Inconsolable Trials IV

The many transports of harriet tytler, daughter of the army

Kashmir Gate, after 1857

“It was a sickening sight, knowing all we valued most was lost to us forever things that no money could ever purchase – a beloved dead child’s hair, manuscripts and paintings for a book my husband was going to publish some day, all my own paintings, books, clothes, furniture…Indeed we lost in money value, value…some £ 20,000, a fortune for a poor military man in those days, and to replace even what we could buy would cost a great deal more than this. But the one absorbing thought of flying for our lives soon made us forget that which at any other time would have been an inconsolable trial.”

So wrote Harriet Tytler, as she watched Delhi burning in the distance. Her home was reduced to ashes and all she had left to her in the world was now contained in a small, vastly inadequate carriage.
We had left Harriet, following the guns, as her husband had told her to, while he was still haranguing his men to be true to their salt. Orders were not new to her – as the daughter of Lieutenant-Colonel John Lucas Earle of the 3rd NI, she knew army life from birth and if any woman on that day understood her husband’s duties, it was Harriet.
The sight of their comrades blown up in the explosion of the Magazine had left the sepoys of Robert’s regiment with no doubt that the English were indeed intent on killing them all.

Delhi Magazine

“Go sir, save your wife and children, we won’t hurt you but we cannot answer for the other soldiers….No, we won’t go with you another step.” Tytler realised now it was no use and he did as he was told with the sanction of Brigadier Graves, and, borrowing a horse from Major Nicholl who was still trying his best to bring order, Tytler went off after his wife.
He did find them; – after a sorrowful appeal of Mrs. Gardner (and much to Harriet’s horror), he went back to the cantonments and found Captain Gardner too (who was attempting his escape on foot, with a revolver in his hand). Then for the third time, Tytler effected his own escape now with Gardner in tow.
Reunited, the two families proceeded together, Tytler mounted the coach box and settled Gardner on the seat behind and after some reshuffling of hastily packed boxes (things that Marie the maid had had the foresight to take before going to Flagstaff Tower), they could finally set off with the actual intention of fleeing. In a carriage made for two, there were now two men, two pregnant women, a nanny and three children, Tytler driving.

It was bright, moonlit night but the smoke from the burning city obscured its light. It was with no little surprise that they suddenly saw, out of the dark a carriage approaching heading towards Delhi. Tytler immediately flagged it down. In it was a young English woman – a Mrs. O’ Connor, the 16 year old wife of a canal engineer- Tytler explained that going to Delhi was indeed a very poor idea and she would be killed, but in no uncertain terms, she told him, he was lying. Washing his hands of her insolence, the families drove on in the dark.

Though not quite the carriage the Tytlers were escaping in, these were common as a mode of travel over long distances. The Tytlers carriage was smaller. A dak bungalow is in the background

In settled times, travellers would have planned everything in advance in minute detail. They would have informed the Postmaster of their route and intended length of the journey and he in turn would have ensured that there would be fresh change of horses or palkee bearers (a mode of travel which involved being carried in a palanquin by 8 men) on the route, that the dak (post) bungalows were informed in advance to expect an arrival and of course, everything would have been paid for before starting out. Along busy routes, a traveller could expect a regular stops dak bungalows where they could wile away the heat of the day, as most travel was done at night. It might have been slow going but it was efficient. Unsurprisingly, when their horse finally gave up, Tytler made his way to the first staging stable they could find on their road to pick up a fresh horse. Civilised travel however was a thing of the past – the caretakers refused to give them a horse and only after Gardner pointed his gun at them, did they agree. Tytler paid the men anyway borrowing the money from Marie – his had been stolen and Gardner had none.
Not that it mattered. The carriage had other ideas and shortly after, the four wheels collapsed and the party continued on foot. After several miles they heard the sound of wheels behind them. No one was terribly surprised to see the same young woman (who was only 16 years old!), only this time flying for her life in the opposite direction. True enough, she had met other fugitives from Delhi, trudging along who had managed to convince her she really was in danger. This time Tytler was having none of her nonsense and promptly requisitioned her carriage for the two families. Although in better repair than the wreck they had left behind, the roads remained uncompromising and it was not long after when this carriage too, lost a wheel.
Mrs. Nixon had also escaped Delhi – her husband was dead and children she had none, so she did what she felt was her best option and settled herself in the mail cart that, for some unknown reason, left punctually from Delhi as if truly nothing out of the ordinary had happened that day. It was thus that she found the Tytlers, the Gardners and surly Mrs. O’Connor on the side of the road, contemplating the broken carriage wheel. Stopping, she obliged the post officers to give Tytler a rope with which he tied the recalcitrant wheel back into its rightful place. Mrs. Nixon did not join them – she was on her way to Karnal with the post. She did however promise to send them a carriage.
Wheel fixed, the next thing to break were the springs in the seat, sending Harriet and Marie tumbling in all directions – “happily, a tumbrel came by, which was on its way to the arsenal at Delhi with a lot of odds and ends of broken arms. Happy thought – this must be seized and employed the carry us on our weary way till something better could be met with.” Tytler and Gardner ignored the remonstrances of the drivers and requisitioned their next mode of transport. Throwing out the rubbish the men hurriedly tumbled the women and children into the springless cart; the drivers, seeing that the armed officers were not in the mood for arguing “thought it best in common wisdom to run away.”

