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30th Lancers[Gordon's Horse]


Guest Balbir
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I have started researching the family tree and come across my grandfather's war medals. On the back of his 1914-1915 Star Medal it is inscribed

No: 2056

L. DR. NAHAR SINGH

30/ Lncrs

What does L. DR. stand for? Is it lance Duffadar - lance corporal.

30/LNCRS - I believe to be 30th Lancers [Gordon's Horse]

Does any one know when did this cavalry unit come to France from India and which campaigns did it take part in? What were the Cavalry Colours and uniform?

Thanks

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Any of the Indian Army histories will give you the deployment dates and organizations of the 30th Lancers. Cox says Western Front and India. Check the OB for assignments.

They had no battle honors.

At the start of the war, they were cantoned in Ambala amd comprised two squadrons of Sikhs, one of Jats and one of Hindustani Muslims. Review Order: Rifle green kurtas with no facings or piping. Scarlet cummerbund, white trousers, rifle green puttees. Turban was rifle green with white and dark blue stripes on the light blue part and a white kullah.

Service dress would be khaki...kurta, trousers, puttees, turban, etc with brown leather bandoleer cavalry equipment. (Nevins) SMLE carried in rifle bucket.

Hope this helps...

DrB

:rolleyes:

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What does L. DR. stand for? Is it lance Duffadar - lance corporal.

30/LNCRS - I believe to be 30th Lancers [Gordon's Horse]

Balbir

Yes, in both cases.

Ron

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The 30th Lancers were first raised in 1826 as the 4th regiment of Nizam's Cavalry (in Hyderabad), by Sir John Gordon, Bt, late of the Coldstream Guards. In 1854 they became the 4th Cavalry, Hyderbad Contingent, having spent the intervening years on campaign in Central India against various bands of marauders.

They stayed loyal during the Mutiny and spent the period on campaign, though with no specific Battle Honours.

In 1890 they became the 4th Lancers, Hyderbad Contingent, and in 1903, the 30th Lancers (Gordon's Horse).

On 5th October, 1914, the 30th left their station at Amballa, sailing from Bombay for France, where they arrived on 11th November. Amballa Brigade, 2nd Indian Cavalry Division (with the 8th King's Royal irish Hussars and the 9th Hodson's Horse).

They served with the Indian Corps throughout ti's time in France, finally leaving for the Frontier on the break-up of the Indian Cavalry Corps.

They then went to Iraq in 1920, returning to Peshawar and amalgamation with the 26th King George's Own Light Cavalry, to form the 8th King George V's Own Light Cavalry.

The 1901 composition of the regiment was Sikhs, Jats and Hindustani Mussulmans (Moslems).

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Thank you very much for your help. I am planning to reasearch more into the matter and would appreciate any suggestions.

I met my grandfather as a 6 year old on a visit to India in 1958. He used to talk of scavenging/ bartering for food during the cold winter months in France and could still speak few words in french.

After 3 years in the trenches he got severe frost bite and was told by the surgeons that his feet would need to be amputated. He argued with them successfully not to do so but to send him back to India. He lost his toe nails but by the troop ship had reached Aden he said that the circulation had improved so that surgery was no longer contemplated. he died at a ripe old age of 100 in 1978.

Can i call on your expertise in the future to check the information that i may unearth?

Thanks

Balbir

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A useful start point is Gordon Corrigan's Sepoys in the Trenches, which covers the Indian Corps in France; sadly it doesn't go beyond the departure of the Infantry Divisions - the Cavalry stayed until 1917.

A book I have always liked, as a general background history of the Indian Army and it's ethos, is A Matter of Honour by Philip Mason - published a few years ago (my copy cost 84 shillings....Four Guineas, eh!), but a good, thoughtful book.

I'm afraid I have no idea if the 30th had a Regimental History.

Thanks for the PM - good luck.

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  • 1 year later...

Balbir,

I have the history of Gordon's Horse will check it for you over the weekend. Will also let you when they served each year from 1914. What are the medals in addition to the 1914-15 Star?

As ever,

Sushil

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  • 6 years later...
  • 2 years later...
Quote

 

Hi

Can anyone help me with further information about the 30th Lancers? 

 

The composition of the 30th Lancers was 2 squadrons of Sikhs, 1 of Jats and 1 of Hindustani Musalmans. In the war diaries of the 30th Lancers, the squadrons are mentioned as A,B,C & D. It says A+D squadrons embarked from Bombay on H.T. Ventura and squadrons B+ C embarked on H.T. Locksley Hall.

 

Has anyone got information regarding A,B,C & D squadrons composition as to which of these were Jats, Sikhs or Musalmans? 

 

Thanks for your help

Balbir

Edited by Guest
spelling mistake
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  • 5 months later...

