PLACES OF INTEREST

MANOR.

Manor, in Mahim, a small town on the Vaitarna with a population of 436 souls, lies six miles south of Asheri and ten east of the Palghar railway station. The Vaitarna is tidal at Manor, and boats of five tons (20 khandis) can pass to the landing place in ordinary tides, and boats of ten tons (40 khandis) at springs. Under the Portuguese it was the head-quarters of a district or pragana with forty-two villages and one sarretor. [Da Cunha's Bassein, 206.] The fort of Manor is mentioned with Asheri as two of the chief Portuguese strongholds in north Thana. [De Couto speaks of Manor as a fort, which with Asheri pave the Portuguese command of a rice-yielding country (Decadas, VII. 229). In 1595 the commandant of Manor was ordered to supply a galley every year. Arch. Port. Orient. Fasc. III. pt. 1, 510.] Some of these references may refer to the fort on the Asava hill. But there is also at Manor a small hill or eminence with a bungalow like a fort, and a cistern. In 1634 it was described as round, about the size of a two-storied house, the roof of the upper story resting on pillars. In the lower story were two large balconies supported on pillars for the defence of the tower. There was a good store of lead and gunpowder, five pieces of ordnance, seventy muskets, thirty iron balls, and thirty torches. Close to this fortified house was a stockade about three-quarters of a mile round, with a tower in the middle and a settlement of twenty Portuguese families, twenty-three native Christians and eighty Hindu and Musalman archers. The place had been fortified to protect Portuguese territory from the Ahmadnagar king (Melique), from, the Kolis, and from Chautia. The captain of the fort farmed the revenues of the district which amounted to 602 (16,072 pardaos). [O Chron. de Tis. III. 221. Ogilby (1670) says, 'On the continent near the Salsette de Bacaim the Portuguese have a fort called Manora and also a village with many hamlets near it.' Atlas, V. 214.] In 1728 the fort is described as on a rock, the walls not higher than an ordinary mansion, and from its position, form, and weakness, unworthy of the name of a fort. It had eight pieces of ordnance, five of them useless, and a garrison of 104 men and three corporals. [O Chron. de Tis. I. 34.]