Hidden among Calcutta’s by-lanes just across the Presidency college is India’s oldest repository of colonial records from 1758 till post 1947. The West Bengal state archives at 6, Bhawani Dutta lane is a treasure trove of information on civil, military and secret correspondence emanating from and received at Fort St. William in Calcutta which was the capital of the brightest of the British jewels – her Indian colony.
In there, enclosed in annual hard bound volumes lie over a century of correspondence between Tipu Sultan’s sons’ and extended family in Russapaglah, then a malarious swampy suburb of Calcutta (now the most fashionable Tollygunj) with their British ‘benefactors’ or ‘captors’ at Fort St. William, from where colonial India was administered. Today there are no less than 30 members belonging to Tipu Sultan’s family living in Calcutta and their forefathers were the first Mysoreans in Calcutta. Among them are several who live in abject poverty and the spirit of Tipu is all what sustains them even if two of his heirs take up plying rickshaws for making both the ends meet. While there have been more than one attempt to rehabilitate them by governments in Karnataka of all political hues, no outcome has come yet of these attempts and the families still carry on with their lives there. It was during the time that I had spent here attempting to use information from the archives to document the lives of the Princes’ in Calcutta that my attention was drawn to some letters referring to the Princes from an earlier and lesser known period of their lives spent at Vellore, a bustling town in Tamil Nadu state in South India today. It is my attempt here to provide to the reader an account of the circumstances behind the presence and the lives of the Mysore family during the period of their stay here. I will be narrating from primary accounts left behind by English visitors as well as reference to the family from other contemporary sources and introducing the readers to the treasure trove of underutilized information that may be gleaned from all the family correspondence still hidden away in the archives in Calcutta.
Soon after Seringapatam fell on May 4 1799, Lord Wellesley ordered the removal of Tipu’s family from Mysore, “with the least practicable injury to their feelings”, so that the Mysorean populace was prevented from rallying around the heirs of their late ruler. Lord Wellesley, in his letter dated 4th June 1799 exactly a month after Tipu’s death wrote – “As soon as you shall judge that your arrangements with the remnant of the Mussulmen interest are in sufficient forwardness, you will proceed to take the necessary measures for removing the family of the Sultan…….I have appointed Lieut. Colonel Doveton to take the command of the fortress of Vellore, which is destined for the future residence of the Sultan’s family….After their arrival, no reasonable expense will be spared to render their habitation suitable to their former rank and expectations; and it is my intention to give them a liberal pecuniary allowance…The females and children of the several families must follow the princes as speedily as possible…” The four elder princes of Tipu – Fath Haidar, Abdul Khaliq, Moyinuddin and Mohiuddeen, with their respective families, crossed the Kaveri river and proceeded on their march to Vellore on the morning of 19th June 1799.
Of the four princes, this departure would have been especially poignant to Fath Haidar and Abdul Khaliq. Fath Haidar was Tipu’s eldest son, almost 30 years old then though not born of a senior wife was widely seen as successor to Mysore’s throne. Shahzada Fath Haidar ‘Bahadur’ had distinguished himself even at the age of 19 when he decimated an army led by the Nizam’s confidant Hafiz Fariduddin near Adhoni and recaptured Gurramkonda for Mysore from the Nizam. At the death of Tipu he was away in the field and as the contemporary Mysorean chronicler Kirmani wrote – “persuaded by many of his confidantes to continue the struggle against the English as Tipu’s former servants still held control over most of Mysore’s strong cities and forts and that his army with all its stores and artillery was still a potent force. However, deceived by the conciliatory message of Commander in Chief of the Bombay army, Maj. Gen. Harris, and the assurances of some of his officers that the victors would restore to him his fathers’ kingdom, he did not take up arms and threw himself on the mercy of the English.” Sadly for him, things did not turn out as expected as Lord Wellesley was adamant that having a descendant of Tipu on the throne of Mysore would always be dangerous for the British and instead he raised a young boy Prince from the old Wodeyar royalty to be the new King, Mummadi Krishnaraja Wodeyar. Fath Haidar was left high and dry and this would singe him as long as he lived. Abdul Khaliq about 18 years then, was along with Prince Muizuddin among the two sons of Tipu offered upto the British in 1792 as hostages to guarantee the terms of the treaty signed after Mysore’s defeat in the 3rd Anglo Mysore war. Just 7 years ago, Abdul Khaliq would have watched from his silver howdah on an elephant, his father the Sultan staring at his sons from a rampart on the fort, leaving Seringapatam on way to the British camp outside. He was now departing from his beloved country not as a hostage who would return but as a defeated Prince being sent away forever. The Princes with their families arrived at Vellore on the 12th of July, 1799.
