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“No matter what he or she does, or how long or short they live,
everyone on this planet plays a central role in forming the history of the world”

Indian Memory Project is a visual and narrative based online archive that traces the histories and identities of the Indian Subcontinent, via photographs (and sometimes letters) found in personal archives. Contextualised with narratives, the photographs are contributed to the archive from all over the world. The micro-stories reveal a macro narrative, and thus a powerful and historical palimpsest of a largely undocumented society and subcontinent.

With personal images serving as evidence, each post on the archive reveals valuable information about the Subcontinent’s people, visitors, families & ancestors, cultures, lifestyles, traditions, choices, circumstances and thereby consequences. Indian Memory Project is a empathetic and personal memory of the world – a sociological and photographic history, remembered, realised and experienced by its own people.

Indian Memory Project was founded in February 2010, by Anusha Yadav and is based wherever the Founder-Editor may lay her hat/MacBook, though it is mainly in Mumbai, India.

CONTRIBUTE YOUR OWN STORY

If you’d like to contribute your own photograph and story, please click this icon.

VOLUNTEER TO COLLECT STORIES

If you’d like to volunteer your time and help IMP collect stories and images for the archive, please click this icon.

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This Post Has 62 Comments

  1. Loved the Presentation at INK talks :) It’s some amazing work you’ve been doing!!!

    1. Thank you :) Such encouraging words.

  2. Hi ,
    Its a Great Copncept . I came to know about this while i was visiting Yahoo . My best wishes are always with you . I am a desginer and a web developer too if any help needed during the project do let me know ..

  3. What a fascinating idea Anusha :) Loved looking through the photographs and reading the stories that go with…amazing stuff! Hope to contribute soon :) Bravo!

  4. Hi Anusha,

    A lovely, lovely project..more reason for me to go back into the archives and get stories of photos before they are lost.

    Superb work.

    Parul

  5. Anusha
    i have fallen hopelessly in love with this rich account of the modern history of India! congratulations and i hope to support it inthe ways i can…
    charu

  6. This is absolutely brilliant. I first read about it in Indian Express EYE magazine. Will definitely try to contribute. Need to dig photo albums a bit :-)

    did I say this was AWESOME!

  7. Dear Anusha. This is outstanding idea. Kudos. First, I wud like to contribute my paternal grand parents’ photos & history soon. Second I had an entrepreneurial idea on which I am working for the last 2 years, which I wud discuss with u when we meet in Delhi sometime. Do let me know of your visit next. Regards. Uday Sahay

  8. A great work. Really very impressive. It helps the current generation which includes me, to know more about our pasts.

    If I am interested in sending a picture and its information, can it be done through emails or is there any address?

    Shivangi.

      1. Thank you. will try my best in promoting your website.

  9. Thank you, Anusha for starting this remarkable project. Each post and each picture here is a glance into another life from another time – at once we see how important these people from another time were and realize their little place. It is a wonderful insight into the cultures, mores and ways of a bygone time – captured without the hypocrisy or generalization or cynicism that a historian may produce – with merely anecdotes and accounts of direct relatives. Once again, thank you.

    1. Hi , thank you so much for a vert appreciative comment. I am very chuffed too! :)
      Warm regards
      anusha

  10. Dear Anusha, many thanks for the blogg posting, I’ve managed to get in touch with lost family members in Australia. I wonder if you could pass on my e-mail address to a lady on your blog called Deborah Nixon who is also doing some similar studys of the last days of the Anglo Indians in India.

    Thank you, Jason Scott Tilley

  11. Hi Anusha,

    its really a superb project and very interesting to go through these pictures. i enjoyed it..

  12. the best. i love it.

  13. Thank you for this amazing project. I’m writing my dissertation on Indians who traveled to England in the late 19th and early 20th century and have been going nuts trying to track down family photographs from that era. This is brilliant!

  14. This is so wonderful. I will be submitting pictures and stories

  15. Anusha, excellent initiative. I have a few photographs which my family dug out from the Earth which I shall send across and look forward to have compiled along with many others.
    Everyone, please promote such an initiative in the various media you are equipped with.
    Cheers,
    Arjun Mehta

  16. Great work.You really get lost in the old world !
    It needs more publicity so that many more can contribute to this great project.
    Amit

  17. very intresting project. would love to be a part of it. have some old old photographs.

  18. Wonderful project. Keep the good work going.

  19. very cool project anusha.
    do hope it picks up critical mass quickly!

  20. Hi, good beginning. I am a Sindhi, born in Karachi in 1938. My father, Prof RR Kripalani (Mathematics .. DJ Sind College) and his wife, Sushila, moved from Karachi to Delhi In Sept 1947, with me, my younger siste,Indu, and youngest brother, Gul, lived there for10 years.
    I have been able to gets e lovely pictures of my father as an actor in Tagore’s play, Dak Ghar in 1937 in DJ Sind College, Karachi. I have several pictures pre -1990, of various activities in Delhi and Mumbai. I shall be happy to share these with readers of this beautiful site.

    Congratulations to those who have worked with this project.

    (Mrs) Shamlu Kripalani Dudeja

  21. Grt work, will contriibute soon. lots of photos got destroyed in Mumbai floods of july 2005. Will need to sort out and hope to post soon!

  22. Very interesting project. I have family photos up, dating from the early 1900s, of my family in India, Fiji, South Africa, and other locations, at http://www.minalhajratwala.com/ (scroll down and click on “View Slideshow”). The files are a bit large to transfer over email but if you’re interested, we could figure out another way to get them to you.

