- source: Getty Thesaurus of Geographic Names
- source: Family History Library Catalog
- source: Family History Library Catalog
- the following text is based on an article in Wikipedia
Minchinhampton is an ancient market town in the Cotswold Hills, located on a hilltop south-south-east of Stroud in Gloucestershire, England. The population in 2011 (UK census of that year) was 2,875.
Nearby is Minchinhampton Common, a recreation area for walkers and golfers, of which is managed by the National Trust. The Common is also used as grazing land for the cows of local farmers in the summer. On the Common are long parallel ditches and mounds which formed part of a large Iron Age fort. There are good views from the Common, west over the Severn estuary into Wales, and east to the Golden Valley and further into the Cotswolds.
A 19th century description
A Vision of Britain through Time provides the following description of Minchinhampton from John Marius Wilson's Imperial Gazetteer of England and Wales of 1870-72:
- "MINCHINGHAMPTON, a town, a parish, and a [registration] subdistrict, in Stroud district, Gloucester. The town stands on a gentle declivity, near the Thames and Severn canal, 1 mile S of Brimscombe [railway] station, and 3¾ SE of Stroud; was given, by William the Conqueror, to the nunnery of Caen; took thence the first part of its name, by corruption of Monachyn, signifying a nun; passed to the Windsors and the Sheppards; figured long as a place of considerable importance, but has latterly declined; consists chiefly of four streets at right angles to one another, but is irregularly built, and contains many houses so dilapidated as to be uninhabitable; and has a post office under Stroud, a police station, a church, a Baptist chapel, endowed schools for boys, a national school, almshouses for 8 aged women, school endowments to the amount of £184, and charities £118. The church was built, in the time of Henry III., by the nuns of Caen; was partially rebuilt in 1842; is decorated English and cruciform, with central octagonal tower; and contains several curious brasses. A weekly market is held on Tuesday; fairs, for horses, cattle, and sheep, are held on Trinity Monday, and 27 Oct.; woollen cloth manufacture is carried on; and there are a few maltings in the neighbourhood, and a brewery at Forwood.
- "The parish includes the town division, and the tythings of Chalford and Rodborough, comprising the hamlets of Box, Forwood, Holcombe, Littleworth, Theescombe, Amberley, St. Cloe, Chalford, Hyde, Burley, Brimscombe, and Cowcombe, also part of the chapelry of Nailsworth; and all forms part of the parliamentary borough of Stroud. Acres: 4,895. Real property, with the rest of Nailsworth: £17,888; of which £139 are in quarries. Population in 1851: 4,469; in 1861: 4,147. Houses: 1,004. The decrease of population was caused by the removal of families to London and other large towns. The manor belongs to H. D. Ricardo, Esq. A large common, on the W side of the town, was given to the inhabitants, in the time of Henry VIII., by Dame Alice Hampton; and comprised originally about 1,000 acres; but has been diminished, by successive encroachments, to little more than 500 acres. A remarkable entrenchment is on the common; extends nearly 3 miles, from Littleworth, to a valley on the opposite side of the town, called Woeful Lane Bottom; and is conjectured to have been the scene of a great overthrow of the Danes,--possibly the much disputed site of the battle of Ethandune in 879. A petrifying spring is near Chalford. The living is a rectory in the diocese of Gloucester and Bristol. Value: £433. Patron: H. D. Ricardo, Esq. The [perpetual] curacy of Brimscombe and the rectories of Rodborough and Amberley are separate benefices. Chapels for Wesleyan and Primitive Methodists and a national school are in Brimscombe.
- "The [registration] sub-district is conterminate with the parish.
Stroud (1837 - 2006)
Gloucestershire (2006 - )
Online sources which may also be helpful:
- The Victoria History of Gloucestershire chapter on Minchinhampton, available online on the website British History Online.
- GENUKI gives pointers to other archive sources as well as providing some details on each parish in the county. The emphasis here is on ecclesiastical parishes (useful before 1837)
- A listing of all the Registration Districts in England and Wales since their introduction in 1837 and tables of the parishes that were part of each district and the time period covered with detailed notes on changes of parish name, mergers, etc. Respect the copyright on this material.
- The FamilySearch Wiki for Gloucestershire provides a similar but not identical series of webpages to that provided by GENUKI
- A Vision of Britain through Time has a group of pages of statistical facts for almost every parish in the county
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