l d men u n f i t to endure the f a t i g u e s of the campaign, are to be i n l i s t e d . " 4 ^ T h i s p o l i c y had to be modified very q u i c k l y , as the B r i t i s h e n l i s t e d b l a c k s o f f e r i n g freedom to indentured servants and s l a v e s who would take s e r v i c e under the B r i t i s h f l a g . There 48 was a l s o the problem of f i n d i n g enough whites who were w i l l i n g to s i g n up f o r yet another year of f i g h t i n g i n the C o n t i n e n t a l army. I t t h e r e f o r e became necessary to accept f r e e b l a c k s as s o l d i e r s . A number of northern s t a t e s went f u r t h e r and a c t i v e l y r e c r u i t e d s l a v e s , o f f e r i n g them freedom at the end of t h e i r s e r v i c e and compensation to t h e i r former owners. Massachusetts, Rhode I s l a n d , C o n n e c t i c u t , and New Hampshire among others had companies or b a t t a l i o n s of black men. Slaves sometimes e n l i s t e d as s u b s t i - t u t e s f o r white men. The s t a t e of Maryland passed l e g i s l a t i o n p e r m i t t i n g s l a v e e n l i s t m e n t s . The s t a t e of V i r g i n i a i n 1783 passed a law d i r e c t i n g the emancipation of s l a v e s who had served as s o l d i e r s , s u b s t i t u t i n g f o r white men, d u r i n g the R e v o l u t i o n a r y War. However not a l l masters honoured t h e i r promises and some attempted with g r e a t e r or l e s s success to r e - e n s l a v e t h e i r former s l a v e s . Not a l l black veterans waited to f i n d out i f they could t r u s t the white man's promises; some took the f i r s t o p p o r t u n i t y a f t e r the war's end to move f a r away from t h e i r former owners. To sum up, the American R e v o l u t i o n produced an improvement i n the s t a t u s of b l a c k s . Many won t h e i r freedom by s e r v i n g i n the armed f o r c e s on e i t h e r the American or B r i t i s h s i d e . Revolu- t i o n a r y i d e o l o g y encouraged i n d i v i d u a l s l a v e s to seek manumis- s i o n , and encouraged some masters to f r e e t h e i r s l a v e s , s e v e r a l s t a t e s to p r o h i b i t the s l a v e trade, and some southern s t a t e s to l i b e r a l i z e t h e i r manumission laws. Vermont, New Hampshire, and Massachusetts a b o l i s h e d s l a v e r y , and other s t a t e s p r o v i d e d f o r g r a d u a l emancipation. A number of black veterans i n c l u d i n g the founder of b l a c k Masonry, P r i n c e H a l l , sail-maker and a b o l i t i o n - 49 i s t James F o r t e n of P h i l a d e l p h i a , and the Reverend Lemuel Haymes, a former Green Mountain Boy, became l e a d e r s of the developing f r e e b lack community of the n o r t h . 5 1 However, the small progress achieved s t i l l l e f t the m a j o r i t y of b l a c k s i n bondage, e i t h e r l e g a l or economic. In some r e s p e c t s the s o c i a l , p o l i t i c a l , and economic c o n d i t i o n s of black Americans d e t e r i o r a t e d i n the years f o l l o w i n g the American R e v o l u t i o n . Although the U.S. C o n s t i t u - t i o n d i d not f o r b i d the enl i s t m e n t of black men, and the M i l i t i a Act of 1792 d i d not s p e c i f i c a l l y exclude b l a c k s ( i t merely r e q u i r e d the enrollment of white males), i n p r a c t i c e most s t a t e s excluded black men from m i l i t a r y s e r v i c e except i n some cases as l a b o u r e r s and musicians. There were s e v e r a l reasons f o r t h i s e x c l u s i o n of b l a c k s from combat r o l e s . 5 2 A f t e r 1792 the army r e q u i r e d r e l a t i v e l y few men and t h e r e f o r e had no p a r t i c u l a r need f o r b l a c k s . L o c a l m i l i t i a u n i t s took on s o c i a l and p o l i t i c a l overtones, and l e a d e r - s h i p i n the m i l i t i a was used by whites as a form of community s e r v i c e u s e f u l to them i n p o l i t i c a l l i f e . There was an under- standable r e l u c t a n c e to allow b l a c k s to p a r t i c i p a t e i n t h i s type of a c t i v i t y . An a d d i t i o n a l f a c t o r was the s l a v e r e b e l l i o n of the 1790s i n H a i t i . A s l a v e r e v o l t under T o u s s a i n t L'Ouverture, Jean-Jacques D e s s a l i n e s , and Henri C h r i s t o p h e achieved indepen- dence f o r H a i t i i n 1804 a f t e r d e f e a t i n g a l a r g e French army. T h i s c e r t a i n l y c o n t r i b u t e d to white f e a r s of armed r e v o l t of b l a c k s and mulattoes, p a r t i c u l a r l y i n the southern s t a t e s where bl a c k p o p u l a t i o n s were very l a r g e . In 1798 b l a c k s were o f f i c i a l - l y b a rred from e n l i s t m e n t i n the Marine Corps and Navy. However, 50 these s e r v i c e s f r e q u e n t l y had t r o u b l e g e t t i n g enough white seamen and continued to accept black men. The War of 1812 once again p r o v i d e d some o p p o r t u n i t i e s f o r bla c k men to serve i n the m i l i t a r y . In L o u i s i a n a , t r a n s f e r r e d from France to the United S t a t e s i n 1803, a black m i l i t i a u n i t s t i l l e x i s t e d . T h i s was f o r m a l l y r e a c t i v a t e d i n 1812 as the B a t t a l i o n of Free Men of C o l o r . T h i s b a t t a l i o n was made up of f r e e b l a c k s (many of whom were a c t u a l l y mulattoes or quadroons of French a n c e s t r y ) , each of whom owned p r o p e r t y of at l e a s t three hundred d o l l a r s i n value. The b a t t a l i o n had some black o f f i c e r s , though i t was commanded by whites. A second b a t t a l i o n was r a i s e d by Joseph Savary, a black o r i g i n a l l y from Santo Domingo. These two b a t t a l i o n s took a l e a d i n g r o l e i n the b a t t l e of New Orleans i n 1814, and were commended by General Andrew Jackson f o r t h e i r courage and perseverance. Black men a l s o served i n the naval f o r c e i n the b a t t l e of Lake E r i e under C a p t a i n 0. H. Perry.^3 Between the end of the War of 1812 and the C i v i l War b l a c k s were once again excluded from the r e g u l a r army. However, they continued to e n l i s t i n the navy, where they served not o n l y as cooks and stewards but a l s o as common seamen.54 Blacks a l s o p l a y e d a s i g n i f i c a n t r o l e i n the F i r s t and Second Seminole Wars, f i g h t i n g a g a i n s t U n i t e d S t a t e s troops. The Spanish colony of F l o r i d a had f o r many years o f f e r e d a refuge to s l a v e s escaping from South C a r o l i n a and Georgia. Many f u g i - t i v e s l a v e s were accepted i n t o Seminole t r i b e s , married Indians and o f t e n became t r i b a l l e a d e r s . The F i r s t Seminole War of 1817 to 1818 was l a r g e l y a p u n i t i v e e x p e d i t i o n to de s t r o y black s l a v e 51 towns and r e t u r n s l a v e s to t h e i r owners. F l o r i d a was ceded to the U n i t e d S t a t e s i n 1819 by Spain. Eleven years l a t e r P r e s i d e n t Andrew Jackson ordered the removal of a l l Indians from the south- e a s t e r n s t a t e s to the Arkansas t e r r i t o r y . The attempt to imple- ment t h i s p o l i c y a g a i n s t the Seminole Indians and b l a c k s l e d to the Second Seminole War from 1835 to 1842. The Un i t e d S t a t e s army u l t i m a t e l y won the war, a f t e r l o s i n g some f i f t e e n hundred men and f o r t y m i l l i o n d o l l a r s , by adopting a scorched-earth p o l i c y which e f f e c t i v e l y s t a r v e d the Indians i n t o submission. At the c o n c l u s i o n of the war hundreds of black Seminoles were s o l d i n t o s l a v e r y . Some chose i n s t e a d to f l e e to Northern Mexico where they waged g u e r i l l a warfare f o r many years a g a i n s t Texas p l a n t e r s . 5 5 The experience of b l a c k s up to t h i s p o i n t was very s i m i l a r to that of the Mahars i n one r e s p e c t : they were accepted i n t o the m i l i t a r y when e x t r a manpower was needed, allowed even to h o l d p o s i t i o n s of some r e s p o n s i b i l i t y , but g e n e r a l l y not allowed much command r e s p o n s i b i l i t y . Given o p p o r t u n i t y and i n c e n t i v e , both c l a s s e s of men proved capable of courage, perseverance, and l o y a l t y . One important d i f f e r e n c e between the two was i n the a t t i t u d e of the m a j o r i t y p o p u l a t i o n . American whites, p a r t i c u l a r l y i n the south, were j u s t i f i a b - l y f r i g h t e n e d of s l a v e r e v o l t s and t h e r e f o r e extremely wary of a l l o w i n g b lack men to bear arms. Nothing i n t h e i r h i s t o r y or t r a d i t i o n s suggests that the Mahars ever t r i e d armed r e v o l t , or even contemplated such a c t i o n , a g a i n s t Indian r u l e r s or a g a i n s t 52 the B r i t i s h . T h e i r r e p u t a t i o n as a c l a s s was p r o v e r b i a l l y t h at of l o y a l and f a i t h f u l s e r v a n t s . The e x p l a n a t i o n f o r t h i s d i f f e r e n c e seems obvious. The Mahars were, a f t e r a l l , an i n t e g r a l p a r t of t h e i r s o c i e t y , bound by r i t u a l and custom to t h e i r l o c a l communities, and s h a r i n g language, c u l t u r e , and a n c e s t r y with t h e i r h i g h e r - c a s t e neigh- bours. Though they might have resented t h e i r s u b s e r v i e n t p o s i t i o n and r e t a i n e d a f o l k t r a d i t i o n of a time when they were acknowledged owners of the land, n e v e r t h e l e s s they were p a r t of a s t a b l e s o c i a l order with enough b u i l t - i n checks and balances and compensatory mechanisms to maintain s o c i a l e q u i l i b r i u m . None of t h i s was true of the s o c i a l order e v o l v i n g i n the U n i t e d S t a t e s through the c o l o n i a l era and R e v o l u t i o n a r y War. Through the e i g h t e e n t h century many b l a c k s , perhaps even a major- i t y , were A f r i c a n - b o r n , kidnapped and enslaved as a d u l t s , having no t i e s of any k i n d to the dominant white s o c i e t y , which was i t s e l f r a p i d l y changing. There were few e s t a b l i s h e d s o c i a l mech- anisms to make the s t a t u s of s l a v e r y endurable or a c c e p t a b l e . The ending of the A f r i c a n s l a v e trade i n the e a r l y n i n e t e e n t h century, along with growing a b o l i t i o n i s t sentiment and s e v e r a l g e n e r a t i o n s of i n t e r a c t i o n between b l a c k s and whites, tempered some of the worst excesses of p l a n t a t i o n s l a v e r y , but c o u l d h a r d l y make the i n s t i t u t i o n i t s e l f p a l a t a b l e . Given a l l of t h i s i t would be s u r p r i s i n g i f there had not been s l a v e r e v o l t s and attempts by runaway s l a v e s to a l l y themselves with Indian t r i b e s , themselves hard-pressed by expanding white se t t l e m e n t s . L a t e r themes i n black American h i s t o r y , such as the "back 53 to A f r i c a " movements of Marcus Garvey and others, the founding of L i b e r i a , and even the Black Muslim movement, r e f l e c t the ambiva- lence of many Americans, both black and white, over whether b l a c k s can or should ever be t r u l y a p a r t of American s o c i e t y . By c o n t r a s t , though the Mahars have t r i e d many t a c t i c s to improve t h e i r s t a t u s , the idea of s e p a r a t i n g e n t i r e l y from Indian s o c i e t y has never been an i s s u e . T h e i r most dramatic step, the mass co n v e r s i o n to Buddhism, was a d e l i b e r a t e r e v e r s i o n to an o l d e r , non-Brahmin t r a d i t i o n , but s t i l l w i t h i n the Indian c u l t u r a l context. The m i l i t a r y experience of b l a c k s i n the American army i s mostly c l o s e l y comparable to that of the Indian s o l d i e r i n gener- a l , and low-caste Indians i n p a r t i c u l a r , i n the l a t e n i n e t e e n t h century. I n c r e a s i n g p r o f e s s i o n a l i z a t i o n of the m i l i t a r y , chang- ing r o l e s of the m i l i t a r y i n m a i n t a i n i n g and extending s t a t e power, and growing r a c i a l / c a s t e p r e j u d i c e are c h a r a c t e r i s t i c of both the American and Indian armies i n t h i s p e r i o d , and c o n s t i - t u t e the s u b j e c t of the next chapter. 54 Footnotes, Chapter II 1. R. V. R u s s e l l and H i r a L a i , The T r i b e s and Castes of the C e n t r a l P rovinces of I n d i a , v o l . IV (N.p.: C e n t r a l P r o v i n c e s A d m i n i s t r a t i o n , 1916; r e p r i n t ed. Oosterhout N.B. - The Netherlands: A n t h r o p o l o g i c a l P u b l i c a t i o n s , 1969), pp. 132-133. 2. Alexander Robertson, The Mahar F o l k : A, Study of Untouchables i n Maharashtra ( C a l c u t t a : Y.M.C.A. P u b l i s h i n g House, 1938), pp. 29-30. The date given to Robertson was Shake 1109 (1187 A.D.), but as he noted t h i s must have been i n a c c u r a t e l y t r a n s - c r i b e d . The kingdom of Bedar f l o u r i s h e d c. 1492-1565 A.D. 3. J a d u n a t h Sarkar, S h i v a j i and H i s Times ( D e l h i : O r i e n t Long- man L t d . , 1973 L f i r s t p u b l i s h e d 1 9 1 9 ] ) , p. 363. 4. V. R. Shinde, B h a r t i y a Aspishyatecha Prashna (Nagpur: Venkatesh Shamrao Balkundi, Nav Bharat Granth Mala, 1933), pp. 169-172; K. V. Kotavale, P o l i t i c s of the D a l i t s (Bombay: M a j e s t i c Book S t a l l , 1974), pp. 142-145. These sources were brought to my a t t e n t i o n by S h r i V. W. Moon i n Bombay and Prof. M. D. Nalawade i n Kolhapur, and were t r a n s l a t e d f o r me by Smt. Mangala Moghe and Mr. Amol Di v k a r . 5. C o l . V. Longer, "Mahar Regimental H i s t o r y , " chaps. I and I I , p. 12, Mahar Regimental Centre, Saugor, M.P. 6. Robert J . M i l l e r , "Button, Button . . . Great T r a d i t i o n , L i t t l e T r a d i t i o n , Whose T r a d i t i o n ? " A n t h r o p o l o g i c a l Q u a r t e r l y 39 (January 1966):26-42. 7. M.S.A., P u b l i c Dept. Diary, 1747. 8. M.S.A., M i l i t a r y Compilations, v o l . 716 of 1857, #389. 9. P h i l i p Mason, A Matter of Honour: An Account of the Indian Army, I t s O f f i c e r s and Men (Harmonsworth, England: Penguin Books, 1976), p. 127. 10. "Record of the 21st Regiment Bombay Native I n f a n t r y or Marine B a t t a l i o n " U.S.I. J o u r n a l , no. 4 (1871-2):50. 11. L i e u t . - C o l . W. B. P. Tugwell, H i s t o r y of the Bombay Pioneers (London: The Sidney Press, L i m i t e d , i y 3 b ) , app. 2~, pp. 372-3. 55 12. "Record of the 21st Regiment," p. 72; Tugwell, Bombay- Pioneers, p. 33. The argument that Marathas were unable to serve at sea due to caste p r e j u d i c e s seems weak, s i n c e as l a t e as 1783 the Peshwa s t i l l commanded a s i g n i f i c a n t n aval f o r c e under the command of one Anundrao Dhoolap. P o s s i - b l y by the ni n e t e e n t h century they had developed a d i s t a s t e f o r s e a f a r i n g , or p o s s i b l y t h i s was a r a t i o n a l - i z a t i o n f o r other problems, such as r.eluctance to under- take housekeeping d u t i e s while at sea. 13. "Record of the 21st Regiment," pp. 52-53. 14. Tugwell, Bombay Pioneers, pp. 57-58. 15. "Record of the 21st Regiment," p. 55. 16. I b i d . , pp. 57 and 65. 17. I b i d . , pp. 63-64. 18. Tugwell, Bombay Pioneers, p. 63. 19. "Record of the 21st Regiment," pp. 73-74. 20. Tugwell, Bombay Pioneers, p. 109. 21. The Gazetteer of Bombay C i t y And I s l a n d , v o l . II (Pune: The Government Photozinco Press, 1977; f a c s i m i l e ed. o r i g . pub. Bombay: The Times Press, 1909), pp. 284-295. In 1830 the Indian Marine was renamed the Indian Navy; t h i s d e s i g n a t i o n was r e t a i n e d u n t i l 1858, when i t became Her Majesty's Indian Navy. In 1863 i t was again renamed the Bombay Marine, and was amalgamated with the other Indian marine establishments i n 1877, under a scheme de- v i s e d by C a p t a i n ( l a t e r Admiral) Bythesea. 22. Tugwell, Bombay Pioneers, p. 109. 23. M.S.A., M i l i t a r y Compilations, v o l . 488 of 1852, #197. 24. "Record of the 21st Regiment," pp. 55-56. 25. George Seaver, David L i v i n g s t o n e : H i s L i f e and L e t t e r s (London: L u t t e r w o r t h Press, 1957), pp. 481-495. 26. L i e u t . - C o l . M. G. Abhyankar, Valour E n s h r i n e d : A H i s t o r y of the Maratha L i g h t I n f a n t r y 1768-1947 (New D e l h i : O r i e n t Longman, 1971), p~i 43 . 27. L i e u t . - C o l . E. W. C. Sandes, The Indian Sappers and Miners (Chatham: I n s t i t u t i o n of Royal Engineers, 1948), pp. 182-3. 56 I. A. E z e k i e l , "Over My Dead Body . . . " I l l u s . Weekly of I n d i a , A p r i l 2, 1972, p. 17. I b i d . E z e k i e l and the authors of some other popular a r t i c l e s on the Mahar m i l i t a r y t r a d i t i o n got t h e i r i n f o r m a t i o n from C o l . G. K. Karandikar, now r e t i r e d and l i v i n g i n Pune. C o l . Karandikar served with the Mahar Regiment from 1942 and wrote the f i r s t r e g i m ental h i s t o r y . Regimental H i s t o r y of Mahar M. G. Regiment (Dehra Dun: The Army Press, 1954), app. B, p. 9~TT Sandes, Indian Sappers and Miners, p. 280. C o l . R. D. P a l s o k a r , " H i s t o r y of the G r e n a d i e r s , " chap. 17, p. 124, Pune. L t . - C o l . V a l e n t i n e B l a c k e r , Memoir of the Operations of the B r i t i s h Army i n I n d i a d u r i n g the Mahratta War of 1817, 1818, & 1819, 2 v o l s . (London: Block, Kingsbury, Parbury and A l l e n , 1821), p. 183 and app. I, p. 457. Maj. J . T. Gorman, 2nd B a t t a l i o n 4th Bombay Grenadiers (King Edwards's Own) formerly The 102nd King Edward's Own G r e n a d i e r s : H i s t o r i c a l Record of the Regiment, 1796-1933 ( f i r s t ed. of 1877 by C o l . S t a n l e y Edwardes; Weston- Super-Mare: Lawrence Bros., L t d . , 1933), p. 60 and app. I, p. 147. The c a r e t a k e r of the monument i s Gulab Rao Babu Rao Jemadar, r e t i r e d i n 1960 from the 2nd B a t t a l i o n , Maratha L i g h t I n f a n t r y . He i s the great-grandson of "Cundajee M u l l o j e e " — K h a n d e Rao Malatkar—who was a s u r v i v o r of the b a t t l e . Sources: Gorman, 2nd/4th Bombay Grenadiers, p. 147. C o l . R. D. P a l s o k a r , p r i v a t e communication, J u l y 17, 1980. The f o l l o w i n g are the names of Mahar s o l d i e r s of the Grenadiers appearing on the Koregaon monument: K i l l e d | N a i k s : Sonnac Cummulnac I Ramnac Essnac I P r i v a t e s : Gondnac Cootennac I Ramnac Essnac I Bhanac Harnac I Amnac Cannae I Gunnac Balnac I 57 K i l l e d 1 Wounded Balnac Dhondnac j Roopnac Lucknac 1 Drummer Tannac Hurnac E t t n a c Dhaknac j Robnac Ramnac j Raznac Gunnac | Bobnac Hubnac | Rynac Jannac 1 Sujunnac Essnac 1 There were s i x Gunnac Dhrumnac 1 others wounded. Dewnac Annac j Gopolnac Balnac I Hurnac Hurnac j Jetnac Downac | Gunnac Ducknac The other 28 c a s u a l t i e s i n c l u d e d Muslims, Chamars, and Marathas. 37. N.A.I. F o r e i g n Department, Secret Supplementary Branch, May 1880 #176, P o l i t i c a l D iary, Kandahar: 22-30, A p r i l 1880. 38. E z e k i e l , "Over My Dead Body . . . ," p. 16. 39. Gazette of I n d i a , 18 December 1880, no. 51, M i l i t a r y Department, p. 697. 40. Haeem Samuel Kehimkar, The H i s t o r y of the B e n e - I s r a e l of I n d i a ( T e l A v i v : Dayag Press L t d . , 1937), pp. 188-191. 41. I b i d . , pp. 191-216. 42. Abhyankar, Valour Enshrined, p. 55. 43. C o l . Malleson, ed., Kaye's and Malleson's H i s t o r y of the Indian Mutiny of 1857-8, v o l . 5 (London: Longman 1 s, Green and Co., 1909), p. 27. 44. Gorman, 2nd/4th Bombay Grenadiers, p. 60. 45. Roland C. McConnell, Negro Troops of Antebellum L o u i s i a n a : A H i s t o r y of the BatTEalion of Free Men of C o l o r (Baton Rouge: L o u i s i a n a S t a t e U. Press, 1968), p. 14. He a l s o mentions, on page 9, one F r a n c o i s T i c o n "of the Senegal n a t i o n " , f r e e d f o r bravery i n the Choctaw War. 46. I b i d . , p. 42. 47. Jack D. Foner, Blacks and the M i l i t a r y i n American H i s t o r y : A New P e r s p e c t i v e (n.p. , Praeger, 19/4), pT T~. 