Their time in Vellore would have gone undocumented had it not been for a visitor. Henrietta Antonia Clive, Countess of Powis (1758 – 1830) was a British mineral collector and botanist. She married Lord Robert Clive’s (of Plassey fame) eldest son and heir Edward Clive and in 1798, accompanied him to India when he was appointed Governor of Madras by the East India Company. Having been confined to Madras for the duration of the final Mysore campaign and following every development with bated breath, her diary is witness to the importance that the British placed on the destruction of their most formidable enemy. Immediately following the battle, plans had been made for Lord Mornington (Wellesley) and Lord Clive to travel to Seringapatam, with Henrietta to follow later. However at the last moment, Lord Clive decided that they would remain in Madras for the victory celebration and the trip to Seringapatam was foregone altogether.Lady Henrietta was not one to give up so easily and she remained quite fixated upon visiting Seringapatam. A letter to her mother in law dated August 9th, 1799 has her speaking of “You have heard of all our victories in this country, I am almost tired of hearing of Tipu Sultan and all belonging to him. People think of nothing but pearls and emeralds. All the officers send heaps to their wives….” Finally on March 4, 1800 Lady Henrietta started on her journey to Mysore accompanied by her 2 daughters, her artist friend and daughters’ governess Signora Tonelli and others on palanquins accompanied by a train of draught animals which included fourteen elephants !
On March 15th 1800, the party of travelers crossed Arcot and entered Vellore. At the entrance of the town, she writes of being waited upon by Col Doveton who met her there upon an elephant. He took the entourage to rest for the night at his country house outside the fort at Vellore. She mentions “Col Doveton having the charge of Tipu’s four sons cannot sleep out of the fort.” This also means that even though over eight months had elapsed since the four Princes had reached Vellore the rest of Tipu’s sons were still not here. The next morning she saw a palace which was the building for Tipu’s and Haidar’s wives. They were allowed two apartments each, besides a verandah. She mention of Col Doveton establishing a school for the four Princes who were to study there along with the children of the soldiers of the Scotch brigade garrisoning the fort.
She writes – “I breakfasted at the commanding officer’s house, and afterwards the Princes came to see me. Moyen Uddeen and Mousa Uddeen came from their house opposite on horseback; the countenance of the latter, the Padshaw is extremely interesting; there is a great appearance of gentleness in his countenance. I understand that col. Wellesley was much pleased with his manners at Seringapatam. His brother’s appearance was quite different; his spirited and even fears eyes were extremely expressive of his character, which is violated cruel. He has great pleasure in meeting his servants and tormenting animals; once he had a horse rubbed over with gunpowder, and then set on fire. Col. Doveton has been under the necessity on interfering on many occasion, not always with proper effect. …… A short time after they came, Abdul Khaliq arrived who is illegitimate, his mother having been a slave; the other brothers look upon him with great contempt; of course, I got to receive him, and his brothers did the same but they said to Col. Doveton afterwards, that they should not have done so, if I had not thought he was their elder brother. He has a most sulky countenance, and really the appearances of a slave, unlike the general countenances of the Mussalmans; he was more dressed than the other being in silver muslin with a red and gold turban. The Padshaw has not owned any turban, only a shawl twisted round his head, since the death of his father which with them is a sign of mourning……. The mothers of both the young princess were of high cast; one of them (the Padshaw’s ) is dead.
After they were gone, Futteh Haidar came; he had never been in any English house, or seen any English women, and had not till that morning expressed that he wished to pay his respect to me. Futteh Haider is said to be very likely to his father, indeed he resembles all the drawings I have seen of him. He is fact, and as a most remarkable thick neck, like Tippu’s ; there is a most terrific expression in his countenance, and I fancied I could see as he looked round him I wish to have the English in his power. One of his attendants stood near to him whom he frequently looked at, and appeared to express something in those looks, which we did not understand. His manners were more polished than those of his brothers, he having mixed more with the world. I really could have looked at him till I had been frightened; there is something so fears in his aspects. He passes his time in reading, and in his Zenana, in great retirement, in continual regret for having surrendered himself a prisoner. He says Poornaiah deceived him by advising him to surrender, saying that it would be most likely to soften the English govt. towards him; he could have occasioned much trouble, if he had not come into Seringapatam. ……. They had each several wives. Futteh Haider married a great granddaughter of Chunda Saheb and has had seven children, who are all dead; one died on the road to Vellore, and the last since he came here. His wives habitation is divided by a high wall from those of Abdul Khaliq, and there was lately a serious engagement between these zenanas. His elder wives overheard something impertinent said of them by the young ones of Abdul Khaliq, and resented it; stones were presently thrown from each party till the stones were exhausted. Then they sent their old female attendants, out into the street to collect more. A message came to Col. Doveton to inform him of the civil war, and he sent them word that unless peace was immediately established, that he should be under the necessity of sending in a guard which would disgrace them forever. This quieted the fury of the combatants.
