Sarrah Tucker college of Palayamkottai, TN founded by physically challenged English woman

Sarah Tucker, founder  Sarah Tucker College,
Palayamkottai, TN

 Above image: English woman Sarah Tucker, founder of Sarah Tucker College -1895, Palayamkottai, Thirunelveli, Tamil Nadu. In 1939 it was up graded and till 1966, it was affiliated with Madurai Kamaraj Universit..........

A preponderance of people of South  India, in particular, Tamil Nadu may not be aware of the fact that the Sarah Tucker College of  Palayamkottai town in  Tirunelveli corporation of Tamil Nadu, holds the  distinction of being  the first college for women in south India. The college owes its  inception to Ms. Sarah Tucker of England and her friends,

Sarah Tucker College, Palayamkottai, TN,

Present Kaniyakumari, Tirunelveli districts of Tamil Nadu and the southern districts of Kerala state became an ideal ground for the spread of Christianity in the region in the early centuries. Christianity was first introduced by St. Thomas in 52 AD on the coastal Malabar of Kerala.  However, Christian missionary activities were on the increase in the 1800s in Tamil Nadu. As part of missionary work, Christian schools and college slowly came up on a low key level in the initial stages.

In the Tirunelveli district, there arose a necessity to establish schools to impart education to the poor people.  Established in 1865 by the Christian Missionary Society with four students at the time of its inception, now  Sarah Tucker College for women is a post-graduate, autonomous institution (since 2007) of good repute offering numerous PG courses in many fields. 

 Palayamkottai (Tirunelveli) TN. location map,

During the East India company rule and later during the British Raj, European missionaries, both men and women came to India  for missionary work and to open up several Christian educational schools to impart knowledge  to natives. The East India Company, in the early stages, allowed the missionary activities with certain restrictions. Names such as Christian Friedrich Schwartz (1726–1798), an Angelo-Saxon missionary settled at Thanjavur, TN, George Uglow Pope (1820–1908), Constantine Joseph Beschi, an Italian Jesuit priest, Sister Maria Teresalina Joaquina, a Spanish Catholic missionary to Kashmir (July 1918 - 27 to October 1947; who was murdered by invading Pakistani mercenaries, Isabella Thoburn (1840–1901) of the American Methodist Episcopal Church, best known for her establishment of educational institutions and missionary work in North India and a host of preachers  made valid contribution in the field of education in India.

Sarah Tucker College, Palayamkottai, Tamil Nadu,
One Sarah Tucker, though a physically challenged and confined to her room in England, her trust in Jesus Christ and zeal for missionary work never declined.   Being a good writer, she wrote numerous articles on matters related to  missionary works, charity an deeds of piety. She had very much limited mobility, but not  her Christian faith of love and care for other people which  rather grew by leaps and bound.  

One among the volunteers to do service in India Sarah never landed on the shores of India for the missionary work, but she had a soft corner for the Indian natives.  Ms. Tucker used to read reports  on  the missionary activities going on in other countries as well. When Tucker read reports on Indian women and their physical and mental  sufferings both at home and work places under various appalling conditions, she was very much saddened and their pathetic conditions  very much affected her. She realized the root  cause of problems in Indian women's suffering is their illiteracy, lack of education and motivation. Upon hearing that there was no proper women educational institution in southern  India, she made up her mind to have a separate educational institution started to impart knowledge to Indian women. With  a crusading spirit, she volunteered to get her vision fulfilled.

Through education, Indian women can realize and achieve  their full potential  in fundamental  fields that will prepare  them for tomorrow's challenges and establish them as worthy citizens. They may become  shinning examples to the posterity.  With this motto in mind, she and her  her friends, guided by crusading spirit   and enduring  faith in god, raised funds for the proposed institution in India  - a small school for training teachers for elementary schools in Tirunelveli District in south India.  The small  institution  became a High school and later  was raised to  a college 1895.   
Sarah Tucker College, Palayamkottai.

Thus Sarah Tucker became an overseas fairy-like founder of a woman's institution in South India.  This institution was named after Ms.Sarah Tucker - a fitting tribute to her - whose inspiration and dedication, despite her being  confined to England, was responsible for the founding of this first ever women's educational institution in S. India.  Motto of the college is: "So run that ye may obtain the incorruptible crown"
'Service to people is service to God.'' This great, distinguished woman is absolutely a shining example  of this ancient wheeze.