References to Amlwch in University of Bangor archives
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Amlwch Vestry and Highway Board Papers

Reference: GB 0222 BMSS AVB
Title: Amlwch Vestry and Highway Board Papers
Dates of creation: 1768-1903
Administrative/Biographical History

The parish of Amlwch, situated in Anglesey, north Wales, was, in common with other parishes, a major instrument of local government. The parish, represented by a selection of members known as the vestry, had responsibility for poor relief, as well as maintenance of highways and law and order, which continued until local government reforms in the late nineteenth century. In 1894 parish government was reconstructed which left vestries with limited powers such as the election of churchwardens and administration of charities.

Scope and Content

Material relating to parish government in Amlwch, Anglesey, north Wales:  

  Vestry books, 1768-1903
  Minutes of meetings, Amlwch District Highway Board, 1872-1895  

Amlwch Literary and Scientific Institution Records

Reference: GB 0222 BMSS ALSI
Title: Amlwch Literary and Scientific Institution Records
Dates of creation: 1837 - 1858
Held at: University of Wales Bangor
Extent: 95 items
Name of Creator: Officers and members of the Amlwch Literary and Scientific Institution.
Administrative/Biographical History

The idea of the Amlwch Literary and Scientific Institution appears to have originated in 1837 with William Fricker, the brewer, in a letter to Mr Greathead of the N. P. Bank. It seemed quite natural for such a society to be founded at Amlwch with its variegated population. The most prominent characters in its records are invariably English immigrants to Amlwch or descendants of such. The Rev. Morris Williams (Nicander) and his curates were also amongst the subscribers.

The balance between literature and science was kept pretty even.

Scope and Content

Records consisting of lists of donations and subscriptions, annual reports, balloting papers for the election of officers and committee, correspondence and bills with references to lectures, lists of books borrowed.


John Bennett Hughes, Amlwch Manuscripts

Reference: GB 0222 BMSS AMJH
Title: John Bennett Hughes, Amlwch Manuscripts
Dates of creation: 1799-1970
Held at: University of Wales, Bangor
Extent: 163 items
Name of Creator: Amlwch business people, local and parish officials, John Bennett Hughes, Hughes family and business associates.

Administrative/Biographical History

The town of Amlwch is situated on the north-west coast of Anglesey, Wales. The discovery of copper at Parys Mountain and development of a mining industry, between 1750 and 1850 was a most significant event in its history. It resulted in social and economic changes in this rural community including a sudden population growth and development of a variety of local businesses. The development of Amlwch port was closely linked with the prosperity of the mines and their decline after 1850 also resulted in a considerable loss of trade for the port.

John Bennett Hughes (ca. 1900-1970), Tailor and Local Historian, was proprietor of John Hughes & Sons, a ladies and gents tailoring business established in the town in 1907.

The collection contains manuscripts and printed material relating to Amlwch and district from the collection of businessman and local historian John Bennett Hughes.

It contains deeds and other legal documents relating to property in Amlwch including dwelling houses and business property, particularly licensed premises such as public houses and hotels and material relating to Amlwch parish. Collection also contains shipping and harbour records, maps, plans and agreements, notebooks, scrapbooks, newspaper cuttings, advertising and other material relating to various Amlwch trades people and businesses including John Hughes & Sons, Tailors.


Lastra Papers

Reference: GB 0222 BMSS LST
Title: Lastra Papers
Dates of creation: 1803-1873
Held at: University of Wales Bangor
Extent: 128 items
Name of Creator: W. R. Jones of Amlwch
Level of Description: fonds

Administrative/Biographical History

The hamlet known as Lastra (also spelled Lastre, Lasdref and Lasdred) is situated at Amlwch, Anglesey in north Wales. Circa 1803-1820 Reverend Edward Hughes, a major shareholder in the Parys Mountain copper mining development, owned property at Lastra; Griffith Roberts was his tenant. Later in the century, his son Rowland Roberts occupied property there. He was also involved, as a shareholder, in the Amlwch ships, Mary Hannah , John and William and the Mona and was the funds collector for the Bible Society, Gwredog division, c. 1840-1843.

Scope and Content


  Inventories of cattle, horses etc., at Lastra farm, 1824, 1857
  Acquittances to Rowland Roberts of Lastra from his sisters, relating to shares in stock arising from their father's will, 1838, 1842, 1848
  Rent receipts for Lastra, 1803-1824
  Bonds of obligation to the churchwardens of Amlwch in cases of bastardy, 1813, 1823
  Miscellaneous bills etc., 1805-1823
  Accounts sent to Rowland Roberts as shareholder in the ships Mary Hannah , John and William and the Mona , 1855-1873
  Accounts relating to Amlwch port, cartage of coal, weighing of corn, etc., 1819-1830
  Farm accounts etc., 1830, 1835, 1837, 1842-1855
  Note book, Bible Society, Gwredog division collections, 1840, 1842-1843


Amlwch Church and Mona Mine Dispute Papers

Reference: GB 0222 BMSS AMLC
Title: Amlwch Church and Mona Mine Dispute Papers
Dates of creation: 1793- 20th century
Held at: University of Wales Bangor
Extent: 5 items
Name of Creator: John Warren, Bishop of Bangor, Amlwch Churchwardens and Mona Mine Company representatives  

Administrative/Biographical History

The town of Amlwch, situated on the north eastern corner of Anglesey, north Wales, grew with the development of copper mining on nearby Parys Mountain, at its height the most productive copper mine in the world.

Copper was rediscovered at Parys Mountain between 1761 and 1768 on the estate of Sir Nicholas Bayly (1707-1782) of Plas Newydd, who owned Cerrig-y-bleiddia Farm, on the east of the hill and also had a share in Parys Farm on the western part. A legal dispute between Sir Nicholas Bayly and the other owners of Parys Farm resulted in the engagement of solicitor Thomas Williams (1737-1802) of Llanidan. In 1778 Sir Nicholas Bayly leased his share in the Parys Mine to a Macclesfield company in which Thomas Williams was partner. By 1785, the lease had run out and Sir Nicholas' son and heir, Henry Bayly, Earl of Uxbridge (1744-1812) went into partnership with Thomas Williams to form the Mona Mine Company. Production began to decline around 1850 although it continued until 1883 and ore recovery carried on into the twentieth century on a small scale.

Circa 1793 a dispute arose involving John Warren (1730-1800), the bishop of Bangor and rector of Amlwch, the churchwardens of Amlwch and the Parys and Mona Mine companies relating to the demolition and rebuilding of Amlwch parish church. The bishop alleged that the mining companies were reneging on a promise to rebuild the church; Thomas Williams denied that any such agreement had ever been made, however his co owner, the Earl of Uxbridge did offer to contribute towards the cost of rebuilding or repair.

Scope and Content

Comprising papers relating to the dispute between representatives of Amlwch parish church and the Mona and Parys Mountain mining companies over the rebuilding of the church.


  Copy of a letter from Bishop Warren to the churchwardens, referring to a promise made to the writer by Thomas Williams regarding the demolition of the church and the building of a new one at the expense of the proprietors of the mine companies, 5 October 1793. Attached: copy of a letter from the bishop to the churchwardens of Caernarfon drawing their attention to the " dirty and indecent condition " of the parish church and directing them to summon a vestry for the purpose of putting it into good order, 5 October 1793
  Copy of a letter from Thomas Williams to the bishop referring to the letter which the latter addressed to the churchwardens (5 October 1793) and denying that any promise had been made that the church would be built at the expense of the mine proprietors etc.
  Copy of undated letter from the churchwardens to the bishop enclosing a copy of a letter received by them from Thomas Williams, 30 November 1793, remarking on the contents of the bishop's letter of 5 October 1793.
  Resolutions of a vestry meeting held at Amlwch church, 13 January 1794, the consequence of a letter received from the bishop of Bangor.
  Copy of an undated letter from the churchwardens to the Earl of Uxbridge thanking him for this promise towards the building or repairing of the church.



Rev. William Roberts, Amlwch Family Papers

Reference: GB 0222 BMSS WR
Title: Rev. William Roberts, Amlwch Family Papers
Dates of creation: 1811 - 1906
Held at: University of Wales Bangor
Extent: 20 items
Name of Creator: Rev. William Roberts.

Administrative/Biographical History

William Roberts was born in the parish of Llaneilian, Anglesey in 1784. At the age of ten he was working at the Parys Copper Mine but later became a husbandman and candle maker. He received no education when he was young, but later attended the school at Amlwch port for a period of three months. At the age of 21 he was made a deacon and at 23 he began to preach and eventually became a Calvinist Methodist minister. He married Sarah Jones in 1864 and they had 7 children. He died at the age 80 in 1864.

For further biographical details, consult his biography, Cofiant y Parch. W. Roberts, Amlwch by Rev. H. Jones, Amlwch (1869).

Scope and Content

Correspondence and papers bound in one volume which includes letters written by William Roberts to his family, friends and colleagues and letters received by William Roberts and others from various correspondents including John Elias, 1837-1901. Also, an 1811 table of his preaching appointments in south Wales and of his expenses and list of lectures on his visit to London.

Records of Llanfwrog Chapel in the form of a list of names of preachers 1833-1835.
Records of Ebenezer Chapel, Llanfaethlu, Anglesey including account books, 1840-1908 and a register of baptisms, 1840-1897.
Expenses of the Monthly Anglesey C. M. Meetings held at Llanfaethlu, 1847-1876.
Highway rate book for the parish of Llanfaethlu, 1837-1838.
Account books of the family of Rev. William Roberts which are written in various hands, 1847-1906. These include Llanfaethlu shop accounts, 1885-1906 and corn and wheat accounts for 1885-1903 which include names of Anglesey businessmen.


Amlwch National School Log Book

Reference: GB 0222 BMSS ANSL
Title: Amlwch National School Log Book
Dates of creation: 1863-1887
Held at: University of Wales, Bangor
Extent: 1 item
Name of Creator: Amlwch National Girls School

The National Girls School at Amlwch, Anglesey had a variety of teachers over the period 1863-1887. Staff included qualified and pupil teachers. It was under the headship of Mrs Jane Roberts from 1863-1867 and again from September 1872 to end of October 1873, when she retired apparently because of her husband's death. Her departure resulted in a series of changes in teaching personnel. Over the years the school experienced the movement of pupils to the local British school, some of which returned and were accepted back into the school on payment of a fine.

Scope and Content

Comprises logbook of Amlwch National Girls School, 1863-1887, containing teachers' reports relating to subjects taught and progress, attendances, new pupils, holidays and visitors to the school. Also includes some lists of pupils and summaries of inspectors' reports.

Related Units of Description

Also held at the Archives Department of the University of Wales, Bangor is a typescript copy of an essay on education in Amlwch, completed for a diploma in Welsh studies, by Gwynfor Roberts, entitled Hanes Addysg yn Ardal Amlwch, 1650-1900 . A collection level catalogue description is available, reference number: General collection of Bangor manuscripts: 34553 .


Caerpandy Rentals

Reference: GB 0222 BMSS CAEP
Title: Caerpandy Rentals
Dates of creation: 1857-1887
Held at: University of Wales Bangor
Extent: 1 item
Name of Creator: Not known

Administrative/Biographical History

Some of the legal work relating to property at Caerpandy in the parish of Amlwch in Anglesey, north Wales was handled by the firm of Bangor solicitors Carter Vincent and Co. Leases drafted by the firm involved John Jones of Anglesey and Liverpool and John Paynter of Amlwch in 1815, and Reverend Christopher Bethel, Bishop of Bangor and John Melville of Middlesex in 1848. No further administrative history is available at time of compilation.

Scope and Content

Caerpandy rentals, 1857-1887. John Paynter and other Paynters are mentioned in the rental and various residential property and businesses including Thomas Rowland, butcher (p. 6) and the Mona Mill (p. 60).


Amlwch Manuscripts

Held at: Department of Manuscripts, University of Wales, Bangor
Reference: GB 0222 AM
Title: Amlwch Manuscripts
Dates of creation: 1794-1934
Extent: 0.75 linear metre

Administrative/Biographical History

This is a collection of papers of three generations of the Matthews family. John Matthews, the elder was a surveyor and public man. Born on 1 January 1773, he was the son of Edward Matthews of Pen y Bont, near Mold, Flintshire. He became a surveyor, and by 1811 he had secured a considerable practice in North Wales. In 1819 he was appointed commissioner for the Arwystli commons and in 1821 commissioner and arbitrator for the reclaimed land (Traeth Mawr) near Portmadoc. In May 1823 he removed to Clydfanc, near Llanidloes, and in December 1828, to Aberystwyth. He was made a burgess of Aberystwyth and carried out considerable specialist work in the town, such as measuring the streets and planning the water supply. He also took an interest in the development of the lead mines in Cardiganshire and elsewhere. His diaries show that he was a great traveller and that he was familiar with all parts of North and Central Wales. He was a devoted member of the Calvinistic Methodist connexion and he frequently attended the Association meetings. John Matthews married Elin of Tros-y-wern, near Mold, and by her had a son, also called John. He too became a surveyor, and was also a shopkeeper and mayor of Aberystwyth.

John Matthews, the second, after the family had moved to Aberystwyth, opened a shop called the 'British Emporium' but he was first and foremost a surveyor like his father. The collection contains a map made by him at the age of thirteen of a little farm owned by his father in Mold. He was also the organising mind behind the new Tabernacle at Aberystwyth and his son too was an enthusiastic Methodist. John Matthews, the third, moved to Amlwch in 1867 as a bank manager. He was an enthusiastic patron of the singing festivals among the Methodists of Anglesey and is responsible for all the correspondence with architects and builders when the new Bethesda Chapel was built at Amlwch. On 8 April 1869 he married Miss Sarah M. Gee, daughter of Thomas Gee, publisher.

Scope and Content

These papers describe the activities and outlook of three generations of the Matthews family. The collection consists of 115 items relating to John Matthews (I) of Mold (1773-1848), John Matthews (II) of Aberystwyth (1808-1870), land surveyors, and John Matthews (III) (1843-1916) who came to Amlwch as bank manager in 1867. It includes letters to John Matthews (II) from his father, mother and sisters, containing references to Methodist Associations and the preachers who came to them; diaries (35) of John Matthews (I), 1812-47, containing accounts of his varied experiences as a surveyor frequently interspersed with references to his attendances at various Associations (Sasiynau) and preaching meetings; maps and surveys of estates and parts of estates by the first J. M., including those of Stansty, Bathafarn and Garn in Denbighshire, of the manor of Eidda in Ysbyty Ifan, of Traeth Mawr and of roads in the Llanrwst district; notes by John Matthews (II) on sermons delivered at Aberystwyth, Mold, the Llanidloes district and in north Cardiganshire, 1826-46; his account book as proprietor of the 'British Emporium' at Aberystwyth, 1842-54; his diaries (9) for the years 1824-69 and his letter book for the period 1848-69 which is particularly informative not only on his activities as surveyor in north Cardiganshire and south Merioneth but also as emigration agent during the Australian gold rush and as arranger of 'publications' for prominent ministers in north Cardiganshire; account books belonging to William Griffith of Llangefni, excise officer and father-in-law of John Matthews (II), 1794 and 1795, containing names of innkeepers, maltsters, etc. in that district.


Llwydiarth Esgob Manuscripts

Held at: Department of Manuscripts, University of Wales, Bangor
Reference: GB 0222 LLE
Title: Llwydiarth Esgob Manuscripts
Dates of creation: 1576-1920
Name of Creator: Mr Thomas Prichard, solicitor of Llwydiarth Esgob, Anglesey.
Extent: 5.1 linear metres

Administrative/Biographical History

Mr Thomas Prichard (1846-1920) was a noted antiquary and his keen interest in archaeology led to his collection of important prehistoric implements, which were acquired throughout Anglesey. He was a member of an old family who had lived at Llwydiarth Esgob, Llannerch-y-medd, Anglesey for many generations. His father, Mr Robert Prichard was a solicitor and his son was brought up in his father's profession. He was articled at Reading and returned to Anglesey to assist his father. For many years he was agent for the Bodorgan estate.

Scope and Content

A collection of 642 items and consisting of title deeds and other documents relating to properties in Amlwch and Amlwch Port, Aberffraw, Beaumaris, Bodedern, Bodwrog, Bryngwran, Caerdegog, Ceirchiog, Cerrigceinwen, Clegyrog, Cornwy Lan, Llanallgo, Llanbadrig, Llanbedrgoch, Llanbeulan, Llandegfan, Llandrygarn, (including lease of Calvinistic Methodist chapel), Llandyfrydog, Llandysilio, Llaneilian, Llannerch-y-medd, Llanfaes, Llanfair Mathafarn Eithaf, Llanfair-yn-neubwll, Llanfechell, Llanfihangel Dinsylwy, Llanfihangel Tre'r Beirdd, Llanfihangel Ysgeifiog, Llangadwaladr, Llangoed, Llangwyllog, Llantrisant, Llanwenllwyfo, Llanynghenedl, Llechylched, Newborough, Penrhoslligwy, Rhodogeidio, Rhosfair, Rhoscolyn (Bodior), Trefadog, Trefdraeth (including lease of Calvinistic Methodist chapel and Glan-y-traeth Colliery), Trewalchmai, co. Anglesey; Bangor, Caernarfon, Llanfihangel Bachellaeth, Llanllechid and Llansanffraid Glan Conwy, co. Caernarfon; and Llanfechain, Mathrafal and Trefedryd, co. Montgomery, 1576-1889; wills (original and copy), including those of John Williams of Treban (1805), David Pierce of Bangor (1807), John Parry of Bryn-du, Llanfaelog (1826), Thomas Meyrick of Cefn Coch (1831), Mrs Ann Meyrick of Cefn Coch (1835), John Jones, attorney and town clerk of Beaumaris (1823), David Owen of Trewyn, Llanfihangel Tre'r Beirdd (1855); probates and administrations, 1762-1909; rentals and accounts of the Cefn Coch estate, Anglesey, 1841-82; agency journal and accounts of the Goring (Harry Dent Goring) estate in cos. Anglesey and Caernarfon, 1842-72; agent's accounts of the Plas Gwyn estate, Anglesey, 1840-1; members' subscription book of the Anglesey Druid Society, 1839-44; maps and plans relating to properties in Aberffraw, Amlwch (Bodednyfed estate), Bodwrog (Eirianell and Llynfaes), Heneglwys, Llanddyfnan, Llanfair-yn-neubwll, Llangwyfan, Trefdraeth (Glan-y-traeth Colliery workings) and elsewhere in Anglesey, 1795-1846; miscellaneous papers, including land tax assessments for the parishes of Bodwrog and Llanfaethlu and the township of Caerdedog, 1753-93; correspondence and accounts relating to the Trearddur estate, Holyhead, 1806-1870; papers and documents concerning the title to the Cefn Coch estate, 1689-1901; diaries of E. E. Meyrick of Cefn Coch (mainly disbursements), 1819-50; papers in a Chancery suit (Goring v Vivian) relating to the Llanddyfnan estate, 1821-73; documents relating to the lease of the Tabernacle Chapel, Holyhead, 1823-4; and papers concerning the drainage and reclamation of Malltraeth Marsh, 1898-1918.


