A major part of the Chattisgarh (Bastar) as we know today was known as Dandakaranya in the ancient times. Other parts were known as Dakshina Koshal. In the medieval period, the region, which falls south of the Vindhyas, came to be known as Gondwana. Earliest human settlements were established in this region much before they came into existence in any other part of the country. Historians and anthropologists are trying to establish the exact date for the earliest human settlement in this region.
Right from the beginning, Chattisgarh has been swarmed with migrants from nearby places, who now constitute a major part of the population. Right from the days of great Magadha Empire, Chattisgarh remained part of every empire that ruled the country from north to south, but their dominance was political only. As the region was extremely inaccessible, not much interference could be made in the lifestyle of the tribes. Kalchuris were the first rulers who ruled clearly over this region till 19th century. After the fall of Kalchuris, it was time for the Bhonsles of Nagpur to dominate over this region for a brief period in the 19th century. However with the decline of the Marathas, there prevailed complete lawlessness throughout the region and many tribal chieftains established rule over small tracts of land.
The English recognized the mineral wealth of the region and established a vast network of mines and railway track throughout the region, which marked the beginning of a new phase in the tribal history of Chattisgarh. Today, the state is a heterogeneous mix of races from all over the country working together to create a prosperous Chattisgarh.