His Highness Sayajirao Gaekwad III
(Son of Kashirao Dadasaheb, adopted by Matushri Jamnabai Sahib, widow of Khanderao Gaekwad)
Maharani Jamnabai, the widow of Maharaja Khanderao Gaekwad adopted Gopalrao, son of Kashirao Dadasaheb to be the heir apparent to the throne of Baroda.
The first question that Maharani Jamnabai asked was “Why do you think you have been brought here?” and the answer that followed made her decision and one among the three selected boys were chosen to be adopted. Gopalrao’s answer “Why, to be made the Maharaja, of course!” He was born March 11th, 1863 and adopted as Sayajirao Gaekwad on May 27, 1875. He was placed on an enormous brocade covered cushion that takes the place of the gadi.
A salute of a hundred and twenty-two guns was fired. Sugar was distributed all over the state, the poor fed and prisoners released. His first of many titles to follow “His Highness Maharaja Sayajirao Gaekwad, Sena Khas Khel, Shamsher Bahadur.”
History of Baroda
The early man is believed to have lived on the banks of the Mahi River which formed the flood plains in that region. There are evidences of the existence of early man and the existence of early settlements in the Mahi river valley at a number of sites within 10 to 20 km to the north-east of Vadodara.
Archaeological findings of human settlements on the right bank of the river Vishwamitri on a group of dunes resting on the alluvium of the river have been dated to 1000 B.C and also ascertain the existence of the Stone Age.
Around the beginning of the Christian era, a small township developed at the same spot as the above mentioned settlement on the right bank of the river. It came to be known as Ankotakka (present day Akota), the mound on which this settlement was established came to be known as Dhantekri. The entire settlement was developed by clearing grazing land and thick forests that covered an area of ½ to ¾ km².
Ideas shape the course of history….John Maynard Keynes
There exist several ideas about Vadodara or Baroda and reasons for it being called so. Let us take a journey back in time to savor these ideas which contribute to Baroda’s enchanting history.