New Yorkshire Gazetteer (1828) page 285
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chapel of ease; here are also several
meeting houses for the different deno-
minations of dissenters ; a theatre, the
seamen’s hospital for widows, with
various charitable and other institu-
tions, which merit no peculiar elucida-
tion. What is remarkable in so bleak
a district is, that a botanical garden
is attached to the subscription library.
Whitby is a very opulent town; its
alum works, its Greenland fisheries, as
well as those on the coast, its coasting
trade, with its various manufactures
connected with ship-building, form an
inexhaustible source of wealth. The
neighbourhood abounds with natural
curiosities, the various petrifactions,
particularly the skeletons of men and
animals, found in the alum rocks, have
long excited wonder, and puzzled phi-
losophy ; ammonitse, or snake stones,
are frequently met with on the Scarr,
a stratum of alumine which forms the
beach; the snakes are enclosed in hard
elliptical stones, and seem to be of a
different substance from the mass in
which they are encrusted : it is still a
tradition with the vulgar, that they were
real snakes with which Whitby and its
vicinity were infested, but which being
driven over the cliff by St. Hilda, and
losing their heads by the fall, were
afterwards by her prayers converted
into stone; the resemblance of the
snake always wants the head: these
substances being commonly found in
all beds of alumine, were probably by
some fermentation brought into their
present shape, by those unknown ope-
rations in which nature has delighted
to conceal her arcana. Whitby has
frequently suffered from the depreda-
tions of the ocean. On the 24th De-
cember, in the year 1787, a new built
quay, supporting a pile of buildings 80
feet above the margin of the sea, unable
to 'sustain the pressure of the earth
above, fell with a thundering crash,
and carried with it several houses, and
rent asunder many others ; the inhabi-
tants had sufficient warning to escape
with their lives, but nearly
200 fami-
lies, in an inclement season, were left
destitute of house, fire, or food. In
the summer season, the environs of
Whitby are pleasant and romantic; they
contain several elegant residences of
its various opulent inhabitants, and
the townships of Aislaby, Eskdaleside,
Hawsker with Stainsacre, Newholme,
Ruswarp and Ugglebarnby. Entire
population, 12,584.

Whitby Strand, N.R. (3) a wa-
pentake in the North Riding, bounded
on the north by the German Ocean, on
the west by the wapentakes of Lang-
barugh and Pickering Lythe, on the
south by Pickering Lythe, and on the
east by Pickering Lythe and the Ger-
man Ocean ; it is a cold and bleak dis-
trict, containing one market town,
townships, 4 of which are parishes,
2671 houses, and 14,916 inhabitants.

Whitchurch, or Whitkirk, W.R.
(5) a parish and township with Temple
Newsam, in the wapentake of Skyrack,
4 miles E. from Leeds; inhabitants,
1116 ; a vicarage, value 13/. 5s. 7%d.;
patron, Trinity College, Cambridge.
In the church of Whitkirk was a
chantry for two priests, founded by
William Scargill, of Thorpe Stapelton:
a monument of his son, though three
centuries old, yet continues in excellent
preservation. The remains of John
Smeaton, the celebrated builder of the
Eddystone Lighthouse, a native of Aus-
thorpe, (which see), repose here under
a handsome mural monument. This
church also has been the burying place
of the lords of Temple Newsam. The
parish contains the townships of Aus-
thorpe, Seacroft, Temple Newsam, and
Thorpe Stapelton. Entire population,

Whitcliffe, W. R. (5) a township
with Littlethorpe, in the parish of Ripon,
wapentake of Claro, ltj mile S. from Ri-
pon; inhabitants,
157. Thorpe Hall is
the seat of the Rev. W. Waddilove. •


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