A Rich History! Richmond College, Galle

Forgotten History of Richmond College by Ananda Dias Jayasinha is now available ….

Richmond HISTORY COVER

I. A Review by Ananda Ariyaratne

Social enlightenment is a natural reflection of level of the intellectual capacity of any society. It in turn was always dependent on the civilizations both local as well as those interacted. Sri Lanka is a land that can boast about her own unique civilization that had evolved in an environment that was always open to outside influence while providing the opportunity to progress in a kind of isolation that affected its identity which is in several ways similar to all the island civilizations of the world. Sri Lanka is such an island civilization that clearly shows that external influence coming from another land thousands of miles away.

Although, Sri Lanka was affected by all the seafaring nations that had their people crisscrossing the vast Indian Ocean, the most outstanding and inseparable features had been left behind by the British. Two other European nations had a foothold in the coastal regions but were unable to penetrate deep into the hinterland like the British who took the complete control of this land in 1815 after controlling the coastal lands from 1796, within a very short period like nineteen years.

British legacy: British were able to take control of the whole land more easily due to the way their commerce was established, making it a mixture of effective administration of the local society as well as their trading activities. It is in connection with that the early history of the British in Sri Lanka, this exceptional work, which has no doubt been the result of a determined and dedicated commitment of the writer– Ananda Dias Jayasinha.

The British first appeared here in 1796, in numbers, and the missionaries came in behind the soldiers and the trade-administrators. Their systematic  exploitation of the potential here became more effective due to the participation of the ‘local elite’ that had got used to working with the foreign masters and by that time it had already developed a strong legacy of local aristocratic families which had natural become the bridges between the local people and the rulers.

Although Sri Lanka had a very impressive and a proud history of seats of Learning and a line of acclaimed scholars who excelled in oriental languages and arts, all such learning had been very limited. It was by the British Missionaries that the first organised schools started to serve the ordinary people. Richmond College in the South is an exceptional seat of learning that enriched Lankan nation. The impression that was there about the origin of that great school that produced a large number of exceptional citizens was that it commenced in 1876.

Richmond 1861 Richmond Hill in 1861 a painting by the Rev Jobson when he visited Richmond hill in 1860 on his way to and from Australia. the provenance Caroline Simpson Library and Research collection, Sydney Australia (here is the link -> http://collection.hht.net.au/firsthhtpictures/resbyfield.jsp?term=mission+buildings&field=SUBJECT&searchtable=CATALOGUE_SEARCH_PICTURES&displayFormat=TABLE). you will find very many pictures from ceylon during the British era.

Known history: The writer who had embarked on doing a book stumbled upon evidence about the evolution of Richmond by chance and naturally, spent some considerable time in trying to learn about that part of the history, not known, as it was never presented. The value and the greatness of Ananda’s work is exceptionally significant due to that only. The conviction that had motivated the writer to be very passionate about the beginning of the school is understandable and also justifiable as any subsequent developments could never have happened unless it was born first.

Therefore, the year of birth is important as all the developments that could have taken place over the years can be treated as what happened during its lifetime. The Official Missionary records and publications referred to a ‘First School’ in Galle, under several names for the same establishment. “The Galle School”, “The Wesleyan Boy’s School, Galle”, and in the records of the Imperial Government it had been referred to it as the “Galle Boys’ School”. After the Methodist Mission purchased the “Sillery’s Hill” or “Mount Seymour” about a mile and a half from the Galle Fort. The Methodist Mission administrators had preferred to upgrade the school that existed than starting another new school and the conglomeration of some sections that had existed in several parts of Galle came to function from one place by the year 1858.

The South Ceylon as the Missionaries called the country outside the North and East was lagging in English Education. Due to the persisting efforts by Missionaries like the Rev Scott and the Rev George Baugh two schools in the South became high schools. Though the Ceylon Mission received the sanction in 1873 to upgrade the Galle School to a High School and with plans afoot to upgrade the School and name it Wesley College Galle, the pressure exerted by the Colombo elite saw the Ceylon mission upgrading the Dam Street School and renaming it Wesley College. However in 1875 the Mission conference in England sanctioned the upgrading of the Galle School to a High School and in 1876 the School became a High School, which has been in existence from 1814. As far back as 1858 the School was at the same place where the Great School exists even at present. In records, it had been known as “Kumbalwella School”,” Richmond Hill School, Richmond Institution” and finally Richmond College since 1881.” It is 139 years since the school became a high school and 200 years since her beginning.

