In 1887, John Bartholomew's Gazetteer of the British Isles described Whitehaven like this:
Whitehaven, parl. bor., township, seaport, and market town, St Bees par., Cumberland, 14 miles S. of Maryport and 38 miles SW. of Carlisle by rail - township, 176 ac., pop. 13,374; bor., 1693 ac., pop. 19,295; P.O., T.O., 4 Banks, 4 newspapers. Market-days, Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday. Whitehaven owes its prosperity to the immense seams of coal and of haema-tite iron ore in its vicinity, some of which are wrought beneath the town and for a considerable distance under the bed of the sea. ...
There is a good harbour with a new dock, and the exports, which consist chiefly of the coal and iron ore, with pig-iron, rails, and provisions, are very considerable. (For shipping statistics, see Appendix.) On the W. Pier head is Whitehaven Light-house, 47 ft. high, with revolving light 52 ft. above high water and seen 11 miles. There is regular steam-boat communication with Liverpool, Belfast, Dublin, and the Isle of Man. There are iron shipbuilding yards, blast furnaces, iron and brass foundries, and mfrs. of coarse linens, earthenware, soap, and of all articles connected with the fitting up of vessels. White-haven rose from a fishing village to a considerable sea-port town during the 17th century. It was made a parliamentary borough in 1832, and returns 1 member.
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 Whitehaven has changed, please see our redistricted information for the modern district of Copeland. More detailed statistical data are available under Units and statistics, which includes both administrative units covering Whitehaven and units named after it.
GB Historical GIS / University of Portsmouth, History of Whitehaven, in Copeland and Cumberland | Map and description, A Vision of Britain through Time.
Date accessed: 18th May 2013
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