Soldier Sahibs: The Daring Adventurers who Tamed India's Northwest Frontier

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Carroll & Graf Publishers, 2001 - History - 368 pages
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Drawing extensively upon diaries, letters, and family mementos as well as his own frequent travels in the northwest region of India, author Charles Allen here recounts a lively chapter out of British colonial history that prominently featured his ancestor Brigadier General John Nicholson.

In 1840, six ambitious young officers, inflamed with patriotism and religious evangelism, set out under Nicholson's leadership to secure the Northwest Frontier for the Raj. Dominated by the strategic Khyber Pass and prone to invasion by Russia and warring tribes from what are today Pakistan and Afghanistan, this region represented British India at its most vulnerable. Its hostile mountain landscape and extreme climate also made it virtually impossible to survey, navigate, supply, or defend. Yet Nicholson and his intrepid band of adventurers combined their martial talents with the courageous instincts of explorers and athletic skills of mountaineers to accomplish the impossible. Allen's exciting narrative sets the scene for "The Great Game", when Europe's imperial powers squared off for control of all of Central Asia.

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