Indian Indentured Labour in Natal 1860-1911

Areas indentured Indians came from

Finding the area ones ancestors came from is a daunting task. To assist the searcher, the table below has been created. The table distinguishes between the taluk ( which often has the same name as the town/village or district) (Column 2), the district proper (Column 3) and the presidency/State (Column 4). These three subdivisions are not to be confused with the three place names that accompany each indenture entry (with name, age, sex, caste, height, place names etc). The indenture entries lists place names that are villages, thanna (police circle) and zillah (district). Hence, one needs to find the district first before finding the village/town etc. In the table below a clear indication is given where a taluk or district falls and the presidency/state involved. Use the map of India 1900 to ascertain the relative location of the district (Column 3) and the presidency/state in India (Column 4). Once the district is found with the assistance of the table below, the village/town/taluk may be ascertained. Separate maps for the Madras Presidency (South : Tamil speaking)Madras Presidency (North : Telugu Speaking ), Province of Agra and OudhBihar is provided to assist in the location of the districts within these presidencies/states.

The three principal areas that contributed to over 2/3 rd's of Natal immigrants were the Madras Presidency, Provinces of Agra and Oudh and the Bengal Presidency (Behar features prominently). It is interesting to note that immigrants were drawn from as far as the Punjab, Champarun and other states like Mysore as well as Mauritius and Reunion Island (probably those who already served indenture there). In the table below an * signifies Taluks/tahsils (column 2) that may have the same name as the District (Column 3) or in themselves be districts. Hence, some smaller districts (Column 2 with *) lie within larger ones (Column 3). The "/" signifies alternate names while the "( ) " around a name signifies present day name change/usage.

Please note that while the Madras Presidency is divided into the Tamil and Telugu sections by two separate Maps ( Madras Presidency (South : Tamil speaking).Madras Presidency (North : Telugu Speaking ), often there were overlaps in languages e.g. the district of Chittoor had 56% Tamil and 39% Telugu speaking peoples. So Tamil in the table below refer to the Southern lying Taluks/districts while Telugu refers to the Northern Taluks/districts.