48. I b i d . , pp. 4-5. 58 49. Marvin F l e t c h e r , The Black S o l d i e r and O f f i c e r i n the U n i t e d S t a t e s Army, 1891-1917 (Columbia: The U. of M i s s o u r i Press, 1974), p. 12. 50. Robert E w e l l Greene, Black Defenders of America 1775-1973 (Chicago: Johnson P u b l i s h i n g Company Inc., 1974), pT 343. 51. Foner, Blacks and the M i l i t a r y , pp. 18-19. 52. I b i d . , p. 21. 53. Greene, Black Defenders of America, pp. 345-6. 54. F l e t c h e r , Black S o l d i e r and O f f i c e r , p. 16. 55. Foner, Blacks and the M i l i t a r y , pp. 28-29. 59 CHAPTER I I I PROFESSIONALISM AND PREJUDICE: MILITARY SERVICE IN THE LATE NINETEENTH CENTURY The nature of m i l i t a r y s e r v i c e changed i n important ways i n the l a t e n i n e t e e n t h century. More s o p h i s t i c a t e d weapons and equipment, r e q u i r i n g higher l e v e l s of education and more v a r i e d s k i l l s , i n c r e a s e d the a t t r a c t i o n of m i l i t a r y s e r v i c e as a p r o f e s - s i o n . The r o l e of the m i l i t a r y i n maint a i n i n g and extending the power of the s t a t e became more e x p l i c i t and f o r m a l i z e d i n t h i s p e r i o d , p o t e n t i a l l y i n c r e a s i n g the p r e s t i g e of the m i l i t a r y p r o- f e s s i o n . At the same time, i n c r e a s i n g r a c i a l / c a s t e p r e j u d i c e (among other f a c t o r s ) tended to r e s t r i c t access of b l a c k s and I n d i a n s — e s p e c i a l l y low-caste I n d i a n s — t o m i l i t a r y s e r v i c e . In both I n d i a and the United S t a t e s , the l a t t e r h a l f of the n i n e - teenth century can be d e s c r i b e d as a p e r i o d of c o n s o l i d a t i o n f o l l o w e d by expansion, with s i g n i f i c a n t changes i n m i l i t a r y p o l i - cy f o l l o w i n g changes i n the p o l i t i c a l landscape. In I n d i a , the r a p i d e x t e n s i o n of B r i t i s h t e r r i t o r i a l c o n t r o l and l e g a l and s o c i a l reforms which c h a r a c t e r i z e d the e a r l y n i n e t e e n t h century were h a l t e d by the outbreak of r e v o l t i n 1857. The aftermath of r e v o l t saw much gr e a t e r c a u t i o n i n meddling with Indian customs and s o c i a l o r g a n i z a t i o n , and a m i l i t a r y p o l i c y geared to minimizing the r i s k s of maint a i n i n g a l a r g e mercenary army. By the e a r l y 1880s s e c u r i t y concerns had 60 abated, and the Indian Army was p e r c e i v e d as a f i r s t l i n e of defense a g a i n s t Russian i m p e r i a l expansion i n A f g h a n i s t a n and as an instrument of i m p e r i a l p o l i c y i n A s i a . 1 A f t e r a p e r i o d of r a p i d expansion i n the e a r l y 1800s, the U n i t e d S t a t e s faced i t s g r e a t e s t p o l i t i c a l c r i s i s i n the C i v i l War of 1861-65. The causes and consequences of t h i s war are f a r too complex to be d i s c u s s e d , even b r i e f l y , i n t h i s context. However, from the p o i n t of view of American b l a c k s , the most important consequence of the C i v i l War was the a b o l i t i o n of s l a v e r y . T h i s meant—among many other t h i n g s — t h a t m i l i t a r y p o l i c y now had to accommodate the demands of a l a r g e number of newly-freed s l a v e s f o r r e c o g n i t i o n of t h e i r past s e r v i c e s i n the Union army, and of t h e i r r i g h t as c i t i z e n s to share i n n a t i o n a l defense. Between 1866 and 1890 the c h i e f r o l e of the U.S. Army was to f a c i l i t a t e expansion i n t o the West, p r o t e c t i n g s e t t l e r s and subduing the Indians. The Spanish-American War and a c q u i s i - t i o n of former Spanish t e r r i t o r i e s marked a beginning of g r e a t e r American involvement i n i n t e r n a t i o n a l and inter-American a f f a i r s , and f o r c e d g r e a t e r p r o f e s s i o n a l i z a t i o n and b e t t e r o r g a n i z a t i o n of the armed s e r v i c e s . The Indian Army B r i t i s h power i n I n d i a advanced from the l i t t l e commercial settlements at F o r t St. George i n Madras and F o r t W i l l i a m on the H u g l i , and C a t h e r i n e of Braganza's dowry of Bombay on the west coast of I n d i a . 2 Around these n u c l e i grew the c i t i e s of Madras, C a l c u t t a , and Bombay, each the commercial and a d m i n i s t r a t i v e c e n t r e of i t s r e s p e c t i v e Presidency. Under H.E.I.C. r u l e the Map 2. I n d i a i n the Twentieth Century 61 SOURCE: The Oxford H i s t o r y of In d i a , 4th ed. By the l a t e V i n c e n t A. Smith. C.I.E.; f o u r t h ed., e d i t e d by P e r c i v a l Spear. D e l h i : Oxford U n i v e r s i t y Press, 1981, endpaper. 62 P r e s i d e n c i e s were autonomous, each Governor r e p o r t i n g d i r e c t l y to the Court of D i r e c t o r s i n London. In theory the Governor-General of Bengal had s u p e r v i s o r y a u t h o r i t y over Madras and Bombay, but f o r p r a c t i c a l purposes the s u b o r d i n a t i o n of Madras and Bombay to the Government of I n d i a , (based i n C a l c u t t a ) , although advanced by the Charter Act of 1853, became a r e a l i t y o n l y a f t e r the assumption of Crown r u l e i n 1858. Improved t r a n s p o r t a t i o n and communications v i a r a i l r o a d s , t e l e g r a p h l i n e s , and the Suez Canal (1869) made i t t e c h n i c a l l y f e a s i b l e f o r the Government of I n d i a to e x e r c i s e r e a l c o n t r o l over i t s whole t e r r i t o r y , and f o r the S e c r e t a r y of S t a t e f o r I n d i a i n London to stay i n r e g u l a r contact with C a l c u t t a . Each Pr e s i d e n c y had b u i l t up i t s own army to meet l o c a l m i l i t a r y needs. The Bombay Army began as no more than a s m a l l body of n a t i v e m i l i t i a (as d e s c i b e d i n Chapter I I ) , but by 1767 the process of o r g a n i z i n g n a t i v e sepoys i n t o r e g u l a r b a t t a l i o n s , t r a i n e d and equipped along European l i n e s , was underway along the l i n e s p ioneered by S t r i n g e r Lawrence and Robert C l i v e i n Madras and B e n g a l . 3 The Bombay Army passed through three major phases. Between 1679 and 1799, i t grew s t e a d i l y i n s i z e and fought t h i r t y - s i x campaigns, i n c l u d i n g the 1st and 2nd Mysore Wars i n the 1790s. By 1824 the Bombay Army i n c l u d e d horse and f o o t a r t i l l e r y , an engineer and pioneer corps, f i v e c a v a l r y regiments, and 24 r e g i - ments of n a t i v e i n f a n t r y , as w e l l as two European i n f a n t r y r e g i m e n t s , 4 with a complete range of s t a f f and s e r v i c e depart- ments, a l l nominally under the orders of the Governor of Bombay. 63 In p r a c t i c e the Presidency armies were not completely segregated; r e c r u i t i n g p a t t e r n s and g a r r i s o n d u t i e s overlapped, and i n war- time the Government of I n d i a c o u l d and d i d use a l l three as p a r t s of one m i l i t a r y o r g a n i z a t i o n . As B r i t i s h power expanded between 1800 and I860, the Bombay Army was engaged almost c o n s t a n t l y i n l a r g e or s m a l l campaigns i n c l u d i n g the 3rd Maratha War (the P i n d a r i War) i n 1817-1818, 1838-1843 campaigns i n Sind and A f g h a n i s t a n , the 2nd S i k h War, 1848-1849, and the Indian Mutiny 1857-1859. N e a r l y the e n t i r e Bombay Army, with the e x c e p t i o n of a few regiments which mutinied or were c o n s i d e r e d u n r e l i a b l e , was engaged i n suppressing the mutiny and i n mopping-up o p e r a t i o n s afterwards i n C e n t r a l I n d i a . Between 1860 and 1890, the Bombay Army served i n o n l y ten campaigns, and seven of these were very s m a l l , i n v o l v i n g o n l y one or two regiments. The campaigns i n A b y s s i n i a , 1867, the 2nd Afghan War, 1878-1880, and the Burmese War of 1885-1887 were the l a s t three campaigns i n which the o l d Bombay Army took a major r o l e . 5 By the l a t e n i n e t e e n t h century, the armies r e c r u i t e d and s e r v i n g l o c a l l y i n the Madras and Bombay P r e s i d e n c i e s had l a r g e l y o u t l i v e d t h e i r m i l i t a r y u s e f u l n e s s . The Bengal Army had become the most important of the three, c a r r y i n g the major r e s p o n s i b i l - i t y f o r the s e c u r i t y of the North West F r o n t i e r . I t r e c r u i t e d i t s s o l d i e r s p r i m a r i l y from North and North-western I n d i a , the Gurkhas of Nepal, and from t r i b a l Muslims (Pathans, A f r i d i s , B a l u c h i s ) on both s i d e s of the border. The Bombay Army, which p r o v i d e d g a r r i s o n s f o r Aden and the Red Sea f o r t s and a l s o f o r 64 Sind, had a g r e a t e r m i l i t a r y r o l e than the Madras Army, which was by t h i s time almost e n t i r e l y a l o c a l f o r c e , with the Madras (Queen's Own) Sappers and Miners the o n l y regiment of the Madras Army which continued to be used on f i e l d s e r v i c e o u t s i d e the Presidency. A f t e r the s u p p r e s s i o n of the Indian Mutiny, the composition of the Bombay Army changed s t e a d i l y i n the l a t e n i n e t e e n t h century. Recruitment from the Konkan, formerly a major r e c r u i t - ing area, s t e a d i l y d e c l i n e d , while recruitment of s o - c a l l e d " m a r t i a l " races from Northwest I n d i a i n c r e a s e d , r e f l e c t i n g a g e n e r a l s h i f t i n the lo c u s of m i l i t a r y power to the n o r t h and north-west, and away from the l o n g - p a c i f i e d south of I n d i a . Table II shows the changing c a s t e and community makeup of the Bombay Army between 1877 and 1895. The g r e a t e s t change i s i n the Muslim component, which r i s e s from j u s t under o n e - f i f t h to over o n e - t h i r d . By c o n t r a s t , the numbers of Marathas and Mahars (Parwaris) drop s u b s t a n t i a l l y , the l a t t e r f a l l i n g from over 14% to l e s s than h a l f t h at amount. The Jews, always a sma l l propor- t i o n , dwindled s t i l l f u r t h e r . The d i m i n i s h i n g importance of the Mahars i n the Bombay Army i s f u r t h e r shown i n Table I I I , showing the r e g i o n a l breakdown of the army. As l a t e as 1877, over h a l f of the Bombay I n f a n t r y was r e c r u i t e d from the Konkan (the c o a s t a l d i s t r i c t s of R a t n a g i r i , Thana, and Kolaba). T h i s was the r e g i o n from which most of the Mahars, who were n e a r l y a l l from R a t n a g i r i D i s t r i c t , were r e c r u i t e d . These changes i n r e c r u i t i n g p a t t e r n s came about f o r s e v e r a l reasons, i n c l u d i n g c o m petition from Bombay i n d u s t r i e s f o r manpower, a d m i n i s t r a t i v e and o r g a n i z a t i o n a l 65 changes i n the army, i n c r e a s i n g acceptance of the " m a r t i a l r a c e s " theory, and growing cast e p r e j u d i c e (perhaps more marked among the B r i t i s h than among caste Hindus). TABLE II BREAKDOWN OF BOMBAY INFANTRY BY CASTE AND YEAR Caste Year 11877 | 1880 | 1882 1885 1 1890 1893 1895 1. Muslims* 119.4%| 20.5%1 2 0 . 7% 2 1 . 5% 1 22.6% 3 0 . 5% 33.1% 2. Marathas* I 3 9 . 6 % | 38.7%| 3 8 . 8% 3 4 . 2% I 32.5% 2 9 . 3% 27 . 9% 3 . Parwaris* 1 1 4 . 2 % | 12.2% | 12.1% 9.8% 1 8.7% 7.6% 6.6% 4 . Brahmins 1 5 .1%| 4.9% | 4.9% 5.0% 1 5.4% 4.8% 4.3% 5 . T e l i n g a s I 0 . 5 % | 0.4% | 0.3% 0.2% 1 0 . 2% 0.1% 0 . 2% 6. Rajputs/ J a t s / S i k h s I 6 . 0 % | 6. 5% 1 7.0% 8. 7% 1 7.2% 6.3% 7.2% 7. Other Hindus 112.2%| 13.5%| 13.0% 17.6% I 21.2% 19. 5% 19.0% 8. Indo- Europeans 1 1.8%| 2.0% | 2.0% 1.8% i 1.5% 1.2% 1.2% 9. Jews 1 1.3%| 1. 2% | 1.2% 1.1% 0 . 8 % 0 . 7% 0.6% SOURCE: Summarized from I .O.L., Caste Returns of the Bombay Army. * i n d i c a t e c a t e g o r i e s showing g r e a t e s t change; order o t h e r - wise as i n o r i g i n a l r e c o r d s . 66 TABLE I I I BREAKDOWN OF BOMBAY INFANTRY BY REGION AND YEAR Country Year 11877 | 1 8 8 0 1 8 8 2 | 1 8 8 5 1 8 9 0 I 1 8 9 3 | 1 8 9 5 1 . North & N.W. I n d i a * 114 .5%| 1 5 . 1% 1 6 . 7 % | 2 2 . 0 % 3 4 . 4 % | 4 2 . 7 % | 4 7 . 0 % 2 . Konkan* | 5 6 . 3 % | 5 0 . 7 % 4 8 . 0 % | 4 3 . 6 % 4 1 . 8 % | 3 7 . 0 % | 3 1 . 8 % 3 . Deccan 112.1%| 1 8 . 3% 2 1 . 4 % | 1 8 . 1% 12.8%1 1 2 . 2 % | 1 2 . 3% 4 . Oudh 1 9.6%| 8 . 7% 7.1% | 7.7% 6 . 6 % | 5 . 2% | 6 . 1 % 5 . C e n t r a l I n d i a 1 1.7%| 0 . 9 % 1.1% 1 6 . 2 % 4 . 2 % | 2 . 7 % | 2 . 8 % 6 . Other 1 5 . 8 % | 6 . 3 % 5 . 7% | 2 . 4 % 0 . 2% | 0 . 2% | 0 . 1 % SOURCE: Summarized from I.O.L., Caste Returns of the Bombay Army. * i n d i c a t e c a t e g o r i e s showing g r e a t e s t change; order o t h e r - wise as i n o r i g i n a l r e c o r d s . The Konkan, densely populated and poor, was a l s o a major source of manpower f o r the growing i n d u s t r i e s of Bombay. Whether i n d u s t r y a c t u a l l y drew o f f so many men that the army co u l d not f i l l i t s needs i s q u e s t i o n a b l e . In 1852 v i l l a g e r s from the Konkan complained to revenue o f f i c i a l s t h a t r e c r u i t i n g p a r t i e s seldom v i s i t e d them and many young men had looked i n v a i n f o r o p p o r t u n i t i e s to e n l i s t . 6 At t h i s time the Bombay c o t t o n indus- t r y , l a t e r to become a major employer, was i n i t s i n f a n c y ; the f i r s t c o t t o n s p i n n i n g f a c t o r y was not even b u i l t u n t i l 1854. 7 6 7 As Table IV shows, between 1848 and 1852 the Bombay Army obtained n e a r l y h a l f i t s new r e c r u i t s from the Konkan, going to Hindustan f o r l e s s than o n e - t h i r d , i n accordance with o f f i c i a l r e c r u i t i n g p o l i c y . As the c o t t o n i n d u s t r y and others grew, the need f o r labour a l s o i n c r e a s e d and doubtless d i d draw o f f some young men who might otherwise have e n l i s t e d . However, as the Bombay Army d e c l i n e d i n both s i z e and m i l i t a r y importance, i t s need f o r new r e c r u i t s a l s o d e c l i n e d . I t seems u n l i k e l y that competition from i n d u s t r y was the most important f a c t o r i n s h i f t - ing p a t t e r n s of r e c r u i t m e n t . There was an apparent c i r c l e of c a u s a t i o n at work; decreased manpower requirements of the Bombay Army (as e a r l y as 1852) meant fewer r e c r u i t i n g p a r t i e s ; fewer o p p o r t u n i t i e s to e n l i s t i m p e l l e d young men to seek other employ- ment; when r e c r u i t i n g p a r t i e s d i d show up, many p o t e n t i a l r e c r u i t s had given up w a i t i n g and migrated to Bombay i n search of work, thus c o n t r i b u t i n g to the impression that enough r e c r u i t s c o u l d not be obtained. T h i s q u e s t i o n i s d i s c u s s e d f u r t h e r i n Chapter IV, "Costs and B e n e f i t s of M i l i t a r y S e r v i c e . " A d m i n i s t r a t i v e and o r g a n i z a t i o n a l changes were made i n the Indian Army f o r s e v e r a l reasons: s e c u r i t y concerns i n the aftermath of the Mutiny, need f o r improved economy and e f f i c i e n c y , and changes i n the m i l i t a r y p o l i c y of the Government of I n d i a . The Bengal Army was completely r e - o r g a n i z e d a f t e r the Mutiny, with an almost complete s h i f t of r e c r u i t i n g to the Punjab, North-West I n d i a , and Nepal. 68 TABLE IV BOMBAY ARMY RECRUITING, 1848-52 i Hindustan Deccan Konkan Other i T o t a l 1848 I 134 44 83 55 I 316 1849 I 119 58 240 51 I 468 1850 I 255 89 519 154 I 1017 1851 I 270 62 357 92 1 781 1852 I 171 42 337 72 I 622 T o t a l s I 949 295 1536 424 I 3204 SOURCE: M.S.A. M i l i t a r y Compilations, v o l . 492 of 1852, #790. Although o n l y a few Bombay regiments had mutinied, or come c l o s e to mutiny, t h i s army too was a f f e c t e d by post-Mutiny reforms. Many t h e o r i e s were propounded to e x p l a i n why c e r t a i n regiments of the Bombay Army had mutinied, or come c l o s e to mutiny, while others had not. The 27th Native I n f a n t r y , p a r t of which had mutinied, was con s i d e r e d to be a p r o v i n c i a l regiment i n that almost t h r e e - q u a r t e r s of i t s men, mostly Marathas, had been e n l i s t e d w i t h i n the Bombay Presidency and were l i k e l y to be i n sympathy with the " r e b e l " l e a d e r s . The 1st Grenadier Regiment, which remained l o y a l , drew s l i g h t l y more than h a l f of i t s s o l - d i e r s from beyond the Presidency.8 On the other hand, the r i n g - l e a d e r s were among the Hi n d u s t a n i s o l d i e r s of the 27th, while a Bene I s r a e l H a v i l d a r r e p o r t e d the planned mutiny. The m i l i t a r y r ecords a l s o show that men of a l l castes and communities i n the 69 27th N a t i v e I n f a n t r y , with the e x c e p t i o n of the Parwaris,^ were i n v o l v e d i n the p l o t . I t would seem that any simple theory r e l a t i n g the c l a s s composition or geographic o r i g i n of the s o l - d i e r s to t h e i r tendency to mutiny or not to mutiny does not adequately account f o r the s p e c i f i c problems i n the 27th Native I n f a n t r y , or the l a c k of problems i n other regiments. What i s c l e a r from the records i s that, i n r e o r g a n i z i n g the 27th Native I n f a n t r y , the Parwaris who had not mutinied l o s t t h e i r p l a c e i n t h i s regiment. A number of a l t e r n a t i v e s were suggested, i n c l u d i n g r e p l a c i n g the 27th regiment with a regiment of B h i l s or other a b o r i g i n e s , r e p l a c i n g the 27th with a B a l u c h i regiment, or en- l i s t i n g men from Gujarat or S i n d . By 1877 the 27th Native I n f a n t r y was composed l a r g e l y of Muslims from Bombay, Punjab and Northwest I n d i a . I t would appear that the 27th had been complete- l y disbanded, with o f f i c e r s and men who had remained l o y a l being t r a n s f e r r e d to other r e g i m e n t s , 1 0 and then re-formed with a somewhat d i f f e r e n t c l a s s composition. T h i s c l o s e d one regiment to p o t e n t i a l Mahar r e c r u i t s . Although not intended as a p e n a l t y a g a i n s t the Mahars, who had done nothing to deserve any p u n i s h - ment, i t was the f i r s t of a number of d e c i s i o n s which substan- t i a l l y reduced the o p p o r t u n i t i e s a v a i l a b l e to Mahars to serve i n the army. In g e n e r a l , however, the concern f o r m a i n t a i n i n g checks and balances between r e g i o n a l f o r c e s tended to preserve the Bombay Army as a separate e n t i t y w e l l beyond i t s r e a l m i l i t a r y u s e f u l - ness. With i n t e r n a l s e c u r i t y l a r g e l y the r e s p o n s i b i l i t y of the p o l i c e , and r e s p o n s i b i l i t y f o r e x t e r n a l s e c u r i t y and i m p e r i a l 70 m i l i t a r y d u t i e s s h i f t e d to the nothern p o r t i o n of the Bengal Army, the Bombay Army underwent major r e o r g a n i z a t i o n s intended to allow i t to f u l f i l l i t s reduced f u n c t i o n s with g r e a t e r e f f i c i e n - cy. By the l a s t q uarter of the n i n e t e e n t h century, the mainte- nance of i n t e r n a l s e c u r i t y was no longer a great c o n s i d e r a t i o n . The armed p o l i c e establishment was adequate to d e a l with any but very l a r g e l o c a l d i s o r d e r s , and r e l a t i v e l y small l o c a l g a r r i s o n s permanently s t a t i o n e d i n p o t e n t i a l t r o u b l e spots were c o n s i d e r e d adequate to d e a l with or p r e f e r a b l y a v e r t l o c a l r e b e l l i o n s or d a c o i t y . The experience of the 2nd Afghan War, 1878-80, d e f i - n i t e l y suggested that the Indian Army needed some improvements i n order to meet any f u t u r e t h r e a t s from that q u a r t e r , such as a p o s s i b l e c o n f l i c t with Russia i n A f g h a n i s t a n — a p o s s i b i l i t y which g r e a t l y w o r r i e d the government of I n d i a . S e v e r a l measures undertaken to improve the e f f i c i e n c y of the Bombay Army undermined the p o s i t i o n of low-caste s o l d i e r s . In 1882, one c a v a l r y regiment and four i n f a n t r y regiments were reduced, and the remaining regiments i n c r e a s e d i n s i z e , so that the t o t a l manpower was v i r t u a l l y unchanged. (The Madras Army l o s t e i g h t i n f a n t r y regiments; the Bengal Army, three c a v a l r y and s i x i n f a n t r y , but a c t u a l l y i n c r e a s e d i t s t o t a l numerical s t r e n g t h by 1,764.) The 6th, 11th, 15th and 18th Bombay Native I n f a n t r y were s e l e c t e d f o r r e d u c t i o n ; a t o t a l of 2,767 men, of whom 311 or approximately 11 per cent were Mahars, were a f f e c t e d . Another aspect of the 1882 reforms with i n d i r e c t i m p l i c a t i o n s f o r the 71 Bombay Army was the disbanding of low-caste regiments r a i s e d f o r the Bengal Army as a post-Mutiny experiment. In J u l y of 1882 the Commander-in-Chief i n I n d i a , General S i r Donald Stewart, i s s u e d a c o n f i d e n t i a l c i r c u l a r #3610-D to commanding o f f i c e r s of Bengal I n f a n t r y regiments i n s t r u c t i n g them to cease e n l i s t i n g "the lowest and menial c l a s s e s of Hindus," i n c l u d i n g Chamars, Banias, and " K a i t h s " 1 1 — K a y a s t h a s . Stewart and the Governor-General, Lord Ripon, had agreed that the e x p e r i - ment of e n l i s t i n g low-caste Hindus had f a i l e d and wanted to e l i m i n a t e them. 1 2 O f f i c i a l records do not s t a t e why the e x p e r i - ment was deemed to have f a i l e d , but d i s s a t i s f a c t i o n of commanding o f f i c e r s was an important f a c t o r . 