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Excerpt from "Our bones are scattered"

From - "Our bones are scattered - The Cawnpore massacres and the Indian Mutiny of 1757" by Andrew Ward, published by John Murray, 1996.

(1) Page 134 quotes from Helena Angelo's Diary.

(2) Pages 338 & 339

"During the attack on the boats Captain Frederick Angelo, 312 the newly arrived superintendent of the Canal Department who had managed to get his pregnant wife and two daughters out of Cawnpore on the eve of the siege, succeeded in swimming across the river and hiding in the reeds until nightfall.313 Stripping down to a waist cloth, Angelo darted along a series of ravines, trying to make his way north towards Lucknow, when villagers surrounded him and took him to their landlord. The villagers gave him sugar and watched as he greedily devoured it 'with both hands.'314

The landlord took pity on Angelo and promised to take him to Lucknow. But word of the feringhee's capture quickly spread, and on June 28 a party of sepoys arrived at the landlord's village to lay claim to him. The landlord refused to break his word to Angelo, but then more rebel zemindars descended on the village, overpowering his matchlockmen, and took Angelo to Baba Bhutt, who ordered him cut down on the spot. His rebel captors refused unless the captain was himself armed. 'Our creed does not permit us to kill a bound prisoner,' one of the matchlockmen explained, 'though we can slay our enemy in battle.'315

'Let him strike us,' another suggested, 'and then we will strike him in return, but we will not strike him in his present condition.' A sower put an end to this impasse by striking Angelo on the arm, whereupon the jullads 'laid on with their swords, and he was despatched.'316

That day Angelo's pregnant wife, Helena, and his two little girls were safely sailing for Calcutta in the rain; it was a Sunday, and the passengers held a service. 'My dear Fred,' Helena wrote in her diary, 'I wonder whether my prayers have been answered and you spared in all these dangers !'317 Two hundred miles away up river her husband's slashed corpse floated after her down the Ganges.318"

RFM Kanpur 12/96

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