The existence of the Nicobars has been known from the time of Ptolemy onwards but the place is having a long unwritten history. The inhabitants had been in touch with the outer world through the trade of copra. However, the entry of the modern world into their lives started after the famous Vascodigama voyage to India. 17th century onwards Portugese and French missionaries tried to propagate Christianity in Nicobars. In 1756 the Danes took possession of these islands and established their head quarter on Kamorta island, but they abandoned the same in 1848. In 1869 the British formally took possession of these islands. In 1870 they established a panel settlement at Kamorta which was closed in 1888. The islands were included in the Chief Commissioner ship of A & N Islands in 1871. This Administrative arrangement continued till the Pre-Independence period. During 1920s, the British Government appointed Mr. E. Hert as first Assistant Commissioner for Nicobars.
The impact of world war II and consequent Japanese occupation of the Islands from 1942-45 caused a great upheaval in the mind of the people. After a brief period of British repossession the islands achieved independence as an integral part of the Republic of India on 15th August 1947, because they have been part of the old British Empire of India. John Richardson was ordained as Bishop in 1950. He also represented the Andaman and Nicobar islands as a nominated Member of parliament for the first time. Thus he became a modern architect of Nicobarese society.
Soon after Independence the Government was keen to protect the interests of the Nicobarese and did not allow outside traders to exploit the people. The regulation for the Protection of Aboriginal Tribes came into force in 1956 under which entry to the Nicobar Islands was strictly restricted. However in the late sixties the Administration started settlement of non-tribals in this group of islands, like Andmans. 330 ex-defence presonnel were settled in some de-reserved areas of Great Nicobar island, where Panchayat System exists at present. Some Plantation Tamils were also brought in mid 70s for engaging in rubber plantation works in Katchal Island. Owing to increase in population, 165 Car-Nicobari families were resettled in 1973-74 to Little Andaman Island.
On 1st August, 1974, Nicobar group of islands was declared a separate district with its headquarter at Car Nicobar, where half of the population exists. Except three Panchayats and one Panchayat Samiti in Great Nicobar, rest of the District is having its own local traditional Tribal Councils.