16th Lancers, Battle of Aliwal, 28 January 1846
Watercolour by Michael Angelo Hayes (1820-1877), 1850 (c).
The battle was fought during the 1st Sikh War (1845-1846) between a force of 10,000 British and Indian troops under the command of General Sir Harry Smith and a 15,0000 strong Sikh army led by Ranjur Singh. The Sikh forces occupied an entrenched position between the villages of Aliwal and Bhundri, close to the River Sutlej. Smith drove the Sikhs out of Aliwal with his infantry and then rolled up their line with cavalry and artillery support. The 16th Lancers charged several times during the action, breaking a number of Sikh infantry squares and overrunning a battery of Sikh artillery. The lancers are shown wearing over their chapkas the white cotton cover which had been adopted for service in the tropics.
NAM Accession Number
National Army Museum, Out of Copyright
National Army Museum, Study collection
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