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Photographs Album details for shelfmark Photo 997/

Sir T.D. Forsyth, 'Report of a mission to Yarkund in 1873' (Foreign Department Press, Calcutta, 1875).

Photographers: Captain Edward Francis Chapman and Captain Henry Trotter
Contents: 102 prints 70x90mm to 165x90mm Albumen prints
Provenance: Transferred from European Printed Books Collection, pressmark V.3129.
Description: Yellow cloth-bound (modern rebinding) volume measuring 220x275mm, containing 102 small albumen prints mounted on pages alongside text. According to the list of photographs given in the book, prints 1-86 are the work of Edward Francis Chapman and prints 87-102 are by Henry Trotter RE.

In 1873 Thomas Douglas Forsyth was selected to head a mission to conclude a commercial treaty with the Amir of Yarkund and Kashgar and was in addition instructed to endeavour 'to obtain the fullest and most precise information on every subject, connected with the condition, resources, history, geography, and trade of Yarkand and the neighbouring countries.' Although appointed to the post partly to compensate for his dismissal as Commissioner of Ambala, Forsyth was in fact ideally suited to the job, being a keen advocate of the opening up of commercial links between India and Central Asia: in 1867 he had visited Leh to negotiate the removal of trade barriers between Eastern Turkestan and the Punjab, and in 1870 he had made a 2000 mile round trip between Lahore and Yarkund to cement relations with the Amir of Yarkund and Kashgar (as it happened, a fruitless trip, as the Amir was absent). Among his subordinates on the 1873-74 expedition were Lieutenant-Colonel (Sir) Thomas Edward Gordon (second in command), Dr Henry Walter Bellew (mission surgeon), Francis Edward Chapman (secretary), Henry Trotter RE, John Biddulph and Dr Ferdinand Stoliczka. The main expedition party reached Leh on 20 September 1873 and from there marched to Shahidulla, where they were met by an escort sent by the Amir. Kargalik was reached on 5 November, after which a series of marches brought them on 8 November to Yarkund, 'where our first appearance in the streets...excited the lively curiosity of the inhabitants.' Since the Amir was still building suitable premises to accommodate the mission at Kashgar, 'we therefore spent a very pleasant three weeks in visiting Yarkand and the vicinity,' before setting off on 28 November. After a few days at Yangi-hissar, the British mission entered Kashgar on 4 December. The mission was received by the Amir shortly after its arrival, but the day fixed for the formal reception was 11 December, on which occasion letters and presents were exchanged. The commercial treaty was presented for the Amir's acceptance on 20 December, 'on which occasion His Highness expressed very warmly his desire to avail himself of European science for the improvement of his country, and his determination to render every facility to traders.' On 2 February the Amir put his seal to the treaty, 'and thus the object of our mission was happily accomplished.' Several weeks were then spent exploring the country around Kashgar, until on 16 March an interview to take formal leave of the Amir was held. On the following day the mission left the capital, reaching Yang-hissar on the 18th, where they stayed a further month. News was received on 3 May that the proposed plan of return via Kabul was not feasible for political reasons and so the main party set out homeward by a similar route to the outward journey. After a halt at Yarkund from 6-18 May in order to await letters from the Amir addressed to the Queen and the Viceroy, the headquarters of the mission marched up the Kogiar Valley, along the Tisnaf Valley and thence into Ladakh, reaching Leh on 17 June 1874. Apart from the death of Dr Ferdinand Stoliczka from exhaustion and exposure, the mission had accomplished its purpose without serious mishap. The published account supplies not only a narrative of the journey, but also detailed accounts of the topography, commercial resources, history and culture of the area, compiled by various officers on the staff.

