Book on European graves in
Kannur, Feb 6:
Malabar: Christian Memorials 1737-1990, a book on European gravestones and church memorials in the Malabar towns of Kannur, Thalassery and Mahe has been released at the International Book Fair in
New Delhi. The book, researched and written
by Dr John C. Roberts, a social anthropologist who worked at Oxford
and Columbia universities, and N P Chekkutty, a
senior journalist in Calicut,
has details on the Portuguese, Dutch, French and English gravestones in the
region. The book also has a complete list of Europeans buried in various
cemeteries in these towns during the past two centuries, based on the burial registers maintained in
The authors said research work on the book was launched in September 2010 and data was gathered from the extant gravestones in cemeteries, burial registers in churches, and quarterly returns on births and deaths maintained by the French and English governments on their citizens, kept in the
and the French National Archives.
The book covers burials at the St Johns Anglican Church and Holy Trinity RC Church in Kannur, the
Anglican Church and the Holy Rosary RC Church at Thalassery, and the St Theresa’s
Church and cemetery at Mahe. The burials at the German Basel Mission cemeteries
at Kannur and Thalassery are also recorded. The book has details on the European
regiments and native troops stationed at the Cannanore Cantonment and details
on deaths in armed forces.
The authors said the book gives a comprehensive picture of the health hazards faced by the Europeans in the colonial towns in 19th century, as most of the entries have details on the cause of death.
The 272- page book, with two maps and a large number of photographs, is published by the South India Research Associates (SIRA), a voluntary network of researchers and scholars, registered in New York.