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Wednesday, September 26, 2012


(KOLKATA) 1912

Amazing collection of photographs depicting life in India
a century ago are found in an old shoebox. A tennis
party pose among tea trolleys:
full-length dresses and sun hats for the ladies; shirt-sleeve order,
neat moustaches and optional pipe for the men.

One image shows buildings in the city of Calcutta lit up over the
Lal Dighi body of water, commemorating a British royal visit,
while another depicts ships arriving at the Chandpal Ghat,
the main landing site for visitors to the city along
the Hooghly River. 

All 178 of the plate-glass negatives were found inside a size-nine
Peter Lord shoebox by the Royal Commission on the Ancient and
Historical Monuments of Scotland (RCAHMS) in Edinburgh.
All 178 images were found in a Peter Lord shoe-box
in Edinburgh and are about 100 years old.

A tennis party poses (one, far right, with a pipe) among tea trolleys in this photo taken in India around a century ago.

Two men stick dance in front of a crowd in Maidan,
Calcutta. The dance represents a mock fight between
legendary warrior Durga and the mighty demon
king Mahishasura.

Buildings on the south-east side of Lal Dighi, Calcutta,
lit at night for the 1912 British royal visit by
King George V and Queen Mary.

Archivists have confirmed some of the images were
definitely taken in 1912, when the royals visited.
It was the only trip by a British monarch to India
as Emperor of the subcontinent.

King George V and the Queen arrive in Delhi in 1911.

A crowded riverside with bathers at Chandpal Ghat
in Calcutta, the main landing site for visitors to the city
along the Hooghly River.

A street scene in an unknown location, capturing life in
India at least a century ago.

Ships arriving at Chandpal Ghat, while crowds gather
by the docks.

A Jain temple complex in Calcutta called Dadaji's Temple.
even today it is a sight-seeing place for visitors.

A street hairdresser giving a 'Hindustani haircut' (pudding bowl)
in Strand Road South, Calcutta.

Celebrations for the visit of King George V and Queen Mary
to Calcutta in 1912.

A Muhurram (sacred month) procession through a crowded
Calcutta street with tazieh theatre performance in the
background. Tazieh drama re-enacts heroic tales
of love and sacrifice.

Calcutta is lit up for the royal visit

A group seated in two ferry canoes moored in
a stream at an unknown location.

Waterside with a group of washer-men at a Dhobighat
(open-air laundry zone).

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