1 3 A c c u r a t e l y p r e d i c t i n g f u t u r e r e c r u i t i n g p a t t e r n s , Lord E l p h i n s t o n e , Governor of Bombay, had w r i t t e n i n 1858: As soon as the m i s t r u s t which recent events have e x c i t e d has i n some degree subsided - nay even b e f o r e - command- ing o f f i c e r s w i l l again p r e f e r good l o o k i n g h i g h c a s t e r e c r u i t s , to stunted Bheels, or black shabby l o o k i n g P u r w a r r i e s . 1 4 The r e s t r i c t i o n on e n l i s t m e n t of low-caste men was not extended to the Bombay or Madras armies i n 1882, but the f a c t t h a t t h i s p r o p o s a l was made by the Commander-in-Chief and approved by the government of I n d i a i n d i c a t e s a very s i g n i f i c a n t change i n p o l i c y . S o l d i e r s with l e s s than f i f t e e n years s e r v i c e were t r a n s - f e r r e d to other regiments; those wishing to leave the army r a t h e r than accept a t r a n s f e r were e l i g i b l e f o r g r a t u i t i e s , bonuses, or p a r t i a l pension depending on t h e i r l e n g t h of s e r v i c e . S o l d i e r s having f i f t e e n years s e r v i c e or longer were c o m p u l s o r i l y r e t i r e d . 72 Those with f o u r t e e n to twen t y - f i v e years s e r v i c e r e c e i v e d the o r d i n a r y r a t e of pension with bonus, while those with t w e n t y - f i v e years of s e r v i c e or more r e c e i v e d the higher r a t e of pension f o r t h e i r rank. Some attempt was made to t r a n s f e r some of the men to c i v i l i a n employment or to the p o l i c e , or to other regiments i f vacancies e x i s t e d or co u l d be made f o r them. The S e c r e t a r y of Sta t e f o r I n d i a acknowledged that compulsory r e t i r e m e n t would be a severe blow to many of these men, who had counted on s e r v i n g the remainder of t h e i r a c t i v e l i v e s with t h e i r regiments, but the r e d u c t i o n was c a r r i e d out anyway. 1 5 A minor concession, i n the form of i n c r e a s e d good-conduct pay f o r h a v i l d a r s and d a f f a d a r s , was of no b e n e f i t to the men summarily r e t i r e d . In 1891 the government of I n d i a decided to l o c a l i z e two regiments of the Bombay Army i n B a l u c h i s t a n , s e l e c t i n g the 24th and 26th Bombay I n f a n t r y 1 6 f o r c o n v e r s i o n . The r e c o n s t i t u t e d regiments were to draw t h e i r men from the Pathans and other t r i b e s w i t h i n and on the borders of the B a l u c h i s t a n agency. 1^ The 24th Bombay I n f a n t r y was r e c o n s t i t u t e d i n June 1891, with the 26th Bombay I n f a n t r y f o l l o w i n g i n November of 1892. In both cases the n a t i v e o f f i c e r s and s o l d i e r s were disposed of under s i m i l a r terms to those accorded the men of the regiments d i s - banded i n 1882. Of the 601 men of the 26th Bombay I n f a n t r y p r i o r t o c o n v e r s i o n , 299 were dis c h a r g e d with pension, 124 with g r a t u - i t y , and 178 t r a n s f e r r e d to other regiments or to the r e s e r v e . Only one h a v i l d a r and four p r i v a t e s were t r a n s f e r r e d to the newly r e c o n s t i t u t e d 26th B a l u c h i s t a n I n f a n t r y . Of the regiment's twenty r e c r u i t boys, f i v e were t r a n s f e r r e d to other regiments and 73 the remaining f i f t e e n d i s c h a r g e d without g r a t u i t y . T r a n s f e r to the reserve or other regiments was p e r m i t t e d o n l y to " c a r e f u l l y s e l e c t e d Sepoys belonging to c l a s s e s which i t i s con s i d e r e d d e s i r a b l e to r e t a i n . " 1 9 T h i s p r o v i s i o n does not seem to have been a p p l i e d to the co n v e r s i o n of the 24th I n f a n t r y , or to the four regiments disbanded i n 1882. T h i s i s a f u r t h e r i n d i c a t i o n t h a t government was a c t i v e l y d i s c o u r a g i n g m i l i t a r y s e r v i c e of low-caste men. Although the 27th I n f a n t r y was r e c o n s t i t u t e d as a r e s u l t of i t s mutiny i n 1857, the other regiments e i t h e r d i s - banded or r e c o n s t i t u t e d were not s e l e c t e d as a d i s c i p l i n a r y measure or because they were co n s i d e r e d i n e f f i c i e n t or i n any way troublesome regiments. The regiments disbanded i n 1882 were chosen p r i m a r i l y because they were the l e a s t s e n i o r of the Bombay I n f a n t r y regiments, and were a l l p r e s e n t l y at posts w i t h i n the Bombay Presidency. The 24th and 26th I n f a n t r y were chosen f o r co n v e r s i o n at l e a s t p a r t l y because the 25th I n f a n t r y had r e c e n t l y been converted to a R i f l e Regiment, and government d i d not wish to i n c u r a d d i t i o n a l expense to convert i t again. The 21st Infan- t r y and the 28th I n f a n t r y were both s p e c i a l i z e d b a t t a l i o n s , (the Marine B a t t a l i o n and the Pioneer B a t t a l i o n ) and were co n s i d e r e d e f f i c i e n t i n these r o l e s . " The 27th, 29th and 30th i n f a n t r y were a l r e a d y c l a s s e d as B a l u c h i , and i t was t h e r e f o r e intended that regiments c l o s e to them i n the army l i n e should be converted. By 1892, t h e r e f o r e , o n l y twenty i n f a n t r y regiments remained which r e c r u i t e d Mahars and other low-caste men. The p r o p o r t i o n of Mahars i n the i n f a n t r y had d e c l i n e d from s l i g h t l y over f o u r - teen per cent i n 1870 to about seven per cent i n 1893. The army 74 r e o r g a n i z a t i o n of 1893 r e s u l t e d i n the d i s m i s s a l of almost a l l of the remaining Mahar s o l d i e r s and s o l d i e r s of other c l a s s e s now c o n s i d e r e d "non-martial." A few l i n g e r e d i n s e r v i c e as l a t e as World War I, but f o r the most p a r t the s o - c a l l e d "non-martial c l a s s e s " were removed from the army i n 1893, and d i d not perma- n e n t l y r e g a i n the r i g h t to e n l i s t u n t i l the independence of I n d i a i n 1947. A major f a c t o r i n f l u e n c i n g the nature of army r e o r g a n i z a t i o n i n t h i s p e r i o d was the i n c r e a s i n g p o p u l a r i t y of r a c i a l t h e o r i e s such as the s o - c a l l e d " m a r t i a l r a c e s " theory, and growing c a s t e p r e j u d i c e . B r i t i s h p r e j u d i c e a g a i n s t low-caste s o l d i e r s has been touched on i n t h i s chapter, and w i l l be d e a l t with as i t a f f e c t e d the Mahars s p e c i f i c a l l y i n the next chapter. "The " m a r t i a l r a c e s " theory i s of s u f f i c i e n t importance to warrant an extended d i s c u s s i o n , which f o l l o w s here. R a c i a l T h e o r i e s : M a r t i a l Races and the "Gurkha Syndrome" An important trend i n B r i t i s h r u l e i n I n d i a i n the mid- n i n e t e e n t h century was s o c i a l reform based on l i b e r a l and evan- g e l i c a l d o c t r i n e s ; d e s p i t e t h e i r r a d i c a l l y d i f f e r e n t o r i g i n s , both were "movements of i n d i v i d u a l i s m " which r e s t e d on the assumption that "human nature was i n h e r e n t l y the same i n a l l races, and that i n h e r i t e d c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s were r e a d i l y a l t e r - a b l e . "20 S o c i a l and e d u c a t i o n a l reforms undertaken under l i b e r a l i n f l u e n c e tended to promote s e c u l a r (or at l e a s t non- t r a d i t i o n a l ) values, and i n d i v i d u a l r i g h t s , while undermining such i n s t i t u t i o n s as c a s t e . A c o u n t e r v a i l i n g tendency, to p r e - 75 serve t r a d i t i o n a l i n s t i t u t i o n s f o r the sake of s t a b i l i t y , was strengthened by the shock of the mutiny. A new element i n s o c i a l thought was the development of a v a r i e t y of s c i e n t i f i c and p s e u d o - s c i e n t i f i c t h e o r i e s e x p l a i n i n g r a c i a l d i f f e r e n c e s and s o c i a l i n e q u a l i t i e s . Herbert Spencer's " e v o l u t i o n a r y s o c i o l o g y , " f i r s t expounded i n the 1850s, c o n t r i - buted to the movement l a t e r c a l l e d s o c i a l Darwinism,21 that i s to say attempts to apply the p r i n c i p l e s of n a t u r a l s e l e c t i o n to s o c i a l systems. I t appears l i k e l y that the " m a r t i a l r a c e s " theory developed out of a b a s i c a l l y c o n s e r v a t i v e view of Indian s o c i e t y , i n f l u - enced by popular i n t e r p r e t a t i o n s of e v o l u t i o n a r y theory. Less a f u l l y - d e v e l o p e d theory than a " c a t c h - a l l phrase . . . used to j u s t i f y a wide range of o p i n i o n s on the i n h a b i t a n t s of India,"22 i t s e f f e c t on r e c r u i t i n g p o l i c i e s can be a t t r i b u t e d almost e x c l u - s i v e l y to the i n f l u e n c e of Lord Roberts of Kandahar, Commander- i n - C h i e f i n I n d i a from 1885 to 1893. Lord R o b e r t s — " B o b s Bahadur" to the Indian Army—had a long and i l l u s t r i o u s c a r e e r , spanning forty-one years i n In d i a , with a c t i v e s e r v i c e d u r i n g the Mutiny, the 2nd Afghan War, and the South A f r i c a n War of 1881. He had served with the Bengal Army, as Commander-in-Chief of the Madras Army, and had had c o n s i d e r - a b l e c o n t a c t with the Bombay Army. A f t e r h i s retirement from I n d i a he went on to serve as Commander-in-Chief d u r i n g the Boer War, and remained a c t i v e i n m i l i t a r y matters u n t i l h i s death i n 1914.23 Based on h i s e x t e n s i v e experience with a l l three P r e s i - dency Armies, he was completely convinced that the poor q u a l i t y 76 of the Madras and Bombay Armies was due to the lack of m i l i t a r y i n s t i n c t s i n the men from whom these armies were r e c r u i t e d , and was e q u a l l y convinced that i n order to meet the Russian t h r e a t i n A f g h a n i s t a n o n l y men from the " m a r t i a l r a c e s " of n o r t h I n d i a should be r e c r u i t e d . Roberts was n e i t h e r a f o o l nor a knee-jerk b i g o t ; when he went to the Madras Army as Commander-in-Chief i n 1880 he knew that i t s r e p u t a t i o n had s u f f e r e d , and he wanted to know why. He concluded that peace, s e c u r i t y , and p r o s p e r i t y had had a s o f t e n - ing and d e t e r i o r a t i n g e f f e c t on the Madrassis, and that "the a n c i e n t m i l i t a r y s p i r i t had d i e d i n them as i t had d i e d i n the o r d i n a r y H i n d o s t a n i of Bengal and the Mahratta of Bombay." 2 4 He regarded the Madras Sappers and Miners as an e x c e p t i o n a l case, and b e l i e v e d that the g r e a t e r i n t e l l i g e n c e and b e t t e r education of Madrassis q u a l i f i e d them as Sappers or Pioneers r a t h e r than r e g u l a r i n f a n t r y . He may not have wished to acknowledge t h a t the r e a l d i f f e r e n c e might be i n the q u a l i t y of B r i t i s h o f f i c e r s , although he i n s t i t u t e d reforms to improve t h e i r morale and e f f i - c i e n c y . O f f i c e r s of the Indian Sappers and Miners were volun- t e e r s , seconded from the Royal Engineers, s e r v i n g i n I n d i a f o r a l i m i t e d time to get f i e l d experience, while i n f a n t r y o f f i c e r s served i n the Madras Army, with few o p p o r t u n i t i e s f o r f i e l d s e r v i c e or p r o m o t i o n , 2 ^ f o r l i f e , or u n t i l they c o u l d wangle a t r a n s f e r elsewhere. Much the same cou l d be s a i d of the Bombay Army, although i t s prospects f o r a c t i v e s e r v i c e were somewhat b e t t e r . 77 Roberts's experience with the Bombay Army d u r i n g the Second Afghan War confirmed h i s low o p i n i o n of i t s f i g h t i n g q u a l i t i e s , although a c a r e f u l examination of the d i s a s t r o u s b a t t l e of Maiwand suggests that Roberts saw what he expected to see, and i n t e r p r e t e d the events of the b a t t l e a c c o r d i n g to the theory he had a l r e a d y formed. A d e t a i l e d examination of the course of the b a t t l e of Maiwand does not support Roberts's c o n c l u s i o n s about the Bombay Army. On J u l y 27th 1880, a Brigade commanded by B r i g a d i e r - G e n e r a l Burrows, c o n s i s t i n g of a troop of horse a r t i l l e r y , s i x companies of the 66th Regiment of Foot ( B r i t i s h ) , the 1st Bombay Native I n f a n t r y ( G r e n a d i e r s ) , 30th Bombay Native I n f a n t r y (Jacob's R i f l e s ) , a company of Bombay Sappers and Miners, f i v e hundred n a t i v e c a v a l r y sowars and a b a t t e r y of captured Afghan smooth bore guns s u f f e r e d a s e r i o u s defeat at the hands of Ayub Khan. The l o s s e s i n c l u d e d 934 k i l l e d , i n c l u d i n g s i x n a t i v e o f f i c e r s of the Grenadiers, and 175 wounded and missing, out of 2,476 s o l - d i e r s a c t u a l l y engaged; i n a d d i t i o n 893 f o l l o w e r s and d r i v e r s were k i l l e d and missing. Many of these were Afghans and had probably d e s e r t e d . Over one thousand r i f l e s and c a r b i n e s and many swords and bayonets were a l s o captured. Roberts, who was then commanding at Kabul, c r e d i t e d the debacle to the u n r e l i a b i l - i t y of the n a t i v e troops, s t a t i n g i n h i s memoirs, "The Native p o r t i o n of the brigade got out of hand, and pressed back on the few B r i t i s h i n f a n t r y , who were unable to h o l d t h e i r own a g a i n s t the overwhelming numbers of the enemy."26 j j i s i o w o p i n i o n of Bombay troops i s f u r t h e r i l l u s t r a t e d by h i s statement r e g a r d i n g 78 the f o r c e i n B a l u c h i s t a n that "as belonging to the Bombay P r e s i - dency, i t c o u l d not be composed of the best f i g h t i n g r a c e s . " 2 7 In a d i s p a t c h to the Adjutant-General i n I n d i a dated 30th J u l y 1880 on the o r g a n i z a t i o n of the Kabul to Kandahar f i e l d f o r c e , Roberts noted again, "I am sure that few Bombay regiments are able to cope with A f g h a n s . " 2 8 However, other f a c t o r s than the r a c i a l composition of the Bombay Army were i n v o l v e d i n the d e f e a t at Maiwand. F i r s t of a l l , Burrows' Brigade was outnumbered by approx- ima t e l y ten to one, and outgunned by t h i r t y to twelve. Burrows had a very exposed p o s i t i o n with o n l y h i s c a v a l r y regiments as r e s e r v e s . The i n f a n t r y had s u f f e r e d a two-hour a r t i l l e r y bom- bardment at the time they f i n a l l y f e l l i n t o d i s a r r a y . Most s i g n i f i c a n t l y from the p o i n t of view of the " m a r t i a l r a c e s " theory, the f i r s t body of men to break and run i n the face of the enemy were two companies of the 30th Bombay Native I n f a n t r y (Jacob's R i f l e s ) . T h i s regiment was r e c r u i t e d very l a r g e l y from North and North West I n d i a and Oudh, and was made up p r i m a r i l y of Muslims, Rajputs, J a t s and Sikhs. I t contained no low-caste s o l d i e r s at a l l . The Grenadiers d i d not break ranks u n t i l pan- i c k e d by the c o l l a p s e of the two companies of Jacob's R i f l e s . The a r t i l l e r y m e n and the small company of Sappers were the l a s t to leave the f i e l d , l e a v i n g f o u r t e e n Sappers and L i e u t e n a n t T. R. Henn dead on the f i e l d . The dead Sappers i n c l u d e d two Mahars. The s u r v i v i n g Sappers, along with a few of the Grenadiers and the s u r v i v o r s of the 66th Regiment, made another stand near the v i l l a g e of Khig, and a f i n a l p a r t y of about twelve Sappers 79 e v e n t u a l l y a r r i v e d at Kandahar, marching i n formation under the command of the s e n i o r Sapper. I t i s e x t r a o r d i n a r y under the circumstances that t h i s l e v e l of d i s c i p l i n e was maintained i n the face of m i l i t a r y d i s a s t e r . 