In 1844 Fateh Khan Tiwana, the revenue collector of the Sikh government, built and garrisoned a fort in the heart of Marwat which he called Ihsanpur. A town grew up under its walls and became the capital of Marwat until 1864, when the site was abandoned and the inhabitants removed to Lakki on the right bank of the Gambila River. The municipality was constituted in 1874.
Tanzeel-ur-Rehman, also known as Tanzeela Marwat in section of society, remained the nazim of city from 200 to 2003. His unconditional support to Musharaf regime soon brought him into disgrace. On 1 January 2010, at least 99 people were killed in the town when a suicide bomber blew himself up at a volleyball game.