"HOWDEN, a respectable and ancient market town and township, in the parish of its name, in the wapentake of Howdenshire, east riding, is 175 miles from London, 30 from Leeds, 21 from York, 12 from Market Weighton, and 10 from Selby. The town is situated on the north side of the river Ouse, and surrounded by a level country in a high state of agriculture, and exceedingly productive. It is celebrated for the interesting ruins of its ancient collegiate church, which, for beauty of architecture, may vie with any ruin in the united kingdom. The bishops of Durham had here a palace, the remains of which are still to be contemplated; and about four miles distant is Wressell castle, the ancient residence of the dukes of Northumberland. The parish church is dedicated to St. Peter; the benefice is a curacy, in the gift of the Lord Chancellor, and incumbency of the Rev. Thomas Guy. Here are besides three chapels for dissenters, a free school for fourteen boys, and a national school, in which about 300 children are taught. This is not a manufacturing town or one of any peculiar trade; what it enjoys is of a local character, the prosperity of which is dependent upon its own immediate inhabitants, assisted by the farmers and others attending the markets. A court is held here for the recovery of small debts; and courts leet, baron and halmot occasionally. The market is on Saturdays, and the fairs are the second Tuesday in January, 15th April, second Tuesday after 13th July, and every alternate Tuesday front 26th September to 3rd of October, for horses and cattle. The population of the whole parish, in 1821, was 4,443, and of the township 2,080."
Pigot's National Commericial Directory for 1828-29
by Colin Hinson ©2007