Note:  Do not rely on this information. It is very old.


Cheshire, a county in England, on the W. seaboard, is skirted on the N. by the Mersey, which separates it from Lancashire. Covering an area of 1,100 square miles, of which fully three-fourths is under cultivation, it provides some of thb finest pasture land in England, and the staple produce of the Cheshire farmers is consequently cheese. A considerable acreage is devoted to market gardening, and the markets of Liverpool, Manchester, and other large centres are supplied from here. Rock-salt and coal are extensively worked. There are also brine springs from which salt is made in large quantities. Among other minerals found are lead, copper, firestone, limestone, millstone, and marl. There are extensive and varied manufactures in the large towns of the county, which embrace Birkenhead, Congleton, Chester (the capital), Crewe, Macclesfield, Stalybridge, and Stockport. Trade is facilitated by the numerous railways that traverse the county, and a splendid system of canals, among which is the Manchester Ship Canal for the greater part of the distance it extends. Besides the Mersey, it has also the navigable rivers Dee and Weaver, the former on the W. and the latter in the E. of the county. It contains eight parliamentary divisions, each returning one member, and was erected by William the Conqueror into a county palatine. It did not send representatives to the English Parliament till 1549.