724 pages, colour & b/w photos, colour & b/w illustrations, colour & b/w maps
From the introduction:
"This book seeks to remind us to appreciate the rulers of our land who opened the shores to the travelers who visited our soil with new thoughts and ideas which helped in establishing plantations, augmented economic changes and social reformations through the missionaries they brought in, honor and respect missionaries who gave us education, tribute the pioneers who introduced plantations and the protectors of our land, its culture and traditions, past and present.
Sow seeds of appreciation for our biodiversity keeping in mind that the true asset of lndia comprise living forests, mountains, rivers and soil. All our culture, learning and commerce rest on this foundation. Economic growth can be achieved only through fair planting and its allied activities with ecological harmony as its cornerstone.
I welcome you to the passionate journey of seeking the past in support of plantations tourism, rooted in the past and footed in the present. We envisage the promotion of destinations in the Western Ghats through nature friendly hospitality services and by offering plantation experiences in the Bungalows. In early days they were frequently no better than grass thatched huts with mud and wattle walls; depressively primitive to those who arrived from London and Edinburgh. These later became estate bungalows in which today we suffice fine living for travelers, where you may find many a testimony of the men and women who braved the hills.
The contents of this compilation are not claimed to be a complete historical reference as this is in fact only an attempt to link the historical backdrop ofthe plantation destinations offered through our plantation tourism activities. Only the presentation and some observations are claimed to be original. Most of the materials are compiled from publishings dated from 1915 to 1990s, (with special mention to the most valuable materials provided by United Planters Association of Southern lndia from their publications on plantations and books by S. Muthiah who need no introduction as an authority on British period in South India and John Loadman, who has done the most authentic work on History of Rubber). At the same time I should introduce some of the families from the native planting communities who need mention like the European pioneers as they too have done a very commendable task of nurturing their backyard cultivation into well established plantations, now innovatively diversified in to quality tourism. related activities.
Some of the interesting material has been contributed, directly and indirectly, by the children of the men who have left the East after long service as planters, with whom I have acquainted during my years in plantation tourism related activities, which they shared with me in kindness when they traveled to their first homes where they spend up to their teenage years. And about women who, some hundred years ago went along their men hewing their way in to the jungles far remote from towns and cities, and led their finest encircled lives in and around the bungalows and the muddy, leech infested tracks rnoving along with the men unobtrusively with patience and endurance."
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