If you were to walk around South Parade, Cubbon Road, and nearby areas in the 1920's ... perhaps even in the 1940's ...


St. Andrew's Church

This Church of Scotland was erected and opened for public worship on 18 November 1886, two years after its foundation stone was laid by Lady Hope Grant. It is of Gothic Architecture and accommodates about five hundred. The building is surrounded by a tower which holds the Municipal Jubilee Memorial Clock with four dials which was a great convenience to the people who lived around it. A fine Pipe Organ was erected in 1880 and a beautiful stained glass window in 1897 (this stained glass is one of the best in Bangalore even till today). In 1867 St. Andrew's Free School (up to the Primary Standard) was opened on Thimmiah Road a then poorer district of Bangalore. Here about 50 poor children were freely educated , and given a mid-day meal daily and receive new clothing annually.

(History) and (Photos).


B.R.V. Institute and Theatre

These are located on Cubbon Road which is on the Northern side of the Parade maidan. It was the Head Quarters of the Bangalore Battalion (Auxiliary Force, India ). The original buildings occupied the same site but were demolished and in 1905, and again in 1912 the present building was erected and opened . It is built after the Tudor Style of Architecture and was one of the finest buildings in Bangalore. The Regimental Institute was on the ground floor which included a Billiard Room, Reading Room, Ladies Room and a Bar. It was open to all members of the Corps for a small subscription. The upper floor accommodated the Regimental Offices, Stores, Band Room, and Lecture Room. On the Eastern side of the building was the Armoury. The names "BRV Stores" and "BRV Armoury" are still visible on the stone surface of the building. The Theatre Hall is approximately 120 feet long and 60 feet broad and could seat 800. The Stage (before it was converted into a Cinema) is on the East end and behind it were the dressing rooms, green rooms, and lavatories. An Orchestral Pit was in front, and a passage ran below the stage connecting up this Pit. A Gallery at the rear or West end of the Hall could accommodate 300 more. The building was lit by electricity. This Hall was hired for Concerts, Lectures, Dances (the floor of the Theatre was one level, and had beautiful chandeliers till a few years back), Theatrical Companies and "Bioscope" Exhibitions.

The BRV Today.

Another View.


Army Head Quarters, Madras District

Was situated on Cubbon Road adjoining St. Andrew's Church. Bangalore was the Headquarters for the Army that was stationed in the Madras District, and numerous offices connected with the same were housed in the same block. Today this is the ... .

Baird Barracks

Further up Cubbon Road towards the East end, almost opposite the Gymkhana Pavilion was the Barracks known even till today as the "Baird Barracks". Long rows of buildings are in lines and fill a vast area in the compound. There are also games fields that are sometimes used by schools for tournaments. There is now a Military School also in the same compound. In the 1920's, The Highland Light Infantry, 2nd Battalion was stationed here. Today this Baird Barracks gate is closed and sealed with brick, removing history forever.


Soldiers' Home

There was a Home on East Parade run by the Wesleyan Mission and open to soldiers. Accommodation was provided in dormitories for men on furlough. It had billiard tables and other recreational games. A Library and Reading Room was attached. A small hall was attached that could seat around 200 where Religious Meetings were conducted. There was also a separate Prayer Room. Today this building does not exist. It has been probably demolished to make room for more modern buildings of the Commercial kind. East Parade is known as Dickenson Road, and is a very busy Commercial sector of Bangalore where lots of posh offices are situated.


The Wesleyan Methodist (or East Parade) Church

On East Parade (on Dickenson Road at the junction with M.G. Road) this Church could still be seen. It belonged to the Wesleyan Mission. The Mission ran the Solders' Home, and also the Children's Home, Pensioner's Rooms and Widows' Quarters (on Haines Road, actually a few rooms stand at the junction of Thimmiah Road and Old Poor House Road, that afforded shelter to about five poor widows who were maintained on the income of a legacy of the late Mr. Garrett, once a resident of Bangalore. Next to this is the Free Library for the poor, aged, pensioners of St. John's Hill). The Mission also ran four Tamil Churches, a High School and Boarding School for Tamil girls and a number of Elementary Schools for boys and girls. The Mission dates back to 1826. Another of their fine Churches can still be seen near Cole's Park on St. John's Hill.