Col. Doveton described Mousa Uddeen as very clever, as I have before mentioned, and ready for any expedition if he could possibly get out of the fort, or for any mischief. A few days ago he sent to desire Col. Doveton would drive him to a great camel feast where there are some thousands of people assembled, but he declined it. The Padshaw is more gentle and reserved in his manner, but it is a pity they do not attend to reading or some part of education; they only play like much younger boys. Futteh Haider says he was alarmed for the safety of his family at the taking of Seringapatam, but perhaps the reason I have before given may also have some weight with him. There is not the least friendship subsisting between the brothers; they never meet but in great form. Two of Tippu’s daughters I hear, are said to be very beautiful ……..”
Lady Clive’s observations are interesting. She alludes to the lack of bonhomie between the brothers and the resentment of some among them at being expected to receive another of their brothers whom they consider to be of lower standing. This was not surprising in the families of Muslim nobility of that time where a man’s’ wives were ranked as per two classifications. The primary classification was on the basis of ‘Nikah’ wives and Non-‘Nikah’ wives. A muslim is allowed four wives as per Muslim law while any other of his wives is not legally a wife yet enjoys a fair degree of protection of her rights as a Non-Nikah. The rights of any child he may have with a non-Nikah wife are the same as that from a Nikah wife. However in the protocol of the Harem or the Zenana as the women’s quarters in India are known the Nikah wives have a higher rank and so do their children. However it is the prerogative of the father to name any son or in rare cases a daughter as his heir and this choice is accepted irrespective of whether the heir is from a Nikah or a Non-Nikah wife. Such combinations of Nikah and Non-Nikah wives created it’s own layers of intrigues within the Zenana. Added to this was another rank system in the Zenana of classifying the women as well as concubines on the basis of their lineage. A lady of royal birth was usually ranked higher in status than one say purchased as a slavegirl. Coming back to the status of the Princes as mentioned by the Lady Clive, we note that only Mousa Uddeen was called a Padshaw and that both Mousa Uddeen and Moyen Uddeen looked down upon their half brother Abdul Khaliq with ‘contempt’ as the latter was descended from a slave-girl. The fact is that among the four senior Princes mentioned by Lady Clive, only Moyen Uddeen’s mother was one among Tipu’s four legal wives. His mother Ruqayya Begum was Tipu’s most beloved wife and tradition goes that Tipu Sultan fell in love with her even before his marriage to her. The mother of the senior most in age Prince Fath Haidar was Roshani Begum who was a dancing girl from Adoni. Prince Abdul Khaliq, who the other Princes looked down with contempt as his mother was supposedly a minor wife (Non Nikah wife whom Henrietta obviously on account of coming from another culture terms slave-girl), she being one three Hindu Princesses of Mysore who Tipu had conscripted into his Zenana. And surprisingly Durdana Begum the mother of Prince Mousa Uddeen who Tipu had deemed his heir was also not a Nikah wife but was one among twenty slave girls purchased in Delhi. So, the dynamics of rank within the women’s quarters would not have been well understood by a European visitor as Lady Clive then.
Prince Fateh Haidar’s disappointment at not being restored to the throne of Mysore was also very genuine as he had surrendered to the British in the hope of clemency as well as being crowned Nawab of Mysore has father was. His mention of Purnaiah, the Diwan being instrumental in his surrender is also correct as Tipu Sultan had entrusted Fateh Haidar into Purnaiah’s care during the siege of Seringapatam and both of them were outside Seringapatam when the capital fell to the British. Purnaiah on seeing that that Tipu Sultan had fallen and the principal city taken, would have realized with his vast experience of serving under Tipu and Haidar Ali that the Kingdom could not withstand this loss of leadership and would crumble if not immediately but in a while under the onslaught of the combined forces of the English, Marathas and the Nizam. So hedging his bets he advised Fateh Haidar to surrender to the English accompanied by himself. Besides the families of both Purnaiah as well as Fateh Haidar were in Seringapatam and were prisoners of he British. This would obviously have weighed on their minds as well. It is thereafter to Purnaiah’s credit that he proposed to the English that Fath Haidar should be placed on the throne of Mysore allowing for the payment of a tribute to the English by the Mysoreans as well as agreeing for the English to garrison such forts as they considered strategically important. But Wellesley rejected the proposal on the ground that “such a settlement would have cherished in it’s bosom a restless and a powerful principle of it’s own dissolution.” Fate thus took a cruel turn for Fateh Haidar.