My great grandfather and grandfather ( Village Narwar, Lahore ) served in the British Indian Army. Unfortunately my great grandfather died at the turn of the century , and my grandfather in 1946. My father was only 12 years old then. We lost everything , including medals, citations, photographs etc, when India was partitioned. We have nothing to remember our forefathers by.

I'm searching for my great grandfather Pal Singh, who served in the 4th Lancers Hyderabad Contingent (Earlier known as 4th Regiment Nizam's Cavalry and 4th Cavalry Hyderabad Contingent) . My great grandfather finds mention on page 56  of Maj EAW Stotherd's 'History of the thirtieth Lancers - Gordon's Horse'.
 An excerpt
"The govt transport mules were mobilized in September 1897 for service on the North West Frontier. Duffadar Govind Rao , Lance Duffadar Pal Singh and Sowar Shekh Myboob  went. They took part in the operations on the Samana, in Tirah, the march down Bara Valley, reopening of the Khyber , and other expeditions. They all returned on 27th April 1898".

 

Duffadar Govind Rao ( who was with my great grandfather in the above mentioned operations ) was awarded  
 1. North West Frontier of India 1897-98 Operations on the Samana,and in the Kurram valley : Medal 
      with two clasps. 
2. Tirah 1897-98 : clasp 


So, I'm sure my great grandfather would also have got these awards.

 

I would like to know when my great grandfather was commissioned, his war service, photographs (if any) , grants of land, when and how he died, and how much pension he got.

 

 

My grandfather Risaldar Kapur Singh (30th lancers ) , was commissioned in his father's regiment on 1 Oct 1911 and took part in WW1 
His war service
The war  of 1914- 1921 -Operations in France and Belgium 10 Oct 1914 -1 Aug 1916
Operations against Mohmands 30 Sept 1916 - 4 Nov 1916.
Afghanistan NWF - 6th May 1919 - 8th Aug 1919  IDSM
Iraq 1920 - 21

I would like to know more about his war service as well, including photographs , citations  and pension etc.

 

This forum has been quite informative. Sushil Talwar has helped to put things in perspective . Balbir, the information you shared about the ships is an added bonus.
 

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A most useful reference book for Indian Army in the Great War is: SEPOYS AND SOWARS IN THE GREAT WAR- Indian Cavalry and Infantry Regiments ( author Ashok Nath, a former Indian cavalry officer and academic ). Covers brief services, battle honours and insignia of all the above, also very useful introductory chapters and appendix.1554457954_Sowars--Sepoys-BookCover.jpg.a9d3c5322810519369c01c667070961b.jpg

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On 21/04/2019 at 03:10, T Dhillon said:

My great grandfather and grandfather ( Village Narwar, Lahore ) served in the British Indian Army.

...

I would like to know when my great grandfather was commissioned, his war service, photographs (if any) , grants of land, when and how he died, and how much pension he got.

 

 

My grandfather Risaldar Kapur Singh (30th lancers ) , was commissioned in his father's regiment on 1 Oct 1911 and took part in WW1 
His war service
The war  of 1914- 1921 -Operations in France and Belgium 10 Oct 1914 -1 Aug 1916
Operations against Mohmands 30 Sept 1916 - 4 Nov 1916.
Afghanistan NWF - 6th May 1919 - 8th Aug 1919  IDSM
Iraq 1920 - 21

I would like to know more about his war service as well, including photographs , citations  and pension etc.

 

 

I am not aware of any sources which would enable you to find out more about your great grandfather, who was a non commissioned officer, equivalent to a corporal, at the time he was mentioned in the regimental history, other than perhaps the Gazette of India, mentioned below.

 

For your grandfather, who was a commissioned officer, you could look at the record sources mentioned on the FIBIS Fibiwiki page Indian Army.  https://wiki.fibis.org/w/Indian_Army  While this page was written mainly about researching  British members of the Indian Army, some of the sources will also apply to Indian Officers.

 

You could try the National Archives in Delhi, but most likely they won't have anything. Firstly, because they don't seem to have much, if anything, from the WW1 period, and secondly at this time British Officers were given their service file when they resigned or died, and perhaps this same practice was also followed with Indian Officers.

 

I think the most likely record sources would be Indian Army Lists, some of which are available online. 

The London Gazette, available online, could be a source, but I'm not sure if Indian Officers were included.

The Gazette of India would be a source. Some editions are available online, however the editions I have looked at it has been very difficult to find anything , and the Search within the volumes has not been very good.

More about these sources can be seen in the link https://wiki.fibis.org/w/Indian_Army#Online_records

 

For general information, there are also FIBIS Fibiwiki pages, with links to online books, such as 

 Western Front  https://wiki.fibis.org/w/Western_Front

North West Frontier Campaigns https://wiki.fibis.org/w/North_West_Frontier_Campaigns

3rd Afghan War https://wiki.fibis.org/w/3rd_Afghan_War

Mesopotamia Campaign https://wiki.fibis.org/w/Mesopotamia_Campaign includes some  (limited) information about the 1920s

 

Cheers

Maureen

 

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Thank you ever so much Maureen . You've been very helpful  with the links. I'll be trawling the net to search for my great grandfather. I did find some mention of my grandfather...he played polo and also went on hunts in Mesopotamia .

