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Plate 1 

id- . 




Plate 1 

Late 18th Century. 

Ceded to E.I.C. by 
Nawab of Bengal 

i 24-Parganas 

2 Burdwan, Midnapore, 

<£ Chittagong 

3 Bengal, Bihar & part Emperor of Deth 

t Madras JagJr _ 
5 Northern Circars 
S Benares 
7 Island of Salsette 
S Guntur Circar 
g Malabar, Dindigul, 

Salem, Baramahal 
10 Carnatio 

Nawab nf Gamatic 


Tipu of Mysore 

20- 8-65 

30- 8-65 


21- i-75 

22- 5-76 
18- 3-8S 
17- 3-9i 

Nawab of Carnaiic. Cession 

jf Coimbatore, Kanara, 

12 Tanjore 
(3 Bellary, Anantapur, 

Kurnool, Guddapah 

H Sural 

Of fferenuoa noi , ui au- 

ministration Aug. 1790. 

Complete Cession 31- 7-01 

Mysore 19- 7-9S 

Raja ofTanjore 25-10-% 

Ceded by Mysoreto Nizam, 
1792 & 1799, & by Nizam 
to E.I.C. 12-10-01 

Captured 1759, Full adminis- 
tration of District 15- 5-0t 

Marathas, Green: Nizam, Blue: Oudh, Mysore & others, Yellow, 
Danish: Serampore (A ). Tranquebar. 

Dutch : Chinsura r A j, NegapaOm 4 tfagora. , , . 

French: Chandernagore i A >, Kankai <Bl, Mafte f£9 

Portuguese: Daman. Diu.Goa. ,.j 

Fu6tifhedas#'tActdinxrslyJ.7infsRai7id! AI-u//i t ij<?&. 

From map facing p. 235 of Rennell's Memoir of a Map of Hindoostan, 1788, with the 
addition of tints and a table of References. 




a - ii - 


Plate 1 


I -■ 2Q no. 
AlQl !! : 

V '"'" '■■ 'i 

: ; 


Published 1945 


Plate : 






l CU r -'~ J i ! I 3 i ■--, --^ 


Volume I 

Collected and compiled by 
Colonel R. H. PHILLIMORE, C.I.E., D.S.O., 
( late Royal Engineers and Survey of India) 





Price : Rs. 30 or 12. Js, 3d. 

( Copyright reserved ) 







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L'avancement de la Geographie m'etant plus oher que 
la carte de l'Inde, je souhaite qu'elle ne soit que la prepara- 
tion a une autre plus exacte et plus complete, qui . . ne lui 
laisse d'autre merite que d'avoir donne lieu a une meilleure 

At that day we were compelled to receive information 
from others respecting the interior of the country, but in 
your time you explored for yourselves. I have only the merit 
of furnishing a dim light by which others groped their way. 

RENKELL. 1808. 








f 3 


From about 1860 onwards there are published reports describing the work of 
the Surrey of India, and there are full accounts of the work of the Great Trigono- 
metrical Survey from its start. We have, however, only the scantiest accounts 
of the inception and early development of surveys in India, and of the work of 
those great men who, from the simple beginnings of the 18th century, built up 
the Survey of India on sure lines, and established its reputation as a survey 
■department second to none. 

On his retirement from Government service in 1934, Colonel Phillimore 
undertook the monumental task of compiling a history of surveys in India from 
the earliest days. . Interrupted by the war, during which he came back to duty 
with the department, it has been possible so far to publish only this first 
volume of his work, covering the 18th century, though much of the material 
for subsequent volumes has been collected. The research work has been immense ; 
the records have come from a multitude of places; many have been rescued from 
oblivion ; they have been studied, sorted, and compiled into an admirable history 
that is at once instructive and entertaining. We are indeed fortunate in having 
a historian who seeks to record not only accurate facts, but also the human 
interests and adventures of the early surveyors. It is fitting too that this 
historical volume should not only record the work actually carried out by a great 
survey department, but also form a record of the policy of the Court of Directors 
and their servants in India, and of their successors, towards maps and surveys. 

From the detailed accounts of the work carried out, the instruments and pro- 
fessional methods used, and the details of organization, financial control, and terms 
•of service, we are able to observe the steady growth and consolidation of the 
department, and the gradual application of improved methods and instruments to 
meet the requirements of good government. It is instructive to observe the 
multifarious and increasing demands made on successive Surveyors General as the 
complexity of the administration increased. 

His enthusiasm and long association of over forty years with the Survey of 
India make Colonel Phillimore peculiarly well qualified to undertake this labour of 
love. "We and posterity will owe him a great debt of gratitude, and we sincerely hope 
that his ambition to carry this important history forward to 1883 may be achieved. 

Dehua Dun : 
June 1945. 

E. 0. Wheeler, 
Surveyor General of India. 


Addenda & Corrigenda 







f , COl T„ n 5 ; ^' rigllt ' Iine 2 ; / or ****« read Sclata. 

1 hue 19, /or Pekin read Peking. 

2 line 10 from bottom ; for Willliam read William 
after footnote 2, add , which obviously distorts 

Monserrate's arithmetic, 
footnote 5, after 1668-72, insert: arrd. India 
13-7-69, v. B31. Ilarl. MSS. 4254. 
26 line 23, after Verelst insert | 22 n.4 ]. 
30 line 7 for thet read that. 

line 16 from bottom, after compass insert [ 39 ]. 
Ime 14 from bottom, after Mountains insert [ pi. 13 1 
line 18, after Poonah insert [ 154 ]. 
line 17 from bottom, after River insert [ 21 n 12 1 
Ime 30 before 2S6 insert 215. 
footnote 5, for show read shows, 
line 1, after so insert [ 297 ]. 
line 17 from bottom, after Nagpnr insert T 24 n 8 7 
last line, for at read all. ' 

42 footnotes 10 and 11, after BM. insert Addl MSS 
45 Section Heading, after Binual insert ,1779-87 
47 Section Heading, after Isuhm insert , 1788-96 
51 Ime 22, move reference number 6 (o follow inch 
lane 21. ' 

Ime 15 from bottom, for Rohilkhand read Rohilla 
alter footnote 1 add Maps, Cawnpore to Barilwar 
by land, MRIO. 25 ( 71 ), 30 ( 20, 21, 55 ) 
fLvtil 71, 80); retam b y river, MRIO. 163 
( 27 ), 166 ( 24 et serf ), 168 ( 2, 10-3, 15-8 I 
footnote 4, John Marshall italics. 
Renumber references to footnotes, lines 26, 27, 28. 
Cabral should read 7, referring to note 8, b. 1 59!)' 
etc., which should be renumbered 7, date Kill 
being changed to 1624. 
Azo should read 8, referring to note 7, Hazo, etc. 
which should be renumbered 8 oral fello/e ,'A vn>- 
note 7. 
Delete % following October 21st. 
line 16 from bottom, for Ladak read Ladakh 
hne 10 from bottom, for Pekin read Pekin" 
- . line 10 and footnote 3, for Pekin read Pekfni.. 
73 line 7, after K anar insert [ pi. 6 ]. 
footnote 4, for Daniel read Daniell. 
footnote 6, John Marshall italics. 
line 19, /or Daniel reati Daniell. 
line 30 for tirere read tfere. 
footnote 1,/or ib. read De FiUppi. 
note 3, Hobson-Jobson italics. 
line 12 from bottom, delete but otherwise all was 
conjecture, and substitute and Rennell shows a 
route eastward through "Mimnyppur" and 
"Tammoo"[pl. 14]. 
line 24, after survey insert [ 101 ]. 
.- bottom lino, after Ariuv insert [ 279 1 
99 note 2, delete Memoir 1793 ( 25 ). 
103 line 16, for Governement read Government 
110 footnote 11, fie/ore 58 M/14 insert 2 m. N. of Cudda- 

112 line 24, after Ceylon insert [ 117 ]. 

113 line 19, after Cochin insert [ 7 ]. 

116 line 6, for Sindha read Sindhia. 

117 line 19, after school insert [ 286 ]. 
120 line 13, for Herr read Carsten. 

footnote 2, 1672-S1 italics ; after I 157 ) insert 
London 1698. 

123 line 10, for Scindhia read Sindhia. 

footnote 8, after IS P/4 insert v. pi. 16, C delli. 

124 line 13, for Minicoi read Minicoy. 

125 line 18 from bottom, after Mysore insert r pi. 11 

126 footnotes 10, 15, for ih. read Bo S& Pol 
128 footnote 1, far ib. read Bo S & Pol 

149 lines 10, 17, 20 from bottom, for Pekin read 

159 line 19, after occurred insert [ 186-7 1. 

ige 160 
., 164 


















last line, after Anopshere insert [ 161 ]. 
hue 5, for astromimer read astronomer. 
Ime 12, after General Roy, insert re/erence to new 
footnote to read, b. 1726 ; Pr. Engr. 23-12-55 • 
Lieut., 53rd loot, 4-1-56 ; Ens. Eft. Rnars' 
14-5-57 ■ d. London, 1-7-90. g 

footnote H, delete present note and substitute 
Marsden, Topping, and possibly Mather, were 
the only sailors amongst the Madras surveyors 
lines 16, 17,/orDoIlandreadDollond. ' 

footnote 3, before Acting insert Mad. Engrs Ens 
17-^1-70 ; after Mysore insert killed in action' 
Pondicherry, 1793. 
line 14, after Pocket delete comma. 
line 2, omit from Europe, but and substitute at all 

I pis. 2, 5, 161 ], or 
footnote 2, after (57) insert ; Map, MRIO 150 (46) 
Ime 4 imm bottom, after usual insert f 159 1 
line 16, for yon read you. 
line 7 from bottom, for e.xcuted read executed. 
Ime 7, for Moritogomeries read Montgomerie 
Ime 19, after Gunter's chain insert reference to new 
footnote to read of 22 yards, named after Edmund 
1620 '°"° d " Sljd '" Bn e knd from about 
note 7, 200 note 6, and p. 201 notes 1, 3, South 

ilensington roman type. 
note 4, Midnapore italics. 

line 11, after Ibn Haukal insert reference to new- 
footnote to read- -v. Ousely. 
footnote 2, for ib. read Herbert, 
line 5 from bottom, after expenee insert I 38 1 
line 22, for 225 read 255. 
line 9, for Blaev read Blaeu. 
line 6 from bottom, after [ 25-6 ] deleie The and 

substitute In the later edition the. 
line 3 from bottom, for pamphlet rend work 
footnote It I delete Ben. Civ. ; for Consideration of 
Indian Affairs read Considerations on Indian 
Arfairs, London, 1772. 
line 22, for Coas Beyhar rend Coos Beyhar 
Ime 28 and footnote 4, for Hemmanneau real 

line 3 from bottom, for expenee read expense 
note 6, Markham italics. 
note 1, for ib. read C D to M. 
note 1, after Sir delete stop. 
hne 27, for Geogrpher read Geographer, 
hne 5 torn bottom, for at this time read in 1799 
footnote 1, Supply. Desps. italics. 
line 15 : for the Surveyor General read Call 
line 7 from bottom, after Stuart insert f 95 1 
footnote T after ( 199 ) insert ; he was granted a 
further 400 'pagodas a month tile year before 
bis death [ 392 ]. 
lines 5 and 9 from bottom, for Webb read Webbe. 
Ime 4, for Webb read Webbe. 
line 1,/or Turn read Turn. 

line 9 from bottom, after survey insert 1 160-1 1 - 
delete last 5 hues of page from In his journal. '. 
to Badnnauth, etc. 
line 24, between this and wrote insert I 
line 12 from bottom, for Mustan on lopes read 

Mustan in hopes, 
line 13, for carry of large read carry off large 
line 14, for attached read attacked, 
line 28, after city insert [ 299 ]. 
line 8 from bottom, after God delete stop, and for 

Set read set. ' 

line 7 from bottom, for conveniently read con- 
Hne 7, shift reference 3 to end of line 8, follomng- 



When. I was at Dehra Dun early in 1933, I received a letter from Sir Edward 
Tandy asking for certain particulars about Sir George Everest, and more especially 
what he was doing in 1833, one hundred years before, a matter of topical interest 
in view of the projected attempts to conquer Mount Everest by the climbers of the 
Ruttledge expedition and the airmen of the Houston flight. 

This led to my first introduction to the old correspondence records of the Great 
Trigonometrical Survey, which comprise more than 700 volumes extending from 
about 1790 to 1883, and I found them of absorbing interest. They were in excellent 
preservation, and, though consisting mainly of the correspondence of the Trigom> 
metrical Survey, include much- of the Surveyor General's correspondence, parti- 
cularly for those periods when the great geodesists, Everest, Waugh, and Walker,, 
combined the offices of Surveyor General and Superintendent of Trigonometrical 
Surveys, viz., 1830-63 and 1876-83. 

Enquiry at the Surveyor General's office at Calcutta produced similar records 
for the rest of the department for intervening periods, but these were in sorry 
state. Some volumes were missing, and all had suffered grievously from the cruel 
Calcutta climate ; most of them were sadly worm-eaten, and many showed signs 
of having been rescued from fire. Considering, however, the vicissitudes of the 
office during the first half of the 19th century, it is marvellous that so much survived. 
All honour to the hand-made paper of those early days, and the excellent writing 
ink. The records for the ; period 1863-75, when Sir Henry Thuillier was Surveyor 
General, are not bound up, but stored in tin boxes, each letter folded and docketed. 
These Calcutta records have now been brought up to Dehra Dun s rebound, and 
assembled with those of the Trigonometrical Survey. 

I was tremendously struck, not only with the intense interest of this old corres- 
pondence, but also with the futility of letting it continue to lie in its present 
inaccessible form. It had lain thus, the greater part of it, for over 100 years, and 
if nothing were done it would continue to he another hundred years, if indeed it 
did not perish. - 

' ' I saw how interesting these details of our past work would have been to me 
during the active years of my service ; the accounts accessible in annual reports 
and record volumes are mainly professional, and give no continuous narrative. 
Sir Clement Markham's Memoir of the Indian Surveys is indeed a classic summary 
of the work from the earliest years, but is not sufficiently intimate or detailed to 
'grip the imagination. 

To write up a history of the Survey of India from these volumes of correspondence 
seemed to be the best way of preserving them to posterity, arid I was fortunate in 
finding that the Surveyor General, then Sir Harold Couchman, welcomed my offer 
to undertake the task after my retirement. This departmental correspondence 
would not however meet the whole task, for it did not cover the early years of 
survey, and there were many later gaps ; there was practically nothing about 
revenue surveys. 

After a few months spent at Dehra' combing through the Geodetic Branch 
library, I went to Calcutta where I found a wealth of material, and most generous 
assistance, both at the Imperial Record Office and the Imperial Library ; but the 
Government of India records also have been sadly depleted by accidents and 
.fires, and hold but scanty information about the interesting period of RenneU's 
surveys. L 

During the cold weather of 1935-6 I spent six weeks at the Record Office of the 
government of Bombay. There was practically nothing about Bombay surveys 
either at Dehra Dun or Calcutta, but the Bombay records not only gave detailed 
accounts of the earliest surveys from about 1785, but also described the interesting 





revenue surveys from 1830 onwards. Whilst at Bombay I was riven the „ri ;i 
of consu tug the library of the Bombay branch of the Koyri E s'iet ^ 
am deeply mdebted to the honorary secretary, Mr. Tilley f 0I .££ JfaS'Xi 
I have met nowhere else in India. J ' s to books that 

From Bombay I went to Madras -where I found a mass of info™, V ■ x, 
wonderful record office at Egmore, where the reoorfs areTn el^ f '^ " ^ 
*nd readily accessible, and the ejection of valuable nM J "* Pf ser ™ tiou 
kept. I have specially to thank Dr tXa aid M^ staff JTe m ° S * "^ 
and valuable assistance. I also received the E ti tJ 1V ™ ry °° urteous 
Library, and at the library o ? the Mad £ ^tetrv W t t^ Connemara 
most interesting find was a cony of ThoZS ™ ^* ? y " ■ M the former m y 
Mat of the Waf on tie C^ofGhl^Zell^- fnl'lTT ?,?' Map * *< 
■SenneWs Me mm r of a Ma P o/sinZZ^L el '™ wLTthXietvT 1 
graciously presented to the Survey library at Dehra Dun ™ tj m ° St 

the E Tcofd Ofn^oT^B ' "f r ? * ^ "T ""^ at Cal ™ tta . ^% at 


fieldbook through Central India 1792 7 Thil i « P ° rtl ° n ° f ^""y's 

Mdbook of an g ent lr ely dSnl P er£ef an^cre^ sTveyo™ ^0?^ 
Sh tteTatl o r bT 6rS d WaS S deU f htfUl wate -°l-rVinting and /Z 

wMoTclff" 67 S adW ff ment askin « &r subsCTibere *— a "Set of %ws^ 
a" 8 t e o 7 fi C n d reSPOnded *"* th ° 8e ° f tl6 Mdb0 * • &rtb - «M^ 

siastical records of births, marriages, deaths, and wills for "!S tEJZ. ■ 
there were the Home Miscellaneouf Series, the "rLS., the MackeSfe MSS '' 
Court Minutes, and many other records which do not exist in TnS mZ ' 

pnceless rare books in the library, and the 4 »dt-^ ofth 1Z 
Boom. Perhaps the most interesting of all these was the folio of Rennell's mans 
sent home in 1774, containing his account of his methods of survey and "he constac 
tion of his maps with a little index showing the area surveyed wTol 


„„ ^* he f Bnt j shM >f eum tlie library gave access to books and periodicals that 
could be found nowhere else; the Crown Library possessed several folos of old 
maps and surveys that had been sent home from India in the very early davs of 
many of which no copies had been kept in India. It was a great joy to howThesI 
off one morning ; to Colonel Ryder, Herbert Crosthwait, and Sir Hardd Coulhnlan 
The Manuscript Room gave more original maps and surveys, besides survevcW 
journals and private correspondence, mostly amongst the Hastings Papers Many 
of these must have found their way home as private property ; some may have 
come from the collections of Orme, Dalrymple, or Rennell. " 

I have also to thank the Royal Society and the Royal Astronomical Society for 
permission to consult books and manuscripts in their libraries. 

My notes on the work of the early Jesuit missionaries have been gathered from 
many publications, in search for which I have received the greatest assistance from 
Father J. Macfarland, S.J., of St. Mary's College, Kurseong. 

I wish particularly to acknowledge the kindness and the enthusiasm with which 
all officials at the various record offices and libraries have done everything in their 
power to assist my researches. I am greatly indebted to the cheerful and willing 
labour of the messengers at the various record offices, perhaps more especially 
those at the India Office, who kept me supplied with a stream of heavy volumes, 
often brought from subterranean vaults, to which they had to be restored in perfect 
order after I had done with them. 

As regards the form which these Records are to take ; the Surveyor General has 
agreed that they should form a distinct series of volumes entitled, The Historical 
Records of the Survey of India. 

There is no reason why such a series should not gradually be brought up to the 
present day ; I have myself aimed at the year 1883 as the limit of my own endeavour, 
and it is impossible to say now how many volumes this will entail. The war has 
now sadly interrupted not only my own work, but also the printing of this first 
volume, and I doubt whether I shall myself complete the narrative beyond 1862. 
From about 1860 regular annual reports were published ; but these are of a dry subs- 
tance, and there is room for a readable human history as well. 

For the period before 1860 Markham's Memoir is the only history of the depart- 
ment as a whole. For the Trigonometrical Survey there are the fascinating works 
of George Everest, An account of the Measurement of an Arc of the Meridian.. .1830 ; 
and An account of the Measurement of two Sections of the Meridional Arc of India..'. 
1847 ; and also the Parliamentary Report ore Operations of the Great Trigonometrical 
Survey by Sir Andrew Waugh, published in 1851 ; but these are out of print and 
difficult of access. There is also the series of ponderous tomes of the Record Volumes 
of the O.T.S. of India, which contain brief historical summaries of each trigono- 
metrical series ; Sir Sidney Burrard tells me that it was General Walker who insisted 
on having these summaries inserted. The production of a history of the Depart- 
ment up to 1860, embodying the substance of the correspondence volumes to which 
Markham never had access, appears therefore to be a matter of urgent importance, 
especially when it is considered that manuscript records have a limited life. 

The early story covers much more than the mere construction of rough surveys 
and maps that were doomed to be superceded. It tells of the constant demand of 
administrators for information about their own territories, and those beyond their 
boundaries, and at the same time their fear of spending too much money. It tells 
of the enthusiasm of a few for the improvement of geography and for the unravelling 
of the mysteries of the unknown, and also of the farsightedness of those who strove 
to put this survey business on to a sound footing under a professional chief with an 
adequate staff. Then there were the true men of science who followed the progress 
of instruments and methods in Europe, and brought about such achievements as 
an observatory for the control of astronomical observations, a school where sur- 
veyors should be taught their business, and eventually a master survey on sound- 
geodetic principles, to which the work of all surveyors should be tied. This early 
history is worth telling in full, for the first efforts of the pioneers and their explor- 
ation of an unknown country can be even more interesting that the regular 
methodical survey of later years. 

This first volume covers the 18th century, the age of romance and adventure 
in India, and I hope that I have succeeded in giving some sense of that romance 
and adventure which coloured the work of our 18th century surveyors and soldiers. 
The second volume will cover a short but very important period, 1800 to 1815, 
during which Colin Mackenzie brought regular organization and system to the 
surveys of the Madras Presidency, and William Lambton laid the foundation of the. 
trigonometrical survey and its great meridional arc. 


?C "k* G '*" '«— S™ • """""- -r « • -tat.,, 

A iarge part of this volume is U»' i. , . 
wamng given to me that the 41 * XaT J ^^^ notes, in S p ite of a 
the other hand, the work cannot h„ y f- ™° re lm P or tant than the man n 

every man wh makes ^'^^^^ -font the n^ndTis rfot 

g^^t°^2t^ t ( ^^ f «- *-* ^ authoritv for the 

the Photoditho Office for the effi P^*™ ( nw Lt, Colone CAK wf ^ 
though, and then- f^Ztt^l^X^ "*«* »* ^™S^ 

Guuuarg, Kashmir. 
October 1939, 
( Delhi, 1944 )'. 

P- H. Phillimoke. 

Piate 3 

by Gerard Meroat, 

<w, 1612. 

Reduced from pi n t„ 

'» **>« p. 3tt rt mua^Mh 

■ Amsterdam, 1612. 

Notable featirSof rt P S ,' ine fP L «>. n. 1 
Th « river (?"„„ fl th ! s ear 'j geography are- 





References of MS. Records 

References to Publications 

Other Abbreviations 

Chapter I 
General Narrative 

To the Departure of Rennell in 1777 
Maratha & Mysore Wars, 1778 to 1784 
Six Years of Peace, 1784-90 
Extension of British Interests, 1790 to 1800 




Chapter II 
Bengal Surveys to 1777 

Jesuit Missionaries, 1579 to 1771 

The 24-Parganas, 17S7-64 

Coasts & Islands 

The Great Rivers 

Midnapore & Burdwan, 1761-6 

Renneil & Richards, 1765-6 

Bihar, 1766-8 

Route Surveys 

Rennell as Surveyor General, 1767-77 

Chapter III 
Bengal Surveys, 1777 to 1794 

Thomas Call as Surveyor General, 1777-86 

Goddard's March to Bombay, 1778-9 

Pearse's Marches along the East Coast, 1781-5 

Political Missions, 1781-90 

Wood & Kyd, 1786-94 

Wilford in Benares, 1788-94 

Coasts of the Bay of Bengal, 1779-87 

Andaman & Nicobar Islands, 1788-96 

The Hooghly River 


Chapter IV 
Bengal Surveys, 1793 to 1800 

Beyond the North-West Frontier 
Chittagong Frontier, 1794 
Chunar to Rajahmundry, 1795 
Ganges-Hooghly River Passage, 1777-96 
Ganges River above Cossimbftzar, 1796-1800 
bpecral Surveys in Calcutta, 1795-6 
Uuttagong Coast, 1799-1800 








Chapter V 


Himalaya Mountains : 

Jesuit Missionaries 

Lama Survey of Tibet, 1712-17 

Sources of the Ganges & Go<ra 

-Bogle & Turner, 1774-84 


Tie Snowy Range 
Assam : 

The Brahmaputra 

Welsh's Expedition, 1792-4 
The Eastern Frontier 


Chaptee VI 
Madeas Sueveys to 1788 
Early Surveys to 1765 
Barnard's Survey of the'jagir, 1767-74 
Military Surveys in the South, 1765-75 
JMorthern Circars, 1767-76 
Fort St. George & Madras 
Pnngle & the Guides, 1777-88 
Kelly and other Surveyors, 1778-Ss' ' 

Chapter VII 
Madras Surveys, 1786 to 1800 
Coromandel Coast, 1786-93 
Kistna-Godavari Irrigation Surveys',' 1775 
J- anJt Repairs 
The Corps of Guides 
Colin Mackenzie 
Third Mysore War, 1790 
District Surveys 
Nizam's Dominions 
Fourth Mysore War, 1799 

Chaptee VIII 
Bombay Sueveys 
City Surveys 
Maratha Wars, 1774-S2 
Marine Surveys 
Charles Reynolds, 1783-9 
Emmitt with the Marathas, 1790-5 
Malabar, 1790-1800 
Reynolds & his Map, 1792-1800 

Revenue Sueveys 

Methods of the' Country 



Chaptee IX 








Chapter IX — f concld. ) 
Bevenue Surveys— ( concld. ) 

The Jagw, 1767-91 
Northern Circars, 1774-88 
Salem & Baramahal, 1792-9 
Assistant Revenue Surveyors, 1795-1800 


Chapter X 

Astronomical Control, Bengal 
Observations before 1760 
RennelTs Maps of Bengal, 1760-77 . . 
Transits of Venus, 1761-69 
Smith, Pearse, and others, 1776-90 
Reuben Burrow, 1783-9. . 
Burrow's Measures of the Degree, 1790-1 
Burrow's Last Season, 1791-2 
Colebrooke & his Surveyors, 1794-1800 


Chapter XI 

Astronomical Control, Madras & Bombay 
Madras Observations before 1786 
Topping & the Observatory, 1786-1800 
Military Surveys, 1788-1800 
Bombay Observations 
Breadth of the Peninsula 
Fundamental Longitudes, Madras & Calcutta 



Chapter XII 
Professional Methods op Survey 
Rennell in Bengal, 1764-77 
Route Traverses 
Madras Jagw, 1767-74 .. 
Michael Topping, 1788-94 
Baramahal & other Madras Surveys, 1792-9 
Madras Surveying School, 1796-1800 
Journals and Fieldbooks 

J 82 

Chapter XIII 

■Survey Instruments 

Sextants & Quadrants 

Theodolites .. 
Supply of Instruments 
Astrolabes . . 
Instrument Makers 




Chapter XIV 
Maps op India 

Ancient Geography 

Early Maps to 1750 . . ' ' 

D'AnviUe's Map of 1752 

Jefferys & Orme . . ; 

RenneU's Map of Hindoostan, 1882-93 

Thomas Call's Atlas, 1782-9 

Reynolds's Map, 1793-1807 

Colebrooke & Others 


Chaptee XV 
Maps op Bengal 

Maps before Rennell 
RenneU's Early Maps, 1764-72 
RenneU's Provincial & General Map, 
Bengal Atlas, 1779-83 
Distance Tables 
District Maps \ ] 

Upper Provinces, 1797-1800 
Punjab & Afghanistan, 1786-1804 
Map Drawing & Draughtsmen 

Chapter XVI 
Maps of Madras & Bombay 

Early Maps of the Carnatic, to 1780 

KeUy's Atlas of 1782 

Madras Maps, 1780-180O 


Maps of the Nizam's Dominions 

Maps of Bombay 

Chapter XVII 
Map Construction & Pbeseevation 


Projections ,"." 


Maps for Court of Directors 

Co-operation between Presidencies 

Custody & Distribution .' . 

Chaptee XVIII 


Surveyor Generals of Bengal 
Bengal Regulations 
■ Surveyor General's OfHce at Calcutta 
Proposals for.Surveyor General, Madras 
Surveyor General, Bombay 


Recruitment - - 
Conditions of Service 
Civil & Military Surveyors 
Surveyors "Out of the Servi& 

Chapter XIX 












. _.C h a p t b k X I X— ( Gondii. 
Surveyors — (Goncld. ) 

Rermell's Surveyors ".. 
Other Bengal Surveyors ... 
Madras Surveyors 
Bombay Surveyors 

Chapter XX 
Pay & Allowances 

Surveyor Generals of Bengals 
Bengal Surveyors 
Madras Surveyors 
Bombay Surveyor 

Chapter XXI 
Civil Establishment 
European Assistants 
Surveying School, Madras 
Assistant Revenue Surveyors, Madras 
Indian Explorers 
Reynolds & his Surveyors 
Lascars & Followers 

Chapter XXII 

Inhabitants & Officials 
Bengal in Rennell's Time 
India at Large 
Military Escorts 
Posts & Communications 

Addenda & Corrigenda . . 
Further Abbreviations ..... 
Biographical Notes ' . . 

;; ■ PLATES 

Political Map of India . . >'.... 

India to Arabia 

India Orientalis 

Arab Map of Sind 

On the Bhutan Border 

The Ganges and the Gogra " . .. .-„... 

Ladakh to Lhasa . . ■ 

The Indus to the Granges ; 

The South Peninsula 

After Father Monserrate • ■ • 

L 'Empire du Grand Mogol .■.', .. * 

Presqu 'Isle de 1 Tnde 

Bengal from D 'Anville 

Bengal & the Brahmaputra '/■;. 

Kelly's Title-page ,.. ,--.'! :: 

Terza Parte dell 'Asia .'. '' 

Alexander Dalrymple 

Robert Orme 

James Rennell 

Charles Reynolds 

Index to Surveys, 18th Century - .'. 



. . 270 

.. 271 










. . 287 





303, 305 

. . 306 

■::', 308 

Front Cover 

. facing Title Page 

page x 

J ,, xx 


, ,, 55 




..' 148 


, plate - 11 

page 221 

plate : 13 

page 238 






Back Cover 

References to MS. Records & other Abbreviations 








B Pol C. 






E S & Pol. 

B S & M. 

B S & Sep. 

B Ter C. 


B Rev Bd. 

B Ter Rev. 




Bo ME. 

Bo PC. 

Bo Poi C. 




Bo to CD. 





C D to B. 

C D to Bo. 

C D to M. 






Com of Rev. 






Emb Lists . 

et seq. 



GEO Lib. . 


G G in C. . 



H C. Report. 


. . Bengal Foreign Consultations 

■ . British Museum 

JS. British Museum Additional Manuscripts 

- . Minutes of the Bengal Council 

. . Bengal Military Consultations 

■ ■ Bengal General Order 

■ ■ Bengal Public Consultations 

■ ■ Bengal Political Consultations 
. - Bengal Revenue Consultations 

■ - Proceedings of Council, Bengal 

■ ■ Bengal Secret Consultations 

. Bengal Select Committee Consultations 

■ ■ Bengal Secret & Foreign Consultations 

. Bengal Secret & Political Consultations 

■ Bengal Secret & Military Consultations 

. Bengal Secret and Separate Correspon- 

■ Bengal Territorial Consultations 

■ Bengal Letter to Court of Directors 
. Bengal Board of Revenue 

■ Bengal Territorial Revenue Proceedings 

■ Bengal 

. Bombay Foreign & Political 

■ Bombay Military Consultations 

■ Bombay Military Establishments 

■ Bombay Public Consultations 

. Bombay Political Consultations 
. Bombay Revenue Consultations 
. Bombay Secret & Political Consultations 

■ Bombay Survey Correspondence 

- Bombay Letter to Court of Directors 

■ Bombay 

■ Commander-in-Chief 
Committee of Correspondence, I O. 
Court of Directors 

Court Despatch to Bengal 

Court Despatch to Bombay 

Court Despatch to Madras 

Chief Engineer 

Court Minutes, I 0. 



Chief & Council 

Committee of Revenue 

Survey of India Records at Dehra Dun 




East India Company 

Embarkation Lists, I O. 

and following 



Library of Geodetic Branch Office, Survey 

of India, Dehra Dun 
Governor in Council 
Governor General in Council 
General Order 
House of Commons Reports ; Committees 

1831-32. Vol. IX (PRO.) 
Home Miscellaneous Series, I O. 

I O Copies . 

I O Lib. 
I Misc. 
I Maps 
IRDLib. . 


Imp Lib. 


Kelly's Atlas. 



M M C. 



M R I O. . 


MRevBd. . 



M S & M. . . 

MSM&P. . 

MS & Pol. .. 

M Sel. C 

M to C D. 

MaekMSS. .. 



Mad Eccl. . . 

Mar Rec. 

Mil Bd. 


Mise L R. . . 




OrmeMSS. .. 





Pers Rec. 

Q M G. 


R S Lib. 






Sel. . . Select 

Sep. . . Separate 

f v -. • • sub verbo ( under the head ) 

L ** c ] • ■ thus, as printed 

[sup} . . above 

V M - - • Victoria Memorial Hall, Calcutta 

v - ■ ■ see 

W. . . West 

Bound Copies of I 0. Records with Im- 

penal Records, Sew Delhi 
India Office Library 
India Office Miscellanies 
India Office Map Room 
Imperial Record Department Librarv 

New Delhi 
The same ; as above 
Imperial Library, Calcutta 

Manuscript Atlas in two volumes at S G O 
Library, Calcutta 
. Military Accountant General 

■ Madras General Consultations 
. Madras Military Consultations 

■ Madras Public Consultations 
- Madras Revenue Consultations 
. Map Record & Issue Office, Calcutta 

■ Madras Record Office, Egmore 

■ Madras Board of Revenue Proceedings 

■ Madras Secret Consultations 

■ Madras Secret Committee Consultations 

■ Madras Secret & Military Consultations 
. Madras Secret Military & Political Con 


■ Madras Secret & Political Consultations 

■ Madras Select Committee Consultations 
. Madras Letter to Court of Directors 

Mackenzie Manus-ripts, I 0. 


Madras Civil Establishments, I O. 

Madras Ecclesiastical Records, I O. 

Marine Records, I O. 

Military Board 


Miscellaneous Letters Received, I O. 

Minute of Correspondence or Angle ' 



Orme Manuscripts, I O. 

Provincial Council of Revenue, Bengal 

Public Record Office, London 


here and there 

Personal Records, I 0. 

Quartermaster General 

which/whom, see 

Royal Society Library 



Surveyor General 

Surveyor General's Office 

Reference, to maps of the Survey of India fT 2 L/12[ Key, pi 21 ] mSer ' ,0 " S ! ' " J ' 


References to Publications 

The Imperial Gazetteer of India contains excellent historical accounts of the various pro- 
vinces districts, and cities of India, scattered through its different volumes, with a general 
historical summary in volume II. 




As A 8. 
As J. 



Ben Atlas 

Ben P & 
Ben Sd. 





Bo Geo Soc. 









Addiscombe. Its Heroes ami Men of note. 

Vibart. 1894. 
A Collection of Treaties. ..C. V. Aitchison. 

1909. G. 

Antiquite Geographiqua da I 'hide et plus- Cadell 

ieurs autres contries de la Haut Asie. 

Bourgignon d'Anville. 1775. Calcutta tfc N. 

Major-General Sir Thomas Munro... Cambridge 

Arbuthnot. 2 vols. London. 1381. 
Asiatic Annual Register ( periodical ). 
Asiatic Journal [ periodical ). 
Asiatic Researches ( periodical ). I Campos 

Lord Gomwallis in Bengal. Aspinall. 1931. j 
Travels in India. Jean-Baptiste Taver- | Caraccioli 

nier. ed. by Ball. 2 vols. 18S9. 
The Origin & Conduct of the War with 

Tippoo SuUaun. Alexander Beatson. Cardew 

Beloved Marian. K.L. Murray. London. Carey 

A Map of Bengal cb Dakar in VIII parts... \ 

James Renaell. 1779. : Carmichael 

A Bengal Atlas. ..2xuL edn. of above. | 

J. Rennell. 1781. 3rd edn. 1783. j Carrol's Code 

Reprinted S G 0. Calcutta. 1914. I 

Bengal Past & Present ( periodical ). | Ceatury Series 

Selections from the Records of the Govern- I 

meat of Bengal ( occasional ). [ Glan Campbell 

Description Uistorlque et Geographique de Clements 

I'Inde. Jean Bernoulli. Berlin 1786-9. Markham 

3 vols. German edn. 1786. 3 vols. 
Missionaries da Carnatic de la Compagnie Close 

de Jesus. L. Besse. S.J. Trichinopoly. 

1918. ! Colebrooke 

Les Aventuriers Frane-ais aux Indes, 

{ 1775-1820 ). Maurice Besson. Paris, j Colin Mackenzie 

Construction db Principles of Mathematical ! 

Instruments. Bion. 1723. Translated j Gommenlarius 

from the French by Stone. 
Twelve Years of Military Adventure in 

three quarters of the Globe. John 

Blaekiston. 1829. 2 vols. Companion- 

Calcutta Past & Present. Kathleen Atlas 

Blechynden. London. 1905. 
Ain-i-Akbari, by Abul-Fazl. Translated Cotton 

by H. Blochman. vol.1. 1871. 
Christian To nib f <is Monuments in the U.P. Cox & Stuart 

Blunt. 1911. 
Transact''' oris of the Bombay Geographical Crawford 

Society ( periodical ). 
Haidar Ah and Tipu Sultan. L.B. ! Crawford's //«' 

Bowring. 1893. 
Life of Thomas Munro. i Crawford 

Voyages and Travels of Manddsloe. Henry | 

Dodwell. The Broadway Travellers. : Gyc. Ind. 

(1930? ). DIB. 

Rise and Progress of the Bengal Army. 

Broome. 1850. D N B. 

Catholic Encyclopedia. New York. 1911. Dalby 

Paper by Joseph Brueker. S J., of Paris. 
A Journey from Madras through- the Coun- 
tries of Mysore, Canara and Malabar. Dalrymple 

Francis Buchanan. 1807. 3 vols. 
Memoirs of the Services of the Bengal 

Artillery. E. Buckle. 1852. ; D'Anville 

History of Ancient Geography. Sir E. j 

Echoes from Old Calcutta. Busteed. 1908. I 

Proceedings of the Controlling Council of 
Revenue at Murshulabad. 1 vols. Cal- 
cutta. 1920. 

Calcutta Gazette. { periodical ). 

History of the Bombay Army. Patrick 
Cadell. 1938. 

Calcutta Old and New. Evan Cotton. 1907. 

An Account of the War in India between 
the English and the French on the Coast 
of Choromandel...from 1 750 to 1 7oO r 
li. O. Cambridge. London. 1761. 

History of the Portuguese, in. India. J.J. A. 
Campos. Calcutta. 1919. 

Life of Robert Lord Olive, Baron Flassey. 
Charles Caraccioli. London, undated 
[1775-7]. 4 vols. 

Services of the Bengal Native Army,. 
Cardew. Calcutta. 1903. 

The Good old days of Honorable John 
Company, 1600-18b~8. W. H. Carey. 
Simla. 1882. 3 vols. 

Manual of the District of Vizugaputam. 
I). F. Carmichael. Madras. 1869. 

Abstract of General Orders & Regulations 
...on the Bengal Establishment. 1812. 

The Century Science Scrips. Major James- 
Rennell. ... Clements Markham. 1895. 

Records of Clan Campbell in H.I. E.G. 1925. 

Narrative of the Mission of George Bogle of 
Tibet. Clements Markham. London. 
1879. v. Markham. 

The Early Years of the Ordnance Survey. 
C. F. Close. 1926. 

Life of Mountsiiiart El-phinstone. Cole- 
brooke. 1884. v. T. E. Colebrooke. 

Dominion* of t'h.e late Tippoo tiuitan. Colin 
Mackenzie [ not the S G. ]. Calcutta. 

Father Anthony Mouse rrato's M.orajolica;- 
Legation is (.■ommentarius, Ed, H. Has- 
ten. S.J. Memoirs of As. Soc. of Bengal 
III. No. 9. { 515-7U4 ). 1914. 

A Companion Alius to those published, by 
Major James Rennell. ... Illustrated by 
a Memoir by Hirst & Ascoli [ qv ]. 1914, 

List of Inscriptions on Tombs in Madras. 
Cotton. 1905. 

District Manual, North Arcot. Cox, re- 
vised by Stuart. Madras. 

History of the Indian Medical Service.. 
D.G.Crawford. 2 vols. London. i ( J14. 

List of Officers of the I.M.S. D. G. Craw- 
ford. London. 1930. 

Journal of an Emboss t/ to the Court of Ava y 
1827. John Crawfurd. London. 1829. 

The. Cy do ocedia of India-. Calcutta. 1909. 

Dictionary of Indian Biography. Buck- 

Dictionary of National Biography. 

A Short Account of... Burrow's measure- 
ment of a Degree ... Isaac 
London. 1796. MS. in R S. Lib. 

Nautical Reports. Alexander Dalrymple, 
B M. Papers on Eastern Navigation, 
10 1770-87. v. Oriental Repertory. 

pci.aireiss«/)t.ens Geographiq-ues stir la Carte 
de VInde. Paris. Bourguignon d'An- 
ville. 1753. English translation, v. 
Herbert; Antiquite Geographique. 


References to Publications 


De Filippj 
Diet. Gene. 

Diet. Suis, 


Dist. R. 


Du Halde 


Ency. Brit. 

Eur. Mag. 

F. C. Hirst 

ED Set. 









Gaz. Bombay 

Geo. Rev. 
Genl. May. 

Glad win 

Gleanings < 

Vizier Ali Khan, or The Massacre at 
Benares. James Davis. 1st edn, 1KI4 
•2nd edn. 1871. 
°'\y£i' AnAo " lml "JTibet. DeFilippi. 
Diaicmnaire Generate de Biographic et 
dHistmre. Dojobry et Bachelet 
IcTsulsse' M "°"1 ue " b ' : Vaphiaue de 
A Narrative of the Campaign i„ Xniia 
unthTippoo Sultan, mi Dirom. 1793 
bengal JJMnr.t Record.,. Rev W K B, 
mmger. 1914. Sylhet. 4 vols., RnngpZr' 
i vols. , Midnapore 4 vols. ; DinafpZ- 
thiltagong ( not by Firminger ). 
The Nabobs of Madras. H. Dodwell 
London. 1926. „. Henry DodwS 
Broadway Travellers. " """" > 

Bombay & Westemlmlia. Douglas 1891 

T'T,", M ' l mpin de CM "«- father 
tilt; Pa , m - 1735 - * Wig. i 

Lnglish edn. mol. maps, 3 vols 1738 
East India Military Calendar. John Phil' 

lippart. 1823-6. 3 vols. 
J he Rise of Bombay. Edwardes. 1902 
The History 'of India by its cum H istor ians. 
H. H. Elliot & Dowson. 1867-77 
Encyclopcedi,, llrdannica. 1 lth edn 1915-' 
l«h edn. 1929. ' ' 

European Magazine ( periodical 1 
A Series of Letters addressed to U R B the 
Dak, of Sussex. George Everest. 1839. 
Old Revenue Surveys of Bengal, Btlua; 
Onssa, and Assam. F. C. Hirst P fl l 
cutta. 1912. v. Hirst. ' 

Selections front the records of the SW»- 

mentoflnda, Foreign Department. 
Orzgmal Letters front India. Mrs. Fay. 

Proceedings of the Comptrotting Committee 
cfRevemt, ■ Murshidabad. Rev W K 
Firminger. v. Dist. R. ' ' 

Oriental Memoirs. James Forbes. Lon- 
don 1813. 2 vols. 2nd edn. 1834-5 

?„ d i R J' h '- ha ^ Man. Francis 
Forde. Forde. 1910 

A n m Ti l ?L th ' Estk ' r S "H. Bengal to 
Quedah lm Capt ThomM v » 

pub. Alexander' Dalrymple. 1788 

A Journey from Bengal to England 

George Forster. London 2 vols. 1790 

Reprinted. Allahabad. 1915 

Fottt" '" \ n ot ° ff '" B " x " d "- Wi «i™ 
Foster. 1919. v. William Foster. 

< iS"7 itt Fra,Mi ' i & Keary - 

"%&&&.*& ° ! S *»"^*»- 

Col. Wm. Fullarton. 1788 

a m'ST °J Bmb «u Ci "S «** Muni. 
t>. M. Edwardes. Bombay. 1909 

Geographical liecieu- ( periodical I ' 

Geneologml Magazine 1 periodical ), 

Sannyasi * Fakir Raiders 
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AyeenAkbery, Translatedfrom the origi- 
nal I ersta,,. K'rancis Gladwin, -'vols 
London. 1800. 

( periodical ). Calcutta. 1829-33. 

Life of Sir Thomas Munro. Gleig. 2 vols. 

Government Gazette (periodical). C»l- 

Grant Duff 




Henry Dodwell 



Hirst & Ascoli 

Hobson Jobson 






Imp Gaz. 

Imp Lib 

M &p. 

I Cat. 

I O Tracts 


J A SB. 
James Rennell 

^offndTcL 1 ?" Cm ' ml P'™*™ 
of India. Charles Grant. Bombay. 1870 

Dal? * ° f He Mahrat "">- J- O. Grant 

°^i!f^J *«»*, Ft. William, 

deto^fS" W ' S - «»"»"■ Kid-' 

The Letter, of Warren Hastings to hi, Wife 

S. C. Grier. 1905. J 

A voyage to the East I„ Mr. Grose 

London. 1772. 2 vols 
The Despatches of F. M. the Duke or 
Wellington. Gurwood J 

A Narrative of the Insurrection in the 
Zemindar, of Benares in the month of 
Angus, Warren Hastings. Calcutta! 
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v. Warren Hastings 
The Private Journal of the Marquess of 
Hastings, ed. by his dan. the Mar' 
chioness of Bute. Keprint from 2nd 
edn. Pamni p r0S s, Allahabad. 1907 
Warren Hastings; Letters to Sir John 
Maaphersmt. Henry Dodwell. „. Dod 

A Geographical Illustration of the Map of 
Indut Trans ated from the French of 
M. d Anytlle [ sup ]. William Herbert 
1st edn. 1754 ; 2nd edn. 1759 

Memoirs of William Rickey. 4 vols. 

i'V'leT':' '''""•"• M ''i'"-Ceneral 

*S?* ty*^ Geography of Bengal, 

^^'^■^ «-«»' 

A Memoir upon the Maps of Bengal b,i 
Rennell, from 1,64. Hirst & Ascoln 
1914; superseded by The Survey, of 
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BvY,l'e*ir ,, re , fe, ' encBS are ™«fe- 
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Travels in India, 1780-83. William 

Hodges, R.A. 1793. ° m 

List of Officers of the Bengal Army, 1,68- 

T ^«aob,inEngland. New 

J ^L M ,tT n V'-l r in »«*« India... 

t,o- ml " m !'- s •" India... .w. W. Hunter 

1897. v. Rural Bengal. 
Parochial Annals af Bengal. H. B. Hyde 

Calcutta. 1907-9 *iyue. 

Imperia^Gazelleer of India. Calcutta. 

Catalogue of Maps et Flans in the Imperial 
Library. Calcutta. 1910 mp,rml 

tSL° S urn™ 9 " 1 Emp '' m Resim " 1 "- 

Catalogne...of MS. * Printed Reports 
Memoirs, * Maps of the San 
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Published Tracts. India Office 

A desenption of the Road, -in Bengal eb 
Bahar. James Rennell. 1st edn'. 8vo 
1/78; 2nd edn. 4to. 1779 [I O Lib 1 
v. Rennell. J ' 

References to Publications 

Jarrett Ain-i-Akbari. Abul Fazal. vols. 2, 

translated by H. S. Jarrett. 1891-94. 
Jefferys Explanation of the Map of the Seat of War 

on the .Coast of ClwromanrM. T. Jefferys. 
John Marshall John Marshall in India. ... 1668-1672. 

S. A. Khan. London. 1927. 
Johnstone Capt. Welsh'. 1 ; Expedition to Assam in 

" 1792, 1793, and 1794. Lt.-Col. J.J. 

Johnstone. Calcutta. 1877. 
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Jones. 1851. 
Kanea Mons. Anquetil du Perron. Kanga 

Kaye The Astronomical Observatories of Jai 

Singh. G. R. Kaye. Calcutta. 1918. 
Kindersley Letters from the East Indies. Mrs. Kin- 

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Eirkpatrick An Account of the Kingdom of Nepaul. 

Wm. Kirkpatrick. London. 1811. 
Kistna Manual K-i-stna Di-sinct Manual, pub. Madras. 
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III. No. 3 ( 95-248 ) ; The Journals of 

Major James Rennell. ed. by T.ILD. La 

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Land Revenue Report on the Land Revenue System of 

Bengal & Bekar. 1883. 
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Asia 2 vols. London. 1788. 

Leckie Journal of a Route to 1790. 

D.R. Leckie. London. 1800. 
Lister District Gazetteer, Hazaiibagh. E. Lister. 

Calcutta. 1917. 
Logan Manual of the Malabar District. Wm. 

Logan. 2 vols. 1787. Reprinted 

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Long Social Conditions of Bengal, 1748-67. 

Long's Selections from Unpublished Records of 

Selections Government. Long. Calcutta. 1869. 

Love Vestiges of Old Madras. H. D. Love. 

4 vols. 
Low History of the Indian Navy. C. R. Low. 

1S77. 2 vols. 
Lushington The life.. .of General Lord Harris. S. R. 

Lushington. 2nd edn. London. 1S45. 
Mackenzie Sketch of the 'War with Tippoo Sultan, 

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Maclagan. London. 1932. 
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Mad. Set. Selections from the Records of the Govern- 

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Maltby The Ganjam District Manual. Madras. 

Markham A Memoir on the Indian Surveys. Cle- 

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1878. v. Century Series; Clements 

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Martin Despatches, minutes, and correspondence 

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Martrneau Bussy ei VIndc Francaise, 1720-1785. 

Alfred Marfcineau. Paris. 1935. 
Mech. Mag. The Mechanics' Magazine ( periodical ). 

Memoir Memoir of a Map of Hindoostan. James 

Rennell. 1st Map of 2 sheets ; 1st edn. 

1783 ; 2nd edn. 1785— 2nd Map of 4 

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Mervyn Davies 

Mil. Reposi- 


Misc. Tr. 
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Old Rev. 

O 'Malley 


Or me 

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Qy. Xee. 

Komi! 11 

Warren Hastings. A. Mervyn Davies. 

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The British .M.UiV.iry Repository. Capt. 

Samuel Parlby. 3 vols. Calcutta. 

The Record of the Royal Geographical 

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Annual Register ( periodical ). 
Warren Hastings in Bengal, 1772-74. 

Moncton Jones. Oxford. 1918. 
Operations of (.'apt. Littles Detachment of 

the Mahratta Army. E.Moor. London. 

Descriptive and Historical Account of 

Godavery District. Morris. 1378. 
Narrative of the Military Operations on 

the Coromandel Coast, 1780-84. Innea 

Munro. 1789. 
Historical Account of Discoveries and 

Travels in Asia. ... Hugh Murray. 

'Edinburgh. 1820. 3 vols. 
The Letter Copy Books of the Resident at 

Murshidabad. 1769-1770. ed. W. K. 

Eirminger. Calcutta. 1918. 
Joseph Tieff entailer. S. J. A Forgotten 

Geographer of India. Rev. S. Nofci. S. J. 

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Calcufcta. 1907. 
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History of the Military Transactions of the 
British Nation in Indoostan from the 
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Reprinted, Madras, 1861 [to which 
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The Oriental Geography of Mm Haukal ... 
Sir W. Ousely. London. 1800. 

Report on the Palk MSS. Historical MSS. 

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in at the end of some copies of the 1793 
edn. e>i Memoir of a, Map of Hindoostan . 

i'hilosop'liAcG.1 Transactions of the Royal 
Society ( periodical ). References are 
given to the original edn. which are 
also given in abridged edn. 

A Journey from Calcutta.. .to England. ... 
1750. Bartholomew Planted, 2nd edn. 

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Quarterly Review ( periodical ). 

Marches of the British Annies in the Penin- 
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Reminiscences of many Years. Lord 
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A Hydrographical Journal of a Cursory 
Survey of the Coasts & Islands in the 
Bay of Bengal. Capt. John Ritchie, 
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A Description of the Roads in Bengal t£ 
Bahar. James .Rennell. 1778. 

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Robert Orme Historical Fra-pncnls of the Mogul Empire 
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Roberts The History of British India. P. E. 

Roberts. Oxford. 1930. 
Roy An Account of the mode proposed to he 

followed in. ..determining the Relative 
Situation of the Royal Observatories of 
Greenwich and Paris. ..Maj. Gen. Wil- 
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Rural Bengal Annals of Rural Bengal. Win. Hunter 

S.C.Hill Major Randfurlie Knox...Dilawar Jang 

Bahadur. S.C.Hill. 1917. v. Hill; 
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Sandes. 1935. 2 vols. 
Sastri Cunningham's 'Ancient Geography of 

India'. S.M. Sastri, Calcutta. 1924. 
Schwab Vie d' Annuel iUnvperron. Raymond 

Schwab. Paris. 1934. 
Scots Peerage The Scots Peerage. Balfour Paul. 1910. 
Scton Kerr Selections from the Calcutta ' Gazettes. 

Seton Kerr. 5 vols, covering period 
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Sinha Sir Alexander Allan ; An Account of tlie 

Campaign in Mysore. 1799. ed. by 
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cent A. Smith. 1917. v. Vincent Smith. 
Statistical & Geographical Report of th$ 
24-Pargannas. Maj. R. Smyth. Cal- 
cutta. 1857. 
Observations Mathrmatigues (periodical). 
Paris. Paper by Pere Souciet, 1729-32; 
Dictionary of British- Scientific Instruments 
Science Museum, South Kensington. 
Spring List of Officers of the Bombay Artillery. 

Spring. 1902. 

Stewart An Account of the Kingdom of Tibet. 

Phil Trans. LXVII. 1777 ( 465-88 ). 

Stracliey Narrative of the Mutiny of the Officers of 

the Army in Bengal in the year 1706. 

Henry Strachey. 1773. 

Stubbs History of the Bengal Artillery. Stubbs. 

Supply. Desps. Supplementary Despatches of the Duke of 

Wellington, ed. by his son. 1858. 
Swetenham British Malaya. Swetenham. 1906. 

Symes Mission to the Court of Ava. Symes. 1795. 

T. E. Cole- Life ofH. T. Colebrooke. T. E. Colebrooke 

brooke 1S73. 

Taylor Travels from England to India in the year 

17S9. ... Major John Taylor. London. 
Teignmouth Memoirs of the Life, Writings, and Cor- 
respondence of Sir William Jones. Lord 
Teignmouth. London. 1804. 


Sou t. li 




Thuillier and 


Ursula Low 

A alontia. 
Vi hurt 

Vincent Smith 




William Foster 

C. R. 




W. J. 


^ oun2 

A Voyage to the East Indies. Rev. Edwarc 

Terry, 1655. Reprinted 1S77. 
Biographical Notices of Officers of tht 
Royal ( Bengal ) Engineers, Edwarc 
Thackeray. 1900. 
Three Frenchmen in Bengal. S. C Hill 

Manual of Surveying for India. Thuilliei 

& Smyth. 1st edn. 1851. 
An account of an Embassy to the Court m 
the Teshoo Lama in Tibet. Samue] 
Turner. London. 1800. 
50 Years with John Company. Ursula 

Low. 1936. 
Voyages and Travels. 1802-06. Vis- 
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The Military History of the Madras En- 
gineers . .H.M. Vibart. 1881-3. 2 
vols.; v. Addiscombe. 
India in the British Period. V. A. Smith. 

Oxford. 1920. v. Smith. 
Memoirs written at sea. A Review oj 
his administration. Warren' J, 
Warren Hastings and Philip Francis. 

Weitzman. Manchester. 1929. 
Military Rcmrn-isciviKcs. James Welsh. 

Early Jesuit Travellers in Central Asia. 

1603-1731. C. Wessels, S. J. 1924. 
Embassy of Sir Thomas Roe to India. 
William Foster. 1st. edn. pub. by 
Hakluyt Society 1899. 2 vols. ; 2nd 
edn. Oxford. 1926; one vol.; v. 
An Historical Account of . . the Bengal 
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Capt. John Williams. London. 
- British Relations with the Nagpur State in- 
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Old Fort William in Bengal. C. R. Wil- 
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Plate 4 

11th Century 

»b F Sb™ P i a K?„n 2 ?W° L J ° f "' ffiS '°"-' 0/ M » '» * °»» & *~ Elli0t * 

. London. 1867. 

A reproduction, with the addition of the 
English translation of the Persian script, 
from a map contained in the Ashkal-ul-Bildd 
of Ibn Haukal [208]. 

The real name of Ibn Haukal was Mu- 
hammad Abu-I-Qasim, a native of Baghdad, 
who left Baghdad on his travels in 943, a.d. 

The following extracts illustrate his des- 
cription of Sind, and are typical of the infor- 
mation on which D'Anville constructed his 
map of 1752. 
tj The Mihran is the chief river of those parts. 


sea in the neighbourhood of Multan. It then flows 
by Basmad, Alruz, and Mansura, and falls into the 
sea, to the east of Debal.... It inundates the iand 
during the summer rains, and on its subsidence 
thcseed is sown, as in Egypt. 

From Mansura to Debal is six days journey; 
from Mansura to Multan, twelve ; from Mansura to 
Turan, about fifteen: from Kasdar, the chief city 
of Turan, to Multan, twenty. ... 

He who travels from Mansura to Budha must 
go along the banks of the Mibran, as far as the 
eity of Sadustan. 

Ibn Haukal's work gives the geography 
of all countries of Islam, and his description 



To the Departure of Rormell m 1777—Mardtha & Mysore Wars, 1778 to 1784 — Six 
Years of Peace, 1784-90 — Extension of British Interests, 1790 to 1800. 

Up to the 18th century there was little real knowledge of the geography of 
India; the many maps that had been published in Venice, Holland, France, and 
England, were based on tradition and on tales of mariners and travellers ; in 
the absence of more sure foundation they borrowed the one from the other, acquiring 
variation and detail as fancy directed. ; 

Here and there were maps which showed some knowledge ot portions of the coast 
and its neighbourhood, and it was chiefly from mariners that information of a 
more reliable nature began to creep in, till in 1723 the French geographer Delisle 
published maps of the southern coasts which gave a very fair picture of the general 
outline. These were improved upon by Apres de Mannevillette, the French 
navigator, who made his first voyage to Poudicherry in 1719. 

The earliest contribution to the geography of the mainland came from French 
Jesuit missionaries, one of whom. Father Bouchet, sent home to Pans in 1719 a 
rough map of southern India, with a few observed latitudes and longitudes, and 
several detailed sketches, from which the great geographer Bourgignon d'Auville 
published his first map of South India in 1737. 

D'Anville had already in 1733 completed his map of Tibet, which showed part 
of the Himalayan range and the upper courses of its great rivers as conceived by 
the Lamas who had been sent out from Pelriii [ pi. 7 ]. 

In 1752 he published, at the request of the French East India Company, his 
Carte de I'liule, which was a great advance on anything previously accomplished. 
He accompanied it with a full account of all the works he had consulted, going- 
back even as far as the Arab and Greek historians and geographers. He accepted 
nothing without some direct evidence, and his most valuable material included 
astronomical observations by various Jesuit missionaries and detailed routes of 
European travellers. 

At this time there was so much more knowledge of the Oarnatic than ot the 
rest of Tndia, that D'Anville was able to publish a special map of the South 
Peninsula on a larger scale, and the struggle between the French and the English, 
which had started with the arrival of Dupleix as Governor of Pondicherry m 1*4,9, 
and continued with little intermission till the fall of Pondicherry m 1761, gave 
both sides the opportunity to gain a better knowledge of the country. 

The first opportunity for any regular survey came, however, in Bengal, where 
as a result of the victory at Plassey, the English Company obtained the grant_ot 
the 24-Parganas and a close alliance with the Nawab of Bengali and then 111 1760 
they obtained from the Nawab the further grant of the provinces of Ohittagong, 
Burdwan, and Midnapore, practically the whole of Lower Bengal. 

Knowledge of the geography of Bengal was at this period practically confined 
to the banks of the Ganges and Hooghly rivers, as depicted on the extract of 
D'Anville's Carte de VIncle given on plate 13. 

Surveys of the new possessions were ordered by the local Council, and encour- 
aged from London. The first thought was to ascertain the extent of cultivated 
lands and the value of their revenues; then there was the safety and regularity of 
communication, both by sea and through the rivers; and then the defence of the 
passes of the western frontiers. 

General Narrative 

Plaisted wag put on to survey the coasts of Chittagong and the Sundarbans, 
and Hugh Cameron to survey "the New Lands" of the 24-Parganas. On Cameron's 
death in 1764, James Eennell was appointed surveyor in his place, but deputed to 
survey the Ganges Kiver and search for a waterway for up-country traffic from 
Calcutta that should be navigable throughout the year. 

Early in 1765 De G-loss was appointed to survey the Burdwan district, and 
then, as the defence of the western passes became an urgent matter, one surveyor 
after another was appointed, either by the Council at Port William, or by the 
commander of the forces on the frontier. 

In 1765 Clive returned to Bengal for his second term of office, and, having been 
specially asked by Robert Orme, the historian, to make him " a vast map of 
Bengal ", commissioned Eeimell to carry out this task. 

Eennell set about his worl: with so much enthusiasm and ability, showing- a 
positive genius for putting maps together, that Clive and his Council made him 
Surveyor G-eneral from the beginning of 1767, and placed all available surveyors 
under his orders. Some of these were engineer officers, and a few were infantry 
officers, who had a taste for the work ; amongst the latter was the Frenchman Claud 
Martin, who became famous in after years as the founder of the " La Martiniere '"' 

The necessity for a proper marine survey of the coasts and islands was not over- 
looked, and Eitchie was appointed marine surveyor after Plaisted's death, and made 
a complete survey of the coasts from the south of Chittagong, round and through 
the Sundarbans, and down the east coast as far as Madras, besides a general survey 
of the Andaman and Nicobar Islands. 

By 1773 Eennell and his surveyors had completed the survey of the Company's 
possessions in Bengal and Bihar which by now extended to the frontiers of Oudh 
and Allahabad on the west, and to the southern jungles of Chota Nagpur and the 
forests of Orissa on the south. To the north-east Eennell had himself surveyed the 
Brahmaputra Eiver as far as the Assam frontier near Groalpara in 1765, and the 
survey now extended to the foot of the Garo and Khasia Hills and embraced the 
whole of Sylhet and Chittagong. 

Early in 1774 he submitted to Government a complete set of provincial maps 
on the scale of 5 miles to an inch, together with general maps on smaller scales, 
and shortly afterwards G-overnment called in all surveyors, including some who had 
been at work in Oudh under Poller. Eennell stayed on at Dacca, improving his 
maps with such extra material as he could collect, and at the end of 1776 obtained 
permission to send out surveyors to fill up small gaps near Cooch Behar, the Santal 
country, and Palamau, and to extend surveys through Allahabad and Oudh. 

He now considered that his task was complete ; he had been seriously wounded 
during an encounter with fahir marauders in 1766, and his health had suffered 
greatly during his arduous years in the vile climate of Eastern Bengal ; as soon as 
he was assured of a pension he resigned the service, and left India early in April 
1777. He continued to serve the cause of India and geography till his death. 

There were occasional surveys undertaken beyond Eennell's control, the most 
notable of which was the survey of Colonel Upton's route to Poona in 1775, which 
w ? as entrusted to the Eev. Willliam Smith, a gentleman of whom little else is known. 
With astronomical observations taken almost every night, his survey across the 
unknown heart of India was hailed by Eennell and other geographers as a most 
valuable contribution to geography. 

Thanks to the strong start given to him by Clive, and also to his own clear 
view of what could be done with the available men, instruments, and time, Eennell 
succeeded in giving Bengal and Bihar, inside the comparatively short period of 
12 years, a continuous and uniform set of maps. The survey was far from complete 
or accurate in detail, but showed the general geography of the whole country and 
the more important features with sufficient accuracy for the needs of the time. 

Departure oe Uennell 3 

Wothin- lite this was attempted elsewhere in India, although more than one 
surveyor would hare been ready to undertake the task. In Bengal alone was the 
nolitical situation favourable. 

TTnder the Madras Presidency considerable information had been collected ot 
Trichinopolv, Tinnivelly, and Madura, by the survey of military routes under the 
direction of" the Chief Engineer, John Call, and a general map of the South Penin- 
sula had been compiled by Henry Montresor, but the only lands belonging to the 
Company were the Jagir, granted in 1763, and the Circars to the north of the 
TTistna Kiver, which were occupied in 1768. 

The Jaqir was a thickly populated and rich tract about 100 miles by oO ui 
extent and Barnard's survey, begun in 1767, was a model of what a survey should 
be It was carried out on a scale of 2 inches to a mile on strict scientific principles, 
and, besides shewing all topographical features, gave a wealth of information for 
revenue purposes : the maps were not completed till 17/4. i 

The survey of the Circars was a different matter ; the country was extensive, and 
the greater part of it was covered with jungle and most unhealthy. In the first 
veare after it had been taken over, a start was made at the two extremes, lo the 
north in Gailjain, Cotsford, the civil officer in charge, produced an 'elegant map 
in addition to his other multifarious duties. To the south, in Masulipatam, Stevens 
of the Engineers did his best to meet the urgent wish of the local council for 
a more accurate knowledge of the country; but here again surrey could only be 
undertaken when time was stolen from other duties. 

In 1773 a serious effort was made to complete the survey, and the Chiet 
Engineer appointed Stevens to survey the southern area, and Pittman and Johnston 
alsS of the Engineers, to survey from the north. But the work was never brought 
to completion ; military duties to the south called away first Stevens, and then his 
relief, Dugood ; the climate killed Pittman within two years and Johnston s health 
suffered so much that he had to be recalled at the end of 1776. 

Between 1770 and 1775 several attempts were made to persuade the JNawao or 
the Carnatic to allow a general survey to be carried out over the whole ot his 
dominions. The Wawab and the English had now been firm allies for many years ; 
it was pointed out to him that an accurate survey of his dominions would greatly 
facilitate the operations of the English armies in his service, but he was uncompro- 
mising in his objections, the chief of which was his fear that it would cause a 
diminution of his Dignity and Honour in the eyes of the Neighbouring Powers 
and Foreigners ". So the matter was dropped, and the soldiers continued to grope 
their way about the country as best they could, with such help as they get from the 
surveys of their former marches, which continued to be extended by a few ardent 
surveyors like Robert Kelly. , 

There is little as yet to tell of Bombay; the Company possessed no lands 
beyond the island of Bombay except the factories at Surat and along the Malabar 
coast, until at the end of 1772 they captured the town and ot Broach and 
in 1774 occupied the island of Salsette. As early as 1756 officers of the Artillery 
Company had made detailed surveys of the town and fortifications, both at Bombay 
and Surat, and, during the campaign of 1775 against the Marathas, survey was 
made of the marches of the army into Gujarat and a start made on the survey ot 
Broach pargana. 

Mabatha & Mtsoke Waes, 1778 to 1784 

After Eennell left India the need for surveys in Bengal seemed satisfied, and 
Thomas Call, the new Surveyor General, settled down to the compilation of an 
atlas that should embrace the whole of India. . 

In Madras Kelly pursued his self-imposed task of covering the south peninsula 
with an atlas of degree sheets compiled from measured routes, but his proposal tor 
a regular survey department was turned down. 


General Narrative 

Another Madras soldier, Join Pringle, took up the' surrey of routes with <n-eat 
enthusiam and on his initiative a military Corps of Guides was established whose 
thM ear* men C ° nteb,lted largely t0 the 8urTe J" s oi tlle Pi'SBidenoy for the next 

And now Bombay comes well into the picture. In 1778 war broke out once 
more against the Marathas and the Governor Genera], much against the wishes of 
™ °Zl \f 1 a S r°" 6 ' f01 ' Ce ° f ?f ,gaI tr °°P 8 t0 march "SW ^o*s India to 

? W '. i P 6 ^ ^ 7 t r ei 'T en ;. , iftel ' many de,a y s tMs folce reaoh «l Snrat under 
General Goddard at the end of February 1779, and in the three years war that 
followed, Goddard's army overran the country below the Ghats north of Bombay 
and occupied the greater part of Gujarat, '' 

* rt" 16 n^f °i the ,*£"* fTOm EaIpi t0 Surat had bee " most carefully surveyed by 
Arthur Caldwell and Duncan Stewart, and was a most valuable tie 1 ne for the 
geography of the continent. Stewart continued as surveyor to the force till he 

hi 17 S f "othe, oT ' aldeiachm -t™-M theNarbada on its march homewrt 
m 1784. Otter officers, principally Charles Turner and Reynolds did good work 
m clearing up the geography of these regions, besides completing the survey of 
Broach yargana. " s ■> 

Peace was concluded with the Marathas in 1782, and a Bombay force was sent 
to the west coast to co-operate against Haidar Ali; Eeynolds accompanied this 
with the surprising post of Surveyor Genera] to the army, which he justified bv 

SSTZteJ the oompleteIy mWo C0UDtry tetween u ™ «* 

And now to return to Madras, where Haidar Ali of Mysore had threatened the 
very existence of the settlement by invading the Carnatic in force in July 1780 and 
completely annihilating Colonel Baillie's column and driving Hector Munro's small 
army back on Madras. Reinforcements were hastily sent from Bengal, the most 
important of which was General Sir Eyre Coote to take command in person A 

of ColonePearse, of the Bengal Artillery, and early in 1783, after the death of both 
Coote and Haidar Ah, the English armies had definitely won the day Another 

^Z^ZT^f **"" ^ "** * *"** '° ^ ^ ^ ™ «* 
During this war several notable additions were made to the geography of India 
lhe most important was the surveyed line run between Madras and Bengal on the 
return of Pearse's force in 1784. Pearse himself was an enthusiastic astronomer 
and it was under his personal direction that, on this march, a young infantry officer' 
Robert Colebrooke, ran a continuous perambulator traverse, and took a regular 
series of astronomical observations for latitude and longitude 

Another valuable line was surveyed by Robert Kelly and other surveyors with 
Colonel Pullarton's army, which marched in 17S3 from rTegapatam on the east 
coast through Madura to Palghat, and there connected with a survey brought up 
from the Malabar coast the previous year by Colonel Humberstone's detachment 

Ihroughout the war John Pringle did yeoman service as Captain of the Guides, 
and his route surveys were of the greatest service to General Coote 

Yet another important link was the connection of Nagpur by the surveys of 
James iwart, who accompanied the mission sent by the Governor General to the 
ivaja of Berar, to secure his friendship during the struggle against Haidar Ali 

Kennell s first Map of Bmdomtan, reached India in 1 783, too late to be of use 
whilst the wars against the Marathas and Mysore were in progress; indeed this 
first map would have provided little information of value, for it was not until 
Rennell had embodied all the geographical results of these wars into a new mar, 
on a larger scale that it became a standard authority. F 

In compiling his great map Rennell followed D'Anville's method of a close 
analysis of all the early historical and geographical evidence available, and he had 
a wealth of additional material collected by the surveys of the last 25 years In 

Maratha & Mysore Wars 5 

his later editions he was able to include the work of the Jesuit geographer, Father 
Tieffenthaler, who had been making measurements and observations from Bombay 
to the foot of the Himalaya Mountains for nearly SO years. 

The scattered geographical material now available was not easy to compile ; 
serious discrepancies were inevitable when using long- lines winding- through hills 
and jungles, with distances but roughly measured, or merely estimated ; latitude 
observations gave valuable checks when available, but observations for longitude 
were often more uncertain than the measured routes. 

The skill with which Rennell put this material together, and the account which 
he gave of it, won him far greater renown than did his survey of Bengal. 

Six Years of Peace, 1784-90 

The continuous wars of the last few years had greatly impoverished the East 
India Company, and a period of rigid economy was the natural consequence. In 
Bengal drastic reductions were made in all establishments and salaries, and early 
in 1785 surveyors were called in, not, however, before an elaborate survey of 
Calcutta had been completed by several Engineer officers under Mark Wood. 

The attention of the Directors to the cause of geography had, however, been 
particularly stimulated by recent events, and to assist their geographers, Dalrymple 
and Rennell, the Court called on each of the Presidencies to send home copies of 
all surveys that could be collected; they also asked for an accurate chart of the 
Coromandel coast, which Ritchie had not been able to complete. The work of the 
Surveyor General's office at Calcutta was thus concentrated on the copying of maps, 
whilst Thomas Call made special efforts to complete his Atlas of India. 

Finding great discrepancies in the geographical positions adopted for many 
important places, Call suggested that a special astronomical survey should be 
carried out by Reuben Burrow, an eminent mathematician who had come out to 
Calcutta in 1783, and Burrow spent two seasons, 1787-9, travelling- from one end 
of the Presidency to another, fixing a number of places by astronomical observation. 
These positions were accepted as authoritative for the next thirty or forty years, 
though here and there they were found to be disputable. 

Burrow spent another two seasons in attempts to measure the length of a 
degree, both of latitude and longitude, a work that had been suggested by General 
Roy, the great English geodesist, but he died in 1792 before he could bring his 
work to a satisfactory conclusion. 

At this period there was a call for better harbour accommodation for the 
Company's shipping, such being practically non-existent along- the east coast of 
India. In 1787 Alexander Kyd was sent to survey the island and harbour of 
Penang, or Prince of Wales Island, which had been ceded to the Company the 
previous year. 

In the following year Archibald Blair, of the Bombay Marine, was deputed to 
survey the Andaman Islands, with the particular object of finding a good harbour, 
and in 1789 Kyd and Colebrooke accompanied Commodore Corirwallis, of the Royal 
rTavy, on a further reconnaissance round the Andaman and ISicobar Islands, making- 
special surveys of all the likely harbours, including that of Nancowry. 

Blair completed his survey and remained at the Andamans till the end of 1792, 
when he was relieved by Kyd, who was occupied with the defences of the settlement 
until 1796, when it was decided to rely solely on the harbour at Penang. 

For some time the Madras Government were unable to find a suitable officer for 
the survey of the Coromandel coast, which the Directors considered particularly 
urgent, owing to the number of ships which had been lost along its open shores, 
which were moreover obstructed in places by dangerous shoals. 

In 1787 they found a marine officer of experience and ability, named Michael 
Topping, who, breaking away from the eternal method of perambulator traverse, 

General Narrative 
ran a 300-mile Hag of triangles along the coast from Madras to Pali Strait He 

poTt of :L Jt r ted to suryej and report m the raine ° f c °™»- *»r «?£*£ 

co.esponding obs^vations made at one or n^ZTZZTo^Jtlt 

obtamed tie use of a private observatory at Madras for this purpose nd also the 

ervices of John Golcmghain as his astronomical assistant. He then obtained 

Sh:»^o f ^^ 10nOfaPe ™ aUent <*"""*»» <** - complete 

Further progress was made in fillino- „r, the "mUffa,™ .„„ i „ e j., 
southern peninsula by the efforts of the offices oUh^VS^ id^r 
Pnngle s death, the work « carried on with zeal by Beatson and Allan 

On the occupation of Guntur Circar by the company's troops in 1 88 a survey 
Mac^f "* F " ™ ^ * a ^ W-er "fflcer named "SZ 

Turning once more to Bonibav we find that n,.], ;„ i-o- x> n 
npon to accompany a pohtical ^^3; t^Kla^ oT tht 
unknown plateau of Malwa, to seek out the Maratha chief, llahadii Sindhia The 
m.ssion s arted from Surat and passing through Ujjain and Gwalior, found SincMa 
near Muttra; after a visit to Delhi the party continued its march to Caw not 
where boats were taken down the river to Calcutta Cawnpoie, 

This gave Eeynolds a wonderful line to survey, and he was delighted to find 
that rt completely changed the face of the country Is depicted on BemielTs fcs 
Map of ff™to„. It is interesting to note the natural triumph of every surveyor 
htdhfs o^ortu, dt™f ^ aCtUal """"* tHe «* ° f "»» -*£ woike7who nX 
The mission returned to Bombay by sea, and Eeynolds was then sent un to the 
Deccan wrth the Resident to the Peshwa's court at Poona. At th sp cial reoues 

During the next three years he travelled backwards and forwards across the 

Srr■:^e:tn m l d 8 8 se 8The rr, 1 ? diffe ; e,it route betwe ™ p »°™ ^ ^ 

mESLZ tc, M a ! e fed fl '° m m ^ ur t0 Hyderabad, then through 

Masulrpatarn to Madras, returning again through Hyderabad. 


directed to abandon further field work and to "remain at Surat worfcmg up hi maps 

and oth7Li s 6 TudXt h had fi beeD " °f by ° ffl ° erS ° f the BonXy Marh e 
', T sa ™- Huddart had fixed a series of bngitudes alon°- the coast south 
wards from Bombay by means of chronometers, and between 1787 and 1» 
McCluer surveyed the coast from Kathiawar to Cape Comonn Wh he had [to 
leave a considerable stretch uncharted because of fl/hostility of T^uf o" 

Extension oe British Interests, 1790 to 1800 

In 1790 war broke out once mor-p norn-nof T;™-, «„;i i • 
campaign along the southern f ^l^Kd MalLS wer^ 
survey many miles of new routes. t0 

To hasten a conclusion, the Governor General, Lord Cornwallis decided fn + i 
command in the field himself, and left Calcutta in December mn wf ! , 

the Surveyor General, Kyd, to his personal staff, and tne ^assistants' infheT 
General's office also took the field. To Colebrooke was Ll^tel^Z^ 

Extension or Bbitish Interests 7 

up a survey of the routes of the Grand Army, and by the time the treaty was signed 
before Seringapatam in March 1792, he had made a very fair skeleton map of 
Mysore, whilst another map was produced at home by Rennell from the surveys of" 
Beatson and Allan. 

Eminitt, of the Bombay Infantry, was attached as surveyor to the Maratha army 
which marched down by Dharwar to co-operate in Mysore. His work ran through 
country that had never been surveyed before, and included a continuous line from 
Poona to Seringapatam, a survey of the Tungabhadra River to its junction with 
the Kistna, and a line from that point westwards through Dharwar, down to the 
coast at Goa. 

Reynolds accompanied the Bombay army to Malabar, and with Johnson of the 
Engineers took lines of survey from that coast into Mysore. 

At the close of the campaign Kyd sent out surveyors on various tasks. He 
himself carried a line from Seringapatam over the Ghats through Coorg, down to 
the west coast and through Cannanore to Anjengo. Anburey and Blunt, of the 
Engineers, surveyed a line to Hyderabad, and during the following cold season 
continued it through Berar and Saugor to Kalpi, whilst at the same time Reynolds 
took another line from Hyderabad to Agra. 

Under the treaty of 1792 Tipu had to cede to the Company the province of 
Malabar, and the districts of Dindigul and Salem, besides other territories to the 
Marathas and the Nizam. 

Malabar was allotted to the Bombay Presidency, and arrangements were at once 
made for its survey which was started by Emmitt and Johnson. The difficulties of 
the. country were prodigious, and the work dragged on for several years, other 
officers employed being Moncrieff and Williams of the newly raised Bombay corps 
of Pioneers. 

The civil charge of Salem Districts was entrusted to Captain Alexander Read, 
who engaged John Mather to survey the district which included the Baramahal, a 
hilly tract to the north. Though not based on regular triangulation, this was the 
first district survey based upon a system of theodolite bearings and intersections as 
opposed to the usual of perambulator traverses. It took nearly five years to comp- 
lete, and established Mather's reputation as a skilled surveyor. 

At the close of the Mysore campaign, the so-called Subsidiary Force returned 
to Hyderabad, and Mackenzie was appointed to it as Engineer and Surveyor, with 
particular instructions to devote himself to the geography of the Deccan, a task 
into which he threw his whole heart and energies. Although he was called away 
more than once to other military duties, he returned each time to his post at 
Hyderabad, until in 1798 he marched down with the Nizam's army to take part in 
the final campaign against Tipu. 

Early in 179o Topping was deputed to Masulipatam to undertake a survey of 
the Kistna and Godavari rivers, and report on the possibility of an irrigation 
project. He ran lines of levels and laid down permanent bench-marks, and reported 
that the idea seemed to be practicable, but that further investigation was desirable. 

He died in January 1796, whilst still on this duty, and though Caldwell and 
Beatson were in turn in charge of the work for short periods, the project was 
dropped, and not revived till nearly fifty years later. 

In 1790 the Company had taken over the administration of the districts of the 
Carnatic, and to assist in their development, Topping proposed an establishment of 
Assistant Revenue Surveyors to work under the district officers. At his suggestion 
a school was fomided for their professional training, and placed under charge of 
Goldingham at the observatory. After Topping's death G-oldingham succeeded to 
his duties as Astronomer and Marine Surveyor, and was also allotted the duties of 
Inspector of Revenue Surveys. The first duty of the revenue surveyors was the 
preparation of a topographical map of the district, to which they added such 
information about cultivation and the possibilities of irrigation as would be helpful 
to the district officer. 

General Narrative 

The detailed measurement of individual fields was a matter for which the native 
staff remained responsible, and the first effort to bring order and system to these 
measurements, so that they should form a fair basis for the settlement of revenue 
was made by Eead in the Salem District. The district officers in Bengal had never 
succeeded in obtaining satisfactory or trustworthy results from such measurements, 
and in 1793 Lord Cornwallis authorised the introduction in that Presidency of the 
system of Permanent Settlement, which it was hoped would, amongst other advan- 
tages, obviate any interference of Government with details of revenue collection. 

The Bengal Presidency was now rapidly extending its contacts with its neigh- 

In 1793 Kirkpatrick led a mission into Nepal, marching up the Bapti valley; 
he had to return almost at once, but brought back an interesting sketch map of 
his route. 

In the autumn of 1792 the Baja of Assam appealed to the Governor General 
for assistance against his rebellious subjects, who had driven him from his capital, 
and were besieging him at Gauhati. A small force was sent up under Captain 
Welsh, who relieved Gauhati, won a remarkable victory over the rebels, and restored 
the Raja to his capital. At the special desire of Lord Cornwallis, Thomas Wood 
was sent up with Welsh to make sueh surveys as he could of this country, about 
which nothing whatever was known. By the time that the expedition was with- 
drawn in 1794, Wood had carried the survey of the Brahmaputra from the point 
near Goalpara where Eennell had left it in 1 765 as far as the Dikho River below 

The following year Wood was attached to the embassy conducted by Captain 
Symes to the court of Ava, and made an excellent survey of the Irrawaddy Eiver. 
Beyond a visit to Pegu the mission saw little else of the country, but Buchanan, 
who accompanied it as medical officer, collected a vast amount of interesting infor- 
mation about the various peoples and tribes and the general geography of Burma, 
a country of which, as in the case of Assam, nothing whatever had been known 

Towards the end of 1798 Wood was posted to the army stationed in Oudh, and 
during the next four years carried his lines of survey hither and thither through 
Oudh and Bohilkhand ; up to Hardwar, and down the Ganges as far as Oawnpore. 

Colebrooke had always been an enthusiastic surveyor, and after becoming Sur- 
veyor General in 1794 made several excursions himself, the most important of 
which was during the season 1796-97, when he surveyed the Cossimbazar River, 
and continued up the Ganges as far as Colgong. James Hoare surveyed the 
Jumna from Allahabad to Delhi, and Mouat, at the close of the Bobilla war of 
1794, surveyed the boundary of the jagir granted to "Ahmed Ally Khan", which 
is now known as Bampur State. 

Perhaps the most interesting survey of this period was the line taken by James 
Blunt from Chunar southwards through the very heart of India, across the head 
waters of the Son and the Mahanadi, down the Wainganga, Wardha, and Godavari, 
to the east coast, through a country which had never been explored before ; meeting- 
several adventures with Khonds and other inhospitable people. 

Reynold's last excursion in the field was during season 1793-94 when, after a 
special visit to Calcutta, he obtained authority to make a survey of Sindhia's 
territory at the head of the Jumna-Ganges doab, and extending beyond Delhi. 
For the rest of his service he devoted himself to the compilation of his" great map 
of Hindustan, with particular attention to those parts which lay outside the 
Company's territories. He made his headquarters at Surat, and sent out native 
surveyors trained by himself, who explored Sind, Rajput-ana, the Punjab, and other 
little-known parts, for which his map was for many years the only authority. 

At the end of 1798 preparations were started for the last deal with Tipu of 
Mysore, and the Governor General once again moved down to Madras to take 
personal control, though this time Lord Mornington did not take the field. His 
most trusted adviser for the organization of the campaign was Alexander Beatson, 


Extension or British Interests 9 

whose knowledge of the military geography and the conditions of warfare in the 
south was acknowledged as unrivalled. Beatson was given the honorary post of 
Surveyor General to the Grand Army, and both he and Allan played prominent 
parts in the brief campaign which ended with the capture of Seringapatam and the 
death of Tipu. Mackenzie held the responsible post of Engineer in charge of the 
batteries on the northern bank of the Cauvery, whilst an elderly subaltern of H.M.'s 
83rd Regiment, William Lambton, was Brigade Major to Sir David Baird, and took 
the lead in the final storming of the ramparts. 

Mysore was now shorn of the outlying districts which had been acquired by 
Haidar Ali, and a commission was appointed to settle details. Mackenzie attended 
and provided them with the best maps he could put together, though he found the 
materials available for the remoter districts and boundaries both scanty and 
conflicting. It was decided that a survey of Mysore and the newly ceded territories 
should be put in hand at once, and orders appointing Mackenzie to this task were 
issued by the Governor General in September 1799, before he returned to Calcutta. 

Whilst Mackenzie was engaged in collecting his materials, officers, and equip- 
ment, lambton continued as Brigade Major with the Grand Army during its 
preliminary clean-up round the north-western districts of Mysore. 

The 18th century had yet over a year to run, but we will leave the story at this 
point, with Mackenzie making preparations for the first great topographical survey, 
and Lambton yet to propound his scheme for a trigonometrical survey, to extend 
right through the peninsula, continuous and indisputable. 



Jesuit Missionaries, 1579 to 1771 — The 24-Parganas, 1757-64 — i 
Islands — The Great Rivers — Midnapore & Burdwdn, 1761-6 — Rennell & RicJuxrds 
1765-6 — Bihar, 1766-8 — Route Surveys — Rennell as Surveyor General, 1767-77. 

THERE are many records of the care with which the Mughal Emperors had their 
main roads measured, and sometimes marked, in coss. Father Monserrate des- 
cribes the measurement of Akbar's 1 march to Kabul in 1581 ; 

Furthermore, he orders the road to he measured, to find the distance marched each day. 
The measurers, using ten-foot rods, follow the king, measuring from the palace. By this one 
operation he learns both the extent of his dominions, and the distances from place to place, 
in case he has to send embassies or orders, or meet some emergency. A distance of 200 
times the ten-foot rod, called a coroo in Persian, or cos in the Indian language, equal to two 
miles, is the measure for calculating distances 2 [247]. 

Rennell records the distance, stage by stage, of the " Great Road from Moor- 
shedabad to Delhy, measured by order of the King " but gives no date or name 3 . In 
his map of 1804 [234] Wilford used distances from Delhi to Kabul and Lahore to 
Multan, measured by order of Shah Jehan 4 . 

In another place Rennell acknowledges the receipt of 
the registers of the actual measured distances, as taken by the orders of the Emperors 
Acbar, Shahjehan, and others, on the great roads from the city of Lahore, Cabul, Ghizni, 
Candahar, and Moultan ; and back to Lahore again ; as well as those between Cashmere and 
the cities of Lahore and Attock, respectively ; and between Cabul, Balk, and Bamiam ; besides 
many others; ...(require an allowance for the inflexions [184-5] hut superior to vague 
report or judgement}. 
These were without "direction of compass", and '''latitude but seldom given". 5 

In compiling their maps of India, both D'Anville and Rennell made use of every 
record they could find of the distance of one place from another, and give special 
weight to any distance that had been actually measured rather than estimated. 

Apart from the official measurements above referred to, no traveller would 
have been given opportunity to make actual measurements, and geographers had 
to do their best with estimates of distance recorded by travellers and historians, 
and the early Arab and Persian geographers [-pi. 4]. One of these travellers 
was the French diamond merchant Tavernier who made several journeys through 
India between 1640 and 1667, keeping a record of the distances marched stage 
by stage, and describing the rivers and mountains he crossed ; his more important 
routes were, 

Surat - Ahmedabad - laipur - Agra. Surat - Aurangabad - Hyderabad - Masulipatam. 

Surat - Asirgarh - Gwalior - Agra. Goa - Hyderabad. 

Agra- Delhi -Lahore - Kabul - Persia. Hyderabad - Kurnool - Madras. 

Agra - Allahabad - Rohtas -Dacca. 

Much valuable information came from the Jesuit missionaries, who had stations 
in many parts of India from the 1 6th century onwards 7 , and included many men of 
scientific habit, who recorded details of their journeys, sometimes taking astronom- 
ical observations for latitude and longitude [149-50] and compiling sketches and 

Emperor of Delhi 1556 till his death in 1605. "Fiwt the Latin of CommenSctrras (580), 8-2-15S1. 
3 La Touche (106). 4 Emperor of Delhi 1627-58. 5 Collected at Delhi hy Kirkpatriek, Memoir, 1793 
(83) [asI. ''Ball. 7 The Society of Jesus gained its first hold in India in 1542; Maclagan ( xx). 


Jesuit Missionaries 11 

maps. Both D'Anville and Bennett refer constantly 1 to " Lettres Edifiantes et Owrieu- 
ses", which was the authorized publication of selected letters from Jesuit missionaries 
in all parts of the world 3 . 

One of the earliest of the Jesuit surveyors was Father Monserrate, a member of 
the first Jesuit mission to the court of Akbar in 1579, which travelled "by sea from 
Goa to Daman 3 , marching; thence to Surat, and on to Fatehpur Sikri 4 . In 1-581 
he accompanied the Emperor on his march to Kabul, and left a long list of geo- 
graphical positions, and a most interesting- little map of India [ pi. 10 ] . So far as 
is known the first use of his work was made by Thomas Call, who in 17S4 reported 
that he had embodied into his atlas of India [ 2 1 5—6 ] , 

.an actual survey of Padri Monserrat from Delhi to Cabul. ... A cursory survey taken by him 
■with a compass and corrected by observations of Latitudes from Goah to Delhi 5 . 

Mention is made elsewhere of the work of Father Bouchet in the south penin- 
sula [238], and of others who travelled through the mountains to Tibet [ 67-70 ] . 

Of more immediate interest to Bengal was the work of Father Boudier, who was 
stationed at Chandernagore from 1719 till his death in 1757, and made many astro- 
nomical observations that were of the utmost value [ 150]. During a notable 
visit to Jaipur and back in 1733-4, he not only fixed the latitude and longitude of 
many important places, but kept up a survey of his route between Agra and Allah- 
abad which gave "the description of places on this road ...with the computed 
distance of each from the course of the Grenme 3 and the Granges' ", which D'Anville 
was glad to make use of. 

Father Tieffenthaler was one of the most enthusiastic geographers of all. When 
he came out to Ooa in 1743 he was already a skilled astronomer, and from that 
year till his death in 1785 he devoted himself to the cause of geography, keeping a 
record of all his journeys from place to place, and a register of all the astronomical 
positions he observed [ 150-1 ]. 

His more important travels included a land journey from Daman to Surat, and 
through Udaipur to Agra during 1744. With headquarters at Narwar 3 from 1747 
to 1765, he travelled to Bombay through Burhanpur and Nasik 9 in 1750, visited Goa, 
and then returned up the west coast to Broach and Cambay, and reaching Ajmere 10 
turned east through Jaipur to return to Narwar in April 1751. 

In 1765 he travelled from Narwar through Chhatarpur 11 in Bundelkhand to 
Allahabad and Benares, still keeping up his surveys and observations. At Benares he 
resolved to study the middle and the lower course of the Ganges, instead of completing the 

I remainder of his journey by land. His object was not to register the latitudes of the towns 

along the banks ... for these had already been measured by Father Boudier ... aud others. 
What he wanted was to obtain an accurate idea of the manifold windings of the river and the 
exact number of its affluents. The former were mapped by means of a compass 13 ; as to the 
latter, he not only noted their names, but carefully sketched their junctions with the main 

After a short stay in Calcutta he 

returned to Upper India, studying carefully ... all details what might have escaped him on 
his downward journey. ... Instead of returning to the West, he started from Allahabad in ... 
January 1766, reaching Oudh ... on 3rd February. ... From thence he set out to explore the 
whole province of Oudh till the year 1771 13 . 

By 1775 he was able to send home to Europe the results of his surveys. To 
Copenhagen he sent his book on the geography of India, a form of gazetteer; whilst 
to Anquetil-Duperron in Paris [ 72 ] he sent his maps; 

The first of these maps measured 15 feet in length, and represented the entire course of 
the Ganges. The second and third maps outlined the river Gogra in two sections, of which 
the first, measuring 1 1 feet, pictured the upper course of the river, whilst the latter, 6i by 
6 feet, represented its lower course, ... . [There were also] 21 detached drawings of the 
confluents of various tributary rivers of the Ghogra and Ganges 14 . 

1 H.erbert & Memoir, 1783 [passim^. 2 34 vols, issued in Paris between 1702 & 1741. Edn, 1780-3 
in 26 vols, by Querboeuf, vols. X to XV referring to India, Maclagan (15). 3 46D/15. *54 E/12. 
BPC. 29-11-84. 6 Jumna E. 7 Herbert (25). s 54 a/14. HI E/13. 10 45 J/ll. » 54 P/9. ,3 See 
also Bernoulli, II (292). ,3 Noti (400-1). "Full description, Bernoulli, II (266-8). 


Bengal Surveys 

Anquetil combined, at his own expense, the three principal ones, and produced a ee „„„\ 

™f e r PreSentlng the entire °° UrSeS 0t the Ganges and the Gh °Sra, on a considerably reduced 

It was above all, Tieffentaller's map of the Ghogra basin which was most appreciated bv 

the geographers of Europe. They came to taow about it for the first time and were aston 

ished, says Anquetil, at the sudden appearance on the map of India of a large river too coss 

long, having 29 affluents 3 . ° J a 

Tieffenthaler had employed "an Indian expert to study the upper course of the 

Ghogra river and its affluents and he filled in the detail of the upper course of the 

Ganges through the mountains from information collected, but made no attempt 

himself to travel into the hills [ 73 ]. F 

In a letter mitten to Aiiquetil-Duperron in 1759 he expresses the delight he 

took m this geographical work, which may indeed be taken as typical of the srjirit 

m which the missionaries and other pioneers devoted themselves to the cause • 

Next to the salvation of souls ... nothing has afforded me greater pleasure than the'study 
of the geographical position of places, the variation of winds, the nature of the soil and the 
character and manners of the regions through which I am travelling .. . thereby to acouire a 
greater knowledge of the Creator and fix my mind on things heavenly* 

It does not appear- that any of Tieffenthaler's surreys or astronomical observa- 
tions reached either D Anville or Bennell, or were otherwise made use of, before the 
publications of Duperron and Bernoulli, 1784-7 [ ?2 ] which Eennell received in 
time for the 1788 edition of his Map of HmdoostanK Thomas Call however had 
already received copies from Tieffenthaler in India, and in 1784 reports that he had 
embodied into his Atlas of India 

Routes taken between Goah and Agra by Padri Tieffenthaller - 
A Survey of the country N.W. of Delhi by Padries Windell and Tieffenthaller" 
Father Wendel was closely associated with Tieffenthaler and they had for several 
years been the last representatives of the Society of Jesus in India; for in 1759 the 
King of Portugal had banished all Jesuits from Portuguese colonies, and in 1773 
the Pope abolished the order altogether; it was not resuscitated till about 1813= 

The 24-Pab&anas, 1757-64 

We turn now to surveys by officers of "the Honourable John Company" whose 
first acquisition of territory in Bengal, beyond the narrow lands of Calcutta was 
the 24-Parganas, ceded by the Nawab of Bengal? after the battle of Plassey" 

There was no delay in proposing a survey, for the Council at Port William 

Surshidabtl 8 ' 1 ' 8 * 1St 1?57 that ° liTe had Writte " fl '° m fte K " aWab ' s ca P ital at 

Creat ,! ro rT V a r"^ V1 " ageS ' dlStnCtS ' reVenUeS ' etc " - of the Territory from the 
Great Lake" Eastward of Calcutta, as far as Culpee" South; but as it may be impossible to 
determine a proper boundary merely from the report of these people, they recommend it as 
a concern worthy of our most and serious attention, whether the best method would 
not be to send boats on the Great Lake with directions to trace its source, examine its depth, 
etc. That other boats might be sent into Culpee River, and if the design is executed by 
experienced men, an exact and useful survey may be made which will enable us to settle 
beneficial boundaries 13 . 

The Council referred to the fleet for a surveyor, but Admiral Watson™ replied, 

1 Map pub. at end of Bernoulli, II. 2 Moti ( 410-1 ). D' Anvi.1p'« man n f i^^; ■ -i ■ , . 

?B» ,»'--tT',' ( J l) ' / Bp C. 29-11-81. •English Jesuits first came to Calcu taYu S 
Bt>JI. 30-i-ai, Mir Jafar confirmed secret treaty made before Plasiev cedin» 'Ml 11 , |.„ i , „ 

South of Calcutta, as far ., ;«-■; formal trea/y ceding the whole tlp^L^M^ ^ aS 
flf! ' , ' 'Tit [ / 35 ] - J From 5 to 10 m - E ' of «■ William. >' Kulpi, 79 B/4 '"bSCC l « St' 
Ives Tm). • » mm! «"l=dtl«' neat at recapture of Calcutta, d. lU-57, near Calcutta.' 

The 24-Papganas 


I have received your letter of this day's date, acquainting me with the necessity you are 
under of having an exact survey and regular Plan of the Lands granted to the Company by 
the Nabob, and requesting I would assist you from the Squadron with such men as are pro- 
perly qualified for such an undertaking. It appears to me to be a work requiring so much 
care and exactness that I know of none in the Squadron capable of it, and if there were, I 
am very certain such a performance would require much more time than I shall continue 
here. But if upon an enquiry you find anyone who will answer your purpose, and is willing 
to remain in India, I will give orders for his being discharged 1 . 

A civil servant, William Frankland, was appointed to the task, and in December 
1758, the Council reported 8 that he had made a five months survey tour, and col- 
lected much valuable information of a revenue nature, but said nothing of any map 
[136]. Capable surveyors were however found before long, and within a year an 
engineer officer of the artillery company [266], Eobert Barker, made a traverse 
survey from the Salt Lakes, down the Matla Eiver, and then westwards through the 
creeks to Eangafulla 3 on the Hooghly 4 . 

In 1761 the Council appointed Hugh Cameron, to be "Surveyor of the New 
Lands 5 ", an appointment which he held till his death in March 1764. Cameron's 
survey of 1761-2 is a very fine skeleton map of the 24-Parganas, mainly of the 
exterior boundaries, on scale H inches to a mile 8 . It shows the left bank of the 
Hooghly from north of Barrackpore to south of Kulpi, the country eastwards from 
Barrackpore to Baslrhat 7 , then southwards down the rivers and creeks, and west to 
join the Hooghly about 25 miles south of Kulpi. Along the Jamuna Eiver is 
written — on the right bank " A fine country belonging to the Company " — and on 
the left bank " The Nawab's Country ". One of the channels into the Salt Lakes 
bears the note " This way Honey & Wax are brought to Calcutta ", and to the south 
in the Sundarbans, is another note "Here those who come to gather Wax & Honey 
in their season, sacrifice to Juggernauth ". Old Tort William is shown, with the 
outline of the new fort and the village name Govindpur alongside. 

Eennell makes several references to Cameron's survey 8 , and in January 1767 
directs Eichards to connect with it on the Ichamati Eiver near Bangaon 9 . 

In 1762 the Council resolve that 
Mr. Cameron being returned from his Survey of the Boundaries of Company's New Lands, ... 
may be able to give us some account of the soil, Produce etc., of the same, which may prove 
a Guide to the Company in some measure in sending proper orders for the Management of 
their Lands 10 . 

Cameron's interesting report says, 

My survey led me along the East side of the River Hughly, the Company's limit west- 
ward, and from the banks eastward I could discover all along fine extensive fields of ripening 

Corn. That was in the latter end of October and beginning of November the country 

everywhere abounds with cattle. As to the southernmost parts of the Company's Lands, 
from Rangaf ullah down to Sagar 11 , and up again, ... the banks are bordered with impenetrable 
Jungull ... How far these Jungulls extend inwards I cannot say ... I have never seen the In- 
land parts 13. 

His subsequent surveys were of a revenue nature, and are referred to in a later 
chapter [ 136 ]. A full topographical survey of the southern -parganas was made 
later by Claud Martin [ 51 ] . 

Coasts & Islands 

■™ 'he Tery early years merchants trading in India were but little interested in 
the interior of the country 18 . Their factories were situated either on the sea coast 
or, as m Bengal, up the estuaries of the great rivers. Their first concern was in 

-K-„l™ 1E 52 ; ' 13 ™ 5 ' 7 & Long (245). * B to CD. 31-12-58 ( 101-11 ). • Ringafala, 19 B/4; Sm.beloir 
rw'„ ,?T BM - AML MSS - U1m < 2 >' ' 'B to CD. 12-11-61 (80). 'Plan of the Company's 
Lands and UU S (6). "19 B/14. ■ L a Touehs (88, &c. ). '19 A/16. '°BPC. 5-4-62. 

tranga, S.gar, T9 C/2. "BPC. 8-4-62; his expenses from Oct. to Match were Es. 2,592-15 -6. 

Tavernier [ io] was a notable eiception. 


Bengal Surveys 

their communications with the open sea and Europe, so it is natural that amongst 
the earliest surveys of Bengal should be those of the coasts and river approaches" 

There are charts of the coasts of Pegu and Arakan dated 1680 [ 221 ] whilst 
later and more accurate charts are from surveys by the French navigator Api-es de 
Hannevillette 1 , who published his maritime atlas, Neptune Orientate, in 1745 [1] 

From time to time ships" of the East India Company were lost along the Coro- 
mandel coast 8 and off the Ganges delta [45]. Eennell points out that though 
the difference of longitude between the towns of Balasore and Chittigong is 4° 53' • the 
charts, so late as the year 1752, represented the difference of longitude between these'two 
places to be only 3° 48'; that is 1° 5' less than the truth ... which doubtless occasioned the 
loss of many ships, who trusted to the information* [ 152 ]. 

The passage by open sea from Calcutta to the factories at Dacca and Chittagong 
being particularly hazardous at many seasons of the year, a safer passage was sought 
through the Sundarbans. 

The first regular surveys of these coasts were made by Bartholemew Plaisted who 
had come to India as a sea captain. In 1761, immediately after the cession of the 
provinces of Bengal [21 n 7], the Council wrote to the Directors that, 
being... advised that Mr. Plaisted's assistance would be very useful in compleatin» the Sur- 
veys of the River and Coasts near Chittagong, we have employed him on that service 
esteeming it very essential... 5 
and the same month the Chittagong Council sent in his maps, saying, 

Accompanying this your Honour. ..will receive Capts....and Plaisted report to us of the 
Coast oi Chittigong from this place to the Latitude of 21° 10', with a draft of the same . 

Mr. Plaisted will return to Luckypore" & from thence take a survey of y River 
Sea Coast, the Isld. of Sundiva?, & all shores, shoals, & soundings that lay betwixt 
Luckypore and Chittigong, a draft of which we think will be exceedingly necessary. As soon 
as he has completed this, he will [proceed] again through the Sundry-Bunds, & finish his 
survey of y Rivers their, & their outlets which may also prove of very great advantage 
& enable him to lay before your Honor, & on his arrival in Calcutta, a Complete Draft 
°!~. r H^urs, Rivers, Shores, Shoals, Soundings etc. that lay betwixt Calcutta 
& Chittagong 8 . 

Accompanying this we forward to you Mr. Plaisted's Book of Drafts containing his surveys 
of Rivers etc. between Calcutta & this place, as far as... yett done together with his remarks'. 

These are acknowledged ; 
Mr. Plaisted's Draughts with his observations are a very useful performance.aud meet with 
our approbation. As we find him so well qualified for this material business, we direct him 
to continue his survey of the parts adjacent to Chittagong, & the different Branches of the 
Ganges for the present; and, when the season will permit, of the Coast between the Islands 
of Sundeep and Sangre", towards the sea, by which means the Chart" will be completed". 

The Fort William Council wrote home again in November, 
Finding Mr. Plaisted's services very useful at Chittagong in Surveying the Creeks Rivers 
Islands, &c, on that Coast, we venture to detain him still, notwithstanding your appointment 
of him to Bombay, judging his present employ to be of great Importance.! 8 
and in December Chittagong reported 

Mr. Plaisted had again been to the Southward, and finished his survey as far as Cruz Colly 1 *. 
...He will proceed on his Surveys. soon as he can be furnished with proper vessels for 
that purpose... 15 
and the necessary vessels were sent from Calcutta. 

In addition to a fresh survey of the Chittagong coast, "executed on a larger 
plan, and more correct than his former ", Plaisted submitted detailed instructions 
for navigation, and an account of his methods of survev, mostly observations of the 
Sun's declination with several quadrants 16 . 

'His chart of East Coast of Hindustan extends from 13° N to : 
2 Known as East indzamen. 

23'N; BM. Addl. MSS. 15319 (7). 

V7<n I 37) .kS",?', C w «- E >- M fr f ,'°, m ""P Point t0 Point Oalimere [ ,01 ]. 'Memoir 
,793(37). B to CD. 16-1-61(167). "Lakshmipur, 79 J/13. 'Sandwip, 79 N/7. p " ' 

•V fS'l') oMM^ef \it^-f-^l^^^'^ old^'for' the' town^S^; 

lb. (211) of 17-3-61. "Sagar 79 C/6. "Sumy of the Coast of Chittagan, cf the River «j> to Dacca. 

From d in C. to Islamabad, 30-6-61. "B to CD. 12-11-61 (132). « Ktrarusknl 

•'BPC. 28-12-61. "BPC. 26-1-62. 


79 0/15, on the Arakan bordi 

Coasts & Islands 15- 

When publishing these navigation instructions with later surveys in after years, 
Dalrymple points out that Plaisted's survey was by no means complete, and that ■ 
there are many dangers in the Offing, and perhaps also near the Coast, not described with 
sufficient precision for the security of Navigation 1 . 

The Council sent Plaisted to "Cat Colly" to survey the damage clone by an 
earthquake, and on May 1st 1762 he reported, 

The earthquake that happened on the 2nd of April . . . has made such devastation, that 
nothing but a view of' the place would give credit to the several reports made thereof. . . . The 
Black figures express the former & the Red the present soundings. The Prikt line among 
the trees shows where the former borders of the creek were, while the trees shew how far 
they now stand in the Water ; I sailed through the middle of them & sometimes found four 
fathom 3 . 

The Directors were anxious to keep these surveys of their harbours secret; 

Mr. Plaisted in his second survey to the Southward of Chittagong, discovered a Harbour 
for Shipping of which he sent a plan . . . We would have the survey made as correct as possible, 
and direct you to send all the information you can. ..and here We must caution you, to keep 
this knowledge of the Chittagong River as confined as you can, that Foreign Nations may not 
be acquainted with it 3 [000]. 

Early in 1765 Plaisted was surveying the Meghna River [23 1, and in 1766 he 
made a survey "over to Balasore", and also of Channel Creek, employing two Euro- 
pean assistants [ 283 ], and two or three sloops 4 . 

After his death in 1767 the survey of the Sundarbans was carried on by John 
Ritchie, and in 1769 the Council reported, 

The Surveys to the Eastward are completed so far as regards the Outer Sands and 
mouths of the several Inlets, and the interior Surveys are now making; a very accurate Plan 
of this useful work hath been delivered in to us by Mr. Ritchie who was employed ia this 
important Business. His Assiduity in this Duty and the accuracy with which this Plan 
appears to have been executed hath recommended him highly to our notice... 5 
and the following year, 

We have the pleasure to send you ...a Chart of the Eastern parts of India according to 
the latest Surveys; and as it requires much time & pains to make out these charts, we re- 
quest you will get some copies engraved and send them out to us. Those you favoured us 
with last year are very inaccurate 6 . 

and again, 

We forwarded to you ... a plan of the Mouth of the Calcutta River or Western Branch of 
the Ganges, as likewise a Chart of the Bay of Bengal from Point Palmyras to the Coast of 

Dalrymple gives the following description of his earliest chart of the Bay of 
Bengal, in one plate north of parallel 19°, engraved and published in 1772 8 ; 

It must appear very extraordinary, when it is considered how long the Europeans have 
had an intercourse with Bengal, that there is not hitherto a particular chart of the Bay of 
Bengal published in any language. 

The Honourable Thomas Howe. the year 1763. ..went to the Coast of Orixa; in his 
passage from thence to Bengal he had an opportunity of correcting the Charts of this Coast 
in the Neptune Oriental ; and having reduced to a general scale all the particular Charts in his 
possession of the Coasts &c. of the Bay of Bengal he connected them together in the best 
manner he could. 

Soon after my return to England in 1765, Mr. Howe gave me a copy of his Chart: and en- 
couraged me to revise and improve it from what materials I had collected; accordingly I set 
about this work and reduced the Coast of Orixa to a scale of 3 inches to i°... 

Plaisted's Survey of the Coast of Chittagong, served, both in Mr. Howe's Chart and mine, 
for the description of that Coast; but I added, from other authorities, some Banks remote 
from the Land. 

The Coast of Ava, from Negrais to Cheduba, I laid down from various materials, but I 
found so great a disagreement in the Latitudes, . . . that I desisted from my intention of having 
the Chart engraven 9 . 

'Kate dated 1-3-85, Eitcliie (iii). 3 BPC. 17-5-62. S CD to B. 24-12-85 (49). -»BPC. 12-1-67. 
a BtoCD. 25-9-69 (19). *B to CD. 85-1-70 (94). 7 B to CD. 12-2-71, (83). s Imp. Lib. M$ P. (350). 
"Dalrymple, Memoir of a chart of the Bay of Bengal ■ 31-3-72 ( 1, 2 ) . 


Bengal Surveys" 

In 1770 Ritchie was sent 
in the Snow Diligent to make a cursory Survey of the Coasts and Islands around the Bay of 
Bengal: ... The Orders. ..were "not to lose time, by entering into any River, Bay, or Inlet, 
but to keep our Track of Soundings as unbroken as possible; and determine the great outline 
of the Land, and position of the Islands, the present Trip being only meant as introductory 
to a General and accurate Survey of the whole 1 ." 

The following extracts are taken from his journal ; 
November 1770. 30th. Weighed anchor from Calcutta. 
December 2nd. Culpee. ... 
7th. Saw the Coast of Aracan. . . . 

8th. Commenced Survey Southward from St. Martin's Island. ... 
14th. Saw Cheduba 2 [160]. ... 

20th. At 10 min.past 7 a.m. died Mr. James Wright, our second mate; it seems he was ill before 
we left Calcutta, but concealed it, until we were at Sea, for fear of preventing his voyage. ... 
2ist...the whole Coast of Aracan presents a most dreary and inhospitable Prospect from the 
Sea. ... 

Jan. 4th. 1771. Chief Mate landed on Preparis 3 . The only visible Inhabitants being Rats, 
Squirrel and Monkies, and to the last mentioned Gentry we were obliged for pointing out the 

13th. Narcondam 4 . ... 

1 6th. In a good harbour formed by the cluster of Islands and the Andaman. ... 

20th. [Meet Andaman Islanders; long account of incident; entice a few of them on board, 

where they stayed content and inquisitive for a few hours, and left with presents of cloth 

and iron 5 [48]]. 

Although we were about the Island till the end of January, not a boat or man was seen 

by us afterwards. ... 

[Note by Dalrymple] I have the copy of an old Portuguese Chart of the Andaman Islands... 

in which this very Strait (Diligent Strait) is laid down. n° 59'N. 

[Note by Ritchie] The Plan of Great Andaman Island, as laid down in the Sea Charts, will 

do as well for any other Island as for It ; for it has no sort of resemblance to it, either in form 

or extent. . . . 

Jan. 30th 1771. We are now about to leave the Great Andaman Island, of which hitherto 

nothing was known, and what we have been able to do will mend the matter but little. 
31st.. ..along the West side of Little Andaman. At 10 a.m. we saw three Men upon the beach, 

in a little Bay... but upon our approaching within about 1/2 a mile of the shoar, they fled 

into the woods. ... 

Feb. 9th. Carnicobar e ....the appearance of this beautiful Island, and goodnatured freedom 
of its inhabitants was extremely pleasing. ... 

March 3rd. Entered Noncovery Harbour 7 . Found some Danish Missionaries... spent 15 days 

there... Had an opportunity of copying the rough Plans of our Survey so far, and of surveying 
and examining this most excellent Harbour. ... 

[Note by Dalrymple] I was at this Harbour in 1762, and communicated a copy of Lindsay's 
Plan to Governor Pigot. ... 

March 24th. Light Airs and Calms throughout; we begin to suspect, that the surveying busi- 
ness is at an end for the season on this Side of the Bay, and the Monsoon about to shift. . . . 
31st. We have been drove by the Current to the Westward of all the Acheen Islands [47 n.2] 
without seeing them by reason of the haze and Fogs. Make for the Choromandel Coast. ... 
April 17th. At 9 a.m. saw the Hills of Sadrass and Mount Saint Thome, and shortly after 
saw the Ships in Madras Road. 
The Journal now ends; 

We had only to carry a Line of Soundings along a well known shoar, from Fort St. George 
up to the Road of Balasore, in which track very little new was likely to occur. Indeed the 
only alteration that happened was in the Shoals of Armagoan [104 n. 2], the False Point of 
Dim, and the Point and Bank of Godavery, or Gardaware, all which my Plans will shew 
sufficiently distinct 8 . 

It is apparently of this survey along the east coast that Eennell writes, that 

1 Ritchie (v,8). 3 18?45'N, 93° 40' E. 3 14° 52' N, 93° 40' E. 4 13°25'N, 94° 15' E. 5 Kitchie 
(47-52) cf. encounters by Blair & Colebrooke [ 48-9 ]. 6 9"10'K, 92° 45' E. 7 Naneowry [48-9]- 

3 Ritchie (5-94), 

Coasts & Islands 17 

in 1770 and 1771 ...took a series of bearings and distances, which he corrected by the lati- 
tudes, along the whole coast between Point Palmyras and Madras... 

He surveyed from Balasore to Palmyras Point by a series of triangles formed by three 
surveying vessels, and corrected for latitude 1 . 

A complete series of Ritchie's surveys, as completed by 1771, was examined and 
compiled by Bennell, and sent home as A set of General and Particular Maps of the 
Say of Bengal 2 [224] ; and in an introductory note to Ritchie's Journal, Dalrymple 
writes, on March 1st 1785, 

All the pieces, in my possession, of the Coasts of Chittagong, Arracan, and Ava, are now 
engraven ; ... every one contained something omitted in the others 5 . 

Ritchie writes of his survey in 1777, 

All that is yet known concerning the Andaman, is only what was collected from a cursory 
survey of the Eastern part of them in the year 1771. The Western part is almost Totally 
unknown, both as to form and extent, and the Harbours, all except one, are as yet unexam- 
ined. ... We have not taken possession of these Islands, and consequently there can be nO' 
claim of Sovereignty in our favour, in case of national disputes with our Natural Enemies. 

I will just mention farther that the Coast of Arracan remains unexplored, any farther 
than by a single line of Soundings which I carried along it, at some distance from the land. ... 4 

He suggested that Government should fit out an expedition to make good these 
deficiencies, but the matter was deferred [45-6]. 

The Great Rivers 

For many years after the acquisition of Lower Bengal the waterways provided 
the most important lines of communication, especially for the purposes of internal 
commerce, and the Granges River was the great highway to and from the Company's 
stations up country 5 . 

The direct line from Calcutta to the Ganges lay up the Oossimbazar 6 River past 
iVlurshidabad 7 , and its survey was the first task allotted to De Gloss on his appoint- 
ment in February 1765 [22]; three months later he submitted his maps, writing, 

I have the pleasure to think that these drafts will be found on examination to be as 
correct as was possible for any to be, having measured the whole as exact as the Nature of the 
Ground would admit of 8 . 

During the dry season boats could not, however, get through the shallows at 
the head of the Oossimbazar, but had to go down the Hooghly from Calcutta, 
through Channel Creek and the Sundarbans, to reach the Ganges in the direction 
of Dacca. It was to save this long detour that in April 1764 James Rennell had 
been sent to carry out 

the Survey of ye great River to the Eastward of Jelenghee 9 find out the shortest & safest 
Channel leading from the great River to Channel Creek. . . 

For this purpose you will coast along the South side of the great River & examine every 
Creek or Nulla which runs out of it to the Southw d -, tracing them as far as you find them 
Navigable for Boats of Three Hundred Maunds 10 Burthen & informing yourself ...whether 
they are. ..Navigable all the Year 11 . 