A tumbrel

Not that this was going to be an easy task. Tytler and Gardner had never driven bullocks before “so they tried to follow the example of the hackery wallahs and each took a tail into their strong hands-” Tytler squeezing so tightly, that his bullocks promptly fled down an incline and Gardner was left twisting the tail of the other hapless animal so sharply “in self-defence it turned to his side and stopped the downward course of the other animal.”
The cart men suddenly reappeared (they hadn’t run too far and must have just been waiting to see what the sahibs would do next, albeit, from a safe distance), “..seeing such ignorant handling of their animals came running back, saying, “Sahib, sahib, wou will kill our bullocks – we will drive them if you will let us!” Obligingly now, Tytler and Gardner gave up their seats and let the drivers take the rope between their toes and gently take hold of the tails – and off they trotted at the shambling pace of 3 miles an hour. The officers walked.
By morning, weary, footsore and thirsty they were found on the road by the husband of their young companion – Mr. O’Connor thanked Captain Tytler for saving his wife’s life and she in turn, this time said nothing at all. Perhaps she had realised just how close to death she had come. They went on to the O’Connors bungalow, a little way off from Karnal.
It was decided, after a hasty breakfast (their first meal since leaving Delhi) to proceed to Karnal, notwithstanding the entreaties of the two post officers who had accompanied Mrs. Nixon, suddenly arriving who claimed everyone in Karnal was dead and Ambala in a state of anarchy. Tytler dismissed them when they suggested the party travel overland to Cawnpore instead.
Until Mrs. Nixon had arrived in Karnal, no one at that station had heard of any mutiny so it was some horror they were suddenly beset by the fugitives from Delhi – the Tytlers and Marie , the Gardners and soon after, Mrs. Holland arrived with Miss Hollings and Miss Winfield, Mr. Glub of the 28th and several others. Shortly after Major Shute arrived from Ambala, blissfully unaware of what had happened at Delhi – and in short order he was dispatched, accompanied by Glub back to Ambala; it was imperative that General Anson, still settled in Simla, should get the news as quickly as possible.
Now Tytler turned to the post master of Karnal “a native with an English name,”, (so said Harriet), and asked him for conveyances for everyone – they would proceed to Ambala the same day. Several hours later, the bullocks still had not shown up, the postmaster shuffled and excused himself, saying the bullocks were our grazing and no one could find them. Tytler, had by now, had just about all he could handle and lost his patience completely. “He called the head man, one of those who had driven us in, and, holding a revolver at his head, told him he would shoot him dead if he did not produce those bullocks in a quarter of an hour.” The bullocks miraculously turned up in even less time – they were found to be tied up a short distance away behind the post office wall. Whatever the intention was behind the delay, Harriet was in doubt the people at Karnal were simply waiting for troops to come from Delhi and kill them all. Tytler then tried to persuade the only civilian official in Karnal – Mr. Richards – to leave his post – “as much as he would like to go, he did not care to do so for fear of dismissal from the service.” Duty above sense it would seem- Mr. Richards stayed, the postmaster fled as soon as Tytler disappeared in the distance – he lost his post, but Richards kept his!

Their next mode of transport was a shigram – a cart, through covered was thoroughly without springs and it was to take them the next 70 miles to Ambala. The men walked. The children were restless and kicking, Harriet bore the brunt of their tempers until at last at 2 in the morning, she begged her husband to take her out and let lay her on the ground. “This he did…I lay there for some time without a word passing between us, while he long calvacade went slowly on. But when the last carriage made its appearance, my husband turned to me saying, “Harrie, you must get up now.”
I replied, “I can’t. I am dying. You go and take care of the children.
“What nonsense,” he said, “You think I can leave you here to die alone?”