 

 

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On 24/04/2019 at 12:21, piffer said:

A most useful reference book for Indian Army in the Great War is: SEPOYS AND SOWARS IN THE GREAT WAR- Indian Cavalry and Infantry Regiments ( author Ashok Nath, a former Indian cavalry officer and academic ). Covers brief services, battle honours and insignia of all the above, also very useful introductory chapters and appendix.1554457954_Sowars--Sepoys-BookCover.jpg.a9d3c5322810519369c01c667070961b.jpg

I've put in a request for the book in our  local library. Thank you .

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  • 3 months later...
Quote
On 26/10/2007 at 23:57, Guest Balbir said:

No: 2056

L. DR. NAHAR SINGH

30/ Lncrs

 

 

On a recent visit to India, I came across information that when in 1900 my grandfather joined the army he was in 3rd Lancers Hyderabad contingent which I believe was disbanded in 1903. On page 59 of the book "History of the Thirtieth Lancers Gordon's Horse" , it mentions that the Sikh Squadron of the 3rd Lancers Hyderabad contingent was transferred to the 30th Lancers to bring it to strength of four squadrons. 

While looking at the casualty lists in the war diaries of 30th Lancers, it comes across that A and D squadrons were made up of Jatt Sikhs. It is most likely that "D" squadron of the 30th Lancers was the Sikh squadron that had been transferred over from the 3rd Lancers in 1903.

 

The above would tie in with the new information and my grandfather's medals.

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  • 1 year later...
On 26/04/2019 at 16:49, T Dhillon said:

Thank you ever so much Maureen . You've been very helpful  with the links. I'll be trawling the net to search for my great grandfather. I did find some mention of my grandfather...he played polo and also went on hunts in Mesopotamia .

 

 

Hello friends

I have gone through all the healthy & valuable informative discussion regarding 30th Lancers Gordon's Horse and want to add one more story. My grandfather  NORUNG SINGH SIROHI also served as a Dafadar in this unit during great war of 1914 and he was also a very good Polo player of his time. He was awarded  a  Gallantry award to be known as "JANGI- INAAM" for distinguished service during WW1 . (Attaching a copy of the same. ) . Unfortunately I don't have any of his photo in uniform. I Tribute to all such brave persons of my grandfather's generation. 

N. S. Sirohi

 

IMG_20210202_204141.jpg

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17 hours ago, N S Sirohi said:

Hello friends

I have gone through all the healthy & valuable informative discussion regarding 30th Lancers Gordon's Horse and want to add one more story. My grandfather  NORUNG SINGH SIROHI also served as a Dafadar in this unit during great war of 1914 and he was also a very good Polo player of his time. He was awarded  a  Gallantry award to be known as "JANGI- INAAM" for distinguished service during WW1 . (Attaching a copy of the same. ) . Unfortunately I don't have any of his photo in uniform. I Tribute to all such brave persons of my grandfather's generation. 

N. S. Sirohi

 

 

Thank you for sharing that: very interesting document.

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5 minutes ago, Steven Broomfield said:

Thank you for sharing that: very interesting document.

Thanks Steven

Regards🙏

Sirohi

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16 minutes ago, Steven Broomfield said:

Thank you for sharing that: very interesting document.

Hi Steven

Can you help me  in finding any mention of my grandfather in war diaries or else where

Regards

Sirohi

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3 hours ago, N S Sirohi said:

Hi Steven

Can you help me  in finding any mention of my grandfather in war diaries or else where

Regards

Sirohi

 

Sirohi, sadly not. It is worth seeing if the War Diaries are available at the National Archive at Kew (almost certainly not available except in print form; I don't think they would have been digitised), but it is not common to see Indian other ranks mentioned by name (it's the same with British other ranks). I am afraid I don't know if or where service records might survive. There was also no regimental history for the Great War period so all in all it's difficult to see where you might go.

 

Probably trying to find any service record is best, but not sure where to suggest looking.

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1 hour ago, Steven Broomfield said:

 

Sirohi, sadly not. It is worth seeing if the War Diaries are available at the National Archive at Kew (almost certainly not available except in print form; I don't think they would have been digitised), but it is not common to see Indian other ranks mentioned by name (it's the same with British other ranks). I am afraid I don't know if or where service records might survive. There was also no regimental history for the Great War period so all in all it's difficult to see where you might go.

 

Probably trying to find any service record is best, but not sure where to suggest looking.

OK, dear

It's all right

Regards

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