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Sunday, October 19, 2014

OLD MAP OF KOLAR GOLD FIELDS

This is an old map of KGF which is displayed in the KGF Club. This will give you an idea of the place in the earlier days


Wednesday, October 15, 2014

THE KGF HOSPITAL – Dr. Maj. T J O’DONNELL




















THE KGF HOSPITAL – Dr. Maj. T J O’DONNELL
The John Taylor and Sons Company with the co-operation of the O’Donnell brothers, Dr Maj. T J O’Donnell and  Dr.J D O’Donnell, established a small hospital to accommodate 48 patients initially in 1887.  It became a well equipped hospital in 1900, to cater to the medical needs and emergencies of the miners and their families. It was centrally located in Champion Reefs. Dr Maj.T J O’Donnell was the first Chief Medical Officer of the Hospital and served as the CMO for more than 25 years. Dr. Maj T J O’Donnell was also a honorary Surgeon Major in the KGF Volunteers.

The hospital was staffed with eminent British and Indian doctors and British and Anglo-Indian nurses. The hospital wards were named after the erstwhile British bosses such as Gideon Ward, Henry’s Ward, Morgan ward, etc.. Medical Treatment was provided free of cost for the miners and their families. A well maintained Maternity Unit was also later established in a separate wing of the Hospital.The Mining Hospital slowly gained the distinction of being the best hospital in the whole of the Kolar district. This Mining Company Hospital was later recognized by the Indian Medical Council as a reputed center for the treatment of Occupational Diseases, such as Tuberculosis, Silicosis, etc.


Today this Hospital with its once expensive equipment and more than 200 beds has been shut. Most of the medical equipment has been stolen. The hospital wards named after the erstwhile British bosses such as Gideon Ward, Henry’s Ward, Morgan ward, etc., are completely denuded of the beds and furniture and the hospital now resembles a haunted building, and is slowly falling down in parts. Its so sad to think that “This Hospital” which was once the best hospital in the whole Kolar District which saved the lives of so many people has now ceased to exist. 

