Himachal Pradesh is located in the northern region of India with borders of Jammu & Kashmir on northern front, China on east, Punjab in west, Uttar Pradesh in southeast and Haryana in south. The history of Himachal Pradesh goes back to the time of Dasas, Koilis, Dhaugiris, Kinnars and Kirats, as first tribal inhabitants of the pre-historic times. These tribal clans were defeated by the powerful army of Aryans, who settled there. During this period, this state also witnessed the establishment of small republics that maintained cordial relations with the main rulers to retain their existence.
After the downfall of Aryans, Guptas took over as the rulers of Himachal state. With the rule of Guptas, the inhabitants of Himachal enjoyed certain amount of freedom as Guptas didn't rule them directly. In this period, Chandragupta introduced Buddhism in the state and built many stupas. The collapse of Guptas was followed by the rise of Harshas. Harsha Vardhan was a vivacious ruler, who promoted the growth of art and culture in the state.
Subsequent to the death of Harsha, local feudal lords enjoyed the rule for more than 40 years. Afterwards, they were defeated by the Rajputs. During the rule of Rajputs, Himachal Pradesh witnessed the invasions by Mughal rulers. These invasions lead Mughals to expand their powers. Later on, when the Mughal rule began to break, Himachal Pradesh regained its independence under the rule of Maharaja Sansar Chand.
On the other side, Gurkhas were consolidating their power to establish their rule in this state. They managed to defeat Maharaja Sansar Chand and gain power. However, their effort to win over the fort of Kangra was crushed by Maharaja Ranjeet Singh. This lead to Anglo-Gurkha war and Gurkhas came in direct contact with Britishers. Gurkhas were, then, expelled from the states lying east of river sutluj. It led to the emergence of Britishers as a supreme power.
At the time of Britishers, Sikhs tried to invade British territory and fought Anglo-Sikh war. After winning this war, Britishers began to exercise their control over other territories also and this led to first revolt of 1857. British gained the official rule over hills after the proclamation of Queen Victoria. This period saw freedom struggles taking place in different parts of the country, including hilly regions.
After gaining independence, the chief commissioner's province came into existence in April, 1948. After that, Himachal Pradesh was made a Union Territory in November, 1956. In January, 1971, Himachal Pradesh emerged as a new and independent state of India.