Gwredog Manuscripts

Held at: Department of Manuscripts, University of Wales, Bangor
Reference: GB 0222 GWR
Title: Gwredog Manuscripts
Dates of creation: 1726-1939
Extent: 5.2 linear metres

Administrative/Biographical History

The founders of the family fortunes of Gwredog were John Owen of Gwredog, Amlwch and William Jones of Dwygyfylchi. The former benefited from the prosperity of Mynydd Parys at the end of the eighteenth century. The latter took advantage of the hard stone, which was to be found in great quantity on his land. John Owen's granddaughter married the son of William Jones of Dwygyfylchi, Elias Jones and he is the outstanding personality in the family tree. He had great possessions at Penmaen-mawr and managed one of the largest farms in Anglesey. When he married Mary Jones he went to live at Gwredog. He was a Justice of the Peace, and for forty years he was a Guardian of the Anglesey Union and a deputy chairman for twenty-six years. He was also a provisional chairman of the first meeting of the county council and was one of the foremost laymen in the Methodist denomination and a supporter of all good causes in Church and Chapel. In politics, he was a stout liberal. The son of Elias Jones, Owen Lloyd Jones, worthily carried on the Gwredog traditions of benefice and hospitality. He applied to Gwredog many of the new ideas in agricultural science and farming practice. He deepened and extended his father's interest in black cattle, and won many prizes in shows, both national and local. He was also a Methodist deacon, a JP and a County Councillor. When he died he was treasurer to the Anglesey 'Cwrdd Misol'. For the next quarter of a century the wide domain of Gwredog fell to the government of a lady, daughter of Elias Jones and sister of O. Lloyd Jones.

Scope and Content

A collection of 808 items which includes, a Gwredog account book, 1784-1804; account and commonplace books of Samuel Judd, joiner and undertaker of Amlwch, 1837-1849; eleven account books (1827-1867) and nineteen diaries (1825-1868) of William Jones of Brynymor, Penmaen-mawr; records of Gwredog, comprising farm and account books (1842-1922) and diaries (1857 and 1871-1922) of William Jones's son Elias Jones (d.1892), his grandson Owen Lloyd Jones (d.1898) and grand-daughter Mary Jane Jones.

The additional group of 464 items deposited in 1959 comprises of family correspondence and miscellaneous papers covering the period 1829-1924.

The further additional group of 233 papers deposited in 1967 comprise of letters to and from various members of the family, 1807-1910; miscellaneous letters, 1829-1913; letter books, 1861-1923; rentals, etc., 1862-1921; diaries and journals, 1870-1924; accounts, 1818-1930; deeds, wills and other legal documents, 1786-c.1939; and miscellaneous papers, 1822-ca.1915.


Llysdulas Papers

Held at: Department of Manuscripts, University of Wales, Bangor
Reference: GB 0222 LLYS
Title: Llysdulas Papers
Dates of creation: 1741-1930
Name of Creator: The Lewis and Hughes families of Llysdulas, co. Anglesey and Kinmel Park, co. Denbigh.
Extent: 1.7 linear metres

Administrative/Biographical History

It is believed that the ambition, enterprise and good management of Owen Hughes, 'Yr Arian Mawr', considerably stimulated the later fortunes of the house of Llysdulas. He became a prosperous attorney at Beaumaris, High Sheriff of Anglesey in 1683, and represented the borough in Parliament from 1698 to 1701. He died in 1708, without issue and the property went to his two sisters Jane and Gwen. Jane's daughter married Ambrose Lewis of the Hughes family of Kinmel Park. She was to become the mother of William, the last Lewis of Llysdulas who was also High Sheriff of Anglesey, 1713 and 1714 and who married Elizabeth the daughter of William Meyrick of Bodorgan. William Lewis died in 1762, without issue and so the property passed on to his niece. Mary with her husband the Rev. Edward Hughes became heir of the Llysdulas estate, which then included the rocks and stones of one side of Mynydd Parys. Their fortunes were increased, partly because of the wealth accruing from the Parys mine and partly because of the energetic personality of Rev. Edward Hughes. He also acquired portions of the old Kinmel and Llewenny estates in Denbighshire, bought up large portions of the Bodeon estate in Anglesey and of the Dyffryn Aled estate in West Denbighshire. Their issue was William Lewis Hughes (1767-1852), who was made the first Lord Dinorben in 1831, colonel of the Anglesey Militia and M.P. for Wallingford from 1802 to the time of his elevation to the peerage. He married first a lady of Northumberland, Charlotte Margaret and by her had issue William Lewis Hughes the second Baron Dinorben. His second wife was Gertrude daughter of Grice Blakney Smyth of Ballynatray co. Waterford, Ireland, and by her he had two daughters. Lord Dinorben died in 1852 and his son died in October of that same year and the title became extinct. Opinions differ as to what happened to the estate after his death. Some sources state that the estate went to Lady Dinorben and after her death in 1871 the Llysdulas and Dinorben estates passed into the hands of her daughter Gwyn Gertrude. However, other sources state that the entailed estates devolved on the first cousin and heir male of the second baron, William Lewis Hughes, namely Hugh Robert Hughes (1827-1911) of Kinmel, co. Denbigh, Lord Lieutenant of Flintshire.

Scope and Content

A collection of 264 items relating to the Lewis and Hughes families, which fall into three groups. The family papers include wills (original and copy) of William Lewis of Llysdulas (1741), Margaret Lewis of Llysdulas (1784), and the Rev. Edward Hughes of Llysdulas and Kinmel (1809), a mortgage (1788) and recovery (1799) of the Llysdulas estate, and the marriage settlement of William Lewis Hughes of Kinmel and Charlotte Margaret Grey (1804). The Anglesey papers include deeds relating to properties in Llanwenllwyfo, Llanrhwydrys and Llanfair-yn-neubwll, Llechylched, Llandyfrydog, Llangeinwen, Penmon, Llanfihangel Dinsylwy, Amlwch, Llanfeirian, Llangadwaladr, Trefdraeth, Llaneilian, Penrhoslligwy, Llanfihangel Ysgeifiog, Llanbadrig, Llanallgo and Newborough. A few of the leases in this group concern the Anglesey mining activities of William Lewis Hughes, first Baron Dinorben, including the Parys Mine itself, copper and other ores under the Rhosmanach lands in Llanwenllwyfo, the Glan Traeth Colliery (Malltraeth and Corsddaugau Marsh) and the Berw Uchaf Colliery (Llanfihangel Ysgeifiog). The Denbighshire and Flintshire papers consist of deeds and other documents relating to lands in Bodfari, Abergele, St. Asaph, Meiriadog and Cefn Meiriadog, St. George and Henllan.


Museum of Welsh Antiquities Papers

Reference: GB 0222 BMSS MUS
Title: Museum of Welsh Antiquities Papers
Dates of creation: 1823 - 1970
Held at: University of Wales, Bangor
Extent: 46 items
Name of Creator: Staff of the University College of North Wales

Administrative/Biographical History

Bangor Museum and Art Gallery which is now located at Gwynedd Road, Bangor was originally known as the Museum of Welsh Antiquities and based at the University College of North Wales.

Scope and Content

This fonds consists of a miscellaneous collection of material accumulated by the Museum of Welsh Antiquities located at the University College of North Wales, mainly relating to the University and surrounding area. It includes Museum visitors books, 1939-1967; newspaper cuttings concerning various subjects including the National Eisteddfod at Bangor, 1890; exemplification of a recovery relating to land at Clynnog, Caernarfonshire; photographs of clerics from Caernarfonshire, Anglesey and Liverpool; a social report relating to Amlwch, Anglesey, ca. 1831; a bundle of letters to Sir Harry Reichel, first Principal of the University College of North Wales and others on a variety of subjects relating to the University, ca. 1884-1900.


Mona Mine Records (Plas Newydd Papers)

Held at: Department of Manuscripts, University of Wales, Bangor
Reference: GB 0222 MONA
Title: Mona Mine Records (Plas Newydd Papers)
Dates of creation: 1736-1878
Extent: 13.1 linear metres

Administrative/Biographical History

Parys Mountain on Anglesey was in the eighteenth century divided into two farms, Cerrig y Bleiddia Farm on the eastern side owned by Sir Nicholas Bayly, and Parys Farm on the western side which was held in moiety by Bayly, aforementioned and William Lewis of Llysdulas. The mountain had remained comparatively idle and unproductive since the beginning of the seventeenth century, although its possibilities hadn't been wholly forgotten. In 1762 however, Alexander Fraser, a native of Scotland, induced Sir Nicholas Bayly, the proprietor to sink shafts in the mountain. Copper ore was discovered, but not a sufficient quantity since the shafts became flooded and the enterprise had to be abandoned. Consequently, Sir Nicholas Bayly insisted that Messrs Roe and Co. of Macclesfield, lessees of Penrhyn Du in Llanengan parish also take that white elephant, Parys Mountain, off his hands for 21 years. They did so with great reluctance, and although they found ore, after years of expenditure with no profits they resolved to discontinue operations. They were about to give up in despair when, as a last resort they sent for their foreman from Penrhyn Du, Jonathan Roose, a Derbyshire man. A spring directed him to the spot for sinking and he divided the workmen into partnerships of three or four apiece and ordered them to sink shafts in several places, within about seven to eight hundred yards of the spot. It was one of these groups of bargain-takers that first struck ore on 2 March 1768. Seven years after this 'lucky strike', further discoveries were made to the west of the original workings, by the Rev. Edward Hughes, who had become co-owner with Sir Nicholas Bayly through his marriage to the daughter of William Lewis. In order to disentangle his claims from those of Sir Nicholas Bayly and to work his ores independently, the Rev. Hughes employed the services of a rising local attorney, Mr Thomas Williams, whose fortunes were henceforth to be inextricably bound up with those of Parys Mountain.

Mr Thomas Williams was the son of an Anglesey farmer who had worked up a practice for himself at Beaumaris. He is responsible for inducing Sir Nicholas, through the services of a London banker, to grant a lease of his moiety of the joint estate to a partnership consisting of the Rev. Hughes the co-owner, Mr Davies the banker and Mr Thomas Williams the legal adviser and business manager. This was the origin of what became to be known as the Parys Mine Company.

From here onwards mining work went rapidly ahead. In 1785 the lease of Roe and Company had run its 21 years, and instead of renewing it, the Earl of Uxbridge, who had now succeeded to Sir Nicholas Bayly's estate, followed the example of his neighbour and formed a company of his own, which became known as the Mona Mine Company. Again, the chief agent and principal partner after the Earl himself, was Mr Thomas Williams. The Mona Mine Company was designed as a close parallel to the Parys Mine Company. While the companies were independent in form, there is no doubt that they were run by Williams. Under Thomas Williams the works began to flourish and by 1785 they were supplying not only the British Navy, but also those of France, Holland and Spain, with copper bolts, nails and sheathing. He claimed in 1799 to be conducting half the copper industry of the country, with a capital not far short of a million, and a coal consumption of 750 chaldrons a day.

In 1811 a new company took over the Mona Mine and introduced James Treweek as manager. He is the most important figure in the history of the mines in the nineteenth century, and is second only to Thomas Williams in the whole story of their development. The Mona Mine papers show clearly the importance of James Treweek's role in the industrial development of Amlwch during the first half of the nineteenth century. The death of Treweek in 1851 marked the end of an era in the history of the Anglesey copper industry. The decline that was evident before his death was accelerated during the second half of the nineteenth century, until the mines and smelting works were closed down. No other person took control who had the qualities or ability of either Thomas Williams or James Treweek.

Scope and Content

A collection of 3770 items (many of them consisting of bundles of papers not individually described), relating to the Mona Copper Mine on the slopes of the Parys Mountain near Amlwch in north-western Anglesey. The collection ranges in date from 1764, when the first considerable strike of copper ore was recorded, to 1878, by which time the productivity of the mine had long been in decline, and includes papers illustrating the working of the mine under the successive dispensations of Sir Nicholas Bayly of Plas Newydd, 1764-1785; the Earl of Uxbridge and Thomas Williams of Llanidan, 1785-1802; and the (first) Marquess of Anglesey, 1817-1854. Apart from the various accounts and returns (including those of labourers and ore-breakers, shipments, bargains set and settled, etc.) covering every aspect of the mine's activities, there are also many hundreds of letters addressed to the three successive mine agents: John Sanderson, Thomas Beer and F. A. Legg between 1817 and 1878 and dealing with such topics as the crises of the pre and post Waterloo years, day-to-day problems of management and production, new developments in smelting, fluctuations in the market, relations with the adjoining Parys Mine and complications over the working of joint levels and precipitation pits, vicissitudes of freight and carriage, transactions with brokers, exporters and manufacturers and the depression which set in after 1848.


Plas Newydd Manuscripts

Held at: Department of Manuscripts, University of Wales, Bangor
Reference: GB 0222 PN
Title: Plas Newydd Manuscripts
Dates of creation: ca.1340-1350, 1546-1978
Extent: 110 linear metres Physical characteristics are noted in the three catalogues alongside the description of the documents.

Administrative/Biographical History

Plas Newydd is said to have been in existence since the 13th century, and is believed to have first been known as Llwyn-y-Moel. From about 1470, it belonged to the Griffith family of Penrhyn, and they built the house early in the following century. Many of the properties in Anglesey had come to Gwilym ap Griffith, by his marriage to Morfydd, daughter of Goronwy ap Tudur of Penmynydd.

In 1553, Ellen Griffith of Penrhyn married Sir Nicholas Bagnall, who consequently added Plas Newydd to his estates in Ireland. Their granddaughter Ann married Lewis Bayly, Bishop of Bangor and the house became the home of the Bayly family until the 17th century. Lewis Bayly was the first to alter the house built by Robert Griffith of Penrhyn, and was the first to change the name to Plas Newydd. He died in 1631 and his estate went to his wife, and then to their son, Nicholas Bayly. Nicholas Bayly was Governor of Galway and the Isles of Arran as well as Gentleman of the Bedchamber to Charles II. He had a son, Edward, who was created a Baronet in 1730. Edward's estates was passed to his son, Sir Nicholas Bayly, following his death in 1741. Sir Nicholas Bayly became one of the most influential men on the island. In 1737, he married Caroline Paget, and thus united two of the most influential families of the time. Caroline Paget, was the great-great-great-great-granddaughter of William, the first Baron Paget de Beaudesert in Staffordshire. She was also the heir to his title and estate.

The second son of Sir Nicholas and Caroline, Henry (1744-1812), inherited the lands and fortunes of the family. He also inherited the large estate of Burton-upon-Trent, which the first Baron had acquired. In 1725, Henry gained a second inheritance following the death of a wealthy West Country landowner, Peter Walter, who had stated in his will that if his own male line was to die out, all his possessions should pass to the heir of Sir Nicholas Bayly. Henry became the 9th Baron Paget of Beaudesert and took the name Paget upon succeeding to the baronetcy. In 1784, he was created Earl of Uxbridge. He extended his fortunes by forming the Mona Mine Company in 1785 together with Thomas Williams of Llanidan (1737-1802), to work the rich deposits of copper discovered on the eastern side of Parys Mountain, near Amlwch. He also owned half of the Parys Mine Company. Henry died in 1812 and was succeeded by his eldest son, Henry William Paget (1768-1854).

Henry William Paget became the most famous member of the family as he was created first Marquess of Anglesey in 1814 as a reward for his military achievements on the field of Waterloo, where he lost a leg. He was M.P. for Caernarfon, 1790-1796, constable of Caernarfon Castle, 1812, 1831 and 1837, and Lord Lieutenant of Anglesey from 1812 to his death in 1854. He had eighteen children who presented him with 73 grandchildren. Little is known of the 2nd and 3rd Marquesses except that both participated in local government, and that the 2nd was also appointed Lord Chamberlain of Her Majesty's Household. The third Marquess died without issue, and the estate was inherited by his half brother, who became the 4th Marquess of Anglesey in 1880. He was a model landlord and was admired by his tenants. He died in 1898 and was succeeded by his son by his second wife, Henry Cyril Paget (1875-1905).

The 5th Marquess nearly destroyed the estate financially. He died at the age of 29 years and the estate passed to his cousin, Charles Henry Alexander Paget. He made considerable changes in order to try and secure the estate. He died in 1947 and left the estate to his son and heir, who became the 7th Marquess. He eventually gave Plas Newydd to the National Trust.

Scope and Content

A collection of 20,871 items consisting in the main of estate and family correspondence, but also including deeds, rentals, accounts and miscellaneous papers relating to Anglesey and Caernarvonshire and ranging in date from 1546 to 1930. Among the subjects covered in varying detail by the correspondence and papers are politics and electioneering in the two counties from 1784 to 1868 (the collection is particularly valuable for the light which it throws on the various Anglesey county elections between 1784 and 1868 and the borough elections, 1832-1868; the Caernarvon county elections of 1784, 1790, 1796 and 1826 and the borough elections from 1784 to 1833); the Anglesey militia and deputy-lieutenancy, 1782-1854; local administration in Anglesey between 1791 and 1854; social and economic conditions in Anglesey and Caernarvonshire (and Caernarfon town in particular), 1789-1856; the Menai Bridge project, 1784-1830; the establishment of schools in Anglesey in the 1840's; and industrial enterprises in which the first Marquess was interested; the Penrhyn Du lead mine (Llanengan, Lleyn), the Penrhyn Mawr colliery (Malltraeth, Anglesey), and the Gallt-y-llan slate quarry (Llanberis). Deeds in the collection refer to land and properties in Aberffraw, Amlwch, Bodlegady, Bodlew, Coedana, Clorach, Dinsylwy Rys, Heneglwys, Hirdre-faig, Holyhead, Llanbadrig, Llanddaniel-fab, Llanddyfnan, Llandrygarn, Llandyfrydog, Llanedwen, Llaneilian, Llanfaelog, Llanfair Mathafarn Eithaf, Llanfair Pwllgwyngyll, Llanffinan, Llanfihangel-yn-Nhywyn, Llanfechell, Llangefni, Llangoed, Llangristiolus, Llanidan, Llansadwrn, Llanrhuddlad, Llysllew, Mathafarn Wion, Penmynydd, Penhwnllys, Porthaethwy, Porthamel, Trefdraeth, Tre-ifan, Tre'r-beirdd, Trewalchmai and Ysgeifiog, co. Anglesey; Aber, Bangor, Caerhun, Caernarfon, Castell, Llanbeblig, Llanbedr, Llanberis and Llanfairfechan, co. Caernarvon; Allington, Bodlith, Chirk, Cristionydd Cynrig, Gwern Halghton, Llansilin and Ruabon, co. Denbigh; Halkin, co. Flint and Penderyn, co. Brecon, 1546-1854. Personalities represented in the deeds include, Sir Henry Bagnall of Newry, Ireland (and Plas Newydd); his sons Arthur Bagnall and Griffith Bagnall; Piers Griffith of Penrhyn, Llandygai; Sir Richard Trefor of Trefalun (his will dated 28 October 1636 is included); Sir Edward Bayly, Sir Nicholas Bayly and the 1st and 2nd Earls of Uxbridge. There is also an extensive series of rentals of the Marquess's estate in Anglesey and Caernarvonshire, 1782-1930, and a few for the Staffordshire, Derbyshire, Dorset, Somerset and Irish properties, 1789-1867. Series VIII consists of establishment papers, which includes household and home farm papers; estate papers of the Llanfair Pwllgwyngyll Agency and the Amlwch Agency, which include papers on Parys Mountain; maps and plans; and general estate papers. Series IX consists of property deeds and documents relating to the parishes of Amlwch, Holyhead, Llandysilio, Llanddaniel Fab, Llanedwen, Llanfihangel Ysgeifiog, Llanfair Pwllgwyngyll, Llanffinan, Llansadwrn, and mixed parishes, co. Anglesey; Dorset, London, Sussex and Ireland; rental and rent receipt books; Inland Revenue papers; insurance papers; estate correspondence; domestic and household establishment papers, personal correspondence and papers; Letters Patents and other documents; papers relating to yachting and shipping; financial papers; maps and plans; and miscellaneous papers, which include papers relating to the Menai Bridge and Anglesey Waterworks, the Chester to Middlewich Canal and papers relating to family history.


