Old Montague Street, E1

Road in/near Whitechapel, existing between 1650 and now

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Road · Whitechapel · E1 · Contributed by The Underground Map
Whitechapel Workhouse Mortuary, contemporary press illustration.

Old Montague Street is a thoroughfare running east-west from Baker’s Row (now Vallance Road) to Brick Lane.

The western section of the street (as far as today’s Greatorex Street) was certainly in evidence by the 1670s (known simply as Montague Street) and was probably built up when the east side of Brick Lane was being developed in the 1650s. Much of the north side was rural at this time, however, with the south side comprising of scattered properties and gardens.

This state of affairs appeared to exist into the mid-18th century - the street was extended eastwards by this time but the newer pathways were as yet unnamed.

By the beginning of the 19th century, these easterly extentions were known as Rope Walk (later Chapel Lane) and Princes Row. This part eventually became Princes Street.

To the south of Princes Street was the Whitechapel Workhouse, built on Whitechapel Road by 1827 and abutting this was a burial ground, originally an overspill for St Mary Matfelon. Adjacent to the workhouse was the Davenant Foundation School which had been founded in 1680.

In 1874, Montague Street and Princes Street were renamed Old Montague Street and the south side had become built up. The mortuary connected to the workhouse (invariably referred to as the Whitechapel or Old Montague Street Mortuary) became the only such facilities in the district, amounting to little more than a shed and accessible by gates in Eagle Place.

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Post by Jan: Kerbela Street, E2

My grandparents lived in Kerbela Street many years ago when they were terraced houses. My memory of the street is one long street with these strange wrought iron things outside - which I now know as boot scrapers. The house inside was fairly large, but I was a child. Loo was outside. Shame they knocked the terraces down and build a huge housing estate, but that?s progress I suppose. Does anyone know the origin of the name Kerbela?
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The 1750 Rocque map is bounded by Sudbury (NW), Snaresbrook (NE), Eltham (SE) and Hampton Court (SW).
Outside these bounds, the 1750 map does not display.

The 1800 mapping is bounded by Stanmore (NW), Woodford (NE), Bromley (SE) and Hampton Court (SW).
Outside these bounds, the 1800 map does not display.

The 1830 mapping is bounded by West Hampstead (NW), Hackney (NE), Greenwich (SE) and Chelsea (SW).
Outside these bounds, the 1830 map does not display.

The 1860 mapping is bounded by Brent Cross (NW), Stratford (NE), Greenwich (SE) and Hammermith (SW).
Outside these bounds, the 1860 map does not display.

The 1900 mapping covers all of the London area.


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Whitechapel is a neighbourhood whose heart is Whitechapel Road itself, named for a small chapel of ease dedicated to St Mary.

By the late 1500s Whitechapel and the surrounding area had started becoming 'other half' of London. Located downwind of the genteel sections of west London which were to see the expansion of Westminster Abbey and construction of Buckingham Palace, it naturally attracted the more fragrant activities of the city, particularly tanneries, breweries, foundries (including the Whitechapel Bell Foundry which later cast Philadelphia's Liberty Bell and also Big Ben), slaughterhouses and, close by to the south, the gigantic Billingsgate fish market, famous in its day for the ornately foul language of the extremely Cockney fishwomen who worked there.

Population shifts from rural areas to London from the 1600s to the mid 1800s resulted in great numbers of more or less destitute people taking up residence amidst the industries and mercantile interests that had attracted them. By the 1840s Whitechapel, along with the enclaves of Wapping, Aldgate, Bethnal Green, Mile End, Limehouse and Stepney (collectively known today as the East End), had evolved, or devolved, into classic 'dickensian' London. Whitechapel Road itself was not particularly squalid through most of this period - it was the warren of small dark streets branching from it that contained the greatest suffering, filth and danger, especially Dorset St., Thrawl St., Berners St. (renamed Henriques St.), Wentworth St. and others.

In the Victorian era the base population of poor English country stock was swelled by immigrants from all over, particularly Irish and Jewish. 1888 saw the depredations of the Whitechapel Murderer, later known as 'Jack the Ripper'. In 1902, American author Jack London, looking to write a counterpart to Jacob Riis's seminal book How the Other Half Lives, donned ragged clothes and boarded in Whitechapel, detailing his experiences in The People of the Abyss. Riis had recently documented the astoundingly bad conditions in the leading city of the United States. Jack London, a socialist, thought it worthwhile to explore conditions in the leading city of the nation that had created modern capitalism. He concluded that English poverty was far rougher than the American variety. The juxtaposition of the poverty, homelessness, exploitive work conditions, prostitution, and infant mortality of Whitechapel and other East End locales with some of the greatest personal wealth the world has ever seen made it a focal point for leftist reformers of all kinds, from George Bernard Shaw, whose Fabian Society met regularly in Whitechapel, to Vladimir Ilyich Lenin, who boarded and led rallies in Whitechapel during his exile from Russia.

Whitechapel remained poor (and colourful) through the first half of the 20th Century, though somewhat less desperately so. It suffered great damage in the V2 German rocket attacks and the Blitz of World War II. Since then, Whitechapel has lost its notoriety, though it is still thoroughly working class. The Bangladeshis are the most visible migrant group there today and it is home to many aspiring artists and shoestring entrepreneurs.

Since the 1970s, Whitechapel and other nearby parts of East London have figured prominently in London's art scene. Probably the most prominent art venue is the Whitechapel Art Gallery, founded in 1901 and long an outpost of high culture in a poor neighbourhood. As the neighbourhood has gentrified, it has gained citywide, and even international, visibility and support.

