Vintage Indian-American ads: A 1910s lecture tour by an “Indian Prince”

“Prince” Sarath Kumar Ghosh cross-crossed the U.S. 100 years ago

Lecture circuit pamphlets, via SAADA

In the 19th and early 20th century, it was common for lecturers to criss-cross the United States, speaking to local audiences. These lectures were a way to get a glimpse of the world, to inform, and inspire—some compare them to TED talks.

Our friends at the South Asian American Digital Archive (SAADA) have been collecting pamphlets advertising South Asian lecturers traveling across the United States.

Here’s one of our favorites, a pamphlet advertising speaker Sarath Kumar Ghosh, a self-described Indian prince. We love the photo and the beautiful typography. (Much more on Ghosh at Sai Shankar’s pulp book blog.)



Lecture announcement, Los Angeles, 1912

Los Angeles Herald, February 17 1912, page 4, column 3

Lecture announcement, Richmond, Indiana, 1918

Lecture ad, Washington, DC, 1914

The Washington Herald, November 1 1914, Society Section, page 12, columns 6–7