Portrait heads of Dost Muhammad, and three members of his family, E.Eden, June 1841. ©The British Library Board [WD 1291]
|1843||Return of Dost Muhammad Khan to Kabul. British annex Sind|
|1845-46||First Anglo-Sikh War|
|1846||Death of Muhammad Akbar Khan, heir apparent of Dost Muhammad|
|1848-49||Second Anglo-Sikh War: Dost Muhammad Khan allies with the Sikhs|
|1849||British defeat the Sikhs and their allies and annex the whole of the former Sikh dominions. The whole of northern Afghanistan (except Badakhshan) submits to Dost Muhammad|
|1851||Yar Muhammad Khan of Herat dies; succeeded by his son Saiyid Muhammad Khan|
|1854||Persian attempts to exert control over Herat: British remonstrate. Persian envoy to Kabul seeks anti-British alliance|
|1854-56||Crimean War between Britain and Russia|
|1855||Mission of Ghulam Haidar Khan, heir-apparent of Kabul, as plenipotentiary to meet the British at Peshawar. Treaty of friendship signed with Sir John Lawrence for the Government of India. Dost Muhammad annexes Kandahar, provoking considerable opposition. Saiyid Muhammad of Herat overthrown by a conspiracy|
|1856||Persians besiege Herat; it falls in October. Ghilzai revolts|
|1856-57||Arrival of British Vakil to the Court of the Amir of Kabul (see British Representatives in Afghanistan)|
|1857||Jan Dost Muhammad goes to Peshawar and concludes a treaty with the Government of India; is granted a subsidy|
Mar Anglo-Persian Treaty of Paris; Persians withdraw from Herat; a nephew of Dost Muhammad appointed ruler
Apr A British Military Mission under Major H.P. Lumsden arrives in Kandahar
|1857||May Outbreak of rebellion in India against the British|
|1858||Death of Ghulam Haidar Khan; Sher Ali appointed heir apparent. Government of India transferred from the East India Company to the British crown|
|1859||Badakhshan recognises Dost Muhammad Khan as ruler. British annex Baluchistan|
|1863||May Dost Muhammad annexes Herat|
Jun Death of Dost Muhammad Khan; Sher Ali succeeds to much opposition
|1863-69||Civil war between Sher Ali and his brothers|
|1863||Sher Ali defeats the combined forces of Muhammad Azim Khan and Muhammad Afzal Khan|
|1864||Abdur Rahman Khan, son of Muhammad Afzal Khan flees to Bokhara; Sher Ali imprisons Muhammad Afzal Khan; Muhammad Azim Khan takes refuge at Rawalpindi with the British. The death of the heir apparent casts Sher Ali into a fit of melancholia. The British Vakil leaves Kabul, leaving the Munshi in charge|
|1866||Abdur Rahman Khan and Muhammad Azim Khan take Kabul and place Muhammad Afzal Khan on the throne. Sher Ali retains Herat and considerable support in the south and north. British recognise Muhammad Afzal as Amir of Kabul|
|1867||Death of Muhammad Afzal Khan; Muhammad Azim Khan succeeds as Amir, quarrels with Abdur Rahman Khan, who leaves for the north|
Sher Ali reconquers Kandahar and Kabul. Muhammad Azim flees to Persia, Abdur Rahman Khan takes refuge in Tashkent. British Vakil returns to Kabul
The Government of India grant Sher Ali a subsidy and invite him to a conference at Amballa with the Viceroy, Lord Mayo
|1871||Sher Ali nominates Abdullah Jan as heir apparent; his other sons Muhammad Yakub Khan and Muhammad Ayub Khan rebel|
|1872||Boundary Commission in Seistan under Major Goldsmid to settle frontier between Afghanistan and Persia|
|1873||Anglo-Russian agreement over spheres of influences in Central Asia. Simla conference between Government of India and Afghan delegation|
|1874||Sher Ali imprisons Muhammad Yakub Khan; revolt by his brother Muhammad Ayub Khan fails; he takes refuge in Persia|
|1875||Muslim agent of the Russian Czar appointed to Kabul|
|1876||Turkish mission to Kabul|
|1877||The British establish a military outpost at Quetta in Baluchistan. Sher Ali invited by the British to send a representative to meet Sir Lewis Pelly for a conference at Peshawar. Saiyid Nur Muhammad, the anti-British Afghan representative, dies early in the discussions.|
|1878||Russo-Turkish war settled by the Congress of Berlin|
During this period there was a great increase in the production of official record material in the India Office Records on several levels. After the appointment of a British Vakil at Kabul around 1856-57 reports on affairs in Afghanistan were submitted weekly. At another level, because of the international strategic and diplomatic issues involving Afghanistan, there was an increase in correspondence, memoranda, etc, dealing with the formation of high policy decisions, as well as précis, abstracts and summaries. During this period, the series of Political and Secret Department memoranda was started, and also the Political and Secret Department Library.
