Manchester is neither Borough nor Corporation, but a spacious, rich and populous Inland Town in the Hundred of Salford and South East part of Lancashire. A distinction was sometimes made by eighteenth-century writers between the township of Manchester and the town of Manchester, i.e. the built-up area inside the township. In 1758 an enumeration of the population of Manchester took place as the result of a dispute about the manorial corn-mill rights and the figure of 17,101 was obtained for the township. The movement of foodstuffs into Manchester on the scale could not be effected without major changes in local transport facilities. Improvement began as far as the Manchester area was concerned, in the early eighteenth century. The industries of Manchester, and the fortunes of the merchants and wholesale manufacturers who directed them have only received fragmentary treatment at the hands of economic historians.