Labor

The "Dhoby"

The "Dhoby"

Hobson Jobson (1903) the great dictionary of Indian words in English, defines "Dhoby, Dobie s. A washerman; H. dhobi [from dhona, Skt. [Sanskrit] dhav, 'to wash.'] In colloquial Anglo-Indian use all over India. A common H. [Hindustani] proverb runs:

Dhobi (Washerman)

Dhobi (Washerman)

Another evocative card by M.V. Dhurandhar injects personality into the roving washerman. In the background is an edifice of the "new" Bombay while in the foreground we see the age-old profession of washermen cleaning the resident's laundry.

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Shell Cutters

Shell Cutters

Shell cutters usually use saws and other blade instruments to cut raw shells into different shapes to create jewelry, bangles, drinking vessels and other accessories.

Road Sweeper

Road Sweeper

This finely lithographed card by Clifton & Co. was one of the their most popular images, and produced in multiple black and white formats. Originally from a photograph, this colored version would have required multiple print runs.

Toddy Drawers

Toddy Drawers

Toddy or palm wine as made from sap collected by climbers like this one in little pouches; fermentation was so fast in the humid air that a mildly alcoholic drink could be had in a few hours.

Water Carrier

Water Carrier

The bhistee or water carrier was a critical support to urban life before running water became widespread and reliable, and is one of the most frequent postcard subjects.

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