6 Interesting Facts About Colonial Assam That You Should Know
Assam is brimmed with amazing facts and figures.
A land of diverse culture and tradition, where everyone lives with harmony, where mother nature has copiously blessed the land with rich natural resources, diverse flora and fauna, unique and diverse land mass and Brahmaputra river as its lifeline.
A State in India which has its own State Anthem, celebrates Bihu thrice a year, has Maa Kamakhya's abode in the Nilachal Hills of Guwahati, is the producer of Muga silk, has the world's largest river island - Majuli, the world's smallest river island - Umananda, Asia's oldest amphitheater “Ranghar" in Sibsagar, Asia's highest One-Horned Rhino population, Asia's oldest Refinery and the birth place of crude oil and now has India's longest river bridge.
It has Mayong, a place like Hogwarts which is famous for black magic and witchcraft and has Dhekiakhowa Naamghor at Jorhat, which has a earthen lamp that has never been put off since 1461. The lamp was lit by the saint Madhavadeva in 1461, and has been burning since then.
Being from Assam we have perceived the above facts so many times that whenever you seek out some interesting facts about the state, this is all that you come by.
However, Assam is filled to the capacity of numerous other facts too, which brings me to present you 6
interesting facts about the Colonial Assam which you should definitely know.
1. The only Indian who died in The Quit India Movement.
We all know the Quit India Movement was one of the most important independence struggle. But did you know, only one person lost his life in the entire country during The Quit India Movement? He was Kushal Konwar from Assam.
Kushal Konwar was hanged in connection with the derailment of a train at Barpathar. Due to the government's tightened noose on the people Kushal Konwar became the only martyr to be hanged in the entire country during the Quit India Movement.
So it was an Assamese who was the only martyr of the Quit India Movement.
2. First women of Assam who died in The Non-cooperation Movement
When Mahatma Gandhi visited Assam in 1921, an alcoholic woman named Mongri, who worked as a labourer in a tea garden got so influenced by Gandhi's vision, that she not only gave up drinking alcohol but also actively participated in Anti-Liquor drive of Assam. Mongri lost her life in a clash that occurred at the picketing of liquor shops and hence became the first woman of Assam who got killed in the Non-Cooperation Movement.
3. Margherita - How a town in Assam got named after an Italian Queen?
In 1865, Goodenough of McKillop Stewart & Company got a place on rent free lease in upper Assam, 8 miles away from Digboi for a period of 20 years. After some failed attempts of digging boring wells, he finally struck oil in that area.
Since McKillop was an Italian Engineer, the people decided to name that place after the Italian Queen Margherita as a tribute to the Engineer and an honor to the Queen of Italy.
So an Italian Queen holds a tribute here in Assam too.
4. Dig Boy Dig!
One of the most usual facts we know about Assam is that Asia's Oldest Refinery is in Digboi, tucked away from the hustle and bustle of city life. But how did Digboi get its name?
It is being said that the British Engineers ordered the labourers to dig the land so hard that they could reach its commercial motive. "Dig Boy Dig" is what they used to say.
Thus, the call to dig the land, "Dig Boy Dig" gave the town its name - Digboi.
So not all the places in Assam hold a tribute or honour like Margherita does.
5. How did the British find tea in Assam?
Robert Bruce, an official of the British empire is credited with the discovery of tea in Assam in 1823. He saw the Singphow community drinking something made out of boiled leaves. The drink was locally called Fanap or Final. And hence the East India Company looked for that plant seriously and formed a Tea Committee on January 24, 1834 to examine it's commercial possibilities.
So our most essential 'Saah' is the modern generation of 'Finap'
6. Past name of Assam Medical College, Dibrugarh
Assam Medical College, Dibrugarh stands as the first Medical College of Assam.
Dr. John Berry White, MRCS, a British surgeon of the East India Company, was the pioneer who started health education and health care in Assam. And the Medical College was formerly known as Berry White Medical School.
So, the present day Assam Medical College in Dibrugarh was formerly known as the Berry White Medical School.
I believe that our land is still not over with interesting facts. All we need to do is, keep looking
for them as there's a saying "what we know is a drop, what we don't know is an ocean".