In 1887, John Bartholomew's Gazetteer of the British Isles described Glamorgan like this:
Glamorgan, a maritime co. of South Wales, bounded N. by Carmarthen, Brecknock, and Monmouth, E. by Monmouth and the estuary of the Severn, S. by the Bristol channel, and W. by Carmarthen and Carmarthen Bay; greatest length, N. and S., 28 m.; greatest breadth, E. and W., 48 m.; area, 516,959 ac., pop. 511,433. Glamorgan is, commercially, the most important co. in Wales, chiefly owing to its great mineral resources, the fertility of its soil, and the extent and convenience of its seaboard. The surface of the co. ...
in the N. is mountainous; but towards the S. it becomes more level, especially in the fertile expanse known as the Vale of Glamorgan. It is watered by various rivers, of which the more important are the Taff, Taw, Neath, and Rhymney; all the streams flow S. to the Bristol Channel. Mining is the principal industry, the co. having one of the largest coalfields in Britain, while its supply of ironstone and limestone is said to be inexhaustible. The soil yields abundant and excellent crops of the usual cereals, and large quantities of dairy produce are exported (For agricultural statistics, see Appendix.) Some of the largest ironworks in the world are in Glamorgan, notably those at Merthyr Tydfil and Dowlais; and the co. likewise contains very important copper, tin, and lead works. Glamorgan comprises 10 hundreds, 166 pars., the parl. and mun. bor. of Swansea (2 members), the greater part of the parl. bor. of Merthyr Tydfil (2 members), the Cardiff Boroughs (Cardiff, Cowbridge, and Llantrisaint -- 1 member), and the mun. bors. of Aberavon, Cardiff, and Neath. It is mostly in the diocese of Llandaff. For parl. purposes it is divided into 5 divisions, viz. Eastern, Rhondda, Western or Gower, Mid, and Southern, 1 member for each division.
Vision of Britain presents long-run change by redistricting historical statistics to modern units. However, none of our modern units covers an area close to that of Glamorgan. If you want trends covering a particular location within the county, find it on our historical maps and then select "Tell me more".
GB Historical GIS / University of Portsmouth, History of Glamorgan | Map and description for the county, A Vision of Britain through Time.
Date accessed: 10th December 2013
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