2 9 In s p i t e of the long and d i s t i n g u i s h e d r e c o r d of the Bombay and Madras Armies, and o v e r l o o k i n g f a c t s such as those j u s t c i t e d , many, but not a l l , m i l i t a r y men s u b s c r i b e d to some v e r s i o n of the " m a r t i a l r a c e s " theory. One who opposed t h i s idea was Lord Napier of Magdala, who wrote i n 1871 that "the best o f f i c e r s and the best s o l d i e r s are formed from a p a c i f i c p o p u l a t i o n by the powers of education and d i s c i p l i n e , " and suggested that s u i t a b l e candidates c o u l d be found i n a l l c l a s s e s , "perhaps even among the Mahratta B r a h m i n s . " 3 0 Although Lord Roberts had been p r e s s i n g the c o n t r a r y view that the Indian army co u l d be rendered "as p e r f e c t a f i g h t i n g machine as i t was p o s s i b l e to make i t " o n l y by s u b s t i t u t i n g "men of the more w a r l i k e and hardy ra c e s " f o r the Hin d u s t a n i s , Tamils, Telugus, " s o - c a l l e d Mahrattas" and other "effeminate peoples of the south" s i n c e h i s term as Commander-in- C h i e f of the Madras Army, he encountered c o n s i d e r a b l e r e s i s t a n c e , and even wrote that he was " i n d e s p a i r at not being able to get people to see the matter with [ h i s ] e y e s . " 3 1 General S i r George Chesney, the m i l i t a r y member of the V i c e r o y ' s C o u n c i l i n the l a t e 1880s, and Governors-General D u f f e r i n and Lansdowne, however, d i d see with Roberts's eyes, and as p r e v i o u s l y d e s c r i b e d the r o l e of "non-martial" races and c l a s s e s was reduced s t e a d i l y i n t h i s p e r i o d . By the time of the army r e o r g a n i z a t i o n of 1891-95, the m a r t i a l races theory had come to dominate recruitment p o l i c i e s , 80 and continued to do so f o r s e v e r a l decades. As l a t e as 1932, Li e u t e n a n t - G e n e r a l S i r George MacMunn cou l d s t i l l s t a t e that, "The mass of the people of I n d i a have n e i t h e r m a r t i a l a p t i t u d e nor p h y s i c a l c o u r a g e . " 3 2 Nq very c o n v i n c i n g e x p l a n a t i o n c o u l d be advanced f o r the presumed d e t e r i - o r a t i o n i n m a r t i a l q u a l i t i e s . The e n e r v a t i n g c l i m a t e of South I n d i a , the d e b i l i t a t i n g e f f e c t s of t r o p i c a l d i s e a s e s , and degen- eracy due to c h i l d marriage were a l l proposed, but none of these accounts f o r a sudden change i n the p h y s i c a l or moral q u a l i t i e s of a given p o p u l a t i o n . Even Lord Roberts's great p e r s o n a l p r e s - t i g e and the weight of h i s F i e l d - M a r s h a l ' s baton c o u l d not have won such g e n e r a l acceptance, had the " m a r t i a l r a c e s " theory not served at l e a s t two important f u n c t i o n s . F i r s t i n importance was the need f o r a l o y a l and p o l i t i c a l - l y n e u t r a l army. There was no obvious reason to doubt the r e l i a b i l i t y of the Bombay and Madras armies i n t h e i r pre-1893 form; there were some grounds f o r concern about the f u t u r e . There was a higher degree of p o l i t i c a l awareness and a c t i v i t y among b e t t e r - e d u c a t e d Indians, which i n c l u d e d v a r i o u s c l a s s e s now a r b i t r a r i l y d e f i n e d as "non-martial." Many Mahars and poor Marathas (among other castes) had migrated to Bombay and Poona from the v i l l a g e s of the Konkan and Deccan. T h i s r a i s e d the d i s t i n c t p o s s i b i l i t y of some hundreds of the n e a r l y e i g h t thou- sand s o l d i e r s who l e f t the army annual l y , going to l i v e with t h e i r kinsmen i n the growing i n d u s t r i a l slums of Bombay. Bearing i n mind that the Indian Army was a "mercenary f o r c e , s e r v i n g an a l i e n government," 3 3 t h i s was a r i s k y s i t u a t i o n . Since i t was 81 not p o s s i b l e to a v o i d having a n a t i v e army, i t was c e r t a i n l y d e s i r a b l e to s h i f t r e c r u i t i n g to d i s t a n t , predominantly r u r a l , areas, where r e t i r e d s o l d i e r s would be unable ( i f so i n c l i n e d ) to cause much t r o u b l e . I t i s h a r d l y c o i n c i d e n t a l that the " m a r t i a l r a c e s " now to become the backbone of the Indian Army were " g e o g r a p h i c a l l y d i s t i n c t . . . on the r e g i o n a l p e r i p h e r i e s of the s t a t e , " having " l i t t l e access to c e n t r a l a u t h o r i t y and [being] outnumbered wi t h - i n the . . . s t a t e system,"34 organized along t r i b a l or c l a n l i n e s , and o f t e n e t h n i c a l l y or c u l t u r a l l y d i s t i n c t from the m a j o r i t y of the Indian p o p u l a t i o n . The Sikhs met a l l of these c r i t e r i a ; so d i d the Gurkhas; so, to a l e s s e r degree, d i d the J a t s , Rajputs and other " m a r t i a l r a c e s . " These " m a r t i a l r a c e s " were a l s o e d u c a t i o n a l l y backward and are s t i l l sometimes de- s c r i b e d i n f o l k l o r e as somewhat dense ("Sikh jokes," on the p a t t e r n of "Newfie" or " P o l i s h jokes," have j o i n e d t r a d i t i o n a l proverbs about thick-headed J a t s , although recent events i n I n d i a have rendered "Sikh jokes" d i s t i n c t l y unamusing). Saxena's con- c l u s i o n t h at "educating a n a t i o n a l army might be a compulsion, but t r y i n g to improve the education of a mercenary army co u l d not but be s u i c i d a l " 3 ^ m a y be extreme but i s h a r d l y unfounded. In view of t h e i r l a t e r r e p u t a t i o n , i t i s i n t e r e s t i n g that i n 1851, when Sikhs were f i r s t e n l i s t e d i n c e r t a i n regiments q u a r t e r e d i n the Punjab, they were not looked upon with much favour; s p e c i a l r u l e s were i n s t i t u t e d r e q u i r i n g Sikhs to keep t h e i r uncut h a i r and beards (the "kes") and f o r b i d d i n g i n t e r f e r - ence with t h e i r r e l i g i o u s p r a c t i c e s and " s o c i a l p e c u l i a r i t i e s . " 3 6 82 The Marathas, who should have q u a l i f i e d as a " m a r t i a l race" on the b a s i s of t h e i r h i s t o r y , were co n s i d e r e d a very dubious case; they were, perhaps, too numerous and had too much p o l i t i c a l p o t e n t i a l to be s a f e l y t r e a t e d as m a r t i a l . They d i d not f i t the "Gurkha syndrome" which a p p l i e d p e r f e c t l y o n l y to "an e t h n i c group that produced men who were both m a r t i a l and l o y a l " 3 7 — s u c h as the Sikhs and Gurkhas. A secondary f a c t o r , though by no means a n e g l i g i b l e one, was the wish to have the army conform to the B r i t i s h and Indian c a s t e / c l a s s s t r u c t u r e . The t r a d i t i o n a l Indian system of h e r e d i - t a r y s o l d i e r s , r u l e r s , merchants, a r t i s a n s , sweepers, and so on, meshed very w e l l with V i c t o r i a n ideas of c l a s s s t r u c t u r e and h e r e d i t y . 3 8 The wish to maintain t h i s k i n d of r i g i d d i v i s i o n , even when Indian s o c i e t y was undergoing r a p i d change and many t r a d i t i o n a l r o l e s were being questioned, may r e f l e c t o n l y the conservatism common to m i l i t a r y e s tablishments. But there may be another reason. The o f f i c e r s of the Indian Army, i n h e r i t o r s (by t r a i n i n g i f not by blood) of an a r i s t o c r a t i c m i l i t a r y t r a d i t i o n , seem to have had a romantic y e a r n i n g f o r the sturdy yeoman f a r m e r - t u r n e d - s o l d i e r , i d e a l i z e d as the E n g l i s h longbowman of A g i n c o u r t and Crecy. E n g l i s h peasants were hard to f i n d i n the n i n e t e e n t h century; the average B r i t i s h s o l d i e r was f a r more l i k e l y to come from an urban slum. 3^ The S c o t t i s h Highlands, which had produced tens of thousands of s o l d i e r s f o r "the e a r l i e s t n a t i v e regiments r a i s e d by i m p e r i a l B r i t a i n , " had been depopulated by the Highland c l e a r a n c e s , and by the 1850s r e c r u i t - ing agents heard: "You robbed us of our country and gave i t to 83 the sheep. Th e r e f o r e , s i n c e you have p r e f e r r e d sheep to men, l e t sheep defend you I " 4 0 B r i t a i n ' s own " m a r t i a l r a c e , " which had c o n t r i b u t e d d i s p r o p o r t i o n a t e l y to the army from 1776 to 1815, had been d i s p e r s e d and demoralized, but India's m a r t i a l Sikhs and Gurkhas remained. In I n d i a i t was s t i l l p o s s i b l e to have the " r i g h t " k i n d of s o l d i e r : a young man from a r e s p e c t a b l e l a n d - owning f a m i l y , brave and honourable r a t h e r than educated or c l e v e r ; f o r t u i t o u s l y , such men u s u a l l y proved to be of K s h a t r i y a ancestry, or such a n c e s t r y was " d i s c o v e r e d " a f t e r they were determined to be " f i t to bear arms." 4 1 I f B r i t i s h s o l d i e r s were not l i k e t h i s (and both Lord and Lady Roberts devoted a great d e a l of time and energy to improving t h e i r h e a l t h and charac- t e r ) , 4 2 at l e a s t Indian sepoys c o u l d be r e c r u i t e d from the r i g h t c l a s s e s . A c o r o l l a r y to the theory that o n l y c e r t a i n Indians were f i t to be s o l d i e r s was that no Indian was f i t to be an o f f i c e r above regimental l e v e l . T h i s was a necessary e x t e n s i o n of the " m a r t i a l r a c e s " theory; o n l y Europeans had the q u a l i t i e s of l e a d e r s h i p necessary f o r o f f i c e r s . The extent to which t h i s c o n v i c t i o n c o u l d be c a r r i e d was demonstrated by the case of C h a r l e s E z e c h i e l . He was a son of L i e u t e n a n t J . A. E z e c h i e l of the Bombay Commissariat-Transport Department. Li e u t e n a n t E z e c h i e l sent C h a r l e s to be educated i n England i n p r e p a r a t i o n f o r a career i n the army. Ch a r l e s wrote the Sandhurst entrance examinations i n 1891, and passed c r e d i t a b l y , but was r e f u s e d admission on the grounds that he was not of pure European e x t r a c - t i o n . He and h i s f a t h e r both p r o t e s t e d , p o i n t i n g out that a l l 84 B r i t i s h - b o r n or n a t u r a l i z e d B r i t i s h s u b j e c t s were e l i g i b l e f o r commissions i n the army, but were not able to have the d e c i s i o n r e v e r s e d . C h a r l e s E z e c h i e l based h i s appeal on h i s c i t i z e n s h i p ; h i s f a t h e r was born i n England of parents who were both l e g a l l y d o m i c i l e d i n England; h i s mother, who was of Indo-Portuguese background, was a n a t u r a l i z e d B r i t i s h c i t i z e n . C h a r l e s was born i n Poona, on what was l e g a l l y " B r i t i s h " s o i l . By education and t r a i n i n g he was B r i t i s h . But to the m i l i t a r y a u t h o r i t i e s at the Horse Guards he was a "native of I n d i a , " so designated on the b a s i s of h i s mixed parentage alone. Lord Roberts, to whom L i e u - tenant E z e c h i e l appealed, supported t h i s i n t e r p r e t a t i o n arid d e c l i n e d to i n t e r v e n e . 4 3 Since everyone i n v o l v e d with t h i s i s s u e w i l l i n g l y conceded that C h a r l e s E z e c h i e l was f u l l y q u a l i f i e d i n a l l other r e s p e c t s , the p r i n c i p l e of r a c i a l d i s c r i m i n a t i o n was ap p a r e n t l y to be upheld under a l l circumstances. The Indian C i v i l S e r v i c e , while not at t h i s time e n t h u s i a s - t i c about r e c r u i t i n g Indians, d i d not exclude q u a l i f i e d c a n d i - dates on the b a s i s of race. C h a r l e s E z e c h i e l ' s o l d e r b r o t h e r David had a l r e a d y q u a l i f i e d f o r the I.C.S. and had at l e a s t a moderately s u c c e s s f u l c a r e e r . 4 4 B r i t i s h o f f i c e r s commanding Indian troops g e n e r a l l y had chosen to do so, e i t h e r f o r f a m i l y reasons (a t r a d i t i o n of Indian s e r v i c e ) or because they f e l t t h e i r career p r o s p e c t s were b e t t e r than i n the B r i t i s h army. P o s s i b l e r a c i a l c o n f l i c t s were l a r g e l y defused because s o c i a l c o n t a c t s o u t s i d e the m i l i t a r y s e t t i n g were l i m i t e d , p r i m a r i l y by mutual consent. O f f i c e r s were expected to take a c l o s e p a t e r n a l i n t e r e s t i n t h e i r men, v i s i t t h e i r v i l l a g e s 85 on t o u r , understand t h e i r customs, but not to t r e a t them as equals. The tone of the r e l a t i o n s h i p was "ma-bap"—the command- ing o f f i c e r was "mother and f a t h e r " to h i s men. Whether the Indian sepoys ever resented t h i s a t t i t u d e i s unknown; the impres- s i o n d e r i v e d from regimental h i s t o r i e s , p e r s o n a l reminiscences, and the l i k e i s that the r e l a t i o n s h i p was g e n e r a l l y one of mutual r e s p e c t , and that e s s e n t i a l i n e q u a l i t y was accepted as an immutable f a c t of l i f e , at l e a s t up to the World War I p e r i o d . Assuming t h i s was the case, the r e l a t i o n s h i p between B r i t i s h o f f i c e r and Indian sepoy was doubtless much more r e l a x e d than that between white o f f i c e r s and black s o l d i e r s i n the American Army. S o c i a l and p o l i t i c a l i n e q u a l i t y was accepted by both p a r t i e s without q u e s t i o n , and c a s t e and r e l i g i o u s r e s t r i c t i o n s kept t h e i r p r i v a t e l i v e s completely separate, but i n the l i m i t e d area of t h e i r p r o f e s s i o n there c o u l d be r e s p e c t , f r i e n d s h i p , and even a k i n d of l o v e . , There were great d i f f e r e n c e s i n the kinds of d i s c i p l i n e imposed upon s o l d i e r s of d i f f e r e n t c l a s s e s . The c o n t r a s t was very marked between B r i t i s h s o l d i e r s i n India, who were s u b j e c t to f l o g g i n g u n t i l 1878 because " i t was needed to keep down drunk- enness, i n s u b o r d i n a t i o n and t h e f t , " and Indian sepoys, f o r whom f l o g g i n g was such an extreme d i s g r a c e i t was very r a r e l y used and was a c t u a l l y a b o l i s h e d f o r ten years (1838-1848). 4 5 Why Indian sepoys were so well-behaved i s u n c e r t a i n , but the fear of d i s m i s - s a l was a powerful d e t e r r e n t to s e r i o u s misbehaviour. Drunken- ness, a major c o n t r i b u t o r to d i s c i p l i n a r y problems among B r i t i s h troops, was uncommon among Indian troops, and i f they used drugs 86 they seem to have done so q u i e t l y . The VCOs and NCOs were expec- ted to maintain d i s c i p l i n e i n minor matters, and were h e l d r e s p o n s i b l e f o r the behaviour of the sepoys. I t i s l i k e l y that minor o f f e n c e s which might have earned a B r i t i s h s o l d i e r o f f i c i a l punishment were handled by the Indian o f f i c e r s i n an i n f o r m a l way, and never came to the commanding o f f i c e r s ' a t t e n t i o n . An unusual i n s t a n c e of widespread v i o l e n c e i n a Bombay regiment o c c u r r e d d u r i n g the Mohurram (28th September to 1st October) r i o t s of 1877 i n Bombay. S e v e r a l men of the 17th Bombay I n f a n t r y , which was then s t a t i o n e d i n Bombay, were i n v o l v e d i n a f i g h t with p o l i c e and townspeople. At l e a s t one policeman was k i l l e d while i n the sepoy l i n e s . The regiment was immediately removed to Mhow where the o f f i c e r commanding Mhow D i v i s i o n , Major-General R. R. G i l l e s p i e , i n s p e c t e d and r e p o r t e d on i t . The r e s u l t s of h i s i n s p e c t i o n i n c l u d e a number of comments about the preponderance of low-caste men among the n a t i v e o f f i c e r s and NCOs of the regiment. He commented that the regiment was g e n e r a l l y q u i e t and w e l l behaved but not up to the average of Bombay r e g i - ments i n appearance. The H a v i l d a r s were not w e l l i n s t r u c t e d but seemed i n t e l l i g e n t ; some were very smart and most of good appear- ance and capable of making e x c e l l e n t NCOs. "There are too many low caste men among them, however; 10 out of 40 being Purwarees or Moochies." 4^ G i l l e s p i e r e l a t e d the number of low-caste NCOs to the lack of d i s c i p l i n e shown d u r i n g the Mohurram r i o t s , im- p l y i n g t h a t they were unable or u n w i l l i n g to maintain d i s c i p l i n e among h i g h e r - c a s t e sepoys. However, of the o f f i c e r s who were d i s c h a r g e d f o r t h e i r f a i l u r e to c o n t r o l t h e i r men du r i n g the 87 r i o t s , none were of low c a s t e ; one was a Brahmin, two Marathas, one a J a t or Sikh, one Muslim and one Bene I s r a e l . Two others were of dubious o r i g i n , but one was probably a T e l i n g a (South Indian) and the other p o s s i b l y a Maratha. 4^ Three n a t i v e o f f i - c e r s were t r a n s f e r r e d i n t o the 17th Regiment; of these one was probably a Mochi, one a Maratha, and the t h i r d a J a t or S i k h . I t i s d i f f i c u l t to see what the ca s t e of the noncommissioned o f f i - c e r s had to do with the r i o t s , c o n s i d e r i n g that the o f f i c e r s a c t u a l l y d i s c h a r g e d were not i n f a c t of low c a s t e . I t i s probab- l y more r e l e v a n t that the Subadar-Major was a s o l d i e r of t h i r t y y ears' s e r v i c e , and might simply have been promoted beyond h i s l e v e l of competence. The B r i t i s h o f f i c e r s who had been with the regiment at the time were a l s o s e v e r e l y reprimanded f o r t h e i r f a i l u r e to be i n c o n t r o l of the men; the n a t i v e o f f i c e r s were p a r t i c u l a r l y h e l d to blame f o r having f a i l e d to i d e n t i f y or t u r n over f o r punishment the sepoys i n v o l v e d i n the r i o t i n g . 4 ^ The American Army to 1900 The C i v i l War was the f i r s t o c c a s i o n f o r l a r g e - s c a l e r e - c r u i t i n g of black men i n t o r e g u l a r m i l i t a r y u n i t s , although i n the f i r s t years of the war f r e e Northern b l a c k s seeking to volun- t e e r were o f t e n r e j e c t e d by r e c r u i t i n g c e n t e r s . E x p r e s s i n g an extreme form of a common view, "Governor David Tod of Ohio, r e j e c t i n g a request to r a i s e a Black regiment, asked: 'Do you know that t h i s i s a white man's government; that the white men are able to defend and p r o t e c t i t ; and that to e n l i s t a Negro s o l d i e r would be to d r i v e every white man out of the s e r v i c e ? ' " 4 9 M i l i t a r y n e c e s s i t y and p r e s s u r e from a b o l i t i o n i s t s combined to 88 make t h i s an untenable p o l i c y . F e d e r a l f o r c e s moving i n t o Con- fe d e r a t e t e r r i t o r y a c q u i r e d w i l l y - n i l l y the s e r v i c e s of thousands of f u g i t i v e s l a v e s , many able and w i l l i n g to work or f i g h t f o r the Union. As i t became obvious that the war would be long and bloody and as white v o l u n t e e r s f a i l e d to p r o v i d e s u f f i c i e n t manpower, the pre s s u r e to r e c r u i t b l ack troops i n c r e a s e d . In 1862-1863, P r e s i d e n t L i n c o l n g r a d u a l l y changed h i s view of the war and moved c l o s e r to emancipation. S e v e r a l Union m i l i - t a r y commanders had a l r e a d y begun to employ smal l u n i t s of b l a c k s . General Hunter, i n May 1862, r e c r u i t e d b l a c k s from the Sea I s l a n d s i n t o the f i r s t regiment of South C a r o l i n a V o l u n t e e r s . General Lane i n Kansas r a i s e d the Kansas Co l o r e d Volunteer Regi- ment. General B. F. B u t l e r i n L o u i s i a n a , without s p e c i f i c au- t h o r i t y from the War Department, mustered i n the F i r s t , Second and T h i r d Native Guards, formed from the Native Guards of L o u i s i - ana. T h i s regiment of e i g h t companies had been formed by the f r e e b l a c k s of New Orleans under Negro o f f i c e r s commissioned by the Confederate governor. However, the Confederacy had never made use of the Native Guards, s i n c e there was c o n s i d e r a b l e d i s t r u s t of them, and there were f e a r s that they would be i n f i l - t r a t e d by f r e e Negroes from the north a c t i n g as spies.^° T h e i r r e j e c t i o n by the Confederacy, to whom they had f i r s t o f f e r e d t h e i r s e r v i c e s , l e d the Native Guards to accept General B u t l e r ' s o f f e r to r e c r u i t them i n t o the Union army. Late i n August 1862, War Department p o l i c y o f f i c i a l l y s anctioned the recruitment of b l a c k s . A l l b l a c k s admitted i n t o m i l i t a r y s e r v i c e , with t h e i r f a m i l i e s , were d e c l a r e d f o r e v e r f r e e . General Hunter's u n o f f i - 89 c i a l regiment formed the nucleus of the f i r s t b l a ck regiment f o r m a l l y mustered i n t o f e d e r a l s e r v i c e i n January of 1863. The F i r s t South C a r o l i n a V o l u n t e e r s were p l a c e d under the command of an a b o l i t i o n i s t from Boston, Thomas Wentworth Higginson. Other b l a c k regiments r a i s e d over the course of the war i n c l u d e d the 54th and 55th Regiments of Massachusetts V o l u n t e e r s , and r e g i - ments r a i s e d i n Connecticut, Pennsylvania, Ohio, I l l i n o i s , Indiana, and Michigan. Most black s o l d i e r s , however, came from the South as the Union armies p e n e t r a t e d f u r t h e r i n t o Confederate t e r r i t o r y . E a r l y i n 1863 the L i n c o l n a d m i n i s t r a t i o n a u t h o r i z e d the c r e a t i o n of the United S t a t e s C o l o r e d Troops as p a r t of the r e g u l a r army. By the end of the C i v i l War, more than 180 thou- sand b l a c k s were s e r v i n g i n USCT u n i t s , i n c l u d i n g 120 i n f a n t r y regiments, 7 c a v a l r y regiments, 12 regiments of heavy a r t i l l e r y , and 10 b a t t e r i e s of l i g h t a r t i l l e r y , about ten per cent of the t o t a l Union f o r c e s . 