The Nagas

Hill Peoples of Northeast India

Project Introduction The Naga Database

printed - tour diary of the Deputy Commissioner of the Naga Hills for the year 1870-1872 (John Butler) volume two

caption: frost; to Khonomah where nature of the boundary explained to chiefs; ammunition for sale in Khonomah; Manipur Political Agent promises to investigate
medium: tours
person: Samensah clan/ KhonomahMerhamah clan/ KhonomahNachatchumah clan/ KhonomahThomson/ Col.Roma Sing/ MajorMuna Ram/ Insp.
location: Khonomah
date: 1.1.1873
person: Butler/ John
date: 22.11.1870-17.2.1873
note: inaccurate spelling in the original text
text: 1st January, 1873. Just as I expected, it turned out to be excessively cold again last night and when we got up this morning the whole ground was so thickly covered with white hoar frost that it had all the appearance of snow. The ice too was very much thicker than usual.
text: A short and easy march brought us into Khonomah today where I found the two rival clans of Samensah and Merhamah were each anxious that we should encamp in their half of the village, but in order to avoid any appearance of our sympathizing with either side, we determined to pitch our tents on neutral ground and so encamped on the terraces belonging to the Nachatchumah clan, after which I ordered the Chiefs of each clan to come into me, which after considerable delay they did do when I explained to them fully in the presence of Colonel Thomson and Major Roma Sing the nature of the boundary that had been laid down between Assam and Manipur and most solemnly warned them against committing any raids across the border for the future.
text: I must here record that the Merhamah Chiefs tried very hard indeed to avoid attending the meeting in person, and it was only when I threatened to adopt other measures to compel their attendance that they came in and I cannot help thinking their conduct in this matter was chiefly due to Manipuri influence. However it is very difficult indeed to arrive at the truth in questions of this kind and so long as I find my orders are carried out, I shall avoid stirring up the mud any more than I can possibly help.
text: My Inspector Muna Ram brought me in 40 more rounds of ammunition this evening which he had just purchased from some Nagas of the Merhamah clan for Rs. 2 and made over one packet of 20 rounds to Colonel Thomson with whom I had a long conversation on the matter and he has assured me that he will, on his return to Manipur, make a full enquiry into it. He seems to doubt that the Maharajah or his Ministers can be cognizant of the sale of this ammunition to the Nagas but at the same time thinks, from the appearance of the cartidges, that they are probably some taken from the Rajah's old ammunition for which it appears he has now no longer any use owing to his having been lately supplied by our Government with several hundred stand of the Enfield smooth bore, for which these cartridges are much too large.