Indian and Sri Lankan records from colonial missionaries, 1770-1931

South Asian records of the USPG

South Asian records of the USPG

Educational returns having lately been required by the local Govt, I enclose a copy of it, as far as relates to the schools connected with S.P.G.
Bishop Chapman; Nov 1856E/PRE series reports, 1840-1861; Colombo, 1853-1858; img 2

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Follow Indian and Sri Lankan history from the 19th century to Partition in 1947

The documents in this resource come from the archives of the Society for the Propagation of the Gospel in Foreign Parts (SPG). Some are true archives, arising from the work of the Society in India; some are manuscripts which cover the period when the Society for Promoting Christian Knowledge (SPCK), founded in 1698 was working with the Royal Danish (Lutheran) Mission, founded in 1705. They chart the history of Anglican Protestant engagement in the region from shortly after the strategic turning point in the fortunes of the East India Company wrought by Colonel Robert Clive in the 1750s, through to the toppling of Tipu Sultan in 1799, the controversial changes to the EIC's charter in 1813, the Sepoy Rebellion of 1856-1857, and on right through to Partition in 1947. As with the Society's missions elsewhere in the world, the documents also trace the gradual shift that began in the early 19th century from a church dependent on English priests to one increasingly led by indigenous clergy. Accompanied by an online guide to the collection by Isobel Pridmore, formerly the archivist at the USPG, whose archives are now held at Rhodes House Library in Oxford.


Indian and Sri Lankan records from colonial missionaries, 1770-1931...

Containing 84,424 pages belonging to 134 documents housed in 8 volumes...

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C/IND/GEN, ca. 1770-1844

C/IND/GEN. These seven boxes begin around 1770, during the period of the Society for the Promotion of Christian Knowledge (SPCK),...

Copies of letters received, 1837-1928

CLR. This series begins with two general volumes of correspondence from East India, while the letters in the remaining volumes...

Copies of letters sent, 1833-1931

CLS. Beginning, like the CLR series, with a general volume for correspondence to East India, which includes some items relating...

E/PRE series reports, 1840-1861

E/PRE series comprises four boxes or volumes of largely unbound materials, including some statistics but chiefly the reports of individual...


  • These items cover India, Sri Lanka, and Myanmar; the series contain a variety of reports, copies of letters sent by the Society and copies of letters received by the Society from their missionaries in these countries.
  • The reports start in the E/PRE series in Sri Lanka from 1840 and India from 1852. Reports are summaries of a missionary's work in a set area which were written by that missionary.
  • Copies of letters sent' are handwritten or typed accounts of missionaries' in India, Sri Lanka, and Myanmar. Subjects covered tend to include the development of schools, budget updates and questions about progress.
  • Copies of letters received' cover issues including sending their doctors to colonies, engaging with followers of other religions, and movements of personnel.
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