A Peek Into British Era Ooty, Old Print 1913
This old print gives a rare peek into the activities of British-era Ootacamund or Ooty in the 1900s. One of them was horse racing shown on this page from the Times of India’s supplement of 1913. The headline says “Season At Ootacamund” and “Ootacamund Races: Saddling Up For The Ootacamund Cup.” Ooty had a robust horse racing activity, typically for Europeans only.
But after independence, Indians apparently took it forward with equal zest. This was also largely with the case of other legacies that the British left behind. The top picture shows jockeys readying their horses before the final kickoff. A fairly packed crowd looks on, amongst them a sprinkling of European ladies. Notice the British flag the Union Jack hanging from a flagpole on the left of the image.
The center images show the horses along with perhaps their owners. The bottom two images show the winning horse and a white child sitting astride a horse under the “Children’s ponies class.” A foal and a watchful Indian attendant are also seen. Just as Shimla was the summer capital of the British government in Kolkata later Delhi. So was also the case with Ootacamund which was the summer capital of the Madras Presidency.
Many Maharajas were also regulars to this once verdant hill station, some had their own palaces there. The collector of Coimbatore John Sullivan was credited to be the first European to discover Ootacamund in 1819. He brought about many developments to the hill station one of them was the commissioning of the artificial lake. Click on the photo for better view.
See older posts Ooty Town & Lake – Old Photo 1890., and Shimla British India’s Summer Capital – Old Photo 1890.
Did you know- the oldest inhabitants of Ooty are the Toda people who have inhabited the place since 1117 AD.
From the collection- Antique Painting of Madras Fort St George., Calcutta Night Scene WW2 – Old Photo 1942., Interior Of Tanjore Palace – Old Postcard 1890., Duke Of Edinburgh At Parel Station Bombay – Old Print
The images are of the actual items from my collection. And Not a photocopy, pirated, reproduced, stock photos, or taken from other sources.