1911 Encyclopædia Britannica/Coleraine
COLERAINE, a seaport and market town of Co. Londonderry, Ireland, in the north parliamentary division, on the Bann, 4 m. from its mouth, and 61½ m. N.W. by N. from Dublin by the Northern Counties (Midland) railway. Pop. of urban district (1901) 6958. The town stands upon both sides of the river, which is crossed by a handsome stone bridge, connecting the town and its suburb, Waterside or Killowen. The principal part is on the east bank, and consists of a central square called the Diamond, and several diverging streets. Among institutions may be mentioned the public schools founded in 1613 and maintained by the Honourable Irish Society, and the Academical Institution, maintained by the Irish Society and the London Clothworkers’ Company. The linen trade has long been extensively carried on in the town, from which, indeed, a fine description of cloth is known as “Coleraines.” Whisky-distilling, pork-curing, and the salmon and eel fisheries are prosecuted. The mouth of the river was formerly obstructed by a bar, but piers were constructed, and the harbours greatly improved by grants from the Irish Society of London and from a loan under the River Bann Navigation Act 1879. Coleraine ceased to return one member to the Imperial parliament in 1885; having previously returned two to the Irish parliament until the Union. It was incorporated by James I. It owed its importance mainly to the Irish Society, which was incorporated as the Company for the New Plantation of Ulster in 1613. Though fortified only by an earthen wall, it managed to hold out against the rebels in 1641. There are no remains of a former priory, monastery and castle. A rath or encampment of large size occupies Mount Sandel, 1 m. south-east.