General view from Transport Karkhana, Secunderabad.
Photographer: Dayal, Deen
Medium: Photographic print
Photograph with a general view looking across the Secunderabad Cantonment towards Husain Sagar Tank, taken by Deen Dayal, c. 1890. In the 19th century era of pioneering photography mostly dominated by Europeans in India, Deen Dayal earned renown as a hugely successful Indian photographer. Born to a Jaina family in Sardhana near Meerut, he studied photography while an engineering student, and took it up professionally encouraged by mentors such as Sir Henry Daly. His technical excellence and attention to detail made him much in demand and he took official photographs of colonial events and administrators, including Lord Dufferin, Viceroy 1884-88. In 1884 he was appointed court photographer to the Nizam of Hyderabad and founded a studio in Secunderabad which is still run by his descendents today. He specialised in portraiture and Indian views.
Secunderabad is situated in Andhra Pradesh next to Hyderabad, its older twin city (founded c. 1590), separated from it by the artificial lake called Hussain Sagar. The Nizam of Hyderabad, Sikander Jah, entered into a subsidiary alliance with the British East India Company in 1798, involving military and political cooperation. Under the alliance an area north of Hussain Sagar lake was to be made a cantonment. Soon after the alliance was signed 5,000 British troops arrived and camped north of Hyderabad; the cantonment was laid out in 1806 and named after the Nizam, and thus was Secunderabad founded.