The first sighting of the Khasi Hills from the plains of Sylhet in June 1841 was a long anticipated moment for the missionary. Thomas Jones travelled up to Cherrapunji on the back of a mule, and his possessions were carried up the mountainside by a hundred 'coolies'. From the 1770s to the early 1840s, a succession of imperial agents confronted the mountains of the north-east from the plain at Pandua. Over sixty years before Thomas and Ann Jones ascended to Cherrapunji, Robert Lindsay stood in the foothills at Pandua. By the mid-1820s there were new reasons for a British foothold in the frontier. The desirability of establishing a medical station for invalids in the hills had first been suggested to the government by David Scott, Political Agent to the Governor-General on the north-east frontier of Bengal.