The National Gazetteer of Great Britain and Ireland - 1868
"NEWPORT, (or Trefdraeth), a parish, seaport, and market town, in the hundred of Kemess, county Pembroke, 10 miles from Cardigan, of which it is a subport. The harbour of Newport at the mouth of the river Nevern, is small, and has a bar of sand at its entrance extending for near a mile, which renders it accessible only at high water. It is said to have been founded by the followers of Martin de Tours, first lord of Cemaes, who, having conquered this territory from the Welsh, erected it into a lordship-marcher, and whose son William built the castle of Newport, which he made the head of his barony, and invested it with many privileges. The town, which is situated in a valley, surrounded by wood, was formerly much more extensive than at present, consisting of several streets, intersecting each other at right angles. The period of its greatest prosperity was the beginning of the 16th century, when the woollen manufacture was extensively carried on, but owing to the great mortality occasioned by a plague, it rapidly decayed, and even its market was discontinued. It is now an irregularly built village, neither lighted nor paved, but interspersed with trees. It is a corporated town by prescription, but is not included in any of the schedules of the Municipal Corporation Act. The greater part of its trade has been diverted to the neighbouring town of Fishguard; but some business is still done in the export of corn, butter, and slates, in exchange for timber, limestone, coal, and culm, which are imported. The living is a rectory* in the diocese of St. David's, value £216. The church, which is said to be of the 13th century, has been modernised, and is very plain. The Calvinistic Methodists have a chapel. The old castle, with a tower of the 13th century, was, until recently, a ruin, overlooking the bay and town, but is now incorporated with a modern dwelling-house, built by T. D. Lloyd, Esq., the lord of the manor. Yob. III. Friday is market day. Fairs are held on the 27th June and 16th October, chiefly for horses, cattle, and sheep.
[Transcribed from The National Gazetteer of Great Britain and Ireland 1868]
by Colin Hinson ©2018