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3549 "We are looking westward.  Simla town is behind us.  This magnificent pile was completed in 1888; it is the official residence of the Viceroys of India.  It was first occupied (in 1888) by Lord Dufferin.  It is built chiefly of gray stone quarried in the neighborhood, and, situated on the crest of Observatory Hill, it commands beautiful vistas in every direction, from the plains at the south to the snowy range at the north.  Every part of the interior is spacious and admirable-the entrance hall is 30x40 feet, the dining-room 30x70, the drawing-room 30x60, the ball-room 30x70, and numberless other rooms have magnificent proportions.  The entire place has been furnished and decorated without regard to expense. It is lighted throughout with electricity, giving it a fairylike appearance on occasions of state festivity. 

You will note that those palace guards are natives, that the servant with the fantastic cap is a native ; in fact, all the numerous servants belonging to the palace are natives." (Extract from India through the Stereoscope by James Ricalton).
Lady Dufferin's Journal, published under the title Our Viceregal Life in India, gives a graphic account of the construction of the palace in 1885-8.  About a thousand native men and women were employed and Lady Dufferin says it was a unique experience to see young women arrayed in necklaces and bracelets, treading dizzy rafters, carrying mortar in earthen "hods" upon their heads. 

[[italics]] From Notes of Travel No. 40. copyright 1907 by Underwood & Underwood. [[/italics]] 

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South front of the Viceroy's palace, Simla, India.

Façade sud du palais du Viceroi, Simla, Indes.

Güdliche Façade des vizeföniglichen Palastes zu Simla, Indien.

Fachada sur del palacio del Vicerey, Simla, India.

Södra facaden af vicekonungens palats i Simla, Indien.

Южный фасадъ вице-королевскаго дворца, Симла, Индiя.

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