Brief History

    One of the most fascinating yet mystical cultures of the ancient world is the Harappan Civilization. This culture exited along the Indus River presently in the province Punjab, Pakistan about 2500 BC to about 1500BC for period of about 700 years. This site takes its name from a modern village which is located near bank of Ravi River. The ancient site is located 6 km (3.7 miles) away from the current village Harappa. Harappa and Mohenjo-Daro were the greatest achievements of Indus valley civilization. Harappa is well known for its magnificent, organized and regular layout. More than one hundred other towns also occur in this region. The people of Harappa were cultured, literate and used the Dravidina language. Only part of this Dravidian language has been decoded today, leaving various question about this civilization remained unanswered.
Oldest mention record of this city is in the Rigveda (ancient Indian collection of Bedic Sanskrit hymns), as the scene of the deaft of Vrcivants by Abhyavartin Cayamana. The recorded name was as Hari-Yupuya. The earlier habitants were probably non-Aryans who get conquered. Probably this site is one of the renowned sites where the so called Aryans overcome the local population and established their control. However, until more proofs are uncovered in the support of the theory, this is mostly supposition.
The first visit to Harappa was made by James Lewis, British army deserter in 1826 AD who roamed the Punjab and North-West areas in the search of antiquarian remains. While travelling to Multan he encountered Harappa and said the following words in description summarized as.
East of the village there was abundance of grass where I left my hoarse for grassing. While joining the camp and spotted a large circular mound and to the west was an irregular rocky height crowned with remains of buildings, in fragments of walls with niches, after the eastern manner. The rocky height was undoubtedly natural objects while the circular mound was artificial one. The walls and towers of the fort were very high. Therefore remain unabated for a very long time. There is a extended deep trench which is overgrown with grass and plants. Tradition affirms the existence of a city that may be extended to Chicha Watni, and it is destroyed by God in order to punish the lust and crimes of sovereigns.
Mistakenly he related the city to Sangala from the age of Alexander about 1300 years previous.
Later in 1831, Alexander Burnes, an ambassador from the King willian IV recorded the extensive reamins at Harappa while his voyage from Multan to Lahore to handover the gifts of horses from King of United Kingdom to Ranjit Singh. He also encountered Harappa on the same route. How he describe Harappa is summarized as.
About fifty miles eastwards of Toolumba (town near Multan) spotted ruins of ancient city, called Harappa. This is a big area which is built of bricks and have circumference of three miles. The ruined castle is on the river side of the town. Everything in the town is disordered and has not the complete building. The fall of Harappa at the same period as Shorkot (1300 years ago), and the people refer its ruins to the revenge of God on Harappa. I found the coins of both Hindu and Persian and can’t tell about the correct area.
However, their records were observed by Alexander Cunningham, who had visited the site in 1853 and 1856, resulting in a small amount of digging done in 1872. Then he identifies the site with that of Malli, which alexander had ordered to be blockaded when he invade the subcontinent. That city had extensive marshed and to the east or south-east of Kot Kamalia, and Harappa is located exactly in such on the bank of the old course of the Indus and 16 miles east-south-east of Kot Kamalia.
The site at this time was used as a pick the bricks by brick robbers who are working on the Multan Railways. When Alexander Cunningham was excavating (digging) Harappa found pottery, chert blades (blades made up of fine-grained silica-rich microcrystalline or cryptocrystalline sedimentary) and a seal. Alexander Cunningham had idea that the seal was foreign to India. The fort hill was the site of a major Hindu temple that was destroyed. The bricks which are taken from the site are more than enough to furnish 100 miles of the Lahore to Multan Railway, testifying to the scale of the building that exited there. Alexander Cunningham found very little to preserve as the majority of the settlement had been stripped of bricks. Subsequent excavations (digging) at Mohenjo-Daro, and Suktagendor revealed the extent of this civilization, but extensive investigations in Harappa and Mohenjo-Dar were carried out in year 1922 and corresponding sites were named as the Indus Valley Civilization.
In 1914 John Marshall (Archaeologist, Chester, England) sent Harry Hargreaves to Harrapa on inspection to determine if it should be further excavated (dug) and to observe the mound for the further study. Further seals were found which it was observed the age of the site is far beyond they previously considered into the 3rd-4th millennium BC and this was attested by Dr Ernest John Henry Mackay (Archeologist from Bristol, England). John Marshall stop his work at Taxila digs to work on the sites of Harappa and Mohenjo-Daro in year 1923-1924 and finally the points where the Indus Civilization have been identified. Other archaeologists who worked at the site were Maho Sarup Vats, Ahmed Hassan Dani, Ernest John Henry Mackay, Rai Bahadur Daya Ram Sahni, Rakhal Das Banerjee and Aurel Stein. Sir Robert Eric Mortimer Wheeler then took over the charge of excavation in 1944 and continued his work after the post partition era when he was archaeologist advisor to Government of Pakistan. The later work done by George F. Dales, Richard H. Meadow and Jonathan Mark Kenoyer in the mound pushed the date of historical site to early 4th millennium BC.