On May 7th Rennell left Fort William by boat, with a party of 39, including 
an "assistant surveyor" and "3 other Europeans" [283]. The very first nio-ht 
at one in y e morning I was awakened by an alarm of y* Budgarow's sinking, & indeed she was 
on the point of it, being 2/3 full of water. By this accident I had most of my Stationary 
spoiled, & likewise a great part of my Clothes. Stayed at Calcutta this Day, & repaired the 

40 ivnfT^t< 1>793 i 10 )- . 3I °- Ma P s - AC - 13 i L ist, Markham (4). s Ritchie (iii). 4 IO. Copies 
4U-1 1 1 j (.41-3 ) a-1-77. =John Marshall, a Company's .servant. 1W8-72, describes the river journey to 
7* % rff 3r?Sn at Patna * & ilt Singaya 011 the Gandak. John Marshall (30 et seq.) 6 or Ehagirathi. 
iS U ». UPC. 29-4-65. 9 Jalangi, 78 D/12, 1U 2S maunds to the ton. "Prom Henry Van'sittart 
governor b-D-b4 ; La Touche (<)}. Henry Yansittai't, Governor 1760-4; lost at sea on return voyage to 
India, 1(70. irom here onwards Bennett's journal, 1764-7 (La Touche) is freely quoted. 


Bengal Stjevbys 

Taking- various useful observations of the breadth and depth of the river, the 
variation of his compass, and so forth, Rennell reached Jalangi on the 19th and 
then had to arrange for boats; 

Before I left Calcutta the Governor informed me that a convenient Budgarow with as 
many Willocks l as I should want, would be in waiting for me at Jelenghee...but on my arri- 
val ... I found neither Budgarow nor Willocks. . . . The Budgarow I came in was very unfit for 
me to do my business in during y e approaching wet Season, both on account of its smallness, 
& leakiness. ... I set about getting some better Willocks for the Surveying People, but had 
little success... I could procure only 2; ...besides these I kept 3 of the Calcutta Willocks, & 
sent the other two to Calcutta 3 . 

On the 21st he writes, 

This afternoon began the Survey of the Southern Bank of the Ganges about a mile above 
Jelenghee River . . . 3 
and his journal continues, 

The 22nd... this afternoon we had a Specimen of the weather that we might expect in y c 
great River at this Season; for in y e evening in crossing y e River... a violent Squall from the 
SE drove all the boats ashoar on y e Jelenghee Sand, where they continued beating all Night; 
2 men were blown overboard during y e Squall but fortunately swam ashoar 4 . 

Prom now he journeyed down the river making a continuous survey of the south 
bank, and exploring every opening towards the south, making "exact surveys" of 
every channel that appeared to be navigable. 

The 6th, 7th, 8th, employed in reducing the Original Surveys to smaller Scales and copying 
the Journal to send to the Governor. During this time we had much rain. Employed some 
Carpenters to stop y e Budgarow's Leaks, & repair the rudder 

The 10th in y e Morning dispatched a Hircar 5 with y e Maps & Journal 6 . 

On June 24th he left the Ganges at a point about 25 miles below Pabna 7 to 
explore a big' creek 8 running in a south-easterly direction and connecting with one 
he calls the "Burrasaat"; he notes in one place that "the Banks being mostly 
covered with Jungle we have very troublesome Work to survey them", and on July 
20th he writes, 

It will now appear by our Observations that the Burrasaat is the West most of the navi- 
gable Creeks which run out of the Ganges to the Eastward of Jelenghee & is therefore likely 
to afford the shortest Passage to Calcutta; but being at present destitute of Cash to pay y e 
People, or proper Boats to survey Sunderbound 9 with; besides it being now nearly the height 
of the wett Season, we are very apt to be deceived in y e depths of Water. ... I have therefore 
judged it proper to go to Dacca to get a supply of Cash & larger Boats 10 . 

They reached Dacca on August the 4th, and after six weeks silence the journal 

The 19th of September 1764, being pretty well recovered from my Indisposition, I set out 
from Dacca in the forenoon in order to proceed with the Survey of the great River. 

By the 25th he reached "Saatpour" 11 , at the head of the creek where he had left 
the Ganges three months before ; 

There had been so much of the Bank carried away by the Freshes, that we hardly knew 
the place again; & could not have found the Mark out, had it not been for a remarkable Tree 
which I formerly took y e bearings of. ... 

15th October Received a letter from the Governor by 2 Hircars, & answered it imme- 
diately, inclosing a Sketch of the River from Saatpour to this Place. In Mr. VanSittart's 
letter he approves my Intentions of surveying the River on both sides, having before omitted 
to explain whether it was to be so surveyed. ... 

The 25th at the time of finishing the Survey ... I found myself very ill of a Cold, which 
was followed by a Feaver; & being in the neighbourhood of Dacca, I thought it proper to go 
there for Assistance. ... 

My Disorder increasing I remained at Dacca till y e 2nd November when being tolerably 
recovered I set out from thence to proceed with the Survey. . . . 

1 Budgarow, a houseboat; Willock, a smaller boat. -La Touehe (9-13). 5 Onne MSS. Vol. 1; 
copy of Journal in RenneH's handwriting-; differs slightly from La Touehe. 4 La Touehe (13). 
^Harkara, a messenger. e ib. (16). 7 78H/8. s Now the Garai K. 9 Sundarbtms. the forest-covered 
delta of the Ganges. 10 ib. (22). "79 B/5. 

The Great Rivees 19 

Whilst at Dacca I wrote to Mr. VanSittart informing him of my illness, & of the late 
Progress of the Survey inclosing a Sketch of it. At the same time I requested his Opinion of 
the utility of surveying the Baramputry or Megna from its conflux with the Ganges to Dacca. 
He was pleased to express his approbation of it. 1 

In Kennell's time the junction of the Ganges with the Meghna'- lay well below 
Lakshrmpm-, 8 and nearly 80 miles south of Dacca, and Eemiell now continued his 
journey southwards down the Ganges through typical Sundarbans country ; 

We have no other Obstacles to carrying on our Business properly than the extensive 
Thickets with which the Countrey abounds, & the constant dread of Tygers, whose Vicinity to 
us their Tracks, which we are constantly trampling over, do fully demonstrate. 

We now proceeded along the Western Shoar of the Megna NBE'i & NNE, a confused cluster 
of uninhabited Islands forming the East side of the Passage. Between some of these Islands 
I could discover no Land at all, it appearing like an Open Sea. 

The 20th in the Morning... had a view of Luckypour, the Factory being distinctly seen 13 
or 14 miles. Before noon we reached it. 

The 22nd in the Morning we set out from Luckypour, on our return to the Survey. [This 
visit being by way of reconnaissance.] ... 

The 30th received a new Budgarow from Calcutta. It has been 3r days on its Passage 
Being a new one it will be rather safer than the one I had before, as that was old & ready "to 
drop to pieces, bnt this one seems to be very crank & dangerous. ... 

The 14th [December] ... at Noon came to the Point opposite Luckypour from whence we 
crossed over in the afternoon. The Megna seems to be about five miles over. 

The 16th began to make an exact Survey of the Nulla, Fort & Village of Luckypour. 
The 20th having finished the plan, took y Latitude of the Place by Hadley's Quadrant but 
the Horizon was not good enough to place any dependance on the Observation [152, 222].' ... 

From this time to y° 23rd employed in finishing y" Original Maps, copying others,' & making 
a small Map of the Ganges which was immediately dispatched to the Governor. Began like- 
wise a compleat Sett of Maps of the Ganges on a scale of 2 miles to an inch* [223]. 

The 2nd [January 1765] in the Morning set out for Luckypour in our way to Dacca, where 
I must proceed in order to get a supply of Money. Nothing remarkable happenned in our 

[Marginal note]. The 6th in y Morning one of the Sepoys was taken off by a Tyger from 
y e Northwest part of Daokytya Island, he having stept ashore out of a Pulwar'. 

Having got his money Bennell now returned to survey both bants of the 
Meghna, and lastly the " Beuvygonga, or Eiver 011 which Dacca is situated", and 
dosing work at Dacca on March 3rd completed his maps before starting his survey 
of the Brahmaputra. 

The 28th March sent the Governor a general Map of the Megna on a scale of 2 Miles to an 
Inch, & the 4 th April sent y remaining 8 Maps of the Ganges; there has now been sent a com- 
pleat sett of Maps of the Ganges, both general and particular. 

The 5th April received Orders from the Governor to survey the Megna or Baramputrey 
from its conflux with the Issamutey to Gaulpara? or as high as it can be done without 
offending the Natives. ... 

The 6th [May] received intelligence of Lord Clive's arrival at Calcutta 8 [22]. 

Thursday May 9th set out from Dacca in order to survey the Baramputrey, & proceeded 
by way of the Issamutey Hiver. ... 

The Western Bank of this River harbours a great number of Snakes, amongst which there 
are some of an enormous Size'-. June 3rd came into the great Baramputrey. 
« a! 1 Day [JU ' y I4 * h] We were obli « ed t0 leive off surveying, by reason of the Rivers 
suoaenly overflowing the Banks, & rendering it impossible either to measure Station Lines 
or to note the exact bed of the River. ... 

to Chi™ "li 14 ^ h t0 T I9th ° J July ' em P lo y ed in tracin g J* Baramputrey from Baganbarryl" 

ins. itT a «T '■• The dlstm ce by Estimation is near 70 Miles, & as I was assisted in ascertain- 

g it ooth by the bearings of the Mountains & the Latitude of Chilmary, there can arise no 

very considerable Error 

about?!, ?'?-* * high Morlntains ■ ■ ■ that are said to be the Eastern Boundary of Bengali begin 
Latitude of 25° ro'N and run in a curve line to the Northwestward. ... I have not 

Sylhet %9 U T/1 % <%?°!', , " Vh ° Brah nripiitra tikes this name after being joined by the Meghna from 

on Assam fror. ie ,'?8 W X ^i *1 "^ u '^ W - ? "?f ^ "l (36 »- "^P™. 

"Chilmiri, 78G/10 ih. (41-3). 'of. Bonbon Burrow [ 158]. "now Mymensingh, 78 L/5. 


Bengal Surveys 

yet had an Opportunity of taking their exact Altitude, but judge they are near a mile * h»w 
m perpendicular Height 1 . 

In the accompanying General Map, only one of the Mountains is placed in its true Situa 
tion, ... the others by reason of the very frequent thick weather were not seen from the South 
end of the Base, & therefore their Situation must be left undetermined till y" dry Season 

Frcm the 19th to y« 25th July staid at Chilmary, during which time we were employed in 
taking y. Latitude, getting Information from y Country People, & constructing a Sett of 
General Maps 3 . 6 

Keniiell now broke off survey and spent the rest of the rains at Dacca where 
he received dive's orders for the complete survey of Beno-al [ 22 1 
_ As his Lordship was pleased to leave it to my Discretion where to begin mv Surveys I 
S*XS it° Pr ° Ceed Witt thS S " rVey ° f the RiV6r B ~^ * the Countries 

Sunday 13th [October 1765] set out from Dacca. The Rainy Season not broke up but 
expected to break at the new Moon which was to happen ye next day. Being to go by wav of 
Naranda Creek I judged that no ill Consequences could happen to the Boats by the Monsoon 
breaking, whilst they continued in so narrow a Creek ; the Weather also appeared to be settled! 

The Courses of the River are various, being from SW. to East; however the whole dis- 
tance is chiefly mendonial, & therefore easy to be corrected by the Latitudes [is-l By this 
Base I was unabled to fix the Situations of several of the Sosong Mountains* which in clear 
Weather will serve as Marks 80 miles off. ... 

Being entirely ignorant of the Situation of Rnngpoup, & the adjacent Countries; the 
knowledge of which would enable me to regulate my Route after the Survey of the Baram- 
putrey was finished, I judged it proper to trace the Roads to that Place. ..That roth of 
November entered the Teesta Creek" & proceeded np it towards Olyapour' which lies in the 
Kungpour Koad ... 

at this°Sea°on aP ° Ur ™ Pr ° Ceeded t0WErds Run KP° ur h Y L ™4 there being no Water Passage 
lik„l her + e r 3 ^' P* 16 T r ? remarkin S abcrat Kungpour, it being only a principal Gunge, & 
tase^ta the Town ' "" * "' ****** & Bamb °° S ' there be ' ng *** one ^rick 

We arrived at Rungpour the 14th. ..From the 16th to the r 9 th employed in tracing the 
Roads from Rungpour to Gurvgong«. ... In our Route we crossed the.. Teesta Creeks besides 
several Jeels which render the Roads impassable 6 months of the Year?. 

They rejoined the Brahmaputra on November 21st and continued up towards 
Goalpara, passing the mouth of the Manas 8 ; 

th/ 8 ^m ^ a f? d5 r Sh ° Xt a PaS3age t0 the BOTtm M °™teins . . . there is no doubt but 
that any Number of Firr Trees may be brought down by it, if a right understanding subsisted 
between our People & the Assamers; as I have myself seen a large Firr Tree which floated 
down the River, after being washed down the Mountains by the Land Floods [ 2 -T> 

&- „nl h nVth Sam rn , "^ b , ginS , f , r ° m thB B ° naaSh Eiver °° the North side the Barampntrey 
& one of their Chokeys is placed directly opposite Gwalpara; but on the South side the Ben-.aU 
Provinces continue for upwards of 21 miles. ° 

Ele*an T ! * dSa t h T d T' it V e I er f; lkindSOf ^ animab ' 3S T ^ erS - Rhinoceros, Bnffalos, 
Ulephants, &c, the tracks of which may be seen everywhere. 

to tfT th t e 2nd , *? Y ° 6th December ^Ployed in tracing the Baramputrey from Gwalpara 
to the Frontier of Assam on the Southern side. The distance by ye River is ■>-, miles We 

were not permitted to land on the Northern or Assam side, all the way, there" being several 
Chokeys placed; however we found means to lay down about 10 miles beyond the Bengali 
Frontiers, & m returning we coasted the Assam side near enough to inform ourselves of "all 
the particulars which we wanted 10 [78-9J. ™ 

Between. April 1764 and December 1765 Eemiell had thus completed a detailed 
surrey of the Ganges from Jalangi to the sea, and of the Brahmaputra from the sea 
to more than 20 miles above Goalpara, besides many important side streams. 

'G5ro Hills, 78 K; highest point 4652 ft. s LaTouehe. (44-8). 3 Ka,n°T>iir IsaK »T p n. 
day the mam Tista R, Sowed down the Atrai K, changing towards CkihSri in 1787 •TJli™ Atcfn 
•Knrip-™, 78 G 9. -ib(51-5 . »7S J/11, 15. 'U a letter home. 30-8-66, he : write. :"Thc rtw „f 
mountains which separates Bengali from Thibet is covered with Firs and Pire Trees so t hit ,1 \ g ff 
years we shall be able to mast all our Ships with Pines". H.M.S. 765 '"L Touche (57 j) 

The Giieat Rivebs 


Much of the work of himself and Ms assistants during- the next five years covered 
the survey of the major waterways; in particular, Ritchie surveyed the Madhumati 1 
from the sea to the Ganges, whilst the Ganges was surveyed below Baimaha] hy 
Eennell himself; from Bajmahal to Monghyr by Richards; from Monghyr to Patna 
by De Gloss, and from Patna to Kanauj - by Huyens. 

Eennell's detailed river surveys of 1764-5 areVtffl preserved, both in his Bmaal 
AilaA and in the Companion Atlas' [226-30], whilst early MS. copies are numerous 

Eennell's surveys of the Bengal rivers will always be of interest for the study 
of changes of detail along their courses; many references to these are made by 
Colebrooke thirty years later [64-5], and in 1828 Mr. May, then "Supervisor of the 
Madia Elvers asked for Eennell's surveys of the Ganges, below the head of the 
Jalangi, m order to study such changes 5 . 

Major changes are less frequent, as is pointed out in an interesting comparison, 
made by the Surrey oflice at Dehra Dim in 1934, between Eennell's surveys and in 
the modern maps of the 1/2M Southern Asia Series; 

Using the chief towns as ruling points [the maps] were found to fit very well with verv 
little adjustment. ... The only material changes are in the three large rivers the Kosi Tista 
and Brahmaputra. ' 

The Kosi has shifted considerable to the west, the Tista to the east, and the Brahmaputra 
now has its mam branch down a previous minor branch on the west, but the old easterly 
branch still functions as a minor branch 6 . y 

MlDNAPOEE & BuEDWAN, 1761-6 

As may be seen from D'Anville's map of 1752 [pi. 18] little was known of the 
geography of Bengal m 1760 when the Company obtained possession of "the pro- 
vinces of Clnttagong, Burdwan, and Midnapore" [ i ] \ 

The earliest English maps are rough sketches of parts of Midnapore and Burdwan 
which appear to have been made between 1760 and 1765. Orme records a man 
entitled Knox's Eoads in the Midnapur Province"', whilst Eennell makes use of a 
map of that area "the author's name unknown'". There are still preserved in 
Calcutta two old maps of Midnapore on the half-inch scale 1 ", which may contain 
cursory surveys by Dennis Morrison of "part of the Balasore province" and of 
roads m parts of Midnapore and Burdwan", which Eennell used in the map he o-ave 
lord Chve in January 1767 [24]; they probably also include the surveys made by 
James JSTieol under the orders of Eanfurly Knox, who 

was always assiduous in making himself maste'r of this useful knowledge; with this view when 
he commanded in the province of Midnapore, from the end of the year 1761 to July 176=; 
he employed Mr. Nicol, an active officer under his command, to survey the province Mr NM 
went as far as Balasore; ...he surveyed the mouth of the Piply River 1 2 

Another map of this period is entitled "A Map of Part of the Kingdom of 
f™<J*l, drawn from surveys made in the year 1762 and 1763"". This map covers 
the whole country from Balasore northwards to the Ganges, and from the rlooohly 
and Cossimbazar rivers westwards to the hills, and is a skeleton map compiled from 
SemmTl • fv^ 6 fin roads and rivers. This is possibly Poller's map from which 
Ken. ell m 1765 took "the Hooghly and Jelenghee Bivers together with that part 

vie b? pT T 1Ch ' eS *° the westwaris "" [^2] . How much of this was sur- 
veyed by Poker himself, we cannot tell. 

assist' f el ™7 l1 ^ & ' " Dein g m "<* i" ™nt of another person Well qualified to 
assist m making, the different Surveys of the Country", the Council appointed 

Capt. W. S SneiSll 7- f,> I ' /ST' , MBI0 ' See also **"* °» * siv « s °f B'ngal. 19-2-1857 
treaty with Mi Sim ™ V ^ ^ Mm »taW[ (31-2). "GBO. 42. C.4., 1934 (19). *By 

184 A 135 (89 931 ™'S succession as Nawb of Bengal. BSCC. 27-9-60 & 6-11-60. »O r me MSS. 
XI (3006). ' 1! sioara»,SS,°\ maP t I1T ' °™'>>™ A >>™- '"-&»*• M>. » # P. 352, 379. "OrmeMSS. 
(«»: Cataceielifeir ^ife&S j£^£ ^ W {^ * ^ ^ * *™» 


Bengal Surveys 

'"Mr. Lewis Du Gloss. additional surveyor*' 1 . After surveying the Cossimbazar 
River [17], he was ordered "to survey the Midnapore & Burdwan Provinces & 
Pargannas, as also the course of the Mohanaddee River"-. 

De Grloss made "exact surveys" in various parts of Burdwan and Midnapore, 3 
"but most of his time was spent on surveys of the rivers and embankments, and on 
schemes for controlling the floods, and this matter was found so important that 
Plaisted was called up from Chittagong to assist him, at the request of Mr. Verelst*, 

During 1/65 the Directors wrote out, twice, pressing for maps; 

You are to transmit to us as soon as possible, exact Plans of all the Lands granted to the 
Company, as well those in the Environs of Calcutta, as in the Provinces of Burdwan, Chittagong, 
Midnapore or elsewhere, accompanying the same with such Remarks and Explanations as may 
be necessary to give us a full and satisfactory Information of all our Possessions, their value, 
and the Importance they are to the Company 5 [250]. 
and again, 

Much remains yet to be done before we can be convinced that we receive the full value 
of the Revenues of the Province [Midnapore], therefore we direct you to be very full in your 
information . . . and you must send us a Plan of the Bengal Frontier towards Orixa, with your 
opinion for the best means of preventing Invasion on that side 6 ... 

but soon after this reached India, De Grloss was called away to survey the frontiers 
of Bihar, and other officers took up the work in Midnapore [28]. 

Rennell & Richards, 1765-6 

In May 1765 Clive had come out to Bengal for his second term of office [19], 
and Rennell writes, 

The 10th October whilst at Dacca I received Lord Give's Orders to set about forming a 
general Map of Bengali with all Expedition; & as it appeared to be a very tedious Work 
should all the Distances be exactly ascertained, his Lordship gave Directions that they should 
be taken in a cursory Manner only, correcting them by Latitudes or any other eligible Means. 

This order at once raised Rennell from a mere surveyor of rivers to be the geo- 
grapher of a vast unsurveyed country, and it is interesting to trace the origin of Lord 
Clive's wish. 

Robert Orme, the historian, had settled in London, and was finding difficulty in 
abstracting from the India House material for his second volume. In a letter to 
Clive, dated November 21st 1764, he speak of these difficulties, and continues, 

You, my Lord, have treated me differently; and pray continue to do so. Make me a vast 
map of Bengal, in which not only the outlines of the provinces, but also the different sub- 
divisions of Burdwan, Beerboom etc., may be justly marked.... Take astronomical observa- 
tions of longitude, if you have anybody capable of doing it. I send you a skeleton of the 
Bengal map I intend for my second volume... 8 
to which Clive replied, Calcutta, September 29th, 1765: 

I am preparing plans in abundance for you. You shall have very exact charts of Bengal, 
Bahar, and Orissa, and of the Mogul Empire as far as Delhi at least. A map of the Ganges 
likewise, and all the other rivers of consequence 9 . 

At Clive's wish Rennell was given an assistant [269] ana " records that as he was 
returning from the Assam frontier, 

On December 1 ith Ensign Richards with a Detachment. . .joined me, and on the 12th we set 
out by Land to survey the countries between the Bonaa sh River and Rangamatty 10 [ 32 ] . 

'BPC. 19-2-65. 2 The Mahanadi E. flows thro' Cuttack, 150 m. south of Midnapore, far beyond 
De Gloss's area. 3 Orme MSS. XI ( 3006 ). ■'Henry Verelst, Writer c 1750 ; Chief at Chittagong 1761-5 ■ 
in charge Burdwan it Midnapore 1765-6; Governor 1767-9; d. 1785; SIB; BSCC. 28-10-66 &CD to B 
15-2-65. 6 CDtoB. 24-12-65 (54). ~>Ls, Tonche (51). "Malcolm TT (523). "Malcolm, III (133)! 
10 ManasR.78J/ll, 15; Bangaraati, near Dhubri, 78F/16. [pis. 13,14]. 

Plate 5 


. We entered the Boutan Countrey...* crossed about 7 miles of it. ... I had some thoughts 
of proceeding... but finding theNati ves very averse to it, ... I judged it prudent to desist with- 
out farther orders, as being foreign to the Service now in execution. 

We arrived at Guragongl the 30th, & the next day being the last of the month I dis- 
charged all the boats except the Budgarow & Pulwars, having now no farther Occasion for 
them 3 . 

'. . They now surveyed a line across the north of Rangpur district, and Bennell 

. I went so far to the westward as the Purranyahs & Mornng* Countries, and have now 
finished the North Limit .of Bengal from Assam to Morung, which is near 3 degrees of 
Longitude. The borders of Bengal are from 26° to 26° 30'. . . . Assam lies to the NE and some 
independent Provinces & Boutan a to the N. 

The Bontan Mountains begin in 27° & are so high that they may be plainly discovered 120 
miles [76]. A great number of Rivers have their source from thence; some falling into the 
Burrumputry, others into the Ganges 6 . 

They left Rangpur on January 22nd, marched northwest and crossed the main 
Tista some 30 miles south of Jalpaiguri', where Bennell notes 

We perceived pieces of different kinds of Trees lying on the Sands in the River- these 
the Countrey People informed me are brought down from the Boutan Mountains by the 
Freshes: amongst many other kinds of fine Timber I perceived the stump of a Pirr Tree of 
which I brought away several pieces 8 [20]. 

They came to the Mahananda Eiver at "Sanashygotta" 3 finding the latitude to 
be 26 33 , and after surveying the boundary towards Murang worked down the 
Purnea side of the Mahananda to "Maha-Baage-Gunge" 1 ". From here they re 
turned eastward, and recrossing the Tista at "IVabobgunge ", u surveyed the boundary 
between Rangpur and Oooch Behar. 

On February 20th, 1766, near the southmost point of the borders of Cooch Behar 
they fell in with a small force of sepoys engaged with a band of sanydsi Fakirs -v 
Bennell placed himself and his men at the disposal of the commander, and in the 
fighting that followed his Armenian surveyor was killed, and he himself most shock- 
ingly wounded; he was with difficulty conveyed to Dacca and was fortunate to tret 
through alive [292]. & 

I stayed at Dacca till the beginning of June for the recovery of my Health & then set out 
to survey the Countrey between Luckypour &the Fenny, in order to join on Mi- Verelst's 
March to Cospour to the General Map of Bengali. [82]. Ensign Richards was sent in the 
beginning of May to finish the survey of the Curesa River & the Rangamatty Countrey'" 

Rennell worked through Comila and WoSkhali to Chittagong, returning- to Dacca 
at the end of July; 

As Mr. Plaisted is said to have surveyed all the Coasts & Islands betwixt Luckypour & 
Islamabad, I forebore setting about surveying them, as well to prevent double Trouble & loss 
ot time, as that the Season of the Year was improper for it [ 1 4]. 

None of the Hills exceed the height of 240 yards, & of these Sittacoon" is the highest 
situated about halfway between the Fenny & Chittagongii. 

After completing the survey that had been interrupted by the encounter with 
. ae scmytms, Richards surveyed the main Tista through DinajpurW towards the 

iges, and joined Bennell in Dacca for the rains. 

The 4 th November [1766] set out from Dacca to survey the Northern Branches of the 
anges The Dullaserry ■' was surveyed in 1765 from its conflux with the Megna to the Beurv- 
gon a & we now proposed to go on with the Survey of that & its principal Branches first 
«,v „? pT ™f lo ^ on ^ S »™y al * ^tt-.rte. we came mto ths great River' to 
w a ^r„ f , ' •" nver has a ™ry serpentine Course, the distance through being up- 

wards of 53 miles, whereas the Horizontal distance is not 28. 

,„ 'Kurigrim, 78 61/9. 
'The name Bhutan wr - -■ 
JIM). - 

7 78B/10. 
near the present s7waar%."°Jn. 78 

■ '■ -■ - :: " " ™ Mar Sitatnnd, 1155 ft., 79 H/10. 


-La. Touche (59-61). 'Purnea Dist. 72 N, 0. < Mu.-ang Dist Semil 72 U 

.orally applied to Tibet till after Bogie's mission [74, 223]" >0rme IfSS 54 

Touchy (6S_). j'Sanyasikita. 78 B/6. "now Kishanganj, 72 N/16. "7SB/11. 

' J The area of the catastrophe. La Touche (74^5)! 

E. 19 1/6. '»Pibaa,78H/8. 

"ib. (76-7). 

6 7S C/10. "Dhalesivari E. 79 I. 

24 Bengal Surveys 

They then spent some weeks surveying the rivers and swamps on the Pabna- 
Raishahi borders through which the old Tista found its way to the Ganges; 

Between Boutan & Raage Gunge it is named the Teesta, from thence to Bandgotta the 
Attri; between that & Cullum the Gole Nuddy; and afterwards the several names of Bagan- 
uddv, Ballaser, & Currumjar. 

Mr Richards had surveyed the River from Raage Gunge' to Cullum as before-mentioned, 
but for want of an instrument for taking the Latitudes the latter part of the Survey was not 
sufficiently exact; for this reason we proceeded up the River & took the Latitudes as far as 
was necessary. We finished the Survey as far as Cullum the <jth December ... The last Obser- 
vation was . . . near Conchon, the Latitude of which was 24° 53' N. "'. 

They also surveyed the eastern limits of „ __„ 

the Radshy Province in order to make Lord dive's Map as compleat as possible before his- 
leaving Bengali. ... 1tb : 

All our leisure Time since we left Dacca has been employed in compiling a general Map- 
for Lord Clive After all the Observations that we could make before his Lordship's setting 
out the Map would remain very imperfect without we were supplied with Copies of several 
Maps from Calcutta, & it being too late to wait for these, I determined to go to Calcutta as 
soon as the survey of the above-mentioned River should be compleated. 

We had not Time to survey the Currumjar River as I intended, by reason of the sudden 
departure of Lord Clive. We left Sajatpour" and proceeded for Calcutta the 2 oth December. 
. . .The 30th in the evening arrived at Calcutta. We had been employed on the Map the whole 

?aS From the 30th of December to the 6th Feby. inclusive stayed at Calcutta. The greatest 
part of the Time, we were employed in compiling and copying Maps for Lord Clive . 

Olive's health had broken down, and he left Calcutta, a sick man, on January 
29th 1767 6 . 

Bihar, 1766-8 

In 1763 war broke out between the English and Mir Kasim, Nawab of Bengal ; 
the Nawab retreated to the west of Patna, and obtaining the support of the Wazir 
of Oudh and Shah Alam, the exiled Emperor of Delhi «, made stand on the 
Karamnasa Eiver', till the English won a decisive victory at Buxar on October Idra 


On Olive's return to Bengal the following year, he promptly went up-country 
and came to a settlement with the Emperor and Wazir, and obtained for the 
Company the dewani of "Bengal, Bahar & Orissa»", besides the Northern Circars 
and the Madras jrigtr. , 

The Company had now a long frontier from Balasore on the south, through 
Chota Nag-pur and Bamgarh, to the Karamnasa Eiver on the west, through com- 
pletely unknown country and unknown peoples ; with the Marathas always pressing 
towards the rich country of Bengal. The Council became anxious about the 
protection of their western frontiers, and in September 1766 wrote to the C. in C. 
Colonel Richard Smith 9 ; 

In consequence of a resolution taken sometime since, of making a thorough survey of the 
Roads in the province of Bahar". we have despatched Captain De Gloss to you for that 

S^H^Smr Soil liifi:,nl"dllL a letter from Patrick Ro S s, CK Madras, to 
William Stevens, tellino- him the news, possibly distorted! "The Europe Ships are arrived and bring 
Z ,h™coount of a new Parliament, and that the Americans continue refractory Lord Clive they say 
Tas piU an end to Ms existence by thrusting a paper scraper mo his throat. The Duke of Atliol has 
droYn d "nilf in the Tay, and Lady Effingham has burnt herself others say her Eate p^eededfrom 
accident Whichever it be, God preserve us from such an end Mack MhS LXV111. iS-t>-7». 

■sSSSdedAtamgirinneO; returned to Delhi 1771 ; eyes put out by Boh.Ha Chief 1,88; d. 1806. 
7oS " the accursed river " by Hindus; joins Ganges from SW. ,64 0/14, 10 m W. of Buxa, > Midna- 
nore had been part of Bengal from 1706; Orissa had been granted to the E,]» of Nagpuv m 1751 under 
poie nan ueeii p „ 1803-6. Wills (-27 n). of. Memoir, 1793 (oxui) & Imp. Sax. Hun. I. (301). 

'eXd-toSobotmbo™" IlSi(74-«): ..CoveredthepresentdistrictsofPatnaiGaya. 

Bihar 25 

purpose; and as we understand that Captain Claud Martin 1 , is well versed in the Business of 
Surveying, you may employ him likewise upon the same undertaking, which we wish to see 
concluded with all possible despatch & accuracy. 

It is certainly of great importance to our security that we obtain a perfect knowledge of 
the Inlets to Bengal. For this reason Captain Huygens has our orders to examine the several 
passes into the province from the Hills of Tilliagurry 2 , quite down to Midnapore ; to assist in 
■which we desire you will immediately dispatch Ensign Carter from Monghyr 3 [26]. 

De Gloss has left a journal*, which gives such a vivid and interesting account 
of his survey that the following extracts seem worthy of print. He took four 
European assistants with him [283]. 

z 3_^_66. Received orders from Lord Clive to proceed to Patna, and follow the instruc- 
tions of Colonel Richard Smith — Left Calcutta that evening. . . . 

27-10-66. Joined Capt. Huggins of the Engineer Corps and Surveyor ... a few coss from 
Ratrjmall 5 . ... 

2-11-66. Parted company with Capt. Huggins who was proceeding to Gongerpersaut to 
begin is survey [sic] . . . 

10— 11-66. Reach Monghere 6 . ... 

18-11-66. Reach Patna. Budgeroe & Boats remaining Patna, report to Colonel Smith 
on 19th. . . . 

23-11-66. Received one company of sepoys, 6 Cavalry, 20 Burgundasses, and 3 Harcarras 
from Government for the use of the Survey, with following instructions from Col. Smith. 

Headquarters at Meer Aboyls. 25-11-66. ... to proceed on Survey of Part of the Bahar 
Province ... to commence surveying at Doudnagore 7 taking your route to Gautolly upon the 
Zoane 8 , and from thence to Rottasgur ... , continue your survey along the Banks up the 
Zoane, until you come to the Range of Hills that lays to the SW. ...or as high up the Zoane, 
as you can proceed with safety. When this is accomplished you will survey along the range 
of Hills Eastward until you come to ...Bahar 9 , examine well if there are any passes thro' the 
Hills, until you come opposite to Mongheer. ... 

The principal object of your present Survey is to obtain information of every Pass or 
Entrance into Bahar Province from the Westward & to acquire some knowledge of the differ- 
ent Roads, Rivers, and Principal Towns with their Bearings & Distances. You are to keep a 
daily journal. ... On your arrival at Mongheer you will receive further orders. 

25-11-66. Left Patna. 

28th. Arrived at Doudnagar, near R. Zoane. 

29th. Began the Survey. ... 

15—12-66. Found it impossible to continue the Survey any further by the Impracticable 
Junggles etc. [no road or pathway]. ... 

19th. Employed surveying the mountainous Hill of Rottasgur 10 , together with the Fort . 

20th. In the course of Survey found the country much embarassed with junggles and 
immense Quantity of Tygers with great plenty of Deer, Peacock, and other game. 

. 21st. Surveying along the Zoane altho" attended with the utmost Trouble, difficulty, and 
fatigue, being obliged to cut passes thro' the junggles for our Proceeding forward & observa- 
tions, yet could not proceed above one coss and a half each day. ... 

25th. Halted at Berealpour on account of the Jungles, the bildars employed clearing 
them away to make a pathway. Met with several armed people in the Thicketts where they 
reside, having Bows & Arrows and Cutlashes, but on our appearing in view off, as also 
the village people, forsaking their Habitations, which much distressed we for want of supply 
of Provisions. . . . 

26th. [The party is fired at during this day & night] ... Saw the Track of Rynosserus is 

_ 27th. ...Came to the village of Pushduree with immense fatigue & trouble owing to the 
Junggles; found several bullocks etc., that had been devoured by the Tygers where are also 
great numbers of Bears, one of which, with here cubs attacked a Lascar who narrowly escaped 
*alhng a prey by mounting a tree & on his calling for assistance, which was immediately given, 
the Bears took another Road in the Thicketts. ... 

sn^™ & 2^ m v WaS ^ this time Solved in the "Batta Mutiny" and does not appear to haue joined in this 
alEe call H IT? " pa . 3S ilt N - end of Eljmahal Hills, 72 0/12; "At about a league on this side near 
^ - J? -. J- eria -galli 3 the road is shut up by a gate or barrier, which they only open occasionally, 

Erfnv JK £ y sol , (liCTS - The restof the raad is s ° narrow that you cannot travel but just by the 
<fZl.wSJ vTn Father Boudier, 1734; Herbert (28); see also Hodges (24). ; 'BSCC. 23-9-66. 
riSnMvteoi*' s« ote ^ ^akness of his English. "Rajmahal, 72/16. "Monghyr, 72 K/7. 
uaudnagar, 72 C/8. s Son It. pining Ganges, 7a C/14. 9 Bihar, 72 G/12. 10 Eohtas, 61! P/14. 

Bengal Surveys 

J the Hills.] 

1-1-67. [Leaves the Son & surveys along the "Cole" R 1 .] 
2nd. [Surveys -with less difficulty than along the Son]. 

3rd. ...Surveying on the sand of the River Cole where myself and horse was much 
embarassed on the Quicksands, the horse with difficulty saved 3 . 

8th. [Returned to Rotasgur, and now carries his survey eastwards 1 
27th. [Cross road leading to Pallamow 3 .] 
12-2-67. [Reaches Gayah; described.] ... 
26-3-67. Enters the Ramgur 4 Country. ... 
3-4-67. [Takes an observation for variation of Compass.] ... 

8th. Employed surveying & on the Drafts. Received advice per Harcarar that Lieut. 
Carter, & Mr. Cameron 5 , & Russell were on Survey with 3 companies of Seapoys. 
9th. Received a letter from Mr. Carter. ... 
17th. Came to Soubah Bahar. ... Most of my people fell sick with fevers & Fleux, thro* 
the immense Heat of the Wether & many deprived of sight by the Hot Winde. Was obliged 
to Halt & employ a Doctor to attend & give them Medicines, as also my assistants equally 
indisposed, but during which time surveyed & employed on the Drafts. ... 

[From May 12th to 27th, left most of his men and baggage in Bahar, and surveyed round 
the parganah; returned to the soubah "rinding my assistants & people violent ill with 

[During June & July continued Survey, with interruptions from the Rains.] 
July nth came to Mongheer. 

12th. [Went to wait on the CO. of the Garrison], ...letters waiting for some months 
from Governor Verelst & Colonel Smith directing me to proceed to Benares et Allahabad. 
Camped at M. and made fair copies of maps for the Governor. ... 

August 20th. Employed constantly on the Drafts & reducing it to a small scale, agree- 
able to the Governor's direction, as by Letters received from Captain Reynells 6 for so doing. 
Be Gloss now received orders for a survey of the Grandak River, the Council 

appointed one of the Company's servants ... to examine the River Gandak and report oa 
Fir Trees from Butea 7 country, and being of opinion that it would be of great use to the 
Public if we could be supplied, with Fir Tree Timbers by means of the River Gunduc which' 
empties itself into the Ganges opposite Patna, ... direct the Gentlemen^ at Patna to ... apply 
to the Commanding Officer for a Surveyor to survey not only the River but likewise the 
Nullah that runs close to the Fort of Battea 9 , also to give directions for some of the largest 
Trees to be sent down to Calcutta [20]. 

De Grloss had to wait several days because all available boats had been requisi- 
tioned for Colonel Peach's brigade which had been ordered on service to the 
Circars [91 ], and embarked for Calcutta on October 13th, on which date De G-loss 
departed from Mongheer, crossed the Ganges, surveyed the Rocks, River & Islands Opposite 
the Fort. ... 

October 16th. Hired boats which had been sunk in order to avoid being pressed for 
transport of the Brigade. ... 

r8th. Continue survey along north Bank of Ganges River noting the Limits of the 
Pargannas. ... 

26th. Departed from the village Piprah 10 & and met with equal Difficulty on account of 
the high Reed Junggles. 

Saw the Track of Tygers, Wild Buffaloes, and the Rynosseroces ; two of the latter of which 
as Informed was caught last season in the said place by a Trap particulatly Invented for that 
Purpose. ... 

November 5th. Met the Ganduk River emptying itself in the Ganges with extreme 
rapidity, the sands of which shifting and in constant motion forming whirlpools so rolling and 
essuing forth in that manner when least expected . . . 

November 8th. Hodgepoor 11 . Waited on Mr. Rumboldt, who insisted on my handing in 
my seapoys who were required for collection of Revenues. ... 

10th. Allowed 20 seapoys belonging to the Calcutta Garrison, and returned those from 
Mongheer. ... 

^oelR. joins the Son 63 P/14. " A common experience on these rivers. 3 Palamau, 73 A/1. 
4 Eamgarh TS E/10, 30 m. south of Haziiribagh. s Probably John Cameron, Engrs. 6 Rennell had be- 
come S G. from 1-1-67, and De Gloss was under his professional orders. 'Bhutan T2Tn %~\ 3 the 
Provincial Council. ° Bettiah, 72 B/5. l0 72 K/8. "Hajipur, 72 G/2. 

Bihar 27 

15th. Surveyed and came to Patna. ... 
27th. Return to Hodgepoor, still surveying. 
December 9th. [Surveys the Ganduc] ... 
* ^ 16th. Small scale drafts Mongheer to Patna to Governor Verelst. 
-'' Surveying. ... 

25th. Halt for Christmas. 
~ .' 26th, [Continues surveying the Ganduc] 
; ■ 30th. [Surveying towards Bettiah. 3 J 

January ist 1768. Halted for the New Year Day. Was suddenly indisposed by a fever & 
Pleurasy in my side. ... J w 

8th to 12th. Bettiah. ... 

23rd. [Is warned to expect opposition from a local Raja ] 
2 6th. [Meets an armed body of 200 men which disperses on 'his approach 1 
j 30th. Letterfrom Governor Verelst ordering me to decline the further Course of Survey 
A Immediately... to Proceed downwards for Bankapoor* Cantonments, agreable to which 
did so comply. ... ° 

. February 14th. [On journey down the Ganduc]. Heavy rain & sudden squalls of wind 
by which lost one Boat on the Quick Sands, wherein was Boxes of Instruments Booklet ' 
other Necessaries etc great part of which could not obtain as the Boat entirely Bilged* 
sunk et Buryed in the shoals & Budgrowse and other Boats in equal Danger, so that could 
not proceed but obliged to lay at a Sand Bank. 5 

■Governor ^Zlt^ H ° dgep °° r at Whlch P lace fouad Ensi « n Shards, Surveyor. Wrote to 
18th. Came to Patna. . 

Gov^Ve'relsf ' SUbmitted draftS 0l tte GmdUC River ' With abstr - t °* J— 1 '» 
. De Gloss was now placed on other duty, and not again employed on survey. In 
the 17 months smce he had left Calcutta, he had travelled up" the river to Patna 
and then been continuously on survey through hot weather and rains alike; he 
had completed a survey of the Son beyond Eohtas, along the southern limits of 

wvevnfth ^tt , r^' ^ adetail6d Slme ? »'»'«-; then a 
survey of the north bank of the Ganges from Monghyr to Patna, noting paraana, 
boundanes ; then a survey of the Gandak River as far as Bettiah. 

Route Sukveys 
Although most of the surveys of these times were in the nature of route surveys 

of 1 thriXs p T tio b ul r I - T ;f ieates those whose immediate ^^ ™ *>* -^ 

survey S ™ t ? J ^ ^T' * P ° Htical missi ° n ' rathei ' tha " the «»«P»* 
survey ot a particular area or boundary F 

»urI e v S fro t m W r h tie J re " ch w Chi < *>» Law de Lauriston, who retreated up. 
17™ andwld ^ 1 ' 1 afte i r *? Eng:lish ° a P tured Chandernagore in March 
W lZo T v r ° mP ^, t0 ? la0eWith aSma " t0d y of French a » d Mian 
he sm'rende Zff: ^ T', I. BlIu >/e Ta and B™delkhand; after various adventures. 
Be smiendeied to the English, and was deported to Prance. He kept up surveys of 

M I?: r d°ef ' an ? B ' aTC US ma P t0 D ' AnTilIe who M « <"g»™d [ L ] ; 7 
■C0^lt e n7 I wZ7TTT m " dim l 0iPSdetmU ^ Sd,mS le ™ rd ™* Delhi, me 
lanTenne S T. n , ' ^ Carte dreSrf par lui " me ™. d'apres ce qu'avoit donne 

parTourTes T „r r U f, aV<Mt aJ ° Ut6 en d6SSin r ° Uge Par ^tinction, des routes qu'il avoTt 
d-eteTonnues I e ^" es , Sii r 7°*°'-t des positions asse z considerables pour meriter 
recueilli, Z ■ , T1 ^ piques morceaux vers la frontiere du Tibet, & qu'il avoit 

*^L e s z k^."' " carte de ces *»*- s *p~ z£ 

purges' 1 fetfe ^til-Dupem*, who travelled in India for literary 

Iwn tte eat co-t f ^ 1? f \' 1 T Bi LaW f ° r a short time > a » d th » travelled 
■he east coast from Bengal to Masulipatam; and later from Goa to Poona 

Add], MSS B 2M14. =BanM P°' c ' M »' P»ta». »2 a/2. M»H g „if e - Geography ( iv ). See also map, Bit 


Bengal Surveys 

and Aurangabad 1 . He kept measurements and observations along many of his 
routes, but Eennell writes of that from Goa, 

I lament exceedingly that he had not a compass with him, ... for in a quarter where 
geography is so bare of materials ... that gentleman had a fair opportunity of distinguishing 
himself in this way, as he may be said to literally to have trod a new path 3 [127]. 

Duperron has left an amusing- account of the military route surveys of his day j. 

J'ai voyage dans l'interieur de 1'Inde. seul, en troupe, en corps d'armee. L'Onicier, le 
Commandant, passe la journee dans son Palanquin, ou il dort le plus souvent. A la dinee, 
il demande ... a son Dobachi^ ...combieu on a fait de Cosses, par quels endroits on a passe. 
Celui-ci interroge les Beras (les porteurs) ou repond de mi-mem e, parce qu'il faut repondre; 
& le nombre des cosses, le nom des lieux est couche sur l'ltineraire, sur la Carte. 

Ce que je viens de raconter, je l'ai vu de mes yeux 4 [185]. 

Of the Company's soldiers, Eennell mentions surveys through Cuttack and 
Orissa by Polier and Campbell 5 , and we have already noticed the surveys by 
Morrison and Nicol in Midnapore [21]. When Knox was withdrawn from 
Midnapore in 1763 to join the main army on its march to Patna, Nicol was charged 
with the survey of "Budjapore province' 5 " which he carried out "with a diligence 
and exactness peculiar to that trusty officer", and was then despatched to survey 
"the roads in the Beerboona Province" as far as ... Calcutta". This survey was- 
interrupted by the campaign which ended with the Battle of Buxar, and Nicol had 
to return to military duty 8 . 

To return to Midnapore, — in 1767 the Collector 1 ' had a body of sepoys at his 
disposal and John Ferguson commanded a column of these along the western 
borders, which were then entirely unexplored. He writes from Ghatsila 10 , 

A journal of my proceedings I have up to this day, but my compass went wrong the 2nd 
day's march to this Fort, I having it in my hand to observe our course, when the enemy set 
on us, and my needle, from the firing I think it must be, flew off its axis. This will in-. 
future make me very imperfect in the course, & the want of a set of mathematical instru- 
ments renders me incapable of making charts 11 . 

The Collector reports, 

I have in my possession a copy of Lt. Ferguson's journal of his western expedition, but 
it is not complete enough for a map to be formed from it. I shall keep it in my hands for 
the present in order to make some necessary additions to it... ia . 
and the Governor replies, 

I could wish to have Lt. Ferguson's Journal completed as soon as possible that we may 
get a chart of his Expedition to the West laid down 115 . 

By this time Eennell had been posted as Surveyor General r and several of his. 
surveyors, Adams, Carter, and Portsmouth, were drafted in to make a systematic 
survey of the province and we hear nothing more of Ferguson's amateur efforts. 

The army was now fully engaged beyond the western frontiers, and under spur 
from England, surveys were pushed on in every direction. 

It is hard to over-emphasize the influence exerted by Orme on the surveys of 
India at this period [22]; amongst his papers is an autograph "Essay on the Art 
of War", undated, but probably sometime about 1765, written possibly for Clive 
or Richard Smith or some other soldier friend, and pointing out the military 
value of maps; 

We have in general very few good charts in India. No Wonder. Our Generals have 
not paid that attention to the subject which it requires. ... If those in the Administration 
were sensible of the advantages resulting from it, they would never scruple the expence. 
But then great caution should be observed that none but capable men should be employed 
and whose integrity is equal to their capacity. To such, great encouragement should be given. 

I would have a Plan of your whole Frontier, with the Engineer's observations from 
League to League. And where you have any Defiles, they should be accurately described, 

'Orme JISS. 134 (43-1). "-Mmioir, 1793 (253). ^Interpreter. ^Bernoulli, II (466-7).- 

s Eennell is tantalising in that he hardly ever gives a date. Memoir, 1783 (68). G or Shahfibiul Dist. 72 C. 
Bm. Atlas iii. 7 BTrbhiim, 73 M. 3 Caraccioli (346). ° In this correspondence called Collector and 
Resident indiscriminately; the regular office of Collector was not generally introduced till 5 years* later- 
3ft 73J/6. u Midnapore Dist. R. 4-4-67. 12 ib. 3-8-67. Vi Midnapore Dist. B. 3-9-67. 

Route Sueveys 29 1 

surveys having first been made with -the most minute exactness. ... Route Surveys. ... From 
a Compleat Engineer you may go much further. He is not to confine himself to the roads 
only, but the situation of the country — 

A General Officer should always be furnished with some such a chart, for it is impossible 
for a Council Board to form a system of operations upon the Intelligence they have re- 
ceived. ... 

Embrace therefore every opportunity ... to send officers into a Country, where you may 
soon have occasion to march an Army. But such officers should be the most intelligent in 
the Service 1 . 

In 1767 Orme acknowledged receiving from Richard Smith [24], 

A map of Patna to Delhi, which you say is imperfect. ... Another of the Country about- 
Agra & Delhi, of which you have a Better opinion. 

I had received before the map from Patna to Delhi, but never till now the other, which 
differs so very much from all preceeding informations concerning that part of Indostan, both, 
m the quality of materials, their dispositions, and the names of places, that I readily concur 
in thinking it much more to be depended on then any of the former charts, because in these 
matters few people take pains of changing the old notions of Geography to substitute new 
inventions without foundation. They would be deterred by the dread of being discovered 
and exposed. ... 

In your map of the country about Agra, I see for the first time the situation of the 
Countries of the Jauts and Rohillas. Get as accurate information as you can concerning the 
Boundaries of these countries, and the description of the peoples 

I likewise see in the map Pitans 2 between the Jumna and the Ganges; I can account 
for them. 3 

Among the surveys sent home to Orme 4 are military routes surveyed by Samuel 
Showers between 1766 and 1769, which include, 

A Plan of part of Bahar Province, surveyed in November 1766, scale 3 inches to a mile 
including Sassaram and Rotas ■', 

which is a road traverse along the Son River, with a loop road round Rohtas hill, 
and a wide area of hills shown in a distinctive conventional style which is almost 
exactly reproduced in Bolt's map of 1772 [223]. 

There are other surveys made by Showers in 1767; the G-ogra Kiver from Fyzabad 
to the Ganges, July to September ; the rivers Karamnasa [2411. 7], "Gmntah or 
Goompty 6 ", various roads from Benares, and the road from Allahabad to Fyzabad ; 
in a journal of 1768 he writes, 

We met with nothing near the Goompty, but immense fields of thick grass, which 
together with the shortness of the reaches, greatly conduces to render this work more 
tedious: the true distance of today's survey is 5 miles and 4 furlongs, the ground I have 
measured exceeds 14 miles — This day's survey has been one continuous jungle, which by 
the prints of their feet, is the dens of Tygers; & other wild beasts 7 . 

In 1768 Showers was sent on a mission by Colonel Smith to the Maratha chief 
at Nagpur, travelling through "Rywary 8 ...Sahagu Ghat...Gurrah-Mundela 9 " 
[296] ; he wrote from Tilwara Ghat 10 on the Narbada, 

I am credibly informed the source of this river is 50 coss East of this place, where is- 
likewise the source of the River Soan and another small river called Tutte . . . near Umar- 
cuntuck 11 [60]. 

His map of the road from Allahabad to the Narbada 12 is beautifully drawn, 
with hills shown conventionally in elevation, and with branch roads to various 
important places. 

Rjennell acknowledges the use of Showers' work [22611.7], and makes the- 
following references to his and other surveys in Bundelkhand; 

Rewa, in the Bundelcund country is the most westerly point on the road leading from. 
Allahabad to. Nagpour and the Deccan that is determined by survey and latitude. From 

TW-™. -j?"™ 6 ^ SS " 303 < 109 >' "PatWs, from Afghanistan. a OrmeMSS. 222 (157). *bv Brace, 
tS,,™^ ^. d <*hers. s Sasaram, 72 D/l; BM. Addl. MSS. 15739 (17|). 6 Thc Gumti flows "through 
»*™! T^'^"" t} "' & a*ges below Benares. 'Orme MSS. 8 (3). 8 Eewah, 63 H/6. 3 Mandla Fort. 
, °r£ ,^v fe' 55 M/1S- -»■ decide (74-5). u Amarkantak, 64 F/10; letter dated 2^68, Orme MSS. 
BM. AddL MSS. 15739 (15): unfortunately quite mmvitable for reproduction. 



Bengal Surveys 

thence to Telwarrah Gaut on the Nerbudda is laid down in a more cursory manner: but I 
believe tolerably exact for the purposes of a general map 1 . ... .. 

Chatterpour... was formerly visited, and its position determined by mensuration from 
Rewah, by Captain Carter 3 . ... 

The country between Mirzapour and the heads of the Soane and Nerbuddah, was explored 
by the late Major Bruce; ...during his expedition he verified a fact which has long been 
doubted, though strenuously insisted upon by the natives, viz., thet the Soane and Ner- 
buddah Bivers had their common source from a pond, or lake, on the southern confines of 
the Allahabad province . . . 3 . 

Wilford records that Bruce made his surveys "about the year 1771"'. 
An interesting- route survey from Cuttack to Sambalpur was made in 1766 by 
Thomas Motte, "free merchant", who was sent by Clive to sound the Marathas as 
to their willingness to cede Orissa in return for an annual tribute [ 24 n. 8 ] , and 
also to open a trade hi diamonds with the Baja of Sambalpur; one share to Motte, 
two shares to Clive. [pi. 13]. 

He left Calcutta on March 13th 1766, travelling by Midnapore, Balasore, and 
Cuttack. At Balasore he heard tales of "volcanos", but found them to be jungle 
fires. He left Cuttack on May 6th, and on the 22nd reached Bund s ; here his - 
tent was struck by lightning and caught fire; thirty of his followers were involved 
in the tire and sixteen of them died. On his arrival at Sambalpur on May 31st 
he found a local revolution going on, in which over 300 were massacred. " Both 
his European companions died of fever, but Motte himself stayed till October, 
suffered much from fever, but was never able to come to business, and never even 
saw a diamond. 

On October 1st the Baja paid him a farewell visit, and begged everything he 
saw; it was with great difficulty Motte could save his compass, and he was glad to 
get away the next day. He had adventures with wolves on his return journey, but 
reached Cuttack safely on October 19th, and Balasore on 28th. Further negotiations 
regarding Orissa were abandoned owing to Olive's ill-health and return to Europe 

Motte writes that "Mallock, sent by Mr. Henry Tansittart", presumably on a 
similar errand two or three years before, "durst only stay 24 hours" 6 . Mallqck's 
companion, Alleyne, had noted the bearing and distances from Cuttack to Sambal- 
pur 7 , and Motte also made a survey which was apparently embodied in Bolts' map 
[ 223 ], and was also used by Bennell who notes that, 

Mr. Motte's route along the Mahanuddy was described from computed distances and 
bearings by a compass. He also took the latitude of Sumbulpoore in a rough manner 8 . 

A rough sketch of the Mahanadi is preserved at Calcutta, which bears a note 
to the west of Sambalpur "Diamond Mines among these Mountains"; it may be 
Alleyne^ for the names given do not correspond with those of Motte's account 9 . 

In 1774 Jacob Camac, commanding in Chota Nagpur, sent "Golam Mohamed, 
a Sepoy officer, to explore the roads and countries of the Deccan", and "to gain 
intelligence about the Mahratta powers"; and Bennell took "the roads from 
Burwah to Buttunpoor, and from thence to Gurry Mundlah, Nagpour, Aurang- 
abad, and Burhanpour" 10 all from his itinerary 11 . Bennell further states that he 
was indebted to Camac for "the course of the Bain Goiiga 13 ... quite a new acquisi- 
tion to Geography" 13 . 

A notable contribution to geography was the survey made by the Bev. William 
Smith, appointed in July 1775 to accompany Colonel Upton's political mission to 
Poona [ 2 ] ; 

Col. Upton's Ambassy to Poona affording a favourable opportunity to survey the Penin- 
sula of India, and likewise to ascertain the true Distance of the places thro' which he will 

'JTonoir, 1783 (68-9), Hb. 1793 (206). «it>. (235). Us. B. (399-400). 'on the Mahanadi 73 
D/5. 'Motte s vivid narrative is in ,4s AH. I. 1799; Misc. Tracts. (50-85); also Wills (22-43) ^Orme 
MSS 67 (138). B Memoir, 1793, (241) ; References to Motte's bearings are made by the surveyor with 
Elliot's mission [39], MKIO. M. 272. 'Imp. Lit. W If P 336. "Barwenagar, 73 A/4- Ratammr 
■64 J/4; Mmdti Port, 64 B/6; Burhinnur, 55 C/3. "Jfemoir, 1783 (vi, 66», 69)- Ben UUt I x )' 
"Wainganga R. 55 & 64. n Memair, 1793, (246). ' 

Route Surveys 31 

pass, Col. Monson 1 proposes that the Reverend Mr. William Smith be appointed to attend 
Col. Upton for this purpose, conceiving that the public may obtain many advantages from 
this survey which probably would not be able to be taken at any other time 3 . 

The mission started from Kalpi 3 , on the Jumna, on October 24th 1775 and 
reached Poona on December 27th. During January and February Smith carried 
his survey down to Bombay and back. Kennell describes his achievement thus: 

Mr. Smith set out from Calpy with Col. Upton ... and fell into the great road from Delhi 
to the Deccan at the city of Narwah 4 ; ... from Narwah, he proceeded to Strong 5 , a city of 
Malwa [56 n. 16] ... , and from thence to Burhanpour, the capital of Candeish. ... In his way... 
he crossed the famous river Nerbuddah, formerly the reputed boundary of the Deccan. ... 
From Burhanpour, he went to Poonah, ... crossing the heads of the Goda very and Beemah, 
rivers in his way; and from Poonah to Bombay. 
■ During all this route, he took observations of latitude and longitude, as often as oppor- 
, tuhity offered; which was not unfrequently; and with these he constructed a map, which is 
no less valuable on the score of its general accuracy and extensive information, than curious 
by the novelty of its subject. "We had then, for the first time, a geographical line on which 
we could depend, drawn across the continent of India, through the principal points between 
Agra and Poonah". 

In 1777 the Council reported that Mr. Smith 

was prevented by ill health from completing a map of the country ; ... he is now on his passage 
to Europe, but has promised to finish it as soon as possible, and take the first opportunity 
of sending it to us. In the meantime We have put his Journals into the hands of the Chief 
Engineer 7 , to form a map from them 8 . 

The journal gives a full and detailed narrative of. his survey and astronomical 
observations, with complete fieldbooks and perambulator traverse 9 [ 185]. 

Rennell as Surveyor General 1767-77 

• Before leaving- India, Olive showed his appreciation of Rennell's surveys by- 
appointing- him Surveyor General, a post-thus created in India for the first time, 
and notified thus to .the Directors : ,...*"' ' 

So much depends upon accurate surveys, both in military operations and in coming at a 
true knowledge of the value of your possessions, that we have employed everybody on this 
service who could be spared and were capable of it. But as the work must ever be imperfect 
while it is in separate and unconnected plans, we have appointed Captain Rennell, a young 
man of distinguished merit in this branch, Surveyor General, and directed him to form one 
general chart from those already made, and such as are now in hand as they can be collected 
in. This, though attended with great labour, does not prevent him from prosecuting his 
Own surveys, the fatigue of which, with the desperate wounds he has lately received in one 
of them [23], have already left him but a shattered constitution. I0 

Rennell writes in his journal, 

Theistof Jan. 1767 I was appointed Surveyor Genl., and the Govr. (Mr. Verelst) ap- 
pointed the several Surveyors . . . under me, 

Capt. Lewis Du Gloss. Lieut. Carter. 

Capt. John Adams. Ensign Wm. Richards. 

The three first had each a particular part of the Countrey allotted him to survey, & 
myself (with Mr. Richards as an Assistant) had another part. 

■ Mine was to be ; first, the Roads from Calcutta to Hadgigunge 1[ ; next the Cosee* 2 River 
from its conflux with ye Ganges to the Northern Frontier of Bengali. 

Leaving Calcutta on February 6th, he surveyed through typical Bengal country, 
crossing one creek after another and " The 22nd surveyed 7| miles thro' a dismal 
Jungly Countrey infested with Tygers ". He completed the 133 mile to "Hadgi 
Gunge " by February 2 6th ; 

^pi^r^nV/ Su .P reme Council from 1774; d. Calcutta, 25-9-76. 3 BS & F. 24-7-75, 3 54 U/16. 
ft+iimr^i s-^ r0n J' 54 H/12 - Memoir, 1783 (62). 'Post of S.G. was vacant from April to 
™rl fe >£?£S? J l A B ~ GI> - M-ll-fT (37). 9 BM. Addl. MSS. 29213 j map reproduced, Macpherson; 
«Eos?E £ ti P y n - I0 - Trad 389 ' '° B t0 CD - 3 °- 3 - 67 - " 5m - ^ of ^aridpur 79 E/14' 


Bengal Surveys 

I staid at Hadgigunge till the 2nd March waiting for Mr. Richards. During this time 
I was employed in constructing & coping a large Map of Bengali for the Governor. 

The 2nd of March finding that Mr. Richards had but just left Culna, I set off for Dacca to 
get a supply of Men & Boats for the next Survey 1 . 

Meanwhile Richards surveyed the route from Calcutta through Bangaon and 
Muhammadpur -, and reached Dacca March 7th. 

They set out again on the 11th, working southwards into Backergunge, but 
Rennell had to break off and return to Dacca with fever, leaving Richards to carry 
on 3 . Here his fascinating- journal closes, and we get but occasional glimpses of his 
work from his letters. He made Dacca his headquarters, sending out professional 
instructions to the various surveyors, and spending all the favourable months of the 
year out on survey himself. He himself surveyed the whole area north of the 
Ganges from Purnea on the west to Sylhet on the east. In September 1767 he 
wrote home, 

I am now going to traverse the countries that lie on the East and Southeast of the 
Baramputrey, and you may not expect to hear from me again till near this time twelve 
month, as the length of the Expedition will take up near that time. I shall have a strong 
Detachment, and may probably go near the western limits of the Chinese Empire. No Coun- 
trey in the world perhaps is less known to Europeans than the Countries lying between 
China and Indostan, and indeed how should it be otherwise, as the Company have made very 
few discoveries till within twenty years past 4 . 

He did not at once proceed eastwards as here suggested, but in November 

I am now in the midst of my journey to Thibet. Being got into a more northern Climate 
and in "the neighbourhood of the Mountains I breathe a cool and healthy Air 5 . 

He writes from Rangamati [pi. 14], 

I have made one short trip to the Northward, but was obliged to return again with some 
precipitation as the Boutese had drawn an army together to oppose my Progress. I very 
nearly fell into an ambuscade which they had laid for me, but escaped with the loss of one 
man dangerously wounded. I was obliged to retreat a considerable way thro' an Enemy's 
Countrey perpetually harassed by their detachments, and crossed a deep river in my way. 
I hardly ever experienced more fatigue at one time, however my health has not suffered in 
the least. 

I am now in the midst of the Forests of Rangamatty which are chiefly inhabited by wild 
Buffaloes, Elephants, Rhinoceros, and Tygers ; the tracks of most of these terrible Animals 
I see every day. I never saw a just description of the Rhinoceros in any Books that I have 
■read. It is about the size of the Elephant, and rather an overmatch for it. It feeds on 
Herbs, and frequently makes excursions to the Plains 6 . 

He spent all his time when not out on survey in compiling the surveys that 
were sent in to him. In December 1768 he was able to write, 

The business in my Department goes on briskly, and next year we may expect that the 
Geography of these Kingdoms will be as well known a s that of most Countrey s in Europe — 
A great progress is made in the surveying of the Western Countries, so that we have now 
measured a line of near 14 degrees of Longitude?. 

Of the surveyors first posted under his orders, we have already noticed De Gloss 
at work in Bihar, and his withdrawal in 1768 [ 22 ] ; Adams surveyed roads in 
Midnapore, and certain rivers in western Purnea, and died during 1767 ; Carter 
worked in Midnapore, Jungleterry [34 n. 9] and Chota Nag-pur, and appears to have 
continued on survey till at least 1772 ; Richards continued till the survey was 
closed down. 

Other surveyors were brought in as they could be obtained, military officers 
possessed of some knowledge or aptitude. Each officer received the Surveyor 
General's instructions as to the area he was to survey, the principal towns to be 
included, and the routes by road or river he was to traverse, generally in the form 
of a network ; occasional latitudes were observed. 

1 I*Touohe (86-93). 
16-11-67. 6 HMS. 765, 20-1- 

a 79A/16;79 E/ll. 3 ib. (94), 23-3-67. 4 HMS. 765, 25-9-67. 
8. Hb. 30-12-68. 


,-■ In 1768 report was made to the Directors that, 

A number of Gentlemen are employed on a Survey of the Provinces ; the Boundaries are 
almost finished and they are now taking the Sections of the several Countries. In Septem- 
ber next I hope to have the pleasure of sending you a complete and particular Plan of all 
your possessions in this part of India. In tracing and examining such an immense Tract of 
Country, the greatest Part of which affords not the least conveniency to an European, the 
Expense must necessarily be great ; but the Benefit of such an Undertaking will be an ample 
Compensation for the Charges that are attendant upon it 1 . 

In 1770 Rennell wrote, 

All the work in the Field will be done by the end of 'ji, but then it will take several 
Months to inspect and compile all the Materials 3 ; 
and again, 

Besides the Surveys of Bengali and Bahar ( the Company's Territories } carried on under 
my direction, the officers of the Army [29] have surveyed the inland Countries belonging to 
Sujah Dcwlah 3 and several independent Princes ...situated on both sides of the Ganges, So- 
that the whole extent corrected by our Geographers is upwards of 14 degrees of Longitude 
and 9 of Latitude 4 , 
and again the following year, 

I have entirely done my business in the field, and all that remains to be done to complete 
the General Survey of Bengali, Bahar, our part of Orixa [ 2 4 n. 8 ], and the Provinces of Allaha- 
bad & Awd will be completed within these 4 months. The sea coast & rivers also have had 
a regular survey, and a surveyor [ 1 6-7 ] in a sloop has been all round the Bay of Bengali and 
described the sea coasts & islands. It will now be my business to compile all these surveys, 
& for that purpose I am now setting down seriously for at least 13 months 5 , 
again, in 1772, 

The Provinces of Bengali and Bahar were formerly divided into about 28 grand Divisions 
answering to our Counties, tho' few of them were so small as Devonshire, and these grand 
Divisions were again divided into Pergannas. ... The Boundaries even of these inferior Divi- 
sions are chiefly ascertained, with every Town of note in the Provinces, together with all tho 
Roads and Rivers 6 . 

In 1774 Eennell completed his series of Provincial Maps, which he submitted 
with smaller scale General Maps, and an account of their construction, and a small 
index showing the areas covered by each surveyor 7 ; 


De Gloss 



Carter, Portsmouth, Call 




From Purnea to Sylhet 

Part of Burdwan 

Chittagong, and Bihar north of the Granges 

Rajmahal Hills 

Midnapore to borders of Chota Nagpur 

Districts E. of the Hooghly; Cooch Eehar 


Coastal areas Balasore to Chittagong 
After giving an account of the survey, signed January 17th 1774, he remarks, 
It is hoped that the tedious delay in the execution of this work will be pardoned, when 
it is known that the materials from which it is compiled, consist of 500 original surveys ; and 
as these were the work of 10 different gentlemen, it is natural to suppose that from so great 
a diversity of Instruments and Measures, the lines of Bearing and Distance must frequently 
disagree; and indeed the Truth is, that the Comparing and Correcting of them employed a 
large portion of the time. 

,. I will not pretend to say that every particular part of these Maps is perfectly accurate; 
but I can vouch for their being generally so, and that no capital errors appeared during the 
examination and Construction. In order that every Surveyor may be answerable for his 
own work, I have added his name to it in the Maps ; and at the end of this page have parti- 
cularized the Tracts surveyed by each [224]. 

I hope that it will not be expected that every small Purgannah...shonId have its limits 
oeimed m these Maps.... A certain gentleman of Rank has remarked this unavoidable 
defect m a Map drawn for his use. 

of Oudh ,r0m ^-Z?r 1 7n' G °lT r T' t0 *?' 28 " 3 - 68 ( 42} " aHMS " 765 ' 30-10-70. ' Wazlr, or Nawiib, 

Bengal Stjeveys 

First then, the lines traced during a general Survey, tho' at a convenient distance from 
each other for the purpose intended, do sometimes fall without the Boundaries of small 
Districts; by which they escape notice, ., . ' 

2ndly, The Peasantry, from whom the Knowledge of Boundaries, etc., is chiefly derived 
frequently use different names from those in the Government Books, ... in short in some Parts 
they adhere to the ancient Division of Lands, and in other to the modern. 

Lastly, the difficulty. ..of securing Intelligence of any kind; as has often happened in 
places where the Natives either through fear desert their habitations, or through obstinacy 
refuse their assistance. 

The maps give occasional information of interest such as, 

The space within these Hills [RajmahaH] has never been explored by any" European 
& is seldom visited by the inhabitants of the circumjacent plains. 
and of the Garo Hills 2 , 

Mountainous country independent of Bengal ; Mountains from 900 to 1,000 yards neroendi- 
cular height [ 20]. 

The surveyors made no effort to penetrate into heavy jungle or difficult hills ■'■ 
across the jungle area to the east of Cooch Behar is a note ' " Tract of Country un- 
explored ... subject to a Bootan Eajah" ; along the foot of the mountains to the 
north of Bihar the country is marked woods, and little detail is shown ; on the 
north boundary of Chittagong District is a note "The course of the Fenny within 
the Hills is not known." 

In submitting these maps [ 224 ] Eennell reports that 
the Surveys of Midnapour, Jellasore 3 , Bissunpour*. Purneah & Boglipour s are not quite 
finished, but will be completed during the present fair season... 

and Government then direct— in Genera] Orders — " that all surveys except those 
particularly specified should cease on the 30th of June 1774«". 

These surveys had not been carried on without incidents and excitements, 
although, considering that the Company's officers were only just starting to take 
over administration in some areas, and that in others the people had not yet accepted 
the English rule, it is surprising to find how smoothly the work proceeded [296]. 
The regular surveyors could not work without large escorts, which they obtained 
from the battalions maintained at the disposal of the civil officers [300]. 

In 1773 Warren Hastings established a close alliance with the Wazir of Oudh, 
whose western frontiers were threatened by the Marathas, who had conquered Delhi 
the year before ; the Wazir agreed to pay a subsidy for the protection of his terri- 
tories by the Company's troops, and was allowed to take over the provinces of 
Allahabad and Eohilkhand '. Several officers were sent up on survey, amono-st 
whom were Marsack, Martin, and Eitchie ; Polier, who had been lent to" the Wazir 
as an Engineer, was placed in charge, and Eennell reports that,- 

_ On the 5th April 1773 Major Polier was put in orders to superintend the Surveys taken 
m that Province. In consequence of that order I have neither issued orders to, nor received 
Returns from, any Surveyor in that Province. ... I furnished him with sketches of the country 
to enable turn to point out what remained to be done, and also gave him my opinion at large 
on the routes to he chosen, and the method of surveying them; I even pointed out each 
particular route, and I perceive that in general he has followed my advice 8 . 

At the end of June 1774, this survey was closed down with all others. 

Later in the year, Capt. Browne, " commanding the Light Infantry " and in 
political charge of Jungleterry », detailed one of his officers, Andrew Pringle, to 
carry out surveys of the area ; 

The present situation of the Corps at this place presenting a favourable opportunity for 
Performing a part of the Surveys ordered by the Hon. the Governor, you will please to pro- 
ceed on the following ones mentioned in the Surveyor General's Instructions 10 . 

_ The routes to be surveyed covered the country lying between the Bajmahal 
Hills, Dumka, and Madhupur"; the country was in a disturbed state, and Pringle 

L 72P. 2 78K. 3 Jaleswar, 73 0/1. 4 Bishnupur, 73 M/8. 5 Bha£alpur. 72 K/12 s BS0 24-2-75 

'1st EoMlla War, 1774. «BSC. 24-2-75. 'On the border between Benjal & Bihir, roughly octet 

pondrngwiththepresentSantilParganas. 10 BEO. 7-4-75 (9) dated Chakii, 72 L/6, 18-10-74 ' 

in 72 Jj & x\ 

" falling 

Bunnell as Surveyor General 35 

■was unable to complete the whole area before he had to close work. Whilst on 
surrey at Deoghar, his zeal led him to interfere with the native adminstration, and 
he was severely reprimanded by the Council [295]. 

In January 1776 Beimel] was able to submit the remainder of his maps [ 325], 
and Government forwarded to the Directors, 

A compleat sett ot Maps of the Company's Provinces and of the Dominions of the Nabob 
... , formed and drawn by Major Rennell, your Surveyor General, which will of themselves, 
without any commendation on our part, sufficiently manifest his Merit and Abilities in that 
line ; however we cannot avoid this Occasion (in which we acquaint you that the surveys of 
the Country have been entirely compleated) to repeat how highly deserving we think Major 
Rennell of your Favour & Bounty 1 . 

Bennell was not however yet satisfied that everything possible had been com- 
pleted, and he addressed Government on September 12th, 

After the most careful and deliberate examination of the General Maps formed from the 
' Surveys and other materials in my office, ... I find that some more Surveys are required to com- 
plete the General Geography of these Provinces, as well as those of Oude Ellahabad Agrah 
and Delhi. ' * 

How far a continuation of the Surveys, when attended with considerable expense in the 
execution, may be an object of administration, f am not capable of Judging; but as a Sur- 
veyor, f think it my duty to point out the defects of the Maps 3 . 

He submitted an estimate of the work required and the expense— i surveyors, 
average &\ months each, Rs 14,000. 

1st. In Ranigur and Palamow 3 , no surveyor has ever yet been employed. The idea that 
we have of the interior parts of these Districts, is from some sketches and remarks made 
by Capt. Camac, Lieut Fennell, ... [225]. The principal parts of ChutadSIagpour, Toree, and 
Kocndah*, were regularly surveyed by Lt. Fennell, who died whilst on the Survey. He had 
instructions to survey Palamow and Ramgur also. ... This survey will take up 5 or 6 months. 

2nd. In Jungleterry and Rajmahal there is three months employment for a Surveyor. 
Ensign Pringle ... chiefly attended the motions of the battalion of Light Infantry ; and till 
very lately was not able to undertake any survey at a distance from the main body,' for want 
of a sufficient Escort. As the tranquillity of these Districts appears to be restored, the 
ensuing fair season seems a very proper opportunity for completing the survey. 

3rd. fn Ccoch-Beyhar and Buttis Hazary 5 there is employment for a surveyor during 
2 months. When the Northern Frontier was surveyed by Mr. Rennell, neither of the above 
Provinces belonged to Bengal. They were reduced in 1773; and a Surveyor 6 was sent 
thither ; but he fell ill before he had half compleated his task. 

■ 4th. In Midnapour, Injellee', &c. there remained about 2 months work to be done, when 
Lieut. Call fell ill there in 1774 [294-5]. 

Surveys are wanted in Oude, Ellahabad, Agrah, and Delhi, 

There remains great room for Improvement in the Map of these soubahs. The present 
Map can properly be considered only as the Skeleton of one, since many of the Boundaries of 
Countries, publick roads, & Courses of Rivers, are wanting. But as the general distances 
and relative positions of the Capital Towns are ascertained, it will be no difficult task to fill 
up the intermediate spaces. ... 

_ I would propose that one party should be confined to the Districts of Cheet SingS (that 
is, Benares, Gazypour, Jawnpour and Chunar 9 ), and its neighbourhood ; and that the other 
snould make the Tour of Agrah, Delhi, and the western Parts of Oude & Ellahabad These 
Surveys conducted on an economical Plan, would hardly cost more than r 5,000 Rupees. 

lt is intended that only a few of the roads shall be actuallv measured ; and those only for 
me purpose of joining on some former surveys to the late ones. ... All the remaining Roads 
cnr™-* ° e . traEed b y cursor y Bearings and estimated Distances; and are afterwards to be 
Mm Ti?' m -,, 0meCaSesbyobservati ° IlscfLatitude ' andinotllers b 7 kn °™ points in the 
will =™r Pr ° Te an ex P editiou s method ; and as the general Distances are already found 
win answer every purpose required. 

On this the Board agreed 

adnrmiXS ioTtt^ntrltea to Can?' 'Vr™ (l % , „' E,Lm S rh ' "if WO; captured by Goddard«72; 
of Jalpaiguri. C r tt - ? m ■'■, Pa an ""\ 1 ? A ' J - 'Tori, 73 A/10 ; Kunda, 72 D/12. 'Dirt. 
Singh, Blja ot Ben™- r.El' , El V l \°-l™g nght bank of HoogMy. 73 0/13 to 12 N/16. »Chet 
63KU6. Shares, rebelled against Company's control, 1781. ■ Jannpur, 63 J/9 ; Chunar, 


Bengal Surveys 

to permit him to execute these Surveys in the manner and to the extent proposed by him 
confiding m his judgment that the expense will not exceed the estimate. ... the Board leave 
the choice and appointment of surveyors to him 1 . 

- in Bamgarh, Charles Ranken, 

The surveyors employed appear to have been ; 
of whom Bennell reports in January 1777, 

In consequence of Lieutenant Ranken's having represented the impracticability of carrying 
on the survey of Ramgur, Nagpour, and Palamau during the present troubles, I directed him 
to discharge his People, and wait a more favourable opportunity 3 [38]. 

— in Allahabad and Oudh, John Jloulton, who was still working there two years 
later; — towards Delhi and Agra, Bobert Dawes; and— in Cooch Behar, Andrew 
Prmgle, to whom Bennell sent the following instructions on December 25th 1776- 
You are hereby directed to survey the unexplored parts of Coos Beyhar and Butti's 
Hazary; you will therefore proceed by way of Dinagepour^ towards that station and com- 
mence your survey at Consamahgunge* on the River Teestah', taking a cursory survey of 
the Road from thence to the Cantonments at Sahebgunge" in Coos Beyhar. ... 

It is not intended that you should enter the thick part of the forest, but only to ascer- 
tain the extent of the cleared Lands; ... you will please to note the respective situations of 
Jerpigory" and Paharpour; ... you are to inform yourself of every particular relating to the 
countries that lie on the north and west of your station, and particularly of the passes 
through the great mountains. 

Further routes which will serve to join on Capt. Martin's surveys in Coos Beyhar to mine 
in Rungpore; must ascertain the Boundary of Coos Beyhar towards Bootan....The 
distances in the routes marked Mens, are to be measured, the rest to be estimated only«! 
Pringle completed this work by the following April and returned to his unit. 
Bennell had now accomplished his great task to his own satisfaction, and had 
received permission to return to England on a pension. He was crippled by wounds 
and constant ill health, and had endured the enervating climate of Eastern Bengal 
without respite for thirteen years. 

On March 31st 1777 he writes his last official note to the Governor General in 

As you have not been pleased to appoint a successor to me to in the Office of Surveyor 
General, and a part of the surveys resolved to be carried into execution... being still 
unfinished, I have thought it my duty to lay before you the following. . .account of the cons- 
truction and state of the Maps of Bengal, Oude, etc. with Instructions for the use of the 
Surveyors whom you may hereafter be pleased to appoint, to supply the deficiencies. ... AU 
instruments remaining on charge have been sent in to the Chief Engineer 9 , 
A few days later he laid down his office and departed for home. 

In 1850, seventy-three years after Bennell had left India, Waugh reported that 
only half the area covered by Bennell's surveys had been superseded by later 

'BPC 28-10-76(14) >BPC. 20-1-77 (5). 'Dinijpur, 78 0/9. 'KMnsama, 78 C/9. 'The 
p!e d a Sn r ?li!?7 n ;B ] PC. i'ln' 15 - ' JalPaigUri ' W m °- 'BPC 28-4-77 (19). 'Letter from 


BENGAL SUBVEYS 1777 to 179 


Thomas Call as Surveyor General, 1777-86 — Goddard's March to Bombay, 1778-9 

Tearse's Marches along the East Coast, 1781-5 — Political Missions, 1781-90 Wood 

& Kyd, 1786-94 — Wilford in Benares, 1788-94 — Coasts of the Bay of Bengal, 1779- 
87 — Andaman & Nicobar Islands, 1788-96 — The Hooghly River — Calcutta. 

IT was not until six months after Eennell had left India that Thomas Call was 
appointed to succeed him, "for the purpose of receiving and compiling the 
Maps and Reports of the Surveyors now on duty". 

Eennell had completed the survey of practically the whole of the territories now- 
controlled from Fort William, but very little was known of the countries beyond. 
However, the general unsettled state of India in these days and the vigorous policy 
pursued by Warren Hastings gave many opportunities for the extension of geogra- 
phical knowledge, and though Call had few regular surveys to control and organise 
there was a constant demand for surveyors to accompany political missions and 
military expeditions. 

. Government was not always ready to take such opportunities, for in February 
1777, when the Commander-in-Chief asked that Mark Wood, Field Engineer, might 
survey the Ganges " from Mindeeghat to Hurdawar i " and return along the foot of 
the hills to the north of Boliilkhand, the Council replied, 

Having already given directions for executing all the Surveys which were recommended 
to us by the Surveyor General as requisite for completing the General Geography of this 
sountry, we think it unnecessary to undertake the Survey of the River, ... especially as that 
tract lies at such a distance from the Company's possessions 3 . 

In December 1777 Balph Broome was sent up to survey the hills of "Jungle 
Tarar" " at the request of Captain Browne, Collector as well as "Commanding the 
Light Infantry 4 ". Four years later a surveyor was sent up at the request of 
Augustus Cleveland, Collector of "Bogleypoor 5 ", to assist William Baillie on his 
survey between Colgong 6 and Bajmahal. 

Between 1778 and 1783 Andrew Pringle was employed on the survey of the 
Subharnarekha Eiver?, and parts of Bohtas and Shahabad 8 . 

_ In 1779 John Moulton writes to the Surveyor General from Lucknow describ- 
ing his surveys in Bohilkhand and Oudh ; 

I have been very particular in shewing the country through which I surveyed in the 
state it was, that is, whether close or open, jungly or cultivated, or otherwise ; also the 
more minute remarks, expressing all tanks, whether pucka or dug, nor have I omitted a 
single pucka well. 

The boundaries of the different Pargannahs are also marked with an accuracy that may 
Be depended upon, as I had very intelligent people in my service for the business. ... 
. He discusses the crops & produce of the country, the names of towns k rivers 
and compares them with " the general map of the country " ; 

The very constant wet weather has rendered the air so damp as has prevented my finish- 
ing my plan with the expedition I could wish ; add to that the bad quality of the paper on 
wmchl lay them down (though the best I could procure) has been another unfavourable 
cu-cnmstance to my proceedings ; though I have the satisfaction of knowing that what I do 
will ™ <- ^ the mcest inspection hereafter; and which I am also inclined to flatter myself 
win meet with your approbation. ... The survey is laid down 2 miles to an inch'. 

27-l-7s Min « d TU? a i U *J} 3 J t Hi « d Y"< 63 K/l. ! BPC. 28-4^77. 'JuagWwry C34B.0J <BEC. 



Bengal Surveys 

In the same year William Hyde, acting Field Engineer with the force at 
Cawnpore,was deputed to survey " all the Chants and places along the Jumna, 
from Miisanasrar 1 to Kalpi and thence to Etawah 2 ; 

The importance of having a thorough knowledge of all the Gauts and Fords upon 
this rive? by wLh these Provinces have generally been entered whenever they have been 
InvacledbytheMahrattasistooebvious; ... no regular Survey has ever yet been taken of them. 

Government approved that he should extend his survey to Allahabad under 
the particular instructions of the Surveyor General'". Hyde made other surveys 
along the same stretch of the Jumna, and through the neighbouring country, during 
the cold weather of 1786-7 4 . ^ 

Rennell records that George Perry of the Engineers was sent by Mr. Hastings 

the^plrts of Berar* ... as well as the adjacent parts Bordering on the Circais. which have 
remained an absolute Blank in the most modern of our maps 6 . ,-.„.. „ , 

It is not likely that Perry was able to do much to fill this blank, for he was recalled 

" ^retrtrilte^^^entheta^^ of Beta, Golconda Orissa and 
the Circars!a void space of near 300 miles in length and 25° m Breadth; nor is it likely ever 
to be filled up, unless a very great change takes place in the state of European politics in India?. 

Charles Ranken had resumed his survey of Ramgarh [36], covering the south- 
ern half of the present Hazaribagh District', till m 1781 he was diverted to the 
lay-out and construction of a military road from Calcutta, across the Eamgarh 
Tilateau, to Sherghati 9 and Chunar 10 . » 

P As mrt of his regular duty as an engineer, Thomas Brown was employed for 
about two years from 1784 on a large scale survey of Benares City and its environs ; 
and between 1782 and 1785 Mark Wood and other Engineer officers were employed 
under the Chief Engineer on a similar survey of Calcutta [ 52 ]; _ 

During his time as Surveyor General, Call specially devoted himself to the pre- 
paration of an Atlas of India, and employed Indian munshis and harmras on filing 
in the many gaps [286], but in the economy campaign which followed the close ot 
Se Mysore War, Government ordered these and all other surveys to be closed 
down, and "that none be employed on this duty in future but by the specral order 

of the Board" 1!! [ 5, 277 ] ■ 

The Directors were in due course informed that, „„»,«.„ 

The Surveyor General's office has been confirmed under some restrictive rules, which are 

calculated to keep Government informed of the Progress of the Works carrying on in it, and 

to call their Attention to those occasional Services which might otherwise be unnecessarily 

pronged, and entail an expence beyond the Period for which its existence was required^. 

Godbabd's Maech to Bombat, 1778-9 

Two historic events gave special opportunities for adding to geographical know- 
ledge : Goddard's" march to Bombay, and Pearse's marches along the East Coast, 

The first occurred in 1778, when a Bengal detachment was sent to assist the 
Bombay Government against the Marathas. The force set out from Kalpi on June- 
3rd 1778, and advanced slowly through Bundelkhand until October 8th, when 
Goddard assumed command on the death of Colonel Leslie. Goddard was a vigorous 
commander and achieved undying renown during the campaigns of the next four 
years. He brought his force to Hoshangabad, on the Narbada, by December 1st, 

.54N<16 = 54N/l ! abeairfifull J <L™map,BM.K.115/36. »BPC 6-9-7S 1(11,12). 'Jamais 
t Fdbte MEIO. M 206- 7 : 'PL 1 show exteat ofW the territory theMar.tha Bap o N.gpur. 

at sea off Lard's End, 7-7-83 ; MMC. ; V NB. ; BIB. ; Hodson. 

Goddard's Makch to Bombay 


-and was held up there for six weeks waiting for orders and cash 1 . Setting out 
again on January 16th, they reached Burhanpur by the end of the month, and 
Surat by February 25th 1779 [4, 121]". 

Arthur Caldwell, of the Engineers, kept a survey of the route as far as Burhanpur, 
580 miles, which he protracted in 25 sheets on the one-inch scale s , a survey which 
was held up as a pattern to surveyors thirty years later as " an excellent example of 
minuteness and perspicuity 4 ", and was of particular value because "it touches on 
the route of Mr. Smith [30-1 ] " at certain points 5 . 

"When discussing the policy of sending this detachment Warren Hastings had 
noted that it would pass through 

the district of Bhopal, which is under the government of a Pathan chief. ... I am not 
^naster of the exact geography of this country, that is neither mentioned in our maps, nor 
inown at this distance but to persons who have occasionally passed through it B , 
whilst Philip Francis who had strongly opposed the expedition, commented, 

Col. Goddard's Army is now near Eleven Degrees West of Calcutta. We have no other 
way of tracing his progress, or ascertaining his Distance from us, but by observing, as accu- 
rately as we can, the Latitude and Longitude of his Position on a General Map of India?. 

The survey of the last stage of Goddard's march from Burhanpur to Surat was 
•carried out by Duncan Stewart [121-2]. 

"Whilst the detachment started from Kalpi, a political mission was sent from 
Cuttack to Nagpur under Mr. Elliot B , to negotiate a treaty with the Kaja of Berar, 
that should include a safe passage for Goddard's force. 

The mission left Cuttack on August 11th, and in addition to Elliot, private 
secretary to Warren Hastings, comprised M 1 . Robert Farquhar, Captain William 
Campbell [ qv. ], and Lieutenant James Anderson 9 . 

A journal of the whole route from Cuttack to Hoshaugabad is still preserved at 
'■Calcutta 10 , and was apparently kept by Campbell ; the records are entered with preci- 
sion, and give frequent compass bearings, direction of flow of streams, bearings to 
'hills, and careful notes as to the nature and the features of the country ; the time 
of passing each recorded detail is entered, and the distances calculated at rates 
varying from S to 41 miles an hour. In the earlier marches constant comparison 
is made with the bearings given in Motto's journals of 1766 [30]. 

The protraction of this survey, made some years later, is preserved in another 
book, apparently in the handwriting of Eobert Colebrooke, who quotes word-for- 
word extracts from the original journal, and adds occasional remarks such as, 

, These two stages nave been laid down at 3 miles per hour, but as the Author of the journal 
appears to have travelled in his Palankeen, it is possible that the distance (where the road 
was good ) may have been a little underrated 11 . 

;, The mission was overwhelmed with disaster in the heart of the jungle, losing 
both Elliot and larquhar 13 from "jungle fever", whilst Campbell was sick for 
many days of the same complaint 13 . The party reached STagpur on November 1 5th, 
Jbut with Elliot's death the whole political purpose of the mission had collapsed. 
The journal was iept up with but few intervals, which correspond with the periods 
•of Campbell's sickness, and closes on December 21st at Hoshangabad, where 
<3oddard's force was halted. 

' „ Two journals of the route from jSTagpur to Cuttack are preserved, both made in 
2 l j SrBk ' Januar y 28th to February 27th 11 , iept by a Mr. Thomas [ 296] 
Wio had travelled to Nagpur from Benares, is quoted by Eennell ; the second, March 
^SUr to April 24th « was kept by Mr. White of Chapman's embassy [42]. 
• flute found Elliotts tomb "on the bank of the Laut STuddee" "in pretty good 

». IW^k'IXr 01 EUpe8 t l " rd - tr ° m ^-fS" 1 '' Jiin - 12th ' ' J <"™* °f the March... v ub. bv W. Faden. 
StaSf i iSro "»» mSI, Sr JK 10 - "MS)* 10. Maps IAC. 16. Folk., with diary of 
*4M»7 7B8r ?"??? ,o t 1 ;, '^ 82 (138) S«±rille to S«,\ =»„„.„>. 1793 ( 201 ,. «BSC. 
'^M-UtdMhlJli n/. ? I " J !i£ r K 5 ,n J™°™ d ™°*. Ben. «,.; bro, of Sir Gilbert Elliot. 
S)T^EnT?™ tTS?%, 1 ?. I8 J?- Mm " ir - 1Wi (239,240) and Clemenfa Markham (e: 
5«L ■" n^Strj M. 89-M6; Besdt. with Siadhia 1785. BIB. """" - 


MEIO. M. 272. "MKIO. M. 320 
16-10-78; »BSC. 28-9- 

I (18-27). 

229 (11-18), and BM. Addl. MSS. 13588 (110) 


Bengal Surveys 

"repair & obtained the Rajah's promise to keep it so 1 ". Thomas refers to the tragic 
fate of the mission which he says 

consisted of five gentlemen 3 , the only Englishmen who ever went this road before me, and 
one only reached General Goddard's army alive. ... The journal of this Gentleman, but whose 
name I have not learned, lately came into my possession, and. I esteem it a truly valuable 
Geographical document. 

During Goddard's campaigns on the west coast from 1779 to 1782, a force under 
Jacob Camac kept the Marathas engaged from the east, and William Cameron, sur- 
veyor to this force, "surveyed the roads and country between Etayah and Strong 3 ", and 
mapped "the G-ohud and Narwah provinces 4 between the Chumbul and Sinde rivers 5 ". 

At the conclusion of peace with the Marathas the Bengal detachment marched 
back from Surat to Bengal, and reached Cawnpore in April 1784, reduced to about 
half its original strength 6 . The reason for these difficult marches in preference to 
sending to troops round by sea, was the inveterate objection of the sepoys to sea 
travel ; the great opportunity for the acquisition of geographical knowledge was 
one of the compensations. 

Peaese's Maeches along the East Coast, 1781-5 

In 1780 Haidar Ali of Mysore invaded the Carnatic in great force ; Hector 
Munro assembled his few troops to protect Madras, and summoned Colonel Baillie's 
detachment from Nellore ; within nine miles of Munro, Baillie was intercepted by 
the Mysore army and hardly a man of his force escaped death or capture 7 . 

Warren Hastings on hearing of this disaster, at once organised a relief expedi- 
tion from Bengal. Sir Eyre Coote was sent by sea with the few European troops 
that could be spared, but the sepoys had to be marched. Six battalions and 16 
pieces of artillery were assembled under Colonel Pearse, and marched from Midna- 
pore on January 21st 1781 [4]. 

The force was troubled from the beginning by frequent desertions, and the 
state of discipline amongst the English officers was very low. 

When the detachment first started ... Pearse met with much opposition from the Batta- 
lion commanders, because he insisted on counting the files himself on parade, thus appearing 
to impugn the honour of the officers who had submitted parade states. 

There was great difficulty in obtaining food supplies, and even cash ; there were 
political difficulties with local chiefs and with the Maratha rulers. Passing through 
Orissa, at that time under the Maratha Raja of Nagpur, Pearse writes, 

I am passing through a country as little known as if it were in the midst of China. We 
always understood that the whole country was a wilderness from Jellasore 8 to Balasore. My 
march lay to the end of that wood through plains so extensive that I saw the sun rise from a 
fair horizon, and I found the country in the highest state of cultivation. 

Without any previous knowledge of the road, the force had great difficulties as 
regards camping ; 

We were to march at four the next morning, and I was fatigued as well a.s the troops, by 
having been on the road from five in the morning till past eleven, and the rear guard passed 
my tent at four. Yet the march ... was only six miles. ... Today we marched at four, and I 
intended to reach Surong 9 , being told we had only six Coss to go, which as I understood it, 
was but twelve miles. At 8 o'clock the advanced guard reached the place of our present 
encampment ; here expecting to learn that Surong was just at hand, I learnt that it was four 
Coss distant, and that we had travelled somewhat less than two Coss; by the actual measure- 
ment we travelled eight miles and a half, therefore according to the country mode of esti- 
mating, we had four more such Coss to travel ( as we had marched two ), that is 16 miles ; it 
would have killed at the cattle to have attempted it 10 . 

J The tomb, erected by Warren Hastings, was still kept in repair in 1870. Grant (464). 2 Only 
4 members; see account of mission by Wills (47-83). 3 Etawah, 54 N/1 ; Sironj, 54 H/12. 4 Gohad, 
54J;Narwar, 54 G. & K. ; Sind R. 54 G. to N. ^Memoir, 1793 (205,233); Maps, BM. Addl. MSS. 
13907 ( d, f ). 6 Journals by unnamed surveyor, LIRIO. BL 206-7. 7 at Perambakkam, 57 0/16 ; 10-9-80 ; 
Bowring (89-93). a Jaleswar, 73 0/1. a Soro, 73 0/11. l0 Ben, P Sf P. Ill (76) to Warren Hastings, 

Peakse's Marches along the East Coast 41 

They reached "Juggernaut" (Puri) on March 7th. On the march through 
Ganiam the detachment was attacked by cholera and lost a large number of men 
and officers and on April 5th Pearse mote, 

That I may carry 3,500 men to Coote is the utmost of my wish, and I think he will have- 
eason to wonder there are no more, when he considers the great distance, without a single 
day's fighting to divert their minds from a country that seems made up of the shreds and 
fraLnents of a world in Dame Nature's shop, producing nothing but sand and craggy rocks, 
brackish water, and pestiferous winds. If you ever want to send au army to Madras again 
by land, it must be done through Nagpore and the Nizam's country [59]. ... 

The surgeon who came to us from Ganjam was taken ill the morning before last and was- 
dead before 9 p.m. of this disorder [cholera] ; if we lose another we shall be undone 1 . 

There were two European surgeons with the force and the hospitals were full 
the whole time ; tents were issued for the first time at Vizianagram 3 about April 
11th. They reached Ellore 3 on May 20th, and halted there ten days, by which 
time they numbered 3,000 fighting men ; they reached Nellore on July 2Sth, and 
St. Thomas's Mount on August 3rd. 

A survey was kept of the route from Midnapore to Ganjam by Patrick Douglas, 
who notes that, 

Distance of each day's march is laid down in miles and furlongs, measured by perambu- 
lator. At the end of every day's march, a certain allowance is made to rectify it, according 
to the ground marched over. ... [Results] may not be exactly true, but the army was 
marching in the night, and this an enemy's country 4 . 

Douglas could not continue his survey the whole way because of constant 
trouble with his perambulators [199]. 

On arrival at Madras the force was broken up and distributed amongst the 
various brigades, and the staff appointments, including that of Surveyor, were 
abolished ; but the battalions bore a distinguished part in all the fighting that 
followed in the next two years. 

Hostilities were concluded towards the end of 1783, when the Detachment was 
re-assembled and encamped near Madras until the end of April 1784 whilst the 
details of peace were settled. On November 15th Pearse appointed Bobert 
Colebrooke to be Surveyor which post he held throughout the return march to 

The detachment left Madras on April 22nd, and reached Ellore June 1st. 
Pearse had suggested marching through the hills via Sambalpur and Eaipur, in 
preference to following the low lands during the rains. Government did not 
approve, but directed that he should canton his men at some place along the road*. 
They reached Vizagapatam on June 29th, and moved into cantonments near 
Chicacole 6 in the middle of July, remaining there till October 31st. They then 
resumed the march, arriving at Gaurhati on the Hooghly, January 15th 1785. 

The services of the detachment were recognised by a special General Order 
published on January 22nd, announcing rewards in the form of swords of honour, 
standards, medals, and gratuities, and two day's later Warren Hastings himself 
honoured the camp with an inspection, one of the last public ceremonies he attend- 
ed before leaving India 7 . 

Throughout the return march Colebrooke had kept up a very careful perambu- 
lator traverse 8 . Pearse, an experienced astronomer himself, trained him in the art 
of taking observations for latitudes and longitudes, and they both observed at most 
of the principal places they passed through [155, 185]. 

In submitting the survey to Government Pearse writes, 

I held it to be as much a part of my duty to conduct a regular plan of my route, ( I have 
knowledge of the modes), as to make a true return of the number of men. ... I hope the 
accuracy of the survey will entitle it to your approbation. ... From what I have thus shewn, 
I will venture to say, that this survey excels all I ever heard of in accuracy, if not extent. 

'Ben. PS; P. HI (93) to Warren Hastings. '65 N/12. "65 H/3. 'Fcibk. BM. Addl. MBS. 
29215(23). 'B.S. * F. 8-6-84 'MHflB. 'Ben. P Sf P. VI (294). 'Journal & Mbk. MEIO. M. 
145; Map in several sheets MEIO. 149 (21,33-35) ; see also Dalrymple's Plan 0/ the Chtlko, Lab, with 
Colebrooke' s route " Ganjam to Jaggernanth ", Oriental Repertory, II. 


Bengal Surveys 

Should theCBoard be pleased to order it to be published by their printer 1 , it might serve 
to shew to others how surveys ought to be made and how they actually can be made, with 
little trouble, by the surveyor of any detachment that may march into remote parts. ... The 
surveyor's journal is large, and that would shew any future detachment every difficulty it 
would have to encounter, in a march of above IT24 miles; I might have saved much time and 
fatigue, if I had had such information when I went towards Madras ; what I did get was really 
very deficient s . 
and again, 

The survey was ... finished with astronomical observations, which prove its value to 
be far superior to anything of the kind I have heard of. If Mr. Smith's, made on the same 
foundation, is superior, it is the only one [31]. 

This line was hailed by Eennell and other geographers as a most important con- 
tributation to the correct geography of the east coast, and it remained the 
undisputed authority for more than a generation 3 . 

Political Missions, 1781-90 

To establish friendly relations with the Maratha Raja of Berar during the war 
with Haidar Ali, Warren Hastings sent a mission under Charles Chapman* to 
Nagpur in November 1781. James Swart, whose skill with the sextant came from 
several years service with the Bombay Marine, was attached to the mission as 
surveyor, and ran a trayerse from Cliatra, through Lohardaga, Eatanpur, and 
Khairagarh to Nagpur 5 , besides surveying various routes whilst stationed there, the 
Surveyor General reporting that, 

he not only sent me his Route laid down from observation and measurement, but during 
his stay at Burra Nagpour he was very attentive in making astronomical observations and 
procuring me several routes from Cossids 6 . 

In 1784 he closed his traverse by returning to Benares by a route through 
Mandla? and Eennell observes that, except in the intervals between his measured 
lines, Bwart's routes entirely superseded those of " Golam Mohamed 8 ". 

Another opportunity for surveys to Nagpur occurred when George Porster 
was sent there as Resident in 1788, James Rind mating a survey of his route from 
Kalpi ; Bind who also had served in Bombay marine, made other surveys between 
1787 and 1790 9 , the Surveyor General reporting 

on one of part of the Duab [55], tracing the boundaries of the Vizir's Dominions from the 
Ganges to the Jumna, the other Mr. Forster's Routes to and from Nagpore ; accompanying 
these Surveys there are Journals, ... and as Mr. Rind has also added several routes to places 
in the neighbourhood of Nagpore, the whole is a valuable addition to the Geography of that 
part of the Country 10 . 

The survey of Forster's route from Cuttaek to Nagpur in 1790" was made 
by James Davidson, commanding his escort; in fact, up to this time, much of the 
knowledge of the interior of the Peninsula had been gained by officers attached to 
various political missions. Political officers were often able also to obtain native 
maps and surveys; when Bind was Assistant to the Resident at Delhi from 1785 to 
1787 he was able to get material for a Map of the Country of the Seiks [233], and a 
Plan of Scindia's Country, and shortly after, Eirkpatrick sent to Eennell a number 
of measured routes which he had found at the Emperor's court at Delhi [ 10 n. 5]. 

I 1 Never separately published. . 'Ben. P$P. VI (295), 29-1-85. ' Memoir, 1793 ( 8-19 )• Markham 
( 55 ) reference most inadequate. 4 Ben. Civ. ; some time Private See to Warren Hasting and mlihV-,1 
vharj'., of Ohota N,7i;rpav from 1780. '72 D/16, 73 A/11, 64 J/4 & 64 CIS; Journal. VI; [O V -><) & BUT 
Addl. MSa 15588 (115-7); Maps MRIO. 29(26-35) & EM. Addl. MBS. 29214(89) ' »BPC 6-2-84 
( 19 ); Oossids, Postal Runners. '64 B/6. "Memoir,- 1793 (237). 9 MRIO. 30 (1 31) 168 (30 31) etc 
seWtal ieaaSng autograph. ">BPC. 11-9-89 ( 7 ). Journal, BM. 135S5 ( 89 ) "B Pol C '•>', " <n 
Journal BM. 13588 ( 99 ei se? ) & u. Leciie. ' n K>1. 1,. 20-2-93. 

Wood and Kyd 43 

Wood and Ktd, 1786-94 

During- "Mark Wood's short term as Surveyor General the most important 
occurrence was the appointment in 1787 of Keuben Burrow to make astronomical 
observations for latitude and longitude at various places from Chittagong on the 
east to Hardwar on the west [5, 157-62]. Hitherto, surveys had been tied together 
by such observations as had been taken -casually and independently by different 
surveyors or amateurs, only a few of whom had any real training or experience. 
In constructing his map of India Call had become convinced of the incorrectness 
of many of these observations, and it was at his suggestion that Burrow was now 
employed 1 . Burrow was a skilled observer, and his observations gave a number of 
master control stations, for which his values were accepted with few changes for 
next 30 or 40 years [163]. 

Burrow also made a survey of Cheduba Island [ 160 ], and, measured the length 
of a degree, both in latitude and longitude, near Krishnagar [165-6]. He died in 
1792 whilst out on survey. 

It fell to Wood to supervise the completion of fair copies and reductions of 
Call's Atlas of India and he felt convinced that a systematic collection of military 
route surveys would contribute to fill the many blanks. At his suggestion the 
following G-eneral Order was published ; 

It is to be a standing regulation that all Officers Commanding Detachments of the Army, 
or single Corps, on a march, do keep an account of their daily movements, remarking their 
computed distances, the towns, villages, and rivers in their routes, the nature of the roads 
and places of encampment, or any other observations which they may deem material, copies 
of which are to be transmitted to the Quartermaster General, after the troops have arrived at 
their destination 2 [196]. 

This was not particularly new in principle, but was the first published order 
establishing the practice by regulation. It was not immediately productive, and 
had to be re-published from time to time ; the standard of work sent in was seldom 
very high, but in course of time several valuable surveyors gained their first 
experience and training through the routine practice thus introduced. 

Kyd, who succeeded Wood as Surveyor General in 1788, had but little oppor- 
tunity to interest himself in local surveys, as he was continually employed on 
service overseas. In 1789-90 he made a survey and reconnaissance of the harbours 
of the Andaman & Nicobar Islands [48-50], and at the end of 1790 he accompanied 
Lord Cornwallis 3 when he took personal command of the armies operating against 
Tipu in Mysore ; except for Wilford in Benares, all his assistants accompanied him 
to Mysore [11 2-3 ] . 

A detachment of Bengal sepoys marched down the east coast just as Pearse's 
detachment had ten years before, but under very much easier conditions. On their 
way back their route was surveyed by the brigade major, Edmund Wells 4 . 

At the close of the war two engineer officers, Anburey and Blunt, were deputed 
to return by a new route through the heart of India, and surveyed a line north- 
wards, through Hyderabad, Berar, and the Central Provinces, to Kalpi on the Jumna, 
where they arrived in January 1 793 [116]. Anburey kept interesting notes on the 
journey in his field book, which he embellished with charming water-colour 
sketches 5 . 

Early in 1793 Kyd was sent to the Andamans as Superintendent of the settle- 
ment, and left Colebrooke in charge of the Surveyor General's department. 

Wileord in Benares, 1788—94 

In 1788 Francis Wilford, who had since 1783 been working on Call's atlas, was 
sent up-country to survey the province of Benares, under the orders of the 

burrow's Journal; 10. Maps MS. 5. 2 GO. byGG in C. 29-9-88. 3 GtG. 1786-93. 'Journal 
MKIO. M.19fi & 244. 'Part of Fdbk. GBO. Lib. A.a41. ; Maps. MRIO. 64 (4-17 ). 

** Bengal Surveys 

Eesident, who was engaged in the settlement of the revenues and general re or 
gamzatiou 1 . He completed a survey of the districts north of the Ganges but his 
survey of the boundary between Benares and Ouclli had to be abandoned in 1794 
after delays which will be understood by all survey officers who have been employed 
on similar duties ; he wrote to the Eesident in 1791 

Whilst you were on the Coast the disputes on the Boundary ran so high and the beha- 
viour of the Vakeel of His Excellency, who used to get drunk every day, grew so intolerable 
that I was obliged to represent the whole to the Acting Resident. The Commander in Chief 
being acquainted with these particulars ordered me back to Benares, there to remain till you 
return". y 

and the Eesident reported that, 

Since he [Wilfordj has been at this station he has been uniformly employed... either in 
the general Survey, or the arduous Task of the adjustment of the Boundary between the 
Honble. Company sand the Nawaub Vizier's Dominions, which two services constituted the 
object of his being sent into this part of the country. . . . Whilst he has made very considerable 
progress m the former, the obstacles that so long interrupted the Progress of the latter or 
the Frontier Demarkation, have at length been so far obviated that the progress which 
Lieut. Wilford and His Excellency's Agent lately made on the Cawnpore side have been very 

Later in the year, however, Wilford reported 

November 27th I went to G-... there to resume the adjustment of the Boundary ■ Himut 
All was there with about 300 armed men, but he went away the same day ... without taking 
the least notice of me. s 

November 29th, he came, was very civil, and as usual made many protestations of his 
sincerity .oward the speedy adjustment of the Boundary. He hinted several times that he 
expected a monthly allowance from the Company. 

December 3rd & 4 th I gave out that seeing it was impossible to go on with the Boundary 
from the obstructions I met with, ... f was resolved to give it up & go away ' 

December 5 th, Himut Alfa Wakil came and said his master was ready to comply having 
accordmgly summoned the Zimmdars of -in the Company's Territories, and of- in the 
country of the Nabob Vizier, they appeared and agreed to have all disputes ... settled by 
arbitration, which took place immediately and the boundary line between the aforesaid 
villages was settled and traced that very day. 

Work proceeded satisfactorily for several days ; with the following incident to 
lighten proceedings, 

As the subject of contention was of some consequence, and had been for a long time the 
occasion of many quarrels and feuds, the Arbitrators, who doubted very much the sincerity" 
of Himut Ah were in the greatest anxiety, and very unwilling to incur his dis- 
pleasure by a decision not agreeable to Ms wishes; I really thought that a stop would have 
been put to our progress, when a Snake springing from the ground between the Arbitrators 
to their astonishment and terror, ran away towards the Boundary. The Arbitrators, and 
the parties themselves, concluding this was a signal interposition of Providence, considered 
themselves now obliged to abide by the decision of the Snake, and agreed that the Line the 
snake had described in his flight would be for ever their mutual Boundary. However as the 
Detetttod S ° ne OVeI bUt 3/4 ° f thC DiSputed Gr °™ d before he disappeared, i/ 4 remains to 

On the 3rd and 4 th inst., meeting with so many obstructions from Himut Ali, and finding 
that my colleague the Nabob's Vakeel was a mere Cypher, being without power, without an 
escort and totally deserted by the Court at Lucknow, I was really going to give np ... when 
Himat Ah on reflexion thought proper to Comply; ... the Settlement goes on, and will con 

I™ 6 Z»J S v™*,^ thiDkS Pr ° Per ' f0r he iS ° f a fickle disposition. But as soon as we 

*■■ « r Boun dary round his District, it will be absolutely impossible to =0 on 

until the Court at Lucknow are forced to adopt more Efficacious measures*. 

At length the Eesident was forced to recommend that the work be abandoned 
and the disputes left unsettled; 

«, Jbe Boundary disputes between this frontier district and the contiguous dominions of 
the Nawaub Vizier ... mduced the Marquis Cornwallis ... to send Lieut. Wdford ... to make a 

rlL t„ , inch. w iZ d Zu!]: ^mMtl S 2 Wap 4Z s af^S " the *-"■•» ° f B — 

Wilfojeud in Benares 45 

survev of and assist in the adjustment of, a permanent line of Boundary; ... there are so 
obstacles continually occurring to the progress of such a demarcation, that ... we have 
found bv experience that it is better to suffer the occasional evils arising from disputed 
limits than to incur the risk of the still greater, that arise out of the endeavonr finally to 
decide on them 1 . 

Coasts of the Bat of Bengal 

The detailed survey of the coasts and islands had now become a matter of 
extreme importance to the large fleet of sailing vessels maintained by the East 
India Company [14]- 

Early in 1779 Dalrymple seized the occasion of the loss of one of the Company's 
ships, the Oolebroohe*, to submit a memorial to the Directors, asking for his ap- 
pointment for the compilation of nautical charts for the East Indies 3 ; 

Every year shews by the narrow escape of some ship or other, and sometimes by the loss 
of ships where no danger was suspected, the importance, not to call it necessity, of such a set 
of Charts ; the Journals at the India-House constitute a noble repository of na.ut.ical know- 
ledge, but ... examining all the Journals, from the earliest time to the present ... is a Work of 
infinite labour, and requires not only an unwearied patience, but a certain turn of mind and 
a degree of experimental knowledge which few men possess 4 . 

The Directors, accordingly, appointed him Hydrographer from April 1779, and 
wrote out to India, 

Having resolved to use all means in our power to improve the Charts for the security 
of the Navigation to, from, and in, the East Indies, and being desirous that every person 
under the Company's protection, conversant in Naval affairs, should co-operate with us in 
this very useful undertaking; we therefore direct, that you forthwith notify our intentions 
by pu brick advertisement. . . . 

We shall order our supra-cargoes in China to send you annually from thence, a quantity 
of transparent paper deliver to such persons as may be inclined to furnish copies of 
Charts and plans already in their possession ... 5 [236, 251-2] 
whereupon the G-overnor G-eneral hi Council issued the following order; 

Public notice is hereby given that the Surveyor General has been directed to receive 
from the Commanders and Masters of all ships and vessels sailing under British Colours such 
information as they have acquired during their residence in India, which can in any respect 
tend towards the correction and improvement of the Charts commonly used 6 . 

Dalrymple's enthusiasm brought him much material of this nature, and he was 
enabled to publish many valuable charts and journals, though the old surveyor 
Ritchie was most scornful of this method of collecting geographical information • 

My Journal of a cursory Survey of part of the Coast and Fslands of the Bay of Bengal ... 
was never meant for publication ; it is the hasty remarks only, of a running survey ... [16] 

Of late it has been the fashion to censure sailor's Journals in the periodical papers, with 
the utmost rage of critical virulence, and if we might believe these literary Macaronies, it is 
not the most accurate observer, but the best story-teller who is entitled to wear the garland 
of public applause; has been observed of late that spontaneous productions of this nature 
are grown very thin ; and it is likely that but few seamen will take much trouble to get 
themselves laught at for describing broken lands and indented shores in the pointed phrases 
of their profession, when they know that this must be the case 7 . 

One of Ritchie's later surveys was a detailed one of Palmyras Point, made "to 
fix a proper spot for a light-house" 8 , and "he is pretty certain that no large river 
falls in between Pt. Palmyras and the False point 9 ", a report which crushed all 
further thought of the long cherished " GS-anga River " [ 209, 213; pi. 3 ] . 

In October 1783 the Bengal Government wrote home, 

A proposal was made to us by Capt. Thomas Forrest 10 to undertake a survey of the 
Andaman Islands, soon after his return from his former expedition. As we had no present 

'BPC. 13-6-94. Earned after Sir George Colebrooke, Director, EIO. 3 Memorial dated 28-1-79. 
4 A Collection of Plans of Ports in the East Mies; Da&yraple, 3rd. ed. 17S7 (27). 'CO to B. 27-5-79 
(51). 6 BMC. 23-5-81. 'BPC. 6-10-83 (26). s Not built till nearly 40 years later. 9 Memoir, 1793 
( 36(5). "Captain of the Esther brig. 



employment for him at this place, we agreed to accept of his services in that hue and eiiEaee 
a small vesssel which he had purchased for the purpose. He left the river in May wi 

Daliymple writes., 

The intention of this voyage was a Survey of the Andaman Islands, but Captain Forrest 
left Bengal on the 14th of June, a very improper time forsuch a destination. ... Capt Forrest 
instead of the Andaman Islands, made the Preparies ; went to leeward, i.e. to the northward 
of Narcondam ; and on nt July saw the Island Tores on the coast of Tenasserim 

As Captain Forrest carried with him from England a Chronometer [202], it 'is much to 
be regretted he had it not wrth him on this voyage, as it would have precisely established 

Queda? P 6 ^ ° f Bengal WhiCh iS Wantin & viz. from Negrito 

_ men Wood became Surveyor General he obtained Government sanction to 
issue tresli regulations tor the collection of information about the coasts ■ 

In consequence of the publication from Government for the improvement of the Naviga 
tion and Geographical knowlege of India, not a single plan, chart, journal, or paper ofTny 
sort has as yet been presented, nor do I believe the desired effect will ever be answered 
unless every Commander of a ship sailing from this Port under British Colors is compelled: 
under the penalty of a forfeiture to conform to orders. ... compelled 

I have procured several charts of the Eastern Seas, and of the Dutch Islands which are 
represented as being of some importance, and procured during the war, at considerable 

CXJ}6HC6 , 

Our first record of Kyd's wort as a surveyor is contained in an interesting 
report on the Aralorn coast submitted early in 1785- 

An ill state of health having obliged me to go to Chittagong ; on my recovery in September 
last I was sohcited by the Proprietor of Mascal Island • to make a survey of the Harbour as 
he had been made to believe that it was sufficiently deep to admit ships of War to re-fit and 
refresh and to afford Protection for India-men, and as I was not then called upon by anv 
public duty, I thought I could not employ my time better, than in an examination of a matter 
of such national importance. ... I was, however, much mortified after a laborious survey to 
tod that it had been taken up on very ill grounds. ... In the course of this survey accident 
brought me acquainted with some of the inhabitants of the adjoining Frontier, known to us 
by the name of Little Arracan, from whom I learnt that there were some very considerable 
openings m the Coast to the Southward ; . . . I thought it worth while to attempt the exami- 
nation. ... I accordingly set off from Mascal in a sloop accompanied by some boats the Rajah 
sent to conduct and pilot me. J 

Kyd examined the various inlets and estuaries as far south as "the great Arracan 
River called the Man'", but he found the whole country up in arms against an 
invasion by the people of Pegu, and was unable to proceed further south He 
concludes ' 

with a great degree of certainty, that there is not any Harbour, on that side of the Bay 
where a Fleet could refit, or where vessels of an considerable size could meet with shelter in 
tempestuous weather, so fit as the port of Chittagong 

As I believe the other side of the Bay has never been surveyed, and as far as I can learn 
is very little known I have endeavoured during the course of this Business to lay down the 
wo,nldm-r, '^ tn r th v, e ff i0n0fplaC<iS ' aS lately as time and circumstances 
thf coun™ ' PC mSy bS ° f S ° me ° Se t0 the Geneml G ««raphy of 

Kyd was next called upon to survey of the island of Penang, which had been 
acquired from the Raja of Kedah in 1786, through the agency of Captain Francis 
Light, who became the first Superintendent 8 . j , 

The Governor General acquaints the Conned that his desire to have an accurate survey 
of Prince of Wales s Island and its Harbours has induced him to order Captain Kyd an 
officer of Engineers on whose report he can depend, to proceed on that duty". 