There were about 3000 Mysoreans in Vellore in 1806, when the mutiny broke out. Native solders in the British army in April 1806 were ordered to wear a new kind of turban made of leather (prepared from cow hide in most cases), which was against their religious feelings. This new form of turban was actually resembled a round hat topped by cockade, similar to what some European and Indian Christians were using. This was on top of too hugely unpopular orders, one banning sepoys from displaying ash on the forehead or a beard on chin. Consequently some of the fort’s sepoys and their Indian seniors refused to wear it, whereupon two havaldars, one hindu and the other a muslim, were punished with 900 lashes.
When the forces of the two opposing sides were thus drawn up, an event took place at fort Vellore. The wedding festivities of Noorunnissa Begum, a daughter of Tippu Sultan and sister of the Royal Heir Prince Mohy Uddin, took place on the night of July 9th, 1806. This event gave a fillip to the insurrectionists and the raising of the sepoys took place in the early hours of 10th July 1806…… the flag of Tippu Sultan bearing ‘the son in the centre with green tiger stripes on a red field’ was hoisted on the garrison flag staff amidst victorious shouts of ‘Deen’, ‘Deen’! The flag, it was alleged was the property of Prince Mousa Uddeen, 4th son of Tippu Sultan who separate the same to the sepoys. The followers of the Princes, it is said, assisted the insurgent sepoys, in getting out the guns, in laying them, in encouraging the sepoys to kill the English. Princes Mousa Uddeen and Mohy Uddeen presented themselves before the sepoys and ordered refreshments to be given to them. Prince Mousa Uddeen, further, was reported to have presented a sword to the son (then in British service) of Tippu Sultan’s commandant Syed Gaffur and ordered him to take possession of the hill fort of Vellore. Many Britons in the fort were killed while they slept and also many others were dragged out the fort’s sick rooms and shot among those gunned down was the fort’s commander Col. John Fancourt, though his wife and young children hit themselves and survived.
With the passing of hours it was found that the sepoys were more and more attracted towards looting the fort than in taking control of Vellore. The British garrison in Arcot was alerted by an escapee, from where accompanied by Horse pulled galloper guns, a cavalry squadron led by Col Rollo Gillespie road off at once to Vellore and suppressed the mutiny the galloper guns demolished rebel defenses and the cavalry stormed in, cutting down every sepoy in his way. If about 200 Europeans were slain during the half day mutiny nearly 800 sepoys were probably killed in the reprisal, in which Indians among the company’s troops joined. Once the fort was secured the Princes were placed under tighter watch and an enquiry was set up under a Mixed Enquiry Commission which submitted it’s report after an extensive investigation of the affair and interviews with the survivors and the Princes included. This commission was regulated by the Government of Madras from Fort St. George and we get a hint of it’s general conclusion from an entry in The Asiatic annual register, Vol. 9 ,1807 containing documents on the Vellore mutiny which mentions “it appears unnecessary to detail the extensive evidence, that the family of Tippu took an open and active part in the fatal scene; that the most confidential persons in the palace had been employed in negotiation and direct hostility. The guilt of two sons is established, and their murders intentions left without a doubt…….. It is even stated in evidence, amidst the numerous bands of the family of Tipu, collected from all parts of the country and resident in the Pettah, there were 500 persons in regular pay.”
