Clive House, Chennai - the man who changed the political map of the world, lived here!!

Clive House, Ft.St.George, Chennai.

Clive House, Ft.St.George, Chennai. ThenThisai

Above image: The East India  Company, having obtained a charter from King Charles authorizing the erection of Courts to deal with interlopers, established the Court of Admiralty in 1686 with Sir John Briggs as Judge-Advocate. Since then it had been called as the Admiralty House...............

Clive House, about 300 years old,  imposing brick and mortar structure. is a historical place right on the southern side of St. George Fort across the St. Mary's church, Madras (Chennai) and it was here Robert Clive who  lived with his wife  has made history. Clive and his wife lived in the house owned by an Armenian merchant. It was also then known as Admiralty House., this being due to the fact that "The Courts of Admiralty, established in 1687 as a Court of Appeal — later was functioning  in this building, according to Historian S. Muthiah whose special interest is monuments around Madras.  His book, "Madras Discovered, a Historical Guide to Looking Around," first published in 1981 is quite useful to those  who are interested in Madras and its colonial structures, in particular. Presently, ASI is functioning here, way back in the past, the Court of Admiralty ceased to function and it became the town residence of the governor.  Nice wooden floors,  beautifully carved wooden staircases and high ceilings with,  roof supported by "British steel" girders made by Dorvan Long & Co. Ltd, Middlesbrough, England bring out the beauty of early colonial building and ambiance.   The highlight of Clive House is a huge hall on the first floor with Corinthian columns, obviously a banquet Hall that would have seen many lavish parties and balls  with the band playing numbers from Mozart, Beethoven, et al. The Clive house was heavily damaged with leaking roof, walls, etc., partly due to negligence and ageing. The later additions spoiled the colonial look. 

Clive Hose being restore, Chennai. The Hindu

Tablet inn Clive House, Chennai India Mike

In 2004, the ASI meticulously, removed the additions, repaired the damaged parts, replaced the wooden panels in the windows with glass and restored it back to old elegance and beauty without compromising on the its heritage values. Serious attention was paid to the leaking roof and ASI did  tight water-proofing. Pot-tiles with brick jelly and lime were being used.
Of particular interest was the restoration of  the majestic  banquet hall to its original charm.
Clive House, Ft. St.George, Chennai. Flickr

01. After India's Independence, the Pension office, the Pay and Accounts office, Internal Audit office, and even a part of the Accountant-General office, used to function from the building.

02. The main part of the building is the banquet/dining hall where many parties were held. The historians call it one of the oldest reception halls in Chennai.

03. The Admiralty House is not the government building on the government estates. 

04. When Robert Clive joined the East India Company, Madras  as a writer in 1743, he was just 18 years old with no proper education
Robert Clive. British Library blogs

Above image: Robert Clive's wedding took place at St. Mary's Church, Ft. St. George, Chennai. Clive had a close link with Madras, the city that became his launching platform for grooming the greatest empire in the world and his personal wealth ...........

05. Circumstances forced Clive to take to the sword, instead of pen and fought a successful war with the French forces operatiing on the southern east coast of India.  Commander/Administrator Joseph Dupleix, his capture of Ft. Davis, Cuddalore and defence of Arcot in 1751 won him laurels. His ultimate success in the Black Hole incidence in Calcutta and finally the capture of Bengal from Nawab Siraj-ud-Dauala won him enormous name, power and pelf, establishing himself as the earliest founder of the British Empire. He also amassed a lot of wealth, of course illegally.  Lord Curzon considered him "one of the master-spirits of the English race."