THIS IS AN EXCERPT FROM MY BOOK KOLAR GOLD FIELDS DOWN MEMORY LANE 

Thursday, October 9, 2014

THE KOLAR GOLD FIELDS RIFLE VOLUNTEERS

The Kolar Gold Fields Volunteers which was earlier part of the Bangalore Rifle Volunteers was formed as the Kolar Gold Fields Rifle Volunteers on 23rd January 1903. (In 1905 it came under the Commander-in-Chief in India: formed by G.G.O. 639 of 1903). On 1st April 1917, the Kolar Gold Fields Rifle Volunteers became the 43rd Kolar Gold Fields Battalion. It was  redesignated on 1st October 1920 as the Kolar Gold Fields Battalion.
Here is a small History about The Auxiliary Force (India) (AFI) from where the Kolar Gold Fields Volunteers came into existence.
The Auxiliary Force (India) (AFI) was a part-time, paid volunteer organisation within the Indian Army in British India. Its units were entirely made up of European and Anglo-Indian personnel. The AFI was created by the Auxiliary Force Act 1920[1] to replace the unpopular British section of the Indian Defence Force, which had recruited by conscription. By contrast, the AFI was an all-volunteer force modelled after the British Territorial Army. The Indian parallel to the AFI was the Indian Territorial Force.
 Bangalore Rifle Volunteers unit was an army regiment of the Auxiliary Forces under the British Indian Army. It was a volunteer corps unit that was raised on 31st November 1868 by the British administration in India. The regiment served under the administrative control of the Madras Army of Madras Presidency. On 21st November 1884, a number of detached companies of the unit were used to raise the Coorg and Mysore Rifle Corps.
The headquarters of the Bangalore Rifle Volunteers was established in Bangalore (now Bengaluru) in 1901. The troops wore khaki drill formal dress and the detachments were stationed in Kolar Gold Fields, Mysore and Whitefield. The minor unit of the Bangalore Rifle Volunteers stationed in Kolar Gold Fields was later separated in order to form the Kolar Gold Fields Rifle Volunteers on 23rd January 1903.
The Bangalore Rifle Volunteers battalion was eventually merged with the Coorg and Mysore Rifles on 1st April 1917 and was designated as the 6th Bangalore, Coorg and Mysore Battalion. It was again renamed as the Bangalore Battalion on 1st October 1920.
The Kolar Gold Fields Volunteers which was earlier part of the Bangalore Rifle Volunteers was formed as the Kolar Gold Fields Rifle Volunteers on 23rd January 1903. (In 1905 it came under the Commander-in-Chief in India: formed by G.G.O. 639 of 1903). On 1st April 1917, the Kolar Gold Fields Rifle Volunteers became the 43rd Kolar Gold Fields Battalion. It was  redesignated on 1st October 1920 as the Kolar Gold Fields Battalion.
Motto of the Unit: "Defence not Defiance".
Uniform: Full Khaki. (The uniform of the troops was modified in 1940 to include rifle green formal dress with scarlet facings).
Badge: Crossed pickaxe and hammer in circle superscribed "The Kolar Gold Fields Battn" all surmounted by crown.
The following were the Non-commissioned Officers of the Unit.
1. Honorary Colonel - Richard Hancock ,
2. Lieutenant-Colonel - Thomas Edward Piercey,
3. Commandant Majors - G.A. Paterson , C.H. Richards Captains - E. Jeffery , R.H.P. Bullen , F.J. Tregay , Percy Key , H.M. Leslie , H.T. Hincks , D. Gill Jenkins , J. Johns 4. Lieutenants - G.W. Walker W.R.C. Beudon, T.A. Clarke, N.F.K. Richards, W. Ward, H.M.A. Cooke, G.E. Payne, A.W. Jolly, C.H. Stonor
5. 2nd Lieutenants - J.J. Clarke, R.F. Vaughan, H.H. Osborn, J.S. Anderson, W.C. Vine, R.T.J. Weeks
6. Staff - Adjutant - Capt. F.G. Pierce , 69th Punjabies;
7. Medical Officer - Surgeon,-Maj. T.J. O'Donnell;
8. Hon. Chaplains - Rev. L.G. Pollard, Rev. J.H. Fraysse
9.  Hon. Major - Edgar Taylor
10. Quarter Master - Hon. Lt. G.W. Bickley
11. Surgeon - Lt. J.D. O'Donnell Sergeant-Major -- H.W. Goble
12. Sergt.-Instructors - A. Goldfinch,  L. Taylor, R. Motley
13. 1st Essex, Officiating, Gold Fields Quarter Master Sergeant - D.A. Spence

Source: http://www.indianetzone.com/65/bangalore_rifle_volunteers.htm
http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Indian_Auxiliary_Force#undefined

Friday, August 29, 2014

REARING OF HENS AND CHICKENS (fowls) IN KGF IN THE OLDEN DAYS



 THE FOWL RUNS AND HEN HOUSES IN OUR BACK GARDEN IN NANDYDROOG MINE, KGF 
 In the olden days there were no Poultry farms, like there are now a days, where Broiler Chickens are fed with hormones and specially bred to grow very big in a short span of  time. In just 6 to 8 weeks they grow from cute fluffy chicks to hens that are ready for the table. In those days most  families reared and  bred their own Country and Fancy Fowls in their own homes, lovingly cared for and nurtured and fed with natural grains. The hens and chickens were allowed to roam and graze freely clucking and clacking away while pecking at the food on the ground.  

