The Last Stand at Gundamuck

One of the final detachments of surviving soldiers (mostly from the 44th) rode into the village of Gundamuck and hoped that if they could survive just one more day they might make it the remaining thirty miles to the safety of the garrison at Jellalabad. Unfortunately, they soon found themselves surrounded by hostile Afghans and realised that they had little chance of surviving. They formed themselves into a makeshift square with only 20 muskets and just two rounds each. The Afghans did try and negotiate their surrender, but by this time, the British no longer trusted the Afghans to keep their word. The Afghans tried to disarm them but the British used their remaining ammunition and then resorted to hand to hand combat. One officer killed five men with his sword.

In 1979, a British anthropologist, Dr Andre Singer discovered that the bones of the men who had died a century and a half beforehand were still to be found on the top of a hill. Local villagers told him that visitors from British India used to regularly make their way to the spot to pay homage to the fallen men.

First Afghan War | Afghan War Images

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by Stephen Luscombe