Needless to say, Harriet did not die. She arrived in Ambala – and as fate would have it, she would shortly return to Delhi. Her part in the mutiny – as that of her French maid, her children and her husband – was not over by any means. As to the Gardners, Harriet leaves them behind in her book. Their parting was unfortunately, not as friends.

sikandar’s daughter

“The terrifyingly able Mrs. Wagentreiber” – there really is no more fitting description for Elizabeth Wagentreiber, the daughter of the legendary Colonel James Skinner. She used all means in her arsenal to eke out every advantage for her family on their rush to flee the burning city – and it was no means a small feat.
Her husband was George Wagentreiber, the sub-editor of the Delhi Gazette. Unlike his wife, who had grown up in India, He had only recently arrived and his grasp of the language was not perfect, and his intuition less so. On the 11th of May he went off to work – and his quick thinking wife, hearing the first mutterings of unrest had him recalled, sending a servant to tell him she had suddenly been taken ill. George obeyed the call and returned home. As he arrived, servants were bringing news to his wife – the troopers were cutting down every European in sight. George quickly got his firearms together – thinking perhaps, they could hold out in a strong back room. He also sent a note over to Dr. Balfour, who lived close by – the good doctor didn’t really see what the fuss was all about. Very shortly, he would. The Wagentreibers could see the fires raging in Daryaganj from their house: Elizabeth, for one, wasn’t going to idly wait for the plunderers to reach her home. Organising a small supply of necessities and taking George’s firearms, the small family (consisting of besides George and Elizabeth, of 14 year old Julia Haldane – Elizabeth’s daughter from her first marriage – and baby Florence), retreated to Brigadier Graves’ house in the cantonments. The servants informed the Wagentreibers the Brigadier was not home and refused them entrance, so they returned home.
As they entered their gate, their neighbour, Mr. Murphy of the customs office stopped them. They could come to his house – a good strong one with a flat roof, unlike the easily combustible thatch. Here they found a party of 10 ladies and 6 gentlemen, including Dr. Balfour. From the roof of the house, the men watched the progression of the troops streaming into the city. As the approached the civil lines, the party in a body, fled to Flagstaff Tower. Elizabeth was not particularly impressed by what she saw – the smallness of the tower, the crying women and wailing children, and above all, the able men were doing nothing at all –” the gentlemen stood about in doorways…There with loaded guns, they watched and waited.”
Less than an hour after arriving, a personal servant of Elizabeth’s came up to the tower, asking if he should bring up the carriage? Promptly sending for the paeton and a pair of young, thoroughbred horses, Elizabeth prepared to leave. Unlike the Tytlers who had nothing but a hunting carriage in which to make their escape, the Wagentreibers were leaving nothing to chance. It was not a moment to soon.

