top of page
  • Writer's pictureSpeak Your Roots

Ka shnong Rangjyrteh

Ka shnong Rangjyrteh

The village of Rangjyrteh

In the bygone days, Rangiyrteh was a thriving village known for its mastery of iron smelting across the region, but now it is left abandoned in ruins and mostly only ever referred to in old Khasi folklores. Rangiyrteh is said to be the village where the woman named 'Ka Likai' hailed from. According to folklore, after a gruesome and devastating tragedy befell her, Ka Likai ran to the edge of a cliff and threw herself towards a waterfall to her death. The waterfall was then named 'The Fall of Ka Likai' or more popularly, the 'Nohkalikai Falls' According to oral tradition, Rangjyrteh was a prosperous place during that time and people lived mainly by the trade of iron smelting. The transaction of the iron products was between the local villagers and the people of Sylhet (now in Bangladesh). It is regarded as one of the oldest villages in the Khasi and Jaintia Hills and no one really knows when this village came into being but it has achieved its prominent place in Khasi imagination.

(Taken from: /trip/trip-to-rangiyrteh-lost-civilization -mawsawa-falls-dainthlen-falls-cherrapunjee -sohra-meghalaya-5f575ca82f851.amp)

...just seven kilometers away from proper Sohra on the western side, lies an extinct ancient settlement, a place rarely appearing in Khasi literature but which has many historical and mythological events associated with significance and direct references to various aspects of Khasi culture and society. Believed to be the ancient industrial centre for iron smelting, people also adopted orange cultivation as a major activity. Located exactly opposite to Dainthlen Falls, this ancient settlement is known as 'Rangiyrteh' an indigenous name which currently falls within the jurisdiction of Laitduh village under Sohra Syiemship. But before the formation of Hima Sohra, Rangjyrteh was very much part and parcel of the then Hima Khathynriew Shnong (a conglomerate of several villages on the slope where the Umiam Mawphlang river flows). But as far as the historical aspects of 'Rangiyrteh' are concerned, it can be construed as the centre for forging iron which lasted till the 17th century. From the remains it shows that there was a generation of industrialized communities a long time ago in these hills. But the reason for the collapse of this indigenous ancient industry as was narrated by older people was primarily the incapability to compete with the products coming from then East Bengal under the British. Iron smelting was the main trade and activity of this place. Besides, the famous Nohkalikai Falls too has derived its name from the person of this hamlet (Rangiyrteh). Considering the plurality of history associated with 'Rangjyrteh', I wonder if it could ever be included in the list of heritage sites presented to UNESCO for possible funding. The factuality and merit of the place defines it and it deserves to be treated as a priority as far as preservation of evidence associated with our ancient socioeconomic system is concerned. The present and future generations should become aware of all these things. Therefore, when we have something as clear evidence connected with our past generation, we should attempt to explore and unearth the mysteries associated with our own origin..As far as Rangjyrteh is concerned, including the culture and activities that existed there long time ago, we should be proud of it as a community and this particular spot on this region belongs not only to a particular Hima or Raid or Village but to the entire Khasi community.

(Taken from: /rangiyrteh-a-forgotten-heritage-site-of-sohra/ (Written by Aristotle Lyngdoh) )

It is a place with historical treasures and ethnic beauty that can still be witnessed today. Monoliths of different forms, tall and short and each having its own meaning, talk of a civilization's past. Under these monoliths are bronze or earthen pots with ashes of our ancestors; there are a few silver shells too. The place is characterized by some form of marking around each area surrounded by well-constructed rocks. The stone foundation used to cremate the dead and the place where they used to hold meetings or the 'dorbar' are visible too. There is also a belief that this village was once fortified with well-constructed walls made from iron and rocks. The people used a gateway called 'Ka Khyrdop' to go in and out of the village for trade or other purposes. There is also a belief that a battle between Rangiyrteh and a nearby village had taken place. The battle claimed the life of the Doloi or headman, and the place where he died is known as Ka Pom-Doloi. The monoliths on the spot are in remembrance of those who fought in that battle. It was in this village that the finest iron was made. We can still see rocks shaped like a basin where water was kept to cool the iron after melting. These irons were exported to Bangladesh, earlier known as Shilot. The people used to trek down to sell these irons, the pathways still noticeable from Rangiyrteh through Dainthlen, Mawpun and on to Nohkalikai Falls connecting Mawmluh village and finally to the plains of Bangladesh.

(Taken from: -civilization/cid2550931.htm (Written by Shynna Lyngdoh Mawphlang) )

Rangjyrteh is a village that many of us might not have heard of. There are many historical and folkloristic associations that the village holds. 🏞️🪨🌲 If you know more please tell us!
All photos are from

Recent Posts

See All


bottom of page