Hooghly district is one of the districts
of the state of West Bengal in India. It can alternatively
be spelt Hoogli or Hugli.
The district is named after the Hooghly River.Hooghly
situated on the west bank of Hooghly River about 40 km north
of Kolkata. But, the district has thousands of years of rich
heritage in the form of the great Bengali kingdom of Bhurshut.
The first European to reach this area was the Portuguese sailor
In 1536 Portuguese traders obtained a permit from Sultan Mahmud
Shah to trade in this area. In those days the Hooghly River
was the main route for transportation and Hooghly served as
an excellent trading port. Within a few decades the town of
Hooghly turned into a major commercial center and the largest
port in Bengal.
Later in 1579-80 Emperor Akbar gave permission
to a Portuguese captain Pedro Tavares to establish a city
anywhere in the Bengal province. They normally chose Hooghly
and thus Hooghly became the first European settlement in Bengal.
In 1599 the Portuguese traders built a convent and a church
in Bandel. This is the first Christian church in Bengal known