In 1887, John Bartholomew's Gazetteer of the British Isles described Nottinghamshire like this:
Nottinghamshire, Nottingham, or Notts, north-midland county of England, bounded N. by Yorkshire, E. by Lincolnshire, S. by Leicestershire, and W. by Derbyshire; greatest length, N. to S., about 50 miles; greatest breadth, E. to W., about 25 miles; area, 527,752 ac., pop. 391,815. Towards the E., Nottinghamshire has a level surface; while westwards it is marked by gentle hills of no great elevation, which tend to impart some variety to the scenery. The eastern portion comprises the vales of the Trent and Belvoir; in the S., between the Soar and the Smite, are the Wolds, consisting of level tracts of moor and pasture; while in the W. ...
are the remains of the royal forest of Sherwood. The Trent flows through the co. from SW. to NE., and is navigable for river vessels. All the other streams are tributaries of the Trent; they include the Soar, Erwash, and Idle. By the Nottingham and Grantham Canal, and the Fosse Dyke Canal, there is connection between the Trent and the Witham. The soil is varied, but cannot be spoken of as being highly productive. Green crops are the principal growth, and the common cereals are cultivated. Hop plantations are numerous, while in proximity to Nottingham and Newark there are many market gardens. (For agricultural statistics, see Appendix.) Magnesian limestone and old red sandstone overlying coal prevail in the W.; in the other districts are formations of marl, new red sandstone, and lias, with quartz and gravel in the Forest. In a few places coal is worked. The principal mfrs. are laces of various descriptions, in recent years a great development being apparent in the production of lace curtains. Hosiery mfrs., woollen mills, cotton mills, and iron foundries are also actively productive. Nottinghamshire comprises 6 wapentakes, 273 pars. with parts of 5 others, the parl. and mun. bor. of Nottingham (3 members), and the mun. bors. of East Retford and Newark. It is almost entirely in the diocese of Southwell. For parliamentary purposes the county is divided into 4 divisions - viz., Bassetlaw. Newark, Rushcliffe, and Mansfield, 1 member for each division.
For an overview of how the county has changed, please see our redistricted information for the modern of Nottinghamshire -- but you should check this covers the area you are interested in.
GB Historical GIS / University of Portsmouth, History of Nottinghamshire | Map and description for the county, A Vision of Britain through Time.
Date accessed: 10th December 2013
Click here for more detailed advice on finding places within A Vision of Britain through Time, and maybe some references to other places called "Nottinghamshire".