[IOR:C] Minutes of the Council of India
[IOR:L/PARL] Parliamentary Branch
L/PARL/2/88 Parliamentary papers on Afghanistan, 1846-79
L/PARL/2/89 Parliamentary papers on Afghanistan, 1878-79
L/PARL/2/182 Parliamentary Papers on Afghanistan and Central Asia, 1864-84
[IOR:L/PS] Political and Secret Department
In 1875 the separate Secret and Political Departments, which had until then created their own series of records, were amalgamated into one Political and Secret Department and all correspondence with India, both Secret and Political, was bound up in the same series. Secret letters from Persia, however, continued as a separate series until 1888.
L/PS/3 Home Correspondence, 1807-1911
L/PS/5 Secret Correspondence with India, 1756-1874
L/PS/6 Political Correspondence with India, 1792-1874
L/PS/7 Political and Secret Correspondence with India, 1875-1911
L/PS/8 Demi-Official Correspondence, 1862-1912
L/PS/9/123-190 Secret Letters and enclosures from Persia, 1843-88
L/PS/18 Memoranda: 'A' Series
L/PS/20 Political and Secret Department library: 'B' Books. See also miscellaneous material
From 1860 (with some variations) Proceedings were no longer sent back to London in full but were divided into Part 'A' Proceedings which were sent back in their entirety, Part 'B' Proceedings of which only a summary was sent and Part 'C' (or 'Deposit') Proceedings which dealt with routine and ephemeral matters, and which were not copied to London.
India: Secret (to 1859 only)
Political and Foreign (to 1858)
Foreign and Political, 1859-61
In the indexes up to 1860-61 see under 'Native Powers' and 'Government of the Punjab' for material on Afghanistan.
India: Foreign (Political) (from 1861)
Monthly indexes to the proceedings in the various branches of the Foreign Department were bound up in annual volumes but not consolidated; for Afghan affairs see indexes to the proceedings in the Political Branch. The indexes are printed and follow a modern-style system from 1861.
Punjab: Foreign (from 1871)
Punjab Foreign Department Proceedings were not received by the India Office prior to 1871.
British Vakil's Reports
From the appointment of a British Vakil at Kabul around 1856 periodical diaries as well as occasional newsletters on affairs in Afghanistan were submitted through the Commissioner, North West Frontier at Peshawar, to the Government of the Punjab who forwarded them to the Government of India. Up to 1865 only translated extracts of the reports were sent to the Indian Government and by them to the India Office but from 1865 translations of the complete diaries were sent. Reports were also received from newswriters elsewhere in Afghanistan. These diaries and newsletters can be found in the following series of India Office Records:
L/PS/5 Secret Department: Enclosures to letters from India (to 1874)
L/PS/7 Political and Secret Department Correspondence (from 1875)
P Proceedings: India Foreign (Political) (to 1871 only)
P Proceedings: Punjab Foreign (from 1871 only)
[MSS EUR] Private Papers
Mss Eur B380
BOURKE (Richard Southwell), 6th Earl of Mayo
Private letters from Richard Southwell Bourke, 6th Earl of Mayo (1822-72), as Viceroy of India 1869-72, to the 8th Duke of Argyll (1823-1900), Secretary of State for India 1868-74, commenting on official matters and enclosing copies of official papers (indexed).
5 volumes, 1869 - 1870
Mss Eur C260
FLEMING (Henry Hugh Mackenzie), Capt
Letters from Capt Henry Hugh Mackenzie Fleming (d 1852), British Army 1840-52, to his parents and sister, describing his life in India, including service in Sind, Afghanistan, and the Sikh War 1848-49, when he was present at the battle of Chilianwala (1849).
1 volume, 1840 - 1851
Mss Eur C605
Manuscript copy of (i) letter by unidentified officer of the Bengal 30th Native Infantry, dated 26 Jan 1849, describing the battle of Chilianwala; (ii) letters, dated 13 and 28 Mar 1849, describing the pursuit of the Sikh and Afghan armies.
7 folios, 1849 - 1849
Mss Eur C634
HERRIES (William Robert), Capt
Letters from Capt (later Maj) William Robert Herries (d 1846), British Army 1835-46, chiefly describing his activities as A.D.C. to the Governor-General Lord Ellenborough, including events in Afghanistan, his task of accompanying the `Gates of Somnath' on their return to India, and the battle of Maharajpur.
