Although a coolie – "a hired labourer, or burden-carrier"(Hobson-Jobson, p. 249) – were at the bottom of the social ladder, and the word is said to originally come from Kolis, a hill-people in the Western Ghats, "whose savagery, filth and general
Darjeeling owes its name to a blend of the Tibetan words namely "Dorje" (thunderbolt) and "ling" (place), that translates to "The land of the thunderbolt."
[Original caption] Dandy and Bearers, Darjeeling.
One can only marvel at the early "Greetings from" postcard, the way five photographs are woven into one image with the help of plant motifs, in this case tree branches but often palm trees for Indian images.
Thomas Paar was one of the earliest publishers of Darjeeling postcards, and a longtime photographer with a grand studio in the middle of the hillstation.
"The professional photographers of Darjeeling generated innumerable prints depicting those whose toil supported the lifestyles of the colonialists in their homes and businesses, and who created products they loved to consumer," writes Claire Harris
Darjeeling, located in the lower range of the Himalaya, is often called the "Queen of the Hills." Its Sunday market, when villagers and merchants from the neighbouring villages and towns come to offer their wares, was a very popular postcard subject
Hamburg-American Line was one of the largest shipping lines in the world, and brought a majority of German immigrants to the US, as and many tourists from the US to India.
"I was carried to and from the hall in a primitive conveyance, called a “dandy”; it consists of a bit of canvas, fastened stoutly to an oblong frame of wood, terminating in a short pole at either end," writes Margaretta Catherine Reynolds, author of
An early "Greetings from" postcard of Darjeeling by its premiere early photographer Thomas Paar. Clare Harris in her excellent book Photography and Tibet (Reaktion, 2016) "deconstructs" the figure on the left, whom she correctly calls a 'poster boy'