"Ceylon, a large island and British colony in the Indian Ocean, separated on the N.W. from India by the Gulf of Manaar and Palk Strait. It lies between 5° 55' and 9° 51' N. and between 79° 41' and 81° 54' E. Its extreme length from north to south is 2 712 m.; its greatest width is 1371 m.; and its area amounts to 25,481 sq. m., or about five-sixths of that of Ireland. In its general outline the island resembles a pear, the apex of which points towards the north." The island is now called Sri Lanka.
The Portuguese arrived in the early 16th century, followed by the Dutch in the 17th Century with the British, as usual, arriving late - 1796 - when the British East India Company established control. In 1802 Ceylon became a British Crown Colony. The island was unified in 1815 (previously there had been three kingdoms) and the island finally gained its independence in 1948.
- War against Dutch in Ceylon -1795-96
- 1st Kandyan War - 1803-05
- 2nd Kandyan War - 1815
- 3rd Kandyan War (Uva Rebellion) - 1817-18
Ceylon Planters Rifle Corps
The Ceylon Planters Rifle Corps was a Volunteer Corps established in 1861. Initially the movement consisted of the Ceylon Light Infantry Volunteers but by the 1900s also had Artillery, Medical, Engineers and Supply and Transport units.
The CPRC sent a contingent to South Africa in 1902 along with a detachment of the Ceylon Mounted Infantry. In 1910 the force became known as the Ceylon Defence Force.
A Corps of 150 ‘fine young Englishmen’ left Ceylon in 1914, comprised not only of planters but also Government servants, Colombo businessmen and others. They served in Egypt and were then attached to the Wellington infantry Battalion of the New Zealand Expeditionary Force in the ANZAC division at Gallipoli. The high standard of the men led to virtually all of them receiving commissions and they went on to serve in other regiments which meant this Corps then ceased to exist. 
Except for the few short years when the East India Company was in control (1796-1802) records for Ceylon will not be found in the India Office Records at the British Library, but at The National Archives at Kew. For example, the description and succession books of the Ceylon Rifles covering years 1809-1872 are held under reference W025/638-641 (these include officers services) and reference WO23/158 includes the admission books for the Ceylon Rifles and Gun Lascars for the period May 1868-Sept 1876. Personal data may also be held amongst the National Archive's Administrative Records of Ceylon (Sri Lanka).
Some birth marriage and death information may be obtained by writing to Registrar General's Office, New Secretariat, Maligawatta, Colombo 10, Sri Lanka.
For general details about LDS records, including microfilms, see IGI.
Sri Lanka, Colombo District Dutch Reformed Church Records 1677-1990 are available with images online on the familysearch website.
The North Parramatta Family History Centre in Sydney, Australia has the detailed indexes to the Baptisms and Marriages at the Dutch Reformed Church at Wolfendaal, Colombo, up to 1897. These are not LDS microfilms but are spiral bound photocopies made from the journals and indexes at Victor Melder's Sri Lankan Library in Melbourne.
- Monumental Inscriptions from Columbo Cemetery, Ceylon FIBIS Database
- List of inscriptions on tombstones and monuments in Ceylon, of historical or local interest, with an obituary of persons uncommemorated by J Penry Lewis in FIBIS database
- Images of Ceylon
- Ceylon Wikipedia
- Sri Lanka, Colombo District Dutch Reformed Church Records 1677-1990 Familysearch
- Administrative Records of Ceylon (Sri Lanka) - movinghere.org
- History of Ceylon Tea almarteas.com
- The Virtual Library of Sri Lanka has a section "History", which in turn has a section "Colonial History, The British in Lanka (1796-1948)"
- Kabristan Archives-Old Irish and Indian Graveyards
- History of Ceylon Tea includes many online publications including Ferguson’s Ceylon Directories from 1871 to 1930 (broken range).
- Under a Tropical Sun (Macquarie University) covers 1796-1821. Includes the historical background and contemporary accounts of the Officers of the 73rd Regiment of Foot (and their families) in Ceylon 1814-21.
- History of Tea in Ceylon, an archived site.
