In 1887, John Bartholomew's Gazetteer of the British Isles described Dorchester like this:
Dorchester.-- capital of county, municipal borough, and market town, Dorset, on river Frome, 8 miles N. of Weymouth and 138 miles SW. of London by rail, 635 ac., pop. 7567; P.O., T.O., 4 Banks, 3 newspapers. Market-days, Wednesday and Saturday. D. was the Durnovaria of the Romans, and the Dorn Ceastre of the West Saxons. Portions of the Roman wall still remain; also, the ruins of a large amphitheatre, the most perfect of its kind in England. There are some breweries, but the trade is mainly agricultural. A little to the W. of the town are large cavalry and infantry barracks. The bor. returned 1 member until 1885.
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 Dorchester 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 Dorchester and units named after it.
GB Historical GIS / University of Portsmouth, History of Dorchester in West Dorset | Map and description, A Vision of Britain through Time.
Date accessed: 12th December 2013
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