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General Post Office Building In Chennai – Old Photo 1890

This is an old 1890 photograph of the General Post Office Building in Madras or Chennai. Situated near Parry’s corner in Chennai. Robert Chisolm designed the General Post Office. It is a three-storied longitudinal building, see photos. The caps of the twin towers were of the Kerala style (Travancore). Influenced after Chisholm’s assignment of the Napier Museum’s design in Trivandrum that was completed in c1880.

Despite the financial headaches, it went through, the GPO got completed in 1884. That was a good 10 years after the construction commenced in 1874. Unfortunately, Kerala-style caps blew off from the twin towers around the 1940s in a cyclonic storm. It has never been replaced since then. Today when viewing the GPO you will see the caps missing and a part of the building’s handsomeness lost. 

See a picture postcard of the GPO from 2002 shown in this post. Also, check the following link and scroll down to view the GPO- Madras Day: Journey from Madras to Chennai on city’s 380th birthday. The huge iron chains shown in the foreground probably used to lift the caps. This is one of the earliest and rarest photos on the Madras GPO. 

Did you know- motorized transport for carrying mail was introduced only by c1915, before that the Dak runner and horse carts were the only dependable carriers of mail for long distances. 

From my collection- Antique Stereo Photograph British India Era Postman.,   Raja Ravi Varma’s “Laxmi” Oleograph c1910., The Durbar Of The Maharajah Of Travancore – Old Print 1859., German Map Bombay With Waffen SS Stamp & Seal.,   Old India Postcard-British Family on Bullock Cart Travel

The images are of the actual items from my collection. And Not a photocopy, pirated, reproduced, or stock photos or taken from other sources.

Photo Details

Year -


Photograph Size -

11 x 8.25 inches

Photographer -

Nicholas & Co