Our Mining Bunmgalow in KGF had a large garden around it and we had sufficient space for Fowl Runs and Hen Houses in our back garden. My mum was very fond of rearing hens, chickens, ducks and even turkeys. We had quite a number of White Leghorns, Rhode Island Reds, Black leghorns as well as many Country Fowls. We also had a few Roosters to keep the hens company!! The eggs laid by these hens were used for our breakfast every morning. My mum was very particular about the health of her poultry.  She would always check and ensure that their eyes were bright, their nostrils dry, their feathers shiny and they were active and alert. Any deviation from this would mean that they were sick or under the weather. She would immediately separate the affected bird from the others and give it some ‘Omum water’ or some other medicine. The hens were fed with grains such as wheat, millets, and also some left over household food and vegetable scraps. With all this special attention our poultry were real tasty and well nourished birds when they finally landed up on our dining table.

 When my mum  noticed that a particular hen was nearing the ‘Broody’ season she would save all the eggs and mark them date wise. She would then arrange the eggs on a bed of soft sand, in a deep basket or ‘Makri’ and the hen would sit over the eggs for 21 days. We would eagerly wait for the eggs to hatch. My mum would leave grains and water near the hen so she wouldn’t get hungry. I still remember the delight and happiness we felt when the eggs hatched and the tiny chickens came out. The hen would then get very protective of her chicks and keep them under her for at least 10 more days. If any of us went close she’d try to peck us as she presumed that we wanted to take away her chicks!!

After about 10 days my mum would shift the mother hen and the chicks to a separate Fowl Run. These little chicks would slowly grow and they would either be used for the table or again to hatch more chicks. The circle thus went on.


My mum also reared Turkeys and ducks for Christmas and for our First Holy Communions. The turkeys and ducks reared in our house were always big and well fed. They were fattened up with a special diet of oil cakes, ragi and grain. The oil cakes were known as ‘PUNAK’ in Tamil and we loved saying this word ‘PUNAK’.

Thursday, August 14, 2014

KGF BOY'S SCHOOL, OORGAUM KGF

Pencil Sketches of the KGF Boy's School and the Tin Roof Water Storge Tank near the KGF School, Oorgaum , KGF by Mr R Sri Murugan an ex resident of KGF in 1966.

Mr. 'R Sri Murugan' who was born and studied in KGF is an engineer by profession. He worked as a civil engineer for nearly 20 years. He also freelanced as an artist for various architects, design centres and builders and promoters. He coined the term 'Peeli' meaning peacock, in tamil literature, that he studied in school. His drawings and paintings bear this name for over 50 years. He specializes in line sketches, and paintings in various mediums. In addition he has also created murals and metal etchings for various clients. He now lives in Hyderabad.

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

CENTENARY OF KGF MINES - ISSUANCE OF POSTAGE STAMP AND FIRST DAY COVER




 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
CENTENARY OF KGF MINES - ISSUANCE OF POSTAGE STAMP AND FIRST DAY COVER
In order to commemorate the Centenary of the Kolar Gold Mines, the Indian Posts and Telegraphs Department issued a special commemorative Postage Stamp and First Day Cover on 20th December 1980
Philatelic Stamp Description : The stamp depicts a miner drilling for ore along with representation of molten gold being poured into a mould and a few gold bricks.
The first day cover shows old and new techniques of drilling for ore against a mine head structure.

Stamp Issue Date : 20/12/1980
Postage Stamp Denomination: 1.00
Postal Stamp Serial Number: 0990
Postal Stamp Name: GOLD MINING
Stamp Currency: Rupee
Stamp Type: COMMEMORATIVE
Stamp Language: English
Stamp Overall Size: 3.91 X 2.90 cms
Postal Stamp Print Size: 3.55 X 2.5 cms.
Number of Stamps Per Sheet: 35
Stamp Perforations: 13 x 13
Postal Stamp Shape: Vertical
Postage Stamp Paper: Un-watermarked adhesive stamp paper
Indian Stamp Process: Photogravure
Number of stamps printed: 15,00,000
Stamp Printed At: India Security Press

