File 4345/1912 'Trans-Persian Railway'


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The record is made up of 1 volume (163 folios). It was created in 1911-1913. 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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This volume comprises telegrams, despatches, correspondence, memoranda, notes, printed reports, a press cutting and a map, relating to the connection of the railway system of Europe to the railway system of India by the construction of railway lines through Persia.

The discussion in the volume relates to the proposal of a Russian consortium and the response of the Government of India to this proposal. A Report (No. 18 of 1911' folios 144 - 160) notes that the Government of India would do well to accept in principle the Russian proposal subject to a number of modifications. A map entitled 'Indexed Map Showing Proposed Railways in Persia' (folio 160) accompanies the report. Suggested modifications included:

  • the point of intersection of the trans-Persian railway with the Indian railway system (British preference for Karachi); and concessions for branch lines (Bandar Abbas, Charbar, Mohammerah);
  • the requirement that both main and branch lines in Persian territory be deemed international with Russia and Britain holding preponderant shares and Persia included as a participant;
  • and the use of a different gauge railway in the British and Russian zones. As a quid pro quo for their support on this matter Britain expected the Russians to cease any consideration of extending the Trans-Caspian Railway to the Persia-Afghan border.

Also discussed are the negotiations about a loan between the Société des Études du Chemin de Fer Transpersan and the Persian Government and a suggestion that the British and French governments should guarantee a substantial loan by securing it against the crown jewels.

The following topics are also discussed: the Foreign Office proposal to refer the whole question of railway development in Persia to the Committee of Imperial Defence; a draft application for the concession; a memorandum by Brigadier General A H Gordon; dispatch of instructions to His Majesty's Ambassador at St Petersberg on the attitude of the Her Majesty's Government; the view of the Sir G Buchanan on the attitude of the Russian Government to the question of alignment.

The principal correspondents in the volume include: His Majesty's Secretary of State for India, the Earl of Crewe; Deputy Secretary to the Government of India, E H S Clark; His Majesty's Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs, Sir Edward Grey; 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. , Lieutenant-Colonel Percy Zachariah Cox; the President of the Railway Board; Agent to the Governor-General and Chief Commissioner in Baluchistan.

This volume includes a divider which gives the subject and part numbers, year the subject file was opened, subject heading, and list of correspondence references contained in that part by year. This is placed at the back of the correspondence.

Extent and format
1 volume (163 folios)
It is grouped into

The papers are arranged in approximate chronological order from the rear to the front of the volume. The subject 4345 (Trans-Persian Railway) consists of 1 volume.

Physical characteristics

Foliation: the foliation sequence commences at the inside front cover with 1, and terminates at the inside back cover with 163; 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.

Written in
English in Latin script
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


Archive reference
Former external reference(s)
P. 4345/1912

History of this record

1911-1913 (CE, Gregorian)

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File 4345/1912 'Trans-Persian Railway', British Library: India Office Records and Private Papers, IOR/L/PS/10/307, in Qatar Digital Library <> [accessed 22 September 2019]

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