The author begins his preface to the book with the observation that the general reader may very possibly ask the question, “What can we now be told on this subject with which we have not already been acquainted?” My answer is “ an awful lot!” Kars is a Turkish town near the border with Russian Transcaucasia. Colonel Lake (1810-1881) was a cadet at Addiscombe, the East India Company’s College for gunner and engineer officers, he was commissioned as a 2nd Lieut in 1826 and two years later he was posted to the Madras Engineers. In 1855 he transferred to the British Army and was seconded to the Turks for the defence of the fortress of Kars which the Russians besieged and occupied in 1855. Lake was captured and held prisoner by the Russians for a year. He ended up as an ADC to Queen Victoria (1856-1864) and Chief Commissioner of the Dublin Metropolitan Police 1858-1877. This, then, is the story of the defence of Kars in the Crimean War, but Kars must have been getting used to this sort of Russian activity. In 1807 it successfully resisted the Russians, but lost out to them in 1828 and again in 1855. In the war of 1877-78 it was again stormed by the Russians and they kept till 1921 when it was returned to Turkey by what had now become the USSR.
NARRATIVE OF THE DEFENCE OF KARS
An account of the defence of a Turkish fortress against Russian forces during the Crimean War, by a British engineer officer attached to the Turkish army, who was taken prisoner when the town fell.