5 1 Black troops fought i n many b a t t l e s i n - c l u d i n g Port Hudson, May 1863; M i l l i k e n ' s Bend, June 1863; F o r t Wagner, June 1863; and Richmond i n 1864. Although i n many cases these s o l d i e r s had had very l i t t l e t r a i n i n g or experience, they g e n e r a l l y fought very hard and with great d e t e r m i n a t i o n . T h e i r m o r t a l i t y r a t e s were g e n e r a l l y c o n s i d e r a b l y higher than those of white troops, p o s s i b l y due to poor medical care, poor equipment, and a presumed "no q u a r t e r " p o l i c y of the Confederate army when conf r o n t e d with black t r o o p s . 5 2 Black s o l d i e r s i n the Union army s u f f e r e d from d i s c r i m i n a - t o r y p o l i c i e s i n a number of areas. The most s e r i o u s d i s c r i m i - n a t i o n was i n the matter of pay. The o r i g i n a l assumption had 90 been that the black regiments would serve as noncombatants. They were, t h e r e f o r e , p a i d as l a b o u r e r s and not as s o l d i e r s . White p r i v a t e s r e c e i v e d $15.00 a month p l u s a c l o t h i n g allowance of $3.50, while black s o l d i e r s were p a i d $10.00 a month with a $3.00 deduction f o r c l o t h i n g . A l l ranks r e c e i v e d the same pay, even Chaplains, although white Chaplains were p a i d $100.00 per month. Many black s o l d i e r s r e f u s e d to accept any pay at a l l r a t h e r than accept pay as l a b o u r e r s . C o r p o r a l James Henry Good- ing of the 54th Massachusetts regiment asked: "Now the main q u e s t i o n i s , are we s o l d i e r s , or are we l a b o u r e r s ? We have done a s o l d i e r ' s duty. Why can't we have a s o l d i e r ' s pay?"53 C o l o n e l Higginson noted that o n e - t h i r d of the men of h i s r e g i - ment, the South C a r o l i n a V o l u n t e e r s , r e f u s e d to take the seven d o l l a r a month pay. They s a i d , "We're g i b our s o g e r i n ' to de Guv'ment, Cunnel, . . . but we won't 'spise o u r s e l v e s so much f o r take de seben d o l l a r . " 5 4 The Massachusetts regiments a l s o r e f u s e d , as a matter of p r i n c i p l e , to accept an a p p r o p r i a t i o n of money from the s t a t e l e g i s l a t u r e to make up the pay d i f f e r e n c e . Governor John A. Andrew of Massachusetts worked hard to ensure that the men of the 54th and 55th Massachusetts Regiments would r e c e i v e the pay to which he b e l i e v e d they were e n t i t l e d by law.55 P u b l i c p r e s s u r e f i n a l l y f o r c e d Congress i n June 1864 to grant equal pay, r e t r o a c t i v e to January, f o r a l l black s o l d i e r s and r e t r o a c t i v e to e n l i s t m e n t f o r b l a c k s who were f r e e i n A p r i l of 1861. In response to t h i s , many b l a c k s s a i d that they were f r e e by God's law i f not by man's. Another law i n March 1865 granted f u l l r e t r o a c t i v e pay to a l l black s o l d i e r s . 5 6 Apart from the pay 91 i s s u e , which was u l t i m a t e l y r e s o l v e d favourably, b l a c k s o l d i e r s seemed to have c o n s i s t e n t l y r e c e i v e d i n f e r i o r equipment, s u p p l i e s , medical treatment, and t r a i n i n g . A l s o very few were promoted to o f f i c e r s t a t u s . T h i s was p a r t l y due, of course, to the f a c t many b l a c k s , p a r t i c u l a r l y southern b l a c k s , were i l l i t e r - a t e, and l i t e r a c y was r e q u i r e d even f o r noncommissioned o f f i c e r s . C o l o n e l Higginson n oted 5? that s e v e r a l of the NCOs of h i s regiment would have been e l i g i b l e f o r commission had t h e i r l i t e r a c y e ducation been s u f f i c i e n t . I t would seem, t h e r e f o r e , that had a s e r i o u s e f f o r t been made to improve the l i t e r a c y of some of the noncommissioned o f f i c e r s , more co u l d have been done to promote them to commissioned rank. In s p i t e of the problems and d i f f i c u l t i e s encountered, black troops g e n e r a l l y performed w e l l , and produced few d i s c i - p l i n a r y problems. S i x t e e n black s o l d i e r s won C o n g r e s s i o n a l Medals of Honor, and four b l a c k s earned Navy medals of h o n o r . ^ Higginson and other o f f i c e r s commanding black troops found that b lack s o l d i e r s responded very w e l l to being t r e a t e d with r e s p e c t and with regard f o r t h e i r d i g n i t y . U n f o r t u n a t e l y t h i s was not always remembered. Blacks had mixed f e e l i n g s about t h e i r s e r v i c e i n the C i v i l War. On one hand, they c o u l d now l e g i t i m a t e l y c l a i m to have earned t h e i r freedom. As C o r p o r a l Thomas Long of the 1st South C a r o l i n a Regiment s a i d with great f o r c e : If we hadn't become s o j e r s a l l might have gone back as i t was be f o r e . . . But now t i n g s can never go back, because we have showed our energy and our courage and our natu- r a l l y manhood. Anoder t i n g i s , suppose you had kept your freedom 92 widout e n l i s t i n g i s d i s army; your c h i l e n might have grown up f r e e , and been w e l l c u l t i v a t e d so as to be equal t o any b u s i n e s s ; but i t would have been always f l u n g i n dere faces - 'Your fader never fought f o r he own freedom' - and what c o u l d dey answer. Neber can say that to d i s A f r i c a n race any more.59 Others became r a p i d l y convinced that there was no prospect of advancement or promotion f o r black s o l d i e r s , and that to continue to serve i n a subordinate c a p a c i t y was an admission that b l a c k s "are not f i t f o r promotion, and . . . are s a t i s f i e d to remain i n a s t a t e of . . . s u b s e r v i n c y L s i c ] . " ^ 0 These c o n s i d e r a t i o n s induced Sergeant-Major C h r i s t i a n A. Fleetwood, a black Medal of Honor winner of the C i v i l War, to leave the army, b e l i e v i n g he c o u l d do more i n c i v i l i a n l i f e to f u r t h e r both h i s p e r s o n a l ambition and the betterment of h i s r a c e . T h i s dilemma confronted s u c c e s s i v e generations of black Americans. As c i t i z e n s , they were morally (and sometimes l e g a l - l y ) o b l i g e d to f i g h t f o r t h e i r country, and to r e f u s e or a v o i d t h i s o b l i g a t i o n would have made i t hard to j u s t i f y demands f o r c i v i l r i g h t s . But to serve i n the subordinate p o s i t i o n s a l l o t t e d to b l a c k s was to v a l i d a t e , or seem to accept, the s t e r e o t y p i c a l view of b l a c k s as i n f e r i o r and i n c a p a b l e of l e a d e r s h i p or cour- age . A f t e r the C i v i l War, there was a major r e o r g a n i z a t i o n of the American army. Many r a d i c a l Republicans wanted a l a r g e army to a i d i n r e c o n s t r u c t i o n p o l i c i e s i n the South, to favour t h e i r a l l i e s among newly emancipated b l a c k s , and to serve on the f r o n - t i e r . U l t i m a t e l y , the g r e a t l y expanded r e g u l a r army i n c l u d e d two b l a c k c a v a l r y regiments, the 9th and 10th, and four black i n f a n - t r y regiments, the 38th, 39th, 40th and 41st. In 1869, a l l 93 i n f a n t r y regiments were c o n s o l i d a t e d , and the four b lack u n i t s became two, the 24th and 25th. These four u n i t s , a small share compared to the 180,000 USCT of the C i v i l War, p r o v i d e d the o n l y openings f o r b l a c k s i n the r e g u l a r army u n t i l 1944. Despite i n i t i a l problems i n f i n d i n g o f f i c e r s f o r these regiments (many white o f f i c e r s d i d not wish to serve with them f o r fear t h e i r f u t u r e m i l i t a r y c a r e e r s would be hampered); 6 1 these four r e g i - ments had a g e n e r a l l y s u c c e s s f u l r e c o r d d u r i n g the p e r i o d of the Indian Wars. From 1865 to 1890, the four b lack regiments were s t a t i o n e d almost e n t i r e l y on the f r o n t i e r , where they performed a l l of the d u t i e s expected of troops on the f r o n t i e r , such as e s c o r t i n g wagon t r a i n s , b u i l d i n g roads and t e l e g r a p h l i n e s , and keeping i n t r u d e r s out of the Indian T e r r i t o r y . 6 2 The 24th Infan- t r y served i n New Mexico from 1880-1898; the 25th i n Texas, the Dakotas, Minnesota, and Montana from 1860-1888. The 9th and 10th C a v a l r y served on the f r o n t i e r from t h e i r o r i g i n a l formation u n t i l the Spanish-American War. 6 3 F r o n t i e r duty was arduous, p h y s i c a l l y demanding, and dan- gerous; i n a d d i t i o n to normal hazards from h o s t i l e Indians, d i s e a s e , and harsh c l i m a t e s , b lack s o l d i e r s had to contend with c i v i l i a n p r e j u d i c e a g a i n s t them. T h i s p r e j u d i c e was tempered i n some cases by the presence of other s o c i a l l y depressed groups such as Mexicans, Chinese, and Indians. Black s o l d i e r s under- stand a b l y f e l t some resentment at spending a l l of t h e i r s e r v i c e i n i s o l a t e d f r o n t i e r posts, whereas white troops got o c c a s i o n a l g a r r i s o n duty east of the M i s s i s s i p p i . In s p i t e of such prob- lems, the black regiments had a good r e c o r d d u r i n g the Indian 94 Wars. T h i r t e e n b l ack s o l d i e r s earned Medals of H o n o r . 6 4 The b l a c k regiments had very low r a t e s of d e s e r t i o n , h i g h r a t e s of r e - e n l i s t m e n t , and a much lower i n c i d e n c e of a l c o h o l i s m than white s o l d i e r s . 6 ^ American Army detachments s e r v i n g i n i s o l a t e d f r o n t i e r p osts seem to have been su b j e c t e d to very harsh punishments, such as " s p r e a d - e a g l i n g " or confinement i n sweat-boxes. Some of these were i l l e g a l under army r e g u l a t i o n s but were imposed by command- ing o f f i c e r s e i t h e r out of simple sadism, or because normal d i s c i p l i n e was i n e f f e c t i v e f o r some hardened o f f e n d e r s . 6 6 There was no suggestion that t h i s was r a c i a l l y motivated; i f anything, black s o l d i e r s may have f a r e d b e t t e r , s i n c e they were g e n e r a l l y well-behaved and had fewer problems with a l c o h o l . D i s c i p l i n a r y problems more o f t e n arose when black s o l d i e r s were s t a t i o n e d near white p o p u l a t i o n s ; c o n f l i c t s o f t e n erupted, o f t e n provoked by whites. A common complaint of black s o l d i e r s was the f a i l u r e of c i v i l i a n or m i l i t a r y a u t h o r i t i e s to p r o t e c t t h e i r i n t e r e s t s or even ensure a f a i r t r i a l . P rospects f o r promotion were dim. Although i n theory and a c c o r d i n g to an Act of Congress i n 1878, i t was p o s s i b l e f o r men from the ranks to earn o f f i c e r s ' commissions, very few black s o l d i e r s (and not many whites) ever obtained commissions i n t h i s way. In f a c t , p r i o r to the Spanish-American War not a s i n g l e b l ack e n l i s t e d man rose from the ranks to earn a commission. 6 7 Between 1870 and 1889 twenty-two black youths were appointed to the U n i t e d S t a t e s M i l i t a r y Academy. However, o n l y twelve passed the entrance examinations, and o n l y three a c t u a l l y managed to 95 graduate. One, Henry 0. F l i p p e r , was c o u r t - m a r t i a l l e d and d i s - missed from the army i n 1892 (on grounds which he always main- t a i n e d to be improper), one d i e d i n 1894, s h o r t l y a f t e r becoming an i n s t r u c t o r i n m i l i t a r y s c i e n c e at W i l b e r f o r c e U n i v e r s i t y , and the t h i r d , C h a r l e s Young (graduated 1889) was s t i l l on a c t i v e duty at the beginning of World War 1. 6 ^ A t h i r d p o s s i b i l i t y f o r promotion was to come to the army from the v o l u n t e e r s e r v i c e s . T h i s was the route f o l l o w e d by Benjamin 0. Davis Sr. He was a graduate of Howard U n i v e r s i t y , commissioned F i r s t L i e u t e n a n t i n the 8th U.S. Volunteer I n f a n t r y i n 1899. Davis took h i s d i s - charge and r e - e n l i s t e d as a p r i v a t e i n the 9th C a v a l r y , hoping to earn a commission i n the r e g u l a r army, which he d i d . He was commissioned 2nd L i e u t e n a n t i n 1901 and became a General i n 1940, r e t i r i n g i n 1948 at the rank of B r i g a d i e r - G e n e r a l . His case i s probably u n i q u e . 6 9 A f t e r 1890 many changes took p l a c e i n the o r g a n i z a t i o n and purposes of the U n i t e d S t a t e s Army. With the end of the Indian Wars, m i l i t a r y needs began to change. The two small wars which preceded the F i r s t World War, the Spanish-American War of 1898 and the P h i l i p p i n e I n s u r r e c t i o n of 1899-1902, d i d not r e q u i r e much manpower. However, both r e s u l t e d i n the a c q u i s i t i o n of l a r g e c o l o n i a l t e r r i t o r i e s which had to be g a r r i s o n e d . At the same time, with the f r o n t i e r f i n a l l y p a c i f i e d , i t was necessary to post more s o l d i e r s near l a r g e c e n t e r s of p o p u l a t i o n . I t was no longer p o s s i b l e to i s o l a t e b l ack s o l d i e r s on the f r o n t i e r away from major c i t i e s . 96 The Spanish-American War and the P h i l i p p i n e I n s u r r e c t i o n were h i g h p o i n t s i n the m i l i t a r y h i s t o r y of black s o l d i e r s . The 10th C a v a l r y was commended by C o l o n e l Theodore Roosevelt a f t e r the B a t t l e of San Juan H i l l i n Cuba, J u l y 1898. Black s o l d i e r s s e r v i n g i n Cuba earned f i v e Medals of Honor and more than twenty C e r t i f i c a t e s of M e r i t . The 10th C a v a l r y a l s o was reviewed by P r e s i d e n t McKinley, and given a s p e c i a l r e c e p t i o n both i n Wash- ington and i n P h i l a d e l p h i a . 7 0 But p u b l i c enthusiasm f o r black s o l d i e r s c ooled very q u i c k l y as they were demo b i l i z e d and black o f f i c e r s of vo l u n t e e r regiments were decommissioned. Black s o l - d i e r s d i d not f a i l to note that, while some black s o l d i e r s were given commissions, these were i n temporary v o l u n t e e r regiments r a t h e r than the r e g u l a r army. 7! On d e m o b i l i z a t i o n i n 1901 none of the black volunteer o f f i c e r s were given r e g u l a r commissions, although John R. Lynch, a paymaster and Major i n the v o l u n t e e r s , was appointed a Cap t a i n i n the paymaster department of the regu- l a r army. In 1901 two black e n l i s t e d men were granted commis- s i o n s as 2nd L i e u t e n a n t s . These were Benjamin 0. Davis Sr., who had served as a 1st Lieutenant i n the v o l u n t e e r s d u r i n g the Spanish-American War, and John E. Green. Along with C h a r l e s Young, West P o i n t 1889, these three men were to be the o n l y black o f f i c e r s ( e x c l u d i n g Chaplains) i n the U.S. Army u n t i l World War 1.72 Although black Americans had shared i n the g e n e r a l enthu- siasm f o r the Spanish-American War, there was a very mixed r e - sponse among b l a c k s to American involvement i n suppressing Aguinaldo's independence movement. On one hand, as c i t i z e n s 97 American b l a c k s f e l t an o b l i g a t i o n to support n a t i o n a l p o l i c i e s ; on the other hand, some f e l t a n a t u r a l sympathy f o r F i l i p i n o a s p i r a t i o n s to independence. Whatever t h e i r p r i v a t e r e s e r v a t i o n s may have been, black s o l d i e r s of both r e g u l a r and volunteer regiments f u l f i l l e d t h e i r d u t i e s honourably while s e r v i n g i n the P h i l i p p i n e s . Another consequence of these m i l i t a r y involvements was a major revamping of the War Department. American v i c t o r y over Spain had to be a t t r i b u t e d more to Spanish weakness than to American courage. The American f o r c e s had proved i l l - p r e p a r e d i n many areas, e s p e c i a l l y the Commissary Department, the medical branch ( f o r each of 286 b a t t l e c a s u a l t i e s there, were 14 deaths from d i s e a s e ) ? 3 and naval gunnery. Reforms i n c l u d e d the a p p o i n t - ment of E l i h u Root to head the War Department, c r e a t i o n of a permanent General S t a f f , an i n c r e a s e i n army s t r e n g t h to 100,000, enlargement of the navy, and b e t t e r p r o f e s s i o n a l s e r v i c e s i n both branches. These reforms d i d not, however, improve career p r o s - pects f o r b l a c k s o l d i e r s . T h e i r access to o f f i c e r t r a i n i n g or s p e c i a l i z e d t r a i n i n g was s t i l l very l i m i t e d , no i n c r e a s e i n t h e i r t o t a l number was made, and i n 1907-8 black seamen were d i v e r t e d i n t o the messmen's branch or t r a n s f e r r e d to shore d u t y . ? 4 I t can be argued that poorly-educated b l a c k s were l e s s able to f i l l the s k i l l e d p o s i t i o n s needed i n a l a r g e r and more t e c h n i c a l l y ad- vanced m i l i t a r y , but no e f f o r t was made to f i n d or encourage those who d i d have s u i t a b l e s k i l l s and education. U n l i k e the Indian Army, the American m i l i t a r y never evolved a formal " m a r t i a l r a c e s " theory, f o r two l i k e l y reasons: i t was 98 p o l i t i c a l l y i m p ossible to remove b l a c k s (who were c i t i z e n s ) e n t i r e l y from the m i l i t a r y , no matter what t h e o r i e s might be developed; but e x i s t i n g r a c i a l p r e j u d i c e s and st e r e o t y p e s c o u l d be u t i l i z e d to l i m i t t h e i r p a r t i c i p a t i o n and o p p o r t u n i t i e s . Pop- u l a r r a c i a l s t e r e o t y p e s p o r t r a y e d the black man as c h i l d l i k e , c a r e f r e e , i r r e s p o n s i b l e , and s u p e r s t i t i o u s , p o s s i b l y capable of courage i f given the r i g h t l e a d e r s h i p (only by white men, of course) but c e r t a i n l y not to be r e l i e d upon i n c r i s i s . I t was a l s o widely h e l d that b l a c k s c o u l d not endure c o l d , and would not be able to f u n c t i o n e f f e c t i v e l y i n many t h e a t r e s of war; t h i s b e l i e f a p p a r e n t l y p e r s i s t e d although the bl a c k regiments had served f o r many years at f r o n t i e r posts i n the Dakotas, Montana, Wyoming, and other north and northwestern l o c a t i o n s . The treatment of the few black commissioned o f f i c e r s p r i o r t o World War I i l l u s t r a t e s the great r e l u c t a n c e of the army to allow any black man, however q u a l i f i e d , command r e s p o n s i b i l i t i e s . John Alexander (West P o i n t 1887) was assigned to the 9th C a v a l r y post exchange, and was r e l i e v e d of h i s d u t i e s i n 1894, f o r no apparent r e a s o n . 7 ^ C h a r l e s Young, who d i d see a c t i v e s e r v i c e with the white 7th C a v a l r y i n 1896, with a black volunteer regiment during, the Spanish-American War, and with General Pershing i n Mexico, was sent on a m i l i t a r y m i ssion to L i b e r i a d u r i n g World War I r a t h e r than allow him the f i e l d command to which h i s rank and s e r v i c e e n t i t l e d h i m . 7 6 The case of Henry 0. F l i p p e r was p a r t i c u l a r l y sad, i f as he i n s i s t e d he was not g u i l t y of the misuse of funds f o r which he was c o u r t - m a r t i a l l e d i n 1881. I t seems h i g h l y p o s s i b l e that he.was r a i l r o a d e d , or at l e a s t that 99 he was punished very s e v e r e l y f o r what may have been poor judge- ment and i n e x p e r i e n c e . Many prominent people who knew him i n h i s l a t e r career as a mining engineer worked to have h i s c o n v i c t i o n r e v e r s e d . A l b e r t B. F a l l , S e c r e t a r y of the I n t e r i o r , w r i t i n g on h i s b e h a l f to the Senate Committee on M i l i t a r y A f f a i r s i n 1922, had t h i s to say, a f t e r p r a i s i n g F l i p p e r ' s work and a b i l i t i e s : H is l i f e i s a most p a t h e t i c one. By education, by expe- r i e n c e and because of h i s n a t u r a l h i g h i n t e l l e c t u a l c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s , he can f i n d no p l e a s u r e i n a s s o c i a t i o n with many of h i s own race, and because of h i s c o l o r he was and i s p r e c l u d e d i n t h i s country from e n j o y i n g the s o c i e t y of those whom he would be mentally and otherwise best f i t t e d to a s s o c i a t e with. I have never known a more honorable man . . .77 A s i m i l a r statement c o u l d have been made of C h a r l e s E z e c h i e l , who had a l s o been d e p r i v e d of h i s chosen career through race p r e j u - d i c e . The d i f f i c u l t i e s experienced by these few black o f f i c e r s a l s o resemble the d i f f i c u l t i e s .faced by the f i r s t Indian c a n d i - dates f o r the Indian C i v i l S e r v i c e ; i t was p o s s i b l e but very d i f f i c u l t to g a i n admission, and Indians may have been judged more h a r s h l y than B r i t i s h i n the same circumstances. Surendra Nath Banerjea, who passed the I.C.S. examination i n 1869, was d i s m i s s e d i n h i s f i r s t year of s e r v i c e , on grounds that he ( l i k e F l i p p e r ) always i n s i s t e d were u n j u s t . 