During the 19th and 20th centuries there were provisions for temporary lodging arrangements for the seamen in the most of the major sea ports all around the world. An Institution named,”The Sailor’s Home” made these arrangements for the officers and the ordinary crew members, specifically in the British Mercantile Marine or British Merchant Marine. Leaving their families ashore, these mariners used to sail month after month in the wide, wide sea, faced turbulent weather and travelled around the world, for the benefit of their country. Undoubtedly, they played a significant role and contributed to the commerce of the British Empire. Mainly they carried tea from China and various spices from different parts of the Orient to their country.
Till 1839, the Sailor’s Home in Calcutta, a destitute seamen’s asylum, was situated at 12 Strand Road, the site of the present Metcalfe Hall, facing the River Hoogly. After some time, it shifted to another building, at the crossing of Strand Road and Hare Street. However, in the late 19th century the Sailor’s Home, which was then in a dilapidated state due to negligence and lack of maintenance, was pulled down and replaced by the Magistrate’s Court and thus, the legend of the Sailor’s Home in Calcutta was lost forever.