The first account of Indian Timbers was
published in 1831 by Dr. Aitken. His studies were
confined to the Timbers of Assam. In 1881 J.S.
Gamble published The Manual of Indian Timbers which
comprised a brief survey of the various timbers of
the different parts of India. A more complete and
much more extensive edition of his work was
published in 1920. Mr. R.S. Pearson and Dr. H.P.
Brown, published a detailed account of the
"Commercial Timbers of India" in 1932, During the
past few years Dr. K.A. Chowdhury of Dehra Dun has
made very extensive studies of numerous timbers,
chiefly of N. India.
The materials examined here are some of the
lesser known timbers, particularly of Malabar
(Travancore - Cochin State), They are mostly
confined to the rain forest region and the adjoining
plains. These trees nave not been studied in
detail before. As yet no exhaustive or complete
account of the timbers of S. India has been made,
though some of the most important and well known
commercial timbers have been described ay the
persons mentioned above. The present work has been
carried out with a view to describe the structure,
to identify certain timbers, and to make an
exhaustive and analytical study of the behaviour of
the various wood elements of the dicotyledonous
trees o the rain- forest area where growth is almost
continuous throughout the year.
The first part of the work comprises a detailed
account of the anatomical structure of the various
trees under investigation with a brief account of
their external morphology, habit and habitat.
The second part consists of a detailed account
of the structural variations brought about in the
various wood elements in the growth of the tree.
No such work on Indian Timbers has been done before.