_ Kyd obtained the services of Robert Coiebrooke as assistant, and Colebrooke's 
interesting diaries are still preserved'". He writes, 

(preface? %fn. VUf! L£ "SE&S^S, *S*l££if}&*- %£' ZSS 

' (191-2) & Swetanham (33). "BMC. 2S-3-S7. '»DDn. 48 M.Ill 

Coasts of the Bay oi ? Bengal 47 

On the i«;th of April we embarked on board the Tryal Snow 1 , a vessel which was fitted 
■out by order of Government for a voyage to Pulo Penang, now called the Prince of Wales' 


This place was lately ceded to the Company by the King of Quida. ... It was thought 
necessary by the Governor and Council to send a proper person to survey and explore the 
Island and to collect on the spot every information concerning its harbour, soil, and natural 

Capt. Kyd of the Engineers was the gentleman pitched upon for this service, and I was 
permitted to go with him as an assistant. 

On May the 7th they sighted the Coco Islands and the North Andaman; on the 
8th they viewed Narcondam, landing- there on the 11th, and on Kay 28th they 
landed at Pulo Penang. 

In about six weeks, the work of surveying the harbour, East side of the Island, the 
opposite shore, etc. being compleated, Captain Kyd determined upon returning and visiting 
-Quida and Acheen 3 on the way. 

Reaching Kedah on July 12th, and Achin on the 20th, they returned to Calcutta 
-on August 12th, 1787. 

Andaman & Nicobar Islands 

At the end of 1788 Archibald Blair of the Bombay Marine was commissioned 
to survey the Andaman Islands with the following- instructions. 

The Honorable Company's snow Elizabeth having been victualled for six months, and 
impressed for three, is placed under your orders, and being now in readiness to sail with 
the Viper, ... you are directed to proceed to sail forthwith to the Southward... to a survey 
■of the Andaman Islands. 

The material object of this survey is to ascertain in what parts of the Islands there are 
good Harbours, and where it would be most for the Company's advantage to possess one. ... 
It appears that the most advantageous situation for an Harbour must be near the South end, 
and to the Eastward of the Island. ... It is therefore wished that you should make the first 
examination on this quarter; the Board are further encouraged to give you such advice, from 
a perusal of reports from Mr. Ritchie . . . [ 1 6-7 ] . 

The primary view of this research being ... the acquisition of an Harbour where fleets in 
time of a war can refit ... on leaving the Coast of Coromandel upon the approach of the stormy 
Monsoon, or ...retire in the event of a disastrous conflict with the enemy, and obtain a central 
position in the Bay, ... the following objects occur as necessary to he enquired into: ... 

As rrrhmte a description as time and circumstances permit to be made of the adjacent 
Heights, if any, and Ground, the General surface of the Ground ... cultivation ... climate .. . 
timber ... limestone ... mineral productions ... vegetable productions ... animals, birds, or fish 
not known in other parts... tin and gold ... intercourse with the people. ... 

Grounds of contention are to be avoided, as far as possible, with the natives, whose 
indisposition to every kind of intercourse (Mr. Ritchie's instance excepted) [16] has been 
attended with acts of Hostility. . . . Perhaps after gentle treatment of the Natives while you 
are at the Island, it may not be impracticable to induce two or three of thern to attend you 
to Bengal, where a further intercourse with the English may lead to the further civilization 
of the people. ... 

It is h;irdly necessary to recommend to you to ascertain from Astronomical observations, 
by such instruments as you possess, the position of the places which you visit. 

Copies of Ritchie's Journal and Survey.. .will be delivered to you. 

Sulphur — . . .great importance ; . . . indispensable ingredient of gunpowder. . . . There is great 
reason to suppose that it may be found in abundance on a small island seen by Capt. Kyd 
on his return from Prince of Wales's Island and known... by the name of Barren Island; it 
was then in. the state of Eruption, but circumstances not permitting Capt. Kyd to go on 
shore, he can only conjecture what the production of the Volcano may be. ... 

To proceed to Siddoo Harbour* and to examine it accurately on all points 4 . 

1 A"suow"was a type of sailing shin ; in CG of 11-8-85 appears an adv., "To be sold at Public 
Auction, August lfith, The good snow thyal, about 95 tons. A remakably ifood sailing vessel". 
Achm, at NW. point of Sumatra. 3 At NW. extremity of Sumatra. 4 BS & Pol. 23-12-88. 

'18 Bekgal Surveys 

On return from his first season's work Blair reported, on May 29th 1789, 

The Elizabeth and Viper are arrived in the River, ...the Commands of Government are 
fulfilled relating to the Great Andaman and adjacent Islands to the best of my judgement. 

I afterwards proceeded to Prince of Wales's Island to refit the Viper with a mainmast, 
to procure assistance for the sick, and such provisions and stock as we were in want of. ... I 
touched at Acheen and have made there several attempts to examine Siddoo Harbour, but 
the season ... being too far advanced, ... I judged it improper to persevere. 

I shall lose no time in preparing a Chart of the whole survey, with particular plans of the 
harbours and full report on the subject K 

Blair sailed from Calcutta again in September, and in November reported from 
Mask Redoubt, Port Cornwallis 2 , 

The Ranger arrived here Sept. 28th, and the Viper Oct. 27th; ... the Ranger to Carnicobar 
for a variety of useful plants, Coconuts, Yams, Potatos, and stock; the four latter articles 
wiH be highly useful on the arrival of the Squadron, particularly so, should there be any scor- 
butic Patients 3 . 

In 1789 a small squadron of His Majesty's ships came out to the East Indies 
under Commodore Cornwallis, brother to the Governor General, charged with the 
survey of the islands and coasts of the Bay of Bengal, and reached Diamond 
Harbour on September 18th 4 ; the squadron followed Blair to the Andamans in 
December, taking Eyd and Colebrooke to survey and report on the harbours. We 
are again indebted to Colebrooke for most interesting journals and descriptions of 
the islands and their people 5 ; 

December 23rd 1789, About 4 in the morning we made sail and entered the Harbour 
called Port Cornwallis at about 8 o'clock. . . . 

24th. Capt. D. and myself went up the Harbour in a boat to the distance of about 
3 miles. We saw upon a rocky point about twenty or thirty of the Natives; they appeared 
to be quite naked and bismeared with mud. ... 

26th. Seeing one of the natives on shore, we stopped a few minutes to hold a con- 
ference with him. He was a man of the middle size, tolerably well shaped. His wool was 
rubbed with a kind of red earth, and the rest of his body smeared with mud. He wore round 
his neck and left arm a kind of ornament which looked like a fringe of dried grass. He 
appeared very cautious of approaching us, probably for fear of being siezed; however he 
allowed Mr. Kyd to draw near him, and readily exchanged his Bow and Arrows for a knife 
which was presented to him. He had under his arm a small basket into which he deposited 
everything that was given to him. We gave him some handfuls of biscuit, and in rowing 
away we saw him sat down on the rock and eat of it with great avidity. 

27th. This morning the Ranger Snow sailed for Bengal. ... A native who had been on 
board of this vessel about three weeks, and who appeared to be perfectly reconciled and 
pleased with his new mode of living, was left on board of our ship. At the same time the 
Commodere gave orders that if he wished to go on shore, and return to his countrymen, 
an opportunity should be given him to desert. He was accordingly put into a Boat and sent 
ashore. There happened to be at this time a few of the natives in sight, and we desired 
him to go and join them; he seemed to be actuated by a sudden impulse of joy at seeing 
them. He sprang out of the Boat, and flung down his Hat and ran towards them ; they did 
not immediately recognize him for one of their countrymen, as he had been cloathed on 
board... with a jacket and Trousers. He soon disencumbered himself from his cloaths and 
returned to that state of nature which he had from his infancy been accustomed to. They 
immediately seemed to congratulate him upon his safe escape, and they all together ran into 
the woods. ... 

30th. TheLat. of Port Cornwallis by Mr. Blair is n° 38 30". 

31st. Sailed from Port Cornwallis ; . . . we shaped our course about South for the Carnicobar 
Island. ... 

January 1st. 1790. About sunrise we saw the land of Carnicobar Island ahead; at II 
o'clock we came to an anchor on the western side of the Island. ... 

4th. About 1 p.m. anchored in Nancowry Harbour. There we saw the Danish flag 
flying. That nation has long had a small settlement at this place. A Serjeant and two or 

TuUEeport, dated 10-6-S9; BS. & Pol. 3-6-S9. -'Sow Port Blair [40] 87 A/14 J BPC 
:l-2-90. Uspinall (201). 'Journal, DDn. 10. 

Andaman & Nicobar Islands 49 1 

three soldiers 2 old guns badly mounted, a wooden house, and two or three black slaves, 
composed the whole of their establishment 1 . 

5th. Sailed up the Harbour in the Atalanta's Pinnace. 

6th. The Commodore determined upon leaving the Atalanta with Capt. Kyd and myself 
to survey Nancowrey Harbour. We moved in the evening. ... 

8th. Capt. Kyd began the survey. In the evening we took a walk into the country. ... 

March 19th. Sailed from Port Cornwallis. ... 

20th. Anchored in the evening at the mouth of an inlet ... which had the appearance of 
a good Harbour. . . . 

22nd. By an indifferent observation at Noon our Lat. was n 3 57' 52". ... 

23rd. This morning we made a survey of the Harbour by taking bearings and angles in 
different directions and calculating distances by sound from the report of guns and muskets. 
We rowed out in our small boat to a rocky point at the northern entrance of the Harbour, 
where we stayed about an hour to make our observations and take views. We saw three 
canoes with about twenty of the natives coming round a point to the northward probably 
with an intention to attack us. This enduced us to abandon the rock, and when we got into 
our boat we fired two muskets in the Air for a signal; ... this appeared to alarm the natives, 
for they began rowing back immediately. The rock we were upon is remarkably steep, ... 
we had soundings of 5 fathoms quite close to it. We saw while upon it great numbers of 
sharks swimming about, they appeared to be very ravenous. ... 

24th. This morning we left the harbour, which Captain Kyd called Port Meadows; ... 

31st. We sailed up the coast. ..and anchored in the afternoon within half a mile of the 
shore. Captain Kyd and Mr. M. took an airing in the Boat and saw a great number of the 
natives. They shot about a dozen arrows at the Boat, but not one flew near enough to do any 
mischief. A couple of musquets fired over their heads induced them to retreat into the wood. 

April 1st. We stood to the northward along the coast. ... 

4th. ...In the afternoon Capt. Kyd and Mr. W. went out in the Boat; they saw one of the 
natives upon the beach, who called out and signs to them to come near but it was only 
with an intention of leading them into a snare, for the boat had no sooner approached within 
fifty paces of him, than Capt. Kyd perceived a number of men laying in ambush under the 
mangroves; when they found themselves detected they rushed out and sent a shower of 
arrows at the Boat, some of which flew over it, ... 

5th. We got our water filled up from the Ranger and prepared to leave Andamans for 
Bengal. ... 

7th. ...About 4 miles to the northward of the Saddle Mountain 2 we found another 
Inlet, which led into a Bay s branching in several directions. Mr. Blair with the Ranger and 
Viper went into it to survey and examine it. We took leave of them and pursued our 
course for Bengal. . . . 

18th. In the afternoon we fell in with two pilot vessels and took a pilot on Board. We 
crossed the Western Brace about 10 o'clock at night and anchored in the Kill. It blew very 
fresh, and we had a heavy sea all night. 

19th. Blowing very fresh from the southward, we crossed the Eastern Brace early in the 
morning. It was almost low water, and we had an enormous sea with only i\ fathoms upon 
it; however we got safely over it, and about 7 o'clock passed the Fairway Buoy. The flood 
Tide and a strong southwest wind enabled us to get up the river very fast; at 4 o'clock in 
the afternoon we anchored about 1 mile below the mouth of the Roopnarain River 4 . 

April 20th 1790. Arrived at Calcutta in the afternoon. 

Blair held charge of the settlement for three years at the first Port Cornwallis 
near the south end of the South Andaman, but Commodore Cornwallis reporting 
that a harbour in the Great Andaman was far more suitable for the fleet, the colony 
was moved there in 1792; this new settlement was also called Port Cornwallis, the 
earlier one being then called the "Old Harbour", and later "Port Blair*". 

Early in 1793 Blair was relieved by Kyd 6 and returned to his duties with the 
Bombay establishment after submitting his reports and maps 7 . 

- . .'T he ,J >a ^ sh i Govemor at Tranquehar protested "against the action of Commodore Cornwallis 
tv, Z\ 1 " U ":"" U ' L ' 1: " Uid ' ■ Mltl ™tmg- » survey of the Harbour of Nancowry, which has been a 

TWt 9^f e 4 S1 «« f °V ht \ past 40 years "- BPolC - 6 " 8 - 9a Cf - Topping's account. Bio. Notes. Saddle 
SfT % 86 M" uow p °rt Cornwallis, SB 0/3. 'Rfipniirayan R. T9 B/4. =Low. «£PC. 
™rV7 : R9 P 0rt ' B ? C ' 31 - 3 - 93 > & TO Sd. XXIV; Maps, BM. K. 116 (31). With the maps at the 
£ = « I 8 :;"l msite coloured panoramas of the coast, mostly by W». Test, one of Blair's assts. ; 

his senior asst. on the surrey was John Wales [124]. 


Bengal Surveys 

The colony had already been adopted as a penal settlement, and now owing- 
to the war with France, rt was put into a state of defence ; large reinforcement! 
were sent, and more guns mounted to guard against possible attack. But in 1794 
Port Cornwall* was reported to be unfavourable to the health of the settlers • in 
the following year o0 deaths occurred among the conyicts, and in December 1794 
Government reported to the Directors, 

. Ma I° r Kyi the Superintendent of the settlement, advised us on his return to it from 
Prmce of Wales Island, that the settlers at the Audamans were more healthy in the St 
season than they had been m the proceeding one, altho" the rains had been more heavy 
123 inches between the 1st of May and the loth November, which exceeds double what'has 
been observed m the Bengal at any period!. 

. After a report from Eyd on the comparative advantages of the Andaman and 
Prince of Wales Islands, orders were issued in February 1796 for the abandonment 
of the former settlement, and the removal of the penal colony to Penano- Nothing 
more was heard of Port Cornwallis till the Burma War of 1824, when the Bengal 
and Madias forces made it their rendezvous on the way to Rangoon « 

_ The next expedition to the Andamans was made in 1858, after which the 
original settlement Port Blair was re-established. 

The Hooghly River 

A pilot's survey of the Hooghly is said to have been made annually from 1748 
with no great scientific accuracy', but in 1765 the Court of Directors wrote out 

In the course of our Enquiry into the loss of the ship Winchelsea, there appeared great 
reason to believe that so essential a measure ... as that of an annual survey of your River had 
been shamefully neglected. ... We positively Insist upon your causing the most exact and 
careful Surveys of the River to be made once or oftuer every year, agreable to our Orders of 
the 2nd February 1737-8, and 3rd of March 1758 4 . 

In 1769 the Master Attendant was making regular surveys and soundings with 
an establishment of five assistant surveyors', one of whom was John Ritchie, who 
found time from his more extensive survey to make several surveys on the Hoo°-hlv 
even up till 1782. ° 3 

«. *? 177 ° B™3 a ™n Lacam brought forward his scheme for a new harbour at 
the head of Channel Creek, and made several surveys in advocating important 
improvements 111 the navigation of the river 6 . 

Prom 1779 various Engineer officers were employed on surveys either of special 
channels or the banks of the river. William Baillie near Hiili' in 1 77° s -Mark 
Wood near Sankrail in 1780 and 1781', & again in co-operation with the Master 
Attendant down the Eastern Channel of the River" in 1782. This latter work 
was under the Chief Engineer, who represented that 

As there will be a considerable difficulty in making a correct Chart of this passage, and 
also that the Master Attendant and Pilot are not alone sufficient to give Captain Wood 
the aid requisite for completing such an undertaking in the manner it ought to be executed 
which would absolutely require the joint labour of two or three persons competent in the use' 
of Land instruments. Therefore take the liberty to propose that two or three Gentlemen of 
the corps of Engineers be ordered to assist 10 . 

Wood applied for 
boats, people for clearing jungle; Two azymuth, or two Knight's, compasses with stents ■ 
a yuadrant; sounding leads, loglines Flags etc. 11 ... 

hut a month later Government report, 

Mr. Ritchie being returned, we have ordered him to make a complete & accurate Survev 
of the Eastern Channel of the River, instead of that which was to have been made by the 
Engineers 1 -. 3 

«>™ B 'i'r CI) ' a " 1! f, ( ?' ' L0W ' 'I"«IMi, < CD to B. 15-2-65(17) 'BPC 
V n, Lacam came to India, a m.dshipman, in 1760; employed as Dman. k asst. under CD Ft' 

lVm.; settled on the Hooghly and devoted himself to development of his Sew Hartxnn HMS ' 396,.). -Hijli. between Tamlut, 79 B 4, & Kedgeree, 73 0/13- Sintrul 7<1 II ■ Y'lr 7 ' : . 

>Map,MM0.165(26). »BPC. 14-10-82. "BPC. 3-12-82. "B to CD. 6-1-83 

The Hooghly Kivee 51 

In 1788 Archibald Blair, with James Caldwell of the Engineers as assistant, 
made a survey of the New ^ Harbour and Channel Creek, and also of Diamond' 
Harbour "that the comparative advantages ... might be clearly ascertained 1 ". 

The survey of the river appears to have been then left to the Master Attendant 
and the pilots. In 1798 the Surveyor General reported, 

I have inspected a set of charts of the River Hooghly from Calcutta to the foot of the 
Sands, executed by Mr. Wade, a Pilot. From the manner in which the Work has been 
compiled, the Reaches of the River and the Sands having been laid down by the Eye and not 
by actual Measurement, it cannot be so accurate as a Geographer would desire.... Lieutenant 
Blunt in constructing a Draught of the River Hooghly for the Commander-in-Chief took the 
Sand Heads and Shoals from Mr. Wade's Charts, considering them as the best authority 3 . 
Wade was allowed 3,000 " sicca rupees " for these charts. 

Other rivers occasionally called for a survey; in April and May 1782, Wilford 
was sent out to survey two channels from the great river to Ballia Ghat, near Dacca, 
which had been reported as navigable 3 ; and in 1787 Caldwell was sent to mate 

an accurate survey of the Banka Nullah"; as well as to ascertain the annual expence of 
keeping it navigable 3 . 


The earliest plans of Calcutta were made by engineers for purposes of defence 
and the lay-out of fortifications, and the following list details some of them ; 

1742. Two plans of Calcutta and the Adjacent country, by Foresti and Ollifrees. ' Scales 
20 and 40 fathoms, or toises, to an inch. [Foresti was an Italian engineer, John Aloffe was 
Surveyor of Works 6 ]. 

1746-47. Sketches and Plans of Fort William and Calcutta by Plaisted, who %vas at that 
time Surveyor of Works 7 . 

1753. Plan of Fort William & Part of City of Calcutta, with a project for Fortifying 
the Fort. Scale 100 feet to an inch. Surveyed A Drawn by William Wells, Lieut, of the 
Artillery Company in Bengal. 

[Shows streets and buildings with occupants s. Wells was at this time employed as en- 
gmeer under Colonel Scott, who as Engineer General was then designing the new Fort William]. 

1757- Plan of the Territory of Calcutta, scale 10 inches to a mile, author not known' 
extending some distance beyond the Mahratta Ditch. Shows the position of the tents and 
tots of the Nabob's Army in 1756' [54]. Seton Kerr describe it as, 

"A plan and view of Calcutta in the year 1756, when there were but seventy houses in 
the town, when the site of a present fort was a jungle, and modern Chowringhee, with other 
parts of the town, consisted of bamboo groves and paddy fields " 1(1 . 

1757- Plan of Calcutta from Hooghly to the Lake; shows "The Moors' 1st Camp, February 
5*h , "2nd Camp", and also the "English Camp"; "to illustrate Clive's attack, February sth 
1757, and Col. Clive's march". [Orme describes it as done for Scrafton, one of the members 
ot Council. The map is merely a coloured sketch in manuscript], 

Calcutta appears in some detail in Cameron's Plan of the Company', Lands and 
Lakes, scale li inches to a mile, 1761-2 [13], and also in Martin's Part of General 

!7S7""d fjeoi^r* 1 Lands11 ' on the one - inc " scale, probably surveyed between 

Martin's survey extends south from Calcutta to the Sundarbans, with a small 
area to the west of the Hooghly from Ulubaria to the Damodar. It is a careful 
topographical survey, showing village sites and names, salt-works, roads, creeks 
protective embankments, pargana limits, tree symbols, and elevated land. 
of Salt- a I," 1 "* 8 ° f Sm ' Vey are notBS — "Part not Inhabited Where a quantity 
oait is made —" Land not Inhabited call'd SOTMHtBUND, full of Woods Creeks 
« .ravers & where a great quantity of Salt is made ". 

Wffla'l ft^^jU! 19 ' ,„T C - ^"J 1 ": ' BPC ' 8 -« 3 m- 'At th. head of the 
«MS. copy BM T„, S? 28 -;°- s '- „„ *BM. K. 115 (40, 41) -Orme MSS. 147 (35) 4 333 (15). 
prmted P eopfefor me , , i ; t pl ' m i° d ' n r Ff ■ ? JoUtta ' abont 1S68 > ™' « M - »«• '»» MS. found; 
Kerr, IV Sac,? Hjrt ?," K "ZJJ ( ^"t ' ; YM ' OTbt ' 17iM i P*°<* ™S. ™ ( 893 ). "'Seton 
forrejec ton of date J* V/™^^, 4 ^ Prinfecl "P?' IED ' "!>■; M3S., MEIO. 52 (5-8 1; 
j »uun 01 dates suggested on MEIO. label ». Bio. Notes, »«. Martin. 


Bengal StTEVEl'S 

When m 1 800 the Surveyor General prepared a map of the environs of Calcutta 
he used the whole of this survey of Martin's without correction, extending it by 
Cameron's skeleton survey and various route surveys. 

There is at Calcutta a survey by Richard Parrott, of the Engineers of Bvda, 
Budge and the Hooghly River on the scale of 400 feet to an inch, which 'must have 
been made before Parrott's death in 1772 1 . 

* i? 17 /° G ° Yetnm ? nt pointed Commissioners of Police for the administration 
ot the city-, laying- down amongst other things that it was 
necessary for the Convenience and for the Preservation of the Health of the Inhabitants of 

11 ?« , , Sti ? nant W2ter Sh ° Uld by PI °P er Drains & C1 «™^ be drained 

from the said Settlement, and the Filth, Dirt, and Rubbish removed therefrom 

and also that "a Eegistry of Lands, Houses and Estates" should be prepared and 
suitable names suggested for all streets and lanes. 

Edward Tiretta was appointed Surveyor to the Commissioners on a salary of 
KS. 1,000 a month, and 

tZJrr? tD SUn ,I the S£dd Street s, Lanes, and Passages, and to report... whether any addi- 
tioroftteRoTds WeiSareWant ■ and - at the same time report the State and Condi- 

He was also to be responsible for the disposal of refuse, and control of brick 
kilns. His responsibilities were obviously heavy, and in August 1781 he writes 

in the month of January last you were pleased to grant me assistants in order to make 
a Survey of the Town and the Limits thereof, as also an establishment for an office In 

consequence of this grant, part of the Town has been surveyed and delivered in to you,' and 
in the Month of April yon were pleased to strike off the whole of that Establishment since 
which time it has been totally out of my power to goon with the Survey without such 
assistants it not being possible for any one man to perform such work by himself alone 

Should you think proper to have the survey and the Levels of the Town proceeded 
necessa yOU "'" P ' eaSed '° ^^ "" S " Ch assist!mts ' and such P^ons as may be 

and again three months later, 

Levelling, especially in large towns where the sight by the vicinity of Buildines is 
continually confined to very short distances, is not only a complicate but a very tedious 
and Laborious work, the more in this Country, where, from the heat of the Climate those 
who are employed on such duty can work but a few hours in each day; from this circumstance 
it is impossible for me to ascertain with any probability the time it will take or expence 
which will be accrued. i^m-v 

Respecting the Survey it is my opinion that with assiduity and proper assistants this 
wt hf T aCC " ra 4 tel y Periled i° ^ course of two years, the probable expence attend- 
ing which I compute to Rs. 24,000 *. ... 

The Commissioners of Police asked Government to grant them financial assist- 
ance our present funds being- very inadequate to so expensive an undertakino-" 
but it was decided to call on the Chief Engineer to depute two Engineer officers" to 
make the necessary surveys, and nothing further is heard of Tiretta's work No 
survey had been delivered by January 1784 when the Commissioners wrote in 
P, k, w g , T frec l u ™ tl y °hliged to Proceed in the dark in the Execution of many of the 
Public Works for want of a General Level of the Town, and conceiving that to continue 
without it may be attended with a Waste of Public Monev, and understanding that there is 
Plan, Survey and Level, of the Town lodged in your Public Department, ... we beg the favour 
to be allowed to copy it. ... s 

Reference was thereupon wrongly made to the Surveyor General, who had to 

re piy? 

I have none other than that which is delivered in the printed maps of Major Rennell • the 
Chief Engineer has I believe a particular plan of the Town and Environs of Fort William 
lately laid down at a large scale by Captain Robinson, Garstin, and other officers a couv of 
which was never sent to my office 6 . ' -" 

> MEIO 49 ( 15 1. 'BP0. 26-6-SO ( 726-99); Regulation, pub. IBPC. 1-2-S1 ' From Tiretta 
toUie Commissioners of Police 21-8-S1; BPC. 4-9-S1. <BPC. 24-12-81. *BPC. 2-1 j)4 <BPC. 

Calcutta 53 

In May however, the Commissioners appear to have made touch with Mark 
Wood and his officers, reporting "that they have asked Capt. M. Wood to prepare 
plan, surrey, and levels of Calcutta. ... 1 " 

Garstin writes of this survey in 1808, 

Four Engineer officers were employed for near three years on a Survey of the Town ; it 
was scarcely completed, when great alterations that had then taken place called for a new 
one ' and I was employed for about six months in surveying one small division, and that the 
least crowded with buildings. ... It is impossible to survey the streets of so populous a place 
except for an Hour or two in the morning, before they are filled by the inhabitants 3 . 
The survey was on the scale of 200 feet to an inch, and showed every house and 
tank; the maps were completed by 1786 s . 

The reproduction of copies of a large-scale city map is almost as arduous a task 
as the survey, and no full scale copies of Wood's survey are now known. In 1791 
Wood, now Chief Engineer, recommended that copies should "be engraved on a 
reduced scale by William Baillie, a retired officer of Engineers; 

A few years ago 1 made a Survey of the Town of Calcutta for the Commissioners of Police; 
at which time it was intended to have named the different streets. ... By some accident, the 
Naming of the Streets has never taken place, and as there is no copy of the Survey, in the 
course of a very few years... it is more than probable that the Considerable Expence of this 
Survey, as well as the Trouble attending it, would be entirely lost to the Public. 

With a view of preventing this, I took it upon me to promise Mr. William Baillie... every 
support and assistance towards executing an Engraved plan ... on ... a reduced scale ...* 

As in the course of Five Years, Calcutta has undergone some considerable alterations, the 
Plan would be more correct were your Honourable Board to admit of my employing an 
Engineer Officer to insert in the Plan such alterations, which would not occupy a longer space 
of time than two months. ... 

The subscription is only Twenty Rupees each copy 5 . 

Government approved and "to assist the police'' subscribed for 150 copies,. 
which Baillie delivered in December 1792, writing, 

I have endeavoured, tho' in vain, to get impressions thrown off equal to my wish, as the 
Workmen of this Country are as yet very inexpert in Copperplate printing, especially in 
Works such as the present, where the plates are much laboured, and the Work close and 
crowded. ... G 

Wood was very disappointed with the style in which the job was carried out, 

Mr. Baillie has in no respect executed the Plan of Calcutta in the Manner which he ought 
to nave done. ... Had Mr. Baillie only taken the trouble to have made a correct copy of the 
Plan on a reduced scale, a business to which I know he was very equal, the Engraver would 
have found no difficulty in executing the work, in place of which he has merely traced the 
streets and Lanes, and even this small part of the Work, I fear, was not done by himself, and 
filled in the intermediate space with black lines, which renders the Plan of no sort of value. . . . 
Had he even represented the principal Houses and Tanks he would have been more excusable. 
The Chowringhee and [European] Quarter has been executed in the manner that the whole of 
the plan ought to have been 7 . 

On receipt of this report the Board declined to pay the balance due on the 150 
copies, having advanced one third of cost. 

Baillie's own advertisements of the map are of interest : 

Mr. Baillie's plan is now ready for delivery. He has waited many months in the expecta- 
tion that the streets in the Native Part of the Town would have received new names, as those 
in the European Quarter have latelv done. ... [The Plan is] 35 inches by 14 inches, accurately 
reduced from the large one in possession of the Commissioners of Police, and points out all 
streets, lane ghauts, etc. It shows all public buildings, but private buildings though on the 
original map, scale 26^ inches to a mile, cannot be shown on the reduction, which is little 
more than 6| inches to a mile. 

Price 25 sicca rupees mounted on roller, or 20 if pasted on cloth at the Free School. 

N.B. The ground and new buildings at Chowringhy, south of the Burial ground are taken 
from an accurate survey made last year 8 . 

J I0. Copies, 1784 (34-8). s DDn. 81 (47) of 25-11-1808. 3 B to CD. 18-8-91 (159). 4 800 feet 
to an inch. "BPC. 30-3-91. 6 MS copy, with copies of the engraved map MRIO. 43 ( 4); BPC. 5-12-92. 
'BPC. 28-12-92. *CG. 29-11-92. 


Bengal Surveys 


-tS^- Se^t^-~ — .ice < 
preserved ; mijiKu-j purposes, of which the following are still 

s«* 8 S:fto^r^r ! ' 6etoee ' 1 ^ ft ^ ^ — *. *»»%. 

eA^vecTt^'X.n: ffl W °°V** ^ n0t ha ™ been 
own surreys ; ' ° e P 10babl J incorporated the police map with his 

Budge B„d ge , d t , e 8J ™P a ^spo„ the right fcank ^ 

-i!e drr^W^^T^ 800 ™"^^^ » ^ -le of 4 inches to a 
them is inscribed 8 °' SU ™ 7ed Januar y to "^ 1W2 and ] 783 One ? 

information, is presented^. " Whlch was anally intended for military 

Calcutta was o-rowino- fast n n j i5„;ir , 
In October 1791^^^ ,fh ' fTadTe'en B V '^ T^ re «>*™. 
Survey of Calcutta and its Bnv rons" whin T f ! ^ lnter ' "commenced a 

scale of 8 miles to an inch ; th map vasS fct "PT^ and ™ a PPed on the 
ment took forty copies P f °' Slrf y ra P ees a copy and Govern- 

1793 by A. Upjohn [and bearfa Toten Plln S th "t"T "' taken in the ^ '792 and 
year w ; exhibiting likewis S e thTlnh'5™ ™ ! • Terntor J r of &lcutt a as marked out in the 
^^^^aht^TTjltSof tt^,^*^ '«**•<« and taken 

The GANGES and the GOGBA 
Rennell, 1788. 

— ciy^t paring-. 

Part of Rennell's Map of Biatoattm 1788. Se»l e H inches to a degree 


BENGAL SURVEYS, 1793 to 1800 

Beyond the North- West Frontier — Chittagong Frontier, 1794 — Ghmmr to Rajahmundry, 
17 g 5 _ Ganges-Eooghly River Passage, 1777-96 — Ganges River above Cossimbazar, 
1796-1800 — Special Surveys in Calcutta, 1795-6 — Chittagong Coast, 1799-1800. 

BY the time Colebrooke became Surveyor General in 1794 political anxiety had 
definitely shifted to the country beyond the western frontiers. The Mughal 
Emperor at Delhi was a prisoner in the hands of the Marathas, who were press- 
ing on the frontiers of Oudh and of the Company's smaller neighbours on the west. 
In 1798 Timur Shah of Kabul had marched down to Attack 1 but had died there 
just as his army was preparing to cross the Indus. He was succeeded by his ambi- 
tious son Zaman Shah, and to forestall possible danger to the Company's provinces 
it appeared essential that strong support should be given to the Wazir of Oudh, and 
that as much information as possible should be collected about the countries to the 

Government therefore welcomed the offer of Charles Reynolds, surveyor to the 
Bombay Government, to make a survey of the upper part of the Ganges-Jumna doab"-. 
The object of his proposed researches... are the Provinces in the Duab, and he means 
particularly to take a northerly direction, into parts which have hitherto been little explored. 
For this purpose he has obtained the acquiescence of Mharajah Scindiah without any applica- 
tion or Intimation from this Government. The obj ect of his proposed surveys are principally 
in the Dominions of that Chieftain. ... 

That he be allowed an assistant, and that the Commander-in-Chief be requested to give 
permission to Ensign James Blunt to act upon this service 3 . 

Blunt joined Reynolds at Allahabad in December 1798 and they ran their survey 
through Meerut and Delhi, paying a visit to the Emperor [ 30 1-2 ], and continuing 
as far west as Panipat* thence returning by Hardwar, and through Rohilkhand to 
reach Lucknow in May 1794, when the party dispersed, and Reynolds had to return 
to Bombay 5 [132]. 

Later in 1794 followed the disturbance in Rampur State, which led to the second 
Rohilkhand War, and the Surveyor General replied to a request for a map, 

I do myself the honour to transmit. . .for the use of the Commander-in-Chief, a sketch of 
Rohilcund, in which the principal places are laid down from the astronomical observations of 
the late Mr. Reuben Burrow. The rest is partly drawn from the Authority of Major Rennell. 
... I regret much that we have not more particular survey of the Province and that the 
country beyond the Hills bordering the Rampour District 6 is totally unknown. 

It is much to be wished that an officer might be appointed to act in the capacity of a 
surveyor during the campaign^. 

The Commander-in-Chief appointed James Mouat, of the Engineers, to take 'an 
accurate survey... of Rohilcund and in particular of the Jaghire of Ahmat Ally 
Khan 8 ", specifying "as the first and leading objects", 

To trace the Ram Gunga from hence 9 to the hills, carefully examining its fords, with their 
depth of water at different seasons of the year. 

To examine all the passes in the hills, from the Hurdwar to the south-east confines of 

'43 Oil. '-Land between two rivers. Ws min„ BMC. 8-11-88. 4 ??«15. /Bhmfs Fdbk. 
MEIO. M. 5* i Boogh IV.t racti.'us. MP.IO. 30 (61-66). «Bimpni, 53 P/l. ' DDn. 16 ( 54) of 16-10-94. 
8 The infant Raja now established as Chief of the Rlunpur State. 9 Bareiliy, 53 P,7. 



Bengal Surveys 

particular to investigate by what ra i* „„ P rmcl P aI towns and forts in Rohilcund and in 
stations, to Cossiporef and LZ£££ g %%XT* ^ ^ » d f ~ 

You will return by the wsy of Isliubb^ r T 5 Rampore on the left. .. 

been aceurately examined^. Y Waulabad - * m <* route from thence to Bareillyhas not yet 

Mouat took up this work from Decern W 90+1, 
General sent him furthe, detailed 0^^3(0 the' ""? VT later tlle Sll ™y« 
prmoipal object of gaining- "some Wl e l< e of tiff '" ^ BhonH foUoT ' with ' th « 
«eyer yet been exploded b/any European ? f S f" t P T -f Eohiku »d which has 
-a suryey of the Ram Ganger! Bareil^ t o the Hills i- 3 " ^ M ° Ua * Ud Sent » 
h H r C;jsca°ie £ rnST 'J%?? A 2 ^uVei^ ^^ " «**"- - 
Satefriy^r ~ * ^ .fflSSf 3SSKS S^T^E 

respectivelyB". ^ P eo P Ie de Puted on the part of the Warier and Rohillas 

fr 7^«^-audAn„ P sh a i r :CSurSr"'" g ^"^ ^ '—d o, ali the country- 

m from another S0UI ^' tt. WillSmH^?T ^?' h ° Werer ' bee " com 4 
Residency with Maharajah Scindia" hacfa be^t I "" Ass f *'"* Surgeon to the 
wandered from place to place in camp fashln l-b oT" 7 ' ^ tho Marath » Court 
observations and measured the routes 8 year ' he took agronomical 

middle of April z 792 , till tte ruiddle of M^h r™, ^l"' ; n^^T" 1 at ° 0j ™ fom *- 
Muckandra... 25 th Kotah ... April 4 th rJZ^ ^ ££ °°1^ March i 4 th i 793 ... 22n d 

On his return to Agra Hunter met T? L ] f rtteh P 00r -Srcn...2i s t Agra", 

up from Hyderabad [if 3] an d waTmnch^l ft° ^ T 6 "^ brOU =" ht a —7 
that experienced surveyor; pWd to find ,lis ro " te « appreciated by 

igeine 13 will 

of Capt. Reynolds, ...I Lg leaye to „fe tt^s^S "' br ^^ T tto ^ 

S^^tt 8 on Huntei " s ■outes ™; pnblic service - ■■■" 

appear to beTaM do™, "^Slom the mat^umhf "V?"' ^ aCCUraCy with ^ ">ey 
which you haye made. " *"*" OTmber of Ac tual Astronomical Observations 

The survey from Futtyghur to Agra is „,«, 1 
be very much wanted. g"...M entirely new, and has always appeared to me to 

Deckan [i l6] . The principal merit of it is Se nnmber n « , a 7"* fa Ws wa >' to <*» 
and the important route which completes tota £ Zfnl A st™omical Observations, 
were before ignorant, except from report Bopaul« to Oogein, & of which we 

Your return from Oogein by way of Boondee « i, „f +h < 
W^tract of which we hi nS infor^.^^ vT =^,^1 

•n « part of the Central India i^jftfi ^ SW^I'^fiW 8 "" *" ^ ^wS 

Beyond the North-West Frontier 57 

geography of which will now be completed by your survey, and the assistance of the route 
I shall take on my return 1 . 

The following season Hunter sent in another survey, this time from Fatehgarh 
to Lucknow, and 

detected many errors in the position of places as laid down in Major Rennell's map, and... 
inserted towns and places of some note, that have been entirely omitted. ... The extent of his 
survey in Road distance is 330 miles. The places ascertained by Astronomical Observations 
are seventy in number". 

Government awarded him a sum of 2,500 rupees as compensation. In both 
the following seasons, 1794-5 and 1795-6, Hunter made similar surveys, which 
were much appreciated 3 . It should be noted that this class of survey was of a much 
higher standard than that carried out by Rennell's surveyors, the astronomical control 
was closer, and all the distances were measured by perambulator ; there was still 
however no attempt made to complete the survey of a definite area in detail ; maps 
were still mere skeletons. 

In 1795 the Surveyor General obtained permission to send James Hoare to sur- 
vey the Jumna River [ 1 8S ] ; 

As no good survey has yet been made of the Jumna River [38], I would recommend his 
being sent to explore it, from the confluence at Allahabad up to Delhi, or so far beyond it as 
he might with safety proceed. That the object of his deputation should be, not only to ascer- 
tain the course, depths, and windings of that River, but also to insert in his plan all the 
Towns, Forts, and villages on its banks, marking also the places where Ferries are established, 
and those where the river is, at any time, fordable. He might likewise be directed to 
ascertain the Mahratta Boundary in that quarter more correctly than has yet been done 4 . 

Hoare completed the survey up to Agra in his first season, and carried it on to 
Delhi during 1796-7, spending some time in making good observations for latitude 
at both these places ; his health however broke down, and he was not able to make 
the necessary fair copies of his journals and fieldbooks which the Surveyor General 
required [ 197] ; he was recalled in May 1797 and died the following year. In sub- 
mitting fair copies of his charts to Government, the Surveyor General remarks that, 

As these charts have been laid down from measurements by a perambulator, and bearings 
taken with a compass throughout, ...there is reason to believe that although the more nice 
operations with the theodolite and sextant had been almost entirely omitted; ...they will 
nevertheless furnish data for inserting the course of the Jumna in the maps with a greater 
degree of precision than has hitherto been done. . . . The third sheet from Agra to Delhi is the 
more valuable, as that part of the river Jumna had not I believe ever been surveyed before 5 . 

It falls to most surveyors that their labours should be criticised in after years 
[6], and the following comment on Hoare's work was made only 12 years later; 

I am led to think the obstacles to the navigation of the Jumna may be removed at a 
very moderate expence. ... A correct survey of this river is much to be desired. That done 
some years since by Captain Hoare being of little value, as it is replete with errors; no sort 
of reliance is to be placed on it 15 . 

Early in 1797 great alarm was caused by Zaman Shah's invasion of the Punjab, 
and threat to advance on Delhi [55]; and Colebrooke, with a keen sense of his 
duties as Surveyor General, wrote, 

I take the liberty of suggesting that a survey of the upper part of the Dooab might be 
found to be of the highest utility and importance, in case of that country becoming at any 
future period the seat of war, and the late inroad of Zemaun Shaw into the Punjab would 
appear to render such an event not altogether improbable''. 

Accordingly in 1798 Thomas "Wood was sezit up to join Sir James Craig's army 
in Oudh in the capacity of Surveyor, whilst the Governor General sent General Craig 
instructions for the protection of Oudh against a possible attack by Zaman Shah, 
who crossed the Indus, and arrived at Lahore with a large army s . The alarm 
caused by this intelligence was all the greater because of the war that was then in 
preparation against Tipu of Mysore. The strain was relaxed when it was learnt 

^EIO. M. 574, 15-5-93. -'Letter from SG., DDn. 16 (44), 22-3-94. J Maps, MEIO. 30 (3) and 
31 (43-17). ^DDn. 16 (80), 1-4-95. 5 DDr.. 14 (127). 28-9-99. 6 DDn. 81 (27). Garstin to QMG. 
5-7-3808. -DDn. 16 (33). 11-5-97. 8 Martin, I (261 363, etc).- 


Bengal Surveys 

saull forests " is a fine level cultivated en, „t, t Y " * ^ CalIed m the ma P' " *«* °r 

is laid down at mere random and ™ steered bene v 7h "^ T^ ^ B °° rah ^P** 8 
harcarrah reports « snch information' ° fc baS beei1 ma ™&ctured from 

surveyed"' af tt r fiT^ in!? Tari ° US r0utes ttat '« hM 

the two irtl^efCS *r ^ ln t a K y ° f °" mapS that J ha ™ «. -d 
what we now have, afl took m b y e ro " ^ar "7" ' T ^ ^ mOTe P arti ™>- *»» 
right and left. ... There is much inZ ♦ f " ry t0 ™ aad vilI ^ e X c °uld see to the 

as I am anthorized by the ResMent to s» tfat the Nnh I T'? ™ St WlUtogIy be afcded 
to the survey being contmned, is o^TI^^iZTJ^ ^ »7 Morions 

a rout^m S^Ba ait^ ^'J™ - ^ected to survey 

which place he is I ™^S^^^ B ^ f t 00t ° f the hiU " to Hardwar, from 

to survey the r 1V er to Ramgau/betow Z lib r a TheV^ ^ ^^ Ms ' and 

Cawnpore has never been accurately survived I Tn'd'm ^ b ° m Ramgaut do ™ to 


^^i^^^ 1 n Srr-r tlmB, ? ing so completeIy **" -P » y my 

frequently not until Sunset TwS nowUe thTrT f"? """ ? *" " the afte ™^ «* 
veyed during the flvemonths I hive beln absent m J Tf ^ °' What X haVe s - 
jungles where I am certam no Human beT^ '" w ^ ° f my track -were through 
surprize to me how I did pass wZTany a^dentTo^ ' ?* ?* " " StU1 a matte oi 

numberofTigersisreallyincredible iTom™ V Pe ° PleWhOWereWith me - » «» 

proceeded to Lucknow. From then el went? bt ^ '""^ at tWs P lace [Cawnpore] and 
the Western side of the Gog" h as ; £ £ Dur^S °* a 8 WeSt f erly directi <»'- ■ ■ ■ Khairabrf, ...up 
trate.on account of the Forests etc I r,Z hT* ' - fnrttar ^ which! could not pene 
places not inserted in any o our Saps froTptf bTf Peeleebeat9 P^ing... many other 
here my progress to tte Northward' « ?J££t eat I went up to Nahnick Muttahl. and 
struck off to the westward, and nosing Through S PP 7 "T^ F ° reStS - J therefo « 
from which I went through the Forest to Kafah' ^T^'i'"'™ 1 * Afz ° 01 Gtar "- 
issues from the Mountains Ghattah, at which place the Ram Gungah 

Chandieghaut on the Ganges (and imn ,S attempt and... succeeded, having reached 

fourth day after reaching Nud^ba^ 7 ° PP ° Slte tQ wUch is the town oi Hurdwar) the 

Seikf ^nl^ojL wnrSbif tTe wt'te^Bamk^Tr?. 1 Sh ° aW ^ ™ th from tta 
passing over to Hurdwar I surveyed down tha^rt' J V determ ' led to m ake the triai, and 
recrossed without the smallest IbfectioXavt 1 '^ ""^ ° f - fi ' teea miIes ' at wM * ' 

the Ganges to Asophghur"; homm^Trl ^T^ - J came d °™ the eastern bank of 
... Thewholeof my Land Surrey cLpLes". ^T^"' * ^'^blo way inland, 
bearing is taken with a Theaiomt^Zn^o{,7 "P™?' <* 8 °° "^ » which every 
the most particular manner from Hardwa^ down „ tbi T' " ' W Sarreyed tbeGanges in 
upwards of 400 miles. I have exanZSW^ fTJ rT T^ S bj iU "^mgs to... 
ghaut, besides this there are particular plansTf varfous Forts" t T? HUrdWar and Ram " 
Wtakes a considerable time; ...during my^™ f h^ ^at^^T^^ 

% "SI 3963 ! ^S H J t r a ?^1f S^ g £• ™»; » («). -p- ir». 

Beyond the North-West Frontier 50 

for Latitude ■ 20 for . . . magnetic variation, and 19 for the Emersions or Immersions of Jupiter's 
Satellites for Longitude ; . . . 1 think I am not much wrong in saying that very few Surveyors in 
this Country ever did so much in the same time, and without any assistance whatever 1 . 

Chittagong- Frontier, 1794 

Other surveys of this period include surveys made by Thomas Robertson in 
Chittagong, under instructions from the military officer commanding. In July 1794 
he submitted 

the survey of the Southern Frontier of this Province, ...but have to regret that from tile 
advanced season of the year, as well as the impenetrable nature of this country, it being 
chiefly Hills & Forests etc, ; I have not been able to render the survey so complete or so ex- 
tensive as I could have wished, ...its having been out ot my power to trace the course of the 
Naaf River 3 , but the Banks of this River are so covered with Forests as to be impenetrable 
to a single person, and of course impracticable to carry a series of measured lines along them; 
neither was it possible to proceed by water, as Boats were not to be procured 3 . 

His survey lay from Maiskhal Island* to the mouth of the Naaf Eiver. 

During season 1799-1800 William Parker of the Artillery ran a survey from 
Eamuto Ukhia Ghaut 5 on the Naaf estuary. 

Ohunar to Rajahmundry, 1795 

Early in 1795 a survey of particular importance was made by James Blunt 

from Chunar 6 to the East' coast; in recommending which, the Surveyor General 


As his route would lay through a tract of country never yet traversed by Europeans, our 
Geographical knowledge would be considerably increased by such a survey. . . . There does not 
occur in Major Rennell's map the names of more than three or four places in the whole track 
he proposes to explore, being in length nearly 500 miles. 

In a political point of view this survey might. considered as an object of the highest 
importance, as it would lead us to the knowledge of the native powers inhabiting those 
hitherto unexplored regions. 

It would furnish a route, and it might be hoped ultimately, a high military Road, leading 
from the extreme point of our Dominions in Bengal to . . . our Territories on the coast, forming 
a more direct channel of communication for succours, supplies, or intelligence than any we 
yet know. ... The whole distance might be marched in fifty days provided no extraordinary 
impediments occurred [4i] 7 - 

Government granted their approval; 

The necessary passes from the Ra]ah of Berar have now been obtained; however the 
Nagpoor Government might be jealous of his surveying any part of its dominions, you are 
to direct him to be particularly circumspect during his route thro' Berar, that the object of 
his commission be executed with a caution to prevent suspicion. ... The Commander in Chief 
will be requested to order an Escort of a Jemadar and 30 sepoys to accompany Ensign Blunt 
from Chunar, and the Military Paymaster General will he instructed to give orders for an 
advance of three months allowances for himself and the Escort. 8 

The Surveyor General's detailed instructions to Blunt read, 

The most likely way of attaining that desirable end will be to set out from Chunarghur in 
a southerly direction, and not to deviate materially from that course until you reach Cossim- 
cotta 9 in the Northern Circars, or any other place of note in the Vizagapatarn District. But 
as a variety of natural impediments might occur on the way, . . . you will . . . perhaps be obliged 
to alter the direction of your march by a few points of the compass. ... The propriety of such, 
a direct course will appear the more obvious as it is the object of Government to establish a 
communication between the upper provinces and the Circars, and to find a road by which an 
Army might upon any emergency march with ease and expedition [41]. 

^Wood to SGK 30-^1800; BMC. 14-12-1807. 2 84 D/6. a BPolC. 8-8-94. 4 79 0/14 5 84 0/3 
& C/4. 6 63 K/16. ?DDa. 16 (50), 1-8-94. 8 BPolC. 28-11-94. H Kasimkota, 65 K/14. 

a i 

Bengal Surveys 

February 1 5th B .iv ri re?lons for ^ considerable 

ttan we had paid at'sS^," rath * "***» it, at 25 seers to the 6o 

SSSSnrt the Rajali of c — 

b. ^vzAy b :^T:^ : , a ™ g for — 4 s 'bee?so ZuZ ot r ° ameis ** 

ln ^ s^* ~ a ^ as aIso a " - - * messse 
-s^fa^r s - h ^*-^=? ™* — -o, r 

in company wrtn anoT T" 1 Ws att <^ance in order a H '^j 1 ^ ° f water, which 
"PbedV c^ectal T,T : - tb ^ ™» both rn s f„' " "rf ^T' * Ms '«»", 
Goands. J ^"""S' that ««* had been robbed and murd of MaWa * Wr C a„ah 

t- ^KasSS^srtta- -* ~» — 

>DD». 16(60), 4-12-m ,«, T , gwltic ™tion in passing the frontier 

Chattagarh, tract covering 64 I K S ,°2?'„, ""^P", 64 J/1 ni ™° d "PP^ «"» modem 
8 -L.M.iV. »6oN/8. "65 J/9. &m MIS. '**■ M W 10 L m l- 

Chunar to Rajah mux dry 61 

of their respective countries, for, having no pass. produce to the Nizam's officers, it was 
uncertain in what manner they might receive me. 

Leaving the Wainganga River at Dewalmari 1 , a few miles below its junction 
with the Wardha, Blunt proceeded south-eastwards towards the Indravati River, and 
on April 30th was fired on by a party of Khonds ; 

At this instant fortunately, I was joined by a naik and four sepoys of my escort, and im- 
mediately formed them, priming and loading in a little space of open ground on our right. As 
soon as the sepoys had loaded, I would fain have parleyed with the savages before firing, but 
all my endeavours towards it were ineffectual; and as they continued to rush with impetuosity 
towards us, with their matches lighted, and arrows fixed in their bows; they received the fire 
of my party at the distance of about twenty yards; when four or five of them instantly 
dropped. This gave them an immediate check, and they ran off, hallooing and shouting, into 
the woods. ... I directed a party of a naick and four sepoys to drive them from the hill; this 
they soon effected. ... 

Came to the bank of the Inderowty river, where not being able to find a ford, we were 
necessitated to encamp on its bank. ... 3 

Finding the people of the country thus inhospitably inclined towards us, I conceived it 
would be hazardous to send a messenger to Bhopaulpattun 3 ; for should he be detained or put 
to death, we might wait in vain for an answer, until the numbers by which we should be sur- 
rounded would effectually cut off our retreat. The Goands appeared to be in full expectation 
of our attempting to pass the river ; which they would no doubt have resisted; so that the 
only way to extricate ourselves from the present embarrassing situation, was to retreat as 
fast as possible by the road we had come; ...the weather clearing up at daybreak, we moved 
off in perfect silence. 

Arrived back at Dewalmari, Blunt found a friendly Khond chief, and after 
making him a present of his fowling piece, was given a letter to the Dewan in the 
Nizam's territory; never having expected to be forced so far to the south he had not 
been provided with any letters to the officials of the Nizam. He now followed down 
the Wainganga to Sironcha' 1 at the junction with the Godavari, which he crossed 
and coming into the Nizam's dominions, followed the right bank of the river to- 
wards the south-east. 

May 5th. Marching at this season in the heat of the day oppressed us exceedingly; but 
the unsettled state of the country, and the probable risk of being attacked, rendered it un- 
avoidable. Although the road was a beaten one, and tolerably clear of brushwood, yet the 
forest on each side, being excessively thick, might if we had moved in the dark have enabled 
an enemy to come upon us unawares ; whereas by travelling in the day and taking our ground 
in a clear spot, we were always in a situation to defend ourselves with advantage. 

The women and children who had accompanied the sepoys, and who, at the commencement 
of our journey, had been accustomed to ride, were now, from the reduced state of the cattle, 
compelled to walk. They appeared however to be fully impressed with the necessity of the 
case; and although they would have suffered less by travelling in the cool of the night, yet 
they must have created considerable confusion, in case of an attack at that time; exclusive 
of which considerations, the daylight was essentially necessary to my geographical pur- 
suits, ... 

May 15th. Intercepted by officials of the Paloncha 5 Raja, with 25 armed horse- 
men and about 300 infantry, who demanded a Pass from the Nizam. 

May 16th. Marched 16 miles to Paloncha. The Rajah's people told tales of the 
desperate state of the English in the Circars 6 and said that he proposed to send 
Bl lint's party as prisoners to Hyderabad; Blunt said he knew many of the Nizam's 
officials at Hyderabad 7 and would welcome sueh a step; "their astonishment was so 
great that they immediately departed to make a report thereof to the Rajah." 
During the night about 1,500 armed men surrounded the camp. 

17th. This morning the Vakeel came to me with a request, that I would send my Toorky 
horse, and three sheep which I had brought with me from Chunarghur, for the Rajah's inspec- 
tion. This I readily compiled with; and at the same time demanded an interview with the 
Rajah, and permission to depart. ... In about an hour the horse was returned, with a very 
polite message from the Rajah, expressing how much he had been gratified by the sight of so 

'56 M 15. -near Desli, (3o A/4. ;i Bhoprdpatnam, 65 B/5. "56 N/13. 5 56 C/10. '' A fairy tale. 
'Blunt had spent the summer of 1792 at Hyderabad [43, 116]. 


Bengal Surveys 

?self perfectly easy; for I staid be aS^ "Mediately desired I wo 
The whole of the ensuing day was spent i Y ^ ° n the ensu ">S day. 

miles distant t hi 7 m ° Ved forward - ™i a 

compact t^°I! d ~ * I- « With cantion. f 0*1^^-^™ 

found it rnn.i^„j _j- J ■ F ._ ^ nTO 

compact bodv- and „ i— "- wilu cautu 

th +^ """^ lueii issued, as we 

fiv P , ^ ™ e ^A's Pass, to which however «.«, ■ "™ ~ M »«P«» to stop us 7 

ing up the «^ oppos te tnth '^ TOS dete ™ed not 

myself with the ^„ ys . Someparties~ s tole',,,7 7^"™ Bagga 8 e ' and s oon after folio' 

™ ^^u. a. wuuia not be 
baggage, and soon after followed 

f May 2Ist . We had marched TnTilesfrof D °, ""^P 4 to & e " 

two days, had harassed us a good fe S? "" IaSt <™amp m ent; and the heat for the 1 * 

our troubles were nearlv „t Jn T '„ emg now arriv ed within the cZT > aSt 

where my geographical ££^ **» » «-> Pearse, n-^1^^ 

Thfl h t °*S"i. ui an European counten- 

windin s to ^Xdt &T *«■ — *» eight degrees but th ■ ■ 

our parti had s t ; "t^ With fmr «»« attached 1 th "* ^^^ bad been 

"iSS^^ir "--—-- „ 

rr„ „ " . , '™ lt u " tnen unknown 

^^ te ^^^^^*-£«- ta *- a it im . 

falls into the Godavery at Z'oonclS \T ^ "* C ° UrSe ° f *» Boungun™ 4 e^f ?"? 
than it is given in an/former ££ ' - tte C °" fl — being more than xo^mit ^hlr ^p 

wsssjtfcs?'* !Eraa " adH ». ■ w 

*65&#6. ♦WaingamgaR. 

^iroasha, 56 N/13,. 

Chtjnar to Bajahmtjnbkt 63 

Blunt's journey through this inhospitable country was not repeated by any 
European official for over sixty years, and his route remained the only source of 
geographical information of the western borders of the Central Provinces for an 
even longer period 1 . Eiver. Passage, 1777-96 

Bunnell's surrey of 1764-5 had not brought to light any new route from 
Calcutta to the Ganges ; during the dry season heavy boats still had to go all the way 
round through the Sundarbans before they could get a clear run up the Great Eiver. 
In 1777, possibly inspired by the success of Major Tolly 2 with his canal south of 
Calcutta which had been opened that year [65 ], John McGowan put forward a 

to keep open the channel from the Ganges into the Cossimbazar Eiver, and to keep the river 
open to navigation down to its junction with the Hooghly at Nadia 3 , 

with the concession of being allowed to collect tolls. Permission was given with 
certain restrictions, but two years later the Chief of Cossimbazar protested against 
the collection of tolls before any attempt had been made to improve navigation. 
On McGowan pointing out that he had spent nearly two years in making surveys 
and levels, Government allowed him the salary of a surveyor, and withdrew his 
permit to collect tolls. His contract was annulled shortly after. 

It was possibly in 1788 that Wilford made a careful survey of the channels into 
the Cossimbazar and Jalangi Eivers from the Ganges, with several lines of levels 1 . 
His fieldbook contains a reasoned discussion of the feasibility of opening a cut to 
allow navigation in the dry season. He concludes that this would not be successful 
as the difference of levels would vary considerably at different seasons; 

The Baugrutty^th the other Branchesof the Ganges labourunder all the disadvantages 
common to all large Rivers, which is, that near their mouths they generally have hut little 
descent. For the Land above their mouths for a considerable extent is but an incroachment 
upon the sea, occasioned by a vast quantity of Sand and Earth brought down by the Current, 
which being repelled by the Sea falls to the bottom, forms at first shoals and Banks, which 
raising continually, at length appear out of the Water, forming a solid ground which is soon 
covered with grass and trees. 

Such is all the Country from the Rajemall Hills down to the Sea. The bottom of the Bay 
of Bengal reaching formerly up to these hills. ... 
He then quotes ancient Hindu records about the rivers of Lower Bengal. 

At the end of 1794 James Hoare was deputed to survey the Hurdum and Jamuna 
rivers 6 for a navigable connection to enter the Hooghly from the east below Nadia, 
and in considering his report the Governor General observed, 

The communication between Calcutta and the Upper Provinces during 7 months of the 
year is only practicable by the Sunderbuns, a hardy and dangerous navigation. ... I do not 
thmk Lt. Hoare's survey a sufficient ground for undertaking the object in view, but merely 
as furnishing materials for a further investigation, which I recommend to be made by the 
Surveyor General..." 
and the Council 

thought it proper to direct the Surveyor General to ascertain the existence or practicability 
of a communication by water between the Houghly River and Ganges at all seasons of the 
year, either by the channel of the Hurdum and Howleah, or that of the Jubuna, Issamutty 
and Howleah, . . . taking into consideration the length of the navigation, the expence of making 
It practicable, and the probability of its continuing so after having been once made 8 . 
M *{; are ' 1 1?95, therefore, Colebrooke surveyed the Jamuna and found it unsuit- 
able, but reported more favourably on the Hurdum, or Churni, submitting a survey 
irom its source at Sibnibas 3 to its confluence with the Hooghly; he described certain 
narrow parts connecting with the Ichamati ; 

.mdnt^Trfi 1 ''',™ =Wi "i»m Tolly. Ben .Inf. (OTB) [65 n. 5 i. S BPC. S-12-77 (15). <FJbk. 

:'„ :; ' »»<»HS.*9. WihOTd's levels were read to tenths of an inch; one of his lines was 7 miles 

7WPP ot , aS n ? r ;?t l1 h K " speond lh "' b >' liferent route. * Uhrejirathi. ov Co ,„„,;,„„,. K, <7S 1) ii 79 .1 

tiru 28-1-90 (2). s B t0 ca ^ 2g! . ^ „ a m eagt rf Krish , 9 A/n 


-Bengal Surveys 

I proceeded next to observe with «,»„ 
tie two rivers, commencing iroTn th f ^ mstam ente the difference of 1 , . 
carried myjevelsm line a dire °t a , n„ P L? e Where the Hnrdnm ceaSe to h. • b ° tween 

there is so great To eriodic f "n tam P™« with them in dS2 c , Cap3Cit y of R^er 

of much aS.^*" SWeUlng C» TO '™] and vel^rfJCt P1 * nM '' -*™ 

/ears that £ had taX^T^* 16 c0 «- of the G an „ es in t , y . 
earlier, with M „' m , J ! g " Wlth that described r,v j> ,, e yano "s 

the river ell™ S T n ?f,lo 0nS f ° r * he -^tenaTe of\f 6 Tay T^ ^ 
The encroachments, wtr"r 1 e g a 6 s^r tm ^ be0f " lte '-t gat '° n "^ 

say the Geography ? a " 2 ? g ViUa « e or 4 °™. The T^ e \ S P ot r s inI ^. or had 

ftom this canL^s^thefac X P ° n "' tte C0Untl 7. -"1 S ImSSSSS "?** ahMst 
are sometimes removed, C ™ ntr5 ' is not only altered bvTh P er P<>tual fluctuation 

Gauges River above Cossimbazak 


Here I am at length arrived after a pretty favourable passage considering the season of 
the year. Though I most full intended to have at least attempted what you recommended 
a sketch of the river from Colgong upwards, yet I am sorry to acquaint yon, it was com- 
pletely out of my power. For many, many, years past the Ganges has not been known to 
overflow its banks so much as it has done this season, and it was but seldom, even with 
Rennell's map of the river, that I could make out where I was. I had not the smallest 
idea of what the Ganges is during the rains, until now that I have seen it, and though I have 
repeatedly gone up and come down at other seasons, believe me, I could not have known it 
for the same river 1 . 

Colebrooke's later journeys up the river as far as Cawnpore will be described in 
another volume. 

Special Surveys a Camutta, 1795-6 

In 1795 the Surveyor General was called on to advise the Military Board about 
a scheme for draining the laud "near the General Hospital and the back of 
Chowrmghee", by means of a canal draining into Tolly's Nullah, and to make a 
survey with levels for the purpose ; he writes, 

Upon the whole, the proposed scheme appears to be practicable, and highly eligible as a 
quantity of putnd and stagnant waters which lodge in the drains and ditches about Chow- 
nnghy all the year round, might thereby be drained off, and the place would of course become 
more healthy -. 
and later, 

As the business of my office at the present juncture occupies almost the whole of my 
fa ? e ; ""I!, JPP rehens "' e -" th at it will not be in my power personally to pay that attention 
which would be requisite to compleat it as soon as may be expected, but I have directed 
Ensign Blunt, one of my assistants, to begin the survey under my superintendence ». 
_ Blunt completed the survey at the end of 1796, on the scale of 200 feet to an 
inch, with a table of levels carried out to govern the excavation of the drain" 4 

The same year Government reviewed the lease which had been granted to Major 
Nullah" " ld ° W £ ° r C0llectiu » tolls on the traffio Passing through Tolly's 

The Governor General in Council observes that previously to coming to any final deter- 
mination with respect to the proposed surrender of the grant of Tolley's Nullah he thinks it 
necessary to ascertain now, fully, the present state of the Nullah, and the probable expence 
at making the necessary excavations for the purpose of facilitating the navigation of it 

A S reed --- th at orders be issued... to the Surveyor General. proceed immediately to 
survey the Nullah, and to report the present state of it, ...and the annual expence of making 
the necessary excavations in future for... rendering the Nullah at all times navigableS. 

In June 1796 the Surveyor General submitted his report together with a survey 
made with the assistance of Blunt', who was then directed to see that the canal 
was cleaned out and excavated to the necessary depth. 

Chittaoofg- Coast, 1799-1800 

At the end of 1799 the Marine Board asked for a survey of the Chittagong 
coast, and Government ruled that "the service properly appertains to the Surveyor 
General's Department'. Upjohn [54]. who had now become an assistant in the 
oflice, was appointed to the survey with Mr. Jeremiah McCarthy and the vessel Harrirt 
at his disposal, and with the following instructions from the Surveyor General- 

navigated Pr ^t a h T t 0b)e f "^ ? Sm "" Y th ° CWtta S°ng H™ as high as it is usually 
gated, with its entrance, and such a portion of the coast as vessels are liable to fall in 

Adffl.MSs'ssoWBiS T 8 ' T ;™V 6 (! ">>J».irae. »DDn. 16 (146), 1-10-96. 'It.p.BM. 

home in 17M Wl t , m " ^ rante d a 12 years lease for collection of the tolls, he died on his voyage 
taken over lot G„„ "e" ™ extended for a further period of 15 years to hi, ,vi„ ( „, : the Xnllah wE 


Bengal St 

or as high as it is navigated, with its soundi™, « 1'k ? Chltta gong River to Islamabad 
of the survey, m orde/to be rendered ToreSc^te aTd 3 ' ""T?* "* ^ **» P^ 
partly with a theodolite and chain, or MrLtaSor n d 17 ^ ShOUld be P-taied 
as of the highest spot up the river to which your survev ,, " f"" ° l entrance - as w <* 
dete^ned by observatio n „t the snn and stirs aSr, V o e Lnoe eXtmd ' ^ ^ """^ 

Mascal, the end as far as relates to the na2a ton oTth T ^ &ab Mand *><■"> °' 
Yon will of conrse include in this part HW ( ' """l ° f ? hitta B°»« ™" be answered. 
Snndeepa., with the islands of Knttnbdia and Maseal, a Th ^ T* ^ ° f tte island °* 
all the shoals, rocks, and soundings, so as to con^t ; „ P art *ularly careful to include 
benefit to navigation. The variation or the magnetic netl" ^ ™ U ^ ° f " al use and 
within this track should be observed and wtth a vie' to ? ^ ' atitUdeS ° f a f ew P oi ^ 
occasionally be conducted on shore. gIKlter aCcurac y y°" operations may 

A few extracts are here riven frorTr^ T IT ° f ^-^r noticed*, 

uary 3rd to April 16th 1800 M Pra1 ' which e **^ from Jan- 

Monday, i 7 th. Busilv employed ,„i™ » ttagong to procure others. ... 

necessary aHeratrons^ 356 " ' '^ ^ Md em P'^d carpenters etc. to make the 

N.B. This day very ill in bed. 

Wednesday, the 19th February. 4t X oast M th. V, * ,. ■ * 
another, weighed and proceeded down the river g fin,Shed ' an "aving hired 

possible; in doing which the boat was swamped t0 aV °' d aS much of tte ^ as 

-•t^^^!^^ 5 ^^^^^^ " ttat *» " «* 
swell, the breakers near the ship having much iricTeald ™™°W<™* of there being a heavy 

bad weather; that therefore I could not extect to 'ee' * a PP rehensi ™ °* approaching 

if I persisted in continuing my operations further south "°* ^^ fam *» ff «"*' 

masterly manner"' Residency and handed m his charts, executed in a 

of a!CiSn°t WS death thC SU " ey0r ^ "**» «* the re.uW appointment 

^0^ s^r oftaTnarnrT ^^ £ ? *J?* "* * *«* * ~* - 

but Government did not approve " q ° lr6d by the Marine B ° ard - 

take into consideration such Pro P o L'ons " sh U b T"^ ^ 1 " C ° UnCil •" ™»4 
There was no Marine Survey Z™'rt f ! v", T d *° Wm by that Board6 - 

from the Lamas' map of 1733 

Plate 7 

■7 one-eighth from map facing p. M of Markham 

tie's Description de FErnp-ire de Chine 
.amas' survey as adjusted by Father 
above, which sections are three times 
blowing- note by the translator; 
rected and improved by the Missionaries 
al observations, ... the Missionaries have 
as Adjusted the Situation of the Country 
China, whose Latitudes were observ'd, according to P. P. Dorville 
it the Map differs from their observations 
h & West of Mount Kentais, where the 
d down from Report of the Natives. 
. pp. 38t, 886) from the account sent 
many versions of the story [70] ; 
Kegis because 

rvation, and... the Distances were not 

mathematical Academy. ... They were 
L n !7^ fr T S '- nin S--}°L as a, the Grand 

's Narrative of the Mission „/ a e „ ge 

s^itm^ir: x%o„?d°thSr re r sed in s u ^ by «*■ *« * '«* 

a Map of a„ Tibet , mo^St^^^SS "» «"■*" *• *»*. 
of TTbetT Tartars 4 fromT fe ^ *"* " ^ «"» «" »» *™*» 

empfoyed^raSn^Mfp of S T ta ° S ™* *-*■ The two ^ 
escaped the Fate of theif Brethren But a sTe ^V^f^ **** narrowly 
were obliged to content the™, • 7 ™ ere humed b y this Accident, thev 

round the'sourceoftte^r with 'su^ ^r^"" 3 ^^ to the Countriel 
Pagoda could afford them and w" h what ?u° Z™ ^ IaWaS " the ^^bouring 

found at the Grand io W s at i^ 7 d "*""" ^ "" HiSt ° riCal A «»«^ 

i-J^ZtZz^zirj?^: 1 ^ Mountain *"*•■■■ ■ k «■»*« «* 

courI he for a Th u^erTartf * bT > "" ^ ^ ^ ™ ld ^^ 
couid make J thf intorXon ^iT ^2°?!?™^' *«>.»' .*£ 



HIMiLAYA MOUNTAINS; Jesuit Missionaries — Lama Survey of Tibet, 1712-7 — 
Sources of the Ganges & Gogra - Bogle & Tuner, 1774-84 -Nepal -The Snowy 
Range — ASSAM: The Brahmaputra — Welsh's "Expedition, 1/92-4— 1 he Eastern 
Frontier — BURMA. 

IN describing the boundaries of " Tndostan " Orme writes, 
Mount Caucasus forms its barrier to the north, separating it from the various nations 
of Tartars, from the great and little Thibet. From mount Caucasus to Oiittigan, marshes 
and rivers' divide it from the kingdoms of Tepral, Assam, and Aracan 2 . 
In this chapter we tell of the early efforts to explore these barriers and the 
countries that lay beyond. 

Ptolemy [207] shows the Caucasus, Mons Imaus, and Emodi Montes, stretching 
as a continuous barrier along parallel 38°, and the ideas of geographers of the 16th 
and 17th centuries may be seen in plates 11 and 16. 
Marshall writes in 1670 [17 n. 6], 

The- Morula Neopoll and Botton Mils' are inTartary and the last of which are called 
Nettee Cuttee which are Caucasus hills. All are out of the great Mogull's Dominions*. 

The name Caucasus was given to the whole range because it was considered 
properly a continuation of the great Caucasus, which stretches from the ancient Media and 
the shores of the Caspian sea, round the north-east frontiers of Persia, to Candahar and 
Cassimire, and thence, continuing its course more easterly, forms the great northern barrier 
to the various provinces of the Mogol Empire, and ends, as we have reason to believe, m 
Assam or China ■'. . 

Wilford, writing at the end of the 18th century, applies the name to the present 
Hindu Kusli , recording' that this . . 

country- which very much resembles the valleys of Cashmir, and Nepal, is mentioned m the 
Aveen Akbery [ 133 n 3 ] ■ It must not however be confounded with the famous country 
otCmh-gharl or Cmimr to the eastward of Sama r cani...The original country ol Chases 
seems to have been the present country Cash-gar, to the north-east of Cabul . hence Ptolemy 
with great propriety, asserts, that the mountains to the north-east of Cabul, are the real 
Caucasus. ... The capital city of Cashmr is called CMtmuP, ...and is the place of residence 
of a netty Mahometan prince ,J . 

The mountains presented a formidable barrier to all knowledge, and it was not 
until the 17th century that the first Jesuit missionaries made their adventurous jour- 
neys, endeavouring to establish mission posts in these inhospitable regions, and 
Beading bach accounts of their travels, and descriptions of the mountains, country, 
and people. They did not mate their journeys for the sake of exploration or 
geography, hut to carry the Gospel into the far lands 10 . 

The French geographers of the Sanson family [209] were the first to map the 
information sent home by the missionaries " but ", writes Martham, 
Guillaume Delisle, was the first to publish a map of Tibet. ... His map of Central Asia 
of 1706 [209] contains many details, published for the first time, which must have beer, 
obtained from the Jesuit missionaries. ... Delisle obtained much information, but he had 
no precise knowledge respecting relative positions, so that his map is very confused. Bor 
instance, Tibet and Utsang 11 are inserted at a distance from each other, as if they were 
different places l3 . 

'Tippera or Tripura; 79 I.M. -Orme, 1(2). >Mm-ang, Nepil Bhutan 'John Marshall (163) 
s Stewart (188). '3SIM-42DH '39'28'N; 76° E. 'CMtral, SSM/13. 'Paper entitled On Mmnt 
Caucasus. As B. VI. 1792 (455-7 ). '"The earlier judgments on their reports did them scant justice ». 
Stewart ( 18S ). ll Central, or Great. Tibet, l2 Cl'enients Marfcham ( cxxvm-rx ). 



Beyond the Barriers 

The following Is a brief summary of the travel, „# « 
the pnncrpal contributions they made tc TgeoZpt lotl* ™ 1 ? d ?» ari ^ ™<J of 
and observations l . (feo^iapny through then- journals, letters 

We have already told of Father Monserrate »t +1, 
the map of his travels [ pL 10 ] oert ain v "f l " ° 0Urt of AH > a r [u] In 

^es --yfaivrepreseUtionSteteoffe ™ t ° ^"l * ^ '> 
upper Indus and Punjab rivers, and show Lake M™ 'row' ^ ^ C ° m ' SeS of the 

He first saw the mountain, f,-™ n f ruanasarowar 3 . 

Mount Imaus, whrch Tcalte ple ° a Tl Cum ° f ^^ 

—ion that would account for the curious position assif , led to tfe ^ ^ 

^^r^Ttr*^^^^' wllicl1 was then 

Peshawar, Jelalabad and Kabul to tSc nd • Jro^T^f With tradin §' «»«W, by 
Tarlcand through Turfia. to 8 ^™^°^^^ed Hioto., thenfaS 
cu 8I vely that Cathay w but another „anef Ch, m ^ ha ™ e P™" 3 c ™" 
t fi! ath by tlle IocaJ People, and h s dra.w tor Hls Property was looted 

I" 1624 Antonio deAudrade' travelled f ,r . tori1 °P™ and mutilated*, 
over the Mana Pass, to ^C he sZt £*> ^ ^'^ Garf ™>> 
to Tsaparang the followino ve a ,- It,, ? 3 > nd bact to Ao-ra. He retornJ 
there till ijb, when KM^f^T f^ <=Wh, andlSy el 
had to withdraw^. as OT eithrown by the Ladathis and he 

of Lahul and Eulu returned to Agra e ai ty 1^6 J f' °" *° ^ ™ d the " *T *V 

BeZin ml™ 6 t0 ^ ^ * «° *>«■ - begin with hi s startfrom 

On the 23rd of September we tom-rWli h„ 
^yf^^ e ,v t Uch^re^^^f^ r ^'l''^^to^»i S T I het. We went bv 
October, and in the course of a few d£ aeTed^W of tn^ """ » «*» ^ - 

the Caucasus is a IonK ramre crms;.fl„ , the Caucasus. 

cros S1 ng one mountain you J££T^Sgg**r£>* •* ">% fountains. Aft ei 
higher than either of the two former cZ raS ttfjZi^* " ™ tal1 deeded by a ttM 
you reach the highest of all, namely Per PanSl^ ***" y ™ S the **« 7°* Smb. t¥i 

twelveryXtr^: gSS^^^ ?~« ^ «"' - «~ We too k . 
■mpetuous torrents, which ta£Z^£^£*?f* Ws - ™» -credible difficuity 

STth t T ks and bonMers ' • snow ' dash down Wlth * tre ™ 

^H^^^^-S^ltaf^-ri; Tta en °™ S *»»** of snow 
there for SI x months. ... cutely closes up the passes, obliged us to re™? 

We had left Kashmir on the 17th „f M 

and entered Tibet. Much ^wSS^^ f*-™ =™sea the mountain 

,ave room for the '££Z U 2ZZ SSSSfflffj 5 ^- ^t 

the Latin of cCSS$„ "^S^S—"" b/w&orf "11° Vm' x^S * 0te ?-fe 
to Goa, d. 19^3-1634 stGoa orl\ T essels 10-39). "b 15S0 ,t ™- ? 10 Ni 80 ' E - 

Agra; d.12-8-1660, at Goa. "We™ Is t-U^mV' 
i». "Pn- Panjfd, 43 Ki hig Ct poVt l^'jf 14 ^ 1733 - »* »-«- 

Jesuit Missionaries 


deafening noise against the rocks as to appal the stoutest traveller. ... [reached Ladak June 
25th]. ..We lelt Ladak on the 17th of August 1715 K ... 

Finally, two years and four months after I left Goa, and one year and a half since our de- 
parture from Deity, and ten whole months since leaving Kascimir, we arrived by the grace of 
God, on the iSth day of March 1716, at the city of Lhasa'-. 

The full MS. narrative of Desideri's journey was not discovered until 1S75, and 
was published in Italian 29 years later. An English translation was published in 
1932 3 , and once more we find that most valuable contributions to geography had 
been lost to the 18th century. Among those pointed out by De Mlippi are the 

We find the first hint of the sacred mountain Kailas, of Lake Manasarowar, of the great 
valley of the Tsang-po, of Baltistan, and news also of Ladak. 

Desideri . . . states unequivocally that Southern Tibet is traversed through its whole exten- 
sion from east to west by a single great river, which he identifies in a manner which leaves 
no room for doubt with the upper flow of the Brahmaputra— a remarkable affirmation at that 
date, when one thinks of the long controversy on that subject that was only settled at the 
beginning of the present century 4 [78-80]. 

Desideri described the extent and boundaries of Tibet, and placed the latitude of 
Lhasa at 29° 6', as compared with its true of 29° 39' 16"; he stayed in or near Lhasa 
until "in 1721 he received instructions that the mission field of Tibet was to be 
surrendered to the Capuchins, and he left on April 25th 1721", returning to India 
by way of Nepal 5 . 

Turning now to the east, we find that two of these devoted missionaries had 
entered Tibet from Assam and Bhutan nearly 90 years before Desideri's great jour- 
ney through Kashmir. 

On August 2nd 1626 Stephen Caeella and John Cabral left Hooghly, and 
travelling through Dacca reached Azo 7 [pi. 13], the capital of Lower Assam, on 
September, 26th and Biar [Cooch Belmr] on October 21st 8 . 

Leaving Biar on February 2nd 1627 they reached Paro in Bhutan on March 25th. 
They were here received in a most friendly manner, and it was with some difficulty 
that they were able to leave and continue their way into Tibet. Cabral reached 
Shigatse 3 in January the following year, and after Cacella's arrival returned by him- 
self through Nepal to Hooghly. Caeella remained behind and after a visit to Bhutan 
died at Shigatse in 1630. Cabral made another journey to Shigatse and back to 
Hooghly during 1631-2 10 . It will be noted that Caeella and Cabral were making 
their visits to Shigatse at about the same time that Andrade and Azevedo were 
travelling in the Sutlej valley and Ladak. 

And now we come to our last two figures in this romantic epoch, Johann G-rueber u 
and Albert d'Orville ll , both members of the band of Jesuit missionaries working in 
China, of which we shall have more to say shortly [ 70 ] . Beceiving a summons to 
Rome, and being unable to travel by sea because of war with Holland, Grueber was 
ordered to find a route overland. 

With d'Orville as companion, he set out from Pekin on April loth 1661, and 
travelling through Siningf u Is they reached Lhasa on October 8th, the first Euro- 
peans, with one doubtful exception, to visit that holy city. Crossing the Kampa 
La they reached Katmandu in January, and passing 'through Motlhari and Patna 
reached Agra in March 1662, where d'Orville died the following month. The only 
account of this journey that was ever published was written up from their letters, 
and gave the values of the latitudes observed [ 1 49 ] u . 

After d'Orville's death Grueber continued his overland journey to Italy, travel- 
ling through Makran, Persia, and Asia Minor. His full journal/which would have 
been of thrilling interest to geographers, has never been found u . 

,, -a ' Translati ™ of letter from Llifisa, 10-4-16; Clements Markhaai (302). "De FiKppi (90). :l ib. 
(lojetseo). 'ib. (36, 48). 5 ib. (108). «b. 1585, at Aviz, Portugal SJ. 1614; to In.liiieJ I ; .1. 6-3-30. 
atbmgatse. 'Hajo, 78 N/7. s b. 1599, at Celorico, Portugal; SJ. 1615; to India ,1614. "77 0/15. 
Wessels (lb2) "h. 1623 at T,inz onDarmbe; SJ. 1641 d. 16S0. > s b. August 1621, at Brussels; S.J. 
1Mb: with l.onebev from Europe 1656 to Goao 1658 to JIacao; 1660 to Pckin; d. S-4-62 at A"-] 
36 IN: 101 45 E. "Clements Marklmn, (295 -302), Wessels (166-203): of. HE. Journ 
'■'Cien-etits Miii'khatp (ivii). 

i-md. Sept. 1923. (355a.). 


Beyond the Barriers 

Further knowledge of Tibet was acquired from the Cannot,',, ,„;-■ 
reached Lhasa in 1719 by way of Necal and who I V £ missionaries, who 

Horace della Penna". He mates reference to he t Tr ™ e ™ tten ll P h 7 
on Gastaldi's map of 1561 [pi ,61 and th ° t?7f 5 ° f ^T'' Whk * "PP"™ 
from whose travels Gastaldi te 4 most of hti, fo w T't^l * Mai '°° Polo > 
Polo's contributions to geography were i deed ^ Sa " f ? r f e " traI Asia - Marco 
memory with the assistanee%fVfew ^mt%^%£?Xg? 

Lama Survey 01 Tibet. 1712-17 

plo^^^lnS^a^^t 1 ^ ^ to he based on systematic ex- 
home by the Jesuit Mission "S at PeS wlS r f maPS f^ "' Sent 

aesc^^dttt fS^^S" **» *¥* «« "1 

his fellow missionaries made systematic nstrZ ' i r ° Ugh sketeh es, he and 

It is said that in 1701 alone they Served <*""*«<»•- oyer a wide area. 

on the frontier of Thibet, .JS^t^H ^T^™ md brOT 8W them to Si-ning, 
In the same year...and in i 7 " t C m de a ™ D o'l ' e^ ^"^ *" ^^ te W 

Regis continued his work for the re™ oi nZ7 » p w0 ' tlm g Md Manchuria, 
companions to Mongolia, Formosa the new man „ s "f^ i™^' ° r Smdin « Ws J- uit 

srsss t exteiided to ^etT; ^;™^ leted on January ist ws - 
ss-t: Peki - — - * ^^ttrs«££ri-.£ 


ordered to draw maps of the count^ o the Great C"a ! I** S —^ "*° were 
the maps . . . were handed to the Tesnit Se4 Sth + a ■' ^ ^ retUm to CMna in *7". 

the existmg maps of the other Chinese^ymTes Ct '° n *° *"" *» to th <= «!• * 

-^r^^rr^r 81 ^^ n- * e - d — a «. ^h^ to the academy founded by Inlthr^ " °"f? Mlected U *° L ™as who had been 
to draw accurate maps of t^ltlyVZ^t^TT^ ^ '" Tlbet "*" "ders 
far successful that they reached Lanka -Dhe Tthe «fl ff ^ *£? ex P edit ™ was so 
Lamas of a local monastery, that the Ganges had l« ^ '" They bamed from ««= 

they were able to take lat tndes of thfl S n\a nn gm " ^ Lake ' However - b <=fore 

the country. S °' the La °^-Dhe regum . . . the two Lamas had to flee from 

On their return to Pekin in „,- +w 
missionaries. These distrusted thc'worlf tat had ~T **««**. fc COmm »t *> «* 

Sis— -=^ 

a companion volume to Father du HaWeV fo pr ? ducec ' ils atla « of 42 maps, as 
la Chine .... ClU HaWe s fc«r-Tolume Description d e I'Empire de 

•- for MariTXtSvSf:: Eiy ( Sr^ 1 %**<&■■ a °™^ Ifcita. flW, 4 809 340) 

»• 1«* in Pa,, S! for s» m eXX^??SSS;S LS,« ; S^^ * ^ JS 

Lama. Survey oh Tibet 


A. portion of the Carte generate d% Tibet, ou Bout-tan.. . , dated April 1783, appears 
on plate 7. Other "cartes particulieres du Tibet" appear in the atlas which was 
published in Paris 1 , with the following 

Avertissement- Toutes les Cartes ayant ete mises au meme point et sous une projection 
generale, les originaux surent presentez a S.M.T.C. 3 par le P. du Halde tels qu'il les avoit recus 
des missionaires et se conservent dans la Bibliotheque du Roi. 

Avant que d'etre mises entre les mains des graveurs, elles ont passes par celles de M. 

E-ennell had no other authority for these regions, but records his distrust; 

We have the history of the Lamas' map in Du Halde, which is not altogether favourable 
to its character, especially in the parts towards the source of the Sanpoo & Ganges. A close 
examination of its particulars turns out still more unfavourable to it. For instance the 
place where the Ganges enters the plains of Hindoostan, is placed under the 28th degree of 
latitude, though it is known by our late observations to be in about 30 3 [pi. 6]. 

He was blamed by his contemporaries for not having- taken a stronger line and 
rejected the Lamas' map altogether, but his only alternative was to leave the area 
blank as he did in his final map of 1792 [pi. 8]. 


From the earliest times there had been speculation about the source of the 
Ganges, and it was natural that legends of mystery should be attached to the source of 
a river whose waters were endowed with such special sanctity. D'Anville writes that, 

According to Ptolemy, the ancients knew as little of it as of the origin of the Nile; ...We 
mistook for the head of the Ganges, a place inclosed between the mountains which separate 
India from Tibet, through which this river runs into India. According to... Terry, the Indians 
are of opinion that the waters ...rise in the province of Siba. ... The Persian historian of 
Timur 4 , conducting that conqueror as far as the entrance oi the Strait of Kupela 5 , ...says 
that 15 miles above this strait, there is a stone cut in the shape of a cow, from whence the 
Ganges springs 6 . 

The curiosity of the Emperor Akbar was intrigued by the legend, and towards 
the end of the 16th century he sent a special mission of exploration, which penetra- 
ted to the neighbourhood of Gangotri ; 

On s'avanca toujours du cote du Nord, & plus on approchoit de la source, plus le lit du 
fleuve s'etrecissoit. On traversa des forets inhabitees, oil il fallut se faire des chemins nou- 
veaux. Enfin on arriva a une haute montagne, qui sembloit taillee par l'art en forme d'une 
£gte de vache. De la coule une grande abondance d'eaux, qui semblerent aux Deputes etre 
la premiere origine du Gange. On ne penetra pas plus avant. On revint apres avoir coum 
de grands dangers, faire a l'Empereur le rapport du voyage. La Relation des Deputes fit in- 
seree dans la Chronique'. 

It was some years after this journey that Terry 8 wrote in 1655 describing 
Hardware, where the famous river Ganges, passing through or amongst large rocks, makes 
presently after a pretty full current; but both this and that other great river Indus have their 
rise & original out of the mountain Caucasus, from whence they both first issue. 

That principal rock, through which this river Ganges there makes a current, is indeed, or 
(if not), according to the fancy of the superstitious Indians, like a Cow's Head, which of all 
sensible creatures they love best 9 . 

Father Desideri who passed close under Mount Kailas 10 on his march from Ladak 
to Lhasa in 1715-16 [67-9] noted that this seemed to he the source of the Indus 
and the water parting between east and west; 

It seems that the above mentioned mountain Ngnari Giogar must be regarded as the 
fountain head not only of the river Ganges, but also of the Indus. . . . Being the highest point 
of this region, the water drains off on two sides. To the west it flows through Second Tibet 
to Lesser Tibet until it reaches the Mountains of Csscimir, and finally, near Lesser Guzerat 11 

1 Nouvelle Atlas de la Chine ... . et du Thibet... Paris, 1735; 1737. 10. Maps, II, AC. 35. English, 
edn. London 1738. 2 vol. 2 Sa Majeste tres chretienne. B Me,moir, 1793 (300). 4 S chare seddin, 
15th Century; Bernoulli, II (281). 6 The george above Rikikesh, 15 miles above Hardwar. "Herbert 
(21 ) "Quoted from Manouchi, Bernoulli, II (282-3). s Chaplain to Sir Thomas Roe "lord ambassador 
to the Great Mogul" ; Terry & William Poster. fl Terry (74). "Height 22,028 ft., 62 E/S. "Gnjrit, 
Punjab, 43 L'2; distinguished from Gujarat, Bombay, 46 B ; actually, the Indus flows about 150 m. west 
of Gujrat. 

72 Beyond the Barriers 

forms the navigable river Indus. On the eastern side, another large body of water flows into 
lake Retoa and eventually forms the river Ganges 1 . 

But Desideri's report did not reach D'Anville or Rennell who followed the Lamas' 
map, as D'Anville writes, 

We have learned that at the foot of the Kentaisse 2 mountains, the Ganges, formed by 
several springs, crosses successively two great lakes, and takes its course to the Westward, 
where meeting with a chain of mountains that obliges to turn to the Southward, and then 
winds itself between the East and South, till wholly directed towards the latter it enters 
India, which it cannot do but by opening itself a passage between the mountains. . . . This dis- 
covery has added to the Ganges about 200 leagues 3 . 

Wilford explains that, 

It is one of the Southern peaks of Mount Canlaiseh, which, rising behind the subordinate 
peak of Kyemlung, is considered by pilgrims as the source of the Ganges. There ended the 
survey of the Lama mathematicians, and the countries to the South and South West were 
added afterwards, from the report of natives 4 . 

D'Anville made slight modifications which Eennell accepted and wrote, 

In placing the heads of the Ganges and Sanpoo rivers, I have followed M. D'Anville's cor- 
rection of the Lamas' map in Du Halde, . . . and have continued the course of the Ganges to the 
place where it enters Hindoostan, from the same map. I have said before, that I consider 
thus part of the Lamas' map as a very vague performance; but the want of better materials 
obliges me to make use of it. I suspect that the Ganges does not take quite so wide a circuit 
to the northwest, as is there described 5 [71]. 

Duperron on the other hand was emphatic in his scorn and justly remarks, 

Sans peut-etre en avoir de meilleurs, M. Rennell ne peut plus employer des Materiaux 
dont on connoit maintenant le defectueux 6 ... 

whilst Hodgson, in 1821, overlooking perhaps the doubts that Eennell expressed, 
wrote that 

in some few instances he failed, particularly in his conjectures respecting the [upper?] part 
of the course and the source of the Ganges 7 . 

In 1786 the publication by Bernoulli of the maps and writings of Father 
Tieffenthaler brought fresh information from a new and apparently trustworthy 
source 8 . Anquetil-Duperron had compiled Tieffenthaler's maps into a general 
map [12] which he published with notes of his own in 1784; learning thus of 
Tieffenthaler's work, Bernoulli 9 , then a professor in Berlin, obtained his Descripiio 
India! from Denmark, and published a translation, to which he added, in two further 
volumes, an expanded edition of Duperron's treatise, and a translation of Bennell's 
Memoir 10 [214]. 

He included Duperron's general map with large-scale insets shewing the sources 
of the Ganges and Gogra as sketched by Tieffenthaler from native information. 
These place the famous Cow's Mouth at Gangotri about 3 degrees west and 8} 
degrees north from Hardwar (the correct distance being about 40' E. and 65' N.), 
though Tieffenthaler observes that, "La vraie source du Gauge est inconnue, & elle 
ne sera jamais decouverte, parce qu'au dela de la bouche de la Taehe les chemins 
sont impractiquables "," a suggestion ridiculed by Duperron. 

In a sketch of the lakes "Mansaroar" and "Lanka Dhe 1! ", three rivers are shewn 
rising from the former ; against that flowing to the east Tieffenthaler notes, 

On dit que le Brahmapoutren qui va a, Ascham et a Rangamati, sort de ce Lac [80, 209]. 
and against that flowing to the north-west 

On dit que le Satkradj qui va a Belaspour et a Lodiane, sort de ce Lac; mais cette asser- 
tion ne merite aucune croyance, car il est plus vraisemblable qu'il se jette dans l'Allaknanda 
qui arrose Badrinath et Sirinagar, ou dans une autre Riviere. 

The Gogra is shewn flowing from the "Lanka Dhe", with the notes, 

Le Sardjou sort de ce Lac. On appelle ce fleuve Sardjou tandis que e'est reellement le 
Gogra, a cause de Sardjou qui s'y jette a Pasca. 

1 DePiIippi(83-4> 'Kailas. 'Herbert (21 ). Us B. Vm, 1805 (323-3). 'Memoir 1783 (991 
•Bernoulli, II (491) 7 DDa . 196 (90); SG. to Govt. 1S-9-IS21. »Maclag a n notes that Tieffenthaler 

aiivcr quoted hi» authorities. Mean Bernoulli, b. 4-11-44, at Basle; a "rent a-trmoine, ■ ,1 ",07 ,, 
Berlin. "1785 Ecu,. "Bernoulli, II (279). "™ or Tso lUapham \ Lagan™ or Si, 62 

3 late 8 

The INDUS to the GANGES 
Rennell, 1792. 

Part of RennelJ's Map of the Countries situated between Delhi and Kandahdr, 1792, i 
faces p. 65 of his Memoir of a Map of Hindoostan, 1793. Scale 1 i inches to a degree. 

Rennell has received a new value for the position of Sirinagur, Garh 
and changed the course of the Ganges above Hardwar to conform [ 73 ] . 
He has now abandoned the Lamas' version of the Upper Ganges, but 

_ ?J-_ „!' IX.- _£ ii-_ T— J _i_\!_i_ -kT i— L_:i _t_ cinn _. 

Sources ot the Ganges & Gog-ha 73 

C'est par le recit des Voyageurs qui vont a ce Lac, qu'on connoit la source de ce fleuve; 
pour avoir quelque chose de plus certain, il faut d'autres recherches. 

Just above its exit from the "Camaoun Hills" the G-og'ra is shown passing 

through, the 

reservoir du Sardjou ou Kanar, que Ton bien appeler sa seconde source ; ici il est nomme 

Kanar; ailleurs Sardjou; ailleurs Gagra et Devha... 

and nearlv 50 miles lower the river passes through the "Cataracte du Kanar 1 ". 

Bernoulli's publication reached Rennell in time for Tieffenthaler's work to be 
incorporated into his map of 1788 [pi. 6 ], and here again he was misled, wrongly 
assuming that Tieffenthaler had visited G-angotri himself, though Duperron had 
been emphatic that he had never done so, but had trusted to " des renseignmens 
qui lui ont ete donne par les gens du pays 3 ". In his new Memoir Eeunell discusses 
at length all the evidence now available regarding the source of the Ganges, conclud- 
ing with this magnificent picture; 

To sum up the whole information, collected from different accounts of the upper part of the 
course of the Ganges, it appears that the two branches of it, which spring from the western 
side of Mt. Kentaisse, take course westward, inclining considerably to the north, for a course 
of about 300 miles; ...when, meeting the great chain... of Mount Himmaleh, which extends from 
Cabul along the north of Hindoostan, . . . the rivers are compelled to turn to the south; in which: 
course they unite their waters, and form what is properly termed the river Ganges. This 
great body of water now forces a passage through the ridge of Mount Himmaleh ... and sapping 
its very foundations, rushes through a cavern, and precipitates itself into a vast bason which 
it has worn in the rock, at the hither foot of the mountains. ... From this second source.. .its 
course becomes more easterly than before, through the rugged country of Sirinagur s ; until, at 
Hardwar, it finally escapes from the mountainous tract, in which it has wandered for about 
800 B. miles' 1 . 

Five years later he dropped the Lamas' course altogether and corrected his map 
immediately above Hardwar [pi. 8]; 

I find that I was misled by the map of the Ganges, made from the materials furnished by 
the late M. Tieff entailer; having placed the town of Sriuagur ...on the north of Hurdwar; 
whereas it appears by the observations of some English gentlemen, 1789... to lie nearly 
to the ENE. of Hardwar. The position of Srinagur is at present established, ...on the 
authority of Capt. John Guthrie 5 who visited it in 1789, ...ascertained by a compass and 
perambulator. Mr. Daniel... also visited Srinagur the same year, and he gives nearly the same 

Some geographical information concerning the upper part of the course of the Ganges and 
its principal branches, appears at the foot of a ... beautiful sketch ... drawn by Mr. Daniel; ...the 
Alucknundra 6 river, which passes under Sirinagur is made perfectly distinct from the Bagh- 
retty; ...Mr. Daniel's sketch shows it as a branch which separates Iromthe Baghretty 7 below 
the cow's mouth, and rejoins it below Sirinagur 3 [pi. 6, 8]. 

The Lamas' version of the sources of the Granges was last reproduced in Arrow- 
smith's Map of India published in 1804, and a full review of the misconceptions 
that had so long prevailed was written by Henry Golebrooke [77 n. 3] in 1809, and 
published in Asiatic Researches '\ 

Bogm & Turner, 1774-84 

As early as 1768 the Directors had expressed a wish for intercourse and trade 
with Tibet and the countries to the north 10 , and they repeated this desire in 1771 ; 

It having been represented to us that the Company may be greatly benefited in the sale 
of Broadcloth, Iron, Copper, Lead, and other European commodities by sending proper persons 
to reside at Enngpore, and to explore the interior parts of Butan, Assam, and other countries 
adjacent to Gaulparah; and as you well know our earnest wish to extend the vend of the 

'Sotesonmapiit end of Bernoulli, II. -Bernoulli. II (282), 3 Srinag'ar, 53 J/16. 4 Memoir, 1788 
(233). An interesting review of this whole subject appeared in Critical Re-searches in Philology § Geo- 
graphy, vilasco-w-, 1824, which is reviewed in As J. XVII, May 1824 (512). 5 Account of Gtrthrie's visit 
with Thomas Daniel, & his nephew William, the artists; Ben. P $ P. XLIX (9). ^Alakna.tula, S3K, 
' Bhnglrathh 53 J. "Memoir. 1793 (3fiS). 9 AsE. XI, 1810 (429-455). 10 CDto B. 16-3-6S; HMS. 
356 (185). 


' Beyond the Bakriers 

north of Cooch Behar=, and on receiving a letter from 1 Teshn T" 7 I*" 1 *™' 
on behalf of the Bhutanese, Warren Hasting tonwL I -P f a mtel ' oedln e 

Bogle on a mission of goodwill to Tibeta 8 *"" °PP Mtamt r *° ^nd George 

ge^SX™ CMe% COnCei ™ d "** «> «>ut two items refer to 

aoeonnt of an interview with the Teshu Lama oT^y mh 775 Te L£ ^ 

That I was exceedingly concerned thatGesnb still continued to rrnarine that T ' 

with a design of making an unfriendly account of this Wnrfom ttat iTL t l™ S l"" 16 
surveying or war- that Mr WamilMr, ,„h„ u "' b ""Soonl , that i knew nothing about 

country £ Tibet, the Gosa^, when d^n dX Zl^™ Z f^ T" " * *» 

me a map of Tibet from ladak "the ton i r of China' I JT"" " P ° n ?"' ° fimd *° give 
distances. This was a solendid „ Jo * , 7 ? ' he names of P laces and their 

lustre on my commission" " I reprLT' in"the 1m "t t ^T^ ™ Ud ^ ™ h 
Lama for his kind offer, that the situation „f the c^untrv its't T^ f *"***« the 

of ^pSXt i2SSr&-32?^ ^3* «• on,y information 

river throngh Vn^ t r S h g s^ \?Zr c ™r e cUh ' ^' ^ ^ B ^» 
"Desheripgay", the residence of the tII t ossec ' tue Tsang-po and, reaching 

there five months n ° f the Teshu Lama ' on November 12th 1774, stayed 

Mr. Bogle divides the territories nf eht rfi t >- »0 ], records that, 

hesimmedfately contiguous to Z t ^ r "t "^ * diSerent parts - ^ which 
and the other, which Senas to a^'tb , T ^ W the n3me of Bo " ta " l=3». 5 ]; 
natives Pu, he styles Thibet B n ° rth ™ rd as *« « «» frontiers of Tartary, called by the 

acWM^'L'tLc^Son 77V7 T^^ *° ^ tUs time * 
Warren Hastings, ^ S^tet^h^ ^ tt ^^ " ^ ° f 
and Bobert Saunders as medical Ttte7dsnV f T Vn ?T Da ™ as surre J»'- 
Bhutan turning aside to risft Punata the eL'i al' b' B °S' le ' s ™' te «™^« 
cion on account of his prof essionTnTwt nTa Left™ ^fuX^ V"^ 
pnbhshed an account of his mission in 1800 which ;"i i, , , ?', TlIrnei ' 

Davis made in Bhutan, as well as a Ip rf nrT route" wh tt! fetches which 
the snowy peaks were quoted by Sir William Jont r'nfi AfrTTb * -^ ^ 
17W-84, there was no further o'fficia, intercou^it^ilt We^00~ * 

'li-b^&^^I'-oJeS^^^X^J^r^^H^ s Stewa rt a 89 ) 

Bogle & Turner 


Iii 1786 the Directors wrote out to ask for copies of a ''Plan of tlie Thibet 
Mountains" and of a "View of Thibet or Bhutan"; apparently in response to this 
request, the Surveyor General sent home in 1792 a "Plan— The High Mountains of 
Thibet and- those between Nepcml and the low Countries " l ; this has not been found and 
nothing is known of its authorship. 


We have noticed that various missionaries had travelled through Nepal during 
the 16th and 17th centuries [69-70], and after they had penetrated to Lhasa, the 
Capuchin mission established headquarters at Bettiah in 1745 K Rennell acknow- 
ledges an itinerary, with distances, taken from Father Giorgi's 3 record of the 
mission, but adds "we are almost entirely in the dark as to the particular direc- 
tion. .. 4 '\ Tor his maps of 1774 he took 

the course of the Gunduck River beyond Soupour", and all the places beyond the Bettiah 
Hills, from a MS. Map made by the Jesuits in Nepaul . 

There were two official missions sent to Nepal by the Government of Bengal 
during the 18th century. The first was an expedition under Captain Kinloch made 
in 1767, to assist the Raja of Nepal in his defence of Katmandu against the Raja 
of Gorkha. 

Kinloch marched a small force of 4 companies of sepoys from Patna through 
Janakpur, but was held up by a thousand difficulties, and but for knowledge gained 
of a small portion of the frontier, and the extension of the Company's influence, 
nothing was accomplished. Kinloch sent maps to the Governor ; 

I send you his present attack of Cuttmandro & Paton, by which the terrible situation of 
Jay Percass [Raja of Nepal] may be easily seen, notwithstanding the Rudeness of the Work, 
which indeed is neither Plan, Perspective, or Profile, and altogether out of proportion. It 
is done by Mactah "Under, the man who did the Map which was sent to you 7 . 

In recommending that Kinloch should be allowed to make a second advance, the 
Chief at Patna wrote in February 1768, 

The knowledge Capt. Kinloch has obtained of that part of the Country, which was before 
so little known, will be a means of not subjecting him to so many difficulties as he before met 
with... 6 
and again, 

I have delivered to the President some Plans Capt. Kinloch has sent me down, shewing 
the Rout he intends to take 9 . 

Robert Kyd made a sketch of Kinloch's route "to Seedly & Harriorpour ", beyond 
the Nepal border 10 . 

In 1792 the Gurkhas appealed to Calcutta for help in a war against Tibet; 
military aid was refused, but a mission under William Kirkpatrick was sent to offer 
mediation. Starting in February from Muniariup the Baghmati River, it reached 
Katmandu after the trouble had been settled, and returned at once, travelling down 
the Rapti, and reaching Sagauli 11 on the Gandak in April. 

A survey of the route 1 * was kept by John Gerard, one of the officers of the escort, 
and compiled into the map which was published with Kirkpatrick's account of the 

The original of the accompanying map is the performance of Lieut. Gerard.. .who has 
also the merit of having taken considerable pains in the course of our journey to ascertain 
with exactness the relative position of places; a task which was rendered the more laborious 
by the circumspection with which he was obliged to use the compass. As the use of the 
perambulator was entirely out of the question; and as, owing perhaps to the nature of the 
country, we did not find the pedometer answer, we had no other means of measuring the 
distances but by the watch. No doubt this was a very inaccurate method, but we endeavour- 

^PC. Feb. 1192. -O'Malley (156). :! b. 1711, near Rimini, Italy; an Angnstin Friar; Author 

of Alphaheiirm TihitaHum-. -'Memoir, 1193 (303). "Probably Salempur, on the Nepal border. 63 N71... 
i; IO. Maps. I.AC. 13. ; BSC. 21-1-61. 3 BSC. 10-2-68. 3 ib. 16-2-68. m For all these places v. pi. 14, 
"72 B/9. "MRIO. S9 (20 & possibly 22-3). 



Betond the Barriers 

ed to correct it, in some degree, by comparing notes after each day's journey; and by 
paying due regard, in our computations, to the varieties of the road with respect to ruggedness 
or facility. Accordingly we have allowed, in different situations, from two to four miles per 
hour though it was very rarely indeed after entering the Nepaul territories, that we proceeded 
at the latter rate. ... It is much to be regretted that we were not able to fix the situation 
of a few points, at least, of our route by observations of the latitude and longitude. ... We 
were not absolutely without the means of accomplishing the former of these interesting 
obiects, but as we did not sufficiently understand the management of the astronomical 
quadrant, ...we were too ill satisfied ourselves with the results of our operations to think 
them entitled to any confidence 1 . 

The Snowy Range 

Without going back to the days of Alexander the Great, we will now record the 
•comments made by some of the early surveyors and other travellers on their first 
sight of the snowy peaks of the Himalaya. We have already noticed the first 
impressions of Father Monserrate in 1581 [68], and the awe which Father 
Besideri felt when passing through the mountains into Kashmir and oyer to the 
Indus valley [68-9], which contrast with the restraint of the surveyor (probably 
Bruce) with the first Eohilla compaign of 1774, who indicated the foothills ^vith a 
simple line of conventional hills, with a further conventional line marked "Moun- 
tains covered with snow 3 ". 

Marshall writes in 1670 [67], 

About Morung [pi. 14b which is a great place, are very high hills which upon the 31 July 
1671 I see, being at Singhee 3 about 8 Course 4 North from Patna. ... They ly directly North" 
from hence and seeme a vaster distance of [sic] than any object my eyees ever beheld. I see 
them before Sunrise about 2 minutes of an houre, when I could see the sun shine upon the 
tops of them, which hills seemed about \ degree above the horizon. These people, when they 
go thither, they go first to Neopoll and "some days journey beyond pass over vast valleys 
before come to these hills. They go to Botton for Musk, that being the chiefest place where 
the Musk-deer are. Travelling over the Neopoll hills requires 24 or 25 days time, which being 
up most vast hills and down vast valleys, the way in a straight line may not be much, and 
considering the crookedness of the way passing through vast woods etc., and going by Neopoll 
to Botton, which is out of the way, lying about 1 point of the Compass East of it, and then 
considering that they come to these hills 4 or 5 days before come to Botton. ... I reckon that 
the reall distance of these hills from hence may bee in a straight line about 140 Course, 
which at i\ mile per Course, make 315 English miles. 

Several Arminians and Jesuits which have come from them parts, which come from China, 
and have travelled the most Countries in the World, say that these Botton hills are the high- 
est hills they ever see or heard of 6 . 

Bennell saves his emotion for the view of the plains looking back from the hills 
of the Buxa Duars, 

The southernmost ridge of the Bootan mountains rises nearly a mile and a half perpendi- 
cular above the plains of Bengal in a horizontal distance of only 15 miles, and the astonished 
traveller looks back on the plains, as on an extensive ocean beneath him?. 

He considered the mountains as outside his province, being beyond the frontiers 
of Bengal, but plate 5 shows that he sketched them in where he could, and 
intersected occasional prominent peaks ; for example, one to the north of Buxa Duar 
bears the note, "This sharp mountain is seenfrom Chilmari, Pumeah, etc.", and he 
notes generally that 

the Situation of different Peaks in the chain of mountains covered with snow were ascertained 
by good bases, many parts of it being distinctly seen at distance of 60 miles from the foot of 
the first chain 8 . 

He was definitely impressed by their height but attempted no estimate ; 
They are among the highest of the mountains of the old hemisphere. I was not able to 
determine their height; but it may in some measure be guessed, by the circumstance of their 

'E;irkpatrick(5-7). ! HMS. Vol.221. ' Singhiya, 72 G/l. 
"John Marshall (137-8, 162). 7Qj. Bm. VI, 1811 (303). «IO. I 

coss. s " SE. by 5. & NHE." r>. 137. 
I, I.AC. 13. 

The Snows: Range 77 

rising considerably above the horizon, when viewed from the plains of Bengal, at the distance 
•of 150 miles 1 [23], 
and again. 

I suppose them to be in point of elevation equal to any of the mountains of the old 
hemisphere. Indeed the country of Thibet is altogether one of the highest in Asia; it being 
a part of that high elevated tract which gives rise not only to the rivers of India and China, 
hut to those also of Siberia and Tartary. . . . 3 

This lack of inquisitive ness puzzled Henry Colebrooke s , who points out that, 

Travellers through Bhutan into Tibet had enabled him to determine, with considerable 

accuracy, the geographical position of some of the peaks, and establish the important fact that 

the snowy range was removed by a vast tract of hill country from the plains *, 

Sir William Jones, founder of the Asiatic Society of Bengal, was quick to 

-appreciate the immense height of the peaks, which he saw about a year after his 

arrival in India; he writes, 

Just after sun-set, on the 5th of October 1784, I had a distinct view from Bhagilpoor 5 of 
Chumalury peak, and the adjoining mountains of Tibet, which are very clearly seen from 
Perneia^, and were perfectly recollected by a learned member of our society [Samuel Turner], 
one of the latest travellers to that interesting country, who had obligingly communicated to 
me a correct note of the bearings and courses observed in his journey from Rengpur 7 to 
Tassisudden, and thence through Paradgong to Chumalury 8 . . . . From the most accurate calcu- 
lations that I could make, the horizontal distance at which it was distinctly visible must be at 
least 244 British miles. ... 

By an observation of Mr. Davis [74] at Rengpur, and another at Tassissudden, the 
difference of latitude between the place last mentioned and Bhagilpoor, is 163 geographical 
or 188 and a fraction British miles ; now although the road from Buxadewar in Butan, the 
latitude of which was found to be 26 53', consisted of rough mountains and deep valleys, yet 
the way between Paradong and Chumalary, especially from... the frontier of Tibet, was very 
level; and the accuracy of our travellers gives us reason to believe, that their computed miles 
from Tassissudden were but little above the standard; so that having measured the northern 
sides of the two triangles, formed by their courses WNW. and NNW., we could not be far 
from the truth. . . , 

The mountains of Chumalury are the second or third ridge described in the Memoir'- 1 . 
The Major justly considers the mountains of Himola, for so they are named by the natives 
from a word signifying snow, as equal in elevation to any in the old hemisphere ; and an obser- 
vation of Mr. Saunders [ 74 ] at Perneia, added to a remark of Mr. Smith 10 on the appearance 
of Chumalury from Moreng, gives abundant reason to think, that we saw from Bhagilpoor, 
the highest mountains in the world, without excepting the Andes 11 . 

Henry Colebrooke became a great enthusiast on the subject of the height of the 
snowy peaks; 

His attention was first drawn to this question during his residence at Purnea ( 1789-93 ), 
from which station there is a fine view of the majestic range 150 miles distant 1 -. 
He was the first to attempt to decide the height of the range by observation, 
and found that an estimated distance of 150 English miles, with elevation of 1° 1', 
gave a height of 26,000 feet; he was transferred from Purnea before he could 
conclude his observations. 

Reuben Burrow, during his visit to Groalparain 1788 [159], measured a base and 
fixed all the peaks of the Bhutan mountains that he could, taking panorama sketches, 
and on his journey to Hardwar took observations to the _Kumaun Hills 18 [ 161 ], 

There are at least two ranges of hills ( but I suspect many more ) ; it is the farthest and 
highest range that is called the Almorah Hills; ... I could not get the name of the nearest 
range of hills 14 . 

When he got to Hardwar he took observations to all the peaks he could see 
from the top of the hills near "Chandyghaut". 

In 1796 Thomas Hardwicke, the botanist, visited Hardwar, and travelled up the 
G-anges as far as Srinagar 15 [ pis. 6,8 ] , making a plot of his route and of the course 
of the river; and leaving vivid descriptions of the country; 

/noo . l Memoir, 1788 (256n). 2 ib. 1793 (302). 3 lst Cousin of Robert Colebrooke [ qv. ]. 'Colebrooke 
i^'-%, AsE ^ XUt 181S <^ 5 -6)- 5 Bhagalpur. 72 K/16. 'Purnea, 72 0/9. 'Eaugpur, 78 G/5. 
Vbari Dzong. ,8 E/2; ChumaJhari, 7* E.'o. 23,930 it, ^Memoir. ) 7*3. 1(l William iiruci- Pmitii, merchant 
& mdigo factor, Purnea & Nathpur ( U) ; {-IMS. 379 (259-67) ; had sent a sketch of Kosi E. 
tobG.DDDn. 131 (89), S-S- 18.1,1, "Tei^nmouth, II (46) ; see also Colebrooke (2BS et seq.). ^Cole- 
brooke (268). "530; m B.C. "Journal, 10 Maps MS. 5. 15 MEI0. M. 320 (51). 


Beyond the Bakmbrs 

April 27th at Teyka-ka-Maanda. The toad continuing with an ascent for about half an 
hour brought me to the summit of a ridge, from whence is seen the lofty chain of snowy 
mountains in a very extended line from E. to W. From the distant and indistinct point of 
view these mountains are seen in some parts of Rohilcund, no just idea, can be formed of the 
sublimity of the scene here exhibited, and which every moment appeared with additional 
"randeur and brilliancy as the rising sun gradually increased his altitude. 
' One of the most conspicuous summits of this Chain is distinguished by the name of Hem ; 
on the base of which. the famous place of Hindoo worship called Buddm Nauth 1 . ... Its 
bearing from where I made these notes was NNE. 

April 28th. Chet Kote. ... I was brought to another view of the lofty snowy mountains, 
which the" moment before were hid by the neighbouring hills, and from the increased eleva- 
tion of this spot above the one I last saw them from, their magnitude and extent were seen 
ir proportionate degree, but the grandeur of the scene was so infinitely increased, that des- 
cription must fall as far short of doing justice, as would the pencil of the most eminent 
artist. ... . 

April 29th. Had a distinct view of the town and valley of Sireenagur, and the winding 
course of the Aleekmmdra River 2 . 

Hard-wide discusses the distance of the base of the snowy range beyond Srina- 
o-ar, and quotes the descriptions given by Daniel in 17B9 [ 73 11. 6]. 
' We may close with a reference to Kirkpatrick's description of the ' terrific 
appearance" of the snow-covered range as seen during his visit to Katmandoo, 
and his estimate that one peak " cannot be supposed to be less elevated than the 
Peak of Teneriffie 3 ". 

Assam: the Brahmaputra 

Nothing whatever was known of the geography of Assam before the days of 
Bunnell and most maps shewed the Brahmaputra as a short river not oOO miles 
lono- flowing from north to south [ pis. 3, 1 r, 1 6 ] . D'Anville shows it as high as 
"Azzo" [6911. 7] just above Kangamati [pi. 13], and gives the following 

description; ... . . 

Un pen au dessous de Daka, le Gange est joint par une grosse riviere, que sort de la fron- 
tirere du Tibet Le nom de Bramanpoutre qn'on lui trouve dans quelques cartes, est une 
corruption de celui de Brahmaputren, qui dans le langue du pays signifie, ' tirant son origme 
de Brahm. ' Cette riviere, en remontant conduit a Eangamate et a Azoo, qui sont la frontiere 
del'etatdu Mogul*. 

A prominent feature of the old maps was the great lake Chramay lying 
between Assam and Upper Burma [ pis. 3, 1 1 , 16 & p. 48 ] of which Wilford writes, 

The Brahma-cmda, '' from which issues the Brahma-putra, is the same which is called 
Chiamay by De Barros [210 n. 6, 221], and other Portuguese writers. De Barros calls the 
Brahmaputra the Caor river, and says that it comes from the lake Chiamay, and from thence 
it goes to the town of Caor. ... 

The Chiamay Lake was said to be 180 miles in circumference. . . . Four rivers are supposed 
to spring from this lake, but except the Brahma-putra, the others must issue from it through 
subterraneous channels. The Pauranics " delight in such mystical communications'. 

