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August 19, 2009

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Chennai History

The region of Chennai was called Tondaimandalam in those days and had its military headquarters at Puzhal, which is now a small and rather insignificant village on the outskirts of the city. Modern Chennai grew out of a small village when in 1639 a fishing hamlet called Madraspatnam was selected by early English merchants of the East India Company as a site for the settlement. Founded in 1639 on land given by the Raja of Chandragiri, the last representative of the Vijayanagar rulers of Hampi.

A small fort was built at a fishing settlement in 1644 and a town, which subsequently became to known as George Town, which grew in the area of fort St. George. The settlement became independent of Banten, Java, in 1683 and was granted its first municipal charter in 1688 by James II. It thus has the oldest municipal corporation in India, a fact which Tamil Nadu state governors are only too keen to point out at every available opportunity.

During the 18th and early 19th centuries, when the British and French competed for supremacy in India, the city's fortunes waxed and waned. It was briefly occupied by the French on one occasion. It was used by Clive of India as a base for his military expeditions during the Wars of the Carnatic and, during the 19th century, it was the seat of the Chennai Presidency, one of the four divisions of British Imperial India.

After independence the city continued to be known by the name Madras until the government of Tamilnadu under the chief minister Mr. M.Karunanidhi officially converted it to Chennai in 1997. other major metros of India, it is far less congested and polluted.

1639 Grant given to English Company for the construction of Fort St.George
1716 The starting of St.Mary's Charity School
1733 Preparation of map of Madras and its surrounding village
3rd - 10th Sep 1746 Bombardment of Madras by De La Bourdonnais
10th Sep. 1746 The capitulation of Madras to the French
Nov 1746 The battle of the Adyar River between the Nawab's troops and the French
Sep 1746 - Aug 1749 Madras remains in French occupation
April 1752 Madras again becomes the seat of the Presidency
1793 Erection of the Madras Observatory. Building of the Madras Lunatic Asylum
1806 The Mutiny at Vellore
1809 The threatened White Mutiny
1817 The starting of the Madras Literary Society
1834 Started Government Survey School
1835 Started Madras Medical School
1841 The opening of the High School (Presidency College)
1855 Abolition of the titular Nawabship of the Carnatic
1856 University of Madras was incorporated
1868-1871 Protected water supply for Madras
1871 First census of Madras was taken
1876-78 Great Madras Famine; construction of the Buckingham Canal through Madras
1876 Construction of the Madras Harbor was started
1895 The first tramway line of the city opened
1905 The Madras Port Trust created
1907 Starting of the Indian Bank
1915 Leather Trade Institute was opened
1916 Madras Trade School was opened
1932 Mayor of Madras was revived
Aug 4th 1939 Celebration of the Tercentenary of the Foundation of the Madras city

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