Rev Langdon Revd Langdon

 

rippon_hall  Rippon Hall – the original Rippon girls school (which was then known as Richmond hill girl’s boarding School) from the Wesleyan Juvenile Offerings of 1864.

Missionary activity:  The technique the writer has used is the simple presentation of facts found in various documents originated or maintained by some Missionaries who had played significant roles during the times relevant and sometimes.

The wealth of information gathered and presented in the process by the writer provides a ready and easily accessible source regarding great Methodist Missionary educationists who had done a lot in developing schooling facilities not only for boys but also for girls. Rev. McKenney, Rev. Clough, Rev. Rippon, Rev. Spence Hardy, Rev Gogerley and the Rev. Samuel Langdon, are some in the early years and in later years, the Rev James Horne Darrell and the Rev W. J. T. Small the Rev. Henry Highfield. The Rev Newstead contributed immensely to the education in the South.

With the development of Commerce, the affluence of the people around also had improved and more and more people became interested in educating their children. The administrative aspects that linked add up to valuable information a scholar may seek in upgrading his knowledge. The information the writer has gathered are very much in detail and is well connected to the Imperial Government Records as well as what can be found in Missionary Reports, as may be applicable only to the education and schooling facilities that had been taken very seriously.

***    ****  ****

II.  CONTENTS

A Message from the President, Methodist Church Sri Lanka …………………   xxi

About the Book ………………………………………………………………………………..  xxiii

Foreword ………………………………………………………………………………………   xxviii

Preface……………………………………………………………………………………………. xxix

Acknowledgements……………………………………………………………………………… xli

Abbreviations……………………………………………………………………………………. xlv

Prologue …………………………………………………………………………………………….   1

Part One ……………………………………………………………………………………………  11

Chapter One …………………………………………………………………………… 13

Introduction……………………………………………………………………….. 13

Guidance …………………………………………………………………………..  19

Peremptory requirements……………………………………………………. 24

Explanations to non-Christian readers…………………………………. 26

About the Anniversaries ……………………………………………………… 27

Chapter Two……………………………………………………………………………. 29

The beginning – 1814 ………………………………………………………….  29

The First Methodist School in Asia ……………………………………….. 30

The beginning of Wesleyan education …………………………………… 34

The founder of the First School…………………………………………….. 35

The wrong Atapattu Walauwwa ……………………………………………  36

Doornberg – The Mudaliyárs residence………………………………….. 37

The last Missionary to arrive in Galle……………………………………. 42

The first students ………………………………………………………………. 44

Mission’s first property ……………………………………………………….. 45

Chapter Three …………………………………………………………………………. 49

The Early Years, 1815-1816 ………………………………………………… 49

The First Sunday school in Ceylon ……………………………………….. 52

More Missionaries to Ceylon – 1816 ……………………………………… 52

Education during the Colonial era ……………………………………….. 54

Catch them young ……………………………………………………………… 57

Chapter Four ………………………………………………………………………….. 59

Rediscovering the forgotten history ………………………………………. 59

Types of schools …………………………………………………………………. 60

Classes and schools …………………………………………………………… 63

Galle station and circuit ……………………………………………………… 65

English, Anglo-vernacular and vernacular education …………….. 66

The Mainstay – The Galle School………………………………………….. 67

The Charity Schools …………………………………………………………… 68

Chapter Five …………………………………………………………………………… 73

Societal impact on education ………………………………………………. 73

The branch schools ……………………………………………………………  74

Caste, Creed and Class ………………………………………………………. 75

The dead not allowed to ‘Rest in Peace’ …………………………………. 77

Comb play havoc ………………………………………………………………… 78

Dress and caste …………………………………………………………………. 79

Finding people on coconut tree tops ……………………………………… 80