A brief chapter (Chapter X) of the report by Captain Chapman supplies some information on the photographic side of the mission's work. Chapman writes that when the mission was first formed it was decided, no doubt for reasons of economy, to hire a 'qualified Native Photographer' to document the expedition. This however proved difficult and it was therefore decided that members of the mission would undertake the work. Chapman and Trotter, therefore, 'provided themselves, through Messrs. Lyell & Co., with 7¼x4¼ inch cameras and with chemicals, etc., for the preparation of some 400 plates...Subsequently, two sets of Mr Piazzi Smith's apparatus for taking small photographs for enlargement were ordered.' After consultation with the photographers Bourne & Shepherd of Simla, it was decided to use the standard wet plate process, although 'a certain number of dry plates were ordered from home from the Liverpool Dry Plate Company.' Charles Shepherd was also 'good enough to devote a good deal of time during May and June 1873 to Captain Chapman's instruction' and both officers 'desire prominently to acknowledge the assistance they have received from this gentleman, whose advice they have followed throughout.' It was also decided from the first not to attempt any printing during the expedition, but to send the negatives to Bourne & Shepherd, who would carry out the work. All cameras, chemicals and processing equipment were carried by mule throughout the journey. As to the photography itself, 'the greater number of the photographs obtained have been taken with Dallmeyer's wide-angle lens, the slide of the 7¼"x4¼" camera having warped so much under the weight of stereoscopic lenses, which were also provided, as to render them useless. The total number of negatives obtained is 110...The greater number of subjects being figures, the dry plates furnished with the equipment were not made use of, owing to the long exposure required with them, and as it was nearly always possible to employ the larger cameras, Professor Piazzi Smith's apparatus was not brought into use.'

Among the difficulties encountered during photography in the field were weather conditions, and Chapman emphasises that 'the severity of the winter season and the difficulties attending photography on the line of march need to be appreciated;' however, 'in favour of the equipment and the process employed, it may be recorded that some of the negatives were obtained when the thermometer showed many degrees of frost, and that the camera was constantly used after a long march.' The religious sensitivities of the inhabitants had also to be taken into account, and in the main body of the report Forsyth notes that the missions scientific instruments - 'theodolites, photographic cameras, etc.' - 'might be looked on as only instruments of the black art.' As the Yarkundis became more used to the presence of Europeans, this suspicion dissipated: 'By degrees he [the Dadkhwah, Muhammad Yunus Jan] became accustomed to the idea of photography, and allowed Captains Chapman and Trotter to take likenesses of his soldiers, and even admitted the camera into the court-yard of his palace, taking good care however to preserve even the skirt of his garment from falling within the range of the photographer's lens.' (report, p. 7).

