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The Maidan & Government House, Calcutta

The Maidan & Government House, Calcutta

Photographer: Stretton, W.G.

Medium: Photographic print

Date: 1875

Shelfmark: Photo 355/1(5)

Item number: 35515

Length: 18.2

Width: 26.4

Scale: Centimetres

Genre: Photograph

Photograph by W. G. Stretton taken in the 1870s, part of the Dunlop Smith Collection: Sir Charles Aitchison Album of Views in India and Burma. View looking north across the Maidan (or green space) in Calcutta. The High Court is on the left, the Town Hall (partially concealed by trees) on the right, and Government House right of centre. In the background to the right is the dome of the Post Office. The Supreme Court building was opened in 1782, and Sir William Jones, the great Orientalist, was judge until his death in 1794. The Town Hall, which was completed in 1813, was designed by John Garstin of the Engineers and funded by Lottery money. Government House was comissioned by Marquess Wellesley on becoming Governor-General in 1798. Captain Charles Wyatt, the architect, based his designs on those of Kedleston Hall in Derbyshire, with specific modifications required by the Calcutta climate. The Post Office was built by Walter Granville in the 1860s. The Maidan is often described as 'Calcutta's lungs', once covered by dense jungles, it now extends for 400 hectares along Chowringhee (now Jawahar Lal Nehru Road), and contains Fort William and several club houses.

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