The history of Munnar begins in the middle of the 19th century. Owes it's tribute to an adventurous Englishmen Mr. John Daniel Manro and Kannan Devar, the tribal chief of Anchunadu - a small tribal kingdom including Marayoor, Kanthalloor, Kovilkadavu etc. which is considered to be one of the earliest human settlements in the whole of South India. With the assistance of Kannan Devar, Mr. Manro getting permission from his highness, Maharaja of Poonjar for acquiring 588 sq-km of land. Mr. Manro and his companions understood that the place is best suited for plantations. Cardamom and coffee were cultivated first.
The Anglo American companies bought the land from Manro. They started the tea plantation which slowly covered the tea area completely. In honour of the tribal chief for his invaluable assistance, the Englishmen named the tea plantations Kannan Devan Hills and the company, Kannan Devan Tea Company.
In 1983, the Tata Finlay company bought the land and named Tata Tea Company while the Panniar, Suriyanelly and Lockhart estates had been taken by Harrison Malayalam Ltd. Tata Tea Ltd., build Munnar infrastructure by constructing roads, shopping centers, bridges and so on. Even now the Tata Tea Company run it's own Postal service and Electricity generation and distribution system. Most roads in Munnar, except few main roads, had been constructed by Tata Tea Ltd. The company also have a Mini Hydro Power Station at Vagavurrai which is 25 Km away from Munnar. The company has distributed electricity to all estate as per Kerala State Electricity Board norms.
Lastly, the actual creators of the Munnar Tea mounts as well as the whole surrounding area is the poor labourers who migrated from Tamilnadu and spent their lifetime hazardous toil.