Tynygongl Papers

Held at: Department of Manuscripts, University of Wales, Bangor
Reference: GB 0222 TYN
Title: Tynygongl Papers
Dates of creation: 1632-1933
Extent: 7.5 linear metres

Administrative/Biographical History

Tynygongl was a prominent solicitors office situated in Beaumaris, Anglesey and latterly occupied by Messrs J. S. Laurie and Co. The contents of the collection suggests that the solicitors acted on behalf of numerous gentry families in Anglesey and Caernarvonshire in particular, namely the Lewis' of Llysdulas, the Pantons of Plas Gwyn, lord Boston of Lligwy, the Sparrows of Red Hill and the Bulkeleys of Baron Hill.

Scope and Content

A collection of 806 items comprising, title deeds and other documents relating to properties in Aberffraw, Amlwch, Beaumaris, Bodafon, Bodedern, Bodfilog, Bodwrog, Brynberfa, Cerrigceinwen, Coedana, Dinam, Heneglwys, Holyhead, Llanbabo, Llanbadrig, Llanbedr-goch, Llanbeulan, Llanddaniel, Llanddeusant, Llanddona, Llanddyfnan, Llandegfan, Llandyfrydog, Llandysilio, Llandrygarn, Llanfachreth, Llanfaes, Llanfair Mathafarn Eithaf, Llanfair Pwllgwyngyll, Llanfair-yn-y cwmwd, Llanfaelog, Llanfeirian, Llanfflewin, Llanfigel, Llanfihangel Dinsylwy, Llanfihangel Tre'r beirdd, Llanfihangel-yng-Nghornwy, Llanfihangel Ysgeifiog, Llanfwrog, Llangadwaladr, Llangaffo, Llangeinwen, Llangoed, Llangristiolus, Llangwyllog, Llanidan, Llaniestyn, Llanrhuddlad, Llansadwrn, Llantrisant, Llanwenllwyfo, Llanynghenedl, Newborough, Penmon, Pentraeth, Penmynydd, Trefdraeth and Trewalchmai, co. Anglesey, 1688-1902; Aberdaron, Ardda, Bangor, Beddgelert, Bodfaio, Bodidda, Botwnnog, Bryncroes, Bryniau, Caerhun, Caernarfon, Castell, Conway, Cwmdyli, Cymryd, Dinlle, Dwygyfylchi, Eglwys-rhos, Eiriannws, Eirias, Glyn, Gronant, Gweredros, Gyffin, Llanbeblig, Llanberis, Llandygai, Llandwrog, Llanfaglan, Llanfihangel-y-Pennant, Llanengan, Llangelynnin, Llangian, Llangystennin, Llaniestyn, Llannor, Llanllyfni, Llanrhos, Maes y Bedd, Maenol Bangor, Merchlyn, Meyllteyrn and Nefyn, co. Caernarfon, 1680-1864; Cegidog, Cilgwyn, Denbigh, Derwen, Ereithlyn, Henllan, Llandyrnog, Llanrhaeadr-yng-Nghinmeirch, Llansantffraid, Llanrwst, Lleweni, Llwytcoed, Mochdre, Pen-y-bont, Rhiw, Ruthin, Trebwll and Ystrad, co. Denbigh, 1691-1824; Bodfari, Brynpolyn, Halkyn, Meifod and Ysgeifiog, co. Flint, 1699-1812; and Barmouth, Harlech, Llanaber, Llandanwg, Llandecwyn, Llanenddwyn, Llanddwywe, Llanfawr, Llanfihangel, Llanfrothen and Trawsfynydd, co. Merioneth, 1632-1789. Abstracts of title and schedules of title deeds relating to properties in cos. Anglesey, Caernarfon and Denbigh, 1792-1914.Wills and probates of wills, including those of Coningsby Williams of Penmynydd, Anglesey (2 March 1708), William Lewis of Llysdulas, Anglesey (16 July, 1759), Henry Sparrow of Red Hill, Anglesey (8 February 1770), Owen Holland of Conwy (18 July 1794), Holland Williams of Pwll-y-Crochan, co. Denbigh (13 February 1797), and John Bodychen Sparrow of Red Hill, Anglesey (14 March 1798). Rentals of the Trysglwyn and Llanddyfnan estate, co. Anglesey, 1798-1803; Lligwy estate (Lord Boston), 1799; Plas Llangoed estate, 1893; and tithe account books for the parishes of Llandysilio and Llanfihangel Dinsylwy, 1882-1888 and Llangoed, Llaniestyn and Llanfihangel Dinsylwy, 1893-1910 and 1926-1933. Plans and maps, 1792-1827. And also miscellaneous papers, including court rolls of the manor of Nanhwynan, co. Caernarfon, 1781-1792; draft of the Malltraeth Marsh enclosure Award, 1817; a bundle of papers relating to the Cwmdyli Copper Mining Company, Beddgelert, 1856-1870; minute book of the Beaumaris borough court, 1862-1877 and declaration book of the Beaumaris borough council, 1894-1908.


Sarah Emily Davies Papers

Reference: GB 0222 BMSS SED
Title: Sarah Emily Davies Papers
Dates of creation: 1916-1945
Held at: University of Wales, Bangor
Extent: 65 items
Name of Creator: Sarah Emily Davies

Administrative/Biographical History

Sarah Emily Davies 1875-1945, of Wenallt, Llandegfan was one of Anglesey's most prominent figures. She was the daughter of John Matthews of Amlwch who was Justice of the Peace and for many years chairman of the local magisterial branch. Since its inception Mrs Davies was honorary secretary of the Anglesey County Nursing Association. She was also a member of the Education Committee, Chairman of the School Management Sub Committee and involved with the Anglesey Rural Community Council and the Women's Institute.

She was married to Captain A. Stanley Davies.

Scope and Content

This collection consists of a broad range of material relating to the administration of the Anglesey County Nursing Association and the North Wales Nursing Association and includes material relating to contemporary issues and policies in nursing and public health.

Material includes correspondence, reports, pamphlets, financial particulars and details of meetings. There are also documents relating to the awarding of grants and nurses' agreements. The collection also contains material relating to other community organisations in Anglesey with which Mrs Davies was involved, including the Anglesey Education Committee, the Women's Institute and the Anglesey Rural Community Council.


Plas Cadnant Papers

Reference: GB 0222 BMSS PCAD
Title: Plas Cadnant Papers
Dates of creation: 1602-1885
Held at: University of Wales, Bangor
Extent: 201 items
Name of Creator: Price Family of Plas Cadnant, Menai Bridge

Administrative/Biographical History

The Price family of Plas Cadnant, Menai Bridge, Anglesey were closely associated with the Baylys and Pagets of Plas Newydd with whom three generations worked. Hugh Price of Wern, Llandegfan was Agent to Sir Nicholas Bayly during the last quarter century of the 18th century and held the office of High Sheriff of Anglesey in 1792-3. His son, John Price (1754-1804) was for many years Chief Agent of the Mona Mine and appears to have lived at Mona Lodge, Amlwch, Anglesey. He also played an active part in local administration, being clerk of the General Meeting of Lieutenancy during the period 1796-1803 and was High Sheriff in 1800. He died at Llandeilo in 1804 while on a visit to South Wales. His son, also John Price (1780-1855), succeeded him as Mine Agent, and his commonplace book included in this collection shows him to have been an industrious compiler of local information and statistics.

A substantial amount of material in the collection relates to the Hughes family of Llanddaniel, Llangaffo and Ty'n y Caeau, Anglesey. Although there is no obvious connection between this family and the Prices it may be that some of the Llandysilio properties, which formed part of the inheritance of Hugh Hughes of Llangaffo, were at some stage absorbed into the Plas Cadnant estate.

Scope and Content

This collection consists of material relating to Hugh Price, John Price (1754-1804), his son, also John Price (1780-1855), John Bulkeley Price and the Hughes family of Llanddaniel, Llangaffo and Ty'n y Caeau. It contains a variety of material including legal and administrative documents including letters, wills and codicils. Also contains pedigrees, genealogical notes, plans and maps.

An interesting feature of the collection are the commonplace books which have entries in four different hands: John Price the elder, John Price the younger and two formal copperplate hands, one of which may be that of the Reverend Evan Lloyd, Rector of Aberffraw. These contain a variety of information relating to north Wales and Anglesey in particular as well as Ireland and Scotland, such as pedigrees, statistics relating to holders of the various offices, population and voters. Also contains information on administrative procedure such as the rules to be observed by the court of the Great Sessions and the duty of High Sheriff etc. There are also militia orderly books and enclosures compiled by the younger John Price with rules and guidance for officers, names of officers and letters.


Journals and papers of David Griffith, Curate

Reference: GB 0222 BMSS DG
Title: Journals and papers of David Griffith, Curate
Dates of creation: 1853 - 1896
Held at: University of Wales Bangor
Extent: 61 items
Name of Creator: David Griffith, Curate

Administrative/Biographical History

David Griffith, schoolmaster and curate, was born in Bontnewydd, Caernarfonshire in 1841. After a period as a student teacher at Bontnewydd Church School, he joined the North Wales Training College at Caernarfon in 1860. He became schoolmaster of his old school, but then moved to Capel Curig in 1861 as schoolmaster where he stayed until 1875.

He was then accepted into Llanbedr Pont Steffan College. He became curate of St Mary's Church, AberdÔr, Glamorganshire from 1877-1883 and served at several other parishes throughout Wales until his death in 1910.

Scope and Content

Journals, 1854-1896, of David Griffith serving as curate parishes throughout Wales, including Capel Curig and Llanbedr, Caernarfonshire; Pontrobert, Montgomeryshire; AberdÔr and Hirwaun, Glamorganshire, Gaerwen, Pentraeth, Amlwch, Llanbedr-goch and Trefdraeth, Anglesey. These are written in good Welsh and English and include many descriptions of characters and situations. He is very opinionated, criticising individuals involved with the Church as well as the Church in general, and its Englishness. They provide a valuable insight into the life of a curate and his duties.

Also includes note books, newspaper cuttings, a summary of the contributions of David Griffith to the Welsh church press from 1873-1887 e.g. Yr Haul , Y Cymro and Y Cyfaill Eglwysig and notes on parishes, churches and parsons. A few letters also make up the collection, many written by Owen Williamson of Dwyran, Anglesey on various subjects, in particular on the snobbery of some church members.


Edwin Jackson Papers

Reference: GB 0222 BMSS EDWJ
Title: Edwin Jackson Papers
Dates of creation: 1716-1836
Held at: University of Wales, Bangor
Extent: 3 items
Name of Creator: Edwin Jackson

Administrative/Biographical History

Edwin Jackson (fl. ca. 1920), headmaster at the Llandegai Church School, Gwynedd, was an enthusiastic local antiquary and botanist.

Scope and Content

Material consists of two accounts and one descriptive manuscript volume, which were part of the collection of Edwin Jackson. It relates to Bangor, the surrounding areas in Gwynedd and Anglesey.

The first account (item number 7365), with entries dating from 1716 to 1719, contains receipts and disbursements belonging to Benjamin Hoadley, Bishop of Bangor. Among the receipts are rents and presents due from various leaseholders in Anglesey and Caernarfonshire; tithes and annual payments due from the rectors and vicars of various parishes in Anglesey, Caernarfonshire, Denbighshire, Merioneth and Montgomeryshire. The disbursements include wages paid to household staff and tradesmen for work done at the Bishop's residence; money distributed to the poor; salaries of the curates of Amlwch, Llanddyfnan, Llangristiolus and Llanddyrnog, together with various taxes and odd expenses. The second account in this collection (item number 7367), dated 1836, which belonged to Robert Thomas, a Bangor timber merchant, contains entries relating to his business.

The other item (7366) is a bound manuscript description of Anglesey, not dated but containing information which suggests that it was probably written before 1782. There is no information regarding the author's identity but parts of the text are similar to that of A History of the Island of Anglesey , published by James Dodsley in 1775, without the author's name, but later ascribed to the Reverend John Thomas (1736-1769) a native of Ynyscynhaearn in Eifionydd who in 1766 became rector of Llandegfan and Llansadwrn and Headmaster of Beaumaris Grammar School, Anglesey. Inscriptions on the flyleaf and in the text indicate that the volume appears at various times to have been in the possession of Edward Llewelyn Williams of Beaumaris Road, Anglesey and of Hugh Jones of Cefnpoeth, Penmynydd.

The manuscript describes the general history of Anglesey, territorial divisions, population, chief industries of the island, its rivers, harbours and the history and contemporary condition of particular areas including Beaumaris, Holyhead, Newborough, Llanddwyn, Llandysilio and Tre-ffos.


Nicander Manuscripts

Held at: Department of Manuscripts, University of Wales, Bangor
Reference: GB 0222 NIC
Title: Nicander Manuscripts
Dates of creation: ca.1841-1894
Extent: 0.25 linear metres

Administrative/Biographical History

Morris Williams, who was otherwise known as 'Nicander', was a cleric and a man of letters. Born at Caernarfon, 20 August 1809, he was the son of William and Sarah Morris. Sarah Morris, ne Jones was the sister of Peter Jones ('Pedr Fardd'). When Morris Williams was a child his parents moved to Coed Cae Bach, Llangybi, Caernarvonshire. He had some education at Llanystumdwy and was apprenticed to a carpenter. He began to write poetry, and in 1827 published an 'awdl' in which proper names from the Bible were woven into an intricate metrical pattern. He took advantage of the literary tradition and activity of the district where he lived, and since he showed obvious tendencies towards scholarship, he was helped to enter the King's School at Chester. He matriculated at Oxford from Jesus College in April 1832, and graduated B.A. in 1835 in the second class in 'Litterae Humaniores'. He took his M.A. in 1838. He was ordained deacon by Bishop Carey of St. Asaph in October 1836, having been licensed to Holywell as curate in April of that year. After a short period at Bangor diocese, he was re-licensed to Holywell in June 1838, but became curate of Bangor and Pentir in February 1840, moving to Llanllechid in April 1845. He was appointed perpetual curate of Amlwch (Llanwenllwyfo) in January 1847 and rector of Llanrhuddlad (with Llanfflewin and Llanrhwydrys) in October 1859. He was at various times rural dean of Twrcelyn and Talybolion.

In 1840 Morris Williams married Ann Jones of Denbigh. They had five daughters and three sons. One son, William Glynn Williams, became headmaster of Friars School, Bangor, and in 1901 published his father's work Damhegion Esop ar Gan . Another son, Richard became headmaster of Cowbridge Grammar School.

Whilst at Holywell, 'Nicander' assisted with the revision of the Welsh version of the Book of Common Prayer, and from 1849 and the Aberffraw eisteddfod onwards, when he won the chair for an 'awdl' on the subject of 'The Creation', he took a prominent part in Welsh literary life. He frequently adjudicated and competed at the National Eisteddfod. He contributed often to Welsh magazines, translated Aesop's Fables into Welsh, and composed a number of hymns. Among his publications are Y Flwyddyn Eglwysig , 1843; translations of Dr. Suttons's 'Disce Vivere', 1847 and 'Disce Mori', 1848; an edition of Llyfr yr Homiliau , 1847; a metrical version of the Psalter, 1850; an edition of the works of Dafydd Ionawr, 1851; and a number of essays on church matters. He was also one of the pioneers of the Oxford Movement in the diocese of Bangor.

Morris Williams died at Llanrhuddlad on 3 January 1874. There is a tablet in his memory at Llanrhuddlad church where he was buried and at Bangor Cathedral a marble pulpit has been dedicated to him.

Scope and Content

A collection which consists of 5 items, which includes a volume of holograph poetry, much of it unpublished; an essay entitled 'Traethawd ar Brophwydoliaeth' which was published in 1861 under the title Y Dwyfol Oraclau ; letters, 1847-1852 from 'Nicander' to the Rev. Charles Williams, then vicar of Holyhead and later Principal of Jesus College, Oxford; and to Spurell the Carmarthen publisher, 1861-1873; to 'Nicander' from Bishop Thirwall from Abergwili, 1851. Also letters to W. Glynne Williams, son of 'Nicander' and former headmaster of Friars School, Bangor, from Robert Issac Jones ('Alltud Eifion'), Hughes and Son, Wrexham; Ellis Wyn o Wyrfai, R. Ivor Parry, Pwllheli; Charles Ashton, Hwfa Mon, Sir Owen M. Edwards, Owen Humphrey Davies ('Eos Llechid') and John Griffith ('Y Gohebydd') in reply to enquiries about his father's literary work.  


North Wales Deeds and Documents

Reference: GB 0222 BMSS NWD
Title: North Wales Deeds and Documents
Dates of creation: 1703 September 16 - 1912 August 8
Held at: University of Wales, Bangor
Extent: 136 items

Administrative/Biographical History

In modern times the six most northerly counties of Wales were known as Anglesey, Caernarfonshire, Denbighshire, Flintshire, Merionethshire (Merioneth) and Montgomeryshire. Following local government reorganisation in 1974 and 1996, they have undergone significant administrative change. Caernarfonshire and Merionethshire are now administered as Gwynedd, the historical name; Denbighshire was abolished in 1974 and absorbed into the newly created county of Clwyd, which was itself abolished in 1996, when four new authorities were created, known as Denbighshire, Flintshire, Wrexham Borough and Conwy County Borough. The boundaries of these modern constructs of Denbighshire and Flintshire are different from those of the historic counties of the same names. The former county of Montgomeryshire is now administered as Powys.

Scope and Content

Comprises deeds and other documents relating to property in North Wales counties of Anglesey, Caernarfonshire, Denbighshire, Flintshire, Merionethshire and Montgomeryshire:

A. Deeds of Title, 1732-1912


  Anglesey: Parishes of Amlwch, Llanddaniel-fab, Llandysilio, Llanfflewin, Llanfihangel Ysgeifiog, Llangoed, Llansadwrn, Llanddwyn and Llanfair Pwllgwyngyll, 1776- 1907.
  Caernarfonshire: Parishes of Bangor, Caerhun, Llandudno, Llanllechid and Conwy, 1776 - 1864
  Denbighshire: Parish of Abergele, 1732 - 1817.
  Flintshire: Parishes of Cilcain, Diserth, Hope, Rhuddlan and Whitford (Chwitffordd). Also contains deeds relating to mines, quarries and railways etc including Flint Marsh Colliery Company, Hope Colliery, coalmines in Flintshire, Ochr-y-Foel Quarry, Llay Hall Colliery, Wrexham Mold and Connah's Way Railway, 1825 - 1912
  Merionethshire: Parishes of Mallwyd and Llanymawddwy, 1873-1906
  Montgomeryshire: Parishes of Llangynog and Mallwyd, 1875-1904


B. Probates of Wills and Administrations, 1840-1896 relating to lands in Anglesey, Denbighshire and Caernarfonshire. Wills relate to Hughes family of Abergele and Reverend John Hughes Williams of Llangadwaladr, Denbighshire, Owen Owens of Llangoed, and Thomas Williams of Beaumaris, Anglesey.