Holy Trinity Church

One can find this Church at the side of the Cavalry Barracks (today it is at the East end or begining of M.G. Road). The foundation stone was laid on 16th February 1848 and consecrated on 16th September 1851. The Church can seat 900. This Chruch was used by Soldiers, Officers, and their families. The interior has many interesting plaques.( I am trying to photograph some of these interesting marble rememberance wall plaques.. if I have got them and they are loaded, you could view them at Ron's Collection.


Mayo Hall and Station Public Offices

From East Parade Church if you proceed West on the South Parade, you will come across the Mayo Hall that was erected in memory of the late Lord Mayo Governor-General of India who was assassinated in the Andamans in 1872. It was built by public subscription and handed over to the Municipal Commission (today Corporation) on 6th June 1883. The upper floor was 75 feet by 40 feet and was available for Public Meetings and Exhibitions. On the ground floor are the Municipal Offices of the Station and Office of the Health Officer. These Offices still are maintained. The Hall upper floor is however not opened to public as some of the Courts are run there. The walls were adorned with pictures of great citizens and commissioners. A special stair case leads to the top from where one could get a bird's eye view of Bangalore (today there are many tall buildings surrounding the area blocking the view. Next to this is the Utility building with more than 20 floors). Adjoining the Mayo Hall is a block of buildings built in the Florentine style of architecture. It is three stories high. On the ground floor cone could find the Offices of the Collector and District Magistrate, Resident's Treasury, Excise Superintendent's Office, Police Stores and Lock-up. On the second floor are the District Magistrate's Court, Office of the Supernatant of Police, Courts of Railway Magistrate, Second Magistrate, Honorary Magistrates and Amildar's Office. The building was opened by the then British Resident, Sir James Bourdillon on 2nd July 1904. This has further been expanded n the Eastern side with a block in a similar style. The Mayo Hall Today and also The Muncipal Offices.


Bangalore Library

This Institution was on the South Parade adjoining Mayo Hall ( demolished to become Bangalore's first skyscraper of 20 plus floors, the Utility Building ). In 1813 it was known as the "United Service Library" and later "Bangalore Book Society", but in the 1920's as "The Bangalore Library". It was well stocked with old and new books and the membership was opened to all residents. The Library was like a Club. It had three Tennis Courts on a plot adjoining the Gymkhana Pavilion and facing the Court buildings (today this plot on M.G. Road is used for football, boxing, fairs, even "Boney M (was it?)" when they played in Bangalore played here!).


Gymkhana Pavilion and Ground (RSI)

The Pavilion and Ground occupy the Eastern end f the Parade Maidan. The Pavilion is an upstair building facing the cricket pitch. The Gymkhana conducted various branches of sports like Polo, Paperchase, Racing, and Trap-Shooting besides Cricket, Hockey and Tennis. Ladies and visitors were eligible for Honorary Membership.


Funnel's Restuarant and other places on South Parade ... in the '40's

South Parade and the Places that were alive at all hours


St. Mark's Cathedral

Proceeding to the West end of South Parade, one can find the beautiful Church of St. Mark's, also known as St. Mark's Cathedral, ministered by The Church of England (today it is run by the Church of South India [CSI] ). The Church of England in the 1920's ministered through its Chaplains St. Mark's Cathedral, St. John's and the Holy Trinity Church. St.Mark's was built in 1808, but in December of 1902 the Church collapsed at the East side due to the fall of the Tower. It was restored in 1906 and formally opened on 9th August by Dr. Whitehead. A cenotaph to the memory of Major Dickson who died in 1808 used to be at the Southern entrance. The Colours of the 77th Moplah Rifles when they disbanded were received and used to hang on the West wall of the Church. By public subscription electricity was installed in 1908. Unfortunately, on account of a short-circuit fire in 1924, a great portion of the building was burnt. The charred appearance of the Church and the dome which threatened to fall presented a ghastly spectacle. The repair and renovation work started in 1928 and the Church was again used for Worship. A marble altar and stained-glass windows and a marble pulpit were added. It could accommodate around 700 including a choir of 50 that sat on special benches near the altar. The Church has a beautiful pipe-organ, that has been well maintained throughout the years. (History)


