Bonn, Germany. Having studied in the Universities of Copenhagen, Gottingen, Nancy and Bonn, he worked as a Lecturer in Botany in Bonn. The change came in 1854 when he married Rachel Marshman, a sister of the wife of General Havelock, a friend of Lord Dalhousie. This led to his joining the British Imperial Forestry Service in 1856 as the Superintendent of teak forests of Pegu division in Eastern Burma. After the death of his wife,
he married Katharina Hasse and they had six children. 

His ten year’s work in Burma included determination of teak volume, rate of growth, identifying rate of harvest, developing forest protection plans against pests and fi re. He introduced timber purchase and clearing rules. 


The wonderful transformation of a British Military Offi cer to the Conservator of Forests came naturally toColonel Richard Henry Beddome, as he had a penchantfor nature.

Born as the eldest son of Boswell Brandon Beddome inS.W., he got trained for the legal profession, but landed upat the 42nd Madras Native Infantry as a Cadet at Jabalpur,when he was just 18 being his choice.

He was appointed in the Madras Forest Departmentin 1856, he went on to become an Assistant to Dr. HughCleghorn, and his devotion to botany and natural historysaw him succeed Cleghorn in 1863 and he remained in thepost of Conservator of Forests upto 1876.


A true visionary, F.A. Lodge received his professional training in forestry from the Forest School of France and joined the Imperial Forest Service in Madras Presidency during 1883, and served his cadre in the capacities of Assistant, Deputy and Conservator of Forests and after retirement he served as Inspector General of Forests at Hyderabad in the Nizam Kingdom. He was a Companion of the Order of the Indian Empire (CIE).


The main road abutting the Tamil Nadu Forest academy Campus in the city of Coimbatore bears his name. That shows the remarkable achievement of a man with a strong will and determination.

Cowley Brown was a legendary member of the Imperial Forest Service who received his professional forestry training from Royal Indian Engineering College, Cooper’s hill and joined the forest department of Madras Presidency in the year 1891. With more than 20 years of rich experience in the forests of the then Madras Presidency, he joined the Madras Forest College as the founder Principal in the year 1912. He selected wisemen like K.R. Venkatramana Ayyar as Instructor which speaks volumes for his organizing ability and vision to give good shape to the College and Training. Initially, the college functioned from the municipal hospital building with three instructors. Mr. Cowley Brown got the foundation of the new college building laid by His Excellency, Lord Pentland, the Governor of Madras, on 9th April 1913. Two years later, the same was inaugurated by him on14th October 1915, in a sprawling campus of 165 acres.


Born in London in 1846, J.S. Gamble had his formal education at the Royal Naval School, Math at Magdalen College, Oxford. Received forestry training in Forest School in Nancy, France where he studied Systematic Botany with great interest.

The year 1871 saw Gamble join the Imperial Forest Department in India. He founded the Forest School Herbarium in 1890 while he was serving as Director of the Imperial Forest School at Dehradun. It was later renamed as the Dehradun Herbarium in 1908.

A leader in his own way, James Sykes Gamble specialized in the fl ora of India with many a journal to his credit. He has authored many books and published papers on Forestry and botanical subjects in the Indian Forester, for which he was the Editor. Among his many books on Indian Plants are : List of the trees, shrubs and large climbers found in the Darjeeling District, Bengal, the Bambuseae of British India, Annals of the Royal Botanic Garden, Calcutta.


Mr. Hugo Francis Andrew Wood after joining the Imperial Forest Service in 1890, received his professional training at Royal Indian Engineering College at Cooper’s Hill, came to India during 1893 and worked in Madras Presidency up to his retirement in 1926. He worked in various capacities, as Assistant Conservator of Forests, Deputy Conservator of Forests and rose to the rank of Conservator of Forests in 1918 and retired in 1926.

He is remembered for his work in the Godavari, Kurnool and South Coimbatore Forsest Divisions. Despite his ill health on account of malaria ridden forests, he worked without a break for almost ten years. He prevented serious forest fi res by practicing early burning of grass. He tackled the unruly aborigine Chenchu who, with their bow and arrow had intimidated everyone, pursuing the easy way of timber thieving, robbery and blackmail. Wood tackled the problem by providing them labour in teak plantations, by instituting provision stores and civilizing infl uences of all kinds. He had such a great infl uence over the people that even after he had left the district, they revered his presence.


Fischer was born in Bombay in July 1874. He was tutored in Switzerland and England with a term at Nancy in France where he learned forestry.

