Rare & Signed
Reading Room

The Rare & Signed Reading Room safeguards books of immense cultural value on account of signatures, scarcity, and previous ownership. Selected signatures include those of former Governor of Bombay Bartle Frere, former Chief Engineer of the Bombay Port Trust Thomas Ormiston, and former Chairman of the Bombay Improvement Trust Sir Walter Hughes.

* All Urbs Indis material is accessible by appointment at the Urban Design Research Institute Library in Kala Ghoda, Mumbai. 

*Digitization inquiries will be addressed on a case-by-case basis. Please write to [email protected]

Tom Cringle’s Letters on Practical Subjects, Suggested by Experiences in Bombay

Tom Cringle

1863 (First Edition)

Inscription: Signed “H.B.H. Frere, 1864”
Bookplate: Henry Bartle Edward Frere
Frontispiece: Inset photographs (2 nos.) of William Walker.
Cover and Binding: Black leather in fine condition, with gilt embossed letters “His Excellency Sir H. Bartle E. Frere, K.C.B. Governor of Bombay.”

Reasons Why the Baroda Goods Terminus Should Not be at Colaba

Thomas Ormiston

1867 (First Edition)

Inscription: Signed “Thomas Ormiston, Bombay”

Maclean’s Guide to Bombay:  Historical, Statistical, and Descriptive

James Mackenzie Maclean

1880 (Fifth Edition)

Bookplate:  The Fogg Memorial Library, Berwick Academy, Maine

Reflections on Plague and Methods of Checking it

(With Letters to the Press)

Pestonjee M. Kanga

1907 (First Edition)

Book Plate: Library of the American Museum of Natural History
Inscription: “A.M.N.H. CANCELLED” and “The Oriental Review, with complements of Pestonjee M. Kanga.”

Electric Railway Memorandum

Sir Walter Hughes

1907 (First Edition)

Inscription:With the compliments of Sir Walter Hughes

History of the Bombay Electric Supply & Tramways Company, Limited

Pestonji D. Mahaluxmivala

1936 (First Edition)

Inscription:  Signed “With the compliments of Pestonji D. Mahaluximivala”

Urbs Indis is an urban aerial photography studio and archival library founded by Mumbai based architect and artist Robert D Stephens (RMA Architects). Since 2007 he has been documenting urban India from 10,000 feet above sea level, in black and white as well as colour photography.

© Robert D Stephens
Website design by Tina Nandi Stephens