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In 1865 the Irrawaddy Flotilla Company (IFC), which was Glasgow based and run by a character called Paddy Henderson, began services on the Irrawaddy River with four steamers and three cargo flats (attached barges)

In 1868 King Mindon (Mandalay) allowed services to the upper reaches, and by 1869 a service started to Bhamo. The fleet was built in Clyde, Scotland, dismantled, then shipped to Mandalay and re-erected. Indians from Chittagong crewed the vessels, while the officers and master were primarily of Scotish descent

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"Come you back to Mandalay, where the old Flotilla lay:
Can't you 'ear their paddles chunkin' from Rangoon to Mandalay"
(Rudyard Kipling)

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