37th Dogras Northwest Frontier Colonial India photograph album, circa 1896-1899

Overview of the Collection

37th Dogras Northwest Frontier Colonial India photograph album
circa 1896-1899 (inclusive)
98 photographic prints in one album (1 box) ; sizes vary
Collection Number
Photographs of landscapes, cities, forts, soldiers, animals, and locals in the northwest frontier of colonial India, which later became Pakistan and northwest India.
University of Washington Libraries, Special Collections
Special Collections
University of Washington Libraries
Box 352900
Seattle, WA
Telephone: 2065431929
Fax: 2065431931
Access Restrictions

Entire collection can be viewed on the Libraries’ Digital Collections website. Permission of Visual Materials Curator required to view originals. Contact Special Collections for more information.


Historical BackgroundReturn to Top

During the first Afghan war (1839-1842), the British overextended themselves and were forced to pull back. After that, they focused less on expansion and more on defense. In 1857, members of the Bengal army that controlled northern India mutinied. Many people died, and the British suffered a severe blow. The British crown took control of the army, which had been under the authority of the East-India Company. Despite their lack of success during the first Afghan war and their focus on defense, the British once again headed for Kabul. The second Afghan war did not go well for the British, and once again they failed to gain more than temporary control of Kabul.

In 1887, the British strengthened the Bengal army by adding a regiment of Hindus from the Rajput hill states. This new regiment was called the 37th Dogras. The homogeneous composition of the group was a result of the British belief that segregation would help prevent another widespread mutiny. In the remaining years of the 19th century, the 37th Dogras participated in expeditions in several parts of the northwest frontier. The Tochi Valley was one of the areas in the frontier that caused problems for the British. It was one of the main routes to Afghanistan, and after the Waziristan Expedition in 1894, the valley's main posts, including Idak, Miran Shah, and Datta Khel, were garrisoned by British troops. The British continued to fight in the valley until 1901, when Viceroy Lord Curzon removed the British troops and replaced them with tribal militia. By 1924, the British were once again at war with Afghanistan.

Content DescriptionReturn to Top

The photographs in this album depict landscapes, cities, forts, soldiers, animals, and locals in the northwest frontier of colonial India, which later became Pakistan and northwest India. They were taken between 1896 and 1899, and for the most part were arranged in the album in chronological order. Many of the pictures show members of the British-allied 37th Dogras regiment as well as scenes of the rugged Tochi Valley, where the 37th Dogras helped fight for control of the Afghan border. They also show the Simla hill station, where the British went to escape the heat and danger; several sites in the Indus valley, including Multan and Dera Ghazi Khan; the famed Khyber Pass; and the city of Chamba, known for its temples and a grass concourse called the Chawgan. It is probable that the album's original owner was a British officer in the 37th Dogras who was stationed in the northwest frontier of colonial India during the late 19th century and created the album to document his travels.

Use of the CollectionReturn to Top

Restrictions on Use

Restrictions may exist on reproduction, quotation, or publication. Contact Special Collections, University of Washington Libraries for details.

Administrative InformationReturn to Top

Acquisition Information

Purchased by UW Libraries South Asia Center, June 18, 1991.

Processing Note

Processed by Scott Forland, 2002 and Jill M. Dalager, 2003.

Detailed Description of the CollectionReturn to Top


Container(s) Description Dates
Page item
1 1a Two Indian soldiers beside a road
1 1b Landscape with evergreens
2 2 Fort and a ferry 1896
3 3 Bridge over a river
4 4a Simla landscape December 1896
4 4b People on a street in Simla December 1896
5 5a-b Landscape with evergreens
6 6 Viceregal Lodge in Simla 1897
7 7 Viceregal Lodge in Simla
8 8a-b Buildings in Simla 1897
9 9 Monument surrounded by evergreens
10 10a Pack mules on the pass in Datta Khel, Tochi 1898
10 10b Five Indian soldiers near Miran Shah, Tochi 1898
11 11a Five Indian soldiers next to a road
11 11b Indian soldiers sitting on a rock wall
12 12a Two lines of Indian soldiers at the guard fort in Datta Khel, Tochi 1898
12 12b Ten members of the 37th Dogras on mules in Idak, Tochi 1898
13 13a Lines of Indian soldiers
13 13b Military marching band with bagpipes and drums
14 14a "Afsault at Arms" in Miran Shah, Tochi 1898
14 14b Bayonet exercises "Afsault at Arms" with Brigadier General Dyce
15 15 Military camp, possibly at Datta Khel
16 16 Officers and their orderlies from the 37th Dogras in Idak, Tochi 1898
17 17 Officers from the 37th Dogras
18 18a Landscape of Datta Khel, Tochi 1898
18 18b Landscape of Miran Shah, Tochi 1898
19 19a-b Landscape
20 20a-b Young boy holding a flower with the caption "John Lawrence Maxwell" 1898
21 21a Married couple
21 21b Man sitting on the ground with the caption "The Great Lord Budh" 1899
21 21c Kher Fort in Munro 1899
22 22 Large group of soldiers with the caption "Major R. Boothby's Battery"
23 23 Landi Kotal on the Khyber Pass
24 24a People with ox carts
24 24b People on a city street
24 24c Three men standing by a wall
24 24d Landscape with a river
24 24e People and animals on a boat
24 24f-h Three views of the same city
25 25 Soldiers and battery elephants in Multan 1898
26 26a Sail boat on the Indus River in Dera Ghazi Khan 1899
26 26b Building surrounded by palms with the caption "D.G.K. 1899" 1899
27 27 Palms, people, cows, and a water-operated machine
28 28 Woman posed with book and fur with the caption "LAAS 1899 D.G.K."
29 29 Eight men in uniform
30 30a Men and a tent with the caption "My troopers Tent"
30 30b Three men on a hillside
30 30c Men on horses with the caption "Horses returning from water"
30 30d Animal in brush
30 30e Man standing beside a wall
31 31 Men riding on eleven battery elephants in Multan circa 1899
32 32a-h Views of Chamba and nearby landscape
32 32i Woman, a man, and an animal with the caption "Chamba Lady"
33 33a-f Buildings, probably in Chamba
33 33g People in a rural area
33 33h Man outside of a tent
33 33i Men outside of a tent with clothes drying on a rock
34 34a-e City scenes
35 35a-d Town scenes
35 35e People, pillars, and hanging cages
36 36 Oval photo of men running across a field with onlookers
37 37a-e Buildings and bridge in Chamba
37 37f Large grass area in Chamba called the Chowgan
38 38a-b Two girls in costume
39 39a Girl in queen of hearts costume
39 39b Girl in Scottish costume
40 40 Girl in Scottish costume

Names and SubjectsReturn to Top

Subject Terms

  • Afghan Wars--Photographs
  • Military personnel--India--Photographs
  • Military personnel--Pakistan--Photographs
  • Soldiers--India--Photographs
  • Visual Materials Collections (University of Washington)

Corporate Names

  • Great Britain. Army--Colonial forces--India--Photographs
  • India. Army. Dogra Regiment--Photographs

Geographical Names

  • Chamba (India)--History--19th century--Photographs
  • India--History--British occupation, 1765-1947--Photographs
  • North-West Frontier Province (Pakistan)--History, Military--Photographs
  • Pakistan--History--19th century--Photographs
  • Simla (India)--History--19th century--Photographs
  • Tochi Valley (Pakistan)--History, Military--Photographs

Form or Genre Terms

  • Photograph albums