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

KGF - Namakara Hawker and China Man John

Namakara Hawker was a Walking fancy Store. He had everything that could be found in a regular Fancy Store among his wares. He had all his wares packed between layers of brown paper and tied with white sheets in two huge bundles (An excerpt from my book KOLAR GOLD FIELDS DOWN MEMORY LANE)
Namakara Hawker and China Man John were the other hawkers who visited our house on a regular basis. As little children, we didn’t know that Namakara Hawker’s actual name was Mr. Venugopal. He was known as the ‘Namakara’ Hawker only because (being a Brahmin), he had three ‘Namus’ or 3 vertical Red lines drawn on his forehead which was the sign of his Hindu caste. The word ‘Namakara’ meant ‘Man with Namus’.
Namakara Hawker was a Walking fancy Store. He had everything that could be found in a regular Fancy Store among his wares. He had all his wares packed between layers of brown paper and tied with white sheets in two huge bundles. Namakara engaged two men to carry the bundles for him on their heads while he walked at their side carrying his umbrella.  Namakara Hawker had everything from safety pins, elastic in running length, Cotton Bras, Dress Materials, Nail polish, Hair Pins, Hair clips, Clothes Clips, Cotton Vests and Banyans, Men’s Briefs, locks and keys, screw drivers, nail clippers, nail files, scissors, handkerchiefs, scarves, Naphthalene Balls, etc to Reels of white and Coloured thread for the Sewing machine, Skeins of embroidery thread, machine oil, balms, hair oil, bundles of knitting wool, knitting needles, machine needles, plastic brushes, combs, pens, shirt material, pant material, etc, etc in his bundles. Each variety was packed separately between layers of brown paper.
Whenever Namakara Hawker visited out house, we’d eagerly wait for him to open his wares. It was so exciting watching him open each layer of brown paper and reveal the items concealed in them. There would be ‘Oohs’ and ‘Ahs’ of delight when we saw something we liked and much smirking and sly smiles when he came to the Bras and Panties. We’d worry my mum to buy us stuff from Namakara even if we didn’t need it.
Namakara Hawker was a permanent fixture in our lives during the first and third week of every month. He extended credit and installment facilities to all his customers and each family had a separate page in his account book. He would collect his dues in the first week of the month after the salary day, and bring his wares for sale again in the third week. He was always sure of making a sale in whichever house he went to.
I remember Namakara Hawker coming around to the houses in the mines right up to the 1970’s. He must have been about 80 years old then and he was still healthy and active. However, his walk had slowed down and he was quite bent up. We were all very sad when we heard that he passed away in 1976. It seemed like the end of an era.
Chinaman John was another Hawker who regularly visited all the Anglo-Indian homes in KGF. Chinaman John was a Chinese National settled in KGF. He was married to a local Tamil lady and had 4 children. His son studied in the KGF Boy’s School and his daughters Violet, Charlotte and Lilly studied in St Joseph’s Convent. We didn’t find it at all strange that while they had Chinese features, they had an Indian dark complexion. Chinaman John would get consignments of soft, beautiful Silk dress materials, Silk Cushion Covers, silk table cloths etc from China and bring them around to the Anglo-Indian houses. Sometimes, he would get beautiful Silk Kimonos with elaborate embroidery of dragons and lanterns in gold and red silk threads. Chinaman John never left an Anglo-Indian home without making a sale!!!

 

