Americans in India: Satyanand Stokes – An American in Gandhi’s India

Kamla Bhatt Show show

Summary: ( you think of Americans in India in the early 20thc not too many names may come to your mind right? But, there was a small trickle of Americans who came to India in the early 20thc and one of them was Samuel Evans Stokes, who later was known by his Indian name Satyanand Stokes ( He was a Quaker by heritage as his grand-daughter Asha Sharma puts it. In 1904  Stokes had just turned 21 years old when he made his journey from Philadelphia to India. That 1904  visit turned into a very long one and eventually Stokes settled down in India  and raised a family in Himachal Pradesh. He was the American, who brought in a certain strain of apples (Delicious) into Himachal Pradesh and helped start an apple revolution in that state. Today, apples form a key cash crop of Himachal Pradesh. The story of Stokes is chronicled in An American in Gandhi's India  ('s+india&source=bl&ots=3Y_w5PoMAo&sig=euv9242mlnZuNz1K04vL9sQLBzQ&hl=en&sa=X&ei=08ycUv6OHKW-igKRoYC4Bg&sqi=2&ved=0CHQQ6AEwCA#v=onepage&q=an%20american%20in%20gandhi's%20india&f=false)by his grand-daughter Asha Sharma, who lives in the San Francisco bay area. We spoke with her about her American-Pahadi (pahadi means from the mountains)  grandfather's journey to India. Stokes was the only American to go to jail for fighting alongside Mahatma Gandhi during India's freedom struggle. This interview was originally recorded for TV and aired in the SF bay area. You can watch the video ( interview here. Photo credit: Asha Sharma