The Mutiny at the Margins series takes a fresh look at the revolt of 1857 from original and unusual perspectives, focusing in particular on neglected socially marginal groups and geographic areas which have hitherto tended to be unrepresented in studies of this cataclysmic event in British imperial and Indian historiography.

A British Artisan's View from Calcutta

A british artisan's view from calcutta

THIS letter, written by William Maul, an ordinary British artisan and assistant to a cabinet-maker, illustrates the anxieties and uncertainty brought about in the colonial capital Calcutta, by the events in North India. Trade had ground to a halt and Maul, therefore, complains that it may not be worth his continuing to remain in India. Meanwhile, he describes the hurried preparations made by the city authorities to organise a band of volunteers in case they are needed to defend the city. This ultimately proved unnecessary, but waves of anxiety gripped the city on several occasions, especially the ‘panic Sunday’ of 14 June 1857, and again in July, when ordinary citizens armed themselves and ...

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