Monday, June 2, 2014

JACKFRUITS, MANGOES &JAMLUMS – MEMORIES OF THESE TREES IN KGF

JACKFRUITS, MANGOES &JAMLUMS – MEMORIES OF THESE TREES IN KGF
An Excerpt from my Book KOLAR GOLD FIELDS DOWN MEMORY LANE
The Jamun / Jamlum Season  is on in Bangalore and the sight of these dark, luscious Black Plums brings back many nostalgic memories of the Jamun / Jamlum and other fruit Trees in our garden in KGF.
Our Mining  house in KGF was an independent bungalow surrounded by a huge garden with lots of plants and trees. Our garden was always a profusion of colors, with huge beds of lovely flowering plants and shrubs in the front and back gardens. Asters, Daisies, Lilies, Roses, Cannas, Tiger Lilies, Spider Lilies, St Joseph’s lilies, Phlox, hollyhocks, Cockscombs, Hydrangeas and Pansies were some of the flowering plants in our garden, besides the jasmines, and frangipanis. We didn’t have to go to a florist to buy a bouquet of flowers for anyone’s birthday. We had ample flowers in our own garden to make beautiful bouquets!!!
Our garden also had a number of fruit trees such as mangoes, guavas, jamun / jamlums, custard apples, goose berries, papaya, Jack Fruit etc. All these trees had been lovingly planted by my grandmother Nana Maud and later nurtured by my mum. The garden with its abundance of plants and trees were home to numerous birds, squirrels and insects as well. We woke up every morning to the sounds of the birds chirping in the trees and hedges. The cawing of crows, the chirping of the sparrows, the sounds of the mynahs and the cry of the Koel and the Cuckoo bird was music to our ears in the morning.  Wild parrots, bulbuls, mynahs, crows, sparrows, wild pigeons, blue Jays, and squirrels built their nests and fed off the Jamlums, guavas, mangoes and papayas in our garden. It was so enjoyable to watch these birds sunning themselves and trying to attract their mates by fluffing out their feathers and strutting around. 
The Jackfruit trees bore delicious Jackfruits that were huge and as sweet as honey. Since the trees bore so many Jackfruits, my mum would distribute them to the workers who worked under my dad and to all our neighbours, friends, domestic helpers, etc. 




During the Mango season, the 4 Mango trees in our garden would be loaded with fruit. My mum would use some of the green mangoes to make delicious Mango pickle and lots would be left to ripen in straw for us. Since the trees bore so many mangoes we would distribute the rest among lots of people. My mum  would also make delicious Jams, Juices and Squashes besides a variety of puddings, custards, fruit salads etc with this golden fruit.


How could I forget the Jamlum Trees in our garden. During the summer months the 2 Jamlum / Jamun trees would be loaded with fruit. The dark, luscious black plums would gleam in the sun. The birds and squirrels would have a feast  everyday and by evening they would get drowsy from being intoxicated with this fruit. We would feast on these delicious black plums with salt and sometimes a little chillie powder. My mum was an expert in making a delicious Wine with the Jamlums from our garden.

The guava trees, Custard apple trees, Gooseberry trees and papaya trees too were always laden with fruit. We had quite a variety of fruit to choose from every day. The lime trees always bore a profusion of juicy limes on them and there was no dearth of lime juice or lime pickle in our home as mummy always made use of our own homegrown limes. I still remember the sweet smell of the lime blossoms from our lime trees when they were in season.
We also had a few Curry leaf Trees and Drumstick trees in the back garden The curry leaves were used for seasoning the curries and Pepper Water. The Drumstick tree bore long and tender drumsticks. Mummy would cook the Drumsticks along with meat or in a Dhal Curry and the drumstick leaves were turned into a delicious ‘Foogath’ which is a vegetarian side dish. Our gardener also grew green chillies, Coriander greens, Fenugreek greens, Mint and Coriander in a small kitchen garden on the left side of the garden.
With so many trees in our garden we were quite adept at climbing the guava and mango trees when we were children. These trees also made excellent hiding places for us during our games of Hide and Seek and Police and Robbers. The mango tree in front had a broad branch from which my dad hung a swing with a wooden seat for us. We spent many happy hours swinging from this mango tree shaded by its copious branches.

The memories keep rushing back and a smile lights up my face remembering those happy days in Kolar Gold Fields.

