Thoothukudi District, also known as Tuticorin District is a district in Tamil Nadu state in southern India. The district was formed by dividing Tirunelveli district in 1986 and Thoothukudi is the district headquarters. The district is known for pearl cultivation, with an abundance of pearls being found in the seas offshore. It was formerly ruled by one of the oldest kingdoms in India, the Pandyan Dynasty with the port of Korkai through which trade with Rome happened. The archaeological site at Adichanallur holds the remains of the ancient Tamil civilization. As of 2011, the district had a population of 1,750,176 with a sex-ratio of 1,023 females for every 1,000 males.
Tuticorin (Thoothukudi) is also known by the name ‘Muthu Kuzhithurai’. It is also called as “Sea Gateway of Tamil Nadu”Thoothukudi is part of the Pearl Fishery Coast, and is known for its pearl fishing and shipbuilding industries.Thoothukudi was the seat of Portuguese during the 16th century, and the Dutch occupied in the 17th century as evidenced by Pagoda coins. During the 18th century the British overpowered and occupied the town. Being a port town, the town received attention from the rulers for improving their trade, and so it was brought to Municipal status in 1866.
On the 20th of October 1986, a new district, carved out of the erstwhile Tirunelveli district was born in Tamil Nadu and named after V. O. Chidambaranar, a prominent national leader hailing from Ottapidaram who led the Swadeshi Movement in the south. Since 1997, as is the case in other districts of Tamil Nadu, this district has been named after its headquarters town, Thoothukudi.
Thoothukudi became the citadel of freedom struggles in the early of the 20th century. It was in Thoothukudi that the illustrious patriot, V. O. Chidambaram established the first swadesi Stream Navigation Company, sailing the first steamer S. S. Gaelia to Thoothukudi on 1 June 1907.
The minor port of the Thoothukudi anchorage port with lighter age facilities has had flourishing traffic for over a century. The first wooden jetty of this port was commissioned in 1864. This port was used for export of salt, cotton yarn, senna leaves, palmyrah stalks, palmyrah fibres, dry fish, country drugs, and other goods to neighboring countries and for import of coal, cotton, copra, pulses and grains. The minor port of the Thoothukudi has the distinction of being the intermediate port handling the highest traffic tonnage of over 1 million per annum
The major harbour of Thoothukudi is well known as a pearl diving and fishing center. It is one of the oldest seaports in the world and was the seaport of the Pandyan kingdom after Korkai, near Palayakayal. It was later taken over by the Portuguese in 1548, captured by the Dutch in 1658, and ceded to the British in 1825. The lighthouse built in 1842 marked the beginning of the history of harbour development in the city. Thoothukudi was established as a Municipality in 1866 with Roche Victoria as its first chairman. It attained the status of Corporation on 5 August 2008 after 142 years of being a municipality. Thoothukudi Corporation is divided into 60 wards after its expansion in the year 2011 and these wards are comprised in four zones—i.e., East, West, North, and South. East zone has 14–16 and 19–33 wards, West zone has 34–47 wards, North zone has 1–13 and 17, 18 wards and South zone has 48–60 wards
Recreation and Places of Interest