The ruler of Avathi Mallabiregowda's son Marigowda was hunting one day at Kodimanchanahalli forest. A rabbit was standing in front of the dogs without fear. Seeing this, ruler was very happy and told his son that is due to the boldness of the people of this place. As such the ruler took permission from king of Vijaynagar and built a fort and formed a town. This in future becomes chickballapur. During the ruling of Baichegowda king of Mysore attacked the fort but had to withdraw due to the interference of Marathas. Sri Dodda Byregowda who came to power after baichegowda acquired the land, which was taken by Mysore king. In 1762 during the ruling of Chikkappanayaka, Hyder Ali captured the town for a period of 3 months. Then Chikkappanayaka agreed to pay 5-lakhs pagodas, and then the army was taken back.
After this, Chikkappa Nayaka with the help of Murariraya of Guthy tried to get back his powers. He was hiding at Nandi hills along with Chikkappa Nayaka. Immediately Hyder Ali acquired Chickballapur and other places and arrested Chikkappa Nayaka. Then with interfere of Lord Corn Wallis, Chickballapur was handed over to Narayanagowda. After knowing this, Tippu Sultan again acquired Chickballpaur. In 1791 British occupied Nandi & left Narayanagowda to rule the town. Due to this fight between Britishers and Tippu Sultan again started. Narayanagowda lost his administration. Later on British defeated Tippu. Chickballapur also came under the administration of Wodeyars of Mysore, which is now a part of Karnataka.
As of 2001 India census, Chikballapur had a population of 54,938. Males constitute 51% of the population and females 49%. Chikballapur has an average literacy rate of 57%, lower than the national average of 59.5%; with male literacy of 61% and female literacy of 52%. 11% of the population is under 6 years of age.