A FAMILY STORY ABOUT A COFFEE BEAN, TWO LEAVES AND A BUD FROM A TEA BUSH AND OTHER AGRICULTURAL PRODUCTS THAT HELPED FORM THE BASIS OF AN ECONOMIC SYSTEM OF A NATION, TOGETHER WITH WHAT MAY HAVE BEEN THE EXPERIENCES OF THE ROWLANDS’ OF CEYLON AND THEIR DESCENDENTS IN THE NINETEENTH CENTURY AND THE CONTRIBUTION OF THE PLANTATION INDUSTRY TO THE DEVELOPMENT OF THE INFRASTRUCTURE AND SUPPORT SERVICES THAT FORMED THE BASIS OF A ROBUST AND PROGRESSIVE ECONOMY.

In the 1500’s, the Portuguese took possession of the Maritime Provinces of Ceylon, to be replaced by the Dutch in the 17th Century. In 1796, Ceylon was taken possession of by the British and the Dutch expelled from its shores. From that period to 1815, the native chiefs boldly resisted the usurped authority of the invaders and were finally reduced to subjugation only after a desperate struggle and by such agencies that England alone was skilled to employ for the accomplishment of her objective.

Dedicated to the life of my Great-Grand-Father Richard William Rowlands and his Sinhalese friends Sir Charles Henry and Lady de Soysa who were philanthropists extraordinaire, Reverend.William.E.Rowlands of the Tamil Cooly Mission, all other Coffee, Tea, Rubber and Coconut Plantation Owners, Superintendents and their workers from the Madras Presidency of South India who came to Ceylon as free men and women rather than as slaves to work the Plantations and the Sinhalese, Tamils, Malays and other workers who laboured to establish the Estates, the Planters’ Association of Ceylon and Government Officers of all racial and cultural backgrounds in Ceylon at the time, who, to a large degree, treated the people of their communities, labourers and the less fortunate with kindness, honesty and generosity, to help develop a social structure and a plantation economy in the country that will always be a fitting tribute to their contribution to the people of Sri Lanka.


IN MEMORY OF

RICHARD ROWLANDS OF KENT.


A Distant Cousin who will always be fondly remembered for his kindness and generosity.