Queen Victoria's Statue

Facing the Western side of St. Mark's Cathedral and at the South-East entrance of Cubbon Park, a Memorial stands. The statue was erected by His Highness the Maharaja of Mysore and the public including the citizens of the Civil and Military Station. It was erected to Commemorate the memory of Her Majesty Queen Victoria. It is a white marble replica of the statue at Worchester. It is about eleven feet high including the plinth. The pedestal is made of gray granite. It is enclosed by a circle of ornamental railings. The Sculptor was Sir. Thomas Brock. It was unveiled on 5th February 1906 by His Royal Highness the Prince of Wales ( in the late 1920's became His Majesty King George V). Queen Mary, then Princess of Wales was also present.

King Edward's Statue

In the same line, but further North in the Cubbon Park, is the Statue of King Edward VII, almost opposite the rear gate of the Central Telegraph Office. It was built by public subscription, and unveiled on 28th September 1919, by His Excellency Baron Chelmsford. Queen's Road and King's Road run parallel to the garden between the statues. Today, there is some modification and there are two East parallel roads, and one West parallel road. Between the statues is a hedged area that is supposed to be lawns, but people use this to exercise in the morning and play badminton, and hence the lawns have disappeared. (On the East side is the Cricket Stadium with it's dinosaur looking flood-light stands that tower over. They should have made them like the MCG ground).


War Memorial

Facing the Central Telegraph Office, on Cubbon Road, stands a War Memorial. It was erected and unveiled on 13th July 1925. It commerated the Great War (1914 - 1918), and is a fitting Cenotaph for the men of Bangalore who were killed in the War. The bronze statue of an Unknown Soldier stands on a high pedestal. His head inclined and hands resting on his rifle brings to mind even till today sad reflections of the sufferings of the Great War (First World War). Recently, other Wars are also remembered on a plaque.

Central Telegraph Office and G.P.O.

The Central Telegraph Office is at the North-East end of Cubbon Park, on Cubbon Road. Immediately behind this was an ornamental building of the General Post Office (demolished in 1977). The areas to the North and West of this was known as High Grounds. On 1st May 1895, a Telegraph Recreation Club was opened. There was a Reading Room, Library and Tennis Court. A Coffee Shop which adjoined the Library was open all day. Today the Telegraph Office and The G.P.O. both have new looks. The Telegraph Office is at the same location, but has a very low structure, with modern facilities. The G.P.O. on the other hand is made of granite stone blocks and has different architecture.


The Residency

If one were to travel on Cubbon Road past the Central Telegraph Office and the General Post Office towards High Grounds, one would come to an imposing white building deep within strong grilled gates and walls. The Offices of the Hon'ble The Resident in Mysore were situated here during his trips to Bangalore. It had a large Banqueting Hall and extensive grounds. The Hon'ble The Resident exercised the powers of a High Court in the Civil and Military Station. The Mysore Residency included the Hon'ble The Resident, Secretary to the Resident, Personal Assistant, The Collector and District Magistrate, Residency Surgeon, Commissioner of Police, Garrison Engineer, Assistant Engineer and Military Adviser, South India Circle. The first Residency was situated in the Good Shepherd Convent before the nuns bought over the building. Then for some time the Hon'ble Residency stayed at what was known as the Madras Bank building (built around 1840) which is next to St. Joseph's Boy's School. Later the Residency was moved to the BUS Club on Residency Road, and finally to the building on Cubbon Road ( today called The Raj Bhavan, where the Governor resides).


