1800s - Middlesbrough, a small hamlet

In stark contrast to the busy town centre that it would become over the century, Middlesbrough’s population in 1801 stood only at 25 people, centred around Middlesbrough Farmhouse.

The area on which modern Middlesbrough would emerge had previously been home to a monastic cell, dating back to the seventh century, and later a medieval priory. In the early 1800s the community at Middlesbrough was centred around the Middlesbrough Farmhouse and was a rural society.

Above: Middlesbrough in the early 1830s. The road in the foreground is now Depot Road running parallel with Port of Middlesbrough (Source: T.Roddam Dent Booklet, c.1940s)
Above: A view of Middlesbrough in 2022, taken from the roof terrace of AV Dawson’s head office at Port of Middlesbrough. The picture replicates the angle used in the 1830s picture above and illustrates how the landscape has changed.

Did you know?

In the early 1800s there was little industrial activity on the Tees at Middlesbrough. Instead, Stockton-On-Tees was the main port for the area, a position previously held by Yarm.

Did you know?

In 1808 the Tees Navigation Company was founded through an Act of Parliament. Their first task was to dig a channel, known as the Mandale Cut, to make it easier for ships to navigate up the River Tees to Stockton – which was the main port on the Tees at the time. The River Tees was transformed from a narrow, tortuous waterway to one of the most easily navigable rivers in the UK.