Photograph
Photograph

Photograph

Artwork

Accession Number
2005.016.003.108
Description
A photograph of six men in military uniforms, at lower center a British officer (Major Guy Audain) stands in a shallow trench gesturing to a distant scene whilst in conversation with an Indian officer (Maharaja Sir Bhupinder Singh GCSI GCIE GCVO GBE of Patalia) who is pointing with his right hand whilst three officers (two Belgian and one Indian) listen intently while two other Belgian officers prepare to enter the trench, the ruins of a large brick building comprising the background scenery.
Narrative
Guy Mortimer Audain (1864-1940) was married to Sarah Byrd “Byrdie” Dunsmuir (1878-1925), a granddaughter of Joan Dunsmuir of Craigdarroch and daughter of former B.C. Premier and Lieutenant-Governor Hon. James Dunsmuir (1851-1920). Major Audain came out of retirement in British Columbia in order to provide liaison between the British and Indian armies during the Great War. Through his pre-war service in India, Audain became fluent in the Hindi/Urdu and Punjabi languages.

In her book, The Dunsmuir Saga (Reksten, 1991), author Terry Reksten explains that before WWl, Guy Audain was an officer in the Hyderabad Contingent of the Indian Army.

In  2014, Chandar S. Sundaram Ph.D. (McGill), a Victoria-based historian of the colonial Indian Army, provided the following information: 

"The 19th Hyderabad Regiment originated in the Hyderabad Contingent, a force of foot raised by the Hyderabad Nizami (state) at East India Company (EIC) insistence and trained and equipped on the British pattern. The Contingent was eight battalions strong when, in 1853, it was folded into the EIC's Madras Army. Over the next fifty years, recruitment into the Contingent reflected the general reorientation northward, and the Hindu-Muslim ratio of its rank-and-file was fixed at 3:2. The Kitchener reorganization of 1903 abolished the Hyderabad Contingent, but not its constituent battalions. Nineteen years later, in 1922, these battalions were once more grouped together, forming the 19th Hyderabad Regiment. For more information, see: John Gaylor, Sons of John Company: the Indian and Pakistani Armies, 1903-91, (New Delhi: Lancer, 1993), pp. 194-198.

It was quite common for Indian princes (rulers of Indian princely states) to volunteer their services to the Crown in August 1914 - nineteen of them did. One of them was Maharaja Bhupinder Singh of Patiala, who, on 11 Aug. 1914, called on the Government of (British) India's Foreign Secretary, who handled relations with, and supervision of,  the princely states. The Maharaja was "extremely keen" to secure a staff post with the General Officer Commanding the British Expeditionary Force, which the Maharaja had heard was then being readied for despatch to Belgium. Bhupinder Singh was told that it would be very hard for the Government of India to arrange this, but the Foreign Secretary assured Bhupinder that he would mention it to Lord Hardinge, the Viceroy, as well as to the military authorities concerned. Privately, the Foreign Secretary wrote that it would be "...very desirable, from a political point-of-view, that the Maharaja...be given an opportunity for active service." As a Sikh, the Maharaja was a member of a "martial race", whose natural inclination, according to the Imperial ideology of the day, was towards warfare. The Maharajas were also seen as staunch political allies of  the Raj. [reference: Note by J.B. Wood, 11 Aug. 1914, in Government of India, Foreign and Political Department Notes, Internal B, Sept. 1914, proceedings 271-284, National Archives of India, New Delhi]"


In May, 1915 Audain went to Ireland hoping to find the body of his nephew, Lt. James Dunsmuir among the remains of the victims of the torpedoing of the RMS Lusitania. He was unsuccessful. 
 
History of Use
This photograph was owned by Guy Mortimer Audain, later by his son James Guy Payne Audain, and still later by his grandson, Michael James Audain, OC OBC.
 
Date
1914 – 1918
Photograph Type
Gelatin silver process
Subject/Image
Major Guy Audain, Maharaja Bhupinder Singh of Patalia
Medium
Photographic
Support
Paper, Photographic paper

Related people/businesses/organizations
Guy Mortimer Audain (depicts)
Guy Mortimer Audain (owner)
James Guy Payne Audain (owner)
Related Association
Ellora (house) (was used in)
Related Objects

photograph, 989.006a (is related to)

photograph, 2005.016.026.006 (is related to)