While being posted at Madras, in the year 1895, he served various places before becoming a Divisional Forest Offi cer in1909 and Principal of the Madras Forest College. He served as the Conservator of Forests from 1920 till his retirement in 1926. In between the years (1907), he was the Forest Entomologist at the Forest Research Institute, Dehradun and during 1908 had a period of study at Munich, Germany. Later, he was deputed as a Lecturer in Forestry to Oxford during 1919-20.

During the course of his frequent visits to the Anaimalais, being a correspondent, he sent his collections of botanical specimens , to the herbarium of the Royal Botanical Garden, Calcutta. Later published it as Records of the Botanical Survey of India in 1921.


Chakrapani Ayyangar Rama Bhadran was born on 24th September 1907. His father Chakrapani Ayyangar was Vice- Principal, Raja’s College, Pudukottai. C.A.R.Bhadran did his M.A. on Geology and Botany in the year 1928 and passed out with top position, from the Presidency College, Madras and received University prize for Geology. He appeared for the Indian Forest Service Examination during 1930 and he was the sole candidate selected. He was deputed to undergo professional training in forestry during 1930-32 batch at Indian Forest College, Dehradun. He passed out as topper and was awarded Currie fellowship.


Born on 28th February 1921 in Pondicherry, brought up in Coimbatore District. Mr. Jayadev did his B.Sc., (Hons) in Chemistry in the Presidency College and served as Lecturer in Pachaiyappa’s College. Selected for the Superior Forest Service of the Madras State, he received preliminary training at Coimbatore North Division towards the end of 1943 and joined the Indian Forest College for two years professional training during April, 1944.


Born on 21st December, 1911 as the eldest son on Mr. Kulanthaiappan & Mrs. Pichaiammal at Mamasapuram, a Village near Srivilliputtur. He had his primary education at Church Missionary Society School in Srivilliputtur and later joined Sivakasi Hindu Nadars Victoria High School in Sivakasi – Stood as a School Topper. Completed intermediate in National College, Trichy and Honours Degree in Economics from St. Joseph’s College, Trichy in 1934. In those days, the University Training Corps (UTC) was meant to impart regular Army Training to young university students. The training was intensive and vigorous on the pattern of regular British Army. He became a Sergeant in the second year, Company Sergeant Major in the third year and became an Under Offi cer in the fourth and fi fth years. This Army training was very useful, when he became the Instructor in the Forest College, Coimbatore. Besides, the UTC training provided him necessary physical fi tness and culture required for exacting fi eld work of Forest Service when roads and vehicles were not many in use.


Born in Tirunelveil District, Mr. Venkatakrishnan graduated with B.A. Degree in Botany and stood fi rst in Madras Presidency in 1941 and worked as Demonstrator in St. Joseph’s College Trichy for two years. He got Post Graduate Degree in Botany from the Presidency College and stood fi rst in the Madras Presidency during 1945. He worked as Assistant Lecturer in Natural Science in the Government College, Mangalore.


Mr. Achaya was born in Coorg District in Karnataka. After two years professional training at Indian Forest College, Dehradun and initial training at Nellore, he was posted as Assistant Conservator of Forests, Palghat Division.

After being Assistant to the Provincial Silviculturist, Ooty during 1950-54, he worked as District Forest Offi cer at Kollegal, Mangalore, Madurai West and Vellore East Divisions for four years. He then served as State Silviculturist from 1958 to 1960. He was on deputation to Andaman Nicobar Islands Forest Department for about 3 years.


Mr. Mohammed Ansar Badsha was born in Madras in 1910 and developed interest in nature as a boy. In 1931, he graduated from Madras University and entered the Madras Forest College where he obtained his Diploma in Forestry. He started his career in the Madras Forest Department as a Forest Ranger and got promoted to the rank of Assistant Conservator of Forests towards the end of 1946. In the capacity of Assistant Conservator of Forests, he served in several places as an Attached Offi cer, Salem South Division. Assistant Forest Utilization Offi cer, Madras, City Firewood Offi cer, Madras, District Forest Offi cer, Hosur, Personal Assistant to the Chief Conservator of Forests, State Wildlife Offi cer etc.,. Mr. Ansar Badsha was deputed to Andhra State as a “Transferred Offi cer” on the request of the Andhra Government for appointment as Personal Assistant to the Chief Conservator of Forests, Andhra, from 1st October, 1953, then reverted to the Madras State on 27th August 1954 afternoon and assumed charge in the State as Personal Assistant to the Chief Conservator of Forests. In 1959, he received training in Canada in Forest Management and Wildlife Administration.


