Personal info

  • Name: Arthur George HAMMOND
  • D.O.B: 28th Sep, 1843
  • D.O.A: 14th Dec, 1879
  • D.O.D: 20th Apr, 1919
  • Award: Victoria Cross
  • Occupation at time of action: Captain, Queen's Own Corps of Guides, Punjab Frontier Force (Infantry), Indian Army
  • Book: The Complete History - Volume 1
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The Asmai Heights, Kabul, Afghanistan 14 December 1879

14 December 1879

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The Asmai Heights to the north-west of Kabul, Afghanistan, form part of that arc of high ground to the west of the city of which the Darwaza Heights form a continuation south of the Deh Mazang Gorge. Following the action at Takht-i-Shah, it became clear on 14 December 1879 that Mohammed Jan was now massing his forces on the Heights prior to attacking the British. Major General Roberts ordered Lieutenant Colonel Baker to attack them there and he succeeded temporarily in capturing the Heights before the pressure of Afghan numbers forced him to withdraw. In one small engagement Captain W J Vousden led a charge against a group of Kohistanis he encountered riding along the bank of the Kabul river. However the overall situation was clearly deteriorating and Roberts had no alternative but to withdraw all his forces to the protection offered by the Sherpur cantonment. On 23 December there was a sustained Afghan assault on the cantonment. Its failure allowed Roberts to reoccupy Kabul.


 For conspicuous coolness and gallantry at the action on the Asmai Heights, near Kabul, on the 14th December, 1879, in defending the top of the hill with a rifle and fixed bayonet, against large numbers of the enemy, while the 72nd Highlanders and Guides were retiring; and again, on the retreat down the hill, in stopping to assist in carrying away a wounded Sepoy, the enemy being not sixty yards off, firing heavily all the time. 

The London Gazette of 18 October 1881, Numb. 25027, p. 5140

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