Wednesday, September 28, 2016
Gateway to Sikhism

Murray, Captain William
Wrote Early Account of the Sikhs (1791-1831)

Captain William Murray was the youngest son of Sir William Murray and brother of Sir Patrick Murray, was Asst. Political Agent at Ludhiana, Dy. Superintendent of Sikh and Hill Affairs and later Political Agent at Ambala during 1815-31.

He collected written materials and also obtained details by personally contacting many people who still had fresh memories of events. After fifteen years of hardwork and painstaking research, Capt. Murray, described as an able, experienced and eminently qualified Officer by the Agent to the Governor General, completed his memoir in 1830 which forms a valuable piece of pioneer historical research and a very important original source of information of the most crucial part of the history of the Punjab and the rise and consolidation of Sikh power.

Partly due to the intrigues of his subordinate and colleague Capt. Wade (afterwards Sir Claude Martine Wade, Colonel Kt., C.B.) and partly due to the frank account of his memoir, Capt. Murray fell in the estimation of the Political Department and died of a mysterious disease at Sabathu on 28th June, 1831.

Source: Ganda Singh, Patiala, April 30, 1960

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The etymology of the term 'gurdwara' is from the words 'Gur (ਗੁਰ)' (a reference to the Sikh Gurus) and 'Dwara (ਦੁਆਰਾ)' (gateway in Gurmukhi), together meaning 'the gateway through which the Guru could be reached'. Thereafter, all Sikh places of worship came to be known as gurdwaras.
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