Mount Road During Madras Monsoon, Postcard 1900
A 1900 postcard shows Mount Road during the monsoon in Chennai, formerly Madras. One of the best legacies associated with the British was undoubtedly the Mount Road in Chennai. Now known as Anna Salai. A celebrated wide boulevard and one of the main arterial roads of the city. The route stretches to around 15 km, that once carried a romantic and old-world charm.
Completed in 1795 connecting Fort St George with the military cantonment and barracks at the base of St Thomas Mount. In the past, there were garden houses lined on both sides interspersed with quaint shops and establishments. This was the case until at least the British left the scene in 1947. A brief outlook of an early 20th-century observation on Mount Road.
Starting from Wallajah (presently Quaid-e-Milleth) Bridge, it traverses the Cooum River Island grounds. To left lie the golf course, polo ground, and Gymkhana Club. For a while, the road is lined with important shops, hotels, and important edifices. A big house to the left is the residence of the Raja of Bobbili. Soon the road traverses the district known as the “Thousand Lights….”
In the commercial stretch of the road, there is the famous British book store “Higginbothams”, Taj Connemara, Spencer’s store, and so on. Today this enchanting road is no different from any other Indian commercial road. The old-world charm seems to have completely given way sadly to the present day’s maddening pace and loud honking.
Although the date inscribed on the postcard in ink is 30.9.20 but the postcard looks to be from before 1906. Because the two-story building shown on the right would eventually be used for the opening of Hotel D’Angelis. This Italian-owned hotel opened its doors only in 1906. I will be posting more on Hotel D’Angelis sometime later. Click on the photo for better view.
See older post Electric Tram & Mount Road Madras – Old Photo 1938.
Did you know- the Spencer’s store was the first and once the largest store built by the British in India.
From the collection- Raja Ravi Varma’s “Mohini On A Swing” – Vintage Print 1930s., Colonial Bungalow In British India – Old Photo 1865., Worli Fort In Mumbai Old Print 1930., Vintage Book 1939 – The Handbook of India