St. Mary's Church

Coming from St. Mark's Road through the West side of the Parade, passing the BRV Institute towards the Bowring Hospital, and then around it one can find an old Church. The Church itself is just opposite the Russell Market (Adams or Richard's Square). During the 19th Century this was the only Roman Catholic Church in the Civil and Military Station. On the site of the old Church the present beautiful Gothic building was erected and consecrated in 1882. It was chiefly intended for the Indian Christian residents of the Market Area and adjacent villages. From an architectural point of view it is very unique and interesting. The building is entirely constructed of masonry and even the windows are made of stone. The body of the Church seats around 500 and the wings 200. The tower is surmounted by a Cross and it occupies a conspicuous position in the locality. (Today, this Church has become a Basilica, and devotions are carried out there in Honour of Mary, and the Feast is conducted in September every year. All communities in the Area support this feast. The statue of Our Lady is carried out in procession around the square. There are thousands of people attending this event). (History Photos)


Lady Curzon Hospital

Close to Commercial Street, Cubbon Road, and Russell Market and St. Mary's Church can be seen a large hospital. The hospital is on Hospital Road (parallel to Infantry Road). It had over a hundred beds in the late 1920's, and was a Government institution for Women and Children. There were General Wards, Caste Wards, Special Wards and some beds were kept for maternity cases.

Bowring Civil Hospital

One does not notice it really that Bowring Hospital and Lady Curzon Hospitals although adjoining were separate, they share a common wall with Russell Market area. This hospital is for Men, in the 1920's there were eleven Wards accommodating over a hundred beds of which three Wards were for Special Patients. The Wards were updated and fitted with modern accessories. Cooking and heating were done with electricity and the Hospital was run by the Nuns of St. Magdalene. The Hospital had an X-ray installed and fittings for treatment by electricity were included. The R.M.O.'s quarters and that of the Assistant Surgeons were on the campus.


Gosha Hospital

This Hospital was specially intended for gosha ladies (Muslim) and originated through the generosity of Sir Ismail Sait. It is situated South-West of Tasker Town. There were ten maternity beds and ten beds for in-patients. The Government managed the Hospital. It was opened in 1925.


Cantonment Railway Station

The Station is situated on the Southern boundary of Benson Town and was the principal one for the Civil and Military Station of Bangalore. The Terminal station of the M. & S.M. Railway in the 1920's was Bangalore City Station, which is about three miles from this place. There was a connection with Poona (called Pune today) Branch and the Mysore State Railway. Poona, like Bangalore was a Military Station.


Electric Power House

This is on Station Road ( it is still existing but as a Service Station behind the Veterinary Hospital and opposite the Cantonment Railway Station). Electricity was just introduced into Bangalore. In March 1904 the Mysore Government formulated a scheme to supply electricity to the Station. The conditions were agreed to by the Municipality and the arrangement was that the Mysore Electric Supply Company guaranteed the supply of electricity at a fixed rate to the City. The street lighting of the Civil and Military Station was inaugurated on 1st January 1908. Till a few years back some of the original bulb shades and holders were still being used! ( Bangalore, at present is still in that period of time as there are quite a few "power cuts" due to shortage of electricity, further due to shortage of rains?).


Veterinary Hospital

This was the only one in the Civil and Military Station in the 1920's and was situated near Cantonment Railway Station adjoining the Electric "Power House". The Hospital was controlled by the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals which had been established since 1875 ( the Office for the SPCA is at the East entrance to Cubbon Park opposite St. Mark's Cathedral). The Society's Offices were held in the British and Foreign Bible Society building at the corner of St. Mark's Road. Today this Hospital still functions and is run by the Government. There are many other Hospitals and Clinics come up around the City. There is also a Veterinary College attached to the University of Agricultural Sciences (UAS) at Hebbal which has the major Hospital facility and Operation Theaters. Today there are many "Pet Care" Clinics and other Associations that look after the welfare of animals.