7 ( 3 i n each of these cases, o u t r i g h t r a c i a l p r e j u d i c e or a more s u b t l e e x p e c t a t i o n of f a i l u r e not o n l y c o n t r i b u t e d to the d e s t r u c t i o n of a chosen c a r e e r , but a l s o d e p r i v e d t h e i r r e s p e c t i v e s e r v i c e s of the t a l e n t s of three capable and ambitious young men. An extreme example of lengths to which m i l i t a r y a u t h o r i t i e s and the government were prepared to go to spare white f e e l i n g s i s 100 found i n the h a n d l i n g of the B r o w n s v i l l e i n c i d e n t of 1906, when 167 s o l d i e r s were dishonourably discharged from three companies of the 25th I n f a n t r y , a black regiment, without a t r i a l or c o u r t - m a r t i a l . On 13 August 1906, s i x t e e n to twenty armed men had engaged i n a shooting spree through the s t r e e t s of B r o w n s v i l l e , k i l l i n g one man and wounding another. A c u r s o r y i n v e s t i g a t i o n ordered by P r e s i d e n t Roosevelt suggested that men of the 25th I n f a n t r y were r e s p o n s i b l e , and s i n c e no s o l d i e r s of the 25th I n f a n t r y would admit to involvement with the shooting or i d e n t i f y o t h ers who were g u i l t y , the i n v e s t i g a t o r s concluded that they were engaged i n a c o n s p i r a c y of s i l e n c e . Many of the s o l d i e r s d i s m i s s e d were l o n g - s e r v i c e veterans with good r e c o r d s . A court of i n q u i r y i n 1909 found that f o u r t e e n of the s o l d i e r s were e l i g i b l e f o r r e - e n l i s t m e n t , but gave no reason f o r t h i s d e c i s i o n . Eleven of these men d i d i n f a c t r e - e n l i s t . Most of the men d i s c h a r g e d were never given an o p p o r t u n i t y to defend themselves i n c o u r t, or even to appear before an i n q u i r y . The g e n e r a l f e e l i n g among b l a c k s was that the s o l d i e r s had been r a i l r o a d e d . White Southerners i n c o n t r a s t were p l e a s e d with P r e s i d e n t Roosevelt's a c t i o n and f e l t i t was both l e g a l and j u s t . 7 9 Comparison of American and Indian Armies, c. 1865-1914 I t might appear that the American Army, a v o l u n t e e r c i t i z e n army s e r v i n g a democratic government, c o u l d have l i t t l e i n common with the Indian Army, a mercenary army s e r v i n g a f o r e i g n i m p e r i a l power. As Roger Beaumont has observed, there was " v i r t u a l l y no American e q u i v a l e n t to the sepoy . . . (unless i t was the black 101 ' b u f f a l o s o l d i e r ' ) . " 8 0 I f the black regiments i n the American Army are c o n s i d e r e d as a separate c l a s s (as indeed they were), many s i m i l a r i t i e s can be seen. Black s o l d i e r s had approximately the same p o s i t i o n r e l a t i v e to white s o l d i e r s and o f f i c e r s i n the American Army, as Indian s o l d i e r s had to white ( B r i t i s h ) o f f i c e r s and troops i n the m i l i t a r y i n I n d i a ( i n c l u d i n g Indian Army and B r i t i s h troops i n I n d i a ) . W i t h i n the Indian Army i t s e l f , the s t a t u s of low-caste s o l d i e r s r e l a t i v e to h i g h - c a s t e s o l d i e r s a l s o resembled i n some r e s p e c t s the black/white r e l a t i o n s h i p i n the American Army. The comparison i s best made i n the p e r i o d between 1866 and 1914. In 1866 the American Army was r e - o r g a n i z e d as a r e l a t i v e l y s m a l l standing army a f t e r the C i v i l War; by the same date i n In d i a the upheavals of the Indian Mutiny were past, the t r a n s f e r from Company to Crown was complete, and the i n t e r n a l m i l i t a r y s i t u a t i o n was s t a b l e . In both 'countries the primary f u n c t i o n of the army was to maintain i n t e r n a l s e c u r i t y ( e s p e c i a l l y i n I n d i a ) , to guard and sometimes advance the f r o n t i e r s , and to f i g h t occa- s i o n a l s m a l l e x t e r n a l campaigns. v As f o r g e n e r a l c o n d i t i o n s of s e r v i c e , these were roughly comparable. Pay s c a l e s (although meaningful comparisons are d i f f i c u l t due to the many d i f f e r e n c e s i n s o c i a l e x p e c t a t i o n s , f a m i l y s t r u c t u r e s , and other o p p o r t u n i t i e s ) seem to have been more-or-less comparable—on the low end of the range f o r c i v i l employment of comparable s k i l l , but accep t a b l e and even a t t r a c - t i v e to men with l i m i t e d o p t i o n s . S e r v i c e f o r pension was about the same: t h i r t y years i n the American Army ( l e s s i f d i s a b l e d ) ; 102 twenty-one years f o r h a l f pension; t h i r t y - t w o f o r f u l l pension, (with p r o v i s i o n f o r i n v a l i d pension) i n the Indian Army. In n e i t h e r case were black s o l d i e r s , or low-caste s o l d i e r s , p a i d at a lower l e v e l . Table V shows comparative s e r v i c e c o n d i t i o n s , with b l a c k s compared both with a l l Indian s o l d i e r s and with low- c a s t e Indians as a subgroup. The American Army spent the p e r i o d 1866-1900 l a r g e l y at p o s t s on the western and southern f r o n t i e r s . The b l a c k regiments were almost c o n t i n u o u s l y posted west of the M i s s i s s i p p i ; although t h i s appeared to be d i s c r i m i n a t o r y treatment to many b l a c k s , white regiments a l s o spent very long tours on the f r o n t i e r . There was simply a long f r o n t i e r with many posts to be g a r r i s o n e d by a small army. By c o n t r a s t , although the Indian Army fought two major wars i n A f g h a n i s t a n and g a r r i s o n e d the North-West F r o n t i e r , most r e g i - ments were posted on a semi-permanent b a s i s f a i r l y c l o s e to t h e i r r e c r u i t i n g grounds. Regiments sent f a r from home on a c t i v e s e r v i c e were u s u a l l y not expected to serve more than a few years ( f i v e seemed to be maximum) without r e l i e f . Only a few Bombay regiments ( i n c l u d i n g the B a l u c h i regiments) spent much time on the f r o n t i e r ; most served at m i l i t a r y cantonments i n the Presidency. A t t i t u d e s of o f f i c e r s towards t h e i r men d i f f e r e d i n s i g n i f - i c a n t ways. White o f f i c e r s i n the American Army i n some in s t a n c e s resented being assigned to black regiments, e i t h e r because they b e l i e v e d t h e i r chances of promotion would be reduced or because they had a low o p i n i o n of black troops. For example, 103 TABLE V COMPARATIVE SERVICE CONDITIONS AMERICAN TO INDIAN ARMIES, c. 1865 - 1914 S i m i l a r i t i e s B l a c k s 1. not e n l i s t e d i n A r t i l l e r y 2. not e l i g i b l e f o r promotion beyond regimental l e v e l . A l - though i n theory (A.G.O. #93 of 1867) commission from the ranks was p o s s i b l e t h i s was very r a r e , e s p e c i a l l y f o r b l a c k s . 3. not allowed to command white troops 4. black troops o f f i c e r e d by whites 5. h i g h r a t e of r e - e n l i s t m e n t compared to whites 6. number of b l a c k s i n army s t r i c t l y l i m i t e d 7. e n l i s t e d i n support u n i t s , mess stewards i n Navy, e t c . ; Even r e g u l a r regiments some- times performed non-combat d u t i e s 8. Army one of the best of l i m i t e d employment op t i o n s P i f f e r e n c e s 1. e n l i s t e d i n Navy i n very l i m i t e d numbers Indians 1. A r t i l l e r y r e s t r i c t e d to a few Mountain B a t t e r i e s 2. not e l i g i b l e f o r promotion beyond regimental l e v e l 3. not allowed to command B r i t i s h troops 4. Indian troops o f f i c e r e d by B r i t i s h 5. many l o n g - s e r v i c e s o l d i e r s 6. t h e o r e t i c a l l y r e s t r i c t e d to a set r a t i o with B r i t i s h troops i n I n d i a Low-Caste Indians 7. o f t e n e n l i s t e d as musicians and as menials, even when a l s o accepted as combatants; employed as servants by B r i t i s h o f f i c e r s 8. Army one of the best of l i m i t e d employment o p t i o n s 1. served i n Indian Navy/ Bombay Marine at lower ranks from 1863 on 104 TABLE V — C o n t i n u e d Di f f e r e n c e s Blacks 2. not e n l i s t e d as Marines 3. nominally equipped and t r a i n e d same as white troops; i n p r a c t i c e may have sometimes r e c e i v e d l o w e r - q u a l i t y equip- ment . 4. 2 Black c a v a l r y regiments Indians 2. Marine B a t t a l i o n i n Bombay Army 3. Indian Army gi v e n l e s s e f - f e c t i v e weapons, poorer housing, lower l e v e l of b e n e f i t s than B r i t i s h troops, as a matter of p o l i c y . Low-Caste Indians 4. Not e n l i s t e d i n c a v a l r y f o r f i n a n c i a l reasons r a t h e r than p o l i c y (Bombay c a v a l r y orga- n i z e d on s i l l a d a r i system) George Custer r e f u s e d the c o l o n e l c y of a black c a v a l r y regiment and took a lower rank to serve with a white regiment. O f f i c e r s of b lack regiments sometimes were not accepted s o c i a l l y among white c i v i l i a n s . Other white o f f i c e r s adopted a p a t e r n a l i s t i c a t t i t u d e . A few were able to accept b l a c k s simply as s o l d i e r s and to t r e a t them with the same re s p e c t , and demand from them the same performance as white s o l d i e r s . Comparing the treatment of the n a t i v e o f f i c e r s of the 17th Bombay I n f a n t r y with the treatment of the 25th I n f a n t r y at B r o w n s v i l l e , Texas some years l a t e r , the Indian s o l d i e r s on the whole got much b e t t e r treatment. Seven of the o f f i c e r s were simply d i s c h a r g e d on t h e i r o r d i n a r y pension, while the l a s t was d i s c h a r g e d with a g r a t u i t y of s i x months pay. T h i s was a p u n i s h - ment i n that some of them at l e a s t would o r d i n a r i l y have expected to r e c e i v e the higher r a t e of pension of t h e i r rank, but i t 105 h a r d l y seems e x c e s s i v e , and was much l e s s severe than the summary di s c h a r g e without pension or b e n e f i t s meted out to the men of the 25th I n f a n t r y . These are both extreme, but by no means i s o l a t e d or aber- r a n t , examples of the treatment accorded to Indian s o l d i e r s and bla c k s o l d i e r s r e s p e c t i v e l y . Apart from the a b s t r a c t q u e s t i o n of whether low-caste men were u n f a i r l y p e r c e i v e d as i n f e r i o r s o l - d i e r s , B r i t i s h m i l i t a r y a u t h o r i t i e s g e n e r a l l y t r e a t e d Indian s o l d i e r s as f a i r l y as p o s s i b l e , i f onl y i n the i n t e r e s t of keeping up recruitment and m a i n t a i n i n g morale. In the American s i t u a t i o n , not o n l y was there c o n s i d e r a b l e p r e j u d i c e among white c i v i l i a n s a g a i n s t black s o l d i e r s , but a l s o a tendency f o r m i l i - t a r y a u t h o r i t i e s to pander to white s e n s i t i v i t i e s while i g n o r i n g black s o l d i e r s ' l e g a l r i g h t s . T h i s at l e a s t was a w i d e l y - h e l d b e l i e f among black s o l d i e r s , and even a l l o w i n g f o r p o s s i b l e b i a s among black h i s t o r i a n s and popular w r i t e r s , i t appears to have s u b s t a n t i a l j u s t i f i c a t i o n . Summary The l a s t t h i r d of the n i n e t e e n t h century saw s i g n i f i c a n t changes i n the o r g a n i z a t i o n of both the Indian Army and the Uni t e d S t a t e s Army, and a r e l a t i v e d e c l i n e i n the o p p o r t u n i t i e s a v a i l a b l e to low-caste and black , s o l d i e r s r e s p e c t i v e l y . T h i s d e c l i n e o c c u r r e d i n s p i t e of past s a t i s f a c t o r y s e r v i c e ; i n the * case of black s o l d i e r s , the dramatic example of the USCT; i n the case of the Mahars, long and l o y a l though l e s s s t r i k i n g a s s o c i a - t i o n with the Bombay Army. 106 The northward s h i f t of r e c r u i t i n g i n the Indian Army was p r o b a b l y i n e v i t a b l e , given m i l i t a r y requirements. The a b o l i t i o n of the separate Presidency armies was long overdue by the time i t a c t u a l l y happened i n 1893. These changes alone would have l a r g e - l y e l i m i n a t e d men from southern and western I n d i a ( i n c l u d i n g the Mahars) from the army, without any formal d e c l a r a t i o n of t h e i r u n s u i t a b i l i t y ; with a m a j o r i t y of regiments s t a t i o n e d semi- permanently i n the Punjab and North-West F r o n t i e r , few Konkanis would be l i k e l y to t r a v e l to Peshawar or Amritsar to e n l i s t . I f p h y s i c a l d e t e r i o r a t i o n were a major problem, more s t r i n g e n t p h y s i c a l examinations c o u l d have d e a l t with t h i s . Why then was i t c o n s i d e r e d necessary to produce d e t a i l e d l i s t s of c l a s s e s and c a s t e s no longer to be e n l i s t e d ? The author suggests that the " m a r t i a l r a c e s " theory s a t i s f i e d other requirements than improving m i l i t a r y e f f i c i e n c y , p a r t i c u l a r l y m a i n t a i n i n g a p o l i t i - c a l l y n e u t r a l army which conformed to B r i t i s h p r e j u d i c e s about c l a s s and c a s t e . R e s t r i c t i n g recruitment of black men to o n l y four r e g u l a r regiments, and p l a c i n g severe l i m i t a t i o n s on t h e i r o p p o r t u n i t i e s to become o f f i c e r s , although j u s t i f i e d on the grounds of inherent l a c k of l e a d e r s h i p q u a l i t i e s , courage, endurance, and other m i l i t a r y v i r t u e s , a l s o served other ends. The p r a c t i c e of segre- g a t i n g black s o l d i e r s i n t h e i r own u n i t s (where p o s s i b l e f a r from white p o p u l a t i o n s ) , denying them o f f i c e r t r a i n i n g , and keeping them i n the l e a s t t e c h n i c a l l y - a d v a n c e d branches of the army, c e r t a i n l y c o n t r i b u t e d to m a i n t a i n i n g the p a t t e r n of white domi- nance by l i m i t i n g b l ack access to m i l i t a r y t r a i n i n g . As i n the 107 Indian case, m i l i t a r y e f f i c i e n c y c o u l d have been maintained by a p p r o p r i a t e standards f o r p h y s i c a l f i t n e s s and e d u c a t i o n a l attainments. An important d i f f e r e n c e i n these two s i t u a t i o n s i s a d i r e c t consequence of the d i f f e r e n c e i n p o l i t i c a l s i t u a t i o n s . The government of I n d i a d i d not have to give much weight to Indian p u b l i c o p i n i o n , c e r t a i n l y none to the views of poor, low-caste s o l d i e r s . As w i l l be seen l a t e r , Indian p u b l i c o p i n i o n d i d not always agree with government recruitment p o l i c i e s , but with l i t t l e or no r e p r e s e n t a t i o n i n government, disagreement c o u l d not become e f f e c t i v e p r e s s u r e f o r change. American b l a c k s , on the other hand, d i d have some p o l i t i c a l power and d i d have some c o n s t i t u t i o n a l r i g h t s as c i t i z e n s . They c o u l d not, t h e r e f o r e , be completely excluded from the m i l i t a r y , and a few even had to be allowed a chance to become o f f i c e r s (however g r u d g i n g l y g i v e n ) . O v e r a l l s i m i l a r i t y i n m i l i t a r y s e r v i c e c o n d i t i o n s f o r b l a c k s and Indians ( p a r t i c u l a r l y low-caste I n d i a n s ) , as shown i n Table V, extended to a c o n s i d e r a b l e improvement i n pay and bene- f i t s , more advanced weapons and equipment, with a p a r a l l e l r e d u c t i o n i n access f o r b l a c k s and low-caste men. B e n e f i t s of m i l i t a r y s e r v i c e are d i s c u s s e d i n some d e t a i l i n the next chapter. In both i n s t a n c e s , however, a general improvement i n p r o f e s s i o n a l standards l e d to fewer o p p o r t u n i t i e s due o v e r t l y to the (presumed) i n a b i l i t y of b l a c k s or Mahars/"non-martial c l a s - ses" to measure up to the new standards, but c o v e r t l y to c a s t e / c l a s s p r e j u d i c e s and a d e s i r e to maintain the s o c i a l and p o l i t i - c a l s t a t u s quo. 108 Footnotes, Chapter I I I R. K. P e r t i , South A s i a : F r o n t i e r P o l i c i e s , A d m i n i s t r a t i v e Problems and Lord Lansdowne (New D e l h i : O r i e n t a l P u b l i s h e r s and D i s t r i b u t o r s , 1976), p. 151. K. M. L. Saxena, The M i l i t a r y System of In d i a , 1850-1900 (New D e l h i : S t e r l i n g P u b l i s h e r s Pvt. L t d . , 1974), pp. 1- 2. I b i d . , pp. 4-5. Roger Beaumont, Sword of the Raj : The B r i t i s h Army i n I n d i a , 1747-1947 (New York: The B o b b s - M e r r i l l Company, Inc., 1977), p. 40. S i r P a t r i c k C a d e l l , H i s t o r y of the Bombay Army (London: Longmans, Green and Company, 1938), app. T, pp. 307-313. M.S.A., M i l i t a r y Compilations, v o l . 492 of 1852, #3194. Bombay I n d u s t r i e s : The Cotton M i l l s , ed. by S. M. Rutnagur (Bombay: The Indian T e x t i l e J o u r n a l L t d . , 1927), p. 9. T h i s was owned by the Bombay Spinning and Weaving Company, founded by Mr. Cawosji Nanabhoy Daver. M.S.A., M i l i t a r y Compilations, v o l . 812 of 1858, #515, item 8892, pp. 6-8. M.S.A., M i l i t a r y Compilations, v o l . 812 of 1858, #515, item 7893, par. 5. Jemadar ( l a t e r Subadar-Major) Moosajee, the Native Adjutant who had given f i r s t i n f o r m a t i o n of the mutiny, was t r a n s f e r r e d to the 17th Native I n f a n t r y . N.A.I., M i l i t a r y Department Proceedings, January 1894, #2282-85 B. (See a l s o n. 30, chap. VI.) The Kayasthas o b j e c t e d to being c l a s s e d as "menials," and s a i d so i n a memorial to government, but were ad v i s e d that no r e f l e c t i o n on t h e i r s o c i a l s t a t u s was intended, o n l y that they were not " m a r t i a l . " N.A.I., M i l i t a r y Department Proceedings, November 1882, #1702 and 1703, pars. 3-4. Saxena, M i l i t a r y System of In d i a , p. 100. M.S.A., M i l i t a r y Compilations, v o l . 812 of 1858, #515, pp. 441-446; L i e u t . H. L. Showers, "The Meywar B h i l Corps," U.S.I. J o u r n a l , no. 84 (January 1891):87-95; A. H. A. Simcox, A Memoir of the Khandesh B h i l Corps (Bombay: Thacker & Company L i m i t e d , n.d., c. 1912). 109 B h i l s had been r e c r u i t e d i n t o i r r e g u l a r l o c a l corps, i n c l u d i n g the Meywar B h i l Corps (1841-1891) and the Khandesh B h i l Corps (1825-1862), the l a t t e r being converted to armed p o l i c e (1862-1891) p r i o r to a b s o r p t i o n i n t o the r e g u l a r p o l i c e f o r c e s . Sporadic attempts were made to r e c r u i t them as r e g u l a r sepoys, but without much success or p e r s i s t e n c e . 15. N.A.I., M i l i t a r y Department Proceedings, March 1882, #1153, pp. 13-23. 