106 folios, 1842 - 1846
Mss Eur D1162
FRERE (Henry Bartle Edward), Sir, 1st Bart
Letters from Sir (Henry) Bartle Edward Frere, 1st Bart (1815-84), Bombay Civil Service 1834-67, written while Chief Commissioner in Sind 1850-59, to Brig-Gen John Jacob, Political Superintendent of Upper Sind 1847-58; with copy of Secret Despatch 64 of 1858 from Frere to Governor of Bombay on Kalat affairs 1839-58 recommending formation of Frontier Field Force and the occupation of Quetta.
1 folder, 1858 - 1858
Mss Eur F78
WOOD (Charles ), 1st Viscount Halifax
Wood Collection: papers of Sir Charles Wood, 1st Viscount Halifax (1800-85) as President of the Board of Control 1853-55 and Secretary of State for India 1859-1866.
143 items, 1853 - 1870
Mss Eur F83
BRUCE (James ), 8th Earl of Elgin
Elgin Collection (1): papers of James Bruce, 8th Earl of Elgin (1811-63) as Viceroy of India 1862-63.
117 items, 1862 - 1863
Mss Eur F90
LAWRENCE (John Laird Mair), Sir, 1st Baron Lawrence
John Lawrence Collection: papers and correspondence of Sir John Laird Mair Lawrence, 1st Baron Lawrence (1811-79), Bengal Civil Service 1830-59; Member, Board of Administration of the Punjab 1849-53; Chief Commissioner of the Punjab 1853-59; Member, Council of India 1859-63; Viceroy of India 1864-69.
79 items, 1841 - 1879
Mss Eur F114
NAPIER (Robert Cornelis), 1st Baron Napier of Magdala
Napier Collection: correspondence and papers of Robert Cornelis Napier, Field Marshal 1st Baron Napier of Magdala (1810-90), Bengal Engineers 1826; Military Member, Governor-General's Council 1861-65; C-in-C, Bombay 1865-68; commanded Abyssinian Expedition 1867-68; C-in-C, India 1870-76; Governor of Gibraltar 1876-82. Some reference to affairs in Central Asia and Persia in 1875.
68 volumes; 7 portfolios; 10 boxes, 1794 -1910
Mss Eur F126
PELLY (Lewis ), Lt-Gen Sir
Pelly Collection: correspondence and papers of Lt-Gen Sir Lewis Pelly (1825-1892), Bombay Army 1840; Indian Political Dept 1851; held political posts in Persia and Zanzibar 1859-62; Political Resident, Persian Gulf 1862-73; Agent to Governor- General and Chief Commissioner, Rajputana 1873-78; Resident and Special Commissioner, Baroda 1874-75.
112 items, 1842 - 1883
Mss Eur F134
GOLDSMID (Frederic John), Maj-Gen Sir
Goldsmid Collection: correspondence and papers of Maj-Gen Sir Frederic John Goldsmid (1818-1908), Madras Army 1839-75, chiefly relating to his work as Boundary Commissioner for the settlement of the Perso-Baluch frontier and Arbitrator in the Perso-Afghan dispute concerning Sistan 1870-72; also including unpublished memoirs and literary papers.
89 items, 1836 - 1899
Mss Eur F231
SMITH (Robert Vernon), 1st Baron Lyveden
Lyveden Collection: correspondence and papers of Robert Vernon Smith, 1st Baron Lyveden (1800-73), as President of the Board of Control 1855-58, relating in particular to the Persian Campaign 1856-57 and the Indian Mutiny 1857-58; also papers, dated 1898-1900, relating to the service and death of Capt Ronald James Vernon in the Boer War.
34 items, 1855 - 1858
Mss Eur G38
BOWRING (Lewin Bentham)
Compiled by Lewin Bentham Bowring (1824-1910), Bengal Civil Service 1843-70, Private Secretary to Viceroy 1858-62, Chief Commissioner, Mysore and Coorg 1862-70. See G38/1, ff.6, genealogical and biographical material on 'Pedigree of Kings of Cabu'
Mss Eur IOR Neg 11671-88
GASCOYNE-CECIL (Robert Arthur Talbot),3rd Marquess of Salisbury
Papers of Robert Arthur Talbot Gascoyne Cecil, 3rd Marquis of Salisbury (1830-1903) as Secretary of State for India 1866-67 and 1874-78.
18 reels, 1866 - 1878
Mss Eur Photo Eur 440
MOORE (Adolphus Warburton)
Photocopy of letter book of Adolphus Warburton Moore (d 1887), India Office official from 1858-87, Assistant Secretary, Political Department from 1875-85, containing copies of private correspondence with Col (later Maj-Gen Sir) Owen Tudor Burne (1837-1909), Private Secretary to Viceroy 1869-72 and 1876-78, Secretary, Political and Secret Dept, India Office 1874-76 and 1878-80; and others.
1 folder, 1876 - 1877