A convincing Adenwalla

5 April, 2013
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Sir Hormusjee Cowasjee Dinshaw

Statue: Sir Hormusjee Cowasjee Dinshaw
(1857- 1939, Statue 1949), Church Gate Street (presently Veer Nariman Road)

Often, to Hormusjee’s full name was added another surname ‘Adenwalla’. In the 1800s individuals chose to fashion their identity with surnames that usually reflected an occupation or a native or contemporary place of residence. Hormusjee made a more convincing Adenwalla in Bombay than in the port city of Aden in Yemen, where everyone was technically an Adenwalla.

A small ceremony to garland the statue is held every year on April 4th, Hormusjee’s birthday.

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Motifs: Royal Alfred Sailors’ Home (1876)

1 April, 2013
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Royal Alfred Sailors’ Home

Royal Alfred Sailors’ Home (1876)

Junction of Apollo Bunder Road and Apollo Street (presently Maharashtra Police Headquarters, Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Marg, Colaba, entry prohibited).

The construction of the Sailors’ Home was a significant step towards containing and domesticating the population of seamen in the city, long considered drunk, disorderly and prone to recreate at taverns, boarding houses, grog shops and brothels.

Notice the three nautical motifs.

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Signage: Elphinstone Circle (1872)

29 March, 2013
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Elphinstone Circle (1872)

 

Elphinstone Circle (1872)
Fort (presently Horniman Circle).

The Circle was named after Lord Elphinstone, Governor of Bombay from 1853-1860. An initial proposal to name the Circle after Queen Victoria was turned down in favour of the Governor. The Baghdadi Jewish merchant prince David Sassoon, who had donated Rs 50,000 towards the initial proposal, withdrew his funding on the selection of Elphinstone’s name over Victoria’s; giving us a sense of how the politics of naming worked in colonial Bombay.

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Façade: The Red Building

19 March, 2013
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The Red Building

The Red Building
Parsi Bazaar Street, Elphinstone Circle, Fort, (presently S. A. Brelvi Marg, Horniman Circle)

The Red Building houses the offices of The Bombay Samachar (1822), Asia’s oldest newspaper. Formerly the premises were also used by the Bombay Chronicle (1913-1949); after whose editors, Benjamin Guy Horniman and Syed Abdullah Brelvi, the Circle and Street, have been renamed.

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Signage: The Arthur Crawford Municipal Market (1868)

19 March, 2013
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The Arthur Crawford Municipal Market

The Arthur Crawford Municipal Market (1868)
(presently called Mahatma Jyotiba Phule Mandai), Junction of Hornby Road and Carnac Road (presently M. Khana Road).

Arthur Travers Crawford (1835-1911) had a sociable and controversial tenure as a civil servant in various parts of Western India, including as the first Municipal Commissioner of Bombay.

Notice the monogram ‘ATC’ on the clock tower.

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