Whitechapel, is a London Underground and London Overground station, on Whitechapel Road was opened in 1876 by the East London Railway on a line connecting Liverpool Street station in the City of London with destinations south of the River Thames. The station site was expanded in 1884, and again in 1902, to accommodate the services of the Metropolitan District Railway, a predecessor of the London Underground. The London Overground section of the station was closed between 2007 and 27 April 2010 for rebuilding, initially reopening for a preview service on 27 April 2010 with the full service starting on 23 May 2010.

Aldgate East:   In a land east of Aldgate, lies the land of Aldgate East...
Altab Ali Park:   
Goodman’s Fields Theatre:   Two 18th century theatres bearing the name Goodman’s Fields Theatre were located on Alie Street, Whitechapel.
Whitechapel:   Whitechapel is a neighbourhood whose heart is Whitechapel Road itself, named for a small chapel of ease dedicated to St Mary.

Adler Street, E1 · Alderman Stairs, E1W · Alderman Stairs, SE1 · Alie Street, E1 · Angel Alley, E1 · Assam Street, E1 · Back Church Lane, E1 · Back Mews, SE4 · Bacon Street, E1 · Barnsley Street, E1 · Batty Street, E1 · Bishops Square, E1 · Black Lion Yard, E1 · Blossom Street, E1 · Boyd Street, E1 · Brady Street, E1 · Braithwaite Street, E1 · Brick Lane, E1 · Brushfield Street, E1 · Buckhurst Street, E1 · Buckle Street, E1 · Burr Close, E1W · Burslem Street, E1 · Buxton Street, E1 · Calvin Street, E1 · Cambridge Heath Road, E1 · Camperdown Street, E1 · Casson Street E.1, E1 · Casson Street, E1 · Castlemain Street, E1 · Central House, E1 · Chance Street, E1 · Chicksand Street, E1 · Christian Street, E1 · Club Row, E1 · Code Street, E1 · College East, E1 · Collingwood Street, E1 · Commercial Street, E1 · Corbet Place, E1 · Court Street, E1 · Coverley Close, E1 · Crispin Place, E1 · Crispin Street, E1 · Cudworth Street, E1 · Darling Row, E1 · Davenant Street, E1 · Deal Street, E1 · Dorset Street, E1 · Dray Walk, E1 · Durward Street, E1 · East Mount Street, E1 · Elder Street, E1 · Fairclough Street, E1 · Fashion Street, E1 · Fieldgate Street, E1 · Flower and Dean Street, E1 · Folgate Street, E1 · Forbes Street, E1 · Fordham Street, E1 · Fournier Street, E1 · Fulbourne Street, E1 · George Street, E1 · Golding Street, E1 · Gower’s Walk, E1 · Gowers Walk, E1 · Granary Road, E1 · Greatorex Street, E1 · Greenfield Road, E1 · Gun Street, E1 · Gunthorpe Street, E1 · Hanbury Street, E1 · Headlam Street, E1 · Hemming Street, E1 · Heneage Street, E1 · Henriques Street, E1 · Hermitage Court, E1W · Hopetown Street, E1 · Hunton Street, E1 · Key Close, E1 · Kings Arms Court, E1 · Knighten Street, E1W · Knighton Street, E1W · Lamb Street, E1 · Langdale Street, E1 · Little Paternoster Row, E1 · London Fruit Exchange, E1 · Manningtree Street, E1 · Merceron Street, E1 · Mews Street, E1W · Monthope Road, E1 · Mulberry Street, E1 · Myrdle Street, E1 · Nesham Street, E1W · Old Montague Street, E1 · Orton Street, E1W · Osborn Street, E1 · Osborne Street, E1 · Osbourne Street, E1 · Parfett Street, E1 · Pedley Street, E1 · Pereira Street, E1 · Philchurch Place, E1 · Pier Head, E1W · Pinchin Street, E1 · Plumbers Row, E1 · Ponler Street, E1 · Princelet Street, E1 · Puma Court, E1 · Quaker Street, E1 · Redchurch Street, E2 · Regal Close, E1 · Romford Street, E1 · Saint Katherine’s Way, E1W · Sampson Street, E1W · Scott Street, E1 · Selby Street, E1 · Settles Street, E1 · Shoreditch High Street, E1 · Spellman Street, E1 · Spelman House, E1 · Spelman Street, E1 · Spital Square, E1 · Spital Street, E1 · Spring Walk, E1 · St Anthony’s Close, E1W · St Katharines Way, E1W · St Katharine’s Way, E1W · Star Place, E1W · Stepney Green Court, E1 · Stockholm Way, E1W · Stothard Place, EC2M · Stutfield Street, E1 · Surma Close, E1 · Tent Street, E1 · Thomas More Square, E1W · Thomas More Street, E1W · Thrawl Street, E1 · Three Colts Corner, E2 · Three Colts Lane, E1 · Three Colts Lane, E2 · Tower Bridge Approach, E1W · Tower Bridge Approach, EC3N · Tower Bridge, E1W · Tower Walk, E1W · Trahorn Close, E1 · Umberston Street, E1 · Underwood Road, E1 · Vallance Road, E1 · Vaughan Way, E1W · Vine Court, E1 · Weaver Street, E1 · Wheler Street, E1 · Whitby Street, E1 · White Church Lane, E1 · Whitechapel High Street, E1 · Whitechapel Market, E1 · Whitechapel Road, E1 · Whitechapel Street, E1 · Wicker Street, E1 · Wilkes Street, E1 · Winthrop Street, E1 · Wodeham Gardens, E1 · Woodseer Street, E1 ·

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