Ross Island is one of the Andaman and Nicobar Islands, about 2 km east of Port Blair. It was the Administrative Headquarters for the islands, before an earthquake rocked it in 1941. The headquarters were then shifted to Port Blair. One can see remnants of an opulent past in the ruins of the church, swimming pool and the chief commissioner’s residence with its huge gardens and grand ballrooms. There is also a cemetery and a small museum managed by the Indian Navy. The museum has on display a collection of old records.
Ross Island can be reached by a short boat ride from Water Sports Complex. The island is controlled by the Indian navy, which requires every visitor to sign in on entering.
The small island, with its treasure of ruins, became the hot tourists spot in the territory. The island presently houses the ruins of the state Ballroom, the Chief Commissioner’s House, the Government House, Church, the old ‘Andamanese Home’, which was Hospital, Bakery, Press, Swimming Pool and Troop Barracks, all in dilapidated condition, reminiscent of the old British regime. Ever since Dr. James Pattison Walker arrived in Port Blair aboard the East India Company’s steam frigate ‘Semiramis’ on 10 March 1858, this island remained under British occupation till 1942. From 1942 to 1945, the island was under the occupation of Japan. However, the allies reoccupied the island in 1945 and later abandoned it. During British occupation, this island was the seat of power of the British.