16. P h i l i p Mason, A Matter of Honour: An Account of the Indian Army, I t s O f f i c e r s and Men (Harmondsworth, England: Penguin Books, 1976), p. 347. The term "Native" was o f f i c i a l l y dropped i n 1885. 17. N.A.I., M i l i t a r y Department Proceedings, June 1891, #292, General Order no. 537. 18. N.A.I., M i l i t a r y Department Proceedings, December 1892, #1457. 19. N.A.I., M i l i t a r y Department Proceedings, December 1892, #1453, p. 10. 20. Thomas R. M e t c a l f , The Aftermath of R e v o l t ; I n d i a , 1857-1870 ( P r i n c e t o n , N.JT1 P r i n c e t o n U n i v e r s i t y Press, 1964), p. 8. 21. Peter Halfpenny, P o s i t i v i s m and S o c i o l o g y : E x p l a i n i n g S o c i a l L i f e (London: George A l l e n & Unwin, 1982), p. 21; Robert C. B a n n i s t e r , S o c i a l Darwinism: Science and Myth i n Anglo-American S o c i a l Thought ( P h i l a d e l p h i a : Temple U n i v e r s i t y Press, 1979), p^ 4. The term " s o c i a l Darwinism" was used by R i c h a r d H o f s t a d t e r i n 1955, but a c c o r d i n g to B a n n i s t e r f i r s t appeared on the Continent about 1880. I t has been a p p l i e d to a wide v a r i e t y of s o c i a l and p o l i t i c a l views, most having l i t t l e to do with Charles Darwin. 22. Stephen P. Cohen, The Indian Army: I t s C o n t r i b u t i o n to the Development of a Nation (Berkeley, C a l i f . : TT. of C a l i f o r n i a Press, 1971), p. 45. 23. H. W. C. Davis and J . R. H. Weaver, The D i c t i o n a r y of N a t i o n a l Biography, 1912-1921 (London: Oxford U n i v e r s i t y Press, 1927), pp. 464-470. Appointed c o l o n e l - i n - c h i e f of the Indian E x p e d i t i o n a r y Force, Roberts went to France to v i s i t and encourage the troops, but d i e d of a c h i l l . He was eighty-two years o l d and a d e d i c a t e d s o l d i e r to the end. 24. F i e l d - M a r s h a l Lord Roberts, of Kandahar, Forty-One Years i n I n d i a (New York: Longmans, Green & C o ~ 1900), p. 499. 110 25. Mason, A Matter of Honour, pp. 345-46. 26. Roberts, Forty-One Years i n I n d i a , p. 470. 27. I b i d . , p. 471. 28. I b i d . , p. 472. 29. A r c h i b a l d Forbes, The Afghan Wars, 1839-42 and 1878-80 (London: Seeley & Co., L i m i t e d , 1892), pp. 292-302; L i e u t . - C o l . E. W. C. Sandes, The Indian Sappers and Miners (Chatham: I n s t i t u t i o n of Royal Engineers, 1948), pp. 279-280; T. A. Heathcote, The Indian Army: The G a r r i s o n of B r i t i s h I m p e r i a l I n d i a , 1822-1922, H i s t o r i c Armies and Navies S e r i e s (Newton Abbot, London, Vancouver: David & C h a r l e s , 1974), p. 88. 30. Quoted i n Saxena, M i l i t a r y System of I n d i a , pp. 264-265. 31. Roberts, Forty-One Years i n I n d i a , pp. 531-532. 32. From The M a r t i a l Races of I n d i a , quoted i n Mason, A Matter of Honour, pp. 348-9. 33. N.A.I., M i l i t a r y Department Proceedings, August 1885, #135, app. C, p. 259. "Proposal of Army Commission r e g a r d i n g c r e a t i o n of an army r e s e r v e . " 34. C y n t h i a H. Enloe, E t h n i c S o l d i e r s : S t a t e S e c u r i t y i n D i v i d e d S o c i e t i e s (Athens: The U. of Georgia Press, 1980), pp. 26-28. 35. Saxena, M i l i t a r y System of I n d i a , p. 245. 36. N.A.I., M i l i t a r y Department Proceedings, November 1882, #1704, l e t t e r from Maj.-Gen. S i r G. R. Greaves, A d j u t a n t - General i n I n d i a ; C i r c u l a r no. 457, dated Simla, 12 March 1851, from L t . - C o l . H. T. Tucker, Adjutant-General of the army. 37. Enloe, E t h n i c S o l d i e r s , p. 27. 38. "God b l e s s the Squire and h i s r e l a t i o n s , And keep us i n our proper s t a t i o n s . " S a i d , tongue-in-cheek, by an obscure V i c t o r i a n E n g l i s h - man, H. D. Packer (born 1898); (the author's f a t h e r ) . Probably a misquotation of C h a r l e s Dickens, The Chimes: 0 l e t us love our occupations, B l e s s the s q u i r e and h i s r e l a t i o n s , L i v e upon our d a i l y r a t i o n s , And always know our proper s t a t i o n s . Oxford D i c t i o n a r y of Quotations, 3rd ed. (Oxford U n i v e r s i t y Press, 1979), p. 176. I l l 39. The Duke of W e l l i n g t o n , b e f o r e Waterloo, d e s c r i b e d h i s i n f a n t r y as "the scum of the earth, e n l i s t e d f o r d r i n k . " 40. John Prebble, The Highland Clearances (London: Seeker and Warburg, 1963), pp. 316-322. 41. Cohen, The Indian Army, pp. 48-49. 42. Mason, A Matter of Honour, p. 348; Saxena, M i l i t a r y System of I n d i a , p. 195; Roberts, Forty-One Years, pp. 514-520. 43. N.A.I., M i l i t a r y Department Proceedings, May 1893, #2319- 2320. 44. P h i l i p Woodruff [ P h i l i p Mason], The Men Who Ruled I n d i a , v o l . I I : The Guardians (London: Jonathan Cape, 1963), pp. 184-185. David E z e c h i e l i s mentioned as a c t i n g D i s t r i c t M a g i s t r a t e , Noakhali D i s t r i c t , Bengal. 45. Mason, A Matter of Honour, pp. 202-203. 46. N.A.I., M i l i t a r y Department Proceedings, June 1888, #3317. 47. They were: Subadar-Major B a b a j i Mania, Subadars Ram Chandar Powar, Punjab Singh, Jaganath Pande, K r i s h n a j i Kadam, Jemadars Sankappa and Shaik Suliman, and Jemadar Isaac M u s a j i . 48. N.A.I., M i l i t a r y Department Proceedings, June 1888, #3317. 49. Jack D. Foner, Blacks and the M i l i t a r y i n American H i s t o r y : A New P e r s p e c t i v e (N.p.: Praeger, 1974), p~. 32. 50. Robert E w e l l Greene, Black Defenders of America 1775-1973 (Chicago: Johnson P u b l i s h i n g Company Inc., 1974), pp. 355-356. 51. Marvin F l e t c h e r , The Black S o l d i e r and O f f i c e r i n the U n i t e d S t a t e s Army, 1891-1917 (Columbia: The U. of M i s s o u r i Press, 1974), p. 18. 52. B i n k i n et a l . , Blacks and the M i l i t a r y (Washington, D.C: The Brookings I n s t i t u t i o n , 1982), p. 15, n. 11. 53. Foner, Blacks and the M i l i t a r y , p. 42. 54. Thomas Wentworth Higginson, Army L i f e i n a Black Regiment (Boston: Beacon Press, 1962; o r i g . pub. 1869), pi 242. The s o l d i e r s a l s o sang the f o l l o w i n g d i t t y , "Ten d o l l a r a month 1 Tree ob dat f o r c l o t h i n ' 1 Go to Washington 112 F i g h t f o r Linkum's d a r t e r 1" " L i n c o l n ' s daughter" being L i b e r t y . 55. Greene, Black Defenders of America, p. 347. 56. Foner, Blacks and the M i l i t a r y , p. 43. 57. Higginson, Army L i f e i n a Black Regiment, p. 26. 58. Master Sgt. I r v i n H. Lee, Negro Medal of Honor Men (New York: Dodd, Mead & Co., 1967), pp. 127-129. 59. Quoted i n Foner, Blacks and the M i l i t a r y , p. 51. 60. Sgt.-Major C. A. Fleetwood to James H a l l , 8 June 1865, quoted i n Greene, Black Defenders of America, p. 351. 61. W. Sherman Savage, Blacks i n the West, c o n t r i b u t i o n s i n Afro-American and A f r i c a n S t u d i e s , no. 23 (Westport, C o n n e c t i c u t : Greenwood Press, 1976), p. 51. 62. I b i d . , p. 51. 63. I b i d . , pp. 54-62. 64. Lee, Negro Medal of Honor, p. 128. 65. Don Rickey, J r . , F o r t y M i l e s a Day on Beans and Hay: The E n l i s t e d S o l d i e r F i g h t i n g the Indian Wars (Norman: U. of Oklahoma Press, 1963), p. 159; Foner, Blacks and the M i l i t a r y , chap. 4; F l e t c h e r , Black S o l d i e r s and O f f i - c e r s , i n t r o d u c t i o n ; Savage, Blacks i n the West, chap. 3. In the 1880s almost 41 out of 1000 s o l d i e r s were h o s p i t a l i z e d f o r a l c o h o l i s m ; t h i s i n c l u d e d o n l y the most severe cases, men s u f f e r i n g from d e l i r i u m tremens. In the four b lack regiments o n l y 5 l/2 cases per 1000 were r e p o r t e d . 66. Rickey, F o r t y M i l e s a Day, passim. "Spread-eagling" i n v o l v e d s t a k i n g a man out i n the sun, l y i n g f l a t on h i s back with h i s arms and l e g s t i e d to stakes, f o r a p e r i o d of s e v e r a l hours. 67. Foner, Blacks and the M i l i t a r y , p. 64. 68. Greene, Black Defenders of America, pp. 360-363; Savage, Blacks i n the West; pp. 52-53. 69. Foner, Blacks and the M i l i t a r y , p. 93; Greene, Black Defenders of America^ pp. 189-90. 70. F l e t c h e r , Black S o l d i e r and O f f i c e r , pp. 45-46. 71. Foner, Blacks and the M i l i t a r y , p. 91. 113 72. I b i d . , pp. 85, 93-94. John R. Lynch was a prominent black Republican from M i s s i s s i p p i whose appointment was a p i e c e of p o l i t i c a l patronage. 73. Samuel E l i o t Morison, Henry S t e e l e Commager, and W i l l i a m E. Leuchtenburg, A Concise H i s t o r y of the American Republic (New York: Oxford U n i v e r s i t y Press, 1977), pp. 487-88. 74. Foner, Blacks and the M i l i t a r y , pp. 104-106. 75. Savage, Blacks i n the West, p. 52. 76. I b i d . , p. 53. 77. Greene, Black Defenders of America, p. 361. 78. Woodruff, The Men Who Ruled I n d i a , pp. 169-171. 79. Foner, Blacks and the M i l i t a r y , pp. 95-103; F l e t c h e r , The Black S o l d i e r and O f f i c e r , pp. 119-152. In 1971 a black Congressman from C a l i f o r n i a , Augustus F. Hawkins (D.), succeeded i n having a b i l l passed to d e c l a r e a l l of the d i s c h a r g e s honourable. The l a s t s u r v i v o r , D o r s i e W i l l i s , was awarded a pension of S25,000. 80. Beaumont, Sword of the Raj, p. IX. 114 CHAPTER IV COSTS AND BENEFITS OF MILITARY SERVICE The c o s t s of m i l i t a r y s e r v i c e are r e a d i l y apparent. They i n c l u d e , p a r t i c u l a r l y i n wartime, the r i s k of death or d i s a b i l i - ty, r e s t r i c t i o n s on p e r s o n a l l i b e r t y , acceptance of m i l i t a r y d i s c i p l i n e , frequent enforced s e p a r a t i o n from f a m i l y and home, and foregone o p p o r t u n i t i e s f o r c i v i l i a n employment. B e n e f i t s i n c l u d e pay and pensions, access to education and/or s p e c i a l i z e d t r a i n i n g , p r e f e r e n t i a l access to employment, enhanced s o c i a l s t a t u s , and p e r s o n a l s a t i s f a c t i o n . For American b l a c k s there was an a d d i t i o n a l f a c t o r : the b e l i e f t h at f i g h t i n g f o r freedom i n the C i v i l War had guaranteed that black men c o u l d never again be denied t h e i r freedom or have i t c a s t i n t o t h e i r faces that freedom had been given to them and not won. C o r p o r a l Thomas Long, quoted e a r l i e r , made t h i s p o i n t on the b a s i s of h i s p e r s o n a l s e r v i c e with the 1st South C a r o l i n a Regiment; U l y s s e s Lee confirmed the importance of m i l i t a r y s e r - v i c e p r i o r to World War I, s t a t i n g t h a t : [The Army] was one of the few n a t i o n a l endeavors i n which Negroes had had a r e l a t i v e l y secure p o s i t i o n and which, at l e a s t i n time of war, cou l d l e a d to n a t i o n a l r e c o g n i - t i o n of t h e i r worth as c i t i z e n s and t h e i r p o t e n t i a l as p a r t n e r s i n a common u n d e r t a k i n g . 1 S i m i l a r l y the Mahars co u l d c l a i m that s e r v i c e i n the army had removed u n t o u c h a b i l i t y and giv e n them equal s t a t u s i n s o c i e t y . As the Indian newspaper Rashtra V i r put i t , 115 Army en l i s t m e n t i s the b i r t h r i g h t of every community and l i k e e ducation removes u n t o u c h a b i l i t y and g i v e s e q u a l i t y of s t a t u s to the Mahars. 2 These b e n e f i t s are d i f f i c u l t to measure i n o b j e c t i v e terms, so i t i s important to note the s p e c i f i c , measurable, o b j e c t i v e b e n e f i t s of m i l i t a r y s e r v i c e . The Indian Army As a p r o f e s s i o n a l standing army, the Indian Army ( s p e c i f i - c a l l y the three Presidency armies of which i t was composed) o f f e r e d r e g u l a r pay, some long-term s e c u r i t y i n the form of pensions and c i v i l employment, and a degree of p r o f e s s i o n a l t r a i n i n g . In t h i s i t d i f f e r e d from most of the armies of Indian or Moghul r u l e r s , which were o f t e n p a i d i r r e g u l a r l y or not at a l l , and counted on plunder to make up shortages. S e r v i c e i n the Indian Army opened up the prospect of the m i l i t a r y as a p r o f e s - s i o n f o r o r d i n a r y men, not an a r i s t o c r a t i c blood s p o r t . Pay and pension b e n e f i t s f o r Indian s o l d i e r s of the n i n e - teenth century were r a t h e r low, but not i n s i g n i f i c a n t . In 1881 the pay of an Indian s o l d i e r ranged from 7 rupees per month f o r a p r i v a t e to 100 rupees per month f o r a Subadar f i r s t c l a s s . S t a f f allowances f o r noncommissioned o f f i c e r s and VCOs ranged from 2 rupees per month f o r a Colour H a v i l d a r to 25 rupees per month f o r the Subadar-Major of a regiment. Good-conduct pay was i n t r o d u c e d i n 1837, and by 1886 amounted to 1, 2, or 3 rupees per month a f t e r three, s i x and ten y e a r s ' s e r v i c e r e s p e c t i v e l y . In 1876 a grant of 30 rupees was given on e n l i s t m e n t f o r purchase of c l o t h i n g , with 4 rupees "half-mounting," or k i t money a n n u a l l y f o r upkeep, r a i s e d to 5 rupees i n 1886. 3 1 116 By comparison, i n 1875 wages i n the Bombay co t t o n m i l l s , which a t t r a c t e d a l a r g e p r o p o r t i o n of t h e i r workers from the same d i s t r i c t s of the Konkan, Kolaba and R a t n a g i r i , as the army d i d , ranged from 5 to 6 rupees per month f o r boys, 7 to 8 rupees per month f o r c o o l i e s and c e r t a i n s e m i - s k i l l e d workers, to as h i g h as 50 rupees per month f o r mechanics. 4 The pay s c a l e f o r s o l d i e r s was t h e r e f o r e roughly comparable to that of c o t t o n m i l l workers. S o l d i e r s were p r o v i d e d with housing, medical care, and p a r t of t h e i r c l o t h i n g and food expenses, while m i l l hands had to p r o v i d e a l l of these f o r themselves. In a d d i t i o n , m i l l work was p h y s i c a l l y arduous and f r e q u e n t l y unhealthy. On the other hand, m i l l hands co u l d u s u a l l y o b t a i n leave on a r a t h e r generous b a s i s , and were f r e e to leave t h e i r employment whenever they chose, while s o l d i e r s were not. S o l d i e r s d i d get long f u r l o u g h s , and a f t e r 1885 were given f r e e r a i l w a y passes to go home, 5 but o n l y f i f t e e n per cent of the men of a regiment were u s u a l l y allowed f u r l o u g h i n a given year. The Governor-General, Lord D u f f e r i n , w r i t i n g i n 1885 to the S e c r e t a r y of S t a t e f o r I n d i a , Lord Randolph C h u r c h i l l , expressed the view (apparently accepted by the Commander-in-Chief, S i r Donald Stewart) that the sepoy's pay was no longer competitive with c i v i l i a n wages, or even with non-combatant r a t e s of pay, and that a r e g u l a r and adequate supply of new r e c r u i t s c o u l d t h e r e - f o r e not be counted upon. 6 Although improvements i n pay and emoluments were made i n accordance with D u f f e r i n ' s recommenda- t i o n s , the Mahabaleshwar Committee, meeting s e v e r a l years l a t e r t o d i s c u s s the r e o r g a n i z a t i o n of the Bombay Army, r e i t e r a t e d the 117 complaint that army pay was i n s u f f i c i e n t to a t t r a c t the "best m a t e r i a l . " 7 Army pay was adequate to a t t r a c t low-caste men, who might not have access to b e t t e r - p a y i n g c i v i l i a n jobs anyway, and f o r whom the h i g h e r s t a t u s of m i l i t a r y s e r v i c e was an important c o n s i d e r a t i o n . M o r r i s D. M o r r i s ' a n a l y s i s of wages and the supply of labour i n the Bombay c o t t o n m i l l s shows that wages rose very s l o w l y i n the p e r i o d 1875-1906, although the r a t e of employment rose very s h a r p l y , i n d i c a t i n g the a v a i l a b i l i t y of enough s u r p l u s labour to keep wages low. I t would appear that any manpower shortages encountered by the m i l i t a r y were not a b s o l u t e , but r e l a t i v e to the supply of men of h i g h e r - c a s t e , landowning fami- l i e s who were p r e f e r r e d as s o l d i e r s . 8 M o r r i s a l s o observed that i n 1872 and 1881 untouchables formed a much smal l e r p r o p o r t i o n of the m i l l labour f o r c e than of the p o p u l a t i o n of Bombay, and as l a t e as 1921 they were s t i l l not o v e r - r e p r e s e n t e d . ^ There i s some evidence that untouchables were d i s c r i m i n a t e d a g a i n s t by some mill-owners, and were l a r g e l y excluded from the h i g h e s t - p a i d jobs i n the weaving sheds, although there i s "the p o s s i b i l i t y t h a t the e x c l u s i o n of untouchables was not e n t i r e l y a c a s t e phenomenon but was a l s o a device to preserve the monopoly of p a r t i c u l a r l y advantageous but very l i m i t e d economic o p p o r t u n i t i e s a g a i n s t newcomers. A form of monetary reward f o r a small number of s o l d i e r s was the medal f o r g a l l a n t r y f o r long s e r v i c e and good conduct. The Order of B r i t i s h I n d i a was i n t r o d u c e d i n 1837 f o r long, f a i t h f u l and honourable s e r v i c e , and was given o n l y to n a t i v e 118 o f f i c e r s . The f i r s t c l a s s , awarded to Subadars and above, i n c l u d e d a s t i p e n d of two rupees per day and the t i t l e of " S i r d a r Bahadur." The second c l a s s Order of B r i t i s h I n d i a , a v a i l a b l e to Indian commissioned o f f i c e r s of a l l grades, had a s t i p e n d of one rupee per day and the t i t l e of "Bahadur." The Indian Order of M e r i t , the e q u i v a l e n t f o r Indians of the V i c t o r i a Cross, c o n f e r - red f o r conspicuous g a l l a n t r y i n the face of the enemy, was awarded i n three c l a s s e s : one act of bravery merited a t h i r d - c l a s s Order of M e r i t , a second earned the second-class, and a t h i r d e l e v a t e d the hol d e r to a f i r s t - c l a s s Order of M e r i t . The monthly allowance i n c r e a s e d a c c o r d i n g l y , from o n e - t h i r d of the b a s i c pay and pension of rank to double pay or pension f o r a f i r s t c l a s s Order of M e r i t . 1 1 In 1888, i n commemoration of Queen V i c t o r i a ' s Golden J u b i l e e (1887) long s e r v i c e and good conduct medals were i n t r o d u c e d f o r noncommissioned o f f i c e r s and other ranks. There were three d i f f e r e n t types of award. Each c a v a l r y and i n f a n t r y regiment i n the three Presidency Armies was allowed two medals f o r m e r i t o r i o u s conduct, with an annuity of 25 rupees, f o r D affadars and H a v i l d a r s . A f t e r the i n i t i a l grants were made, new medals c o u l d be awarded o n l y when a pr e v i o u s h o l d e r d i e d or was promoted or reduced i n rank. Each regiment was allowed a n n u a l l y two medals, i n s c r i b e d " f o r long s e r v i c e and good con- duct" and with a g r a t u i t y of 25 rupees each, to be granted to rank and f i l e o n l y . A f u r t h e r l o n g - s e r v i c e and good conduct medal without g r a t u i t y was allowed i n each regiment per year. The a n n u i t i e s payable i n the f i r s t i n s t a n c e were continued a f t e r d i s c h a r g e i n a d d i t i o n to p e n s i o n . 1 2 119 In the p e r i o d 1865-1885, approximately 122 n a t i v e o f f i c e r s of the Bombay Army ( r e t i r e d or s t i l l s e r v i n g ) h e l d the Order of B r i t i s h I n d i a . T h i s number i n c l u d e d one Mahar, one Mochi, and n i n e t e e n Bene I s r a e l . In 1890, the s e v e n t y - s i x members of the order i n c l u d e d f i v e Bene I s r a e l and two Mahars; by 1895 there were s i x Bene I s r a e l , but o n l y one Mahar (the other having p r e - sumably died.)13 Table VI, a p a r t i a l l i s t i n g of medals awarded between 1890 and 1900, shows Mahars g e t t i n g approximately one- f i f t h of them, about three times as many as t h e i r p r o p o r t i o n i n the army would suggest. T h i s might be accounted f o r p a r t l y by the f a c t that they were being c o m p u l s o r i l y r e t i r e d at a h i g h e r - than-normal r a t e at t h i s time, and few of the s o l d i e r s r e c r u i t e d i n t h e i r p l a c e would have q u a l i f i e d f o r l o n g - s e r v i c e medals. The o f f i c i a l records do i n d i c a t e t h at at l e a s t a few Mahars (and more than a few Bene I s r a e l , c o n s i d e r i n g t h e i r small t o t a l numbers) were able to earn the h i g h e s t honours a v a i l a b l e to Indian s o l d i e r s . The system of pensions, f i r s t i n t r o d u c e d i n 1796, was intended to reward long and f a i t h f u l s e r v i c e ; a sepoy served f o r t y years f o r f u l l pension, but might be i n v a l i d e d out on h a l f - pension a f t e r f i f t e e n y e a r s . 