Sunday, May 23, 2010
The Henrietta legend at Yercaud's Lake Forest Hotel overwhelms you
According to a wonderful booklet produced by the Steve Borgia Indian Heritage Museum, titled ‘India-British – The British Left-Behind Show’, while researching the life of Henrietta Charlotte Rosario (1857-1940), whose home today forms the basis for design of the Lake Forest Hotel in Yercaud, it appears Henrietta has left reminisces from Queen Victoria downwards. Tate, one of the last British planters to have died there, has claimed he has heard Henrietta and her stories. Henrietta, according to him, is the daughter of an unwed mother who was the first to climb the hills in Yercaud. While it was partying at night, it was games in the morning, including hide-and-seek and ringa-ringa roses!
Henrietta, a notable personality in these parts, is said to have adored Her Majesty, the Queen of England. Her album contained pictures of Queen Victoria, Queen Mary and Queen Elizabeth. The album, the booklet mentions, was later updated by Henrietta’s daughter, Kathleen D’Silva, in the 1940s. The album survives today, the booklet adds, thanks to Flossy Tate (was she a descendent of Mr Tate?).
- What was once Henrietta’s home in the hills
- A coffee crusher used by Henrietta, so says a hotel attendant
- Henrietta’s jewel box (same source)
- Was she Henrietta? Most likely, yes
- The sale deed signed by Henrietta (when she sold her land) appears before what must be her picture