CANADA DIARY# KOTTAYAM FORWARDED BY IPE MATHEWS PUTHUPARAMPIL
(The famous writer and author of the Novel 'Trails Of The Shepherd' is writing about Kottayam,the Educational center of Kerala State,where originally English educational institutions weere established in the 1800s. Mr.Ipe Mathews hails from Kottayam.Please read this interesting article which starts with Part-I LAND OF LETTERS. Thanks to Mr. Ipe Mathews for the wonderful information.) New World
I came accross some remarkable facts attributed to Kottayam. Maybe you know most of them. However, here is a recap for you.
Kottayam is a land of unique characteristics. Bordered by the lofty Western Ghats on the east and the Vembanad lake and paddy fields of Kuttanand on the west. It is the only district in Kerala that shares neither a border with neighbouring states nor with the Arabian sea. The city of Kottayam is also called as "Akshara Nagari" considering it's contribution to print media and literature. Kottayam can claim many first places
LAND OF LETTERS
1] Kottayam Town is the first town in India to have achieved 100% literacy(in 1989), In 1991 kottyam district became the first district in India to achieve 100% literacy
2] English education started first in south India at old seminary, kottayam as early as 1813
3] The first college in the kerala State (CMS College) was also started at Kottayam in 1840. Vidyasamgraham is the first College Magazine in the State, a publication of the C.M.S College, was started in 1864.
4] The first English high school in Kerala was started by the missionaries of Church Mission Society (CMS), at Kottayam in 1821.
5] Baker Memorial Girls High School in Kottayam, is the founded by Amalia Dorothea Baker, is the oldest girls' schools in Kerala.
6] The first printing press in Kerala was established (CMS Press) here in 1821 by Rev.Benjamin Baily.
7] Maiden printed English & Malayalam Dictionaries were published from Kottayam in 1846 & 1865 respectively
8] The first travelogue in Malayalam, Varthamana Pusthakam (1778), written by Parammekkal Thoma Kathanar published from kottayam
9] The first autobiography in Malayalam by Vaikom Pachu Moothathu was published from Kottayam in 1870.
10] The first Malayalam Bible was also published from Kottayam.
11] The first and only Cooperative Society of writers, authors and publishers (SPCS), for publishing books and periodicals was set up in 1945 at kottayam.
12] Deepika is the first daily in Malayalam published from kottayam, Started in 1887
14] Kottayam is the home town of a vast number of books and periodicals and 70% of books in Kerala are being published from here. Popular publishing houses like Malayala Manorama publications, D.C.books, Labour India Publications Ltd, Mangalam Publications, Deepika, V Publishers, Vidhyarthimitram, Avanthi publications, National book stall (S.P.C.S).