The Calcutta Boys' School

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Origin

THE ORIGIN of Calcutta Boys’ School is closely linked with the establishment of the Methodist Episcopal Church (now the MCI) in India. On January 9th, 1873, the Reverend Dr. William Taylor, a famous evangelist, founded the work of the Methodist Church in Calcutta (now Kolkata) and established the first Methodist Church in Zigzag Lane, Bowbazaar, which in 1874 shifted to Dharamtalla Street (now Lenin Sarani) and was later named the Thoburn Methodist Church in memory of Rev. James Mills Thoburn (1836-1922) D.D.;LL.D., (later Bishop of the Methodist Episcopal Church).

Rev. Dr. William Taylor was succeeded by Rev James Mills Thoburn in 1874. It was Bishop J.M. Thoburn who founded Calcutta Boys’ School in 1877. The school was first located on the rear veranda of the Thoburn Church Parsonage, then located on Dharamtalla Street opposite the Thoburn Church (currently the B.H. Smith & Co.) with its opening in Mott's Lane, and then housed in a room on Corporation Street near Whiteaway's. Later, the seat of learning was shifted to the room at the corner of Princep Street opposite Wellington Square while the resident students continued to live in the Parsonage.

The school finally acquired its own building at the current location on S.N. Banerjee Road in 1893, thanks, in large measure, to the generosity of a man who could be regarded as the chief patron of the school : Sir Robert Laidlaw KT (1856-1917). Sir Robert Laidlaw (M.P. for the East Renfrewshire, Scotland, from 1906-1910 and founder-chairman of the great business houses 'Whiteaway, Laidlaw and Co.' and the 'Duncan Durian Rubber Estate, Ltd') donated the land and erected the Main building in 1893 and the Renfrew House in 1902. He endowed the school with the 3 magnificent 'Waverley Mansions' in 1903 and established Calcutta Boys’ School Endowment Trust in 1904.