Zenana Mission Hospital (CSI Hospital)

This Hospital is on Colonel Hill Road near Cantonment Railway Station and in the 1920's belonged to the Church of England Zenana Missionary Society. The object of the Society was to provide medical relief and Christian teaching to Indian women and children. Mission work was carried out in that area amoung the poorer class. The Foundation stone of this hospital was laid on 30th October 1893 and the building was formally opened on 31st October 1895. The Hospital was for specially treating Mohammedan Gosha women, but Hindus and other Indian women of all creeds were admitted. Private wards were available on payment. Tuberculosis patients were admitted and kept in a special ward. The Hospital was then supported by funds from Great Britain given for the evangelisation of Indian women. The Society conducted schools for Mohammedan girls and the teaching was done in Hindustani (a local dialect of India). There was then an Orphanage Boarding School in the Mission compound at No. 13, Cubbon Road. As the hospital was founded for the poorer classes of Indian women and, exclusively for Indians, however Europeans and Anglo-Indians were admitted only on a payment. The Lady Doctors in charge in the 1920's was Miss. Nunan, MD. and Mrs. M.S. Gnamuttu, LCP & S, and the Nursing Suptd. was Miss. F. Spencer.


Friend-In-Need Society

This great Institution is on Colonel Hill Road near the Cantonment Railway Station and was founded in 1830. In the 1920's it catered to the deserving poor irrespective of caste and creed. It also provided a Home for the aged, infirm and destitute, where they were clothed and lodged. It also helped deserving persons with weekly or monthly allowances, and found employment for some of them in the Mining and Plantation Districts. On 10th September 1923, Women's workshops were opened through the endeavours of Lady Barton, where needlework of all description was done. One could get uniforms for their domestic help stitched, also pillowcases, bed spreads, table and house hold linen. The Society's affairs were managed by a representative committee. It solved to some extent the problem of beggars, and people supported them. Rev. Fr. Antoine Marie Tabard, the Hon. Secretary, was on the Executive Committee, and also a patron of this Society. The President in 1920 was the Hon. H.V. Cobb, CSI, CIE, and the Vice President Sir Leslie C. Miller, Kt. (History) (FINS)


Cole's Park

Further North in the Northern Suburbs of Bangalore is the Cole's Park. The Park is located to the West of St. John's Hill and is run by the Municipality of the Civil and Military Station. It is still the important "lung" of the district, and is being improved every year. Parks were felt needed even in the 1920's, and that they were the "lungs" of the City in those days goes to show that people were aware of the need for air purification. Remember, Bangalore in those days had air that was pure and not polluted by vehicles and dust as we have today.


Theosophical Society

The Society was situated at No. 6, St. John's Road. The Institution possesses a good library of books on Religion and Philosophy. Today this address has changed.


St. Francis Xavier's Church

The Roman Catholic Church on St. John's Church Road was opened for Worship in 1851. The Church was rebuilt in gray granite in the late 1920's. The Church was mainly attended by Indian residents of St. John's Hill and so the main portion was reserved for them. One wing was set apart for Europeans and Anglo-Indians. St. Aloysius' School for boys on Promenade Road and another one for girls was attached to the Church. A Reading Room was established in 1898 and in 1905 through the efforts and endeavour of Rev. Fr. Servanton it was accommodated in a new building of its own. Unfortunately this Church lately had been the focus of a lot of "language" issues that made the Diocese less effective in this locality. It is the Archbishop's Seat , hence has now become St. Francis Xavier's Cathedral, and St. Patrick's Cathedral has returned to St. Patrick's Church. (History Photos)


St. John's Church and Institute

This Anglican Church is on St. John's Church Road. It's Parish was the largest in Bangalore in the 1920's. The Foundation stone was laid on 12th November 1895, and the Church was opened in 1896. IN the steeple of the Church is a clock with two dials, and it was beneficial for people living around. A stained glass window above the sanctuary was a gift of Chaplain Rev. Sharp before he retired in 1899. A new Pipe Organ was erected on 6th February 1902. The Chruch could accommodate about 400 and was attended by Officers of the Regiments stationed in the locality. The Institute was the oldest of its kind in Bangalore. It was founded in 1858 for the benefit of pensioners who settled down in St. John's Hill. There was a Library of interesting books. A good supply of papers and periodical was available in the Reading Room. There was Billiards, Cards, and Tennis. Whist Drive and Concerts were frequently held and were well patronised. (HistoryPhotos)


