Lot Archive


№ 192


27 September 1994

Hammer Price:

The Indian Mutiny medal awarded to Allan Octavian Hume, Magistrate and Collector at Etawah, from which place he repulsed the rebel Prince Feroz Shah and was rewarded with a C.B.

INDIAN MUTINY 1857-58, no clasp (A.O. Hume) very fine

Ex. Jack Wadey Collection.

Allan Octavian Hume was born in 1829, educated at Haileybury and entered the Bengal Civil Service in 1849. He was appointed Magistrate and Collector at Etawah in March 1858, and was soon involved against the rebels at Silawa in May, his report of the action being published in the London Gazette on 17 September 1858.

On the 8th December he came to prominence for his action against the force of Feroz Shah, one of the Delhi Princes. The following narrative of the action is taken from a contemporary report: 'From the Doab we have further details of Mr.Hume's action with Feroze Shah, and feel it to be a duty to draw attention to the remarkable spirit and energy of that gentleman, which ought certainly to secure for him some mark of approbation of Government. It appears that with but 250 foot police and 150 horsemen, all new levies, who had never seen a shot fired, he boldly moved out to save the loyal zemindar of Hurchandpore from the attack of Feroze Shah's troops. These troops, all disciplined men, outnumbered Mr. Hume's little column five to one, and quite outflanked and would have surrounded it. It was then that Lieut. Doyle, with the greatest gallantry, sacrificed his life, leading his thin troop of horsemen against ten times their number. He fell in the charge, and, discouraged by the death of their leader, his men, all but about twenty, turned rein and fled. Of those who stood their ground, the greater part were soon killed or wounded, and the powerful cavalry of the enemy, 1,500 strong, then charged Mr. Hume's foot police. Five times they came up to the muzzles of the guns, and were as often broken by the steady fire of these new levies, and on making a sixth and last attempt, such a withering volley was thrown in upon them that they drew off altogether in confusion. As this is the third time that Mr. Hume has commanded against a powerful enemy, and on each occasion with the greatest honour to himself and to our arms, we earnestly hope he will be recommended for some distinction.'

Hume's reward came in 1860 when he was made a Companion of the Bath. His subsequent appointments included Commissioner of Customs, Secretary to Government of India, and member of the Board of Revenue, N.W. Province of India. He retired in 1882 and before his death in 1912 published several works on Ornithology. Sold with further research.