Articles

These photo essays entwines the people with the very times, places and events covered in the preceding sections. Where relevant the information has been researched to bring it to the present day. 

They capture memories of people and events, stories  that has come down over the generations or has lain buried in memories or publications. The articles have been researched and presented, based on stories handed down from generations. Most of the people who gave the source/s of the leads, and shared these interesting stories,  are now no longer with us. Thankfully, the verified and documented story remains here, for generations to come. 

Family Coat of Arms

Arms were so called because they were originally displayed upon defensive arms, and coats of arms because they were formerly embroidered upon the surcoat or camis worn over the armor. The term coat of arms, once introduced, was afterward retained, even when displayed elsewhere than on the coat. In the days when knights were so

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Mudaliyars Explained

These pages examines the life and times of the Mudaliyars, their background, the social and administrative function performed by them, their status in society, duties, details that gives us a better understanding of our ancestors some of whom were Mudaliyars. The second page in this series gives the numbers and distribution, their salaries and allowances

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Island in the Stream

  If you travel to the south of the island on the Galle Road, you will travel across the Kalutara Bridge and past the picturesque Kalutara Temple. If you did notice, the bridge is built in two sections, using the island in the middle of the river to shorten the span. This story is about

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E. C. de Fonseka and the Royal Star & Garter Home

In 1922, the Star and Garter Home in Richmond-Upon-Thames, UK, was the beneficiary of a substantial donation from a Sri Lankan philanthropist, Edmund Clarke de Fonseka M.B.E.  The Royal Star and Garter Home for Disabled Ex-Service men and women stands high on Richmond Hill in magnificent surroundings overlooking the river Thames. This unique home offers the

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Ascot Avenue

Ascot Avenue:  This posh residential area owes its name to Major Edmund Clarence de Fonseka During the early part of the century, Edmund Clarke de Fonseka owned some of the largest and the best Plumbago mines in this country. These were at Hikgaha, Goluwanmulle and Himbutamulle. The Plumbago produced from these mines was transported in his

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ARCADIA – The home that lent it’s name to Arcadia Gardens.

Arcadia as painted in the early 1930’s by Otto Scheinhammer (see footnote 2) ARCADIA(1) ;  A search of an Encyclopedia may describe it as a mountainous region of ancient Greece, traditionally known for the contented pastoral innocence of its people or any real or imaginary place offering peace and simplicity. Obviously it would have been

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Fonseka/Fonseca – Brands from around the world

de Fonseca of Italy : Check out this famous Italian fashion house, renowned for their slippers. The company founded over 30 years ago produces and sells over 10 million pairs of footwear each year.  The brand name is based on one of the co founders of the company, Laura Camis De Fonseca and is based

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The Gulf of Fonseca

The Fonseca Gulf or the ‘Golfo de Fonseca’ is located on the Pacific Ocean of Central America. It is an inlet of the Pacific Ocean, with a size of 700 sq miles (1,810 sq km) and is shared by El Salvador, Honduras and Nicaragua. Situated in a volcanic area, it is a natural shallow harbor

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The Brownrigg Gold Medal (1819)

Among the most cherished possessions in the collection of S. R. De Fonseka , (Mudaliyar) was a gold medal presented by Governor Brownrigg to Johannes De Fonseka, (Mudaliyar) dated 21st November 1819 ( see reference section – The D’andrado Papers ). Johannes de Fonseka, Mudaliyar was the son of Franciscu de Fonseka and father of

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Mahawatta – The Dutch Grant

Mahawatta, in the Grandpass area of Colombo, is a property steeped in history. It has been identified with the D’andrado families for well over 200 years. In this page we trace the Dutch grant of this land in 1785, the subsequent allotments of this land in1877, and the situation as at to date. The property

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De Fonseka Road

De Fonseka Road, which connects Dickman’s Road and Vajira Road in the prestige residential area of Havelock Town in Colombo, was named after Mudaliyar Simon Richard De Fonseka. The lane which branches off from this road, and now connects up with the Duplication Road near the popular shopping mall ‘House of Fashion’ is also named

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The Henry Frederick Walauwa:

The old ‘Walawwa’ of Henry Fredrick de Fonseka still exists at 116/1 Horton Place, and is used by it’s present owners, Tudawe Brothers as a Warehouse. The Front of the house has been demolished, and the large garden which extended up to the road (where the above group photo was taken), now belongs to a

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Kalutara De Fonseka Places

Telford Lodge, Kalutara ‘Telford Lodge’ was the home of John Henry de Fonseka. His children Henry Frederick, E.C, Frank, Luke, Emmy and Louise de Fonseka spent the early part of their lives in this house. Later on Frank de Fonseka settled down in this property. His daughter Mary Grace married the son of James Fretz

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St. Kevin’s Bungalow – Then and Now

St. Kevin’s bungalow was at one time the home of Mudaliyar S. R. De Fonseka, and appears  in the book ’20th Century Impressions’ (see the Reference Section), a veritable who’s who of the early part of the century. St Kevin’s was only one of the few properties owned by the Mudaliyar. The property is situated

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Alvinu Lowe Headstone

Alvinu Lowe : This photograph taken in 1997 shows the headstone of Alvinu Lowe’s grave. Alvinu lowe was the Mudaliyar of Kammala Pattu (Ceylon Almanac 1839), Mudaliyar of Pitigal Korale (Ceylon Almanac 1871) and Mudaliyar of the Governor’s Gate (Gate Mudaliyar) as shown in the headstone .He married Michella De Fonseka, daughter of Manuel de

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The McCullum Gold Medal of S. R. de Fonseka

Another medal in the possession of the De Fonseka family is the gold medal received by S. R. De Fonseka (Mudaliyar), commemorating his investiture as a Mudaliyar of the Governors gate. The medal has been presented by Governor Henry Edward McCallum on the 22nd of June, 1911. A picture of a similar medal also appears in

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Family Heirlooms – Artefacts from the past

Decorative Comb – (Bastian de Fonseka 1770) Head ornaments were part of the attire of men of high position such as Mudaliyar, Muhandiram and other officials. The family has retained to date a comb used by Bastian de Fonseka, Muhandiram (Act of appointment 5-10-1770). The comb made of what is popularly known as ‘Tortoise Shell’,

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