Sunday, May 18, 2014

Farewell Address to Mr J K Walker Superindent, Champion Reef Mine




 


























2. Address presented to Mr J K Walker on the Occasion of School day 26th January 1953 by the President, Madurai Numperumal Middle School, Andersonpet, KGF



 
Address presented to Mr J K Walker on the Occasion of School day 26th January 1953 by the President, Madurai Numperumal Middle School, Andersonpet, KGF
 

Friday, April 4, 2014

ST SEBASTIAN’S CHURCH, COROMANDEL, KGF

An Excerpt from my book KOLAR GOLD FIELDS DOWN MEMORY LANE
St Sebastian’s Church in Coromandel Kolar Gold Fields  was established in the year 1899. It is one of the oldest Churches in KGF. This Parish of St Sebastian catered to the Catholics living in the mining areas of Coromandel, Balaghat, Gold Field Hill and the whole of Nandydroog Mine.
Inititally, Nandydroog Mine did not have its own Parish church and all the Catholics from Nandydroog were therefore Parishioners of St Sebastian’s Church in Coromandel.
Since the Church was almost 3 miles way, people  either had to walk or go by train or Jatka to the Parish Church. In view of the distance and the difficulties involved in reaching St. Sebastian’s Church, arrangements were made by the Parish Priest to conduct Mass for the parishioners in the KGF School Hall. All the Catholics from Nandydroog Mine would attend this Mass at 6 O’clock on Sunday mornings. Even though the Service would be conducted in Latin, everyone would take active part in the prayers and sing all the hymns. The Choir was conducted by Mrs. Monisse and Mr. Oliver. However for all important feasts and other occasions such as the Annual Mission, Funeral Masses, Christenings, First Communions etc, we went to our Parish Church. Later on, a new Shrine dedicated to Infant Jesus was established in the old swimming bath premises for the Catholics of Nandydroog mine.Since we belonged to St Sebastian’s Parish Church initially, all of us were  Baptized and also made our First Holy Communion in St Sebastian’s Church.




 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
St Sebastian’s Feast in the month of January  was celebrated as the Parish Feast with great fervour and religious zeal by all the parishioners. Every year a novena of 9 days was held just before the feast.  On the Feast Day, Masses were held in English and Tamil followed by a grand Car Procession with the statues of St Sebastian, St Anthony and Our Blessed Mother decorated grandly and taken out on all the roads around the Church. While the procession was in progress, people would throw flowers and Gram or “Kudla” mixed with pepper and salt on the statue of St Sebastian as a token of their gratitude for favours received from him. Silver offerings of various figures were also offered either as a request for some favour or in thanksgiving for his blessings. A mini fair would come up around the Church for the whole nine days and stalls selling cheap toys, bangles, Food stuffs, Sweets, etc made roaring business. The giant Wheel, Merry-ground, slippery side etc were major attractions of the children.
 
 
A Shrine in honour of St Anthony was also built in the premises of St Sebastian’s Church. This Shrine and the Statue of St Anthony draws many devotees who throng the Shrine on Tuesdays and on other days to pray to him for help in their daily lives.                                                                      



There is a statue of St Roch in the Church which attracts many devotees who pray to St Roche to cure them of various illness most especially skin rashes. St. Roch is known as  the patron Saint against plague, cholera, and skin rashes. St Roch is also known as the patron of Dogs as he loved dogs and it is believed that he got cured of his skin rashes only because his dog would lick the wound .

 

Sunday, March 30, 2014

Old Photographs of KGF 2

 
 

Old Photographs of KGF

A collage of old photographs of KGF showing the Oorgaum Hall, St Michael and All Angels Church, the KGF Mining Company Hospital and the bungalow that was allotted to the Doctors of the Mining Hospital in at Champion Reef, KGF.




