In Which Year was the First English Factory Set Up on the Banks of the River Hooghly?

By BYJU'S Exam Prep

Updated on: November 9th, 2023

The first English factory was founded in 1651 on the banks of the river Hooghly in Bengal. The East India Company began trading in Bengal. The warehouse in the factory was used for storing goods. To establish trade with India, the East India Company first traveled by sea to Surat in the year 1608. On June 23, 1757, the British East India Company defeated the Nawab of Bengal Siraj-Ud-Daulah and his French allies in the Battle of Plassey.

First English Factory Set Up on River Hooghly

A gathering of eminent traders and explorers took place in 1599 to plan a potential expedition to the East Indies under a royal charter. Along with Fitch and Lancaster, the group also included Sir John Wolstenholme, Richard Hakluyt, a writer and supporter of British colonization of the Americas, and several other seafarers who had served with Drake and Raleigh. Thomas Smythe was a prominent London politician and administrator whose father had founded the Levant Company.

The conflict solidified the Company’s presence in Bengal, which over the ensuing century, grew to encompass much of India. John Goldsborough of the East India Company constructed Fort William in Calcutta in 1696.

Facts about First English Factory

  • In Mumbai, Sewri Fort was constructed by the British in 1680.
  • As trade increased, local traders and merchants began to move in close to the factory.
  • By granting the Company zamindari rights over three villages, they bought off the Mughal officials.
  • Later, they succeeded in persuading Aurangzeb, the Mughal emperor, to sign a ‘farmaan’ granting the Company free trading rights. A ‘farmaan’ is a royal directive or decree.
  • On the other hand, company employees who engaged in private trade were required to pay duty.


In Which Year was the First English Factory Set up on the Banks of the River Hooghly?

The first English factory was established in Bengal in 1651 along the banks of the Hooghly River. Trading in Bengal is started by the East India Company. Products are kept in the factory’s warehouse. The East India Company first visited Surat in 1608 in order to establish trade with India. With an increase in trade, the merchants and local traders began moving closer to the factory.

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