MS: Letter from James Glencairn Burns to Jean Burns, dated Jarra Mirzapore, 4 August 1813

Jarra Mirzapore 
James Glencairn Burns, Author 
Object Number:


James Glencairn Burns (1794 – 1865) was the second youngest son of Robert and Jean. He was sent to London for his education and then travelled to India in 1810 to serve in the East India Company’s army. At the end of his long military career he retired as a brevetted Lieutenant-Colonel in the 15th Bengal Native Infantry.

A series of letters from the young James Glencairn Burns to his family and friends survives, detailing his schooling in London, his journey to India and his initial experiences there.

This letter is mostly concerned with James' opportunities for advancement within the Army. James first corrects his mother's misinformed opinion that the Governor General would be able to provide opportunities for a higher rank. He then proceeds to describe the other connections through which he might attain favour. He hopes that by meeting with Lady Loudon, a native of Ayrshire now living in India, he will gain her favour and influence, thus increasing his prospects in the Army.

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