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‘Administration Report on the Persian Gulf Political Residency and Maskat Political Agency for 1899/1900’ [‎276r] (25/150)

The record is made up of 1 volume (60 folios). It was created in 1900. 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 Documents collected in a private capacity. .

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P aet II. ADMINISTRATION UEPOKT OF THE MASKAT POT T
TICAL AGENCY An office of the East India Company and, later, of the British Raj, headed by an agent. FOE THE YEAR 1899-1900
The year under report has been marked by little or nothing worthv of
Pontic^. record m the political annals of Oman.
rising of tribesmen and the restlessnesrof^Be^uks^eLrallViTth"^ f t - he
were indeed from time to time rife, but as is so oftpn flm . + , interior
be bubbles which one after another burst harmlesslv nnrW? ^ 0
the year happily passed off with unprecedented tranquillity, o^ng pfrhap" to
he fact that the decimating ravages of cholera and small-pox all P ove r tl e
mtenor and the subsequent prevalence of plague in Maskat turned thl atten
tion of the population generally to the preservation of their own lives and hafl
Strrs POn ' 6 0f ^ tW ' bulent f- P -^TuponS
On the 1st April the Sultan instructed Sheikh Suleiman bin Suweilim his
Wah at Sohar to undertake an expedition against the Beni Katab who had a
short time before as mentioned in last year's report, raided the small port of
Shinas on the Batineh Coast, and had maltreated and looted two British Indian
traders. Ihe object of the expedition was both to punish the marauders and
to obtain from them compensation for the losses sustained by these British
subjects. The Sultan's intention, however, reached the Beni Katab in time to
enable them to enlist the aid of the Naeem and Mokabil clans, and as Suleiman
bin Suweilim s force was not strong enough to cope with the above combina
tion, the expedition proved abortive. It is satisfactory to note, however that
the Sultan has since paid without question the whole of the amount of compen-
sation (4131J dollars) claimed by the two Banians.
On the 4th Sheikh Rashid bin Uzaiz, the Governor of Semail, reported to
the Sultan that he has re-appointed Sheikh Khalfan bin Thenayan, Sheikh and
Wali of Nakhl. The Sheikh, who was deposed in 1897 for certain disturban
ces referred to in the Administration Report for 1897-98, had eluded the
pursuit of the men sent by the Sultan to arrest him and had since continued to
make trouble at Nakhl. The Sultan acquiesced in his re-appointment, how
ever, apparently because it enabled him to withdraw the 130 Wahabis whom he
had sent to garrison Nakhl and whom he could ill spare from Maskat.
On the 11th April the inhabitants of Nezwa petitioned the Sultan to
recall his Wali on the ground that he was practising oppression and injustice,
and a short time afterwards news was received that the community were
preparing to rise against the Wali unless action was speedily taken from head
quarters. The Sultan, therefore, after enquiry into the truth of the accusations
against his official, dismissed him and appointed Sayyid Nasir bin Muhammad
in his stead ; the garrison, however, mostly consisting of the relatives of the dis
missed Wali, refused to surrender the fort to the Sultan's garrison sent in
advance of Sayyid Nasir bin Muhammad, the newly appointed man. The
Sultan considering it inexpedient to eject the garrison by force, and being ade
quately assured of the future good conduct of the garrison and the ex-Wall,
retained them and reinstated the latter and recalled Sayyid Nasir.
On the 16th news was received to the effect that Sheikh Suleiman bin
Seif er Eiami Sahib of Jebel Akder had been murdered by his nephew Sheikh
Hameyr in revenge for the murder of the latter's father and mother some
fifteen years before by Sheikh Suleiman. This was followed by the news on
the 25th instant of the murder of Sheikh Sultan bin Saeed of the al-Wahibeh
by the Jenebeh of the ed-Dahireh in retaliation for non-payment of some
blood money due to them. Both these Sheikhs were most influential and
exercised great power for good or ill over the tribesmen of the interior. Their
exit from the sta^e of Oman politics will have an important etiect in insuring
tranquillity in the interior.
In May persistent rumours of a rising of Sharkiyeh tribesmen were
current; the Sultan therefore increased the garrison at Seeb and re-called all
the Wahabi garrison of the Coast towns to Maskat. On the 27th, the Sheikh

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Administration Report on the Persian Gulf The historical term used to describe the body of water between the Arabian Peninsula and Iran. Residency An office of the East India Company and, later, of the British Raj, established in the provinces and regions considered part of, or under the influence of, British India. and Muskat [Muscat] Political Agency An office of the East India Company and, later, of the British Raj, headed by an agent. for 1899-1900, published by the Office of the Superintendent of Government Printing, India (Calcutta), forming part of the Selections from the Records of the Government of India, Foreign Department, and based on reports sent to Government by 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 The historical term used to describe the body of water between the Arabian Peninsula and Iran. and 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.

