The Great Hedge of India

This was a customs barrier built by the British rulers across India in the 1840s to facilitate collecting the heavy salt tax. The barrier consisted of fences, stone walls, and a nearly impenetrable barrier of trees, thorny bushes, and hedges, with periodic guard stations. The hedge was forgotten in India as well as in Britain, without even passing mentions in standard histories, until its existence was unearthed by Roy Moxham. The Customs Line ran nearly 2,000 miles (3,200 km), and was manned by about 12,000 personnel actively patrolling and guarding the barrier. There is something wonderfully English and revelatory in this story.

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