Thomas Fisher (publisher)
The history and antiquities of Rochester
Rochester 1772

William Wildash (publisher)
The history and antiquities of Rochester, 2nd edition
Rochester 1817
(Text only - illustrations omitted)

Passages printed grey are inherited from the first edition
(Fisher 1772); passages printed black are new. A red e in
the margin refers to the list of errata at the end of the book.

William Wildash (publisher)
The history and antiquities of Rochester
Rochester 1833
(Text only = illustrations omitted)

This is basically just a shortened version of Wildash’s edition
(1817) of Fisher’s ‘History’ (1772). Passages retained from that
edition are printed grey. New passages are printed black if they
are (apparently) original. Passages printed blue are copied from
Hasted (pp. 14–16, 19–21), or from the ‘Gentleman’s Magazine’,
Sep. 1825, pp. 225–6, which has two descriptions (by E. J. Carlos
and A. J. Kempe respectively) of bishop Sheppey’s monument,
just recently discovered (pp. 50–1).

Charles Spence
A walk through Rochester Cathedral
London 1840

This is the earliest guidebook to the cathedral written by someone who combined some
knowledge of medieval architecture with some close knowledge of the building itself.
 The author's name is not given, but there was never any mystery about it: the book was
written by Charles Spence, an Admiralty official who was based at the time in Rochester.
The printer, John Limbird, was also the publisher of a weekly magazine, "The Mirror of
literature, amusement, and instruction" (usually called just "The Mirror"), to which
Spence was a frequent contributor.  Two of these articles are included, together with a
review of his book (unsigned but known to be by John Gough Nichols) which appeared
in the Gentleman's Magazine.
(opens in a new window)

James Phippen
Descriptive sketches of Rochester, Chatham, and their vicinities

This is not a good book. In some ways it is a very bad book. There are
numerous mistakes, and numerous misprints, some of the more obtrusive of
which I have marked. The author, James Phippen, was not a local man: he only
moved to Rochester in the 1850s. Much of what he says is second-hand at
best. And yet, for all its faults, the book does contain some contemporary
information which is not, or not easily, to be found elsewhere. The "sketches",
it had better be said, are verbal sketches: there are no illustrations. – C.F.
is the website of Colin Flight.

It includes the current versions
 of all the files which were previously made available through the Kent Archaeological Society’s website. It will, eventually, include much else besides.