Pearson, Thomas Hooke (DNB00)

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PEARSON, THOMAS HOOKE (1806–1892), general, was the son of John Pearson, advocate-general of India. He was born in June 1806, educated at Eton, and entered the army as a cornet in the 11th light dragoons on 14 March 1825. In November of that year he served at the siege of Bhurtpore under Lord Combermere; and when, owing to the scarcity of European infantry, volunteers were called for from the cavalry to take part in the assault, he was one of those who offered themselves. The arrival of an additional infantry regiment made it needless to use them, but the cavalry did good service in preventing the escape of the usurping rajah and his followers. When Lord Amherst, the governor-general, paid a visit to Runjeet Singh, Pearson accompanied him as aide-de-camp, and received a sword from the maharajah for his skill in mounting and riding a horse that was believed to be unmanageable. He obtained a troop in the 16th lancers on 16 Aug. 1831, and served with that regiment at the battle of Maharajpore, where Sir Hugh Gough defeated the Mahrattas on 29 Dec. 1843, and also in the first Sikh war. At Aliwal (28 Jan. 1846) he commanded one of the squadrons which broke through an infantry square. During the latter part of that day, and at Sobraon (10 Feb.), he was in command of the regiment; he was twice mentioned in despatches, and received a brevet majority 19 June 1846. He became major in the regiment 23 April 1847; but he saw no further service in the field, and was placed on half-pay 7 April 1848. He became lieutenant-general 1 Oct. 1877, and was then retired with the honorary rank of general. He had been made C.B. 2 June 1869, and on 4 Feb. 1879 he was given the colonelcy of the 12th lancers. He died 29 April 1892, leaving four sons and three daughters.

[Records of the 16th Lancers; Despatches of Lord Hardinge, Lord Gough, &c., pp. 89, 127; Times, 3 May 1892.]

E. M. L.