Caste issues in Anglican Schools …………………………………………  80

Methodist Schools and caste ……………………………………………….. 82

The malignant Caste issues ………………………………………………… 86

Caste and ‘The Galle School’ ……………………………………………….. 87

Caste in other parts of the country ………………………………………. 88

Caste in jails ……………………………………………………………………… 89

Empty that well…………………………………………………………………… 90

Chapter Six …………………………………………………………………………….. 93

The Galle School, 1817-1830 ……………………………………………….. 93

Beginning of Vernacular Education ……………………………………… 94

The Mágálla English School ………………………………………………..  97

Wesleyan Methodist English Schools ……………………………………  99

Scant history of Schools ……………………………………………………. 101

Beginning of Anglo-vernacular school …………………………………  103

Schools in the Galle Station ………………………………………………  107

Chapter Seven ………………………………………………………………………. 117

Colebrooke-Cameron Commission ………………………………………. 117

The Commission Recommendations ……………………………………. 118

The School Commission …………………………………………………….. 122

Schools of Methodist Mission……………………………………………… 123

Did The Galle School discontinue? ……………………………………… 124

Social Changes in 1833……………………………………………………… 126

The Ceylon Civil Service…………………………………………………….. 127

Chapter Eight ……………………………………………………………………….. 131

The years, 1834-1840 ……………………………………………………….  131

Reluctance to join the Government list ……………………………….. 133

The Galle School – 1837……………………………………………………… 135

Chapter Nine ………………………………………………………………………… 141

The years, 1841-1850 ……………………………………………………….. 141

Female education in Ceylon ………………………………………………. 143

Ladies Society for Female education …………………………………… 144

Wesleyan English Girls’ School – Galle ………………………………… 145

The Galle Schools ‘taken in the list’ ……………………………………  148

Fort and Mágálla Schools merge…………………………………………. 153

Opinion of a researcher……………………………………………………… 156

The discontinued schools ………………………………………………….  160

Commission guidelines ……………………………………………………… 164

Registering and releasing of schools …………………………………… 165

The Government Education scheme…………………………………….. 168

The Central School Commission ………………………………………… 171

The Galle Boys’ and Girls’ schools ………………………………………. 173

The Rev William Bridgnell …………………………………………………. 177

The Rev Gogerly’s “Christiani Pragñapti” ……………………………….. 179

Chapter Ten…………………………………………………………………………… 181

Dawn of a new era – 1850 and beyond ………………………………… 181

Mount Seymour or Sillery’s Hill…………………………………………… 184

Mt. Seymour renamed Richmond Hill ………………………………….. 186

A Superior School in South Ceylon …………………………………….. 188

The proposal by the Rev Joseph Rippon ………………………………. 190

The Conference resolution …………………………………………………. 193

Chapter Eleven………………………………………………………………………. 199

Richmond Hill after 1858 …………………………………………………… 199

The Rev John Walton’s address – 1860………………………………… 201

The Rev Dr Jobson visits Richmond Hill……………………………….. 203

Rev Langdon and Punchi Nona…………………………………………… 211

The branch schools………………………………………………………….. 214

Winds of change………………………………………………………………. 216

The Morgan Commission…………………………………………………… 217

Schools released from the list……………………………………………… 220

Department of Public Instruction………………………………………… 221

Chapter Twelve………………………………………………………………………. 227

Agitation for a Superior School……………………………………………. 227

School sanctioned in 1863 ………………………………………………… 229

Whitefield Road Girls’ School………………………………………………. 232

The Ragged School……………………………………………………………. 233

The Richmond Hill Institution ……………………………………………  234

Baugh, Langdon and Kandy Girls’ High ………………………………. 235

Years leading to the Superior School ………………………………….. 236

The Rev John Scott writes to the Society …………………………….. 238

The battle for sites…………………………………………………………….. 243

Building the cause…………………………………………………………….. 246

North-South disagreement…………………………………………………. 249

Wesley College taken away from Galle…………………………………. 251

The veiled threat ………………………………………………………………. 257

The Buddhist Sunday – Poya Day……………………………………….. 259

Part Two…………………………………………………………………………………………… 263

Chapter One…………………………………………………………………………. 265

