Hanshall was the second editor of the Chester Chronicle (see: Newspapers in Chester).
He died of the cholera in 1833 during a national epidemic. His obituary reads: (The Annual Register. 1833)
- "After two hours illness of cholera Mr JH Hanshall, one of the editors of the Alfred newspaper. He was formerly for many years editor of the Chester Chronicle and while resident in that city he published between 1817 and 1823 a History of Cheshire in one volume 4to."
Hanshall is effusive in his praise of Chester as a healthy place to live (before he died of the cholera):
- "THE city of Chester which has been for ages the admiration of the antiquary the resort of the traveller and the object of the curious is situated on the Northern bank of the river Dee, a river which has often been the theme of poesy and the adoration of ignorance. Its elevated site and salubrity of air render it perhaps the most healthful place in England."
He is also pretty "laid-back" when it comes to recounting history, as in the following example:
- "Llwyd in his valuable poetic TRANSLATIONs FROM THE BRITISH has the following anecdote: Speaking of a celebrated Welshman named Reynallt ap Gryffydd ap Bleddyn one of the brave defenders of Harlech Castle, he says This Reynault afterwards dwelt at the Tower near Mold but was always at variance with the Citizens of Chester - a great number of these being at Mold fair in 1465, a scuffle ensued and much slaughter in which Reynault succeeded and taking Robert Byrne Mayor of Chester in 1461 among the prisoners hung him on the staple still remaining in the hall of his house at Tower. 200 tall men afterwards sallied from Chester to besiege Reynallt's house upon which, retiring to a wood, he permitted them in part to enter it when rushing from his covert he degraded himself and sullied his former triumphs by burning them in it and pursued the remainder into the Dee in which they perished. Lewis Glyn Cothi, a contemporary of Reynalit celebrates his exploits and uncharitably describes Chester as 'the habitation of the seven deadly sins'."
- The history of the county palatine of Chester J H. Hanshall (1823);
- Hanshall 1816 The stranger in Chester: giving an accurate sketch of its local history, with chronological arrangements ofthe most interesting events connected therewith. Written and compiled from the most authentic sources, including the records of the Corporation, by the Editor of the Chester Chronicle. Published 1816