MARKET TOWNS OF CORNWALL (from SDUK Penny Cyclopedia)
St. Agnes in 1837
St. Agnes is on the NW coast, in the hundred of Pyder, between Padstow and St. Ives, 260 or 261 miles from London by Salisbury, Dorchester, Exeter, Lauceston, Bodmin, and St. Michael. It is a small town ; the market, for which there does not appear to be any charter on record, has been held from time immemorial for all sorts of wares and provisions except corn. Thursday is the market day. The parish comprehends an important mining district, and had a population of 6,642 in 1831. There is a harbour at Trevenaunce, in this parish, which has been much improved of late years ; the pilchard fishery has been established here since the beginning of the present century. St. Agnes was anciently called Breanick or Bryanick.
St. Agnes is a parochial chapelry, united with the vicarage of St. Perran-in-Zabulo or Piranzabuloe. The two are stated to produce £419 net yearly revenue, and are in the gift of the dean and chapter of Exeter, in whose jurisdiction they are. In a dingle called Chapel Combe was an ancient chapel called Porth Chapel, the ruins of which were taken down 1780 ; there are the remains of an ancient chapel at Malow or Morlah, in the parish of St. Agnes. There are a free-school, a Sunday-school, and three dissenting places of worship. Opie, the painter, was born at St. Agnes.
St. Agnes Beacon is on a pyramidal hill near the town, 621 feet above the level of the sea ; it is formed out of an ancient cairn or tumulus, and was used as a beacon during the alarm of invasion in the beginning of the present century.