Herman Moll wrote, before 1722 [ 209], 

\cham The Lake of Chiamay lies in this Country, betwixt Latitude 25 and 27 , and is, 
says Luyts 180 leagues in Compass. The river Cacpoumo runs from it into the Bay of 
Bengal thro' several Kingdoms, and there are divers other Elvers which fall into it. T'was 
bv sailing up this River that the Moguls first discover'd the Country. Tavermer [ qv. ] says 
that several other Rivers flow from this Lake, which he places in the 29th or 30th degree. 

' In 1765 Eennell took his survey of the Brahmaputra a short distance above 
Goalpara, where he was stopped by the Assam frontier posts [20]. He was 
greatly impressed by the size of the river, and astonished to find it flowing from 
the east, 

iTMrmWh K N/6 -Journal, MEIO. M.349, also A,K. YI. 1799 (309-81) & As AB. 1800. Misc. 
f „f (% V ''iVrS 295 (10) ' D'Anville (62). > Bralmiajmnd, 92 A/6, located in 182r ' 

punt where Lohit ™»a£ torn L hills. ' Hindu sacred writing, » A. S.XIY, 1822 (136-7). 


The Brahmaputra 


very different to the description given of it in the Maps. ... This River must needs have a 
very long course before it enters the Bengali Provinces, since 400 miles from the sea it is 
twice as big as the Thames K ... 
and again, 

The size of the Ganges has been very much magnified by those Historians who make any 
mention of it ; and on the contrary the Buramputrey, of the largest rivers in the world, has 
been scarce taken notice ot. The Buramputrey 60 miles from the sea is in some places 
71 miles broad, and is navigable for Boats of 150 tons 740 miles above its mouth; its stream 
is not very rapid, scarce exceeding the rate of 5 miles an Hour during all the above-mention- 
ed space 2 . 

His observations and enquiries convinced him that the Brahmaputra was identi- 
cal with the Tsang-po, and he writes, 

I have placed Kirganu, the capital of Assam, 160 miles E. by N. from Goalpara, according 
to the reports of the Assamers. They also informed me, that the Burrampooter has a very 
long course previous to its entering Assam ; and that it comes from the NW. through the 
Thibet mountains 8 . ... 

The Sanpoo... was supposed by M- D'Anville to the same with that which is called, in the 
lower part of its course, the River of Ava : but we have now little doubt * of its being the 
same with the Burrampooter. ... It was traced by me in 1765, to about 400 miles above the 
conflux; that is, as high as the latitude of 26°, longitude 91 ; where the Bengal districts and, 
and those of Assam begin; but I was not permitted to go any higher. ... 

The Lamas' map of Tibet in Du Halde [70] describes the course of the Sanpoo to within 
120 g. miles of the assumed situation of the capital of Assam; and still nearer to some parts 
of the Burrampooter that are known, and have been described by the Assamers. These 
facts together with those respecting the Ava river ... establish ( I think ) the strongest pre- 
sumptive proof possible of the Sanpoo and Burrampooter being one and the same river, under 
different names; and positive proof can never be obtained, but by actually tracing them; a 
circumstance unlikely ever to happen to any Europeans, or their dependants *. 

He summarised his conclusions in a paper first published in 1781 % from which 
the following extract is taken; 

Father Du Halde expresses his doubts concerning the course that the Sanpoo takes after 
leaving Thibet, and only supposes generally that it falls into the gulf of Bengal. M. D'Anville, 
his geographer, not without reason, supposed the Sanpoo and Ava river to be same, . . . for the 
Burrampooter was represented to him as one of the inferior streams that contributed its 
waters to the Ganges, and not as its equal or superior. ... Till the year 1765, the Burram- 
pooter, as a capital river, was unknown in Europe. 

On tracing this river in 1765, I was no less surprized at finding it rather larger than the 
Ganges, than at its course previous to its entering Bengal. This I found to he from the east; 
although all the former accounts represented it as from the north; and this unexpected 
discovery soon led to enquiries, which furnished me with an account of its general course to 
within 100 miles of the place where Du Halde left the Sanpoo. 

I could no longer doubt, that the Burrampooter and Sanpoo were one and the same river : 
and to this was added the possitive assurance of the Assamers, 'that their river came from 
the north-west, through the Bootan mountains' 7 . 

In 1880, discussing recent discoveries which seemed to confirm the identity of 
the Tsang-po and Brahmaputra, J. D. Herbert 8 writes, 

The paper . . . mil add another to the many proofs we have of the sagacity of the father of 
our Indian Geography, Major Rennell, whose very guesses appear better founded than the 
laboured erudition of other men 9 . 

But long before Kennell's day Father Desideri [69] had, in Ms journal of 
1715-6, recorded as a definite fact that, 

There is one [ river ] which flowing from West to East traverses the centre of Third Thibet 
and the province of Kong-to, . . . and then turning to the South -East enters the country of 
Lhoba ( Bhutan ), whence it descends to Rongmati [ Rangamati ], a province of Mogol beyond 
the Ganges into which this principal river of Thibet at last flows 10 , 
on which De Filippi notes, 

This is a clear mention of the Tsang-po. . . . That Desideri, alone of the men of his time, 
should have identified in no equivocal manner the Tsang-po with the Brahmaputra is a notable 

■ ' 3 rtS? die * 58 '*■ * HMS - 765 ' 31-8-65. 3 Memoir, 1788 ( 219 }. 4 " we have not the least doubt " 
-Memoir, 1/93 (298). 'Memoir, 1783 (90-1). * An account of the Ganges and Bur ram-poo tar Rivers. 
FtixL. lrans.1,81: reproduced in Memoir, 1788-93. 'Memoir, 1788 (276-7) & La Touche (58 n). a Deputv 
!1 Gieanmr/s isi Science, II (66.). in De Tolippi (127). 

Surveyor General, 1829-31. 


Beyond the Barriers 

fact. Turner, too, at the end of the 18th century, knew that the two rivers were the same; 
'the Berhampooter... penetrates the frontier mountains that divide Tibet from Assam. In 
this latter region it receives a copious supply. ..before it rushes to the notice of Europeans 
below Rangaraatti, on the borders of Bengal' 1 . 

Tieffenthalev also had, before 1776, recorded information that the Brahmaputra 
rose in the Manasarowar Lake, to emerge through Assam and Eangamati [72], 
and in describing his maps Duperrou supports this conclusion, and quotes 3 , amongst 
other evidence, Stewart's ' A account [74]; 

The city of Lahassa, which is the capital, is of no inconsiderable size ; . . . The waters of the 
Great River, as it is emphatically called in their language, wash its walls. 

Father Du Halde with great accuracy traces this river, which he never suspects to be the 
Borampooter, from its origin in the Cassimirian Mountains ( probably from the same spring 
which gives rise to the Ganges ) through the great valley of Thibet, till, turning suddenly to 
the Southward, he loses it in the kingdom of Assam; but still, with great judgement and 
probability of conjecture, supposes it reaches the Indian Sea somewhere in Pegu or Aracan. 

The truth is, however, that it turns suddenly again in the middle of Assam, and traversing 
that Country, enters Bengal towards Rangamatty under the above mentioned name, and 
thence bending its course more suddenly, joins the Ganges, its sister and rival, with an equal, 
if not more copious stream; forming at the conflux a body of running fresh water, hardly to 
be paralleled in the known World, which disembogues itself into the Bay of Bengal 4 . 

Dupperon concludes, 

Mais c'est toujours une satisfaction reelle pour moi, de me trouver d'accord sur ce point 
important de Geographie, l'identite du Tsanpou & du Brahmapoutren, reuni au Gange, &c, 
avec trois Voyageurs instruits : MM. Bogle, Stewart & Rennell, lesquels, comme moi, ont 
reside dans le Bengale 5 . 

The earliest trading with Assam appears to have bean in the hands of one 
Daniel Rausch [159], who was established at Goalpara from about 1768 till his 
death in 1794 [82]. He never appears to have contributed any information of a 
geographical character, though he probably knew more about the Assamese of that 
time than anyone else 5 . 

Welsh's 7 Expedition, 1792—4 

In 1792 the Governer General received an appeal from the Raja of Assam to 

assist him against a wide-spread rebellion, which was being carried on with the 
help of a large number of "barkandazes ", or hired soldiers, from Bengal. On 
September 10th the Commissioner of Rangpur 8 gave a deplorable account of the 
state of affairs in Assam ; Mr. Eausch had been robbed of Rs. 45,000 worth of goods 
between Gauhati 9 and G-oalpara, and recruits were said to be daily passing up from 
Bengal in large numbers to join the plundering bands 10 . In deputing Captain 
Welsh to enter Assam, and ascertain the real situation, the Goveruer General 

However extraordinary it may appear to people in Europe, we are under the necessity of 
admitting that owing to the unremitting jealousy which the Chiefs of those countries have 
hitherto shown of the English, we know little more of the interior parts of Nipal and Assam 
than the interior parts of China, and I therefore think that no pains should be spared to avail 
ourselves of so favourable an opportunity to obtain good surveys and to acquire every 
information that may be possible 11 . 

Thomas Wood was appointed surveyor to the expedition, and in December Welsh 
reported from Gauhati, 

Mr. Wood joined me on the 7th inst. I am employed in gaining every information I possibly 
can of this country. I intend sending him down to Nugrabura Hill 13 to connect Rennell's 

Mb. [3Qori. 17] quoting Turner (298), who thus aptly described the junction of the Bihan^ and 
Luhit below SfWliya (83 M/9). '^Bernoulli, II (354, 365-9). 3 Jolm Stewart ; Writer, Madras, 1763; in 
L776, Secretary to Govt., Ft. William; a great traveller; DNB. ■'Stewart (194); reproduced In Annual 
Register of 1778. Bernoulli, II (460-4). E Formerly an officer of the armies of Frederick the Great, 
fiausch came to India in 1766, '&■ established a trade agency at Goalpara ; m. Miss Mayo at Eangpur. Oct. 
17H2; murdered by Assamese, 1794 T82]. 7 Thoma,s Welsh. Ben. Cav. & Inf.; Cornet 12-9-69. ..Col. 
i>9-5-' 1800; d. LI -4 1822. *riangpur I)ist. 7SG, to be distingiushed from the Assam capital [8i 11.7]. 
°78K/16. ' u, BPolC. 19-9-92. "Johnstone (10). "Near Goalpara, 78 J/13. 

Welsh's Expedition 81 

survey with this place; as soon as he returns I shall push him on towards Naogong 1 about 
7 days journey further up the river 5 . . 

On January 4th 1793 Welsh reported that Wood had reached Gauhati, haymg 
completed the survey up from Nagrabara Hill, and in March, after the rebels had 
been heavily defeated, 

Mr. Wood left this on 4th inst. to survey the river to the Eastward as iar as Kolhabar 
about 100 miles from here 3 . 

Before moving up the river Wood had surveyed 
a route from this place, thro" the country of Drungh* to .. . the Borders of Bootan, as likewise 
along part of the present boundary of Assam. . .. 6 

Such Remarks on the appearance of the country as occurred to me while passing thro' it, 
as likewise the little information I could acquire as to the rivers that have their courses thro' 
Drungh and the interior Division of the country 6 . 
Of his survey up the river he writes, 

I still have about one hundred and forty miles of the Burrampooter River to protract 
and finish, as likewise the march of Captain Welsh's detachment, from where it left the Boats, 
to proceed to Rungpore 1 the Capital, and thence to Ghurgong... 8 
and again, whilst still held up in Gauhati during the rains, 

I am sorry it has not been in my power to obtain any general information respecting the 
geography of Assam or of the bordering countries, as might naturally have been effected from 
a person sent up here for that purpose, and I regret the circumstance the more, as the natives 
are by no means averse to make any communications in their power. ... This circumstance I 
beg leave to notice for my own credit, lest I might have been supposed inattentive to the 
purpose for which I was appointed 9 . 

At the end of October 1793 a detachment was sent up the Brahmaputra to 
Koliabar, and Wood writes to the Surveyor General, 

At last I have got away from Gwahatty to my great satisfaction. I am going up with a 
detachment. ... I propose taking up my survey at the village of Littoree, where I left off, 
and hope to be able to send you down by & by, thirty or forty miles more of this wonderful 
river. T shall in the course of a few days send down my survey of the south side of Gwahatty, 
and indeed might have done it some weeks ago, had I not been in hopes that the country 
would have been dry enough to admit of my adding the north side of the river, but after 
attempting it 1 found it was impracticable. ... I had an observation of the second of Jupiter's 
satellites... which agreed so closely with my former ones, that I think the longitude I gave 
you for Gwahatty is very near the truth indeed. I have likewise made several observations 
for the variation of the compass 10 . 

In January 1794 Welsh left Gauhati in company with the Raja, with the 
intention of restoring him to his capital at Bangpur, but while he was still at 
Koliabar, his advanced force had a fierce engagement with a large body of the 
"ItLoamaria" rebels, who were opposing the march to Jorhat 11 . Wood [qv] gives a 
vivid account of this action, in which he took an active part; Eangpur was occupied 
without further opposition on March 18th and he concludes his report, 

I returned to the boats ... and have continued my survey up to the south of the Dhikam 
River ls . I am now going up that river [Brahmaputra] with the fieet as near to Rungpore 
as we will have water, but am disappointed in surveying it. The banks are perpendicular on 
each side, and covered with an impenetrable jungle. So soon however as I get up to 
Rungpore, I mean to survey down the road we first marched up, at the commencement of 
which I left a mark, doubtful of being able to survey up the Dhikani at this season of the 
year, and I am happy I did so, as I shall be able without any great trouble to lay down the 
situation of the Capital 1S . 

The expedition was now recalled; 

A small force, ably commanded, had advanced many hundreds of miles into an unknown 
country vanquishing enemies vastly superior in number, settling... the county as it 
proceeded. ... 

Sir John Shore 1 *... now ordered Welsh to return to British territory by July 1st at latest. 
... On 25th May Welsh left Rungpoor on his downward voyage. The Rajah wrote many 

>3SF6wgong, 83 E/ll 2 BPolC. 31-12-92 (20). 'BPolC. 22-3-93 (33). ' Darning Dist. 83. B. 
s Map,HB,I0. 36(34). «BPolC 11-10-93 'Banvpur Palace, 2 m, S. of Sibsagar, 83 J/9, "Saigaon 
Palace ; BPolC. 28-0-93 (41). 8 DDn. 8S (9), Sept. 1793. >°DDn. 88. (13), Oct. 1793. 83 J/1 

"Ditto E, joins Brahmaputra S3 J/5. "DDn. 88, April 1794. "Writer, 1762; Succeeded lord 
Cornwallis as GGr. in 1794; cr. 1st Baron Teignmouth, 1798. 


Beyond the Babsibbs 

letters to Calcutta begging that the troops might remain. The troops arrived at r , 

on 3rd Reaving the country...a prey to Larchy. The RajlhTas Z ?££ ft£ 

a^K*^!* 8m ' TCys down t0 Calratta wliere he ^* -»» ' — «- 

This was the first visit ever made by the British into Assam and no further 
7ea™lafe S ^ W " wU ° h Started in 1824 > eactl y *irty 

The Eastekn Froetiee 

Sylhet had nothing to do with Assam till late in the nineteenth century it 
S P , art f t h f 1»™* ceded t° »« Company in 1760, and was surveyed by 
Eennell himself between 1768 and 1771, though another surveyor had visited the 
proTince as early as 1763. J iwiusu me 

«K ^ 17 f f , t 1 h ." Ea J a of Mfnipur, or "Meckley"=, sent an agent to the Company's 
office at Cluttagong, asking for an alliance and protection against the BuLeL 
toiZSt ir " " V' the ?. C1 t f /* Chittagong, sentproposals for such an riW 
to Foit William, and was directed to send a body of six companies of Sepoys 
to fix a post at Monevpoor & make themselves acquainted with the Strength and Deposition 
iMeeXRajL , SltUatl ° n0f theirC0Untry ' "«■«»*««»» further Friendship" 

Tipp^and" t^ m ° n fl ' 0m 0hittag ° llg ' aC1 '° SS thS ^ rf -> ^ 
was unable to proceed further than the Country of Koohar on account of the violent rains 
Dlar^ ° Cant ° th6re S ° me tim<5 W6re ' UP ° n * he Tr0uWeS breaki »« <>"*. Called to 
A complete survey of the march up from Cliittagong is still preserved in 
Calcutta, and was made use of by Eennell 7 [ 23 ]. The survey comprises eight 
sections and appears good wort, but there is no record of the name of the surveyor 
One section bears a note, J 

„neTi'; r0a Th S meaSUred ^ a Perambulator in statute miles, and laid down on a scale of 
one inch. The squares are parallels of Latitude & Longitude, each 2 Geographical miles on 
a propor- tional scale to the others. 8 * e ™ 

Prom a confident reference to his Hadley's quadrant [ i e 1 1, this was undoubt 
edl, ; the work of Bartliolemew Plaisted who had been employ^ on surveys fo the 
Chittagong Comical since 1760 [ 14] ; and it was probably on the recall of the 
expedition from Cachar that Plaisted surveyed the rivers and creeks of Sylhet to 

June 16th m^R M n gh r near DaCCa ' *° WM ° h KenneD refers in his '««4 
June 16th 1765'. Eennell also incorporated into his maps "particulars of the road 

nLrCettn?' C C ° Sp ° m ' ] " and A ™" as desoriM h J th/pdde. who accompa- 

O11 the north frontier of Sylhet, the Eaja of Jaintia caused much trouble and 
anxiety _ by raids mto the Company's lands, and in 1774 Eennell was consulted as to 
the best way ^of putting an end to his hostilities. Though he had never actually 
crossedfte border he had acquired a fair knowledge of the "Khasia & Jaintia 

The Soormah, or Sylhet, River is the General Boundarv of the Sylhet Province on the 
north. -. AchamofhighMountainsontheNorthsidemnsnearlyparallel to its Course which 
is from east to west, at the distance of 10 to 16 Mile, from it, forming a narrow Tract' of flat 
Country m extent 60 Miles long & from ro to 16 Broad. This Tract which is tao™ by tte 
General name of Cossyah, or the Country of Freebooters or Plunderers, is subject to Several 
petty Rajahs, among which the Geatyah Rajah is the principal. His Territories taclude 

l»^ 1 7°, h ^ St0 °li 39,4l ; ) - ,0n ^'o" 1500 yds S=2mile a loan inch; MSIO. 171(22) 172 (37 £401 
<BtoCD19 , \2 6?n^ S T e f if " Hi ' Hob » IlJobs <'' 1 ( 59 '). Confirmed ll4'ea t' B PC 11-10-62 

/ ac\ ioat <-■■-, -. ' -^ , """-•^i'^ \ J \j<ii,j.i<tni,i>ih Alias. ".imp. MO, M <X F 

(46). ^Near Silchar, 83 D/13. "Memoir, 1783 (88) & 1793 (298). 13 78 07 

The Eastern Frontier S3 

the eastern part of the above Tract, together with the Hilly Country between that and 
Assam. His whole Territory may be Reckoned 40 miles long and 30 broad; one hall oi 
which is flat, arable Land, the remainder Mountainous. ... 

The Western Cossyahs possess the Country between Gentyah & Laour. I understand 
that they are subject to several distinct Rajahs... & that they are often quarrelling & 
fighting among themselves. The only Town of note in these Parts is Pundua 1 which is the 
mart where the Bengali, Assam, and Garrow Goods, are bought and sold. The Cossyahs' 
Country in General and Especially the western part of it, is woody and almost impenetrable. 
Their force is very contemtible, both from the sraallness o£ their Numbers, and the nature 
of their weapons which last are Bows and Arrows & Short Lances, but when attacked in 
their woods, they are reported to make use of a variety of stratagems to ensure their 

On the strength of Eennell'a advice operations against the Jaintia raiders were 
confined to the plains, and in due course met with success 2 . 

In 1787 the Collector of Sylhet reported that, 

The Cosseahs inhabit that tract of mountainous country from Laour, the N. W. extremity 
of Sylhet, to the eastern boundaries of Cachar. The mountains, according to Bunnell's cal- 
culation, are 1,200 yards high 3 , so perpendicular as to be inaccessible to a foreign enemy... 4 
and again, 

Considering the situation of Sylhet as a frontier inhabited by timid ryotts, and sur- 
rounded by some encroaching neighbours, I cannot but think it advisable to recommend an 
accurate survey that the Company's limits may be denned, especially toward the Jaintia 
country 5 . 

Of the G-aro Hills to the west, and of Tripura to the east, Eennell had no 
knowledge; he writes in 1774, 

That part of Rangamatti to east of Burrampooter . . . [was] never explored, but the moun- 
tains that form the Boundary, and even most of the detached hills, were laid down by Bases. 

The Eastern part of Tiperah is an entire forest, ... it is not with any c ertainty known how 
far this forest extends Eastwards, and the first Territories we hear of beyond it are those 
of Ava. I am of opinion that the uninhabited tract extends at least 150 miles from west 
to east, and about 100 from north to south. 

The Chingree river is taken from a sketch drawn by a Dutchman who navigated that 
river during the time it was swollen by the annual rains. The Eastern Boundary of Tiperah 
is from the reports of the Rajah's people, who made an excursion that way some years 
before Tiperah was subjected to Bengali, During their journey they saw no habitations 
except those of the Cookies, who are a kind of wild men and build their Huts on Trees for 
the greater security against the wild Beasts 6 . 


Till very late in the 18th century nothing was known of Burma except for 
scraps of coast-line recorded by navigators 7 and rare observations for latitude; the 
Irrawaddy was known as far as Ava, but otherwise all was conjecture. 

D'Anville makes use of "a Dutch MS. map... for the river of Ava, of its 
large sheets is missing" 8 , probably the same map that according to Rennell, 
described the river 

as high up as the city of Ava itself, which it places in lat. 21 "48', and also says in a note 'by obns.', 
and indeed the whole scale of the map seems to be formed from the difference of latitude. 

The difference of longitude, as inferred from this Dutch map, places Ava in 97 , but 
Capt. George Baker, of whose accuracy I entertain a high opinion, took hearings and 
estimated the distance, the whole way from Negrais to Ava, and the result corrected by the 
observation at Ava, 21 48', gives the longitude 97 45' y , and this longitude I have adopted 10 . 

Baker was one of several captains 11 of the Company's ships whose observations 
along the coasts are quoted by Rennell and Dalrymple. His map and " journal 

^andu, 5 in. from Gauhati, "78 N/12. -Sylhet Dist. B. I (13) 13-2-74. ^Height of Shillonfc 
Peak 6,441 ft. 4 ib. 11(205), 14-12-87. 5 ib. Ill 113 of 27-12-S8. 6 IO. Maps I. AC. 13. 'Ritchie 
(app,); Instructions for the West Coast of Ava etc, Dalrymple, March 1785. "Herbert (70). 9 Ava, 
12m. SW. of Mandalay, 21° 51' N.; 95° 59'E. M Memovr, 1793. (296). "Others were George Hayter, 
Walter Alves & Thomas Forrest [46]; Baker commanded the Ouddalore in which Dalrymple sailed to 
Borneo in 1759. 

84 Beyond the Baeriees 

of an Embassy to the Eing of the Buraghmahns ", made in 1755, were published 
by Dalrymple, together with the Dutch map aboye described, and Baiter writes 

< .£ U l! 1V = Y °l a Vi6W ° f thC Ava Mver - The cMe£ river in tMs Em Pta, traverses it 
from North to South, passing Ava and many other Cities; it is generally called by the natives 
"the river by way of Excellence, as the Ganges in Bengal, Tsanpu in Thibet, and Kiang in 
China; all of which are nothing more than appellations, which have abolished the common 
use of their proper names. ... 

This river discharges itself into the sea by a multitude of channels. ... The eastern 
channel is conjunct with Pegu River, into which that of Ava falls, a little wav below 
Dagoon *, a very noted Pagoda. 

Some Modern Geographers have imagined that of Ava to be the River Yarou, or Tsanpu ■ 
the more ancient reckon it the Lukiang; a middle opinion, from the best information I have 
been able to obtain, appears the most rational. 

I am assured, that not very far above Ava there is a very large lake, from whence the 
river proceeds. 

This lake I am inclined to believe, is the receptacle of the many large rivers, which run 
ifTi ? towards Ava; it is probably the CMamay lake of the old maps though 

that lake is deemed imaginary, by the omission of it in the modern draughts; out of this lake 
run not only the Ava River, but those of Siam and Cassay, and probably those of Arrakan 
Cnatigan-, and some others on this side 3 . 

This famous lake is a prominent feature of the maps which accompany Capt 
Bakers journal, and indeed of all maps before DAnville* [78, 209]. 

In 1795 the Bengal Government deputed Captain Syme's to visit Ava on a 
political nnssion, with Thomas Wood as his assistant and surveyor, and Francis 
Buchanan as surgeon. 

The embassy embarked at Calcutta on February 21st, and called at the Andaman 
Islands on the way to Bangoon 5 . After a visit to Pegu by river, they returned to 
Rangoon, and set out again by river on May 29th for Amarapura. Wood's survey 
was perforce confined to the river and to astronomical observations for the man 
which he entitled, F ' 

Draught of the River Irrawaddy, or Irabatty, from Rangoon to Ummerapoora the present 
Capital of the Blrman Dominions, made between the months of May and December ivqs 
Scale about 12 1 miles to an inch 6 , 

Buchanan spent all his time collecting information about the geography and 
people of the country, and submitted his materials to Government with the following 
notes ', & 

My original intention was to have taken as a basis Mr. Wood's survey of the Rivers 
Irrawady and Burampooter, Mr. Rennell's survey cf Bengal, Mr. D'Anville's Atlas de la Chine 
and the Sea Charts, and with the Assistance of these to have formed a map of all the 
countries east from Bengal and south from China. 

My present seclusion from Books.. .has made me give up all thoughts of completing 
my original intentions, r s '" 

He suggests that his paper may be communicated to 
Mr. Rennell or some other Geographer of Distinction. ... The General outline of the dis- 
coveries is as follows. That MukleyH and Cussay are the same country and not subject to 
the Burmas; J 

(2) That to the east of Mukley are a people called by themselves Parloon«9 

(3) That nearly where Mr. Rennell supposes Cussay to be situated, is inhabited by a nation 
called Go. 

(4) That what in Mr. Rennell's map of Hindoostan is supposed to be Upper Siam is a 
country which has been long subject to the Burmas, and is called by them Myelapthan It 
is in fact the country of M. Loubere's Grands Siams 10 . 

(5) That the people of Java and Mergui are a distinct nation from both those of Siam and 
Pegu, and at present subject to the Burmas. 

(6) ...accounts of many rude tribes of whom Europeans have scarcely ever heard the 
Karayn, Kiayn, Kakiayn, andLowa 11 . 

.'Shwe Dagon pagoda, of Rangoon = Chittagong. 'Oriental Reperto.-y, II (iii) * The onl , 
lakes m this region are Indawgyi. m the Chin Hills, 93 0/8, and Logtak, m Mantonr 8= W '1 9 • M 
narrative, Symes 'Map MKIO. 171 (16); there is also a 1/4 inch "map 17 < 1?) S,£h wis urobablv" 

"Probably £ 

Burma 85 

(7) ...the Loos, Jangomays, Lanyans, and other nations situated between Siam and China 1 . 
New information. ..relative to Great Rivers; 

(8) The Arakun river is not so considerable as has been supposed; but takes it rise from 
Hills at no great distance to the North. 

(9) That the river coming from Thibet and which is supposed by Mr. Rennell to be that of 
Araken, is in fact the Keayanduayn^ or the Great Western branch of the Ava River. 

( 10 ) That what he supposes to be the Western branch of the Ayrawade is in fact the Eastern 
one, which passes by Ava... keeping west from the Province of Yunan. 

( 1 1 } That the Luckiang, which Mr. Rennell supposes to be the great branch of the Ayrawade, 
has no communication with that river, but on entering the Burma dominions assumes the 
name of Tholuayn 3 ...and falls into the sea at Martaban. 

(12) That the river of Pegue which Mr. Rennell supposes to come from China, is a river from 
hills about ioo miles from the sea... 

(13) That between the Pegue and Martaban rivers there is a lake* from which two rivers 
proceed; the one runs north to old Ava, where it joins the Myeengnaga, a little river of Ava, 
which comes from mountains on the frontier of China; the other river runs south from the 
lake to the Sea, and is the Sitang river of Mr. Rennell, but it is by no means a branch of the 
river of Pegue, as he supposes. 

( 14) That the rivers of China, which Mr. Rennell supposes to be the heads of the Pegue river 
are those of the rivers of Siam. 

(15) That the rivers of Siam and Camboja communicate by a very considerable branch 
called the Anan. 

Buchanan's charts and papers" were passed to the Surveyor General and on to the 
of Directors, and compiled by Dalrymple, whose map is thus acknowledged by Symes, 

1 am obliged to the kindness of Mr. Dalrymple for the construction of the general map 
prefixed to this work, which has been compiled from the materials collected by Dr. Buchanan. is laid down on a contracted scale, being designed merely to point out the relativ e 
situation of the Kingdom of Ava, with reference to other countries. . . . The materials requisite 
to give an accurate topographic display of all parts of so extensive an empire, could not be 
procured during the short period of our residence; but the ability and indifatigable industry 
of Dr. Buchanan have effected much, to which the astronomical labours of Mr. Wood have 
considerably added 6 - 

Wood's map of the Irrawaddy was a careful piece of professional wort, and was 
of the utmost value to the army in the Burmese war, 1824-6, when the experienced 
surveyor Peter Grant writes, 

Since an opinion generally prevails that Amarapoora is placed 10 minutes too far to the 
eastward, ... the operations of the army provide no conclusive data on this head. ... Yandabu said to be laid down erroneously in Wood's map. I shall add here that I entertain the 
highest opinion of his general accuracy, and indeed looking to the obstructions thrown in his 
way, the restraint imposed on him by circumstances his survey of the Irrawady does him the 
highest credit. Errors in longitude were unavoidable 7 . 

Again in the war of 1852-3, one hundred copies of Wood's map were specially 
lithographed and eagerly sought for, whilst Grant's more deliberate survey was 
apparently overlooked 8 . 

1 c£ Gazetteer of Burma. " Chindwin K. 83 & L, 74 I&J. 3 Salween. 4 This might refer to the 
Inle Lake, 93 D/14, 15. 'Original rough sketches, MRIO. 157 (11-38). fi Symes (is). 'DDn. 240, 
1825. s DDn.55S (2-4) 24-1-1852. 



Early Surveys to 17 65 — Barnard' s Survey of the Jdgir, 1767-74 — Military Surveys 
m the South, 1765-75 — Northern Dinars, 1767-76 — Fori St. George & Madras — 
Pnngle & the Guides, 1777-88 — Kelly and Oilier Surveyors, 1778-88. 

ALTHOUGH the Company had established a factory at Masulipatarn so early as 
1611 and that at Madraspatam in 1639, over fifty years before the founding 
of Calcutta, it was not until 1763, that the Nawab of Arcot 1 ceded the district 
of Chingleput, which henceforth became known as the J&gir. 

From the earliest days the English had been regarded as the guests of the 
Nawab, and during the long struggle with the French from 1745 to 1761, when 
each side sought the favour of rival princes, it was the support of English arms 
that enabled Muhammad Ali to establish his succession. 

As Nawab of the Carnatic he was suzerain of practically 8 the whole country 
"below the Ghauts", from the Kistna to Cape Comorin, and it was part of the 
price of his friendship, that he expected, and got, the help of the Company's troops 
in the maintenance of authority over refractory chiefs and subjects. 

The war against the French closed with the English in complete supremacy 
having warded off the siege of Madras of 1758-9 [ 98 ], and followed up with Eyre 
Coote's decisive victory at Wandiwash in January 1760, and the capture of 
Pondicherry a year later. 

Geographical knowledge of the Carnatic was greatly advanced during this long 
period of war, but not in time to help D'Anville with his map of 1753 [ 239 ]. 

_ He took his coast-line from the work of Apres de Mannevillette and other 
sailors, but did not speak highly of the Portuguese maps of the west coast; he 
quoted Fathers Vincent-Maria and Noel as authorities for the Malabar coast, and 
took parts south of Calicut 

from a particular map, for which we are indebted to some bare-footed Carmelites, sent to the 
Christians of St. Thomas, under the pontificate of Alexander VII3. 

He had already made use of the work sent home in 1719 by Father Bouchet for the 
inland areas of Madura and the extreme south [238], and writes, in French of course 

What we know of Maissur we owe to the Jesuits, whose missions have extended hitherto; 
...the representation thereof... is drawn from a particular draught sent me by Father dri 
Halde. In a letter from Father Calmette... the latitude of Shinna-Ballabaram* in this 
inland part of the Carnate, is observed to be 13° 23'; is of great consequence to be thus 
fixed in some point at so great a distance from the coast 6 [170]. 

D'Anville found that the Carnatic was so much better known than other parts 
of India, that he issued his separate map of the Coast of Coromandel on four times 
the scale of his Carte de Flnde, and observes, 

We might mention different parts of Europe, in which geography is less informed, than of 
many places in Coromandel 6 . 

The earliest record of survey by a servant of the Company is of " a measured 
line " drawn from Devicottai 7 to Trichiuopoly " by way of Tanjore by Mr. John 
Barker 8 ", at some time before 1751. 

'Also called Nawab of the Carnatic; Muhammad Ali, from 1749 till death in 1795- resided in 

Glepank" a mile S of It. St. George. 'G.mfur Circir remained the jag-„ of Basalat Jan'o- till ceded 

to the Company m 1788 [n []. 'Herbert (46-9). 'Near Chik Ballapur, 57 G/ll »ib (56 61) 

. , i 6 ?' ' , ' r, " w <> te . pl- 9 ; A fort at month of Coleroon E. 58 M/15 now washed away ; captured by English 

m 1748, & granted to Company by Bija, of Tanjore; Imp. Go.%. Mad. II (157). a Memoir, 1783 (23 ) 



from Kelly, 1782. 

Plate 9 

Redrawn and reduced from Robert Kelly's Index Map to the Atlas submitted to the Governor 
General and Supreme Council in 1782 [ 240-2]. 

The Political Divisions as shewn by Kelly are thus distinguished: 

Maharattas ... ... Green Ryder Ally ... ... Blue 

Ifieam fy Basla-JKng ... Yellow English ... ... Red 

Travancore ... ... Buff 

Though Kellv shows the whole Carnatic as English, full possession was not obtained 
tfll 1801 [10711.6], 

Names shown in brackets are taken from map published by R. Bowyer, Pall Mall, 1-2-94. 

Early Surveys 87 

From this time onward many surveys were made by military officers with the 
armies in the south. There is an undated French route survey, from Palamcottah 
through the " Royaume de Madura " to Trichinopoly, on the scale of about 3 miles 
to an inch, in colours 1 . It may "belong to the same period as several beautifully 
drawn plans, showing actions against the French round Trichinopoly during 1753 
and 1754-, made by George Erbb, "Sergt. d'Artillerie an service de l'hon. Co. 
des Indes Englaisses", then serving in the army of Major Stringer Lawrence 3 . 
In 1755 William Jennings, also of the Artillery, made surveys round Madura of 
the marches of Colonel Heron, who was sent " to collect the Revenues in Madura 
& Tinnivelly" on behalf of the Nawab of Arcot 1 . 

Orme gives many large-scale maps of this period in the third volume of his 
history, mostly elaborate ones of forts or battlefields, and amongst MS. maps at 
Calcutta is one by Robert Barker of the capture of Karilral 3 in April 1760, and one 
of Pondicherry snowing positions of guns, redoubts, &c, at the time of the Fnglish 
attack "in January [ 1761 ] in a great storm 6 "; both of which are reproduced by 
Orme, with some changes 7 . 

Many of the maps and surveys of this time are signed by John Call, mostly in 
his capacity as Chief Engineer, as in the case of a 

chart of the Madura and Tinnivelly Provinces and part of the adjacent countries, surveyed 
by the Engineers employed on the expedition against Usoff Cawn in the year 1764, under the 
direction of John Call, Chief Engineer. 5 miles to an inch 8 . 

One of these engineers was probably Willam Stevens who was deputed the 
following year to carry out a survey of the straits 9 between India and Ceylon, with 
the following instructions; 

The communication with our Garrison at Palemcotah & with the Troops in the Tinnivelly 
Country being very tedious by Land, ...and it being of great Importance to have a more 
easy and frequent communication by Sea between this Country and that of Malabar than 
the usual Passage round Ceylon, ...we are desirous to obtain a certain knowledge whether 
there is, or is not, a Passage for vessels of 300 tons burthen or more... thro' the bank of 
sands which is commonly called Adam's Bridge. ... 

We have therefore chosen you to go in search of this Channel; are. proceed 
towards Ramisseram 10 continuing your soundings from the Station where Mr. Rennell, in the 
Neptune (whose Chart you are furnished with) left off 11 . If you can get 
through any Channel to the South of Adam's Bridge, you are to continue your soundings & 
Navigation to Coilpatnam 1!i or Purnicale & note in going thither all Rocks & shoals. .... 

You will be particularly careful not to give Offence to the People of Rnmisseram or any 
of the blacks You meet, & You must also avoid giving any Jealousy or cause of Complaint 
to the Dutch, and for this we recommed that you keep at a Distance from the Coast of 
Ceylon 13 . 

Stevens carried out his survey in February and March 1765 "without being 
able to discover any passage for vessels of any considerable Burthen 1 -", 

The Directors commended this enterprise; 

We much approve of your sending Mr. Stevens. survey the passage between Rainis- 
seram and the Main. We would have you also avail yourselves of the influence you have 
in the Country whilst Peace & Tranquility subsist, to obtain as perfect a knowledge of every 
part as possible, and if it were practicable to have exact surveys made of the whole Province 
of Arcot, it would be a good & useful work; and if such an undertaking should prove agreable 
to the Nabob, he might probably be willing to bear the Charge; but as this is a delicate affair, 
we would have you act with circumspection that the Nabob may have no justification for 
taking offence 13 . [90-1]. 

Such a proposal had already been made ten years before, without any tangible 
result, the Madras Council having written home in 1755, 

l Jmp. Lib. M $ P. 3S0. 2 Grose, II (133-43). 3 BM. K. 115 (85, 1 & 2) & Addl. MSS. 15739 
(12-14) ; engraved copy faces p. 15 of "Cambridge" ; also Orme, III ( Maps ref . to I, pp. 314, 346). 4 BM. 
K. 115 (S4,S7) & Addl. MSS. 15739 (11); engraved copy faces p. S3 of "Cambridge"; Orme, I (3*0-93). 
"58 N/13 ; Imp. Lib. M $ P. 368. 6 ib. 363. '' Orme, III, last two maps. 9 MRO. Map, 149. "Named 
Palk Straits, after Robert Palk, Governor of Mitdras, 1763-7. 10 Barnes warara, 58 0/7. "Eemiell's chart. 
1763-4, showing "Park's Streights, with soundings", Orme MSS. 333(1). 13 Kayalp:it.nam. 58 L/2. 1S MS 
&M. 13-2-65. U M to CD. 14-10-65 (55); chart pub. by Dalrvmphi 20-7-81: IO. Maps II AC. 36 (25). 
]S CD to M. 24-12-65 (11). F * * * 

88 Madras Surveys 

It might be of great Use hereafter cou'd we obtain an accurate Survey of the whole Arcot 
Province; and, if possible, we propose to have it done 1 . 

Barnard's Survey of the Jagir, 1767-74 

In reply to the Directors' further order for the early survey of the lands ceded 
in 1763 [86] the Council wrote, 

"What you are pleased to recommend regarding Surveys to be made of the whole Province 
shall be complied with as soon as proper people can be found for that purpose, and the 
Engineer is prepairing a Draught of the Company's Jagueer, which shall be sent you as soon 
as compleated 2 ... 
and two months later, 

Your Chief Engineer has sent Mr. Thos. Barnard, his assistant, to make an exact survey 
of the Company's Territorial Possessions round Madras; it is a work which will require much 
time and labour, but we have that confidence in Mr. Barnard's abilities that we doubt not 
but his greatest Diligence & Attention will be exerted on this occasion 3 . 

_This survey proved to be a long job, especially as Barnard, without any 
assistants, was expected to combine with his topographical survey a detailed survey 
and report for revenue purposes, and experienced many interruptions [141-2]. He 
eventually finished the field work in 1773, and submitted his maps and reports in 
November 1774, together with a copy of the instructions given him at the start, 
with the following comments; 

It will scarcely. expected... that they could in any shape be executed through an 
extent of Country no miles in length and 50 in Breadth, by any one person; even tho' he 
had not the extremities of. an Eastern Climate to contend with... the task was much above the 
powers of a single man to accomplish. . . . 

The survey commenced in February 1767; in the course of that and the two succeeding 
years, I was kept from it near a year superintending the repairs of Poonamalee 4 Fort; the 
war not permitting me to continue it. In 1770 and 1771 another year was lost when I was 
ordered to attend Mr. Dawson. ... In 1772 I had finished the Survey in part, but not the fair 
drawings of them 5 [3]. 

The survey was laid down in 16 sheets on the scale of two inches to a mile, 
and covered 2,436 square miles 6 . It was reduced later to the i-inch scale in 
the Chief Engineer's office, and the reduction was sent home to the Directors and 
engraved and published by Dalrymple in 177S 7 . 

Military Surveys in the South, 1765-75 

Surveys were continually required for a variety of military purposes. During 
1765 and 1766 there was much trouble along the frontiers between the Carnatic 
and Mysore 8 , and in July 1765, Government wrote to the officer commanding at 

Whilst the exact Boundaries of the Country belonging to the Nabob & the Mysorians 
remains undetermined, We must always expect Disputes & Troubles in those Parts, & if we 
are on all occasions obliged to send out such considerable detachments as that with Capt. 
Bonjour, the revenues of the Country will not support the expence. We therefore desire 
You will procure what information You can with regard to the exact limits and advise us 
thereof 9 . 

He replied; 

I have people examining the Bounds of Carour 10 , Manapar, and Trichinopoly Countries, 
&c, and when it is done I shall be able to transmit a Plan... of the Nabob's possessions 
which will enable you to judge of the just rights between him and the Mysorians. In the 

'M to CD. 10-3-55. -M to CD. 22-1^67(19). 3 MtoCD.21-3-67 (33). *66 C/4 5 KRC. 
20-12-74. 6 Eeport by Mackenzie, 29-11-1810; MEIO. M. 60. 7 MBO. Map 10. also Oriental Repertory 
and Orme MSS. 65 (137). s Haidar Ah had seized the Mysore throne in 1761, and was extending his 
dominions in eTery direction; Imp. Gaz. Madras, I (18). 9 MS &M. 3-7-65. 1() Rarur, 58 J/l. 

MniTAET Surveys in the South 


meantime I. ..transmit you a. sketch of Swamy & Moodu Naique's Countries, but as I have not 
yet been able to get the measure of them, therefore the scrawl cannot be perfect 1 . 

Some months later Bonjour was directed "to take a surrey of the Passes leading 
into the Carnatic down the Ghauts"; lie "risked all those under the Nabob of 
Arcot, but not those in the hands of the Mysorians", and reported. 

If I have committed a mistake in applying to you for fresh orders, I beg you will attribute 
it to the different significations of the word survey. 

In order to report the Situation of the different Passes leading into the Nabob's domi- 
nions, ...I... present you a chart in which I have fixed their positions, and an account of each 
in particular, mentioning their distance one from the other, as well as from Arcot and other 
places of consideration. ... 

Having used no Quadrant for the observation of the different Latitudes I have regulated 
myself as near as my remarks could permit, by Mr. DanwilFs Geography 2 . 

Bonjour's survey is thus described by Rennell, 

A curious MS. ..entitled An Account of the Passes between the parallels of Udeghery z and 
Sautgud, and from which I have received great assistance, has the distances in computed 
miles from one pass to another, and often from some distant capital place also; but without 
bearings 4 . 

In 1767 the Directors write out again. 

As an accurate knowledge of every part of the Country may be very useful, We recom- 
mended to you last year, to encourage and promote the making of Surveys, with the Nabob's 
concurrence, of the whole Province; this may be too great a work to be undertakenat once,... 
therefore it would be well to encourage such of the young officers... as have any turn that 
way, to make Surveys and draw Plans of the Forts & Districts, where at any time they may 
happen to be quartered; these if taken with any accuracy, when collected together, may be 
united into a General Draft; we shall send you. Instrument, called a Pentagraph, by the 
help of which the outlines of any Draft may be copied with great ease and dispatch, & with 
sufficient accuracy. 
to which the Council reply, 

We have omitted no opportunities of encouragement to obtain Charts and Surveys of 
the Countries through which our troops have marched, and we hope time and experience 
will render them compleat, and correct the very erroneous Charts now existing, particularly 
with regard to the Boundaries and Passes between Mysore Country and the Carnatic 5 . 

None of the surveys of this period have been found, though Eennell writes, 

A variety of MS. Maps of the country lying on the west of the Carnatic, and between it 
and Seringapatam, have appeared; most of them, I believe, the offspring of the War of 
1767-68 with Hyder Ally. ... 6 

A map of the Barra-mahal.[ii3]. This map is in Mr. Dalrymple's collection, and has 
much the appearence of general accuracy; the number of Forts placed on rocky eminences... 
affording an easy means of determining the relative positions by triangles ">. 

One of the officers who toot a large part in surveys of the Carnatic was Robert 
Kelly, who in 1778 thus describes his early efforts; 

In the course of above ten years service in this country I could not help observing a 
variety of Distresses and Difficulties which Armies and Detachments have been led into, 
either by the Ignorance or Villany of Harcarras [95], and the Vast Opportunities which were 
lost by want of knowledge of the face of the Country even two Miles of our Camp or of the 
Field of Battle. ... I therefore determined, in the year 1770, to put together the f ew Obser - 
vations I had already made, and to continue Surveying every Road I should have occasion to 
march in future. ... 

By the time I had Collected a Number of Observations and thrown them into some form, 
the Utility and importance of the Work struck me in so Forceable a light that I could not 
resist the impulse I felt of making it a matter of Public Concern. I consequently wrote a 
letter to Mr. Du Pre, then Governor 3 , . . . enclosing him a few rough Sketches of the Roads I had 
surveyed, and requested to know whether I should continue the Work under the Auspices of 
Government. ... He laid my papers before the Board and his answer of the 10th of May 1770 
conveyed to me the appreciation they had met with 9 [240-1]. 

1 MS &M. 16-7-65. 2 A sad distortion of D'AnviUe's name ; MS M & P. 5-5-66. 3 Udava.?iri, 57 N/5. 
* Memoir, 1793 (280-1). 5 MtoCD. 4-11-67(27). e Memoir, 17S8 (189) ; account of 1st Mysore War, 

Bowring (49-58). 7 ib. (191). Uosias Du. Pre, Governor of Madras, 1770-3. 9 MMC. 22-12-78. 


Madras Surveys 

The Governor later told the Board 
that when Capt. Kelly went to Trichinopoly he had desired him to take an exact Survey 
of the Roads & Country in his Journey, and at the same time to consider how far it mi«ht 
be practicable with the assistance of any of the officers and Cadets in the service who are 
capable of drawing, to have an exact and accurate Survey taken of the Carnatic 

The Board being very sensible of the great advantage & utility of such an Undertaking 
it is agreed that the President... apply to the Nabob to obtain his consent to the Survey 
being taken, and that thereupon the proper Instruments &c. be procured 1 . 

At the next meeting- 
the President acquaints the Board that he hath applied to the Nabob for his consent to 
the taking an exact Survey of the Carnatic, which lie had readily granted, and that in con- 
sequence thereof, he had enquired of the Engineer regarding the Theodolites and other 
Instruments required by Capt. Kelly and finds there are none in the Garrison 

Resolved that enquiry be made by the Storekeeper, whether any can be procured out of 
the Europe ships, and if so that they be purchased 2 [203]. 

No immediate action was taken on these resolutions, and Kelly records that 
I accordingly got together some young gentlemen who understood surveying and drawn!" 
bought Mathematical Instruments and stationery, hired draughtsmen ftc, and set seriously 
about the business. 7 

After I had laboured upwards of a year, without receiving either the appointment or 
Assistance from Government which they had given me reason to expect, I grew weary and 
impatient of the task I had imposed upon myself and once more remonstrated to Mr Dupre 
how impossible it was for me to support the expence of so extensive a work, and prayed 
that I might at least be permitted to send in my bills of unavoidable exper.ces as the work 
I had undertaken was solely for the use of the Company. 

To this I received a very polite answer, and many promises of service on some future 
day, but that day never came; though to do that Gentleman's memory justice, I know it was 
no fault of his that the work was not warmly patronised 3 [241]. 

In 1771 and 1772, during- operations to the southward which resulted in the 
capture of Ramnad, Montresor, Pittman, and Dugood carried out surveys over a 
large part of Madura, Marawar and Trichinopoly*. 

In May 1773 the Commander in Chief ' put forward a scheme for raisino- a corps 
of guides under a Quartermaster-General, whose 

main object must be to procure or form as accurate a Chart as possible of all the orincipal 
places m the Country, their situations & Bearings from each other, with the nature of the 
Roads between, and their distance; this he should form on a large scale... with all informations 
to form a compleat Military Chart 6 . 

On this the Council reported home ; 
_ General Smith delivered in a minute, to show in what manner his scheme could be carried 
into execution without putting the Company to any additional expence. It was agreed to 
establish a Company of Guides, & to commence the Survey as soon as the necessary Pre- 
parations could be made. * 

As General Smith recommended Captain Montresor as an officer well qualified for this 
undertaking, he was accordingly appointed there to; but as to the appointment of a 
Quartermaster-General? it was referred to your Honors. The Siege of Tanjore was soon after 
undertaken and the death of Captain Montresor.. .obliged us for some time to lav aside all 
thoughts of the Survey 8 . 

A few months later the Council record that 
the country being at present in Tranquility, is resolved that the Survey be com- 
menced with all possible Expedition, and that the necessary orders be issued for establishing 
the Company of Guides at Vellore, from the several Sepoy Carnatick Battalions 

Lieut. Geils being strongly recommended by General Smith _ resolved that Lieut 
Geils be appointed to the Command of the Company of Guides, and to execute the* Survey 9 ' 
however at a later meeting, 

* J rhe j PreS ! d f lt reP ° rtS th3t ° n ** A PP licatirai to «* Nabob ; . . .he appeared much alarmed 
at the idea of Surveying his Country, and requested the undertaking might be set aside 
asserting that there was no necessity for a Survey, as the country was abundantly well 
known. ... The Nabob enumerated many objections Such as that the Company of Guides 

'MMC.4-6-(0. ! ib. 11-6-70. ':BPC. 27-5-82. 'MtoCD 15-10-72 (481- MMO m if. To , 
STlt ■ r ° MPi Smith ' ,MM& 10 - 3 -' 3 - ' QMG ' »W 4 - !«"• '"ffl™ (38). ' iMiS: 

Militahv Surveys ik the South 91. 

marching through Ms Country would be productive of many Disputes with the inhabitants; 
that the Villagers would complain of the Sepoys, & the Sepoys would complain of his People 
for not supplying them with what they wanted; and he further added that the having his 
Country surveyed would lessen him exceedingly in the Eyes of the Country Powers, as they 
would immediately conceive that the next step would be to deprive him of his Country 
altogether 1 . 

Several efforts were made to break down the objections of the Nawab, even to 
the point of offering to place Geils and the company of Guides under his control, 
but thev were of no avail, and the scheme had to be abandonded 3 . 

Northers CircAes, 1767-76 

The Northern Circars from Guntfir to Ganjam had long been tributary to the 
Nizam, and for many years there had been both French and English factories along- 
the coast. . 

In 1753 Bussy [115] the French commander at Hyderabad obtained from the 
Nizam the grant of the revenues of four of the Circars to meet the pay of his troops, 
and in 1 756 he proceeded to establish French authority to the northern limits of 
Ganjam 3 . In July 1758 he was called down to the Coast 4 , and the same year, at 
the invitation of local chiefs. Clive sent down a force of Bengal troops under Colonel 
JForde, which defeated the French and re-established the English factories at 
Masulipatam and elsewhere. 

Eennell notes various surveys made during this campaign; 

Between Rajaimmndry 5 and Vizagapatam, the particulars of the inland parts have been 
taken chiefly from a large MS. map, in which Col. Ford's marches are described. Between 
Vizagapatam and Coopilty is taken from another MS. map, seemingly not very accurate 6 . ... 

Between Vizagapatam and Jagarnaut' Pagoda, an interval of 180 G. miles, the bearings 
by compass, and distance by a Perambulator, were taken by Major Polier in 1759 (on his 
return to Bengal with Col. Ford from the Masulipatam expedition) 8 . 

In 1765 the Emperor of Delhi granted to the Company the dewani of all these 
Circars in addition to the provinces of Bengal and the Madras Jagtr, and the 
following year a treaty was signed with the Nizam for their occupation, with the 
exception of Guntur [86 n.2]. 

The Directors were anxious to avoid further wars, and wrote out, 

Respecting your negociations with Nizam... for the Northern Circars, ...Military Ex- 
peditions are so expensive & ruinous and their consequences so indefinite, that we shall ba 
better contented to enjoy what we already possess in Peace, than to risk the least part in 
new Engagements. ... We do not mean to prescribe such bounds as shall prevent you taking 
advantage of any circumstances which may tend to the Security or Enlargement of our 
Possessions & Revenues, provided you do not suffer yourselves to be borne away with the 
ideas of Conquest, which has indeed been too much the case latterly with our Servants in 

However by the time this letter reached Madras General Caillaud had already 
advanced north of the Kistna into the Circars 1 ". 

The ocupation was not effected peacefully ; in 1767 war broke out with Haidar All 
of Mysore [89], and the Nizam supporting Haidar Ali, Bengal troops under Colonel 
Peach were sent to the Circars [26], and marched up through Ellore as far as 
Warangal" to threaten Hyderabad; in March 1768 the Council were able to report 
the signing of a new treaty by which the Nizam confirmed the cession of the Circars 13 . 
Peach's force was then employed "reducing and settling" Ganjam. 

■MSEC 23-5-11. s M to CD. 9-12-75. (22). J Camvic-hael (172-5) ;M»ltby (102-10). *A term 
Generally applied to the Coromandal Coast, Madras or Pondielierry in particular Kobson-Jobson. 65 

G/16. 'Memoir. 1783(66-8). 'Pari, T4 E/18. »ib. (21). 'CD to M. 24-12-65. "> M to OB, 1-4-66. 
"56 09. I: M to CD. 1-3-68. 


Madras Surveys 

Various surveyors were employed during these campaigns ; Gardiner surveyed the 
route to Warangal 1 , and Cridland the country round Ohicacole* with "a very 
accurate survey of the Tickelly District 8 ". 

Cotsford, sent up to Ganiam* at the end of 1766 "to act both as Engineer and 
Kesident , had to return owing to the unsettled state of the country, but was able 
to give the Chief Engineer a description of the country, with "a plan of Chicacole 
Circar" and a sketch of the "Town of Gaujam 5 " [3 J. 

In 1768 he was sent up again to establish a factory at Ganiam with the support 
of Peach s brigade, and in October sent in a plan of the district and promised 
to send a large and more exact Plan than I am now able, in which I will mark out the diff- 
erent Purgannas & Zenlindaries 6 . 
A year later he sent a small scale "Plan of the Itchapour' District" [93]. ' 

In 1767 the Council at Masulipatam proposed to order Stevens, their engineer 
to make a survey of the whole frontier towards the Nizam's territories' and in' 
1771 they write that, 

Before we determine on building new Forts, it is absolutely necessary that we should 
nave a more accurate knowledge of the Geography of the Country, a Survey of which should be 
taken as soon as possible, in which should be ascertained the Limits of the Circars the Bearinss 
& distances ot the several places, the most remarkable Passes, & the Roads leading to them » 
and Government reply that the senior engineer, 

Major Mitchell, will either reside at Masulipatam to carry on the works there, or proceed 
to survey the several Forts in the Circars, or proceed to make a general survey of the Country 
as may appear most advisable 10 . 

It was Stevens, however, who was more often on survey; and in 1773 he was 
selected for charge of the southern section of a survey of the Circars for which the 
Chief Engineer 11 made the following proposals; 

As the Circars are very extensive & as the Survey of them which is now resolved on is 
a great and useful undertaking, I think as many people as can be properly spared should be 
employed on that service. ... For which purpose I would have the Surveyors formed in two 
drvrsions, under Captains Stevens & Pittman, with as many intelligent Assistants as can be 

As Capt. Stevens has already surveyed a considerable part of the most Southerly Cir- 
car u, I recommend that he, with at least one Assistant, should be directed to finish them 
compleatmg the most Southerly parts first, and then to work Northwards; that Capt Pittman 
in like manner should begin to the Northward, where Mr. Cotsford has left off, and work 
towards the South, until he meets Capt. Stevens. Both these Gentleman should be directed 
to intersect the same stations, that their Surveys may correspond when closed. 

They should be directed to ascertain the Company's Boundaries with Precision- the 

Courses of the Rivers, the direction oi the Roads, together with the Inlets from the Country 

by which an Enemy can enter it. ... } 

The Engineers are from time to time to forward their Surveys to the Chief of the 

Settlement under which they may act, who will transmit them to the Board [196] is. 

Detailed instructions to this effect were sent to Stevens and Pittman, and James 
Johnston was sent as assistant with Pittman. Suitable letters were written to the 
Chiefs at Masulipatam & Vizapatam, and the following to Cotsford at Ganiam 

Vou will be pleased to inform Mr. Stratton [at Vizagapatam j how far has been Surveyed 
to the Southward of Ganjam, that he may give the Necessary Direction to Capt. Pittman 
District U ^ transmit to I" Drafts of the Surveys which may have been made ia your 

Pittman was instructed to 

begin in the Tickally country, and having compleated the same to go from thence to Tolmore 
& Kimmedy «, which are the Northernmost parts of the Chicacole Circar, on this side the 
Itchapore District 16 . 

_ At the end of the year Cotsford handed over charge at Ganiam, and submitted 
his tmal maps, before proceeding on furlough : 

"lb. 30-3-73. '•J;dm l ,r,74B/2;Parhkimidi,7iB/l. »ib. 19-7-73. J ' «MC. 2-a-73. 

Northern Circars 93 

Accompanying this letter You have a general Plan of the Itchapoor District, which view 
serves to explain what I have written; a great Part of it is from an. Actual Survey, but the 
state of the Country has hitherto prevented an exact Survey of the whole to be made, so 
that I have not been able to shew the separate Purgunnahs & Zemindaries in it 1 [92]. 

This map was afterwards published by Dalrymple, scale %\ miles to an inch, and 
described by Rennell as "Mr. Ootst'ord's elegant map-" [3]. 

Stevens had not been more than six weeks on the survey before he was with- 
drawn to take a leading- part in the siege of Tanjore, and Dugood was sent up to 
carry on, which he did with many interruptions till the end of 1775 ; much of his 
time was spent on the survey of a canal taking olf from the Godavari ttiver [105]. 

Pittman died in January 1775, and Johnston carried on till his health broke 
down at the end of the following year when he was transferred to other duties. 
During the latter part of the survey assistance was given by Charles Mastone, of 
the civil service, an officer who made other useful surveys later on [ 143 ] . 

There is a very old undated map of the Ganjam District in the Madras Record 
Office, scale about 1-1 miles to an inch, carried out in pictorial style, with trees, 
buildings, and hills in elevation, and a marvellous headpiece ; it extends from Chica- 
cole on the south to the hills on the north ; it is said to have been one of 20 
.sections 3 . There is also a map entitled "Survey of part of Yizagapatam Circar, 
including the districts of Chicacole, Bomally, and Teckally", scale Q\ miles to an 
inch, with a note "copied from a tracing on china paper, deposited in the Revenue 
Office, Madras, 1804 4 ". Both these maps are probably copied or reduced from the 
.surveys of Pittman and Johnston 5 [252-3]. 

"Port St. George & Madras 

The earliest known large-scale map of Madras is dated 1710 and inscribed, 

Plan of the City of Madras; actually surveyed by order of the late Governor Thos. Pitt Esq.; 
Engraven, Printed, and sold by Jn. Harris, Newgate St. ... Scale 140 yds. to an inchA 

This was followed by a map of Madras and its villages, showing village bound- 
aries and names of some streets and gardens, drawn in 1733. The survey was 
made, and the map probably drawn, by Mr. John Hoxton to assist the repair of 
defence works "'. 

"We then find a map shewing Madras at the time of its capture by the French 
in 1746 ; the names are shown in both French and English ; a very neat map, with 
little pictures of French ships, inscribed, 

A Plan of Madras & Fort St. George, taken by the French commanded by Monsieur Mahe 
de la Bourdonnais s on Sept. 21st 1746. Published by John Rocque, cartographer to the late 
and present Prince of Wales, 1751 . R. Benning, Sculp. . . . The corner of Buckingham Street 
in the Strand 9 . 

In the British Museum are, 

Plan of Ft. Si. George, according to Colonel Scott [51], drawn by Robert Barker. ... 
October 1753. Scale 300 feet to an inch, showing fortificd,tion.s proposed by Scott 10 . 

Plan of Ft. St. George and the Bounds of Madraspatnam, Surveyed and drawn by FX. 
Conradi, 1755. Plotted to a scale of 60 yards to the inch 11 . 

Conradi's map was oviously the outcome of an order dated December 31st 1754, 

A survey of the Company's Present Bounds of Madrass and its Districts be made by 
Messrs. Hume and Saussure... under the direction of Mr. Brohier 13 , ... 
the Directors being advised that, 

We have directed a new Survey to be made of your Antient and present Bounds, and 
some of the Engineer's Assistants are now actually employed on that Business 13 . 

Orme published two maps illustrating the siege by the French between Decem- 
ber 12th 1758 and February 17th 1759 [86], one on the scale of 600 feet to an inch, 

1 MMC. 15-1-74. 2 DDn. 246 (125); Memoir, 1*783 (68). 3 1VIK0. Map 424. 4 ib 427. 5 Seealso 
MEIO. 137 (8, 25). 6 Love, I (4). <ib. II (253). 8 TIie French Admiral. "Imp. Lib. M $ P. 373. 
"•Map, BM.K. 115 (75). "Map, BM.K. 115 (76). u Bn«. in charge, 1751-3; to Ft. William, as C.E., 
1757; absconded 1.760. Sandes I (115). Love. If (-170). 13 M to 01). 10-3-55. 


Madras Surveys 

and the larger one BOO yards to Si inches. Both are excellently drawn and show 
much detail 1 . 

In 1769 the Council 
approve the Chief Engineer's plan for fortifying the Black Town, and with regard to the 
manner of raising a sum lor defraying the expence, propose making an Assessment on 
every House, Garden and spot of Ground within the walls, according to the value thereof 
Resolved that Mr. Marsden & Machlin. . .be instructed to take a regular Survey of each street 
to number each house, garden, and spot of Ground, specifying the Name of the Proprietor' 
and the value thereof and to affix a board at the corner of every street, with the name of 
such street wrote m English and Malabar 2 , 
and at the end of the year Marsden 

lays a plan of the Survey before them, with valuation of property and numbers of each lot 
and notes of encroachments . ' 

The "Book of the Surrey" gave the contents of the gardens for each owner in 
square feet, with their values. Unfortunately a year later Marsden's plan could 
not be found and Pittman had to be ordered to make a new survey* In Sep 
tember 17/1 a civil servant, Eyles Irwin, was appointed to make a survey of all 
the ground lying within the walls of Blacktown, as many grounds "have been 
fraudulently obtained since the commencement of the Fortifications "• he was at 
the same time appointed "Superintendent of the Lands and Grounds belonging to 
the Town of Madras, St, Thome, Chippauk and the Environs ", and was allowed "20 
Pagodas per month for the charges of an horse and Palanqueen for this ser-, 
vice " s L290]. 

In 1776 Irwin 
lays before the Board a Survey of the whole of Black Town ; several setts of Books containing 
details of properties and waste lands, areas in square feet, and values », 
however the Committee of Works reported that 

M Irwin has made no report of the Grounds belonging to St. Thome... nor fixed Landmarks 
between the Boundaries of Poonamalee & Madras. ... i-anamaras 

and the appointment was abolished'. The following year 

The many late encroachments on the Public Roads rendering' it necessary that -n Exact 

u^rye h Chfeftg h Seer £ S . them ' *** *■»*""* **"** * «*» " *« "^ 
, , Z " 17 /?, H "= h Ma ™ll, => Civil Servant, was appointed to be "Superin- 
tendent of the Company's Grounds" with the same allowances as were given to 
irwnv, and 111 1788 Tomano was appointed to succeed Maxwells This post was 
still maintained 111 1791 under the designation of "Superintendent of the Company's 
Lands and Eoads" and carried the allowances of a Surveyor. 

In 1771 Montresor and Pittman proposed a large scale survey 
Being desirous to render ourselves useful to the Honble Company by performing some 
Service that may merit their attention, We take the liberty of proposing^ SurvTy of Fort 
St George and its Environs of 10 miles in Circumference on a scale of 400 feet to an inch • the 
utility of such a work is too obvious to require a Detail of the many good Purposes it may assure. 
sh„„w 1 I " nder takmg that W1 „ require great Perseverance and Fat; I 

ance tantedTf ^P™^ "* ™ ***** ° UrSelveS We sM1 have the ™<*™Y assist- 

ance granted Us for carrying on so great a Work 11 

The Council approved the scheme, but revoked their approval at a later meeting on 
the grounds that it should have been made through the Chief Engineer 

In 1776 Dugood was employed on a survey of "the Home Earns", 'or suburban 
villages particularly describing the Level of the tanks and Water Courses 1! " 
L '42-3J- 

No further record of town surveys of Madras has been found until 1798 when 
the Chief Engineer received the following orders; ' 

The Governor in Council has been pleasedto fix the' limits and boundaries of the town 
of Madras m the following manner. ... 1 am therefore directed to desire that a map of the 


Madras Subtexs 

w^U prove of very essential advantage in correcting many errors which have been observed 
n the charts ; of this coast. He has now the pleasnre to bring Mr. Topping's jouLl before 
the Board, and his observations and remarks appear to Mm not only ingenious aXtatiS 
but likewise of utility to Government, from the accuracy with which he seems to h™e laid 
down, the bearings and distances of the principal stations in the Circars. ... [ I7 Z 1 

From the laudable anxiety expressed by the Court of Directors, ... Sr Archibald begs 

Later in the year the following instructions were issued to Topping- 
This Board have come to the resolution of having an accurate survey taken of the sea 
Ztatn^the ^laTr^ S °^™*^™«Y »f the peninsula, witL^w not on.y to 
ascertan the actual Mm of the Sea Coast, but... of obtaining a complete Survey of those 
parts of the Peninsula of India which belong to the Company and to their allies 

As soon as the season will permit, you will accordingly lose no time in proceeding upon 
I!" 717; - I™ T 11 ^ P arti ™My attentive to ascertain the exact pos tTon "of any 
remarkable town, Pagoda, Point of Land, or Hill; ... you will observe the depth o water and 
direction, of the different rivers through which yon pass, where they empty themsllves into 
the sea the depth of water on the bars, will communicate ..any remark St the 
poss bility of making the entrance more accessible to vessels of considerable burthen 

or shoalTeawa'rd wXth ^"^ T"" 11 the beari " gS ° f ^ r ™^able point of ' land 
or shoal sea-ward, wrtb the soundings to a certain distance from the shore.. .by means of any 

small vessel that you may be able to procure for this occasional purpose, Government S 

^E^P^T* - relying " ^ r »"*— t0 "Company to aflirtle 

You will pay particular attention to lay down with the utmost accuracy possible the 

ESSl fTwf" WatCT Up ° n the Arme « on Stad to the North™" of Pulicat 
[104 n.a], for although this is not within the limits of the linc.for your survey yet it is 
pretty certain that this shoal is very erroneously laid down, in COh^menceTwHrltrne of 
the Company s ships have been in the most imminent danger of being lost [ !0 4 ] 

lost rlT ? r TT ed ?^7 ey tbe r ° Ck ° r Sh0al Where the SockinghL Indiaman was 
lost the shoal of Devicotah[86 n. 7 ]...will also require your attention! 

Strafts of Man, ? h 'f ^T ° £ tbe B ° arf *** tte ^^ shaU be carried * through the 
poh of 2 PenilsH fTn "** " ^^^ " nd ^^ districts to the Southmost 
™ f . \ A f Z ^ ^ -y OTa « *« the present to consider these instructions as 
only extending from the Armegon shoal to the Southmost Termination of thTs cmst 
opposite to the Island of Hameswaram- the survey of that Island, as far as the B amTns of 
these pagodas will permit; from thence round the point of the Peninsula to Koilearre" 

"» Z M lmary , T0pping J reported that he had " taten CT ery necesoary 

% m TvJZ m T\ Wd T T d f ? 00ms P°^nt astronomical observations 
at Mr. Petnes private observatory [i 7 ,]. No ship was forthcoming, so the survey 
was earned out by land and was the first Indian survey of any extent to have been 
based on triangulation [191]. 

Porto Novo'T' h T " aC0 °r t ° f tUs fixation and a base-line measured at 

February 16 h 1792 ? " l^t"' "J^"? " More tte «°yal Society on 

•ST -,„ [ 9I "• 2] and m a letter t0 Government in 1791 he wrote 

Totally unaided-except by lasears-I conducted a series of Triangles near three 

colt" in^Mchl haTf i be f eS me f SUriDg a BaSe liM ° f SlX mite -d a S halfrtnr„: g h 1 
country in which I had to elevate myself for each observation above the tops of the highest 

thr„ort g °t gh ^ fa i iPle ° £ traVeUin « SOme th0asaads °* **»■ to endure the rigors of 

Zo^^Z-J^l^. menta ' ^ ° l *** «* — 

Having carried his triangulation from Madras to Adirampatnam" on the 

northern shore of Palk Strait, and surveyed the coast line southwards from 

Pondicherryio, Topping returned to Madras in December, expecting to return 

tSSswsr* t0 Cape Comor ' m ' wHoh h — he ™™^» 

• s M,;r c vpiit;„, ! Lxx'in (9 ;f mn 4v c 8 1 12I1 o 'i 68 ;f 7 nak ^ m Kiie > mpc - 3( i- 11 ^- 
*■' Mi °™ dto m» — r ye-» w™ PC ^o 2 iS\9-n,f a ';„ S i D itprt r o^t™ 


Goldingham made use of this survey in compiling a 
map of Negapatam districts, and part of those dependent on Nagore 1 , laid down chiefly 
from surveys by Mr. G. I. Hoissard in 1791. Corrected by Mr. Topping's survey of the coast. 
July 25th 1797- Scale 6 miles to an inch 5 . 

An application to the Governor General for the loan of a "Bombay Cruiser" 
for Topping's use was not successful, and on his return he looked for a suitable 
vessel at Madras; 

Having. ..used every endeavour. procure a small vessel for the marine part of. 
my survey, enquiries, till very lately, have been wholly unsuccessful but. ..two 
days ago I very fortunately met with a small well-built cutter of about 30 tons burthen... 
suited to the purpose. This vessel is quite new, having been launched about three months 
ago at Pegu, where she was constructed of the very best teak timber. ..after an English 
model 3 . 

He asked permission to purchase it for 1200 pagodas 1 , and to spend 
"the trifling" extra cost of providing copper sheathing to her bottom and a small 
boat to attend her. As he further assured Governement that she would be 
in every way suited to the purpose wanted, and particularly for exploring the passages 
situated between the Coast of India and Ceylon, 

her purchase was sanctioned. Topping indented on the Paymaster for two candies 
of sheet copper for the use of the Mary, but, 

after much fruitless trouble and vexation, not being able to procure the sort I wanted from 
the Company's stores, I was compelled to purchase the necessary quantity from a Merchant 
in the Black Town 5 . 

In the meantime the Directors had written out welcoming Topping's appoint- 
ment, and ordering that his first task should be to re-examine the coast for a safe 
harbour ; 

It would be of the utmost consequence to have a Port of Shelter for large ships within 
our own territories on the Coast of Choromandel, and a doubt having been suggested, on 
attention to Major Stevens's plan of Coringa, whether there be such a passage for a large ship 
into the river Godavery; but the late dreadful calamity at Coringa 6 may have made essential 
alterations since Major Stevens's survey was taken [101]; we therefore direct that 
Mr. Topping be employed as soon as possible in making a survey of the mouth of the river 
Godavery. ... Possibly planting the mud banks of the mouth of the Godavery with 
Mangroves might tend to deepen the channel. It will be proper to survey also the road of 
Coringa to ascertain what shelter it can afford. If. ..neither the river Godavery nor 
Coringa can afford safe shelter for large ships we think the Bay of Pettapolly 7 ought to be 
carefully examined 8 . 

As Topping estimated that it would take eight months to finish his survey to 
the south, the Council decided that he should first carry out the survey at the 
mouth of the Godavari. 

He commenced his survey of the Bay of Coringa in August 1789 and made a 
thorough survey with soundings, besides taking systematic observations of the tides 9 
[191-2], In liis report submitted in February 1790 he pointed out the inaccuracy 
of former charts, apparently including that of Stevens, made in 1772 ; 

This led the Hon. Court of Directors to expect that a passage for their shipping into the 
Godavery might be found, ... a matter as will now appear of utter impossibility. ... I have 
determined to submit the materials with which I have constructed my Chart to their 
inspection, being of opinion that were the means by which all maps and Charts are made 
exposed to the test of examinations, much fewer impositions would be attempted than are 
at present practiced, with too frequent success, by persons who depend more on the opera- 
tions of their own fancy than on their knowledge of things requisite for the construction of 
geographical documents [184]. 

Though the passage of ships into the Godavery was quite impracticable, he 
described the safe harbourage and convenience of the Road of Coringa at every 
season of the year, and, alluding to a rumour that the object of the Directors was to 

make Coringa the place of rendezvous for their Bengal shipping, in order to avoid the 
dangerous, and too often fatal, navigation of the Ganges, 

Negapatam & Nagore, Dutch Settlements annexed by EIC. in I7S1, 58 N/13. 2 M&0. Map 322. 

3 MTC. 8-12-8S. 4 About £ 500. s The northern quarter of Madras, MPC. 16-6-89. "Tidal wave, 1787 ; 
Imp. Gaz. Mad. I (295). ?66 A/9 (see pi. 9). 8 CD to M. 20-8-88 (10). fl MEO. Map. 108. 

104 Madras Surveys 

added that "no place can be fitter for these purposes 1 ". 

During 1790 and 1791 Topping was employed on arrangements for building 
the observatory at Madras [ 1 72-3 ], and he wrote in December 1791, 

Being at present occupied. erecting an Astronomical Observatory' at this Presi- 
dency, it will not be possible for me to proceed on any distant service; ... the late heavy 
monsoon must have impeded not onfy that, but every other outdoor operation that I might 
have been engaged in; ... as however the Rivers will probably subside in a few days, I think 
I may venture to promise that the observatory shall be compleated within three months 
from the setting in of the fair weather. ... 

Although my present occupations will not admit of my immediately commencing my 
service Southward, yet, if the Hon'ble Board approve of my entering upon an examination 
and survey of the Pullicate and Armegon Shoals 2 during the present favorable season, and will 
allow me the assistance of Mr. Goldingham, I can, as those dangers are not very distant from 
Madras, arrange to conduct that service. 

The investigation of these dangerous shoals make a part of my instructions; ... the 
uncertainty of their true situation and extent has long been an evil very justly complained 
of; and, if I am rightly informed, the Vestal Frigate, with the Right Hon'ble the Governor 
General on board, had lately a narrow escape of being wrecked or one or the other of them 3 . 
This was approved, and in the following October Topping reported. 
The survey of the Pulicate shoals have been compleated some time but, ...before 
Mr. Goldingham could accomplish his examination of the Armegon and other Banks to the 
northward, ...he had the misfortune to lose the cutter's mast and, ...notwithstanding I 
have searched everywhere for a spare to replace it, I have not yet succeeded in finding one. 

In consequence of this disaster I have ordered the lascars to be discharged and the vessel 
to be secured in Pulicate River, directing at the same time Mr. Goldingham to proceed with 
his survey on shore to beyond the Armegon, in order that by a connected series of 
observations, in addition to that formerly made by myself, we may at length obtain a true 
figure of the whole peninsula 4 [ 178]. 
In December he reported that 
the Survey of the sea coast northward by Mr. Goldingham is going on, and will extend to 
Point Devy 5 including Pettypolly Bay very shortly. 

In March 1793 he submitted 
Mr. John Goldingham's survey of the sea coast from Madras to the Kistna, together with 
a very particular investigation of the Pulicate Reef s =. ... As the work will speak for itself, 
I shall only observe that the method adopted was recommended by myself, and that the* 
execution of it discovers great zeal, application, and ingenuity in Mr. Goldingham?. 

In acknowledging this survey and Topping's letter that accompanied it, the 
Directors write, 

We recommend that the Mary be fitted as a Schooner, and the survey of the Bay of 
Pettipollee and the Soundings on the other parts of the Coast be completed by Mr. 
Goldingham as soon as opportunity will allow. ... 

Although correspondent observations at the observatory are very desirable, yet that 
consideration cannot be admitted as a competent excuse for postponing the actual surveys. 

Without deprecating the extreme precision with which Mr. Topping and his Assistant seem 
so meritoriously to have executed the survey of the sea Line, and which we wish to have 
continued, yet there are surveys of more general importance, but none which merit more 
attention than that of the Godavary and Kistnah, as they affect the cultivation of the 
countries adjacent s [105-7]. 

These surveys of the coast were compiled by Goldingham into a map 3 which 
bears the following note [ 192 ]; 

The coast from Adiapatnam to Fort St. George (a distance of about 240 miles)... was 
surveyed by means of a continued series of large triangles, formed with high signals. ... The 
same method was adopted in the survey of the coast from the Western mouth of the Kistna 
River to Masulipatam, a distance of about 47 miles. Both these surveys were executed 
solely by. . .Mr. Michau Topping. 

The coast from Fort St. George to the Western mouth of the Kistna (an extent of 250 
miles) was surveyed by means of high signals ranged along the coast at intervals of 9 or 10 
miles, the relative bearings and distances of these having been found by Astronomical 

'To Dalrymple, 10-7-90, Mai. Sel. XIX. 1855 (2,22). »6 m. from shore, off present liehthouse 
Monapajem, 60 Ci ! ; ft.p. c.'ii:. Mad. I. (365). "11PC. 27-12-91. "1IPC. 16-10-92. 'Divi Point 66 Eft- 
False Divi Pout, 66 A/13. 6 MRO. Map 41, en^ra.viid by J. Walker; pub. 1-5-1821 '< \] pr [Q 1 n-> 
"CD to M. 23-4-94 (61-64). = MRIO. 137 (53) & MRO. Map 125. ' 


observations, and smaller curves ascertained by theodolite and perambulator. The Pulicate 
Shoals were surveyed by the help of signals ranged on shore. Both these surveys were 
executed by myself. ... 

The coast from Masulipatam to Point Gardewar 1 (about 106 miles ) was surveyed by 
Bearings and distances with the Theodolite and perambulator, by Lt. Caldwell of the 
Engineers, when Assistant. the Survey of the Kistna and Godavari Rivers [106]. 

The Bay of Coringa was laid down from an accurate survey by the late Marine Surveyor. 


The first recorded survey carried out for irrigation purposes 2 was one by 
Dugood on the Godavari Itiver in 1775 [ 93 ] j 

33 sheets of a sketch showing the Zully Brooke and its environs, from its leaving the 
Godavary to its joining the Colere. Done to a scale of 8 inches to a mile; ... done large for 
the purpose of distinguishing minutely the Dams &c. 
The canals had been constructed by the local people 

to make the Country about them produce Paddy; ... the purpose of tracing the canal was to 
improve it by deepening, widening, &c, and improve the passage of water; 
and with his survey Dugood estimated "the cost of taking away and re-making 
the dams 3 ". 

Dalrymple has published an account 4 of a survey of the Godavari by Walter 
Lennon in 1786 with a view to the "improvement of cultivation"; 
Mr. Lennon in 1786 went in a boat up the Godavery & Shevery Rivers, about 180 miles 
above Rajahmundry 5 , and reported on the various tributaries, and that he found no 

In 1788 Lennon represented to the Governor, 

That he had, in 1786, at his own expence, undertaken to make a Survey of the Godavery, 
upon a scale of one inch to a mile, distinguishing the different districts upon its Bank; ... 
that his intentions were to begin near Rajahmundry, and to go as far North and West as he 
should be permitted; he surveyed in this manner about 9 miles of the river. ... What he 
did was merely for trial of the practicability of the Work. 

He now proposed to make an exact Survey of the River Godavery, on a scale of an inch to 
a mile, and also of the Rivers Shevery & Sheelain...and offered to compleat the whole at his 
own expence, the only assistance desired, a few lascars ; and the only Emolument expected, 
was the privilege of sending down Teak Timbers, ... secure... from the exactions & plunder 
of the Zemindars [144]. 

Dalrymple also reproduces a report from Dr. Roxburgh 6 , the botanist, dated 
October 17th 1792, with 

a sketch of the Colar 7 , with those parts of the little Rivers that supplied it with water, 
taken from a manuscript Map, which he believed to be exact, but of this Map no copy J3 
come to England, & Dr. Roxburgh has not an exact idea of the Channel from the Godavery, 
which was surveyed very minutely by Capt. Dugood. 

In 1792 the Directors wrote out, 

We recommend that Mr. Topping. ..may be employed in Surveying the Circars, particular- 
ly the Rajahmundry Circar. ... Such a Survey would at once shew, not only the position and 
nature of the Lands at present in cultivation, and with what cultivated, but. ..what 
Improvements might be made 3 . 

One consideration of much moment is, the easy communication with the Sea or Water 
carriage. ... The Inland Navigation of the Rajahmundry Circar is not known to us; it would 
therefore be of the utmost consequence to Survey Branches of the Godavery River as well as 
of the Kistna, ... One very great object is floating down Teak, which... might thus be brought 
by Water to the Sea 9 . 

The Council passed this letter to Topping and at the same time consulted 
Beatson, the Governor noting that, 

Godavari Point, 65 L/6. 3 But see 3rd & 4th Instructions to Barnard [142]. 3 Mack. MSS. 

LSVIII, 27-4-75. ^Oriental Repertory, H; Watering the Circars, Dalrymple. 1 793, with map. 6 65 Gill). 
"William Roxburgh, Asst. Surg. Mad. 28-5-76; succeeded to charge Botanical Gardens, Sibpur, 1793. 
" Colair Lake, 65 H/2. 8 See proposals made by Lennon [144]. 9 CD to M. 16-5-92 (11-13). 


Mabkas Surveys 

r, ^wvt *T ne ln ttlt qUarter ^ agaln nat "ally timed the public attention to the 
practicability of securing water, in future, by means of the two rivers aTS.- £T 
waters to the purposes of cultivation, as a pint of the fiJ^^^T*™^ *"" 

rleatson was strongly in favour of 
ULSf*,* ]adi ?T l7 constracted : •••" forming an aqueduct, there would be uo nn 
lZ7Jai B of f des « nt r Wh ^ 0llghtn0t tQ 6XCeed fi " Hichesmamile,whe r eVt h e 
7nl"be wo e rr famed " * ** M "* "^ ^ S ° ^utly as to run no risVor 

wlthTt 1 SKSLK IrT ^^ " j^ £ T bf ^t^ 

Squint ^ Z- * - M^SM =M 

He further recommended that levels should he taken alouo- the rivers and 
Surveys of the Ground, for a mile or two on each side of these level!, to be made and all 
original observations of the Surveys & Levellings to be arranged in a eta & dStinct 

to ^ en ee e ssa 17 instructions were then passed to Topping, who first went down 

from ieO "F T [95 "' 6] "^ ^ the irri g ati °» S 7 st ™ taking ou 

from the Cauvery and Coleroon rivers; he then left Madras in March 1793 for 
Masuhpatam, taking James Caldwell with him as assistant, He made a survey of 
the Kistna from Masuhpatam to Bezwada, J 

S^^ f .^V tSn0rttembank; -^^ari River was executed in like 

T,at n r™ C0Un i ° f ? S leTelIin S operations is given in a report dated February 14th 

i L 192-3 J, and a year later he wrote, apparently in a mood of depression 
• „ TJ°, part ' cular T lse a servlce in wh ich I have laboured these two seasons past and 
indeed that on which I indulge Warm hopes of support and encouragement from tte Hortle 
Company-Namely my exertions in tU Northern drears. In despite of illiberal opposition 
and an almost total want of proper assistance. In despite of the rigors of a climate fpeAaps 
the hottest and most unhealthy in the habitable world) I have conducted a series oileZl 
near two hundred miles m length; and a minute survey of the Kistnah, with its several 
branches, to near a hundred miles from the sea; and I purpose to do the same by the 
Godavery and its adjacent territory, if life and health permit V 

Much has been said, and much written, on this important subject. The Watering of the 
C^^tw^U however appear from the delineations already laid before Government and 
more fully from those which I shall shortly submit..., that nothing can be more w?ld and 
extravagent than the idea of those who recommend undertakings of this kind to be WMv 
com,nenced...without method, nay, without first ascertaining the practicability of the 
scheme a work of great (but indispensable) labour; ...and, .. supposing the proposed work 
has...been found practicable, a second survey and series of levels, more minute than those 
previously accomplished, must also be undertaken, in order to mark out the «-o™rf 
which the intended canals are to be carried, to determine their proper dimen ions thei fiT* 
and slope &c, all of which will require ample assistance and a Band of wactical tn g 
well instructed, and capable of enduring the climate 8. P surveyors, 

His chart of the "Lower Division of the Kistna", and chart of levels was sent 
home to the Directors later in the year, the Council noting that 

This work completes the Kistna from its several entrances to 'beyond Amuktala „ 
distance of near no miles from the sea, and furnishes determinations of the levels of tt» 
adjacent country to that furthest inland point. e 

i Mr. Topping, from want of sufficient materials is still.. .[anxious] to susoend w 
judgement upon the practicability of the ultimate object we have in view* 

After Topping's death in January 1796 the Directors ordered that Beatsnn 
should complete the survey, which was now widened in character so as to cover u 
means by which the irrigation of the cultivated lands in the Circars could V, 
improved. Beatson came out from home for this special purpose, and left Mad,.,! 
in March 1798, taking with him Madias 

a Map of the countries between the Kistna and Gaudavery rivers, with a survev „f «. 
rivers by the late Mr. Topping and Captain Caldwell, their lines of levels at every loth 

'MEC. 4-12-92. "Note on map, MEIO. 137 (53V 

*Mto CD. 2-10-85 (11?, 116). 

e also MEIO. 161 (21, 22). 'MEC. 7-2-95 


station being marked thereon and also profiles of the levels taken . . . up the Kistna and across 
the adjacent country to the Gaudavery 1 . 

He travelled up to Ellore through 
Calastry...Ongole...Chmtapilly 3 ; ... throughout this tract the objects I have constantly kept 
in view, were to ascertain the various modes of watering and cultivation — the nature and 
situation of the best tanks — the different methods of constructing.. .sluices, and to discover 
every means of improvement that might be successfully introduced in the Circars. 

At Chintapilly, I examined that narrow part of the Kistnah, about a mile above the fort, 
where the waters are confined between two rocks, in a space of little more than 300 yards; 
afterwards I proceeded to explore the face of the country on each side of the river, from 
Chintapilly to Ibrampatam, which.. .appears to me totally ineligible, and I may add 
impracticable, for canals or aqueducts, however favourable the levels might have been found. 

On his march to Ellore Beatson had employed 
several intelligent Bramins of the Corps of Guides, ... in different parts, to ascertain some 
points connected with the investigation, 

and they brought in surreys of the more important rivers flowing through the 
Guntur and Ellore Circars. He goes on to say that, 

During this investigation I have often had reason to regret that so small a portion of 
these districts has as yet undergone an actual survey, and that there is no map of the interior 
of the circars which could afford me any material assistance. To the late Mr. Topping's and 
Captain Caldwell's accurate surveys of the Kistnah and Godavery I am indeed much 
indebted, and to Captain Dugood's of the Wayairoo ; but excepting these the rest of the map 
of the Masulipatam circar is extremely imperfect, being a Moochy map, constructed many 
years ago in the Engineer's office at Masulipatam 3 . 

Beat-son suggested that a similar survey should be carried out in GTuntur Circar 
to that which he had made some years before in Palnad [no], 

At the same time that this Survey is carrying on, I beg leave to recommend that a 
similar Survey of the rivers in the Gun tur Circar (including 2 miles on each side of them, 
representing principal watercourses from these rivers, villages, and Tanks} be made upon the 
same scale; this survey with the Routes already surveyed by Captain Mackenzie and myself 
will form an useful map of that Circar*. 

He was not able to accomplish much, for war clouds were gathering, and 
in July 1798, the very next month, he was called away to join the Governor 
General's staff and act as adviser on the geography and local conditions of the 
Mysore frontier [118]. Topping's scheme was not pursued further; 

The first idea of the Godavery Anicut originated with Mr. Michael Topping, who reported 
how desirable it would be to throw a dam across the Godavery, so as to raise the water, and 
make it available for irrigation. The project was permitted to slumber for half a century 
and was revived in 1844 5 [by the great engineer Arthur Cotton]. 

Tank Repairs 

The Company having assumed the administration of several of the Carnatic dis- 
tricts from the beginning of the war of 1790 6 , and suggestions being made by 
district officers for the improvement of the revenues from cultivation, the Directors 
wrote out in 1793, 

The Letter from Mr. Andrews of the 16th August 1790, has stated in such forcible terms 
the advantages which are likely to accrue from cutting a Channel for supplying the Devicotah 
District with Water from the Coleroon, that we trust no time has been lost in making the 
necessary previous examination and Survey, and in commencing the Work, if the Report shali 
have been in favor of the project. ... 

We observe by the Letter from the Board of Revenue, . . . that from the present ruinous 
state of the Water Courses and Tanks, it is to be apprehended, that without the aid of 

^PC. May 1798. s E31afcasti, 57 O/lO: Ongole, 66A./2; Chmtapaile, 65D/2. 3 MKC. 27-7-98. 

4 Mack. MSS. LIX, 10-6-9S, "ACollnction of papers illustrative of the different W terworks in the Carnatic". 

5 Moms (109). 6 In 1781 the Nawab of the Carnatic assigned to the Company the revenue of his dis- 
tricts to provide for their defence; this was not confirmed by the Directors, but a treaty of 1786 provided 
for such assignment in the event of another war, and this was put into force in 1790. v. M Pol. to CD. 
1S-9-90 (162). At the close of the war administration 01 certain districts remained with the Company, 
and complete transfer followed in 1801 [pi. l]. 

■-^ ! 

108 Madras Scev-eys 

Government, no effectual repair will be made by the Renters. ... We authorize you if the 
state of your finances shall adnut of it, to disburse the Sum. ..necessary for giving Ttnorou»n 
eparr to the Water Courses and Tanks \ a measure which, ... if effected byskilM S 
could not fad to mduce Proposals for an increased Rent... ultimately attended with a 
proportionate increase of Revenue 3 . 

The matter was referred to Topping whose recommendations were eminently 
practical; he wrote to the Board of Revenue on January Sth 1794- 

District r vl1 U donb;i t e < s reCOmmend * tho ™^ ™V^ of the reservoirs' in the Company's 
n™Xt b f ^ necessary one. Before, however, so extensive a work can with 

mXn/th r° T "-,, ParbCUlar SUrV6y ° f each reservoir ' nata ^ <* Artifical, shoulTbe 
onthem. ^ Certamly ^ ° bUged t0 pay d ° uWe the m ° ne ? bonafide expended 

...[26 4 ] aeCtthiSSalnt0ryPUrPOSe ' arSgalarSUrVey ° rGenaraL ' S ° ffiCe Sh ° Uld be institated 

to act^nl^s™ ^""r * *"? T£ *" ° r tm ' Ve ****>»«>• *»*!)*« will be wanted, 
to act under the Surveyor General and his Assistants; These should, in my opinion be formed 
mto a regular body, and established in the fixed pay and service of the Company 
Ihe Board of Revenue endorsed this proposal 
■ J^ beg J eaTe t0 recommend that a Surveyor General's office be instituted at Madras 
Mr To" 7 and th<! " nmber ° f aSSiStaQtS ' b ° th E "°P-" *" d Native, pointed out oy 

apoetr ttat tnT^T r^ fin 2? ° f the Tanks &C m the ^^, <** " » ™uld 
oufthedSriS , t K , reCtOTS '- intend t0 eXtend such improvements through- 

out the districts under this presidency; we conceive an establishment of this nature to be of 
the utmost importance, not only to effect the necessary survey of the state of the Tanks 
the repairs they require, and where others may with advantage be constructed but 
afterwards to Superintend the execution of the works 3. smictea, But 

l7o!f f ei 'T entaOCe ?, te , dtIle r Se commendations so far as the establishment in 
1794 of a Surveying- School [ 2 8 4 ], and the following- year resolved that 

Bang convinced of the necessity of appointing a scientific person to superintend the 
under "^^ an f. Wate / C °-- S : « «^ed that Mr. Topping be nominated to th at duty 
under the designation of "Superintendent of Tank Repair & Watercourses" 
^ As the execution of the orders which have been received...upon this important subject 
will necessarily involve the Company in a very heavy expence, and as grea? r3E 
consequently attached to the person employed in the work, resolved that Mr Sf £ 

apprntment<> PaS ** m ° nth "" ^ ^^ DeDart — * fa» the dateoTri 

On Topping's death in 1796 Caldwell succeeded him in charge of the "Depart- 
ment of Tank Repairs", the first regular department of Public Works to be 
established m India. 

Early in 1794 John Non-is was deputed "to survey the Devicotta District [8611 7 1 
and report on the scheme put forward for its Irrigation". He reported that he con- 
fl e To, * im 7 neC f S f P" f aD the ™ tecou ^s, tanks, and communications with 
the Coleroon River, but he does not appear to have done much towards such survey 
for a year later Government told the Chief Engineer that ' 

further employment of Captain Norris at Devicotah is useless and unnecessary. He is 

relatve'To theS ""l!"^ ^^ " "Nation as he may ha^proeied 

relative to the Survey, upon which he was ordered so far back as January 1794 « 

In his place Caldwell was sent down in 1795 from Masuhpatam, "to examine 
how far the waters of the Coleroon could he applied to water the lands of 
Devycotah" and m pursuance of his report, the first two boys passing out from the 
surveying school were sent down to survey the district. The following letter shows 
that the survey was m the nature of a "Revenue Survey", but as time went on the 
Department of Tank Repairs developed its own type of survey, and produced district, 
maps for its special purposes which were of considerable topographical value- 

In Captain Caldwell's last letter he wrote me that we must male a survey of all the 
Paddy gronn d s which are cultivated, and which are not cultivated, and to find the contents 
of them, and for that. Sir. we want ahnnt so „r f. n h„ m K„„„ *„- t, __ _, U "V contents 

„ ■——"•*- -'"™"". ™ wmen are not cultivated, and to find the contents 

of them, and for that. Sir, we want about 50 or 60 bamboos for flags, ... and we do want also a 

! CD to M. Rev. 25-6- 
6 CD to M. 9-5-97(52). 

* EC .'^r ns ss s B L X ^2tf- ] 9 5. >cZ?i^tr 3 ft 36) - smec - »"~ 

Tank Repairs 109 

person out of the village to shew us the boundary of them, and also to shew us properly 
which are cultivated, and which are not cultivated. ... We have orders to make a survey of 
all the salt-water Rivers; for that, Sir, we must have a Boat, to be for our Survey; if Captain 
Caldwell was here we would have them by his orders, but he, being so distant from us, it is 
with much difficulty to receive one of his letters in a month, and therefore I have mentioned 
it to you, Sir. We have not persons enough to cut the jungle as it is so thick between the 
boundary of Devicottah and also at the Salt-water Rivers. . . . We are going on with the nullahs 
from the Yarry [reservoir] ; at present we have rain here most days in the week; Allan desires 
to be remembered to you. Sir; I hope all our friends are well 1 [195]. 
On this Goldingham wrote to the Board, of Revenue, 

It is absolutely necessary for the person these lads are placed immediately under to be 
on the spot, ready to give them the requisite assistance, and to support them through the 
opposition they are likely to meet with from persons interested in keeping from Government 
the information they are ordered to obtain, by which the real value of the country will be 
ascertained, as well as to give them due encouragement to persevere in the prosecution of a 
difficult and laborious duty. 

Such troubles were of course the lot of all surveyors, though more particularly 
of those engaged in revenue surveys. 

The Cobpb of Guides 

On Pringle's death in 1789 Beatsou succeeded to the command of the company 
of Guides [97]. The establishment and composition of the company had been 
frequently changed; Pringle had left a scheme for 400 men, 100 to be employed 
north of the Kistna, 200 in the Carnatic, and 100 south of the Coleroon, but the 
Directors considered these numbers too high ; 

With reference,., to Captain Pringle's proposal for establishing a numerous body of guides 
...and the Commander in Chief's opinions of 1773 and 1775 [90] we are led to form an opinion 
in favour of the utility of some regular Establishment of this nature. ... We are inclined to 
think that the labours of Colonel Kelly and Captain Pringle have rendered the Establishment 
of Guides to so large an amount as 400 less necessary than formerly, and we desire to know 
whether you are in possession of the maps which were presented to the Governor General 
in Council by the former in 1782 [240]. If not, you must make application for them, and you 
must inform us whether you really think it necessary to keep up so large an establishment 
of Guides as Captain Pringle recommends 3 . 

The Chief Engineer then recommended an establishment one quarter of that 
suggested by Pringle, but Government only sanctioned 50 men, whom Allan was 
authorized to raise in time for the war of 1790. During peace time many of the 
guides had been employed as harcaralis under the Goyernor and the Commander- 
in-Chief 3 . 

Both Beatson and Allan were enthusiastic surveyors and it is recorded that. 

During the interval of peace, until the commencement of the war with Tippoo in i7go. 
Captain Beatson was indefatigable in surveying and exploring the whole face of the 
Carnatic. ... His surveys extended from the River Godavery to Cape Coraorin; and by the 
routes he had selected, especially by the ranges separating the Carnatic from Travancore and 
Mysore, he had obtained a knowledge of every pass or defile, above 60 in number, which lead 
through that range 4 . 

He embodied this work, together with much that must haye been collected 
"from information", into a map of which Rennell writes ; 

Toom-buddra River, ... the remainder of its course, and its place of junction with the 
Kistnah 5 , is from Capt. Beatson's map of the Coromandel &c, drawn and transmitted to the 
Court of Directors of the East India Company in 1789, This valuable piece of geography... 
contains material for correcting a considerable portion of the course of the Kistnah river. ... 

1 From Thomas Turabull to Goldino-ham ; MKev. Bd. 13-9-98. 2 CD to M. 8-4-89 (25). 3 Maek. 
MSS. LXIX, 30-1-90, *MMG. II (3*75). s 57 1/1. 


Madras Surveys 

Capt. Beatscm's survey of the Palnaud district [shows the] a point more 
than go miles above Condapillyi. Thence to Sooropour, or Solapour, is from authorities 
collected by Capt, Beatson. ... 

Balhary 3 27 G. miles to south-west of Adoni, Beatson's map of 1789. 

Within those [boundaries] of the Nizam, on the side of Cuddapah and Gooty. the places 
are taken, chiefly, from Capt. Beatson's map; as are those also in the north Carnatic, Guntoor 
and Palnaud 3 . 

A map of Beatson's preserved at Calcutta is entitled Countries between the 
Peunar and Oodavari Rivers, compiled for Sir Archibald Campbell (presumably 
during 1788-9) [101 n.g]. It is on the scale of 6 miles to an inch and carries the 
following' notes; 

The district of Palnaud, the principal points in the Guntoor Circar, and the routes 
expressed m double lines are from my own survey.— The Masulipatam Circar is chiefly from 
Major Stevens's map, and Nizampatam...from an original survey by Mr. Scott.— The interior 
parts, and the routes expressed by the single line, are from cursory surveys by Capt. Alexander 
Read, and from itineraries kept by Hircarrahs sent to explore the roads' 1 . 

Another map shows "the roads to Madras from Masulipatam drawn by Maior 
Beatson from the report of Hircarrahs" 2 . 

Beatson's Military survey of the district of Palnaud 1 ' is preserved at Madras, a 
sketch made in 1787, apparently on a framework of measured roads. Beatson says 
that he finished in " in about three months, during which time I visited every 
village and every pass in the district'" [193]. 

His invaluable surveys and reconnaissances made when commanding the Guides 
during the Mysore War of 1790-2 were sent home with the following note from 
the Council; 

We send the third volume of Capt. Beatson's Geographical Observations in Mysore & the 
Baramahal s , with an examination of the Passes, ... to which we added some Military sketches 
of Hill Forts & of Seringapatam. Captain Beatson will lose no time in arranging the earlier 
materials into a frst & second volume to be transmitted to England 8 . 
The Directors replied, 

The performances of Capt. Beatson, whether of General Geography, or of sketches meant 
to convey ideas of particular spots of ground for military purposes, ... appear to be executed 
with great judgement and accuracy. ... The map of Coromandel transmitted by the same 
dispatch is a monument of great industry, skill, and minute accuracy 10 . 

Allan's surveys were hardly less valuable and include, 

A Survey of the Sea Coast from Fort David U to Killay, and of the country in the 
neighbourhood of Porto Novo and ChillumbrumJ 3 .— Several Surveys of Roads.— A military 
survey of the Provinces South of the River Coleroonl-".— Fieldbooks and maps of the Marches 

of the Army under the command of General Medows, from May 1790 to January 1791. A 

Field Book of the Marches of the Army under Command of Earl Cornwallis, from February sth 
1791 to May 1792 u . 

During 1790 General Medows had worked backwards and forwards along the 
southern frontiers of Mysore in a yain attempt to bring- Tipu to decisive action, 
and it was in an effort to bring the war to some conclusion that the Governor 
General, Lord Cornwallis, assumed command of the army in February 1791, and 
by invading Mysore with a greatly larger force, was able to force Tipu to surrender 
before Seringapatam in March 1792 15 . 

Allan gives the following account of his surveys, 

Of the Military survey of the Provinces South of the Coleroon, it may be proper to 
remark that I commenced it in May 1789, and in December following, on the prospect of a 
war, it became incumbent on me to quit that service and proceed to... Trichfnopoly for the 
purposes of raising a Corps of Guides and endeavouring to investigate... the nature of the 
country and roads in such parts of Tippoo's Dominions, as were likely... to become the 
theatre of the future operations of the Army. 

■Kondapalli, 65 D/10 [pi. 9]. ! Bellaiy, 57 A/i6. ' Peninsula (i, 10, 13) . *MH[0 VIS (191 

MEIO. 180,14). 'W. of Gmrtur [pl. 9 ],HEO. Map 11(5. & MEIO. 147 (11). Revenues .northed to 
the Company from 2-1-2-87, KiMna Manual (153). ; MRC. 27-7-9S. 'The Lilly trac- ■'nth? IV ---? 
Salem Dirt. 57 L. >M to CD. 31-7-92 (37). ">CD to M. 25-B-9:i (-1-4,45; «5S NI-14 "Omd™ 

rjaram, 58 M/ll: probably MEIO. 133 (12). "Fdbk. MRIO. M. 77. " JIMC. 1-3-93 " "A.-eountoi3rd 
Mysore War, Bowriag (145-173)- 

The Coups op Guides 111 

Some parts of the Map are... sketched in from information, and distinguishes 
accordingly. ... In the Field Book of the Marches of the Army under Maj. General Medows, 
the distances of the Marches from September 14th to Octobsr 7th I received from the Officers 
of Engineers' by whom they were measured. After the distribution of the troops in August 
1790, ...General Medows approved my making a more minute survey of the country from 
Caroor 3 to Coimbatoor than my official duties as Captain of Guides with the army had per- 
mitted me to do on the March. 

One of his maps, entitled "a Map of the Marches of the British Armies in the 
Peninsula of India, during- the Campaigns of 1790, 1791, and 1792" was prepared 
from a map published by Bennell in London early in 1792, to which Allan added 
his own later surveys. The map showed all the new boundaries fixed by treaty, the 
marches of the British and Mysore troops distinguished by different colours, every 
encampment with its date of occupation, and all the Ports captured during the war 3 . 
Rermeil's map was compiled from maps sent home by Lord Cornwallis ; 

They consisted of 2 distinct maps, on very large and similar scales (9 inches to a 
degree); the one containing the capaign of General Medows in 1790; the other that of Lord 
Cornwallis in 1791. The 1st was compiled by Capt. Allan, who held the office of Capt. of 
Guides to the Army during the campaign of 1790; the other by Capt. Beatson who held a 
similar post during the succeeding campaign; and who had previously given very sufficient 
proofs of his ability as a geographer, by his surveys and remarks made in the N. E. of the 
Peninsula. Each of these maps possesses a very considerable share of merit, and collectively 
they describe a chain of positions fixed by cursory measurement, and angles taken from the 
distant hills 4 [253]. 

After the conclusion of peace Beatson was appointed Town Major at the 
Presidency, whilst Allan was appointed to make "a complete military survey of the 
Baramalial and Salem districts", which had been ceded by Tipu [113]. In submit- 
ting the results of this survey, he writes, 

I have the honor to lay before your Lordship in Council, several volumes of Geographical 
observations, made in the countries ceded by Tippoo [287]. 

The course of that part of the Cavery which forms the Western Boundary is ascertained, 
as also the nature of the several fords across that river, and the remainder of the Frontier 
line from the Cavery to Amboor is determined s . 

Early in 1798 Allan resigned command of the Guides, and was relieved by 
Alexander Or, who commanded them through the fourth Mysore war, and was in 
turn relieved by Thomas Sydenham, followed by James Colebrooke in October 
1799; these officers upheld the tradition they inherited, and continued to add to 
the knowledge of the new territories ceded to the Company on the fall of Tipu. 

Colih Mackenzie 

Though he has himself noted that he made his first surveys as early as 1784 s , 
probably when serving with his battalion in Coimbatore, the first survey made by 
Colin Mackenzie of which we have any particulars is a " Survey of Nellore and 
Seropilly with the roads between them. ..1787. ..scale 250 yards to an Inch'', which 
the critical Montgomerie classed forty years later as "good" 7 . The following year 
he made an extensive survey of the roads of Guntur. 

Under the treaty with the Nizam of 1768 [91], the circar of Guntur 8 , granted 
to the Company by the Emperor of Delhi, remained the jiiglr of the Nizam's 
brother Basalat Jang for his life; Basalat died in 1781 but it was not until 1788 
that the Company took possession, as Mackenzie writes, 

Guntoor had been a subject of important Political discussion before my arrival in India, 
but no trace of any attempt to survey it existed in 1788 when the Detachment under Lieut. 
Colonel Ellington was sent to resume possession of it from the Nizam. At that time I was 
employed to survey the roads marched by the Detachment, and the principal Forts 9 . 

'Of whom one was Mackenzie [112]. ! Karnr, 58 J/1. "MMC. 1-3-93. 'Rermell (Advertise- 

ment). s MEIO. 138/49, Sketch of the pastes between JfcjK [57 K/15] # Gamlhltti [53 E/ 2] (slowing 
country between Arcot & Seringapatani) by Allan ; sd. Baramahal, 30-9-93 ; Ambar. 57 L/9. Letter of 

19-1-1811; MMC. 8-2-1811. ?DDn. 248 (142). s The Circar was a nmch smaller area tb m the present 
district [pi. o]. 8 MMC. 19-6-1817. 


Maeeas Surveys 

His detailed account of this Surrey, illustrated by a couple of maps, was 
published by Dalrymple [i 86], He had commenced 

without any fixed appointment, from an opinion of the utility of the work, and which was 
approved by Government. . .on my presenting the work 1 . 

A year later, 

A complete survey of the District appearing desirable to Government, in December 1789 
I was appointed to survey Guntoor, but after preparing for that undertaking I was ordered 
to join the Army about to take the Field 3 . 

He was warned for field service in March 1790 and, joining- General Medows's 
army to the south, made survey of the routes of the army "in the Coimbatoor 
Country", and also of the fort of "Palgautcherry 3 ". 

During- the campaigns of 1791 and 1792 he served as assistant to the Chief 
Engineer m Mysore, and on the conclusion of peace was posted as "Engineer and 
Surveyor with the Ellore Detachment" attached to the Nizam's service I" u S 1 

From 1792 to 1794 he surveyed 
the newly Ceded Districts of the Nizam, Cnddapah, Canoul, the wild mountains of Yermulla 
and Nalmulla 1 etc. bounding the Carnatic as far as the Kistna.,. 3 

continuing his survey of the Penner Biver through Nellore to the sea [116] and 
being- called away for a few months in June 1798 for the siege of Pondi cherry 6 . In 
1794 he moved up to Hyderabad, submitting to the Kesident a plan, in four sheets 
of the passes and roads on the frontier of the Carnatic, between the rivers "Pennar and 
Kistna" reduced from his surveys". 

His subsequent surveys north of the Kistna are described later [n 6-8]. On 
his journey back from Ceylon 

in 1796, f was employed. take a cursory inspection and view of the Fortresses and 
Military Posts in the tract between Ongole, Masulipatam and CondapillyS, including Guntoor. 
... No detailed Provincial Map or survey of Guntoor, or of the adjacent Country existed at that 
time, and I had recourse for the necessary information to my own former Itinerary Surveys 
of the cross roads, and to Harcarrah routes and sketches supplied by the Collectors 9 . 

Third Mysore War, 1790-92 

We have already noticed the surveys of Beatson, Allan and the Guides, and we 
now come to the work of the Bengal and Bombay surveyors during the third 
Mysore War. 

In November 1790 the Governor General sent the Surveyor General, Alexander 
Eyd, in advance to Madras to collect information, especially regarding the 
approaches into Mysore. On his own arrival at Madras, he appointed Kyd as one 
of his ADC's, and during the rest of the war Kyd not only performed the duties of 
Surveyor General in the field, but also acted as personal adviser on engineering 

The chief surveying duty, apart from that carried out by the Guides, was 
entrusted to Eobert Colebrooke who, leaving Madras at the end of January, carried 
a continuous survey, through Vellore 10 where Lord Cornwallis took over command 
of the Grand Army, up into Mysore. He ran a series of triangles from Madras to 
Seringapatam 11 , correcting it by numerous observations for latitude; but, thouo-h he 
took several observations for longitude, he did not take these into account, 
trusting more to the perambulator measurements of the route 12 [175]. 

His journals contain water-colour sketches and panoramas [187], and his map 
is very neatly drawn 18 . It is by no means a complete map of Mysore, for it only 
shows the country along- the routes actually marched, crossing and re-crossing the 
south and east parts of Mysore, with the farther hill ranges sketched where visible. 

>DDn. 154 (66), 30-1-1817. ! MMC. 19-6-1817. 'Palghit, 58 B/9. 'Mountain ranees 

KiTimiak. 57 1.2; \:i] amalai, 56 P,4 to 57 M/2. °DDn. 195 (13). 6 Srm-endered ?:j-S-9S 7 vnri< 

2S-12-94; MBO. Map 112. s Kondapalli, 65 D/l 0. »MMC. 19-6-1817. ]0 57 P/l ' "51 Dm' 

"Journals MEIO. M. 120, 134, 142 etc. Map BM. Addl. MSS. 18109 (F), 4 miles to an inch on ono sheet' 
28" by over 4 feet. I3 Original plots, MEIO. 133 (3) etc., 189 (1, 2). 

Third Mysore War 113 

After his return to Calcutta Colebrooke submitted his fair map, 
in part, the Result of my labours for two years ; it represents, upon a scale of two miles to an 
inch, such parts of the Mysore country as were traversed.. .during the campaigns of 1791 and 
1792, likewise a part of the country between Vellore and the Ghauts. 

I thought it needless to join to this sheet the March of the Army through the Carnatic, as 
being only a single track, it would have added greatly to the length of the paper, without 
showing any considerable portion of the country; this part of my work has been projected 
upon separate sheets. 

I shall be enabled likewise, from my journals and field Books, to lay down upon larger 
scales, plans of Bangalore, Seringapatam, and their environs, and to furnish routes or 
itineraries showing the distances as measured by the Perambulator,. .and containing written 
Descriptions of the Roads, passes. Grounds for encamping, and other particulars. 

I have the honor to present with the Map a copy of the astronomical observations, and 
have ventured also to forward a few pages descriptive of the climate, topography, and History 
of the Mysore country 1 . 

In submitting a copy of Colebrooke's surveys for the Directors, Kyd also sent 
various other surveys and routes collected by him in the course of the war. 
Amongst these were his own surrey made at the conclusion of the war from 
Seringapatam through Coorg to the sea, and then along the coast to Cochin 2 : — 
surveys by William Stewart, attached to the Nizam's army, of country round. 
Bangalore and marches through Cuddapah [116] ; — surveys by Johnson of the 
Bombay establishment with the Bombay force from Camianore to Seringapatam h — 
surveys by Emmitt, also of Bombay, who accompanied the Maratha army [ 128—30] . 

By the treaty of Seringapatam signed on March 17th 1792, Tipu ceded to the 
Company the districts of Malabar, Dindigul, Salem and Baramahal [pi. 1 & 9]. 

District Subveys 

Administrative charge of the Salem and Baramahal districts was given to 

Alexander Read, who was specially commissioned to settle the revenues [1 44] . One 
of his first acts was to make a rapid survey which he did himself by planetable, cover- 
ing the whole area in two months [193]. A copy is still preserved in the British 
Museum 4 ; 

Sketch of the Countries North & East of the Cauvevy, ceded by Tippo Sultan in March 1792 ; 
inscribed to Marquis Cornwallis by Alexander Read. Scale about 3 inches to a mile. 

Tabular Statement of Revenue, showing the totals for each Tahsildari — Table of Dis- 
tances — Note on method of Survey — Tehsil Boundaries shown by dotted lines and areas 
distinguished by different colours. 

The sketch, of which this is a copy, was done by the Superintendent. particularly 
useful in the management of their civil affairs; ... it has taken only two months thanks to 
local knowledge, ...what by the usual mode of surveying would be a work for any one man 
of some years. ... 

These considerations, the ease with which surveys of this kind are made, and the great 
use of which they are in Revenue affairs, may recommend the having similar ones made of 
all the Companies possessions in Coromandel; especially as with the help of the numerous 
situations ascertained by astronomical observations, and routes that have been surveyed 
with proper instruments, they might afterwards be laid down with sufficient exactness for 
everything in which assistance is derived from Geography. 

Allan's "military survey" [in] was but a rough reconnaissance of the roads, 
so in 1794 Read engaged a civilian surveyor, John Mather, whose work he thus 
describes ; 

The first Geographical Survey of these districts was begun in January 1793, and in the 
August following Government and the Revenue Board of Fort St. George were presented 
with Maps of them. But as those were only Sketches, and inaccurate, from the slender 
means and haste with which they were executed, another was begun in August 1 794 with 

»B Pol. C. 19-2-93. 2 MEIO. 150/32-35. 3 Wyld's map of 1843 shows Col. Hartley's route from 
Calicut through Coimbatore to Mysore. *KSt. Addl. MSS. 26102 (A). 


114 Madkas Suiiveys 

proper instruments and upon a much larger scale. From its being impossible for the 
Superintendent of these districts to prosecute a business of that nature and pay due attention 
to the many other duties of his station, tie could only propose to set it on foot, and employed 
Mr. Mather, a professional surveyor, to carry it on. This extensive undertaking is now 

The Superintendant proposes, if circumstances permit, to put the finishing hand to this 
work himself by performing another circuit of the districts, to examine all the principal 
points made use of in the survey, and determine their latitudes and longitudes by Astro- 
nomical observations. As exhibiting the aspect of the country in respect to Hills. Plains, 
Woods and Rivers, the true shape and extent of Districts, and as containing every village 
and tank, it will be one of the most particular surveys of the kind in India, and, relying on 
Mr. Mather's ability, the Superintendent supposes it will be one of the most correct 1 . 

This survey of Mather's was indeed the most thorough and complete survey of 
any district in India made since Barnard's survey of the Madras jagir; but it was of 
no value thirty years later, when Montgomerie reported. 

The Records of the survey of the Baramahul and Salem Districts executed by Mr. Mather 
under the direction of Colonel Read, are in a tolerable state of preservation, although con- 
siderably wormeaten. The whole tract included in tie survey is divided into 25 districts, or 
Talooks, each of which is laid down on a separate sheet, on a scale of one mile to an inch, 
accompanied by its statistical tables; there is attached to the memoirs a general map of the 
district, together with a map shewing the political divisions of the country 2 [ 194]. 

Mather says that his survey took 4 years and 3 months, and contained 6,800 
and odd square miles, coming to 150 miles annually. His work was so well 
thought of that Mackenzie was very glad to obtain his services for the survey of 
Mysore which was commenced in 1800 [9,119]. 

When authorizing an establishment of Assistant Surveyors for tank repairs 
[108], Government directed that they should, when fully trained, be sent out to 
the districts to make any surveys that might be useful to the district officer. 

With this object Goldingham drew up detailed instructions, under which he 
divided the district survey into two parts, General, for topographical detail and 
Particular, for revenue information [145-6]. For the General part, he gave instruc- 
tions for measuring a base — triangulating the whole district— and fixing the village 
sites [194-5] — and continued, 

You will trace out the Principal Roads, and remark on all woods and inaccessible jungles; 
ascertain the course of all the Rivers and Watercourses; and, to assist the person who may be' 
appointed to superintend the repairs &c. of Tanks, mark the places where Rivers may 
probably be branched off, so as to prove beneficial to the country by increasing its 
cultivation 3 [146]. 

