Chennai’s Lighthouse Man documents India’s lighthouses

DECCAN CHRONICLE. | TASNEEM AKBARI KUTUBUDDIN
Published Aug 14, 2019, 12:14 am IST
Updated Aug 14, 2019, 12:14 am IST
Fondly known as ‘The Lighthouse Man', his book, Madras Exchange Light House is a result of extensive research on the lighthouses of Madras.
Indian light house section at his home turned museum
 Indian light house section at his home turned museum

For engineer and maritime historian D. Hemachandra Rao, lighthouses light up his eyes. For those known to him, he is a walking, talking guide to city's rich cultural heritage and a connoisseur for all things that have collected a history and story around them through the years. His findings and souvenirs from his trips across the years decorate his house-turned-museum.

Fondly known as ‘The Lighthouse Man', his book, Madras Exchange Light House is a result of extensive research on the lighthouses of Madras. The data was gathered from the Tamil Nadu archives over a period of eight years and gives an insight into how the "system" worked then. This year for him is unique and special as Madras’ second light house is 175 years and Madras third lighthouse 125 years old.

 

“Madras’ 2nd lighthouse opened on 1st January 1844, and Madras' 3rd lighthouse opened on 1st June 1894”, he says. On this occasion, Hemachandra deemed it apt to launch a Panorama of Indian Lighthouses Section to his ‘Maritime Heritage Museum’ that was launched last August in his home.

Hemachandra Rao also curated a Classic Bridges of City Walk on Sunday for 18 enthusiasts who turned up to see 8 bridges of the city hidden under their feet. They started from Commander -In- Chief Bridge and ended finally at the Wallajah Bridge behind Arcot Palace.

D. Venkataraman, Director, DGLL, TN Region will inaugurate the section at Madras Heritage Museum, at 10.30 a.m.

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