Project ’57: Population

These population figures are based on the historic county of Dorset rather than the registration county of Dorset, which is used for birth, marriages and deaths data.

  • In 1851, there were 184,207 individuals (89,204 males, 95,003 females) living in 36,138 houses[1]. This represents an average of 5.1 people per house[2].

  • The population had increased by 61 per cent since 1801[3].

  • The most populace towns were Weymouth and Melcombe Regis (9,458), Poole (9,255), Bridport (7,566), Wareham (7,218) and the county town, Dorchester (6,394)[4].


[1] Edward Cheshire, ‘The results of the census of Great Britain in 1851, with a description of the machinery and processes employed to obtain the results’, Journal of the Statistical Society of London, March 1854, 17(1), appendix, 56 (table X).
[2] Cheshire, appendix, 60 (table XIV).
[3] Cheshire, appendix, 58 (table XII).
[4] Cheshire, appendix, 63-68 (table XVII).


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Population of Dorset, 1801-1861
Adapted from

 

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Births, marriages & deaths by registration district, Dorset, 1861
Adapted from 24th Registrar-General’s annual report, abstracts, p33

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Population and number of inhabited houses in the cities, boroughs and principal towns in England and Wales in 1851

From Edward Cheshire, ‘The results of the census of Great Britain in 1851, with a description of the machinery and processes employed to obtain the results’, Journal of the Statistical Society of London, March 1854, 17(1), appendix, 56 (table XVII).

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