1911 Encyclopædia Britannica/Ochterlony, Sir David

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18121991911 Encyclopædia Britannica, Volume 19 — Ochterlony, Sir David

OCHTERLONY, SIR DAVID, Bart. (1758–1825), British general, was born at Boston, Mass., U.S.A., on the 12th of February 1758, and went to India as a cadet in 1777. He served under Lord Lake in the battles of Koil, Aligarh and Delhi, and was appointed resident at Delhi in 1803. In 1804, having been promoted to the rank of major-general, he defended the city with a very inadequate force against an attack by Holkar. On the outbreak of the Nepal War (1814–15) he was given the command of one of four converging columns, and his services were rewarded with a baronetcy in 1815. Subsequently he was promoted to the command of the main force in its advance on Katmandu, and outmanoeuvring the Gurkhas by a flank march at the Kourea Ghat Pass, brought the war to a successful conclusion and obtained the signature of the treaty of Segauli (1816), which dictated the subsequent relations of the British with Nepal. For this success Ochterlony was created G.C.B., the first time that honour had been conferred on an officer of the Indian army. In the Pindari War (1817–18) he was in command of the Rajputana column, made a separate agreement with Amir Khan, detaching him from the Pindaris, and then, interposing his own force between the two main divisions of the enemy, brought the war to an end without an engagement. He was appointed resident in Rajputana in 1818, with which the residency at Delhi was subsequently combined. When Durjan Sal revolted in 1825 against Balwant Singh, the infant Raja of Bharatpur, Ochterlony acting on his own responsibility supported the raja by proclamation and ordered out a force to support him. Lord Amherst, however, repudiated these proceedings. Ochterlony, who was bitterly chagrined by this rebuff, resigned his office, and retired to Delhi. The feeling that the confidence which his length of service merited had not been given him by the governor-general is said to have accelerated his death, which occurred at Meerut on the 15th of July 1825. The Ochterlony column at Calcutta commemorates his name.

See Major Ross of Bladensburg, The Marquess of Hastings (“Rulers of India” series) (1893).