- Bank of Calcutta was founded on 2 June 1806, mainly to fund General Wellesley’s wars against Tipu Sultan and the Marathas.
- It was the first bank of India and was renamed Bank of Bengal on 2 January 1809.
- The bank opened branches at Rangoon (1861), Patna (1862), Mirzapur (1862), and Benares (1862).
- Among the bank’s renowned customers were, scholar and politician Dadabhai Naoroji, scientist Jagadish Chandra Bose, India’s first President Rajendra Prasad, Nobel laureate Rabindranath Tagore and educationist Ishwar Chandra Vidyasagar.
- The bank was risk averse and would not lend for more than three months.
- The Bank of Calcutta, and the two other Presidency banks — the Bank of Bombay and the Bank of Madras — amalgamated on 27 January 1921 and the reorganized banking entity assumed the name Imperial Bank of India.