Looking N.W. across tree-shaded Dalhousie Sq., and its charming lake to P.O., Calcutta, India
Photographer: Ricalton, James
Medium: Photographic print
Stereoscopic view from the balcony of the Telegraph Office in Calcutta, West Bengal, taken by James Ricalton in c. 1903, from The Underwood Travel Library: Stereoscopic Views of India. This is a view from the balcony of the Telegraph Office looking across Dalhousie Square and Tank towards the Post Office, with a portion of the Dalhousie Institute in the foreground. Calcutta General Post Office was built in the 1860s, now renamed Benoy Badal Dinesh Bagh, after three Indian freedom-fighters. The building was designed by Walter B. Grenville and erected on the old Fort William site. Dalhousie Square, originally Tank Square, so named because it was built around the large spring-fed tank which supplied the majority of the city with its water, became the main administrative area of the city, and remains so to this day. This is one of a series of 100 photographs, designed to be viewed through a special binocular viewer, producing a 3D effect, which were sold together with a book of descriptions and a map. Stereoscopic cameras, those with two lenses and the ability to take two photographs at the same time, were introduced in the mid 19th century and revolutionised photography. They cut down exposure time and thus allowed for some movement in the image without blurring as subjects were not required to sit for long periods to produce sharp results.