Established on 14 October 1799 as Portsmouth Telegraph; or, Mottley's Naval and Military Journal, the newspaper changed its title twice more, before the name Hampshire Telegraph, and Sussex Chronicle was adopted in July 1803. In 1801, the population of Portsmouth was 33,000. This grew to nearly 195,000 by 1901. The newspaper provided a chronicle of events for the busy naval port of Portsmouth throughout the century.
It was from Portsmouth that Admiral Nelson set sail to command the fleet that would defeat the combined French/Spanish fleet at Trafalgar. After the battle, issue no. 321 of the Hampshire Telegraph, 2 December 1805, printed a table showing the position of the battle order of the two fleets of ships, entitled: 'Position of the Combined forces of France and Spain, at the commencement of the Action 24 October 1805.' The issue also listed those killed and wounded in the battle.
In 1823, each issue of the paper was four pages, and the price was 7d. At this time, typical issues of the paper covered, in minute detail, such topics as the arrivals and departures of ships and Coroner's Records, together with reports from Winchester, Plymouth, Portsmouth and London. The six columns into which each page was divided gave plenty of room for such stories, as well as more sensational reports, such as fires in other cities. Local markets were noted in almost diary-like tones.
By 1846, the paper was published on Saturday, at a price of 5d. It was described in Mitchell's Press Directory as '... liberal towards dissenters, as well at towards the Papal Church, as far as Ireland is concerned'. In 1878, it was issued bi-weekly, Wednesday 1d, Saturday 2d. the impact of tourism was starting to be felt, as the paper published in its Saturday issue a list of visitors to the fashionable resort of Southsea. The circulation in 1882 was 12,000 copies. The paper continued to publish until November 1976.
For this newspaper, we have the following titles in, or planned for, our digital archive:
- 1799–1802 Portsmouth Telegraph; or, Mottley's Naval and Military Journal
- 1802–02 Mottley's Telegraph, and Portsmouth Gazette
- 1802–03 Hampshire Telegraph, & Portsmouth Gazette
- 1803–1900 Hampshire Telegraph, and Sussex Chronicle
- 1899–1914 Hampshire Telegraph and Naval Chronicle
- 1913–61 Hampshire Telegraph & Post and Naval Chronicle.
This newspaper is published by an unknown publisher in Portsmouth, Hampshire, England. It was digitised and first made available on the British Newspaper Archive in May 4, 2013 . The latest issues were added in Nov 11, 2021.