 
PORT OF DEPARTURE Taluks/Districts DISTRICT ONLY PRESIDENCY/States Remarks
Madras   Arcot, North Madras Presidency (Tamil)  
Madras   Arcot, South Madras Presidency (Tamil)  
Calcutta Agra Agra United Province of Agra & Oudh  
Calcutta Aligurh (Aligarh) Aligurh United Province of Agra & Oudh  
Calcutta Allahabad Allahabad United Province of Agra & Oudh  
Madras Arnee* Arcot, North Madras Presidency (Tamil)  
Calcutta Arrah Sahabad Bihar  
Madras Athur/Atur* Salem Madras Presidency (Tamil)  
Calcutta Azimghur (Azamgarh) Azimghur United Province of Agra & Oudh  
Calcutta Bahraich Bahraich United Province of Agra & Oudh  
Calcutta Ballia Ballia United Province of Agra & Oudh  
Calcutta Bancoorah Bancoorah? Bengal Presidency  
Calcutta Banda Banda United Province of Agra & Oudh  
Madras Bangalore Bangalore Mysore  
Calcutta Barabanki (Bara Banki) Barabanki United Province of Agra & Oudh  
Madras Bellary Unknown Madras Presidency (Telugu) Lies west of district of Anantapur (Andhra segment)/ Karnatika?
Calcutta Benares Benares United Province of Agra & Oudh  
Calcutta Bharatpore ? * see comment Most probably lies on east of Rajputana Agency where Bharatpur is today
Madras Bobbilli* Vizagapatam Madras Presidency (Telugu)  
Calcutta Budaun Budaun United Province of Agra & Oudh  
Calcutta Bustee (Basti)* Bustee United Province of Agra & Oudh  
Madras Cassimode Madras Madras Presidency (Tamil)  
Calcutta Cawnpore (Kanpur) Cawnpore United Province of Agra & Oudh  
Madras Chingleput* Chingleput Madras Presidency (Tamil)  
Madras Chittoor* Arcot, North Madras Presidency (Telugu)  
Calcutta Chupra Sarun Bihar  
Madras Coimbatore Coimbatore Madras Presidency (Tamil)  
Madras Conjievaram* Chingleput Madras Presidency (Tamil)  
Madras Cuddalore* Arcot, South Madras Presidency (Tamil)  
Madras Cuddapah Coimbatore Madras Presidency (Tamil)  
Calcutta Dahabad Unknown Unknown  
Madras Erode Coimbatore? Madras Presidency (Tamil)  
Calcutta Etah Etah United Province of Agra & Oudh  
Calcutta Etawah Etawah United Province of Agra & Oudh  
Calcutta Faizabad (Fyzabad) Faizabad United Province  
Calcutta Fattehpore/Futtehpore (Fattehpur) Fattehpore United Province of Agra & Oudh  
Madras Ganjam Ganjam/Srikakulam Madras Presidency (Telugu)  
Calcutta Ganjam Ganjam/Srikakulam Madras Presidency  
Calcutta Ghazeepore (Ghazipur) Ghazeepore United Province of Agra & Oudh  
Madras Godavery/Godavari Godavari Madras Presidency (Telugu)  
Madras Gonda Gonda United Province of Agra & Oudh  
Calcutta Gonda Gonda United Province of Agra & Oudh  
Calcutta Gorakhpore (Gorakpur) Gorakhpore United Province of Agra & Oudh  
Madras Gudiyatam* Arcot, North Madras Presidency (Tamil)  
Calcutta Gya (Gaya) Gya Bihar  
Calcutta Hazareebag (Hazaribagh) Hazareebag Bihar  
Calcutta Jaunpore (Jaunpur) Jaunpore United Province of Agra & Oudh  
Madras Kistna Kistna Madras Presidency (Telugu)  
Calcutta Lucknow Lucknow United Province of Agra & Oudh  
Madras Madras City* Chingleput Madras Presidency (Tamil)  
Madras Madura Madura Madras Presidency (Tamil)  
Madras Madurantakam* Chingleput Madras Presidency (Tamil)  
Madras Malabar Malabar Madras Presidency (Tamil)  
Calcutta Mirzapore (Mirzapur) Mirzapore United Province of Agra & Oudh  
Calcutta Monghyr Monghyr Bihar  
Calcutta Mozafferpore (Mazaffarpur) Mozafferpore Bihar  
Calcutta Muthra (Mathura) Muthra United Province of Agra & Oudh  
Madras Mysore Mysore Mysore  
Madras Nagery Arcot, North Madras Presidency (Tamil)  
Madras Nellore* Nellore Madras Presidency (Telugu)  
Calcutta Nepal Nepal Nepal  
Madras Palakonda* Vizagapatam Madras Presidency (Telugu)  
Calcutta Patna Patna Bihar  
Madras Peddapore (Peddaporum)* Godavari Madras Presidency (Telugu)  
Calcutta Pertabgarh/Pertabgurh Pertabgarh United Province of Agra & Oudh  
Madras Poloor* Arcot, North Madras Presidency (Tamil)  
Madras Ponner (Ponneri)* Chingleput Madras Presidency (Tamil)  
Calcutta Poorooleean Unknown Unknown  
Calcutta Rae Bereilly (Rae Bareli) Rae Bereilly United Province of Agra & Oudh  
Madras Rajamundry* Godavari Madras Presidency (Telugu)  
Calcutta Sahabad (Shahabad) Sahabad Bihar  
Madras Salem* Salem Madras Presidency (Tamil)  
Calcutta Sarun (Saran) Sarun Bihar  
Calcutta Sooltanpore (Sultanpur) Sooltanpore United Province of Agra & Oudh  
Madras Sydaput (Saidapet)* Chingleput Madras Presidency (Tamil)  
Madras Tanjore Tanjore Madras Presidency (Tamil)  
Madras Tindivanam/Tinivanam* Arcot, South Madras Presidency (Tamil)  
Madras Tinnevelly Tinnevelly Madras Presidency (Tamil)  
Calcutta Tirhoot   * see comment Most likely in Bihar or Bengal Presidency
Madras Tirutani* Arcot, North Madras Presidency (Tamil)  
Madras Trichinopoly Trichinopoly Madras Presidency (Tamil)  
Madras Trinamalai Arcot, South Madras Presidency (Tamil)  
Madras Trivellore (Tiruvallur?)* Chingleput Madras Presidency (Tamil)  
Calcutta Unao Unao United Province of Agra & Oudh  
Madras Unknown Unknown Madras Presidency District/Taluk could not be ascertained /not given
Madras Vellore* Arcot, North Madras Presidency (Tamil)  
Madras Villupuram/Villipuram* Arcot, South Madras Presidency (Tamil)  
Calcutta Vizagapatam Vizagapatam Madras Presidency (Telugu)  
Madras Vizagapatam* Vizagapatam Madras Presidency (Telugu)  
Madras Wallajah* Arcot, North Madras Presidency (Tamil)  
Madras Wandewash* Arcot, North Madras Presidency (Tamil)  

 

Last updated : 09-Nov-2016

This article was produced for South African History Online on 09-Nov-2016

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Indian Indentured Labour in Natal 1860-1911
Indian Indentured Labour in Natal 1860-1911
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The majority of Indian South Africans are the descendants of indentured workers brought to Natal between 1860... more