    Warmly,
    Minal Hajratwala

  23. Dear Ms Anusha,
    I want to send a small cash contribution for the use of the project. Kindly let me know to whom I send it and the bankers or place where I should send it.
    Lt Col G Kameswara Rao (retd)

    1. Dear Mr. Rao, I am honored and touched by your offer. I am in the process of setting up accounts, however it may take some time.If you can wait for a couple of months. as everything is in process. If you like and only if you do, you can send the cheque in my name and I will send you receipt as well as expenditure proofs.
      Do let me know, either is fine by me and honestly I’d be more comfortable if the cheque comes to the Indian Memory Account, as everything is then transparent. you can send me an email on anusha.yadav@gmail.com
      Thank you once again.
      Warm regards
      Anusha

  24. Hey awesome stuff! I am an archivist with Godrej Archives, so i have a fair idea of how humongous your task is. Keep it up!
    At Godrej Archives we have a collection of photographs covering shopfloor activity, life in the housing colony, product pics etc etc. The oldest ones, however, belong to the Godrej family. While most of these photographs are in very good condition, some have faded or have become very brittle. Can you help me with contact details of photograph conservators?
    Lastly, Please include me in your mailing list. Id love to stay in touch and help in whichever way possible.

  25. Great idea and wonderful nostalgic pictures. Am just wondering why you are confining this to photos taken in India? There are equally interesting old pictures of Indians taken outside India eg in Malaysia, Singapore and Sri Lanka. There may also be pictures people have inherited without knowing where these were taken. May help us to trace friends and relatives elsewhere in the world!

    1. Thank you for your comment. I agree with your point and have been considering it as well. :) Shall make the changes in criteria tomorrow. Thank you again. Cheers Anusha – for Indian memory project.

  26. people come and go but photographs live on……its a brilliant concept!!

  27. I love The Indian memory Project…….. mzaaa hii aa jaata hai pics dekh ke…..

    after college was over n job started I somehow stopped photography, but then my good luck i came across ur website and again I was up in the air. And now I’m clicking pics each n everyday…. It brightens me n my day….. I download all ur pics n watching them is a great fun. “A picture a day keeps the voices away”

    Love
    Naval

  28. Hi friend, I came to know this through Tehelka and was facinated. Indeed its a great idea and a national treasure. I wish to see it more organised and streanlined . Thank you very much

    1. Dr. Sayeed, I am in the process of looking for funding to give this project a place and format it deserves, online. If you have an leads on corporates and/or and individuals, interested in sponsoring this project with no commercial criteria, then we’d be happy to hear from you. :) regards.

  29. This is such a treasure. Kudos to you and to everyone contributing for putting this together. Wonderful archives and stories, lost and found. Thank you for doing this!

  30. Very interesting stuff and kudos to you for taking up this challenge.
    The only concern is how to validate photographs and the information provided by the owner of the photograph ?

    1. That is the maximum validation and information one can ever get. No one knows better than family, and we trust that they are being factual and truthful :)

    2. Regardless of how honest the facts may be, the photographs themselves are genuine. I am sure that itself validates this project.

  31. Hi Anusha,

    I came to know about your project from a recent article in the newspapers. I must thank you for taking this initiative.

    I have read about similar project esp those from Library of Congress – http://memory.loc.gov/ammem/index.html and the Exotic New Zealand National Library’s Matapihi project – http://www.matapihi.org.nz/

    I am not sure of how are you cataloguing the photographs that get uploaded, DAM has limited capabilities to enrich the metadata of content.

    I would love to discuss more about it.

    regards and once again…an awesome job.
    Ganesh Yanamandra

  32. A great commendable effort. I have some old photographs of my parents and grand parents’ time which I shall send soon.

  33. came to know about this project from Mans World. I am really excited. Always wanted to see my forefathers’ pictures and others’ too. My last 3 generations were photographers except my father and my grandfather. All their brothers/cousins were. But there are so few pictures of them available. Really it is a joy to see people as they looked earlier specially other than celebrities. My congratulations and thanks for beginning this project. Please get this project mentioned in more and more magazines and newspapers so that many more people are encouraged to send their archive pictures before they are lost forever to callous future generations.

  34. amazing project . It inspired me to dig up old family portraits which I shall be sending in .

  35. Amazing. I thoroughly enjoyed going through the pictures. All the best!

    Cheers,

    The Quirky Indian

  36. Yours is a refreshing blog. It reminds me of a photograph of the Paradise Hotel in Hyderabad, taken in 1958, which was put up in it’s lobby. I gasped on seeing how much change had come to that place. Could we have more of that kind of “walks down the memory lane”?

  37. A great Idea indeed! I m having good collection of old photographs of our college which is 165 year old.

  38. this is an amazing record to collect. do tell us what do you want to with all these pictures. m very curious :) as a student of life, i these will be a visual record of the India that has been lost now. kudos for this project.

  39. this is a great idea… it was very interesting to go through…

  40. Wow wonderful project to collect the dying datas of picture .

  41. This is a very interesting project that you have taken up. Its so refreshing to take a breather and look at the times gone by…to remember the life that we grew up in but are now too busy to enjoy!! Kudos

  42. Amazing project! cheers

  43. very interesting project. really like it!

  44. great work!

  45. I’m interested to know more about the project. Is there an email address I can reach you on?

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