Between 1908 and 1938, 130 young Anglo-Indians were sent to New Zealand. They were the mixed-race children of British tea-planters and Indian women, raised in a Presbyterian mission school in northeast India and sent as workers to families all over New Zealand.
Separated from their parents and their places of birth, these “Kalimpong Kids” went on to blend in to the local communities and seldom spoke of their Indian heritage.
In this series, historian Jane McCabe discusses the Kalimpong scheme and the journeys of many descendants to uncover their hidden family histories.
Jane shares her personal story of discovery: one photograph led her to visit Kalimpong in 2007 and to uncover not only her grandmother’s mysterious past, but the organised emigration scheme that she was a part of.
What’s In a Name?
In this episode we discuss three photographs and how they help us to better understand the distinct parts that interracial tea plantation families were separated into: tea planters, Indian mothers, and Anglo-Indian children.
The Kalimpong Community in NZ
Visible, or invisible? Despite the silence that came to pervade this history, Kalimpong emigrants left a rich visual record of their lives in New Zealand, particularly in the Wellington region.
Photographs and Artifacts in a Hidden History
In this final episode we discuss two photographs that have played a key role in extraordinary stories of discovery – from a rickshaw ride in Singapore, to the remnants of a Kalimpong emigrant’s life retained by a Southland farming family for over a century.