'CONFIDENTIAL 86/12-ii A.75. P.C.L. MUSCAT'

IOR/R/15/1/683

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The record is made up of 1 volume (187 folios). It was created in 1 Jun 1937-29 Oct 1937. It was written in English. The original is part of the British Library: India Office The department of the British Government to which the Government of India reported between 1858 and 1947. The successor to the Court of Directors. Records and Private Papers.

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Content

The volume comprises correspondence between the Political Resident A senior ranking political representative (equivalent to a Consul General) from the diplomatic corps of the Government of India or one of its subordinate provincial governments, in charge of a Political Residency. in the Persian Gulf Historically used by the British to refer to the sea area between the Arabian Peninsula and Iran. Often referred to as The Gulf or the Arabian Gulf. (Trenchard Craven Fowle, Olaf Caroe), the Political Agent A mid-ranking political representative (equivalent to a Consul) from the diplomatic corps of the Government of India or one of its subordinate provincial governments, in charge of a Political Agency. at Muscat (Ralph Ponsonby Watts), the India Office The department of the British Government to which the Government of India reported between 1858 and 1947. The successor to the Court of Directors. (Maurice Clauson, John Charles Walton), the Secretary of State for India (Lawrence Dundas, 2nd Marquess of Zetland), Petroleum Concessions Limited (Frank Holmes, Stephen Hemsley Lonrgigg, Frederick Lewisohn) and the Sultan of Muscat (Said bin Taimur Al Bu Said) regarding negotiations for the granting of two oil concessions for Dhofar and Muscat territory, which were concluded by Basil Henry Lermitte of Petroleum Concessions Limited, with the concession agreements being signed on 24 June 1937.

Also discussed in the volume are arrangements for a meeting between Stephen Hemsley Longrigg of Petroleum Concessions Limited and the Sultan of Muscat, which was to take place in India, in order to discuss how they might go about exploring the South East Muscat Coast and also how to gain access to the hinterland under the control of the Imam of Muscat. Also included is a request by the Sultan of Muscat for the Political Agent A mid-ranking political representative (equivalent to a Consul) from the diplomatic corps of the Government of India or one of its subordinate provincial governments, in charge of a Political Agency. at Muscat, Ralph Ponsonby Watts, to be present not only at the meeting with Longrigg but also at later meetings in Delhi where the British treaty with Muscat was likely to be discussed.

Further discussion relating to exploration is included between the India Office The department of the British Government to which the Government of India reported between 1858 and 1947. The successor to the Court of Directors. and Petroleum Concessions Limited regarding the Company’s interest in exploring the South East Coast of Muscat and parts of the interior controlled by the Imam of Muscat and the difficulties they would be likely to encounter in attempting to do so; along with the area west of the Oman Mountain Range which Petroleum Concessions Limited were interested in ascertaining any known boundaries for, and otherwise how best to approach exploration there.

Another matter of discussion within the volume is Count Byron de Prorok and his wife who had travelled to Muscat to undertake archaeological exploration, but had been refused permission to explore the interior of the country by the Sultan of Muscat. The correspondence goes on to discuss allegations made by a number of individuals and organisations that the he was not entitled to hold the rank of Count; that he had been discredited in the scientific community and could not be considered to be an archaeologist; and that a number of institutions he claimed to have the support and backing of for his explorations had issued statements refuting any involvement with him. Later correspondence discusses an application made by him for permission to travel into the Rub-el-Khali in an attempt to discover an ancient city believed to be there and the India Office’s intention of declining the request. Also included with this correspondence is discussion of a visit made by an Italian, Tullio Pastori, to Muscat and Bandar Abbas and giving Mr Pastori’s background and intentions in visiting the region to recruit labourers to construct roads in Eritrea.

Other matters of interest in the volume include:

  • discussion surrounding ongoing communication between the Sultan of Muscat and the California Arabian Standard Oil Company, who wished to undertake examinations in Muscat territory for the potential development of Petroleum resources there, and regarding such correspondence being in opposition to conditions imposed in the Sultan’s treaty with the British Government.
  • correspondence regarding proposed amendments to the Political Agreement to be signed by Petroleum Concessions Limited and the India Office The department of the British Government to which the Government of India reported between 1858 and 1947. The successor to the Court of Directors. in relation to the Muscat concession.
  • the proposed itinerary for a tour to be undertaken by the Sultan of Muscat in 1937 to India, Singapore, Japan, USA, Britain, France and Italy.

A series of file notes which were maintained as a record of the correspondence in the volume can be found at folios 175-184.

Extent and format
1 volume (187 folios)
Arrangement

The volume contains a table of contents on folio 4 comprising of subject headings and page references. The papers are arranged in approximate chronological order from the front to the rear of the file.

Physical characteristics

Foliation: The main foliation sequence (used for referencing) commences at the front cover, and terminates at the inside back cover; these numbers are written in pencil, are circled, and are located in the top right corner of the recto The front of a sheet of paper or leaf, often abbreviated to 'r'. side of each folio. An additional foliation sequence is also present in parallel between ff 3-174; these numbers are also written in pencil, are circled, and are located in the same position as the main sequence. A previous foliation sequence, which is also circled, has been superseded and therefore crossed out.

Written in
English in Latin script
Type
Archival file

Archive information for this record

Access & Reference

Original held at
British Library: India Office The department of the British Government to which the Government of India reported between 1858 and 1947. The successor to the Court of Directors. Records and Private Papers
Access conditions

Unrestricted

Archive reference
IOR/R/15/1/683

History of this record

Date(s)
1 Jun 1937-29 Oct 1937 (CE, Gregorian)

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'CONFIDENTIAL 86/12-ii A.75. P.C.L. MUSCAT', British Library: India Office Records and Private Papers, IOR/R/15/1/683, in Qatar Digital Library <https://www.qdl.qa/archive/81055/vdc_100000000193.0x000291> [accessed 16 November 2018]

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