The Theosophy Society – Adyar is the name of a section of the Theosophical Society founded by Helena Petrovna Blavatsky and others in 1875. Its headquarters moved with Blavatsky and president Henry Steel Olcott from New York to Adyar, an area of Chennai, in 1886.
The designation ‘Adyar’ is added to make it clear that this is the Theosophical Society headquartered there, after the American section and some other lodges separated from it in 1895, under William Quan Judge.
Known as the “Huddleston Gardens”, the Theosophical Society garden lies on the south bank of the Adyar River and covers 260 acres. The garden has migratory birds, fruit bats, snakes, jackals, wild cats, mongooses, hares, and a variety of spiders.
Trees include the rare mahogany and other trees from across the globe. The garden also had a 450-year-old banyan tree, which was known locally as Adyar aala maram, whose aerial roots covered some 60,000 sq m. It fell under its own weight in 1996.