"WORCESTERSHIRE, west-midland County of England, bounded N. by Shropshire and Staffordshire, E. by Warwickshire, S. by Gloucestershire, and W. by Herefordshire; greatest length (not including the detached parts), NW. and SE., 36 miles; greatest breadth, NE. and SW., 45 miles; area, 472,453 acres, population 380,283. Worcestershire lies almost entirely in the basin of the Severn, which receives the Stour; Teme, and Avon. The surface is a broad undulating plain, broken in the NE. by hills of moderate height, and in the SW. by the Malvern Hills, which reach an altitude of 1395 ft. The soil, chiefly clay and loam, is very fertile. Wheat is extensively grown, and there are numerous hop-gardens and orchards. Large quantities of cider and perry are made. There are several extensive and beautiful valleys (notably that of the Severn), with rich pastures, and great numbers of cattle and sheep are fattened. The strata consist for the most part of new red sandstone, lias, and oolite; other formations are visible in the Malvern Hills and some other districts. Coal and iron are found in the Dudley district, and the manufacture of iron and steel and of hardware is extensive. Carpets and rugs are made at Kidderminster, glass at Dudley and Stourbridge, gloves and porcelain at Worcester, and needles and fish-hooks at Redditch and Feckennam. Immense quantities of salt are obtained from the brine springs at Droitwich. The Birmingham and Worcester and other canals connect the Severn basin with those of the Trent and Mersey."
[Extract from Bartholomew's Gazetteer of the British Isles, 1887]