13th Duke of Connaught’s Lancers (Watson’s Horse)

This article looks at the 13th Duke of Connaught’s Lancers (Watson’s Horse) and will help you to research the Regiment and the officers and men who served with it. This page is one of a series of guides to help you research the Indian Army which can be viewed by clicking on the link below:

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13th Duke of Connaught’s Lancers (Watson’s Horse)

Lineage: Raised at Lahore by Lieutenant H. C. Cattley and Lieutenant J. Watson in 1858 as the 4th Regiment of Sikh Irregular Cavalry. Became the 13th Regiment of Bengal Cavalry in 1861, then the 13th Regiment of Bengal Cavalry (Lancers) in 1864, the 13th Regiment of Bengal Lancers in 1874 and the 13th (Duke of Connaught’s) Regiment of Bengal Lancers in 1884. Then the 13th (Duke of Connaught’s) Bengal Lancers in 1901 and the 13th Duke of Connaught’s Lancers in 1903 and the 13th Duke of Connaught’s Lancers (Watson’s Horse) on 1904. The Regiment was amalgamated with the 16th Cavalry to become the 13th/16th Cavalry in 1921 which became the 6th Duke of Connaught’s Own Lancers in 1922.

Composition in 1914: 2 Squadrons of Punjabi Musalmans, 1 of Sikhs and 1 of Dogras.

Location in July 1914: The 13th Duke of Connaught’s Lancers (Watson’s Horse) was stationed at Risalpur having arrived from Loralai on 18 January 1913.

The 13th Duke of Connaught’s Lancers (Watson’s Horse) was stationed at Risalpur when the First World War broke out in August 1914. The Regiment had been inspected by Brigadier-General J. G. Turner, Commanding Risalpur (Cavalry) Brigade on 2 and 3 December 1913 who reported:

A well equipped and well turned out unit. The details of drill are carefully taught and the training of recruits and remounts is carried out thoroughly. The signalling is satisfactory and there is a very marked improvement in musketry, especially at range practices.

The interior economy is entirely satisfactory. In readiness for war the most important consideration is the mounting. An improvement has been made, but among the horses for field service are some 80 over 15 years of age. A large number of remounts must be purchased for 2 or 3 years. The regiment has to learn to move more quickly. Alertness is required in the place of somewhat deliberate exactness.

Is fit for service.

Confidential review reports on Indian Army units for 1913-1914IOR/L/MIL/7/17023

War Diary of the 13th Duke of Connaught’s Lancers (Watson’s Horse)

There is only one diary for the 13th Duke of Connaught’s Lancers (Watson’s Horse).

  • Date: July 1916 – December 1917
  • 7th Indian Cavalry Brigade
  • Reference: WO 95/5090/1
  • Notes: See also WO95/5090/2 which has identical dates.

Further Sources for the 13th Duke of Connaught’s Lancers (Watson’s Horse)

A good source of information concerning the 13th Duke of Connaught’s Lancers (Watson’s Horse) and the British officers who served with it are its confidential reports held at the British Library: Confidential Reports on Regiments etc. These reports contain the annual reports of British officers who were serving with the 13th Lancers. However, when the Regiment was abroad only the British officer serving with the Depot were reported on. For information regarding the British and Indian officers who served with the 13th Duke of Connaught’s Lancers (Watson’s Horse) the Indian Army List can be consulted.

Regimental History: 

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Extracts from the War Diary of the 13th Lancers

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