The ultimate story of the
Darjeeling Himalayan Railway
by TERRY MARTIN
368 pages - over 350 illustrations
“The Darjeeling Railway is one of the world’s most remarkable journeys. UNESCO has recognised this pioneering mountain railway as a World Heritage site and Indian Railways have committed themselves to making it worthy of that status. I am delighted to recommend this new book by Terry Martin, which will deepen all his readers’ commitment to the DHR”
Sir Mark Tully
“An extraordinary piece of research, narration and presentation. The photographs are amazing, the old ones particularly so. Darjeeling and the DHR owe you great thanks”
Governor of Bengal
(Grandson of Mahatma Gandhi)
It is indeed an astonishing railway, for it scales mountains that lie in an earthquake zone, its trackbed is ravaged annually by monsoon rains, and it serves a kaleidoscope of cultures that are governed by an alarming array of religions and political beliefs.
The success of his first book on the DHR Halfway to Heaven has inspired Terry Martin to continue with his research, and it has led him to a wealth of fascinating stories and recollections from those who lived and worked on the railway. He has also traced a huge amount of long-forgotten archival material, all of which has been underpinned by extensive fieldwork on the long-defunct branches of the railway that crossed the cauterising plains to Kishenganj and burrowed deep into the capricious Teesta Valley.
The author has re-cast the story of the DHR against the social and political backdrop of the Darjeeling and India, and has illustrated it with over 350 historical photographs and maps, most of which have hitherto been unseen. The Iron Sherpa beautifully complements the original book, and this outstanding new work of 368 pages on art paper will become the bible for anyone interested in Darjeeling and its remarkable railway.
(Volume 2 is scheduled for publication end of 2008 or early in 2009, and will include detailed descriptions of the journey, the locomotives and rolling stock, and the operation of the railway over the years)