Saturday, 17 July 2021

Cargills & Millars Buildings, Colombo

Cargills & Millars Buildings
The old Cargills & Millars Buildings are located on the corner of the Sir Baron Jayatilaka Mawatha and the York Street in Colombo Fort, Sri Lanka.

A Dutch building is said to be on the land where the present Cargills & Millars buildings are located and it had been occupied by Sir Frederick North (1766-1827), the first British Governor of Ceylon from 1798 to 1805 (Rajapakshe et al., 2018). In 1844, a British businessman William Milne started his company at this premises by replacing the old Dutch building and in 1896, it was acquired by David Sime Cargill, a Scottish businessman who headed the popular Cargills & Company (Manathunga, 2016; Rajapakshe et al., 2018). 

During the period 1902-1906, the present two-storied Cargills building that following the renaissance architecture was built by Walker Sons & Company in accordance with the design by Edward Skinner, a British architect (Manathunga, 2016; Rajapakshe et al., 2018; Wright, 1999). In 1907, another two-storied building designed by Skinner was attached to this Cargills building and it belonged to William Cramond Miller, the head of the Millers & Company (Rajapakshe et al., 2018).

By 1946, the ownership of these buildings was in the hands of the local businessmen (Manathunga, 2016).

A protected monument
The building belonging to the Cargills company at No. 40/1, York Street, Colombo 01, situated in the Grama Niladhari Division of Fort in Colombo Divisional Secretary’s Division is an archaeological protected monument, declared by a government gazette notification published on 9 September 2011. 

1) Manathunga, S. B., 2016. Pauranika Sthana Saha Smaraka: Kolamba Distrikkaya (In Sinhala). Department of Archaeology (Sri Lanka). ISBN: 955-9159-39-9. pp.38-39. 
2) Rajapakshe, S.; Bandara, T. M. C.; Vanninayake, R. M. B. T. A. B. (Editors), 2018. Puravidya Sthana Namavaliya: Kolamba Distrikkaya (In Sinhala). Vol. I. Department of Archaeology (Sri Lanka). ISBN: 978-955-7457-19-2. pp.33-34.
3) The Gazette of the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka. No: 1723. 9 September 2011.
4) Wright, A. ed., 1999. Twentieth Century Impressions of Ceylon: Its History, People, Commerce, Industries, and Resources (first published in 1907). Asian Educational Services. pp.457.

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This page was last updated on 25 July 2021
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