C. Marriage Settlements, 1782-1872 relating to lands in Anglesey, Caernarfonshire and Denbighshire.

D. Miscellaneous documents, 1703 -1908 relating to Thomas Meyrick of Llanelltud, in Merionethshire and copper and other mines in Llanberis, Caernarfonshire.

System of Arrangement

Material is arranged according to record type and location, then in chronological order and incorporated into the General Collection of Bangor Manuscripts .

Penrhos Manuscripts

Held at: Department of Manuscripts, University of Wales, Bangor
Reference: GB 0222 PENRH
Title: Penrhos Manuscripts
Dates of creation: 1430-1972
Extent: 13 linear metres Physical characteristics are noted in the catalogues alongside the description of the documents.  

Administrative/Biographical History

The old Penrhos family are believed to have stabilised their surname as Owen in the 16th century. It was once a very powerful family. One of its most prominent members was John Owen (d.1712). In the stormy politics of the period that followed the Revolution of 1688, John Owen stood apart from the gentry of the western hundreds of Anglesey in opposing the influence of the Meyricks of Bodorgan and in following the lead of the Bulkeleys of Baron Hill, especially during the county elections of 1708 an 1710. His son and his grandsons who were of a weaker character, and who lacked drive and pertinacity, succeeded him. His son Robert, married Ann, daughter of Chancellor Edward Wynn of Bodewryd and died in 1731, leaving many sons, five of whom died between 1726 and 1742. The elder son, William (d.1733), who is believed to have been a nerveless character, was a gardener and was responsible for the building of the centre portion of the Penrhos mansion. His brother Edward (d.1741) was an artist and was apprenticed to Thomas Gibson the limner. The third son, Hugh, was of weak mind and health. He ran into debt at Oxford and left Oriel without a degree. However, although Hugh himself was not masterful, he had a masterful wife, Margaret Bold, and an even more masterful daughter, Margaret Owen (ca.1742-1816), who married Sir John Thomas Stanley of Alderley, Cheshire. It is believed that the family and its resources survived due to the connection between the Owen family and the Wynn family of Bodewryd, through the marriage of John Owen's son, Robert, to Ann.

Therefore, the Stanley family of Penrhos, came to Anglesey via the marriage of Margaret Owen of Penrhos and Sir John Thomas Stanley (1735-1807) in 1763. Sir John Stanley was descended from one of the minor branches of the Stanleys of Derby. Some interesting characters emerge from this branch of the family. The 3rd Baron, who died in 1903, became a Mohammedan, and had a Mohammedan mosque built in Talybolion. Margaret Owen's eldest son was made 1st Baron Stanley of Alderley in 1839. Another son, Edward Stanley (1780-1849) became Bishop of Norwich and his son was Arthur Penrhyn Stanley, who became the famous Dean of Westminster between 1864 and 1881. The sons of the 1st Baron were also prominent figures. Edward John Stanley, the 2nd Baron, (1802-1869) held several offices in the Whig administration and was the president of the Board of Trade between 1855 and 1858. His twin brother, William Owen Stanley (1802-1884), was M.P. for Anglesey, 1837-1847, for Chester, 1850-1857, and for the Anglesey Boroughs, 1857-1874. He was also interested in Celtic Archaeology and wrote many articles in Archaeologica Cambrensis . Their sister married William Edward Parry, who was the captain who explored the farthest recess of the Arctic. However, the most important member of the family was the 4th Baron, who became Earl of Sheffield in 1909, Edward Lyulph Stanley (1839-1925). He was vice-chairman of the London School Board between 1897 and 1904. He became one of the most prominent men in the educational world. His son was Arthur Lyulph Stanley (1875-1931). He became an M.P. and a governor of Victoria from 1914 to 1920. The family was also prominent in applying the Enclosure Acts in Anglesey and in assisting in the coming of the railway. They also played an important role in the development of the port of Holyhead and communications with Ireland.

Scope and Content

A collection of 5687 deeds and allied documents, holograph correspondence and miscellaneous manuscript material ranging in date from 1430-1972 and consisting of three main groups. One group relates to the Owen family of Penrhos, Holyhead and includes deeds concerning properties in Bronheulog, Carnwylan, Holyhead, Llanfachreth, Llanfair-yn-Neubwll, Llanfflewin, Llanfihangel-yn-Nhywyn, Llanrhuddlad, Llanynghenedl, Rhoscolyn, Trefgadrodd, Trefirian, Treflan-fawr, Treflywarch and Trefuchdryd; letters addressed to John Owen of Penrhos (d.1712) from Richard, 4th Viscount Bulkeley of Baron Hill, Beaumaris, Owen Hughes ('Yr Arian Mawr') of Beaumaris, Sir William Williams (Speaker of the House of Commons, 1680-1681) and others; and correspondence between Ann Owen (widow of Robert Owen, John Owen's son and heir), and her brother Dr Edward Wynn of Bodewryd, Chancellor of Hereford; and her sons William Owen, Edward Owen and Hugh Owen; the Bodewryd group, consists of the papers of Dr. Edward Wynn and includes deeds relating to the Chwaen Wen (Llantrisant), Gwredog (Amlwch) and Bodowyr (Bodedern) estates and lands in Bodedern, Caerdegog, Conysiog Lys, Llanddeusant, Llanfair Mathafarn Eithaf, Llantrisant, Llanfair-yn-neubwll, Tregwehelyth, Tre-ifan, Treflesg, Trefadog and Rhoscolyn, co. Anglesey; and to the Plas Einion, Glanhespin and Dinmael estates, co. Denbigh; genealogical material compiled by the Chancellor; letters addressed to him from members of his family as well as from persons of note including Humphrey Humphreys, Bishop of Bangor (1689-1702) and Hereford (1702-1712), Edward Lhuyd, John le Neve, Browne Willis, Lewis Morris, Moses Williams and Dr Eubule Thelwall; papers relating to the diocese of Hereford and the Chancellorship, including records of causes appearing before the church courts, presentments, rules, decisions fees, Act books, etc.; the Stanley group, includes deeds affecting properties in Holyhead; correspondence consisting mainly of letters to Mrs Margaret Owen (nÚe Bold) of Penrhos from her son-in-law, the first Sir John Thomas Stanley of Alderley Park, Cheshire; and from her granddaughters Isabella, Elizabeth and Louisa Stanley; her daughter Lady Margaret Stanley and from the latter's son the second Sir Thomas Stanley (created first Baron Stanley of Alderley in 1839); from Richard Llwyd the author of Beaumaris Bay and others; papers relating to the Presaddfed-Dronwy estate (inherited by William Owen Stanley under the will of Captain James King of Presaddfed in 1873) comprise of letters written between 1583 and the middle of the 18th century in which six generations of the Bulkeley family of Dronwy, Llanfachreth, are represented and in particular Robert Bulkeley the diarist; letters to Margaret King who inherited Presaddfed estate in 1819 on the death of her brother John Bulkeley, and who married in 1799 James King, Master of Ceremonies at Bath; a group of ten manuscript volumes written between the 16th and 18th centuries and containing copies of 'cywyddau', 'awdlau', 'cerddi' and 'englynion' by Dafydd ap Gwilym, Guto'r Glyn, Lewis Mon, Tudur Aled, Sion Tudur, Sion Brwynog, Huw Morus, Sion Phylip, Edward Morus and others. The Additional Manuscripts include, deeds relating to lands in Aberffraw, Amlwch, Bodedern, Bodewryd, Holyhead, Llanbadrig, Llanddeusant, Llandrygarn, Llandyfrydog, Llaneilian, Llanfachreth, Llanfaelog, Llanfaes, Llanfaethlu, Llanfair-yng-Nghornwy, Llanfair-yn-neubwll, Llanfechell, Llanfigel, Llanfihangel-yn-Nhywyn, Llanfwrog, Llanfflewyn, Llangefni, Llanidan, Llaniestyn, Llanrhuddlad, Llantrisant, Llanynghenedl, Llechylched, Pentraeth, Rhosbeirio, Rhoscolyn, Rhos-y-bol, Trefdraeth and Trewalchmai, co. Anglesey, and Aber, co. Caernafon; inventories and miscellaneous documents; correspondence and pedigrees, valuations and more inventories.


Presaddfed papers

Held at: Department of Manuscripts, University of Wales, Bangor
Reference: GB 0222 PRES
Title: Presaddfed papers
Dates of creation: 1419-1931
Extent: 2.2 linear metres Ms.2 is partly faded, torn, and incomplete. Ms.6 is torn and incomplete. Mss 87 - 88 are incomplete, with only nine sheets surviving out of an original twelve. Mss 160, 220, 388, 539-40 are badly torn.

Administrative/Biographical History

It is believed that the Lewis family of Presaddfed, Bodedern, co. Anglesey, is descended from Hwfa ap Cynddelw. Llywelyn ap Hwlcyn of Bodeon (born ca.1385), is the first of his descendants that can definitely be connected with the family since there are a number of deeds and documents among the papers dating from 1406 to 1460 that include references to him.

In 1697 John Owen (buried 1712) of Cremlyn, Llansadwrn, purchased Presddfed. He had inherited his father's estate of Cremlyn, which was increased by his mother's interest in the lands of Madyn near Amlwch and by the acquisition of the Bodeiniol interests in Llanfechell. Emma Roberts, the youngest of John Owen's children following the death of her two bachelor brothers and sister, became the eventual legattee of the Presaddfed lands. Her brothers had considerably decreased the carefully nursed patrimony of their father - Robert (1706-1754) had failed to redeem the debts and incumbrances brought about by the costly ambitions of his brother John (1702-1754). The sale of 1760 and partition settlement of 1764 were inevitable.

In her will of 1784 Emma Roberts stated that the Presaddfed lands were to go to her sister's grandson, Sir John Bulkeley (1767-1819), the son of Susanna Margaret and the Rev. John Bulkeley of Dronwy. Once more Presaddfed and Dronwy were united. Dronwy had at one time belonged to Presaddfed until it had been sold by William Lewis to the rector of Llanfachraeth, a younger son of the Bulkeleys of Gronant, Flintshire. By 1760 the Dronwy lands had been passed from generation to generation and were in the hands of the Rev. John Bulkeley.

In 1806, Sir John Bulkeley married his housekeeper, Ann daughter of Owen Williams of Glanyfelin. His sister Margaret (1766-1831) married a James King, who belonged to a family hailing from Dublin, but who was Master of Ceremonies at Bath. After the death of Sir John in 1819 without issue, indentures were drawn up by which Lady Bulkeley drew a fixed annuity from the estate, whilst Margaret King managed Presaddfed until her death in 1831. She had no issue, but her successor was to be Captain James King, a natural son of her late husband. He died in 1873. Captain King had married a lady from Guernsey but they had no children. Before his death he had decided to bequeath his estate to the Hon. W. O. Stanley, a younger son of Penrhos. The death of W. O. Stanley in 1884, led to the later dispensations of the estate to the third Lord Stanley of Alderley and Col. W. A. Lane Fox-Pitt.

Scope and Content

A collection of 882 items relating to the Dronwy (Llanfachraeth) and Presaddfed (Bodedern) estates, co. Anglesey, and consisting mainly of deeds and documents concerning properties in Aberalaw, Aberffraw, Beaumaris, Bodedern, Bodegri Rydd, Bodgadfedd, Bodlasan, Bodronyn, Botan, Caerdegog, Caernethog, Cerrigceinwen, Clegyrog, Dronwy, Eiriannell, Llanbabo, Newborough, Llandegfan, Llanddeusant, Llanddona, Llanddyfnan, Llaneilian, Llanfachreth, Llanfaethlu, Llanfechell, Llanfigel, Llangoed, Llangristiolus, Llanrhuddlad, Llantrisant, Llanynghenedl, Llechylched, Penmon, Pentraeth, Trealaw, Trefadog, Trefgwehelyth, Trelywarch and Tre'rdafarn, co. Anglesey, and in Caernarfon and Llanllechid, co. Caernarfon, 1419-1911; rentals of the Presaddfed estate, 1653, 1686-8, 1820-73, 1903-13, 1918, 1920, 1923, 1925, 1927, 1929 and 1931; and 1918-20, 1923-5 and 1927-31. Among other items of interest is a group of taxation records (orders and warrants for collecting ship money, mizes etc.) relating to the commote of Talybolion, 1605-65; particulars of servants' wages at Dronwy, 1669-70 and a poll book of the Anglesey county election of 1710.

The Presaddfed papers were stored in a locked chest at Presaddfed by Emma Roberts until her death in February 1792. She was also the custodian of the Lewis papers dating from about 1560 to 1697. In 1792 the papers became the property of Sir John Bulkeley.


Kinmel Manuscripts

Held at: Department of Manuscripts, University of Wales, Bangor
Reference: GB 0222 KIN
Title: Kinmel Manuscripts
Dates of creation: 1391-1931
Extent: 10 linear metres Mss nos. 504, 612 and 660 are torn.

Administrative/Biographical History

The nucleus of the Kinmel estate consisted of the manor of Dinorben Fawr, with its demesne farm called 'Y Faerdref' in the parish of St. George, and the hamlet of Kinmel in Abergele. They were all part of the Lordship of Denbigh and included in the survey made by Hugh de Beckele in 1334. By the end of the fifteenth century 'Y Faerdref' was in the possession of a branch of the prolific Holland family, which then held considerable estates in Conway, Caernarvonshire, Berw in Anglesey and Pennant Erethlyn in the parish of Eglwysfach, Denbighshire. It was first occupied by Griffith ap David, grandson of Robin Holland who supported Glyn Dwr, and it was he who built the massive house, which still remains. Early in the following century, Kinmel was added to the patrimony by the marriage of Griffith's great-grandson, Piers Holland (d.1552), to Catherine, daughter and heiress of Richard ap Evan ap Dafydd Fychan and Alice his wife, daughter of Griffith Lloyd and heiress of Kinmel.

Meanwhile, at Hendrefawr, also in the parish of Abergele, William Holland, a grandson of Griffith, was founding another estate. Dinorben Fawr itself, in which the family had obtained a firm foothold at least since February 22, 1534/5, was finally sold outright in 1641, by James I for the sum of D512.13.4. to David Holland (d.1616), the fourth of that name. Throughout the preceding half century, David's father, the second Piers Holland, and grandfather, David Holland, had been busy buying land in the townships of Towyn, Gwrych, Hendregyda and Bodoryn, thus securing virtual dominion over the whole of the parish of Abergele. In St. George too, the process of consolidation had been going in apace ever since the days of the first Piers Holland.

The death of the fourth David Holland in 1616 appears to have ushered in a period of some uncertainty in the fortunes of the Kinmel-Faerdref estate. His marriage to Dorothy, daughter of Jenkin Lloyd of Berthlwyd in Montgomeryshire, had failed to provide him with a son. The inheritance, therefore, would eventually fall to two daughters and co-heiresses, Mary and Elizabeth. In 1641, the elder of the two co-heiresses, Mary, became the wife of William Price of the Merionethshire house of Rhiwlas, who was to become a captain in the Royalist army. In 1647, her sister Elizabeth followed suit by marrying a man from the opposite camp, Colonel John Carter, who was at the time military governor of Conwy Castle. The estate descended to the two brides, Mary and Elizabeth. This consisted of lands in Denbighshire, Flintshire and Caernarvonshire. Colonel John Carter and his young bride settled down to country life at Kinmel.

However, the Carter regime at Kinmel brought little stability to the fortunes of the estate. Sir John died in November 1676, leaving as heir his eldest son, Thomas Carter. His chronic financial embarrassment caused the property to become grievously saddled with incumbrances. His marriage to Elizabeth, daughter of Sir Thomas Style of Watringbury in Kent did not help to alleviate his condition, for a deed of 1695 describes him as being a prisoner in the Fleet. The estate, which his son William Carter inherited sometime before 1703, was heavily mortgaged to various creditors. Eventually, in 1729, William, through an Act of Parliament passed that year, obtained sanction for the outright sale of the Kinmel estate to Sir George Wynne of Leeswood for the sum of D29,925. He retired with his family to Redbourn in Lincolnshire, where he owned other lands.

There followed a further period of instability in the history of Kinmel, with mortgage succeeding mortgage, until in June 1781, it was, by a decree in Chancery, again sold. This time it was sold to one David Roberts of London for D42,600. Five years later, in 1786, Roberts together with other interested parties finally disposed of the estate for D42,399 to the Rev. Edward Hughes. It can be established on the evidence in the documents in this collection, as well as from information obtained from other sources, that Edward Hughes was descended from an ancient Flintshire family of that name settled at Llewrllyd in the parish of Dyserth.

Edward Hughes was born in February 1738/9. At the age of 18 he went up to Jesus College, Oxford, in 1756 with an eye to the Church, as a career, took his B.A. in 1760, and M.A. in 1762, when he was also licensed as Curate of Llangadwaladr. In 1765 he became curate to Robert Lewis, Rector of Trefdraeth and Chancellor of Bangor, and on 16 August of that same year he married Mary, the latter's third daughter, who inherited Llysdulas, a smallish estate near Amlwch, under the will of her Uncle William Lewis. This marriage and the inheritance which accompanied it was not only to change the whole course of Edward's career, but was also to lead to consequences which none but the wildest seer would have dared to prophecy. Adjoining the Llysdulas property was a "barren hill" called Parys Mountain, which the heiress held in common with Sir Nicholas Bayly, squire of Plas Newydd in the parish of Llanedwen. In or about 1764 Bayly discovered a rich vein of copper on his part of the mountain, the working of which he entrusted to Messrs. Charles Roe, a Macclesfield copper company. The operations soon extended to the other half of the mountain, the lease of which Bayly had obtained from William Lewis, and it was this development which in 1769 brought about a clash between the former and Edward Hughes and his wife. For six years, between that date and 1775, the litigation dragged itself through Chancery, producing a large crop of affidavits and other documents. The charge against Bayly was that of working the mines in an improvident and irresponsible manner, selling the ore at a price below the market price, employing inexperienced agents and neglecting to keep proper accounts. The upshot was that the court in December 1775, ordered that all the ore produced be equally divided between the parties by the three mine agents employed, one of whom was to be impartial and appointed by the court itself. In July of the previous year, however, it appears that Edward Hughes, with the help of the successful lawyer, Thomas Williams of Llanidan, himself began to work the mine on the western half of the mountain. The two partners were joined by a London banker of the name Dawes, and the three men formed the Parys Mine Company, which in a few years came to occupy the dominating position in the copper trade. Meanwhile, Lord Uxbridge had inherited the Bayly property, and he in 1785 made Thomas Williams his agent not only for the eastern half of the Parys Mine, but also for the nearby Mona Mine. By the end of the century the Anglesey copper mines had a virtual monopoly of the trade, owning smelting and other works in the St. Helen's area of Lancashire, in Buckinghamshire, at Greenfield near Holywell, and at Swansea. Michael Hughes, Edward Hughes's youngest brother, entered the business in 1780. He established himself at Sutton Lodge near St. Helen's as general manager of the Ravenhead and Stanley Works, whence, in the course of the next 45 years he proceeded to carve out a remarkable career for himself as a financier and investor of national repute. Another brother, John Hughes, was manager or agent of the Upper Bank Works, Swansea, around the year 1800.