St. Joseph's Convent

The Convent is on Promenade Road, Cleveland Town. This Roman Catholic Institution was under the charge of European Nuns who belonged to the Order of St. Joseph of Tarbes. In 1886 a Lower Secondary School for Indian girls was opened which admitted day scholars. There was in the 1920's an European High School (St. Francis Xavier's Girls School) preparing girls for High School and Cambridge Examinations. French , Painting and Music were also taught. It was largely attended by European and Anglo-Indian children of St. John's Hill, Cleveland, Cox and Frazer Towns. (History)


Peninsular Tobacco Factory (ITC)

The Factory is situated on Banswadi Road, Cox Town. Tobacco and Cigarette manufacture is carried out here. It employed several hundred men and women. It had a long row of buildings with chimmneys towering skywards, and made the surrounding look like an Industrial Township. The name in the 1920's was Peninsular Tobacco Factory, later it became Imperial Tobacco Company and today it is known as the India Tobacco Company or ITC. This Factory is very close to Bangalore East Railway Station.

Bangalore East Railway Station

This small Railway Station is located in Frazer Town near ITC, and was quite central for residents of St. John's Hill, Ulsoor and Eastern areas of Bangalore. In the 1920's the Mail and Express trains did not stop here. Today this Station is renovated with the extenson of the Platform and canopy.


Poineer Lines

The Poineer Lines were to the North of Benson Town and were also known as "Baidarhalli Lines". They were occupied by the 1st. Battalion (K.G.O.) Madras Poineers. There are large and extensive Parade and Practice Grounds. In the same area were the bungalows (houses) of Officers of the Regiment and also a large Mess House.


Kulpully Cemeteries

The Cemeteries are situated to the North-East of St. John's Hill. The Roman Catholic cemetery contained in the 1920's a grotto in which was placed a life-like representation of the Crucifixion made of plaster of Paris. The Protestant cemetery adjoins the former, and comes under the Chaplain of St. John's Church.There is an account that a beautiful monument of red granite was erected by Officers of the Royal Engineers to remember their comrades who were buried there. A few tombstones date from 1868. The graves of General Cleveland and his wife lie side by side, the former died on 1st November 1883 at the age of 92. In conection with the above, Admiral Dawson (Retd) made an extensive study and documented the Protestant Cemetery. He went to UK and US and visited various cemetries and their administrators, and is in touch with the British Association for Cemeteries in South Asia (BACSA) for assistance to maintain old European Graves. The Admiral is also trying to restore the Agram Cemetery.

Sappers' and Miners' Lines

The Lines extend from St. John's Hill on the West to Ulsoor Tank on the East. In the late 1920's was called "Assaye Lines". It was the Head Quarters of the 2nd Queen Victoria's Own Sappers and Miners. The bungalows of British and Indian Officers are in the vicinity. A Regimental Mess was also near by. There was a large School where Sappers' children were taught English and Tamil. There were other activities carried out such as a Workshop, Telegraph, Photo, Printing and Litho Schools. There were Parade, Sports and Practive grounds that extended up to Kulpally Cemeteries. A light railway (narrow gauge) ran from the Sappers' Lines to the practice ground. Till some years back, this rail track could be seen across the roads leading from Wheeler Road and Ulsoor Lake, the authorities have since removed the tracks.

Sappers' and Miners' Memorial

The Memorial in the 1920's was easily the best in the Station, and stood at the junction of St. John's Church Road, Tank Road and Annasamy Mudaliar Road. The Memorial was enclosed by ornamental iron chains and railings. The plot of ground around the basement was green with a well kept lawn. An iner circle wass formed with six sculptured figures of grey stone representing elephants for India, dragons for China, sphinx for Egypt. Round the column were granite stones incribed with names of Sappers, and Miners who lost their lives in the Great War 1914 - 1918. There was an inscription " Their corpses live forever." A few years back, the Madras Engineers Group (MEG) decided to move the Memorial witihin their premisies, hence we do not see this beautiful and thoughtful Memorial anymore. Wonder if they do?


