In a small, white-washed house in Porbandar, on the coast of Kathiawad in western India, Mohandas Gandhi was born on October 2, 1869. His parents were Karamchand Gandhi and Putlibai. He was small and dark, and looked no different from the millions of other children born in India. Yet this was no ordinary child. He was to fight and overcome a great empire and, without taking to arms, set his country free. He was to be called the Mahatma, the Great Soul. Having led his people to freedom, he was to lay down his life for their sake.
Porbandar is an old sea-port, overlooked by the distant Barda Hills. Even in ancient days ships from far-off lands went there to trade. It was the ancestral home of the Gandhis. The grandfather and father of Mohandas were famous for their ability and for their upright character.
Grandfather Uttamchand Gandhi, who belonged to a humble family of merchants, became the Dewan of Porbandar. He was succeeded by his son, Karamchand Gandhi, popularly known as Kaba Gandhi. Karamchand had very little formal education, but his knowledge and experience.