Travel to Northern India: Lucknow Residency
The Residency, or the home of the British representative stationed in princely Lucknow, was destroyed in 1857 yet has lingered on as an important monument ever since, first to the intrepidity of the British under siege and since 1947 to the determination and prowess of India's early freedom fighters.
The Baillie Guard Gate, built in 1814 by Resident John Baillie to enclose the 33-acre site. The first resident had come in 1775, when the capital of Oudh was shifted from Faizabad to Lucknow. The land belonged to the Nawab of Oudh, who built the buildings, owned them, and was expected to maintain them, at least until 1856, when the last nawab was deposed and the last British resident replaced by a Commissioner.
"The Residency is the spot which all Englishmen will wish to visit first in Lucknow." So speaks colonial-era editions of Murray's Handbook for India. The Residency was built by Asaf-ud-Daula, the Nawab of Oudh. By 1786 it rose three stories. Its location may have been selected by Claude Martin, who had been, among other things, a land surveyor for the East India Company.
The monument in the previous photo carries this plaque.
And this one.
The grandest building on the site was not the residency but the banqueting hall, which was built--also by a nawab--in the early 19th century.
Another view. There are no known photos of the Residency before its destruction in 1857. Its restoration would therefore be a work of supposition. The Archeological Survey's report for 1902/3 states in any case restoration was not the Survey's goal: instead, its "idea has been to avoid all outward semblance of patching up a ruin."
So things stand.
The rear of the banqueting hall.
A stucco fireplace.
A marble-inlaid fountain.
The residency proper.
A plaque marks the spot where Henry Lawrence, the commander of the besieged British, died.
An obelisk sits nearby.
One face of it.
The residency cemetery has 2000 graves.
The famous epitaph.
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