In 1870-72, John Marius Wilson's Imperial Gazetteer of England and Wales described Portesham like this:
PORTISHAM, a village and a parish in Weymouth district, Dorset; under Black Down, 2 miles N E of Abbotsbury, and 6 S W of Dorchester r. station. The parish contains also the hamlets of Coryatts, Shilvington, and Waddon; and its post town is Dorchester. Acres, 4, 540. Real property, £2, 896. Pop., 704. Houses, 138. The property is divided among a few. The manor belongs to Earl Fitzhardinge. Acromlech, called Hell-stone, is on Ridge hill; comprises nine upright stones, about 3 feet broad and 6feet high, and an oval horizontal one 10½ feet long and about 2 feet thick; stands on a tumulus, with connectingterrace 60 feet long; and was proposed, in 1866, to be restored. ...
The living is a vicarage in the diocese of Salisbury. Value, £35.* Patron, W. Manfield, Esq. The church is ancient but good, and has a pinnacled tower. Charities, £7. Admiral Sir Thomas Hardy, who servedwith Nelson, was a native; and a tower to his memorystands on Black Down.
A Vision of Britain through Time includes a large library of local statistics for administrative units. For the best overall sense of how the area containing Portesham has changed, please see our redistricted information for the modern district of West Dorset. More detailed statistical data are available under Units and statistics, which includes both administrative units covering Portesham and units named after it.
GB Historical GIS / University of Portsmouth, History of Portesham in West Dorset | Map and description, A Vision of Britain through Time.
Date accessed: 01st July 2016
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