Wells in 1839
Wells is in North Greenhoe hundred, 118 miles from London. The area of the parish is 2,250 acres, with a population, in 1831, of 3,624. The town is on a slight elevation rising above the marshy flat which here lines the coast, and about half a mile from the sea, on a creek, the mouth of which forms the harbour. The shifting sands render this harbour difficult of access, but considerable improvements have been made in it. The town consists of two principal streets, partially paved, and of some smaller streets. There is a custom-house on the quay; there is also a theatre. The trade of the port is considerable. Corn and malt are shipped ; and coals, timber, deals, bark, oil-cake, tar, and wine are imported. There is a yearly fair. Petty-sessions for the hundred are held every fortnight. Several of the townsmen are engaged as seamen in registered vessels, or in the oyster or other fishery. The living is a rectory, of the clear yearly value of £738, with a glebe-house. There were in the parish, in 1833, six infant or dame schools, with 124 children ; two endowed day-schools, with 60 children ; two schools, supported by private charity, with 60 children ; eight other day-schools, with 277 children ; and two Sunday-schools, with 339 children.