To Edward Hughes himself as one of the principle partners, the enterprise brought a vast fortune. How large is strikingly revealed by the enormous sums which he laid out between 1786 and 1813 in the building up of an extensive landed estate. His largest single acquisition being the Lleweni and Cotton Hall estate in the parishes of Denbigh, Bodfari, Henllan and Llanrhaeadr, for which he paid Lord Kirkwall D209,000 in 1813. Large tracts in Anglesey, too, came to his possession. By 1815, the year of his death, he had spent over D496,000 in satisfying his territorial ambitions, and the Kinmel estate as he left it was among the most extensive in North Wales.

The heir was William Lewis Hughes, Edward's eldest son, who, in 1831, was created first Baron Dinorben, and died in February 1852. The second son Hugh Robert Hughes settled at Bache Hall in Cheshire, while a third son, James Hughes chose the army as a career and rose to the rank of Colonel in the 18th Hussars. William Lewis Hughes, who succeeded to the estate and title as second Baron Dinorben, died unmarried in October 1852, eight months after his father. Kinmel then descended to his first cousin, Hugh Robert Hughes, son of the Hugh Robert Hughes of Bache Hall, who was a partner in the Chester and North Wales Bank, another of the enterprises of the Hughes family, founded in 1792. Hugh Robert Hughes died on 29 April 1911, leaving Kinmel to his eldest son, Hugh Seymour Bulkeley Lewis Hughes. On his death, seven years later, in 1918, the estate came to his brother, Henry Bodvel Lewis Hughes. The latter sold Kinmel Park in 1934, but retained the greater part of the property, in which, dying unmarried in 1940, he was succeeded by his great-nephew, Captain David Henry Fetherstonhaugh.

Scope and Content

A collection of 1809 items ranging in date from 1391 to 1922 and relating to the Kinmel estate in the counties of Denbigh and Flint owned, successively by the families of Holland, Carter and Hughes. It comprises, title deeds and documents affecting properties in Abergele (and the townships of Abergele, Bodoryn, Dolganner, Garthgogo, Gwrych, Hendregyda, Meiriadog, Nant and Towyn), Aberchwilar, Betws-yn-Rhos, Cefn, Cerrigydrudion, Denbigh, Eglwys-bach, Henllan, Llanarmon-yn-Ial, Llaneilian-yn-Rhos, Llanddulas, Llangollen, Llangwm, Llangynhafal, Llanefydd, Llanrhaiadr-yng-Nghinmeirch, St. George, including the Bodtegwal, Pen-y-dref, Richard Parry, Tan-y-gaer, Llwyni and Salusbury estates, co. Denbigh; Bodfari, Cwm Diserth, Llanasa, Meliden, Mold, Newmarket, Northop, Rhudddlan, St. Asaph, Tremeirchion, including the Vaynol, Vaynol Bach, Hughes (of Llewerllyd), Egerton and Dinorben Fawr estates, co. Flint; Amlwch (Bodgadfedd estate), Llaneilian and Llanwenllwyfo (Cochwillan estate) and Rhodogeidio (Ceidio estate), co. Anglesey; Llandyfaelog, co. Carmarthen; Betws Gwerful Goch, Y Faerdref and Llanycil, co. Merioneth; and Llanbedr Felffre, co. Pembroke; abstracts of title and schedules of title deeds; rentals of the Kinmel, Llysdulas Uchaf, Pen-y-dref, Vaynol, Bee and Peel and Wickwer estates, 1733-1819; surveys and valuations, 1664-1797; estate and household accounts, 1741-1864; documents and papers concerning the tithes of Abergele, Brynpolyn (co. Flint), Gresford and Llanfair Talhaearn, 1671-1813; papers relating to the inclosures in the parishes of Abergele, Cwm, Diserth, Eglwys-bach, Rhuddlan and St. Asaph, 1808-1826; wills, settlements and other family papers relating to the Hughes family of Kinmel, 1822-1908 and including the papers of Lt. Col. James Hughes, C.B., of the 18th Hussars (1778-1845), third son of the Rev. Edward Hughes of Kinmel; letters (the writers include William Carter, Rev. Edward Hughes of Kinmel, Hugh Robert Hughes (I) of Bache Hall, Cheshire, Owen Williams of Craig-y-don, William Lewis Hughes, 1st Baron Dinorben; Hugh Robert Hughes (II) of Kinmel and Charles S. Mainwaring of Rhyl), 1727-1909; papers relating to the genealogical pursuits of Hugh Robert Hughes (II) of Kinmel; maps and plans, 1750-1931; papers in an action in Chancery between Margaret Lewis of Llysdulas, Anglesey, and the Rev. Edward Hughes of Porthllongdy (later of Kinmel) and Mary his wife and William Lewis Hughes his eldest son, plaintiffs, and Sir Nicholas Bayly of Plas Newydd, Llanfair Pwllgwyngyll, defendant, concerning the working of the copper mine discovered on a farm called Parys in the parish of Amlwch, 1769-1776.


Bodorgan Manuscripts

Held at: Department of Manuscripts, University of Wales, Bangor
Reference: GB 0222 BOD
Title: Bodorgan Manuscripts
Dates of creation: 1468-1966

Administrative/Biographical History

The Meyrick family of Bodorgan are not only owners of their ancestral estate, but also owners of lands once held by the Bolds of Tre'rddol and the Wood lands of Rhosmor. The Bolds, by a series of providential deaths firstly inherited the Wood lands. This was then followed by the death of Owen Bold in 1703 resulting in the devolution of his lands upon Owen Meyrick the elder, son of Jane, sister of Owen Bold. The lands of Bodorgan, Rhosmor and Tre'rddol, though not exactly contiguous, are situated so near to each other that the Bodorgan estate was one of the most compact in the whole country.

The Meyricks are descended from Cadfael, lord of Cedewain in Powys, but it was in the Tudor period that they first came into prominence. Llywelyn ap Heilyn fought under Henry Tudor at the battle of Bosworth; his son Meyrick served under Henry VIII, was promoted to be captain of the bodyguard, and was given the Crown Lease of the manor of Aberffraw. In the late sixteenth century trouble erupted between Richard Meyrick II (d.1596) and Hugh Owen of Bodeon concerning part of the Aberffraw manor lands. The Bodorgan estate was crushed by the cost of the litigation, and by 1590 a substantial portion had been sold to discharge Meyrick's debts. Richard Meyrick III (d.1644) was the first of the family to be appointed sheriff of Anglesey. It was Owen Meyrick (1682-1760,), who was the real founder of the later fortunes of the family. He was the second son of William Meyrick (1644-1717), and grandson of Richard Meyrick IV (d.1669). He was a keen supervisor of his estates and set it on a strong foundation. He looked after it ceaselessly and carefully, and considerably enlarged its boundaries. In the parliamentary election of 1708 for the county of Anglesey, he very seriously and almost successfully challenged the supremacy of the Bulkeleys and, although unsuccessful on this occasion, effectively challenged the Bulkeley supremacy on the island. For some years he did represent the county in Parliament (1715-1722). He was also High Sheriff in 1706, and Custos Rotulorum of Anglesey from 1715 till his death in 1759. Interestingly, he also commissioned Lewis Morris, the most famous of the three Morris brothers, to make a survey of the Bodorgan lands. Owen Meyrick was succeeded by his son Owen Meyrick (1705-1770), who married a wealthy heiress, the daughter of John Putland of London. His grandson, Owen Putland Meyrick (1752-1825) was also equally fortunate in his marriage to Clara, daughter and heiress to Richard Garth of Morden, Surrrey. The estate acquired additional wealth through the marriage of the latter's daughter and co-heiress, Clara, to Augustus Elliot Fuller of Ashdowne House, Sussex. Their son Owen Augustus Fuller (1804-1876) adopted the name Meyrick when he inherited the Bodorgan estate on the death of his grandfather.

In the course of time three other branches of the family were established at Gwyddelwern, Merioneth, at Cefn Coch, Llanfechell, co. Anglesey and at Monkton in Pembrokeshire. The strongest of these was the last, of which the founder was Rowland Meyrick (1505-1566), second son of Meurig ap Llywelyn and brother of Richard Meyrick I.

Scope and Content

A collection of 1778 items comprising family papers (including settlements, wills, etc.) of the Meyricks of Bodorgan, Anglesey and the related family of Wood of Rhosmor represented by Ellen Wood (widow of William [de la] Wood); Owen Wood the elder, Owen Wood the younger, William Wood, Owen Meyrick the elder, Owen Meyrick the younger, Owen Putland Meyrick, O. J. A. F. Meyrick, Owen Fuller Meyrick and Sir G. E. M. T. G. Meyrick, 1570-1894; title deeds and documents relating to properties in Aberffraw, Amlwch, Beaumaris, Bodedern, Ceirchiog, Coedana, Heneglwys, Holyhead, Llanbadrig, Llanbedrgoch, Llanbeulan, Llanddeusant, Llanddyfnan, Llandrygarn, Llandyfrydog, Llanfaelog, Llanfaes, Llanfihangel Dinsylwy, Llanfair Mathafarn Eithaf, Llanfair-yng-Nghornwy, Llanfair-yn-neubwll, Llanfechell, Llangaffo, Llangoed, Llangristiolus, Llangwyfan, Llanrhwydrus, Llantrisant, Llechgynfarwy, Llechylched, Newborough, Penmon, Pentraeth, Rhoscolyn, Trefdraeth and Trewalchmai, 1468-1925; rentals of the Bodorgan estate, 1755-1918; accounts, including rebuilding accounts, correspondence and plans, 1779-84; household and home farm accounts, 1780-99 and general estate accounts, 1753-1868; maps and surveys (including a survey of the Bodorgan estate made by Lewis Morris, 1724-27), 1724-1872; documents (including correspondence, lists of suitors, papers concerning the perambulation of boundaries, extracts from records in the Public Record Office, etc.) relating to the manors of Aberffraw and Treberfydd, 1825-1925; additional manuscripts which include, log books of the school of Llangadwaladr, a volume of Welsh poetry from the mid-eighteenth century, letters by Lewis Morris [Llywelyn Ddu o Fon, 1701-1765], a copy of the Bible in Welsh by William Morgan published in 1588, and a great number of photocopies of documents belonging mostly to the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries.

System of Arrangement

Divided into two groups - pre 1760 and post 1760 and then arranged according to place, type of document, and chronologically. It was felt necessary and expedient to make a division of the documents in 1759, the year of the death of the elder Owen Meyrick. Each division includes a section of family papers such as wills, marriage settlements, arrangements for annuities, and deeds of appointment to offices of honour. Exchanges of land which operated within the confines of a single parish have been catalogued under that particular parish. In cases where the component parts of land exchanges are in different parishes, sometimes at a considerable distance from each other and even in different commotes, the documents have been gathered together into a special section. The parish of Rhoscolyn, though in Menai, has been listed in both sections under Llifon, because of its natural proximity to parishes in that commote.


Lligwy Papers

Held at: Department of Manuscripts, University of Wales, Bangor
Reference: GB 0222 LLIG
Title: Lligwy Papers
Dates of creation: 1455-1952
Extent: 7.75 linear metres Mss nos. 890 and 1162 are torn

Administrative/Biographical History

The once powerful family of the Lloyds of Lligwy, came to a rather inglorious close with Thomas Lloyd of Llanidan, Anglesey and the lands came into the possession of Sir William Irby. The Irby family derives its name from Irby on Humber, Lincolnshire, and during the reign of Henry VIII they were settled at Gosberton. Anthony Irby of Gosberton, co. Lincoln married Alice, daughter of John Bunting. He died in 1552 having had five daughters and seven sons by her. His fourth son, Thomas Irby, of Whaplode, who married Elizabeth, daughter and co-heir of Thomas Sarjeant, of Moulton, finally inherited the estate. Thomas Irby's heir by Elizabeth was Anthony Irby. He was the M.P. for Boston in the reigns of Elizabeth and James I, an eminent lawyer, as well as a bencher of, and Autumn reader to, the Society of Lincoln's Inn. He was appointed one of the Masters in Chancery, in the reign of James I. On 22 December 1575 Anthony Irby married Alice, daughter of Thomas Welbye, of Moulton. He died September 1625 having had issue, and his heir was Sir Anthony. Sir Anthony Irby, M.P. and High Sheriff of the county of Lincoln in the reign of Charles I, married Elizabeth, February 1602/3, daughter of Sir John Peyton, Baronet of Isleham, co. Cambridge. Sir Anthony Irby died in 1632 and was succeeded by his son, Sir Anthony Irby, M.P for Boston, and recorder of the borough. He was also High Sheriff for the county of Lincoln. He married firstly Frances, daughter of Sir William Wray, Bart. of Glentworth, co. Lincoln, and had an only daughter, Elizabeth. He married secondly, Margaret, daughter of Sir Richard Smyth, Bart. of Osterhanger, Kent; and thirdly, Margaret, daughter of Sir Edward Barkham, but had no children from these marriages. He married fourthly, Catherine, daughter of William, 5th Baron Paget, and had a son and five daughters. He was succeeded by his son, Anthony Irby in 1670. Anthony Irby, married Mary, daughter and heiress of John Stringer, of Ashford, Kent, and was succeeded by his eldest son, Sir Edward Irby, 1st Bart, M.P. for Boston, who was created a baronet on 13 April 1704. Sir Edward married, in 1706, Dorothy, daughter of the Hon. Henry Paget, and granddaughter of the aforementioned Baron Paget. Sir Edward was succeeded by his only son, Sir William Irby, 2nd Bart, 1st Baron Boston. Born 8 March, 1706-7, he was elevated to the peerage as Baron Boston 10 April 1761. He filled several high offices about the court during the reigns of George I and George II, and while a commoner, sat in parliament for Launceston and Bodmin. He married, 26 August 1746, Albinia, daughter of Henry Selwyn, of Matson, co. Gloucester and by her had a daughter, Augusta Georgina Elizabeth and two sons, Frederick who was 2nd Baron and William Henry (1750-1830). Frederick, 2nd Baron Boston, F.A.S. and D.C.L. was born on June 9, 1749. He married on May 15, 1775, Christian, the only daughter of Paul Methuen, of Corsham House, Wiltshire, and by her had issue. His heir was George, 3rd Baron Boston, D.C.L., born December 27, 1777. On October 17, 1801, George married Rachel Ives, eldest daughter and co-heir of William Drake, of Amersham (descended from the Drakes of Shardeloes, and the Garneys of Boyland Hall) and by her had issue. The eldest son and heir was George Ives, 4th Baron Boston. He was born on September 14, 1802. He married firstly, in 1830, Fanny Elizabeth, eldest daughter of W. R. Hopkins-Northey, of Oving House, Bucks, and by her had issue, his heir being, Florance George Henry, 5th Baron. Lord Boston married secondly, on July 30, 1861, Caroline Amelia, eldest daughter of 3rd Lord De Saumarez, and had an issue by her also. His heir, Florance George Henry, 5th Baron, was born March 9, 1837 and married on October 17, 1859, Augusta Caroline, second daughter of John St. Vincent, 3rd Lord de Saumarez, and by her had issue, his heir being, George Florance, 6th Baron. The family seats were, Hedsor in Bourne End, Bucks and Lligwy in Moelfre, Anglesey.

Scope and Content

A collection of 1688 items consisting of, family papers (settlements, wills etc.) of the Irbys of Lincolnshire, represented by Sir Anthony Irby the elder, Anthony Irby, the younger, Sir Edward Irby, Sir William Irby, 1st Baron Boston; George, 3rd Baron Boston and George Ives, 4th Baron Boston, 1603-1873. It includes papers and documents relating to the Paget family, 1625-1771, and particularly to William, 4th Lord Paget; William 5th Lord Paget and William 6th Lord Paget (his second wife was a daughter of Sir Anthony Irby the elder); Henry, Earl of Uxbridge (first creation) and Henry, Earl of Uxbridge (second creation). This group includes surveys of the lordship and manor of Rugeley, co. Stafford and also of the manors of Heywood, Pagett's Bromley, Cannock, Longdon, Farewell and Chorley - all dated 1688; deeds and documents concerning the Penrhosllugwy estate, the Porthaml estate and the manor of Penmynydd, co. Anglesey and properties in Amlwch, Holyhead, Llanbedr-goch, Llanddaniel-fab, Llanfaelog, Llanfair Mathafarn Eithaf, Llanfair-yng-Nghornwy, Llanfihangel-yn-Nhywyn, Llanfwrog, Llanidan, Penrhosllugwy and Rhodogeidio, 1627-1890; rentals of the Lligwy estate, 1740-1949; estate correspondence (including letter books), 1752-1936; surveys and valuations of lands belonging to the Lligwy estate in Holyhead, Llanddona, Llandyfrydog, Llanfachreth, Llanfair Mathafarn Eithaf and Llanfwrog, 1829-1934; maps and plans, 1773-1884; and tithe apportionment maps for the parishes of Llanedwen, Llanidan, Llanfair-yn-y-cwmwd, Llanddaniel, Llanddyfnan, Llangefni and Penrhosllugwy, 1841-1937; papers relating to inclosures, including Pwllpillo Marsh (Rhoscolyn), 1825; Rhosfawr Common (Llanidan), 1858-1860; Mynydd Bodafon, 1864-1865 and Malltraeth Marsh, 1865; papers concerning the wreck of the 'Royal Charter' in Moelfre Bay, 26th October, 1859, and to subsequent salvaging operations; letters and papers relating to the extension of the Chester and Holyhead railway from Bangor to Caernarvon, 1850, and to negotiations for the building of a railway at Red Wharf Bay, 1903-1907; accounts of coal raised and sold at Taicroesion Colliery (Malltraeth), 1854-1866, and correspondence regarding the City Dulas (Penrhosllugwy) copper mine, 1872-1875, 1880 and 1906-1908. In addition to the papers relating to Lord Boston's Anglesey estate, the collection includes a small group of deeds and documents concerning properties in Berkshire, Kent, Herefordshire, Middlesex, Hampshire, Southampton (records of the court baron of the manor of Greywell, 1542-1714), Hertfordshire, Lancashire, Norfolk, Somerset, Surrey, Warwickshire and Ireland, 1455-1874.


Baron Hill Manuscripts

Held at: Department of Manuscripts, University of Wales, Bangor
Reference: GB 0222 BHILL
Title: Baron Hill Manuscripts
Dates of creation: 1319-1996
Extent: 50 linear metres Physical characteristics are noted in the catalogues alongside the description of the documents.

