There are plenty of books exploring the history of Manchester during the nineteenth century, but the surrounding rural communities have been neglected. We know much about conditions in the new industrial city, but there have been no studies of the townships that made a major contribution to its development. Here for the first time is a detailed account of an agricultural community that was just 4 miles from the town. Much of the narrative is rooted in the people who lived here, using their words and records. It tells of daily lives, setting them in a national context, and balances the routine with the sensational - including murder, infanticide and a rebellion. Partly a narrative of rural life, and a description of a community's relationship with a city, the book also includes guided walks around Chorlton to bring this history to life. A database of references and sources is also provided. This is the story of a group of people that history has forgotten and scholarship has ignored.