Princess Leila Of Gondal On A Wolseley Car, Old 1911 Print
An old 1911 print showing Princess Leila of Gondal on a Wolseley Car. This is a page from The Illustrated London News of 4 Feb 1911. The text reads- “The Emancipation Of The Indian Girl, Princess Leila Of Gondal, In Her Motor Car.” Gondal was a princely state in the Bombay (now Mumbai) Presidency. The Maharaja of Gondal was Thakore Bhagwat Sinhji, a forward-thinking ruler. Who believed in women’s liberation even at that time. Princess Leila’s car the Wolseley was made by Wolseley Motors Limited, England. They were major car suppliers to then British India and other countries under the empire.
The Wolseley like most other cars was built sturdy and fit for rugged roads. Motorable roads in the colonial era were largely not too developed nor extensive as it is today. Neither was fuel a great concern because it was cheap and readily available. Thus most cars were built like a tank and real gas guzzlers. But after the Arab-Israeli conflict, OPEC tightened the belt on crude oil prices. That had a ripple effect around the globe in the early 1970s. Consequently, fuel-efficient sleeker, lighter cars became the norm. Check also the numerous interesting advertisements. Click on the photo for better view.
Read older post View of Vintage Car of 1911 British India, Old Print.
Did you know- that not only did the Maharajah end the wearing of purdah for women, and decreed compulsory education for girls in his kingdom. He also ended the centuries-old culture of segregating women’s wings in his palace.
From the collection- Raja Ravi Varma’s “Mohini On A Swing” – Vintage Print 1930s., British Companies In Colonial India – Old Photo 1923., Municipal Corporation Building Bombay – Old Postcard 1908., Indian Railways One Hundred Years – Old Book 1953