Welcome to Serampore

Brief History : Serampore

Serampore is one of the oldest colonial cities of India at the banks of Hooghly River. It is the home of arguably the most ancient Jagannath Temple of the world. The Jagannath temple of Mahesh is dated back to 1755. Various ruins of Hindu temples are still found in Serampore, such as:

    1. Henry Martin's Pagoda,
    2. The temple of Radhaballabhjeu in Ballabhpur (18th century),
    3. The Ram-Sita temple in Sripur and
    4. Gauranga in Chatra dating back to the 16th century.
    5. Hari Sabha (Buttala)
    6. Sashan Kali Mandir
    7. Satimata Mandir, in B. P. Dey Street.

The great Serampore Trio (William Carey, Joshua Marshman and William Ward) has started to build a modern Serampore in 18th Century and that ignited a revolution that helped our Modern Bengal. The Serampore College was built by them which still holds its ground strong.

Area: 11.86 sq. km (4.58 sq mi)

Population: 8,00,000 [Approx. 2011 census]

How to reach: By Train : From Howrah Station and catch any train for Bandel or Burdwan by Main line. It will take you to Uttarpara. By Road : G.T Road connects it with other parts of the country. It is well connected by Bus with Chinsurah and other parts of Hooghly and Burdwan. Bus no. 3 connects Serampore to Shyambazar and greater Kolkata.

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SERAMPORE (শ্রীরামপুর) (also called Serampur, Srirampur, Srirampore, Shreerampur, Shreerampore, Shrirampur, Shrirampore, Srerampore) is a city and a municipality in Hooghly District. It is a part of the area covered by KMDA (Kolkata Metropolitan Development Authority). It is a pre-colonial town on the west bank of the Hooghly River. It was part of Danish India under the name Frederiksnagore from 1755 to 1845.

The city is several centuries old and has witnessed both the growth and decline of the zaminder system, the coming of the Danes and their settlement and then a cultural renaissance (known as the Bengal Renaissance) initiated by the British following the construction of the east Indian railway, along with subsequent industrial development.

This region between the Saraswati and Hoogli rivers once was a thriving local community. Various ruins of Hindu temples are still found in Serampore. The Jagannath temple of Mahesh is dated to 1755. When Bengal came under the command of Sri Chaitanya's Vaisnavism in the fifteenth century, these places became pre-eminent as a Hindu pilgrim centre.

The Birth of Serampore:

Raja Manohar Roy Zaminder of Sheoraphuli built the temple of Ram-Sita in Sripur in 1753, and his son Ram Chandra Roy then later dedicated the villages of Sripur, Gopinathpur and Manoharpur as devottara land in the service of the deity. Since then the temple was taken care by Raja Nirmal Chandra Ghosh and the 'Saraphuli Raj Debuttar Estate'. In present times, the temple and its premises fall under the surveillance of the 'Sheoraphuli Rajbari'.

It is probable that the name 'Srirampur' originated either from 'Sripur', 'Sri Ram' or both, or it could originate from 'Seetarampore' as there was a very famous 'Ram-Seeta' temple. Here some aristocratic localities came up, namely Goswamipara, Lahiripara, Mukherjeepara, Bhattacharyapara, Chakravartipara, Beniapara etc., whose inhabitants were Brahmins of different groups and sects.

After this there arose the need for local artisana along with "service class" people who came from the neighbouring villages and settled on granted land. In this way, several colonies such as Patuapara, Kumarpara, Dhulipara, Goalpara, Dutta Bagan, Khash Bagan etc. were formed. This along with the fact that Sheoraphuli was a collecting centre for local marketable goods produced in different parts of Hughli, induced many families - the Barujibis, Duttas, Deys, Das etc. - to come to settle here before 1755.

British Era:

After taking possession of the town from the Danes, the British began to look after its civic amenities and the earlier 'Village Committee' was transformed into the Serampore Municipality in 1865. Rishra and Konnagar were also included in it.

Post 1947:

Since 1947, Serampore has become a satellite of Kolkata (formerly Calcutta) and as such its process of urbanisation and change is as yet still incomplete. Now Serampore is one of the most developed towns in the main line region of Howrah.

As of 2011 India census, Serampore had a population of 8 lacs [Approx.]. Males constitute 51.55% of the population and females 48.45 %. Serampore has an average literacy rate of 89.99%, higher than the national average of 74.04%: male literacy is 92.75%, and female literacy is 87.05 %.

Attractions of Serampore

Radhaballav Jiu Temple

Present day Thakurbari was built and in the year 1886 and the deities of Radhaballav Jiu Thakur and Radharani Jiu Thakurani were installed in 1887 at the present premises. In the adjacent area houses were built by Ghoshes, all connected through a private passage with the Thakurbari so that the ladies could visit the deities freely without having to go outside. But the history of this great temple was not that simple. It had an outstanding historical value.

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Mahesh today, remains a centre of Jagannath worship, and is home to the second oldest “Rath Yatra” or car festival in India, after Puri. This is the oldest Chariot Festival of Bengal. Every year devotees throng to Mahesh to pull the ropes of the Lord’s chariot. They pull the chariot to the Lord’s garden house to the North of Mahesh, and eight days later, return it to its original location. The idols are then carried out of the chariot, and placed back within the temple. A huge fair is held on the occasion. The chariot itself has been changing constantly since 1397.

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Mahesh today, remains a centre of Jagannath worship, and is home to the second oldest “Rath Yatra” or car festival in India, after Puri. 15th century poet Bipradas Pipilai who is known as one of the contributors to the “Manasamangal” genre, and for having written many of the stories of “Chand Saudagar” first mentioned Mahesh (pronounced as Maa-hesh). His descriptions of Mahesh were probably from around 1495. The area was probably under the rule of Oriya Kings, and as Lord Jagannath was the royal family’s deity of choice, it found acceptance among subjects here.

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There are very few cities in the whole world where a college is considered to be one of the main attractions of that city. Well Serampore college falls on that list of the very few. The college is believed to be the single most place of interest where the modern 19th century renaissance in Bengal originated. Serampore College was established in 1818 by Dr. William Carey and his associates, Joshua Marshman and William Ward, under the Royal Danish Charter, which empowered the College to confer degrees in Theology.

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One of the oldest Durga Puja in serampore is Goswami Bari Durga puja. It is over 410 years old. This puja also called “Buri Durga” due to its age. The history of Goswami bari dated back to the times of Ram Gobindo who purchased this land in just One Rupee from the Zaminder of Sheoraphuli, Basudev Roy.

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Serampore Rajbari was built by Raghuram Goswami. He was a great tactician and finding far too much fragmentation of his original property in Goswamipara, Raghuram left, to build a house for himself and his children and it was thus that the giant mansion known today to locals as “Serampore Rajbari” came up, sometime between 1815 and 1820.

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Sri Sri Chaitaynay Mahaprovu came to Srirampur to visit Lord Sri Sri Jagannath dev of Sripat Mahesh and The holy temple of Sri Sri Radhballav Jiu. several times. Once He came to Chatra by boat and disembarked at 'Gouranga Ghat' of River Ganges. Where fro He visited 'Chatra Kashiswar Pith' or Doltala Mandir and on the way to Jagannath Temple He rested at this place. Where the devotees made this present temple 200 years ago.

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EMERGENCY

Serampore Tarun Sangha Ambulance Service 9804922430
Serampore Police Station 033 2652 1200
Serampore Walsh Hospital 033 2662 6062
Serampore E.S.I. Hospital 033 2622 1703

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