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Help and advice for Blackburn

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Blackburn

BLACKBURN, a town, a township, a parish, a subdistrict, a district, and a hundred in Lancashire. The town stands on the river Blackwater, 9 miles E by S of Preston, and 12½ N by W of Bolton. The Leeds and Liverpool canal passes through it; and railways go from it N, S, E, and W. The country around it possesses little scenic interest, yet is sheltered by hills on the NE and NW; and it lay for ages wild and barren, but has been much improved by cultivation. The town is large; was very prosperous up to the juncture of the cotton distress in 1862; and has owed most of its importance to modern manufactures. Cottonmills and print works are numerous, and employ a large proportion of the inhabitants. The value of cotton goods produced prior to 1862 exceeded £2,000,000 a year. The cotton-spinning was much advanced by an invention of James Hargrave, a native, originally a carpenter; and the cotton-printing was introduced by the family of Sir Robert Peel. Some woollen cloth also is made; considerable industry is carried on in breweries, foundries, and machine-works, particularly in the manufacture of weaving-machinery; and much business is done in connexion with neighbouring factories, corn mills, paper-mills, and collieries. Weekly markets are held on Wednesday and Saturday; and fairs on the Wednesday before 2 Feb., on every alternate Wednesday thence till Michaelmas, and on Easter Monday, 11 and 12 May, 29 Sept., and 17 Oct. The town has a head post office, a telegraph station, four banking offices, and three chief inns; and publishes four weekly newspapers. It is a seat of courts. and a polling-place; it was constituted, by the act of 1832, a parliamentary borough sending two members to parliament; and it was made municipal in 1851, with government by a mayor, twelve aldermen, and thirty-six councillors. Acres, 3,610. Real property, in 1860, £170,703. Direct taxes, in 1857, £26,354. Electors in 1868, 1,894. Pop. in 1841, 36,629; in 1861, 63,126. Houses, 11,306.

John Marius Wilson, Imperial Gazetteer of England and Wales (1870-72) more ...

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Archives and Libraries

Blackburn Central Library,
Town Hall Street,
Blackburn
BB2 1AH

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Census

Churches

There are more than 30 churches identified in this place. Please click here for a complete list.

You can also perform a more selective search for churches in the Blackburn area or see them printed on a map.

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Church Records

The following items have been produced by the LFH&HS.

  • A marriage index for St Mary the Virgin, 1813-1837.
  • A birth/baptism register index is available for Islington Particular Baptists 1772-1837.
  • A birth/baptism register index for Chapel Street Congregational, Oct 1777 - Aug 1837.
  • St John - Grave Occ list 1781-1950.
  • Islington Particular Baptists burials, Sept 1764 - June 1837.
  • Monumental Inscriptions, Non-Conformist chapels.
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Civil Registration

The Register Office covering the Blackburn area is Blackburn.

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Description and Travel

You can see pictures of Blackburn which are provided by:

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Gazetteers

Ask for a calculation of the distance from Blackburn to another place.

Click here for a list of nearby places.

1868 - The National Gazetteer of Great Britain and Ireland

  • "BLACKBURN, a parish, municipal and parliamentary borough, and important seat of manufacture, in the hundred of Blackburn, in the county palatine of Lancaster, 23 miles to the N.W. of Manchester, and 209 miles from London by road, or 177¾ miles by the North-Western railway. It may also be approached viâ the Great Northern and Midland railways. It is a station on the western division of the Lancashire and Yorkshire railway, a branch of which also runs from Blackburn to Clitheroe. By the Leeds and Liverpool canal, which passes near the town, communication is opened with the principal rivers of the country, and the eastern and western seas. The parish, which is of great extent, being about 14 miles in length and 10 miles in breadth, is situated on the river Derwent, and comprises the chapelries of Balderston, Bamber Bridge, Over Darwen, Lower Darwen, Feniscowles, Great Harwood, Langho, Mellor, Salesbury, Samlesbury, Tockholes, Walton-le-Dale, and Witton, and the townships of Blackburn, Billington, Clayton-le-Dale, Cuerdale, Dinkley, Eccleshill, Little Harwood, Livesey, Osbaldeston, Pleasington, Ramsgrave, Rishton, and Wilpshire. The surrounding country, forming anciently the district called Blackburnshire, which included the present hundred of Blackburn, is for the most part barren, and remained till recently uncultivated. A ridge of high ground runs through the parish in a direction from north-east to north-west, extending from Whalley to Billinge Hill, at which point it has an elevation of about 630 feet. That part of the parish which lies on the north-west side of the hills, sloping to the river Ribble, has the best soil and most agreeable scenery. Clay soils predominate, and rest chiefly on sandstone. Coal is obtained in abundance, and some limestone. A mine of alumstone, which was formerly worked, has long been neglected. The staple business of Blackburn is the cotton manufacture, which has long been established there. In the 17th century the "Blackburn checks," a united fabric of linen and cotton, were well esteemed; and subsequently the manufacture of "Blackburn greys," a cloth not bleached before printing, flourished here. The number of hand-loom weavers is comparatively small, and they are employed mostly in the cheap muslin manufacture.

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  • "WENSLEY-FOLD, a township in the parish of Blackburn, county Lancaster, 2 miles N. of Blackburn. It is bounded on the S. by the river Derwent."

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Historical Geography

In 1835 the parish of Blackburn contained the townships of Blackburn, Walton le Dale, Cuerdale, Samlesbury, Balderstone, Osbaldeston, Clayton-le-Dale, Salesbury, Dinckley, Billington, Mellor, Ramsgreave, Wilpshire, Pleasington, Livesey, Tockholes, Lower Darwen, Over Darwen, Little Harwood, Great Harwood, Rishton, Witton, Yate with Pickup Bank and Eccleshill.

You can see the administrative areas in which Blackburn has been placed at times in the past. Select one to see a link to a map of that particular area.

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History

The following Facebook groups discuss the past and contain old pictures:

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Probate Records

For probate purposes prior to 1858, Blackburn was in the Archdeaconry of Chester, in the Diocese of Chester. The original Lancashire wills for the Archdeaconry of Chester are held at the Lancashire Record Office.

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You can also see Family History Societies covering the nearby area, plotted on a map. This facility is being developed, and is awaiting societies to enter information about the places they cover.