Three boys were sent out from the school to the Dindigul District 4 in January 
1797 at the urgent request of the Collector [ 146-7 ], and in December two others 
were sent to Devicottai to work for the Superintendent of Tank Eepairs [108]. 
Others followed to other districts as they were declared fit for independent work, 
and in the course of a few years most of the districts had useful topographical 
maps prepared by these young surveyors. 

Two of the boys sent to Dindigul succumbed to the climate within a 
couple of years [285], and were replaced by Turnbull and Allan from Devicottai, who 
seem to have been kept on surveys of a revenue nature, for in 1799 the Collector, 
Mr. Hurdis, tried to secure the services of De Havilland to make a complete 
geographical survey of his district, but, though he made a reconnaissance map 
covering the whole of Dindigul and Coimbatore, he could not be spared from his 
military duties for a more regular survey. Hindis then tried to get the services of 
Mather, but he was wanted for the more urgent survey of Mysore, and, after trying 
in vain to get a young Engineer officer "to superintend the boys from the Surveying 
School ", he had to be content with the map that these boys eventually completed 
by the end of 1801 s . ' ' 

In 1795 the Collector of Guntur asked that some officer might be sent to make 
a complete survey of that drear, and pressed for the services first of Mackenzie 

>DDn. 12; Memoir (I). s DDn. 202 (91) 22-3-1825. »M Eev. Ba. 22-12-96. '58 F s MEev 
Bel. 12-5-1800 * 14-4-1803. 

District Surveys 115; 

and then of Or 1 , but neither of them could be spared, and though two boys 
were sent from the surveying school in 1798, they did not produce the complete 
.survey which the Collector wanted [147]. 

Nizaii's Dominions 

I11 1775 D'Anville acknowledged that he had received, too late of course for his 
Carte de I'Inde which left the whole of central India blank, 

Une grande carte marmscrite, dresse sous les ordres de M. de Bussy, dans son comma.ndem.ent 
militaixe au centre du Deccan 3 . 

In 1751 Bussy [91] then a lieutenant-colonel, had been sent up in command of a 
French force to Hyderabad, where his influence had greatly forwarded French inter- 
ests, though Eennell considered his geographical contributions of far greater impor- 
tance than his political services ; 

M. Bussy's marches in the Deccan afford data for fixing the positions of many capital 
places there, particularly Hyderabad, Aurangabad, Bisnager, and Sanore 3 . But still there 
are plans of some of his marches wanting, which, could they be procured, would throw much 
light on the Geography of the Peninsula and the Deccan, such as that from Pondicherry to 
Cuddapah, Adoni & Hyderabad; that from Aurangabad to Nagpour, and the campaign towards 
Poonah 4 . ... 

Had it not been for these marches of M. Bussy, the only remaining monument to the 
French nation of their former short-lived influence and power in the Deccan, the geography 
of these parts would have extremely imperfect; but, as they extend through more than four 
degrees of latitude, and more than five of longitude, they occupy... the principal part of the 
Deccan 5 . ... 

Few Europeans, vagrant ones excepted, have visited these places since the time of 
M. Bussy, ... and it is a misfortune to geography that his marches between Arcot, Hyderabad, 
Adoni, Canoul, and Seringapatam, have not been recorded in the same intelligent manner as 
the rest of his marches have been. . . . But, however I may repine as a Geographer, I ought 
perhaps, as a philosopher, to be satisfied that so much has been preserved 0. 

It is of course most unlikely that Bussy carried out any surveys in person, and 
it is reasonable to accept the evidence of Duperron that the map, and possibly most 
or all of the surveys, were the work of one of his officers, Jean-Baptiste St. Paul; 

"Les Marches de M. de Bussy dans le Decan"; vraisemblement ce sont celles que j'ai 
vues en 1758, entre les mains de M. de St. Paul. . .commandant le Detachment des Allemands, 
au pie de Doltabad"'- Cet officier me dit alors que c'etoit lui-meme qui les dressoit d'apres les 
marches de l'armee. ... 

Des gens de merite citent en Angleterre les Marches de M. de Bussy, que je crois &tre les 
Cartes de M. de St. Paul 8 . 

In 1773 Orme visited Paris and called on Bussy who gave him a copy of his 
map of the Deccan, which Orme published in 17S2 9 ; itcoversthe area 17° to 21°K. 
by 75° to 79° E. 

Gardiner's survey to Warangal in 1767 [92], appears to have been the only 
survey of any part of the Nizam's territories by an officer of the Company, till 
Reynolds passed through in 1788 [128]. 

In 1790 Lord Cornwallis made treaties with the Peshwa and the Nizam to 
secure their assistance against Mysore during the campaigns of 1791-2. From the 
treaty of July 7th 1789, the Nizam had paid a monthly subsidy for two battalions 
of sepoys and 6 . field-pieces, manned by Europeans, a force known as the 
Ellore, or Madras, Detachment 10 . This detachment marched with the Nizam's 
army in 1790, and joined the Grand Army under Lord Cornwallis in November 
1791. Its marches from Koppal 11 along the north bank of the Tungabhadra to 

l M Rev Bd. 5-1-98. "Antiquite Qeographiqus, Preface. MS. map of these marches drawn by 
D'Anville in 1770 ia indexed in BM. Addl. MSS. l.'7'(9, but was never received in EM. 3 Savaniir, 48 
N/5. 4 Memoir, 1763 (viii). 5 ib. 1793 (249). 6 ib. (284). 7 Daulatabiid, 47 M/l; rockv fortress stand- 
ing 600 ft. above the plain. s Bemovdli, II (466-7) Robert Orme, I (2). 10 HMS. 563 (126). » 57 A/3. 

116 Madras Surveys 

Kurnool and south to Cudclapah 1 were surveyed by MacAlister, who also surveyed 
the return route to Hyderabad in the following year 3 . Other routes to Hyderabad 
were surveyed in 1792 by Nuthal] and Blunt. After spending the rains at 
Hyderabad Blunt continued his survey in company with Anburey northwards 
through Berar to the Jumna [43]. A line through Aurangabad and Bidar was 
surveyed by William Stewart in 1790 on transfer from Sindha's camp at Agra to 
join the Nizam's camp at Pangal 3 ; Stewart then accompanied the Nizam's army to 
Mysore as assistant to the Eesident, who instructed him to survey the country, 
" and in so doing to act with caution so as not to excite jealousy * " [127]. 

Reynolds also surveyed a line northwards from Mysore, through Hyderabad to 
Agra, daring 1792-3 [132], and Eennell made use of his sketch for tlie '-'country 
between Adoni and Palnaud" south of the Kistna, and for "all places within the 
new boundaries of the Mahrattas, and of the Nizam, in the Dooab" between the 
Tungabhadra and Kistna 3 . Plates 1 and 9 show generally the extent of the 
Nizam's dominions south of the Kistna before the cession of this area to the 
Company in 1800 [119 n.3 ]. 

At the close of the war, Mackenzie was appointed to the Subsidiary Force, with 
directions to make a survey of the districts just ceded by Tipu to the Nizam 6 , and 
then to collect as much material as he could towards the geography of the Deccan, 
in such time as he could spare from his duties as Engineer; 

Having been ordered in April to join the Detachment with the Nizam from the Grand 
Army as Surveyor and Engineer, and to survey the Routes and to make remarks on the 
Roads, Forts, Passes, ... I joined the detachment near Bangalore, surveyed with it from thence 
to Gundecotta?, & Kurpa 8 , from whence I afterwards extended the sarvey. . .through the 
Kurpa, Canoul 9 & Cumbum 1 " Circar, examined the passes from these countries into the 
Carnatic, and, having laid down upwards of 700 miles, hitherto very imperfectly known to 
Geographers, have been only prevented from carrying it across the Kistna to Hyderabad by 
an illness contracted.. .in the Hills 11 [ir2]. 

He did not reach Hyderabad till 1794, and during- his absence Alexander Or, 
Quartermaster with the detachment, had opportunities of making- surveys in several 
directions. Early in 1794 "a rebellion broke out in the districts of Eljundel and 
Warrangole 15 ", and Or accompanied the detachment which marched up to 
"Eungapore" and remained there during the rains 13 . 

At the end of that year the Peshwa declared war against the Nizam who, owin°- 
to treaties between the Company and the Marathas, was not permitted to employ 
the subsidiary force against them, and dismissed it in disgust; Mackenzie, however, 
accompanied the Eesident with the Nizam's army and surveyed the route to Kharda^ 
where the Nizam was defeated on March 11th 179S. As Emmitt. the Bombay sur- 
veyor with the Maratha army, was able to pay a visit to the Nizam's camp, a junction 
was effected between his survey and Mackenzie's, thereby giving a continuous route 
between Hyderabad and Poona 14 [ 1 30 ] . On Ms return Mackenzie obtained special 
permission to stay in Hyderabad to work up his maps, instead of accompanying- the 
"Madras detachment" on its march clown country 15 . As it happened, however, the 
detachment was recalled in July to help the Nizam against another rebellion, and 
these marches and counter-marches gave On- further opportunities to add to his 
surveys, which were extended in 1796 by an expedition which resulted in the capture 
of "Bachoor"" on April Sth, and return by "Gujinderggur", "Mudgull 11 " and 
Pagtoor to Hyderabad 18 . Mackenzie describes his first map thus; 

All the surveys I had executed myself, with several other measured routes which have 
been obligingly communicated to me, have been laid down on one general plan connected by 
such observations as have been made, and connected with well ascertained points extending 

'Kurnool, 57 I/l ; Cudclapah, 57 J/15. =MEIO. 150 (47) & Mack. KISS. LXIX, 9-9-91 'MKIO 
150/18; Pfmgal, 56 LIS. 4 HMS. 614 (205), 12-2-91. •Ponfeurio, (4, 9, 13). 'The Greater part of 

CmMapah&Knrnool; Attehison, IX (214-5). ' Gandikota, 57 J/5. s Old name for Cuddapah "Old 
name for Knrnool. 10 Cmnbmm,57M/2. "Mack. MBS. LXIX, 13-2-93. "Elgantial- 56 \'.'5 Warm"- 1 
56 0/9. "EMS. 563 (85) & 614 (122). "HMS. 446 (19), 560 (10S-204), 613 (427, 467) «MMc' 

18-6-96. "Raichnr, 56 H/8. "Maohtal, 56 H/7. "Mack MSS. LX (71 etc.) ; for other marched 

surveyed by Orr, see fdfcks. in MRIO. M. 163 and maps MRIO. 64 (26-30). 

Nizam's Dominions 117 

north from the parallel of Bangalore to Burhamporei about nine degrees of latitude, and 
extending west from the Sea Coast to Moore Ghaut, whose distance to Poona appears well 
ascertained. ... On this groundwork I have laid down all the Cross-roads and information that 
could be depended on. ... 

All the Chief points being thus laid down as accurately as could be expected... I have now 
to mark out the parts belonging to each Circar, which I shall be enabled to do with some 
precision, from the accounts of the Soubahs and Circars which you have been pleased to 
communicate to me 3 . 

In October 1795 Mackenzie was called down to command the engineers on the 
expedition to Colombo, not returning' to Hyderabad till January 1797. He then 
made a survey westwards to Gulburga 3 , the ancient capital of the Deccan, but later 
in the year he was again called away for the abortive expedition to Manila, and 
whilst at Madras took the opportunity to submit a supplementary map shewing all 
the material he had been able to add to Ms earlier map of the Deccan [245] 4 . 
By this time the "Madras detachment" had been withdrawn, and in 1798 he marched 
up to Hyderabad once more, this time as Engineer with the "Bengal detachment" to 
which was entrusted the task of disbanding the French corps 5 [175]. 

During his stay at Madras Mackenzie had obtained the services of a lad from 
the surveying school and a suitable staff of subordinates, and also an assistant 
engineer, 'Benjamin Sydenham, who took part in the surveys and astronomical 
observations both on the march up from the Masulipatam and after arrival in 
Hyderabad 6 [175]. Mackenzie writes of his own surveys, 

In the Nizam's country all that T have effected, exclusive of the measured routes of the 
Detachment, has been by availing myself of favourable circumstances as they occurred in the 
intervals of several years, sometimes yielding, then embracing the lucky moment, and 
frequently I have been obliged to suspend my operations altogether, as was the case last year 
when our troops were encamped close to Hyderabad, and performing the most important 
services to Government 7 . 

The following extracts are taken from the memoir which he submitted with 
his map of 1796: 

Memoir of the materials and construction of a Map of the Dominions of Nizam Ali Khan, 
Sobadar of the Decan, compiled and written in 1795 by Colin Mackenzie, Field Engineer & 
Surveyor to the Subsidiary Force with the Nizam. 

The interior Provinces of that part of the Peninsula of India, distinguished by the 
general name of The Decan, are so imperfectly known to us, that it was imagined any attempt 
to give a most accurate definition of its extent, limits, internal divisions and natural produc- 
tions would be acceptable; ... 

Independent of these general motives, others more immediately interesting to our 
Military establishments suggest the propriety of acquiring an intimate knowledge of the 
roads, fortresses, rivers, passes and strong posts. ... 

On the appointment of a Surveyor to the Nizam's Detachment in 1792, it had been 
recommended that every opportunity if improving our knowledge of the geography of the 
interior countries should be attended to, and surveys of particular parts of the frontier of the 
Company's possessions bordering on those of the Nizam were ordered and executed. The 
result of these and of the marches of the Detachment across the country, opened a. wider 
field for extending them still further. ... 

The progress made in this attempt ( already interrupted by unavoidable circumstances ) 
was threatened to be finally stopped by the Detachment's being sent back to the Carnatic iu 
1795; there appeared a danger that the whole would be rendered useless for want of being 
arranged and brought together, while the authorities on which it had been formed were 
known or within reach of enquiry. 

The want of this precaution had rendered of little use "The Plans of Marches in the 
Dekan" by Mr. Bussy, and of our Armies in 1767 and 1768, which are become obscure and 
difficult to reconcile for want of the authorities on which they were constructed. 

To prevent this by taking the opportunity of arranging the materials where many 
advantages of local information could be procured, the permission of the Government of 
Madras was... obtained for the compiler... to remain at Hyderabad for a limited time, during 

bangalore, 13°^.; Burhimpm', 2l|*N. "MMC. 17-8-95. 3 56 0/15 j Map, MEIO. 64 (33); Fclbk. 
EM. Add!- ilSS. 18.382 (19). 'AUUO. 6(5/(3; See also BM. Addl. MSS. 135S2, 'llomwks made on tho 
survey in the Nizam's Dominions in 1797"; CM. 5-2-98. 5 Effected 22-10-98. 6 Fdbks. MEIO. M 83 
& M. 166. 7 DDn. 41 ; to Kesdt. Mysore, 6-12-99, 



Madras Surveys 

which the liberal assistance that was received from several nn»w™, * ■,. t j 

the find of authentick documents. . Thou* th actual Z / ' • c °! ltrlbuted to ^^ge 

miles) may be relied on, and much ^ ^^^JZ^T? *? »■** 
collateral information that must be ttablZS ? Wd °" lr - 

particularlytheSonbahofBerarwMchhtsctcevanvon^ J ^ ^ stiU obs ™«- 

square geographical miles were included wSf^S ms ■^""T^" 97 fT 
survey it is subject to many impediments unkown elswhere the pre udices of the X 
££LST* ^ mamerS **** f - *» E — • P-se^St^eslcltly l Sb n e 
In another place= Mackenzie describes his wort thus 

From 1792 to i 79 o it were tedious to relate the difficulties the accident,' " a „n th 
discouragement, that impeded the prowess of this des.Vr. Th i j accidents, and the 

K^£3E=SK ST^r au^H Si r m 
,w J ^ m a ^ Terra-Incognita, of which no authentic evidence eLted, excepting in some 

TarrrrTtv«otr lated Sketches of the «—- B^^sffi^^; 

ForjETH Mysoee Wae, 1799 

• This last and conclusive war- against Tipu gave little scope for survey operations • 
for the purposes of the rapid advance on Seringapatam, the surveys already colSed 
were sufficient. Not-but-what Beatson, the most experienced surveyoi of the 
Madras establishment, was selected to join the Governor General's staff and 
appointed Surveyor Genera to the Grand Army, where he soon established 
himself as one of the most strong-minded and purposeful of the Commanded Mu- 

Allan was D.Q.M.G., and toot a leading part in reconnaissance, and has left a 
most interesting account of the campaign*. Orr commanded the Guides 

From the survey point of view the most interesting feature of the campaign was 
the march of the Nizam's army from Hyderabad to join the Grand Army at Ambn^ 
A complete survey of the route was kept by Mackenzie and Sydenham, tSrtlig 
1799' Tltt - ° n f Decemb » 1«*. -d reaching Ambur on Febmary 21st 
''"', T1 i? N w m ,f f , oroe was then P laoed ™ der the command of Lt. Colonel the 
Hon ble Arthur Welles ley*, who brought his own regiment, the 38rd Foot, o stiffen 
it Mackenzie remained as his Engineer, and constructed the northern batteries 
May 4tlf 6 ^ Whi ° h Serin S a P atam ™ successfully stormed on 

Johnson and Moncrieff brought up surveyed lines from various points of the 
west coast to Seringapatam with columns of the Bombay army 

After the capture of Seringapatam, Fraser, of the Engineers, made a survey of 
the island and its fortifications, whilst Thomas Sydenham, of the Guides was 
deputed to survey the new south and east boundaries of Mysore, "but a violet 
illness obliged him to abandon this work" [i 94 ]. De Havilland, who was Engineer 

gSSWfiss- * Beatson - SSinha - ,57L ' 9 - ! ™° « ^'^ ' 'x?srrs 

^Fourth Mysore War 


with the column which took over the province of Coimbatore, "laid down a consi- 
derable part. a voluntary act" though "not employed or paid as a 
surveyor 1 " [114]. 

Mackenzie was deputed to attend the Commission which sat at Serin gapa tarn 
to settle the affairs of the newly constituted government 2 , and prepared maps to 
assist in the determination of the boundaries 3 . He writes that, 

Few satisfactory materials could be there procured, and those of inferior merit, and 
disagreeing in their nature, and it appeared absolutely necessary to commence such a work 
from an entire new foundation, for. ..though the Central parts of the country had been 
repeatedly traversed by our armies in the Mysorean Wars, yet the limits and extent of the 
several Districts were not denned, nor were even any plans of the surveys. be procured at 
this time, unless we except the results published so far back as 1792 by Major Rennell [111], 
and some manuscripts of detached parts in private hands 4 . 

This state of affairs, whereby the work of earlier surveyors was so often lost or 
hidden away and thus of no avail when sadly needed in later years, was of course 
the direct result of the refusal of the Directors to establish a special survey 
department and surveyor general at Fort St. George, in spite of the frequent 
requests of the Governor and his Council. 

The story of the survey of Mysore by Mackenzie will be told in a later volume. 
The charge could' not have fallen in better hands; by his thorough professional 
methods and his wise organisation of the work, he set a sure foundation and high 
standard for the future topographical surveys of India. 

1 Mackenzie's View of the measures to be taken to 8v,ri:ey the Mysore Country. EM. Addl. MSS. 13659 
(240), 1-5-1800. B Beatson (221). 3 ^. map facing Beatson (256) ; Mysore was now reduced to the limits 
■which exist to this day. Coimbatore, Wynad, and Canara went to the Company, BelL-ny & Auantapur to 
the Nizam; in 1800 an agreement was settled by winch the Nizam ceded the two latter districts, with 
Kurnool & Cuddapah to the Company in return for military support, and these became known as "The 
Ceded Districts" of Madras [pi. i]. "B-Dn. fi8 (21). 




■Marine Surveys — Charles Reynolds, 
— Malabar, 1790-1800- ~ 

City Surveys — Maratha Wars, 1774-82- 
1783-90 — Emmit with, the Mardthas, 1790- 
his Map, 1792-1800, 

ALTHOUGH the Bombay Presidency holds the honour of possessing the first 
factory established by the East India Company in India, namely Suraf, founded 
alone rll I <- ™t acquire any further territory, other than a few factories 

centur °° Bombay and Salsette, until the nineteenth 

«,/? I 66 } B f$ a l Isl ?" d "?"* t0 ° harlBS H 0f En S land on his ^mage with 
the Infanta of Portugal, and was transferred to the East India Company in 1668 
balsette, though included in the dowry, was retained by the Portuguese and 
the* British°in 177? ^ thS MarathaS early in the 18th aentm J> aild first taken by 
Plans of Bombay illustrate boots by the following authors 1 : Ovington, 1688 

thrift d'ffi t ''~. Dr ;-fT + r ; 1698 !' *?*? HarUm md *«> "» inaccurate 
that it is difficult to identify" those IS lands that are named ;— Herr Niebuhr 1764 
a map of the Island;-and Mr. Grose, 1772', a skeleton Plan of Bombay ; these two 
laBt may have been taken from the following maps by De Gloss and De Punck 

«. °™°™ e Z' ls a Plan of the Island °f £omba y h 7 De Gloss dated 1755* and in 
the British Museum there is a Plan of Bombay Town, 1756, by De Funck, which 
shows the Port and its immediate surroundings, scale about 100 feet to an inch- 
it is accompanied by an account of the survey and a forwarding letter addressed to 
the Governor and Council 6 . 

The British Museum also holds a Plan of Burnt*, in colours, scale 300 feet to 
an mch, by De Gloss dated 1753'. Both De Gloss and De Punck were engineer 
officers of Bombay Artillery [266, 273]. s 

The Gazetteer of Bombay City and Island, besides reproducing the maps from 
Fryer and Grose, includes a Sketch of Bombay Harbour, 1626, by Davies, and a man 
prepared for the Peshwa" by his agent in Bombay about 1770 8 . 
In 1784 .Reynolds was employed on a survey of Bombay and Salsette, and Malet» 
with whom he was to work for several years, writes, 

Capt. Reynolds. Surveyor to this Establishment, by the Governor's desire, who is ever 
kZiT °t P r T° tin8 ^ SeM knowled « e ' has fished me with the enclosed sketch of 
Bombay its Harbor and Environs. ... This chart has been taken iu a hurry from materials that 
WH^r 1 w the i . sajlcti ° n o{ oflicial authority, aud consequently are only meant for your 
S^ofthes"™- C **"*»W»*V> «« to b 9 able to furnish unauthentic 

In February 1785 he was relieved by Sartorius who was ordered to "proceed 
with the survey of Salsette 11 ". piuoeeu 

During 1794-5 William Brookes, of the Engineers, was employed on a survey 
-of Bombay town for the "Committee of Buildings" 12 . »mvey 

i. „ 'Douglas (145). 'A New account of Bast India. ..1672-81, John Frvet (151) (HaMnrf c„„ laran 
'A Voyage to the East Indies... Grose (Bom. Civ.) (29) iOime MSB 65 Si- J"Mlnyt Soc. 1909). 
Imp. Lib. X/TP.SIl; scale 3" to a mile. 'BMI. 115 (™7) 'USSj^S M ^ "W 

governor.1759. 'BM.K. 115 (56). > Gaz. Bombay City , I (32 47 48^ II 1 121? '""1 T *w' hal 


Mauatha Wars 121 

JIaeatha Wars, 1774-82 1 

Bombay was closely surrounded by three Maratha powers; the Peshwa at 
Poona; the Gaeekwar of "Baroda, and Sindhia; most of the surveys carried out in 
western India during the 18th century were of Maratha territories. 

In 1772, to effect" a settlement of debts owed to the Company, the Bombay 
■Council took possession of the important town of Broach' 2 , which had belonged to 
the Emperor of Delhi. In December 1774, to forestall the Portuguese, they siezed 
Salsette Island 3 from the Marathas, and the following year, in supporting a 
Maratha claimant Raghuba* against the ministry at Poona, a force under Colonel 
Keating invaded Gujarat 5 with the assistance of troops from Madras. 

Peace was settled by Colonel Upton's mission to Poona [30-1 ], and under the 
treaty of Purandhar* possession of Salsette and the smaller islands in .Bombay 
Harbour was confirmed. 

In 1778 war broke out again, once more in support of Raghuba, and the 
Marathas re-occupied Salsette. General Goddard's force from Bengal arrived too 
late to prevent the disaster of Wadgaon 7 , but in the campaigns which now followed 
Goddard not only recaptured Salsette, but occupied the northern Konkan 8 and a 
large part of Gujarat, and also captured the port of Bassein 9 . 

The Supreme Government were by now, however, most anxious about the out- 
come of the war against Mysore, and came to terms with the Marathas. Under the 
treaty of Salbai, December 20th 1782, all these acquisitions were surrendered except 
those covered by the treaty of Purandhar; Broach was handed over to Sindhia. 

Surveys of the Deccan were first made by the redoubtable Torriano, who in 
March 1777 

accompanied the British ambassador to Poonah, in the command of his honorary guard, 2 
■companies of Sepoys; but with secret directions from the Select Committee at Bombay to 
take privately such surveys of the roads and views of the forts as could be effected without 
alarming the Mahratta Government, and, to more effectually accomplish this purpose, he 
travelled to Aurangabad and other cities in the peninsula of India 10 . 

Reynolds writes in the memoir of his map of 1787 [127], 

The road from Poona to Aurangabad I have laid down from an actual survey made by 
Major Torriano, when he was at Poonah in the time of Mr. Mostyn's residency ; it was communi- 
cated to me by a friend some years ago; the situation of the principal branches of the Beema 11 
and Gunga Godowry 13 Rivers are particularly described in that plan, and become the more of 
consequence as they are corroborated by a late survey of my own 111 . ... 

The route from Poonah by way of Jarngom u to Caarbarry in the Kandeish is laid down... 
from Mr. Charles Stewart's Journal when he was an Hostage with Mhadjee Scindia; the 
bearings were regularly taken with a Compas, the Distances are computed, 

Stewart and Farmer of the civil service 15 were left as hostages with the 
Marathas after the signing of the "Convention of Wadgaon" in January 1779, and 
Rennell writes of 

the road from Poonah to Nursergur...and round to Soangur 16 , which was described by Messrs. 
Farmer & Stewart, during the time they remained as hostages in the Mahratta camp. ... 

Mr. Farmer, in his way from Poonah towards Naderbar 17 , observed that the passes had all 
a descent northward, forming, as it were, a series of steps, until he landed in Candeish. He 
was then a hostage with Madajee Sindia, who at that time led the grand Mahratta army into 
G-uzerat, against General Goddard 18 . 

The last stage of Goddard's famous march [4, 38-9], Burhanpur to Surat, a dis- 
tance of 300 miles, was completed in 19 days 19 , a dash by which he eluded 
the force of 20,000 Marathas sent to intercept him. The march was through a country then 
utterly unknown, and of which no maps existed- . 

^Imp. G-az. The Indian Empire, II (442-3) gives 1st M. War 1775-6; 2nd, 1778-82; 3rd, 1853-04; 
4th. 1817-8; other authorities count- these first two as one: foi* an account of these wars set; Oadcll 
(84-99). 2 46C'14. a 47 A/16. 4 or Eaganafch. 'The central plain N". of Nai-badaB , and E. of Catch 
andKrithirnvar; 46 A, B, E, F. Imp. ffas. Bom. I (200). fi Hill fort 20 m. SB. of Pootm: treaty, 1-3-76. 
7 20 ra. NW". of Poona, 47 L ? /10; 13-1-79. s Tae strip of coast below the G-hiits, both N. &■ S. of Bombay. 

HI A/15; 11-12-79. W EIMC. II (117). "Bhima R., 47 P. J, O. 13 GoddvariR., 47 I, M "BoS 

&, Pol. 8-1-88. "Jalgaou, 46 0/12. >* William Samuel Pernor. Writer, 1763. -"Son^arh. 46 G-/12. 

''Nandurbiir. 46 E/3. ls Memoir, 1793 (223. 258). IH Feb. 6th to 25th, 1779. ^Gleig (5). 


Bombay SuryjEVS 

This part of the route was surveyed by Duncan Stewart', who remained Sur- 
veyor to the detachment throughout its stay on the Bombay side. In a letter 
addressed to the Supreme Council in 1781, he advises the despatch of 
a survey of the route of the Army commanded by General Goddard, from the Capture of 
Bassein till the close of the last campaign". ... The survey of the March from. Surat to Bassein 
I have not yet been able to accomplish in a manner sufficiently correct, having been indis- 
posed during part of the time. ... The next season will, I hope, give me an opportunity of 
compleating it. ... In October last I transmitted. ..a survey of the movements made by the 
army in Guzerat during the preceeding Campaign, but I have not yet learned whether that, 
or my survey from Burhanpore to Surat, have been received 3 . 

To return to ReynokVs memoir ; 

The road from Callian 4 to Surat is from the survey made of Colonel Morgan's route by 
Lieut. Duncan Stewart, the Surveyor to that Detachment. ... The road from Surat to 
Ahmedabad s was surveyed by Mr. Duncan Stewart, as well as the Conkun from Bassein to 
the Bhor Gaut, when General Goddard marched through those Countries. 

The Conkun was also surveyed by Capt. Jackson by order of this Government. I was 
also employed under General Goddard on those services, and tho' not the surveyor, I always 
kept the route of the army, etc., and upon a reference to the surveys of Captain Jackson and 
Mr. Stewart, I find mine does not agree with the scale of either, but as I have had opportuni- 
ties since... of comparing my own original Plans, I have inserted them in my map in 
preference". ... 

The routes through the Broach Purgunnah were made when I was employed on that 
survey with Captain Turner; and the others to Dubhoy, Jamboosur, Cambay 7 and Ahmedabad 
. . .were taken by me for my own private satisfaction as opportunity occurred, and when I was 
not employed in the surveying line 8 . 

After the capture of Broach, Charles Turner had been given charge of the 
engineering works there, and in 1775 the Council resolved that, 

Survey of the Broach Purgunnah upon the Plan proposed by the Factors. . .will be attended 
with Infinite Benefit to the Revenue, and it must accordingly be carried into Execution; 
and.., it will also be of use to have a geographical survey made at the same time of the 
Purgunnah; this business must be committed to Lieutenant Turner y . 

Other officers were appointed to assist, but the survey was still incomplete by 
April 1779, when Turner, being called upon to explain the delay, reported that, 

At the time I accepted of the appointment of Surveyor, it was upon a supposition of 
being Principal, and that the assisting Surveyors were to have been under my immediate 
Direction; had that been the case, the work would have been much sooner compleated, but 
I was consulted only as to the mode of carrying the survey into execution : the several 
Gentlemen employed were independent of me & received their orders of the Chief as Collector 
General, and to him only they made their reports and delivered their Plans & Calculates. 
As I have not yet received an account of those Plans & Calculates, it is not possible for me 
to ascertain at present the true state of the Survey, but from the enquiries I have made here 
[Bombay], I find that much depends upon the assiduity ol Messrs. Lindrum & Reynolds, who 
will require almost the remainder of this year to complete the work. ... 

The officers. ..were recalled to the Presidency soon after the last rains, and from that 
time have been constantly doing Military Duty. ... On the return of the Army from the late 
service I applyed to go to Broach purposely to forward the survey, but could not obtain 

On this the Council resolved that, 

As it is highly necessary it should be finished with all possible Expedition, several 
important arrangements being necessarily deferred for want of it, resolved that Capt. 
Turner's Proposals be complied with, & that himself & Capt. Lendrum do immediately 
proceed to Broach, where they will be joined by Capt. James Jackson & Lieut. Reynolds, now 
to the Northward, who, with any other Officers properly qualified... must be put under the 
Orders of Capt. Turner 10 [4]. 

The Directors stowed particular interest in this survey, writing in 1 7S0. 

'Map, MEIO, IIS (5). -Eougli sketch of "the Konkan Campaign", 1781; ME-IO. 118 (22) ; v. map 
of same period by Ens. Stokoe, covering' march from Kalpi. Upton's march to Poona and campaign- i' 
Gujarat, Mli.IO. :i\ (2$-%): unsigned map, EM. Add! MSS. 18109 ,'B). 3 BPC.4-9-8L -"Kalyiin 47 E'a 
5 46 A/12. "BoS & Pol. 8-1-88. r Dabhoi, 46 P/S; Jambusar, 46 B>16; Cambay. 46 B 11. s Bn s & 'VI 
9-1-88. 9 Bo PC. 0-10-15. ltl Bo PC, 23-4-19. 

Mabatha Wars 123 

Not having yet received a report of the survey at Broach, which we have so long expected, 
we are not competent to give our final directions respecting the management of onr affairs 
there 1 . 

The survey was completed by 1782, and the Council was able to send home to 
the Directors 2 , 

A Map of the Broach Purgannahs, and the march of the troops under Lt. Col. Keating in 
1775, during the Gnzerat Campaign 3 . 

The British Museum holds an undated "Sketch of the Goojerat by Hahfizee", a 
rouo-h skeleton map distinguishing the areas belonging to the Peshwa, the G-aeckwar, 
and Sciudhia, scale about 12 inches to a mile 1 , andRennell speaks highly of 
a MS. map of Guzerat, ...which has the appearance of greater accuracy in the outline, and 
certainly contains more matter within it, than any other map of the tract ; ... drawn by a native 
of Cambay, a Brahmin of uncommon genius and knowledge named Sadanund; ... given me by 
Sir Charles Malet. . .who first suggested the idea of drawing the map ''. 

This genuine Hindoo map, contains much new matter; gives the form of Guzerat 
with more accuracy than the European maps could boast of fi . 

Marine Surveys 

Though it is not intended to give any connected account of the marine 
surveyors, reference must be made to the share they have taken in mapping the 
coasts of India ; fuller particulars have been given by Markham and Low. 

We have already referred to the early work and lifelong enthusiasm of 
Alexander Dalrymple, to the work of Eitehie and Topping in the Bay of Bengal 
and of Blair in the Andaman Islands, and now tell of the work along the western 

The first knowledge came from the early navigators, Portuguese, Dutch, and 
English, and then the more reliable work of Apres de Mannevillette. There is an 
undated French map, Cochin to Cranganore, decorated with ships sailing the sea, 
and houses and churches marking the town sites 7 . 

Of later work there were the astronomical longitudes of Howe and Huddart 
[176], a land survey by De Eunck from Mt. Dilli 8 to Make, and another by 
D'Auvergne from Ponnani to Calicut 9 . 

The first surveying expedition sent out by the Bombay Marine was in 1772, 
when Blair and Mascall explored the coasts of Katiiiawar, Sind, Makran, and part 
of the coasts of Persia and Arabia 10 . In 1773 Skynner 11 surveyed the Broach river, 
the Gulf of Cambay, and the coast of Kathiawar, Dalrymple writing, 

The Gulf of Cambay is taken from the MS. of Mr. Skynner's Survey; I attribute to the 
inattention of his Engraver the differences to be found in the elegant Chart published by 
that Gentleman 12 . 

Bennell also makes use of Skynner's charts for these coasts, but finds them dis- 
agree with charts by Buigrose, also of the Bombay Marine ls , whose work Reynolds 
uses for his map of 1787 u . 

In 1786 an expedition was sent to take possession of the island of Diego Garcia, 
or Chagos 15 , sailing from Bombay on March 15th, and proclaiming the island a 
British possession on May 4th 16 . 

A Senior Merchant was sent in charge, with Sartorius as Engineer, Surveyor, 
and in command of the military detachment. Blair of the Marine, and Emmit of 
Infantry, were sent as assistant surveyors, and had the Brake, and Viper 1 ' for survey 
ships; Emmit carried out a survey of the main island, whilst Blair explored and 
mapped the surrounding islands and shoals. 

1 CD to Bo. 5-7 -SO. : Bo to CD. 10-2-84 (141). :i Map subsequently engraved by Dalrymple 

[i76n. 14b MHO. MS Map 678. 4 BM. Addl. MSS. 18907 (e). 'Malet was Resident at 

Cambay in 1775. 'Memoir. 179a (IS0-611; 221). 'MKIO. 133 (11). 8 4S P/4. 'List of Charts. 

Dalrymple (xx) ; Memoir. 1793 (22-3). '"Lew (1S6). " W. Augustus Skynner, Ban. Mar. '-Colled 0,11 
of Plans of Ports. ..Dalrymple. 1771-5: 3rd ed. )7S7 ,t Memoir of ft Chort of the Coo.sts of Gu:ur:d 5/ Scvr.l.j 
Dalrymple; 3-9-S3. "Memoir 1783, (21) ; 1793, (33-5). » Bo S & Pol. S-1-S8. u 1° Iff S; 71° E. 

lfi Bo F & P. 16-1-86, ei seg. ''Viper accompanied Blair to Audamans [47, 48]. 

124 Bombay Surveys 

On May 7th Blair was " set out next morning on a survey of the 
-Harbour", being allowed only 16 clays; ' 

For facilitating the more particular surrey of the Island afterwards, he was to leave a 
distinguishing mark on all the principal points, which should terminate his angles or form 
stations, to enable those points to be found at any future time ' 

Received great assistance., .from Lieutenant Wales [49 n.yl' '" otherwise should „„t J, 
been able to compleat it in double the time. ... On July" rd saLd\vi h E^perirntnl^W 
to examine the outward coast of the Island 1 . *" 

o^nfluwff?," ™t S Wi * lrawn T recei P ts oi "rfera from Bengal dated August 
2_nd, and the -Dn-ectors afterwards expressed great surprise at its magnitude and 
unnecessary costA Blair was left to continue his survey, and "November 8th 
proceeded on a Surrey of the Adjacent Islands, continuing ti 1 January mh 1 787" 

The Directors meanwhile had issued instructions for a regular survey of the 
coasts by officers of the marine service, and had sent out a set of instruments 

It is our mtention that these Chronometers and Instruments be a w " Aboard the 
same vessel [ 2 „ 3 ]. ... We direct that a Supernumerary- Lieutenant do always proceed with 

t™ tTh m M rf ^K 6 ' " h ° Se 6SPeCial ° harge ^ are to be - ^ ^ recommend that lieu 
tenant John McCluer be employed as the Supernumerary Lieutenant for making the oterva- 

We would have the vessel proceed along the coast from Bombay to Surat determining 
ca dully the Latitudes and Longitudes of the various points, as well as of the PeaTs and 
Hills inland, with explanatory views of the Lands, taking Altitudes for determining the t£e 

H^e h y r Trchtimr ry *"> "" ^ ^ ""*«■ 

jjS^" th6n fo " mred fOT ««J*W the survey round the coast of 

Let what is done be done compleatly and nothing left undetermined in this space- if anv 
doubt arises let them repeat their observations in such part, that an implicit confident ma 
be safely placed m their work when finished. ™° m ™ 

Tal-T en T^ S 7° A „ is „ finished ' we direct «** * particular examination be made of the 
Lakadive Islands and the various banks between them and the Coast of Malabar In the 
course of this Voyage it will be proper to determine the relative position of the Lakadrvef 
Mahcoy, ... and the Head of the Maldives*. Lakadives, 

In another letter they write; 

„,ffir rhe « aCmty T M t h T "f ° f Timekee P ers ^ Lunar Observations give to Surveys 
sufficiently accurate for the safety of navigation, will we trust enable you to get this irmS ' 
ant service completed with expedition. We rely upon your selecting Persons of eve'Zk in 
"tiritranfsc^ ^ 5f tWS T P ' 0yment ' ^ that 5 ™ ™ n " f ° rm ttam tool's of 
encourlgement? " P eSS1 ° n ""' "^ *""» *» ™ r P arti ™^ «S and 

■ ?fc f "I™ 1 }? l^ 1787 ' " the Season bein S nmT sufficiently open for prosecut 
nig that object", McCluer sailed in the & P cr iment , and carried on sm-vey ti 1 the 
following April when monsoon conditions drove him J 

into Surat in distress On the nth, ... it blowing a fresh gale from the S.Wward we were 

far so s u , t G ° ZUrat Sh ° re ' " bemS ™ d ot "7 shelter from these v^nds even 

for so small a vessel. In coming across the banks at the entrance of the gulph the sea rZ 
so high that we swamped our large boat, and several of them broke upon us* „ On t ^ after" 
noon of the i 5 th being half-tide, weighed to go into the river, but our stupid fellow of a P lot- 
ran us on the W-ern Bank, where with a few heavy strokes we unshipped "our rudder- then 
came broadside to the sea which broke over us, and in this disabled condition we'ay beatS 
very hard, ... and as the Vessel is so very slightly built, I expected every stroke to be our 
finishing one; however by God's providence and the exertion of our People at the oars IZ 
her again before the wind and the sea, and with them conducted her up the river § 

We have been four days wind-bound in the River, it blowing fresh the So'ward and are 
now safe over the Bar again intending to go once more so far as Sin, then traverse down 2 
Bombay the whole extent of soundings, if the Vessel will stand the weather*. 

Blair's Journal. Daliymple. "CDtoBo CS & Pol \ 93 ». «»- sr th ■ -r. *». 
»-« »* »-U 'CD to I. 23-3-87. .LeftooKt Bo PC* M A &lH^ ^ ° D to *"■ 

Marine Surveys 125- 

In September McCluer reports 
that I have. ..surveyed the Coast of India from the Ltd. 17 12' N. to 21 40' N. including the 
Gulph of Cambay, and on the Guzarat shore to Diu head, with the soundings 40 leagues from 
the Coast. ... By what I can learn from Mr. Dalrymple's Letters, the Surveys are to be carried 
on So. ward, and among the Islands; if such is the case, for the greater perfection of the work 
and safety of those employed, it will be expedient to have a larger Vessel than the one I now 
command, which is very little larger than a long boat, and of a force sufficient to protect 
herself... from insult, that may be given by the freebooters on the Coast 1 . 

McCluer continued his surveys southwards to Cape Comorin till 1790, and 
Rennell records that 

an extent of about 360 miles, out of 570, between Zyghur 3 and Anjenga, has been explored; 
... the remaining parts were left unexamined because of the then state of hostility with 
Tippoo. Part of this defect is supplied, between Merj ee and Ctmdapoor, by Capt. Reynolds's 
survey in 1781 3 . 

Chaeles Reynolds, 1783-90 

So long as the war against the Marathas dragged on, Bombay could send but 
little aid to Madras in her struggle against Haidar Ali. In April 1781 a small 
force under Major Abington had been sent clown for the defence of Tellicherry 4 , 
and during February 1782 had captured Mahe from the French, and Calicut from 
Mysore ; before the end of the month he was joined by Colonel Hnmberstone 
[98 n. 13] who landed with about 1000 British infantry, and took over command 5 . 

During April Humberstone marched south, intending to reach Palg'hat, but 
after defeating the Mysore forces at Tricalore 6 he had to shelter from the monsoon 
at Tanur. In the following October he marched to the walls of Palghat, but had 
to retreat in haste, being however successful in drawing Tipu and his main forces 
away from the Carnatic. "We have already noticed the surveys made of his marches 
by James D'Auvergne [99, 123]. 

After the treaty of Salbai in "December 1782 a strong force under General 
Mathews captured Mangalore and Onore 7 on the coast of Kanara, and marched up 
to Bednur., a small district above the Ghats which commanded the north-west 
approaches into Mysore 8 . 

Reynolds accompanied the army and, being employed in surveying, escaped 
being taken prisoner when Mathews and his army were overhelmed at Hydernagar 9 
in April 1783. He was however shut up in Onore which was gallantly defended by 
Torriano until peace was signed in March 1784 10 . 

On return to Bombay he handed in his survey 
of part of the Bedanure Province, taken by me on the late service as Surveyor General to 
the Army; it contains all the principal Gauts that are within that space, and the whole from 
actual survey 11 . 

The survey appears to have covered a good deal more than the small district of 
Bednur, for Eennell took 

the coast between Barcelore 13 and Meerzaw...from a recent map by Captain Reynolds, during 
the war which terminated so unfortunately for the British arms in 1783, in the Bednore 
country, to which this part of the coast is opposite. 

This map is drawn in a most masterly style and contains near 60 geographical miles of the 
coast, and extends inland to the foot of the Ghauts, which here approach, in some places, 
within 6 miles of the sea. ... It includes the positions of Bednore, and Bilghey 1S , within the 
Ghauts, and also Onore. ..on the coast 14 . 

1 Bo PC. 18-9-S8. 5 Jaigai-h, 17 G/3. 3 Mirjan, 48 J/6, Coondapoor, 48 K/10 ; an obvious error 
for 17*'' vrliMi llevnolds mado Lis surrey of Bednur [s-isjj] : Penintmla (2). 4 49 JYI/iO; Oom}>: in v's lactory. 
founded 1683. & Cadell (97-100). 6 Trikkamrn, 17 m. SE. of Calicut, near "Tippu's Fort", 49 M/16. 

7 Honiivar, 48 J/7. "Western part of Shimoga Dist. Mysore, 48 J/16 & N/4, K/13, O/l. 9 The capital 
of Bednur, now a small villages Milled Nag-ar. 48 O/l ; Imp. Ga~. Mysore (258). l0 I>t: script ion o£ siege, 

Forbes (107 at seg). "Bo S & Pol. 24-12-84. 13 or Bhatkal. 48 K/9. ,s £ilgi, 48 J/15. "Memoir 

1793 (28). 


Bombay Suiiveys 

After a few months spent on a survey of Bombay Island [120], Reynolds was 
ordered to accompany Malet who had been deputed by the Governor General to visit 
Smdhiai, and then proceed to Calcutta to discuss policy before taking up the 
appointment of Resident at the Peshwa's court at Poona [ 6 '] . The Bombay Council 
write to Malet, 

, x AS /I 13 . T r - fiXSd intentlon to embrace every proper opportunity of procuring a know- 
ledge ot the interior parts of Hmdoostan, We have directed Captain Reynolds our Surveyor 
to accompany yon ... Captain Reynolds will be directed to obey such directions as he may 
receive from you during his absence from hence, to embrace every proffered opportunity of 
makmg observations upon the Countries he passes through, at the same time taking every 

aToided^ ° n t0 gWe °° a ' arm ° r j eal °" Sly t0 the Pe ° Ple ' Wh6re U Can be by ^ mean * 

The mission started from Surat on March 12th 1785, and travelled "through 
country a hve with Bhils ". The camp was robbed, and Cruso, the surgeon, lost a set 
ot valuable surgical instruments; passing through Ujjain [56 n. 10] they reached 
Gwalior on May 2nd, and Smdhia's camp near Muttra on the 23rd 3 . The followino- 
extracts from letters by the way give an idea of the interest taken in this -journey 

I have the honour to acquaint yon of our arrival at Broda^. We left Surat on the 12th 
and arrived here by the way of Broach on the 22nd. ... We move from hence tomorrow ■ our 
route leads by the way of Champanior », through a Country totally unkown to Europeans as 
tar as Ugen, and will afford me an opportunity to furnish information that has never yet been 
m the power of any other Geographer 6 . ... 

The 26th I arrived at Hallole' the first place subject to Madju Scindia since leaving the 
Broach Purgannah. The Country is beautiful, richly wooded, and intersected by numerous 
Gullies and rivulets, some of which at this advanced season have water. Champanier is 
situated at the bottom of the vast Mountain of Powaghur 8 , which with very little assistance 
from art forms an almost impregnable Fortress. ... This place, notwithstanding it appears so 
totally inaccessible, was taken by surprize by HumayunS from Sultan Bahadur King of 
mounfc 1 in^ aPta ' n Reyn ° lds is em P lo y« d in taking a view of this famous and extraordinary 

_ We arrived here [Ugein] on the 10th instant, & in the course of the route have gathered 
information respecting the country... that is much wanted in Reynell's Geography and of 
every other that I have yet met with. The country is in general laid down from Champanur 
as belonging totally to Holcar and Scindia; on the contrary, the whole of it, from about so- 
mites on this side of Brodera, till within 60 or 70 of this place, is in the hands of distinct 
Grasiah Rayahs or Zemindars, the Capitals of most of which I have been able to ascertain 
with tolerable accuracy, and in this last 60 or 70 miles of our route, the country is partly 
divided between Scindia, Holcar, and the Power Family of Marattas, whose Capital Dhar" 
I have also been able to fix with respect to situation. I find Indoor « as well as Dhar to be 
exceedingly misplaced in Rennell, and even this place as laid down by him does not corres- 
pond with my observations, which, from experience of my Instruments, I can venture to say 
are perfectly correct f i 77 ], I have been able to determine the source of the Mhyel' which 
takes a totally different direction from that given it by any other Geographer. Thus far our 
route will throw a deal of light on the situation of this part of Hindoostan. We march to- 

morrow and shall proceed on a different route from any yet travelled by Europeans, till we 
reach Kallaness" when we shall fall into the road laid down in Rennell's Map". .. 

I shall proceed tomorrow morning by the route of Ragogur Hill", wishing to avoid the 
Common road from motives already mentioned of extending onr Geographical knowledge 
which, from what I have already observed, I have reason to think will receive great elucida- 
tion from the accuracy of Captain Reynolds's survey. 

I have taken the liberty to enclose you a table of my journey hitherto, in which I hone 
you will excuse any want of Precision and method, since my confidence in Captain Reynolds's 
well known skdl and ability has made me less sollicitous on those points". ... 

My last respects were under the 13th ultimo from Ugen. ... I have now the honor to enclose 
a continuation of it from thence to Gwalior, where I arrived the 2nd instant, having been 

^lahadji £a<i SimUiia of Gwalior. 2 Bo S & Pol 1S-1-N5 :f Foi-hp* IT! c- TV n 

Charles Reynolds 127 

forced to halt two days for the refreshment of our people and cattle, after our late brisk 
marching at this very warm season; shall proceed tomorrow and to be at Akfaarabad 1 the 
13th instant-. 

Rennell received this route in time for incorporation in the 1792 edition of his 
map [214], and records that, 

This survey of Captain Reynolds's came to hand long after the construction of the Map 
of Hindoostan, 1788. ... Captain Reynolds's route must be regarded as a very capital one; 
bein^ through a tract which was heretofore the most vacant part of the map; and of which 
our general knowledge was so limited that we supposed the courses of its rivers to be to the 
south and into the Nerbuddah, when in fact they were to the north and into the Jumna 
River 3 . 

The mission reached Sindhia's camp near Muttra on May 23rd, and after call- 
ing on the Emperor at Delhi left Agra for Cawnpore, where on August 10th they 
embarked in budgerows for their journey down the river, reaching Calcutta on 
October 18th. From Calcutta they returned to Bombay by sea. 

At the desire of the Governor General, Reynolds was now deputed to accompany 
Malet to Poena, so 

that our knowledge of the interior parts of this country may be increased by the future 

exertion of his useful Talents 4 . 

They left Bombay in February 1786, and passing through Poona made 

a j ourney to the Maratha Army when besieging Buddamee 5 about 250 miles from this city, . . . 

that will tend greatly to elucidate many points which Major Rennell, from want of authentic 

materials, has not been able to ascertain 6 . 

After a week's halt they accompanied the Peshwa back to Poona. Reynolds 
kept a surrey of the route the whole way, through a country that had only been 
known hitherto by the travels of Mandelslo? from Goa to Bijapur [176], and of 

whose travels from Goa to Poonah [writes Rennell] furnished some useful matter towards 
filling up a part that has long remained almost a perfect void [28], ... but a great part of it 
is now superseded by the survey of Capt. Reynolds 8 . 

Obtaining permission to return to Surat for the recovery of his health, Reynolds 
surveyed one route down to Smut, and returned to Poona by another early in 1787. 
He returned again to Surat for the rains, and at the end of the year submitted to 
Government a "corrected Plan «f Hindoostan... on a very large scale", covering an 
area from 12° to 29° N, and from 71° to 80° E; he attached a full account of all his 
sources of information, and gave his reasons for improving on the details of RennelPs 
Map of .Hindoostan ; 

I have accompanied my map with a copy from Major Rennell's on the same scale. It 
will point out more readily the total change these surveys of mine give to the Geographical 
system of Hindoostan. The rivers in the Province of Malwa that run under Uggein, etc, 
have always been supposed to be branches of the Nurbudda River; my surveys determine 
that they are all Tributaries to the Churabul 9 and ultimately to the Ganges. I hope I shall 
not be considered as endeavouring to depreciate Major Rennell's performance by contrasting 
it with mine. I preferred his as being the best extant. 

He took every care that his surveys should not attract the attention of the 

Maratha officials; 

I also request that your Honors will be please to point out to them [the Directors] the 

inconvenience that may occur from allowing them to be published, or in any way made public ; 

the Ministers at Poonah would probably get the information, and in that case the loss of my 

liberty and perhaps more serious consequences to me may ensue from it and by the loss of 

my papers etc., defeat the intention of employing me 10 [297]. 

In April 1788 Malet arranged through George Forster, now Resident at Nag-pur, 

to get passports for Reynolds to travel through the territories of the Bhonsla 

Raja 11 , and suggested that he might make a journey right through to Masulipatam, 

'Fatehpur SIkri, 54 E/12. '-Prom Malet, ib. 3-6-83. ^Memoir, 1793 (320). of. Markham (08), 

which does tmt scant -justice to the value of Eeynolds' surveys. 4 Bo to CO. 13-1-BB (9). "Badaini, 43 
M/9 in BijSpur Dist. where the Peshwa was then at war with Turn: Gfcaatlhiff, III (1-12). 'From Malet 
to Warrpu Hastings, 14-2-87; BM. AddL MSS. 29210. 7 Mzmo-ir, 1793 (258) refers to map of Mandelslo's 
routes by Father Bu Val. s ib. (252). "Chambal E. 46 M to 54 J. lu Bo S & Pol. 8-1-8S. "Also 
called Baja of Berar, or Nagpur. 


Bombay Surveys 

which he succeeded in doing by way of Hyderabad in November, travelling on 

cr P tei"-9] and shewins his survey to s£r Arohi ° b ^ 

From Madras lie travelled back to Hyderabad, and from there followed a new 
route to Sura by way of Auraiigabad, the necessary passports being obtained on the 
grounds that the state of his health prevented a journev through Poona. Ma let 
reports this as giving " B "wen 

a new opportunity to Captain Reynolds' investigations without much cause of additional 
jealousy, which is less active while the object is at a distance K aaumonai 

In acknowledging the passports Reynolds writes, 

My return to Surat, while it is favourable to my completing my map of that Quarter 
which will take me some time, will also be attended with less difficulty to any further excS 
to°H Tl« ^return to Poona. - ^ will require at least one^ther Tip from Su"t 
to Hyderabad after the rains to complete the Map of the Dukun. ... There wffl be no 
difficulty m procuring Purwanas* from this Government, and I trust yon will find none ,1 
obtaining permission. ..from the Minister at Poona 

Since my leaving Poona, I have collected a very considerable stock of materials indepen- 
dent of my Survey, sufficient to determine the practicability of my perfecting a GeneraTsurvey 
of India; but as it ,s impossible that I can arrange them during my traveling I can in fact 
only now be considered as laying the foundation for the future structure* 

and later, 

S„l ^ T*t fr0m Q hen = e [Chimbly, 55 miles S. E. of Poona] will be by Simgumuere, Chandore 
Saere, Moolere, Soanghnr-, and Surat, where I can hardly expect to arrive much before tie 
settingmoftherams; ... The variety of materials from whence I draw my information a e 
such that...the arranging of them is utterly impracticable while I am on my journey where 
every moment of my time is taken up in collecting them. I shall therefore employ mysell 
fall the opening of the season of them, and in the vicinity of Surat. I have also an idea f 
time permits, of makmg a trip to Cambay for some matters relative to the Geography of the 
parts of Goojerat to the westward of it. "5"puy 01 uie 

You taow very well the Ardour with which I pursue the object of my employment and I 
make no doubt that you will do justice to it. ... I must beg. . .that you wiU forward my request 
that my assistant Lieut. Emmitt may be ordered to Surat to join me, for whom as weal as 
myself I have enough to do 6 [273]. 

In October the Governor General gave orders that Reynolds's proposed trip to 
cWtld t \ r 1( f ed 'i t0r fe " cf its arousing resentaent, and ijwas 

di eeted to remain at Surat and continue the arrangement of material already 
collected 6] In April 1790 he accompanied the Bombay detachment thai 
proceeded to Malabar to take part in the war against Tipu of Mysore [,30] 

Emmitt with the Makathas, 1790-5 

On the outbreak of the Third Mysore War in 1790, the Governor General having 
secured the co-operation of the Nizam and the Marathas, a small detachment of 
Bombay troops, two battalions of sepoys and a few guns under Captain Little, was 
deputed to stiffen up the Maratha army which was marching south from Poona 

The detachment joined the Maratha army in May 1790 and reached DhaiW 
at the end of October, where it met with stubborn resistance; as there was no 
•equipment for conducting a major siege, operations were held up to await re- 
inforcements from Bombay. These landed at Cardona on the Jaigarh" Biver on 
November 2oth under the command of Colonel Frederick, with Sartorius as second 
in command John Johnson as Engineer and Emmitt as Surveyor. Em mitt 
observed a latitude^ at the : mouth of the Jaigarh River, and ran a traverse to 
Dharwar, with occasional latitudes [ , 7 7 ] ». The siege of Dharwar Fort occupied 
several months Sartorius succeeding to the command on Frederick's death in March 
1791. Alter its fall, Emmitt was appointed surveyor to Little's detachment which 

M/3. -'47G/3. 'Emmitt's report, Bo S 4 Pol. 23-11-92? m '™' * s 

Emmitt with the Marat-has 129 

he accompanied, southwards to Mysore, whilst Johnson, who had acted as assistant 
whilst on the march, was appointed surveyor to the rest of force, which marched 
"back by way of Poena and reached Bombay on June 2nd 1 . The Maratha army 
now made forced marches and joined Lord Cornwallis 20 miles north of Seringa- 
patam on May 28th, Emmitt completing his surveyed line to make junction with 
Colebrooke's survey from Madras [112-3]. He continued his line to Bangalore and 
Sira-, and in October started a survey from Harihar 3 eastward down the Tungabhadra 
to its junction with the Kistna, then on to Pangal* in the Nizam's Dominions, and 
from thence westwards through Badami and Dharwar to G-oa. As the position of 
G-oa had long been fixed by the Portuguese Jesuits, and more recent values of its 
longitude obtained by Huddart [176], this junction gave Emmitt a value for his 
longitudes [177]- 

Emmitt was the first English surveyor to visit G-oa by land : D'Anvilie had taken 
its geography from a 

particular map I had from Portugal; but I must own, that the scale of that map not being 
exactly known to me, I am afraid I have given the continent in this map rather too much 
extent 5 . 
Rennell also notes that on his map, 

The environs of Goa and the country to the foot of the Gauts are from a Portuguese MS.; 
It is from Goa only, if from any quarter, that we are to expect the geography of the tract 
between Gauts.. .and Adoni, and which yet remains almost a perfect void in the map G . 

Many references to Emmitt and his survey are given by Moor in his Narrative 
■of the operations of Captain Little's Detachment ; 

In the beginning of March (1792) Lieut. Emmitt.. .arrived here [Harihar] from his surveys. 
When he left Hurryhal, he proceeded along the Toombudra's banks to its junction with the 
Kristna; visited the famous city of Annagoondy'; went to Paungul, the residence of the 
Nizam and his court, and thence to Goa; from which place by the route of Dharwar, he was 
now arrived. 

We shall here take occasion to mention the great acquisition our geographical knowledge 
of the peninsula will have met with from the labours of this gentleman; his surveys compre- 
hend the greater part of the country in which the scene of this narrative lies, and... the lovers 
of science will be pleased to hear that the indefatigable exertions of Mr. Emmitt have 
produced accurate surveys of a great portion of that part of the peninsula, which exhibits so 
melancholy a blank in the map of our eminent geographer, Major Rennell. 

Mr. Emmitt's surveys... comprehend considerably more than 2000 miles of distance; ...a 
number of desirable points and stations will be determined.,.; his route commences at 
Jaigur, where Captain Little's & Colonel Frederick's detachments left the sea, and continues 
in this order; to Darwar, Seringapatam, Bangalore, Sera, and the route just mentioned *. ... 

After. ..March 22nd, Mr. Emmitt proceeded to the source of the Toombudra, and returned 
to Bombay by way Simoga 9 . ..Darwar. ..Bejapoor 10 , and Poona. 

Lt. Emmitt being desirous to proceed to the army, Lt. R. and the writer of this narrative 
determined to accompany him. ... As completing the survey of the Toombudra was a desidera- 
tum in Geography, we resolved on taking the route of Hooly Honore n and Simoga, ... by which 
means another road to Seringapatam would be surveyed, and we should avoid approaching 
too near the garrison of Chittledroog 1 -, and some of other forts in Tippoo's hands. ... [News 
arrived] of the glorious successes before Seringapatam of the 6th of February, and the 
cessation of hostilities. ... 

We agree to leave Hurry Hal on the 23rd of March, with 45... sepoys and 5 Europeans, to 
join Captain Little's detachment at Seringapatam. It was of course necessary to proceed 
with all care and circumspection, having a journey to perform of nearly 200 miles, through 
a country, which although the greater part conquered, remained in a very unsettled state, 
and had many forts in the hands of the enemy. ... 

Left Hurry Hal the 23rd of March : ... on 27th.. .halted at Hooly Honore. ... About mid- 
night we were alarmed by a cry of thieves, and repairing to the place whence it proceeded, we 
found Mr. Emmitt's tent robbed of several trunks, and among them that which contained all 
his surveys, instruments and papers; this would have been an irreparable loss, but fortunate- 
ly, not being carried far, it was found near the road. ... Had the robbers succeeded in carrying 

'Survey of route, MEIO. 118 (12). -57 C/14 3 48 N/14. 4 56 L/3. "Herbert (41). "Memoir, 
1793 (292). 7 Brjayanagar, 57 E,T. s Hoor (ISO). 9 Shimoga, 4S 0/9. 10 Bijapur, 47 P/9. u Honnali, 
48 N/12. 12 Chitaicb'0;^, 57 B/8. 


Bombay Surveys 

off Mr. Emmitt's trunk of papers, it would have been a very distressing circumstance; for 
although he had sent copies of almost all his surveys to Poona, there were many valuable 
geographical materials, drawings, etc., that would have been a serious loss ; until lately he had 
always slept upon that trunk, but supposing no danger of thieves amongst so many sepoys, 
and not being in perfect health, had omitted it; from this time however, he recommenced 
the custom, and never, while in the field, left it off 1 . 
After being joined by Johnson on March 26th, 

We left Hooly Honore on the 29th, and crossed the Budra ; ... marched past SimogaFort. . . . 

April 15th March from Hoosdroog 5 . ... Harrassed by enemy; ... Messrs Emmitt & R. both 
lost some part of their baggage. For our part, having been so recently stripped, we had but 
little to lose; that little however was lost; but nothing of any consequence, save for the stock 
of grain for our domestics and cattle, which could not be replaced in camp but at enormous 
expence. Our tents, bullocks, and such things did not much signify; ... Mr. Emmitt's horse 
was killed under him, which, and a Maharatta or two wounded, were the only accidents 
received from the enemy's musquetry. ... Joined up with the Bhow's army that evening^. 

Describes the falls into the "Gutpurba Biver", a mile west of "Goeauk", where 
the "Heron Cassey Biver" falls in a cataract*. 

Mr. Emmitt, with his usual industry and accuracy, made drawings of the cataract, from 
above and below. The breadth of the river was carefully measured, and the space through 
which the water falls ascertained by dropping a plummet from the top, to the water in the 
bason. ... May 12th we crossed the Gotpurba=. 

After his return to Poona Emrnit completed his map, compiling all his surveys 
with the aid of astronomical observations, both his own and others taken by 
surveyors working' under Eyd in Mysore 6 [112-3]. 

In November 1792 Emmitt was ordered with Johnson to Malabar to survey the 
frontiers of that province [131], but by the end of 1794 he had returned to Poona, 
to wort under the instructions of Malet who was still Besident there [299] . He was 
nominally on sick leave from Malabar, but was allowed to accompany the Besident 
and the Maratha Army during the campaign against the Mzam which resulted in 
the defeat of the Nizam's troops at Kharda 7 [116]. In December he was granted 
sick leave to Europe. 

Malabab, 1790-1800 

The immediate cause of the Third Mysore War in 1790 1112-3] was Tipu's 
invasion of Travancore, to oppose which a Bombay force under Lt. Colonel Hartley 
was sent down to the west coast in April, and successfully advanced to Palghat in 

The main Bombay army followed in December under the command of the 
Governor, General Abercromby, landed at Tellicherry, captured Cannanore and, 
driving all Tipu's forces out of Malabar, reached the borders of Mysore in May 
1791 s . Beynolds had accompanied Hartley's detachment in the capacity of 
A.D.Q.M.G., and appears to have been mostly employed upon surveys, sometimes 
assisted by Blachford of the Engineers. He writes, 

Almost immediately after our arrival at Farokabad'- 1 , at the top of the Ghauts, in I7gr, 
I was detached by Colonel Hartley to examine a part of the Malabar Coast, and immediately 
on my return, I vras again detached by Sir Robert Abercromby's orders to explore the 
Tambucherry Pass [ 131 n.S], and to ascertain whether his army could penetrate that way to 
Seringputtam 10 . 

We find records of a "survey of Cochin", a "survey between the Hills about 
Paulghautcherry", a "survey of the Malabar Coast & Calicut Country, and a Map 
of Malabar showing the limits of Eoorga", all made by Beynolds during this 
period 11 \_l 79] , 

'Moor (204). =Hoscmrga, 57C/5. s Moor. (221). J Gersoppa Falls, 48 J/12 - height 825 ft 

•it,.(264). 'BoS&Pol.23-ll-92;Maps,MBIO. 124(24); 135 (2), 119 (5,26-S). 'i'rUi HMS 560 

(3Ni) i Kn lie S -12-9-,: .Mai, MEIO. 124 (17). 'For accounts of those operation, see Caik-11 (US-'Ol 
& Taylor (356-412). '49 11/16. >» Bo HC. 25-11-94. "Maps, MKIO. 135 (45), 150 (7). '' 

Malabar 131 

■ Under the treaty of Seringapatam [113] Malabar was ceded to tlie Company, 
and was administered from Bombay for the next twelve years. It is recorded that 
Captain Reynolds had made a sketch of the whole the Countries that had been ceded to 
the Allies respectively, excepting the District of Soondcon 1 , which "belonged to the portion 
that fell to the Mahrattas, but of the extent and position of which it had not been in his 
power to obtain accurate information-. 

Beynolds had. however, moved up to Mysore early in 1792, and in November the 
Governor describes the various defence works and surveys necessary for the security 
of Malabar; 

For these purposes as well as to effect a general survey of the frontiers of the ceded 
country, I have to propose that Major Sartorius may be ordered down the Coast on duty. . . . 

It is unnecessary for me to point out the advantages that will result from a complete 
survey of the Frontiers; I have already ordered Lieutenants Emmit and Johnston to proceed 
to the Coast for that purpose, and have to propose they may be employed under the inspec- 
tion of Major Sartorius s . 

Johnson had already during the course of the war made a survey of the route 
of the Bombay army "from Nujul Ghaut to Seringapatam", and in January 1792 
from "the Ercoor Rivei" to Seringapatam' 5 . Some of his letters whilst on survey 
in south Malabar have been preserved; in March 1793 "having surveyed the west 
end of the Paulghaut Range... south of the Munnar Pass", he has had difficulties 
with guides; his fever has been relieved by bark 5 , and he asks that 
you will request of General Abercromby to order bark enough to last me until the Survey be 
over. ... I have laboured under great difficulties for want of people to shew me the Boundary. 
... I am going to the Mallicocote District. survey the Munnar Pass 8 . 

Again, after describing the extent of the area over which the revenues had been 
collected by the emissaries of Tipu, 

I deemed it best to proceed and survey the Boundary towards Tippoo's Country of the 
Upper Todenear District ; ... I am now arrived in the District of Nombhully cote 7 . ... The 
District lies about 7 miles to the norward, or within the opening laid down in Captain 
RennelFs [obviously Reynolds] survey between the Munnar Ghaut and the Tembercherry 8 
Range of Hills. ... I wish to be informed whether I am to return and survey the Western 
boundary of the three districts of Mahanaar, Poringai, and Nombhullycote...or whether I am 
to proceed to survey the Wynaat 9 District (which must now be very near us) 10 . 

Moncrieff and "Woodington assisted Emmitt in his survey of "the Northern 
Super in tendency" which included Coorg, Wynad, and "Mount Delia with the Ooast 
as far as Nelisuram 11 ". Their survey was not entirely without incident, for the 
political officer received a report in July 1793; 

The Coorga Rajah says that the Engineer came to examine the Boundaries and settle 
differences; that Tippoo's fellows came to surround him; that the Engineer told them that 
he was an English Sirdar come to inspect the Boundaries, and do justice on both sides. This 
they would not listen to. but abused him and fired at bim 13 . 

In 1805 the Resident in Mysore records that a survey of the Goorg-Mysore 
boundary was made about 1792, "two Gentlemen having been deputed by the then 
Supreme authority in Malabar to effect that object" : he refers to it as authoritative, 
if it can he obtained l& . 

In December 1794, Sartorius sent the completed maps up to Bombay under 
Emmitt's charge 1 *; 

I have now the honor of transmitting the Maps of the Northern and Southern districts 
of the Malabar Province; ... both Surveyors, Messrs. Emmit and Johnson have endeavoured 
to render them as perfect in every respect as unremitted application could make these 
surveys. With regard to the few observable spaces which have yet not been explored, I 
have every reason to think they will not take much more than one season to survey, after 
which such public roads as may be deemed conducive to promote trade, and procure the 
speediest movement of our troops from one end of the Province to the other, may easily be 
traced out. 

i&mda, 48 J/14. -HM8.615 B to CD.5-4-92. s Bo MC. 23-11-92. ^alarpattaimm E-, north 
of Cannanore, from Irikur, 49 3tf|9. 5 Quinine. "Bo Sue. ; Vol. IS, 23-3-93. ! .v6a r part 

of Uudftbii'frtZtife. 5SA/10. s T;lmavaseri. 5S A/3. 9 Wyrnid, 49 M/13, 58 A/NW. "ih. H-i-93. 

!) Map MRIO 135 (4fi) &■ 144 (37), Scale 2 m. to 1 inch; Voimt Dilli. 4S ?/4; N41e;waram, 48 P,'3. "HMS. 
613 (81); Mslabace Corr., 8-7-93. l3 B\Dn. 68 (338), 18-1-1805. "So MO. 20-1-95. 



Bombay Surveys 

In October 1795 Moncrieff vras appointed in Ernmitt's place, and employed on 
a more thorough surrey of the southern province for the Civil Commissioners 
which was, however, broken off for other duties; 

Captain Moncrieff was then employed under us in carrying on a survey, which we had 
proposed should extend throughout the whole province on a plan that will materially aid the 
ascertainment of the Revenue Funds, and otherwise prove of great public utility should it ever 
be completed. Captain Moncrieff, previous to his quitting us, did, however, finish a survev 
of the Betulnad District 1 . ' 

His work was commended to the Directors; 

A great addition has been made to our knowledge of the Geography of Malabar since the 
map of the Ceded Countries prepared by Major Sartorius; for the elucidation of the First 
Commissioners General Report we called upon Captain Moncriefie, who had been employed 
to survey the Southern Districts for as complete a Map as possible 2 

After the final defeat of Tipu, Moncrieff, with the assistance of Williams, one 
of his subalterns m the Pioneers, was employed in North Malabar and Kanara, some 
Eottavam° dU ™ g miIitiU7 °P erations a gainst the Pychy Raja of 

Mountford* writes of one of their maps 25 years later; 

I consider it to be little more than a sketch made during troublesome times and there- 
fore capable of very great improvement. In fact when compared with the surveys executed 
under this office it exhibits little more than a blank, as may be seen by the enclosed copies 
ot the same tract of country from that map 5 . 

Reynolds & his Map, 1792 to 1800 

On his return journey from Mysore in 1792 [116], Reynolds was able to fulfil 
the wish, that had been denied to him three years earlier, to carry another line of 
survey through the Decean; this he did through Hyderabad, Aurangabad. and 
Kotah, to Agra 6 . Prom Agra he obtained permission to go down to Calcutta 
where he pressed a scheme which he had long cherished, that he should be given 
authority, and means, to work up his own great map [217]. 

In pursuit of this purpose he obtained Blunt's services as assistant, and a grant 
of Rs. 800 a month for an escort, and during the cold weather of 1793-1 he and 
Blunt ran surveys from Allahabad to Panipat, and back to Lucknow [5c] 
Reynolds was then recalled to Bombay to attend a courtmartial, and on its conclu- 
sion returned to Surat, and once more took up the compilation of his map, and the 
collection of material. It does not appear that he made any further expeditions 
himself [218], but he employed a number of native surveyors, trained by himself 
whom he sent out in all directions to measure new routes and fill in blanks Their 
most valuable work was carried out in Gujarat, Cutch, Sind, Raiputana, and the 
Punjab [219]. 

'Vettatnid, a former ta.Uk in north Ponnani, 58 B/l. Logan (527, 665-6); Prom the Malabar 
Comnms.onsrs.BoMC. 17-2-97 =BoEevto CD. 31-7-97 (32). ?Tl,e Pyciy SajJcf S (Kottayam) 
«n* ™<"«l" mT^CD f f! C ?,ir d ^Kottoym & Wynid talAJ MR<X 1 lap 173 KRIO S 

S'^S^^iSW. Deira ' yS,J - Had " a3 ' 1618 - 24 iMta • 300 < 170 >- Eo '° rt 



Methods of the Country — Glossary BENGAL — . MADRAS ; The Jagir, 1767-91 

Northern Circdrs, 1774-88 — Salem & Bdramahal, 1792-9 — Assistant Revenue 

Surveyors, 1795-1800 — BOMBAY. 

IN many countries land surveys for revenue purposes have taken priority over all 
topographical or geographical surveys. Such land survey may take various 
forms, according to the manner in which the rights of the occupier are 
recognized, the conditions of his tenure, and the extent to which he is expected to 
pay for the privilege of holding, or occupying, the land. In India the ultimate 
ownership of the land has always rested with the State, or rather, the supreme 
authority in the State. For some time before the middle of the eighteenth century 
this supreme authority for the greater part of India was the Mughal Emperor of 
Delhi. As a general rule the rulers of provinces paid tribute to the Emperor 
according to the reputed wealth of their provinces, and in similar fashion they 
collected revenues from their subordinates. In all cases the final call was met by 
the peasant, or raHyat, who lived on, and cultivated, the land, though between him 
and the ruler of the province were many middlemen. As a ruler the ra'iyat held 
the land at the pleasure of the hereditary landlord, or samindar, who was respon- 
sible for all revenues to higher authority, and used his own means for collecting 
from his ra'iyats. In case of indm, or jagir, lands, the landholder held the lands as a 
free gift, generally on account of special services rendered by him or his family. 

The system by which the lands were assessed, and by which revenues were 
collected, varied from province to province ; 

The legitimate government share of the gross produce... was one-fourth, but Akbar 
demanded one-third generally, and one-half in Kashmir. ... In practice, nearly every ruler, 
Hindu or Musalman, took all he could get, and often the principle was avowed that the... 
raiyat should be left no more than a bare subsistence and seed grain. ... Even the early 
"settlements" made by British officers frequently erred on the side of over- assessment, 
with disastrous results. ... In Bengal of the eighteenth century the information accessible 
was so crude that a decently fair assessment was impossible 1 . 

In most provinces there was some system under which a record was kept of the 
area and ownership of all cultivated land, and some system of assessment of 
revenue, with spasmodic attempts at a fair measurement of the land. 

It is recorded that Rajaraja I of Tanjore (A. D. 985-1011) "carried out a 
careful survey of the land under cultivation, and assessed it 2 ", and there must have 
been other surveys of which no clear record has been preserved. 

Much information is available of the surveys instituted by the Emperor Akbar 
[ion. i ] during the 1 6th century in the Ahhar-Nama and Ain-i- Aboard, records of his 
reign kept by his minister Abu-1-Fazl, from which the following notes are taken ;^ 

7th Year of Akbar's reign. ... At the beginning of this year His Majesty directed his 
attention to an improvement of the administration of his territories, and passed new laws 
for the management of civil and revenue business 4 . ... 

More definite reforms were effected in the 15th... year (1570-1) when Muzaffar K — T — , 
with the assistance of Todar Mall, prepared a revised assessment of the land revenue, based 
on estimates framed by the local Kanungos and checked by ten superior Kanungos. ... 

'Vincent Smith (562). 2 Imp. Gas. Madras, II (134). frequently quoted by D'Anville A 
Rennell; tran.sla.ted, Gladwin 1783, 1800; Blochraan, Vol. I, with biography of Abn-1-Fazl, 1873; Jarrett, 
Vols. II & III, 1894. ''Elliott, VI (61). 


13 I. 

Revenue Surveys 

The conquest of Gujarat in 1573 gave Todar Mall the opportunity for further exercise 
of his special abilities. He was sent to make the land revenue assessment of the newly 
conquered province, and was engaged on the task for six months. ... 64 out of 184 pargamas 
...were surveyed. ... 

The "settlement" was made for a term of ten years, with a demand uniform for each 

Raja Todar Mall's later "settlement" in Northern India— ...Akbar and his advisers fixed 
the units of measurement as the necessary preliminary to survey. 

Measurements had been formerly made by a hempen rope— ...from A. D. 1575 the rope 
was replaced by njarib of bamboos joined by iron rings, which remained of constant 
length. ... 

The first step in the new system of "settlement" operations was measurement The 
next was the classification of lands; the third was the fixation of rates. 

Todar Mall.. .took no account of soils, ...and based.. .classification on'the continuity or 
discontinuity of cultivation. ... 

The Government share was one-third of the average. ... 

Only the area actually under cultivation was assessed. The area under each crop had 
its own rate. ... 

Akbar's revenue system was ryotwaree; ...the actual cultivators of the soil were the 
persons responsible for the annual payment of the fixed revenue. ... Provision was however 
made that the headman should be paid a commission for collection, not exceeding ^i 
per cent for work done. 2 

Smith remarks that the system was an admirable one, the principles sound, and 
the practical instructions to officials all that could be desired, but he expresses 
"considerable scepticism concerning the conformity of practice with precept 1 ." 
Akbar's survey was extended into Bengal : — 

In the time of the kings the particulars of the measurement were as follows. During the 
reign of Akber. Rajah Toorul Mull made the measurement in Every district in Bengal in 
conformity to the Customs respectively Established in them. Different places being 
different m their local circumstances, and the practice of measurement diversified, these 
arrangements were attended to in the Mofussil Serishtas. 

The Country was then covered with Jeels or Jungle; on these accounts in many places 
it not being practical to Effect the measurements of the lands by means of a rope the lands 
were rated by a Toomar Jumma, the number of begahs.. .being Estimated, and the Jummah 
fixed accordingly. 

In such places, on the other hand, as were free from water or Jungle, and in good con- 
dition for cultivation, a measurement being made, the Jummah was rated according to that 
standard, and called Tuzumy. ... Many mahals...were never at that period submitted to 
measurement. ... The Zamindars of such Purgunnahs were unwilling to submit to the meas- 
urement of their lands, from the apprehension of diminishing the revenue by introducing a 
new Custom, being used to make an arbitary Settlement with their Reyatts [142]. 

The business of measuring lands being of so great importance, the persons employed in 
it should be men of ability. Their functions will be difficult and intricate; the measure of 
the Cottah & Begah is various and the names appropriated to these measures vary also 
In some districts three different standards are in use: One of the Zemindar, a second of 
that peculiar to the place, and the third of Government : by which last the Cottah and 
Begah is or larger dimensions than by the two former. 

Such a business requires a man of respectability. If such a one be Employed as an 
Aumeen, the measurement of any place having once been made by him, there will be no 
occasion [or a repetition of it. But if, on the contrary, a careless or incapable person be 
Employed, it becomes necessary that the business should be done a second time, & such is 
the Custom of the Country 2 . 

The indigenous method of land-measurement by simple geometry is commented 
on by Macrabie, brother-in-law and private secretary to Philip Francis • 
■ We drove out again to the Gardens. I have been stalking all round and' showing the 
Boundaries to a Black Surveyor. How the plague these people measure land I cannot 
conceive. They neither use the compass nor take sights as our people do, and yet they get 
the contents of ground with tolerable accuracy. It is by a means of Squares, I believe 3 

1 Smith (370-6). -Report by a Bengal official ; B Res 
13-2-76, Francis, I (260). 

Bd. 21-12-89 (31). "Journal Calcutta. 

Methods of the Country 


By the time that the English came into possession of Bengal there remained 
no periodical system of revenue settlements, or land measurements; 

Most native Governments made rough "annual settlements". Akbar had preferred 
longer terms, and actually, the Bengal "settlement" made by his finance minister Raja 
Todar Mall, lasted for seventy-six years. 

In the r8th century everything fell into confusion. In Bengal the village communities 
...dissolved, and the kanungos ceased to maintain their records properly. ... Individual 
zemindars... developed into hereditary potentates, each controlling a huge extent of country 1 . 


Before proceeding to give an account of the revenue surveys undertaken during 
the early years of the Company's administration, it will "be well to give a glossary 
of the more common Indian terms-. 
Amin. A native official appointed to collect revenues or to investigate and report their 

amounts; or employed on land measurement. 
Band-o-bast. The settlement operations under which the amounts of revenue to be paid on 

the land are settled in detail. 

An area of one square jarib, a unit which varied according to the length assumed 

for the hath. 

Literally that which is and thai which was. A comparative account, generally 

made by a measurement, of the assets or resources of a country immediately 

before the harvest. A detailed enquiry into the financial value of the lands. 

The primary unit, taken from the length of the fore-arm. No two districts 

accepted the same length. 

An area of land held free of tribute. 

A measurement of the lands, with assessment of the revenue to be paid on 


Measuring chain of So haths or 60 gas in length. 

An official responsible for maintaining revenue records and accounts. 

i. Rent-roll showing the actul measurements and area of the land, and its appro- 
Malguzari. Rent-paying lands. 
Ra'iyatwdri. Dealing direct with the individual peasant landholders. 







In November 1757, whilst waiting for Mir Jafar to sign the formal grant of 
the Twenty-four Parganas [12 n.7], the Secret Committee at Fort William 
recorded the following' resolution ; 

The Committee now took into consideration in what manner to regulate the Lands 
when we receive the Grant of them from the Nabob, & it being judged necessary for one 
person to examine into the extent & Nature of the Territories to be held by the Company 
in Farm, to enquire into the Revenues now collected by the Nabob, Zemindars & Holders 
of the Pergannas, to scrutinize and lay before us what advantages may be made of them by 
following any particular Plan, and to execute the said Plan, Collect the Revenues, &c. 

It is unanimously agreed Wm. Frankland Esq. should be appointed to that 
Employ* [13]. 

In the following month Clive wrote from Murshidabad that, 

The Conangoes having finished the Survey of the granted Lands, and ascertained to 
what Purgunnahs they belong, the Purwannah for them is at last drawn out and signed by 
the Nabob 4 ... 
on which the Committee resolved. 

The original Sunnud for the Lands being received, Agreed, We request of Mr. Frankland 
to set out without delay on the Survey of them, and take possession in the name of the 
Company as he goes along 5 . 

'Vincent SinU-.h (iifilj). 
33-12-67; EMS. 809 (290). 

-cf. MursMduldd Letters. 
'BSCC. 4-1-58. 

hid os, 

"BS&M. 12-11-'/. 

A From Clive, 



Revenue Surveys 

Frankland's report was eagerly awaited, one member writing, 

At the time Mr. Frankland was appointed... to take a Survey of the Lands I proposed 
some other Gentleman... might be appointed to accompany Mm in the Survey, but as the 
rest of the Committee were of a different opinion, I acquiesced, induced thereto by the 
imagination that the Survey would be compleated in a month. ... I find so long a time as 
three months has elapsed since Mr. Frankland set out on his survey, and as yet we have no 
account laid before us, nor. ..can we expect any for four months 1 . 

In due course Frankland submitted his survey, giving the number of bighas with 
other statistics; it was forwarded to the Directors who replied • 

. With respect to the Lands ceded to us, Mr. Frankland's letter is too prolix, and not verv 
intelligible, but his account of the different pergunabs, the Grounds, and the Revenues are 
judicious and clear; the barren and untenanted Lands are very extensive, but through Care 
and Attention We shall hope for large increased Revenue improvements 

You are certainly right to order an exact measurement of all our new acquired Lands 
but we hope by more than one Person, and at no great expence; such persons if they have 
judgement, may from their observation of the different Grounds be able to furnish vou with 
many beneficial hints-. 

The Company's servants had at this time no experience whatever of revenue 
administration and it is recorded that, 

From the treaty of 1757 up to July 1759, the Pergunnas were farmed by the Company 
but a suspicion arose that they had not a perfect knowledge of their value, and they were 
put up for sale by public auction, as the only means of arriving at this knowledge. The 
sale produced 7,65,700 sicca rupees, which, with the royalties, estimated at ii lacs made a 
total of over 9 lacs; deducting Clive's JaghireS of 2,22,000, this left a revenue' of nearlv 7 
lacs. 3 ' 

After Cameron's survey of the district boundary in 1761-2 [1 3], he was directed 
to make a "Survey & Measurement of the several Pergannahs", and it was 
agreed the same opportunity be taken of making a Register of the Villages Tenants &c 
and that each Gentleman of the Committee of Lands do for that purpose appoint a proper 
Person to attend Mr. Cameron during the measurement of the respective Pergunnahs under 
their management*. 

Cameron continued to work for "the Committee of the New Lands" till his death 
two years later, but we have no record of the work done [13], nor of anyone 
carrying it on, though possibly Stuart and Martin may have been so employed [137]. 

The conditions of the cession of the provinces of Burdwan, Midnapore and 
Chittagong made by Mir Kasim in 1760 [21 n. 7] were that the Hawaii should 
"be vested with the administration of all affairs of Provinces", and that 
for all charges of the Company and... army and provisions for the field the Lands of 
Burdwan, Midnapore and Chittagaum shall be assigned. ... The Company is to stand to all 
losses and receive all the profits of these three Countries 5 . 

The actual collection of revenues was left in the hands of the former Indian 
officials as agents for the Company until 1771, when the Controlling Committee 
of Revenue 6 was established at Calcutta, and the functions of the° Supravisors 
[137] of districts changed to those of Collectors of Revenue '* . From this time 
each district had a fresh settlement of its land-revenue every five years. 

The impossibility of the Company attempting to undertake any close control 
at an earlier date will be realised when it is considered how small was their staff 
of officers, none of whom were really trained in administration; in 1761 the Council 
had written home, 

We are extremely in want of Assistants for the Business of all our Ofhces- our whole 
list consisting of only 66 for the service of the Presidency, and all the subordinates The 
Engineer and his assistants are of this number 8 . 

Continual anxiety was expressed from home as to the amount of revenue 
could be collected from the provinces; 

Although the increase of the Revenue of this Province [Chittagong] is very agreable to 
us, yet much remains to be done before We can be assured that We draw all the Advantage 

* , 'TV 4 ^" 58 ' 1°% \ ?■ 1 ~* J60 Mk 9S >- lilted by Mir War in 1759, beino- the quit- 
rent due bythe Company to the Siawib. <BPC. 19-4-64. '5th para, of treatyivith kir Kakm , BSOC. 


27-9-60. 6 Superseding Controlling Council of Slurshidabiid. 

8 B to CD. 12-11-61 (119). 

Bengal 13T 

of which it is capable, and therefore direct you to cause an Actual Survey to be taken of 
the whole Province, that we may know what is cultivated, what waste, what pays taxes, 
what free, and bow the whole is disposed of. ... 

We have already approved the Method you took to ascertain the Value of the Calcutta- 
Lands, you write us it has increased the Revenue 1 ... 
and the Council report that, 

By an account of the Jumraabandi, or new measurement, of part of the Calcutta 
Purgunnas lately delivered in by the Collector, it appears that the rent of them for the 
present year... amount to Sicca Rupees [27411.3-}, ...we hope that a proportional increase 
will arise from a re-measurement of the remaining purgunna which we have now ordered 2 . 

In 1768 the Collector- General writes, 

I request your instructions... whether I must continue to collect the Rents of the 
Calcutta Lands at these rates henceforth, or in what manner you may think proper to have 
the Surveyor's Office re-imbursed. I further request your sentiments as to the future 
Establishment of the Surveyor's Office 3 . 

From the heading of Martin's map [ 5 1 ] , it is probable that these Calcutta Lands 
were the same as the New Lands of the 24-Parganas which Cameron had started to 
survey [ 136] ; and the surveyor just referred to may have been a certain Alexander 
Stuart, who, being 

lately employed in surveying some of the Calcutta Lands, sends m a letter requesting 
payment of wages he advanced to his assistants and servants previous to being called in. 

The Hon. the President acquaints the Board... that his surveys are so very incorrect, 
and he has been so inattentive to, and neglectful of, his duty, that he thinks him unworthy 
of any Indulgence whatever. . . . The Board decide. . .that we shall not therefore repay him the 
money he applies for 4 . 

As early as 1766 some effort was being made to investigate the state of the 
revenues of the more distant provinces; 

Mr. Verelst [22 n.4], as Supravisor of the Midnapoor Revenues, lays before us an 
account of the situation of the Jungles to the Westward of Midnapoor, agreably to the 
ancient Statement, 
and the Eesident was instructed, 

To persevere in a scrutiny of the Zemindars' private account, and obtain the most exact 
valuation possible of the Midnapoor and Jellasore Lands. To visit the several Pargannas 
in order to ascertain upon the spot a more accurate knowledge of the subject, and to re- 
dress the Complaints of the Riots 6 . 

In 1769 English Supravisors 6 of Eevenue were appointed with the following 


To investigate & ascertain in a minute, clear, and comprehensive manner, a variety of 
circumstances which intimately concern the welfare of the country; ... The State, produce, & 
Capacity of the Lands. 

The first measure. to procure a compleat kistabood or Rent-Roll with the number of 
Bighas or Measures of Land contained in each district, according to original Surveys & 
Measurements, and the method in which they were laid out and appropriated. 

The next is to fix the ancient Boundaries & Divisions. . . . The title of the Present Posses- 
sions should... be examined, together with the valuation of such Lands before they became 
Talooks. ... You are also to particularize the Extent, Production, & Value of Jagheeres, the 
Titles of the present possessors &c. ... Among the chief effects which are hoped from Your 
Residence. . .are to convince the Ryott that you will stand between him & the hand of 
Oppression; that you will be his Refuge & the Redressor of his Wrongs. ... Having thus 
obtained sufficient & authentic accounts of the Rent Rolls of the Districts, by searching 
into the Papers & Record, ...comparing their respective Husto-bads, surveying & measuring 
the lands which appear rated above or below their value or extent, you are to bring your 
investigation home to the Zemindar 7 . 

The Supravisor at Purnea describes the native system of collection as " sheer 

The method pursued for these last few years has been as follows; At the beginning of 
the year they have made a kind of estimated Bundibust with the Aumils, but without 

'CD to B. 24^12-65 (46, 56). 2 Bto CD. 31-1-66, (70). 3 BPC. 26-8-68. 4 BPC. 15-8-68. 6 BSC. 
I3_3_66. s Fov view of the work of theae Supravisors, see Murshiclabad Letters, Introduction et set}, 
'< BSC. 16-8-69. 



Revenue Surveys 

finally settling what they were to pay, only limiting them in their charges. At the time of 
the Harvest they have sent Aumeens into all parts of the Country to measure the cultivated 
lands, and then Sezawuls to collect accordingly; hy these means they have at least had it 
in their power to lay hold of whatever the Tenants had by industry raised 1 . 

The Suprarisor at "Ragonautpure, Patcheet", reports about his district (now 

This district has never been measured; but.. .the Malguzary has hitherto been settled 
by mere surmise. ... This province should be properly surveyed, by which means alone its 
true extent and quantity of land will be ascertained... 
and asks if he should 

await the arrival of a Surveyor, or if. ..I should send people into the different pergannahs 
to find out the number of Bigas of arable land contained in each 2 . 
The Controlling Council at Murshidabad reply, 

We understand that a Gentleman has lately been sent from the Presidency to compleat 
a survey of all the Western Provinces 8 , but we do not apprehend the result of such a survey 
-will afford you the knowledge you wish to acquire in regard to the Quantity of Land and 
the nature of the Cultivation. These informations, we apprehend, must rather be obtained 
by an actual mensuration, and local inspection of the Country 4 . 

About this time the Chittagong Council report that they have carried out a 
survey of their lands, but have no confidence in the results; 

The mensuration of the Lands of this Province which cost. much money that a just 
assessment of the ground should take place, has rather been a Burthern than any ease to 
the Lower class 01 Inhabitants, and prej udicial to the Public Revenues. 

The venality of the Black Servants employed in the measurement of the Country, 
having for a valuable Consideration excused the rich, and rendered a short measurement of 
their lands, and the Poor who were incapable of complying with their demands have had 
theirs measured with the most rigorous exactness, and the formation of the Jummabundy, 
in consequence of the mensuration, has been so. partial through the Arts of the Black 
servants in office here, that to this cause alone the fixed Revenues of this Province. ..have 
been annually realised, and therefore may rather be deemed nominal 5 . 

The efforts of the Supravisors to make measurements through the agency of 
amms, met with strong opposition on the part of the landlords, one of whom makes 
the following complaint; 

The Supervisor of Bhettoriah has sent an Aumeen to the Jaghier, who interrupts the 
Collection of the Revenues, and measures every particular Division of it. I am hopeful 
that you will give an order for recalling the Aumeen, that the Ryotes, being delivered from 
his oppression, may attend to the Cultivation of their lands and the Payment of their 
and the Council write to the Supravisor, 

As you have received no orders from us for entering upon this measurement, we do 
direct that you immediately withdraw your Aumeen, and immediatly restore to Rajah R — 's 
Agents whatever collection he may have made from the Ryots 6 . 

It was soon realised that there were great objections to basing the collection of 
revenues on native measurements, and that collection through the agency of rent- 
farmers was simpler to work; the Supravisor at Hooghly writes, 

Being persuaded therefore of the inefncacy of a measurement in which there is so much 
room for Fraud and Collusion, and that Annual Farms will by the competition of individuals 
at the commencment every year raise the lands to an adequate revenue in the course of 
three or four years, ... 
he recommends that "the latter method may be adopted 7 ". 

The choice between the two systems was decided differently from one district 
to another ; it was often very difficult to find suitable farmers. 

The Supravisors had no powers to interfere with the collection of revenues in 
any way; they could only watch and report what they saw. The number of civil 
servants available was at that time far too small to take oyer the administration of 
so vast a country, with no sort of staff that could be trusted. The Collectors 

1 ESC. 12-10-69. 3 CCEev. II (14), 12-1-70. 3 It is not known to whom this refers ; possibly Carter 
[32]. 4 ib. II (17), 3-12-70. b CMttagong Dist, B. No. 37l, June 1770. 6 CCRev. II (302), 20-6-71. 

i'b. VII (91), 21-12-71. 

Bengal 139 

appointed in 1772 were only a little better off in that they were now fully 

Detailed investigations or measurements were not encouraged by the Directors, 
who in a letter of July 4th 1777 expressed "disapproval of the Governor General's 
Scheme for a new investigation of the Provinces, by the deputation of Native 
Aumeens into the Districts", and later noted that 

one of those Aumeens has been furnished with a guard of 50 Sepoys from. Dacca without the 
knowledge of the Commander in Chief. It appears that N — 1 has also deputed subordinate 
Aumeens, for whose protection the Governor General seems to think part of this Military force 
might be necessary. We confess ourselves alarmed at these proceedings, and more so when 
we consider that Zimindars and other respectable Inhabitants.. .should be liable to vexatious 
inquisitions 1 . 

In 1779 an effort was made to put the survey of the lands of the 24-Pargannas 
on a regular footing, and the Calcutta Committee of Revenue write, 

Finding that considerable tracts. ..were held by individuals in the 24 Pargannas on 
grants from the former Collector -General, yielding little or no revenue to Government..., 
we find that in. ..May 1771, the Collector General issued 81 grants.. .of lands, which had 
either become wild or always been in that state. 

They recommend 
that the jummabundee should be formed every ten years: that a survey of the Lands 
granted should in 12 months be made by the Company, so that a description of their 
boundaries might be inserted. the grant. ... 

Many people under the authority of these grants had cultivated considerable tracts 
without paying the smallest Revenue to Government, ...there were even some who had 
cultivated and possessed themselves of Lands without holding any title, and without paying 
revenue. ... 

This committee, so long ago as. ..1776, ordered that Aumins should be sent into the 
districts, but no provision was made for the support of the aumins, and they were left to 
receive their pay from the Talookdars themselves, who were particularly interested in 
frustrating the intention of their appointment. ... Their investigation was consequently 
incomplete. ..they surveyed only a part of the lands. ... 

Of about 1,75,000 given out in grants, the Ameens had surveyed 35,637 Beegas that 
were still wild or waste, and 5,805 that were brought into cultivation. That the Jumma of 
revenue for the cultivated ground for year 1184 amounted to Rs. 5,710, but only 980 had 
been collected. 

The Committee then recommended that 
a separate office should be formed in our Cucnery whose duty it may be to survey all the 
lands possessed under pretence of these grants, to ascertain such as are illegally held, to 
distinguish how much land each possess or has brought into cultivation, fix the 
revenue which each. ..ought to pay for the ensuing year... 
and they ashed for provision to be made for payment of the amins 3 . 

In 1789 a ten-year settlement was undertaken in all Bengal Districts, and the 
following notes about the necessary measurements were left to his successor by the 
Collector at Comilla ; 

The Munsiff will demand... the Chittas, or accounts, of the last year's measurement, that 
he may ascertain the Daugs or divisions, but when he has got them, will, if the Reiatts 
liberally pay him, make out an account from them withont measuring the lands at all; 
an experienced Munsiff will measure the whole, both with a view to manage the Reiatts, 
and secure himself if he is likely to be punished with severity. In the field they generally 
set down the real length and breadth in dots, & afterwards at their leisure draw figures 
over these dots, according to their agreements with the Reiatts, but as they will be stiff & 
not fluent like the rest of the writing you may easily see that deception has been practised 
by a bare inspection of the Chitta. It is not only in the quantity of the land but in the 
quality that you be deceived. ... 

The difference occasioned by these manouevres is too considerable to be slightly passed 
over, being nearly equal to one half the Revenue at least. To detect the imposition you 
must go into the detail yourself; it is an object of too much importance to be trusted to 
native Agents. Puvtal is the term for a re-measurement, but the manner in which it is 

1 CD to B. 30-1-78 (60). 2 Calcutta Com. of Eev. 7-5-79. 


Revenue Surveys 

conducted is partial and oppressive; the Purtal Munsiff does not measure the whole villa™ 
he is sent to, but a few parcels of Land only, & in proportion to the concealments found in 
those parcels of land, charge the whole village with what is called a duk 
«. 7 h " J M f a <*y of the m^siffs is however npon a confined scale when compared with 
that m the Ameeny & Jummabmiy Serishtas; the Munsiff has but a village or two to exert 
his talents In, but these Serifhtas have the whole Zemindary for the display of their 
abilities; ...Nothing but indefatigable attention & local knowledge will carry you thro' so 
as to do equal Justice to the Reiatt & Government; As every Reiatt is personally 
concerned, their applications to you will be innumerable. Justice requires that their 
complaints should be heard & redressed if well founded >. 

The Collector of Sylhet met with considerable opposition from the za,nindars 
especially along- the borders of the district ; he writes ■ 

I have as far as possible completed the several measurements of the district but the 
management and examination of the papers will not be effected under four or five months 

Many advantages... will result from the Hustobood. No revenue will be demanded from 
the natives which the apparent condition of their land does not justify. Government will 
know what they possess, and by the knowledge, provided they do not exact too large a 
share of revenue will have a right to insist on a punctual performance of their agreements. 
...When a Hustabood has been once made with tolerable accuracy, I think the jumma ought 
to be fixed for oyer, otherwise the Hustabood papers will be constant scourge over the 
head of the land-holders. By the Hustabood the constant litigation in this district will be 
much less irequent 3 . 
and a few months later ; 

I adhered to the Hustabood papers, which may have been falsified for private purposes 
Abadie lands may have been concealed out of favour, and in other instances Junglah lands 
may have been measured as abadie. Where any have been concealed it is not so material 
as the welfare of the chowdrie and ryot is ultimately and truly the advantage of the Governl 
ment. By overrating, temporary profit only is obtained at the expence of the country but 
when pique or some other motive has caused Junglah to be rated as Abadie, some allowances 
must be made. 

During the course of the year, especially if I can find leisure, before the settine in of 
the rains to go into the mofussil, I shall learn where the assessment bears too hard ■ a 
deduction wdl willingly be granted*. ' " 

and again, 

The hustabood of the district did not orginate with me. It was recommended., by - 
predecessor. ... In December... as soon as the rains would admit, I entered on the disagreable 
task; and in the execution of it...I have received every possible opposition from the 
Cannongoes and principal Mussalman inhabitants, who had obtained great advantage for the 
depression of the zemindars. ... Against sneh opposition...! consider myself fortunate in 
tltZ"^™^ " * "* "*~* t0 °°— *• ** • -Arable 
In 1793 under the administration of Lord Cornwallis as Governor General the 
terms of the decennial settlement of 1789-90 were made permanent, with the 
result that a great part of Bengal, together with other portions of India, became 
liable for no further increase in revenue. The information collected previous to 
1789 regarding the limits and areas of existing estates was incomplete; and pro- 
bably inmost cases very inaccurate, so it was not long before the Collectors of 
districts found themselves in difficulties when deciding what land had actually 
been included in the permanent settlement. It is interesting to note the prophetic 
comments of Warren Hastings on the subject a few years before. Writino- his 
memoirs on board ship during his voyage home in 1786, he observes 

I shall only further observe on the proposed plan of restoring the zemindars to the 
possession of their lands, and the management of their Revenues, that unless care should 
be taken at the same time to establish some mode of guardianship, with a view to remedv 
the defects of minority, profusion, and incapacity of the Zemindars, their restoration will 
often terminate m acts of the greatest severity; in the total dispossession of the Zemindars 
or m concession on the part of Government in their demands for the Revenues" 
The subject was complex, and gave rise to heated discussion ; 

,A_9 cn B R Zi, m - *t* Wl- „ ° S f h,t «* B - HI. 1-9-89. 'Cultivated lands. « ib 1-1-90 »ih 
24-2-90. 6 Warren Hastings, 1786 (121). ■ 

Bengal 1*1 

Hastings... looked to experience, as acquired from a succession of quinquennial settle- 
ments, to furnish the standard rate of the future. Francis on the other hand... advocated 
the fixing of the state demand in perpetuity. The same view recommended ^ itself to the 
authorities at home. ... Accordingly Cornwallis took out with him in 1786 instructions to 
introduce a permanent settlement. 

The process of assessment began in 1789, and terminated in 1791. No attempt was 
made to measure the field or calculate the outturn., as had been done by Akba.r. The 
amount to be paid in the future was fixed by reference to what had been paid in the past. 
At first the settlement was called decennial, but in 1793.. .it was declared permanent. ... 

Shore 1 [81 n. 14] would have proceeded more cautiously than Corrtwallis's preconceived 
English idea of a proprietary body, and the Court of Directors' haste after fixity, permitted 3 . 

In a re-view o£ the system written in 1883, nearly 100 years later, it is stated 3 , 

The claim of Government against the Zemindars was fixed for ever, and the Law 
intended that the rights of the Zemindars over their own tenants should equitably be 
restricted. But no detailed record of Tenant-right was inserted in the settlement papers. 
The rights of the Landlords as against the State were defined by the regulations of 1793 : 
the rights of the tenants as against the Landlord were reserved, but were not denned; 
was taken for granted that the law-courts would afford sufficient protection to subordinate 
rights. However, large zemindaries were speedily broken up; widespread default in pay- 
ment of Government dues, and extensive sales [followed ]. 

By the end of the eighteenth century the greater portions of the Estate of Nuddea, 
Rajshahi, Bishenpor, and Dinajpur Rajahs had been alienated ; ...a host of smaller zemin- 
daries had shared the same fate" 1 . 

Although the permanent settlement rendered measurement of lands belonging to 
mvnfindars of no account for many years, yet there were other lands which called for 
surreys, as shown by the following letter from the Collector of Shahabad in 1800 ; 

I beg leave to submit to the consideration of the Board the expediency of having an 
accurate survey and measurement made of the lands, the property of the Government, by 
European Officers qualified for the task. The benefit which would be immediately derived 
from it, in detecting fraudulent evasions, in the disposition of reservoirs to the most advan- 
tage, and in establishing boundaries beyond the possibility of dispute, would amply repay 
any expence with which it would be attended". 

Nothing came of this request at the time. 

Madras: the Jagir, 1767-91 

On hearing of the grant of the Jagir lands by the Wawab of Arcot [ 86 ], the 
Directors were prompt in ordering them to be surveyed ; 

With respect to the Lands & Territories ceded to us by the Nabob, ...We esteem it a 
Work of that importance to have accurate surveys of them, that no time must be lost; you 
are therefore to cause the same to be set about immediately 6 [88]. 
and in March 1767 the Council record that, 

The Engineer... has sent Mr. Barnard, one of his assistants, with proper Instruments 
and attendants, to make a survey of the Company's Jageer Lands round Madrass, and has 
given him the following instructions, ... 

1st. You will survey as exactly as possible, on a scale of two inches to a mile at least, the 
whole extent of Country comprehended within the limits of the Jagheer lately granted to 
the company by the Nabob, beginning on the North of Madras, & so continuing along the 
Sea side till you reach the Northern extremity, and that you may be more certain what 
Districts and villages compose this Jageer, a List of them is annexed hereto. 

You have also a person sent with you to serve as an Interpreter, and orders from the 
Nabob {now Renter of this Jageer') to his Amuldars to assist you. ... 

2ndly. In the course of your Survey you are to be particularly careful to note the Nature 
of the Country adjacent to, and between, each village, whether it be fit for cultivation of 
Beetle 8 & Paddy, or dry grains, ...or whether it be Pasture Land, Woody, or Sandy. 

'Recognized by Cornwallis as the most trustworthy of his local advisers. 9 Imp. Gas. ; The Indian 
Empire, II (isT). :i For a scathing indictment of this settlement "by a revenue officer of long experience, 
see Vincent Smith (r,!iri-7Cl ; sph ;dso Hunter's Hmujal MS. Records, Yol. I. *Land Bevenue. ef. Old K«v. 
Surveys (it). s B.Ter.E,ev. 27-5-00. 6 CD to M. 24^12-65 (12). 7 As the simplest way of adminis- 
tration, the Jagir had been farmed out to the Nawab. s The Betel Palm. 



Revekue Surveys 

4tWy. Yon must exactly Survey all Tanks, remarking the Water Courses tnat 1. a , 
them, and how they are supply'd with Water v, " ,a '- er /' our ses that lead from 
Sthly. As the collection Z w7afen of Wat ' *s l^ZtTT* fT ^^ 
are minutely to enquire into the state of „*t i xf ] °* Cultmt ">n. You 

be repaired or improved and at what exn»le , "" Reservoir - md r «P°rt how it may 
Grounds are wate^'d thereb You ,T«» T"* n0te What Co » ntri - « 
conveniently be dug, in wha't par^Tr XT^.'S" ^^ "*"- ™ kS - 
othly. You are to remark on all Hills Wood s or w = „+ ^ J" 
all Roads, observing at the same tie IwLttr " bT"' ^ *"" ""' Ex "* M " 

muttl te™ fi nf\h;^tbifa^ t fth m r IdlrS --' What Im P™^ -n be madc.for the 
of the y^wtS^^^t^^^^ 01 ^ 1111 ^ best account ?°» «»- 
Ally'. .! The difierent ProduL W?i t ° ^ ^ 5 ^ * in the time ° f D °^t 

of villages. .. y ° U U °° te ° PP0S ' te the Name ° f <*ch village in your list 

8thly...Number of Inhabitants. ... Manufactures' 

Circar, who studiously endeavour to prevent ruTorn^ri™ , P P " belon S m « *° ^e 

and that unless some^peedy and IZtuT^edT Tp g pl eT 5t wm Wutofhf ^ 
a great measure to execute that part of his instructions" I4 oi 1S P ° Wer " 

o, iJSLS tEIa^an S^rS^en^cS^ - ~ 

drawing paper to be sent to us, ..^SL^.^L^'Qi.- «" '^ - «" 

J-he field work was practically completed durinc- 1770 w „„,,„ f t,„ 
was required to finish the drawings^ reports and stat "tic , and ac vS servant Jewell 

=;^is= ^t s^ir -tt^co^ -r -— - 

approp Ltrotof ^X£ta •^^"Z^^*! 2SS « «" 
possessions and pnvileges, where thTy areTntit^toty ; t£L*SSZ*££ ™ 

tJS^JST^*^^* 1 *^^^™'* «* the oppression 
Other surveys of less importance followed. In 1776 Duo-ood ,», om i i 

„- o n!, 1 ! 08 ' Ali - Nawab °' tie Carnatic, c. 1740. ! MPC 5-3-OT 
27-6-«9 (13). »1I to CD. 28-2-72 (109). «MEC. 20-12-74 

"MMC. 10-7-69. 'MtoCD. 

Madras : The Jagir 143 

From Mr. Dalrymple 1 I had no written Orders. ..relative to the particular business; ... 
the verbal ones, to the best of my memory, were; 

To draw it on a large scale so that everything might be shewn, & he approved of the 
scale of 220 yards to an inch. That it should be executed with a Pen for the purpose of 
being engraved from. That the Paddy Grounds, Estates, Water Channels, etc., should be 
exactly surveyed. And when he last saw it, he approved of the method and desired it to 
be continued. 

I likewise now deliver you a part of the Survey of the Jaghire by Mr. Barnard, and an 
old Plan of St. Thome Redoubt, both of which I received from Mr. Dalrymple. Mr. Beatson 
has surveyed & drawn a correct Plan of this Building with a Pen, as per Mr. Dalrymple's 
directions 3 . 

In 1785 it is recorded that three surveyors were employed "when absolutely- 
necessary" on the "Company's Lands", presumably at Madras, under the Com- 
mittee of Circuit [m/ 1 ], which had been reconstituted in 1780 3 . 

In 1788 Norris, of the Engineers, was employed under the Chief Engineer on 
surveying grounds for new settlers in certain village areas near Madras, and 

It is my duty as a surveyor to inform the Board of Revenue, on examining the Papers 
originally made out by Mr. Barnard 14 years ago, with the grounds, that my survey consi- 
derably exceeds his, and on a comparative view. ..all advantages to the cultivators is at 
least 13% under rated 4 . 
and in 1791 the Chief Engineer reports that, 

There is but one Engineer, Lieutenant Norris, now on that Establishment [Surveying]; 
he has been employed of late in surveying and adjusting claims in particular places of the 
Jaghire for the Board of Revenue 5 . 

Beyond the Jdgir and the Northern Circars the Company possessed no other 
lands under the Presidency of Port. St. George except small areas at Cuddalore 
and Devicottai which were surveyed in 1775 by George Cadogan, of the Civil 
service fl . 

Northern Circars, 1774-88 

Revenue surveys in the Northern Circars were few and scattered; in 1774, 
Andrew Scott, a civil servant "having recommended himself by a knowledge of 
Drawing & Surveying" was appointed to survey "the Home Farms under Masuli- begin with the southernmost first 7 ". 

In 1775, during the governorship of Lord Pigot 8 , the Directors ordered an 
investigation of the resources of the Company's territories on the Coast, with a 
view of their better development; 

Another object of your early attention must be to acquire a complete knowledge of those 
territories which have been granted to the Company on the Coast of Choromandel, and to 
establish a judicious and permanent system for their future managment. ... 

And being well assured that the Jaghire Lands and Northern Circars, and especially the 
latter, will be found capable of answering this desirable purpose, if duly explored and 
properly regulated, ...[recommend] a Committee of Circuit to tour the country and report on 
its resources... and devise a system of control for revenue purposes 9 . 

A Committee was then appointed to tour the Northern Circars 
to ascertain with all possible exactness the produce of the Country, the State of the Manu- 
factures, the fortified places, the gross amount of the Revenues 10 . 

Alexander Dalrymple was a member of this Committee, and being also a 
member of the Council, saw that the committee was supplied with the best available 
maps; nothing came of this, for the committee was broken up during the upheaval 
that oocured the following year 11 [256]. 

In 1776 Maxtone, who had been helping Johnston in the survey of Vizagapatam 
District [ 93 ], made a two-inch survey of "Wooratla 13 " pargana, and afterwards 

1 Now Member of Council, & of the Com. of Circuit enquiring into Revenue matters, 5 MMC. 
6-1-77. 3 Mad. Civ. Ests. 1785, HMS. 349 (161). 4 Mack XSS. LXIX, 5-12-88. 5 ib. 7-1-91. 

"Cuddalore, acquired lti$2 ; Devicottai. captured 1740. MMO. 20-H-75. "MMC. 2-9-74, 8 Governor of 
Madras, l755-63,and 177:. -6 [256116,]. "CDtoM. 12-4-75 (23). 10 ib. (24). " Caruncl^l 

(193 et seq). 'Gratia, 65 K/10 ; signed map, MMO. 137 (25). 



Revenue Sukveys 

surveyed all the Zemindary of Sattiaveram and the Havaily lands of Casin Cotah • also a 
Purgunnah named Uppalnm Pykanadoo, adjoining to Sattiaveram'. 

In 17S8 Lennon [100] was stationed at Bajahmundry, and in reportino- on 
surveys he had made up the Godavari [105], recommended the systematic survey of 
cultivated lands in the Circars; 

The proper management of the Revenues of this Country can derive no greater assist- 
ance from anything than good geographical plans of aU the separate districts, upon a scale 
sufficiently large to set clearly before the view the different kinds of Soil, and the exact 
quantity of cultivated ground, to ascertain the precise limits & boundaries of each division 
...and particularly point out the possibility of Improvement of Cultitation 
rh- . 1 " aCt ,. and ex P ressi ™ P^ns of these (the Haviley Lands, in the Ganjam 
Chicacole, & Masulipatam Districts), after the mode of Mr. Barnard's Map of the Jagnire 
would, I conceive, be a very desirable object. 

*»J ^'t " PK ?f e ,*° m f B SU " eyS ° f eacb ' to lay down eveI 7 viUa K e . th « nature of 
each soil, the quantity & quality of arable ground, the Tanks & Reservoirs of Water' 

Nothing so ambitious was undertaken when Topping- was sent up four years 

later [105], when the Directors particularly ordered, 

this should be a mere Land Survey expressing the kind of land, without any reference to the 
value, which might raise jealousy and discontent 3 . 

Salem & BIeamahal, 1792-9 

The first successful ra'iyatwari settlement was that made in Salem and 
Baramahal by Alexander Bead [113], who held charge of these districts as 
buperiiitendent ot Bevenue, one of his assistants being Thomas Munro* famous 
afterwards as a revenue administrator. 

There was at this time, 1792, no successful policy of settling land revenue, either in 
Bengal, or in the Northern Circars and Jaghir of Madras. In the Circars, a considerable 
portion of the land was in the hands of Zemindars, who collected the revenue from the ryots 
paying a fixed sum to the Government. The Zemindars, for the most part, employed 
farmers of the revenue, who made the collections from the ryots, and oppressed thenf grie- 
vously by unauthorized exactions. The persons thus employed were usually strangers to 
the country; they were employed equally in lands directly under Government. 

Lord Cornwallis, in Bengal, adopted the permanent settlement with the Zemindars' the 
Madras Goveminent...resolved otherwise. The Board of Revenue issued instructions to 
Read providing for the settlement being made with the ryots individually, for in the greater 
part of the Baramahal there were no Zemindars. ... 

For the first year temporary arrangements were made for the collection of the revenue 
with the aid of such village accounts as were forthcoming, and then a survey & assessment 
of each division was set on foot. 

The Ryotmari system does not involve the annual settlement of the rate of assessment- 
all that is inquired into each year is the extent of each ryot's holding, as he has the option 
to give up, or dimmish, or extend his holding from year to year. He is at liberty to sublet 
his property, or to transfer it by gift, sale, or mortgage. He cannot be ejected by Govern- 
ment so long as he pays the fixed assessment, fixed for 30 years. 

This the system which, originated in its main features by Read in the Baramahal and 
extended m after years by the powerful advocacy of Munro, has long prevailed in the greater 
part of the Madras Presidency and in the adjoining Presidency of BombayS. 

We have no particulars about the manner in which Bead's revenue survey wa« 
carried out; it was obviously done by native measurers under the close personal 
supervision of himself and his three military assistants, and involved the measure 
ment and assessment of the holdings of "upwards of 80,000 farmers" Bead's 
great contribution to revenue administration was his code of regulations for workine- 
a settlement directly with the ra'iyats. It was left to Munro ten years later in the 
Ceded Districts [ 1 1 9 n.3 ] to work out a code of " Survey Eegulations " whereby a 
field-to-field survey should be carried out with a staff of native surveyors under the 

,„, ' S^™™- m f/ll i Kasimcoto, 65 K/llj Haveli land, or Government edate, CD to M 9-5-97 

Salem & Bauamahal 145 

minimum of European supervision. In their report submitted with Bead's records 
of the survey 1 the Board of Revenue write in 1799, 

The whole of his records have. ..been divided into 22 sections, and when finished will 
form in all 60 folio volumes. [In the] 22nd section. ..he proposed to devise such a mode of 
management as may best suit the state of the country, the condition of the inhabitants, and 
■ensure, if possible, under those circumstances a permanent revenue to Government. 

We believe no investigation of revenue affairs, so able, so comprehensive and laborious, 
has ever been made by any European in India, as that exhibited in the Land and Geographi- 
cal surveys of Colonel Read and his assistants. ... We have. ..been. ..anxious to reap the 
advantage. ..of this extensive information, towards the attainment of the ultimate object of 
his appointment, a permanent settlement of Revenue in the Ceded countries 2 . 
One of Read's regulations 

declared the assessment to be fixed for ever, but this was never accepted by Government, 
and within 10 years Government introduced the muttadari system, under which the greater 
part of the land in Salem was parcelled out into estates, and sold by public auction to 
muttadars who acted as rent collectors ; this system eventually failed, and Read's ryotwari 
system re-introduced with modifications, and in some places enhancement of rent 3 . 

