College Street, as the name suggests, is a literary crowd magnate. The street is located near the location “boi-para”. The name boi-para is locally known as ‘book mart’. This tells us what college street is known for, i.e. books. College street is home for all types of books and literary heaven for all bibliophiles. The street is home to many prestigious colleges in Kolkata like University of Kolkata, Calcutta Medical College and Presidency College.
Other than these colleges, the street is lined up with bamboo and wood bookstalls on both the side of the street. The street is dotted with different bookstalls filled by English classics such as “Wuthering Heights” to modern Indian authors such as Amitav Ghosh and Amish. These bookstalls aren’t just stuffed with literary books, but it also has entrance exam books. This street is known for its inclusiveness of all the genres of books; ergo a walk on this street is truly intellectually edifying.
A walk down History –
The street got its name because of the establishment of Hindu College in 1817. Hindu college is a brainchild of David Hare. Hare wanted to establish this institution to educate the Hindu community. After he successfully established this educational institution, with the help of 20 other members, the street was named as “college street”. Hare actually founded a school named “Hare school” on this street as well. This school is n fact one of the oldest schools standing in Kolkata.
Intellectual Adda –
Another place that college street is famous for is Indian Coffee House, founded in 1876. This coffee house stands today as the hangout spot of all the college students. This coffee house has catered right from freedom fighters to modern liberals. It is said to have roots in the Naxalite movement of Bengal.
The coffee house is not only known for its black coffee but also, the boi-Chitra museum attached to it. Boi-Chitra is an art and photography admirers favourite destination. It is built in the memory of Kolkata’s first professional photographer Charu Guha. It is home to many vintage photos clicked by Guha. It also has Kolkata’s first artificial photography lights, which will leave you mesmerized by the size of them.