Southport, a watering-place of Lancashire, at the mouth of the Ribble estuary, 18 miles N. of Liverpool, 37 WNW. of Manchester, and 19 S. by W. of Preston. The first house was a wooden inn built from a wreck here in 1792, on what then was a sandy waste; since about 1830 the place has grown more and more popular, enjoying as it does a mild climate, and having broad level sands. The esplanade (3 miles long) commands views of the Welsh and Cumberland mountains, and from it projects a pier (1465 yards) constructed in 1859-68 at a cost of £25,000, with a steam tramway running along it. Other features of Southport, with date and cost, are the Pavilion and Winter Gardens (1874; £140,000), comprising a theatre, concert-hall, aquaria, etc.; opera-house (1891; seating 2000); the Cambridge Hall (1874; £25,000), with a clock-tower 127 feet high; the Victoria Baths (1871; £45,000); the Atkinson Public Library and Art Gallery (1878; nearly £15,000); the Grecian town-hall (1853); the market-hall (1881; £40,000); the Victoria Schools of Science and Art (1887); the convalescent hospital (founded 1806; present building 1854-87); the Hesketh Public Park of 30 acres (1868); and a marine park and lake (1887; £13,000) on the foreshore fronting the town. Nathaniel Hawthorne, then United States consul at Liverpool, describes Southport as it was in 1856 in his English Notebooks (1870). It was made a municipal borough in 1867, the boundary being extended in 1875. Pop. (1851) 4765; (1871) 18,085; (1881) 32,206; (1901) 48,083.