Alexander The Great ended the Achaemenid empire, and marched on India in the 320 BCs, following the Kabul river east. Before reaching the Khyber Pass he split his army, and went north into the Hindu Kush valleys, one of which is thought to be the Kunar, to fight various rebellious tribes.
Maps of the Maurya Empire circa 200s BC show it covering the area Northeast of Kabul. This included the time of the Buddhist emperor Ashoka, and some of his stone edicts can be found in nearby Laghman Province.
A map from the mid 1800s shows ancient "Kabulistan", which was active in the first centuries AD, as including the area.
Archaeologists have dated to AD 800-1000 a fortification system overlooking a Muslim cemetery at Chaga Serai (near the Pech-Kunar confluence).
Babur wrote about Kunar in his Baburnama, which described his conquests of the early 1500s. He claimed that there was a shrine in Kunar to the preacher and poet Mir Sayyid Ali Hamadani, who is said to have died there in 1384 AD (786 AH). He also describes agriproducts citron, oranges, coriander, orchards, strong yellow wines, and a burial custom wherein a woman whose corpse moved was considered to have done good things in life. He mentions Chaghan-Sarai as a small town, and describes the towns folk as Muslims who mixed with the Kafirs of nearby Kafiristan and followed some of their customs. He also claims to have later captured the town, even as the Pech river Kafirs tried to help the Chaghan Sarai residents repel his attack.
Walter Hamilton's writing in 1828 mentions that the padshah of Cooner was joined in alliance with the neighboring Kafirs (non Muslims) of Nuristan in battles against Muslim invaders. The Kafirs were forcibly converted by Abdur Rahman Khan in the 1890s.
Some British sources from the Great Game period (1800s) go into more detail about Kunar. For example, one from 1881 describes the various Kunar Chiefs and their internecine wars, the conflict with Dost Mohammad Khan, their relations with the British, etc. Names vary greatly, with Kunar sometimes being called Kama, or Kashkote, and the capital being listed as "Pashoot", which is not on modern maps.
An 1891 book described the Kunar region as split between the lower river area, controlled by Afghan chiefs, and the upstream area, where the Kunar river was actually referred to as the Chitral river. The major town of Chitral (in modern Pakistan) was the base of a badshah, who ruled under the Maharajah of Kashmir
The primary geographic features of the province are (1) the lower Hindu Kush mountains which are cut by the Kunar River to form the Kunar Valley. The River flows south and southwest from its source in the Pamir area and is part of the Indus river watershed via the Kabul River which it meets at Jalalabad. The Kunar is a primary draining conduit for the Hindu Kush basin and several tributaries, like the Pech, form significant valleys in the area. The mountains, narrow valleys with steeps sides and river serve as formidable natural obstacles and have impacted all movement through the province throughout history. Even in the early 21st century movement on foot, with pack animals or with motorized vehicles is extremely limited and channeled due to the significant geographic restrictions.
- Dr Pema Ram:Rajasthan Ke Jaton Ka Itihas, p.297
- Jat History Dalip Singh Ahlawat/Parishisht-I, SN क-190.
- Cultural Property Training Course, Afghanistan Significant Site 189, US DoD Central Command, Colorado State website, citing Source: Warwick Ball, Archaeological Gazetteer of Afghanistan, 1982, n. 1067
- Cultural Property Training Resource, Afghanistan Significant Site 32 US DoD Central Command, from Colorado State, citing Source: Warwick Ball, Archaeological Gazetteer of Afghanistan, 1982, n. 154
- Baburnama, translated by Annette Susannah Beveridge, 1922, 1979, from  at archive.org
- The East Indian gazetteer: containing particular descriptions of . . . - Volume 1 - Page 30, Walter (M. R. A. S.) Hamilton - 1828
- Conflict in Afghanistan: a historical encyclopedia By Frank Clements, Ludwig W. Adamec Edition: illustrated Published by ABC-CLIO, 2003 Page 139 ISBN 1-85109-402-4, ISBN 978-1-85109-402-8
- Selections from the Calcutta Review - Volume 1 - Page 464 1881
- The Earth and Its Inhabitants ...: South-western Asia - Page 47, Elisée Reclus, Ernst Georg Ravenstein, Augustus Henry Keane - 1891
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