The City College of today had its modest beginning in the City School which was founded on January 6,1879 by the Sadharan Brahmo Samaj. Late Ananda Mohan Bose, the then President of the Samaj had borne the initial expenses of the foundation of the School, which was repaid within a short period. Late Sivanath Sastri was the Secretary and Organiser and other prominent members of the Society were actively associated in founding the School. Late Surendra Nath Banerjee was one of the teachers of the School at that time, because he was a friend of Late Ananda Mohan Bose and Late Sivanath Sastri having been engaged in the Indian Association, the first body which sought the country's freedom from the British.
In 1881, only two years after its establishment, the City School was raised to the rank of a College when F.A. classes were started. Since then, the college made rapid strides towards the advancement of higher education. The B.A .classes were opened in 1884 and thus within five years of its establishment, the institution developed into a first-grade college. In 1885, a Law Department for teaching up to the B.L standard was added. The College was first established in an old house. After a short while, that house at 13, Mirzapur Street (Now Surya Sen Street) was purchased for the City College.