Administrative/Biographical History

It cannot be stated exactly when the Bulkeleys of Baron Hill, Beaumaris first arrived in Anglesey from Cheshire, but it is believed that they were settled in Anglesey before 1450. Their arrival is usually credited to William Bulkeley the elder, who married one of the daughters of the old Penrhyn family of Griffith. They rapidly acquired farms in Anglesey and Caernarvonshire and soon became one of the most powerful families in North Wales. When at its most powerful the family had lands in all six commotes of Anglesey, and important interests in the Creuddyn peninsula, in the town of Conwy, and in the eastern and western districts of Arllechwedd, Caernarvonshire. They also had much property on the Hirael foreshore in Bangor and in the town of Caernarfon. In 1448, William, the son of William Bulkeley the elder, married Alice, daughter of Bartholomew de Bolde, and it was this all-important marriage that laid the foundation of the compact Bulkeley possessions in the two commotes of Isaf and Uchaf in Arllechwedd. Also, in 1749, by the marriage of James, 6th Lord Viscount Bulkeley to Emma, daughter and heiress of Thomas Rowlands of Caerau, the family gained the Caerau estate in north-west Anglesey and the Plas-y-nant lands near Betws Garmon that stretched past Rhyd-ddu to the slopes and summit of Snowdon. Younger branches of the family also developed, and became important families in their own right, such as the Bulkeleys of Porthamel, the Bulkeleys of Gronant and Dronwy, the Bulkeleys of Brynddu and later on, the Bulkeleys of Cremlyn, Cleifiog, Plas Goronwy and Ty'n-y-caeau.

There was no surviving heir to the marriage of William Bulkeley the younger and Alice, and therefore his brother, Rowland Bulkeley, inherited the Caernarvonshire and Anglesey lands. With the accession of the third Richard Bulkeley in 1572, we come to one of the greatest personalities of the house of Bulkeley, who was knighted, in ca. 1534. With his death in 1621, the affairs of the Bulkeleys of Baron Hill took a downward turn. It was alleged that the fourth knight, Richard (d.1645), was poisoned by Sir Thomas Cheadle in order that Cheadle could marry his widow. The accusations were never proven, and the affair subsided into a personal vendetta, which resulted in a dual on Lavan Sands early in 1650, in which Captain Richard Bulkeley was killed. Cheadle was later executed at Conway Castle.

After 1621, the Baron Hill lands, by a series of untimely deaths, fell into the hands of Thomas Bulkeley (d.1659). Soon after his accession, the Civil War broke out and he became the leader of the King's men in Anglesey. In doing so he pleased the Cavaliers and was created Viscount Bulkeley of Cashel in Ireland in 1644. Thomas was also the head and front of the Anglesey insurrection of 1648, and he no doubt paid the highest proportion of the D9,000 composition fine fixed upon the island by a decree of parliament. The Civil War and its vicissitudes greatly impoverished the Bulkeley interest. The son of Thomas Bulkeley, Robert (second Viscount, d.1659) married Sarah Harvey, daughter of a rich alderman of the City of London in 1654. There are mixed views as to whether this marriage was a marriage of convenience to secure the dowry of D7000 or not.

With the advent of the Restoration, the Bulkeleys came into their own again. Robert, 2nd Viscount, became Deputy Lieutenant of the six counties of North Wales, while the 3rd and 4th Viscounts made brilliant marriages, one with the Egertons of Oulton in Cheshire, the other with a daughter of the Earl of Abingdon. These two, the 3rd and 4th, were confirmed tories, High Churchmen and Jacobite in sympathy. The result was that the age-long monopoly of the Bulkeleys in the representation of Anglesey and its boroughs was challenged. The opposing factions were led by the Owens of Bodeon, the Meyricks of Bodorgan, and by Lloyd Bodvell of Bodfan. Owen Meyrick of Bodorgan fought four county elections against the 4th Viscount. The Bulkeleys were successful, but only just. Meyrick failed in 1708 and 1710, but won in 1715, then lost again in 1722. Little happened during the tenure of the 5th and 6th Viscounts. The latter died in May 1752, and his son Thomas James, the 7th, was born posthumously in the following December. He grew to be a powerful personality like some of his ancestors. With him the peerage in Ireland ceased, but in 1784 he was created a peer of the United Kingdom under the title of Lord Bulkeley of Beaumaris. Unfortunately, he died without issue in 1822, and the peerage therefore also became extinct and the long line of Bulkeleys of Baron Hill came to an end, after an unbroken descent from William Bulkeley the elder. Lord Bulkeley was succeeded to the estate by his nephew, Sir Richard Bulkeley Williams (1801-1875) who was the son of his half brother, Sir Robert Williams. The 7th Viscount's mother, Emma, Viscountess Bulkeley had married, as a second husband, Sir Hugh Williams of Arianwst, and it was their grandson who succeeded to the estate in 1822. In 1827, Richard Bulkeley Williams received the King's special permission to assume the additional surname of Bulkeley, to become Sir Richard Bulkeley Williams-Bulkeley. He inherited not only the main Bulkeley lands in the counties of Anglesey and Caernarvonshire, but the Talybolion and Gwyrfai interests brought in as dower to the 6th Viscount by Emma Rowlands of Caera, Llanfair yng Nghornwy. He also came into possession of the Arianwst lands in commote Isaf, which had been inherited by Sir Hugh Williams.

Scope and Content

A collection of 8933 items relating to the Bulkeley family of Baron Hill, Beaumaris and their estates in Anglesey, Caernarvonshire and Cheshire, 1329-1913. It is catalogued under the following main headings: family papers (wills, settlements, personalia, etc.), in which individuals are represented such as William Bulkeley the elder (will dated 10 June, 1490), the first of the family to emigrate to Anglesey from Cheshire; William Bulkeley the younger; Rowland Bulkeley; Sir Richard Bulkeley I; William Bulkeley of Porthamel; Sir Richard Bulkeley II; Sir Richard Bulkeley III (will dated 4 April 1614); George Bulkeley of Amlwch; William Bulkeley of Coedan; Thomas Bulkeley of Llanfairfechan (first Viscount Bulkeley, ob. 1659); Sir Richard Bulkeley IV (ob.1624); Richard Bulkeley; son of Sir Richard Bulkeley IV (will dated 2 March, 1639/40, ob. 1640); Richard Bulkeley, son of Thomas [Viscount] Bulkeley; Robert Bulkeley, 2nd Viscount, second son of Thomas Bulkeley; Thomas Bulkeley of Dinas, Llanwnda; Richard, 3rd Viscount and son and heir of Robert, 2nd Viscount; Richard, 4th Viscount Bulkeley and son and heir of Richard, 3rd Viscount; Richard 5th Viscount Bulkeley; Sir Hugh Williams, Bart. (third husband of Lady Emma Bulkeley, widow of James, 6th Viscount Bulkeley); Thomas James, 7th Viscount Bulkeley (ob.1822); Sir Richard Bulkeley Williams Bulkeley and Sir R. H. W. Bulkeley; deeds and other documents relating to properties in Aberalaw, Amlwch, Beaumaris, Berw, Bodafon, Bodedern, Bodegrihydd, Bodffordd, Bodelgady, Bodfilog, Bodhenlli, Bodlew, Bodwrog, Bryngwallen, Caerdegog, Cerriggwyddyl, Castell Bwlchgwyn, Cefn Alaw, Cemlyn, Cerrigceinwen, Cleifiog, Clorach, Clynnog Fechan, Conysiog Lan, Cornwy Lan, Dinsylwy Frenin, Dwyran Feuno, Dwyran Esgob, Eglwys Ail, Eiriannell, Gafrogwy, Heneglwys, Hirdre-faig, Llanbabo, Llanbedr-goch, Llanddeusant, Llanddona, Llanddyfnan, Llandegfan, Llandyfrydog, Llandysilio, Llaneilian, Llannerch-y-medd, Llanfachreth, Llanfaes, Llanfair Mathafarn Eithaf, Llanfair Mathafarn Wion, Llanfair-yng-Nghornwy, Llanfechell, Llanfihangel Dinsylwy, Llangefni, Llangoed, Llangristiolus, Llangwyllog, Llangyngar, Llaniestyn, Llanllibio, Llanol, Llanrhwydrys, Llanrhyddlad, Llansadwrn, Llantrisant, Llanynghenedl, Llechog, Lledwigan, Llechylched, Llwydiarth, Llysdulas, Nanmorfa, Newborough, Penhwnllys, Penmon, Penmynydd, Pentraeth, Pentre'r Gwyddyl, Perthior, Porthaethwy, Porthamel, Porthllongdy, Rhodogeidio, Rhosbeirio, Rhoscolyn, Trealaw'r Beirdd, Treednyfed, Trefadog, Trefarian, Trefarthen, Treferwydd, Trefdraeth Wastrodion, Trefor, Trefri, Trefyscawen, Tre'r-dryw, Tregarnedd, Trewalchmai, Tyndryfol and Ynys-gnud, co. Anglesey; Aber, Bangor, Beddgelert, Betws Garmon, Bodellog, Bodfaeo, Bodsilin, Bryn Goshall, Brynie, Caerhun, Caernarfon, Castellmai, Clynnog, Conwy, Creuddyn, Cyngreawdr, Dwygyfylchi, Eiriannws, Eirias, Elernion, Glasfryn, Gloddaith, Glyn, Gogarth, Gorddinog, Gweredros, Gyffin, Isheli, Llanbedrycennin, Llandudno, Llanengan, Llanfaglan, Llanfairfechan, Llanfair-is-gaer, Llangelynnin, Llangwnnadl, Llangystennin, Llanwnda, Llechan, Meyllteyrn, Penfro, Penllech, Penmaen-mawr, Penrhyn Creuddyn, Trecastell, Trefferi, Trefwarth, Tremorfa, Tydweiliog, Uwch-heli and Ultra Daron, co. Caernarfon (including the lands of Bartholomew de Bold in the commote of Arllechwedd Isaf); and in Ardswood, Ashley, Cheadle, Edgeley, Middlewich, Timperley and Whatcroft, co. Chester; rentals, 1527-1890; surveys and valuations, 1772-1857; estate, household and home farm accounts, 1709-1901; account books and personal memoranda of Sir Hugh Williams, 1781-1794, and of Sir Robert Williams, 1802-1830; documents and papers relating to the Civil War and its repercussions in Anglesey, 1642-1648, including letters from Archbishop John Williams, the Princes Rupert and Maurice and from various Cavalier and Parliamentary officers, mainly to Thomas, first Viscount Bulkeley; assessments and returns under the Militia Acts of the Restoration, etc., 1661-1711; papers relating to Anglesey elections in the 18th and 19th centuries, including letters, lists of freeholders, a poll book (1708), etc., 1708-1852; a group of papers, including letters relating to Jacobitism in North Wales, 1714-1716; a group of letters addressed to Sir Hugh Williams and Sir Robert Williams and relating to estate and domestic matters, 1748-1810; papers, including accounts, reports, maps and letters, relating to mines and quarries, including the Parys Mine, Amlwch; Cwm Eigia Slate Quarry, the Great Snowdon Mountain copper mine, the Britannia Copper Mine and the Anglesey lime works and Mona Marble Quarries (Penmon), 1853-1913; maps and plans, 1770-1890; miscellanea, of which the outstanding item is the original extent of the counties of Caernarfon and Anglesey, made in 1352 by John de Delves, Deputy Justice of North Wales and of the county of Merioneth. Copies of this were made in the 16th century, and it is from one of those copies (now held at the British Museum) that the Record of Caernarvon , edited by Sir Henry Ellis for the Record Commission in 1838, was based.

The Baron Hill Further Additional Manuscripts include, deeds and documents relating to Beaumaris, Holyhead, Llanbabo, Llandegfan, Llanddona, Llanfaes, Llanfair Pwllgwyngyll, Llanfihangel Dinsylwy, Llangefni, Llangoed, Llangristiolus, Llangwyllog, Llaniestyn, Llanrhuddlad, Llansadwrn, Llanynghenedl, Penmon, Pentraeth, co. Anglesey; Beddgelert, Betws Garmon, Caerhun, Henryd and Llanwnda, co. Caernarfon; co. Cheshire and co. Middlesex; other deeds and documents, include marriage settlements and wills; rentals, surveys, valuations and particulars, relating to co. Anglesey, Caernarfon, Chester and London; estate correspondence, papers and diaries; financial papers, which include, financial ledgers and account books, cheque books, statements and saving books, taxation papers, investments and shares papers, insurance papers and vouchers; home farm papers, including vouchers, accounts, correspondence and papers; papers relating to estate workers and employees; maps and plans; permit and parking books, for Penmon; personal and family papers; papers relating to associations, societies and clubs; and miscellaneous papers, which include printed material and newspaper cuttings, photographs and prints, Anglesey and Gwynedd County Council papers, Beaumaris Town Council papers, parish records, tithes and various other items.


Plas Coch Manuscripts

Reference: GB 0222 PC
Title: Plas Coch Manuscripts
Dates of creation: 1438-1933
Held at: Department of Manuscripts, University of Wales, Bangor
Extent: 5.75 linear metres Physical characteristics are noted in the catalogues alongside the description of the documents.

Administrative/Biographical History

It is believed that the real founder of the fortunes of the Plas Coch estate, Anglesey, was Hugh Hughes the elder (d.1609). He was admitted to the Society of Lincoln's Inn, became Queen's Attorney for North Wales and a member of the Council of the Marches, was an M.P. for Anglesey from 1597 to 1601, and High Sheriff of the county three times. Also known as Hugh ap David Lloyd ap Hugh ap Llywelyn ap Evan ap Madoc ap Evan ap Hoel ap Gwyn, he was the first to assume and stabilise the surname, Hughes. Hugh Hughes was also responsible for the building of the original Plas Coch, which was also known by the old name of Porthamel Isa for a few generations. In 1588 he married Elizabeth Montagu, daughter of Simon Montagu of Brigstock in Northants. The marriage brought him considerable influence, and that combined with his Lincoln's Inn connections made it easy for him to lay the foundations of that interest in the Crown lands of Maesoglan, Bodrida, Gwydryn and Rhosfair that his immediate descendants developed. Hugh Hughes also secured a lease on the Nancall township in the parish of Clynnog.

His son, Roger lacked his father's ability and enterprise, but was a staunch, stout champion of his rights, especially over the exact interpretation of his father's will. He died in 1654 and his son, the second Hugh, drowned in the Menai Straits in December 1665. The son of the second Hugh Hughes, Roger Hughes (d.1716), benefited considerably from the improvidence, which forced his cousin, Griffith Williams of Rhodogeidio, to surrender much of his estate to him. Another son, the third Hugh added to the estate of Plas Coch a considerable part of the lands which once belonged to William Bold of Llanedwen, but whose declining fortunes failed to redeem a mortgage. This third Hugh Hughes died in 1764, having had no issue, and since several of his brothers had died before him, his lands were demised to his nephew William, son of Robert Hughes, vicar of Llanidan from 1748 until 1756. William in turn married Anna, granddaughter of William Bulkeley, the diarist of Brynddu, and so prepared the way for the merger of the Brynddu and Plas Coch estates in the person of Sir William Bulkeley Hughes the elder (d.1836).

It is believed that William Bulkeley Hughes was an unhappy character. He left Oxford considerably in debt. The death of his father in 1802 and of his mother in 1807 saddled him with heavy responsibilities, more especially in satisfying the claims of his younger sisters. The result was mortgage upon mortgage, bond upon bond, with heavy and even heavier recurring sums of interest. Eventually, he sought refuge from his troubles across the Straits of Dover in 1821. With his migration to France, power of the estate fell to William Bulkeley Hughes (1797-1882) the younger.

The second William Bulkeley Hughes had a successful and interesting public career and took an interest in local affairs. He represented Caernarfon Boroughs in Parliament for nearly forty years and was a J.P. for Anglesey and Caernarfonshire and High Sheriff of Anglesey in 1861. He also contributed to the successful development of Llandudno through negotiations, as Chairman of the Llandudno Improvement Commissioners, with the Mostyn authorities in 1873-1877. He efficiently rehabilitated the Brynddu and Plas Coch inheritance through his bold attack upon the frightful difficulties bequeathed him by his father, the speeding to a conclusion of old and harassing lawsuits, the entering of new ones to clear all-important issues, and through the application of an omniscient eye to the smallest detail. He also took advantage of the railway boom to replenish the estate and was Chairman of the Anglesey Central Railway from its opening to its absorption by the L.N.W.R. Co. William Bulkeley Hughes was responsible for organising the banquet given to Robert Stephenson at the George Hotel, Bangor, in August 1851, to commemorate the opening of the Britannia tubular bridge. He married twice, firstly to Elizabeth, daughter and heiress of Jonathan Nettleship of Mattersey Abbey, Northampton, and widow of Henry Wormald of Woodhouse, Leeds in 1825. Secondly he married Elizabeth, daughter of William Donkin, of Rothbury, Northumberland. By his second wife he had a child, Sarah Elizabeth, and it was she who inherited the estate upon his death. Sarah Elizabeth married Col. Charles Hunter, who assumed the additional surname of Hughes by Royal Licence in 1904.

Scope and Content

A collection of 4087 items relating to the Hughes and Hughes-Hunter family of Plas Coch (Llanedwen) and Brynddu (Llanfechell), Anglesey, and consisting of, title deeds and documents referring to properties in Aberalaw, Aberffraw, Amlwch, Bodafon, Bodegri, Bodelgyfarch, Bodfordd, Bodffyddion, Bodfilog, Bodlew, Bodrida, Bodrwyddyd, Bodronyn, Cadnant, Caerdegog, Caeregwy, Cefnyfyrwen, Celleiniog, Cleifiog, Conysiog, Lys, Cornwy Lan, Dwyran Feuno, Eiriannell, Gronant, Gwydryn, Hendre Rhosfair, Heneglwys, Holyhead, Llanddaniel-fab, Llanddeusant, Llanddyfnan, Llandegfan, Llandrygarn, Llanedwen, Llaneilian, Llanfaethlu, Llanfechell, Llanfihangel-yn-Nhywyn, Llangefni, Llangeinwen, Llanrhuddlad, Llantrisant, Lledwigan Llys, Maesoglen, Newborough, Penhwnllys, Penmynydd, Rhosfair, Trefadog, Trefarthen, Trefdraeth, Trefirior, Trefowen, Tyndryfol, Ucheldref, Ynys Keryd and Ysgeifiog, co. Anglesey; Bangor, Caernarfon, Clynnog, Conway, Dinorwig, Llanbeblig, Llanddeiniolen, Llandegwning, Llandwrog, Llanfihangel-y-Pennant and Llanrug, co. Caernarvon and Hiraddug, Is-glan, Kinnerton and Soughton, co. Flint, 1438-1903; rentals and valuations of the Plas Coch and Brynddu estates, 1792-1933; family, personal and estate correspondence (amongst the topics referred to are the banquet given to George Stephenson, builder of the Britannia Tubular Bridge, 27 August 1851, and the deliberations of the Llandudno Improvement Commissioners, 1862-1890), 1789-1917; papers and documents relating to railway developments in the United Kingdom (including North Wales) during the 1840's; documents and papers bearing on the elections of 1837, 1841, 1847, 1851 and 1859 in the Caernarfon boroughs (including 'check', canvass and poll books for the 1837 and 1859 elections; expense accounts of the 1841 election and correspondence); estate maps and plans, 1814-1853.

Among the personalities represented in the collection are: David Lloyd ap Hugh ap Llywelyn ap Ieuan of Porthamel (will dated 11 March, 1573/4), Hugh Hughes (copy will dated 20 June 1603), Roger Hughes (I) (copy will dated 29 May, 1646), Hugh Hughes (II), Roger Hughes (II), Hugh Hughes (III), the Rev. Robert Hughes, vicar of Llanidan; William Hughes (copy will dated 19 February, 1802), Sir William Bulkeley Hughes, his son William Bulkeley Hughes (will dated 25 May, 1887) and Charles Hunter. Also included are letters from William Ewart Gladstone to William Bulkeley Hughes, 1856-1880.


