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COLOMBO HARBOR - 1913

"Colombo Harbor from the Landing Jetty, Ceylon (1913)"

"the large steamers shown in the picture are ships of the Peninsular and Oriental ("P. & O.") and other lines running to India, China and Australia. The small native boats are catamarans, made from a tree trunk hollowed out and fitted with an outrigging of two poles extending at right angles from the canoe and connected at the ends by a float. The upper part of the canoe is made of boards lashed on...Contrast the steamers of Christendom! Better fifty years of Europe than a cycle of Cathay!"

 
The "blurb" on the back of this pic goes on to inform the reader (inter alia) that Ceylon is a little over half the size of Cuba, with 4,000,000 people [nowadays it is over 18,000,000] and that in 1913 Colombo has 150,000 residents. Oh, and "there is a little railroad from Colombo to Kandy in the center of the island, which runs through a country rich in tropical vegetation, and ruined temples of an ancient civilzation".