ASSAM DISTRICT GAZETTERS.
VOLUME VII.
Sibsagar.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

BY
B. C. ALLEN, C.S.
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PUBLISHER'S NOTE

The Assam District Gazetteer Vol. VII Sibsagar printed in 1906 has long been exhausted. This volume is a veritable treasure-house of information on the then undivided Sibsagar district and throws immense light on the conditions prevailing during that time. Considering the importance of this volume it was decided to bring out a reprint for the benefit of all concerned. I am grateful to Shri P.C. Sarma I.A.S., Commissioner to the Govt. Of Assam, Education Department, for his keen interest in the project and also to Shri R.C. Medhi, Editor, for his dedicated efforts but for which the project could not have been undertaken within so short a time. This project entails reprint of the entire series of Assam District Gazetteers, 1905-06 of which this volume is the first.

Amlan Baruah

Editor-in-Chief,

District Gazetteers,

Assam, Guwahati.

Date 17.07.93

 

 

PREFACE.

The Gazetteers of Sibsagar is nothing more than a general description of the district as a whole, and does not, as Gazetteers generally do, include a directory. There are, however, hardly any places in the district which are worthy of the name of town, and the little villages in which the people live do not call for a separate and detailed description. Places which are centres of local trade or of some industry have been specified by name, but to attempt to describe each of these villages would merely have resulted in the most tedious iteration. It should be added that the Gazetteer was compiled at a time when Assam was still a separate Province, and that when the Province is mentioned it is to Assam and not to Eastern Bengal and Assam that reference is made. My acknowledgments are due to the Deputy Commissioner for his kindness in examining the work in proof.

SHILLONG :                                                                                                                                                B.C. ALLEN.
October 1905.

 

 

 

 

 

CONTENTS.

CHAPTER I.—PHYSICAL ASPECTS

Area and boundaries—General aspects—Hills –The Majuli--- River System—Geology—Climate— Rainfall—Storms and earthquakes—Fauna.

CHAPTER II—HISTORY

Early history—The Kachari kingdom—The Chutiyas—Their downfall—The advent of the Ahoms— Steady growth of their power—Koch and Muhammadan invasions—Rudra Singh in 1700 A.D rules the whole of Assam Proper—The Moamaria insurrection—Invasion of Assam by the Burmese— Occupation of Assam by the British—The manners and customs of the Ahoms—The Paik system— The fighting qualities of the Ahoms—Arbitrary form of Government—Social life—Attitude towards Hinduism—The position of women—Condition of the country in 1824—Restotation of Upper Assam to Purandar Singh and the resumption of his territories in 1838—Plots in 1857—Peaceful progress under British rule—Affairs on the Naga frontier—Archaeological remains—Chronological ta

CHAPTER III.—THE PEOPLE.

Area and density—Towns and villages—Growth of population—Migration—sex and marriage— Infirmities—Language—Caste and tribe—Religion—Saktism—Sivaitism—Vaishnavism—The sattras of Sibsagar—Muhammadans—Animism—Other religions—Christians—Occupations— Marriagecustoms—Amusements and festivals—List of sattras.

CHAPTER IV-AGRICULTURE AND FORESTS.

Crops grown—RICE—Mustard—Pulses—Fibres—Storage and threshing of grain—Agricultural implements—Sugar cane—Preparation of molasses—Causes affect- Ing productiveness of land—Garden crops-Yield and value of crops-General remarks-Grazing-Live stock-Cattle disease—Protective embankments—Commence- Ment of tea industry—The boom in the early sixties—Collapse in 1866—Expansion of the industry- Labour supply—La bour laws—Situation of tea gardens-Soil—Varieties of plant—System of cultivation—System of manufacture—Green tea—Outturn and prices—Forests—System of management—Situation of reserves and revenue they yield—List of important reserves.

CHAPTER V.—INDUSTRIES.

Arts and manufactures—Pat silk—Muga—Eri silk—Weaving—Pottery—Brass and bell-metal —Matmaking—The fishing industry—Jewellery

CHAPTER VI.—ECONOMIC CONDITION OF THE PEOPLE, COMMUNICATION TRADE, TOWNS, AND LOCAL BOARDS.

Rents-Wages-Price—Food and dress—Dwellings—Economic condition of the people—Conventional restrictions—Communications—Development of steam navigation—Railways—Roads-Rivers-post and telegraph offices—Commerce and trade—Markets—Towns—Local Boards.

CHAPTER VII.-GENERAL ADMINISTRATION.

Native system of land revenue—Early settlements—The settlement of 1893-The settlement of 1902- Growth of land revenue-Established and fluctuating cultivation Annual and periodic leases—Settlement staff—Land tenures—Mauzas and tahsils—Realization of land revenue-Unsettled waste—Excise—Income-tax—Stamps—Public works—Government— Criminal and civil justice—Registration—Police—Military Police—Volunteers—Jail—Education— Medical—Survey . .