Kensington Park and Ulsoor Tank (earlier called Halsur Tank or Lake)

The Park was a small garden to the North-East of the Ulsoor Tank on Kensington Road. It was maintained by the Municipality. Overlooking the tank made it a popular site to visit. License for fishing in Ulsoor Tank and other Tanks in the Station were obtained from the Muncipality on payment. Today there is so much heated expressions going about the Ulsoor Tank (today it is referred to as a Lake), and the amount of pollution flowing into it. The Ulsoor Tank or Ulsoor Lake Is Dying - unless we all in Bangalore wake up and make it happen! We need to make changes to our environmental habits, our inconsiderate manuplations of Laws and uttermost indifference to what is around us must stop and we should take notice of what Nature provides us with, before it's too late!!


St. Mary's Home

In the 1920's the Home was on Kensington Road. This Institution was run by the Sisters of the Community of St. Mary the Virgin, Wantage, England. The object of the sisters was rescue work amoung young girls and women. There were two departments, one a Home for children, and the other a Training Home for older girls and women. This Home was maintained by voluntary subscriptions.


The present occupant is Red Cross Society.

Ulsoor Rock and Kempe Gowda Tower

The Rock stands on the Eastern boundary of the Ulsoor Tank. It is the highest point in the locality. From the summit of the Rock, an extensive view of the surrounding country could be obtained. This Rock is connected with the tradition of Kempe Gowda where he thought of the plan of building a city. On top of the Rock was a Tower known as "Tippu's Look-Out" . It was used later as a signalling station by the Military Signalling School in the garrison. In this tower was large metal bell that stood 4 feet 6 inches in height and bore Chinese inscriptions which showed that the bell was cast in the fifth year of the reign of Emperor Chien Ling 1741. It was dedicated to the San Guan Kung Temple in China. When, how and why it came here is unknown but there was speculation that it was part of the spoils in Chinese Wars in which troops from Bangalore participated. The Kempe Gowda Tower was historically interesting. It was one of the four towers built by Kempe Gowda, the founder of Bangalore, marking the limits of his new city. The other three were near Hebbal, Fort and Lalbagh. The Tower (Look-Out) in Lalbagh was demolished to make way for a architectural questionable edifice, however there are photographs around that show what the "Look-Out" looked like, and what do you know, I got a copy of one!! ... which I plan to put on the Net once someone offers me some space for the photographs of Bangalore.


The Cobb Y.M.C.A.

The first successful attempt of opening a Y.M.C.A. in Bangalore was made by Mr. Lovel Murray who came out from America in 1902. The then Resident Sir Donald Robertson helped and the Central Branch was opened on Primrose Road on 1st August 1903. That same month the Fort Branch was also opened which outgrew its former accommodation and was moved to a new commodious premises on Cenotaph Road (now known as Nrupathunga Road, and there is also no sign of any Cenotaph!). In July 1904 a third Branch was opened called the Bourdillon Branch and was located on Infantry Road. The building has since been demolished. Only the Y.W.C.A. exists on Infantry Road, and the Tunbridge School is in the same compound. The Central Branch on Primrose Road was mainly intended for Europeans and Anglo-Indians gradually died away and in it's place the "Army Branch" started flourishing and was known as Cobb Y.M.C.A. It's new premises was situated to the South of Holy Trinity Church. It's Foundation stone (which still can be seen in the Military Stores) was laid on 19th November 1913 by Lord Hardinge, Viceroy of India. All Branches were affiliated to the World-wide Organisation of the Y.M.C.A.