Album contents:-
Photo 997/(1) Camp in the Nusseem Bagh, Kashmir, August 1873. 
Photo 997/(2) Embassy Camp, Kashmir. 
Photo 997/(3) Durbar tent, visit of the Maharajah to the British Envoy [Kashgar]. 
Photo 997/(4) Lama Yuru, Buddhist Monastery and Chortens. 
Photo 997/(5) Camp Nimmoo, in Ladak. 
Photo 997/(6) Tartar women at Nimmoo in Ladak, September 1873. 
Photo 997/(7) Leh, the capital of Ladak, view of the Bazar and Palace. 
Photo 997/(8) Leh, the capital of Ladak, view from Joint Commissioner's garden. 
Photo 997/(9) The Indus Valley from Leh, eln. 11,500 ft., view from Joint Commissioner's garden. 
Photo 997/(10) The Ex. Raja of Ladak and family. 
Photo 997/(11) 'Kolon,' No. 1, Head of the family entitled by treaty to conduct a caravan every third year from Kashmir Territory to Lhassa the capital of the Grand Lama; No. 2, Heera Munshi of Ladak; No. 3, Kolon's son. 
Photo 997/(12) Shémurs of Ladak, group of ladies taken at Leh. 
Photo 997/(13) Professional dancers of Leh. 
Photo 997/(14) The Nubra Valley from Panamik, looking S.E. Buddhist Chortens in foreground. 
Photo 997/(15) Buddhist temple at Panamik, Gods of the Buddhas, 1. Chakne Durge; 2. Sangias Shukia Tuba; 3. Pakpa Chingre Zik; 4. Dekhna Karpo, goddess. 
Photo 997/(16) Heads of Oves Ammon, etc., shot by Capt. Molloy, Joint Commissioner of Ladak, 1873. 
Photo 997/(17) Crossing the Sasser Pass, breakfast above Tooti Aylak, elevation 16,300 feet. 
Photo 997/(18) Camp at Shahidulla Khwoja, the frontier outpost of Yarkund Territory towards Kashmir, 22nd Oct. 1873. 
Photo 997/(19) Shahidulla Khwoja, Oct. 1873. Camp at the frontier outpost of H.H. the Maharajah of Jummoo and Kashmir. 
Photo 997/(20) Men of the Pakpoo tribe living in the valleys bordering that of the Tisnaf River. 
Photo 997/(22) Group of natives of Kargullik [Yecheng], Nov. 1873. 
Photo 997/(23) Officers in the service of the Dadkhwah of Yarkund [at Yecheng]. 
Photo 997/(24) Dastarkhwan at Kargalik [Yecheng], 3rd Nov. 1873. 
Photo 997/(25) Street hawkers in the square of the Mess Room of the British Embassy in Yarkund, Nov. 1873. 
Photo 997/(26) Street hawkers, Yarkund. 
Photo 997/(27) Street hawkers, Yarkund. 
Photo 997/(21) Men of the Pakpoo tribe. 
Photo 997/(28) Street hawkers, Yarkund. 
Photo 997/(29) Snuff and tobacco shop, Yarkund. 
Photo 997/(30) Flour cleaner and oil sellers [Yarkund]. 
Photo 997/(31) Yaghach-chi. The carpenter [Yarkund]. 
Photo 997/(32) The knife grinder [Yarkund]. 
Photo 997/(33) Verandah of interior court yard of the Urda of the Dadkhwand of Yarkund, shewing the Hall of Audience. 
Photo 997/(34) Guard of Artillery Sirbaz, and group of officers assembled in the court yard of the Urda of the Dadkhwah of Yarkund. 
Photo 997/(35) Soldiers from Aksu [at Yarkund]. 
Photo 997/(36) Soldiers from Kuchar [at Yarkund]. 
Photo 997/(37) Soldiers from Kashgar [at Yarkund]. 
Photo 997/(38) Soldiers - Kashgaris [at Yarkund]. 
Photo 997/(39) Soldiers from Kuchar, Aksu and Khoten [at Yarkund]. 
Photo 997/(40) Players on longhorn and Mir-i-Shub [at Yarkund]. 
Photo 997/(41) Musicians of Yarkund. 
Photo 997/(42) Sikh merchants in Yarkund. 
Photo 997/(43) Baltistanis from near Skardu resident in Yarkund. 
Photo 997/(44) Tunganis, resident in Yarkund. 
Photo 997/(45) Yarkundis. 
Photo 997/(46) Yarkundis, specimens of goitre. 
Photo 997/(47) Hospital, British Embassy in Yarkund. 