After the Mysore War of 1799, and the death of Tipu, the Salem District was 
enlarged by the cession of the small district of Hosur, and the Collector, who had 
been one of Read's assistants, asked that the survey should be extended to cover it ; 

From the observations which I have, already, been enabled to make on the state of 
these newly acquired districts, in which I find the assessments of the villages extremely 
unequal, it appears to me of great importance to the future amelioration of Revenue, that 
the acknowledged benefits derived from an actual Survey and valuation of the lands, should, 
as early as possible, be extended to them. 

Should your Board authorize the immediate adoption of this salutary measure, establish- 
ments, consisting of experienced Measurers and Surveyors who were employed in the 
Barramahal, can soon be formed, and I imagine that the whole may be compleated within 
two years, at the expence of about Pagodas 8000*. 

Government replied that they had 
no objection to so useful a measure as the Survey proposed by the Collector of Salem, 
previously to his settlement of a jummabundy for the districts 6 . 

Read's survey and settlement of the Salem and Baramahal Districts was the 
prototype of the present Indian system of cadastral surveys. 

Assistant Revenue Surveyors, 1795-1800 

In sanctioning the surveying school in 1794 [284] Government had desired 
that the boys should be trained for carrying out all surveys of a revenue nature 6 , 
and it was not long before demands for their services came in from one Collector 
after another; for example, in 1795 the Board of Revenue wrote in regarding the 
. Northern Circars, 

Having been informed by Government that they were not in possession of any correct 
map denning the extent, limits, and relative situation of the Zemindaries in the five Circars, 
it is much to be wished that a Geographical Survey of the whole could be obtained, and 
when the establishment of Surveyors under Mr. Topping is sufficiently perfected to commence 
on the work, we shall hope to obtain a more comprehensive map, shewing the villages of 
each Purgunnah or Talook, the Tanks, watercourses, and other particulars necessary in a 
revenue survey 7 [ 107-9]. 

For the professional supervision of these young surveyors Goldingham was 
appointed Inspector of Revenue Surveys [285], and drafted instructions [ 114] ; 

I propose a General, and then a particular Survey; the fiTst is to exhibit a general view 
of the country and its divisions, to enable the Board to have before them the relative 
situation of Places. ..while the detailed Revenue Survey is going on, which from its minute- 
ness (and that forms its use and excellence) will require much labour and time. 

'There was no attempt to map the measurements made. "MRC. 12-7-99. ■' Arbuthnot, I (2). 
* M Rev Bd. 26-8-79. 5 MKC. Feb. 1800- 6 MEC. 23-6-94. < M Rev Bd. 30-5-95. 



Revenue Surveys 

Whilst the general survey proceeded, the Collector of the district was to be 
asked to have certain information about the villages collected from the inhabitants 
so as to be ready by the time the particular survey was taken up. 

In this particular survey, run the instructions ' 

You will survey each Taliook or Purgunnah in the District, by finding the contents of all 
the lands in ^each village and m layingdown your work you will distinguish each Pulnnah 
by different colours, tat every village belonging to it by the same colour; yon will aSSata 
the number of houses and inhabitants in each village, the number of cattle sheep ploughs an" 
looms; the measures weights, and current coins; the tenure by which tie lands are held 
the Circar share of the crops, and the share of the inhabitants when a division takes pile ' 
when a money rent i S paid for a particular measurement of lands the measure and "ate 'of 

otrferent n so t /Tf' *Z ?*"** PI ° dUCe ° f a CCTtain measure Tpaddy lan^ S 
different sorts and of dry grain lands; the average price of paddy and dry grains in different 
years; you will also take drawings of the different implements of tasSry and the"' 
dimensions mentioning of what wood made. To enable yon to obtain thisTtamatlon and 
the materials necessary to fill up all the other points in the forms, exclusive of the ,nea 
surement of lands and Geographical part of tie survey, and to aid your enquirie connected 
therewith, the Collector will appoint one or more intelligent persons to attend von o he 
will himself furnish you with the particulars required J °°' OT h8 

„>, Y k U ^" Surve y, al1 Tanks - y aries - T ™gols, and wells used in cultivation, note the means 
whereby they are filled, whether such means may be improved, the state of the bank T 
not of b- V sT f ° r """^ the wat « t° tie Fields, and of what materials built if 
not of brick and ctemam, always make an estimate of the expense of buildinT new ones 
with those materials; will estimate the expence of all tL repairs necesarvTnd the 
benefit to be derived inconsequence, and this is to be done by ascertaining tS quanttty of 
land at present watered by such a tank, and how many crops it yields As great nd,e 

ment an care w,th a knowledge of the level of the country, are 7 requisite toTke wafer 
out of its natural course, nothing of this sort should be attempted witLut a partfcnar 
examination of the country, ...besides an exact calculation both of expense anl advance- 
this will be done on the large scale by the Superintendent of Tanks, who will receive the 
greatest assistance from your inquiries [142]. ... receive the 

You must also ascertain if any of the old channels from Rivers, suffered to fill no can 
be cleared with advantage to the country 1 . P ' 

This was indeed a formidable programme to set before young boys iust out of 

forThe „tt fifr^ fle 'r 0f Statist tj.f ^ ™» ' feafe ™ of & — surveys 
™ e next fifty years ; Government did not now accept it in full • ■ 
Though the instructions, which Mr. Goldingham has proposed for the native survevors 

are extreme y well adapted to the acquisition of useful information, they comprise a ver^ 

desrtns ?httM Golo^r'.^ ^^ *"***<"• - F- this reLonX Board S 
desirous that Mr. Goldingham s instructions and correspondence should be strictly confined 

„ m ™T, CPart ° ftheSUrVeyS:bntaSthe fore « oil >S det ^d instructions vSth tne 

SeToard CkTrth b e T ellC * Ul f ed *" ^ l ^ ^ Mp*i« of the' Electors 
"l™ think that the best means of making them useful, and of avoiding the interference 

CoTectorSI. W Cnd ' " t0 tranSmit th6m by the Mthorit y of «• B °-d of Revenue to the 

Dindlul^rfi °tt Sf * re f V 0mi 8' sul '™y»'« to work under the Collector of 
uindigui L114J, the Board of Eevenue wrote to the Collector 

Although the Board have pointed out what appears the best mode of proceeding thev 
must eave it to the CoUector to take such measures as may appear to him b" t cakmated 
to obtain with the greatest accuracy the information required by the forms annexed to the 

SaCt Vtlrf s^yl * ™ t ** *" * «* — " ££ 
and further, 

that Mr. Goldingham is appointed "Inspector of Revenue Surveys", and that the Assistant 
Surveyors are to report to Mr. Goldingham thro' him on points relating to the scientific nart 
to h r7; S ° d that when all the materials are collected, they are to be brought down 

ttSaS weTtToS' protracted ' and the astr0 " ob ™- °™ -d™ 

The boys were first employed on the survey of disputed lands, but they were 
not sufficiently experienced to give the Collector all the help that he wanted; for 

'M. Eev. Bd. 22-12- 

-"MEC. 80-12-96. >M Key Bd. 30-1-97 

Assistant Revenue Surveyors 147 

besides wanting a complete geographical Surrey, he required assistance in dealing 


the various sources of Revenue to be enquired into; the many translates of schedules; the 

constant and bitter complaints against the Amins and their Cacharies, to which I am 

obliged to give an attention which delays the information I am preparing for your Board 1 . 

As the eldest of these boys sent to Dindigul was only j 8 years of age, whilst 
the youngest was 15, it was hardly to be expected that they could give much 
assistance beyond the simplest of measurements or plans. What the Collectors 
really wanted at this time were experienced geographical surveyors such as Mather 
[ 1 13-5], and competent European assistants to supervise their native amins 
and measurers, such as Bead had in Salem & Baramahal. The Collector of Guntur 
expressed the general need of all district officers at this time, when asking for the 
services of Captain Orr 

to take a survey of this Circar, more particularly to enquire into its extent. Boundaries Divi- 
sions, Soil, Cultivation, Produce &c, which subjects are at present but partially and indifferent- 
ly known from the representations of Natives, generally ignorant, frequently interested in mis- 
guiding the Collector. It is therefore an object very much to be desired that a Person of 
known integrity and sufficient ability would undertake the labor of such a survey, which the 
Collector from his other avocations is not able to execute 3 . 

Orr could not be spared, but two boys were sent up from Goldino-ham's school 

In the course of- a few years a great deal of valuable work was turned out by 
these Assistant Surveyors, more particularly in providing district officers with 
general maps shewing the main topographical features, villages, and internal 
boundaries, but the only district maps of this nature existing in Madras in the year 
1800 were Barnard's map of the Jagir, and Mather's map of Baramahal. 


It is from Bombay that we have the earliest record of a survey carried out in 
India, a Mr. Herman Blake 3 being appointed "Engineer and Surveyor General" in 
1670, and spending several months on a survey to show the "Works " and rights of 
property, which illness prevented him from completing. Other proposals for similar 
surveys are recorded in 1679, 1710, and 1747, but nothing is known of any action 
that followed 4 . 

In 1772 it was agreed that, 
an exact and accurate survey should be made of the whole Island, that the situation of these 
Villages, & of all the Honble Company's Oarts* & Grounds may be exactly laid down as well 
as those of all Persons whatever... under the directions of the Collector, whom the... Principal 
Engineer must furnish with the most skilful persons for doin<* it 6 . " 

The Collector estimated that the expence would amount 
to Rs. 3,912 for 18 Months, the time supposed necessary to compleat it, including the pay to 
one Surveyor, &...that Lieutenant Tamer is desirous of undertaking it alone, which as we are 
of Opinion he is a very tit & proper Person tor the undertaking is therefore Agreed to [122I. 
It may be begun as soon as the Season will admit 7 . 

Turner appears to have made a start on the survey with the assitance of Cadet 
Whiteman, but had to break off almost at once to accompany the expedition to 
Broach in November 1772, and a year later orders were sent to Broach for his 
return to Bombay "for Compleating the Survey of the Islands 8 "; no record has been 
found of his actual work on this survey, and it is possible that the survey carried 
out by Eeynolds and Sartorius in 1784 and 1785 may have been in the same con- 
nection [120]. 

r 1 90 1'* ?S B B n d~H, rr^wSf B4S-1-S8. „ 'dwwtow called Captain Herman Bake. Sand™, 
s-i n „ n °' "' ' "' aro ™ sof <!o™anutpalms. « Bo PC. 19-5-72. rib. 3.-8-72. 

ib. ly— 10— 73. 

Chapter X 


■Observations before 1760 — RennelVs Maps of Bengal, 1760-77 — Transits of Venus, 
1761,69- — Smith, Pea,rse & others, 1775-90 — Reuben Burrow, 1783—9 — Burrow's 
Measures of the Degree, 1790-1 — Burrow's Last Season, 1791-2 — Colebroohe & his 
Surveyors, 1794-1800. 

THE value of the essential elements of latitude and longitude for indicating' 
geographical positions had been realised as early as the second century A.D. 

by the Greek geographer Ptolemy [207], who, besides writing the Almagest, 
a treatise on astronomy, left a list of places with their geographical co-ordinates 1 . 

Both the Hindu astronomers of India and the Muslim astronomers of Arabia 
and Persia were indebted to the work of the Greeks. Hindu astronomy was at its 
height between A.D. 400 and 1100; whilst of the Muslim astronomers Nasir-al-Din 
was born in A.D. 1201, and Ulugh Beg, who founded a large observatory at Samar- 
qand, was assassinated in 1449. 

European astronomy made very little advauce after the death of Ptolemy, and 
gained most of its knowledge of Greek astronomy through the Arabs. 

The chief instrument was the astrolabe [206], but the Arabs also used quadrants 
and sextants, whilst massive masonry instruments were favoured because of their 
stability, and the ease with which their arcs could be graduated and read 3 [ 157 ]. 

The Muslim astronomers followed Ptolemy's example in preparing tables of 
geographical positions, but without distinguishing positions obtained from actual 
observation from those which were calculated from their estimated distances and 
directions from known places[pl. ion.]. 

Both D'Anville and Eennell drew largely from these tables, D'Anville writing ; 

The situation of Kabul in 33-i- by Ebn-Maruph and the Astronomical Canon quoted by 
Golius. ..should be corrected to 34 {- °, without which the North of India would be contracted 
about a degree, which would occasion a remarkable distortion of several, situations, particularly 
of Lahaur and Kandahar, whose latitude appears to be pretty exact. ... 

Kandahar is placed in the latitude of 33 by Nasir-ud-din and Uleg-beg, whose tables, 
among all those of the East, are most to be relied on. A Persian geographer. ..and the Turkish 
geographer agree in this. The Eastern astronomers have computed the difference of longitude, 
between Kandahar and Kabul, about 2 03 . ... 

The errors in the tables of Nasir-ud-din and Uleg-beg extend to the position of Benarez, 
which the table makes 26J 04 . 

Discussing the position of Delhi, Rennell writes, 

To ths list of d%ti must be adied the latitudas and longitudes of the tables of Nasereddin 
and Ulug Beig; which.. .do not always agree in particulars. But we shall find them accord... 
in a sufficient number of points, to satisfy the reader that there is no violent disagreement in 
the chain of positions 5 . 

Eennell also makes use of tables from the Ain-i-Ahbari [ 133 n.3] ; 

Latitude of Lahore by the Oriental Tables, 31 50'. ... The table in the Ayin Acbaree 
(Vol. III., p. 55) places Sealkote in lat. 33 06 ... 

The Ayeneh Acbaree is much out. The difference on a medium here is 11' in each degree 
too much. From such kind of materials, nothing very accurate can be expected ; and therefore 

l Ency. Brit. sv. Ptolemy. : Kaye (3-17, 70-54). 3 True positions, Kabul, 34° 31' N.; Kandahar, 
SI 7 36' N.;diff. of Long. 3° 30' ; Herbert (9 J. 4 Instead of about 25° 20'; ib. (27). 5 Memoir, 1793 (67). 
*ib. (81 ). v. Gladwin, II ( 353-b7 ). True values, Lahore, 31° 36' N. ; Sialkot, 32° 30' N. 


After Father MONSEUHATE, c. 1590 

Plate 10 

Drawn from the enlargement of Monserrate's map which follows p. "04 of Vol. UT, 
Memoirs of the Asiatic Society of Bengal, 1910-14 ; by permission. 
See notes on reverse. 

NOTES, Plate 10. 

Monserrate 's original map was about 5£ by 4| inches in size; black for coast-line 
and place-names, red for rivers and their names, brown for mountains. 

This enlargement is an exact copy of his border, rivers, sites, and coast-line; 
hills have been simplified, and selected names re-written. 


The map was drawn about 1590, and embodied in Monserrate's Mongolia*; Legation-is 
C&mmentarius, the MS. of which, being discovered at Calcutta in 1906, was edited by 
Father Hosten, SJ., and published by the Asiatic Society of Bengal in. 1914. 
Appendix C and plate XII of Hosten's paper give a full description and an enlargement 
of the map. 


Neither D'Anville nor Rennell knew of Monserrate's map or surveyed route, but 
survey was used by Call and Wilford, 1782-5 [n, 149]. 

The route van from Surat, through Delhi, to Kabul, and many astronomical 

latitudes were observed; but, making Surat east of Goa instead of west, Monserrate made 
bis whole map between Agra and Kabul four degrees too far to the east [149]. 

Monserrate gives a better idea of the Himalaya mountains and the upper courses of 
the Punjab rivers than Rennell did nearly 200 years later, but he had no knowledge east 
of the Jumna, as is evident from his depiction of the Ganges and Patna. 

His longitudes are probably counted from the Pope's line as revised by the Treaty 
of Torsedillas of 1494, which, being defined as 370 leagues west of the Cape Yerde 

Islands, was about 40 degrees west of Greenwich; see article by S. E. Dawson in 
Transactions of the Royal Society of Canada, 2nd Series, Vol. V. 

Note the symbol — ■ used over vowel to denote a nasal sound, e.g. Gagis for Ganges. 

See also page 209, and an article by Father McFarland SJ. in the New Magazine, 
Calcutta, Dec. 1 939, No. 60, X ( 473-86 ). 

Observations before 1760 


I have never had recourse to them but in a very tew cases, where every other species of infor- 
mation has failed 1 '. 

TiefJenthaler [ 1 1 ] writes of these early tables, 

Voici maintenant les positions que je tire de ces Geographes Orientaux; 
Agra 26° 43' N. 115° E. Panipat 28 52' N. 113° 20' E. Delhi 28 39' N. 113° 25' E. 
Kaboul 34° 30' N. 114 40' E. 

Quoique la Latitude assignee ici a quelques unes de ces villes s'accorde assez avec la veri- 
table, la plupart cependant en different en plus ou en moins. Les erreurs sont plus fortes 
encores a l'egard do la Longitude. II est impossible, par example, que celle de Delhi soit de 
I13 25' si celle de Kaboul est de 114 40'-. 

Reviewing- Rennell's Memoir of a Map of Rindoodau [213,214], Duperron writes, 

^ Cet habile Geographe croit avoir decouvert que Caboul & Candahar sont plus Ouest, au 
moins d'un dcgre, que M. D'Anville ne les fait, quoiqne probablement moins qu'ils ne sont 
dans l'Ain Akbari; de msme que le cours de l'Indus est beaucoup plus occidental. II differe 
du Geographe francois de pres de deux degres pour la distance en longitude, du Cap Mons, 
extremite Ouest des bouches du Sinde, a Bombaye 3 . 

We now come to the valuable observations made by the Jesuit missionaries, and 
begin with Father Monserrate [11] who left a list of over 100 positions recorded 
on his march from Surat to Fatehpur Sikri' 1 in 1780, and on to Jalalabad" the 
following- year 8 . Neither D'Anville nor Rennell appear to have known of this list, 
but at least some part of it was in the possession of Wilford [pi. 10 n.], who used 
Monserrate's latitudes for Kalanaur and Attoek 7 , and notes that, 

As his observations of the Latitude from Surat to Delhi are very accurate, we may suppose 
he was equally so in these others 8 . 

Monserrate's list includes a large number of places which he never visited, and 
does not distiniuish positions fired by actual observation; however, from a com- 
parison of about 20 identified points along his route, his latitudes have a mean error 
of about 11 minutes, and some at least of these would have been observed. 

He cannot possibly have made any astronomical observations for longitude; he 
places Surat about 2 degrees too far east with reference to G-oa, and accumulated a 
farther easterly excess of 2 degrees on his journey to Agra; he holds this error with 
little further change along the measured route through the easy ground of the 
Punjab [pi. ion.]. 

We have already referred to the remarkable journey of Fathers Grueber and 
d'Orville 9 from Pekin to Agra in 1661-2 [69] ; Grueber had been specially trained 
in astronomy before he left Europe, and during his stay at Surat had observed the 
latitude, 21° 10' 10 , and calculated the longitude from a lunar eclipse 11 ; both he and 
d'Orville worked at the Pekin observatory 13 under Father Adam Schall before they 
started for India, anl amongst the latitudes they fixed by astrolabe were Siningfu, 
36° 20' W., Lhasa, 29° 6' [ 6 9 ] , and Patna, 21° 44' 1S [150].' Wessells points out that, 

Nearly all of Grueber' s latitudes are too low by 30' on an average. Already Fathers Regis 
and JartouK noticed this deviation when marking their cartographical determinations. Du 
Halde is of opinion that most probably his instruments were at fault, or else, perhaps, he did 
not take sufficient account of the sun's diameter 14 . 

Pekin observations were of value to observers in India, and D'Anville records, 

By an observation at Fatepur 15 of an immersion of the first satellite compared with one 
made at Pekin sum? days afterwards, . ..the difference of meridians between Fatepur and Pe-kin 
is concluded to be...35° 50' and some odd minutes. Between Paris and Pe-kin, according to 

the nicest result of a great number of observations, which I had from father Regis the 

difference of longitude is 114° ro ...[giving] longitude of Fatepur.. .78° and some minutes 1 ". 

Of all the Jesuit missionaries, Father Boudier is probably the best known astro- 
nomer, but it is well to introduce him by telling first of Raja Jai Singh Sawai of 
Jaipur, who 

,,„, Memc.,1-, 1,83 («) 'Translated from the original Latin, Bernoulli. I (13). 'Bernoulli, II 

J«,5). 54E/12 >38J77. ' Cm,n,m,tmu, (537-9). J 43 P/4; 43 C/l. s Note on map, MRIO. 7 
U 1 U234n-3j. 5 Sora;tim^ written D'Orville. '"True value 21 J 28' N. "Wfl^sells (173). ls Des- 
cnbed by Du Halde, II (138-39). "True values, 38' 35'; 29' 40'; 25" 37'; Clements Markham (29,1). 
' ~ 3(196). "Fatehpur Sikri. '"Herbert (23). 



Astronomical Control, Ben&ax 

A most interesting- account of Jai Singh and his observatoriBS hna h.„, ■« 

±he Raja had for many years made great progress with the aid nf hi= R,,i, ■ 
but the time came when he desired to test his observations with the he hlS * ahmln ex P erts - 

SSTta't S^S^SSSS SE^S^-'-Sf* -4, stopped at. 
of the Rajah of Delhi, and then p7oceaded?o Taypore where tn ^ Th f -^ 0bse ™ ^ 
September i 734 3. y ° J a yP° re . ™ here they worked during August and 

Regarding the position of Jaipur, D'Airrille writes 
obser^onc thtlt g ,td::tTui%or\ran S ob PalaCe t iS Tf N °^ ™ -™ ■*> an 

x h^esp^r^ ™ at j — by -h^^ri^r^r,?: 

as ^3M» r ST to that B ° Udier ' 3 ° bSerTatiM1 fo " "»*■*• ** **» gaw 25= 38', 

^^^^Jff,S!tt^SS£21-**-- India - - 

his ^tti^^^ 1 ^ w r:s r a - d back - and thro ^° ut 

of European astronomers there. Two years later T7.s / U1V '™S ™ eml »r of the batch 
thereat Moghul to come to Delhi, ^L^t^^^Z^^Z SS 

We haye already referred to Father Tieffenthaler's travels and observations that 
were so great a contribution to geography f 1 1 1 Noti rero \Z 711 l 
passages regarding his astronomical obseryations * ^ followm S 

some phenomena in the sky, sueh as the occupation £ one o Tupher's moons o" T^ 
eclipse. "AtGoa...ini 74 3" he writes "on the „«, ,rv ■ L { P moons.. .or a lunar 

On 2 nd February ! 744 , he was already It Surat, to o «^e the "occul attan o.T ? , Y \ 

26th April 1744, observed lunar eclipse at Daraaun. 

Latitude oi Agra by altitudes of the Sun Mav ist 2 nri"aH „ JC . „„« , , T - 
to see the Observatory of Jai Singh. ... Longtde f W^M^Wh^?, ? V ,' 5ltCd ""^ 
76° 13' E. ... May 16th, lyth, t 7 47; Latitude of Delhi; S^'aFN. 7 747 ' by W ed 'P Se 

Observations befoke 1760 151 

On his journey from Narwar to Bombay, 1750... he visited the astronomical observatory 
of the late Rajah Jey Singh [at Oojein], which consisted of only the most necessary astronomi- 
cal apparatus. Making use of it, he assigned Oojein a latitude of 23 14*1, 

Tieffenthaler's observations, however, were not accurate enough for more detailed 
maps, and Duperron had difficulty in assembling- his maps of the Ganges and G-ogra 
rivers [11-2] on account of his uncertainty both of the length adopted for the 
coss, and the positions of controlling stations 3 . 

Knowledge of the coast line of India came first from early mariners, of all 
nationalities, who observed their position at sea and off the coast, taking latitudes 
by sextant or astrolabe, following point to point along the coasts by compass bearings 
and "estimating" their longitudes. It will be seen from plates 3 and 16 of this 
volume how accurately they fixed the latitudes of the more striking coastal features, 
even so early as the 15th century. The most notable of these navigators was the 
Frenchman Apres de Mannevillette, who used a Hadley's quadrant 3 as early as 
1736, when it was definitely regarded as an English instrument * [199]. 

Eennell's Maps of Bengal, 1760-77 

At the middle of the 18th century latitude could be readily determined by 
observing the meridian altitude of sun or star, but the determination of longitude 
was a very different matter; observers had to wait for some favourable phenomenon, 
such as an eclipse of sun, moon, or Jupiter's satellites in a clear sky; the observation 
was then of little value unless it corresponded with a similar observation at some 
known place, and even then the tables available for working out results were far 
from correct [163]. It is therefore not surprising to find that, though Eennell 
and his contemporaries made frequent observations for latitude, it was but seldom 
that they observed for longitude. Though Eennell made use of any available observ- 
ations for his detailed surveys, he mostly relied for longitude on actual measure- 
ment by ground survey. 

The determination of longitude was of such importance for navigation, that the 
British Government had long offered a reward for some sure means of effecting it 
[202]. An Act of Parliament was passed as late as June 1774, offering rewards for 
either "a Time keeper, the Principles whereof have not hitherto been made public", 
or for "improved Solar and Lunar Tables"; the reward to be 

£ 5,000, if such method determines the said Longitude to one Degree of a Great Circle, or 
Sixty Geographical Miles ; ...£ 7,500, if it determines the same to Two Thirds of that Distance ; 
and...^ ro,ooo, if it determine the same to one half of the said distance", 
and provision was made for satisfactory tests by the "Commissioners for the dis- 
covery of the Longitude at Sea 5 " [ 1 54] . 

Plaisted, the first surveyor employed as such in Bengal, was, being a sailor, a 
skilled observer of latitudes, and on his survey of the Cbittagong coast in 1760-1, 
used mostly observations to the sun [14]. 

On his survey of Verelst's march to Cachar two years later [82], he notes on 
his map that "The Latitudes are taken with Headly's Quadrant by Eeflection in 
"Water and may be depended on 6 ". 

Eennell also, from the very beginning of his surveys, took regular observations 
for latitude. He further observed for the variation of his compass, often in regular 
sailor fashion at the close of the day when pole-star and horizon were both visible, 
and at other times "by y e Sun's Amplitude", For his first two years he worked out 
his latitudes to the nearest minute only, but from 1767, to 15 seconds; he allowed 
for refraction at the round figure of 50 seconds 7 . 

He writes in his journal on December 13th 1764, 

^oti (147-8, 151) ef. Noti (411), & Orme MSS. 65 (10). 2 Bernoulli, II (266 e( Mg.). 3 proba.bly 
an Octant [ 199]. 4 As R. 1800, Characters (46). S BPC. 23-13-76. s Imp. Lib. M fy P. 334 C. ?La 
Touche (123 & passim). 


Astronomical Control, Bengal 

«fJJ ^, , bserva 'f n 0{ ^"te taken this day about four miles below the mouth of the 
At the end I of 1766 Kennell had to re-survey part of the Tista because Bichards 

^ W^^SSST*" °» *» E ^- °* *#*> Whites, at / 49 1 
SnL!i° ll0W J; n ? If M example of the instructions Bennell gave to his survevors- 

Beu^s&trSouth^rT i e0reXtremel7diffiCUltt0 ™ ^ ^between 
An observation must be tataat 4^0^™ it f ^ " S ° "^ meridi °" a l C*>]. 

survlvff'T 1 ' ? B " neI1 J 00n *j dered that the *™™*e measurements throughout his 
survey of Bengal agreed well with the astronomical observations » • 

1„n B itnL T!t W f emeaSUred ' andtheyaccorded with the observations of latitude and 
£££ SiS*"" minUte ' y ' Md ^ thC Iate " ~* that " ™ ™-ce°t y a to 

need^nlv^T '"V^^P ™ ere meas,lred *** »» PossWe exactness. As a proof of it I 

Gree^ch83° o ;"' m ^ " ^^ *" ^ 3 °°< 7 ' E - *"»*.« from 

9i^45'-.Plaisted's Longitude of Islamabad 7. 

8° 38'.. .Difference. 

By mensuration the difference of Longitude between these places (which are in the 

extremes of the Map) is about 8" 36'; not that I would insinuate by any means that eitner 

observations „f Longitude can be taken with such mmute exactness, or "hat t probate 

Discussing the agreement of longitudes Dalrymple also writes, 
I do not mean to insinuate that any two astronomical observations can be confided in for 
the determination of so small a distance as a mile» connoea in tor 

and to illustrate the wide divergence that was possible, Plaisted's value may be 
compared against a value for Chittagong "calculated by P. Barbier mis bnaire 
Jesuite francois...93 degreV"", which would be 95° 20' East of Greenwich 

in ltdTn^yloTe n a ™^ 17?6j **"* ***** ° f C0 ' lditi °" 8 ** ^ ™ 
ran^'i ^h 1 ^ 1 " 8 nations - send tteir trading vessels, year after year, to the months of the 

xt-XKr of the exact geograpMcai poswon ° f the ° therwise we " ! 

As regards latitude observations, Dalrymple writes as late as 1783 
To say that Latitudes, taken at Sea near Land, in the present state of Nautical Astronomv 
cannot be depended on, at all tunes, to less than j' or 6', will raise a sneer. Out "own 
Experience long since convinced me of this : the same thing is now found by careM OtaLels 

■ rTilk ' C *« * N/l.^oSec, l^tnde" "lo'^ 04 ™ M^pfT'l™ S^J* '*"T' 

Hen nell's Maps of Bengal 153 

Orrae made a large collection of astronomical observations, including' 27 latitudes 
which Rennell had considered sufficiently exact to "correct the general map" which 
Clive took home in 1767 [24.]. Fifteen of these were observed by Rennell himself, 
two by Adams, one by Plaisted, and three by someone named Daw 1 . Others were, 

Latitude and longitude of Calcutta by Captain Thomas Howe [ 176 ]. March 1764. Zenith 
distance by Quadrant; Longitude by Jupiter's satellites 3 . 

Latitude; of Cuttack and Sambulpur 3 , by Mr. Mallock and Captaia Alleyne [30]; ...of 
Lucknow by Showers, taken in 1768 or 1769 with a Quadrant of 11 inches diameter*. 

For his first Map of Hindoosian Rennell took the latitude of Calcutta as 22° 33' N, 
and longitude as SS° 28' E 5 . 

by a medium of four different gentlemen; ... Hon. Thomas Howe 88° 33'; Rev. Mr. Smith 28'; 
Mr. Magee [inf.] 24'; Capt. Ritchie 26' [ 180-1 ]. 

Transits of Venus, 1761, 69 

From time to time there have been opportunities in India of observing the transit 
of Venus across the Sun's disc; a phenomenon which may be used for the determi- 
nation of differences of longitude. In 1760, at the suggestion of the Royal Society, 
the Directors called for volunteers to contribute observations, and the Bengal 
Couucil reported, 

In consequence of your directions. ..We delivered copies of the Instructions relative to 
the Transit of Venus to such gentlemen here as were inclined to make the observation. . . . The 
only reports we have received are One from Mr. Plaisted taken at Chittagong, and one from 
Mr. Magee G taken here, ...but for want of proper Instruments they are not of a sufficient 
exactitude to be of any material use 7 . 

From Plaisted's observation the Astronomer Royal deduced the longitude of Islamabad 
91°45' 8 already quoted. 

The chaplain, William Hirst, describes his observations of this transit, made on 
June 6th 1761 at Madras in company with the Governor, Lord Pigot [143 n.8],and 
the Chief Engineer, John Call, and tells how he 

begged Mr. Call to take notice of the Penumbra, ' 'tis a ' coming '. All three observers pro- 
nounced contact with one voice 9 [ 169]. 

In 3 768 the Directors sent out a similar request, saying that observations of 
the expected transit 

will afford the only means of ascertaining some of the principal and hitherto unknown 
elements in Astronomy, and of improving both Geography and Navigation. ... Recommend 
to such of the Company's servants at Madras, Bombay, Bencoolen 10 have been accustomed 
to Astronomical observation to prepare for, and exert themselves in this. . . . Instruments 

1. Reflecting Telescope. 2 ft. focus, with apparatus of smoked glasses. 

2. A Pendulum Clock. 

3. An Astronomical Quadrant, of 1 ft, radius at least, or in lieu of it, an Equal- 
Altitude Instrument 11 . 

De Gloss [27], now employed at his gunfoundry at Dinapore, observed this 
transit with the aid of his assistants, using three quadrants, taking also the Sim's 
altitude, with the hour "exactly corrected and all the allowances made 13 ". Observ- 
ers at Madras were not so successful, the Council reporting, 

The Instruments which your Honors sent for observing the Transit of Venus having 
arrived in time, Mr. Call with the assistance of the other Engineers undertook to adjust every 
preparative for an accurate observation; but after taking great pains to regulate the time- 
keeper, and adjust the Instruments, the expected Observation was entirely frustrated by a 
change of weather coming on the 3rd June, which occasioned so cloudy a morning on the 4th, 

'Orme^ISS. XI. 2 ib. 67 (123). 3 ib. 67 (13S). 4 ib, 8 (3). "Memoir. 1783 (20) ; True values. 
22 34 N..8S 22 E. 6 William^.Tagee. Notary Public, Calcutta. 'B to CD. 1-11-61 (131). s Dafrymple, 
Memoir of 0, Chart of the Bay of Bengal (5). "Phil Trans, (liil 1761 (396). "-'Company's station on 
SW. coa-st of; exchanged later for Dutch settlements in India. "CD b> B.M-3-68. ]i Phil. 
Trans. LX. 239 & BPC. 24-1-69. 



Astronomical Control, Bengal 

that the Sun was not visible till 10 o'clock; the same ill success attended Monsr. Gentil 
[1S0 n.3] sent purposely the year before from France to Pondicherry, and Mr. Stevens [02I 
who had fitted an apparatus at Masuiipatam was equally disappointed. 

The Instruments for Bombay could not possibly be sent thither in time 1 . 

Smith, Pearse, 


There were always several of the Company's servants who were interested 
enough to take astronomical observations for their private amusement, and thus 
help the great cause of geography. 

We have already noticed Thomas Howe, Captain of an East Indiaman ; William 
Magee, Notary public; and the Reverend William Hirst who came out as a Naval 
Chaplain; but the most notable of all the astronomers on the Bengal side were the 
Keverend William Smith, and Thomas Deane Pearse of the Artillery. 

Smith came to Calcutta as a private tutor, not in the Company's employ; he was 
an enthusiastic astronomer, who kid claim to the British Government reward [151] 
with his "Short and correct method of determining the Longitude at sea, by a single 
altitude of the Moon", and it was on account of his known still as astronomer that 
he was selected to accompany Upton's mission to Poona in 1775 [30-1], 
to survey the country. . .in the most accurate manner he can, and by astronomical observations 
to ascertain the exact situations of the places 5 . 

In his journal Smith devotes a full section to his astronomical observations; 
The.. .Astronomical part is indeed the basis. ..with respect to the situation of places' for 
this determines the Latitude and Longitude of each. ... Eclipses of Jupiter's satellites, 
occultations of stars by the moon, observed with 31 ft. telescope by Dolland. ... Latitudes 
from meridian altitudes of stars, some North, some South of the Zenith [200], also of Sun and 
Pole Star; which frequently gave the true Latitude within less than 1 of a mile, and ascer- 
tained the error of the Quadrant within a few seconds. 

Before the mission started he recorded 
meridian altitudes taken at Benares, September 20th to 23rd. I requested Captain Thomas 
Carter to take a set of altitudes with his quadrant, not much unlike mine [ 200] . . .which he took 
at a spot 200 yards from me. Longitude of Benares, found 5" 32" 56", or 83° 14' East from 
Greenwich, by Jupiter's Satellites 3 . ' 

Smith's line, run across the centre of India, was of particular value from the 
regularity and care with which the astronomical observations were taken [31] and 
Reimell points out that between Kalpi and Sironj 4 , an interval of about 2 degrees, 
the difference of longitude as measured by G-oddard's surveyor exceeds that observed 
by Smith by only four minutes 5 . 

Before his return to England two years later Smith was able to observe latitudes 
at Bombay, Cochin and Calcutta L153]. 

Pearse commanded the Artillery in Bengal from 1768; he was an enthusiastic 
astronomer, and established an observatory at his private quarters at the Treasury 
Gate, Port William, where he made regular astronomical and meteorological 
observations. A continuous series of his observations for latitude and longitude, 
from 1774 to 1779, was published in Asiatic Researches with a detailed description 
of all his instruments and apparatus. Prom his observations of Jupiter's satellites 
and lunar eclipses, he deduced a mean longitude for Port William of 88° 22' 07" 
and from the altitude of IS different stars observed with an 18-inch quadrant iii 
1 776, he made the latitude 22° 33' 10" ■ 55 B [ 1 53 n. 5] . 

The Mysore War of 1781-4 gave him further opportunity of prosecuting his 
hobby during his famous marches to and from Madras [40-2 1. During these 
journeys Pearse not only had the. route traversed, but made a series of astronomical 
observations fixing the position of practically every important place along the coast, 

'M to CD. 27-6-69 (63). =BSJt P. 24-7-75. 'True value S3" 01'; EM. 4ddl MSS 29313 'VI 
N/16, 54H/12. -Memoir, 1783(24-5). 'is B. I 17S4. (57-80). 

Smith, Pearse, and others 


with main- intermediate ones 1 , whilst an almost greater contribution to geography 
was the training of his young assistant, Robert OoJebrooke, to become an accurate 
observer and enthusiastic surveyor. 
In various reports he writes, 

In these hot climates the stars only can be employed, for the Sun's heat at noon, after a 
long march, is really not to be borne by any constitution 3 . ... 

The latitudes were daily observed, and the result is entered on the tables. From the 
difference of latitude of the places where the satellites were observed, and the easting and 
westing of that place with respect to Madras taken from the tables, I calculated the angular 
difference of longitude which, added to the longitude of Madras, gives the longitude of the 
place by survey. The differences are such as must happen, because the satellites, observed 
with every degree of attention, will give different longitudes for the same place; and these 
differences will sometimes amount to 10 or 12 minutes of a degree, but the differences on this 
survey are. all less 3 . ... 

The difference of longitude between Madras and Fort William, derived from the reduced 
measure by the wheel and that calculated by observations of Jupiter's Satellites, differed... 
not quite five geographical minutes*. 
■ Regarding the longitudes he further notes that 

Ichappor, Madras, Nellore, Peddapor 5 and Calcutta were observed by myself. Vizagapatam 
once by me, and once by Mr. Maxtone, ... and all the rest by Lieutenant Colebrooket 
Of the longitudes at Vizagapatam ; 

October 3rd 1782'. ... The time was shewn by Mr. Russell's time-keeper, which was made 
by Arnold, and was regulated by the meridian line in his hall. ... 

October 23rd. Emersion of Jupiter's 1st Satellite by Mr. Maxtone; ... Watch corrected by 
Mr. Russell's meridian line 8 . 

Most officers surveying marches of troops made observations of latitude to 
the best of their ability, but this is not always definitely stated in their records. 
There is, for instance, no record of such observations along the survey of Goddard's 
route, though it is hardly likely that skilled surveyors such as Caldwell and Stewart 
would have failed to make them. On the other hand, for the return of the detach- 
ment in 1784, although the journals give no dates nor particulars of any survey, nor 
any surveyor's name, yet there are records of occasional observations of latitude by 
sextant; in fact the latitude of Handia , on the Narbada was observed as 22° 25' by 
one sextant, and 22° 22' by another 10 . 

A surveyor of high class was Ewart, formerly an officer of the Bombay Marine 
[42]. In his survey to Nagpur in 1781-82, he recorded his perambulator distances 
without bearings, but observed latitude to the nearest half minute every two or 
three days 11 . 

The British Museum has a series of his astronomical observations taken between 
1778 and 1781 and worked out on printed forms. For the first two years these 
were taken on board ship, but were afterwards continued at various stations in 
Bengal [ 161 ]. He observed longitudes by lunar distances when at sea, but on land 
turned to the satellites of Jupiter; latitudes were taken with a sextant of six inch 
radius by Eamsden, generally the mean of five sights. There is a note that, 

Altitudes of observations taken on shore were all by reflection in oil, and the correction 
of the watch mostly by Equal altitudes of the sun and stars l °. 

Reuben Buekow, 1783-9 

In 1783 there arrived in Calcutta a most remarkable and talented man, Eenben 
Burrow, mathematician and astronomer, already aged 35 years. He had at one 
time been assistant to Maskelyne, the Astronomer Eoyal 13 , and then for six years 

■Pull details, A, R I. (81-121) 4 Colebrooke's Journals, DDn. 2 k i 'A.B. I (86). 'Bun. 

J>*P .VI. 281.37-1-85. 'ih. VII, 130. 'Icaehipuram, 7* A/12 ; Nellore. »7 871a i : Pitt.puram bo 
K/4 6 BPC. 2S-1-85. "Tjurinf: return in r>n^U, in charge oi treasure ; 199J. Asli- 1 tail- 
•56B/15. '"Journal. MBIO. M.207. >' Journal, MBIO. M. 229. "BM.Addl. UtM. 2!I2 .0 J.352 ,t ..j.). 
'• Nevil Maskelyne. b. 6-10-32 ; ed, Westminster ; Ordained 1755 ; AD, 1765 tall d. 1811: DSB. But. Bnt. 


Astronomical Control, Bengal 

mathematical master to the Artillery cadets at the Tower of London 1 • in which 
capacity he had been employed by the Board ot Ordnance to make a survey of the 
coast of Essex and Suffolk and also of the Woolwich Warren. His salary at the 
Tower was only £ IOC la year and, getting no extra allowances whilst on these 
surveys, he fell out with Ins principals. At the suggestion of Henry Watson. Chief 
Engineer at Port William, he came out to Calcutta to pick up what work he could 
and to follow up a scheme for studying the mathematical systems ot the Hindus 

He at once interested himself in Hindu astronomy and was most anxious to be 
sent up to Benares to get into touch with the pundits there. The following 
extracts from an address he submitted to Warren Hastings gives the substance of 
his proposals ; 

Hindoo Inf0 H rmat '° n wUch tos now °"ai»«i m* regard to the ancient Literature of the 

f:tTL T :^ s ^r seinbon of its remains an obiect *^ the ™ st *>*-«** * •>* 

Tabta of* the Brt, 1 !' 31 ^T 772 ^^ f* ^ ^ the C ° aSt ° f Co™"*" Astronomical 
J „ if \ BrammS ,? Trl ™ Io » r - - H « certain that in Bengal there is a mean profession 
of people who annually compile almanacks from ancient Tables and calculate eel pses with 
depend < miaau ' b °t ■" altogether ignorant of the principles on which their calculations 

It is humbly suggested, therefore, that it is an object worthy of our monarch the 
Sovereign of the Banks of the Ganges, give such directions as mav be necessary ^ 
discovering & translating whatever is extant of the ancient works of the 'Hindoos The 

Astronomical Tables used in Bengal must be easily procured and, it is hoped, some treatises 
m the Shanscnt relative to them 3 . 

< ^f^", g T °" t0 rcoommend a regular astronomical survey to serve as 
foundation for the geography of India, shewing but scant appreciation of the labours 
ot earlier surveyors ; 

The Surveys of India are known to be remarkably defective, & there is great reason to 
believe that not a single place in India has had its Longitude properly determined except 
Pondicherry. The Latitudes are nearly in the same predicament, and indeed most of the 

bvtetr? are T ° f i dMl ChaiM ° f monntains & imaginary woods, taken pieceme aI 

by pretended surveyors, & put together at random without either Longitude or Latitude bv 
people who were only solicitous to have a fine drawing, without any regard to exactness or to 
a e, by these mieans the countries are horribly distorted in their positions, and Geographv is so 
little benefitted by such maps that they are a nuisance rather than an advantage and there 
is no other proper method of correcting such surveys but by determining the portions of 
some of the most material points by Astronomical Observations; this would assist in putting 
the different surveys together; and as the Longitude of Benares, and others that might be 
oe sTfl "Tful Craltntate in P* rt to that purpose, a journey thither of course would 

W^ . 0pP °rt™ it y ° f m f ki "g Observations of the dip and variation of the compass might 
have their utility not only m correcting the surveys, but in discovering the theory of 
magnetism. The nature ot the Refraction and its variation with respect to the Seat 
moisture, and density of the air would also be a very proper object of enqufrv at Benares ' 

the iwr™' TT n With a Pr ° per instrum ™ t tt ™"ld also be advisable to find 
the moons horizontal parallax; ...this would in some respects answer the ourpose of 
measuring a degree of the meridian, especially as the errors might be reduced to very small 
limits by a repetition of the observations; and this method has an advantage overVat of 
measuring a degree for it is not liable to be affected by the uncertain attraction of mountains 
If it was though proper to send a person who was well acquainted with the theory and 
practice of Astronomy etc. with a small collection of good Instruments, to take the Latitudes 
and Longitudes of most of the particular towns and places in the Company's Territories and 
dependencies, he might not only collect materials for making a proper survey of those parts 
and acquire information respecting the ancient and modern state of the country etc but 
would also have an apportunity of making the best Collection of Astronomical ana Phy'sical 
Observations that has yet been offered to the Public; and if it was thought that umbrage 
might be taken at such a procedure by the natives, it might easily pass under the notion of 
measuring degrees of the meridian, or of Longitudes etc, to avoid suspicion a. 

■ Ab.orbed into EMA.. 1582. .. Bio. Notes. „. Bmrow. > BM. Addl. MSS. 29233 ( 237 ). 'ft. 


In another letter lie presses the ad-vantages of mating- astronomical observations 
at Benares; 

Fortunately for Astronomy there is a large Quadrant existing at Benares [150], which 
from the intent of its construction must necessarily have been placed in the plane of the 
meridian when the Observatory was erected, ... and as this Quadrant is an immoveable 
structure of solid masonry... the transits and Altitudes of a number of stars may be taken with 
it, by a proper contrivance K 

No immediate action was taken on these proposals ; Warren Hastings who 
appears to have been interested left India early in 178-5^ and his successor was at 
once occupied in schemes of retrenchment and economy. It was not until 1787 
that Burrow's scheme could be put into action. In the mean time early in 17S4, 
he was, on Watson's recommendation, appointed mathematical master to the 
Engineer officers at Tort William [270]. In pressing the need for the instruction 
of these officers in astronomy, Watson had obviously strong grounds for writing. 

The very great want of Astronomical knowledge in the Surveyors who have been employed 
by this Government has occasioned many repetitions of the same Survey, and great additional 
Expence has in consequence been incurred. I will therefore venture to pronounce that expens- 
ive Repetition must be continued, till a sufficient Number of Gentlemen of the Corps of 
Engineers are able to ascertain the Limits of their Surveys by Astronomical Observations-. 

This dissatisfaction was shared by Call, on whose recommendation Burrow was 
appointed to carry out an astronomical smwey such as he had first suggested. 
Burrow writes; 

Some time about the commencement of the year 1787, Colonel Call (who had been Sur- 
veyor General & was then Chief Engineer) informed me that in constructing the New Map of 
India he had found so many contradictions and absurdities in the various Surveys, and so 
much difficulty in adjusting the places and principal positions of the different districts, that 
he was convinced of the incorrectness of the most considerable Latitudes and Longitudes; and 
therefore requested that I would consider the subject, and draw up a plan for determining 
their situations astronomically; with an estimate of the time it would take to be executed. 

The intention was to fix the positions of the principal places in the Ganges and Burram- 
pootra Rivers; from the Hardwar, where the first leaves the mountains of Sirinagar, to the 
mouth of the Hoogly; and the second from Goalpara on the boundary of Assam, to the conflux 
of the Megna with the Bay of Bengal; also the Coasts of Coromandel & Malabar, from Point 
Palmyras to Bombay; but as the most considerable difficulty was the adaptation of the busi- 
ness to the proper seasons of the year, so as to suffer the least impediment from the rains and 
changes of the Monsoons, etc., I not only took considerable pains in forming a plan for the 
purpose myself, but also submitted it to the opinions of Colonel Pearse and others; and on this 
plan.., it was supposed that the business might be finished in two years. 

The business was recommended to Government by Col. Pearse and Col. Call, & approved 
of; but the Surveyor General (Major Wood) having considered it (though an astronomical 
business) as in some respects under his department, applied for, and procured, the superinten- 
dence of it; and in consequence T received a plan from him which differed most essentially 
from my own; with particular orders from the Government to obey Major Wood's instructions :! . 

These instructions were dated June 23rd 1787, 
two years being allowed to you for the finishing of this work. ... For the present you are 
not to proceed higher up the River than Patna. . . . You are afterwards to return to the Coast- 
ward, and having fixed the latitude and longitude of Dacca, Goalpara and Chittagong, you 
will be pleased... to return to Calcutta... by the beginning of December, for the purpose of 
ascertaining the exact situation of the Southmost extreme of the Island of Sagor 4 and Point 
Palmiras. . . . Your being able to execute this service so early in the Season will greatly facili- 
tate your progress along the Coast of Coromandel and Malabar, to which latter it will be 
necessary you should.. .have finished your observations by the middle of April, as after that 
period it is not only dangerous but difficult for vessels to Navigate that Coast. ... 
From Cape Comorin you will proceed to Goa. Bombay, Surat and Diu 5 . 
On your return to Calcutta you will receive further instructions respecting. ..places to the 
Northward of Patna. ... Ensign Blunt, of the Corps of Engineers, will accompany you on this 
service, for the success of which you have my best wishes 6 . 

>BM. Addl. JMSS. 29159 (3*76). *BPC. 1-12-83. s Journal, 10. Maps, MS. (5). * Sagar I, 79 C/2',' 
s Diu I. 41 L/14. 6 BMC. 23-6-S7. 


Astronomical Control, Bbxgal 

to oS&S^f™^*^**^^ Burrow manaCTed 
,ta * Qm * ^aRupeesrooo r Marine Barometer* 

Thermometer sicca Rupees I4 „ 

I Astronomical Quadrant 4 

I Dolland's Achromatic " " ° 



* ., Large Time piece 
I 15-inch Brass Sextant 

and they wrote home. 

able Mathematician & Astronomer, to' al eSTf/T? 7 '*' R ™ ben B ™». » ™£ 
places, as well on the Coasts as in the inter ornartsf T % t™ "* ^S^des of several 
vations He is to have an addition of R wo tc hi ^ '^ ^^ A *onomicaI Obser- 
emptoyed, which we imagine will not exceed' , "years ^ ^ ^ «™ ot his b ™i » 

.-ed aVa^^ oThT^ m^rnf *£ St^T ^j^ » <*» « -ve 
Burrow started up the river in July 1 78 7 ,tmCtwns to *■ Bu ™w is enclosed'. 

*ns -ro'nlfaTtSial'motT^ Z nS E^aTi % ?* ^ ^ 

d 'srt^irss it r - with * « — .. 

2^tK t^— r fc ^ -^ imP orta, ^ a ,nd 

" ^ws&ts£ rii d ^~ fitte- 
r^S^SS^^r^^f 11 ^^ - « —: -rmy 
tion I found to be counterfeit I could not I f ? me James 's powder, which on examina 

had doubled the number or my boatmen g a J™ 7 ?? DaCCa b< * re th <= 5th November I 
rapid current of the Burrampoo^r;^^^^ 5 JTV" l"** * »»« 
lef "k T b ° th fMt ' St ° mach ' Md ^ad at tie same time ff ?^ Nu " ah [2t> ^ n ' 6 J «** 
.1 ness but no time, for I had taken an European s^lorT' S ° me "Nations by my 

of the infectious air of Dacca was an Slf, ° VerSee the P<S0 P le; and *° S* out 
able to observe till the rath f November I TvtTtb f^"*™- J" was not, however 
servants, and supported in such positions as the Ob I™ ° bliged to be ^rried by my 

k X^ter^r^s xr e ! r toi] and *»*»•< 

keep the account. ... The river is so fuifof is ands and" m ° r ™S^ d did »°«or some time 
wayj^ ££ *£* ^ -^ - with bamboos to k, him. All the 
a^cii hmg, they are very deadly and it is ^Mfc^^ *»*- 

'BS &M. 16-7-87 
Axe, 1824. 

'BtoCD. 16-8-87 (100). 'Nadia, 79 A/7. 

*ef. George 

Everest on Great Burrow 

I r.9 

The country has almost been destroyed fay floods ; a most wretched object, who evidently 
was not a fakir, came to beg, and said that he had 5 children starving to death, & one of them 
at that instant dying; there was such horror in his look & behaviour, and such astonishment 
when I gave him a rupee, that I had no doubt of the truth of what he said ; indeed we were 
almost starved ourselves, as we could buy nothing whatever & had only a little wheat left, 

I saw for the first time two of the enormous tops of the Bootan hills peeping over the 
clouds; they were nearly in the form above but rather indistinct [sketch with bearings]. 

In going round this sand I had nearly lost my boat; it was filling with water and would 
have sunk in a second or two, if I had not cut the rope & let the boat drive down the river; 
it took me till 23 1 ' 40" before I got to the same sand again ( 2' 8'" ), and then it was with great 
difficulty that the place was passed. ... 

Near this place was a town called Cursakatty, and as we were starving we endeavoured 
to get something; but the people were starved out, except 2 or 3 families, & there was no- 
thing to be got except a tame sheep which they would not sell, tho' we offered more than 
thrice its value; we got it however, partly by force and partly by offering them some salt, 
which they prized at a much higher rate than money. . . . 

With respect to Geographical Observations all that could be done was to substitute the 
time for a measure of the space, and to estimate the rate per hour in the manner of traverse 
sailing, and to take such bearings and make such remarks as occurred. As my assistant left 
me in a very short time on account of sickness, & I was totally alone ever after, not only so 
but sick a considerable time myself, will appear, I hope, that as much was done as 
could be expected from a person who was mostly tip a considerable part of the night making 
astronomical observations, and of course the less able to apply in the day. 
[Many coloured sketches of the little wooded hills along the river]. 

When I got to Goalparah I immediately sent a letter to the person that had charge of 
the factory informing him of my business &c„ but he returned the letter unopened & threa- 
tened to shoot ihe man that brought it : I next morning went to the factory myself, but he 
refused to see me, & stopped the Bazar all the time I stayed; so that both myself & the 
people with me were almost starved to death, and one of the men actually died about two 
hours after I left the place : ... At a point where I wished to observe some angles he had plant- 
ed a guard of Sepoys, with orders, as they said, to fire upon me if I attempted it. The 
name of the person is Daniel Rausch [80]. 

Bauseh later explained his conduct by alleging that he thought Burrow was a 
sherrift's officer come from Calcutta to arrest him '. To proceed with the journal, 

I stayed 6 days at Goalpara, and besides a number of distances & other observations E got 
four Eclipses of Jupiter's Satellites ; I arrived there the 1st December, and it was on account 
of two eclipses happening the 5th that I stayed so long. 

Latitude of Factory at Goalpara 26° n' 21"; Longitude, 6 h 2 ra o» 3 . 

After returning as far as Luckypore in the Megna 3 , I found that proceeding from thence 
to Chittagong would not only be dangerous in such a vessel as mine, but would also make it 
too late for me to go round the Coast, & proceeded with the utmost expedition through the 
Sunderbuns to Calcutta. ... 

Stopped as the tide ran strong against us and the people were tired ; this is a beautiful 
river, very like the Stour near Ipswich. Set off again very ill. I had purchased some Turtle 
at Cowcally « and everyone that ate of them were poisoned. I had been growing worse and 
worse and now was unable to keep any account. ... 

At this time my illness increased so much that it was only at intervals that I could keep 
the account, and therefore I shall insert no more of it : I got the latitude of a place in the 
Sunderbnns where there is a Bazar which the natives called Bossuntpore (but which Mr. 
Henkel 3 who cleared a little of the jungle in the Sunderbuns called Henkelgunge«) and found 
it to be 22 27' 21*, but as its Longitude is doubtful I shall not now insert it. 

I arrived at Calcutta the 3rd January 1788, and immediately sent notice of my arrival to 
the Surveyor General, Mr. Hark Wood, but found no vessel provided to go' round the 

Burrow's letter to the Surveyor General runs, 

To make several of my Astronomical observations of use, it will now be necessary to get 
the rates of the time-pieces, which will take a week or ten days. I therefore take the liberty 
to propose that in the meantime a small Pilot Vessel may be got ready that I may set off 
with all expedition to take Sagor Island, and either go to Chittagong first and then round the 

1 BPC 11-2-88 (14), & DD11. 16 (1), 6-1-88. = True position, 26° 55' N. ■ 6 
-,79 J/18. 4 orCharauly, 79 F/14. 6 Collector, Jessore, 1786-9. *79B/15. 

!-i m E. 3 Lakshrai- 
7 Joiirnal, 10. Maps. 




rol, Bengal 

observations that I have already made * d the Shlp ' m ca!cul ating the 

These plans were, however hrntpn ft ff ,o d . 

the Governor General to ta, I ll ' Z^T i^T*, "^ fet *">» 
coast of Aracan • P b ° Und for the lsImd °* Cheduba off the 

orders from Lord Cornwallis, ... "to renort on th^Twi "1 I2th Ja r '"ary I received 

The instruments in your possession v^Iffa ™^tt mefnf f ^ ? I ? dUCe *' ° tthe island ' 
island, the exact latitude of the northern and so,, th I ascertaining the longitude of the 

the main coast of Arracan etc Return bv the ? f " mtIra ' the P^age between it and 
t,ve of your proceedings containing eve" obsefvat ton * re t' tw l"™* me With a — 

On his return from this inr™!«V, ark that has occnrred to y°«" '■ 

of a voyage round tT coast to Both § *"**?,? ™ S t0 ° late to take "P the P™ject 
the encfof the rafnsL wattle tostart S'™ r 3i,1 !, d ? °^ tU ^ at 
On this occasion and duri n rhimanv "ea, h f° e ^ dltlon U P the Ganges. 

ponse ot tie D^ectol on WW T]^ " "" U ^^ t0 ™* «» — 
they cannot believe that BeSs survey ^ B^Tf "^ U - *" &St P W 
correction [ 1 64 ]• y m Ben ^ al squires improvement or 

assigned to Major Rennell's su „l whTchTalreadv b, P h , Y SatlSfad ttilt the P ositio >« 
precision for any purpose. 7 ' ^ P ubllshed . are determined with sufficient 

coast "X 1 : tppi^ Siltaf.S b6 hTf T y 4° r !! im t0 »"<* do ™ «» «* 

timekeepers with £££»». KrCSi ed to"™, '' 7" ^^ rec °™i if the 
determine the relative positions bXe mentioned g °/ mli ° rmI 3'- tt at his first operation be to 
settlement unnecessarily, as t4 more s TeSrh; ' f °° ^ beto <=en settlement and 

precisely will the relative posit™ e r^mined ^ S *"* *" " *" ^ "^ the *— 
But as we have seen, Burrow's sea-trip to Bombay was abandoned 

theSni°e™ he au^mnTI tstZZ ^/tV T^° ^ «P 
stations wMch he had omitted the previous year* 30th, and at certain 

W^tf^.liS 1, and describes his ,a„d Journey across 
Passingthrough "Khvp^ tt ^S """"g f? ° amd t " n 'P° rt - 
PMllibeaf » on January 6th 1789 P ' ""' 7 ' '" Nabo %™ge, he reached 

mathematics wltThim. ^Xy seemed know ^PcT *? ~" ^ * » *» 
expected, and had read some part rf^Alma^?Ti^ th C Tf ^ hettei than ' had 

and I told them that I wanted to compare tte Sesent hLr ^ T, " *" kn ° W ^ bnsiness . 
places in India with the termer onTto determine iw ^ l0ngltudes of tbe difcent 
earth has changed its place upon the surface tJ! ^°T!w h °" m ^ b tb = P°'e of the 
pole could not alter at all; but Fa^uHan c a wn saL C „ f th ! Pt ° 1<Smaic S y stem tb <= 
and Longitudes, which he would make me a oreseat o, , ?J Naming many Latitudes 
he sent me a very good copy of the 1^X^133 n 3l ""^ '* : "" aCC ° rdfa »""' 

get alrSn supplj, rS.SS&.X:^ ^^ °' ^ *° *»**»'*> 
search for Books of Science *c. in It^S ^S L^n^ ^ to 

53L/J. ■ ea,,d l : " lr ' 6 ' JP ' 12 ; ; «™'»l>g»i.],53P/10 ; KliM,Tt,53P/ M . rAnup s ha£; 

Reuben Burrow 161 

Moradabad, January 14th. ... I found the camp almost totally without money, but with 
some difficulty got a sufficiency for the Sepoys, and then returned to Moradabad, . . . then set 
oft with an intention to cross the Country to Cossipore l , as Rennell's map of all that part is 
almost totally empty. . . . 

Cossipore. ... I also met with some Bramins that came from the Hills, & particularly an 
Astronomer who seemed to be a much abler man than they usually are in the lower parts of 
India : he showed me several books and instruments, & promised to let me have copies ; but 
-when I afterwards sent for them, I found them almost all spoiled by the knavery of the 
transcribers, who had left pieces out and copied badly &c; ... he told me there were many 
Astronomers among the hills. 

I also procured a Map of the World made by the Bramins, & saw immediately from it 
what all the European world have for hundreds of years been puzzling themselves about ; 
namely, the seat of paradise and the four sacred rivers. 

After visiting Hardwar [ 7 7 ] ; Burrow then returned via Asophgimr reaching 
Mandawar 3 on February 10th. 

From here I sent ray Pandits to the hills to get routes &c, and to bring such books and 
papers as I had been promised by an astronomer that I met with near Cossipore. ... Got to 
the old station at Anopshere, February 17th. I was taken ill of the gout almost directly on 
my arrival and was totally incapable of doing anything for four days. 

As I knew that Colonel Wood had no intention that I should go round the Coast, and 
that I should certainly die if I stayed at Calcutta, I got leave to go up the country on 
account of my health, but at the same time I had taken every precaution for returning by 
dawk upon the first notice, as I wished very much to have gone round the Coast on account 
of its utility ; as I found however, from the best information my friends could give me, that 
I might give up all hopes of it, I thought it would be best to get leave from Scindia to go at 
least through the Dooab [55 n. 2] and if possible through the Mahratta Country ; also to Swat 
& Bombay, and so round the Coast ; the times happened then to be uncommonly favourable, 
for Timur Shah had then a large army on the march, & Scindia wished to oblige the 
English. ... 

I did not stay further for leave but immediately set off for Delhi, but was stopped in the 
very beginning of my journey by an order from Calcutta to return to the Presidency imme- 
diately ; it was not without the utmost regret that I gave up an opportunity that seldom 
may happen again, and returned to Anopsheer ; I might have gone down by water, but 
thought it would be of more advantage to the Geography of India to go by land as far as 
Futtyghur, though it was much more expensive to myself. Whilst I was at Anopsheer my 
Pundits arrived from the hills and brought several routes to the Comow Hills, Badrinaut 3 , 
&c, with several books that I had bespoken. ... 

February 25th. Got to the town of Bunneah, a small village inhabited by thieves and 
surrounded with Bamboos & jungle; I sent for their Chief and he said they never robbed near 
home but always at a distance ; there was also an army of Fakeers and some, either of them 
or the thieves, made some attempts to steal in the night, but we discovered them. 

The night was rainy so that I got nothing but the meridian altitudes of 4 stars for the 
latitude. ... 

Arrived at Futtygurh March 1st 1789. ... 

I have already mentioned that I was not permitted to follow my own plan, & I now 
repeat that I am perfectly convinced that had I been permitted to follow it, every thing I 
proposed to do would have been done in the time I mentioned. The journey through Fcohilcund 
to the Hardwar in the two months of January and February 1789 was no part of Colonel 
Wood's plan, but merely intended for a change of air on account of sickness, in consequence 
of leave from Lord Cornwallis, & I took advantage of the opportunity. 

Burrow then travelled down the river by water ; 

In my way from the Hardwar in 1789, 1 made some observations at Patna. . . . The Latitude 
I found to be 25 36' 03" [149, 150], and the Longitude by 25 sets of distances of the Moon from 
the Sun and Stars, was 5 1 ' 41 111 02 s [163]. ... These determinations differ very considerably 
from those found by Lieut. Ewart [ 155 ], but there can be no question of their exactness. 

Burrow had already observed on the gola at Bankipore 4 in 1787, and G-arstin 
writes that he 

determined the Longitude of the Granary at Bankipoor , from the mean of upwards of too 
observations, whilst residing with me at Patna, and took nearly as much pains with the 
others 5 . 

'Kiishipur, 53 K/16. 2 53 K/3. 3 Kumaun Hills, 53 O; Badrinath, 53 N/6. 4 f2 G/2. "DDn. 
126 (138), 29-4-1812. 


Astronomical Control, Bengal 

and Telliagurry* " [25 n 2] P°nt»n. of the famous passes of Sacrigully 

He , had an uncomfortable' night further down the river ■ 

to determine it, ia order to fix the posifcn f MuU a d^ K 'V ? \ 9 * ™ hei («*«? 
of the Culcully Nullah which was the. .near v irv ™d „ „ ? * ' St ° PPed at the ««* 
a few altitudes of the Sun, when an enormous black ,^ ^f S<!CUred my b ° ats aad ««* 
that had a most tremendous appearance l^Z T ™ ^"^ distance, 

soon after it came driving horn tL west 2th lc *° f scend perpendicularly to the sky; 

the river began a falling ou .nl^^ZrTlT" ^^ tte *»»->■- 
In an instant. The storm continued 'near an he g ".T" S Wer ° Smk and ore ^Mmed 
then turned s.owly towards the north and it 'raSed TlSEl Vf £ "" " ae *"*"* and 
of .ts violence : about o at night the wind cameTl i bu ' mth °" t the least abatement 

y i but the whole night was so bad tTat I oSv ™t Southward » d «» force abated gradual- 
latitude may be perhaps 1 or ^„f • ^T SmgIe merldi =»n altitude, so that the 
however be pret£ exact a°s Ztn£lT2ellT« ** ""jS"*" t *» «**^-2 
Bogwangola short. g0od lor tlme ' and the run between Rajmahl & 

Secr^ry?^ ^^ ° D "* 12th > "* "*** *»* to the Government 
Governor 1 ^r^t a sttl:X g ' 7i ' ^ ^ * ^ ** H <™ * •* °» the 

thaurz't :?::i::\%:^Jz t the ts* of a ietter from the **•*»• 

ing up his observations and re'snlts wlvh T ""T ? the yea1 ' 1789 * work- 
The following extracts from his oui-L/t id nub, ^f f IV^ «—«*«•. 

With respect to the method IS observaSs T 't ^?/' 1 °/ "" meth ° ds I 
culty than Observers in Europe would susoect w at ' \ ^ St f °™ d mnch « reat « <™- 
glass covering with dew in afinltant and onir3f ' * Mst and Clouds - <™y 

wind: I tried several glass roofs and" rffSal nor?™? 1S !£*? diStUrbed by "^ *>»» £ 
ta the nature of a ipirit level but ^^found th™ T y ^ose of the circular kind 

accidently thought of covering tte qniSetwrVh ^^V ate «^eral trials...! at last 
made of two parallel semicircfes wrTS c onvexi V i ^^ by meanS ° f a frame 

parallelogramick board, in whichros a !J ^ <■ 7 UP S> & faStened to tte sid <* of a 
tained the quicksilver, which stood Mependen of Sf reCeVe , the Shall ° W ^^ that »- 
muscato curtain, to prevent the sandtos a^ te ° „T ^ Tf 7 Up ° n an0tta P ie <* °« 
silver; this method I found to answer be™ r mmnte lnsects ^ getting to the quick- 
Altitudes. ... anSWer be y° nd m y expectation for the Latitudes and 

ou, Th . e t^t^SSS^SSSSSS^, wouM req r a to1u - to ^ «™ 

Tables are much oftner owing to the imp^Sto o^T* USUa " y attllbUted *° the Lunar 

watches, I then deduced ^t ^^S^JZ'.S?' ° T t ^^ pl <™ ""^ ^ 
o the Satellites, and taking a proper medbm I ar^M ^ "^ ™ ^ ™ fam M "P ses 

changes much and is damp generally very sudden, & usually when the weather 


on representing the advantages of such an inatiMe^^o^ otTinnn^? 

Reuben Burrow 


and desired that Colonel Watson would give an estimate of the expence of an observatory ■ 
this however was delayed until Mr. Hastings left the country, and all my attempts to revive 
it afterwards were innefiectnal [i7j]. 

The latitudes were generally determined from both North and South meridian altitudes of 
Stars, sometimes to the number 20 or 30, and seldom fewer than 5 or 6. ... I think few latitudes 
can be out so much as ro seconds, and a very considerable part of them not half the quantity 1 

I believe very few of the... latitudes can be more than 3 seconds wrong, perhaps not 
many of them so much, as the single observations with the sextant seldom differ from one an- 
other more than .5 or 20 seconds and very often not half the number. As to the longitudes 
it, s possible there may m some cases be an error of two or three miles, but I can scarce 

lat',,^ T T" pr ° bab ; Ut y oi "• as tie Observations were made, as well as calcu- 
lated, in a different and more exact manner than is generally used at present' 

The Directors showed no sympathy for Burrow's wish for an observatory « ■ 

We cannot pass over the remark at the conclusion of his list of latitudes and Longitudes ■ 

TtTtheVo^ 1 V ™*" ng ° h T m&mB 0t Ed ^ of tte & «'te are notlent 
out by the Company, because it shows he docs not understand our intentions ; we mean that 
the operations m India, whether astronomical or Geographical, should be confined to 1TJ 
observations only, leaving the comparisons and results to be made in England where it can 
be done more effectually, at much less expence. ... S Ca ° 

Mr. Reuben Burrrow's representing that there is no instrument sufficient to determine 
the place of a star whereby many occultations of undetermined stars, are useless, is a s w 
argument why he should have sent those observations home * [ 252 ]. S 

i TlioughBrn-row'sobseryationswereofafarhigherstandarcUhananyhithertoteken 
in India, and for the next thirty years were accepted as the best available [ « 1 yet 
mistake were found, and they were gradually superseded. Writing in 1 82S of the oh 
servations for the longitude of Calcutta made by Pearse and Burrow, Blacker' remarks" 

The scienific qualifications of both these gentlemen were highly respectable, butTem 
means were limited, and the calculations of the Ephemerides in their time were greatly in- 
pZ'T' f aCCUraCy t0 Wha " he 5' were in the P^^t day. It is true that Colonel 
Pearse refers to some corresponding observations in Europe, but most of the observatories 
have corrected then- longitude since that time ». observatories 

Hodgson 1 writes in 1814, 

AiA U ^^i iPPear ? a * ? UIXOW t0 ° k ttese L ° n «itudes "holly by the satellites; when he 
did, probably having found the error of their then tables, he applied them to his observa! 
tions»; I should rather suppose from their strict agreement, that he took some placeTi 
standards, by occupation of stars or other approved methods, and then took the rest from 
them, by means of chronometers, for his longitudes are of a precision amongst themselves 
more than Jupiter's satellites can give' [5., 180]. "«iuseives 

And again, 

It was known to the late Surveyor General, Colonel Cclebrooke, several years a=o as well 
as to myself, that the longitude assigned to Hardwar and several places Tn Rohucund by Mr 
Reuben Burrow, were too far to the west by about 7 miles. The name of Burrow dese^edly 
rands high as a learned mathematician, as well as an expert astronomer, . but at thaTtime 
ables were less perfect than at present, andMr. Burrow used a telescope o sma 1 power aS 
I believe, took a very small number of observations of the satellites in compSon wlS'ours' 
I do not presume to disparage the operations of so distinguished an astronomer soto as hj 
means o accuracy admitted, but it is well known that the due observations of the ecUnses o 
the satellites, and thence determining the differences of longitude, is by no means IfficuH 
to any person moderately skilled in practical astxonomy, so that those who have tte be t 

rrstTcrr?esuitsS bIes ' and oan take ths ™ »-*« °< ««* ^ - %z 

^d A S^: v lft ins out an emn " in the difEerence of l011gltude b8tween AiiahaM 

It was the opinion of the late Colonel Colebrooke, Surveyor General that an error had 
been committed by Burrow in the difference of longitude, and that he had made it too much 
by 5 or 6 miles, owing to his chronometer haying run down between the tv^lnces n 

12-1-25. hlAevo, General l^UlW^ t 1, T"Ti Ge " ra1 ' "^ " DD »- 20 * < 151 ). 



Astronomical Control, Bengal 

An earlier note by Colebrooke himself states, 

The accurate Astronomical observations of the late Mr. Reuben Burrow have furnished us 
many points on which the Indian Geographer may now with confidence rely and which he 
may assume as the most correct data on which he is to ground and regulate his work It is 
however much to be lamented that this eminent mathematician and astronnmer did not 
extend his observations to a wider range, and that during his residence in India his excursions 
for the purpose of determining the Latitudes and Longitudes of places should barely have 
reached the 30th degree of North Latitude, ... and there is reason to apprehend likewise that 
a vast number of observations which he took within that space remained uncalculated at his 
death 1 . [167]. 



In 1787, before starting the triangulation that was to connect the royal obser- 
vatories of Paris and Greenwich, General Roy wrote a short paper describing the 
principles on which he proposed to work, and pointing out how desirable it was that 
further measurements should be made to determine the length of the degree in 
lower latitudes, and suggesting that the Peninsula of India afforded a suitable field 
tor such measurements. 

The British Dominions in the East Indies offer a scene particularly favourable for the 
measurement of five degrees of latitude on the Coast of Choromandel, as has been noticed by 
Mr. Dalrymple F.R.S. in his paper on the Marine Survey of that coast. Two degrees of 
Longitude at each extremity should likewise be measured. 

The plains of Bengal, directly under the northern tropic, afford another situation where 
it would be of great consequence to determine the lengths of a degree or two of latitude and 
as many of longitude 3 . ' 

Dalrymple's suggestion, dated December 13th 1784 [ 190], had been 
to employ Astronomers to determine the lengths of a degree in that latitude, for at least 
5 are easily commensurable on the Coast of Choromandel, which perhaps cannot be done in 
any other part of the world ". 

Boy sent a copy of his paper to the Directors, and 
the Court being highly sensible of the importance of the objects likely to be attained by the 
experiments proposed by General Roy to be made in the East Indies, ... hesolvbd that 
Major James Rennell and Alexander Dalrymple Esq. be desired.. .to lay before this Court an 
estimate of the expense necessary for carrying his plans into execution *. 
Rennell and Dalrymple made joint reply, 

Whatever Advantages to Science may be derived from the exact determination of the 
figure of the Earth, we conceive no other benefit can possibly attend the Admeasurement in 
Bengal : but that proposed on the Coast of Choromandel will contribute towards the construc- 
tion of an exact Chart of that Coast. ... It would be unpardonable in us. . .not to suggest their 

It is only natural that Eennell should not conceive the need for any more "exact 
chart " of Bengal [160]. Their note concludes, 

As the expence attending the operations would be very much encreased by sending 
Astronomers from England : it would be desirable to have it performed by persons already 
abroad; and m case no Person immediately in the Company's Service should be found suffi- 
S..?,, ac £. ustomed to Astronomical Observations for this purpose, Mr. Dalrvmple conceives 
that Mr. Topping at Madrass and Mr. Burrow at Calcutta are well qualified for this under- 
taking ° ; ... 

whereupon the Directors wrote out, 

We have in contemplation to send by the Ships of next Season the proper Instruments 
[166] for measuring one or move Degrees on the Coast of Coromandel : Mr. Topping at Madras 
and Mr. Burrow in Bengal were mentioned to us, as persons competent to execute this trusts' 

It was probably the receipt of this letter that led to Burrow's recall from Upper 
India m February 1789 [ 161, 162 ], but it was not until March 1790 that he wrote 

I have received Lord CornwalhYs order to measure the degree of Longitude and shall 
immediately proceed to execute it 7 . 

., ',¥.7 0/ ,™? ! MEI ?' 16 ( 10 )' ' S °y < 3 "' S Jf»i»<m- concern.,!!, a,, of the Coast of Choro 

Burrow's Measures oe the Degree 165 

Isaac Dalby has written an account of Burrow's measurements 1 ; 
It appears, that in consequence of the late General Roy's representations in 1787 respect- 
ing the utility of the Trigonometrical Survey at that time begun in England, the East India 
Company very laudably had resolved to commence a similar operation on the coast of Coro- 
mandel, or somewhere in Bengal ; at the same time they intended that the length of a degree 
on the meridian should be determined, because a measurement of the kind had never taken 
place near the Tropic. 

And it was generally supposed that the execution of this business would have been com- 
mitted to Mr. Burrow, not on account of his situation as mathematical master to the 
Company's Corps of Engineers, but because his qualifications for such an undertaking were 
undoubtedly superior to those of any other person in that quarter. ... 

Mr. Burrow expected those instruments in 1789, and so anxious was he to begin about 
that time, that he wrote more than once desiring a zenith might be purchased for him at any 
price : but an instrument of the kind could not be procured : besides there were reasons to 
suppose that one would be sent out the following year on the Company's account. 

The want of a Zenith Sector, however, seems not to have discouraged him, for... in 1790 
and 1791 he measured a degree of Longitude and also another Latitude under the tropic, 
with such instruments and other apparatus as he could procure. ... 

From a rough journal. ..and some private letters, I have made out the following list of 

A theodolite ; A Sextant. 

An Astronomical Quadrant of 1 ft. radius, by Ramsden 3 . 

A Brass scale, length unknown, by Ramsden. 

A 50 ft. Steel Chain, of Ramsden's new construction. 

Several Glass Rods, ground to a particular length ; Long Bamboo Rods, and some 

10 ft. and 20 ft. Rods ; Stands for the Rods. 
Timepieces and watches by Arnold. 
The measurement of this degree of longitude was begun in April 1790 near 
Cawksally, not far from Krishnagar 3 , in Nadia District. Dalby quotes the follow- 
ing account from a letter of Burrow's to Sir William Jones ; 

My intention at first was to have actually measured a whole degree with reds... as others 
measure a base ; and afterwards to determine the difference of Longitude by going several 
times backwards and forwards with Arnold's watches. In this manner, by carrying a line 
directly East & West, all the error of sperical & spheroidal triangles are avoided. ... 

As I could not get the Assistant I wanted 4 , I saw the time was too short to measure 
with the rods, and therefore concluded that the best method... would be to trace out the line, 
and secure with bamboo pins, and measure it as exactly as possible with Ramsden's new 
invented chain ; then make the observations, and afterwards in the cold weather, either to 
measure the whole with rods, or else such part as would show what allowance would be 
necessary. ..for the little irregularities of ploughed land, curvatures, etc. 

I have already measured about 36 miles in this manner; the first 15 miles I measured 
twice over, but found in effect no difference. I have nearly done the Astronomical observa- 
tions of this part, and shall perhaps get another quarter done before the rains come. 

In a letter to the Surveyor General, he writes that he has divided the degree 
into four parts, and intends to measure the whole over again with rods in the cold 
weather. The line was laid out by theodolite from the pole star, and offsets were 
taken to avoid obstacles. Measurement was made by chain, and continued till the 
middle of May, the whole easting then amounting to about 33 i miles, covering the 
two easterly quarters. 

In June Burrow returned to Cawksally, and began measuring to the west, and 
by the middle of July when the rains set in, he had completed his third quarter, 
somewhat over 15 miles. Work was resumed in December by remeasuring the third 
quarter, making it 12 feet shorter than the first measurement. Measurement was 
then carried westward to a place called Dhorapara, thus completing the fourth 
quarter on January 22nd, 1791. 

1 Dalby's account was published in 1796, but no pubd. copy has been found. These extracts have 
been taken from a MS. preserved in the RS. Lib. (X110). Dalby was assfc. to Hoy, & on Ordnance Survey 
of Great Britain; Math. Professor, BMC. 1799-1820. - Jesse Ramsden. b. 6-10-35, near Halifax, 

Yorkshire; d. Brighton, 5-11-1800; portrait hangs in hall of the Royal Society, Burlington Gardens. 
* 79 A/11. 4 Owing to Mysore War. 



omical Control, Bengal 

times backwards and forwards between CawisajTv and ^ ' he ^ Gn * 12 or 13 

checked the length of the chain aeaS t Z , od/ ^ D , hoia P a ;' a - He constantly 
Eamsden's brasl scale; measured" were "eduled^to thf L "th'T^t ^ 
temperature 55°. During the snrin., of 1 701 l? length ot the cha ™ »t 

of latitude, nearly on le meriZ nf r 'v 7"? d ^ len §' tl1 of a degree 
bamboo rods, nearly OoleeT ot "Lo^I ," 7 \ Measurement was made" by 

numb^rof meridia/altjtudroSrsTb^'id™ S M ^ "^ ' «~* 

of the chain, but considered hat the W ih % A ^eB d " e to d°ubt as to the length 
as eould be got by the mXd o timet™. TS f ™ S P1 '° baW7 M accmate 
not more than 3 or 4 seconds wfdeTttSh degTee ° f ktifade P™ ba % 

are shortly to send out some instruments of a te r P , " '' tat aS the Com P an >' 

by the next ships, as I hear theZZTjlZZJlT 1 ^ ^ Pr ° baMy wffl ™™ 
to postpone that part of tie work till ttef ifival 1 ^ ^ " W ° Uld be better 

and the Council reported 

tiou, which Mr. Burrow expected to rLXehvtLl J n f r ™nts of superior construc- 

The Directors had written Lm^i^O PS ° f ^ PreSMt "' 

be m ? d : ££z£££^£gz?r re r meaded by **«— ^ to 

most positive assurances that they Su hf^ptofT" T" ^ B ™ dm *™ tte 
this Season « [i 72] . Y *" ° e com P te ted m time to go by some of the ships of 

Tet, writes Dalby. 

chased by...the Board of Ordnance [toT 79 ip ^ ™ S thr °™ °" hls tands . ^P«- 

tookVcS £^£S£S reached ^ «■*■&» »* ] 
intended for Burrow or Tonmno T"„! -1 ? Lambton, had been originally 

^nnished. whi,st ^^J^^^^^—:-L- 

Bukhow's Last Seasox, 1791-2 

I'beSS" 17M Bl ™ ^dressed Government, 
I beg to offer my services to execute the followine ver4 m «,i 
most necessary, business. I have already b, my W b ™* ' ""f ™ ™ Y °^ nioa 

many of the principal places near the KverTw^d^T hm ™ry erroneous 

Muse JSe^™. I^S^cg^, ' CD * M ' »** W- «»« in the S ci m » 

Burrow's Last Season 


were not so much owing to the badness of the materials as to the distortions and false posi- 
tions occasioned by putting them together without having the principal places fixed astrono- 
mically at first; I do not speak of little trifling errors, but gross enormous ones, from five to 
six miles in latitude to 13 or 14 [in longitude], and these in places so near Calcutta as the 
districts of Burdwan and Beerbhoom. 

I therefore would propose to traverse the diSerent districts on both sides of the Ganges, 
and to determine all the principal places, and as many of the intermediate ones.. .as can be 
done without losing much time about them, connecting the whole at the same time by the 
watches, bearings, distances &c. This wonld render the former maps and measurements 
useful, and at the same time furnish a vast quantity of new materials; ... and as the Com- 
pany seem inclined to spare no cost in having their maps elegantly engraved and printed 1 • 
it is not without concern that one sees so much of it employed in perpetuating errors 3 . 

This proposal was approved and the Directors informed that 
the expence will be trifling, and the object is of Consequence. Circular letters have been 
addressed to the several Collectors, requesting them to afford every assistance in their power 
to the accommodation of Mr. Burrow 3 . 

Our only clues as to his travels during this season are his " Survey of the Road 
from Calcutta to Benares between" October 19th 1791 and January 1st 1792*; the 
cutting of his name, with year 1792, on two Asoka pillars in Bihar, one the "Lion 
column" about 28 miles north of Bankipore '; the other about It miles north-west 
of Rettiah 6 ; and his death " in his budgarow " at Buxar in June. His journals have 
not been found, although his executors sent them to Government in September 


The importance of astronomical control was recognized by no one more than 
Kobert Colebrooke, and when he became Surveyor General in 1794 he appears to 
have started regnlar observations at Calcutta [202]. In January 1795 he 
■addressed Government; 

The Honorable the Court of Directors, having some time since ordered the erection. ..of 
an observatory at Madras, it became an object, also, to ascertain the exact difference'of 
Longitude between Madras and several of the principal places in India, to obtain which 
they send out at the request of Mr. Topping.. .six telescopes. ..for observing the eclipse's of 
Jupiter's satellites. ... 

One of these Telescopes having been committed to my care, I have taken, and commu- 
nicated to Mr. Topping, a few observations, but have not been so fully confident of their 
accuracy as I could have wished, for want of some of the Instruments that are usually 
employed in observatories to ascertain the time 9 . 

He writes later to Topping, 

As there is probability of Ensign Blunt.. .being at Point Palmyras during the ensuing 
month of December to observe the Longitude by the Eclipses of Jupiter's satellites for 
which he is furnished with one of the Telescopes you were so good as to commit to my 
charge, you will I hope. particularly assiduous in observing correspondent sights at your 
observatory, and I purpose doing the same here 9 . 

Blunt had lately returned from his journey from Chunar to Bajahmundry [59-63] 
during which he had fixed 31 latitudes and 5 longitudes under the following instruc- 
tions from Colebrooke ; 

As no single observation of the sun or star is much to be relied on, yon will I hope 
avail yourself of your halting days to observe, more particularly by repeating observations' 
the latitudes of a few places in your route, and, so soon as the planet Jupiter may be visible' 
you will observe with the Company's Telescope the Eclipses of his satellites. 

As correspondent observations will be made here and at Madras, the longitudes of some 
ot the points in your survey will thereby be deduced with the greatest accuracy ">. 

In his instructions to Mouat for surveys in Bohilkhand ["^-61, Colebrooke 


Astronomical Control, Bengal 

As a few of the places through which you will pass have been observed in Latitude and 
Longitude by the late Mr. Reuben Burrow, these observations will afterwards enable you to 
correct your work, but as no astronomical observations have ever been made beyond the 
Hills I would you to observe, if you can, the latitudes of a few places in that part of 
you track, and afterwards, in returning, the latitudes of Mamdy and Khairbad l and also 
any other places you please. 

If however you have not acquired the use of the sextant and the knowledge of practical 
astronomy many degree, let not that deter you from making the survey; ... if correction is 
necessary it can be applied hereafter 2 . 

Similar instructions were given to Hoare for his survey of the Jumna Biyer 
L 57> 1 08 J, which would require 

liiT^wT f ° r obse 7 il, S ^ the sun and stars the latitudes of the principal places ; 
without which a survey of such an extent would be liable to considerable errors. If you can 

wmbecomplelt^ mlC SerVati ° nS *" Ioi * t " d<!s °* *™ or three places, your work 

Hoare took a great deal of pains over his observations at the Tai Mahal Agra 
observing for latitude, longitude, and variation of the compass. The mean of 11 
observations of the Sun's meridian altitude, lower limb, taken between February 
22nd and March 6th 1796, gave a latitude 27° 12' 46", whilst he notes the observa- 
tions of five other observers, 

Captain Reynolds, Surveyor General, Bombay ... 27° 

William Hunter, Esq, Surgeon to the Resident 

Lt. Bushby of the Bengal Army 

Pere Boudier, the one adopted by Major Rennell 

Capt. Udney Yates \ October 13th, 1796 

n. B ? fj haVe 6Very reaS ° n t0 believe Kre B °»«ier"s observation was made at the 
Church, I have rejected it from the others, and the medium of the four is 27° 10' 14' 

Between March 12th and 18th, the medium of 6 careful observations, Meridian Altitude 
of the Sun s centre, with artificial horizon, inverting telescope, instrument by Troughton 
using observatory stand and tripod, gave 27° 11' 32*. 

The medium of 4 observations for the Longitude of the Taj Mahal came to 78° 08' 07" 

l7Q? lmt i e i*ofi kl r la 7-1 bs ,t rYati0nS dm ' mg his J° um <=? s in Upper India between 
1/9J and 1/96, of which the results were published in Asiatic Researches" [S6-7I 

In his journey up the Ganges during 1796-97, Colebrooke himself took series 
of observations between Calcutta and Oolgong for latitude, longitude, and " the 
variation of the magnetic needle ? ". He continued his regular observations whilst 
at Calcutta, and m volume II (1826) of the Memoirs of the Astronomical Society of 
.London were published, 3 

Observations of an eclipse of the moon, in the year 1798. and of eclipses of Jupiter's 
sateUites between J7Q7 and 1803, taken at Chouringhy near Calcutta, by the late Colonel 
K. H. Colebrooke. The place of observation was Mr. Bristow's 8 house at Chouringhy about 
3 seconds of longitude in time east of Fort William. 

'Itfuhamdi, 63 A/1 ; KhairSbnd, 63 A/10. s DDn. 16 (63) Dec 1794 3 RPr wllo^ it> «.i 
oTo y I*\fv Sen - If I' ', vi 5 ; PVfV' W <®° = ^^°™r Henry Yu^cli. Xtg 

10' 00" 

10 23 
10 23 
15 00 



Madras Observations before 1786 — Topping & the Observatory, 1786-1800 — Military 
Surveys, 1788-1800 — Bombay Observations — Breadth of the Peninsula, — Funda- 
mental Longitudes, Madras & Calcutta. 

OTJK earliest authorities tor geographical positions along the Madras coast are 
two Frenchmen, the navigator Apres de Maimevillette [151], and the Jesuit 
missionary Father Bonchet, and their Tallies were thoroughly discussed by 
D'Anville and his English contemporary Thomas Jefterys 1 [178,211 11.7], who 
both pointed out certain blatant errors in the English nautical tables 2 [ 238 ]. 

For the latitude of Cape Comorin D'Anville discusses independanfc observations 
by Bouchet, 7 D 58', and Father Thomas, 8° o'», the true value being 8° 0'. 

For Madras, D'Anville found that the English had observed the latitude of the 
Fort to be 13° 15', and as Apres had often found it 13° 13', he took it as "13 
Degrees and about 11 minutes". For Pondieherry, he preferred the observations 
of Father Boudier " which make its Latitude 11° 55' 30", and its Longitude, deduced 
from several exact Observations, 77° 25'" from Paris 1 . 

Yery thorough astronomical observations were made at Pondieherry between 
1761 and 1771 by Mons. le Gentil [180 n.3] who had been sent out by the King of 
France to observe the transits of Yenus [153-4]- He surveyed the environs of 
Pondieherry and observed for latitude and longitude, taking an eclipse of the moon, 
and several observations of the satellites of Jupiter and the lunar hour-angle. He 
worked out a table of refraction, and determined the length of the seconds pendulum. 
He made several voyages to the far east and to the south Indian Ocean taking mag- 
netic observations s . 

In July 1755 Thomas Howe [15] observed the longitude of Fort St. George, 
" by observations of the 1st satellite of Jupiter ", to be 80° 28' 25" E., whilst in 
1761 Hirst [153], "from many observations of the Transit of Yenus " made it 
80° 2' 15" Fj. ; Hirst also made the latitude 13° 8' N s , 

William Stevens, when acting Chief Engineer in 1778, observed the latitude 
of Madras to be 13° -4' 54", using an "astronomical brass quadrant, on the top 
of the house usually inhabited by the Chief Engineer " ". 

In his map of 1788 [ 99, 243 ] Schlegel gives the position of Madras as " Latitude 
13° 8' 19", as taken by Major Pringle; Longitude 80° 29' from the Hon'ble 
Mr. Howe", preferring Pringle's latitude to that accepted by Eennell, 13° 5' N 8 . 

Tor the survey of the Northern Circars started in 1773 the Chief Engineer 
ordered Stevens that, 

In order to ascertain the accuracy of the Survey, you will be pleased to intersect some 
of Captain Pittman's Stations, which, on closing the whole, should correspond with youra I 
should likewise recommend to you the fixing the Latitude aad Longitude of the principal 
Places by Astronomical observation 9 . 

As has been already told [91-3], this survey was never completed on the large 
lines that had been proposed, and there is no record of any observations taken. 

'Jefferys (3). * The English, or East India, Pilot [200]. * Antiquita Geographiqae (119-20.) 

* Jefferys (7-10). True value 11° 56' N.; 79' 49' B. of Greenwich, or 77° 29 E. of Paris. 5 Le Gentil. 
'Noted on Dalrympl.'s reduce.! map of J&glr, [881. 'Phil. Trans. Abr. Edn. XIV 1779 (512). 'True 
value 13" 4' X. ; 80" 15' E. »MMC. 22-3-73. 



Astronomical Control, Madras & Bombay 

Pringle, though he made no regular observations, records the following in Mb 
"Book of Roads " l . 

Latitude of Trichinopoly, in 1776, lo° 49' 2 . 

Latitude of TanjoreS, February 27th 1777; observed the Sun's meridian Zenith distance 
by Astronomical quadrant, adjusted by spirit level only, io° 46'. Longitude 79° 16', by 
Jupiter's satellites, in company with Major Stevens. From this longitude that of Trichinopoly 
was deduced by survey. 

Latitude of Palamcottah by a number of observations of meridian altitudes of the Sun 
and different stars is 8° 44' K 

June 1785. Observed the meridian altitude of Fomalhaut by double reflection in a 
soup plate almost filled with quicksilver, with a good Hadley's sextant. 
He also records a number of bearings taken by theodolite from the highest hills, 
most of them corrected by observed azimuths, taken by himself or Stevens. 

In 1785, he proposed that he should make a military survey of the Cariiatio 

to which may be added as an embellishment, and for the benefit of Geography in general the 
exact longitude and latitude of the most remarkable cities and places, mouths of rivers and 
for the ascertaining of which, as well as those for surveying, I am already in possession of 
of every instrument. ■' 

Kelly does not tell of any astronomical observations along his earlier routes 
but in 1778 proposed to use them for the control of his Atlas [240] ; constant 
observations were taken during his survey of Fullarton's marches in ] 78S some 
of them by Byres [98, 178-9 ]. 

It is evident that the general geography of the southern peninsula was at this 
period far less correct than that of Upper India 8 , which was tied together not only 
by BemieU's survey, but also by the widely scattered observations of Boudier and 
other missionaries. Writing of Mysore Keunell is grateful for even one isolated 
latitude ; 

Although most or all of the roads that appear in the map. ..have been marched over at 
different times; yet seldom having a surveyor with them, or by the want of instruments or 
leisure, or both, little has been done for geography, ... so that the whole country can be but 
vaguely described ; no one point... having been mathematically determined. Was it not 
for the observation of latitude at Chinna-Balabaram ? the position of Bangalore and all the 
places dependent on it would be involved in uncertainty s [ 99 ]. 

Again, in discussing the geography of the Nizam's country, chiefly derived from 
Bnssy's marches [115], he writes, 

Col. Peach's march from Ellore to Warrangole in 1767, furnished materials for fixing the 
situation of that place, ... A memorandum accompanying the survey says that its latitude is 
17 57 • Notwithstanding this assertion, the bearings and distance from Ellore place it in 18° 2'. 
And I much question, whether Col. Peach's engineer [Gardiner] had anv good quadrant wi+h 
him [ 92 ] 9 . " 

Ioppixg & the Obsekvatokt, 1786 to 1800 

Michael Topping was the only sailor of all the Madras surveyors, and the fixing 
of accurate control stations by astronomical observations was his first care. 
,. ^ l } e ^, st tllat we know of him is tat in 1785 he observed longitudes in the 
Maldive Islands and in Ceylon ; probably on his voyage out to India «' Then in 
November 1786 he made an overland journey from Masulipatam alono- the coast to 
Calcutta, and at the request of Sir- Archibald Campbell. Governor of Madras 
observed latitudes and longitudes at about 40 of the principal places on his way 
( 1 01-2]. His report shows him to have been a careful and experienced observer ; 

•MMC Sr >Lt „ 71 ir , TrneralMl ° « 'N.;79=S'E,oSr,,l. 'Correct, 88 H/M. 
,H5Sj i,- 4 ' 3 ?- -1 mt ° M °' '? "Ji^" S "»™J°™ ™> a sailor till Topping came. ■ CMk Ballapur, 
ffiX (-X) mlSS '°°" y C 8S 3 ' He ' b8rt (61) ' """"'■■ 1Wa < 2 ' 2 >- ' »»">• "S3 (67) 

Topping & the Oesbkvatoby 


I have the honor to transmit for your inspection a course of observations, made.. .during 
my late journey. ... I would gladly have sent them sooner, but was desirous of obtaining others 
at this place to compare them with, and in part to regulate them by. 

The latitudes are, I believe, as correct as observations made out of an observatory can 
ever be expected; I do not think it too much to say in their favour, that they can scarcely 
ever err in more than half a mile, and in general they must be much nearer the truth. ... 

I spared no pains to attain the utmost possible precision in fixing the Longitudes of my 
four principal stations, ... tho' the satellites of Jupiter were my only dependence in this effort; 
I generally staid at each station till I got several sights, and trusted to those of the first 
satellite only ; the tables of the motions of those satellites, it is true, are of late years greatly 
improved, they are still far from being as perfect as we could wish them, for these purposes. 

Had the Eclipses I made use of, been observed with accuracy at Madras, it would have 
been a very great advantage. ... ■ • , 

The Latitudes were all taken with an excellent instrument, on the Hadlean principle, 
made and graduated by Stancliffe, and an artificial Horizon, on the new construction by 
Dolland, as were the Attitudes for the correction of the chronometer. 

A telescope of Mr. Dolland's, magnifying power about 47 times, was made use of for the 
Eclipses of the satellites of Jupiter. Several Eclipses were observed that are not registered 
in this account, which contains only such as were found most correspondent and proper for 
determining the rate of the Chronometer. ... 

The four primary stations were Masulipatam, Vizigapatam, Gunjam 1 , and Calcutta. 

After describing- in detail the record of his observations, he goes on, 

I have crosen this mode of registering these results, and the data on which they depend, 
from a desire. ..of putting it in the power of any person conversant in these matters^ at any 
future time to re-examine them, and to point out mistakes, if any, in the calculations "'. 

The Board were so satisfied with this survey that they ordered Topping to 
continue his observations to the south of Madras [102], 

and also to ascertain the Longitudes of the most remarkable stations in the Carnatic, an 
undertaking for which he is peculiarly well qualified, not only from his experience m astron- 
omical observations, but also from the excellence of his instruments, which he brought from 
England with him 3 . 
and further, 

You will of course take the necessary means for having correspondent observations taken 
at this place, of ocsnltations and eclipses as you may have an opportunity of observing, for 
the longitudes of your several stations which will tend greatly to confirm the accuracy of the 
work i . 

It will he ' remembered that about this time in Bengal, Burrow was regretting; 
that he had no opportunity of getting correspondent, simultaneous, observations 
taken for him at Calcutta, and was snubbed by the Directors [163], but herein 
Madras Topping was more fortunate, for one of the members of the Madras 
Council, William Petrie, '' was a keen amateur astronomer and gave Topping his 
strong support and assistance, and was no doubt responsible for drafting the 

Topping writes that he was fortunate in the 

choice of a person to make the correspondent astronomical observations at Madras during my 
operations abroad, a point of the greatest consequence to the accuracy of the deductions, ... 

having recommended John Goldingham, who had been assisting at Petrie's private 


and Mr. Petrie has permitted me to make 

future operations at the Presidency 6 . 

Government approval was obtained in January 1788, and when Goldingham 
took leave to England the following year, Lennon was appointed to carry on the 
observations. When Petrie went on leave early in 1789, he offered his observatory 
as a »ift to Government, and Topping eagerly pressed the opportunity ; 

The Astronomical observatory built by William Petrie Esq. for his own private use, but 
which by his permission. ..has, since the commencement of my operations, been occupied in 
the public service, becomes liable... to be transferred into other hands, and. in danger 

offer of that advantageous situation for our 

1 Gran jam. 74 B/3. 2 MPC. 11-9-87 & Oriental Repertory I (119-50). 
30-11-87. 5 Mad. Cfv; Writer, 1765; Aetfng Governor of Madras 1807 ; 

27-10-1816, fi MFC. 18-1-88. 

' MFC. 11-9-87. 4 MPC. 
Governor of PWL till death 


172 Astronomical Cohtbol, Madras & Bombay 

of being no longer accessible. ... Should these consequences ensue, the Geographical work 
lam conducting will ha 2 ard a total deprivation of the correspondent observations 
tial to their confirmation and perfection. ... 


Mr. Petrie...very liberally assured me that the building... was at mv entire disposal 
for the public service and that I was at liberty to remove it ... The principal mate a ,so 
winch it ,s constructed are of a nature to be removed without the least injury to them 
the whole may be rebuilt at an inconsiderable expence '" 

In S tr,™er H r' b Th C T PaDy ^^ ** ^ Presidaic y, -veral very valuable Astronomical 
Instruments. They have a very capital Astronomical Clock, an Astronomical Quadrant 
and a large and excellent Telescope, besides other Instruments of inferior consequence 

Astronomical Instruments of the very first quality are actually constructing in England 
by the best artists, and at a very great expence by order of the Hon'ble Court of Lectors 
^:l deStmatl ° n K !° r , thlS Presid <™y and Bengal [ l64 , l66) . I hope I need no add how 
necessary a convenient place for their safe and profitable reception will be 


The Board asked Topping to suggest a position for tlie new observatory and 
forwarded his proposals to the Directors, whilst Lennon carried on at Petri*, oblrva- 
tory under the following instructions ; 

lit« Y f U T Wil ! be P , 1 f aSed t0 ° bServe ^ P articular "tention all visible Eclipses of the satel- 
lites of Jupiter; all occupations of fixed stars by the Moon, with such other phenomena as 
may serve to render these observations of the greatest possible accuracy and utihty 
w „': CI ° Ck " th t e Observatory should be particularly examined for each observation 
by a sett of at least s.x correspondent altitudes of the Sun or some fixed star 

In making observations on the satellites of Jupiter, I recommend the use of the Company's 
large Tetocope. All circumstances relative to the state of the Atmosphere ■ the posWon 

made 6 Everlth f" ft? T'^' V™^ " the ^ M daA ™ hm the observation" s 
made. . . . Everything of this nature should indeed be made so unequivocally plain and obvious 

or r,rnntT rSCm ' TT* ™ °T ^^ Wh ° m ^ £nd Mcasion ° n a 'A. to examine" 
or profit by our Astronomical labours, may meet with no doubt or difficulty whatever Tn 
understanding and digesting every article recorded in our books « ™atever m 

After completing 300 miles of survey along the southern coast during 1788 » 
U02j lopping was employed the following year on a survey of Covin ga Bay [io^I • 
I have taken great pains to ascertain with exactness the latitude of the Company s Housl It 
Connga, by 55 Meridional Observations of fixed stars. ... The sights on both sides of the 
Mendian, gave the same result within , seconds, whereas they differed as much on the „the 
™TrtVb PI ° V6ry a^ately such observations can be taken with the Hadley when 

made by a superior artist, and well divided. 

lites F „°f r T the r L ° ngitUd! ;i > i COringa ' r DOt ° nly ° bse ™ed as many of the Eclipses of the Satel- 
Iltes of Jupiter as could be seen, but took 48 lunar distances from fixed stars, equal numbers 

which th eV T & °, ^n SUe ° fthe M ° 0n ' facing this I used a stand f„ q rrheH™dleT 
for n ; s h k g f Slm ? ' aU ° W f thC inst "™ent to b<= readily placed in any possible plane and 
for the sake of exactness availed myself of the Telescope [200] 

usu^bt 1 Se thePO f i f SOf f ySignalSrrapeCtin 8 theMericii a" were determined, not as is 
vations • P d "' "" needl<5 ° f thC ^^te, ^ut by Astronomical Obser! 

wJrJl 9 °, t ^ D 7 ctora me** that "the Establishment of an Observatory at 
Madras would be of very great advantage to Science'", and Topping, after I00W 
for a suitable site, suggested that, S iooiun b 

As therefore I have long had the Institution greatly at heart, it has occurred to me that 
if a convenient House already built, and well situated, could be purchased cheap the neces 
sary additions might be made at small expence. ... One...motive for my recimmending 
an immediate purchase of this kind, in preference to my being empioyed in erecting 1 
entirely new building, is the desire I feel to prevent any unfavourable suspicions from gf ting 
upon me, or any idea arising that I have private emolument in view. ... B 

Topping & the Observatory 


Our operations have already suffered great injury from the Observer residing at a distance 
from the place of observation ; and at present little can be done of any consequence, the 
Instruments having been necessarily removed from the Observatory during the late hostile 
aspect of affairs at Madras b 

The purchase of Mr. Turing's house at Vepery was suggested at 5,000 Pagodas, 
but the owner promptly raised the price when he saw that it was wanted by 
Government, and Topping writes; 

Since the disappointment we experienced relative to Mr. Turing's House, I have enquired 
particulars of every Garden-House near Madras that has been offered for sale. ... Of these 
...I have proposed terms for two only, Mr. Edward Garrow's House on the Plain, and Mr. 
Davidson's at the Luz. Mr. Garrow's is no longer for sale, and the proprietors of Mr. 
Davidson's House require more than I can venture to recommend ~. 

He therefore submitted plans and estimate for a complete new building, " which 
may be executed with the very best materials" for 6,500 Pagodas. 

An amusing controversy now sprang up between the Chief Engineer and Top- 
ping, Major Maule 3 disputing Topping's good faith and ability, and declaring that 
both design and estimate were untrustworthy, and suggesting that Topping was 
trying to usurp duties that rightly belonged to the engineers *. Topping fortunately 
closed the dispute by finding that Garrow's house could now be secured for 
the very moderate sum of five thousand Pagodas, ... and would compleatly answer the 
purposes. ... The apparatus for fixing and securing the astronomical Instruments will cost 
from fifteen to eighteen hundred Pagodas, and not more. ... Onr operations will than be 
resumed, and every interruption removed, our valuable Instruments will not lye entirely use- 
less and unemployed, as they have unavoidably done for several months past 5 . 

Government thereupon issued orders for the purchase to be made and advanced 
the money for making the necessary additions ; the purchase was completed by the 
end of 1791, and in November of the following year Topping was able to report ; 

The new observatory is,.. in readiness to receive the astronomical instruments, which will 
be placed therein in a few days; and I had it in contemplation.. .to traverse the Bay, whilst 
the north-east winds j revail, with the time-keepers lately sent me by the Hon'ble Court of 
Directors [203]. ... The celestial phenomena at that time will be particularly favourable to 
such an undertaking; not to omit the fineness of the season during the first three months of 
the year for sea operations. I am therefore of opinion that so rare an opportunity should 
not, if possible, be neglected 6 . 

"We have no record of this trip being carried out, and a few months later 
Topping left for the Kistna and Godavari [ 106 ], leaving Goklmgham in charge of 
the observatory, which he connected to sea-level in March 1794 7 . 

Whilst making- arrangements for the building of the observatory, Topping had 
not overlooked the provision of adequate instruments, though much valuable work 
had already been accomplished with the few instruments left by Petrie. Topping 

Every correct observation made at Madras that has a corresponding one with which to 
compare it, taken under any other meridian, determines at once the relative longitude of the 
two Places : this proves the necessity of compleating our Astronomical Establishment as 
soon as possible, and shows the very extensive advantage to be derived from this kind of 
observations, which are capable of settling with all desirable accuracy, the positions of places, 
however situated or remote on the Globe. Since I first recommended these observations to 
be constantly made, I have obtained a great many taken in distant parts, whereby the relative 
Longitudes of Madras, Calcutta, Bombay, Canton and Port Cornwallis have been already deter- 
mined. ... [181] 

The Honorable Company having,. .thought proper to establish an Observatory at this 
Place, and to honor me with the conduct of it, ... 1 fiTst recommend the correspondent astro- 
nomical observations, as the only sure and practicable method of finding the relative 
position of distant transmarine situations; and I indulge myseli in a hope that, by the help of 
these observations, and the use of Chronometers, I shall in a very few years see the Charts of 
these Eastern Seas in a more correct state than those even of Europe are ; or at least a 
regular system established for the perfection of Indian Geography 8 . 

1 MPC. 17-6-91 ; the Third Mysore War was in progress. 2 MFC. 26-7-91. 3 Acting for Ross 
■who was on service in Mysore. 4 Love, III (415) ; Mai-k. MSS. LXIX, 27-7-91, et seq. *MPC. 30-9-91. 
6 MPC. 13-11-92. 7 cf. Mack. MSS. LYIII ( 2 ). Goldnigham's MS. observations of 1793, with account 
of building of the observatory, preserved at Kodaikanal Obserratory, 1940. 8 MPC. 27-12-91. 

174 Astronomical Control, Madras & Bombay 

In 1792 Topping submitted two professional papers, one 

On the most advantageous method of taking correspondent observations of the satellites of Jupiter, 
and the other On some new Improvements in the Hailey sextant. ... My general plan of opera- 
tions for improving the geographical knowledge of India, is also exhibited in these papers, 
I have spared no pains to render onr astronomical institution as beneficial as possible to' the 
important sciences of geography and navigation K 

Kegarding the second paper the Directors replied, in a somewhat obstructive 

We are informed the simplicity of the Hadley in it's use for surveying is such that any 
person of the commonest capacity may in half an hour be completely instructed in the use 
of it, and what is most desired by us is a speedy knowledge of the geography of India in 
attaining which scarce any mathematical knowledge or anything except common instruments 
are necessary, and we are persuaded the less difficulty that is made to attend science, the 
more speedy and effectual will be its progress, nor do we think Mr. Topoing's active duties 
will allow time for executing his proposed Treatise 3 . 

Sanction was obtained for the appointment of a Brahman assistant, to be trained 
to make astronomical observations, and relieve the Astronomer in case his services 
were required on some distant survey, for the Directors still considered that, 

Although correspondent observations at the observatory axe very desirable, yet that 
consideration cannot be admitted as a compleat excuse for postponing the actual surveys. 
Mr. Goldingham is not to be prevented carrying on the survey by attendance at the observa- 
tory,^ the observations at which, as before observed, must be considered as a secondary 
consideration 3 . 

Goldingham was however relieved from distant surveys, and given charge of the 
surveying school [284]. Another of his duties was the preparation of an almanac, 
suggested by Topping; 

Mr. John Goldingham, Assistant Astronomer at the Company's observatory, having at my 
desire, computet an almanac for the Meridian of Madras, a work free from the errors that 
have usually disgraced publications of this kind in India, and in which are included several 
matters beneficial to the Navigation of these Eastern Seas, I request to know whether the 
Hon'ble Board will give permission for its being published by authority of Government 4 . 

The obs 'rvations made at the observatory, including a meteorological journal, 
were now regularly sent home, and the Court resolved " to publish them for the 
benefit of the world 5 ." On Topping's death in 1796, Goldingham succeeded as 
"the Company's Astronomer and Marine Surveyor on the Coast". 

Madras Observatory was a worthy monument to Michael Topping, and contin- 
ued to he the home of important scientific work directed by a succession of 
distinguished astronomers, until in the year 1899 its operations were transferred 
to Kodaikanal 5 , a change which amongst other advantages affords a clearer atmos- 

The observatory grounds are in College Boad, Nangsmbaukam, but the build- 
ings are no longer those which Topping knew; the observatory was rebuilt in 1860 
and is noiv, 1938, occupieJ by the meteorological observatory ; the Astronomer's 
residence was rebuilt in 1869. 

Mimtaet Surveys, 1788-1800 

The only record found of astronomical observations taken by Beatson or Allan 
is the entry "latitude of Church Steeple in Tranquebar, 11° 1' 20"'", in a field- 
book of Allan's. 

Mackenzie definitely states that on his Guntur survey of 1788 "no observations 
of the variation were taken for want of time and proper instruments 8 ". He 
intended to take observations for latitude after joining the Nizam's detachment in 

'MPC. 24-1-92. ' CD to M. 23-4-94 (67). « CD to M. 23-4-94 (63. 66) < MFC 9-12-94 

* CD to M. 3-2-96 (39). ■ 58 F/8. ' Edbk. MRIO. M. 77. ■ Oriental Repertory I (57). 

Military Surveys 


1792, for he then took a sextant with him, and the Chief Engineer was trying to 
get him an artificial horizon in Madras [205]. In 1795 lie writes of his map of 
the Deccan, 

Several observations in the fieldbooks for Latitude and variations [remain] to be examin- 
ed and calculated, and others to be taken to correct the Geographical situation of places 1 . 
The difference of his outlook from that of Topping is at once evident. 
Mackenzie took latitudes to correct his perambulator and compass traverses, whereas 
Topping made his astronomical observations first, regarding the situation of places 
as of the first importance, and the filling in of detail as a secondary matter. 

The Bengal surveyors, Kyd and Colebrooke, who came down for the Mysore "War 
of 1791-2 [ 1 12-3], had the utmost respect for astronomical control; particulars 
of Colebrooke's observations are published in Asiatic Researches 3 ; and lie has left 
the following notes ; 

Tables showing results of observations of different stars ; also comparison of the survey 
with the astronomical observations. ... Instruments used were, 
A fine Sextant by Troughton of 9 inches radius. 

An Artificial Horizon of pure quicksilver over which, when the wind rendered it abso- 
lutely necessary, a glass roof was placed [162, 200]. 

An achromatic telescope by Dolland with three tubes of different magnifying powers, the 
greatest of which might have been 200 times, but the middlemost was used in the observa- 
tions until after the end of June, when the instrument being stolen by some thieves from the 
Mahratta camp, a smaller telescope was procured. 

An Arnold's chronometer was used in observing time. ... 

Frequently Amplitudes and a few azimuths were taken, to ascertain the variation of the 
needle, which never exceeded one degree, except when attracted by the Iron Ore in the 
Rocks, upon which, for the convenience of having a more distant view, it was necessary 
sometimes to put up the instrument. These local variations were ascertained nearly in the 
protraction of the map, and the bearings were corrected, or their differences were applied as 
Angles 8 . 

Benjamin Sydenham describes the observations he took when marching up to 
Hyderabad in 1 798 [117]. He had trouble with his chronometer [ 203 ] , and bad 
to' take a departure from Masulipatam instead of the Madras Observatory. . . . The longitude 
of Masulipatam Flagstaff had been deduced from Jupiter's satellites during the years 1793-94- 
95, and the medium rate of 2 chronometers for a still longer period observed at Masulipatam, 
by Mr. Topping, and at Madras by Mr. Goldingham, and finally deduced by the latter as 
Madras 8i°6'oo*-5; Masulipatam 8i° 15' 39"'75' v [181]. ... 

The altitudes were taken with a most excellent sextant of 8 inch radius, lately construc- 
ted and sent out by Mr. Stancliffe of London. The Eclipses of satellites were observed by a 
refracting telescope by Dolland. 

Observations were taken continously on the march up, and after arrival at 
Hyderabad. Repeated observations for longitude were taken from May 28th to 
June 23rd, " near Captain Mackenzie's Bungalo at the camp of Hussein Saugor" 
giving longitude 71° 46' 08"; they were then closed down owing to rainy weather. 
In October, when the weather cleared, operations against the French Troops prevented 
observations being taken before the French surrender on October 22nd [117]. The march 
of the English Detachment to the Carnatic which took place on December 13th, left a very 
short interval to be devoted to a subject which requires much time and attention : and pre- 
vented our ascertaining the correct Longitude of Hyderabad. 