1 4 The system of pensions and other awards granted on o b j e c t i v e c r i t e r i a , r a t h e r than on an ad hoc b a s i s or by the whim of a commanding o f f i c e r , was an important p a r t of the p r o f e s s i o n a l i z a t i o n and modernization which d i s t i n - guished the B r i t i s h Indian Army from i t s predecessors. The pension system was reformed s e v e r a l times, and i n 1895, when most low-caste s o l d i e r s had a l r e a d y l e f t the s e r v i c e , the lower r a t e 120 TABLE VI MEDALS ISSUED TO BOMBAY ARMY, 1890-1900 Date Bene Awarded Mahars I s r a e l T o t a l Feb. M e r i t o r i o u s S e r v i c e 1 1 9 and with Annuity Sept. 1890 Long S e r v i c e & Good Conduct 27 2 122 with G r a t u i t y Long S e r v i c e & Good Conduct 3 _ 24 without G r a t u i t y June M e r i t . Svce. with Annuity 3 8 1893 L.S. & G.C. with G r a t u i t y 10 - 56 L.S. & G.C. without G r a t u i t y 5 - 18 A p r i l L.S. & G.C. with G r a t u i t y 11 1 55 1894 L.S. & G.C. without G r a t u i t y 3 — 21 A p r i l L.S. & G.C. with G r a t u i t y 7 1 54 1895 L.S. & G.C. without G r a t u i t y 2 — 18 A p r i l M e r i t ; Svce. with Annuity 1 10 1896 L.S. & G.C. with G r a t u i t y 14 1 49 L.S. & G.C. without G r a t u i t y 4 - 22 May M e r i t . Svce. with Annuity 2 8 1900 L.S. Se G.C. with G r a t u i t y 7 - 53 L.S. & G.C. without G r a t u i t y 2 - 20 SOURCE: Gazette of In d i a , M i l i t a r y Rewards L i s t s 121 of pension was granted a f t e r 21, and the hig h e r ( f u l l ) pension a f t e r 32 years' s e r v i c e . Men i n v a l i d e d out with l e s s than 21 ye a r s ' s e r v i c e r e c e i v e d e x t r a g r a t u i t i e s . ^ The b a s i c pension was approximately one h a l f the pay earned at the time of r e t i r e - ment. About 1860, a c c o r d i n g to m i l i t a r y records, men e n l i s t e d at somewhere between 18 and 22 years of age, served approximately 24 years on the average u n t i l they r e c e i v e d pensions, were pensioned o f f i n t h e i r middle to l a t e 40s, and c o l l e c t e d a pension f o r approximately 12 y e a r s . 1 6 The average amount of that pension was perhaps 5 or 6 rupees per month. In 1879, f o r example, there were 7,009 pensioners l i v i n g i n R a t n a g i r i d i s t r i c t , c o l l e c t i n g pensions t o t a l l i n g 454,520 rupees. T h i s t r a n s l a t e s to 65 rupees per year on the average. At the same time 5,599 men from R a t n a g i r i d i s t r i c t were on a c t i v e s e r v i c e i n the army, c o l l e c t i n g pay of approximately 580,000 rupees per year, f o r an average of 103 rupees per year, or about 8 1/2 rupees per month. 1 7 A p p r o x i - mately 16 per cent of the pensioners and 18 per cent of the s o l d i e r s on a c t i v e s e r v i c e were Mahars. Since the Mahars' were somewhat underrepresented at the higher ranks, i t i s pro b a b l y reasonable to suppose that they c o l l e c t e d about 14 to 15 per cent of the t o t a l pensions. T h i s would mean a t o t a l of about 68,000 rupees per year was being p a i d to the Mahar community of Ratnagi- r i d i s t r i c t i n the form of m i l i t a r y pensions, and about 87,000 rupees per year i n pay. Some p o r t i o n of m i l i t a r y pay probably found i t s way back to f a m i l i e s s t i l l r e s i d e n t i n R a t n a g i r i , but there i s no way of knowing how much t h i s might have been. T h i s i s not i n ab s o l u t e terms a huge sum of money, p a r t i c u l a r l y when 122 d i v i d e d over a l a r g e number of f a m i l i e s , but i t was important f o r a depressed community whose t r a d i t i o n a l recompense f o r s e r v i c e was i n k i n d , p a r t i c u l a r l y i n a d i s t r i c t which was poor, densely populated, and i n which cash income was r a t h e r low. The impact of t h i s s i z a b l e i n f l o w of cash to the Mahar community of Ratnagi- r i on the t r a d i t i o n a l s o c i a l order must have been s i g n i f i c a n t , s i n c e i t allowed f o r a degree of independence from the v i l l a g e a u t h o r i t i e s and from the dominant land-owning c a s t e s . The f a c t t h at, as w i l l be seen l a t e r , Mahar pensioners were able to defy v i l l a g e o f f i c i a l s on the i s s u e of s c h o o l i n g , suggests the impor- tance of t h i s degree of economic independence. Normally pensions were p a i d o n l y to s o l d i e r s , and when the s o l d i e r d i e d a f t e r r e t i r e m e n t h i s pension a l s o d i e d . However pensions were payable to f a m i l i e s under c e r t a i n circumstances. If a s o l d i e r d i e d of wounds, or of d i s e a s e c o n s i d e r e d to be caused by h i s m i l i t a r y s e r v i c e , h i s f a m i l y might be e l i g i b l e f o r a f a m i l y pension. I f the man was considered to have c o n t r i b u t e d to h i s own death by intemperate h a b i t s , such as e x c e s s i v e d r i n k - i n g or use of drugs, h i s death would not be considered s e r v i c e - r e l a t e d , and h i s f a m i l y would probably not get any pension. S o l d i e r s were a l s o r e q u i r e d to name t h e i r h e i r s , and i t appears t h a t many d i d not update t h i s p r o v i s i o n i n t h e i r r e c o r d s . A young man e n l i s t i n g would be l i k e l y to name h i s f a t h e r or mother as h i s h e i r ; i f he had a son, the son would most l i k e l y be h i s h e i r ; however, s o l d i e r s d i d not always change these p r o v i s i o n s to r e f l e c t change i n circumstances. There are a number of i n s t a n c e s of a widow, daughter, or mother of a deceased s o l d i e r p e t i t i o n i n g 123 to be named as h e i r , the nominated h e i r having predeceased the s o l d i e r , but such requests were seldom granted. The p o s i t i o n of government was c l e a r l y that a pension was i n no sense d e f e r r e d income, but was a b e n e f i t earned by long and. f a i t h f u l s e r v i c e . T h i s b e n e f i t was earned by the s o l d i e r h i m s e l f , and was t h e r e f o r e a v a i l a b l e to h i s f a m i l y o n l y i n the case of h i s death d i r e c t l y due to h i s m i l i t a r y employment. For example i n 1889, a Mahar, Jannac Bulnac, Bugler, of the 5th Bombay I n f a n t r y , d i e d of r e m i t - t e n t fever i n upper Burma. His nominated h e i r and son had a p p a r e n t l y d i e d . An a p p l i c a t i o n to t r a n s f e r h i s f a m i l y pension from the nominated h e i r to h i s daughter was r e f u s e d . ^ 8 In Feb- ruary of the same year Kasee, widow of the l a t e p r i v a t e Rughnac Downac of the 19th Bombay I n f a n t r y , a p p l i e d f o r a pension a f t e r her husband's death. He had d i e d a month a f t e r t r a n s f e r to the pension establishment, but again a f a m i l y pension was r e f u s e d . ^ On the other hand the records f o r January 1883 show two i n s t a n c e s of f a m i l y pensions granted to mothers of -deceased sepoys. Goonee, mother of the l a t e I t t n a c Gondnac, Tent Lascar, 16th Native I n f a n t r y , r e c e i v e d a f a m i l y pension of 2 rupees 6 annas a month, as a s p e c i a l case. Suggoomee, mother of l a t e Sepoy Jannac Goonac, 21st Regiment Bombay Na t i v e I n f a n t r y , who d i e d of fever c o n t r a c t e d on f o r e i g n s e r v i c e at Muscat, was granted an e x t r a o r - d i n a r y f a m i l y pension of 2 rupees 12 annas f o r l i f e or u n t i l r e m a r r i a g e . 2 0 The records note that such cases were r a r e and each should be c o n s i d e r e d on i t s own merits, but d i d not s p e c i f y why these pensions were granted while most were r e f u s e d . Very l i k e l y the deceased sons were the o n l y a d u l t males i n t h e i r 124 f a m i l i e s , thus l e a v i n g t h e i r widowed mothers e n t i r e l y without support. (Since the pensions were granted f o r l i f e or u n t i l remarriage, the women were presumably widows.) In another case, Sunttu, the widow of Subadar-Major Luximonmetter Mhadmetter, who d i e d i n the h o s p i t a l at Quetta of dysentery f i v e days a f t e r t r a n s f e r to the pension establishment, was granted a f a m i l y pension due to the very s h o r t i n t e r v a l between h i s r e t i r e m e n t and death, and the f a c t that he was a l r e a d y s u f f e r i n g from a s e r v i c e - r e l a t e d i l l n e s s of which he d i e d , at the time of h i s t r a n s f e r to pension.21 A r e t i r e d s o l d i e r had to stay out of t r o u b l e with the law, or r i s k l o s i n g h i s pension. A case i n p o i n t i s that of pensioned Sepoy Bhiknak Gopnak, a Mahar of the 21st Regiment Bombay Infan- t r y , who was granted a pension of R. 4 per mensem c. 15 May 1889. He was c o n v i c t e d i n June 1894 of "causing hurt r e s u l t i n g i n the death of one Malloo Govind" and was sentenced by the Bombay High Court to r i g o r o u s imprisonment f o r 12 months and a 200 rupee f i n e or 3 more months imprisonment i n d e f a u l t of f i n e ; he served 15 months and was r e l e a s e d August 24th, 1895. The q u e s t i o n was whether he was to be readmitted to the pension establishment and at the o r i g i n a l pension or a reduced r a t e ? The sepoy was i n f a c t granted a r e s t o r a t i o n of h i s f u l l pension a f t e r r e l e a s e from p r i s o n , but i t i s i n t e r e s t i n g t h a t there was no o b l i g a t i o n on government to continue the pension while he was i n j a i l . 2 2 There were a l s o cases of A f r i d i p ensioners, who on retirement had gone back to f a m i l i e s across the Indian border to l i v e i n t r i b a l t e r r i t o r y , being warned that they would l o s e t h e i r pensions i f 125 they continued d r i l l i n g t h e i r tribesmen i n m i l i t a r y t a c t i c s which presumably would be used a g a i n s t the B r i t i s h . 2 3 A m i l i t a r y pension was, a f t e r a l l , a reward f o r long and f a i t h f u l s e r v i c e ; a c o n t i n u a t i o n of good f a i t h was expected as a c o n d i t i o n of r e c e i p t of pension. In e s t a b l i s h i n g a system of m i l i t a r y pensions, a form of s e c u r i t y v i r t u a l l y unknown i n other forms of employment, the government sought both to make m i l i t a r y s e r v i c e a t t r a c t i v e and to encourage men to think of the army as a l i f e - t i m e c a r e e r . Long- s e r v i c e s o l d i e r s were the backbone of a t r a i n e d and d i s c i p l i n e d army, and the l o n g - s e r v i c e system minimized the number of ex- s o l d i e r s mixed i n t o the g e n e r a l p o p u l a t i o n . I t was a l s o u s e f u l as a means to secure the long-term l o y a l t y of men to whom no p a t r i o t i c appeals c o u l d be made; they were, a f t e r a l l , s e r v i n g a government which they had not chosen and which had no obvious c l a i m on t h e i r l o y a l t y . As the Superintendent of Pensions f o r Madras expressed i t ; In f o r m u l a t i n g a system f o r paying Native m i l i t a r y pen- s i o n e r s , the q u e s t i o n as to whether, a f t e r a n a t i v e s o l d i e r has served h i s time with the c o l o u r s , the S t a t e has any f u r t h e r i n t e r e s t i n t h a t man beyond the c o n s i d e r - a t i o n of paying him the s t i p e n d he has earned with the l e a s t p o s s i b l e t r o u b l e and expense, i s one s u r e l y worthy of c o n s i d e r a t i o n . . . . I would f u r t h e r submit that there i s d i r e c t and p r a c t i c a l advantage to the S tate i n l o o k i n g a f t e r the w e l f a r e of some 90,000 men who are s c a t t e r e d throughout the towns and v i l l a g e s of I n d i a , and the p i c t u r e of whose contentment and g e n e r a l s t a t e of w e l l - being i n t h e i r d e c l i n i n g years should m a t e r i a l l y a s s i s t r e c r u i t i n g , by o f f e r i n g p a l p a b l e evidence to the n a t i v e mind of the f o s t e r i n g care of the B r i t i s h Raj f o r a l l who have served her f a i t h f u l l y . 2 4 The p r o s pect of e arning a pension a f t e r twenty to f o r t y years may not have been a f a c t o r to most young men e n l i s t i n g i n 126 the army, but i t was doubtless a c o n s i d e r a t i o n i n keeping them there a f t e r a few y e a r s ' s e r v i c e . Even the very small pension of four rupees or so earned by a p r i v a t e or musician was, i n an underdeveloped economy where cash incomes were g e n e r a l l y very low, not to be scorned. Added to any income from other employ- ment, land, or v i l l a g e s e r v i c e , four rupees a month might make the d i f f e r e n c e between bare e x i s t e n c e and modest s e c u r i t y . A r e serve system was another means used by government to p r o v i d e a d d i t i o n a l s e c u r i t y f o r former s o l d i e r s and to i n c r e a s e m i l i t a r y e f f i c i e n c y at low c o s t . The e a r l i e s t type of m i l i t a r y r e s e r v e was the N a t i v e Veteran B a t t a l i o n , c o n s i s t i n g of sepoys who were s t i l l capable of l i g h t duty, but not e n t i t l e d to f u l l p e n s i o n . 2 5 From 1818 u n t i l i t s a b o l i t i o n i n the l a t e 1850s, the Veteran B a t t a l i o n was s t a t i o n e d at D a p o l i , the main m i l i t a r y s t a t i o n i n R a t n a g i r i D i s t r i c t . T h i s body of men performed a u s e f u l s e r v i c e d u r i n g the Indian Mutiny of 1857, when the Veteran B a t t a l i o n and m i l i t a r y pensioners c a l l e d back from r e t i r e m e n t performed v a r i o u s guard d u t i e s throughout the Konkan, such as a c t i n g as t r e a s u r y guards. T h i s f r e e d troops f i t f o r a c t i v e s e r v i c e f o r f i e l d s e r v i c e , l e a v i n g g a r r i s o n and guard d u t i e s to o l d e r or p a r t i a l l y d i s a b l e d men. The Veteran B a t t a l i o n a l s o p r o v i d e d a s o r t of halfway house f o r s o l d i e r s who were not e l i g i - b l e f o r pension, nor able to stand up to the r i g o r s of normal m i l i t a r y campaigning, but f i t enough f o r l i g h t d u t i e s . Given the l o c a t i o n of the Veteran B a t t a l i o n , and the p r o p o r t i o n of Mahars i n the Bombay Army, i t seems l i k e l y t h a t t h i s corps i n c l u d e d Mahar veterans. 127 The r e g u l a r army res e r v e , formed i n 1885 i n the Bengal Army and extended i n 1887 to the Madras and Bombay A r m i e s , 2 6 o f f e r e d a p o s s i b l e form of s e c u r i t y f o r former s o l d i e r s . However, reserve s e r v i c e was not very p o p u l a r . The system of regimental r a t h e r than t e r r i t o r i a l r e s e r v e s , chosen f o r s e c u r i t y reasons, was not a t t r a c t i v e , s i n c e i t r e q u i r e d r e s e r v i s t s to leave t h e i r homes and r e t u r n to t h e i r regiments (from which they were i n e f f e c t on long furlough) once every year or two. 2? T h i s was l i k e l y to i n t e r f e r e w ith r e g u l a r employment or a g r i c u l t u r a l work, as w e l l as domestic arrangements. While some Mahars may w e l l have served as r e s e r v - i s t s , i t seems u n l i k e l y t h a t very many d i d . A t h i r d measure employed by government to p r o v i d e s e c u r i t y to former s o l d i e r s , and a l s o to ensure the l o y a l t y of the army, was the establishment of v a r i o u s schemes to employ m i l i t a r y p e nsioners i n government p o s i t i o n s . Probably p r e f e r e n c e had always been given, i n an i n f o r m a l and unorganized way, to r e t i r e d s o l d i e r s and r e s e r v i s t s f o r employment i n government o f f i c e s and i n a p r i v a t e c a p a c i t y with British-owned f i r m s . However, i t was o n l y i n the mid-1880s that a formal s t r u c t u r e f o r encouraging the employment of pensioners and r e s e r v i s t s i n c i v i l c a p a c i t i e s , and making t h e i r names, addresses, and other data a v a i l a b l e to poten- t i a l employers, was adopted. By then, m i l i t a r y pay and pensions no longer compared very f a v o u r a b l y with pay f o r c i v i l i a n jobs and r e t i r e d s o l d i e r s no longer had the p r i v i l e g e s i n c i v i l l i f e t h a t they had once been able to c l a i m . Under the H.E.I.C. r u l e , sepoys had had s p e c i a l c o n s i d e r a t i o n and p r i v i l e g e s i n law c o u r t s ; these had disappeared with the annexation of Oudh and the 128 t r a n s f e r of p o l i t i c a l power to the Crown.28 As B r i t i s h r u l e was c o n s o l i d a t e d , the s p e c i a l r e l a t i o n s h i p of the sepoy with the r u l i n g c l a s s became l e s s s p e c i a l ; other Indians found niches i n the a d m i n i s t r a t i o n and developed ways and means to improve t h e i r s t a t u s . P r e f e r e n t i a l access to government employment, t h e r e f o r e , would be a compensation f o r the reduced p r i v i l e g e s of m i l i t a r y p ensioners i n other r e s p e c t s . At l e a s t three methods were used to a s s i s t m i l i t a r y pen- s i o n e r s i n f i n d i n g c i v i l employment. These were: advertisements i n the government C i v i l and M i l i t a r y Gazette; employment r e f e r - ences to c i v i l and m i l i t a r y a u t h o r i t i e s ; and a system of employment agencies operated i n c o n j u n c t i o n with, and by the same personnel as, the m i l i t a r y pension system. The f i r s t of these methods, although simple and inexpensive to use, was probably not very e f f e c t i v e , s i n c e h i r i n g f o r many l o w e r - l e v e l jobs was i n the hands of Indian subordinate o f f i c i a l s , who had to be persuaded to h i r e o u t s i d e t h e i r own c i r c l e of r e l a t i o n s and needy dependents, a p o i n t noted by the Superintendent of M i l i t a r y Pensions i n Madras, L i e u t e n a n t - C o l o n e l L e i g h - H u n t . 2 9 The second, although again simple and inexpensive, probably was very e r r a t i c i n i t s u s e f u l n e s s . Some c i v i l and m i l i t a r y a u t h o r i t i e s would take much more i n t e r e s t than others i n the w e l f a r e of m i l i t a r y pensioners r e s i d i n g i n t h e i r j u r i s d i c t i o n s , so whether or not a pensioner d e s i r i n g employment would be able to get a s s i s t a n c e would depend very much on the i n t e r e s t and c a p a b i l i t i e s of the c i v i l a u t h o r i - t i e s to whom he might apply. The t h i r d and most s u c c e s s f u l was the method i n t r o d u c e d i n Madras p r e s i d e n c y by S i r F r e d e r i c k 129 Roberts ( l a t e r Lord Roberts of Kandahar). Roberts's scheme was i n t r o d u c e d i n the Madras p r e s i d e n c y i n l a t e 1885, and depended f o r i t s success upon the system of pay- ment of m i l i t a r y pensions e x i s t i n g i n that p r e s i d e n c y . The p l a n was l i m i t e d to a s s i s t i n g m i l i t a r y pensioners to o b t a i n employment with r a i l w a y s . T h i s scheme was reasonably s u c c e s s f u l ; four years a f t e r i t began, of 22,035 pensioners i n the Madras p r e s i d e n c y 3,455, or almost 16 per cent, were employed. Of these, 592 were employed on r a i l w a y s i n v a r i o u s c a p a c i t i e s . Although at an i n i t i a l disadvantage because of t h e i r lack of i n f l u e n c e with the l o c a l r a i l w a y subord