Paeton, 1855 model

Within minutes of the Magazine going up in smoke, Elizabeth bundled her family into the carriage and they set off, flying for their lives up the Karnal road.
Their first stop was four miles out of Delhi at the home of a trusted Nawab, a family friend, who had often entreated them to visit him. Although the welcome of his staff was sure enough, Elizabeth decided they had not really come far enough yet to get too comfortable. She insisted the carriage and the horses be hidden behind the house and the wheel marks be rubbed away. She then hid her family and sat herself down on a cot in front of the watchman’s house drawing her skirt up from the back, over her head to look like a veil. In the darkness of the night, she looked now like an Indian woman, seated with her husband. Although a gardener and a coachman had been sent to give word to the Nawab they never returned and Elizabeth feared treachery. Keeping the watchman in her sight, she made him light a fire and start cooking chapattis, and told him, if any troopers came, he was to tell them the house was empty and they could go and search it themselves. She further reminded him that her husband ” has loaded guns and is watching from the roof if you betray us he will shoot you first. I have only to raise my hand as a signal for him to fire and I will do so without hesitation if you do not obey me, so beware!” Torn between his terror of the formidable daughter of Colonel Skinner, her obviously deadly husband, the impending arrival of the troopers and any horde of bad characters from the city – it was no wonder he readily promised to obey.
Twice the troopers came during the night – both times they asked if the watchman had seen any fugitives from the tower, but they did not venture to enter the compound. Only the last one was a little more insistent, riding his horse right up to Elizabeth. The watchman followed her injunction to the letter – if the trooper wanted, he could go and search the house himself. The house, with its open doors and windows and the scene of what appeared to be a man and woman cooking their dinner threw the trooper off any search and he rode away into the darkness. At least for now the ruse had worked.
Elizabeth however felt their time to go was nearing – as soon as the trooper was out of sight she sprang up from the cot and went to find the horses, finding them grazing unattended in the grounds. As she came back to the watchman, she found him speaking with the gardener who had lately returned from the Nawab. The news was disheartening – probably fearing for his life and property, the Nawab had sent orders that the Wagentreibers were to be instantly evicted. Without losing a moment, Elizabeth collected her family from the roof where they had been hiding, and while she and George harnessed the horses to the carriage, she gave a pistol to Julia with the stern order to fire at “any native who entered.” Whether Julia would have actually managed to hit anything was besides the point, but just the sound of a pistol going off would have given anyone a moments pause.
Elizabeth now mounted the box and taking the reins in her hands while George placed the girls into the back with all of the guns and ammunition. He then took two pistols and seated himself on the box near his wife. The only one who appeared to be delighted with being on the road again were the horses, they “started forward with a bound…and we were out of the gate in a second, tearing madly up the Grand Trunk Road to Karnal.” Elizabeth let them run for a moment and then slowed them to walk – and as she did, she became aware of a group of men in the distance, blocking the road. Armed with clubs, spears, tulwars and lathis, they called on the Wagentreibers to stop. George aimed his pistol at the front man and told him, with no uncertain terms, he would shoot him.
“With a yell of fury they they rushed at us, and one, more daring than the rest, seized the reigns…My father seeing threats were useless, fired and the villain fell dead beside the carriage.” The horses, startled by the rapport, now plunged forward. Some of the men gave chase but they could catch up to the terrified horses. Only one man, swifter than the rest, appeared to be gaining – George was having none of it and shot him dead.
As soon as the group of miscreants was out of sight, Elizabeth soothed the horses who were now jumping at any shadow across the moonlit road. Slowing them finally to a walk, George could now reload his weapons.

A collection of weapons in India. Top left, drawings of Mughal weapons. Beneath, an East India Company cavalry pistol. Indian tulwar – a deadly sword with a curved blade.
Spear – 18th -19th century, decorated with brass.
Flintlock pistol, Cal, 21 bore, London markings. This pistol is one of many seized from mutineers during the events of 1857 and subsequently donated to to the Melbourne Public Library in 1860 by Earl Charles Canning, Governor-General of India. https://collections.museumsvictoria.com.au/items/400991

The Wagentreibers were not going to have any easy night by any means. The next scenario was simply horrifying.
“The Jats and Gujars have a peculiar war cry, weird and wild like the jackal which travels far, and means much to those who know the tribe. This “call ” with a plaintive wail in it seemed now to come from several directions. Loud and menacing as we advanced and taken up, and echoed faintly in the rear (where they were deploring the fate of two of their party). Evidently they were gathering and concentrating forces ahead, while those we had left behind were crying on their brethren to avenge their dead ! My mother explained this to my father preparing him for another struggle. The horses were allowed their heads, while my parents braced themselves for the encounter, telling my sister to sit well back under the hood of the carriage (which was up) and to be ready with the guns. To my mother’s reassuring words “Don’t be afraid, ” she replied, ” Not I!” so bravely and cheerfully that it nerved my parents for the encounter, while I slept peacefully in her arms! The lot we now saw seemed determined to have our lives, for they rushed forward yelling their loudest, and so terrified the poor horses by their savage onslaught that it needed all my mother’s strength and good handling to keep them from swerving and running off the road into the kutcha dinted hollows on either side..”
The attackers came on in their full fury, hitting at the carriage and the horses with their tulwars and clubs. George shot down the leader; but the rest remained undaunted. As Elizabeth pushed the horses on, one of the men hit out at her, smashing her arm with his lathi – yet she held on, stifling her cry of pain. George shot her attacker.

“At the same time one ran along with the carriage and made a cut with his talwar at my father. My sister, well on the alert, called out, “Look to your left!” and this ruffian too was knocked over before he could do harm. One desperate wretch climbed the hood and was in the act of striking a blow which would have killed one of my parents, but a pistol bullet in the forehead sent him tumbling backwards. The sword just grazed my father on the nape of the neck and fell clattering at my sister’s feet !” Once more beaten, and discomfited, with a
loss of four or five of their number, we got through them, but they continued the chase, hurling spears and large stones at the rear as long as they were able to keep up
.”

