This article is about the 28th Lancers (Deccan Horse) in the First World War and will help you research soldiers who served with the Regiment. I have also created other guides to researching the Indian Army and its soldiers which can be viewed by clicking on the link below:
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29th Lancers (Deccan Horse) in the First World War
Lineage: Formed from the Nawab Murtiza Yar Jung’s, Captains Hallis’ and Smith’s risallahs of the Nizam’s Reformed Horse in 1826 as the 2nd Regiment Nizam’s Cavalry. Then the 2nd Cavalry, Hyderabad Contingent in 1854, then the 2nd Lancers, Hyderabad Contingent in 1890 and the 29th Lancers (Deccan Horse) in 1903. The Regiment was amalgamated with the 20th Deccan Horse in 1921 to form the 20th/29th Deccan Horse which became the 9th Royal Deccan Horse in 1922.
Composition in 1914: 2 Squadrons of Jats, 1 of Sikhs and 1 of Dekhani Musalmans.
Location in July 1914: The 29th Lancers (Deccan Horse) was stationed at Poona (Pune, Maharashtra, India) having arrived from Bolarum (Hyderabad, Telangana, India) on 28 January 1913.
The 29th Lancers (Deccan Horse) was stationed at Poona, now Pune, when the First World War broke out in August 1914. The 29th Lancers had been inspected by Lieutenant-General Sir A. A. Barrett, Commanding 6th (Poona) Division on 19 March 1914 who reported:
Personnel of this regiment is quite satisfactory. Discipline and conduct satisfactory. Health remarkably good. Interior economy satisfactory.
The regiment has done very well at manoeuvres during the past season, more particularly at reconnoitering and protective duties. The training of both men and horses is remarkably good. Considerable interest is taken in musketry, and the practical work of the signallers in the field is very good. The all-round condition of efficiency reflects much credit upon Lieutenant-Colonel Pollard and those serving under him. The regiment is quite fit for active service.
Confidential review reports on Indian Army units for 1913-1914: IOR/L/MIL/7/17023
War Diaries of the 29th Lancers (Deccan Horse)
There are four war diaries for the 29th Lancers (Deccan Horse) but only the first two have been digitized. To download these war diaries for a small fee click on the first two blue links below. The other two war diaries can only be viewed at the National Archives.
- Date: August 1914 – December 1916
- 1st Indian Cavalry Division, Lucknow Cavalry Brigade
- Reference: WO 95/1174/3
- Date: January 1917 – March 1918
- 4th Cavalry Division, Lucknow Cavalry Brigade
- Reference: WO 95/1161/4
- Date: March – July 1918
- 1st Mounted Division, 8th Mounted Brigade
- Reference: WO 95/4509
- Date: August 1918 – March 1920
- 4th Cavalry Division, 11th Cavalry Brigade
- Reference: WO 95/4514
Further Sources for the 29th Lancers (Deccan Horse)
A good source of information concerning the 29th Lancers (Deccan Horse) and the British officers who served with it are its confidential reports held at the British Library: Confidential Reports on Regiments etc. However, when the 29th Lancers was abroad only its Depot and the British officers serving with it are reported on. For information regarding the British and Indian officers who served with the 29th Lancers (Deccan Horse), the Indian Army List can be consulted.
Regimental History: The Royal Deccan Horse in the Great War by Lieutenant-Colonel E. Tennant. A good regimental history which also includes the services of the 20th Deccan Horse. This book has been reprinted and is easily obtainable online.
Extracts from War Diaries of the 29th Lancers (Deccan’s Horse)