The Imperial Indian Contingent was made up of troops from all the regiments, both Indian and British, in the Indian Army. In 1901 it toured Australia and New Zealand to reinforce the bonds of empire, and to mark the federation of Australia. India at this time was regarded as the 'jewel in the crown' of the British Empire. Many New Zealanders gained their main knowledge of India through the popular writings of English author Rudyard Kipling. At a time when few Indians lived in New Zealand the exotic appearance of the Indian troops in the contingent attracted a lot of attention. In this photograph, the touring contingent observes a geyser at Rotorua's Whakarewarewa thermal resort.
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Auckland City Libraries - Tāmaki Pātaka Kōrero, Sir George Grey Special Collections
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