- Sri Lanka Genealogy Website including
- Kyle Joustra’s International Ceylon Database, includes Military, with regiments and names
- Dutch Burgher Union of Ceylon - Website contains much information including journals containing various family history Example
- Photographs: Images of Ceylon
- Ceylon Mounted Infantry in the Boer War AngloBoerWar.com
Historical books online
- A description of Ceylon, containing an account of the country, inhabitants, and natural productions;: with narratives of a tour round the island in 1800, the campaign in Candy in 1803, and a journey to Ramisseram in 1804. Illustrated by twenty-five engravings from original drawings by Rev James Cordiner, late Chaplain to the Garrison of Columbo. 1807 Google Books. Volume 1, Volume II The author was in Ceylon 1799-1804
- There are chapters on Ceylon from page 139 A Voyage To India by Rev James Cordiner 1820 Google Books The author was in Ceylon 1799-1804
- "Observations on the Campaign in Ceylon" The Naval and Military Magazine "Part 1: the Dutch War ending 1764" Volume 2, page 564 1827 Archive.org; Part 2: The British Campaign from 1803, involving the 19th and 65th Regiments of Foot, together with Royal Artillery and troops from Bengal. Volume 3, page 204 1828 Google Books
- The Ceylon Gazetteer; containing an accurate account of the districts, provinces, cities, towns, principal villages, harbours, rivers, lakes &c. of the Island of Ceylon, together with sketches of the manners, customs, institutions, agriculture, commerce, manufactures, revenues, population, castes, religion, history of its various inhabitants 1834 Google Books
- A Gazetteer of the Central Province of Ceylon (excluding Walapane) by Archibald Campbell Lawrie Archive.org
- Ceylon in 1903 describing the progress of the island since 1803, its present agricultural and commercial enterprises, and its unequalled attractions to visitors, with upwards of one hundred illustrations, by John Ferguson 1903 Archive.org
- List of inscriptions on tombstones and monuments in Ceylon, of historical or local interest, with an obituary of persons uncommemorated by J Penry Lewis 1913 Archive.org
- Life in the Jungle or Letters from a Coffee-Planter in Ceylon to his cousin in London by Sampson Brown. Simmond's Colonial Magazine and Foreign Miscellany, Volumes 10 and 11 1847. Google Books and Hathi Trust. First published as a book in Colombo 1845 (109 pages), available at the British Library. Page 13, page 150, page 323, page 376, page 14, page 155, page 401
- Coffee: its physiology, history, and cultivation adapted as a work of reference for Ceylon, Wynaad, Coorg and The Neilgherries by Edmund C.P. Hull 1865 Google Books
- Coffee planting in Southern India and Ceylon by ECP Hull 1877 Archive.org
- "The Eurasians of Ceylon" Calcutta Review Volume 63, 1876, page 173
- Prize Essay on Cinchona Cultivation Written for the Dikoya Planters' Association [Ceylon] by Thomas North Christie 1883 Archive.org
- Ceylon & Her Planting Enterprize: In Tea, Cacao, Cardamoms, Cinchona, Coconut, and Areca Palms Published 1885 by A.M. & J. Ferguson. Archive.org
- All about Cinnamon: including Practical instruction for planting, cultivation and preparation for market published by A.M & J Ferguson, Ceylon 1902 Is available to read online at Kerala State Central Library Rare Books Online. Catalogue no.16433
- All about Pepper: Including Practical Instructions for planting, cultivation and preparation for market published by A.M & J Ferguson Ceylon c 1901 Is available to read online at Kerala State Central Library Rare Books Online. Catalogue no. 16434
- All about 'Coconut Palm' (Cocos Nucifera): Including Practical Instructions for planting and cultivation by J Ferguson (Comp.) 3rd edition 1904 is available to read online at Kerala State Central Library Rare Books Online. Catalogue no. 16435
- My Tour in Eastern Rubber Lands by Herbert Wright 1908 Archive.org Ceylon, Malaya, Java, Sumatra
- "A brief sketch of the medical history of Ceylon" by J L Vanderstratten page 306 The Journal of the Ceylon Branch of the Royal Asiatic Society of Great Britain & Ireland 1886 Volume IX, no 32 Archive.org
- Slavery and the slave trade in British India: with notices of the existence of these evils in the islands of Ceylon, Malacca, and Penang, drawn from official documents Published 1841 Google Books
- The Rifle and the Hound in Ceylon by Sir Samuel W Baker 1854 edition Google Books. New edition 1874 Archive.org
- Recollections of a Boer Prisoner-Of-War at Ceylon by J N Brink, "late adjudant of General Crowther" 1904 Archive.org