Personal info

  • Name: William GARDNER
  • D.O.B: 2nd Mar, 1821
  • D.O.A: 5th May, 1858
  • D.O.D: 24th Oct, 1897
  • Award: Victoria Cross
  • Occupation at time of action: Colour Sergeant, 42nd (The Royal Highland) Regiment of Foot
  • Book: The Complete History - Volume 1
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Sources & Acknowledgements

Bareilly, India 5-6 May 1858

5-6 May 1858

More details about:
The Indian Mutiny 1857-59 

After the outbreak of the Mutiny, Khan Bahadur Khan established what was, in effect, an independent kingdom in Rohilkhand with his capital at Bareilly. All Europeans who could be found were murdered. After the final capture of Lucknow in March 1858, the British advanced into Rohilkhand. On 5 May Sir Colin Campbell approached Bareilly from the south. Khan Bahadur Khan’s army came out to meet him, taking up its position south of a nullah and was driven back across it. However, as the 4th Punjab Rifles occupied old cavalry lines on the northern side of the nullah, they were subjected to a ferocious assault by ghazis. This then broke against the 42nd Regiment. At the same time the Rurki Field Force, of which 60th Regiment formed part, also reached Bareilly. The following day British forces advanced into Bareilly. Khan Bahadur Khan fled north and was executed at Bareilly in 1860, having been captured in Nepal.


 For his conspicuous and gallant conduct on the morning of the 5th of May last, in having saved the life of Lieutenant-Colonel Cameron, his Commanding Officer, who during the Action at Bareilly on that day, had been knocked from his horse, when three Fanatics rushed upon him. Colour-Serjeant Gardner ran out, and in a moment bayoneted two of them, and was in the act of attacking the third, when he was shot down by another soldier of the Regiment. (Letter from Captain Macpherson, 42nd Regiment, to Lieutenant-Colonel Cameron, Commanding that Regiment.) 

The London Gazette of 24 August 1858, Numb. 22176, p. 3905

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