Collection of photographs of KGF School Oorgaum later renamed as Parkinson Memorial School






St Joseph's Convent Champion Reef KGF




 
 






Friday, January 17, 2014

The Telephone Exchange in Oorgaum

 
 
 

PHOTOGRAPHS OF KGF

Just the Landscape of KGF, The Cycnaide Dumps, Mill Tailings, the Meter House in Chanpion Reefs, the 5 Lights Junction etc
 

COLLAGE OF PHOTOGRAPHS OF KGF SCHOOL

 
BOY SCOUTS IN KGF SCHOOL

 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

SOME NOSTALGIA - EARTHEN DRINKING WATER POTS FOR COOL WATER IN SUMMER


When we were kids growing up in KGF, we didn't have fancy water filters or refrigerators to store bottles of water for Drinking Water in those days. Our drinking water was always stored in a Mud Pot which was placed on a special stand in a corner of the Dining Room. Here is a picture of one such mud drinking water pot.
 



 
MUD DRINKING WATER POTS
 
 
The water stored in these earthen / mud pots was alsways cool and sweet and had a lovely earthy taste. This cool water was filled into glass jugs and placed on the side board, with a set of tumblers for us to use whenever we felt thirsty.
There was also another type of mud goglet that was also very handy and in much use in the old days. We also had these mud goglets at home, which were much smaller than the water pots and could be carried easily. In fact in those days, many people carried these goglets along with them on train journeys.
Here is a picture of this old earthen drinking water goglet below
 
DRINKING WATER GOGLET


 

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

THE KGF RESCUE STATION AND THE RESCUE TEAM

 
The KGF Mining Rescue Team was considered to be the best mining rescue team in the whole country in the olden days and the team won many awards and citations. This is the picture of the Rescue Team which won the Barraclough Challenge Shield in the All India Mines Rescue Competition in 1955.


There were several instances of tragic and fatal accidents inside the mines that left many workers physically handicapped and incapacitated. Several times, there was loss of lives due to the Rock Bursts or Air Blasts. The Rock Bursts during the 1920s and 30s and the massive Rock Burst in 1952, claimed many lives as quite a few miners were buried alive.
When the Air Blasts occurred under ground, several miners would get trapped inside the tunnels and die due to suffocation and injuries. The passages and tunnels get blocked due to landslides.
The John Taylor and Sons Company formed a dedicated rescue team which would immediately get into action to rescue workers trapped underground due to mining accidents and disasters such as rock bursts, fires, explosions, cave-ins, flooding of the mines etc. The KGF Mining Rescue Team was thus established in 1923. The Rescue Station was housed in a building quite close to the Oorgaum Station Railway crossing a short distance away from the Nandydroog Mine Offices.
The Rescue Team was always on call 24 x 7, to attend to any emergencies both underground and on the surface. The team was well versed in all rescue procedures and specially trained to rescue miners trapped underground with minimum time loss. They were fully trained in rendering timely First Aid and in the use of the Proto Safety equipment, SABC Breathing sets etc, especially when the miners were suffocated due to lack of oxygen on account of landfalls, fire, smoke, toxic mine gases, etc.
The KGF Rescue Team was soon considered to be the best mining rescue team in the country and won many awards and citations. A picture of the team which won the Barraclough Challenge Shield in the All India Mines Rescue Competition in 1955 is appended hereto.

Friday, September 27, 2013

A FOOT BALL GREAT OF CHELSEA FOOT BALL CLUB WHO WAS BORN IN KGF - LEN DOLDING

A FOOT BALL GREAT OF CHELSEA FOOT BALL CLUB WHO WAS BORN IN KGF - LEN DOLDING

 


For those Foot Ball Fans especially supporters of the Chelsea Football Club, here is some Trivia about Desmond Leonard Dolding (13 December 1922 – 23 November 1954) an English footballer and cricketer who was born in our very own Kolar Gold Fields.
The English Football Giant, Chelsea Football Club had the distinction of having four Indian born Football players including a player who was born in Kolar Gold Fields who have represented their club during the yesteryears. Len Dolding was born in Kolar Gold Fields and played 27 games For Chelsea Football Club in the three years after the Second World War.
Born on 13th December 1922 in Nandydroog Mine, KGF, South India, Len Dolding served as a
bomb-aimer in the Royal Air Force during the Second World War. He was a fine footballer playing as a winger for Chelsea Football Club (27 league appearances in 1946 - 1948) and Norwich City (12 appearances.
He was also a Cricketer and played for MCC for about seven years as a right-arm leg-break bowler. He was the 12th Man for the England Team in the Lord's Test of 1949. Sadly, he died at the age of 32 years  in a Car Accident on 23rd November 1954 in Wembley UK.  The Football and Cricket Scene lost one of their most talented Footballers and Cricketers.