Porth yr Aur Papers

Held at: Department of Manuscripts, University of Wales, Bangor
Reference: GB 0222 PA
Title: Porth yr Aur Papers
Dates of creation: 1422 - 1883
Extent: 100 linear metres

Administrative/Biographical History

The founder of this solicitor's practice at Caernarfon, was Hugh Ellis, the second son of Archdeacon Ellis, vicar of Bangor who died in 1785 and Anne, the youngest child of Hugh and Ellen Lloyd of Trallwyn. His brother was the Rev. John Ellis, Rector of Llanystumdwy, who lived at Plas hen, Chwilog. Hugh Ellis married Ann Wright of Knutsford, Cheshire, a sister of Henry and Thomas Wright who were solicitors to the Vaynol estate at one time. Originally, Hugh Ellis's office was at Bangor, but sometime before 1790 he moved to Caernarfon, and his interests became permanently identified with the county town when he was appointed treasurer of the county in 1796. It is also believed that Ellis also acted as clerk of the magistrates for the Caernarvon district. Hugh Ellis was also made undersheriff for T. Assheton Smith in Caernarfon County in 1774.

The first mention of John Evans in connection with the practice occurs in 1788 when his name appears as that of a clerk in the affairs of the Dinorwig slate quarry in which Hugh Ellis and his brother in law, Thomas Wright were concerned. John Evans was born on 12 November 1766, the son of a farmer in the parish of Llanllyfni, and entered into articles with Hugh Ellis in August 1789 and the affidavit of service was sworn at the second Great Sessions at Conway five years later. There is nothing to suggest that he became Ellis's partner after this, but when the latter died in 1808, John Evans seems to have taken over his practice and extended it very substantially. He headed one of the most extensive practices of the day in North Wales and was considered to be the most active amongst his fellows, with interests extending considerably beyond the limits of ordinary legal activities. His clientele was a wide one. He was administrator of two major estates in the county of Caernarfon for a period, Madryn and Coetmor, and his counsel was acceptable in the affairs of the Gwynfryn, Vaynol and Glynllifon estates. Below these, came such estates as the Pentir and the Brynkir estates in Caernarvonshire and the Taicroesion estate in Anglesey for which he acted. He was also concerned in the fortunes of a large number of yeomen properties in the counties. On the death of Hugh Ellis, John Evans also succeeded him as clerk of the magistrates for the Caernarfon district. In 1810 he succeeded Samuel Grindley as Deputy-Protonotary of the North Wales Circuit - an appointment which made him a central figure in the legal circles of three counties. John Evans also acted as deputy sheriff to Thomas Parry Jones Parry, Madryn in Caernarfon County in 1811 and again in 1812 and 1821 for Sir Joseph Huddart. The assistants of John Evans also acted similarly for G.F. Barlow in 1814 and Rice Thomas in 1817 - both sheriffs of Anglesey. The extra-legal activities of John Evans give him a place in any account of the slate and quarrying industry during the early stages of the industrial revolution. He undertook to open the Cilgwyn Quarry in 1800 and seems to have acted in the capacity of managing director of the concern. His office at Porth yr Aur, Caernarfon was also the office of the quarry company. He was also interested for a time in the Cefn Du Quarry. John Evans married Sydney, daughter of the Rev. William Griffith of Rhoscolyn and had a son, John Griffith Evans who served his articles in his fathers' office but did not succeed to the practice. An improvident marriage, on the part of John Griffith Evans led to an estrangement between him and his father, which ultimately led to complete separation.

John Evans died on 8 July 1827 and was succeeded by his nephew, Evan Evans who had been in his uncles service for several years. He was able to retain one at least of his uncles offices, that of Deputy-Protonotary, but the practice in general shrank during his short career. Following the death of Evan Evans ca. 1836, the practice, or at least the office, was occupied by R.D. Williams who was succeeded by his son of the same name and who was known as of Porth yr Aur, Caernarfon. This served to give the Porth yr Aur collection its title.

Scope and Content

The first deposit of 50, 726 items represents the activities of John Evans, attorney of Porth yr Aur, Caernarvon and his practice.

Papers relating to the administration of justice and local government in the county of Caernarfon and in some cases Anglesey, consist of shrievalty papers, 1774 - 1831; county court action and minute books and papers, 1784 - 1831 (1811 - 1821 for co. Anglesey); court of Great Sessions account books, protonotary's accounts and miscellaneous papers, 1789 - 1831; divisional and Quarter Sessions minutes, jury lists and papers, 1790 - 1835; county treasurer's papers, 1795 - 1809; militia accounts, certificates of enlistment and miscellaneous papers, 1793 1808. Then follow papers dealing with the county gaol and prisoners, 1796 - 1833; highways, 1808 - 1833; bridges, 1796 - 1809; assessed taxes for Caernarvonshire and Anglesey and the land tax, 1772 - 1828; hawkers and pedlars, 1819 - 1832; excise and licensing, 1808 - 1833; weights and measures, 1820 - 1833; overseers of the poor, 1809 - 1834; parochial administration for Caernarvonshire, Anglesey and other Welsh and English counties, 1790 - 1734; Caernarvon town developments, 1819 - 1827; election matters, including poll books of the 1768 and 1774 county elections and of the 1722 borough election, together with accounts, correspondence, election songs and miscellanea, 1768 - 1835.

Documents relating to land and estates include papers regarding inclosures in Aberdaron, Mynydd Mynytho, Rhoshiwaun, Llanbeblig, Llanrug, Llanddeiniolen, Morfan Dinlle, Llandwrog, Llanwnda, Llanllyfni, Clynnog, Nefyn, Llanfihangel-y-Pennant, Penmorfa co. Caernarfon; Heneglwys, Morfa Malltraeth, Llanbedr Niwbwrch, and Llangeinwen co. Anglesey and Llandanwg, Llanfihangel-y-traethau, Llanfachreth and Llanelltud co. Merioneth and Llanfihangel Genau'r-glyn and Llangynfelyn, co, Cardigan, 1803 - 1827; and also a collection of crown rents, 1788 - 1834 and the rents of the Bishop of Bangor's manors of Cantred an Treffos, Anglesey. Also included are originals, copies and drafts of deeds documents and papers relating to the Caerhengan and Coed Cae Du (Llanllyfni), Collfryn (Llanwnda), Coetmor (Llanllechid and Llandygai), Llangwnadl, Cesail Gyfarch (Penmorfa), Glanrafon (Llanbeblig), Glynllifon, Gwynfryn, Morris (Llanrug), Madryn, W.A. Maddocks (Tremadoc), Pentir, Plas Brereton (Llanbeblig), Rhiwlas (Eifionydd), Rosindale Lloyd (Pwllheli), Tan-y-bwlch (Llanllechid), Trallwyn, Treflan (Llanbeblig) and Vaynol estates, and also papers relating to other properties in Aberdaron, Aber-erch, Bangor, Betws Garmon, Bodferin, Bryncroes, Caernarfon, Clynnog, Conway, Llandygai, Llanengan, Llanfairfechan, Llanfaglan, Llangwnnadl, Llanllyfni, Llannor, Llanwnda, Llysfaen, Portinllaen and Pwllheli, 1570 - 1839, and the following Anglesey estates : Bodrwyn (Cerrigceinwen), Chwaen Du, Llanfaethlu, Plas Coch, Tai Croesion, Trosymarian (Llangoed) and Trysclwyn (Amlwch) and other properties in Coedana, Heneglwys, Holyhead, Llanddaniel, Llanddeusant, Llandegfan, Llandyfrydog, Llannerchymedd, Llanfwrog, Llangefni, Llangoed, Llangristiolus, Llangwyllog, Pentraeth and Trewalchmai, 1581 - 1834. Also papers in actions concerning tithes, 1731 - 1834.

Papers concerning slate quarrying and mining activities including accounts, correspondence, plans etc., originate either in litigation or administration concerning the following major quarries : Braichrhydd (Llandwrog), 1810 - 1832, Cefndu (Llanbeblig), 1798 - 1834, Cilgwyn (Llandwrog and Llanwnda), 1789 - 1829, Dinorwig (Llanberis), 1787 - 1829, Hafodlas (Ffestiniog), 1812 - 1827, Moeltryfan (Llanwnda), 1823 - 1830, and the minor concerns of Bwlch Carreg-y-fran (Penmachno), 1814 - 1821, Bwlch-y-beudy (Dolwyddelan), 1814 - 1816, Cefn Carn (Merioneth), 1822 - 1823, Coetmor (Llanllechid), 1804 - 1826, Gallt-y-fedw (Llanllyfni), 1866 - 1877, Gallt-y-llan (Llanberis), 1811, Pen-y-bryn (Llanllyfni), 1808 - 1818, Talysarn (Llanllyfni), 1802 - 1804, 1826 - 1831, Tanybwlch (Llanllechid), 1811 - 1826, Ty'n llwyn, 1817 - 1922 and Ty'n ffridd, 1818 - 1826. Papers dealing with the vicissitudes of the slate trade, 1788 - 1823 and with efforts made to repeal the Slate Tax, 1791 - 1795. Papers in a chancery action between William Turner, one of the capitalist pioneers of the Ffestiniog slate industry and George Ford a London merchant, 1808 - 1828. Papers relating to mining ventures in Caernarvonshire and Anglesey and mentioning the following mines: Pen-y-Crug Colliery (Llangristiolus), 1814 - 1818, Bwlchderwyn Mine (Clynnog), 1822 - 1823, Ffridd Redyn (Llanrwst), 1822, Penrhyn Du Mine (Llanengan), 1769 - 1779, Parys Mine Co., 1764 - 1785, Mona Mine Co., 1812, 1828, Llangystennin Mine, 1784 - 1785, Gwydir Nant Mine, 1773 - 1793, Llanberis Mine, 1761 - 1804, Snowdon Mine, 1805 - 1818 and the Moelfre Stone Quarry, 1823 - 1826.

Papers concerning transport and communications include those dealing with the administration of the turnpike roads of Caernarvonshire and Merioneth, 1786 - 1837. Reports and correspondence relating to the Nantlle Tramroad, 1813 - 1832 and the Caernarvonshire Railway, 1861 - 1865. A group of papers relating to the shipping industry, including the papers of individual ships and papers dealing with the regulation of shipping in the port of Caernarvon - all of which throw light on the development of the port under the impetus of the slate industry, 1793 - 1834.

The administrative papers of the Porth yr Aur practice include journals and day books, general account books, 1773 - 1834. Among the letters are those of the Rev. Peter Bailey Williams, rector of Llanrug and Llanberis, written in his capacity as Justice of the Peace for Caernarvonshire.

Other papers and documents illustrating various aspects of the professional works of John Evans include action papers, 1784 - 1826, wills, bankruptcy papers, 1810 - 1827, corn accounts (Pwllheli market), 1789 - 1832 and building societies' accounts and transactions, 1801 - 1832.

The additional papers (2,062 items) include 1,807 records relating to the King's Sessions and Great Sessions of Caernarvonshire, Anglesey and Merioneth, 1423 - 1831. They include bailiff accounts of the county of Caernarfon, 1422 - 1423, an Anglesey plea roll, 1509 - 1516/7, together with writs, jury presentments, pleas in actions, recognizances, coroner' inquests, recusancy certificates, jury lists and miscellaneous documents and papers, 1433 - 1831. The remaining items include deeds relating to properties in Aber, Aber-erch, Bangor, Bodfaeo, Botwnnog, Dwygyfylchi, Caernarfon, Llanbeblig, Llanfairfechan, Llanfairisgaer, Llangwnnadl, Llaniestyn, Llanllechid, Llanllyfni, Llanrug, Llanwnda, Llanystumdwy, Penmorfa and Pistyll, co. Caernarfon, Beaumaris, Bodedern, Holyhead, Llanbadrig, Llanddyfnan, Llandrygarn, Llandyfrydog, Llanfeirian, Llechylched, Newborough and Rhosbeirio, co. Anglesey and Ffestiniog, Llanfachreth, Llandrillo, Llanfihangel-y-traethau and Tal-y-llyn, co. Merioneth, 1524 - 1903 and a few papers (including commissioners' awards) relating to the Nefyn and Morfa Dinlle, Aberdaron and Llanddeiniolen inclosures, 1812 - 1817.

The further additional papers include deeds, documents and papers relating to properties in the parishes of Llanddona, Llanbabo (Llanfflewin), Llangefni, Llangoed, Llangristiolus, Llanidan, Llechylched, Pentraeth, Rhosbeirio, Amlwch and Beaumaris, co. Anglesey, 1637 - 1866; Aber-erch, Betws Garmon, Bryncroes, Caernarfon, Clynnog, Llanbeblig, Llandwrog, Llanfihangel-y-Pennant, Llanllechid, Llanllyfni, Llanwnda, Penmorfa, Dwygyfylchi, Llanfairfechan, Castell, Deneio, Llanfair-is-gaer, Llanddeiniolen, Llanfaglan, co. Caernarfon, 1625 - 1859; St. Asaph in Flintshire, 1850; Ffestiniog and Llanfrothen in Merionethshire, 1813. Also included are papers regarding the Caernarfon, Beddgelert and Portmadoc Railway 1861 - 1867 and the Nantlle Railway Company, 1827. And also correspondence, 1784 - 1883, accounts, 1780 - 1864 and miscellaneous papers such as pedigrees and Caernarvonshire chapel leases.


Gwyneddon Manuscripts

Held at: Department of Manuscripts, University of Wales, Bangor
Reference: GB 0222 GWYN
Title: Gwyneddon Manuscripts
Dates of creation: ca.1585-1881
Extent: 0.5 linear metres

Administrative/Biographical History

John Davies, otherwise known as 'Gwyneddon', born at Bangor, 1832, was a printer and journalist. He received his apprenticeship as a printer at the North Wales Chronicle office and afterwards became a reporter on the staff. When Chronicl Cymru , a weekly paper, was published in 1866, he was appointed editor. In 1868 he established himself as a printer in Caernarfon and on 30 October 1869 the first number of Y Goleuad was published from his office. For a time he was the editor as well as the printer and publisher. After some years he sold the printing business and became manager of the Caernarfon branch of Pugh and Jones's Bank. He took an active part in municipal matters and was once mayor of Caernarfon. For a period he wrote leading articles for Y Genedl Gymreig . He was a capable journalist and his editorial notes in Y Goleuad were notably good. He will be remembered as the author of a popular harvest thanksgiving hymn. He died at Caernarvon 30 January 1904.

His son, Robert Gwyneddon Davies, solicitor, was born ca.1870 and died 17 April 1928. He was the author of an English translation of Y Bardd Cwsc (1st ed. 1897, 2nd ed. 1909).

Peter Bailey Williams one time owner of a number of the Gwyneddon manuscripts, was a cleric and a writer. Born at Llandyfaelog, Carmarthenshire in 1763, he was the son of Peter Williams (1723-1796) and brother of Eliezer Williams, the antiquary. He was educated at Carmarthen Grammar school and Jesus College, Oxford (B.A. from Christ Church, 1790). He was ordained deacon February 1788 and priest the following November. He was a curate in England until 1792, when he was made rector of Llanrug and Llanberis, where he spent the rest of his life. In addition, he was for some years (1815-1825?) perpetual curate of Betws Garmon. He married firstly Hannah Jones of Llanrwst in September 1804, by whom he had a son, Henry Bailey Williams (1805-1879), rector of Llanberis and Llanrug; and secondly Charlotte Hands of Shrewsbury in November 1835. He was a prominent figure in the public life of Caernarvonshire for a very long time and was a justice of the peace for more than a quarter of a century. Many of his letters on public affairs will be found in the Porth yr Aur Manuscripts. In politics, he was a conservative, a fact amply borne out by the articles he wrote condemning the supporters of the French Revolution. However, he was an ardent supporter of the movement for the education of the masses and there is little doubt that the Sunday school he started at Llanrug in 1793 was one of the first in Caernarvonshire. He was the friend and patron of the local writers - Dafydd Ddu and his friends - and had a hand in bringing out the Greal, neu Eurgrawn (Ieuan Lleyn) in 1800, Trysorfa Gwybodaeth (Dafydd Ddu) in 1807. He collected a number of old manuscripts for his library and copied the contents of others. From time to time he published, in the newspapers and periodicals of the day, extracts from some of these and English translations of portions of others - often enough under pseudonyms such as 'Pant' and 'Peris'. In addition to helping document-hunters like Nicholas Carlisle and William Cathrall, he also published The Tourist's Guide to the County of Caernarvon , 1821, while shorter articles written by him were published in Gwyneddion , 1832 (on the history of Anglesey), and in the Transactions of the Honourable Society of Cymmrodorion , 1843 (on the Welsh monasteries and abbeys). He translated two of Richard Baxter's books into Welsh under the titles: Tragwyddol Orphwysfa'r Saint , 1825, and Galwad i'r Annychweledig , 1825. He died 22 November 1836, and was buried at Llanrug.

Scope and Content

A collection of 25 manuscript volumes formerly belonging to John Davies ('Gwyneddon') and his son Alderman Gwyneddon Davies of Caernarfon, the donor. Nineteen of the volumes (Gwyneddon mss 1-16, 19, 23 and 24) were at one time in the possession of the Rev. Peter Bayly Williams, rector of Llanrug and Llanberis, 1792-1836, and of these, the first four, written during the late sixteenth and early seventeenth centuries, are the nucleus of the collection. They contain transcripts of 'cywyddau' and other poems by: Arthur ab Urthur, Bedo Brwynllys, Bedo Aeddren, Bedo ap Phylip Bach, Bleddyn Fardd, Cynddelw, Cynfrig ap Dafydd Goch, Dafydd ap Dafydd Llwyd ab Ieuan ab Owain, Dafydd Ddu o Hiraddug, Dafydd ab Edmwnd, Dafydd ap Gwilym, Dafydd Fynglwyd, Dafydd ap Hywel ap Hywel ab Ieuan Fychan, Dafydd ap Llywelyn ap Madog, Dafydd Llwyd ap Llywelyn ap Gruffudd, Dafydd Nanmor, (Syr) Dafydd Owain, Dafydd ap Siencyn Fynglwyd, Dafydd Trefor, Deio ab Ieuan Du, Edward Morus, Edward ap Raff, Edward ap Rhys, Edward Urien, Einion Offeiriad, Eos Glyn Teifi, (Syr) Gruffudd Fain ap Llywelyn, Gruffudd Gryg, Gruffudd Hiraethog, Gruffudd ab Ieuan ap Llywelyn Fychan, Gwilym ab Ieuan Hen, Gruffudd Llwyd ap Dafydd ab Einion Llygliw, Gutun Goch Brydydd, Guto'r Glyn, Gutun Owain, Gwalchmai, Hywel Cilan, Hywel Dafydd ab Ieuan ap Rhys, Hywel ap Dafydd Llwyd, Hywel ab Einion, Hywel ap Syr Mathew, Huw Arwystli, Huw Cae Llwyd, Huw ab Elise, Huw Llyn, Huw Llwyd ap Hywel ap Rhys, Huw Machno, Iorwerth Fynglwyd, Ieuan Bedo Gwyn, Ieuan Brydydd Hir, Ieuan Clywedog, Ieuan Deulwyn, Ieuan Dyfi, Ieuan Fychan ab Ieuan ab Adda, (Syr) Ieuan o Garno, Ieuan Heiliarth, Ieuan ap Hywel Swrdwal, Ieuan Johns (?Ieuan ap Sion), Ieuan Llwyd Tudur, Ieuan ap Morgan Iorwerth, Ieuan ap Rhydderch ab Ieuan Llwyd, Ieuan Tew Brydydd Hen, Iolo Goch, Lewis Glyn Cothi, Lewis Mon, Lewis Morgannwg, Lewis Trefnant, Llywelyn Goch ap Meurig Hir, Llywelyn ap Hywel ab Ieuan ab Gruffudd, Llywelyn ap Maredudd ab Edward, Llywelyn ap y Moel, Llawdden, Mastr Harri, Mathew Brwmffild, Meilir Brydydd, Maredudd ap Rhys, Morgan ap Huw Lewis, Morus Berwyn, Morus ap Hywel, Owain Gwynedd, Owain ap Llywelyn ap Moel o'r Pantri, Rhisiart ap Hywel o'r Hengaer, Rhisiart Phylip, Robin Ddu, Robert ab Ieuan ap Thomas, Rhys Cain, Rhys Goch Eryri, Rhys Nanmor, Rhys Tegannwy, Siams Dwnn, Siencyn Fynglwyd, Sion Brwynog, Sion ap Dafydd ap Siencyn, Sion Phylip, Sion ap Hywel, Sion Cent, Sion Ceri, Sion Tudur, Sypyn Cyfeiliog, Taliesin Ben Beirdd, Thomas Derllys, Thomas John o Dregaron, Thomas Penllyn, Tudur Aled, Wiliam Egwad, Wiliam Cynwal, Wiliam Llyn and William Midleton.

