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South Asia Studies

Revenue Stamp of one of the Princely States of India


Special and Digital Collections


These include archives, special collections, and digital libraries. Archives include historical records, documents, and artifacts. Special collections are archives usually grouped by a shared topic or provenance. Digital libraries house digital archives, special collections, galleries, and exhibits. 



The Bancroft Library's Digital Collections, available through the California Digital Library's Calisphere, is an ever-growing collection of digital images, text, audiovisual, and other content files. 



The California Digital Library (CDL) is a collaborative effort responsible for the design, creation, and implementation of systems supporting shared collections. 


The Digital South Asia Library (DSAL) is a University of Chicago and Center for Research Libraries program supported by leading U.S. universities and various South Asia institutions.


Hathi Trust is a collaboration between Big Ten Academic Alliance and University of California system universities that began in 2008 and offers a collection of millions of digitized titles. 


The Library of Congress (LOC) is the world's largest library and "provides access to a diverse source of knowledge to inform, inspire and engage intellectual and creative [research] endeavors."


The Online Archive of California (OAC) provides free public access to primary resource collection descriptions maintained by more than 200 institutions.


The South Asia Archive "provide[s] global electronic access to culturally and historically significant literary material produced from within, and about, the South Asian region."


The South Asia Open Archive (SAOA) is a free open-access resource for key historical and contemporary sources in arts, humanities, and social sciences, from and about South Asia. 


The Court Fee and Revenue Stamps of the Princely States of India is a a gift collection of stamps, each including a state name, a tax classification, and a tax amount. 

Before India's independence from Britain in 1947, Indian princely families collaborating with the British ruled nearly half of the Indian subcontinent. As early as 1797, the British issued the Court Fee and Revenue Stamps of the Princely States of India to collect taxes from Princely State residents.


Featured Stamps
                    Alwar                                       Bundi                                    Indargarh                        Udaipur (Chitrakot) 








Sikh immigrants

Echoes of Freedom: South Asian Pioneers in California, 1899-1965 is an exhibit created from Azadi di Gunj (Echo of Freedom), an early collection of Indian nationalist poems calling for a revolt against British rule in India, published in San Francisco by the Pacific Coast Hindustani Association, later known as the Ghadar party."


Excerpt - "In the late 19th and early 20th centuries, businessman, students, farmers, and laboreres began coming to California from India. Many decided to settle here and make California their home. This exhibit tells their story--their struggles, successes, and contributions--through material from the rich "South Asians in North America" archive.


Formerly known as the Hindustan Ghadar Party Collection, the South Asians in North America (SANA) Collection relates to an Indian nationalist party based in Northern California during the first two decades of the 20th century. The collection includes primary source photographs, pamphlets, party literature, and interviews in Punjabi, Hindi, Urdu, and English. 


Also see: Annotated and Selected Bibliography

Gobind Behari Lal Collection. This collection, ranging from circa 1945 to 1979. includes 8 cartons of papers, notebooks, photographs, and other items related to Gobind Behari Lal, who came to UC Berkeley in 1912 on a scholarship, joined the Gadar Party, and participated in the Indian independence movement. He later worked as a science journalist for Hearst newspapers, becoming the first Indian-American to win a Pulitzer Prize. 

Henry Morse Stephens Collection. This is an early bequest in 1919 of an important collection relating to British India and Indian history. 

Kipling Collection. This collection on Rudyard Kipling was begun in 1919 and expanded by a major purchase in 1963 of rare and scarce materials, first editions, manuscripts, typescripts, and ephemera. 

Krishnabai Nimbkar CollectionThis was a gift in 1955 from Dr. Krishnabai Nimbkar's collection on India's Congress Party, including correspondence, papers, pamphlets, and policy statements.

Leo E. Rose Himalayan Collection. This collection was begun with extensive purchases made in Nepal by Professor Leo Rose on politics, history, and law in the 1950s and continued with purchases under the Himalayan Border Countries Program from 1960 to 1969 and is currently enhanced by acquisitions under the Library of Congress Acquisitions Program. This collection includes microfilm of portions of the holdings of the India Office Library, London and the Nation Archives in New Delhi on the Himalayan region, with a concentration on Nepal. It is especially strong on the 19th and early 20th century period and is a unique resource in the U.S. 

Maps of South Asia. The Earth Sciences & Map Library holds 4500 maps and nautical charts of South Asia, in addition to world maps and general maps of Asia and the Indian Ocean region. There are also 65 atlases and gazetteers of the area. 

The Power of Patterns: Double Ikat for Textile Exchange in India and IndonesiaIn her honors thesis, My Chan highlights two distinctive types of textiles produced by tie-dying the warp and weft threads before they are woven, hence "double ikatPatola in Gujarat, India and Geringsing in Bali, Indonesia.

S.K. (Swarna Kumar) Mitri LettersThis collection consists of four letters (10 p.) Mitri, a "Hindu student", wrote to a fellow student at the University of California Berkeley. It includes details of Mitra's life in Bengal, India, where he married against his family's wishes and tried to start a boycott of British goods. Mitri also writes about how he came to UC Berkeley, his feelings about the campus, and his attitudes toward "foreigners."