The Galle High School ……………………………………………………….  265

The First Principal – Rev Samuel Langdon ………………………….  267

Vernacular and Anglo-vernacular Schools ………………………….. 269

Transformation to a High School ………………………………………… 270

Dissolving views – Rev Baugh’s lecture………………………………… 271

Richmond and the butterfly……………………………………………….. 273

The Rev Baugh writes in joy……………………………………………….. 274

The Rev Langdon pens to the Society………………………………….. 276

Last days of Rev Baugh in Galle…………………………………………. 282

Science as a subject in the school ……………………………………..  283

The tutorial staff ………………………………………………………………  286

Galle High School is renamed Richmond …………………………….  286

Normal School separated in 1885 ………………………………………  287

The Department of Public Instruction …………………………………  288

Fate of the Anglo-vernacular school ……………………………………  290

Conflict with the High Church…………………………………………… 293

Methodist Missionary Superintendents and Principals…………. 295

Methodist Missionary Superintendents …………………………. 296

The Principals …………………………………………………………….. 297

Chapter Two ………………………………………………………………………….  299

Lectiones didicit …………………………………………………………………  299

The controversial advertisement…………………………………………. 300

The founder of Richmond …………………………………………………..  302

Obstacles faced by the Missionaries …………………………………..  304

Fossilised figments……………………………………………………………. 306

The first school become Richmond ……………………………………..  307

Opening of the Darrel Hall – 1900……………………………………….. 308

The first educational Missionaries……………………………………… 311

Relocating scholars to the hill ……………………………………………  313

A sophomoric question……………………………………………………… 315

Was it a new school?………………………………………………………… 315

The beginning of Matriculation Class …………………………………  318

Classic examples ……………………………………………………………..  320

Reasons for not correcting the History ………………………………..  323

History, College Magazines and Logbook ……………………………..  328

William Henry “W. H.” Solomons ………………………………………..  329

Upgrading to a Superior School in 1876……………………………… 332

Where things went wrong ………………………………………………….  333

Historical revisionism ……………………………………………………….. 334

Birth date, Birthday or a milestone …………………………………….  337

The delay in starting a High School ……………………………………  338

Richmond Hill Methodist Church ……………………………………….  341

The ‘Big Bell’ ……………………………………………………………………  342

First library of the Galle High School………………………………….. 344

Rewriting history………………………………………………………………. 345

The Rev Darrell and the glass eye ………………………………………. 348

Bo the tree and Baugh the Missionary ……………………………….  349

Richmond values ……………………………………………………………..  350

Making of Pukka Sahibs ……………………………………………………. 353

Duplicity of the natives ……………………………………………………… 355

Wesleyan Methodist Schools ……………………………………………… 358

Rippon Girls’ School, Galle …………………………………………..  359

Southlands Girls’ School, Galle …………………………………….  360

Newstead Girls’ School, Negombo ………………………………….  361

Methodist Girls’ School, Colpetty …………………………………..  366

Girls’ High School, Kandy…………………………………………….. 368

Methodist Central School, Hakmana …………………………….  370

Vembadi Girls’ High School, Jaffna ……………………………….  371

Hartley College, Point Pedro ………………………………………….  371

Methodist Central College, Batticaloa ……………………………  373

Methodist Girls’ High School, Point Pedro………………………. 375

The Siblings …………………………………………………………………….  375

The greatest gift of the Methodists ……………………………………..  377

Missions give up their schools ……………………………………………  379

The 1951 Diamond Jubilee Souvenir ………………………………….  382

Conclusion ………………………………………………………………………  384

Part Three………………………………………………………………………………………… 389

Chapter One………………………………………………………………………….. 391

The Wesleyan Mission to Ceylon………………………………………… 391

The Rev Dr Coke’s journal …………………………………………………  394

Off they sail to Ceylon ……………………………………………………….  401

… And the Dr Coke’s is dead ……………………………………………..  404

Chapter Two…………………………………………………………………………… 407

Missionary arrival in Ceylon……………………………………………… 407

Missionaries land in Galle and Weligama…………………………….. 410

