In 1870-72, John Marius Wilson's Imperial Gazetteer of England and Wales described Epworth like this:
EPWORTH, a small town, a parish, and a sub-district, in the district of Thorne and county of Lincoln. The town stands in the Isle of Axholme, near the Idle drain, the boundary with Yorkshire, and the river Trent, 5½ miles S of Crowle r. station, and 10 NW by N of Gainsborough; has a post office‡ under Bawtry, a neat market-place, a police station, a church, four dissenting chapels, a national school, and a free school; and is a seat of petty sessions, and a polling-place. The church comprises nave, N and S aisles, chancel, and S porch; has a W late perpendicular tower; contains sedilia; was repaired and altered in 1869; and is associated with the names of John and Charles Wesley, who were natives, and whose father was rector. ...
One of the dissenting chapels is a memorial structure to Alexander Kilham, the founder of the Methodist New Connexion, who was a native; and is an edifice of 1860, in quaint Gothic style, with boldly projecting porch, gable, and large gilt gable cross, and with roof of very high pitch. A weekly market is held on Thursday; and a market-hall was about to be built in 1869. There are two annual fairs; and considerable trade is carried on in the making of canvas and sacking. A Carthusian priory was founded here, about 1395, by the Mowbrays of Melwood. The parish comprises 8, 140 acres. Real property, £12, 545. -Pop., 2, 097. Houses, 497. The property is much subdivided. The manor belonged anciently to the Mowbrays. The surface is flat. Quantities of ancient wood, some of it charred, have been found beneath the soil. Much attention has been given to the growing of hemp and flax. The living is a rectory in the diocese of Lincoln. Value, £952.* Patron, the Crown. Whiteley's charities have £37; and other charities £111.The sub-district contains also two other parishes. Acres, 19, 916. Pop., 4, 360. Houses, 943.
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 Epworth has changed, please see our redistricted information for the modern district of North Lincolnshire. More detailed statistical data are available under Units and statistics, which includes both administrative units covering Epworth and units named after it.
GB Historical GIS / University of Portsmouth, History of Epworth in North Lincolnshire | Map and description, A Vision of Britain through Time.
Date accessed: 28th October 2016
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