Negrais Island

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Negrais Island
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Presidency: Madras
Coordinates: 16.033333,91.879167
Present Day Details
Place Name: Hainggyi Kyun
State/Province: Irrawaddy Division
Country: Burma
Transport links

Negrais Island, at the mouth of the Irrawaddy Delta, was the earliest British possession in Burma. The island was the scene of the 1759 Massacre at Negrais of British settlers by the Burmese.

The East Indian Gazetteer of 1828 describes Negrais as "a small island and excellent harbour...Negrais harbour is, without exception, the most secure in the bay of Bengal, as from hence a ship launches at once into the open sea, and may work to the southward without any other impediment than what the monsoon opposes."[1]


  • 1687 - Madras government establish small settlement on Negrais but deriving little benefit they subsequently relinquished the possession1
  • 1751 - Negrais again occupied by the English, "mismanaged, and abandoned"1
  • 1757 - Alaungpaya, founder of the Third Burmese Empire, ceded the island of Negrais to the British who took possession on the 22nd of August
  • 1759 - in October, Burmese forces massacred about nine-tenths1 of the English inhabitants and retook the island, expelling the remaining settlers
  • 1824 - in May, when the island was occupied by a detachment from Sir Archibald Campbell's army, "it was found covered with jungle, intersected by saltwater inlets, and destitute of inhabitants except a few miserable fishermen"1


  1. Hamilton, Walter East Indian Gazetteer Vol II, 2nd ed. (1828) London: Parbury, Allen and Co.

External links

Historical books online