The regimentally important Scinde Medal 1843, with reverse for Meeanee and Hyderabad, fitted with silver regimental straight bar suspension specific to the 22nd Foot, and named in correct officially engraved regimental style for the 22nd Foot, as awarded to Captain Thomas Chute, 22nd Cheshire Regiment of Foot. Chute was commissioned into his regiment in February 1832, and then saw service out on India, where the 22nd Foot became the only British regiment to accompany Sir Charles Napier’s force to conquer Scinde. Chute was present in action at the destruction of Imaumghur, and at the Battle of Meanee on 17th February, being promoted to command a company in the aftermath of the key battle, which to this day is celebrated as the Regimental Day of the Cheshire Regiment. Chute was then with the force at the occupation of Hyderabad on 20th February 1843, before being severely wounded whilst commanding his company at the Battle of Hyderabad on 24th March 1843, when 20,000 of the enemy posted in a very strong and difficult position, were signally defeated, this completing the entire subjugation of the Scinde. Chute was was of the Irish landed gentry, lived at Glenfield House, Tralee, Country Kerry, and became a Justice of the Peace. At the time of his death in March 1896 he was the last surviving Queen’s Officer to have been present in action at the battle at Meeanee.
Scinde Medal 1843, with reverse for Meeanee and Hyderabad, fitted with typical silver regimental straight bar suspension specific to the 22nd Foot, and named in correct officially engraved regimental style for the 22nd Foot; (CAPTAIN THOMAS CHUTE, 22ND: REGT.)
Condition: light contact wear, lightly polished, Good Very Fine.
Thomas Chute was from a well known Irish landed family, and came from Glenfield House, Tralee, Country Kerry, Ireland, and was commissioned as an Ensign into the British Army on 24th February 1832 and appointed to the 22nd Cheshire Regiment of Foot. At the time of his joining the regiment, the commanding officer was Colonel Chesebrough Falconer, a veteran of the Napoleonic War and the operations in Egypt and at Maida.
Chute was promoted to Lieutenant on 9th December 1836, and then saw service with his regiment out on India, where it became the only British regiment to accompany Sir Charles Napier’s force to conquer Scinde.
Sind (or Scinde) occupied a strategically vital position between British India and the threat of Russian-inspired hostilities from either Afghanistan or Persia. Initially concerned with the threat of the Sikhs, its Baluchi rulers accepted British terms in a treaty signed in 1838, and allowed their country to be used by the British as a conduit for troops to Afghanistan during the First Afghan War. British reverses in Afghanistan and troubles in Baluchistan, however, led relations to deteriorate and when British troops began coming under attack from Baluchi marauders, the British decided to annex Sind.
Thus in 1842 Sir Charles Napier was sent to Hyderabad with a new treaty so stringent that the amirs of Sind could not possibly accept it. On 15th February 1843, the British Residency was attacked in retaliation, with its defendants escaping onto Indian Marine vessels lying in the Indus. Napier used this as a cause for war, and, eager to strike a telling blow before the amirs could properly concentrate their forces, attacked an army of some 22,000 Baluchis with the 2,800 men at his disposal, comprising the 22nd Foot - the only European unit present, and the 1st, 12th and 25th Bombay Native Infantry, 9th Bengal Light Cavalry, Scinde Irregular Horse, and a detail of the Poona Irregular Horse and 12 guns.
The armies met on 17th February 1843 at Miani, also spelt Meanee, with the Baluchis attempting a series of charges at the British line. The line held and the Baluchi’s flank was turned by a charge from the 9th Bengal Light Cavalry and the Scinde Irregular Horse. The Baluchi’s lost an estimated 5,000 men and the British forces 256. On the following day, many of the chief amirs surrendered to the British, and Hyderabad was occupied on the 20th February 1843.
Chute who had been at the destruction of Imaumghur, was present in action at the Battle of Meanee on 17th February, and with the force at the occupation of Hyderabad on 20th February 1843. Chute had in the meantime been promoted to Captain on 18th February, a day after Meanee, he having been promoted to command a company on the death in action of Captain Tew. The great battle at Meeanee on 17th February 1843 is celebrated as the Regimental Day of the Cheshire Regiment.
In the following month, as a junior captain, he was severely wounded whilst commanding his company at the Battle of Hyderabad on 24th March 1843, when 20,000 of the enemy posted in a very strong and difficult position, were signally defeated, this completing the entire subjugation of the Scinde. Four other officers of the regiment were wounded in this action.
The 22nd Foot had itself suffered 23 killed and 129 wounded. On 22nd September 1843 the Scinde Medal 1843 was authorised, with reverses for Meanee, Hyderabad, and Meanee and Hyderabad. Unlike the other medals for this period of the Indian conflicts, this is a rare award, and 350 men of the 22nd Foot received it, the majority with the reverse for Meanee and Hyderabad.
Chute remained on service with the 22nd Foot till 1852 when he relinquished his rank and sold his commission. Chute retired to his home at Glenfield House, Tralee, and became a Justice of the Peace, and died in March 1896, he having been the last surviving Queen’s Officer to have been present in action at the battle at Meeanee.