The report is divided up into a number of sections and subsections, as follows:

Part 1, is a General Summary (folios 268-71) written by 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 The historical term used to describe the body of water between the Arabian Peninsula and Iran. , Lieutenant-Colonel Malcolm John Meade:

  • Section 1: entitled General , includes: a report on the year’s rainfall and harvest; the Governorship of Bushire; public peace and tranquillity in and around Bushire; public health and measures to restrict cholera and the plague in the Gulf; Persian currency; customs house arrangements in Bushire; compensation claims; and the Resident’s tours through the region during the year;
  • 2: Oman – Muscat: including: a change in personnel, with the role of 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. being taken over by Captain Percy Zachariah Cox from Major Christopher George Forbes Fagan; the Sultan of Muscat’s finances; French proposals to construct a coal depot in Muscat; use of the French flag by Muscat vessels; association of the French flag with the arms and slave trades; the impact of cholera and plague in the region;
  • 3. Oman – Pirate coast, including: a list of the those shaikhs in the region who have met with the Resident in the past year; Arab-Persian relations over Lingah [Bandar-e Lengeh], and the expulsion of Persians from that port; the discovery of a large pearl at Kumzār and its subsequent sale for a lower-than-expected price; the prevalence of smallpox on the Arab coast;
  • 4. Bahrain, including: the wounding of two British-Indian subjects; difficulties discharging cargoes in Bahrain; and the death of Aga Muhummad Rahim, the Native News Agent in Bahrain;
  • 5. El-Nejd, with no report due to the recommendation that no one be deputed to travel there;
  • 6. Koweit [Kuwait]: no particulars reported;
  • 7. Persian Arabistan: the navigation of the Kārūn river, and opening up of river and land routes for trade;
  • 8. Fars and Persian coast: Bandar-e Lengeh in Persian hands; the arrival of the British Vice-Consul for Bunder Abbas [Bandar-e ʻAbbās];
  • 9. Persian Baluchistan: delays in compensation claims against the murder of Mowladad Khan; a change in the Directorship of the Persian Gulf The historical term used to describe the body of water between the Arabian Peninsula and Iran. Telegraphs Department; rumours of a revolt against the Shah in Persian Baluchistan;
  • 10. Slave Trade: numbers of slave captured and manumitted during the year;
  • 11. Piracy: cases of piracy reported during the year, with details of where and against whom they were committed;
  • 12. Navy: details of the movements of British naval vessels (Sphinx, Lapwing and Pigeon) and significant foreign vessels, including Russian warship Gilyak;
  • 13. Official Changes: changes in British personnel;
  • 14. Changes among foreign representatives, with particular reference to German, French and Dutch representatives.

An appendix to part 1 (folios 272-75) includes statistical tables comprising meteorological data for the region; dispensaries in Bushire and data for the numbers of patients, diseases, surgical operations and income and expenditure of the Residency An office of the East India Company and, later, of the British Raj, established in the provinces and regions considered part of, or under the influence of, British India. dispensary.

Part 2 (folios 276-78) is a separate report from the Muscat Political Agency An office of the East India Company and, later, of the British Raj, headed by an agent. , written by Cox, with reports on events in Muscat, Rostak [Rustāq], Sohar, Soor [Sur], and Dhofar [Z̧ufār], including: accidental shootings by Wahabee [ Wahhābī A follower of the Islamic reform movement known as Wahhabism; also used to refer to the people and territories ruled by the Al-Saud family. ] tribesmen; the appearance in Muscat of cholera and the plague; British and foreign naval movements in Muscat; and a statistical overview of manumission applications heard at the agency An office of the East India Company and, later, of the British Raj, headed by an agent. .

Appendix A to Part 2 (folios 278v-85) is a detailed report with statistical data on the cholera epidemic in Muscat and Oman, written by the Lieutenant-Colonel Atmaram Sadashiv Jayakar, Chief Surgeon at Muscat. Jayakar’s report contains historical data on outbreaks of cholera in Muscat, symptoms of the disease, mortality statistics, treatment and its results, preventative and sanitation measures. Civil hospital and dispensary statistics follow on folios 285v-287v.

Part 3 (folios 288) is a trade report of the Persian Gulf The historical term used to describe the body of water between the Arabian Peninsula and Iran. for 1899, written by Meade. Its appendices (folios 289-328) comprise tables showing the value of all goods imported and exported to and from various parts of the Gulf region, and the numbers of vessels (with figures on tonnage) of various nationalities plying their trade in the region in each port.

Part 4 (folios 329-30) is a separate trade report with statistical data for Muscat for 1899-1900.

Part 5 (folios 331-35) is a trade report for Mohammerah [Khorramshahr] and the Kārūn river for the year 1899.

Extent and format
1 volume (60 folios)
Arrangement

The report is arranged into a number of sections and subsections, with statistic data in tabular format directly following written sections. There is a contents page at the front of the report (f. 267) which lists the report’s contents in alphabetically ascending order, and refers to the report’s own pagination sequence.

Written in
English in Latin script
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‘Administration Report on the Persian Gulf Political Residency and Maskat Political Agency for 1899/1900’ [‎276r] (25/150), British Library: India Office Records and Private Papers, IOR/V/23/77, No 379, in Qatar Digital Library <https://www.qdl.qa/archive/81055/vdc_100023626792.0x00001b> [accessed 21 April 2024]

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