History of Jakarta

Jakarta began as a small port in the Ciliwung river estuary around 500 years ago. Gradually, this small port was transformed into an international trade center that brought together various nations in the world. Jakarta’s track record can be found through several inscriptions found around the port and along the Ciliwung river.

The history of Jakarta was recorded by European travelers in the 16th century. At that time, Jakarta was widely referred to as Kalapa, which was the main port of the Sunda kingdom. The port, which was also the center of Portuguese trade at that time, was attacked by Prince Fatahillah on June 22 1527. Since then, Prince Fatahillah changed the name of Sunda Kalapa to Jayakarta. The date of the attack is now commemorated as the anniversary of the city of Jakarta.

Then in the 16th century, the Dutch VOC arrived and took over control of Jayakarta and changed its name to Batavia, which was taken from the ancestors of the Dutch people, Batavieren. Batavia’s geographical conditions are similar to the Netherlands, so the Dutch colonial government built a city with canals to protect Batavia from the threat of flooding like in the Netherlands. The Dutch colonial government then established a government center and moved it to higher ground under the name Weltevreden.

Batavia began to become the center of the national movement at the beginning of the 20th century, marked by the Second Youth Congress in 1928. Since the Japanese occupation of Indonesia due to World War II in 1942-1945, Batavia changed its name to Jakarta, or Jakarta Tokubetsu Shi.

Since the Proclamation of Independence of the Republic of Indonesia in 1945, Jakarta became the center of political and government activities in the early days of independence. Then officially in 1966 Jakarta became the National Capital. As the National Capital, Jakarta is developing rapidly with the construction of business locations, accommodation and embassies for friendly countries.

Jakarta continues to develop into a megacity and is becoming one of the largest in the world in the 21st century. Vibrant urban life with a variety of diversity, cultural heritage, and world-class destinations are now gathered and can be found in Jakarta.

Jakarta History Timeline

The long history of the city of Jakarta is full of stories. Starting from the kingdom era to transforming into a global city.

14th century, named Sunda Kalapa and became the center of the port of the Padjadjaran kingdom.
June 22, 1527, Prince Fatahillah attacked Sunda Kalapa and changed its name to Jayakarta.

March 4, 1621, the Dutch began to establish a colonial government and named it Stad Batavia.
April 1, 1905, the Dutch colonial government changed the name to Gemeente Batavia.

January 8 1935, the Dutch colonial government changed the name to Stad Gemeente Batavia.

August 8 1942, Japanese troops arrived in Batavia and changed its name to Jakarta Tokubetsu Shi.
September 1945, Jakarta became the center of Indonesian politics and government with the name Jakarta City National Government.
March 28, 1950, the Indonesian Government changed the name of Jakarta to Praj’a Jakarta.
June 22 1956, the Mayor of Jakarta again confirmed the name as Jakarta.

January 18, 1958, Jakarta became an autonomous region with the name Djakarta Raya Municipality which is under West Java Province.

1959, Jakarta changed its status to a First Level Region (Province) led by the Governor.

1961, Jakarta’s status from Level One Region was again changed to Special Capital Region (DKI).
August 31, 1964, the capital city of Greater Jakarta officially became the capital of the Republic of Indonesia with the name Jakarta.

31 August 1999, Jakarta’s status was then updated to become a provincial government in accordance with Law Number 34 of 1999 concerning Provincial Government for the Special Capital Region of the Republic of Indonesia, Jakarta with autonomous status which has an administrative city.

July 30 2007, Through Law Number 29 of 2007 concerning the Provincial Government of the Special Capital Region of Jakarta as the Capital of the Unitary State of the Republic of Indonesia, Jakarta changed its name to DKI Jakarta and confirmed its status as a special autonomous region for the capital