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The history of one of the ten Gurkha regiments during the Great War and on the frontiers of India before and after the war. The 2nd Battalion served on the Western Front, the 1st in Mesopotamia and Persia. With Honours and Awards, casualties and a succession of Commanding Officers.
This is the second of a three-volume Regimental history and is concerned principally with the 1st and 2nd Battalions (1/2nd GR, 2/2nd GR) during the Great War. In the summer of 1917 the Regiment formed a third battalion (3/2nd GR), which was disbanded in 1920 without going overseas on active service, although it was involved in internal security in Peshawar. The book is arranged in two parts, Part I is entitled France, Egypt, North-West Frontier and runs from 1911 to1920; curiously no reference is made in the title to the North East Frontier where the 1st Battalion was engaged in a punitive expedition against the Abor tribesmen in the region of Assam in 1911, an operation described in the first two chapters. Part II covers Mesopotamia and North Persia (1914 to 1920). There are twenty-two chapters in all, numbered in unbroken sequence through both parts, the first thirteen make up Part I Each chapter covers a specified time period, which is the chapter title together with the relevant sketch number(s), and under it are summarised the contents, in considerable detail. Apart from the opening two chapters, Part I is the story of the 2nd Battalion on the Western front, where it served with the Dehra Dun Brigade, (7th) Meerut Division of the Indian Corps from October 1914 to November 1915 when the Indian divisions were withdrawn from France. It returned to India in February 1916 and subsequently was engaged in the 3rd Afghan War in 1919. Part II describes the activities of the 1st Battalion in Mesopotamia, where it arrived (at Basra) in February 1916, moving into Persia in May 1918. A number of appendices include Honours and Awards to officers and men with citations; casualty lists; text of congratulatory messages to 2/2nd Battalion during their services in France and on the NWF of India and other messages/letters; list of battalion COs and their services during the Great War and of officers detached from the Regiment during the war; list of Indian Army Reserve Officers attached to the Regiment and, most important, fortunes of the Regiment in Polo tournaments since 1894 and football successes. There is plenty of action in this narrative, supported by good maps, interesting photographs and a welcome profusion of names of officers and men, a most important feature of any regimental history. Unfortunately it does not have an index. Finally, the spelling ‘Goorkha’ is peculiar to this regiment and quite unofficial; this was the spelling for Gurkha regiments till 1891 when it was changed to ‘Gurkha.’ The 2nd, however, continued to refer to itself as ‘Goorkha’; not for nothing was the regiment known as ‘God’s Own’.
Reprint of the 1924 original edition.
  • AUTHOR: Shakespear, L W
  • FORMAT: 246pp 17 dwgs Pb
  • Code: 22471

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