Observations were however made between November 17th and December 12th, 
and the position of Hyderabad reduced to 17° 21' 43"*8 N. ; 78° 44' 56" E. 5 . 
Sydenham continued his observations on the march southwards, and then, 
having occasion to return to Madras on business, advantage was taken of this circumstance 
to send the timekeeper down to the Observatory to ascertain a new rate, and take a departure 
from Madras. ... Arriving at Amboor on 21st [February 1799], sights taken to deduce Longi- 
tude 78 42' 43", Latitude 12 51' 33* 6 

iHisfdbk. of 1797 gives regular obsns.; EM. Atfdl. MSS. 13582 (19) &, HMC. 18-5-95. 2 A- R. IV 
(321-4) 3 NoteonciiiU't, M'K-TO". 138 (41). _ 4 True value 81" 8' E. 5 True position, 17" 22' N.; 7S"27'E. 
B True positioi 

tS'N.; IS" 43' E.; Journal MEIO. M. i 


Astronomical Control, Madras & Bombay 


litflfw ^ u'TVT* m f ert f nt 3' abmt t 1 ^ geography of the west coast, and 
little he could bust beyond a few observations by Portugese sailors and Jesuit 
missionaries ; 

Latitude of Cochin observed by father Thomas is o° 58' 
«, w hC l ?tt tnde f Goa ^ the unanimous application of geographers is 71° 25' East from 
the Royal Observatory at Paris, which makes it 9 i° 25' f rom \ h ! Is ? and of Ferrol [242 n 2 

The latitude of Surat is 2 i» io" [ i 49 a . I0 ] ; and its longitude, in the ConnaLance'des 
Temps is 70° from Pans ; ... But Surat is not placed so far to the Eastward tothe r C^S 

r,,^\i raTelIer Msna ; M "\ 3 ma P of whose »»«* » mentioned by Eennell 

Sui ;n L l6S8 0m r M 't a ? atah em i bM3y *° Pe, ' sia ' and went on t0 India! reachfag 
bmat in 1638; he visited many places in Gujarat, and then went up country to 
Agra and Lahore. Beturning to Surat he sailed to Vengurla * in JanZy 1639 and 
visited Bijapur , at that time the capital of the Deccan." It is said that he 
was instructed m the use of the Astrolabe, which he used in making observaHons of the 
Latitudes and Longitudes of the places found in his Journal « ooservations of the 

DupeiTon tells us that the accepted longitude of Goa, 73° 45' B. of Greenwich 
was calculated byCassini from an observation of the eclipse of the moon madlon 
December 21st 1684 by the Jesuit Father Noel, and Bernoulli notes 
MvslZTrvTlr^ 3 l t f™,,™ Petlt °^^-mtitm Observations mathematics & 
Pragul rr 7 / f 3 * C * !TC - faCteaPatreF ™n^0N«...abanno ,684 usque annum ,708 

Thirty years later Eennell found a good deal more data at his disposal He 
was oonddent ot the latitude of Bombay, 18° 58' N "sposai. tie 

and accepted its longitude by Mr. Howe's observations ' 7 2° 38'. ... The positions of Cane 
Ramas, Angedive and Carwar points* are corrccted...b y a set of observatLTand bearing 
he late Capt. Howe, whose attention to marine science was equal to his gallantrt and know 
rh/nH r h ^f Ca ' ( Part u WS P™ fessio - I "™ had occasion repeatedly to^ck„owred"e 

*£l^:^x^ by means ot Ms colleotion ° f 0b " ns md R ~ 

Some time between 1778 and 1787 Captain Huddart, commanding the Royal 
Admiral, earned a set of chronometers down the coast from Bombay to Anjeiigo 
and then back to Bombay; by which the error of his timekeeper was ascertained 3 was 

wl a ttiTst^nT d° 1 "*"*•« l0ngit " de: ™ to ™ ^ ™° ^ -"sM 
™ I A 1 ^ ? ed ^"S^Phy « g^Uy indebted to this gentleman who has 

zzz&S&ZT*' of I6 places on ais coast ' and by that mUs 8i ™ * *™ 

Though fully recognizing the importance of Huddart's series, Eennell at first 
rejected his value for Bombay, and adjusted his work to Howe's long tide 1 u 

L^iVr^' Huddart ' S yal ™' 72 ° **'"• s - tee « »*«** |rea tr'than 
Howe s, fitted his other data much better ls [ 1 79 ] 

He took his longitude of Surat by applying Stewart's survey of Goddard's 

mitetmmet L w r ? ti0 ^^ Bm ' hanpU1 [3 '' > 2 ^> tat ^no.L moved it" 1 
ThTJu / Westward " to agree with the position of Broach, remarkino- 

This change of situation lengthens the distance between Surat and Boo hanpore I have 

itTs^byr Smith if femt ^ ~ *"""« to «* tte » ofBTSanrLrei: 
betw^e^mird^"^^ 6 " «*""" * CllarleS burner during his survey 
for SCeli Vaf o"ly % "** "° ° bSerrations durin e his ""V »* Bednur in 1783, 

* or 73' 45' E. of Greenwich; true value 73° 57'. s True value *>1° IS' w -^o^t, 
Herbert (35, 48, 59n). -f,™ Mecklenburg, Calcttl k™ I ( 297) < 18 E/9 ' '47 P% ^ ?'/?'"' 

(2). » Bo S & Pol. IS. i No e on If™ oTftf B™ S„ ^ ° b » e '™ t ? t y. »'#!■ » P«»~!« 
MSS.336(23). «oteon Map of the BanAe Parj«»n«s...Dalrymple [ 123 ». 3 j; Orme 

Bombay Obskhvatioks 


furnished with the means of joining this portion of geography to the rest, by having the 
longitude of Pigeon Island determined by Capt. Huddart 1 . 

In his later surveys through the Maratha countries Reynolds appears to have 
taken regular observations, at any rate for latitude, and expresses complete con- 
fidence in them [ 126 ], though he writes-; 

My surveys are corrected by observations, and I take this opportunity to mention the 
difficulty I labour under for want of good Instruments. The Hon'ble the Court of Director's 
have sent out Instruments for the purpose of the marine survey, . . . and I trust they 
will consider me entitled to the same assistance... ; besides the Instruments which have 
come out for the marine survey a Perambulator as well as astronomical Telescopes are necess- 
ary ; the latter for convenience sake should be as short and as light as possible ; Ephemeris 
should also be sent out 3 . 

To start the marine survey [124] the Directors had sent out 
one Box, and two Pocket, Chronometers or Timekeepers, and enclose the Astronomer Royal s 
account of their Rate, together with instructions for the use of them ; likewise an Azimuth 
Compass, a Sextant, and an Artificial Horizon, for finding the time by altitudes. ..on 
shore ; a Telescope is also sent 4 . 

The first really trustworthy observations at Bombay were made in June 1790 
by G-oldingham, on his return from leave, and were submitted to Government by 
Topping with the following letter ; 

I take an early opportunity of laying before you a series of observations made at 
Bombay by Mr. John Goldingham, which determine the Geographical situation of that place, 
I have no doubt, very accurately : it consists of a great number of Lunar observations ; 
Meridional altitudes of the Sun and Stars ; Eclipses of the Satellites of Jupiter, and Azimuths 
of the Sun ; with a few remarks on the rise and fall of the Tides. 

The Longitude of Bombay in the latest and best Charts hitherto published has an error 
of full 20 minutes; a circumstance of pernicious consequence, as the positions of other 
places on the Malabar Coast are, no doubt, equally falsified by this mistake : It is by a 
great number of accurate observations only that the true position of the several parts of the 
Globe can be determined and Geography brought by degrees nearer perfection a . 

Emmitt gives a very complicated account of the construction of the map which 
he compiled from his surveys with Little's detachment [128-30]. He had 
made only nine observations for latitude, and two for variation of the needle, and 
for the former never took more than five double altitudes at any one place. _ He 
made no observations for longitude, but hung his survey on a value for Seringa- 
patam supplied by Kyd, and on the accepted longitude of Goa. After laying down 
a rough plot of his traverses, he worked out a scale of latitude and longitude to fit 
these observations and values and form the projection for his fair map ; the follow- 
ing extracts from his description show the devices that surveyors had to use for lack 
of an orderly system. 

For my correction of Longitude I used the following method (not having been able to 
provide myself with a proper Telescope and time-piece...). At Col. Fredrick's encamp- 
ment, ...the 2nd December 1790, I observed the double altitude of the Sun's Lower Limb. 
The 5th I observed [again]. ... I took the mean Latitude of these two. ..for the true Lati- 
tude of our encampment; from thence I proceeded to Dharwar surveying; ... I observed the 
Latitude of the flag-staff in Dharwar Fort by a mean of five good observations. ... 

The difference of Longitude by a careful measured line from thence to Goa, 1° 09' 40", 
supposing the Longitude of Goa to be 73° 45' [176] fixes Dharwar in 74 54' 40", which agree- 
ing with Capt. Kyd's survey from Madras to Sreerangputtum ', and nearly with my own from 
J ayaghur 7 , I have therefore placed it in the above situation, viz., 15 27' 50" North, and 
74° 54' 40" East. Considering this as a point well fixed, I have corrected all my surveys 
from it in the following manner. 

On begining to make a fair copy of my surveys, I noted down the difference of latitude 
between Jayghur, Darwaur, and Sreerangputtum (the latter by Capt. Kyd's observations...). 
By the number of Geographical miles of Latitude contained in this difference, I divided my 
rough copy, and by the distance. ..formed by these miles, I set off the miles of Longitude, 
decreasing them in their proper proportion, thereby connecting the Longitude of every part 
of my surveys to as great a certainty as the Latitude. . . . 

1 Memoir, 1783 (28). = Bo S 4 Pol. 29-4-85. 'ft.8-1-88. ' CD to Bo. 8-3-86. 'MFC. 31-10-91. 
6 Seringapatam. 51 D/ll [ 249 ]. 7 Jaigarh E. 47 G/3. 


All the places where I ascertained the Latitude from observations, I have mentioned at 
the bottom of this letter, and also the variation of the compass, ..[rSj] The sextantl 
made use of is a patent one made by Gregory and Wright sextant 1 

m -i!u e '.wr Particular in describing the method, ... that those who may be ac- 
quainted with a better method of correcting them tor Longitude, may have it in their power 
and to judge how far any error may have been introduced into my works 1 
note lis map of northern Malabar, submitted in 1794, Emmitt has the following; 

As the value of a survey increases in proportion to the accuracy of placing its latitude 
and longitude lines, I deem it explain the method I took..,i» the map 

the ^Zie^TL^l ftT" ^r^ a SpeCimM tte ■A—*- whicl I made for 
the latitude of the mouth of Balbaputtam River z, and as I made use of the same means 

re's Hlso ' he loat of If fl *^fZ ^ fa ^ C °^ Soulea.tdlmrah count! 
renders it mneret f Malabar, and, having fixed such points correctly in the survey 

His specimen shows meridional altitudes observed to U. and Cow™, . 

MoJfD^f; 5 ^ S ofteVnrh ™ *°" ^ ^dart/observations, vT makes 

of J"" ™™ ti0n ° f T the needIe at the head of the Heggut Ghaut, I found by equal altitudes 
of the sun, the 2nd January % 793 , 54 < East. ... At Cannanore, 8th Sept. i 794 , 3 8' E 7 

Breadth of the Peninsula 

Tnrl£?» ft ^ firs * thiQ 8' £ i that ^ tlle e ->' e wheu looMn f? at the early maps of 
India ls the extraordinary shape given to the peninsula as compared with that of 

longitude"^ a rCSUlt ° f * he ^^ u ™«' tai ^ of theearlLobservationsfor 

oJWlrS general Hue of the east coast was fixed by repeated observations at 
Calcutta, Madras, and Pouchcherry, and by Eitchie in 1770-1 F i6- 7 1 it was not 

n 1»TiTt k "TT 7 f ? ? 6 retUm mar ° h ° f *»"* ^taX^ 
in 1784, though this line only touched the coast occasionally. The actual line of 

WefnTy^n^l^r-fr 8 ™ ""^ * "^ ^ ^^ 

much doubt as to the longitudes. 

The breadth of the Peninsula was discussed by D'Anyille in 1752, when he adopt- 
ed a value for the longitude of Pondicherry ' P 
more conformable to the Breadth of the hither peninsula, deduced from itinerary measures 
He makes the Breadth between Pondicherri and Maha*. on the Malabar coast and almostTn 
the same parallel 86 leagues, of ao to a degree, whereas other Geographers give jooleTues? 
™toTl6'. "^ ' WMCh * " remarkab]e ^i-eement with the true 

again 1 st li8CUSSin8 ' tllel783editi0n0fhiSlIap<,/ Hind °°> tm > Bennell compares it 
former maps, the most accurate of which makes the breadth of the hither India (or that in- 
cluded between the mouths of the Ganges and Indus) near 2 degrees and a 1/4 of Lonritude 
narrower that ,t appears in my map ; at the same time that it makes the lower plrt of^he 
Penmsu la 3/4 o la degree vnier than mine does. I have been enabled by means ofobserva! 
fons of Longitude taken at Bombay, Cochin, Madras, Calcutta, Agra, etc., together wltl 
wk" map' SUfVeyS CTteIlded fr ° m th6 ab ° Ve ^ t0 fram - W good g/ouna 
By the time the map reached India, Kelly had carried a surveyed line from 
Neppatam on the east coast to Palghat, only 50 miles from the west coast [98-0T 
EenneH lXnmSuh 26i e~8»I*i»J miles, or minutes of arc, wide? than 

Breadth of the Peninsula 


The latitude and longitude of Policaud ! being thus ascertained; being in possession of 
Col. Humbertston's route from the Malabar Coast to this place ; also the routes of several of 
our officers who marched ■with detachments from hence to Cccheen ; I cannot... place Paniane 8 
in a higher latitude than io° 34', nor in a greater longitude from London than 75 59' ; where- 
as Major Rennell places it in 10° 50' and in longitude 76 25' 30". I find that Cocheen 3 lies 
in. ..longitude.. .76° 3' 30" instead of 76 48' which he was led to place it in. ... 

Upon the whole I find that Major Rennell's maps. ..loses 26| Geographical miles in longi- 
tude between Panian and Nagapatnam. And the more to confirm the Major in this error, he has- 
the authority of Mr. Smith's observations in 1776, which place Cochin in longitude 76 26' 30". 

I have thought it necessary to be thus particular, that the Honorable Board might be 
satisfied as to the grounds on which 1 have presumed to differ from so able a geographer as 
Major Rennell 4 [98]. 

In his Memoir of 1788, Rennell discusses the question again, making use of the sur- 
veyed lines of Fullarton's and Hirrnberstone's marches, and the longitude observations 
of Howe and Huddart, which lie finds agiee to within a minute in giving- the longitude 
of Tanur on the Malabar coast a mean value of 75° 50' 10", and he concludes, 

With respect to my former idea of the breadth of the peninsula, although the extent in 
longitude between Bombay and Madras, remains nearly as before; yet by the swelling out oi 
the coast on the south of Bombay, I reckoned it too narrow by about 30 G. miles in the 
parallel of Madras ; and 27 in that of Pondicherry ; 
thus exactly agreeing with Kelly. 

The Mysore war of 1790-2 brought new measurements further north, but no 
direct line ; and Rennell writes of the second edition of his map of the South Pen- 
insula [243-4], 

As it is not known whether the distant between Seringapatam and Cannanore... , in the 
sketch drawn by Capt. Reynolds, ... was actually measured ; we are still left in a state of sus- 
pense concerning the true breadth of the Peninsula in that important parallel. I am, however, 
strongly inclined to believe that it was measured ; because it seems likely that Capt. Reynolds.. . 
had an opportunity of doing it; and because his representation of the distance differs in 
some degree, from all the former accounts of it ; to which may be added that his result agrees 
nearly with the computation of the land marches and with Capt. Huddart's longitudes 5 

In 1800 Colebrooke having compiled a new map of the Peninsula [244] re-ope- 
ned this question, and though the maximum changes that he found were less than 
20 miles, it will be seen in the table below, that across the Mysore belt his latest 
width was from 20 to 60 miles too great. Kelly's surveys had brought the width 
further south very near the truth, but the impossibility of carrying survey directly 
across the territories of Mysore and the Deccan had prevented the survey of any 
direct lines from coast to coast north of the 11th parallel. Colebrooke writes 6 ; 

As it appears from the accompanying map, constructed chiefly from Actual surveys, that 
the Breadth of the Peninsula is throughout narrower than it had formerly been represented, 
a comparison of it with the latest construction. Major Rennell may not be uninterest- 
ing. The following table exhibits the comparative breadths under the several Parallels, from 
10 to 16 Degrees, and will also serve to verify the longitude of several places upon the Mala- 
bar Coast. 

Breadth of old 

Breadth of the 






















15° (Karwar) 





14 3 (Phatkal) 






13° (MangaJore) 






12° (Cannanore) 






11° (Calicut) 





- 6 

10° (Cochin) 





- ii 

[In this table the number of miles in columns 2, 8, and 5 are those given by Colebrooke ; columns 
4 and 6 show the errors that yvt remained in Colefarocke's map.] 

1 PalghSt, 58/B/9. B Ponnini, 10° 48' N. ; 75° 56' E. 3 Cochin, 9° 58' S". ; 76° 14' E. 4 BPC. 

28-6-84. a Peninsula (1). 6 B Pol C. 10-7-1800. 



■ ■ Fundamental Longitudes of Calcutta & Made as 

There was- so much difficulty in the determination of longitude, that many of 
the earlier maps made no attempt to indicate longitude from Europe, but merely 
'showed a meridian line through either Calcutta or Madras, sometimes with other 
meridians measured from it [225, 229, 239]. "We have already noticed the efforts of 
Pearse and others to determine the longitudes of these primary points with some 
precision, but it was not until the founding of the Madras Observatory, and the 
publication of Maskelyne's [155 n. 13] new astronomical tables, that the problem 
could be tackled with any confidence. 

Colebrooke took up the subject with enthusiasm, and extracts from his corres- 
pondence with Goldingham between 1800 and 1803 will give an idea of how the 
matter then stood. 

It was remarkable that in many of the old Charts, and indeed in some which have lately 
been published, the longitudes were mostly found to lie too far East. ... The late Mr. Reuben 
Burrow... has pointed out... an error both in the common practice of making the Lunar observa- 
tion and method of computation, and Doctor Dinwiddie i has more recently made it appear 
that an error in the Lunar Tables, tending to increase the apparent longitude of places East 
of Greenwich, ... does so actually exist. ... 

The Eclipse? of the Satellites of Jupiter have afforded a more easy and correct way of 
ascertaining the Longitudes of places at land, ever since tables of these Eclipses have been 
calculated and published in the Astronomical Ephemeries, but yet these Tables have been 
found to be not altogether free from error. ... Correspondent observations of the same pheno- 
mena, should always be preferred when they can be procured. 

An Eclipse of the Moon affords an easy method of finding the longitude... ; the observa- 
tion is of course liable to error, yet the mean of several will give a pretty accurate result. . . . 

I shall now give my reasons for having fixed the longitudes of Madras and Pondicherry 
in the accompanying map differently from Major 8 minutes of a degree. 

Major Rennell...has stated the longitude of Madras, at 8o° 24' 40", which he derives 
from the observations of three different gentlemen, Messrs Howe [169], Dalrymple [qv.], and 
Topping, hut does not mention in what manner the observations were made ; it is probable 
however that they were all lunar ", and if so, that those of the two former were taken at a 
time when the Hadley's Quadrant, or Sextant was very far from that state of improvement 
to which those instruments have lately been brought ; in that case an error of a minute in 
taking the Lunar distance might easily have happened. ... 

M. le Gentil 3 was deputed by the king of France to observe at Pondicherry the Transits 
of Venus over the Sun's disc, what took place in the years 1761 and 1769; unfortunately 
he did not arrive there in time to observe the first, and was prevented by cloudy weather 
from observing the second; during the time of his sojourn at that place, he... determined its 
longitude by a series of observations of the Eclipses of Jupiter's first Satellite, which he de- 
duced from correspondent observations... taken at Greenwich and in France. ... The result 
was Longitude of Pondicherry East of Greenwich, 5 h 19" 1 26" [169]. 

If the Longitude of Madras be deduced from the above by adding the difference of 
Meridians by survey, viz, 25 minutes of a degree, we shall have.. .80° 16' 30". ... I have 
likewise inferred the Longitude of Madras from Calcutta. 

Taking Pearse's longitude of Fort "William as 8S C 22' 07"- 5, and applying 
bearing and distance from his own surveyed line along the east coast [41-2], 
Colebrooke derives a value for Madras very close to that from Le dentil's obser- 
vations. He then considers Burrow's longitude of Eussapugly [160, 162] ; 

As Mr. Burrow resided a considerable time at Russapugly, it is also possible that his 
observations at that place would have been more numerous and various than anywhere else, 
of which although he has not left us the detail, yet we may venture to take the result on 
the word of a man of such distinguished abilities. 

Now by taking the longitude of Fort William, as deduced from Mr. Burrow's longitude of 
Russapugly, and applying the difference of Meridian, ... the longitude of Madras will be 5 h 
2i m o6», agreeing exactly with that which was deduced from le Gentil's observations, and 
differing only half a second from the longitude inferred from Colonel Pearse, which very close 

'James Dinwiddie, LLD. spent several years in Calcutta from 1795. 2 Nearly all to satellites of 
Jupiter. 3 Gf uillanme Le Gentil de la Galaisiere ; of the Academie Royal des Sciences ; pub. account 
of magnetic & other scientific work at Pondicherry & over the Indian Ocean [ 1 56]. 

Fundamental Longitudes of Calcutta & Madras 


coincidence, though possibly in some degree fortuitous, at least proves that there cannot be 
any material error in any of these results. I have accordingly placed Madras in 8o° 16' 30* 1 . replied in 1803 3 ; 

About 53 sets of Lunar observations was taken at Madras with different Instruments ; 
and the results, reduced to the Hon'ble Company's Observatory, gave its Longitude 8o° ig' 55* 
East of Greenwich. 

Also 38 sets of Lunar observations were taken at Coringa ; ... by observations with Chrono- 
meters three successive years 3 , Masulipatam was found East of the Madras Observatory 
54' 56*; Coringa had been previously found East of Masulipatam i° io.j', and therefore East 
of the Observatory 2 5' 26" ; hence the Longitude of the Observatory by these observations 
will be 8o° 20' 38". 

Also, 48 sets of Lunar observations were taken at Bombay, which gave the Longitude... 
72 57' 23". By a capital choronometer, the difference of Longitude from Bombay to the 
Madras Observatory was y° 24' 35" '*. The Longitude of the observatory of these observations 
is therefore 8o° 21' 58". I have reason to think, from other observations in my possession, 
this difference of Longitude is very near the truth. 

The Eclipses of the satellites are very numerous. The first result was obtained in the 
year 1787, by correspondent Eclipses taken at Greenwich, Canton, Calcutta, and Madras ; 
which gave the Longitude of Canton 113° 10/ 07", and the difference of Meridians between 
Canton and Fort William 24 54'; hence the Longitude of the latter, by these sights, is 
88° 25' 07". 

By a lunar eclipse observed with great care, the Longitude of Fort William was 88° 25'. 
And by correspondent Eclipses at Greenwich it was 88° 24' 53". ... 

Ail the Madras observations were taken at Mr. Petrie's observatory. The Longitude of 
Canton was determined. Captain Huddart; and the Calcutta observations were taken by 
Mr. Lindley, formerly Assistant to the Royal Observatory. ... By correspondent sights at 
Madras and Canton, the Longitude of the former was 8o° 19' 53". 

By a series of Eclipses of the satellite of Jupiter, observed between the years 1787 and 
1790, and the Tables corrected by observations at Greenwich taken at or about the same 
time, the Longitude of the Company's Observatory is 80 ° 17' 14", 

Taking a mean through all these values Groldingham deduced the longitude of 
the Observatory to be 80° 19' 21" -2. He then discusses the calculations made by 
Colebrooke, and after making various small chang'es, and combining his results with. 
those already detailed } he deduces the following, 

80° 21' 15" 

80° 18' 54" 
88° 25' 12" 
72° 55' 13" 

[ Modern Values ] 
[80° 17' 16" -48] 

[80° 14' 15" 
[88° 22' 00" 

Fort St. George Church 

Madras Observatory 

Fort William 

Bombay Church 
Colebrooke replied, 

Although. ..I cannot suppose that Mr. Goldingham has been far from the truth, yet I do 
not think that his deductions are so correct that the Longitude of either as given by him 
can. depended upon as an Unerring Standard, from which the Longitudes of all other 
places in India should be calculated. ... Some new lights may be thrown on the subject by 
a comparison of the Greenwich Observations with those which have been taken at the Madras 
Observatory since the year 1790. I take the liberty of transmitting for this purpose a dup- 
licate set of Dr. Maskelyne's Observations, . . . consisting of the 3rd volume and two numbers 
for 1799 and 1800, which Mr. Goldingham not being yet in possession of, I request you will 
forward to him. 

I have every reason to believe that the true Longitude of Fort St. George will be found 
between 8o° 16' 30" and 80° 21' 43" as stated by Mr. Goldingham, the difference being only 

] B Pol C. 10-7-1800. 2 DDn. 47(1-15"). :i by Topping 1793-6 f 105-6". * by Goldingham [177]. 
*BPC. 21-4-1803. 





Bennell in Bengal, 1764-77 - Route Traverses - Madras Jag*, 1767-74 - MicUd 
Tofjnng, 1788-94 —Baramahal & other Madras Surveys, 1792-9 -Madras Swrey- 
■mg School, 1796-1800 — Journals £ Meldboohs. ' 

WHEN Eennell reached Bengal at the age of 22, he had been some 8 years at 
sea and had gamed considerable practice at the surveying of coasts and 
harbours, with a certain amount of instruction from brother officer* 
Most of his assistants appear to have had some knowledge of surveying before 
they came to India; : for he seems to have had no opportunity of a personal meeting 
with the majority of them, and in such instructions as have been found, he assumes 
their knowledge of how to run and protract a compass traverse. 

Prom his Journal of 1764-67 [i yn.i i] , and a study of the large-scale river surveys 
ot his first year s work, we learn a good deal about Bennett's own methods His 
instruments included a Hadley's quadrant [199] and at least two chains; he had a 
compass, and took astronomical observations to find its variation; he procured later 
a sextant and a theodolite. For his river surveys he surveyed the banks by chain 
traverses, and the intersection of prominent bends and points with his quadrant 
arid took occasional observations for latitude. He occasionally checked the length 
of his chain recording errors u P to 8 inches excess [ ,98]. He left marks at the 
end ot each length of survey, which he picked up on re-starting 

Throughout his first river survey he distinguished between cursory survey bv 
way of reconnaissance, and the exact survey which he made of any channel which 
might give him the route to the south for which he was searching. 

He appears to have kept up large-scale protractions day by day, at first on the 
scale of 4 inches to a nautical mile, but later on that of 2 inches to a mile f 247 1 
He changed over to British miles later. 

Hirst gives the following note on the first sheet of the Ganges survey of 1764 

The map shows some, but not all, of the triangulation and other stations used ; here and 
there are double lines which were bases measured with more care than other lines on the man 
The methods by winch the map was constructed can, however, be gleaned from the map ■ first 
of all a base was measured near JellinghP, and a traverse was run from it to the Damoda'r end 
of the map ; wherever the traverse crossed deep water triangulation was resorted to and here 
and there fresh base fines were measured. From points on the traverse, bends in the river 
banks and village sites etc. were intersected. ... 

The traverse is sometimes on one bank and sometimes on the other. In manv places 
notes are made where the work is not exact 2 . 

"When Eennell first started his surveys on land he appears to have had no system 
ot running traverses 111 circuits or checking them by cross lines, nor does he appear 
to have any regular system of astronomical control. His earlier surveys were aimed 
to complete some definite length of river, or the route to some important place or 
a major boundary. His surveyors were given certain vague areas to survey 

As he gradually gained a better knowledge of the geography of the country he 
was able to give more precise instructions to his surveyors, and these appear to have 
been in the form of orders for running carefully measured circuits through places 

■Jalangi, 78D.12. ! Hitst 4 Ascoli (1). 

Rennell in Bengal 


of importance, with other lines of cursory survey [35-6]. The following- extracts 
are taken from instructions issued at the end of 1776 ; 

You are hereby directed to compleat the general Survey of the Jungleterry [34 n.o] etc., 
observing the same rules for your conduct as you followed during your former survey, viz., to 
lay down the direction and length of the principal roads, the course of the principal Rivers or 
Nullahs, and to describe the face of the country in general, by distinguishing the Hills, woods, 
'jungles, morasses, arable sands, and to remark the situations of Forts, passes and gauts, as 
well as every particular as may appear worthy of remaTk. ... 

[Then after a list of routes to be followed], you will please to observe that only about 
one seventh part of the whole distance is to be measured, the remainder is to be estimated, 
according to the method you sometimes practised heretofore. Your surveys are to be drawn 
on the same scale as formerly, vi2., 2 miles to an inch 1 . ... 

You are hereby directed to proceed on a survey of the unexplored part of Ellahabad, 
Oude &c. . . . You will herewith receive a list of the Roads, etc., that you are to survey, to 
which you must conform as nearly as Circumstances will permit. . . . 

According to the list of Routes, the point of commencement of your survey is at Secunder- 
pour. You are to trace the Road from thence to Buxar & Benares. I know not on which 
side of the Ganges the principal Road lies; but it will be your business to enquire, and act 
accordingly. ... 

If escort is provided you will proceed from Benares first to Biorigur Fort, and then in a 
direction nearly south till you come to the extreme limit of the Benares District ; and hairing 
found the Boundary, chuse such a route westward as will enable you to describe the course of 
it, till you close the said Boundary at, or near, the village of Gorah 2 , which is represented in 
Mr. Bruce's survey as lying on the frontiers of Chandail 3 ( the territory of the Rajah Gobind 

Then follow detailed instructions as to tracing- boundaries, marking- villages, 
passes, depths of rivers, and making junction with other surveyors; 

It is not meant that you should follow the boundary through all its minute windings, but; 
with such a degree of exactness only as may be expressed in a map of 5 miles to an inch. 

Some roads were to be "measured in a cursory manner", others 
by actual mensuration, in order that I may be able to connect your former Survey with Capt. 
Marsack's. . . . Your surveys must be laid down on scale of two British miles to an inch : they 
must be regularly numbered, & put to paper as soon as possible after they are taken, lest, in 
case of accident to your Baggage, we should lose the fruits of your labours. ... 

In your plans, the general face of the country is to be described, whether Hills, Woods, 
Jungles, swamps or arable sands ; the classes of towns, villages. Forts, &c. must be distingui- 
shed by proper marks; and the passes, gauts, Fords, and Ferries must be noted 4 . 

For the measurement of distances perambulators were generally preferred to 
chains ; 

To show that long distances may be accurately measured by a perambulator, I need only 
mention that during the Bengal survey I measured a meridian line of three degrees with a 
perambulator, and found it to agree minutely with the observations of latitude [ 152]. How- 
ever, due allowance was made for the irregularities of the ground, wherever they occurred 5 . 

Though ti-iangulation was quite out of the question for his survey of Bengal, 
Eennell fully appreciated its value for the hilly country of the peninsula [89]. 
He complains bitterly about the lack of information given by early surveyors 
about the construction of their maps; indeed, few surveyors ever thought to put 
their names or even a date on their surveys or fieldbooks, quite apart from the 
professional information Eennell wanted ; 

It should be a rule observed in all plans, to note how the scale was obtained ; whether by 
actual measurement ; difference of latitude ; or estimation of distances ; to which may be 
added, that the meridian line or parallel should be drawn across the whole space in the plan, 
to prevent errors in measuring the angles of bearing 6 . 

It may be fitting here to refer to Dalrymple's Essay on the most Commodious 
methods of Marine Surveying, written by him before 1765 and revised and published 
in 1771 7 . Dalrymple had his first lessons in navigation and marine surveying from 
Thomas Howe, in whose ship he sailed for Borneo in 1759, and Eennell had spent 

^oPringle; BPC. 5-12-76 (A). : Kora, 63B/8. 3 Chandels, petty Eajas of Btmdelkhand, Imp. 
Gas. U.P.K214). *To Dawes; BPC. 5-12-76 (C). * Memoir, 1783 (66). ^Memoir, 1793 (25n). *<£... 
methods recommended in 1784 [ 190]. 

184 Professional methods of survey 

nearly a year as Dalrymple's surveyor during- his second voyage of 1762-3. The 
following are extracts from Dalrymple's essay; 

The Basis of all Surveying is in determining a Distance, for unless some Base is found, or 
assumed, no Chart can be made. ... 

Experience has fully convinced me, that Bearings taken by Compass cannot be safely 
trusted to in making a correct Draught. I have found not only a Difference of 3° or more in 
different Compasses, but in the same Compass at different times; I do not say the Effect had 
no Cause, but there was no sensible one which I could discover : And I have heard other 
people say their Observations gave room to believe there is a casual Deviation consequent to 
the State of the Atmosphere, or some other occult influence. ... 

Hadley's Quadrant is as much preferable to the Compass for taking Angles in Facility, as 
Exactness. In the common Observation for finding the Latitude, the Hadley being held 
upright. . . . For taking Angles, the Hadley is held horizontal. . . . 

Capt. Plaisted's Practice of using, for determining the Course and Distance in Soundings, 
a Lead instead of a Log to his Line ( the stray Line corresponding to the Depth of Water ) 
seems to be a good Method of correcting the log. 

In another place he writes; 

It is not pretended that any of these Charts are Surveys, according to my idea of the word 
Survey ; by which I understand " a Chart where everything is miri 'tidy and accurately laid down, 
so that there is no room for additions or corrections ". But such works very seldom appear, 
and I have seen some Charts very defective and erroneous, which the Editors have thought 
proper to call Surveys. . . . But an implicit confidence is what no man is excusable for placing 
in any Chart, and I exculpate myself from all consequences which may proceed from such 
misconduct 1 . 

Of map reproduction he writes. 

It is almost impossible to get a chart entirely exact from the impression of a copper-plate ; 
besides those errors in the original to which all human performances are liable, there are many 
peculiar to engravings; the unequal shrinking of the paper; and the great difficulty of having 
a drawing traced exactly on the plate is another 2 . 

Route Traverses 

As might be expected, it was only practicable to undertake deliberate surveys, 
■such as Rennell carried out over Bengal, over territory which had been formally 
ceded to the Company. The only means of acquiring knowledge beyond these 
bounds was through the marches of troops or political missions ; and before about 
1790, except for Charles Reynolds, special journeys for the particular purpose of 
.survey were hardly thought of. 

A. large part of Rennell's Map of Hindoostan was rilled in from travellers' 
journals which gave nothing more than a rough estimate of the distances travelled ; 
these were more useful when a record was kept of each day's march and its general 
compass bearing [10]. 

Most of Pringle's road surveys in the Carnatic record each day's march to the 
nearest quarter of mile and gave no bearing whatever. The trundling of a 
perambulator was a simple matter, but the continuous recording of the windings 
of a road, especially when the greater part of the march was made by night, would 
have been most difficult. In his later work Pringle supplemented his road measure- 
ments by bearings taken from hill tops, and occasional observations for latitude, 
but in the main the military road surveyor gave little thought to the general 
o-eography of the country, and concentrated on the measurement of distance. 

Where perambulator measurements were impossible, as through thick jungle, 
time was noted by the watch and converted to distance by the estimated rate of 
march [7 5-6]. Such computation was always employed when travelling by boat. 
The more experienced surveyors made a regular deduction from their measured 
distances to allow for the unevenness and winding of the roads, and also, in hilly 
country, to reduce the measured distance to the horizontal [ 188 ]. 

1 General Introduction to the Charts Sf Memoirs, 3rd edn. 1787 ( viii ). ' Memoir of a Chart of the 

Southern Ocean (2 ), Dalrymple. 

Route Traverses 


Bennett notes that when using any route distance for map compilation he 
deducted one eighth part for distances of 100 miles, and one seventh for distances 
of from 200 to BOO miles, and conversely. 

Those who wish for a general rule for changing horizontal distance into road distance in 
their common references to maps may break the line of distance into portions of not more than 
ioo or 150 miles, and then add to the whole sum of distances so obtained, one eighth part 1 . 

Those surveyors who had the necessary knowledge and instruments took 
observations for latitude, and for variation of the compass, at frequent intervals 
[ 155]. There was however no regular school of surveying [ 267 ], nor any one 
co-ordinating authority, and each surveyor was his own master until Colebrooke, 
after he became Surveyor General, tried to introduce some regularity of method 
[187-8]. Extracts ai e now given from the journals and reports of various surveyors. 

In describing his survey of 1775 [30-1], Smith discusses the danger of carrying 
out a long line of survey by perambulator measurements without regular observations 
for latitude and longitude ; 

The "best way is to join both these methods together by making astronomical observations 
at the end of every day's measurement, and thereby correct the measures by the chain of 
perambulator, and also the Bearings by the compass ; all this may be done and the survey of 
the whole country taken in the most private manner, without the knowledge of even so much 
as a person's own bearers or servants, and at the usual rate of travelling in a palanquin, which 
is about ten times as expeditious as any method yet practised, by means of the following 
contrivance adapted to a palanquin. 

He then describes, with a sketch and full mechanical details, the fitting of a 
wheel trailing along the ground, beneath the palanquin, connected by a rod and 
endless screw to a cyclometer which could be read by the surveyor whilst seated 
comfortably inside. There is no record of this ingenious device being adopted by 
anyone else, and it is by no means certain, either, that Smith really put it into 
practice, for he writes, 

Not only the places upon the road are inserted, but all those in view from the road, with 
their bearings by the compass, and their distances by estimation. Indeed all the distances 
were obtained by the same way, from the rate of travelling per hour, which in general, 
correspond so well with the Latitudes and Longitudes taken each day, that they cannot be 
much wrong. ... The point of the compass following the name of a nullah or river, shows the 
direction of its course, and sometimes that of its current 2 . 

Colebrooke's survey along the east coast in 1784 fully deserved Pearse's praise 
[41-2]. His fieldbook gives perambulator measurements for each day's march, 
and for many branch lines to the coast and important places off the line of march; 
where opportunity occurred bearings were taken to conspicuous hills, or short base- 
lines laid out and points fixed "by trigonometry". Astronomical observations for 
latitude were taken at almost every halting place 3 . 

The later Madras surveyors, including Schlegel, took full advantage of hills along 
their routes, and by intersecting hilltops were able to check their measured distances. 
In describing his surveys with Puliation's army during 1783 [98], Kelly refers thus 
to the work of the average route surveyor; 

A pocket compass and watch are the sum of his apparatus, and if he guesses within half 
a point of the bearing, and half a mile of the distance, of one village or encampment from 
another, he is allowed to be very accurate in his observations [28]. 

His own methods were different; he fixed the latitude and longitude of Madura 
by repeated observations, ...which observations correspond exactly with its bearing and 
distance from Trichinopoly by several routes, measured carefully with a Gunter's chain, and 
the angles taken with a complete theodolite. ... 

The road. ..has been carefully measured with a chain, ... and the bearing taken from village 
to village with a well -graduated theodolite, the whole corrected by the intersections of large 
triangles formed by the peaks of every remarkable hill. Pagoda, or other object discoverable 
in route ; ... all these surveys further corrected by astronomical observations 4 . 

After describing his traverse from Ongole in 1783 [100], Lennon continues, 

This road is laid down particular exact, for I traversed it four different times, and always 
found the bearings and distances to correspond. 

1 Memoir, 1793 (7n). -Journal, EM. Addl. MSS. 29213. 3 Fdbfe. DDn. 2 &4, * BP0. 2S-6-S4. 


Professional methods op survey 

The rivers I took particular care in tracing, and ascertaining their exact courses The 
Mussy I crossed m about ten different places, and of the few parts that I did not actually 
trace, I had a view of its windings through the whole extent. 

The roads.. .were laid down at the time, according to the Proportion of 8 and Si English 
rmles traversed by the perambulator, to 7 horizontal miles of the same kind; varying the 
proportion, within the above bounds, by the diversity of the roads ' [ 188 1. 
Of his survey of Guntur in 1788 [ 1 1 1-2], Mackenzie writes, 

The great number of remarkable hills and Pagodas facilitated very much a survey of this 
kind, but.. .on the Ongole road this help was much wanting, as the road goes there through 
thick groves of Palmyras, in a level country near the sea, where the sight is much circums- 
cribed, and a view of the mountains can be rarely obtained. 

The situation of some remarkable objects near Nellore were ascertained by an actual 
survey of the environs of that place ; the principal are certain named Pagodas and rocks ■ the 
road to SeropiUy Fort was accurately measured by the chain, and the distance of upwards of 
ir mdes, from Nellore to SeropiUy, formed the base for the angles taken of various points 
and several remarkable hills in the Western Chain, which may be clearly seen from Nellore 
and served to correct the distance run by the perambulator. 

This foundation being laid in August 1788, I measured the road from Nellore following 
the windings of the road, minuting the distance at every change in the direction and country 
correcting the small errors, which unavoidably arose from the pocket compass used by bear- 
ings taken at every convenient station with the theodolite, of those remarkable objects 
mentioned already, and of others which occured in the course of this survey. 

In protracting the measurements on the plan, I laid down each small distance according 
to the beanng of compass, and afterwards corrected them by the stationary bearings so that 
the distance on the plan may be reckoned horizontal, the road of winding distance being in 
the abstract of the routes annexed. 

I also took sketches of the outlines of the remarkable hills, which served to make them 
known to me when viewed afterwards from other quarters ; some of these may be distin- 
guished at upwards of 60 miles 5 . 

Surveyors working in the Ganges valley had, however, to depend entirely on 
measured distances and astronomical observations. Here are notes from Cole- 
brooke's journal of a survey near Cawnpore in 1788 ; 

November 2nd, marched about II miles in apalanquin. ... Traverse table gives the bearing 
of the road by compass points, thus, NNW. ; NW. by N. ; ... Time is given to the nearest 
minute all along the road, with difference of time between villages ; . . . distances are computed 
from these intervals of time. ... Remarks on each village and stream that is passed. 

This estimate of distance is deduced from the time of travelling in a Palanqueeu and I 
have found by several trials that the average rate in 4 miles per hour when the road is 
tolerable [39]. ... 

Total difference of time 4 '' «.. This at the rate of 4 miles per hour would produce 
17* miles nearly, but as the bearers were latterly a good deal fatigued, and went slow I 
allowed only the rate of 3 miles per hour. Result r6 miles. ... 

The distance (six furlongs) is guessed from Begum Serai. The road was so difficult 
that it could not easily be computed from the time. 

Astronomical latitudes were taken almost every evening. The fteldbook con- 
tarns occasional neat little plans, with no indication of scale, obviously to assist in 
the protraction later on. It also contains records of routes measured by peram- 
bulator ; some of these measurements are made without the direct personal supervision 
of the surveyor, who discusses various discrepancies noticed 3 . 

It was usual to protract each day's work on fairly large scale; Bmmitt notes 
I protracted the rough copy of my surveys with a circular protractor 4 inches radius 
vmg nonius and double prickers 4 . 
Burrow describes his protraction thus 5 
The routes may be so easily laid down in the manner of traverse sailing, by using the 
differences of time for the distance and the course as usual, but though I had calculated most 
of them, I found it was just as easy to lay them down from the original observations as from 
the results, and therefore I left the results out; that is, first lay them down on a separate 
piece of paper, then reduce them to the proper scale from the given difference of Latitude 

' Oriental Repertory, I (53). s ib(57). • Journal, DD11. 7. * Bo. S & Pol. 23-11-92. 

Route Traverses 


and similar figures, and then protract the result into the map ; or it might be done by taking 
the mean rate that the camels travelled for the measure of the real distance in the given 
time 1 . 

Here is a note by Colebrooke regarding his survey in Mysore during- the war of 

In marching, the direction and turnings of the road were observed with a pocket compass, 
and, whenever a village, tank, or any conspicuous object occurred, or the road altered its 
direction, the distance given by the wheel was carefully noted down. The same was done 
whenever the theodolite was used. Separate Protractions of each day's march, upon a scale 
of one mile to an inch, in which, besides what was allowed for crooked roads, a reduction of 
1/30 was made for the inequalities of the ground and the unsteadiness of the man who drove 
the wheel, enabled me to ascertain nearly the direction or horizontal distances, which, being 
then corrected, were applied as Bases in the protraction of the map 3 . 

A striking- feature of Ooiebrooke's fieldbooks in Mysore was their illustration 
by artistic panoramas, drawn in pencil and colour wash, with hearings to prominent 
points which would be of the greatest assistance in recognition and for protracting 
the map [ 188 ] 3 . Similar panoramas and sketches are found in a fieldbook of 
Mackenzie's, who was not, however, such an artist as Colebrooke 4 . 
Here is an extract from Davidson's journal of 1790 [42] ; 

The distance of our journey is computed according to the measurement of the country, 
and reduced to the English standard by our own practical knowledge and the time occupied 
by each clay's journey. The course is occasionally regulated by a pocket compass, but I had 
a greater dependence on observing the position of the sun, moon, and certain planets. . . . Total 
distance 565 miles. 

This is unlikely to mean that he took astronomical observations, but rather that he 
judged the general bearing of the road by watching the sky, most of the marching 
being done at night to avoid the heat of the June sun [ 41 ] 5 . 

The Surveyor General entered the following note in the journal, 
The distances have probably been overrated, and probably did not exceed 500 miles. The 
rate of 3 miles per hour allowed.. .was too much in hilly country, where considerable Jungles 
intervened 6 . 

Emmitt's description of his survey with Little [ 1 28-30 ] shows that the Bombay 
surveyors were in no way behind those of Bengal and Madras in the care taken oyer 
their measurements ; he 

observed the latitude of the mouth of the Jayghur River; ... the windings of the river Major 
Sartorius gave me, the bearings of which he took with a good compass measuring the distance 
with a "log". ... 

At Cordona I began the survey, carefully ascertaining a connection of stations in the di- 
rection of the road, the bearing of which I took with a good sight compass, regularly entering 
them in a Field Book, together with offsetts to villages. Hills, Tanks, and wells, or any other 
object worthy of notice, measuring the distance between each station and offset with a good 
perambulator; in crossing of Rivers or Nullas I noted down their distance, measuring 
straight from station to station, by which method the line of Survey served me for a base, 
whereby I ascertained the distance of more remote objects, such as remarkable parts of ranges 
of Hills, Forts &c. by taking two or three bearings of them from different stations in my line 
of survey. 

I protracted the survey daily on a scale of five statute miles and a half and three hundred 
and twenty yards to an inch, taking the distance from a diagonal inch scale answering to ten 
thousand yards, which enabled me to lay off a distance correct to fifty yards or even less. ... 
The scale of my surveys is four and a half inches the equatorial degree, which was 
approved of by Captain Kyd [112]. As the Paper on which I had to make my copies was very 
indifferent, I have... given a correct List of all the Towns in their regular order of survey, 
lest a difficulty might arise in making out some of the names'. 

From the time that Colebrooke became Surveyor General he gave every surveyor 
detailed instructions as to his method of survey, extracts from which are now 
given. To Blunt for his survey of 1795 [59-63] ; 

1 10 Maps, MS. 5. » MBIO. 13S (41). 3 Tdbk, 31. 120, QBO. Lib. Ab. 
& Mount [188]. 4 Jdbt BM. Addl. MSS. 13582 (19). 'Leckie (50). 
IJo. Si Pol. 23-11-92. 

i; v. instructions to 
G BM. Add 1 . MSS. 135SS. 


Professional methods op survey 

The particular mode of carrying on your survey you are, I trust, sufficiently acquainted 
with; I have therefore httle to add on that head. I wonld however recommend to you to 
toy down your work upon a large scale, protracting each day's work upon a scale of one 
British mile to an mch, and deducting 1/30 for the unevenness of the ground and the un- 
steadiness of the man who drives your wheel; a reduction of 2 / 3 o may be made when the 
road is very rugged and full of short turns and.. .windings that you cannot ascertain by the 

Your distances thus corrected become so many bases which you may apply to the con- 
struction of your General Plan, which should not, I think, be laid down on a scale less than 
two British miles to an Inch. 

It is advisable also to make rough sketches of the hills in your Field Book, which will 
greatly aid and assist you m the protraction and finishing of your plan 

lurirZT ""''it" Ue d K reCtly thr ° agh the C0Uat ^ *» *» not - S'ocise, adrmt of your 
rT'S'^ ° mP !, maP , ySnrVey ' Itwillbe <*°f**, therefore, to take down from the 
fre^t of s TbT g ^l eS and HarCarahs ' the Dta <*<™ »nd distances of such places of note as 
are out of Sight, and these you can afterwards shew in a reduced copy of your work 1 

Similar instructions were sent to Mouat in Eohilkhand [ =,6, 168 1 addino- 
,„ r l' S rt ! t0 ^ thatfre « uent angks a ">d tarings must be taken with a Theodolite 

wi 1 he d K, !' . " P ° Cket C ° mpaSS £ ° r the direction oi the Ro ^ j « d°ing which it 
will be advisable to note every object that can tend to render the plan interesting and useful 
making also a rough sketch of the country as you travel, and estimating by the eye the dis- 
tances of such villages. Topes, &c. as are near the road, or not very remote 
the wm ta * Dg angleS T , wi * h l° aT Theodolite it is proper to draw the appearance and shapes of 
the Hills &c. m your Field Book, instead of denoting them by a. b, c, or any other marks by 
which means you will be enabled to observe them again, without which... their distances 
cannot be ascertained " [ 187 ]. 

To Hoare who was to survey the Jumna from Allahabad to Delhi f S7 168 1 
Z°ff ad ™ e y°n. so far as the river may be navigable, to travel bv water with a 
perambulator driving along the bank and keeping pace with your boats. When you arrive 
at any town, fort, or Gaut, it will be easy for you to step out of your boat and look at the 
wheel, and the intermediate distances may be known by a time-keeper or a good watch 
which if your boatmen are made to keep an even pace, may be calculated by the rule of pro^ 
portion. I would, however, advise you to observe the wheel as often as possible, and for the 
greater accuracy of your survey to proceed slowly, and not to be over-anxious to make long 
journeys. » 

The direction and bearings of the River may be ascertained with sufficient exactness bv a 
compass ; but a Theodolite will be necessary for nicer observations on shore. If you can also 
trTwil, be compTetoT 1 ° bSerVatimS the ^tudes of two or three principal places, your 

_ On receipt of Hoare's first field book, Colebrooke makes the followine criti- 
cisms ; s 

The specimen transmitted by you appears in some respects sufficiently satisfactory the 
distances bang marked with minute preciseness; but I beg leave to observe that all the 
Angles being only given to points of the compass, it will be difficult for you to project your 
work without running into considerable error. y 

I beg leave to remind you that in my instructions I mentioned that a compass might 
be sufficient to ascertain the directions and windings of the river, but that a theodolite would 
be necessary for nicer observations on shore. It does not, however, appear that you had 
used one, but even with an Instrument of the former kind you might have marked the bear- 
i rl i ? Je ° tS Wlth greater P rocision . and b 7 observing from time to time the Sun's 

Amplitude or Azimuth, the variation of the needle might have been found, so as to render 
your sights sufficiently correct for the common purposes of Geography *. 

Colebrooke himself spent much time surveying the Ganges and other rivers so 
there was eventually very little that he did not know about survey as carried'out 
from a boat. Several of Ilia field books are still preserved. His traverse form is 
ruled with four columns ; the two side columns contain notes of places and con 
spicuons features on the left and right banks. The first centre column o-i ves 
bearings, which are sometimes simple points of the compass, and sometimes have 

V?";, 16 (60) ' *- 12 - 94 - 'DDn. 16 (63), Dec. 1»4. >DDn, 16 (83) 10-4-95 <Tke s,,™, 
General of 1796 was indeed a p.W. Je.ier Jitter. DDn. 16 (135), 12-9-96 Surveyor 

Route Traverses 189 

the bearing to the nearest degree or half degree, recorded with compass quadrant, 
thus ST49W. [201]. The second centre column shows hours and minutes, for 
calculation of distances [ 196 ]. 

There are occasional tables of " angles with theodolite ", taken to the nearest 
minute to prominent objects, often with no indication of the position of the theo- 
dolite. There is often a round of bearings taken from the top of the budgerow, with 
distances run to the objects by perambulator, and with notes such as 
there was a creek in the way, which prevented the wheel being driven in a very direct 
course. ... The clasie 1 says he drove the wheel pretty straight, and only lifted it up in one 
place, about one furlong, to cross an inlet where the water was deep a . 

Wood writes to the Surveyor G-eneral in 1799 [ 58-9 ], 

I have made considerable progress in my protraction, beginning at Nawabganj up to 
Baraitch, as, being a good deal in a northerly direction, and having observations for latitude 
of these and several intermediate places, the necessary correction I find by these means, and 
what you mentioned to me in one of your letters when I was in Assam, answers very well : 
viz, 1/30, and when the road is broken, 1/15. I have adopted the mode yon recommended, and 
am protracting on a scale of a mile to 3/4 of an inch : you mentioned an inch to a mile. ... 
Afterwards I propose reducing it to a scale of 4 miles to an inch, and on this to lay down 
Don's tract, which I will protract myself 3 . 

Madbas Jamb, 1767-74 

The instructions given to Thomas Barnard for the survey of the Madras jdgir 
in 1767 [ 88, 141-2 ] provided for a full and detailed survey, scale two inches to a 
mile, of an area about 100 miles by 50. He had only reached Madras the year 
before, aged 19, but had received a good mathematical education at the Royal Milit- 
ary Academy, and from his account of the manner in which he tackled this formid- 
able task had fully mastered the principles of geometry and surveying. 

The Country is laid down from angles and measurements performed with the Theodolite 
and Chain. From Madras to Tripasoor 4 Westward, and from that line to the extremity of 
the Company's Territories Northward, the Country is quite level, ... having in all this part 
no elevated Situations to afford the means of correcting such errors as are unavoidably... 
contracted in Surveys of any extent. 

I judged it to be the best way to divide the whole into Circuits of 12 or 14 miles. These 
circuits were contrived so as to afford the most convenience for getting the situation of the 
remarkable objects within them, and to give the greatest possible length to the lines which 
formed them; the fewer stations there were in each circuit, the more correct the work 
became, by diminishing the number of angles to be taken, in which the danger of error is 

The finishing of each circuit corrected the mistakes of the preceding one, as there must 
always among the adjoining Circuits be some common points belonging to both, and of course 
if the work should be perfect they must coincide. 

From the lines which formed these Circuits the Angles were taken to the villages as 
1 measured along. In those villages where no conspicuous object presented itself, the want 
was supplied by a flag on the top of some high tree. ... 

The plan of the villages, the situation and shape of the Yaries [Tanks], were determined 
by their bearings to the above point. ... 

The situation of the paddy fields being almost always contiguous to [the tanks ??], the 
same work which gave me the place of one, afforded likewise the place of the other. ... 

When the whole of the afore-mentioned tract North of Madras came to be closed, and the 
circuits brought together, I found a considerable error had accumulated ; the extremities of 
the work which ought to have joined, did not meet within a mile ; this I have been forced 
to accommodate by diffusing it in small portions over the whole, so that each part shall be 
as nearly in its proper place as possible and none be put much out. 

I have only to offer in excuse for this error, that no pains were omitted to avoid it ; it 
must have happened by errors in the angles or lengths, tho' with respect to the latter, T was 
not above the task of holding the Chain myself ; and in the course of all the above work my 
health enabled me, and a desire to do my duty throughly prompted me to it. 

'»oIosi[28 9 ]. 'FdbtM. 482(a), DDn, 13. 'DDn. 15 (77), 6-6-99. * Tripasur, 57 0/16. 

190 Professional methods or survey 

With regard to that part of the Survey containing the Imaum Lands [ 133 ] south of the 
above Western line from Madras, I give that up to the strictest Inspection ; the many hills in 
it afforded me the means, and X made use of them, to correct all the incidental errors. I 
have accompanied with the Charts, the angles taken from the several Stations on those hills, 
as affording an easy opportunity of reference, upon any occasion that may occur 1 . 

This was indeed a remarkable piece of wort to be undertaken without the 
advantage of professional textbooks, or departmental rules, and with the simple 
instruments of the period ; a work that would do credit to any young officer of the 
twentieth centuary. The lay out of his traverses in closed circuits ; the distribution 
of his closing errors; and the connection of his traverses to the basis of triangulated 
hills where these were available, are principles which stand to this very day. 

Triangulation appears to have been used as the basis of the large scale survey 
carried out by Dugood in 1776 [142-3], when he observed from "13 Principal 
Stations ", and submitted the " computations of a considerable quantity of Capital 
angles " taken from them-. 

Michael Topping, 1788-94 

In December 1784 Dalrymple submitted to the Directors a Memoir concerning a 
Survey of the Coast of Ohoromandel [164], recommending that " it will be very 
proper to take the present opportunity to make a compleat Survey of It", and des- 
cribing the methods which he suggested. 

Flags should be set out on shore, arranged either in triangles or in lines of three 
and their positions fixed by an observer on shore working with a Hadley. The' 
surveying ship, would lay down lines of soundings from the flags on shore, and 
the Persons on board the Vessell [should] take frequent Views of the" Land; ... those Views 
should have the angles of the various Objects taken with a Hadley, as well as their Attitudes 
marked, which will be of use in making a Map of the Country inland, as well as for the 
information of Navigators ; But although it may be useful in making a Map, Angles taken 
from Sea, with any Instrument now made, cannot be considered as equivalent to Geometrical 
Survey. . . . 

Perhaps it would be eligible to leave a short trunk of Bamboe, sunk in every Place where 
a Flag-staff had stood, as it would facilitate the repetition of any angles which might hereafter 
be wanted. ... 

In case any part of the Coast is woody down to the Sea-Side, The Flag-Staffs must be 
fixed on Trees, and the angles, taken, with the Hadley, from the elevated branches of the 
Tree ; which I have practised where the Objects could not be seen from below 3 . 

It is possible that Topping may have discussed these matters with Dalrymple 
before he came out to India ; anyhow it is interesting to compare the methods 
which he actually used to carry out this survey; 

In 1787, Sir Archibald Campbell, entirely satisfied with the observations I had made for 
determining the Latitudes and Longitudes of places between Masulipatam and Calcutta, 
proposed. . .that I should continue those operations Southward [ 102 ]. ... Sensible, however, that 
such a process (superior as it was to former method of surveying) was still inferior in exact- 
ness to what might be done ; and not willing to lose so fair an opportunity of introducing the 
most correct stile of surveying hitherto invented into this country, I proposed the Trigono- 
metrical Mensuration. Chronometers I well knew, however excellent, were liable to accident 
and failure ; and tho' the best expedient for settling the positions of places not very distant 
from each other—at Sea — yet on shore, where a concatenated series of Triangles could be e ffected, 
such a process was to be preferred to every other mode, not only as the most exact of anv[ 
but as a method which, when once excuted, absolutely precludes the necessity of every other,' 
being founded upon Geometrical certainty and truth. 

Were these Triangles carried throughout India (as they might have been at a much less 
expence than has been incurred to make bad maps), the Geography of the Company's Terri- 
tories might soon be rendered compleat ; and surely bad methods should be laid aside when 
good ones can be adopted ; for one good Geometrical survey of a Province, or line of coast, is 
sufficient; whereas after ten bad ones the work requires to be gone over again 4 [Iosl 

■MEO. Map 20; note 1-12-74. ! MMC. 6-1-71. 'Bitehie (1-8). <MPC. 2-12-91. 


Michaex Topping 


He thus describes the details of his triangulatiou ; 

The angles axe all taken with my Hadley's sextant made by Stancliffe, by means of 3 tall 
signals I have constructed of Bamboos 80 feet high, 60 of which I mount upon steps, so as to 
see (over all trees etc.) very distinctly my two other signals, at the distance of from 8 to 13 
miles 1 [ 102, 192]. 

It is, I believe, the first time the Hadley was ever made use of for a purpose of such 
magnitude ; but it is fully equal to it — nay it does more — ; The sun's bearing. . .from my signals 
is also taken by it, by which, and his azimuth (computed), I obtain the angles made by them 
with the meridian, and by combining the whole, the difference of Latitude and meridional 
distance of every one of them in English fathoms. This is found so nicely that a mean of 
mv astronomical observations for the latitudes never differs more than a few seconds from 
those given by the Geometrical mensuration 5 . 

He measured a base-line upon the sea-beach near Porto Novo 3 in May 1788 ; 

This Base Line, could I have chosen its situation, should have been determined as near 
the middle of the line of Coast I am surveying as possible ; but circumstances have not per- 
mitted me to make unrestrained choice of its place. 

On my arrival at Cuddalore, I was told that, as I proceeded southward, I should meet 
with frequent rivers and other water courses, that would certainly obstruct me in the design 
I had formed of measuring it on the sea-beach further south ; and Soon after my removal 
from that place, I found, with much satisfaction, that the Coast between Cuddalore River and 
Porto Novo would serve my purpose extremely well. The Beach here-abouts is flat, broad, 
and remarkably smooth, . . . but forming a curved line, concave towards the Sea. . . . 

An accident that about the same time befel one of my signals, and delayed my Trigono- 
metrical progress, . . . determined me to measure my base at this opportunity, and I 
accordingly began that work by placing two of my Large signals. ..about 7 miles asunder, for 
the. ..extremities of it. ... 

[I] divided the whole distance into 6 distinct portions, each portion forming a small angle 
with the next. ... Measurement; ,.. spared neither pains nor care. The 2 rods of 25 feet each 
which I had provided for this use, had been strictly examined while I was at Cuddalore, and 
their lengths ascertained ; ... they had been left purposely a little too long, as I found it easier 
to determine and allow for such excess, than to reduce them to sufficient exactness. 

Used a capital 2 feet Brass Sector by Adams as a Standard. . . . 

The stands which I had prepared for levelling the rods were also brought out ; and it was 
with much regret that I found I could not profit by them, as I hoped to do, assisted as I 
was by none but Black people, in whom I perceived it would have been impossible, without 
incurring great loss of time, to have impressed a necessary idea of their nature and manage- 
ment [290]. 

He laid the rods end to end along the ground, which he thought was just as 
satisfactory as the French base which was measured on " the rugged pavement of a 
highway near Paris ". 

He gives details of the measurement, the determination of azimuth, the connec- 
tion with his triangulatiou, and the meridional observation of stars for determin- 
ing the latitudes of the terminals, whose position with relation to neighbouring 
marks he describes minutely. 

The following year Topping was engaged on his survey of Coringa Bay [ 103 ] ; 

The capital letters of reference show the positions of my signals for ascertaining the 
leading points. These signals... were of the kind used by myself last year. ...They were 
constructed of the largest bamboos that could be got, so put together with iron cramps, and 
supported with rigging, as to admit of my ascending to the height of 60 feet upon them, and 
thence seeing over every obstruction round me on this flat, woody country. 

My Instruments were screwed upon an apparatus fixed to the top of each signal (T mean 
in particular my Hadley, with which almost all my angles were observed), and the whole 
could be readily elevated, taken down, and transported from place to place. 

By means of these signals, a sufficient number of connected triangles were obtained ; the 
sides of which were computed, and thence (not by the usual method of protracting) the princi- 
pal points were established on the Chart. ... The Base-line, or foundation of the whole, was 
measured as accurately as possible on a spot very convenient for the purpose, with two rods, 
constructed on a similar occasion last year. ... 

'ef. trestles & masts described & illustrated in Records of Survey of India, 1916-7 
3 Toppingr's Report, ES. Lib. MS. X.2. & Phil. Trans. 1792 (99-114). 3 58 M/15. 



Professional methods of survey 

which he 

Pages give particulars of the method used for determining the configuration of the 

shores of the Bay. A great part of them, being low and overgrown with jungles was inaccess- 
ible, and gave me much trouble. Such parts, however as would admit of it, were measured 
with the Perambulator and Theodolite. 

He then describes his method of taking' soundings, 
following a practical application of Mr. Dalrymple's problem (founded upon the 21st pro- 
position of Euclid 3rd) for determining the place of an observer in possession of the an«les 
made by any three known points 1 . 

Goldingham gives the following description of the triangulatioj 
carried up the coast to the north of Madras, in 1792-3. Imde 
directions [104—5]. 

Two signals 60 feet high each were raised at two stations by the sea-side ; on the South- 
ernmost of which the observer could elevate himself between nftv and sixty feet from the 
ground, while the northern signal was distinguished by two large flags (a blue and a white 
one, the distances between these signals were so regulated that the flags upon the foremost 
could be plainly seen by the hinder one, tho" placed from 8 to 16 miles asunder 

The observer, elevated upon the hindermost signal any time between sun risirg and nine 
o clock m the morning, or between 3 o'clock and sun setting in the afternoon, with a Hadley's 
sextant, took the distance of one of the limbs of the sun from the foremost signal, noting the 
precise time of the observation; from which the true bearing of one signal from the other was 
computed : to make the work more correct, instead of one distance, six were generally observ- 
ed, and the bearing reduced from the mean of these. ... 

The latitude of the Southernmost signal was then found by the mean of 16 or 20 meri- 
dional observations; and, in order to remove any error that might arise through the imperfec- 
tions of the instrument, half the sights were taken with objects on one side of the zenith and 
half on the other side. Prom this data, the difference and distance of Longitude between the 
two signals were obtained. 

The hinder signal was then moved forwards and raised precisely in the station where the 
foremost stood ; the foremost signal was carried on, raised, and the operation repeated ; in this 
manner were the situations of the principal signals found. 

The accuracy of this method in a survey of a coast situated, as this mostly is in the 
direction of the meridian, when the precautions before mentioned are taken, can hardlv be 

The line of the coast between the two large signals was laid down by a circumferentor 
[201] and perambulator, with the assistance of smaller signals. The declination of the needle 
was found from time to time to correct the bearings by the circumferentor, and the error of 
the perambulator was ascertained 3 . 

Ind finally we give Topping's description of his survey for the Kistna-Godayari 
Irrigation project [106]. 

The levels were all taken with an excellent Instrument of Mr. Kamsden's construction at 
short sights for the most part of r 5 o yards each : the Instrument had indeed powers adequate 
to observing at much longer intervals; but besides that short distances, in these kinds of 
operations, give a more accurate result than can be derived from more distant observations 
I found it altogether impracticable to take very long sights, attended as I was by Natives 
only, whom I had no small degree of trouble in training to a co-operation with me even at 
these very convenient intervals [191]. 

To render a series of observations, obtained with so much toil, as permanently secure and 
useful as possible, I fixed large Blocks of stone... at convenient intervals on the Bank of the 
Eiver; and to these the station staves were in order applied, that their difference in level 
might be ascertained. These Stcne Terms, which are six in number, are denominated Per- 
manent Terms; and their several positions are marked explicit!,- on the chart 3 ["Many of 
them being under ground "J. ... 

The Angles and distances. ..were all accurately measured with a very good instru- 
ment; ...the islands between its banks, and the numerous Villages situate upon them are 
laid down with every attention to exactness. To render the whole useful in a Geographical 
as well as Political sense, many observations of the Sun and Stars were taken both for estab- 
hshmg a scale of Latitudes probably correct to the nearest second, and for ascertaining 
the decimation of the needle in these parts : and to prevent these observations from being 
committed to a separate Paper, 1 have thought it advisable to enter their results together 
with the compleat series of levels, on the Chart itself. No observations for the Longitude of 
'ilfurf. Sd. XIX. 1S55. (25) s Note on Maps, MEO. (125) & MR.IO. 137 (58). *MR.C. ;>-°-Q* 

Michael Topping 


any station have, as yet, been obtained ; since neither the celestial phenomena, the weather, 
nor my more immediate avocations would admit of my taking any 1 . 

It is probably safe to say that Michael Topping was the most talented and 
highly qualified all-round surveyor that served the East India Company during the 
18th century : and, from the ingenuity of his methods, the sound principles on 
which they were based, and the courage with which he urged them, he deserves a 
high place in the annals of the department [190]. It is a great disappointment 
that nothing has yet been found about his education or early life. 


As we draw to the close of the century we find that the surveyors of the 
southern presidency were no longer confined to the traversing of roads but were 
given whole districts to survey, and, being now free to take full advantage of open 
hilly country and distant views, they were gradually feeling their way towards the 
system of a triangulation net. 

The rapid sketch which Alexander Eead made of the Salem and Baramahal 
districts, after their cession in 1792 [113], was a planetable sketch based on 
graphic triangulation, the first reported use of the plamtable in our Indian surveys 
[263] 3 . 

For the want of other means, the bearings were taken with a plain table of 2 feet square, 
having a pin in the centre, a ruler as an index of 2 feet long, mounted with a vane at each 
end, to turn round the pin in observing ; and a pocket compass, for setting it by the 
meridian : after which the paper for the dTaft was fixed to it, and the compass. ..removed. 

The distances were all computed in gttrries, of about i-| miles. 

Every object and distance were carefully ascertained by careful enquiries of seldom less 
than 100 of the inhabitants. 

Every station being the highest, or most convenient. . . . The drafts at each were severally 
made of different sheets of Royal Paper. ... The sheet to constitute any sketch being divided 
by a line to express the meridian. ... Adjusted by means of the compass and fixed to the table, 
and the pin being placed to express the actual station or common centre, bearings were first 
taken to every remarkable object and village, and the lines laid down to them at scale of 
2 gurries to 1 inch. . . . 

Roads also inserted and rivers. . . . 

View from each station covered 20 or 30 miles square, and 25 in all were required, and 
the positions are described. 

After an apology for the probable inaccuracy of his survey, Eead justifies it on 
account of speed and cheapness; 

That it is erroneous is acknowledged, but it has cost the Hon. Company nothing, and 
contains the principle points of a map composed of the most accurate materials, which would 
cost thousands 3 . 

Beatson's rapid sketch of Palnad in 1787 [no], was 
the work of a few days. * . . . The scale on which it is drawn is half an inch to a Geographical 
mile ; this I deem sufficient for any general survey. If upon this scale the positions of princi- 
pal places, villages, and remarkable peaks, hills,be accurately determined to serve as primary 
stations, the rivers, principal watercourses and large tanks are easily traced in by hand, as are 
arable, hilly or woody lands, and thus a picture of the country is formed on the basis of a map 
sufficiently minute for general purposes of revenue or military matters 5 . 

Allan's " Military Survey of the Baramahal and Ceded Countries ", made in 
1793 and 1794 [ 1 1 1 ], contained 

2150 miles of principal Roads, with remarks on the adjacent country sufficiently minute for 
every military purpose, and views from nearly 100 different stations, from which about 4000 
bearings have been taken with a Rarasden's Theodolite, most of them corrected by Azimuth's 
of the Sun 6 . 

Report of 14-2-94, MPC. Teh. 1794. Hhougri Sandes, I (46 n.) records that one was brought to 
Calcutta in 1742 by a young engineer. 3 Note on map, EM. Addl. MSS. 26102 (A). * elsewhere he 

.ays (Tiree months [no}. 5 MRC. 27-7-98. 6 MMC. 7-12-97. 


Professional methods op survey 

disi S CT ' 6 ™ P '° y ed by Read to make a more "particular surrey of Baramahal 
tleoaoltl TT 6 " C 7 ful . S + u " e 7 based upon a number of points intersected by 
theodolite. His own description is somewhat confused ; he seems to have intersected 
a number of prominent primary stations, from which he made further observations 
to fix topographical detail. The survey which appears to have covered the who™ 
of the present Salem District took over four years 1 [„,-,] 

Montogomerie in 1826 found it impossible to fit Mather's primary points to 
Lambton's tnangulation, and reports pomis to 

it is^teTthTt fr? * aPP T t0 be f ° U " ded ° n ^"metrical Triangulation, and although 
it is stated that the survey rests on a series of Bases taken on the plain south of TricMnonolv 
(m what way any of them were measured is not specified ) yet there is uotrT/to Tea^ to the 
»ZT,f£ f' m pr0SeC,ltin S the survey from these bases, that any otter Method was 

station of", mele ll^ ° f bearingS ( "^ wbat lament not sTaW ) anTthat Z 
situation of places were determined by the mere protraction of the same" [114] 

In 1799 Thomas Sydenham, who had succeeded to the command of the Guides 
[m] was sent up to survey the new southern boundary of Mysore and started bv 
measuring- a base-line near « Ardenelle * " [ pi 9 1 ■ J 

s„ J! ^ ^ E di , reCt liM ° f 3 miles could be conveniently measured, ...from which the 
surrounding hills could be accurately determined. 

Some days were taken up in clearing the ground, in preparing the instruments for the 
measurement, and m tracing out the exact direction. ..The steel chain was "earaf, 11 
measured with a large brass sector, the thermometer being at 7^. and itflenga ound to oe 
Lgtt^ 4 r:do a pted 22/l0 ° ; ^ ^ "^ ^ ™ *£> ™ " -"una 
the ^lete^sl "T iX '&*J&?!tt£Ztt2tt& 
Zi methods oVtX 40 ."™ " ^ hyPOthemSal «*~ - ^-byTne 

As astronomical observations must however be considered the foundation of all eeoina 
phrcal survey I had provided myself with the instruments necessary to determine the ? d' 
tudes and latitudes of the principal stations along the boundary ; although tT Jail II 
in general so boisterous as to preclude the practicability of regular observation, ZTl7^ 

ZSg. fa ! r intervaI - J had reguIated my £=»-£ -SS2SST2K ^ com g 

=, „,I h< K mea !T d bas t Une , afforded * sufficient data to have resolved a series of great tri 
angles, by which a number of primary stations might have been correctly fixed TkSte 
^ ngI ^' WbaCh J mtended *° " aVe determ -d, would have corrected fine relatfve 
positron of the primary stations, from which the adjacent country, and the exact situation of 
the boundary, might have been accurately laid down * situation of 

Unfortunately Sydenham went sick and was never able to complete his observa- 
tions; it is possible that he might have found serious difficulty in adjusting the 
£XT W ft ' 0m Me ba - 1; - "Ml those determined by astronomical 

Madbas SiiEVETrae School, 1796-1800 
for A" 1 ' , 0ll ?™ g are the P/ofessional instructions drawn up by Goldingham in 1796 

^eyofr^cr -"' dWde " into — ■ -^ te £MEE 

To accomphsh the first object, should the Country afford accessible Hills or other 
eminences conveniently situated, and commanding an extensive view, you wffl Lake tntse 
your principal stations; if the country be not of this nature, yon must Z^nHSncS 
stations by erecting tall signal poles of Bamboo with suitable flags on each P P 

From the top of one of these eminences, a signal being placed on another you are to take 
the angles made by the first station ( a flag being now placed on it ) and th^same obiecfs 
wrth any others not before in sight; if a third accessible eminence be near, you may repeal 

•T>,,, i 1J f e "T' DI ? n - l 1 ?- „ SDDn - 218 (74),ll-3-26. •Haradaahani > 68Att3 'DDubs,,,, „™ 
■Ihe mrtmotons lor the Particular survey are quoted elsewhere [ 146 ]. 68 ( 21 >• 1799 ' 

Madras Surveying School 


the operation from it; among the objects observed you will include such as may be likely to* 
afford other principal stations, also remarkable points of distant Hills, whether accessible or 
not, and in this manner you will ascertain the relative positions of all the principal points of 
the Country. 

As early as possible in the survey, you will chuse a level and clear tract whereon to 
measure a Base line, so situated that you may have in view the greatest number of the prin- 
cipal stations, and at the most convenient angles ; this line you will measure with a chain, the 
length of which must be accurately found by a standard brass Ruler at the commencement 
and finish of the measurement of each day ; the length of the Base mast be proportioned ta 
the distance of the stations ; and it would be measured with great care at least twice over,, 
placing a stone at each end, whereby it may be found again if necessary ; it should be levelled, 
and the measured line reduced to its equivalent horizontal distance. A second base of veri- 
fication may be measured towards to conclusion of the survey if the country be extensive;, 
the bearing of one end of the Ease from the other you will determine by Astronomical 
observations. ... 

The positions of all the stations in sight with respect to the base, you will ascertain by 
the requisite angles, take at each end of it. 

Having thus established the principal points, you will readily ascertain the positions of 
all the villages... and objects not in view before, by short bases connected with points before 
determined, or by finding the point where two or more of the principal stations are in view, 
by the usual method, taking care to use the needle as little as possible. . . . 

You will determine the latitudes of some of the principal stations by meridional observa- 
tions of stars on each side of the Zenith; observe eclipses of the satellites of Jupiter, for com- 
parison with like observations taken at the Madras Observatory, and ascertain the difference 
of Longitude by a Timekeeper between the observatory and one of the principal stations or 
places in the District. . . . 

You will protract your work as you go on, and thereby discover if any mistake has occured 
in the operation of the day, that it may be rectified on the spot 1 . 

It is obvious that each, of these district surveys would be completely independent 
of every other, and that its scale and the surveyed area in square miles would depend 
entirely upon the value taken for the measured base. Its geographical position 
would depend upon such astronomical observations as these young surveyors were 
able to make, or upon accidental connection with the work of other surveyors. 

As a matter of fact, not foreseen by either Topping or Groldingham, nearly all 
these district surveys were eventually connected up by Lambton's triangnlation, and 
became incorporated into the general maps of the Presidency. 

We conclude with an extract from a pathetic little note from Thomas Tum'bull, 
aged 15 years, from Devicottai [109], 

The letter you have mentioned dated April 1st concerned of measuring a base, and to find 
our station by means of three objects, but here. Sir, is not a place— plain — extending to ^ a 
mile in length ; the District extends 7 by 5 English miles in length and breadth, and has only 
32 villages. The 32 villages and principal Pagodas we have laid down in the accompanying 
protraction of our survey, but I can't think it to be of much accuracy without a base be 
measured. I have the Devicottah Pagoda and another Pagoda at Atchareram ; to the top of 
these Pagodas we must mount up, according to Instructions of Captain Caldwell, but I have 
made a lascar go up, and he told us that we would not be able to go up ourselves, and... get 
the Instruments over — and neither we could not get the necessary things, which greatly 
hinders us from our survey-. 


Field Books 

The submission of regular journals has always been demanded from surveyors, 
partly as a voucher that they have employed their time to good purpose, and also to 
supply information about little-known country. The first orders given to Rermell 
were no exception • 

You will keep a very particular Journal of your Proceedings, noting the Appearance and 
Produce of the Countries thro' which you pass; the name of every Village, & whatever else 

'M. Eev. Ed, 22-12-96, 2 M. Eev. Bd. 13-9-98. 

3 96 

Professional methods op survey 

may seem remarkable, of which Journal you will give me a copy along with the Drafts you 
are to make of the Rivers and Creeks 1 . 

Kennel] passed similar orders to his surveyors ; 

You are to keep a journal of your proceedings, & a book of remarks on the nature and 
situation of the several countries through which you pass 2 . 

Similar direction were given to Stevens &, Pittman at Madras [92] ; 

As a perfect knowledge of the Country may be of the greatest Consequence to the Hon'ble 
Company, You will endeavour to acquire all Snch Information as may be of use to their 
officers or that can tend to forward the Service you are to be immediately employed on. For 
which Purpose yon will keep an accurate Journal or Field Book, in which you will enter the 
Bearings and Distances of your Stations and of principal objects. Also the Properties of the 
Water and the Means of Procuring it; the Natures of the Soils, their Produce, with their 
effect on the Health of Animals, and the salubrity or unwholesomeness of the Air, accompanied 
by such Reports and Explanations as may render them perspicuous to the Hon'ble Board, 
and enable them to judge of their Fitness and Propriety. ... 

_ You will be pleased to inform me of Your Progress once a month, or oftener should you 
judge it necessary 3 . 

In his orders to Burrow in 1787 [ 157 ], the Surveyor General directed that, 
So long as your situation will admit I shall expect to receive from you monthly an account 
of your observations, and when this cannot be done, as often as you can find a favorable 
opportunity. ... I have also to request of you to keep a regular journal of your journey and 
observations, and your remarks respecting the Geography, History, of the different countrys 
of India through which you may have occasion to pass, will be a valuable addition 4 . 

Many of these journals are still preserved and make most interesting reading 
more especially when the particular circumstances under which the surveyor was 
working are borne in mind. 

In 1788, at the representation of the Surveyor General, Government issued orders 
for the regular survey of all routes marched hy troops, with detailed instructions 
regarding the form of field book to be kept up [ 43 ] . 

The form was to be kept in four columns, the two outer ones for " Bearings and 
estimated distance of objects to the right and to the left"; the two central ones for 
"Bearings of the Eoad", and for "Distance by perambulator or Time" [ 188-9]. 

The names of all towns, forts, rivers and villages, when obtainable, are to be inserted in 
the two broad columns on each side, also all tanks, jheels, and ravines on the route of march, 
ground of encampment for one or more Corps, and occasional remarks as to the nature of the 
road and country. 

Bearings of places and objects, with their estimated distances. ... The road distance, 
whether measured by a perambulator, or estimated by time. ... 

An extraordinary allowance. ..for an Assistant Surveyor in the Field . . . to be drawn, ... upon 
producing from the Surveyor General a certificate of the Journal or Field Book having been 
kept with attention and accuracy. 

The Field Books are in the first instance to be transmitted to the Quarter Master General, 
who will immediately... send them to the Surveyor General, who after taking a copy of them' 
is to return them to the Q.M.G., in whose office they are to be lodged '. 

Finding in 1794 that these instructions had produced but little information of 
value, the Surveyor General asked that the rules should be tightened, and 
that an order be issued requiring all surveyors to transmit with their plans. ..fair and correct 
copies of their Journals or Field Books, containing ail the original measurements by the wheel 
or chain, and every particular respecting their surveys in writing, and that no surveyor be 
considered... as having fulfilled the object of his mission... without transmitting... such Journal 
or Field Book «. 

He pointed out to Blunt, as one of the reasons for the submission of these copies 

As many surveys, however carefully performed, are liable to be suspected of considerable 
errors when applied to the purposes of Geography, if not accompanied by the original measure- 
ments of the wheel, bearings, astronomical observations etc., so I would advise you by all 
means to prepare a fair and correct copy of your journal and Field Book, to be given in with 
your plan after your return 7 . 

•From the Governor, 6-5-64, La, Touehe (9). 'BPC. 5-12-76. "From CE„ MHC. 22-3-73. 
<BMC. 23-6-87. S B<?0. 29-9-88. «BPC. 5-12-94 (S). *DDn. 16 (60), 4-12-94. 



To strengthen these orders still tether, the Surveyor General proposed that 
surveyors' allowance should not be paid until copies of their field hooks were 

re ° Alfsurveyors, acting in or out of the provinces, should transmit to the Surveyor General's 
Office Monthfy Reports specifying the progress they have made in their survey, .and in lad- 
ing regular transcripts of their journals or field books. The Surveyor General will notify to 
the MMary Auditor General the arrival of all such reports at his office until which informa- 
tion is received, the M.A.G. should not be authorized to pass their bills '. 

He explains as the reason for this order that 
it Has hitherto, in general, happened that gentlemen employed iu this hue have withheld then: 
repots until their allowances have ceased, at which time it has been found that the ultimate 
result of their labours had been very inadequate to the time they had been kept on these 

dUt These orders were duly published, and for many years to come they bore very 
heavily on surveyors working strenonsly and single-handed m the held ; as is often 
the case, rules introduced to ensure regular procedure, and to protect Government 
ao-ainst the idle or careless worker, proved vexatious to the honest hard worker. 
This was pointed out with much force by Thomas Wood whose allowances had been 
held up because he had failed to send in regular monthly copies of his papers whilst 
out on survey, and disallowed for the period taken in making copies after return 
from the field. After describing the strenuous and successful nature of his held 
work for a period of over five months [58-9]. he continues, 

Having mentioned these particulars to you. I am very confident yon will not only be 
perfectly satisfied of the impossibility of my copying my Field Books, but likewise that 
without the most constant labour and perseverance, I could not have accomplished what I 

haV Had° I protracted and finished my work as I advanced, worked the various observations 
for Latitude &c, and sent you copies of the whole, I am inclined to think that for what : I 
have got materials in five months, it would have at least occupied me two seasons My not 
having spent my time doing so will, I therefore trust, not only meet with your full I concur- 
rence but that ..His Excellency the Commander-in-Chief... mil be pleased to authorise a 
continuation of my allowances for such a time as he may think my exertions merit . 

'DDn. 16(133), 8-8-96. *MMC. 15-8-96(18,18). 'BMC. 14-12-1807. 



Chains — Perambulators — Sextants & Quadrants — Compasses — Cireumferentors — 
Theodolites— Chronometers—Supply of Instruments — Astrolabes — Instrument Makers. 

SINCE for a proper understanding of the work of any surveyor it is essential to 
know what instruments he used, an attempt is here made to describe not only 

the names of the instruments used during the ISth Century, but their pattern, 
and the manner m which they differed from modern instruments! 

There were, first, the instruments for measuring distance, Chains and 
Perambulators. Next, the instruments for measuring angles, Quadrants and 
bextants ; Compasses, Cireumferentors and Theodolites. And thirdly there were 
telescopes of special make for astronomical work, and chronometers and watches 
lor transfer of time and longitude. 

Many of these have already been referred to when describing the surreys and 
there is no need to deal in detail with such essential articles as drawino- instru- 
ments, protractors, brass scales, or levels. & 


Both Eennell and Barnard, and presumably therefore most contemporary 
surveyors, used chains, probably of much the same pattern as today. 

Eennell twice records in 1764 that he measured his chain and found it from 6 
to 8j inches too long-i ; he does not say how this measurement was made nor 
whether he corrected the length. 

Chains were probably used for all large scale surveys, but seldom for militarv 
route surveys. There are many reference to tho Gunter's chain, but only one 
specific reference to a 100 ft, chain. In an indent of 1787 the Surveyor General 
asked tor brass chains. 

, ln ,Vf ^" rrow used " a S0 ft - steel chai »". ^ing "Eamsden's newly invented 
chain- for the measurement of his degree of longitude, probably similar to those 
used by General Eoy for Ins base on Eomney Marsh, and by Lambton for all his 
base measurements 3 ; with links of 21 feet each. 


These were used in preference to chains for most route surveys. The essential 
parts ot the perambulator were the wheel which was driven along the ground and 
a cyclometer geared to the wheel and graduated in miles and various lesser units 
Perambulators were used by Eennell and were still being used 100 years later In 
1851 they are thus described; 

The staple commodity for route Survey is the perambulator. All English perambulators are 
flimsy, bad m principle, and incapable of working except on a smooth road or bowline trreen • 
across country they go to pieces in a mile or two. There is nothing like the Madras pattern 

1 La, Touche ( 125 ). 2 Dalby. 3 Now preserved in GBO. muse 

, Dehra Pun. 


Perambulators 199 

principle of the endless screw and differential plates. The large Madras perambulator 
[ invented by John Pringle ] has two faults, the wheel is not sufficiently strong, and it is 
graduated to furlongs and yards l . 

The Madras Pattern 8 mile Perambulator... consists of a wheel 20 feet in circumference, 
driven by two handles passing through the axis of the wheel : this axis is geared to dial plates 
which give readings of miles, furlongs, yards, feet, and inches. To a surveyor it is of little use 
[ but cf. Pearse inf. ] its great height { nearly seven feet ) rendering it difficult to manage in a 
high wind, and requiring two men to work it. The only advantage it has over other instru- 
ments of the kind is that it bears its own weight and, the handles being about the height of 
a man's chest, it is only necessary to keep the wheel steady, when the least pressure sets it in 

There were various patterns of Pringle's perambulator. Allan used one of 5 ft. 
li inches diameter, "41 times of the wheel in a furlong 3 ", whilst Colcbrooke used 
"a wheel of 7 feet diameter, with Hackwork, divided into furlong's and 30th parts 4 ". 

Surveys were constantly interrupted through the breakdown of the perambulator ; 
Kennel! says that he could not get the exact situation of Outtack because Campbell's 
"perambulator was spoiled between Cuttack and Balasore 5 ", and Pearse tells of 
trouble he had with perambulators on his marches to and from Madras ; 

In the march to the Carnatic it was found that the perambulator was rendered useless 
before the detachment had performed a fourth of the march; the Surveyor was actually 
obliged to buy a new one at Masulipatam, and that also became useless before we reached 
Madras [41]. The perambulators with small wheels and clockwork are therefore, by 
experiment, proved to be unfit for service of any duration. 

In the Madras Army Captain Pringle measured with a wheel of 7 feet diameter [97] ; and 
I caused a wheel to be made of the same dimensions, and adapted to it brass counting 
machinery, very different from what he had used, and I think better. One of these was 
used in my journey (with the cash) from Ganj am to Madras [155 n. 7], and afterwards in all our 
subsequent marches quite down to Cuddalore, and from thence to Calcutta. Before we set 
out upon our return, two more of the same kind were constructed, and connected together 
by an iron axle-tree ; and with these three the distances were measured for that fine survey 
which was made by Lieutenant Colebrooke. ... I therefore recommend the single wheels of 
this construction for all future surveys, and will lend mine to the arsenal as a pattern for more 
to be made by. As perambulators are included in the proportion of stores, I beg leave to 
recommend sending" them to the different stations, and also one to the office of the Chief 
Engineer, and another to that of the Surveyor General 6 . 

As regards price, the Surveyor General purchased one from an officer in 1787 
for lis. 130; and in 1795 Mackenzie paid about 12 Pagodas for one of large 

In 1797 G-oldingham obtained sanction "to make up some Surveying Wheels" 
upon a design of his own, for use at the Surveying School. 

Sextants & Qttadbants 

Reflecting instruments on the familiar principle of the Sextant had been used by 
navigators from the latter end of the 17th century. In 1731 John Hadley published 
an account of his new reflecting Octant, which was a great improvement on any 
existing instrument of the sort. It was provided with a tangent screw, telescope, 
and vernier scale, enabling the navigator to determine his latitude with accuracy, 
and was equally well adapted for coast surveying by triangulation. In 1733 he 
added a spirit level. 

As time went on it was found desirable to use a more extended arc, and the 
Sextant was introduced in 1757, and Quadrants about the same time; the arc was 
later enlarged to 120 degrees, and some patterns took the form of Reflecting 
Circles. "With these reflecting circles observations could be repeated and the mean 
taken, centring and other errors being thus eliminated 7 . 

'Thiullier & Symth (360-1). 2 ib (107-8). 3 Note in fdbk., MRIO. M. 77. 4 Noto on chart, 
MRIO. 138 (41). '■Memoir, 1783(68). 6 To G-G.; Ben P. $P. VII (120). ? South Kensington (5). 


Survey Insthumekts 


■ ,1S^ Eeniw11 waB Preparing for his voyage to the East Indies as a midshipman 
m i/oO, he wrote to his g'uardian; ' 

I believe I shall want a Quadrant and a book call'd the East India Pilot [ 169 11 2 1 Thev'll 
cost about £ 3-10-0, it must be one of Hadley's Quadrants. ... I have furnished myself with 
drawing compasses. Navigation Books, &c. 2 ; 
and this was the quadrant he used on his first survey in Beno-al. 

On his journey to Poona Smith used 
an astronomical Quadrant.. .made of brass, of 20 inch radius; turns horizontally upon a 
pointed steel axis about 2 ft. long, ... with spirit and plumb line ; but as we seldom staid 
more than one night m a place, the observations were necessarily made in the open air and 
generally ma brisk wind which rendered the plumb line useless, and the observations them- 
selves sometimes rather uncertain to half a minute or more * [ 162 175 ] 

Pearse gives the following account of his instruments •' 

I had only a tolerably good quadrant and quicksilver till December 1776, when I was 

SeTrT g TV ^ ""r land ^^^ made ** EamSden - witb a Urometer to sub! 

divide the nonms. This inverts, and is capable of the nicest adj ustments. ... In August I77v 

oCXmicfomltor.^' 01 ' ^ * "' **' ^ object gi ass, and alS 
Going to Madras in 1782 [ I5 5 n. 7] I used an Hadley's octant and quicksilver [to which he 
made elaborate modifications so that] by this contrivance, with an octant I coold tal „ 
angles of 150 : and consequently meridian altitudes as far as 75°. ... In the way back we 
had a land quadrant of i 5 inches radius, ... sent out by the India Company. It was used by 
Mr. Hurst, in the transit of Venus [ I53 ]. This could not be inverted, but, to destroy the 
effects of eo hmation and error of level, the latitudes are all determined by stars taken north 
and south of each place, as the observations will shew [154] s. 

r F fi hi r ™ ore I iln P OTtant work Topping mounted his "Hadley" on a stand 
[172], but though the Surveyor General in Bengal indented for quadrants thus 
mounted, the Directors replied, 

All the instruments desired for the use of the Surveyor General's office will be sent this 
season, except the two land Quadrants with stands, which must be deferred for further 
explanation ; the Astronomical Quadrant is sent as desired, which it is supposed must anVwer 
every purpose for which the others can possible be required* answer 

In 1789 the Directors 
ordered to be sent on one of the Ships of this season an Astronomical Quadrant made bv 
mandel. ^^ ** ** ^ * ^ T ° PPing " M ^"™y °i ^c Coast of CoS 


The compasses of the ISth century appear to belongs to three main types 

The Pocket Compass reading to 8 or 16 points, was probably carried by most 
offlcera and surveyors and must very often have been the route surveyor's only 
instrument besides his perambulator. } J 

fl„ J^ Az ™ uth C ° m P ass ™>s » superior instrument altogether. It consisted of a 
floating needle, and a ring graduated to degrees which revolved with a pair of open 
sights the line of sight conic ding with the zero of the ring. This compass varied 
from three to Hve inches m diameter, and was used from a stand ' 
to decrees 7 ' ^ C ° mPaSS ^^ WaS inoor P orated ™*° the Theodolite, also graduated 

All readings had to be taken by the naked eye. 

We have found very few direct references to the compasses actually used • 
Eennell makes no mention of his, except that he observed the variation of his 
needle, but it was probably a pocket compass that Ferguson reported for mishe 
haviour under musketry fire [28]. misoe- 

] Lennon, when surveying in 178S, had no other instruments with him than an 
azimuth compass and a perambulator; Colebrooke in 1786 took his bearings "with 

4 CD to B. 6-4-89 (118). 

1 HITS. 765, 2-2-60 ' BM. Addl. MSS. zaal 
"Probably sueoessor to John Bird (l7u9-56), BNB. 

3 AsR. I (58-61). 
6 South Kensington. 



an Azimuth Compass and another of smaller dimensions", but in 1788 Burrow 
regrets that though he had " a theodolite and a small pocket compass " ot his own, 
he had no azimuth compass [204]. . 

All experienced surveyors, from Eennell onwards, took regular astronomical 
observations to determine " the variation of the needle ", that is, the decimation of 
its scale zero from true north. This would of course be of no value with a pocket 
compass, but would be important for bearings taken by theodolite, which could 
give readings by vernier from the magnetic meridian, sometimes to one minute. 

Some compass rings were graduated counter-clockwise from 0" to 360 ; others 
were graduated from 0° to 90° for each quadrant independently ; in recording from 
the latter a note had to be made as to the quadrant [ i8g ]. 


Goldingham mentions the use of a circumferentor on his survey of the coast in 
1793 [ 192"] when the traverse between major signals was run by circumferentor 
and perambulator. A circumferentor was also included amongst the instruments 
issued to each assistant revenue surveyor sent out on district surveys [ 206 ]. 

The circumferentor was a compass on a stand, with a small spirit-level for set- 
ting it horizontal. It had a 9-inch circle, graduated in degrees and reading by 
vernier to 3 minutes. Fixed to the circle was an alidade with sights at either end '. 


Bion describes the English theodolite of the early 18th century as consisting 
of a brass horizontal circle, reading sometimes to 2 minutes, but without a vernier. 
The rotating telescope could be elevated and depressed, but had no vertical circle. 
During the ISth century improvements were added which included a vernier read- 
ing to a minute ; a compass whereby all angles and bearings were referred to the 
magnetic meridian ; and a vertical arc. In an article published in 1822, Edward 
Troughton, the great instrument maker, writes 

that the early theodolite had a single very poor azimuth circle, and angles were observed from 
the magnetic needle. It was really a telescopic compass 3 . 

An early Altazimuth Theodolite is thus described in the catalogue of the 
Science Museum ; 

The Alidade carries a vertical arc, and also a telescope with vernier arm ; ... 8-mch horizon- 
tal circle graduated in degrees, and read to 5 minutes by a vernier scale on the alidade. 
The vertical arc has radius of three inches, and is graduated to degrees up to 50 degrees on 
each side of the zero, and read to 5 minutes by vernier. A 4-inch compass fixed to the 
alidade is graduated to degrees. Telescope of 10-inch focal length, and J-inch aperture. 
Spirit levels for levelling. Two parallel plaies for fixing the instrument to its tripod are 
connected by four levelling screws and spherical joint- 5 . 

Eennell did not receive a theodolite until 1767 ; Barnard used a theodolite 4 from 
that year for his survey of the Jagir. 

On Kelly's smvey of Fullarton's marches angles were taken "with a complete 
theodolite [185] ", and during the Third Mysore War Colebrooke used 
a fine theodolite" by Ramsden with telescopes and spirit levels, and a smaller one by Cole with 
sights and Nonius. The latter was used most frequently on account of the case and leadiness 
with which it might be put up 5 . 

In 1795 Mackenzie indented for a 
good Theodolite, ... if possible, ... with the latest improvements, the horizontal plates and 
vertical arch moved by screws, and with a good telescope fixed, and spirit levels 6 . 

1 Bion ; 4- South )?Bnsi»5t<m [67-8]. 'Memoirs BAS. I, 1822 (5*) 'South KeT.sin.3t0n (70). 

•Midnapore Dist. B. (168), 5-467. s Note on chart, MEIO. US (41 ). ' MM C. 10-1-95. 



Reference must be made to two instruments of a different class ■ 
•' t j E ?, Ual AKitofe Instrument, made by Troughton, which cost 50 <minea s 
in London", used by Emmitt for determining: the variation of his compass i TiySl 
^J^Z^J^f^ ^ S "^ 0r «— al » l^Sforastronoicii 

EoJ'toriV^ C H rCUlar i T traTWnt "P° n * M " construction, called the New Improved 
Equatorial, ..made upon the same plan as the instrument used by General Roy to ascertain 

it L Sndonte T6, n G a " S ^ ^"^ ""' ""* - ^ ™ *e proprilrb^ 
it ,n London for ,67 Guineas ; and carried it first to China, where not haVing met with a 

The purchase was sanctioned, and he writes to Toppino- 
«■ I I*™ pr ° Cure f f new ^Proved Equatorial Instrument of tao feet diameter but the 

loimX^nt Zm£Tu " ?*" ^ miStake ' l ha ™ DOt ** *» ^^ an^ 
use 01 this instrument, which I hope however to do in time, bavin* written to Crmnar„h„r iL 


The possibility of determining Longitude at Sea by the use of a Time-keener was first 
pointed out by the Flemish astronomer Gemma Frisius i„ a work on negation published a 
Antwerp in ,530. ... During t 725 ^o John Harrison, a Yorkshire carpenter invented and 
constructed four practical marine time-keepers, with the fourth of which he wo 1 the reward of 

felST fndl ^' he BritiSh ?°T nment [ I5t ] ' - HarliSOn ' S — hamsm...™ comphcated 
delicate, and costly ...accordingly it had little direct effect on the evolution of the mode™ 
chronometer. But in r 7 6 5 Pierre le Roy of Paris invented and constructed a marine rime" 
keeper, whose mechanism embodied.. .practically all the essential features of the modern 
Z—nZ^r W ° rk ~ *~ UP by toth - d - ^nceandtyroidtn™ 
The last named produced, as early as 1785, several chronometers, which both in appear 
ance , and mechanism, are scarcely distinguishable from the machine of today* ^ 

BalrvmnT/i'f St "T ™ J ad *? f « h ™™™^ being used in India is a note by 

Dabymple ot one owned by Forrest [46] which 

fell into very good hands, for it was purchased by Lieut. J.S. Ewart, who made very eood 
use of it dnnng two years in Bengal and the intenour part of India [T55] and the? as he 
informs me spared it to one of the vessels gone to the North West coast of America' torn 
which therefore Geography has much to expect*. America, lrom 

Both Borrow and Topping made regular use of chronometers and watches For 
his longitude observations in 1787 Barrow bought an Arnold's chronometer and a 
large timeptece for Hs. 1,700 [ 158 ], and writes, 

made to GeoTraoh ^ H f ^ , Arn °' d ** ^^ ° M ° f the ^ test Mi * l °™ «^t ™re ever 
sTve a, t„ „ S P 7 ' ' , he dam P ness oi «* "cather of India in the rainy season is so exces- 

guarSd agai„ a sT n r egn anbeS " ** ^ "*' ^ l ~» tMr -^V considerably, if not ■ 
After taking them both out of their cases, and wrapping them carefully in cotton and 
rommontrvilet *"» "" "»* * "- close box, th?y then went ve^ welltwere^of 
_ We have already noticed that, between his principal longitude stations, Burrow 
mterpolated others by means of several watches whose rate? he constantly' checked 
L 162 ] ; that he forgot to wind the watches and had to stay an extra week at Dacca 
to re-observe their rates [ , 58 ] . and that on his return to Calcutta he found all the 
watches had altered their rates very considerably [ 1 50, , 6 2 ] . In measuring his 
degree of longitude he made use of nine watches [ 1 66] measuring h,s 

On his journey by land from Masulipatam to Calcutta in 1786 [ 1,, 1 Topoincr 
had a small chronometer ' J ' u rP ln s 

^±"rJ' 1 ' M that had bef ° re bem under ^ ° n a ">y*Se f"» England to the Coast and after- 
wards at Madras during an interval of twelve months. The account which follows of the 

Chronometers 203 

method observed to ascertain its rate on the road, will show how satisfactorily it performed 
on this occasion : ... the chronometer appears to have been very little affected, by the motion 
of the Palanquin, between the last two stations 1 . 

At the end of 1792 he asked leave to make a voyage in order to test some 
chronometers just received from England [ 173 ] " ; 

These watches are now in good order, and should be used before they have been too long 
out of the maker's hands, after which they are found to be much less valuable than at first 
for settling the Longitudes of places. 

Huddart fixed the longitude of many places down the west coast by carrying 
chronometers from Bombay, and comparing their times against that from astrono- 
mical observations [ 176 ]. 

Chronometers were sometimes contrary and Sydenham reports that though he had 
carefally recorded the rate of his watch, by Arnold, from "a series of comparisons 
at the Madras Observatory", yet on 

30th March. ..the watch stopped without any visible cause, having been carefully wound up 
the preceding day, and every precaution used to secure it against accident. This unpleasant 
circumstance rendered it necessary to ascertain a new rate 3 . 

In 1786 the Directors sent out for the Bombay Marine survey [124] "one Bos 
and two Pocket chronometers", ...and directed that 

in case of any accident unfortunately happening to the Box Chronometer, it must not be 
put into the hands of any Artist in India, but returned to us. We are informed that the 
Pocket Chronometer can be repaired at Calcutta 4r . 
It is sad to find, however, that two years later McCluer reports, 

The Chronometers sent out by the Company are all useless; the large one was sent to- 
Governor Boddam, that it might be taken to Europe. The small ones are both rendered 
useless, one is with me, and the other is lodged in the Secretary's office. The Longd. has been 
accurately measured by a very good one, sent me by Mr. Dalrymple 5 . 

Supply of Instruments 

In the early days it was not the Company's policy to supply its officers with 
surveying instruments; they were expected to provide their own, even though no 
provision was made for this in calculating their allowances [205, 277]. A 
small stock however, of the more common instruments gradually came to be kept 
amongst the engineer and military stores, and could sometimes be obtained from 
the arsenals on payment. As the Company's servants were the only traders allowed 
in the country, there were no merchants or shopkeepers to import such articles ; 
officers who wanted instruments had therefore to purchase them from England, 
though after a time they were sometimes brought out amongst the goods which 
every captain of an Indiaman had the right to bring out as his private speculation 
[ 90 ] . When an officer died or left the country, any surveying instruments among 
his property were sure to find purchasers, and sanction was often obtained to pur- 
chase them for Government stores. 

In 1775, Ross, Chief Engineer, Madras, wrote to Stevens, who must have 
possessed some instruments already, but apparently had asked for others, 

I will send you the Astronomical Quadrant with a great deal of pleasure : I am sorry 
that I have not a Theodolite that will answer your purpose, but you may depend on having 
the best of the season. I have wrote for several, but am afraid they won't be out this year. 

The Company have never sent me any Instruments, tho' it was one of the first things I 
did to indent for them. What I have hitherto got were such as the officers of the ships 
brought out for sale, which will account for their being of inferior quality 6 . 

Again, to Government, on the close of Johnston's survey in Vizagapatam [ 93 ], 

Mr. Johnstone should be directed to bring with him all the Surveying Instruments that 
are not immediately wanted by Mr. Maxtone. Among which are those belonging to the 
Estate of the late Captain Pittman ; they have been in use for the Company ever since his 
death, and, as they are still wanted, should be purchased 7 , 

1 Oriental Repertory, T ( 419 et saq ). "4 pocket chronometers advised ; CD to M. 16-5-92 ( 15 ). 

3 Journal, MEIO. M. S3. 4 CD to Bo. 8-3-86 (29). s Bo PC. 18-9-88. 6 Mack. MSS.LXvTII, 18-6-75. 
rjtfMC. 6-1-77. 


Survey Instruments 


Again, in 1782, 

The great want of mathematical and surveying instruments for the service of the 
Engineer's Department induces me to request that your Lordship will allow me to purchase 
...several useful articles brought from Europe in the ships of this season, amounting to about 
400 Pagodas 1 . 

Mathematical instruments were a favourite form of official present. When Bogle 
went on his mission to Tibet, he took with him as presents to be distributed in Bhutan 2 , 

A. Case of Mathematical Instruments valued at 

Barometer, Thermometer, Hydrometer ,, 

Three Thermometers ... „ 

Four Compasses ... ... 3J 

A Quadrant ... ... u 

A Microscope 
. A small Telescope ... 

Two Spying Glasses ... u 

Three Prisms ... ... 

' An Electrifying Machine ..: 

In 1771, the Directors send out as a present for the ISTawab of the Carnatic 
an Instrument of curious design and workmanship, called an Orrery, which exhibits the 
revolutions of the Planets 3 . 

and twenty years later presents for the young Peshwa included "an Orrery, Globes, 
fMaps, and Philosophical Instruments" 4 : the orrery was damaged on the journey, 
■ but Emmitt was able to repair it. 

When Burrow was ordered on his astronomical survey in 1 787, he had the greatest 
difficulty in collecting suitable instruments, but, not being a eonvenanted servant, 
'was able to get Government to pay for those which he managed to find [ 158 ] ; 

With respect to the Instruments, Calcutta is not a place where it is easy to be furnished, 
even with bad ones, from the shops ; I had brought some good ones from England, but had 
the misfortune to have them stolen, & there was none belonging to the Company in the 
Settle nient, so that I was obliged to borrow where I could; &. am particularly obliged to 
Lt. Wm. Golding of the Bengal Engineers, for use of a 4 foot refracting telescope ; & to 
Captain Justinian Nutt 5 for the lead of one of Mr. Arnold's timepieces for several months 
during his stay at Calcutta; Mr. E. E. Pote also favoured me with the use of an excellent 
Telescope made by Ramsden, & Captain Garstin, with one of Ramsdcn's theodolites. 

I had likewise a sextant made by Trougaton of 6 inches radius, & two of Mr. Arnold's 
Chronometers ; one of them was very old and without any of his last improvements, but the 
other went very well ; and I had also a Barometer and Thermometer ; and an Astronomical 
Quadrant made by Captain Ritchie, but this last was so liable to error of all kinds (being for 

- the most part made of wood & excessively ill contrived) as to be in a manner almost totally 
..useless, and rather burthensome than serviceable. 

For his trip to Cheduba the following spring, 

The instruments I took with me were two watches made by Arnold belonging to the 
Company, & a Sextant & Telescopes; a theodolite & a small pocket compass of my own. I had 

- neither Azimuth compass, nor log -line, nor time to procure such things, when I received orders 
_to go on board, nor could I with propriety expect such things from the ship as they were 

continually wanting them for their own observations 6 . 

In 1787 the Surveyor General asked Government to sanction the purchase of a 
number of instruments, the property of an officer of Engineers who was goino- home 
as there is not a single instrument in the Office belonging to the Company, and were they to 
, be commissioned from England there would not only be a delay of several years, but very 
little difference in the expence. 

These instruments consisted of 

A large and complete Magazine ease of Mathematical Instruments, containing 


A very complete pentagraph by Ramsden 

Spirit level by Ramsden, with long^ telescope, compass, etc. 


A sextant with telescope 

A large Theodolite, with long telescope and spirit level 

He replied to the Government's query as to how the Surveyor General's Office 
had hitherto been supplied with instruments, 

3 CD to " Nabob of Carnatic ", 10-4-71. 
;. MS. 5. ?MMC, 27-9-87. 

'Mack. MSS. LXTIII, 8-1^82. ! HMS. 219(347), 3-5-74. 
1 HMS. 615 (286). 5 Captain of an Indiaraan. 6 Journal, 10. Ma 

Supply of Instruments 205 

- Some years ago.. .our plans were contracted for to be completed for a specified sum of 
.money, and there is no doubt the Expence for Instruments as well as every other must have 
been considered [235]. At present I have a salary of 500 Sonat Rupees a month for myself, 
and 600 for Draftsmen, but no allowance for instruments [203,277], which of course ought to 
be furnished by the Hon'ble Company. ... 

I further beg leave to recommend. . .that the Court of Directors be requested to send out every 
two years for the use of my office the.. .Instruments which are included in the accompanying 
list, which I have now the honour to send you, and if possible to be made by Ramsden, 
This indent included drawing instruments of all sorts and 
A Spirit Level. A Pentagraph. 

Two Land Quadrants with stands. An Improved Perambulator. 

An Astronomical Quadrant. Tito hanging, and two pocket, compasses. 

Two small Theodolites, strongly made, with double Two hundred-tcer Brass Chains with arrows. 
Telescope and a spare long telescope for each. Two Gunter's Brass Chains with arrows . 

Government sanctioned the purchase of the instruments on sale and forwarded 
the indent to England, which in due course was supplied with the exception of 
r the land quadrants [200]. 

About this time Reynolds in Bombay succeeded in replenishing his stock of 
instruments at Government expence : 

Among the Investment of the Imperial ship, lately arrived, are a variety of mathematical 
and Astronomical Instruments suited to the service on which I am at present employed, and 
as such an opportunity is not to be missed of providing myself with these Instruments, ... I 
-beg leave to solicit your permission to Purchase them on the Honorable Company's account. 

Accompanying is a list with their prices sent me by the Captain of the Ship. I must do 
him the justice to say that the prices are very moderate, and much below what such articles 
generally sell for in India. 

The Military Storekeeper was directed to purchase what Reynolds asked for ! . 

In 1788 the issue of a perambulator and oompass from Government stores was 
authorised for any survey of a military route, on the indent of the commanding 
'officer [196] 3 . 

; In 1792 the situation as regards instruments at Madras was so difficult that 
the Chief Engineer wrote to Mackenzie, on his being posted as surveyor with the 
Nizam's Subsidiary force, 

An Artificial Horizon is not to be got. Topping endeavoured to render that which 
Lennon had serviceable for you, but it did not succeed, you must therefore make the most of 
some quicksilver in a saucer, and chase still weather for your observations. The Major 
[Maule] and Sergeant Balfour have been trying at a wheel for you ; their Progress I cannot 
exactly ascertain, but believe it rather slow 4 . .-.,..• 

The following year Topping submitted a second indent for mathematical 

which I hope will be complied with, as there are no Instruments fit for the surveying service 
of any value belonging to the Company in the Country 5 . 

In 1795, Mackenzie sent in from Hyderabad an account of the instruments that 
had been provided to him in 1792, and an indent for replacement and addition ; 
— provided by himself, 

Brass Sextant by Ramsden, with Large Perambulator. 

Astronomical Ephemeris Tables. Achromatic Telescope, 4 feet. 

Theodolite, with stand, complete. Two Pocket Compasses etc. 
Brass Chain of 50 feet. 

— provided from the Chief Engineer's Office, 

Brass Circular Protractor Box of Colours 

Large Parallel Euler Tracing Glass, with some stationery. 

— and now required, 

A Good Theodolite, Two eases Mathematical Drawing Instruments ; 

ArtilVial Horizon, with ground glass plates ; thecommon brass kind are not St for any work 

very much wanted. of accuracy ; they should be chosen of the best 

Small jar of Quicksilver. kind. ... 

Azimuth Compasses. A pah of Thermometers and Barometers. 

Achromatic Telescope. A Pocket, or Portable, Compass. 
Tracing Glass. 

>MMC. 27-9-87. ' Bo. S & Po. 5-2-88. 3 BGO. 29-9-88. 'Mack. MSS. LXIX, 1-8-92. 

*MPC. 19^-93. 


206 Survey Instruments 

The above list, if supplied will render any application for instruments unnecessary for 
some time. If any of the kind wanted are among the stores at Masulipatam, they might be 
ordered to be supplied on indent from thence 1 . 

The following instruments were supplied to each pair of Assistant Surveyors 
sent out from the Surveying School on district surveys 3 ; 

Theodolite, Cireumferentor. 

Levelling Instrument. Chain. ;. 

Telescope for celestia.1 observations. Two Teak measuring rods. 

Small Telescope. Brass standard measuring rod. 

Hadley's Sextant. Perambulator. 

Artificial Horizon. Protractor. 

Thermometer. Case of Drawing Instruments. 

Astrolabe 3 

Some description must be given of the Astrolabe, the oldest scientific instrument 
in the world, which we have already noticed as having been used by the early 
astronomers and travellers [148,151], and, as late as the 18th century, by the 
missionary Tieffenthaler [ 150]. 

In its simplest form it consisted of a circle or disc of metal or wood, suspended 
by the edge from a ring, and fitted with an alidade which rotated to give readings 
from a scale of degrees. With this instrument, the elevation of sun or stars could 
be observed for the deduction of time and latitude [ 176]. 

Instrument Maeers 

It is not surprising to find surveyors of the 18th century complaining of the 
quality of the instruments they had to work with, and the following extract is taken 
from a letter written by Pearse to an uncle in England. 

Adams' Thermometers are too short for India. I have seen the mercury 120. ... 

I never had any opinion of Adams; when I was in Europe I had seen some of his instru- 
ments very defective, ... his being King's Mathematical Instrument Maker mates him careless; 
but I have seen many instruments of Ramsden's in India exquisitely good. 

I have an astronomical Quadrant of his make which is extremely fine [200]; and I have 
seen refractors of his, little, if anything, inferior to Dolland's; so that I have a very high 
opinion of him*. 

'MMC, 10-1-95. ! M. Rev. Bd. 22-12-96. 3 Ency. Brit. 4 Letter of 3^-TS. Mil, Repository, 

Plate 11 

Reduced b; 

the British Museum, K. 115 ( 25 ) by permission of the 

A great advance on Mercators map, Plate 3, but, interior detail pushed 
too far north, compare Plate 1. 

Note, in contrast, the comparative accuracy in latitude of the coastal 
detail, both here and in Plate 12. 

Plate 12 

Reduced by 

ISTote how 
been pushed 
much room. 

the British Museum, K. 115(60 ) by permission of the 

the Western Ghats, which are visible from the coast have 
far into the interior; Malabar and Canara being allowed far too 
Compare Plates 1 and 3 

l _ . . ,o _! :. „„ rl,,f nf PlatP 11. 



Ancient Geography 1 — Early Maps to 17 SO — D'Anville's hap of 1752 — Jefferys & 
■Orme — Rennell's Map of Hindoostan, 1782-93 — Thomas Call's Atlas, 1782-9 — 
Reynolds' Map 1793-1807 — Ookhroohe & others. 

THE first ideas to reach Europe about the geography of India came through 
Alexander's invasion of B.C. 330; 

The actual campaigns.. .were confined to the valley of the Indus and its tributaries' but 
the information collected. ..included the whole valley of the Ganges on the north, the eastern 
and western coasts of the peninsula, and some scattered notices of the interior of the country 2 . 
This information was worked into shape by the Greek geographers Megasthenes 
and Eratosthenes 3 , the latter attempting the first map of India. He held that the 
earth was spherical in shape and the centre of the universe, and, making astrono- 
mical observations and calculations for the length of the earth's circumference, laid 
the first foundations of scientific geography; his ideas of the dimensions and form 
of India are said to have been a better approximation than those of most of his 
successors up till about the 17th centu j \ "but he strangely distorted its outlines, 
so much so that India extended from West to East, with Cape Comorin as its most 
easterly point"", whilst the ocean beyond formed the limit of his world. 

He was followed by Ptolemy ' [220], mathematician, astronomer, and geographer 
of the 2nd century A D., who established the geometrical principles of geography, and 
insisted that astronomical observation was the only scientific basis for a°map [148]. 
He constructed a map of the world and separate maps of other countries, collecting 
information from historians and travellers. Unfortunately he took the value o°f 
the equatorial degree as 50 instead of 60 geographical miles, and having but few 
observations for latitude, and none for longitude, his positions were mostly = estimated 
by mutual bearings and distances, and thus vitiated by his error. His Indian 
peninsula is typical of the distortion produced, being compressed in latitude between 
parallels 11 and 20°, but stretched in longitude from meridians 110° to 150°. 
Ceylon on the other hand is swollen to 15° north to south, and 12° from east to west. 

Ptolemy shows the Hinialayan'range [ 67 ], with the Ganges flowing south-east 
from the mountains to the sea. He is the first to apply the term India intra Gangem. 
to the 1 egion west of the Ganges, and that of India extra Gangem to that to the 
east, whilst beyond that a rain he shows the Chersonesus Anna and Since 7 . 

Both D'Anville and Kennel] refer repeatedly to his map, Eennell remarking 

Although this geographer's map of India is so exceedingly faulty in the general form of the' 
whole tract; yet several parts of it arc descriptive. ... Ptolemy's ideas were collected from the 
people who sailed along the coast. ... A work which has travelled down to us from the second 
century. ..must have possessed something worthy to recommend it 8 . 

Wilford writes, probably before 1S00, 

It is my opinion that, in the times of Pliny and Ptolemy, they had a more full and copious 
geographical account of India than we had forty years ago. Unluckily through the want of 
regular itineraries and astronomical observations, their longitudes and latitudes were only 
,nferred; an] this alone was sufficient to throw the whole of their geographical information 
into a shapeless and inextricable mass of confusion 9 . 

», ?Mi?KH,. g ' mer t 1 aoc ? l : nt of the e ">y S^SrapIry of Indii, ,. Murray, I. 'Sastri (tail), 
, ; ., : l*B.t,»(l»,,libr., 1 il,a,i l i, ! Smtri (MCili). 'Bunbury.I (635). ■ X „« ( 142 1 , 
1™ ! .< v ' * T° te ab,ut 150 A - D -i E ™y BH >- 'Map, O'rkr.s 6V.™<„>„ !'!oto„,,»,„, 

.XiSk™™:'' 'MR'xitlskfsHnt inSeI ° n ,ttmtia?ieCe ° f A " HPU ' 4 <*««*«««• 



Maps of India 


I 1 

One substantial contribution made by Ptolemy was a table of places with 
latitudes and longitudes, the former from the parallel of Rhodes, an/ the later 

ir? 1 4 h 9 dT en '° [ H2 "• *) • A Latin *™«l»tio n of his Georgia appeared 
in 1482, and his maps were redrawn and printed in 1472 ppeareo. 

