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Lancashire

Lancashire, the most populous county in England, though only the sixth in size, lies mainly between Yorkshire and the Irish Sea, but has Westmoreland on the N.E. and Cumberland on the N. A small part of it, called Furness, is separated from the rest by Westmoreland and Morecambe Bay. Lancashire is 76 miles long, and has a total area of 1,208,154 acres. The coast-line is much indented, Morecambe Bay and the mouths of the Ribble and Mersey being the largest inlets. The county is mountainous in the north and along a great part of the Yorkshire border. Coniston Old Man, near the Cumberland border, is 2,633 feet high. The Lune, the Mersey, and the Ribble are the chief rivers, with the Leven in Furness. The climate is mild, and the rainfall somewhat heavy. Oats and potatoes and some wheat are grown; but Lancashire is not an agricultural county; it has a large coalfield; and limestone, iron, lead, and other minerals are found. The chief industries are the cotton manufacture, the making of machinery, and shipbuilding. The most important towns are Liverpool, Manchester, Preston, Blackburn, Salford, Bolton, Wigan, Burnley, Bury, and Barrow-in-Furness. Lancaster is the old assize town. Lancashire was to return twenty-three county members by the Reform Bill of 1885.

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