As if things were not bad enough, the Wagentreibers ran into a party of the 38th Light Infantry, who were returning from a depot at Amballa. Startled, the men called out for the Wagentreibers to stop. Elizabeth was having none of it – she drove the horses furiously past the men – and ” we went headlong into a band of Gujars (who were lying in ambush on the sides of the road) and sprang up to meet us. The horses were now mad with terror and rough usage, and my poor mother, with her arm almost helpless from the blow she had received, felt that another encounter with these wretches would prove disastrous. In that terrible moment she lost heart and hope for the first time and chose the ‘ lesser evil of the two.’ She felt that if the sepoys did not protect us, they would shoot ns, and it would soon be over, so on their mercy she meant to rely.” Turning the carriage around she drove as fast as she could back to the sepoys.
Stunned by their sudden appearance, the sepoys closed around the carriage – and addressing Elizabeth, the Havildar wanted to know what on earth they were doing, so late at night and so far from home? She quickly explained what had happened in Delhi ( of which the sepoys claimed to have no knowledge) and she now begged them for protection. ” The moon was full and bright and showed the men’s faces clearly. They seemed earnest and kindly disposed. One of them placed his hand on my head and, remarked that it was ” pitiful to see so small a child homeless and exposed to such dangers” promising to protect us. The Goojars seeing this seemed inclined to disperse, but the Jats we had fought our way through had also come up, and their leader (a tall powerful man) called the Havildar aside and said something to him in a whisper.”
Whatever the leader said, it was enough for the Havildar to change his mind – now instead of protecting them, he backed off and called his men away. Elizabeth however, refused to give up.
“She entreated the sepoys in piteous tones to save us, telling them how these men had attacked us, and beset us in such a determined manner that we had fought through them in sheer desperation, but though they felt the force of her words, and praised my father’s pluck, saying he had fired ” straight and sure, and was a brave man to have done so, and to have come unscathed through it,” they declared they would (or could) not stand by us ; for the Jats had a grievance, and were terribly incensed against him, and were determined to have his life for the ones he had taken.” In sheer desperation, Elizabeth played her last hand.
“She told them if they valued their honour to return with us to Karnal, and shun Delhi “for retribution is sure to follow this day’s evil deeds.” The savages had now become impatient (emboldened by their numbers) and called out that if the sepoys did not move on they would attack us in their midst. Then seeing how helpless we were my mother
entreated the sepoys to put an end to us mercifully by shooting us.
” As Sikander’s daughter I am entitled to the protection of all true soldiers, and I claim an honourable death at the hands of soldiers and it will not be to your credit as brave men that you stood by and saw us beaten to death by such cowardly ruffians as these “—pointing with her whip at the mob.”

The sepoys were well taken aback by her bold request – stepping forward the Havildar spoke, ” Ah ! you are the brave daughter of a great man, therefore you speak well ! We knew the Colonel Sahib and it was our Regiment which was sent to escort his remains from Rohtak to Delhi, where he is buried.” Elizabeth had found her chance.
“If that be so, help us now. As Sikander’s daughter I demand your aid or, if you will not protect us, then, at least give us the death we seek, ” she entreated.
“No, that is impossible,” said the Havildar. “We cannot protect you, nor can we have your blood on our hands ; you and your brave Sahib go your way. The God who has brought you so far will nerve his arm to shield you, and give you His protection still. ” Then turning to the mob he addressed them saying that the Sahib had only fired in self defence, and if his aim was true it was kismet, and while we were in sight none should molest us, for they would not look on unmoved at our deaths.

The sepoys let off a few shots – just enough to hold back the mob as Elizabeth turned the horses around for another mad dash through the crowds with George standing up to make better use of his guns. Although she urged on the horses, the mob closed around them, hitting the animals about their heads – “My mother was a splendid whip. She rallied the poor creatures and pulled them up sharp, and dashed on again, but the check had brought our foes upon us in numbers and they were trying to knock the horses on the heads ; so my father fired rapidly and shot a few, and we got through once more. The horses were now showing signs of fatigue and had to be urged with whip and voice ; moreover, a peculiar grating sound seemed to come from one of the wheels
which showed that the carriage had sustained some injury. As soon as the “coast was clear” my father got down to see what was wrong, and was horrified to find that one of the wheels had been cut half through by the iron step of the coach box, which had bent back to such an extent that it had eaten into all the spokes of the left forewheel. Evidently they had tied a rope across the bridge to impede our progress, but it had given way. He managed to knock it into its place with the butt end of his pistol (which broke in the attempt) and stones. In this encounter my father received a blow on the arm, one of the pistols was smashed, and one of the gun barrels injured by a blow from a Iathi. The horses had cuts and bruises all over.”

