Photograph of a portion of Sherpur showing the Aliabad Kotal, taken by the Bengal Sappers and Miners, an engineering arm of the Indian Army in c. 1879. This print shows a view of the cantonments at Sherpur near Kabul with the mountains in the distance and was described as 'West side of Sherpore with Aliabad Khotal in distance, and conical hill, where Captain Spens, 72nd, was killed'. The cantonment was planned by the Amir of Afghanistan, Shere Ali Khan (1825-1879), as the main winter headquarters of his army. The main wall of the cantonment was over a mile and a half long with massive towers at regular intervals for artillery. In October 1879 British forces under General Roberts entered Kabul and occupied the fortress after the death of the British resident Cavagnari and his mission during the Second Afghan War (1879-80). Roberts was tasked with establishing a line of communication with British forces via the Khyber Pass, securing his force at Kabul and punishing those responsible for the death of Cavagnari.