The town, the full name of which is Kirkby-Kendal or Kirkby-in-Kendal, is the largest in the county.
The woollen manufactures of Kendal have been noted since 1331, when Edward III.
Is said to have granted letters of protection to John Kemp, a Flemish weaver who settled in the town; and, although the coarse cloth known to Shakespeare as "Kendal green" is no longer made, its place is more than supplied by active manufactures of tweeds, railway rugs, horse clothing, knitted woollen caps and jackets, worsted and woollen yarns, and similar goods.
Other manufactures of Kendal are machine-made boots and shoes, cards for wool and cotton, agricultural and other machinery, paper, and, in the neighbourhood, gunpowder.
The barony and castle of Kendal or Kirkby-in-Kendal, held by Turold before the Conquest, were granted by William I.
Kendal was plundered by the Scots in 1210, and was visited by the rebels in 1715 and again in 1745 when the Pretender was proclaimed king there.
From 1832 to 1885 Kendal sent one member to parliament, but since the last date its representation has been merged in that of the southern division of the county.
In 1723, through the medium of the king's mistress, the duchess of Kendal, he at last received his pardon, returned to London in June or July, and placed his services at the disposal of Walpole, by whom, however, his offers to procure the accession of several Tories to the administration were received very coldly.
Forts in plenty can be detected along it, notably Manchester (Mancunium or Mamucium), Ribchester (Bremetennacum), Brougham Castle (Brocavum), Old Penrith (Voreda), and on a western branch, Watercrook near Kendal, Waterhead near the hotel of that name on Ambleside, Hardknott above Eskdale, Maryport (Uxellodunum), and Old Carlisle (possibly Petriana).
About 1790 he seems to have thought of taking up law or medicine, but his projects met with no encouragement from his relatives and he remained at Kendal till, in the spring of 1793, he moved to Manchester, where he spent the rest of his life.
During his residence in Kendal, Dalton had contributed solutions of problems and questions on various subjects to the Gentlemen's and Ladies' Diaries, and in 1787 he began to keep a meteorological diary in which during the succeeding fifty-seven VII.
The tremendous uproar raised by Swift about Wood's halfpence was heightened by the fact that Wood shared his profits with the duchess of Kendal, the mistress of George I.
There is no reason to think that the English ministry wished otherwise; but secret influences were at work, and a patent for supplying Ireland with a coinage of copper halfpence was accorded to William Wood on such terms that the profit accruing from the difference between the intrinsic and the nominal value of the coins, about 40%, was mainly divided between him and George I.'s favourite duchess of Kendal, by whose influence Wood had obtained the privilege.
He was created earl of Kendal and duke of Cumberland in 1689.