The city of Manchester is located in the north-western region of England, by the River Irwell. It is one of the biggest cities in England and has excellent traditional and cultural values. It has many industrial units, and tourist spots abound in this place. The place has a rich history, which is not known to many people who come to the place for business or sightseeing and find out about its heritage eventually.
The Roman era
The Manchester region came up during 79 AD in the Roman era, when the famous Roman general Agricola built a fort situated to the north of what is now the Manchester city. This was a wooden fort which was later reconstructed with stone in about 200 AD. The Romans left in around 407 AD and the stone fort began to crumble. Today, a replica of this structure stands in the city centre at Castlefield.
The Norman era and beyond
The Normans invaded the place sometime during the 11th century, and this brought settlement in the area – which was a small village until this time. With more settlement and influx of people, the area saw a rise in trading and commercial activities. By the end of 13th century, the small village had turned into a major town. With the development of the local wool industry, the town became famous and began to witness prosperity.
The Deadly Plague and Recovery
The early 17th century saw the town suffering a major setback in the form of a deadly plague. The epidemic that struck the area in 1603 wiped out around a quarter of its population. Gradually, the townsmen began to recover. In 1637, Manchester turned into a major silk producer.
The Rise of Manchester Cotton Industry
The 18th century finally saw Manchester coming into its own with the setting up of the cotton industry. In 1761, the Duke of Bridgewater began to carry low-cost coal into the town. During this time, the town began to witness more prosperity with cotton production. Lots of textile factories began to come up. The damp climate of the region was perfect for the processing of cotton. With the invention of steam engines for weaving and spinning, there was fast development of the cotton industry all through the area. The Industrial Revolution during this time saw Manchester turn into a city from a small market town. It was merged as a municipal borough, and was conferred the status of a city in 1853.
The 20th century
In the 20th century, the city saw the coming up of various industries such as biscuit and flour manufacturing, education, finance and tourism. In the 21st century, biotechnology, aerospace and chemicals industry have also made much progress. Today, the city has become a major commercial and tourist spot and is visited by millions of people from the world over.