The Portuguese Period
The records of the fortified town of Galle and the history of galle fort begins with the advent of the Portuguese within the island of Sri Lanka at the start of the sixteenth (16) century.
In 1505 a group of Portuguese sailors led by Don Lorenzo de Almeida, son of Francesco de Almeida, arrived in the island. They built the first fortification in Galle on a cliff, jutting out into the sea. It turned into referred to as the Swart Bastion or the Black Fort.
The Dutch Period
The galle fort which became built through the Portuguese become captured with the aid of the Dutch on March thirteenth 1640 after a battle. Portuguese creator Parinavo Kerosh has given an in depth description of the Galle fort and the battle which led to its conquest with the aid of the Dutch in his e-book The Temporal and Spiritual Conquest of Ceylon
In step with him, a Dutch contingent of approximately 2000 squaddies led by using Admiral Wilhelm Jacobs Coster had landed at Unawatuna, a coastal village south of Galle, on 8th March 1640. they’d proceeded on foot to Magalle in which they got themselves entrenched. whilst the Portuguese navy headquarters in Colombo acquired this news, they right now dispatched to Galle a contingent of 323 infantrymen, led with the aid of Captain principal Francesco de Mendona Manuel, by land, who had been joined at the manner by way of a similarly 1800. Their armoury became a loose series of canons, guns of diverse types and even bows. by using that point there had been handiest approximately 110 Portuguese infantrymen led with the aid of Captain Lorenzo Perera de Britto stationed in Galle citadel and that they were in no manner prepared to put up any powerful resistence to the Dutch.
within the struggle which ensued, the Dutch have been able to triumph over the Portuguese and seize galle fort. it is recorded as one of the fiercest battles which the Dutch fought in Sri Lanka.
The conquest of Galle was celebrated in Batavia on 20 th April 1640. The importance the Dutch gave to the seize of Galle is confirmed by way of the reality that this event changed into yearly celebrated by using them in the course of the only and a 1/2 centuries of Dutch rule in Sri Lanka.
The small fortification in Galle which changed into captured from the Portuguese by way of the Dutch changed into considerably elevated and stepped forward by way of them consistent with their personal distinct architectural style.
The British Period
On 23 rd February 1796 the 70 th Regiment of the British Forces in Sri Lanka (then referred to as Ceylon), led by way of Captain Locklan Macwary, took manipulate of Galle without any combating. The British Governor stationed in Madras become in rate of Ceylon until October 1798. due to problems of management, Sir Fredrick North become appointed Governor and Commander in chief of the British territory of Sri Lanka by means of Royal proclamation dated 12 th October 1798. It additionally marked the start of the Ceylon Civil service.
In 1833, several administrative reforms have been finished on the recommendation of a fee which comprised Mr. H.H. Colebrook and Mr. H.C. Cameron. beneath those reforms, the island of Ceylon was divided into five provinces. They chose Galle as the centre of administration of the Southern Province. The Southern Province contained the districts of Galle, Matara, Tangalle, Hambantota, Uva, Wellassa, Buttala and Ratnapura. with the aid of 1845, these districts have been consolidated to shape 3 districts, specifically, Galle, Matara and Hambantota.
Now The Galle Fort,
After the British took over the country from the Dutch in the year 1796, they preserved the citadel unchanged, and used it because the place of business of Galle. In 1947, whilst Ceylon received its independence from the British, Galle became, all over again, an impartial city. via that point the long years of association with eu colonialism had left an indelible stamp on the city which makes it unique in latest Sri Lanka. In recognition of that, UNESCO declared the old city of Galle, essentially the galle fort and its surroundings, a World Heritage Site in 1988.
Source : http://www.galleheritage.gov.lk