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07 Jewish business in Calcutta

The Tea and Coffee Trading Company by Solomon Bekhor

The shop was called Tea & Coffee Trading Company, 15H Lindsay Street.

The Proprietor was J.S.Bekhor. The shop was more of an institution, our coffee and tea was second to none and our customers would not go anywhere else. Amongst our customers were Sir David & Lady Ezra, I remember they had a Rolls Royce and a Sikh driver, in the days of the Raj, my father knew virtually every British, and Continental customer, my father spoke fluent French as he was educated at a French University in Bagdad. We were often invited to French warships for tea as the Captains often visited our shop. We supplied coffee & tea to all the big Hotels, like Firpo, Grand Hotel, Great Eastern Hotel and even the Bata Shoe Co. at Bataganar.

My father knew the Commissioner of Police and they lived next door to Sir David Ezra and his wife started The Girl Guide Movement and my three sisters, Bertine, Seemah and Rachel joined the movement.

Another interesting story, we for about 2 years were living above our shop at 15A Lindsay Mansions, the actress Merle Oberon lived in the same flat before us. There is a book called Merle by Charles Higham and Roy Moseley and on pg 15 you will see that she lived in 15A Lindsay Mansions. My father and mother came to Calcutta in the early 20s when the shop was opened and it closed about 1958.