Sunday, September 15, 2013

THE KGF TRAIN - BANGALORE TO MARIKUPPAM

This article from the Deccan Herald on the 13th September is quite humourous. It also high lights how versatile and willy our KGF locals are when it comes to suiting their own convenience.
On the jouney back to Marikuppam, there are invariably 4 or 5 unscheduled stops  caused by pulling the alarm chain in the train when the train reaches a certain locality or area. These passengers get "dropped" right at their doorsteps. Once the train stops, these "train stoppers" or "alarm chain pullers" just jump off the train, then very kindly pull the string to reset the chain and let the train carry on to its destination Marikuppam. The "Fine" for unauthorised stoppage of trains by pulling the Alarm Chain is Rs.1000/- but since the Chain pullers escape under cover of darkness, the Railway Protection Force is deprived of a nice fat amount!
I'm sharing the article below

 

Thursday, September 12, 2013

SOCIAL LIFE IN KGF IN THE EARLY DAYS


The Anglo-Indian Community in KGF had quite an active social life in the early days of KGF. They loved having parties and get togethers. Card games, Bridge and Whist Sessions were a regular past time in their homes when 3 or 4 families got together. Card Sessions and Whist Drives were also regularly arranged in the Clubs and Associations. They were all passionately fond of music and dancing.
 
 
Almost every person was musically inclined, and they played a variety of instruments. The English Grand Piano was the prized possession in many homes besides a number of musical instruments such as guitars, banjos, drums etc. Many of them were proud owners of a 2 band Radio and a gramophone or Radiogram. Records of old favorites such as ‘O Sol Mio’, ‘Fools rush in where Angels fear to tread’, etc, were very popular in those days.
They had a number of Rhymes and Ditties that they sang at parties and get-togethers. Any occasion warranted a party with much sing-song and dance. Parties at home were jolly, riotous affairs with everybody lustily singing old-time favorites such as ‘Roll Out the Barrel’, ‘When Irish Eyes are Smiling’, ‘She’ll be coming down the Mountain’, ‘Kookaburra sits on the old gum tree’, ‘Row, Row, Row your boat’, etc, accompanied by someone on the piano or Guitar or banjo. There would be much clapping of hands, stamping of feet and beating of pots and pans to keep time. The singing got lustier as the party wore on with the amount of booze being consumed. Their spirits rose higher as ‘the spirits’ went in!!!
Country Music was also a hot Anglo-Indian favorite besides Rock and Roll and Jazz. Most Anglo-Indian children grew up listening to these country songs on the radio or the lucky few who owned records and LPs played them on their gramophones or Radiograms. Popular Country songs in those days were ‘You’re the reason our kids are so ugly’, ‘All my Exs’ live in Texas’, ‘Cotton fields’, ‘She got the ring and I got the finger’, ‘Who’s gonna take the garbage out when I’m gone’, ‘At the Gas station of love, I got the self-service pump’ etc, etc.
Some of the Anglo-Indian boys looked and dressed like the popular film stars of that time such as Clark Gable and later like Elvis and Cliff Richards, sporting the same hair styles and side locks, while the girls resembled the likes of Marilyn Monroe, Doris Day and other Holly wood actresses with their distinctive features and fair skins. Jam Sessions, Pound parties, Go-Go Dances, Socials and Cultural Evenings were regularly organized, and there
was no dearth of entertainment for the Community in KGF in the 1940s to 60s. Sadly the KGF of today is very different to those wonderful times.