Smoking Concert At British Era Bombay Gymkhana In 1908, PC

bombay gymkhana

An unusual 1908 postcard inviting for a smoking concert at Bombay Gymkhana during the British era. The Bombay Gymkhana, established in 1875, is a premier private members’ club in the city of Mumbai, India. Located at the triangular end of the Azad Maidan, in the Fort area in South Bombay. In close proximity to the Victoria Terminus (Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Terminus).

It was originally a Europeans-only club during the British era days. The club soliciting members participation to a smoking concert is interesting, it reads:

“There will be a smoking concert, to which ladies may be invited, at the Gymkhana at 9-30 p.m. on Saturday, 13th June, 1908. Tickets Re. 1 to cover expenses. Ladies accompanied by members will be admitted free…”

It was the time when smoking was cool, cheap, and socially acceptable. Doctors hadn’t yet discovered a clear link between smoking and lung cancer, and a majority of the doctors actually smoked cigarettes.

Did you know – the club was the social center of the civil station and the cantonment. More important for civil officials than for army officers. Because civil officials had no Mess like the military in which to congregate. It was a place for leisure, exercise, and conversation.

Past posts – 1964 M. Suriyamoorthy Charcoal Art Abstract (#17)., Kalbadevi & Horse Drawn Tram British Era Bombay, 1890 Photo., The Outskirts Of Delhi Jama Masjid – Old Print 1800s.,  1914 Old Book – Strangers Within The Gates.