However many English voices differed on this and expressed an opinion that the Princes were innocent and were merely being made scapegoats for the mutiny of the company sepoys. John Blakiston, an engineer in Gillespie’s force who had helped bring down one of the gates of Vellore’s fort would write – “this was a politic measure in more respect than one; for it not only removed them out of reach of former friends and adherence of their family, but it appeared to throw the odium of the conspiracy upon them, instead of permitting it to rest on the native army, whose loyalty and attachment it would not have been prudent to question. William Hickey , the famous attorney of the supreme court of Calcutta, and who was under Sheriff , had the custody of Mousa Uddeen, in his memoirs wrote, “Col. Mariott, who had the care of the princes at Vellore and who accompanied them from thence to Calcutta , assured me that selecting Mousa Uddeen as the object of peculiar severity was most cruel and unjust, for that neither he, nor any of his brothers or other branches of the family had any more to do with the insurrection than he (the Col. ) had nor did it originate in any of their dependants or people……. Col. Mariette further declared that the suspicions raised against Mousa Uddeen and the other princes, originated in the Govt. of Madras, the members of which had propagated such a report in general and in order to pacify the remains of this majesties 69 regiments, which continued in a state of dreadful insubordination, daily committing the most wanton and atrocious murders upon the unoffending natives ……”
That the mutiny happened in of all garrison towns in British India in Vellore with the Mysorean Tiger Flag being unfurled and the Princes actively emerging from their apartments and rallying the sepoys is testament enough to the fact that on that day in Vellore, albeit for a few hours only, the courage of Haidar Ali and Tipu Sultan revealed itself in the blood of their sons.
The Vellore mutiny alarmed the English as this was the first ever large scale mutiny in India where Indian sepoys had turned against their English officers with an intention of getting rid of English rule and replacing the government with a native one. Lord Minto who had succeeded Lord Wellesley, Tipu’s nemesis, as Governor General of India ordered for the removal of the Mysore Princes and their families from Vellore to Calcutta. The reason for their removal may be summed up in an extract from the ‘minute’ of his from Fort William dated 19th October 1807: “Much in my opinion has been done towards security by the removal of these families from the coast to Bengal. They are withdrawn from the sphere of their natural influence, and are transferred to a country in which they cannot count one partisan, or one public friend, but in which they are subject to the close and constant observation of government itself, surrounded by all the means of vigilance and control which are possessed at the seat of authority.” Some more ‘tender and liberal’ commandments were “They shall not quit their habitation in order to make visits without permission. They shall not attend processions or public ceremonies or religious festivals or domestic events.” Security remained short of imprisonment though the exiled Princes enjoyed free management of their respective pensions which varied among the brothers.
And thus the children of Britain’s most feared enemy was exiled from their homeland never to return. In a short span of 30 years, eleven of Tipu’s twelve sons succumbed to the unhealthy climate and surfeit of good living. Prince Fateh Haidar, was declared illegitimate by the British captors and a special police force stationed at his house. Prince Abdul Khaliq died ‘conveniently’ at sandheads even before reaching Calcutta. The heir Prince Mousa Uddeen was imprisoned for his involvement in the Vellore mutiny and his family deprived of financial support. William Hickey, the diarist and superintendent of prisons in Calcutta records the ‘filthy’ condition of the sad and depressed Prince who died in jail in 1809. Prince Mohy Uddin committed suicide in 1809.
The relationship of the Mysore family except for the children of Tipu Sultan, however continued well into the middle of the 19th C. And this is where the archives at Calcutta come in handy. Hidden here and there in between tomes of correspondence volumes of the Mysore Princes, their children and grandchildren with their captor – The Superintendent of Political Pensions – Mysore Family, a position specially created at Fort William to oversee the Mysore Princes are letters from and a few to Vellore, very poignant and despondent ones from and to aunts, cousins, former retainers of the family who had to stay back there.
Among the many letters related to the Mysore family at the Calcutta archives and elsewhere I observed three very interesting letters dated 1820, a sequence of correspondence to and fro between the in-charge of Stipends for the relatives of the Mysore family who were still at Vellore to the Chief Secretary to the Government of India.
Edward Wood Esquire
Chief secretary to the Government
I have had the Honor to receive your letter the 27th Ultimo together with the several enclosures and beg to state for the information of the Honorable the Governor, that I have this day obtained the jewels from Fatima Begum, the property of the Eldest Daughter of the late Tippoo Sultan with came trifling difference as will appear from the schedule of the Begums which will accompany the property.
There are two very large copper boilers and also a great quantity of cooking pots and pans, very old and I should imagine almost useless, which I would recommend to be continued under charge of Fatima Khanum Begum.
For the Jewels-Cloths-Boxes &.., I imagine six bullocks will be sufficient but if that which I have noticed is also sent two bandies will also be required.
May I request to be informed if it is the wish of the Government I should send the Jewels to Madras or from this- sent direct to Mhow thence to Russapuglah.
Vellore I have..
