Bangalore Fort was originally built by Kempe Gowda in 1537 a feudatory of the Vijaynagar Empire and the founder of Bangalore as a mud fort. It was converted into a stone fort by Haider Ali in 1761. It was a stronghold of Tipu Sultan that was captured by the army of the British East India Company led by Lord Cornwallis on 21 March 1791 during the Third Mysore War (1790–1792). Only the Delhi gate of the fort presently exists on Krishnarajendra Road bearing a marble plaque recording the spot where a breach in the fort wall delivered Bangalore Fort to the British. There also exists a wooden palace of Tipu sultan, and his armoury in the old fort area. The fort has provided the setting for the treasure hunt in the book Riddle of the Seventh Stone.

History

The confirmed history of the Bengaluru Fort is traced to 1537, when Kempe Gowda I (pictured), a Chieftain of the Vijayanagara Empire, widely held as the founder of modern Bangalore (now renamed as Bengaluru), built a mud fort and established the area around it as Bengaluru Pete as his province.

Fort structure

The Bangalore fort, ca. 1791, was described as follows:

Bangalore, like Madras, had a fort, with a pettah, or fortified town, outside it. This lay-out was a feature of almost all the cities or settlements in India, the fort providing a place of refuge for most of the inhabitants if the pettah was in danger of capture. The fort at Bangalore had a perimeter of about one mile; it was of solid masonry, surrounded by a wide ditch which was commanded from 26 towers placed at intervals along the ramparts. To its north lay the pettah, several miles in circumference and protected by an indifferent rampart, a deep belt of thorn and cactus, and a small ditch. Altogether Bangalore was not a place which invited attack.
—Sandes, Lt Col E.W.C. (1933) The Military Engineer In India, Vol 1

Present status

All that remains of the Fort is the Delhi Gate and remnants of 2 bastions. Dismantling of the Fort started with the British Conquest of Bangalore in 1791 and continued till the 1930's Ramparts and walls made way for roads while arsenals, barracks and the other old buildings quickly made way for colleges, schools, bus stands, and hospitals. In November 2012 workers at the neighbouring Bangalore Metro construction site unearthed 2 huge iron cannons weighing a ton each with cannon balls dating back to the times of Tipu Sultan.

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Courtesy: Wikipedia

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