Everything you need to know about General Sir Samuel Brown
Lucknow: Born on october 3, 1824, General Sir Samuel James Browne was a British Indian Army Cavalry officer in India and Pakistan.
Sir Browne was made a lieutenant and tasked with raising a cavalry force, to be designated the 2nd Punjab Irregular Cavalry and later incorporated into the regular force.
In Sir Browne's honour, later in 1904 the unit was re-designed as the 22nd Sam Browne's Cavalry (Frontier Force) in his honour.
Born on October 3, 1824, Sir Samuel joined the 46th Bengal native Infantry as a as a subaltern, participating in action at Ramnuggar, Sadoolapore, Chillianwalla and Gujarat.
he commanded the 2nd Punjab in several engagements and was decorated for action during the Bozdar Expedition of 1857, being promoted to captain.
He was also honoured with the most most prestigious award for gallantry in combat that can be awarded to British and Commonwealth forces, Victoria Cross, on August 31, 18 58 at Seerporah, Rohilkhand, Uttar Pradesh, India.
His citation reads:
“ For having at Seerporah, in an engagement with the Rebel Forces under Khan Allie Khan, on the 31st of August, 1858, whilst advancing upon the Enemy's position, at day break, pushed on with one orderly Sowar upon a nine-pounder gun that was commanding one of the approaches to the enemy's position, and attacked the gunners, thereby preventing them from re-loading, and firing upon the Infantry, who were advancing to the attack. In doing this, a personal conflict ensued, in which Captain, now Lieutenant -Colonel, Samuel James Browne, Commandant of the 2nd Punjab Cavalry, received a severe sword-cut wound on the left knee, and shortly afterwards another sword-cut wound, which severed the left arm at the shoulder, not, however, before Lieutenant-Colonel Browne had succeeded in cutting down one of his assailants. The gun was prevented from being re-loaded, and was eventually captured by the Infantry, and the gunner slain."
His Victoria Cross is displayed at the National Army Museum.
Samuel Browne was also the inventor of Sam Browne Belt. After this incident, he began to wear the accoutrement which is named after him as compensation for the difficulty his disability caused with wearing his officer's sword.
Sam Browne belt is a wide belt, usually leather, supported by a narrower strap passing diagonally over the right shoulder; the diagonal strap stabilizes the scabbard of a sword if worn.
Later, such belts were adopted by other officers in India.
Browne's original 'Sam Browne' belt is possessed presently by the National Army Museum in Chelsea.
He was retired from army in 1898 and lost his life at the age of 76.