Satyananda Stokes

Satyananda Stokes

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Category: Social Work

Satyananda Stokes Profile

  • Name:
  • Satyananda Stokes
  • Born:
  • August 16, 1882
  • Died:
  • May 14, 1946

Satyananda Stokes Biography

Satyananda Stokes, previously known as Samuel Evans Stokes was an American who settled in India. He participated in freedom struggle movement too. He is best known for introducing apple cultivation to Himachal Pradesh, which turned a great turnover business and a cultural signature of the northern state. His daughter-in-law is an Indian politician and Congress leader from Kotgarh, Shimla who has served as the member of legislative assembly of record 8 times, and also the oldest elected member to Himachal Pradesh state assembly.


Samuel Evans Stokes Junior was born on 16 August 1882 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. He was born in an American Quaker family, and his family ran a business. His father founded an elevator company, Stokes and Parish Machine Company in US. Young Samuel was not interested in family business and he wanted to do something worthy in his life. In 1904, aged 22, Samuel came to India to work at a leper colony in Shimla, then ruled by British. He moved to India against parents’ wish who wanted him to involve in family business. He did a pious job and lived simple which earned him love of Indians who lived in the locality.


Though his parents used to send him money, he spent those amounts for poor people. He was interested in the spirituality of Indians. As instructed by Archbishop of Canterbury, who visited India, he formed an order of Franciscan Friars for the benefits of the poor. Stokes was a critic of the Christ myth theory and authored the book The Historical Character of the Gospel. He worked in improving the farmland and when he identified a new strain of apples developed by the Stark brothers of Louisiana, US suitable for climate conditions of Shimla, he introduced them to the farm in 1916. Other people also started farming apples and over the years Shimla turned a big exporter of apples. He died on 14 May 1946 at Shimla, shortly before Indian independence.

Published: March 01, 2019

Updated: March 01, 2019


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