Military Memoir of Lieut.-Col. James Skinner, C.B.: For Many Years a Distinguished Officer Commanding a Corps of Irregular Cavalry in the Service of the H. E. I. C.
Born to a Scottish father and an Indian mother, the military adventurer James Skinner (1778-1841) acquired wealth and fame in India for raising and leading regiments of irregular cavalry, aiding the British in their wars against the Marathas and Pindaris. Distinguished in battle and generous as a host and patron, Skinner was also fluent in Persian and highly regarded by his men and his superiors. Based on first-hand acquaintance and Skinner's own journal, this two-volume work, published in 1851 by the Scottish traveller and artist James Baillie Fraser (1783-1856), who aimed to represent Skinner 'such as he was in truth, a gallant soldier, a zealous officer, a steady friend, a worthy noble-minded man; and spite of his dark complexion, a true and loyal Briton'. Volume 2 resumes the narrative during the Second Anglo-Maratha War, revealing Skinner's military assessments and accomplishments, as well as his personal qualities.