Rudraprayag District was established on 16th September1997. The district was carved out from the following areas of three adjoining districts.
1- Whole of Augustmuni & Ukhimath block and part of Pokhri & Karnprayag block from Chamoli District.
2- Part of Jakholi and Kirtinagar block from Tehri District.
3- Part of Khirsu block from Pauri District.
Internationally Known Shri Kedarnath Temple is at North, Madmaheshwar at east, Nagrasu at southern east and Shrinagar at extreme south. The holy Mandakini originated from Kedarnath is the main river of the district.
Historical Back Ground
Today’s Garhwal was known as kedar-khand in the past. In puranas kedar-khand was said to be abode of God. It seems from the facts vedas puranas, Ramayna and Mahabharat that these Hindu scriptures are scripted in kedar-khand . It is believed that God Ganesha first script of vedas in Vayas gufa situated in the last village Mana only four km.from Badrinath.
According to Rigveda(1017-19) after Inundation (Jalprlya) Sapt-Rishis saved their lives in the same village Mana. Besides there the roots of vedic literature seems to be originated from Garhwal because the Garhwali language has a lot of words common with sanskrit .The work place of vedic Rishis are the prominent pilgrim places in Garhwal specially in chamoli like Atrimuni Ashram in Anusuya about 25 km. from chamoli town and work place of Kashyap Rishi at Gandhmadan parwat near Badrinath. According to Aadi-Puran vedviyas scripted the story of Mahabhrat in Vyas Gufa near Badrinath. Pandukeshwar a small village situated on the Rishikesh Badrinath high-way from where Badrinath is just 25 km away is regarded as Tapsthali of king Pandu. In Kedar-khand Puran this land is regarded the land of lord Shiva.
The authentic script about the history of Garhwal is found only 6th A.D on word. Some of the oldest example of there are the trishul in Gopeshwar, lalitsur in Pandukeshwar .The Narvaman rock script in siroli the chand pur Gari rock script by king Kankpal authentitcates the history and culture of Garhwal.
Some Historian and scientist believe that this land is origin of Arya race. It is believed that about 300B.C. Khasa invaded Garhwal through Kashmir Nepal and Kuman. A conflict grew due to this invasion a conflict took place between these outsiders and natives .The natives for their protection builded small forts called “Garhi’’. Later on Khasa defeated the native totally and captured the forts.
After Khasa, Kshatiya invaded this land and defeated Khasa accomplished their regime. They confined Garhwal of hundreds of Garhi in to fifty-two Garhi only. One kantura vashudev general of kshatriya established his regime on the northern border of garhwal and founded his capital in joshimath then Kartikeypur vashudev katyuri was the founder of katyura dynasty in Garhwal and they reign Garhwal over hundreds of years in this period of katyuri regime Aadi-Guru Sankaracharya visited garhwal and established Jyotrimath which is one of the four famous Peeths established by Aadi-Guru Sankaracharya. In Bharat varsh other these are Dwarika , Puri and Srinagar. He also reinstated idol of lord Badrinath in Badrinath, before this the idol of Badrinath was hidden in Narad-Kund by the fear of Budhas. After this ethicist of vaidic cult started to pilgrim Badrinath.
According to Pt.Harikrishna Raturi king Bhanu pratap was the first ruler of Panwar dynasty in garhwal who founded chanpur-Garhi as his capital. This was is strongest Garh for the fifty- two garhs of garhwal. The devastating earthquake of 8th September 1803 weakened the economic and administrative set up of Garhwal state. Taking advantage of the situation Gorkhas attacked Garhwal under the command of Amar Singh Thapa and Hastidal Chanturia. They established there reign over half of the Garhwal in 1804 up to 1815 this region remain under Gorkha rule.
Mean while the king of Panwar dynasty Raja Sudarshan Shah contacted east India Company and soughted help. With the help of British he defected Gorkas and merged the eastern part of Alaknanda and Mandakani along with the capital srinagar in British Garhwal from that time this region was known as British Garhwal and the capital of Garhwal was set up at Tehri instead of Srinagar. After the death of Sudarshan Shah Bhawani Shah succeeded him, who died in 1871 and was succeeded by his elder son Pratap Shah. Pratap Shah ascended the throne of Tehri at the age of 21 only. He was the founder of Pratap Nagar. He also tried to improve the forest, judicial and police administration. During his rule several public uprisings took place in the state. He died in 1886.
Kirti Shah at the time of his father’s death was still in his adolescence, so his mother Rajmata Guleri appointed Vikram Singh as the regent . But after sometime she herself took over administration. Kirti Shah took over charge of the state in 1892. His rule saw a marked improvement in the functioning of courts, forest and other departments. He is said to have invented typewriter for Hindi but gave the copy write to a company. The religious inclination of Kirti Shah is aptly proved by the fact that he organized a religious conference of the followers of different religion at Tehri. He died on 25th April 1913.
Narendra Shah the successor of Kirti Shah was again a minor at the time of succession. Thus, during the initial years the state administration was looked after by a Regency under the presidency of his mother. During the War period(1939-42) Tehri state supplied a huge amount of wood to the Britishers while the king himself offered his services for them during the first world war. Some of his achievement were developing the new township of Narendra Nagar, construction of Kirti Nagar, Tehri , Muni ki Reti. He died on 22nd September 1950 in a car accident but had already relinquished the throne in favour of his son Manvendra Shah on 26th May 1946. The later ruled the state from 1946 till the state was merged with the Indian Union in August 1949.
The newly crated Rudraprayag District was part of three district Chamoli,Pauri and Tehri. On 16th September 1997 Rudraprayag District was carved out from whole of Augustmuni & Ukhimath block and part of Pokhri & Karnprayag block from Chamoli , part of Jakholi and Kirtinagar block from Tehri District, part of Khirsu block from Pauri.