Digital Archive of Tamil Agrarian History (DATAH)

The DATAH notebook illustrates and provide samples of a digital archive of Tamil agrarian history which was created between 2010 and 2016 by a team of social anthropologists through three successive funding from the Endangered Archives Programme (Arcadia) and hosted by the French Institute.

DATAH presently consists of 82 private collections in this archive, consisting of 83 378 images.

Accessing DATAH documents

A large part of DATAH is available on the website of the Endangered Archives Program of the British Library:

EAP 314: 10 collections, 652 documents, 3 460 images

EAP 458: 36 collections, 3 039 documents, 36 774 images

EAP 689: 36 collections, 1623 documents, 43 144 images;r=41

It is sometimes difficult to navigate in and out of the each collection and certain documents, namely palmleaves, are difficult to read online as it is not possible to magnify the images. Pending the full availability on-line of the entire archive, as well as a more intuitive navigation and magnifying options, you can write to the project coordinator ( in order to access documents relevant to your research. Be patient, it may take up to a week to get an answer!

A collection-wise description of DATAH is viewable on this site in the ‘Collections’ page accessible on the left-hand side of the screen.

Using DATAH documents

Please note that these are all private archive which families have agreed to let us digitize for the purpose of research. Many documents deal with sensitive and private matters and use of these documents should be done with an ethical concern for document holders.

Further, it is expected that due recognition of both the original owner of the documents(“Private collection of”), of our project “Digital Archive of Tamil Agrarian History (DATAH)” be given if the documents consulted come to be used in public presentations and publications.

Your feedback and questions are most welcome. You can either comment directly in the notebook or write an email to :