Moreton Hampstead, a small town and a parish in Devonshire. The town stands on a gentle eminence on the E verge of Dartmoor, with a station on the G.W.R., 222 miles from London, 2½ S of the river Teign, and 12 WSW of Exeter. It has a post, money order, and telegraph office. Acreage of parish, 7910; population, 1543. The town was entered by Sir Thomas Fairfax with his army in 1646; is surrounded on all sides except the W by lofty hills; enjoys a remarkably salubrious climate, insomuch that its inhabitants present a singulaily healthful and robust appearance; has environs strewn with huge fragments of rocks, and presenting a bold contrast of cultivated land on the foreground to the barren heights of Dartmoor in the background; consists of one principal street and two or three smaller ones, with houses chiefly old and irregularly built; contains an old cross and an arcaded poorhouse of the l7th century; and has two chief inns, a market-house, a church, dissenting chapels, and an endowed school. The church is ancient, comprises nave, aisles, tran-septal porch, and chancel, and contains a carved wooden screen. An elm tree is at the entrance of the churchyard, and the branches of it are said to have been trained to support a stage for dancing. There are Calvinistic, Baptist,. Wesleyan, and Unitarian chapels. A weekly market is held on Tuesday, and a cattle market is held on the third Tuesday in each month. The woollen trade was formerly carried on to a considerable extent, but began to decline about 1810,. and is now defunct. George Bidder, the famous mental calculator, was a native. There is a convalescent home in connection with one at Torquay. The manor belongs to the Earl of Devon. Cranbrook Castle, overlooking the Teign valley, is an ancient entrenchment, with a double fosse on the N side. The living is a rectory in the diocese of Exeter; value, £400 with residence. Patron, the Earl of Devon.
The following is a list of the administrative units in which this place was either wholly or partly included.
|Ecclesiastical parish||Moreton-Hampstead St. Andrew|
|Poor Law union||Newton-Abbott|
Any dates in this table should be used as a guide only.
For general information about Civil Registration (births, marriages and deaths) see the Civil Registration page.
Directories & Gazetteers
We have transcribed the entry for Moretonhampstead from the following:
- Samuel Lewis' A Topographical Dictionary of England, by Samuel Lewis, seventh edition, published 1858. (Moreton-Hampstead (St. Andrew))
Online maps of Moretonhampstead are available from a number of sites:
- Bing (Current Ordnance Survey maps).
- Google Streetview.
- National Library of Scotland. (Old maps)
- old-maps.co.uk (Old Ordnance Survey maps to buy).
- Streetmap.co.uk (Current Ordnance Survey maps).
- A Vision of Britain through Time. (Old maps)
Newspapers and Periodicals
The British Newspaper Archive have fully searchable digitised copies of the following newspapers covering Devon online:
The Visitation of the County of Devon in the year 1564, with additions from the earlier visitation of 1531, is online.
The Visitations of the County of Devon, comprising the Heralds' Visitations of 1531, 1564, & 1620, with additions by Lieutant-Colonel J.L. Vivian, published for the author by Henry S. Eland, Exeter 1895 is online.