Prof. Kondas was a rare personality among foresters in India. After his academic training specializing in Botany, joined the Madras Forest Service in the year 1952 and underwent induction training at Indian Forest College, Dehradun. After completing the training he served in the rank of Assistant Conservator of Forests in various divisions. He was inducted into Indian Forest Service as initial recruit w.e.f. 01-10-1966 when the service was reconstituted and got allocated to Tamil Nadu Cadre with 1958 as year of allotment.

He joined the Tamil Nadu Agricultural University as founder Professor of Forestry in the year 1973 and continued to serve till 1978 accepting the invitation from Dr.G.Rangaswami, the fi rst Vice-Chancellor, Tamil Nadu Agricultural University, choosing academics by leaving several perquisites and administrative benefi ts in Government service.


Born in South Kanara District in a family of planters after a brilliant academic record in Botany, Mr.Jayapal Wilson joined the Madras Forest Department as Assistant Conservator of Forests on 11.04.1953. Trained at Indian Forest College, Dehradun in 1953-55 batch, he received Honours Diploma and allotted to Nilambur division and Nilgiris division for practical training.

After completing practical training he was posted as Gazetted Assistant to the District Forest Offi cer, Nilgiris division. Then he joined at Salem as Assistant Conservator of Forests, Special Mobile Patrol Party. He served as District Forest Offi cer, Tirunelveli North division for a brief period during 1958 and became Working Plan Offi cer for Ramanathapuram division and held the post of District Forest Offi cer, Ramanathapuram also. As an Assistant convservator of Forests in Trichy, he along with the legendary Mr.Andiappan,the District Forest Offi cer ,Trichy he established successful teak Plantations in Cauvery Padugais and Canal banks in erstwhile Thanjavur district.


Nagapattinam in the erstwhile Thanjavur district was his birthplace and Sankaramurthy was born in September of 1936. With a Masters degree in Botany , he joined the Madras Forest Service as an Assistant Conservator of Forests, Kodaikanal in 1959. The two years that he spent in professional training at Indian Forest College, Dehradun, moulded him for the role of a forester.

Mr. Sankaramurthy after serving in many important divisions like Tirunelveli and Nigiris North moved to Headquaters to take up Administration. He was Deputy Conservator of Forests (Hqrs) for many years. During this tenure he contributed eminently to the various policy initiatives of the Forest department –working as a bridge between the Department and Government. He was also our ambassador to Government of India on forestry matters. The credibility of Forest Department went a notch up due to his personality.


Mr. Shanmugasundaram was born in November, 1939. A native of Cuddalore, South Arcot, armed with a Master’s Degree from Annamalai University in Botany, he got selected to the post of Assistant Conservator of Forests in Madras Forest Service during 1963 and received professional training till 1965 at Indian Forest College, Dehradun. He was the Assistant Conservator for Forests and Deputy Conservator for Forests from 1965 to 1983 in territorial and extension forest divisions. Very much interested in plantation forestry and silvicultural research, he wrote numerous reports and projects in social forestry and forest research.

As Conservator of forests, he worked in forest research wing at Coimbatore and initiated several ground-breaking trials on various tree species like Eucalyptus, Casuarina and thornless Acacias.


Born during June 1929, Dr. Krishnamurthy graduated from Madras Veterinary College and started his career as Veterinary Assistant Surgeon in 1952. He worked in Anamalais, till 1957.

Dr. Krishnamurthy was an elephant conservationist. He suggested immobilization darts as the most effi cient means of capturing wild elephants. He raised the living standards of captive elephants. While in service and even after retirement, he was involved in the capture of more than 160 elephants and their training for domestication. He was the fi rst person to perform postmortem on elephants and probably holds the world record for that. He had seen the birth of over 99 elephant calves born in captivity. He had success in rearing orphaned calves, for the fi rst time in India. He has treated more than 3000 elephants in his career.


Born in Tirunelveli (1911) Mr. Krishnan was a product of the Hindu High School and Presidency College. His father Mr.Madaviah was a well known Tamil Writer one of the reformist writers in Tamil language. Not best known for his academic brilliance, he nevertheless notched up an M.A., (Botany) and a law degree, but eventually carved a secure niche for himself where his heart took him – as a freelance writer and artist. A keen naturalist, Krishnan had a more than a casual interest in botany, mastered in the course of fi eld visits to the Nilgiris Hills in the company of a scientist called Professor P.F Fyson.

