Historically, it is believed that the history of the Tumkur district begins with the Gangas. The city officially became "Tumakuru" on November 1st, 2014. The name Tumkur derived from the name ‘Tummeguru’ which was the original name of the place. Gangas, Rashtrakutas and Chalukyas ruled over the district. At the very beginning the place of Tumkur was ruled by the Gangas. From early in the Christian era to 1025 AD. the Ganga dynasty ruled over the southern and eastern districts of the state. The first record of the Ganga dynasty found in this region belongs to about 400 AD. When the downfall of the Gangas started, Tumkur went into the hands of Rastrakutas and then the Chalukyas. The Nolambas under these rulers ruled the area for a long time. At the time the Cholas also ruled some parts of the district. The Vijayanagara Empire ruled supreme for the latter part of the 13th to 17th century. During the 18th and 19th century, Tumkur was ruled by the Wodeyars of Mysore until independence.
G.S Paramashivaiah, a renowned Irrigation Expert and Chief Engineer was born on February 2nd, 1919 at Gubbi. He was also the Chief Engineer of the Irrigation Department and headed State technical advisory committee on Irrigation. Baraguru Ramachandrappa was born on 18th October, 1947. He is a renowned writer, successful film director, screenplay writer in Kannada film industry. He has also filmed many documentary films. In 2008, he was honored with the degree of Doctorate by the Kuvempu University and Rani Chennamma University.
Geographically, the district has total 10,597 sq. km. and occupies the ranks 3rd in State and 49th in India. In the year 2019 it had 12.12% forest area of total geographical area. It lies at 13o34'N latitude, 77°10'E longitude and 822 m altitude. Krishna and the Kaveri, Jayamangala and the Shimsha rivers pass through the district. The climate of the district remains pleasant almost throughout the year. Most of its rainfall occurs in the monsoon season. The actual rainfall in the district was 646.7 mm in the year of 2018-19.
Administrative wise, the district is divided into 10 sub-districts, 12 towns and 2,582 villages. Kannada is its official language. The district of Tumkur came into existence on the 1st November, 1956 with an allotted district code of 571 in the state of Karnataka. Its district headquarters is at Tumkur which is located at a distance of 73 km. from the State Capital.
Demographically, according to 2011 census, the district has a total number of 6,36,394 households with a total population of 26,78,980 out of which 13,50,594 are males and 13,28,386 are females. The density of population of the district is 253 persons per sq. km. The sex ratio is pegged at 984 (females per 1000 males) while the child ratio stands at 959 (females per 1000 males). As per 2011 census the percentage of major religions practiced by the people of this region is Hindu at 90.10% and Muslim at 9.18%. The population growth rate during the period 2001 to 2011 was 3.65% out of which 2.8% were males and 4.52% were females. According to 2011 census the percentage of the principal languages of the region is Kannada at 84.96% and Urdu at 9.03%. In the year 2017 the number of live births in the district was 34,797 including 18,145 were males and 16,652 were females. In the same year the number of deaths in the district was 25,817 including 15,311 were males and 10,506 were females.
Economically, agriculture is the back bone of the district. Many small scale industries are available here. The Gross District Domestic Product during the period 2016-17 was Rs. 45,09,284 lakh at current price and Rs. 33,72,406 lakh at constant prices in the year 2011-2012. The Net District Domestic Product during the period 2016-17 was Rs. 41,10,579 lakh at current price and Rs. 30,46,368 lakh at constant prices in the year 2011-2012. The Per Capita Income or NDDP, at factor cost during the period 2016-17 was Rs. 1,44,443 at current price and Rs. 1,07,047 at constant prices in the year 2011-2012.
Education wise, according to 2011 census, the literacy rate in the district is 75.14% out of which 82.81% are males and 67.38% are females. The total literate population of the district is 18,13,391 including 10,06,024 are males and 8,07,367 are females. Tumakuru is a hub for the South interior Karnataka knowledge. Tumkuru University has many medical colleges, engineering colleges, degree and post graduate colleges, dental college and many polytechnics, high schools and primary schools. The district has a prominent high school namely Government Junior College (GJC), at Gubbi. Maruthi Vidya Kendra was established in 1986 in Someshwarapuram. The school is from Kindergarten to Class 10 under the Karnataka State Board of Education. There are a number of technical colleges such as Siddaganga Institute of Technology (SIT), Siddaganga Institute of Technology, Sri Siddhartha Academy of Higher Education, Sri Siddhartha Institute of Technology SECAB Institute of Engineering & Technology, Sri Siddhartha Institute of Management Studies and Sri Siddhartha Medical College.
Many key political personalities belong to the district. Gangasandra Siddappa "G.S" Basavaraj is an Indian politician who belongs to Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP). He has been representing Tumkur constituency of Karnataka in the 8th, 13th and 15th Lok Sabha of India. Ramachandra Gowda is a senior leader of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in Karnataka. T.B Jayachandra is a politician from Indian National Congress. He is a member of the Karnataka Legislative Assembly and the Minister for Law, Parliamentary Affairs, Animal Husbandry and Muzrai in Karnataka State. Dr. G. Parameshwara, the current Home Minister of Karnataka was born 6th August, 1958. He is also serving as the current President of the Karnataka Pradesh Congress Committee since October, 2010.
The district has several historical and religious places to visit. These places are Devarayana Durga, Goravanahalli Shree Mahalakshmi Temple, Sidda Lingeshwara Temple and Sri Sidda Lingeshwara Swamy Temple. During 2016, there were 2,01,80,191 Domestic Tourist who came to visit above places. Devarayanadurga is a hill station with several temples. It consists of three elevations and seven gates leading to the top. Goravanahalli is the temple of Shree Mahalakshmi. It is surrounded by greenery. Theetha reservoir is nearby of it which is also a main tourist attraction. Kaidala was also called Kridapura. Earlier, it was the capital of the state. It has two temples namely Channakeshava Temple and Gangadhareshwara Temple which were sculpted by Jakanachari.