Azamgarh, or Azimgarh, a city and district of British India, in the Gorakhpur division of the United Provinces. The town is situated on the river Tons, and has a railway station. It is said to have been founded about 1665 by a powerful landholder named Azim Khan, who owned large estates in this part of the country. Pop. (1901) 18,835.
The area of the district is 2207 sq. m. It is bounded on the N. by the river Gogra, separating it from Gorakhpur district; on the E. by Ghazipur district and the river Ganges; on the S. by the districts of Jaunpur and Ghazipur; and on the W. by Jaunpur and Fyzabad. The portion of the district lying along the banks of the Gogra is a low-lying tract, varying considerably in width; south of this, however, the ground takes a slight rise. The slope of the land is from north-west to south-east, but the general drainage is very inadequate. Roughly speaking, the district consists of a series of parallel ridges, whose summits are depressed into beds or hollows, along which the rivers flow; while between the ridges are low-lying rice lands, interspersed with numerous natural reservoirs. The soil is fertile, and very highly cultivated, bearing magnificent crops of rice, sugar-cane and indigo. There are several indigo factories. A branch of the Bengal & North-Western railway to Azamgarh town was opened in 1898. In 1901 the population was 1,529,785, showing a decrease of 11% in the decade. The district was ceded to the Company in 1801 by the wazirs of Lucknow. In 1857 it became a centre of mutiny.
On the 3rd of June 1857 the 17th Regiment of Native Infantry mutinied at Azamgarh, murdered some of their officers, and carried off the government treasure to Fyzabad. The district became a centre of the fighting between the Gurkhas and the rebels, and was not finally cleared until October 1858 by Colonel Kelly.