After running through several jobs, none of which really interested him (Public Relations Offi cer for All India Radio, Political Secretary to the Maharaja of Sandur), he honed his skills in writing and embarked on a career on a writing that went on to span several decades. Recognising his immense potential, Krishnan was the fi rst to be awarded the Jawaharlal Nehru Fellowship for an Ecological Survey of the Mammals of Peninsular India in 1968.


The man who stood like a Banyan tree - protecting and nurturing the Nilgiri Wildlife Association for over 30 years. A native of Kent in UK, he was born in August, 1914. After serving the British Army in World War II, Major Richard Radcliff came to India and worked as a coff ee planter. He found that Nilgiris in India was similar to his hometown in England and fell in love with it.

Discovering the natural beauty of the Nilgiris, he campaigned for the preservation of natural resources and the conservation of fl ora and fauna of the Nilgiris. His home, Winchcombe was at the hilltop facing Kalhatti Valley and had a beautiful garden with rare fl owering plants, personally tended by him. Another hobby of Radcliff was fi shing, which he pursued all his life with passion.


Mr. Davidar born in Kalakad (Tirunelveli District) in 1920, His father was a respected judge, and the family was known to be progressive with a number of the members being medical doctors and teachers. Davidar’s grandfather loved animals, especially dogs and even maintained a small zoo in the garden. Evidently, this contributed to Davidar developing a passion for animals at a very early age. Davidar’s early companion was an abandoned baby bonnet macaque which he named Juno.

Davidar was fascinated by Ooty which he had visited with his father when he was just a 12 year boy. It was luck abound when his father was posted as the sub judge therein. Davidar joined the British Law Firm, King & Partridge and his wife worked as a doctor in the Mobile Medical Unit of the Government Hospital, Ooty. Their extensive travels to the nook and corner of the Nilgiris, contributed to Davidar’s empathy for the tribal communities and their culture.


Fr. Matthew was born on 16th March 1930 at Ramapuram in Kerala. After Schooling in Travancore State, he had his collegiate education in the reputed St. Joseph’s College; Trichy (1947 – 1950) and joined the Jesuit order in 1950. Completing his M.Sc., during (1958 – 1960), Fr. Matthew obtained a doctoral degree working on the alien plants of the Palani hills.

Fr. Matthew was the Director of The Rapinat Herbarium, Trichy (Research base) and also of The Anglade Institute of Natural History, Shembaganur, Kodaikanal (Environmental base), which he served with distinction. Fr. Matthew, a natural teacher and mentor, joined the teaching faculty of St. Joseph’s College in the Department of Botany in the year 1967 and was instrumental in training some of the best botanists of India.


Dr. Cleghorn was born in Madras on the 9th August 1820,his father then being Administrator-General in the High Court of Madras. Brought up at Stravithie, Dr. Cleghorn as a boy was trained
to rural pursuits and rendered familiar with agricultural routine,and these early lessons no doubt led to that love for fl owers and trees which became so pronounced in his life. He was educated at
the High School of Edinburgh and at the University of St. Andrews.On leaving college in 1837 he was apprenticed to Professor Syme for fi ve years, and held in the last year the one of the positions in the house surgeons of Edinburgh Royal Infi rmary.


C.R. Ranganathan was born on August 15, 1899 in Thanjavur District. Armed with a University Rank in Chemistry Masters from the Madras University, he was selected for training abroad in 1921. As a Probationer he was sent to Exeter College of Oxford University U.K. for a course on forestry. He passed M.A. Forestry ranking fi rst among the IFS Offi cers of his batch from the Oxford, Cambridge and Edinburg Universities and was awarded the Currie Prize. He joined Madras Forest Department in 1923 as Assistant Conservator of Forests, North Coimbatore. In 1924, he was posted as Imperial Assistant in the Timber Engineering Branch, Forest Research Institute, Dehradun.


V.S. Krishnaswamy, born on 12th August 1903, is revered for noteworthy contribution to the cause of forestry in Tamil Nadu which will be always remembered.

V.S. Krishnaswamy, was one among the two probationers selected and received professional training in forestry at Indian Forest College, Dehradun between 1927 and 1929. On allotment to Madras cadre, he recevied fi eld training initially in Wynaad at Manantoddy, Malabar District, where he learnt about teak and private forest management and the nuance of capturing elephants by pit method.