Historical Events

Chennai Historical Events from 1639 to 1988.

Madras day is celebrated on August 22nd.

The events mentioned below taken and formatted from


1639 Madras founded .
The English get Madras Patnam from Ayyapa Naicker.
1640 Francis Day and Cogan landed with 25 Europeans.
Foundation laid for Fort St.George.
1668 Triplicane annexed to the city.
1678 Foundation laid for St. Mary’s Church in Fort St. George.
1679 St.Mary’s Church Completed.
1688 Madras City Municipal Corporation inaugurated.
1693 Egmore, Purasawalkam and Tondiarpet annexed to the City.
1708 Thiruvottiyur, Nungambakkam, Vyasarpady,
Kottivakkam and Sathangadu -
Five neighbouring Villages annexed;
wall built around Black Town.
1711 First Printing Press erected in Madras.
1735 Chintadripet was formed.
1742 Veperi, Perimet, Perambur and Pudupakkam annexed to the city.
1746 The French return Madras to the English;
Santhome and Mylapore annexed to the City.
1758 French Commander Lawly siege Madras.
1759 French siege ended.
1767 Hyder Ali’s first invasion.
1768 Chepauk palace built by Nawab of Arcot.
1769 Hyder Ali’s Second invasion.
1777 Veerappillai appointed as First Kotthawal-
Hence the name Kotthawal Chavadi.
1783 Fort St. George repaired and attains the present shape.
1784 The First Newspaper –Madras Courier.
1785 First Post Office.
1795 Triplicane Big Mosque-Walajah Mosque built.
1817 Madras Literary Society founded.
1826 Board of Public Instructions founded.
1831 First Commercial Bank –Madras Bank.
First Census in the City Population 39,785.
1832 Madras Club founded.
1834 First Survey School inaugurated –
Later developed as Engineering College.
1835 First Medical College –
Later became Madras Christian College.
1841 Ice House was built –
Ice brought from America through ships was stored here;
Later named as Vivekananda House.
1842 First Light House.
1846 Pachaiappan School; Later Pachaiappa’s College.
1851 Museum formed
1853 Zoo formed.
1855 University Board formed.
1856 First Railway –Royapuram to Arcot.
1857 Madras University founded.
1864-65 Presidency College built.
1868 Attempt to protected water supply.
1873 First Birth Registered.
Madras Mail Newspaper founded.
Cosmopolitan Club founded.
1874 University Senate house built.
1876-78 Great Famine – Buckingham Canal dug.
1878 The Hindu Newspaper founded.
1882 First Telephone.
1885 Marina Beach Road formed.
1886 Indian National Congress Meet at Madras.
Connemera Public Library founded.
1889 High Court Building foundation laid.
1894 First Car – Mr. A.J. Boag, Director of Parry&Co,
drove the Car on City Roads.
1895 First Tram Car.
1899 First Tamil Newspaper-Swadesamitran.
1905 Port Trust formed.
1906 Indian Bank founded.
King Institute, Guindy founded.
1914 Water mains and drainage formed.
Street lights introduced.
Kilpauk water works inaugurated.
Endon bombardment-
Endon German fighter Vessel bombarded the sea shore and
disappeared - First World War.
1917 First Aeroplane;
Simpson & Co., arranged for the trial flight.
1924 School of Indian Medicine.
1925 Loyola College
First Bus Transport.
1930 First Broadcasting Station founded at Ripon Buildings Complex.
1934 First Mayor - Raja Sir. Muthiah Chettiyar
1938 All India Radio formed and
broadcasting from Ripon Buildings ceased.
1942 Second World War - Evacuation of Madras.
1943 Japanese Fighter Plane dropped bombs on City and disappeared.
Mambalam, Saidapet, Govt. Farm, Puliyur, Kodambakkam,
Saligramam, Adayar and Alandur Villages which formed part of
Saidapet Municipality were annexed to the city.

Sembiyam, Siruvallur, Peravallur, Small Sembarambakkam
and Ayanavaram which formed part of Sembium Panchayat
Board were annexed to the city.

Aminjikarai, Periyakudal, Maduvankarai Villages which formed
part of Aminjikarai Panchayat Board were annexed.

Part of Velacheri Village belonging to Velacheri Panchayat Board
was also annexed to the city.

1947 Indian National Flag Hoisted over Fort. St. George.
1952 Nehru Stadium.
1956 Gandhi Mandap.
1959 Guindy Children’s Park.
1969 World Tamil Congress.
1971 Snake Park.
1972 Madras Metropolitan Development Authority.
1973 Madras Corporation Superceded.
1974 Rajaji Mandap.
Madras Television Centre.
1975 Kamaraj Mandap.
Valluvar Kottam.
1976 New Light House.
1977 Madras Metropolitan Water supply and Sewage Board
Kanagam, Taramani, Thiruvanmiyur, Velacheri, Kodambakkam,
Virugambakkam, Saligramam, Koyambedu, Thirumangalam,
Villivakkam, Errukancheri, Kolathur, Kodungaiyur
Panchayat areas annexed to the City;
Madras reaches the present stage.
1983 Zoo shifted to Vandalur.
1988 Periyar Science Park
Birla Planetarium.
Madras Corporation’s Tri-centenary.
Decentralisation of Administration.
10 Circles formed.

A city deserves to celebrate its birthday.
And Madras, that is Chennai certainly deserves it.

So a small group of people who love this city launched a unique celebration in 2004.

The founding day of Madras is considered to be August 22, 1639.
It was on that day, in that year, that a sliver of land, where Fort. St. George stands today, was transacted by the East India Company.

The deal was struck by Francis Day, his ‘dubash’ Beri Thimmappa, and their superior, Andrew Cogan, with the local Nayak rulers.
It is believed that this deal was made on August 22, 1639.

Out of the fort, grew settlements. Then the villages around it were brought together.
And then, the old and new townes linked up. And then we had the city.

Today, Chennai stands tall for a variety of reasons. Education, healthcare, IT, history, tourism, auto industries, movies, etc.
And yes, it also has its warts.

Madras Day celebrates the city.

Madras Day was an idea that three people put together – the city’s famed historian, S. Muthiah, journalist Sashi Nair and publisher Vincent D’ Souza. Today, they have been joined by three others – senior journalist and editor Sushila Ravindranath, journalist and web site entrepreneur Revathi R and entrepreneur and writer-historian V. Sriram.

Madras Day focuses on the city, its history, its past and its present and the core team motivates communities, groups, companies and campuses in the city to host events that celebrate the city.
Heritage walks, school exchange programmes, talks and contests, poetry and music and quiz, food fests and rallies, photo exhibitions and bike tours . . . . these and more are the ways in which the city is celebrated.

In order to enlarge participation, the Madras Day has been expanded to create the Madras Week.

In 2010, MADRAS WEEK will be celebrated from August 15 to 22.
MADRAS DAY, as always, is August 22

If you wish to organise, collaborate or host an event for MADRAS WEEK and need guidance / info, please send an email to – madrasday@yahoo.com