Battle of Killa Kazee

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Battle of Killa Kazee
Part of 2nd Afghan War 1878-80
Date: 11 December 1879
Location: Kala, Kabul, Afghanistan
Presidency: Bengal
Co-ordinates: 34.480382°N 68.983536°E
Result: British withdrawal
British & Indians Various Afghan tribes
Maj Gen Frederick Roberts
Brig Gen William Massy
Mahomed Jan
3,168 fighting men
12 guns
29 killed
35 wounded


General Roberts occupied Kabul on 13 October 1879. Afghan forces under Mahomed Jan advanced from Ghazni and Roberts determined to delay their approach to the capital. He ordered three columns to take the field: Thomas Baker Thomas Baker with 1,325 men, Herbert Macpherson (1,492 men) and William Massy (351 men). Massy's cavalry failed to meet up with Macpherson and confronted a greatly superior enemy near Kila Kazee. The four horse artillery guns were at too great a range to have any effect. 198 troopers of the 9th Lancers under Lt-Col Cleland and 40 of the 14th Bengal Lancers under Capt Philip Neville made a heroic charge but the ground was too broken by ravines for it to be of any effect. The force retired losing the guns in the process. The retreat was only saved by the arrival from the city of the 72nd Regiment of Foot which prevented any further advance by the Afghans.

External Links

2nd Afghan War 1878-80 The British Empire
Trumpeter's narrative Garen Ewing
Chaplain William Adams' VC Wikipedia
Map of Kabul environs University of Texas

Historical books on-line

The Afghan Wars 1839-42 and 1878-80] by Archibald Forbes 1892 Battle at Killa Kazee
Forty-one Years in India from Subaltern to Commander-in-Chief by Field Marshal Lord Roberts of Kandahar 1900 Battle at Killa Kazee

Recommended Reading

"Road to Kabul" by Brian Robson 1986 ISBN 1862271968

General Roberts' March to Kabul

Actions fought on this march:
Charasia – Killa Kazee – Takht-I-Shah – Asmai Heights – Siege of Sherpur Cantonment – Kabul

General Browne's March from Peshawar to Gandamak – General Roberts' March to Ali Kheyl – General Stewart's March to Kandahar
General Roberts' March to Kabul – General Stewart's March to Kabul – General Roberts' March from Kabul to Kandahar
Part of the 2nd Afghan War