Siege of Cawnpore

700 WordsApr 23, 20193 Pages
The Siege of Cawnpore was an important part of the Indian rebellion of 1857.When Nana Sahib captured Cawnpore (now Kanpur) British forces surrendered to him and in turn he promised them a safe passage to Allahabad. Unfortunately their evacuation had turned into a massacre during which most of them were killed. It was indeed an unpleasant event of siege of Kanpur. Kanpur was an important garrison town situated on the Grand Trunk Road and Grand Trunk Canal beside the river Ganges and lay on the approaches to Punjab, Sind and Oudh provinces. In 1857, British ruled two thirds of India through East India Company. The remaining part of the country was under the control of Princes with whom the British had an alliance. The year 1857 was an…show more content…
During siege the British felt that the magazine situated in the northern part of Cawnpore was the most suitable defensive place for them to stay. It had thick walls, ample ammunition and stores and also hosted the local treasury. But General Wheeler decided to take refuge in the southern part of the city, in an entrenchment that was composed of two barracks surrounded by a mud wall. This area didn’t have proper sanitary facilities. It had only one well. There were several buildings overlooking the entrenchment which would provide cover for the attackers. There were many other safe places in Cawnpore but General Wheeler's choice of choosing this place stands still controversial. He might have expected the reinforcements to arrive from the southern part of the city. He might have also assumed that, in case of a rebellion, the Indian troops would probably collect their arms, ammunition and money and would head to Delhi and therefore, he did not expect such a long siege. After three weeks of siege, the British started facing the difficulties. The summers were very hot. Many died due to sunstroke. They were short of ammunition as they had to face successive bombardments, snip fire and assaults from Nana Sahib’s side. Their food supplies were getting exhausted and they had to face starvation. People were becoming sick and they were deprived of medical facilities. In such a situation

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