The Nagas

Hill Peoples of Northeast India

Project Introduction The Naga Database

published - Chapter II, 'Detailed Report on the Naga Hills Expedition of 1879-80', Capt. P.J. Maitland

caption: survey operations and attacks on surveying parties
medium: reports
person: Holcombe/ Lt.Badgeley/ Capt.Nuttall/ Col.Butler/ Capt.
ethnicgroup: Angami
date: 1873-1874
person: Maitland/ Capt. P.J.
date: 1880
person: India Office Library, London
refnum: IOR L/MIL/17/18/24
text: In 1873-74 survey operations on the Assam border were extended to the Naga Hills; and in the cold season of that year there were parties, under strong escort, both in the Naga Hills District and in the Eastern Naga country. These surveys, though most carefully conducted, appear to have had a very disturbing effect on the Naga mind. The party in the Eastern Hills was treacherously attacked; Lieutenant Holcombe and 80 men killed, and Captain Badgeley, and 50 others wounded. But for the courage and skill of Captain Badgeley, and the discipline of his men, the whole would have been destroyed. A punitive expedition under Colonel Nuttall, C.B., 44th Sylhet Light Infantry, was immediately organised, and was completely successful, destroying all the villages implicated in the outrage, and recovering nearly all the arms and plunder taken from the survey party. The expedition was composed of detachments of the 42nd and 44th Native Infantry and some frontier police from the Naga Hills. The total force was 308 men of all ranks.
text: In the Naga Hills District, the party led by Captain Butler, the Political Officer, was also attacked twice; first on the night of the 4th January, and again on the 10th, in broad daylight, by large bodies of Angami Nagas. Both attacks were entirely unprovoked, and were happily repulsed easily and without loss. No particular punishment appears to have been inflicted on the perpetrators of these attacks.