Before 1852 there were no official publications of patents and gaining a patent was a cumbersome process involving visits to several different offices and ultimately gaining two signatures of the reigning monarch! In 1852 the Patent office was established and the first task undertaken was to number all the existing patent records in chronological order starting with 1 dating back to 1449 granted by Henry VI to number 14359 from September 1852.
The european patent office website started back cataloging many old British patents and got back to 1900 with partial incomplete coverage back 8 years further to 1892 and developed a numbering system consiting of GB_Year_Number i.e. GB19000001. The aim of this part of the site is to rebuild the data for the years 1853 to 1892 covering those specifically originating in the Northwest of England, principally Lancashire & Cheshire which were the hotbed of the industrial revolution, the home of Cottonopolis and one of the most enterprising ports in the world.
The principal source for this endeavour is The Repertory of Patent Inventions, an unusual publication printed monthly with its first issue dating back to the year 1794 which used as it source the Official Journal of the Patent Office, a cheap source of republishable print, also used by the London Gazette and to bulk out other trade and engineering related publications of the time.