Longport: The 'Kingdom' of Davenport (1760's - mid 19th C))
Introduction to the Longport 'virtual walk'
These notes have been produced for a history 'walk' around Longport.
The purpose of the walk is to show how Longport, the new canal port for the town of Burslem, was created between the 1760s and the middle of the 19th century.
In particular the walk will focus on the role played by the Davenport family who by the early 1840s were the largest pottery manufacturers in Longport.
The map below, an extract from William Yates’s Map of Staffordshire, shows the area between Newcastle-under-Lyme and Burslem in 1775.
The thin black line running diagonally across the map is the Fowlea Brook which formed the boundary between the parish of Burslem and the parish of Wolstanton.
The thick black line next to it is the Trent and Mersey Canal begun in 1766 and completed in 1777.
The road running across the valley from Burslem to Newcastle was turnpiked in 1763.
The name Longport does not appear on the map.
Originally the area was known as Long Bridge and J Aiken, in his book "A Description of the Country from thirty or forty miles round Manchester” published in 1795, explained why the name was changed in the mid 1770s:
“Long Port, situated between Burslem and Newcastle, in a valley; has some good buildings in it, and several considerable manufactories; but its situation thereby is rendered disagreeable, if not unwholesome, by the smoke hanging upon it longer than if it was on higher ground. The Staffordshire canal passes Long Port, and has a public wharf upon it. This place was formerly called Long Bridge, from a kind of bridge which ran about a hundred yards parallel with the water; on the removal of which, and the completion of the canal, added to its rapid increase in buildings and business, the inhabitants about twenty years ago changed its name to that of Long Port.”
The 1832 map shows how the area changed during the next 50 years. The houses called “Long Bridge End” located at the bottom of Porthill Bank give some indication of the extent of the former bridge.
An extract from William Yates’s Map of Staffordshire,
shows the area between Newcastle-under-Lyme and Burslem in 1775
questions/comments/contributions? email: Steve Birks