The Old Protestant Cemetery or Agram Cemetery

This Cemetery was located to the West of Agram Barracks. It was closed in the 1920's. Tombs of several great men could have been seen there. To the right entrance were two huge Ionic Columns about forty feet in height standing on square bases. There were several graves dating as far back as 1808 and contained interesting cenotaphs and epitaphs. This Cemetery has also figured in the Believe It or Not. It was said that one of the soldiers buried there was executed because he did not drink his pint of rum! Again one has to mention the great and Herculean efforts of Admiral Dawson in trying to restore this Cemetery. There are lots of Grave Stones used as the fencong wall between the Cemetery and the Reserve Police. Some of the graves date back to 1806!!. (I have taken a few photos of the cemetery in it's present condition and will try to get them loaded to this Site a little later). There are so many architecture styles used in the construction of the tombs and one really wonders as to the origin. Undertakers or Sculptors (as there were known in those days) like S. Mullenex and Nelson & Black built most of the graves. Very large granite was slabs and blocks were used for the graves, even these heavy blocks and slabs have been moved to make the fencing. To restore the Cemetery into the original beauty would take quite a lot of finance, as a lot of the masenory has been reduced to rubble and also by removing the stones that protected the graves, exposed it to the elements. Admiral Dawson, the Reserve Police and the MES have not given up and as well as a few of us who have volunteered to try and restore the cemetery. There is too much of History in this Cemetery to lose!! For further information on graves in Bangalore and what is happening. Home Page dedicated to Forgotten Soldiers.


British Station Hospital (Air Force Command Hospital)

The Hospital is on the South-Eastern extremity of Agram. It was an easy ride from the Holy Trinity Church and as one passed on the route in the 1920's , one could see the Harris, Cornwallis and Moor-House Barracks. These housed the Field Battery R.A., Field Brigade R.A. and 2nd Armoured Car Company, and the Royal Tank Corps. The Hospital was the principal for British Troops. It was well equipped with modern instruments and a Laboratory was attached to it. Quarters for Surgeons and a Family Hospital are also in the vicinity. The Hosptial is still in the same location, and the grouping of various departments of Medicine are housed in separate buildings and blocks. Some of the original buildings still can be seen. The Hospital can be accesed from both the Airtport Road as well as Cambridge Road. The whole area is surrounded by Military Units and also on the Eastern side by ISRO (Indian Space Research Organisation). Within a short distance was the old steeple chase course and the a village and tanks (lakes). Inscriptions show that the tans were in existance from the eight century.


Vannarpet

The name meant "Dhobies' Village" and it is to the South West of Agram Barracks. In the 1920's there were two tanls in the vicinity that supplied the dhobies with water. Today this whole area had changed, and extensions to the East have come up called Viveknagar and Ejuipura. The now famous pilgrim Church of Infant Jesus is located. Lots of miracles take place at this shrine.


Agram Plain

Ths is a vast extensive ground to the South-East which is accessible by a single road through the Military establishments. The major portion in the 1920's was used as a practice ground for the Royal Artillery. Further down the plain was converted into a Military Grass Farm. A portion of the plain was used as an aerodrome for aeroplanes that frequently visited the Station. In the 1920's the Dutch fliers gave the residents a novel experience of flying over Bangalore for a small payment. A few years back, the aerodrome was used for Motor Sports, and every year cars, scooters and motocycles went around the circuit of the runaway. This has since been closed to the public for such events, and Motor Sports has died away, and except for a few Rallys that is organised through the State there is nothing to look for for excitement in this area. Today one has to pass this area to go to the new posh layouts of flats called the "Trinity Acres". The water that flows into the lake is filthy with some chemicals that is frothy.


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Thought for the Day:" Blessed are you poor, For yours is the kingdom of God. Blessed are you who hunger now, For you shall be filled. Blessed are you who weep now, For you shall laugh. Blessed are you when men hate you, And when they exclude you, And revile you, and cast out your name as evil, For the Son of Man's sake. Rejoice in that day and leap for joy! For indeed your reward is great in heaven, Fon in the manner their fathers did to the prophets. But woe to you who are rich, For you have received your consolation. Woe to you who are full, For you shall hunger. Woe to you who laugh now, For you shall mourn and weep. Woe to you when all men speak well of you, For so did they fathers to the false prophets." Holy Bible: Luke 6:20-26