The next great contributors to Indian geography to be noticed are the Chinese 

40<>T3 S and a fiTiT] " *?"%' Wh ° ^^ th6 Sa0red P 1 "" of '*A» 

400 I 3 and 629-4o, leaving valuable accounts of their -journeys 

From the 9th to the 13th centuries a succession of Arab travellers and geographers 
left careful records of the places they visited and described, fixing So, s 
by means of estimated distances. They illustrated their writings by diagi^s rather 
than maps and one of these, by Ibn Haukal, is shown on plate 4 [ 22 o 1 

The following is an extract from an Arab work completed in 1310 wh-ch is 
more precise when dealing with internal detail ■ 

Hind IS surrounded ou the east by Chin and Machin, on the west by Sind and Kabul and 
on the south by the sea. On the North he Kashmir, the country of the Turks and th» 
mountain of Mem , which is extremely high, and stands opposite to tne Luthel ^f d *** 

Though containing little m the way of maps, old Hindu Sanskrit writing 
contain much accurate geographical information, of which it has been said That * 

Although there is plenty of the fabulous in Indian geographv of outlandist rLvf = '«, 
allusions to purely Indian topography are generally sober. The main Tea lure" of t g. ° ' 2f 
were adequately known in very early times\ ieatures of the country 

Wilford, who was the first serious student of such Hindu literature writes 
Besides geographical tracts, the Hindus have also maps of the world both TccoVdW t„ 
the system of the Pauranics, and of the astronomers ; P fhe latter are try common Thev 
have also maps of India, and of particular districts, in which latitudes 2d longrTudes are 
entirely out of question, and they never make use of a scale of equal parts. The sea shores 
rivers and ranges of mountains, are represented in general by strait lines ct p , ,T ' 

The best map of this sort I ever saw, was one of the kingdom of ^/presented to 
Mr Hastings. It was about four feet long, and two and a half broad of paste toardanS 
the mountains raised about an inch above the surface, with trees pain ed all round The 
roads were represented by a red line, and the rivers with a blue one The ™ZT 

scale ^The'vSSev of ^7*™" *~Z ^^ ^ ^ ^T^J* ^ZH 
^hingV^Swtrru i:rn°Sn e!y ""^ ** " * ^ <* * -p! Maps to 1750 

The invention of printing was a great stimulus to the study of geography and 
between 1472 and 1480 seven editions of Ptolemy's maps were Ssued P Durmg 
the following century a number of Italian and Dutch maps appeared which Ts 
^h^K latTatTlerf *~ * " »" - ~ SS strangffor^ 

f rfi^ H f^ 16 Sh! - W , ItaHan ma P B of tIlc 16in Century by Bertoli and 
Gas taldt- but later maps by Giacomo Cantelli da Vignola, published at Eo me "n 
1683, show a considerable advance in knowledge' m 

; There are a number of Dutch maps, the earlier ones being wildly imaginative 
with picturesque ornamentation in the way of ships and se°a monste™ Iven the 
names of their geographers have an air of romance; Hadriano Eelando Gerard 

piece to GladmnW,™ AUer,j f ,33 n 3] »iwi iv4? ?oT P .fr?' ™ Ch f- "S ap app " a " as *''<">«»- 
o, the Venetian mapLkers of iotlfcen^ry ». "?££' nib! u^klogued. '' "' ^^ " the -" 

Early Maps to 1750 209' 

Mercator ; Johann Huydekoper ; de Witt ; Pieter Goos ; Hendrick Doncker ; Hugo 
Allarot ; and Nicolaum Visscher. Plate 3 gives a fine map from Mercator's atlas 
of the early 17th. century. 

Plate 10 shows a map of the late 16th century, a tiny map drawn by Father 
"Monserrate after his visit to Akbar's court, 1579-82 [ii], which commands our 
respect as the first map even partly based upon measured routes and astronomical 
observation, the surveyed line running from Surat through Delhi to Kabul. 

The chief merit of the map is the delineation of the western Himalaya and the 
upper courses of the rivers from the Jumna to the Indus, which are better shown' 
than in any other map for the next two hundred years [68], though it is seriously 
out in longitude. It was never printed until 1914. 

The first English map of any value was drawn by "William Baffin in 1619,. 
largely from information supplied by Sir Thomas Roe [71 n. 8], whom Baffin 
accompanied on the voyage home from India. Though greatly superior to other 
published maps of the period, and for a long while the main authority for other 
geographers, Orme's remark that " This map is curious for knowledge misplaced l " 
was certainly justified, with, for example, Lahore on the banks of the Indus, and 
Attock 80 leagues to the south. It is interesting to compare Baffin's map with 
that of Monserrate ; they have practically nothing in common 3 whilst Monserrate 
has a very fair idea of the Jumna, he reduces the Ganges to a mere tributary,, 
strangely misplaced; Baffin's Ganges on the other hand, is very well shown, but his 
Jumna rises about twenty miles west of Delhi *.' 

With a neat humour, Baffin inscribed the following text below his map heading,. 
" Vera quae visa ; quae non, veriora " s , which no doubt referred originally to the 
superiority of divine faith over material vision. 

Nearly 100 years later, Herman Moll published in " London, in the Savoy j 
MDCCXXII ", a work entitled A Compleat System, of Geography, Ancient & Modern. 
The volume for Asia contains 31 maps, and lengthy descriptions of the geography 
of India as then surmised *, There are two maps of India, both on the scale of 200 
miles to an inch. 

The West Part of India, or the Empire of the GREAT MOGVL extends from Kabul 
to Pegu, and from the Maldivo Islands to Kashmir. 

Its most striking features are ; first, that it brings the Ganges directly south 
from a lake, presumably intended for Manasarowar [72], which is fed by two 
great rivers, a very different version to that introduced by the Lamas' map a few 
years later [ 70-1 ]. Second, the Brahmaputra is brought from the East through 
Assam, and the Tsang-po is not shown at all. Third, a river "Guenga", in other 
early maps the Ganga, rises in- the Decean near Poona, and flows north-east into the 
Hooghly [45, pis. 3 n. ; 13 n. J. 

The East Part of INDIA, or India beyond the R. Ganges, extends eastwards to 
cover the Andaman and Nicobar Islands, and Sumatra 5 . 

It shows Assam as "Asem or Acham", and also shows a "Laquia E. 6 " flowing west 
from " Chaammay Lake" in Upper Burma to join the Brahmaputra [ 78, 84]. 

Plates 11 and 12 show two maps by le Sieur Sanson d'Abbeville, Geographer 
to the King' of Prance, whom Markham describes as k£ the pioneer of geography in 
Prance 7 " ; they seem to have borrowed from Baffin's map. 

Markham refers to Guillaume Delisle, "Premier Geographe du Eoi", as "the 
principal creator of the modern system of geography", and "the first to publish a 
map of Tibet [ 67 ]". His Carte des Indes et de la Chine is dated 1705, and his map 
of Central Asia, 1706. A later French geographer was le Sieur Robert, Geographe 
ordinaire du Roi, one of whose maps Les Indes Orientates 8 was published in 1751. 

'Orme MSS. 134 (169). 2 Map, BM. K. 115 (2i): reproduced, Terry & "William Foster. ^The 
things that we have seen are true ; those that we have not seen are truer still. Possibly from St. Aug- 
ustine; cf. II Cor. IV 18. *IO. Maps, MS. 87 (451-712). 5 ib. (652) °Eennell gives the name 
" Lukhya " to the W . channel of the Brahmaputra thro' Dacca Dist. ; La Totiche ( 46 ) & Ben. Atlas ( vi & 
ix ). The name still survives, 78 L/12, 79 1/9. ' Nicolas Sanson, b. Abbeville 1600. d. 1667 ; his sons 
Guillaume d. 1733 and Adrian d. 1718. 3 BM. K. 115 (11). 


Maps of India 


D'Antille's Map of 1752 

Ail important stage was reached, and the geography of India largely rescued 
from the vagaries of fancy, when the French geographer, Je^BaptUte Bourgeon 

ma™ of the T°° m ? 1 rf, -""V ° aHe g4n6ml du ™> « *"*■*>«, ^sed on the 
maps of the Jesuits at Pefan, and this had been published in Du Halde's sreat 
work on China [ 7 o, pi. 7 ]. He had also published, in 1737, a map of the South 
Peninsula from surveys sent home by Father Bouchet [86, ^8-ql 

His new map of India was the first to be accompanied by a careful analysis of 
all authorities used in its construction ; it is entitled analysis ot 

3 feSS * ' Inde ' *"* P0UI la "-W" des Indes - »» « P™> 4 lignes au degre. 
His descriptive memoir 4 opens 

? &2£t& sr^s : P ^r iu£: t&2ss^^«5? 

J avouerai merne que j'ai d'abord temoigne quelque repugnance a traveler TuV 1'Lud nlu, 

Aureste , J'avancemeut de la Geographie m'etant pins cher que la carte rfe lf„ i • 

sing positions and distances given by writers even aTearlv a, S ' iTi?" 

cove^B^L^rTSllr^fb ° f Ind ^ Slm0St Wank ' Snd fr0m the "«*>° -"ich 
wJnV= T-ii ■ 3] i , , be Seen how conscientious he was to avoid filling ur, 

virons of Andanagar? ..form the gr^t river Garf° Th "'' e /"J,," ^^ " the en - 
? eat space of country, le aves us StntTny^S^ o7tTu^ driver ^wTbT 

It is surprising that he records "an almost total defect of ;„t«ll;„ 
cernng the course of the Ganges, from it, entrant Tint India UoT^ZLlZ 
the Jomanes-' and even m Bengal shows nothing to thenorthof the GangL^cept 

• Carte d', Imp. Lib. M % P. 891. 'Mill (5). 'M K llo (l! JT.K1 , * 

t„ 1 mch. >EcU m „,e m en,Gi<,,ra. v H q u„ ™r la Carte de TInde 'D'AnvO^Tvil' ' ?§ "^"i 50 m - 
Portuguese historian [ 22 ,j. author of B» Am,, 24 vols Lisbon tlssollfi,, » i***, d " B "' ros ' 
' .Ahnuuiiia^ii'. ■ i 1 12. 8 Herbert f^Ql ■ ef Jn,^ rt i.isDon, c lt.hO-lbl3; 2nd ed. I'yTS-SS 

63 (J/15; Herbert (23). ' ' " 6S ™ J ° fa ™ S "' ^avery, Kedgeree. • Jumna elnnuS 

D'Anville's Map op 1752 


the points of junction of the larger tributaries, giving- no indication whatever of any 
mountains. On the other hand, 

Having material to represent this part of the Ganges, from Ugli l to the Sea, with more 
nicety and exactness, I have filled up a vacant space in the map with a particular draught 
of that part, upon a scale large enough to admit all the circumstances in which we are well 
informed 3 . 

D'Anville's memoir was translated and published with a reprint of his map in 
London in 1754 and 1759, with annotations by William Herbert 3 , Hydrographer 
[304]. He continued his interest in India, and helped Orme with material for his 
History, and in 1775 published his Aniiguite Ge'ographiqtie de I', in the preface 
of which he thus comments on the great advance of knowledge since his map of 

Ce que j'avois pre vu s'est effectue; et l'lnde est de venue l'object d'un travail Geogra- 
phique sur les heux memes. , . . Enfin, la carte de l'lnde dressee dans le cabinet a Paris, s'est 
vue suivie de plusieurs autres. 

CeEe qui parut la premiere a Londres en 1'annee 68, quinze ans plus tard que la mienne, 
ayant ete enrichie en diflerentes parties, en conserve d'autres qui sont purement conformes a 
la carte qui l'a devancee. On lui en a fait succeder une seconde de la partie du Eengale, et 
en remontant le Gange dans un espace d'environ cent cinquante lieues au-dessus de la division, 
de ce fleuve, et cette nouvelle production avec plus de detail, et quelques changemens ea 
divers endroits. La geographic de l'lnde a ete ainsi tiree d'un etat presque nul, ou du moins 
d'une extreme secheresse, pour arriver a un degre de perfection qu'on n'auroit pas ose esperer 
de lui donner °. 

J-efferys & Orme 

The map of 1768 referred to by D'Anville above is obviously one entitled The 
Mist Indies with the Roads*, by Thomas Jefferys 7 , in four sheets, on scale about 
40 miles to an inch, which included surveys by Rennell and others brought home 
from Bengal by Vansittart and Clive [250]. Jefferys had obtained formal per- 
mission from the Directors to publish this map, and their minutes record the receipt 
of a 

letter from Mr. Thomas Jefferys, dated this day, representing that he has attempted in a 
Map to delineate the extent of the British Dominions in the East Indies, and expressing his 
hopes that this Court will give him leave to publish it under their patronage 8 . 
and no objection seems to have been raised to his use of surveys which were rightly 
the Company's property [ 251 ]. ■ 

Jefferys follows Moll in showing the Brahmaputra by the name Lakia, rising 
with the Surma from " Chemay " Lake I_ 209 ] . He shows the Chilka Lake as over 
100 miles from the sea, to which he connects it by two creeks, one flowing out by 
Palmyras Point and the other by Rajahmundry 9 . 

Robert Orme, the historian, was most industrious in collecting geographical 
materia] to illustrate his history [22, 28-g] ; and his papers, now preserved at the 
India Office :o , contain long lists of sketches and surveys sent to him by John Call, 
"Vansittart, Richard Smith, and other friends in India, with notes on geographical 
positions of important places, lists of geographical names, lists of maps in published 
books, and various notes on the construction of " our map n ". His draughtsman 
was Thomas Kitchen 13 , and two sheets of their map, scale 1^ inches to a degree,, 
were published without title in the first volume of his Historical Fragments of the 
Mogul Empire, 1782, with the following comment; 

'Hooghly, 79 B/5. -ib, (30) 3 As purser's clerk h;ul mado obsns. in S. India & Maldive Is;. 

Dalrymple. * " Atlas 4«iigiiMs 1784, ... " 12 maps. Imp Lib. M § P. (239, D. 29). 5 AntiqvAU Geogra* 

$hiqiie. (Preface). 6 BM. K. 115 (13, 2 Tab.) & Imp. Lib. M fy P. 519. 7 Geographer to the King; d. c. 
1774. Geo. Rev. I, 1874 ; DNS. s CM. 27-4-68. 9 Jefferys' map was used by Brion de la Tour hi a map 
of La Presqu'ile des Indes, Paris, 1781 ; Bernoulli, II (434). 10 Orme MSS. passim. u Robert Orme, II 

(68 a). u Hydrographer to the King, Author of Map of India, Frontispiece, Ives. 


Maps op Isdia 

across Rajputana, 
ages from the 

Mr. Orme had projected an Atlas of the Peninsula, to consist of about 10 or 12 sheets of 
which the two maps inserted in this volume were to have formed a part : but the improve- 
ments then resulting from Major Renaell's survey of Bengal, and the marches of the British 
armies m India, prevented his proceeding in so arduous an undertaking *. 
A small scale map of India, also drawn by Kitchen, appeared with his Histor,,, 

Orme's map contains various interesting items, such as, aci 
"Hendous, a savage people", and at the debouchment of the' G-ai 
mountains " Taglipoor, Streights of Eupele s ". 
_ Amongst Ms papers is the proof of a " General Map of Indostan ", with a note 
m his handwriting, 

The province of Oude in this Map is placed all wrong. Such was our general want of 
knowledge m the years i 7 6o to 1764. I write this May nth i 77 8. The Gunga. running thro' 
Berar and falling at Balasore is from Mr. D'Anville's notion, which we have now every reason 
believe wrong [209, 210]*. J 

After Rennell had retired and started the compilation of his Map of Hindooskm 
in London, he expressed, in a letter to Warren Hastings (who was still in India) his 
disgust at the manner in which Orme still held much material that he would be 
glad to get; 

The general map of Hindostan is still at a stand for want of materials. It is a provok- 
ing circumstance that the Historian O-e keeps up all the Geographical materials in order to 
extract snch particulars only as serve the purpose of illustrating his History : and probably 
I may either lose my eyesight, or drop into the grave, before he has done with them? 
He probably got most of what he wanted very soon after, for Orme writes 

Mr. Orme is in possession of several geographical tracts relating to India, which contain 
curious knowledge, and may on occasions be useful abroad. He suggests their publication 
with an index. ... To explain this portion of history.. .a General Map of India is necessary 
according to one or other of two forms he now presents. What is done in that with names' 
already stands at £40, and when so compleated will, with engraving, come to a great deal of 
money, perhaps £150, too much for Mr. Orme to ask, but much more than any sale can bear 

Mr. Orme is therefore very willing to deliver what is already done to the Company 
recommending that Major Rennell, if he can be induced, may compleat the map and in such 
case will assist Major Rennell with all his materials, which he imagines to be a greater 
collection than any m Europe; and will give a tract of such observations and explanations 
on the Construction of the map as may tend to the future improvement of this knowledge' 

Rexnell's Map of Hindoostan, 1782-98 

Before he left India Rennell had already conceived the idea of working up a 
map of India ; 

It is well known that there are deposited in the India House a variety of Maps of 
various kinds; all (or most) of which... appear to be laid aside to perish; amongst this 
various collection of materials much useful matter might undoubtedly be extracted was 
there a proper person appointed to examine it. ... I beg leave most humbly to offer my 
services towards the selecting, arranging, and (if necessary) publishing as many of these., as 
the Hon'ble Court may judge necessary. 

From the best of the materials I propose to form.. .A General map of AH Hindoostan'. 

He had started this great work whilst his Bengal Atlas [ 22S-9 ] was yet in the 
engraver's hands, and in March 1782 he writes, 

I have another Geographical work in hand, and which is to be published shortly A Map 
of All Hindostan, or the Mogul's Empire. ... It is a work much wanted at this time. . The 
Map has been just a 12 month in the Engraver's hands; and my illness has not hastened it ». 

In December the Directors record that Rennell 
presents the Court with a Map of Hindostan, accompanied by a Book explaining its construc- 
tion, and proposes that copies should be sent to India, to be delivered at a reasonable price. 
'BobertOrmeOii). ' Orme, III (I). 3 ef. D'Anville's Carte de L'Inde. * OrmeMRS 11 fi\ 

•Xs tmk KJ? <191)> 2e ~ 1 ~ 81, ,0rme Mss - 15 ° (10L 101) ' 10 -" i; ; bpc. 5 i£ 7 f ( ?i: 

Reknell's Map oe Hindoostax 


Resolved that 30 Books of the best binding, explaining the Construction of Major 
Rennell's Map, ... with a Map placed in each Book, be purchased for the use of the Directors 
and the Officers at Home; and that 20 Books, bound in the other manner proposed by Major 
Rennell be purchased for the use of the Company's Presidencies in India. J 
Of the copies sent out to India, the seven which went to Madras were carefully 
sent in seven different ships, each copy "in a box apart" 3 . 

Kennell thus describes his map and his purpose in preparing it [ 4-5 ] ; 
Whilst the theatre of the British War in Hindoostan was limited to a particular province 
of it, little curiosity was excited towards the general Geography of the Country : but now 
that we are engaged either in wars, alliances, or negociations, with all the principal^ powers 
of the Empire, and have displayed the British Standards from one extreme of it to the 
other ; a Map op Hindoostan, such as will explain the local circumstances of our political 
connections, and the marches of our Armies, cannot but he highly interesting to every person 
whose imagination has been struck by the splendor of our victories, or whose attention is 
rouzed by the present critical state of our affairs, in that quarter of the globe. 

That, which I now offer to the public, is intended to answer the above purposes ; all such 
minutiae 'as tend rather to introduce confusion than to illustrate the general system being 
omitted; and the particular Geography of each province left to be hereafter explained m 
separate' maps, on more distinct scales; in the same manner as Bengal, Oude, etc. are already 

I am aware that I shall incur some censure for using so small a scale on the present 
occasion ; as many people who peruse maps without reflecting on the nature and intent of 
their construction are too apt to expect a large extent of country, and all the minute parti- 
culars of it, in the same map [33]. -■• 

The Map is contained in two large sheets, which may either be joined together for the 
purpose of bringing the whole into one view, or bound up separately in an Atlas. ... The 
scale is one inch to an equatorial degree 3 : and as the whole map is a square of more than 30 
such degrees, its surface will be found to contain a space larger than all Europe. ... The 
whole construction is entirely new. ... 

I have been enabled by means of observations of Longitude taken at Bombay, Cochin, 
Madras, Calcutta, Agra, etc, together with measured lines and surveys extended from the 
above places, to frame a very good groundwork for my map. ... 

We must not go much farther back than 30 years for the matter that forms the basis 
of this map; and it must not be forgotten that the East India Company have caused a 
a mathematical survey to be made at their own expence, of a tract equal to extent to France 
and England taken together* [226, 228]. 

In spite of the great advance of geographical knowledge, Rennell still found that 
for many areas he was little better off than D'Anville, of whom he writes, 

When it is considered that this excellent Geographer had scarcely any materials to work 
on for the inland parts of India, but some vague itineraries and books of travels, one is 
really astonished to find them so well- described as they are . 

Wide areas were still completely blank, or dependent on the journals of casual 
travellers ; and even where routes had been measured, very few were accompanied 
hj astronomical observations [215]. The Memoir shows how he had to juggle with 
the materia] at his disposal to get positions for his principal points that would best 
fit his more trustworthy data, and, as Everest wrote in 1838 nearly sixty years 


By what unwearied exertions did not the patient and judicious Rennell strive to reconcile 
the jarring and discordant data 6 on which the map that was accompanied by his Memoir is 
founded 7 . 
Plate 14 shows the area of Bengal and Assam taken from this map of 1782 8 . 

In 1785 Rennell issued a second edition of the Memoir, which now included 
his Account of the Ganges and Brahmaputra rivers [ 79 n.6 ] and several new maps, 
one of them covering the marches of Fullarton and Humberstone [ 98-9 ] . This 
edition was translated into German and French, and published with a reproduction 

1 CM. 4-1&-82. The map is dated 1782, and Memoir 1783. : By ships sailing m Jan. 1 iS3. CD to 
M, 15-1 -S3 ( 45, 46 ). 3 viz. about 09.V British miles to an inch ; cf . J>' Anville's map, " 1 pouce 4 lignes 
au degre" [210]. * Memoir. 1783 (Preface). Memoir reviewed in Eur. Mag. Ill, 17S3 (o2), and 
Bernoulli, II (464-92). h Mamoir, 1788 (vii). s Fully discussed in the Memoir. ' Everest { 10 ). 

" s Copy of 17S2 map wrongly bound as frontispiece to 1793 Memoir in G-BO Lib. Ha 6. 



Maps or India 

- s&S^^ir^r^ as tlie thM roW of Ms B -**- m ^° 

which hi wrtoT" PUMBhed ^ e " tirel3 ' " eW and enlai ' 8 ' ed map ' aud * e ""*' rf 
The flattering reception that was riven to my former wort- >,, ■ 

an object of duty, which was originally an ob^ert of choice " ™ " ™™"' "^ ^ 

I have been enabled to produce a work of a more rjerfect M„H <h. «. < 

=»to of this rnap is one inch and a half to arr equatorial deSee^ r^S! ft T"' V" 7"° 

large sheets, which may either be joined together for the ™ r , i." contalned "n four 

one point of view, or bound up J^Jety^n^J *"*«" ° f h ™°°'^ *• «** »*° 

the east coast, and Huddarfs observation K west^ TwaX ^ T 

N Tn U sL a rJ d a I id e «" t,lale ;' 8 '""^ °* the GaBges^d Go gra [pi 6 Sm ' TCy t0 

general.lf^l^^lou^rolX^i T d t ^ *" ^ ^ *" d » 
countries bordering on the riveflnd™ and S P^tne muffin T ^f' Md the 
as to have no considerable blanks in it P 6d " P ln Snch a d ^B ree . 

Prob?bly^n h hji 0l :fTeo;i:\ro g StnL m ntof its" iTb" ^ < n ""* ° f "^ * 
but that very complete maps of The Ser^ovinces of^rii^t T^t ' TT *° ^ 
large enough for any ordinary purpose '. g be """■ ta "*»4 « scales 

In a letter to Wan-en Hastings he tells of changes he has made to «,„ 
geography of the Punjab ; to the 

space between the upper part of t^Z^J^^^^^L^l <"*"« 
long ago, ... but could not tell how to correct it It „2™ ™Jab, a fault I discovered 
not allowed space enough, by H or 2 de'rees of Ton TT i "tfP""* 1 ^ ttat »e have 
Hindoostan, and the space between cLdSa an„ t h ^ ^ "° rtl >- west P^ of 

reduced * [148-9] Candahar and the Caspian must be proportionately 

Ma P of ZlnllflZ^: a of°B!„ s f a, ai r «£ K^ ^ ', m » U S ™' e 

Ssw? ^fhrin: ss T ™ lTCd »r"^L a g 

with the title m , <w*. ^r/'ut^llMx7 an 2ir^ 5? ^t 
second edition o the , Ma„ ofm^oostan was given coloured toJnd'ary ribands ^ 

made during the Mysore war of 1790-92 a new X and ^f • f /f n mji 
south of the Eistna were issned separately ™ 4 ] ™ Sl, ' a 

'Map, MR10. 96 (29, 30) T 115 r IS ?f a h 1 i> m 
dncod. Will, (front pocket). » About 46} BrifchahteVto f„£h °°Ifr m ~ C '1 t ^) ^"mce. rep.-o- 
dated 1-3-88. < AI™.v, the same old trouble overTonritade" BM Aiil'ZVlfAi ? U *>' Pl '<*>« 
face signed 22-11-91. The editions of 3f«p wore, M«„ 17s™' 4 o " ^ ' 291 V ( 516 ■ Jft 0- 
JKimofr, 17S2, 1785, 1788, 1792, 1793. "Prefaee sio-nrf 5l To'-) ;t1"- map : 1TSS ' 1792 ' 17 °3 ! of 

eopies of the main 1793 Memoir g d il ^ 1 - 9i ' Tils memoir was bound into some 

Rennell's Map oe Hindoostan 


These two last editions of the Memoir ran to 614 pages 1 , making a monumental 
work which gave a complete account of the sources of all the geographical material 
used in the map ; the map itself was out of elate almost as soon as it was published; 
British rule was extending rapidly, and with it came fresh opportunities for the 
suveyors, who took Rennell's map as the standard by which to shew the value of 
^their new work. No one realised this more than E,ennell himself, and the finest 
appreciation of his Map of Hindoostan is given in his own words written 15 years 

Believe me. Sir, when I say that I pride myself on nothing so much as on having origi- 
nally laid a foundation for the Indian Geography, and which is all that I pretend to, for at that 
day we were compelled to receive information from others respecting the interior of the 
country, but in your time you explored for yourselves. I have only the merit of furnishing 
:a dim light by which others groped their way 2 . 

The value of the Memoir long outlived that of the Map 5 , and as late as 1824 
Blacker asked sanction to purchase a copy for the Surveyor General's office ; 

Major Rennell's Memoir is the only Memoir of Construction of any Map of India with 
which I am acquainted, and such is the backwardness of Indian Geography in some directions, 
that I regret to say it is still occasionally the best authority procurable *, 

Thomas Call's Atlas, 1782-9 

Whilst Rennell, in London, was engaged in preparing his Map of Hindoostan, 
his successor in Bengal had, under Government orders of 1779, already started 
to compile a complete "general plan" [235, 261 ]. Inl783,in reply to an order, 
probably inspired by Beimel], to send all available surveys home to England 
[251-2], Call wrote to Government, 

I have in hand an Atlas of India formed from a variety of materials, such as original 
Maps, actual Surveys, Routes, Marches of Detachments, Journals, Reports, informations fur- 
nished by travellers. Histories and Voyages. 

This Atlas, though not finished, is in a state to convey much new and useful Geographical 
knowledge of this country; it will be divided into 20 sheets, afterwards the whole reduced 
into one portable sheet sufficiently large to exhibit ali rivers, capital towns. Roads, and the 
grand and sub-divisions of the Empire. ... It is constructed from a variety of Authorities, 
more or less to be depended on, according to circumstances ; it would require a Volume in folio 
to explain them and shew why I preferred this and rejected that. ... 

I am sensible to the Merit and abilities of Major Rennell, who has lately published a Map 
of India [213], ...yet it will be no disparagement to him or his work, to say that, being on the 
spot, I have, since his departure, had an opportunity of rendering my Map of India much 
more complete that his, and further that, was he furnished with all the materials I have 
procured, it would take him nearly as much time to compose the Work as it has taken me, 
which would be so much time lost. 

If I send home the Maps... in the state they are, having no copies of them, I shall be 
unable to proceed with the continuation of them 5 . 

Call was permitted to continue work on his map, and in the following year laid 
it before the Board that they might see the progress made ; 

It is in a rough state, but I have kept it as long as possible in one sheet for the conve- 
nience of correcting it as fresh materials were sent in. It will soon be divided into 16 or 20 
sheets, and copied fair. 

After describing various new surveys and routes which he had introduced w much 
of which was obtained from Friends and Natives at a very great expence ", he asked 
for twelve months to make the copy in separate sheets, whilst 

to insert the fresh materials will take three months ; to fill up such parts of the Atlas from 
Original Plans as now appear only in Lines will require about 3 months, so that altogether it 
will take near eighteen months 6 . 

1 Memoir of 1*783 had 99 pages only. Ho Warren, 1-3-1808. MPC. 18-7-1809. 3 Though the 
mapisof immense interest now fo>-;i, study of old locality and place names. 4 BDn, 204 (72), 5-7-1 324 
5 BPC. 6 10-83 ( 21 ). G BPC. 14-2-85. 


Maps op India 

Government thereupon ordered him to drop the collection of fresh material 
[ 38 ], and asked how long it would take, and how much it would cost, to finish off 
the compilation and prepare the reduced copy; to which he replied that the map was 
now in one sheet on the scale of 15 geographical miles to an inch [ 248 ], and 
To complete my rough General Map irom the materials in my possession, 

and prepare it for copying fair ... ... ... Rg. 4000 

To make a reduced copy... on a scale a little larger than that already made 
and published by Major Rennell [213 n. 3]; first in rough, afterwards a 
fair copy to be made and sent to Europe ... ... ... Rs. 8000 

which he engaged to finish in 12 months 1 . 

In 1786, on his appointment as Chief Engineer, Call left Wilford to continue 
work on the map, and reported, 

The Map is at present in one sheet and in a very rough state owing to the frequent 
corrections it has undergone; to preserve a work that has been of so much expence to the 
Hon'ble Company, it will be necessary to divide it; this can easily be done under the inspection 
of my successor in office ~. 
and again, 

1.. .recommend.. .that a fair copy be made of it in 12 or 14 sheets on the scale it is now 
laid down at, viz : about four inches to a degree. 

The fair copy should be kept in the Council Chamber to assist the Governor General in 
Council in ascertaining the position and distance of places, as also to preserve a work that has 
been attended with much labour and expence. 

A reduced copy of the Map should be made on one sheet on a scale large enough to shew 
all Capital Towns, Rivers, and Boundaries of provinces, leaving out all the minuter parts. 

Each member of the Supreme Council should be furnished with a reduced copy; the first 
will be attended with some labor, but afterwards copies can easily be made by draughtsmen. 

The West and North-west parts of India will soon be much improved by the Surveys of 
Captain Reynolds, Surveyor on the Bombay Establishment, who has promised to send me 
all the surveys he has taken 3 [253-4]. 

On taking over office as Surveyor General, Wood asked Government to write to 
Madras and Bombay for all the surveys they could send in, that these might be 
added to the map before it was fair copied [254], and in April 1788 reported, 

It was first imagined that this work would have been completed in 12 months, and, had 
merely a copy of the former Plan been required, it would have been finished within that time. 
Independent of the unwieldy size of the map, which rendered it impracticable to be placed 
on any glass, on cutting it into 12 sheets, it was discovered that the paper had shrunk in many 
places near a twelfth part of a degree. 

In the forming of the New Plan, it was by this means rendered necessary, not only to 
make all the projections again ( which was a work of great labour and difficulty), but like- 
wise to compare the several situations and distances. 

After describing the introduction of further fresh material, Wood continues; 

A comparison of the present Atlas with the original copy will be surest test of the labour 
and difficulties which have retarded its progress, and which have been little short to Mr. Wilford 
to what he would have had in compiling a New Map. ... 

I have. ..added a 13th sheet, ... showing the division and extent of country contained in 
every sheet, . . . and which shall also contain a concise account of the Principal authorities 
from which the map has been compiled. . , . 

The Atlas in 13 sheets for the Council Chamber has at last been completed, and I only 
wait for the insertion of the authorities, and a book for arranging the several sheets to present 

The amount of labour in making copies of these thirteen sheets was colossal ; 
one copy was required for the Governor of Madras; another for the Directors. As 
for the reduced copy on one sheet, with a copy for each member of Council, 

The projection of the degrees, which is a tedious and most difficult part in the 
construction, ... is finished, but no further progress is, nor can be, made till such time as the 
General Atlas is finished 4 . 

In 1788 Call was allowed to return to England on account of ill-health, and 
given permission to take with him twelve sheets of "the Grand Atlas of India" to 

'BPC. 10-9-8O. -BPC. 7-2-Sfi. 3 ETC. 13-2-Sti. 

4 DDn. 16 <9) : 6-4-8S. 

Thomas Call's Atlas 


present personally to the Directors; one sheet, that of Bengal, could not be got 
ready in time. He died on the voyage, hut all his papers and the atlas reached 
Kn gland safely 1 . 

Further complete copies of the atlas were sent home, and in September 1791, 
Bennell was asked by the Directors to report whether it was worth engraving ". 
He was at this time awaiting issue of the final edition of his own map, and in a 
position to realize the endless business of trying to keep a map up to date. He 
found that many of the latest surreys, particularly from Madras and Bombay, had 
not been incorporated in Call's map, though they had already reached Eng'land 3 . 
There was no memoir explaining the construction, and the map would be obsolete 
before it could be engraved. The atlas, on which so much time and labour had 
been spent, was therefore abandoned, though the copies which had been kept in 
India were of great value, especially in the Surveyor General's office for the 
preparations of other maps [219 ]. 

The sheets of Call's atlas are still preserved at Calcutta in excellent condition, 
and are most interesting to study 4 ; being on so much larger a scale than Bennett's 
maps they show far more detail, but, except in certain areas, the lack of scientific 
control, of which Call was fully aware [ 157 ], is most evident. 

Reynold's Map, 1793-1807 

Yet another map was to be created with vast labour and expence, borrowing 
nothing from maps that had gone before, but being laboriously worked up from 
such material as one man could collect, and fated never to be printed or published. 

Charles Reynolds, Surveyor on the Bombay establishment, was for many years 
the only surveyor with any knowledge of the Maratha countries of the Deccan and 
western India, and compiled his first map of those regions in 1787 [ 127]; his journey 
through Hyderabad to Madras in the following year inspired him with the desire 
to "form a General Survey of India" [ 128 ], but he was not able to press the 
matter till 1793, when he visited Calcutta and obtained the Governer General's 
approval to his scheme. We have, unfortunately, no copy of his proposals, but he 
says that 

in the memorandum I laid before Sir John Shore, my proposal to Government was not of a 
partial nature, but was to complete the whole Geography of India 5 [ 282 ] , ... 
and further that, 

the map I am about is of very extraordinary size. The sheet on which it is constructing has 
a superficies of 400 square feet, and will develop the whole of India in a very distinct manner 
from the Mountains of Cashmere to Cape Comorin, and from the Western frontier of the 
Bengal Provinces to the the Western side of the River Indus, an attempt I believe that very 
few would make, and fewer I believe succeed in 6 . 

The Directors approved that he should produce 
a complete general map, with separate maps of each district on a large and expressive scale, 
with a topographical description of the country 7 , ... 
and in December 1796 the Bombay Government wrote home, 

Major Reynolds remarked that your Hon'ble Court expected from him, and he had pledged 
himself to furnish, a map of India, which was to contain 13 provinces, all equally out of the 
Company's Government, and consequently much more difficult of access, and of much less 
personal security, and he did not imagine that either the Governments in this country, or 
your Hon'ble Court, would be inclined to accept a work from him which should prove much 
inferior to Major Rennell's, nor indeed could he hold himself acquitted as to his engagements 
was he to attempt to impose such a work upon them; Major Rennell had established his 
character as a Geographer by his performances, and he (Major Reynolds) toped that his 
would give him an equal claim to the favour of the public should they ever be published by 
the permission of your Hon'ble Court. ... 

1 From John Call to CD. 22-5-93 ; Misc. LR 89 ( 207 ). 2 The Directors always regarded Kennell 

as the right man to make a General Map of India [252]. H.'entury Series (07). * General Map of 

India in several sections, by Call &, Wilford; 16 m. to 1 inch. MEIO. 95 (32-53). °DDn. 146 (27), 
24-12-99. 6 Bo¥C. 24-1-98. 'CD to B. 8-7-95 (95). 



Maps of India 

We have recently received a letter from Major Reynolds giving cover to the rough sheets 
of his intended map of Hmdoostan. ... Major Reynolds regretted that he had not been able 
to lay the whole of his information before ns on the different sheets; ... he assured ns that 
his information of the other provinces is generally in the same state of forwardness ■ the 
scale of iti is four times larger than Major Rennell's maps of the Bengal Province'and 
notwithstanding this considerable difference, his map, in the present unfinished state is ia 
general as much filled up as that Gentleman's are ; ... there are in general but few blank 
s'heetbefort'i'ir 31 ? ° CCUr ' SmVeyS '" nOW c ^ng ™ &r the completion of the 

In conveying... this communication from Major Reynolds, we...accompany it with our 
testimony m favour of the minuteness and apparent accuracy of that Gentleman's Geogra- 
S el ™ <*-*°™:°* ^ ^ we can judge by the Specimen of that part of his general map 
winch he has submitted to our inspection of the North-western part of India, comprehending 
the Gulphs of Cntch and Cambay, and including part of Malwa s 

In 1798, Eeynolds laid before the Governor "the rough sheets of a considerable 
part of my intended map of Hmdostan "; and explained that he was still collecting 
material tor the remaining sheets through the agency of native surveyors r 2t 7-8 1 
and 111 order to avoid having to re-survey country already known he asked that h» 
might be furnished with copies of other surveys*. The Directors however ruled that 
The map m which Lieut. Colonel Reynolds is engaged must be considered as referring to 
his own observations, or Collections of the country surveyors employed by him, and „<Tt to 
include any combination of the surveys made by other persons at our expence* [ 225 1 

For twelve years from 1795 to 1807 Eeynolds continued at his map compiling 
the work of his native surveyors as they came in ; though he frequently pressed for 
an officer to join him as assistant none could be spared til] 1801 He spent a for 
tune from his own money on this collection of material, and said that the sum 
which Government eventually paid to him, after repeated submission of his claims 
did not 111 any way meet his expenditure [282, 288]. When the Directors com- 
plained of the inordinate time that had elapsed without the work appearing to 
draw any nearer to completion, Eeynolds pointed out the wide area that his surreys 
covered, and that he was working single-handed ; 

It must therefore be very easily understood that the accumulation of information could 
only add to my embarrassment ; the second reason for the increase of expence was the mena- 
cing posture of Zemaun Shaw for some years, and the anxiety of our Government in conse- 
quence of it [8, 55, 57 ]. This led me to make a more particular investigation of the frontier of 
^moTt^b w * Hl " d ° St f ' [smd ] ° f Ms tributaries within the Indus! some of whom extend 
almost to the Western boundary of the Soobah of Dehly, of SInd, and of the Baloche country 
adjoining the Indus on the West and North-west from Buchin country 

Were I to specify the different places through which the Surveys have been carried it 
must prove unsatisfactory, as they [the Directors] would not be able to trace them on any 
map now extant, and of course would be as much in the dark as ever 

The different routes executed by myself and people, amount at present to 150 or 160 

much do >, S C enqUirieS made fr ° m diffeTent P° intS 0f these ™tes will occupy as 
much, and m all probability a great deal more. Vy 

S°f J?" ab ° Ve recita1 ' the £ ° u ° wi °g observations present themselves: 

That the Hon ble Court of Directors have authorised my pursuit, and in consequence 
expressivc^cair * C ° mP ' eted *°** besid - -P»- te »-P= °'-ch province on a lar'ge and 

That it became a duty on me to adopt the best means to effect this. ...That I never 
expected to realize the necessary information for it until the present year. That an 
attempt to hurry its conclusion must defeat the intention. 

That the people employed out are beyond the power of recall. That in my proposal I 
particularly stipulated for my assistant being constantly under my orders. That since the 
above sanction, I have had no assistant with me. 

That such a map cannot be arranged by one person ; that to enable me to meet the 
wishes of the...Conrt of Directors, it rs essentially necessary that Captain Moncrieff should 
join me as scon as possible, and that it will add very much to the dispatch of the work if I 
am allowed a second assistant 5 . ■ llv Ji x 

1 9 inches to a degree. s Bo to CD. 10-12-96 (196-2041 1 DDn 14R (firm 3c urn -, . 

'CD to Bo.29-5-99 (29). »DDn. 146 (42), 17-4-1801. ' )- B ° MC ' ' 3 ' 9S - 

Reynold's Map 


At length in 1801 Jloncrieffi joined him at Sural, and other aai.tu.fa were 
posted shortly after, but even so the map was not sufficiently advanced to allow 
him to leave the country before 1807. He toot one copy home to present to the 
Dhecto' s in person, and after a few additions had been made to the copy left m 

B0I SS of a portion of Colonel Reynold's General Map of India, drawn on a scale of 9 
inches to a degree, and contained in 2 o sheets, were forwarded to the Right Hon'ble the 
Governor General on the 4th February 1809 \ 

The remaining 16 sheets were not copied for the Supreme Government, but the 
whole map was redrawn with the addition of other material, and submitted by the 
Bombay Government in 1821. Although never published, this magnificent compi- 
lation formed the basis of all maps of Western India for many years, but no 
complete copy has been preserved, and its exact extent is not known . 

James Welsh elves the following account of Eeynolds at work on his map; 

In his hall I had the gratification of crawling over a map fourteen feet long and ten feet 

broad ■ to do which, without injury to a production intended to be presented to the Court ol 

Directors he furnished me with silk stockings for hands and feet ; and cased in these I moved 

about at pleasure, stopping at particular spots for information which was ^mediately 

obtained from a library of immense folio manuscripts in his own handwriting. So laborious 

a work I never could, without ocular demonstration, have believed to be the production of 

one European in such a climate as the East Indies ; and with only two assistants he was now 

making another map on a larger scale, which, when completed, was to measure 30 feet by 30 * . 

' The following extracts from a letter written shortly after Reynolds' departure 

indicate some of the corrections made to the maps of India by his surveyors; _ 
indicate so ^ ^^ ^ ^ tQ ^ Wofld c so er d 

feet an exhibition of the countries which lay to the N.W. of a hue drawn from Ahmedabad* 
In Goojerat to Hurdwaur under the Mountains through which the Ganges enters India, that 
it would certainly be extremely unsafe... to draw conclusions from their information. For- 
tunately however Lionel Reynolds' works are nearly as perfect in particular throughout this 
reeion as thev are with respect to any other part of India. .„.,... t 

g Alajor Rerinell's latest edition is unquestionably the best map of India that has ever yet 
been published . In Major Rennell's and every other map at thfs time published, an un- 
broken range of high mountains, as strongly characterized as the Ghauts of MaUabar, is 
SbLd 1 runnfng upwards of 500 miles parallel with the Indus, and about 50 miles east- 
ward of that river; no such mountains exist, and the improvement with respect to them is 
riot of greater importance than the corrections made by Colonel Reynolds in several other 

inSta cTnel Reynolds has discovered that the area shown by Rennell as uninterrupted Desert 
between Todhpur and Indus contains many hamlets, villages and wells. .. ,,«„„, 

Therms a formidable range of mountains, equal in magnitude perhaps to the ghauts of 
MaUabar running parallel, on the West side, with the Sind River- from the bank of which it 
seldom recedes more than 50 miles, & often approaches within 15 miles. ... 

The river Ghauggar«...does not run over the Desert to the Sea as supposed by former 
geographers but tee 8 s itself in the sand near a place called Seersa' on the Eastern borders of 
the desert 3 . 


In spite of the frequently declared policy of the Directors that all surveys should 
be sent to England for compilation there, it was almost impossible for an officer in 
the position of Surveyor General to resist the temptation of putting together the 
surveys Tat he had in his office, the more so since he was being continually called 
upon to supply maps of different areas, and it was far easier to trace these off. 
general map that had been carefully compiled at leisure, than to compile afresh 
from original surveys at each call [217]. 

» From Williams to Govt. 3-2-1815, Bo MC. 3-5-1815 

_ - -. . 11.- . ,r H.1T1TA ttz MQ\ . A lic-r. r\t 

L fragment, 

'From Williams to Govt. S-2-lSlo, Ho ilU. a- : >-l»lo. - y r^n-.m. ^^J'^qq 
to Delhi, and westwards to Ajmer". MKIO. 95 (28) ; A list of maps by Reynolds tkat were . 
■ n S^s given in MUIO.M 564. 3 Welsh, I (243). U6 A/12 ; frd™ R. «Q 
in loaa w »« Tvr„n^i™ ia_d_1KnS: HUB. 737 645). 

44 0/2. 

■ .LinMRIO.M. 564. " Welsh, i (243). *46AJ12. " *^dnsK. 
^From SG. Bombay to John Malcolm, 13-4-1808; HMS. 737 (645). 

iginal protraction Agra 
' were in SGO. Bombay 
; Ghaggar R. 7 Sirsa, 


Maps of India 

It was not long before Colebrooke started his own map, and in 1795 he tells 
Government that he has commenced such a map on the scale of 16 inches to a mile' 
Four years later he reports that, 

Having made considerable progress in the construction of a new General Map of India 
and particularly m that part which comprises the Carnatick, Mysore, and Northern Circars in 
which I have nearly inserted all the Surveys and Materials that had been obtained so late as 
the year 1793, I now beg leave to inform you, that as this map is intended for the use of the 
Supreme Government, it would be a desirable object to have it completed from the snrvevs of 
amore recent date... in consequence of the late partition of the Mysore Country and Malabar 

This map again was destined never to be completed or published 
w,? ne "£"? ma ? ° £ India may be motioned, published in London in 1788 by 
William Faden, Geographer to the King [ 243 ] ; it was entitled Hind, Hindustan, or 
AAa, and was compiled by L.S. de la Eochette, and published on a scale of appar- 
ently § of an inch to a degree, about 130 miles to an inch. It bears the following 
advertisement. For the new and interesting particulars with which this map is enriched 
especally in the northern parts, we are chiefly indebted to the Geographical description of 
Father Joseph Tieffenthaller, Apostolic Missionary in India, and to the curious draft of the 
Ganges and Gogra by M. Anqnetil dn Perron [n- 2 ]. The new Chronographical map of the 
Southern Countries of India by Colonel Kelly has enabled us to Reform, in several districts 
the geography hitherto adopted for the Southern part of the Peninsula 

The title is supported by a fine picture of palm trees, Indian jungle, and a. very 
tat elephant with tusks that appear to be at least 10 ft, long 5 . ' 

PosTScmuT. Of other Greek geographers and historians who described India 
L207J we may mention Strabo, whose Geography was -written between 17 and 23 
A.D., Boot XV treating of India and Persia ;— Pliny the Elder, whose famous 
work on Natural History contained Books III to VI on Geography and Ethno- 
graphy, -and Arrran, whose principal work was a history of Alexander's 
expedition, from which the following extracts are given ■ 

The Indus is the largest of all the rivers of Europe or Asia, except the Ganges, which is 
also m India. It receives its rise from the skirts of Mount Parapamisus or Caucasus and 
discharges its water southwards into the Indian Ocean. It has two mouths in a low marshy 
soil, hke those five of the Ister [Danube] ; and it forms the figure of the Greek letter A 

The country eastward from the river Indus is what I call properly India. India is 

bounded on the north by mount Taurus; which mountain retains the same name even in 
that country; it rises on the sea coast near Pamphyllia, Lycia, and Cicilia, and extends it- 
self in one continued ridge, as far as the oriental ocean running quite through all Asia In 
some parts, nevertheless, it is called by other names; for in one country it is named Parapa- 
misus, m another Emodus ; in a third Emaus ; ... The Macedonian soldiers, who accompanied 
Alexander in his expedition, called it Caucasus [ 67 ]. 

■ Eratosthanes ten, us that India, from mount Taurus, whence the river Indus has its 
nse, to the mouths of that river and the ocean, is thirteen thousand stadia. Another side 
namely from the same mountain to the eastern ocean, he reckons scarce equal to the former' 
but as a huge tract of land runs- out four thousand stadia into the sea, it may be reckoned 
six thousand stadia that way; and this he calls the breadth of India. The length thereof 
from the westernmost part to the city Palimbothra, he tells us he has measured! along the 
road called the King's road, and that it contains ten thousand stadia [ 10 ] ' 

An account of the Arab and Persian geographers of the 8th to the 14th cent 

TS i' D "f e n W b ->\ Dl \ J ™ es Bird in a Paper Which a PP ears in the Transactions 
of the Bombay Geographical Society, vol. II (58-72), 1844. The paper is illustrated 
by a coloured map of Afghanistan and neighbouring countries, from the Oxus to 
Sistan taken from a work by Abu Ali Ishak, commonly known as Istakhari, who 
flourished about A.D. 358, and preceded Ibn Haukal [208, pi. 4 1 Lite other 
Arab maps this is entirely diagramatic. 

' BMC. 30-3-86 (10). 'BMC. 26-11-98 (5S). ■ BM. K. 115 (18). - Arrian (127, 207, 208). 

from D'Anville's Carte tie i/Inde 1752 

the British Musimm, K. 115 (12) 2 Tab. by pe 
3c note on Plate 8. 
carries an insuxt aKnt»*no> fi>^. W»w™ui,, th 

of the Trustees. 

Plate 14 

BENGAL and the BRAHMA PUTRA from BennelVs M*f W Hi^oos tan^ 

T , 



Maps before Bennell — Remiell's Early Maps, 1764-72 — Rennell's Provincial c 
eral Maps, 1772-4 — Bengal Atlas, 1779-83 — Distance Tables — District ill . x . 
Upper Provinces, 1797-1800 — Punjab & Afghanistan, 1786-1804 — Map Brewing 
& Draughtsmen. 

THE earliest known map of Bengal was compiled by, or for, the great Portu- 
guese historian Jean de Barros about the year 1550. It extends from Orisea 

on the west to Tipora on the east, on scale just over an inch to a degree ; 
amongst places that can be recognised are Ghatigam (Chittagong), Satigam (Sat»aon\ 
and Sirote (Sylhet) \ 

There is another old Portuguese map 2 which places the city Bengala so close to 
Xatigam (Chittagong) that they appear to be identical, whilst an Italian map of 
160i> by Vignola [ 208 ] shows it on the southern bank of the Karnaphuli, or 
Chittagong- River, as also does the first Dutch map, which appears in van Blaev's 
Theatmm Orbis Ten-arum of 1650. 

In 1660 appeared van den Broeck's 3 map of Bengal and Arracan, said to have 
been "the fullest and most accurate map available for those days " ; it faces p. 146 
of Book IV of Francois Valentyn's Ond en Nieuw Oost Indien published in 1724 
and extracts have been re-published more recently*. 

The Imperial Library at Calcutta has two old maps 5 entitled Sinus Gangeticus 
■outgo Golfo de Bengala and Royaume de Bengals et Us Pays voisins du Gcmge, sittte 
entre le Mogolistan 6 et le Pegu, whilst the British Museum holds a map of the Pro- 
vince of Bengal, 1680, by William Hacke 7 , on the scale of 12 English leagues to 
an inch 8 . 

Nothing is known of a map which D'Anville refers to when describing the 
Cossimbazar River in 1752 ; 

The places on the above-mentioned branch of the Ganges are drawn from an English 
map, which has furnished me with some other particular circumstances, notwithstanding 
there are several mistakes in that map 9 . 

The Imperial Library holds an old English MS. map, scale about 50 miles to 
an inch, stretching from Benares to Masulipatam, and showing the main province 
names and a few important towns ; Calcutta does not appear 1(1 . 

Coming now to the period of English ascendancy after the battle of Plassey, 
our first two maps are. by Frenchmen; one of these is a MS. map signed by 
Charles de Terranneau, and listed by Orme as " From Delhi to Calcutta, a very 
strange kind of map n ". It shows the route between Calcutta and Delhi, with the 
general lie of the country from Bundelkhand to the Himalaya mountains, and main 
rivers and roads. Towns are shewn by red castellated symbols or flags. The 
Goomty [ 29 n. 6 ] rises from a lake called Poullaule Tailors, and the Gandak and 
Baghmati from hills north of Patna ; the lower part of the Bone and the rivers of 
Bundelkhand are shown in fair detail. Hills are shown by lines of artistic pyramids. 

1 Map faces p. 451 Da Asia, IV [210 n.6] ; also frontispiece, Campos. - Pacing p. 12S ot Thevenot's 
Voyages Curieux Ln8n. 3 ]. 3 Mattheus van tUm Broeok, Dutch Director of Trade, Bengal, 165S-63 ; 
Member o£ Council, Dutch Bast Indies, 1763-9. 4 Ben. P $ P. 1936 {54) ; Seton Kerr, V (frontis- 
piece). °Imp. Lib.M $ P. 411 & 502. fi Mughal Empire of Delhi- ' Issued MS. marine charts 
& atlases from Wapping, London. S BM, K. VI, 1 (57). "Herbert (30). '" Imp. Lib. M & P. 337. 
"OiraeMSS. 67; BM.Addl. MSS. 15739(1). 



Maps op Bengal 

i •-: 

In 1770 Eennell wrote home describing- the extent covered by his surveys • 

This has been all formed into Maps and sent home to be engraved for the use of the 
Company's servants, both civil and military, but I doubt if the Directors will suffer them to 
be made so publick l [256]. 

It was in fact many years before his surveys became available for soldiers and 
district officers, who were seriously handicapped by the lack of maps, as shown b y 
the following- minutes of an enquiry into the conduct of the Bohilla compaign of 
1773-4 Clavermg Monson and Francis, of the newly-formed Supreme Council 
protested against the expedition ; 

« ^ W »/° m f- tbat J T Ermy ab0ut tte be S™™8 ° f ttis month was stationed upon the skirts 
Zt it frf S lnS f ' at a Pla ° e SO dlstimt * rom om frontier "■ md s ° considerably to the 

North of Delhi, that it is not comprehended in any of the ordinary maps of Indostan « 

In his reply defending the campaign Warren Hastings wrote 
^ I think it mcumbent upon me to remark a small geographical error, which I have com- 
mitted m my report of the situation in Ramghaut \ which I found laid do™ in mv own 
handwriting upon an old map in my possession at the distance which I have described (60 
miles from the border of Oudh), but having since received a more correct map of that quarter 
from Capt. Rennell, the Surveyor General, which accompanies these papers, I find that it is 
near 40 miles more remote 5 . 

The Quarter-Master-General was cross-examined ; 

What is the distance from Shawbad«, the frontier of the Province of Oude to LalldanK 

the extremity of the Rohilla Country ? 

I believe it to be about 200 miles. 

Do you know the latitude of Lalldang? ? 

The latitude I think is 30 48' N. 

How far do you reckon it to be from Lalldang to Delhi ? 

Delhi I believe is in 28" 8 . ... 

Had you any map of the Rohilla Country furnished by the Governor when you went to 

the Army ? 

No I believe there were very few extant. I applied to the Governor for such as he 

had of the Upper Country, i.e. of the upper parts of Bahar and the Province of Oudh 

and he informed me the only one he had, he had promised to Capt. Toone » 

Do you know if Colonel Champion 10 was furnished with maps of the country ? 

I believe he had some maps of the Country, I have seen scraps of them but he did not 

communicate them to me n . 


Behhell's Provincial & Geuerai, Maps, 1772-4 

Early in 1 7 74 Eennell submitted a full set of all the maps he had completed which 
was sent home, and is now preserved at the India Office in excellent condition 1= 

Ihe maps were classified in three series ; first, a series of 19 provincial maps 
mostly 01, the scale of 5 miles to an inch, with 2 special maps on larger scale! 
becondly, 10 Charts drawn from the marine surveys of John Bitohie [ 1 7 1 and 
thirdly, tour particular maps of Bengal and Behar, reduced from the larger maps to 
a scale of 6 inches to a degree, with one general map covering the whole, on the 
scale of o inches to a degree. 

The provincial maps were accompanied by an index showing the lay-out of the 
different sheets, the area surveyed by each surveyor, a table of symbols, and notes 
on construction and compilation, in which Eennell writes - 

The original surveys from which these maps are compiled we're the work of ten different 
surveyors [33]. A Map was first constructed on a scale of 5 British Miles to an inch but 
being too cumbersome whilst in one piece (it being ten feet by seven), is now copying 'into 
15 parts, each part being on a sheet of large Dutch Paper (40 inches by 26), and containing 
one, two, or more Provinces, or Sircars, according to their extent. 

1 HHS. 765. 2-11-70. < Piliblilt in Eohilkhand. « B Pr C 23-10-74 'Bmno-hsf ™, 11 r- 

to East, whereas this question refers to West bor.Icta of Oudh. 'LSI Dhan=- 29° 58' N ■ 20 m OT 3 

Kemell's Ebovwciax &-Geot)kal Maps 225- 

The followino- is a list of the provincial maps, "which are all on the scale of 5 miles 
to an inch, except where stated. Bach one is signed J. B. fecit, with the year, gener- 
ally 1772 or 1778. Each covers a number of complete administrative areas, marhed- 
with coloured boundary ribands. On most of them the meridian borders are divided- 
into one-minute divisions of latitude, with no indication of longitude whatever [ 1 5 1 J • 

I. North mrt of Bahar, containing the Siroara of Tirrnt, Hajoepom- Pjsttyah and boran witn 
part of Birear Monghir north of the Ganges, as is the whole map [72 B & P j. Mmveyec, 
between the years 1761 and 1772 by Richards. [Includes Mocamupour and Monmg on 
the norti which area is marked "Woods", and shows bnt little detail]. 
TT SW sort of Bate-, containing the Sircars of Rotas, Shawabad, and part of Bahar to about 3 
miles oast of Pat™.. fB3 O & P. 72 C & D] i Map beautifully clear, and neatly drawn]. Sur- 
veyed by DuGloss, Eichards, and Russell, 1767 to 1771. The Ganges, from Patna to Benares, 

III SB 3 Tf %char, making overlap with sheet IT, containing part of Sircar Bahar, Cnrruekponr, 
Boglyponr, Cumiekdea, and with the Passes of Eajema!, and part of Ramghur. [72 G, HJ. 
Surveyed between 1760 and 1770 by Eiciairds, Dublloss and Carter. 
IV ftmnl # Maimal, with the Fejgamnahs of Surorc and Maldah. [73 O, P.-. .Surveyed 1.67 to 
1773 by Richards west of Mahananda River, Bennett to east ; rdahananda Elver by Adams ; 
eastern slopes of Eajema! Hills by Iluygens, western from report. „ r , , , tv 

- V. Dinujcnoar fSorooot. ..[78B. C.]. Surveyed by Bennell, except road from Malda to Dinage- 

pour surveyed by Richards 1767 To 1771. -!,«*«, 

VI. Ran.,„ „,„.».,. "na.voar ,',- Coat-Xcyhar. with the adjacent IV;.™.. .1 riaaarbnrid & Brttre- 

bund, & part of Bootan. [78 F, &.]• Surveyed by Eennell, except for Coos-Beyhar surveyed 

- vn MS*"thc 3 Horth part of Dac'cL' ... [78 L, P.]. Surveyed between 1768 and 1771 by Eennell. 
VIII SoBhWa • art of -Dacca, k. low lands of T.perah. with the Islands in the mouth of the Ganges 

[79 I, J, M, N.]. Surveyed 1764 to 1773 by Eennell, Eitchie & Eichards. Country to west by 

IX Sii°e»9, divided into Chncklahs. [78 N, 0., 84 B, C,]. Surveyed between 1761 and 1772. 
Sea-coast h, Ritchie, Uamabad River by Plaisted, inland pints by Richards. 
This map required a larger scale to have the particulars expressed with clearness & accuracy. 
X. TheSv.,ui<rl,,u,J,Ri.:,.r,. The Railage! and the Sundcriimd sailing passages are distinguished 
bv red and BMOB doited lines. [ 79 F, J, G, K. ]. Surveyed between 1769 and 1773. The 
coasts and Sundeibunds by Eitchie ; other rivers & creeks by Eichards ; inland area to west by 

XI I«lm»ir, J,oon, Noosnah <fc Mahmudshi , with part of Dacca * Eaujeshy, comprehending 
the haltaWe part of country between the arms of the Ganges. [78 A, S, B, J?.]. Surveyed 
between 1769 & 1771. rivers by Eennell At Richards, remainder by Martin. 
XII. BottorioJ,, or North Rai.jeshy. [78 I), II.]. Surveyed r.y Rormell 1769 to _li ,1 

XIII. BtrfaW > Ea«i«.J»J. [72 P. 78 D, 73 M, 79 A.]. Surveyed between IMS * 1771, eastern a ea 
by Eennell, Ganges by Richards, Cossimbasar River hy DnGloss, roads through Rajenial Hills 
by Huygens. country west of Ajy River, by Carter 

[This map shows the meridian line of Calcutta ][ 180]. 

XIV. lH..|,.i! i.:i„»'a„„, ricogii,, Bissumpour.ciPachete. [73 TJj.O.] Surveyed between 1767 & 
1774- North part of Burdwau bv Ren.iell. south rant by DuGloss, Carter, Portsmouth, & Calls 
Midnapour by Carter ; sea-coast hy Eitchie. [Shows the meridian line of Calcutta, and a 
second meridian about 2 mites east of Miduapour]. 

XV. Wed tart of Miaesyotcr, with parts of Mayurbunge & Eamgur. [73 I, J.]. Surveyed by Carter, 
Portsmouth & Call. ,►,,,« , . . 

The next three maps contain material as late as 177o and 17i /, and must have 
been submitted later [35]. ,..,,. 1 • „h to t> tt 

XVI Ramour, Fal.amow. Chut,, Necwiar, Tome a hoondah. Scale 12 m. to an men. I.'- it "-■ 
73 1 r" tlr-dcr survey bvFciineil in 1774, not completed till 1777. Filled m largely from 
observations cud remarks - of Captain Ca.nac * Lieut. Fernell. who reduced these provinces to 
subjection [ 15 ]. [Shows meridian lines, east from Calcutta, one degree apart> 
XVII. J. s to"'t lfa,a;,,a»a«,eJiun,Irt m -,, Oistricrs ivith the Passes of Birboom rtEajemal. [Covers 
the whole of the modern Santal Parganas District]. [72 P, P.], Includes the surveys of 
Piingle of 1775. _ , r , , , , „ ,,i 

XVIII Correction to mens of Dacca cf BoUoHal,, 1775 : [7S H, L.] [protaWy by Rennoll] 
XIX. Maun I ! [78 3] [This may have been surveyed m response to a proposal 

bv the Chief of Cosslmbazait dated 20-12-68, that "A Surveyor be appointed ,o survey the 
Island of the most effectual means of shewing how far the Silk investment 

XX. CoiLtrVKireen Sangral & Ooloobaria, along the right bank of the Hooghly. [79 BJ Scale 2 

inches to a mile. Surveyed by Eennell 1770. . 

XXI. Country 20 miles round the city of Dacca. [79 1,] Scale 2 miles to an inch. Surveyed by 
Eennell 1774. . ico-a 4-1 

Yery few copies of these valuable maps remained in India, and m Lbd6 tne 
Surveyor General reported that he held only 7 copies, which he describes as 
indifferent sketches on a scale of 5 miles to one inch, without an original signature. ... liven 
if ..on a sufficiently large scale for the frequent demands of the public service, they are 
unworthy of credit from their being totally destitute of any Memoir of construction [ 230 ] . 

'DDn. 204 (9), 26-11-1823. 


Maps op Benga 

Blacker knew nothing of the memoir Ivinr, ;„ T j r 
mdictment of Bennell's work i s in ~ S. r^" f33_4] aDd Us seTCre 

during the fifty years that ^,2 1™ ° * P ro ^ s ' rf ««> ™*y 
accurate maps, on which roadTcouk b Wed ?t ^ "^ f ° r COm P Iete and 
oision ; in Eennell's day the urgent need was for b ? mda ™s ^ down with pre- 
the general course of the main rivers and the a a P 10 + W f* ne c°™*ry, shewing 
complete map was required with a Tt t e delay as n K, ° f ^ P™^ 1 to ™ S S a 
little or no importance. J M possible and precision was of 

Beimel! had served his masters ».n i i i 
economy and speed, and had produced fales's than" twT P ^ ^ ^ ™ heS for 
an area of oyer 150,000 squai4 miles Vre^ouslv? Jf 3 seI ™ eab le ™V* of 

years later, in discussing their Zw J? !?^ U ' 2281 Nearl J si ^J 
the cross routes were not sufficient Ju ' P ° mted 0ut that 

the principal towns and villages ^ysl^^i ^Zt^ ^ feat " rM of *"°™try, nor are 
to which the Directors replied C C ° ntraiy seTeraI bIanks hitervene \ 

Bahama tTSe o^L^n inl^tr" * G *» " - - »— - 
that we are in possession of the orSrfnat iZST , B " 0t perha P s a ™*> 

eminent Geographer, on a scale of 5 Sto aTfnch " rH TT tW Pro ™ CeS ^ ttat 

Major Hirsts had a number orXn reproduced f' *$ ^ ^ assist ^» of 
form of a Companion Atlas*. AtTh same time H ^ m 19U in t] « 
maps, io which Ascoli added a chapter oTrh , Hrst P ubhsh «l a memoir on the 
that title to property might be estaMshed o Tl. TaIU6 ' Jt had been suggested 
but Ascoli ^tri y <mr4^^^t l ^ U ^ t J ,yaK,eal8t<, EemelPs ma » 
completed many years before th e S „ZT7l £,T J ?** ^ ^ 
the Company assumed full control of tl, 1 , 1793, and eyen before 

they might provide the only available 1. ^ TT 6 m 177S ' In some ™^s, 
their relative positions, Jd tte ™ "*" 7tv° ^ eiisfen0e of TilIa ? es a » d 
Hirst emphasised the fact that the mans W " 1 77/' the time of s ™y. 

Hirst further published a Dane,, e Kt , l Ar , a ™ '° detailed "Curacy • 
A-prf, 176^7«, P in wlii h h e P make, a" v , ° B ^ ***** *"FV»9 »f 
journal, and tables of road and rivT distanced ' 6 * ammat ™ »f Eennell's maps"; 

?h?a^ rn ptS , :rr ps °L? ngaI aDd Baha '' E ^ « writes, 
degree the scafe pScSely^Ty^hfcouTof ^reVtoS * ^ ^ * 6 *<*- * a 

the defective parts f rom the perfect ■ «« I b mg T PS ° f th ° Se P arts ' To point ont 

country thus vaguely described &X °h Authorities" 7 b *° f"™"** list of thetacts of 

I have also put off the correct™ ofTh.r , ^ "* * P roree ded ». ... 

formed, for, as tie materials are conttutllv iT ^ ^ ^ ^ P'°™,al ones are 
Was it to undergo a change every SSjSS ? 7" *" be "—P^t. 
employment for one person. The tow™ 7,7 c F™ 4 '' Wonld 'nrnish full 

Upper Provinces 1, ought therefore to be Te fast W0 A ^ MaPS ' ^^^ th ° Se of «• 

sub-divided to minutes of fatitnde L^^?™?^ S^tl 

Palk T Noy:rn O bIrT77t ra0tS ^ **" & ° m ^^ lette hom " < *" Sir Eobert 

' DDn. . 

U 45 '' ^t 18S2 -- ! CD.toI 1 ,dia,16- 1 -lS33 (10) 

Bunnell's Provincial & General Maps 


The general and particular surveys are to be drawn in about 45 or 50 large folio maps, 
and will be a very compleat work when finished. Each province is to be drawn in a 
separate map, and most of these provinces are as big as the County of Norfolk, and some 
as big as Yorkshire K 

To his guardian, March 1772, 

From this sketch you'll partly guess what a job I have to construct particular maps of 
each Province on scales of 5 miles to one inch, together with general Maps of the whole 
Country. I have made a considerable Progress in this Work and shall completely finish it in 
a twelvemonth now. Should I leave the Country next January, I shall yet leave behind me 
a complete Sett of Original Maps, but leave the fair copying to another. If I stay another 
year, the whole work will be compleated. ...The distances are all determined by actual 
Mensuration, corrected by observations of Latitudes and Longitudes 2 [ 152]. 

With his next letter he encloses a little plan 
done in hurry, and by a young draughtsman, for I only put the finishing hand to it, by 
writing a few words in it. ...I'll request of you not to lend the Map to anyone, nor suffer- 
any to copy it 3 . 

Rennell eventually stayed out till the beginning of 1777, spending the last 
three years making improved copies of his maps ; in January 1776, he submitted 
another set for the Directors ; 

Bengal & Behar ... ... ... 10 miles to an inch 

Ellahabad, Oude, & the known 

parts of Agra & Delhi ... ... ... 10 miles to an inch. 

The whole in one general map ... ... 20 miles to an inch. 

Some corrections & additions to the map of Bengal, from later surveys ; accompanied by 
an account of the construction of each map 4 

The Directors allowed Rcnnell's general map to be engraved and published 
privately, and in February 1776 there was published by Sayer & Bennett of Fleet 
Street, an engraved Map of Bengal, Behar etc.... from Benares to Silhet, reproducing 
his surveys on the scale of 12 miles to an inch, "dedicated to the Court of 
Directors by Andrew Dury ", but without bearing any acknowledgment to 
Rennell s . 

In the same year there was published a "Map of the Eastern Parts of Bengal... 
drawn chiefly from actual surveys, 1769, Engd. by Win. Whitchurch, 1776. 24 G. 
miles to an inch"". 

Hirst has given a very fall account of Eennell's maps and surveys in his memoir 
entitled The Surveys of Bengal, published in 1917, with full particulars of the 
Bengal Atlas and its Companion Atlas ". 

Bengal Atlas, 1779-81 

Soon after Rennell reached England he wrote out to Warren Hastings, 

I brought home the Provincial Maps safe ; but the Directors demur about engraving them, 
and yet they are now engraving the Map of the Madras Jaghire [88]. Time, and the convic- 
tion of it being a saving scheme, will, I hope, conquer their aversion to parting with a little 
money now to save a great deal in the end : for either the originals will be totally lost ; or the 
copies will run away with a vast sum every year to renew them 8 . 

He had however to take the responsibility of engraving them himself [167 n. 2], 
and explained his design in the following note; 

The maps of Bengali & Behar engraved in 1776 having been executed in a careless and 
inaccurate manner 9 , and containing none of the surveys taken since 1772, I have been induced 
to undertake a new engraving of them; which shall contain all the new surveys. Accordingly 
in this edition there will appear two entire new maps; one of the Conquered Provinces on the 
South of Bahar; the other of Jungleterry. There will also be very great additions made to 
Purneah, Coos Beyhar, Midnapour, Burdwan, Gentian 10 , and the Sunderbunds. 

^alhMSS. 12-11-71. 2 HMS. 765, 15-3-72. 3 ifa. 6-4-72. A These scales are in terras 
of geographical miles, so correspond to those of the earlier maps, 6 and 3 inches to a degree. BPC. 
5-2-76. 5 MKO. Slap 445. G Seton Kerr IV (pocket). ' Where these records do not agree with Hirst, 
careful consideration has heen given to fresh evidence. s EM. Addl. MSS. 29140 (343), 1-5-7S. 9 Pro- 
bably by Whitchurch or Dury [ sup]. '"Jaintia, 83 C. 


Maps of Bengal 

As these maps are chiefly designed for the use of the gentlemen who travel in Bengali & 
Bahar, the Survey of these Provinces is divided into 8 parts, which will fold very convenient- 
ly into a quarto Book, and take but little room either in a Palankeen or escritoire. 

The divisions are as foilows : — 
I to 8. Eight parts (inf.'] Scale IO miles to an inch. 
9, IO. Two General maps. Scale 20 miles to an inch. 

11. The Dooab, on same scale as Bengal. ...a new Map. 

12. The Cossimbazar Island. Scale 5 miles to an inch. 

In the re-distribution of the 8 parts of Bengal, more regard has been paid to the natural 
than to the political division of the country; yet as far as it could be done the Provinces or 
Sircars are preserved entire. 

The above 12 maps (in Boards) will be afforded for about a guinea and a half. A good 
binding 7s 6d more 1 . 

He sent a copy of this note to Warren Hastings with a letter dated November 
20th 1778; 

I have also begun a new set of maps of Bengal & Bahar, the nature of which will be ex- 
plained by the enclosed Paper; and no less by a first proof of one of the maps. I do not 
expect to get them finished till next April or May; so that tie sets will hardly find their way 
to Bengal that year. I shall take care however to send you one of the first copies that is 
worked off 3 . 

The first edition of the Atlas duly appeared on November 1779, engraved by 
W. Harrison, of 42 Wych Street, London, and entitled, 

A Map of Bengal and Bahar in VIII parts, with an index map to the VIII divisions of 
Bengal & Bahar. Published according to Act of Parliament by J. Eennell, November 

The nine 1 
miles to an inch. 

tt' m? 1 ¥ "",' BeW " ° fth " Glln 9' s - vith the adjacent countries on the East, and a plan of Samooko-nr 

II. IheJunghU yD.^nct and adjacent Province of Blrrabhoam. Rajanal, and Boglipovr com- 
prehending the countries between Moorse.ofla.bad and Bahar. 
Map <:/ Saufa Bahar. 
Map e/' 'North Bahar. 

The Northern Provinces of Bengal, with the Bootan. lEorung, and Assam Frontiers. 
The Low Land* t,eijcoid the Ganges, from (he MauMah 'River to Sillier.. 

The Promises of Bengal U/mg on the Wat of the Heoilily River with the Mahratta Frontier 
The Conjuerec! Province! m the South of Bahar, viz., Kamgliur, Palamow, & Cliuta-Sa^pom- with 

2 ISt 

i_ plates were as under, the scale of the first eight being 10 geographical 





1 Tract more extensive &. Populous than tile British 
1 Testimony of his distinguished Abilities, and 
ontrasts Bengal with Great Britain and 

their dependeiiei 
IX. Map of Bengal $ Bahar, comprehendin; 

Hcspeeti'nily insorihod to "Warren Hastin, 
in gratitude for favours received. 

A Table of areas totalling 149,217 square miles. 

Ireland, of area 121.S00 square miles [ 226 ]. 

This plate is on the scale of 25 miles to an inch, and covers the area of the VIII maps above. 

In 1778 the Directors had agreed to advance £1S0 towards the engraving of 

this Atlas, " the charges of executing which work will be defrayed by a subscription 

of the Company's servants in India" 4 . This advance was to be repaid in 18 months 

-without interest, and in 1779 a further advance of £100 was made on the same terms. 

Free transport was allowed for a consignment of the atlases to Bengal, which 

-were to be issued to Company's servants at Es. 16 for a folio atlas, and Es. 14 for 

quarto; 80 copies folio and 120 quarto were sent out before July 1780 5 . 

A second edition followed in 1780, containing IS plates, and was entitled 
A Bengal Atlas: containing maps of the Theatre of War and Commerce on that side of 
Hindoostan. Compiled from the Original Surveys ; and published by Order of the Honourable 
Court of Directors 6 . 

Early in 1781 a quarto edition was published 7 with 23 folded maps, in the ad- 
vertisement to which Eennell wrote, 

The intent of publishing the maps of Bengal . . .under the present Form, was to render them 
portable to those who travel over that extensive country 8 . 

'BM. Add! MSS. 29210 (298). = ib. 29142 (75 ). 'IO. Cat. (164). ' CM 1-10-78 *CM 

10-5-80, t CD to B. 5-7-80 (40 ). « Scale of first 8 sheets now given as 12 British miles to an inch 
+10. Cat. 165 ) also Hirst & Ascoli 35. • Ben P. ef P. Dec. 1935 ( 69 ) 

Bengal Atlas 


Two more editions followed in 1781, of foiio size, with the maps unfolded, and 
a final edition was issued in 1V83. The later plates were, 

X. CWai Mip of 0,.* If Allahabad, with part of Agra A Delhi. Scale .tart So ml M to an mch 
[ Longitude east of Greenwich is given along the north edge and west of Calcutta along the 
south edge; Calcutta being taken as SS" as" cast of Greenwich I [ 150, iboj 
XI. lf«j.o/tt«C(.ssiii.taor IsfamJ. Scale 5 miles to an inch. With a sketch of the Battle of 
Plassey on scale 1.500 yards to an inch. . 

XII. nan of the Boiirems of the City of Dana, (or jeliangurnagur ) Scale about 3 miles to an men. 
XIII Tlte Doo-ab from Allahabad to Kalpy. Scale 6 miles to an inch. 

Plate? XIV to XVII. scale 5 miles to an men, show th.e rteaess from Allahabad to its continence 
with the Megna, and the Megna hence to the Luckia Elver [ 19, 21 ]. _ 

[These plates are specially well drawn, with tree symbol? and excellent lettering 
XVIII ZVw Burrammoter from the head of the Luckia or Banner River to Assam. Scale 5 miles to an 
' inch. Inset, A Southern View of Dellamcottah Fort [pl.5] in Bootan, inscribed to the memory 
of. ..John Jones, ...and Plan of Dellameotta Fort, by Captain Claude Martin. 
XIX The Keoelo Etuei* from Nuddeah to the sea. Pub. August 25th 1780. Scale 5 miles to 1 mch. 
Balasore RooAs ,v Povnl Palodras. Scale 34 nia.rine leagues to 1 inch. 

Battle of Oudanulla 1 ;^. Adams. Aug. 17b3. Scale about 3 miles to 1 inch. [ About 3 miles 
below Eiiimahal]. 
XX A Me/p of the Se.-aderband 0/ Bofliagot Fe.esaoes. Scale e miles to 1 inch. Includes Calcutta and 
Culna on the north, Sutalury on X.E., and Backergunge. 
XXI Viewsoi O.ahuml'o 0783)4 »<«i' (Till- ( 1764 )■ by Claude Martin. 

Semi-final Plate illustrates the action of the Ganges waters m erosion of Banks and formation 
of Islands. 
Fined Plate is a map of Inland Navigation [ 230 J. 
The enlarged Atlas sold at Rs. 22 for a folio volume, and Es. 20 for a quarto, and 
Eennell was allowed to send a box hy each ship proceeding to Bengal 2 ; he wrote to 
Warren Hastings, 

All the Bengal Atlases sent out by the last Fleet were carried to Spam. I have now 
added very considerably to the work. I have prepared 400 copies of it, to go by the ships of 
the present season. ... If the demand should increase I may possibly reap some advantage 
from the publication. From the locality of the subject and its consequent limited sale, I was 
obliged to fix a high price on it 8 . 

Two years later the Bengal Government reported, 

In consequence of the orders contained in your letter of the 8th of Feb. 1781 regarding 
the sale of a number of Major Rennell's Bengal Atlases which yon sent to us by the ships of 
that season, we beg leave to inform you that they have all been disposed of accordingly, and 
the produce of the sales amounting to Rs. 9590-14-0 deposited in your treasury '. 

In 1785 the Atlases were advertised 
to be sold at the Council House Calcutta for Ready Money, Those m folio (a, 30 Sicca Rs. 
each. Those in Quarto @ 25 Sicca Rs. each B . 

The atlas now had a wide circulation amongst officials throughout the Provinces, 
and it is interesting to find the Board of Revenue sending this very practical advice 
to the Resident at Tipperah in 1789, 

\ topographical knowledge of the Districts in his charge is absolutely necessary for a 
Collector, but Rennell's maps will be of little service to him in that respect. He must make 
the Tour of his district himself 5 . 

In 1823 the Surveyor General reported that 
the great utility of the Bengal Atlas published by Major Rennell many years ago (but which 
excellent work is now I believe out of print) has been generally acknowledged 7 . 
A partial reprint made in 1826 was advertised thus, 

In the Press, Calcutta ; Rennell's Illustration of the Rivers Hoogly and Ganges, from the 
mouth of the Hoogly to Cawnpore, comprised in 9 doubles plates, 41.0. coloured, to which are 
added Tables of Routes and Distances from Calcutta, thoughout all the principal Inland 
Navigation, Price in Boards ; Sa. Rs. 10 s . 

Rennell's atlas remained the standard map of Bengal until 1850 or thereabouts, 
when the i-inch sheets of the new Atlas of India began to appear. These contain- 
ed much of Rennell's original survey from his 5-mile provincial maps, fitted to 
later surveys and the triangles of the Great Trigonometrical Survey [ 226 ]. 

In 1908 the Bengal Atlas received new lease of life. A new design was being- 
worked out for Indian maps and, inspiration Toeing found from a study of Rennell's 

■UndwahSala ,5-9-03. "- CM. 1 1-1-81 , «= CD. to B 8-2-81 (24 ) . *BM. Add] MSS. 29147, 

S16-1-81. 'BtoCD. 17S3 (38). ' CC. 24-3-S5. > B. Key. B. 4-6-89 (27). 'BMC. 7-11-1823, 

8 As J. March 1S26. 

23 Maps op Bengal 

old plates, it was decided to make a complete reprint of the 1781 edition '. This 
was done in 1911 and the plates are now stocked for sale at Calcutta, and replenished 
as a matter of routine to meet a steady demand. 

Distance Tables 

In 1776 Beimel] submitted, with his general maps, a Road Table entitled 
Great Roads of Bengal £ Behar, with Dacca taken as centre ; this was supplemented 
"by tables showing roads and distances to places of note from other central 
cities. In 1778 he published a pamphlet entitled Description of the Roads in 
Bengal, of which he writes to Warren Hastings, 

Since I have had any leisure from my own private concerns, I have chiefly employed 
myself m superintending the printing of a Book of Eoads of Bengal, f trust it will prove 
extremely interesting 3 . 

Ill the preface he describes it as, 

A complete travelling guide, as far as relates to distances and the nature of the rivers 
that intersect the roads. The utility of such a work in any country must strike every one : 
much more in a country where the people employed by Government are mere sojourners, - 
and from the want of local knowledge must depend upon the information of Guides, who' 
often mislead them either through ignorance or interested motives [ 89, 95, 241 ]. At best these 
guides know only the most frequented roads ; so that in crossing the country no information 
whatever can be derived from them : and as for the peasantry, or ryots, they cannot be sup- 
posed to know the roads beyond the circle of the markets which they frequent. 

^ By comparing the distances in the Tables with the horizontal distances in the Map, it 
will be found that one mile in seven is taken up by the windings of the Roads ; which, consi- 
dering the flatness and openness of the country, is a circumstance that one would not 
expect [184-5]. 

As most parts of Bengal & Bahar are level, or nearly so, the Sun's rising and setting may, 
in clear weather, be as easily discerned as at sea: I have therefore added a Table of the 
tune of the Sun's rising and setting, as it furnishes the easiest method of regulating time for 
common purposes 3 . 

In 1781 he published a Table of Routes and distances from Calcutta through the 
Prmcipal Inland Navigations, with similar tables from Dacca, Murshidabad, and 
Patna ; it also included a statement of areas for the main subdivisions of Bengal, 
and a Jfep of Inland Navigation, which distinguished rivers perennially navio-able 
from those open for part of the year only *. 

Ill 1779 Call prepared a Map of the Principal Roads of Bengal, Behar, Oude &c° 
[235], and in 1794 Colebrooke submitted distance tables for the Upper Provinces 
and Oude ; 

The accompanying Table of the Distances from Benares and Lucknow to most of the 
principal places m the Upper Provinces; but having been informed from maps, these 
distances will be found to fall short of the real travelling distances bv a few miles, though 
seldom more, I hope, than in the proportion of five miles to a hundred. 

1 have only inserted the distances by water of places situated on the Ganges ; the other" 
rivers falling mto the great river above Patna being seldom navigated... by any.. .civil or 
military servants. ... 

I shall now proceed to lay down in the manner of Major Rennell a set of Tables of the 
Eoads throughout the Upper Provinces, but this must necessarily be a work of time 6 . 
Ill sending these tables home Government remarked, 

A copy of this table has been sent to the Civil Auditor for his guidance in auditing Bills 
for Travelling charges, as far as it can direct him for the purpose, in addition to the°Table 
which was prepared by Major Rennell ". 

' At the suggestion of Capt.W.jiI. Coldstream. "BH. Addl. HSS. 29142 (75) 20-11-7S 'Roads 
.». Bmgal, auttagong to Benares: a free issue to all military officers, CD to E 23 r>-7<< ("»:| 
'Pamphlet 10. Haps. II, AC, (4, 5) ; Map. also in Jfemoir & B,l Atl„. See also Hirst .BMC 

17-7-1813(75-6. 'DDn. (1667), 5-1-95. ' B to CD. 5-2-95 (69) ™ BMC " 

District Maps 


District Maps 

Bennett's 5-mile Provincial Plans were not at first available for use in the 
districts,, for apparently he had only left one copy of each in India. In 1776 the 
Governor General wrote, 

I have had frequent representations from the provincial Councils of the difficulties to 
which they are liable for the want of provincial maps, and having been lately furnished with 
a very compleat general map of the province by the Surveyor General, drawn out -upon a 
scale so large as to comprise all the principal Towns and Places of every district, -which I 
judge will be more useful as a reference for this Board than the separate maps of each 
division, I recommend that this map which I now lay before the Board may be deposited in 
■this office for their occasional inspection, and that the maps of the Provincial Divisions may 
be transmitted to several Councils & Collectors l . 

This was agreed to and acted upon, but ten years later, on the Surveyor 
General's report that many of these plans were missing from his office, Govern- 
ment wrote to all districts calling in any that might still be found. This met 
with but little success, for most officers reported that they had no map of their 
district whatever, whilst the few who did possess one urged the impossibility of 
giving it up [257-8]. 

In 1792 the Chief Engineer, Wood, whilst in temporary charge of the Surveyor 
General's office, raised the question again, reporting that there were two draughts- 

making copies of several of the Provincial Plans which had been found m a very tattered 
State. ...I have since had an opportunity of examining and of arranging those Plans, which 
are ten in number. ... These Plans are on the large scale of 5 miles to an inch, and I think it 
is most probable that there must have been formerly Plans of the whole country on the same 
scale for the use of the Collectors and Revenue Servants ; but which in the Course of so many 
years have been lost or mislaid. 

There were yet 15 districts for which no plan had been found ; 

Should any of the Plans be irrecoverable lost, I will have others on the same scale 
immediately constructed. ... The inconveniences arising from the want of those Plans is 
frequently experienced, having lately had an application from Mr. Macguire of Tipperah 
for a plan of his district, which could not be complied with ". 

The following year the Chief Engineer submitted 
13 Plans on a large scale of the. different Collectorships. ...There is scarcely a Collector 
throughout the whole of the Company's possessions who have any sort of Plans of their 
respective districts, and without them they must be kept greatly in the dark 3 . 

The Collector of Burdwan asked for a map of his district showing parganas ; 

A Map of this kind is the more wanted, in consequence of the proposed sale of a large 
portion of the Burdwan Zemindary in numerous lots; ...It might be found an_ assistance to 
the Magistrate, by enabling him to distinguish the relative positions and distances of his 
Police Tannahs, and certainly to the Collector in his business of regulating & realizing the 
tax proposed for the maintenance of those Tannahs 4 . 

In 1796 the Surveyor General reported, in reply to a request for a map of 
Dacca District, that 

we have not in the office any complete Map of the District of Dacca on a large scale, the 
only documents of that Part of the Country which remain "being of a very old date, and 
much decayed, nor could I have them copied so as to form a connected Draught of the 
whole, as a part of one of the sheets is missing. 

As the Honble. Court of Directors are in possession of all the original surveys which 
have been made of these Provinces, and as no new surveys of any consequence have been 
taken of late years, I would recommend that they be written to on this subject, to request 
that they would be pleased to authorise the Engraving and publishing a set of Provincial 
Maps on a scale not less than five British Miles to an inch 5 . 

This very reasonable suggestion was not approved, and a great opportunity of 
of helping the work of district officers was thrown away. 

1 BBC. 1-5-16. 
26-9-96 (35). 

S BPC. 22-2-92 (17). a EMC. 15-2-93 (19). *MKEO. M 574, 17-fr-t 


Maps of Bengal 

Upper Provinces, 1797-1800 

As the affairs of the Company "became more concerned with the Upper Provin- 
ces, the more inadequate were Rennell's maps found to be, and in 1797 the 
Surveyor General wrote to Wilf ord at Benares ; 

As tie recent invasion of the Punjab by Zamaun Shaw was the cause of serious alarm to 
our Government, and his long-intended inroad into Hindostan may at some future period be 
carried into effect [57], I conceive it the duty of my office to collect in the time, for their use, 
every possible information relating to the countries through which the invader might be 
expected to approach. ... I have therefore to request that you will assist my endeavours. 
sending down to the office every original route or document in your possession. ... What 
would be more particularly useful at present are the original sheets of the great general map, 
which was compiled by you and the late Col. Call ; ...I cannot much depend upon the copies 
which we have in the office, as in consulting them occasionally I have discovered numerous 
errors. ... 

I have in hand of my own a map of the Doab, and Rohilcund, which is in tolerable 
forwardness, compiled from the surveys of Messrs Rind, Hunter, Mouat, & corrected by 
Reuben Burrow's astronomical observations 1 [163-4]. 

In 1800 he was able 
to lay before the most Noble the Governor General in Council, the accompanying Map of the 
Dominions of Oude &c. which has been compiled chiefly from the Materials in this Office. 

The Latitudes and Longitudes of many of the Principal Places along the Ganges., and in 
Rohilcund, have been laid down from the observations of the late Mr. Reuben Burrow, but, : 
since this Map began to be constructed, some other plans have been procured, which with 
the Survey that is now making by Captain Thomas Wood... will enable me.. .to lay before 
Government a copy still more accurate and complete 2 . 

Punjab & Afghanistan 

The Punjab was probably better known to early geographers than any other 
part of India owing to the campaigns of Alexander the Great and the interest 
roused by his historians [207]. The following extracts from D'Anville indicate 
the confused nature of his later information ; he would indeed have rejoiced at a 
sight of Monserrate's map and Commentarius [pi. 10]. 

For the situation 01 most places between Kandahar and the Indus, I am indebted partly 
to the Turkish Geographer, compiled by Kiatib-shelebi, under the title of Gehan-numa (The 
Mirror of the World) and partly to the historical account of the expedition of Timur. . . . 

The Tchenav, which joins the Indus near Attek 3 , is the river which comes from the dis- 
trict of Kashmir : For this we must depend upon two modern travellers, Bernier 4 and 
Thevenot [118 n. 3]. ... Kashmir is celebrated by the Eastern nations; ...The mountains 
which surround and defend it on all sides represent a kind of shell, from which issue a multi- 
tude of streams, which unite in a river a little above Sri-nagar, the capital of the country, and 
in order to get out... the river opens a passage between the mountains, just wide enough for 
it to run through, and which are called the Baramule s . The Eastern Tables make the latitude 
of Kashmir 35 , but I cannot think it so much : that of Lahaur is fixed at 31 50' 6 [148]. ... 

Bernier... has given a map, of which our geographers seem to be unacquainted, in which 
this part of India, in general, has been carefully attended to. ... 

Tchenav is the first of the five rivers, which occasioned the Persian name of Pendj-ab, ... 
Shantov comes next, after which we find Ravee, which is the river of Lahaour ; then Bish, 
and last of all Caul 7 . ... 

Alexander having crossed the Indus, came to Taxila 8 , the largest town between the 
Indus and the Hydaspes 9 : I am inclined to think that this is the same with Attek... which at 
the conflux of the Tchenav and the Indus, may be situate on the left hand, or farther bank 
of these rivers 10 . 

^Dn. 16 (25), 23-3-97. 3 Map. scale 8 m. to an inch, 1798. MKIO. 28 (6) ; and another ic 7 

sheets, scale 4 m. to 1 inch, 1800. MEIO. 15 (23-3% BMC (59), 3-7-ISCO. s Chenab joins Endns, 39 K/12, 

350 10. below Attock. 4 Dr. Bernier visited Kashmir with A.urang'zeb, 1664. 5 Baranmla, 43 J/8; an, 
excellent picture of Kashmir Valley, except that its river is the Jhelran and not the Chenab. B Srina^ar 
34" 6' K. i Lahore, 31 c 36' 3* ' The flvo rivers, from W. to E, are Jhelum, Chenab, - Ravi. Beas. Sutleh 
3 43 C/ 14. 3 Identified hy Rennell as Jhehun K. 10 Herbert (10-16). 

Punjab & Afghanistan 


Herbert includes a map entitled Carte du Pais traverse -par le Fleuve Indus, taken 
from D'Anville's map of Central Asia, which illustrates the above account, 

ReimelPs geography in 1782 was not much further advanced, but by 1792 he 
had collected fresh information from which he prepared a new map covering the 
Countries situated between Delhi and Candahar [pi. 8] ; 

By the favour of my friend Col. Poller, I am possessed of a map of the countries situated 
between the upper part of the course of the Ganges, and the rivers of Punjab : and between 
the northern hills and the road leading from Delhi to Batnir 1 . This map was constructed 
by an European gentleman, whose name I an unacquainted with : but Col. Polier assures me 
that the routes between Delhi and Sirhind were drawn from the gentleman's own observa- 
tions on the spot 3 . 

For the country between Delhi and Ajmer he acknowledges a map by Father 
Wendel [12] and for the Punjab rivers, 

I have derived considerable assistance from the Persian MS. map of the Punjab 3 ; 
was drawn by a native, and preserved in the archives of government in Hindoostan. The 
names were obligingly translated from the Persian by the late Major Davy [249]. ■-- The 
tract includes the whole soubah of Lahore and a great part of Multan proper. It not only 
convevs a distinct general idea of the courses and names of the five rivers ; but with the aid 
of Capt. Kirkpatrick's MSS. [42] sets us right as to the identity of the rivers crossed by 
Alexander *, ... 

By the help of the Persian and other MS maps, particularly a map of the Punjab. ..drawn 
by Lieut. Rind , ...I have been enabled to give the road from Wizierabad 5 ... through the 
Retchna Doabah, with many other positions in and about the Punjab . 

Kind's Map of the Country of the SeiJcs [42], gives a crude representation of 
the five rivers, with a few place names, and a suggestion of the foothills ; its most 
interesting feature is the naming of the four doals, Bind Sagur, Eetchena, Bary, 
and Baeii Jalinder. It was in great demand and several copies now exist in 
Calcutta : . Kennell continues, 

The Behut 8 , or Cashmere river, was supposed by M. D'Anville... to join the Sinde 9 at 
Attok. Tavernier seems to have led M. DAnville into this mistake; which has finally 
been the occasion of his misplacing, and of course misnaming, all the other four rivers. The 
fact is that the river which runs by Cabul, and in the lower part of its course, bears the 
name of Attock, joins the Sinde on the West side, and in front of the city of Attock. We 
are obliged to Mr. George Forster... for clearing up the mistake; and finally to the very 
particular and pointed observations of Capt. Kirkpatrick, for illustrating the courses of the 
rivers in general, in this quarter 10 . 

Forster had made a remarkable journey through the lower Himalaya, Kashmir, 
Afghanistan, Persia, and Sussia. Starting from Benares in August 1782, 

It was necessary, from a regard to safety, to avoid the country of the Seiks ; that is, 
Lahore : he accordingly crossed the Ganges and Tumnah within the mountains, and proceeded 
to Kashmere by the road of Jammoo 11 . From thence, crossing the Indus about 20 miles 
above Attock, he proceeded to Cabul. ... 

As he travelled in the disguise of an Asiatic, and in the company of Asiatics, 
through a vast extent of Mohammedan country, where the religious prejudices... are nearly 
equalled by their political jealousy of all sorts of foreigners, ...detection had been worse than 
death. ... From the time he left the last British station in Oude, to the Caspian, ...he em- 
ployed near a twelvemonth, and travelled 2700 English miles, ...sleeping in the open air, even 
in rainy and snowy weather ; and contenting himself with the ordinary food and cookery of 
the country he passed through 13 . 

He reached St, Petersburg in 1784, and in 1790 published an account of his 
journey 13 with a 

chart of the road, calculated according to the reckoning of my journal, ...constructed by Mr. 
Wilford, ...a gentleman of extensive geographical knowledge 14 . 

Kennell concludes his remarks, 

The geography of the Punjab country. ..I have detailed much beyond its seeming impor- 
tance; ...we are not likely, as for as I can judge, for a great length of time, to be possessed of 

1 Bhatinda, 44 J/16. -Sirhind, 53 B/6. Memoir, 1793, (67), 3 Possibly MEIO. 97 (10, 11). 

4 .MemOM- 1793(103). s Wazirabad. 43 L/3. s Memoir 1793 (110-1). '3LK-I0. 1 (525), 12 (30 etc). 

8 Jhehim E. 9 Indus E. ia Memoir, 1793 (100). " Through Xfihan, 53 F/fh Bilfisijmv ■>! AM-> ; ."Minimi, 
43L/14; Srinagar, 43 J/ 16. ^Memoir., 1793 (148-9). 13 Adv. 06. 11-3-90, " Price Ks. 25. Embellished 
with a Correct map explanatory of the route ". As AM. I (86). u Forster (xiii). 


Maps op Bengal 

any better materials than those I have exhibited, indifferent as they may be in many in 
stances ; and therefore I consider it as the finishing stroke to the whole matter for some time 
to come 1 . 

He was wrong- in thinking- that his map would long remain the " last word ", 
for in 1804 Wilford completed A map of t lie Countries to the West of Delhi, as far as 
Cabul and Multan, scale 16 m. to an inch ", which carries the following note ; 

The survey of these countries was undertaken about 20 years ago by Capt. Wilford, in 
order to ascertain the track of Alexander. Tt was completed between the years 1786 and 
1796 by a native properly instructed [287]. 

This native surveyor, with safety to himself, could only use a pocket compass : the dis- 
tances of course are computed. ... The survey is checked towards the S.E. by the known 
latitudes and longitudes of Hardwar, Delhi, Jypore and Ajmere, but thro' this extensive 
country we have to lament the total want of actual surveys & accurate observations of 
Latitudes and Longitudes. There is however a measured track from Delhi to Cabul, and 
another from Lahore to Moultan, by order of the Emperor Shahjehan 3 . ... 

In 2 instances this map differs materially from that lately published by Major Rennell ; 
Distance from Delhi to Lahore and again from Lahore to Moultan; Delhi to Lahore, Rennell, 
280 geo. miles; Wilford 222. Capt. Wilford having leisurely and maturely investigated this 
subject for several years past is convinced that his distances are correct *. 

Wilford's map was a very great advance over Rennell's geography, and on the 
whole his detail was remarkably good. He showed the Indus down to Sukkur, and 
all the Punjab rivers ; the distant regions of Dera Ismail Khan, Kohat, the Goorum 
River ; Jalalabad and Kabul ; Dheer, Ghatraul, and Tereejmeer, to the north ; the 
" Tor Octffirs called also Syapaosh or Black Vests, Black Infidels ", and the ™ JEsphin 
Cafirs, White Infidels " ; Gilghit and R-unse. 

He places Gilgit about 72° 52' E., 35° 58' N. as against the true position of 74° 
20' E v 35° 54/ N., and shows the general course of the Upper Indus correctly. 
There are of course minor errors and a general wildness in longitudes values; but 
the map is a wonderful example of what could be done by compilation from trust- 
worthy information. 

Wilford had long established himself as a learned geographer, and Burrow in 
1788-9 preferred to send his geographical information to Wilford rather than 
to the Surveyor General ; 

I forgot to mention the reasons why I have not sent copies of the routes among the 
Comow [ 161 n. 3] Hills ; in the first place they are out of the limits of Major Rennell's Bengal 
Atlas ; secondly they require more time to translate and explain them than I can spare at 
present; thirdly, as Mr. Wilford has been for a long time collecting materials at his own 
expence for making a Map of the external parts bordering on India, they will be of more service 
to him, and ultimately to the Company, than they can possibly be by sending them home 5 . 

Reynolds'" native surveyors added much to the knowledge of the Punjab;, 
Bajputana, and Sincl [132], and most of their work is included in the maps 
shown on p. 246. 

jVIap Drawing- afd Draughtsmen 

Both Rennell and De Grloss took three or four European assistants with them 
when they set out on survey [ 283 ], and it is reasonable to presume that these 
assistants made themselves useful in map drawing. Rennell must have spent quite 
as much time in plotting his surveys and in compiling and drawing his maps as he 
did on actual survey; and he mentions that Richards assisted him. 

In his establishment returns of 1768 he allowed for a draughtsman with pay at 
Rs. 120 a month, whilst a surveyor of the rank of captain was allowed one "at 
Rs. 60 a month and Rs. 1 a day when on actual service ", and a subaltern was 
"allowed no Draughtsman, except by particular orders 6 ". 

l M&moir, 1793 (111). 2 MKIO. 7 (11). 3 Wilford here acknowledges asfcr. obsns. of Monserrate 
[ 149]. *True distance; direct, ^40 i.t, miles; by road, 291 m. or 250 G. m. 6 IO. Maps. MS. 5. 6 BPC 
30-6h6S & 4-7-6S. 

Map Drawing and Draughtsmen 


Eennell made his headquarters at Dacca, and from about 1772 till his depar- 
ture in 1777, must have been almost continuously employed in map drawing, with 
a fairly efficient staff of draughtsmen; he refers to " a young draughtsman " in a 
letter of 1772, and the name J. Fougeron is associated with his own on a map 
dated 1775* 

■ In 1779, when the pay of the Surveyor General came under revision, Call 
pressed the importance of an adequate allowance for map drawing; 

I am led to believe your Hon'ble Board have either overlooked the necessary allowance 
for Draughtsmen, or that it is your intention I should draw for them in a separate Bill 
monthly as a contingent expence not to be ascertained. To put my Office on a good footing, 
...permit me to lay before you a particular account of the necessary Draughtsmen for my 

Two European Draughtsmen ... @ 350 ... Rs. 700 

Four Native „ ... 60 ... Rs. 240 

Three Portuguese „ ... 15° ■-• Rs. 450 1,390 

Part of the business in my Office requires men of Genius and ability to execute ; it 
requires precision, close attention, and much application ; few such Draughtsmen are to be 
met with in this Country, and they will exact their own rewards. I have absolutely engaged 
two European Draughtsmen possessed of the necessary Qualifications, and I wish to give 
them proper encouragement. . . . 

For six months past I have been closely engaged in framing a new General Map of India, 
making fair copies of it; Copying Plans furnished me by the Governor General & Commander 
in Chief ; Maps of Roads, &c. &c. [ 230 ] ; Reducing Routes of the Army, and inserting them 
in my general Map. I have absolutely been unable for want of necessary assistance to reduce 
the Surveys of the Several Gentlemen employed in that Branch, and I have now several 
months work to bring up ' ! . 

The Surveyor General was then allowed to make a fixed charge "upon honour" 
to cover all the expenses of his office, including draughtsmen [262], but under 
the retrenchments of 1785 this arrangement was withdrawn, and he made the 
following estimate for completing the copies required by the Directors [ 252 ] ; 

To give you as exact an estimate as possible of the expence in making copies of such a 
variety of Maps, Charts, Plans, Journals, &c. as I have in my possession, I am of opinion that 
the following people will necessarily be employed about 12 months. 

4 European Draughtsmen ... @ 350 a month Rs. 1400 

3 Portuguese „ ... 15° ■ ■ ■ Es - 45° 

4 Bengal or Portuguese Writers 60 ... Rs. 240 2090 

Good European or Native Draughtsmen are with difficulty procured, and they must be 
handsomely rewarded, or they will not work 3 . 

The Board refused to accept this estimate, and Call replied, 

As your Hon'ble Board have since been pleased to withdraw my allowance for Draughts- 
men, Writers, Stationery, Office Rent, and every contingent allowance, it will be impossible 
for me to comply with the orders of the Hon'ble the Court of Directors * ... 
whereon Government "allowed him Rs. 4000 to compleat the rough draught of his 
large map", and on his further representation that, 

If the Original Plans. ..sent to my office are to be copied and sent home, it will require 
draftsmen and writers at the rate of Rs. 700 a month for 12 months, and it will be necessary 
either that Rooms be allotted to the Draughtsmen to work in, or an allowance of Rs. 250 a 
month to be made for that purpose 5 ; 

this estimate was sanctioned for 12 months, besides the Rs. 250 for Wilford as 
Assistant in the Drawing-office [ 277 ]. For the future it was provided that. 

All plans executed by the Surveyor General or under his instruction should be paid for, 
either by contract or estimate, previously approved of by the Board. ... Paper and other 
materials for drawing to be drawn for by bill, as actually purchased, and audited by the Board 
before payment [205], 

and further that a statement of the work actually carried out should be submitted 
with every claim for pay of draughtsmen. It was not long before Wood, who had 
succeeded as Surveyor General, protested against these restrictions ; 

1 MRIO. 53 (7). " HMS. 35S (45), 12-8-79. 3 BPC. 9-9-85 (7). " BPC. 31-S-85. 5 BPC. 15-9-85. 

236 Maps of Bengal 

When the Board came to the resolution that the Surveyor General should send in the 
monthly bills, ...accompanied by the work finished during every month, ... I stated that 
Draughtsmen and such people as were employed by the Surveyor General were not like 
common writers, who could be discharged or increased occasionally as circumstances might 
require, but that they were artists difficult to be procured, more particularly in this country, 
where there is no regular establishment for the education of people in this science. 

For this reason I requested that in place of sending in monthly bills with work, a small 
establishment should be allowed, similar to that of the former Surveyor General, and that 
when any extraordinary work might render any increase necessary, application for this pur- 
pose should be made to the Hon'ble Board. ... 

For the common services of the Surveyor General's Office, an establishment of Drafts- 
men and people a fourth less than what was drawn for by the former Surveyor General will 
be sufficient 1 . 

By the following year, Wood found the pressure of wort in the drawing office 
so great that he proposed the introduction of two Engineer officers to assist • 

The .difficulty m procuring Capable Draftsmen amongst our own Countrymen and the 
necessity of employing Foreigners on business requiring confidence and fidelity has long 
been a matter of regret [245]. ... There are several Young Gentlemen whose abilities as 
Draftsmen, altho' not such as would make them immediately useful in this line yet after 
the practice and experience of a few years, I have no doubt but that they would be capable 
of executing any work entrusted to their care. 

I beg leave to recommend that I be authorized to employ two Young Gentlemen at a 
Monthly salary of 150 Rupees each; Specimens of their abilities being previously submitted 
for your Lordship's approbation ". : 

Two officers, Anburey and Stewart », were appointed, and at the same time 
orders were issued restricting the monthly charge for other draftsmen to Es. 600. 
In 1788 the Surveyor Genera] reported that the draftsmen actually employed were' 
Andrew Bemmannemi. Employed by me for these 6 years past, originally at Es 600 per 
month, to work 5 hours in the day, every day but Sunday; but for these two years past paid 
according to his work and abilities. 

Jean Boisseau*. Employed by Colonel Call and myself for these last 4 years, origiually- 
at Rs. 120 a month, for 5 hours a day, but for the last two years paid according to his work 
T. Wood Junr s . Employed since July 1786 : at present absent [245]. 

Ramnarry, a Bengali Draftsman, employed occasionally in common work (ffi Rs 60 per 
month. r 

When it was customary to pay the Draftsmen per month for their 5 hours attendance 
little or no work could be executed ; as, what under the excuse of sickness and other pre- 
tences, bad attendance was given, & even when present, little work done ; the tasking them 
or allowing them so many days or months for a certain work, was therefore successfully 
adopted by my predecessor, and followed by me G . 

In 1789 Government reported that they had extended the period of employ- 
ment of the two Engineer officers ; 

We understood likewise that he [ Surveyor General 1 was compelled then, and had 
been for some time back, to have recourse to foreigners as being the most capable men he 
could select m the Settlement. As the ties which could be maintained upon the fidelity of 
these Men were very weak, We yielded to the propriety of the Surveyor General's recommenda- 
tion, authorizing him to employ two young men for the space of 12 months, ... since continued - 
or another year ?. 

In 1788 the Directors once more insisted that copies of all surveys should be 
sent to England to he mapped there rather than in India [ 252 ] ; they scoffed at 
the Surveyor General's plea of the great labour and expence ; 

We cannot agree with your Surveyor General that these copies would necessarily be 
attended with great expence, and require much time to copy ; for copying maps and plans 
on transparent paper is a work easily and speedily performed by a careful person without 
almost any knowledge of drawing. We do not mean to depreciate Elegance in execution of 
Drawings ; but actual information must supercede every consideration of Decoration [245]. 

Every new acquisition must be transmitted by the earliest opportunity; for the facility 
of making copies we now send you half a Ream of paper ; we need not observe to you that 

.B ,.h B *, C - f*^ 1 " 86 *' 22) ' .^? M0 -tff' 3Ste ™rt'* "Ration accepted. BMC. 24-3-39. 

ILi.M.rutluT to llt'umianiiKiu. "Thomas Wood, younger brother to Mark : jouiou Hoo Er-T. 178s 
»HHS. 369 (122), B. S & Sop. 12-6-88. IB to CD. (St Sop) 8-1-89 <150) ^ 

Map Drawing and Draughtsmen 


as it becomes opake in the warm, climates, it ought not to be exposed to the air, and that 
the Chart. . .should be traced in black lead pencil, and afterwards done in ink, correcting any 
defect in the outline ; we are informed that the ink proper for the purpose is China Ink, or 
any Ground Ink, not too fluid 1 . 

They approved that the Surveyor General should be given a special assistant for 
charge of the maps and drawing office [ 258 ], "Wilford having now gone to survey 
to Benares, and suggested Colebrooke who joined in July 1789 [ 258 n.7 ]. 

At the end of 1790 the Surveyor General, Alexander Kyd, and Colebrooke were 
ordered off to the war in Mysore, and Anburey followed the next year; all the 
draughtsmen except Hemmonneau and Boisseau accompanied the Surveyor General, 
and the office and maps were left under the charge of Wood, now Chief Engineer. 
The quantity of maps to be copied hardly eased during this interval, and by the time 
that Colebrooke toot charge of the office in 1793, the volume of fresh material had 
been vastly increased. There were still questions about the bills ; 

I beg the favour of you to represent that no fixed allowance is settled by the Regulations 
for Stationery and Drawing Materials; I. ..should consider for the future an Allowance of from 
forty to fifty Rupees per month as amply sufficient to defray every Charge for antiquarian, 
and elephant paper; Reeve's colours; Indian Ink, Pencils, and other articles 3 . 
Government ordered that bills for actual expenditure should be submitted to the 
Auditor General and that annual returns should be made reporting the actual work 
carried out. 

Drawing paper was often a difficulty; and to facilitate the copying of maps for 
England, the Directors sent out supplies of tracing paper [252] of which Wood 
writes contemptuously ; 

As for Oil Paper, in future it had better be kept at home, being totally unfit for the pur- 
pose of Copying Plans on, excepting in cases of great hurry, which seldom occur. It will not 
carry the Ink, and besides is quickly destroyed by Vermin 5 ; ... 
whilst later the Directors write out, 

An inconvenience arises from the use of Europe Paper in large charts as the sheets can- 
not be well joined, and as there is an elasticity in the paper which makes it impossible to 
draw straight lines upon it of considerable length; We shall order our Supra-cargo in China - 
to send to you and other settlements some transparent China Paper, which is more commodious 
for large charts, and facilitates the operation of copying them, and at the same time it is not: 
injured by folding [45]*. 

In 1798 Andrew Hemmonneau was g'ranted a pension of Es. 120 a month 5 on 
the Surveyor General's recommendation; 

In the year 1773 Mr. Hemmonneau entered as a draftsman in the Chief Engineer's office 
at Fort St. George under Colonel Ross, where he served until 1781, when he came to Bengal. 
He was admitted as a draftsman in the Surveyor General's office by the late Lt. -Colonel Call, 
and continued to act in that capacity successively under Colonels Wood and Kyd, until the 
office devolving to my charge, I found Mr. Hemmonneau amply qualified to execute any 
works ; and I continued to employ him as head draftsman, until a weakness in the eyes, 
incurred by long and unremitted application to maps obliged him to desist from that duty 8 . 

He did not enjoy his pension long, for he died at the end of the following year. 

'CD to B. 20-8-88 (13, 14. 26). =BMC. 14-3-94 (14). ^BPC. 13-1-92 (8). 4 CI> to Bo. 25-5-98 
(30). ''Boisseau was granted similar pension from 1-9-1804. fi Dl>n. 16 (80). 12-7-98. 




?™n 1^7' rf "W 0arnatic > to 1780—Kdltfs Atlas of 1782-Madra, Maps, 
1780-1800— Draughtsmen— Maps of the Mza-ms Dominions— Maps of Bombay. 

HE earliest maps of the south peninsula appear to be Dutch, of the 16th 
17th centuries, two of which are ■ 


A map of the peninsula south of 15° 20' entitled Jfcw Tabula: Terrarum, 
"'*""' Malabaru,, Madura, & Coromandalia ; by Hadriano Eelando, scale 
-about 2 , inches to a degree. The coast line is deeply indented, very little internal 
detail is shewn, and the map is decorated with animals, ships, and other ornamen- 

A coloured chart of the coast of the southern peninsula, with Ceylon and the 
Maldive Is ands, by Jaspar Gentet of Batavia, scale 4i Dutch miles to an inch-' 
»r i T2 x S 1Tes , a rel 7 c ™« map, Portion d'une Carte dv, Sud de la Presfile de 
I Inde, forte par des Brahmins, que comprend le Tanjour ", which gives positions 
and names of towns, with stiff wide rivers *. 

Delisle published in 1723 & Carte des Dotes de Malabar et de Coromandel % and 
other, maps or the coasts. 

-d ^.^t^P °f. '^interior, of any merit, was that sent home by Father 
in™,? L , J ' entltlec1 ** Meridionale de I'Inde, par les Bfi. PP. Jesuites 
1722 , scale one inch to a degree, extending slightly north of parallel 14° It 
shows political divisions strangely different to later geography ; there are several 
Royaumes; Carnate, lying entirely north of the Palar river, Gingi, Tanjaour, 
Madwrey, Matssour, besides the Terres de Chitanliken between Gingi and Mysore 
Marava, and on the west coast Oanara, and Bolarin, the latter name covering both 
Malabar and Travancore «. Jefferys writes of this map • 

Europeans had but confused ideas of the inland and southern Parts of the hither Penin- 
sula of the Indies, before the Missioned, especially the Romish, entered those countries 
to prorogate their Religion ; and, as for more than a century none but they had visited them 
none but they were able to give the World exact Informations concerning them 

In 1719, Bouchet the Jesuit sent into France a Map of their Missions in Madurev'and 
the neighbouring Kingdoms, together with the Latitudes and Longitudes of the principal 
Places, as they had been observed, or otherwise calculated, by the missioners 
r „ Thl L M i iP ' WhiC J iS P refixed t0 his lotte =-* the Beginning of the fifteenth Volume of the 
Lettres Edifianles et Cuneuses [un.2l... includes., .the space of above six Degrees that is 
from Cape Comonn to beyond Palliakat a 8 on the East side : and from the same Cape to 
Onor y on the Malabar Side. 

But this Map being drawn by a small Scale of not quite an inch to one Degree of Lati- 
tude, and consequently not capable of giving the Countries in any considerable Detail ■ the 
Jesuits sent over several manuscript Charts, and other Materials, from whence Mr. D'an'ville 
composed a new Map; which, being drawn by a Scale near twice as large as the former is a 
great Deal more particular as well as accurate, and extends farther north M [210] 

From this map, with the Assistance of Travellers and other Materials we were prepar 
ing to draw our Map of the Seat of the War, when Mr. D'anvule's two-sheet Map of that 
Coast appeared, accomodated with the Roads in great Detail : the Space of above five Inches 
'Konkan [121 n. 8]. 3 BIM. K. 115 (61) & Imp. Lib M & P 413 a Ait n f^Ti,^ * 

India; p;,b The Hague 1867. -Possibly- tie map copielby InoSil-DupeLt °£ Mn BoXy 
Bernoulli II (v,,). «BM. K. 115 (62). < BM. Aden. MSS. 15331 (14. S ?. sTS' 

T^Sf?/ 6 T- ■ ' H r" Var - f Zn - '° P " b - ^1;Neuv,Ue Carte X,L jmrfe jST'ta Lfrf 
lie des Mes...dresse siu- deux cartes ms. d*s Jesuites. 10. Tracts. 284 (164). jwesffw 


Plate 15. 


Towards an Improvement 


Exemplified in a New Map 

of Part of the 

Hither Peninsula of India 

hj LXB7 Sketches 

wit]] Geographical Descriptions 

General * Particular to WWli ls added 

ew Lemraeit, t/et 
Geographical Tables 

on a 




*," Gerrffemen of ilie Supreme Council 

C7? if muff ^/ervant 

Early Maps of the Carnatic 239 

and a Half which he assigns to a Degree, having allowed him to describe the Country very 
minutely, in Comparison of anything which hath been hitherto published. He was employed 
in this Work by the French East India Company. ... In this he has made several alterations 
from that of 1737; and even from his first sheet of Asia, published in 1752 [210-1 ]. 

His map is accompanied with a very copious Analysis, full of Geographical Erudition ; 
and as we have taken our Map in a Manner wholly from his ; we shall not scruple to make 
use of his Remarks, so far as may serve our Purpose. 

Our Map extends from South to North the space of four Degrees, that is from the tenth 
to the fourteenth parallel of Latitude 1 . 

D'Anville's two-sheet map appeared in 1753, and was entitled " Carte de la Cote 
de Coromandel j pour La Compagnie des Indes ; 5 pouces 3 lignes au degree", and 
covers the country between parallels 10° 40' and 17° ; the only meridian shown is 
that of Pondicherry, 77° 25' east of Paris 2 . It was republished in London by 
Jefferys in 1754, accompanied by the memoir above quoted, in which some shrewd 
remarks are made as to the spelling of names [