The several Stations of the Missionaries ……………………………..  413

The historic decision made…………………………………………………. 415

Appendixes……………………………………………………………………………………………. i

Appendix I……………………………………………………………………………….. iii

Despatches by the Governor General Brownrigg………………………. v

Despatch by the Governor to Henry Goulburn Esq. ……………….. viii                                                                                       

Appendix II……………………………………………………………………………….. xi

Jubilee Memorials Cover …………………………………………………….. xiii

Appendix III………………………………………………………………………………. xi

Jubilee Memorials Cover …………………………………………………….. xiii

Jubilee Memorials title page ……………………………………………….. xiv

Preface – R. Spence Hardy……………………………………………………. xv

Jubilee Memorials – Page 210 …………………………………………….  xvii

Appendix IV……………………………………………………………………………. xix

The journal of Rev Clough (partial) ………………………………………  xxi

Appendix V…………………………………………………………………………… xxiii

Missionary Register 1816 cover …………………………………………..  xxv

Missionary Register Title Page ……………………………………………  xxvi

Page 111 – Galle………………………………………………………………. xxvii

Appendix VI…………………………………………………………………………… xxix

Wesleyan Missionary Notices 1877 Volume IX……………………… xxxi

Wesleyan Missionary Notices 1877 Title page…………………….. xxxii

Wesleyan Missionary Notices April 1877 – Ceylon ……………..  xxxiii

Appendix VII …………………………………………………………………………  xxxv

Wesleyan Missionary Notices 1878 Volume I cover……………… xxxvii

Wesleyan Missionary Notices November 1878………………….. xxxviii

The South Ceylon District ……………………………………………….  xxxix

Appendix VIII …………………………………………………………………………  xliii

British Parliament, House of Commons papers – Title page …….. xlv

Authentication – Bodleian Library, Oxford University ……………  xlvi

Colebrooke-Cameron Papers 29~33 ……………………………………  xlvii

Appendix IX …………………………………………………………………………….. liii

Accounts and Papers: East India, Ceylon – 1852……………………… lv

On the fixed establishments of Ceylon …………………………………. lvii

Appendix X ……………………………………………………………………………… lix

Conveyance of Mt. Seymour to the Methodist Mission …………….. lxi

Bibliography………………………………………………………………………………………. lxv

Index………………………………………………………………………………………………… lxix

Year index………………………………………………………………………………………… lxxv
B (24)  Darrel Hall today

RICHMOND–ePaper_ _ Online edition of Daily News – Sri Lanka28

ISBN No: 978-955-44-3490-5  
 
Priced at Rs. 2250/- P&P (Parcel postage) Rs.40/- in Sri Lanka  
price US $ 17/-) P& P packing typically 9$ extra
 
Weight 1 Kg Soft cover  –  560 pages of 80 gsm  good quality paper 

In Colombo:

CG ASSOCIATES, 

University Bookshop
Kumaratunga Munidasa Mawatha,
University of Colombo 
Colombo 7
Telephone/Fax: (011) 573 6506
 
Publisher
Sayuri Printers & Publishers (Pvt ) Ltd.
102/176, Mattegoda Road
Mattegoda 
Phone: (011) 278 3333
Fax : (011) 284 4961
 
In Galle from
HAZARA Resturant
Richmond Hill Road, (Wekunugoda Junction)

OR  VIA ananda.diasjayasinha@gmail.com 

 

3 Comments

Filed under British colonialism, cultural transmission, economic processes, education, education policy, heritage, life stories, modernity & modernization, religiosity, sri lankan society, world events & processes

3 responses to “A Rich History! Richmond College, Galle

  1. Congratulations !.
    Sri Lankans should not forget that it was the missionary education system that brought in social mobility in Sri Lanka. The concept of Free education is appreciated, but the school take over in 1962 headed by Bahurdeen Mohomed has caused the down fall of so many schools that served the nation with high standards. Today the middle class Sinhala and Tamil students are deprived of a proper education because of this short sighted move.Benjamin

  2. Lal de Mel

    I presume you were known as ‘ Benja’ at Richmond College? It is regrettable that some members of RCOBA are resisting the recognition of the link between Galle Boys High School, which commenced in 1816 and Richmond College.

  3. Pingback: Revd Small of Richmond: Educationist Extraordinary | Thuppahi's Blog

Leave a Reply