When I arrived in Calcutta in the sailing ship in which I had travelled out via the Cape, we anchored just opposite the ghaut which was then situated immediately on the river bank, approached by a steep flight of stone-steps.
[Illustration: Photo. by Johnston & Hoffmann Prinsep’s Ghat from the land side]
[Illustration: Mullick’s Bathing Ghat, Strand Road.]
When it was low water, and it seemed at that time to be nearly always so, you had to be carried ashore by the dingheewallahs on an antiquated kind of wooden chair or board, as the mud between the river and ghaut was more than ankle-deep. It was of course an immense improvement in every sense when the land was reclaimed from the river, and the present roadway at that part of the Strand was made and extended in a straight line as far as Tackta Ghaut. The railway to the docks did not then exist nor the two houses to the south of the ghaut, one of which is occupied by the Conservator of the Port. Another striking improvement higher up at the junction of the Strand and Esplanade Road, West, has been also effected in recent years. On the site of the Public Debt Office which has been added on to the Bank of Bengal there had stood, from time immemorial, a large three-storeyed house adjoining the residence of the Secretary and Treasurer of the bank, flanked on the Strand side by some low godowns in which Harton & Co. had their stores and office. It was at various times occupied