The exact founding date of İnebolu is unknown. İnebolu was initially called Ionopolis, given its Ionian location. Over time, the name "Ionopolis" metamorphosed to "Inepolis," and then to "İnebolu."
By 1834, İnebolu was considered a sub-district of today's city of Kure (approx. 30 km (19 mi) inland), but it became a district in its own right in 1867.
During the Turkish War of Independence, arms and ammunition were transferred to Anatolia through İnebolu. The town was attacked and defended itself with determination, for which it was honoured with the Independence Medal by the Turkish Grand National Assembly.
Atatürk initiated a campaign in İnebolu to reform personal appearance and "civilize" garments; Atatürk made a well-known speech about hats there.
In accordance with the population exchange between Greece and Turkey in 1923, the town's Greek inhabitants were exiled to Greece. Many of these emigrants settled in a neighborhood called Inepolis in the Athenian suburb of Nea Ionia.
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