The American Cyclopædia (1879)/Dartmouth
DARTMOUTH, a municipal borough, seaport, and market town of Devonshire, England, on the W. shore of a bay formed by the Dart, at its entrance into the English channel, 32 m. S. W. of Exeter; pop. in 1871, 4,978. It is built on the side of a hill, which is so steep that the base of the houses in the upper street is but little below the chimney pots of those in the street below. The thoroughfares are dirty, irregular, and narrow, but are lighted with gas. Many of the houses are very old, and display some fine specimens of wood carving. The town contains three churches, several chapels, schools, and almshouses, a market place, and remains of a castle supposed to be of the reign of Henry VII. The harbor, which is entered by a narrow channel between the fort and battery of St. Petrox and the old castle, is safe, convenient, and large enough for 500 ships. Many vessels belonging to this port were formerly engaged in the Newfoundland fisheries, but this industry has greatly declined. Ship building, rope making, and paper making are carried on to some extent; there is an export trade in woollen goods, cider, and barley, in exchange for wine, oil, salt, and fruit; and slate and limestone are quarried in the neighborhood. The Dartmouth branch of the South Devon railway was completed in 1864, and the trade of the town has since increased. Many improvements have recently been made in the streets. During the civil wars the town was twice captured, once by the royalists and once by the parliamentarians. It gives the title of earl to the Legge family, and is one of the quarantine ports of the channel.