Photo 997/(48) A Doulan from Maralbashi [at Yarkund]. 
Photo 997/(49) The Pamir Mountains from Yangi Hissar and the Tagharma Peak. 
Photo 997/(50) Guard of Honour under Panjsad Khal Mahomed (Bahatur Batcha) sent out to meet the envoy from Yangi Hissar. 
Photo 997/(51) Kirghiz Felt (Akoe) occupied by officers of the mission at Yangi Hissar. 
Photo 997/(52) Soap, tape, oil and sweetmeat sellers of Yarkund. 
Photo 997/(53) Coppersmiths manufacturing water vessels [Yarkund]. 
Photo 997/(54) Bootmaker, bread seller and cotton cleaner [Yarkund]. 
Photo 997/(55) Snuff seller [Yarkund]. 
Photo 997/(56) Derwishes, professional beggars [Yarkund]. 
Photo 997/(57) The fortune-teller [Yarkund]. 
Photo 997/(58) Saddle maker [Yarkund]. 
Photo 997/(59) The forge [Yarkund]. 
Photo 997/(60) Silk reeling [Yarkund]. 
Photo 997/(61) Cotton spinning [Yarkund]. 
Photo 997/(62) Opium smokers [Yarkund]. 
Photo 997/(63) Andijani and child by a Yarkund woman [Yangi-hissar]. 
Photo 997/(64) Cradle scene, Yangi Hissar. 
Photo 997/(65) Children and toy, Yangi Hissar. 
Photo 997/(66) Presents made to the Amir of Kashgar in the name of H.M. The Queen, and of H.E. the Viceroy. 
Photo 997/(67) Yuz-bashi, Paujabashi, and Dah-bashi, at attention [Kashgar]. 
Photo 997/(68) Yuz-bashi, Paujabashi, and Dah-cashi [Dah-bashi] at ease [Kashgar]. 
Photo 997/(69) Attendants at the Embassy [Kashgar]. 
Photo 997/(70) Tungani troops of the Amir [of Kashgar]. 
Photo 997/(71) Tungani troops of the Amir [of Kashgar]. 
Photo 997/(72) Tungani troops of the Amir [of Kashgar]. 
Photo 997/(73) Oves Polii [?Kashgar]. 
Photo 997/(74) Oves Polii, Lyre-horned antelope, frozen specimens [?Kashgar]. 
Photo 997/(75) Present of game and fruit in Kashgar. 
Photo 997/(76) Female patients attending the Embassy Hospital [Kashgar], January 1874. 
Photo 997/(77) Patients attending the Embassy Hospital [Kashgar]. 
Photo 997/(78) A Nogai from Omsk and a native of Sirikul, Pamir [at Kashgar]. 
Photo 997/(79) Bhokara and Khokandi merchants [at Kashgar]. 
Photo 997/(80) Party deputed to Kabul [from Kashgar], 1st January 1874. 
Photo 997/(81) Shrine of Sultan Satuk Bogra Khan at Artush, N. of Kashgar. 
Photo 997/(82) Shrine of Sultan Satuk Bogra Khan at Artush, N. of Kashgar. 
Photo 997/(83) Karawal (frontier outpost), at Tangi Tar in the Thian Shan, 60 miles N. of Kashgar. 
Photo 997/(84) The Kirghiz of Tiggur Matti and Bash Sugun in the Tian Shan. 
Photo 997/(85) Group at Kalti Aylak in the Artush District. 
Photo 997/(86) Moosa Khwoja, son of the Hakim of Artush, with hawks [at Kalti Aylak]. 
Photo 997/(87) Winter quarters in Kashgar, Dr Stoliczka on left and Captain Biddulph on right. 
Photo 997/(88) Scinde Valley, Cashmere. 
Photo 997/(89) The 'Dadhwahs' band, Yarkund. 
Photo 997/(90) Scinde Valley, Cashmere. 
Photo 997/(91) Polo players, Ladakh. 
Photo 997/(92) Scinde Valley, Cashmere. 
Photo 997/(93) Sonamarg. 
Photo 997/(94) A Hadji of Karghalik [Yecheng]. 
Photo 997/(95) Tash-Khoja, an Andijani Yazbashi. 
Photo 997/(96) Two natives of Sanjwa. 
Photo 997/(97) Group of Yarkundis of the lower classes. 
Photo 997/(98) Group of natives, Yarkund. 
Photo 997/(99) Chinese troops, Kashgar. 
Photo 997/(100) Chinese troops, Kashgar. 
Photo 997/(101) A Chinese slave, and a fakir of the country [Kashgar]. 
Photo 997/(102) Chinese troops, Kashgar. 

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