In 1870-72, John Marius Wilson's Imperial Gazetteer of England and Wales described Sheepwash like this:
SHEEPWASH, a village and a parish in Torrington district, Devon. The village stands on the river Torridge, 1¾ mile N of Highampton, and 10½ N N W of Okehampton r. station; was anciently called Sepawasse and Ship-wash; was formerly a market town; was nearly destroyed by fire in 1743; and has now a post-office under Highampton, North Devon, and fairs on the Thursday before the third Saturday of March and the Thursday before 10 Oct. The parish comprises 1, 971 acres. Real property, £2,023. Pop., 527. Houses, 103. The manor belongs to Lord Clinton. Upcott-Avenell mansion belonged formerly to the Hollands; and, with great portion of the land, belongs now to G. L. Coham, Esq. The living is a vicarage, annexed to Shebbear. The church is ancient. There are chapels for Baptists and Bible Christians.
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 Sheepwash has changed, please see our redistricted information for the modern district of Torridge. More detailed statistical data are available under Units and statistics, which includes both administrative units covering Sheepwash and units named after it.
GB Historical GIS / University of Portsmouth, History of Sheepwash, in Torridge and Devon | Map and description, A Vision of Britain through Time.
Date accessed: 30th June 2016
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