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Mr William Fraser McDonnell, Bengal Civil Service, Magistrate of Sarun, winning the VC at Arrah, 30 July 1857

Oil on canvas, by Louis William Desanges, 1860 (c).

On 30 July 1857, during the retreat of the British troops from Arrah, Mr McDonnell (1829-1894) climbed outside the boat in which he and some 35 European soldiers had taken refuge and, under incessant fire, cut through the lashing around the rudder, enabling them all to escape.

This painting is one of a series of 55 depicting Victoria Cross subjects executed between 1859 and 1862 by the British artist Louis Desanges, and displayed at the Crystal Palace during the 1860s and 1870s.

NAM Accession Number

NAM. 1958-12-50-1


National Army Museum, Out of Copyright


National Army Museum, Study Collection

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