There are a few points worth noting before providing the translation of this document. First, the subject of this text is John P. Guthrie whose name is inconsistently expressed throughout the document. Secondly, the "engine" referenced is the mashin khana or Durrani state workshop complex in Kabul, and "tartuqi" carries a number of connotations including "wheeled" and "heavy." Furthermore, "Jadid al-Islam" means a convert to Islam, and in this case Muhammad Salim was likely born a Hindu or a Sikh. Finally, it is important to draw attention to Abd al-Rahman's own handwritten signature appended to which is the acronym of an English title.

It is known to my dear friend, the Honorable Mr. Merk Sahib, Commissioner of Peshawar, that the respected Mr. John P. Kotrie has returned from London and might now be in Peshawar. Since your friend desires him (Kotrie) to come to Kabul for the oversight of the engine, we have sent the trustworthy Muhammad Salim Khan, jadid al-Islam, to Peshawar to accompany the above-named (Kotrie) and (together) come to Kabul. I ask my kind friend that the herein named Mr. John P. Gotrie who has some wheeled or heavy equipment with him and wants to bring them to me, accompanied by the above-named Muhammad Salim Khan who has come from and (is) returning to Kabul, to issue them letters of transit (rahdari) and cause your friend not to worry and that they (Salim and Kotrie) will not be delayed.

Lastly, with God's mercy, all is well.

Written on Wednesday, 28 Ramadan al-Mubarak 1314 Hijri corresponding to 3 March 1897

Sealed and signed, Amir Abd al-Rahman, Zia al-Millat wa Din, G. C. S. I. G. C. B.

Copyright 2008 by author.