White, Michael (DNB00)

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WHITE, Sir MICHAEL (1791–1868), lieutenant-general, born at St. Michael's Mount in 1791, was the third son of Robert White, major in the 27th dragoons, by his wife Anne, daughter of Sir John St. Aubyn, fourth baronet (1726–1772), of St. Michael's Mount. He was educated at Westminster school, and obtained a cornetcy in the 24th dragoons on 15 Aug. 1804. On 14 May 1805 he was promoted lieutenant. Proceeding to India, he was engaged in active service in 1809 on the banks of the Sutlej. On 7 Nov. 1815 he attained his captaincy, and in 1817 he was present at the capture of Hatras. He served through the Mahratta campaign of 1817–18, and at the siege and capture of Bhartpúr in 1825–6. He was promoted major on 10 Jan. 1837, and lieutenant-colonel on 13 Dec. 1839. He commanded the cavalry throughout the Afghan campaign of 1842, accompanying the army under General Sir George Pollock [q. v.] which forced the Khaibar Pass, stormed the heights at Jagdalak, defeated the enemy at Tezín, captured the position at Haft Kotal, and finally occupied the Afghan capital Kábul. After the conclusion of the campaign, on 29 Dec. 1842, he was nominated C.B. He served in the Sikh war in 1845–6, under Sir Hugh Gough (first Viscount Gough) [q. v.] He commanded the cavalry at the battle of Mudki on 18 Dec. 1845, when his horse was wounded. At the battle of Ferozshah on 21 Dec., where he commanded a brigade, he was wounded and had his horse killed under him, and at Sobraon he behaved with such conspicuous gallantry that he was nominated aide-de-camp to the queen. On 1 April 1846 he attained the rank of colonel.

Three years later the second Sikh war began in the Punjab, and White commanded the first brigade of cavalry throughout the campaign. At the disastrous affair at Ramnagar on 22 Nov. 1848, he assailed the Sikh cavalry, taking the command of the cavalry on the fall of Lieutenant-colonel William Havelock [q. v.] On 13 Jan. 1849 he was present at the dearly bought victory of Chillianwallah, where he protected the left of the infantry, and on 21 Feb. 1849 he took part in the victory at Gujrat. On 20 June 1854 he received the rank of major-general, and on 26 Aug. 1858 he was appointed colonel of the 7th dragoons. On 31 Aug. 1860 he attained the rank of lieutenant-general, and on 10 Nov. 1862 was nominated K.C.B. He died in London at 15 Pembridge Crescent, Bayswater, on 27 Jan. 1868. In 1816 he married Mary, daughter of Major Mylne of the 24th dragoons.

[Gent. Mag. 1868, i. 400; Boase and Courtney's Bibliotheca Cornub.; Barker and Stenning's Westminster School Reg.; Army Lists; Times, 1 Feb. 1868; Colburn's United Service Mag. 1868, i. 446; Thackwell's Narrative of the Second Seikh War, 1851, pp. 35–6, 169.]

E. I. C.