10th July 1820 /signed/ aug: Andrews
Major Paymaster of stipends
The Paymaster of Stipends
I am directed to acknowledge the receipt of your letter of the 18th Ultimo and to state the desire of the Honorable the Governor in Council that the jewels and other property which you have recovered from Fathima Khanum Begum for Tippoo’s Eldest Daughter may be packed in a proper manner for transmission to Fort William by sea. You will forward them in that state to the Residency and the Marine Board will be instructed on their arrival to make the necessary provision for their shipment accordingly.
Fort St. George I am…
15th August 1820 /Signed/ E.Wood
Secy to the Govt
C.T. Metcalfe Esquire
Secretary to the Government
at Fort William
The Paymaster of the stipends at Vellore having been instructed to make the enquiry desired in your dispatch of the 6th June concerning certain jewels for the property of Tippoo’s Eldest Daughter. I am directed by the Honorable the Governor in Council to transmit to you to be laid before the Most Noble the Governor General in Council the accompanying copy of a letter from that officers with a copy of the reply to it.
Fort W.George I have the honor …
15th August 1820 E.Wood
Major Andrews, the paymaster of stipends at Vellore was reporting back to a query from the Chief Secretary about the Jewels and other valuable items belonging to the eldest daughter of Tipu Sultan, in all probability Shahzadi Noor Unnissa Begum, the one who was married a day before the fateful incident at Vellore. Major Andrews confirmed the receipt of the Jewels along with various other items from Fathima Khanum Begum and enquires of the Chief Secretary where he should dispatch the items – Six bullock carts of Jewellery and Cloth!! A reply from the Chief Secretary instructs Major Andrews to dispatch the items by sea to Calcutta. And finally the Chief Secretary informs the Secretary, Govt. of India of the matters discussed and action taken.
These conversations are revealing and intriguing at the same time. Six bullock carts of clothes and Jewellery in the possession of Tipu’s eldest daughter even after Seringapatam was sacked for treasure after Tipu’s death may not be surprising given that Noor Unnissa was the daughter of Tipu and his favorite wife Ruqayya Banu, who was Tipu’s first love from his childhood days. But why should, 14 years after Shahzadi Noor Unnissa was exiled from Vellore, her jewels be ‘recovered’ for her from Fathima Begum? And who was Fathima Khanum Begum? A relative, a family retainer? And, why did she keep all of Noor Unnissa’s jewellery? What happened to this jewellery after it reached Calcutta?
The answers to these and more questions could still be hidden in the large mass of Mysore Family correspondence in the archive at Calcutta as well as the archives at Madras and Delhi. One must remember that copies of all correspondence emanating from say Mysore or Vellore would be sent to the Governor at Madras, the Governor General in Calcutta and a copy of all important correspondences also to England via the Indian office. This correspondence is very important for the fact that this may be the only detailed glimpse into the going-ons within a large Indian Muslim royal family. That each family member had to explicitly seek permission for matters as mundane as being allowed to ride a horse within the estate at Calcutta or going for a river cruise to enjoy the fresh air or allowance for a family wedding allows us a peek into the private lives of the descendants of Tipu Sultan after their exile to Calcutta.
Though this corpus of correspondence spread across Calcutta, Madras, Delhi, London and also in private collections has been noted and referenced to in part time and again there has been no effort till date to study these letters in entirety, to cross reference them and place them in different contexts. I myself only studied them as part of research into another area of Mysore’s history that I was working upon. There can be no greater homage paid to Tipu Sultan’s sacrifice than by some hardworking researcher who will dig into these archives and produce a riveting account of the lives of many generations of despairing men, women and children who lived as birds in a golden cage built for them by their English captors.
I am grateful to Dr. Simonti Sen, Director and Ms. Bidisha Chakraborty , Archivist at the Directorate of State Archives, Calcutta, West Bengal for assisting me while studying the Mysore family correspondence in their collection. The archives (Historical Section) at Bhawani Dutta Lane are accessible to all researchers irrespective of academic qualifications who only need to fill an application form and submit a credible reference to the archivists.
Amitava Raha was generous with access to his collection
Sukant Bhattacharjee was generous with his timely assistance and company
Birds of Passage, Travels in Southern India, 1798-1801, Henrietta Clive
South Indians in Calcutta, P. Thankappan Nair
The tears of the Rajas, Ferdinand Mount
Account of the Receipts and Expenditure of the “Appropriated Mysore Deposit Fund”
Exiles in Calcutta, The Descendants of Tipu Sultan, Bunny Gupta & Jaya Chaliha
History of Tipu Sultan, Mohibbul Hasan
Modern South India, Rajmohan Gandhi
Khudadad: The family of Tipu Sultan – Genealogy