You must have seen A.H. Wheeler’s book stalls at most of the railway stations in India, must have also bought book magazines. Did you know that the brain behind this was a Frenchman, Emilie Morey, who had come to Allahabad during 1857. This French man represented Bird and Company, a British based firm. Moreau was very fond of books. He wanted to go from Allahabad, but the biggest difficulty he had was how to dispose of his entire collection of books, periodicals. One day at the Allahabad railway station, More realized that the railway passengers were eager to read newspapers and magazines to pass the time. Just at this time, seeing the possibilities, he decided to set up a book store. He named the book store after Arthur Henry Wheeler, a close friend of his and one of London’s leading booksellers at the time. They thought that an English name might have better brand value. And thus in 1877 A.H. from Allahabad. Wheeler started.
With the expansion of the railways, bookstores also began to spring up at all stations, and soon A.H. The wheeler was a common sight on all railway platforms, attracting commuters as well as reading enthusiasts. Initially it catered only to the English-speaking population, most of the staff were also English or Anglo-Indian. However, when TK Banerjee joined the Kolkata office in 1899, a significant change took place. Banerjee earned praise with his efficiency in handling accounts and auditing and was sent to the head office in Allahabad. The Wheeler book stalls also changed under Mr. Banerjee, now advertising for companies linked to the Indian Railways, but the biggest step was to sell books in regional languages as well. During the freedom movement, A.H. Wheeler also played his part by publishing various news related to the movement. Impressed by TK Banerjee’s work and diligence, Frenchman Moreau stood by him throughout and transferred the ownership to Banerjee when he left for England in 1937.