Page:A biographical dictionary of eminent Scotsmen, vol 6.djvu/273

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MAJOR-GENERAL SIR THOMAS MUNRO, BART., K.C.B. 67

settle disputes amongst the natives ; to punish the refractory ; and to watch over the revenues of the district: and from twelve to sixteen hours were daily devoted to this oppressive and harassing routine of business.

Having accomplished all the purposes for which he was sent to Canara, and having established order and tranquillity, where he had found turbulence and vio- lence, Major Munro (for to this rank he was promoted, May 7, 1800) solicited the government to be intrusted with the superintendence of what were called the Ceded Districts ; a certain extent of territory, yielded up in perpetuity to the Company by Nizam, in lieu of a monthly subsidy which had been previously ex- acted from him.

The request of major Munro was not complied with, without much reluctance and hesitation, proceeding from the high value placed upon his services where he was ; but it appearing that these would be equally desirable in the situation which he sought, he was removed thither in October, 1 800. Here he performed similar important services, both to the country itself and to the Company, as lie had done at Canara. Within a few months after his arrival, he cleared the province of numerous bands of marauders, which had previously kept it in a state of constant terror and alarm, and filled it with robbery and murder. He every- where established order and regularity, and finally succeeded in converting one of the most disorderly provinces in India, into one of the most secure and tran- quil districts in the possession of the Company. This, however, was not accom- plished without much labour, and many personal privations. He repeatedly traversed the whole extent of territory under his jurisdiction, and for the first four years of his residence in it, never dwelt in a house, being continually in motion from place to place, and on these occasions making his tent his house.

During the time of his services in the Ceded Districts, Mr Munro was pro- moted, 24th April, 1804, to the rank of lieutenant-colonel

With that filial affection which forms so remarkable and pleasing a feature in the character of the subject of this memoir, he had regularly increased the al- lowance to his parents, with the advance of his own fortunes. Indeed, this seems to have been his first care on every occasion of an accession of income. In a letter to his father, dated Kalwapilli, 3rd May, 1801, there occurs this passage : " I have at last heard from Messrs Harington, Burnaby and Cock- burn, on the subject of the remittance of a bill for 1000 sterling, to clear your house in the Stock well. In August, I shall remit the remaining sum due upon the house ; and also 200 sterling, in order to augment my annual remittance to 400 sterling. As my mother is so fond of the country, and as a garden would probably contribute to her health, she ought certainly to be under no concern about the trifling expense a country house may occasion, in addition to one in town. I therefore hope that you will draw on Colt for whatever it may cost, and let me know the amount, that I may add it to the 400, which I mean should go entirely to your town expenses ; and that you will likewise in- form me what other debts you may have besides the mortgage on the house, that I may discharge them, and relieve you at once from the vexation and anxiety to which you have BO long been exposed." In a very few years after- wards, we find him making another munificent contribution to the comfort and happiness of his parents, by remitting them 2000 for the purchase of a coun- try house.

Colonel Munro retained his appointment in the Ceded Districts till the year 1807, when he came to the resolution of paying a visit to his native country. With this view, he applied for and obtained permission to resign his situation ; and after a few days spent in preparation, embarked, in October in the year