It was dawn when the battered carriage finally stopped at a chowki. The watchman and the other inhabitants were obviously very curious to know who this small strange party had got into quite such a state, they appeared initially to be friendly and offered to escort them to a safe place, not far down the road. Sorely in need of rest, Elizabeth initially agreed but “As we neared the village two youths came towards us, looked knowingly at the Brahmin and enquired whither he was leading us. The old villain pointed ahead, upon which they laughed, and one called out ” give them comfortable charpais to rest on and may their sleep be sound and long. ” My mother understood the taunt and all it meant. These fiends were going to poison us. ” Turn back, there is treachery here, ” she
exclaimed,
George, by this time, knew better than to argue with his wife. Returning to the chowki, they found that 2 more people had arrived and one of them, an old man with long flowing beard, “…salaamed low, and taking off his turban, laid it at her feet. ” You are one of Sikander Sahib’s daughters,” he remarked.” The venerable gentleman had been Zamindar in one of her father’s villages. He remembered Elizabeth and all of her siblings as babies and had watched them grow up – and now, he would give his life for one of Sikandar’s children. Climbing into the carriage next to her, (George, told not to utter a single word, was hidden in the back of the carriage with the girls) he remained with them, seeing the family through villages and past prying eyes. Being a man of some standing, they were met with nothing but respect on the last part of their road – and all thanks to a man who remembered the baby Elizabeth.
Further on, they met another party of fugitives – Brigadier Graves, Mr. LeBas, Captain Nicoll, Lieutenants Grant, Taylor, Mew, Martineau and Drummond and the Sergeant-Major of the 74th NI. How they had made it so far up the road is anyone’s guess. The Zamindar did not let them go on their own and brought them to Panipat. The Tahsildar of the village came out to greet them – and upon hearing their story, he immediately brought them to his home. The Skinner name was well known in the area – if only because most of the villages in the area belonged to the Zamindar himself and were still a part of the Skinner estate. Provided with food (the baby Florence had not been fed since leaving Delhi – the first food she was given was a crust of bread Mr. Le Bas, he found in his pocket) and able to rest, they continued their journey under the cover of darkness, together with the Zamindar and a strong escort provided by the Tahsildar himself. They reached Karnal on the morning of the 13th of May.
Having been invited previously to stay by Mr. McWhirter, the Wagentreibers made their way to his house. To their surprise, he was not there ( and never would be again but they didn’t know that at the time) but his staff made them welcome and Elizabeth, after a short rest was up and about organising for the household which now consisted of 12 other fugitives besides the Wagentreibers.
Over the next days and weeks, more and more people from Delhi arrived in Karnal. Doctor Balfour and his sister-in-law, Miss Smith, Mr. Thompson of the Engineers, and Mrs Trouson arrived. They had escaped Delhi on a gun carriage. Mrs. Trouson had been left at Cashmere Gate holding her sister’s baby, an infant barely days old – the baby died of thirst and starvation on the road to Karnal, while she herself endured the agony of a broken collar bone and ribs. Miss Smith was bruised and sunburned so severely initially no one recognised her. Soon after, the Peile’s and Woods arrived.
The Wagentreibers would spend the rest of the mutiny in Simla – George would take up his work again, producing a paper called the Delhi Gazette Extra in which he wrote increasingly hysterical articles, which called for nothing less than annihilation of every sepoy in sight. Although history has been unkind to George, perhaps, in light of what he went through on their desperate flight we could perhaps give him a little leeway.
As for the horses, these remained with Mr. Le Bas in Karnal; when the Wagentreibers were back in Delhi, he sent them along – with their carriage – to their grateful owners. The horses were made a fuss of and treated like treasured pets for many years, until they died of old age.

Colonel James Skinner, the father of Elizabeth Wagentreiber


Sources:
Reminiscences of the Sepoy Rebellion of 1857 , Florence Wagentreiber, 1911
An Englishwoman in India – The Memoirs of Harriet Tytler, Oxford University Press, 1986
Angels of Albion – Jane Robinson, 1996
The Raj on the Move – Rajika Bhandari, 2012