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Wexford, Ireland

WEXFORD, IRELAND, a seaport, market town and municipal borough, and the county town of Co. Wexford, Ireland, finely situated on the south side of the Slaney, where it discharges into Wexford Harbour, on the Dublin & South-Eastern railway, 92$ m. S. of Dublin. Pop. (1901) 11,168. Wexford Harbour, formed by the estuary of the Slaney, is about 5 m. from N. to S. and about 4 from E. to W. There are quays extending nearly 900 yds., and the harbour affords good accommodation for shipping, but its advantages are in great part lost by a bar at its mouth pr venting the entrance of vessels drawing more than 12 ft. artificial harbour was therefore opened at Rosslare in 1906, outside the southern part of the promontory closing in the harbour, and this is connected with Wexford by a railway (8J m.) owned by the Great Southern & Western Company, and is served by the passenger steamers of the Great Western railway of England from Fishguard. The town of Wexford consists, for the most part, of extremely narrow streets, of picturesque appearance, but inconvenient to traffic. Some remains exist of the old walls and flanking towers. The Protestant church, near the ruins of the ancient abbey of St Sepulch or Selsker, is said to occupy the spot where the treaty w; signed between the Irish and the English invaders in 1169. Ti principal modern buildings are the town-hall, court-house, barracks, occupying the site of the ancient castle, St Peter': College for the education of Catholic clergy, with a strikii chapel by A. W. Pugin, and a number of convents. At Carrie! 2 m. W., the Anglo-Normans erected their first castle, am opposite this, across the river, is a modern round tower commemorating the men of Wexford who died in the Crimean War, The principal exports are agricultural produce, live stock an> whisky. Shipbuilding is carried on, and also tanning, maltin, brewing, iron-founding, distilling and the manufacture artificial manure, flour, agricultural implements, and rope an twine. Wexford is the headquarters of salmon and sea fishi districts. Under the Local Government (Ireland) Act 189 it retains its mayor and corporation.

Wexford was one of the earliest colonies of the English, havi been taken by Fitzstephen. It was the second town that Cro: well besieged in 1649. It was garrisoned for William III. 1690. In 1798 it was made the headquarters of the rebels, who however, surrendered it on the 21st of June. In 1318 the to' received a charter from Aymer de Valence, which was extend by Henry IV. in 1411, and confirmed by Elizabeth in 155- u0.j but Tn ' By James I. it was in 1608 made a free borough corporate, by the title of " the town and free borough corporate of Wexford." It returned two members to parliament from 1374 till the Union, when they were reduced to one. In 1885 it was included in the south division of the county.

Note - this article incorporates content from Encyclopaedia Britannica, Eleventh Edition, (1910-1911)

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