Gwyneddon mss 5-16 are for the most part written in the hand of Peter Bayly Williams, and contain, apart from some miscellaneous matter, including pedigrees, triads, proverbs, lists of place-names, birds and fishes etc., further transcripts of poems by the bards already mentioned and in addition by: Lewis ab Edward, Llywelyn ap Gutun, Llwydiarth, Ieuan Tew Brydydd o Gydweli, Morus Dwyfech, Huw ap Rhisiart ap Sion, Syr Owain ap Gwilym, curate of Tal-y-llyn, Huw Pennant, Simwnt Fychan, Huw Lewis, Ieuan Waed Da, Syr Dafydd Laes, alias Penllyn, Gruffudd ap Dafydd ap Hywel, William Salesbury, Morgan ap Rhys, Gruffudd Dwnn, Dafydd Gorlech, Sion Rhydderch, John Owen, Rowland Vaughan, Wiliam Phylip, Richard Lloyd, Sion Cain, Rhys Jones o'r Blaenau, Llywelyn Goch y Dant, Gruffudd ap Dafydd Fychan, Hywel Eryri (Hywel Garmon), Gwion Bach, Goronwy Owen, Mabelaf ap Llywarch, Robin Ddu Ieuaf, o Fon, William Wynn o Langynhafal, Sion Powel, Rhisiart Jones o Drefdraeth, Dafydd Ddu Eryri, Llywelyn ap Maredudd ab Ednyfed ab Elise, Bribwll Llanfyrnach, Edward Richard, Rhosier Edward, Iorwerth ab Ioan, Lewis Daron, Hywel ap Rheinallt, Rhys Goch ap Dafydd, Gwilym ap Sefnyn, Dafydd Pennnant, Ieuan Tew Ieuaf , Dafydd Ionawr, William Williams, Llandygai, Griffith Williams ('Gutyn Peris'), Margaret Davies, Ellis Rowland, Griffith Parry, Rowland Ellis, Huw Llwyd o Gynfal, Huw Evans ('Hywel Eryri'), Lewis Owain o Dyddyn y Garreg and Syr Rhys o'r Drewen.

Gwyneddon mss 17 and 18 are commonplace books, the one belonging to the Rev. John Griffith, rector of Llaniestyn in Llyn, with entries ranging from 1732-1751, and the other to an anonymous Dublin lawyer with considerable Welsh connections and covering the period 1682-1688.

Gwyneddon ms 19 consists of transcripts, mostly in the hand of David Ellis, curate of Amlwch in 1776, of 'englynion' by some of the poets previously mentioned as well as by John Vaughan, Cae'r Gai; Thomas Lloyd, Griffith Phylip, Robert Pritchard o Bentraeth, Dafydd Sion, Owen Griffith, Edmwnd Prys, Griffith Bodwrda, Richard Hughes (Cefnllanfair), Gruffudd Peilyn, Thomas Anwyl, Edward Evans, Huw Huws, Mathew Owen, Sion Dafydd (Penllyn), Huw Roberts, Hwmffre Dafydd ab Ieuan, Huw ab Ifan, Ieuan Llwyd Sieffre, Raff ap Robert, Gruffudd Parry, Robert Williams, John Eutyn, Rhys Ionor, Syr Rowland Williams, Robert Hughes, William Davies, Edward Maelor, Rowland Meredith, Dafydd Ellis, Sion Wyn ap Hwmffre, Sion Roger, Rhys Parry, William Elias Rhys Meigen, Ieuan Gruffudd Leiaf, Dr John Davies (Mallwyd) Owain ap Gwilym, Evan James, Casnodyn Fardd, Ednyfed Fychan and Ieuan Iago.

Gwyneddon mss 20, 21 and 22 are all three in the hand of John Davies ('Gwyneddon'), the first two containing minutes, transactions and accounts of two Bangor Welsh literary societies, Cymdeithas Gymroaidd Bangor and Cymdeithas Gomeryddion Bangor for the years 1846-1850, and the third consisting of an essay entitled 'Y Dosbarth Gweithiol yng Nghymru. . .' submitted by J. D. to the Aberystwyth National Eisteddfod of 1865.

Of the three remaining items, Gwyneddon 23, entitled 'Theocriti Idyllia et Epigrammata - Bandi Epistolae Ellenihai', is in Greek script and written by the Rev. Evan Evans ('Ieuan Brydydd Hir'); Gwyneddon ms 24, entitled 'Basgedaid o Friwsion', is a miscellany and scrap-book containing sections from Welsh and English carols, examples of the handwriting of Peter Bayly Williams, letters, etc.; while Gwyneddon ms 25 is a volume (incomplete) of notes of sermons preached at chalcombe, Northants, between 1587 and 1601, probably by the Rev. John Rogers who was vicar there from 1587 to 1632.


Penrhyn Castle Papers

Held at: Department of Manuscripts, University of Wales, Bangor
Reference: GB 0222 PENR
Title: Penrhyn Castle Papers
Dates of creation: 1288-1952
Extent: 21 linear metres Manuscripts 59-61, 205, 1410-1452, 1633, 1637, 2209, 2702 and 2768 are in poor condition.

Administrative/Biographical History

The Griffith family of Penrhyn Castle, was perhaps the first in North Wales to emerge as the owners of a modern landed estate. They claimed descent from Ednyfed Fychan through his son Tudur. Documentary evidence supports the testimony of the pedigrees that the descendants of Tudur ab Ednyfed Fychan were settled at Nant in Englefield, and Llangynhafal, in the vale of Clwyd. Far from being settled at Penrhyn early in the fourteenth century, the Griffith family continued to live in north-east Wales until the close of the century. However, the three marriage alliances during that century brought them substantial property in Caernarvonshire and Anglesey.

Gwilym ap Griffith Heilyn, third in descent from Tudur ab Ednyfed, who died ca.1370, married Eva, ca.1340, daughter of Griffith ap Tudur ap Madog ap Iarddur. Her father and brother Gwilym ap Griffith of Llaniestyn, Anglesey were landowners of some note in Englefield and in various townships in Anglesey and Caernarvonshire. She was probably one of the co-heirs of her brother in 'Gafael Iarddur' in Bodfaeo, co. Caernarvon in 1352, and it was almost certainly this marriage which brought Cochwillan to her husband's family, together with the share of her family's lands in Anglesey. By her brother, Gwilym ap Griffith's will, dated 1375, her son, Griffith ap Gwilym inherited further lands in Anglesey and Caernarvonshire.

Griffith ap Gwilym (d.1405), married Generys, ca.1360, daughter and heiress of Madog ap Goronwy Fychan who was third in descent from Ednyfed Fychan through his son, Goronwy, ancestor of the Tudors. She brought to her husband lands at Gwredog in Anglesey, together with her share of the family lands at 'Gafael Goronwy ab Ednyfed', in the township of Cororion in Caernarvonshire. 'Gafael Goronwy ab Ednyfed' was the nucleus of the Penrhyn estate and the whole 'Gafael' corresponds roughly to the present Penrhyn demesne, or park. This marriage marks the first link between the Griffith family and Penrhyn, but Griffith ap Gwilym lived throughout his life in north-east Wales.

The personal connection of the family with Anglesey and Caernarvonshire began with the eldest and second son of Griffith ap Gwilym. The eldest son of Griffith and Generys, Gwilym ap Griffith (d.1431), married his kinswoman, Morfydd, ca.1390. She was the daughter of Goronwy ap Tudur of Penmynydd. Gwilym thereby gained a further share in 'Gafael Goronwy ab Ednyfed' (Penrhyn) as well as lands in Anglesey. In 1389, Gwilym and his younger brother, Robin ap Griffith, were granted by their father his lands in Caernarvonshire and Anglesey and it was probably this step which led to their firm establishment in the area. Lands in Bodfaeo were given to Robin, but Gwilym was the real founder of the Penrhyn family. His wife's dowry had strengthened his hold on 'Gafael Goronwy ab Ednyfed' (Penrhyn) but his main possessions were in the commotes of Menai and Dindaethwy in Anglesey. From 1391 to 1397 he held various crown offices in Anglesey, and was Sheriff in 1396-1397. His wife's uncles were supporters of their cousin Owain Glyndwr, and although Gwilym himself was more cautious, he was forced by family and other circumstances to throw in his lot with the rebels in about 1402. However, Gwilym made his peace with the King before November 1407, when he was restored to his forfeited possessions. Additionally, he was granted the lands of twenty-seven Anglesey supporters of Glyndwr, who had probably died in the rebellion. By 1410, he had also been granted the forfeited lands of his wife's uncles, Rhys and Gwilym ap Tudur. The will of Gwilym ap Griffith, dated 1430, refers to lands which he had obtained from his Tudor kinsmen. The land of his brother in law, Tudur ap Goronwy, also appears to have come into his hands. Gwilym ap Griffith succeeded thanks to his father's marriage, as well as his own and also profited from the effects of the Glyndwr rebellion, to gain control of most of the patrimony of the Tudors. Some time after 1405, Gwilym married for a second time, Joan, daughter of Sir William Stanley of Hooton, Cheshire. His son by his first wife only inherited his mother's property at Penmynydd. When Gwilym ap Griffith died in 1431, he left his great possessions in Anglesey and Caernarvonshire to his son by his second wife.

Between 1431 and 1531, the son, grandson and great-grandson of Gwilym ap Griffith held the Penrhyn estate and added to it. They succeeded in allying themselves with prominent English houses, especially the Stanleys, which began with the marriage of Gwilym ap Griffith with Joan Stanley of Hooton. Gwilym Fychan, the son of that marriage, married before 1447, Ales daughter and heiress of Sir Richard Dalton of Althorp, Northants. The marriage reflects the Stanley connection, as Ales Dalton was the granddaughter of Isabel de Pilkington by her second marriage, whose daughter by Thomas de Lathom, her first husband, brought Lathom and Knowsley to the Stanleys. Gwilym Fychan married secondly, Gwenllian, daughter of Iorwerth ap David. Robert, his eldest son by this marriage, was the ancestor of the family of Griffith of Plas Newydd, Anglesey, and Llanfair-is-gaer, Caernarvonshire. Edmund the second son founded the estate of Carreg-lwyd, Anglesey. His son and heir from his first marriage was William Griffith (ca.1445-1505/6). He is not always easy to distinguish in the documents from his father. He married firstly Joan Troutbeck, widow of Sir William Butler of Bewsey, Cheshire, whose mother was Margaret, daughter of Sir Thomas Stanley, first Baron Stanley. William Griffith was therefore a nephew by marriage to Thomas, first Earl of Derby, which was another confirmation of the Stanley connection. However, he had other influential connections also. His second wife was Elizabeth Grey, grand-daughter of Reginald, 3rd Baron Grey of Ruthin and first cousin to John Grey, Lord Ferrers of Groby. This marriage would have brought him into personal contact with the powerful Greys and Woodvilles. His son William Griffith (ca.1480-1531) married firstly Jane, daughter of Sir Thomas Stradling of St. Donats, Glamorgan and his wife, Joan, daughter of Thomas Mathew of Radyr, Glamorgan. His second wife was Jane, daughter of John Puleston 'Hen' (the Old) of Bersham. William, the eldest son by this marriage, founded the family of Griffith in Trefarthen. William Griffith's (ca.1480-1531) eldest son William, died young. He was therefore succeeded by his second son, Edward Griffith (b.18 May 1511). Edward Griffith had married Jane, daughter of Sir John Puleston of Bersham, but died of 'the flux' in Dublin, 11 March 1540. His death precipitated a long dispute between Rhys Griffith, his younger brother, who claimed the estates as heir male, and John Puleston, brother of Jane Puleston, acting for his sister and her three children. Puleston asked Cromwell for the wardship of the children, and offered him D40 for his good offices. Rhys Griffith complained that while he was in Ireland 'on the king's service', his sister in law and her father had ransacked Penrhyn, leaving 'nothing but the bare walls'. The Lord Chancellor and the Master of the Court of Wards made an arbitration in 1542, however, the problems involved were still unsettled in 1559. Even after Rhys Griffith had died, in 1580, Sir Edward Bagnal, who had married one of Edward Griffith's daughters, was still pursuing his wife's claims in the court of wards. Rhys Griffith had married firstly, in ca.1526, Margaret, daughter of Morris ap John of Clenennau. By this marriage, there were five sons and two daughters. Secondly, he married, ca.1551, Jane, daughter of Dafydd ap William ap Griffith of Cochwillan. He married for a third time in ca.1566, Catherine, daughter of Piers Mostyn of Talacre. By this marriage there were two sons, Piers and William. Rhys was knighted at the coronation of Edward VI. He died 30 July 1580 and was succeeded by Piers Griffith, his eldest son by the third marriage. During Piers Griffith's lifetime the estate passed by purchase into the possession of John Williams of the kindred house of Williams of Cochwillan.

The Williams family of Cochwillan descended from the same stock as Griffith of Penrhyn, and the founder of the family was Robin ap Griffith, brother of the Gwilym ap Griffith, who established the Penrhyn fortunes. Cochwillan and the Caernarvonshire property was purchased ca.1620, by the cousin of Henry Williams of Cochwillan, Archbishop John Williams (1582-1650), and he acquired the Penrhyn estate about the same time. On the death of Archbishop John Williams in 1650, the joint estates passed to his nephew, Griffith Williams (d.1663), son of Robert Williams of Conway. He married Gwen, daughter of Hugh (Gwyn) Bodwrda, an alliance, which was strengthened in the next generation by the marriage of their daughter to her cousin, John, grandson of Hugh Gwyn of Bodwrda. Griffith Williams was created a baronet in 1658 by Cromwell and by Charles II in 1661. He died in 1663 and was succeeded by his son Sir Robert Williams (ca.1627-1680), 2nd Bart. He married firstly, Jane, daughter of Sir John Glynne of Hawarden in 1652. Secondly, he married Frances, in 1671, widow of Colonel Whyte of Friars (Beaumaris), daughter of Sir Edward Barkham, Bart. Sir Robert Williams was succeeded by his two sons, Sir John Williams (d.1682), 3rd Bart., and Sir Griffith Williams (d.1684), 4th Bart., who died without heirs. The baronetcy passed to Hugh Williams of Marl, third son of Sir Griffith Williams, 1st Baronet. Penrhyn and Cochwillan went to Frances, eldest daughter of Sir Robert Williams, who in turn, left them jointly to her two sisters : Anne, who married Thomas Warburton of Winnington, Cheshire; and Gwen, who married Sir Walter Yonge of Escot, Devon. Between 1765 and 1785 a Richard Pennant succeeded through marriage and purchase in reuniting the moieties of the estate.

The Pennant family fortunes were founded on the wealth of the West Indies. Giffard Pennant migrated west and bought extensive lands in Jamaica before his death in 1677. His son, John Pennant married Bonella Hodges in 1734 which resulted in the merger of two estates raising sugar in the parish of Clarendon, Jamaica. John Pennant reaped further blessings from the will of his brother Samuel in 1749. It was John's son Richard, born around 1737, who married Ann Susannah, daughter and heiress of General Hugh Warburton, owner of Winnington Hall, Cheshire, and the Warburton moiety of the Penrhyn Estate, on 6 December 1765. On the death of his father in law in 1771, he succeeded to Winnington Hall and the Warburton moiety of the Penrhyn Estate. It was ten years after this that he succeeded his father to all of the Jamaica property. He also continued with his father's negotiations for the purchase of the Yonge moiety of Penrhyn Castle and succeeded in completing the purchase in 1785. In the same year he started as a co-operative, the Penrhyn Slate Quarry. In 1790 at Pen-y-bryn he built Port Penrhyn, in order to export the slate to distant places. Between 1800 and 1801, he built the Penrhyn Tramway, the first private horse drawn rail-road in North Wales, and amongst the earliest in the whole of Britain, to transport the slate from the quarry to the port. In the 1790's also, he built a road down to Port Penrhyn and nine miles towards Capel Curig. At Capel Curig in 1803 he built a hotel called the Royal Hotel. Also, in 1797 he had the Penrhyn mansion at Llandygai modernised. In 1808 he died, aged 70 and with his death the male line came to an end. Richard Pennant was undoubtedly a powerful personality with great achievements to his credit.

George Hay Dawkins, cousin of Richard Pennant succeeded to the estate. Winnington went to the widow of Richard Pennant. George Hay Dawkins in the same year as he succeeded to the estate, assumed, by Royal Licence, the surname and arms of Pennant and added them to his own. On July 25 1807, he married the Honourable Sophia Mary, daughter of the Rt Hon Cornwallis Maude, 1st Viscount Hawarden. George Hay Dawkins-Pennant died without male issue in 1840 and was succeeded by his eldest daughter and co-heiress, Juliana Isabella Mary Dawkins-Pennant. In August 1833 she had married Colonel Edward Gordon Douglas. He in 1841 assumed by Royal Licence also, the surname and arms of Pennant. In 1866, after being appointed Lord Lieutenant of Caernarvonshire, he was created first baron of Penrhyn of Llandygai, by Queen Victoria. In 1867-1868, he replaced the 1800-1801 Penrhyn Tramway with the new Penrhyn Railway. He died March 31, 1886 aged 85. He was succeeded to the estate and title by his eldest son, George Sholto Gordon Douglas-Pennant, 2nd Baron Penrhyn of Llandygai. It was during his lifetime that the great strike at Penrhyn Quarry occurred from 1900-1903. He died March 10, 1907, and was succeeded by his eldest and only son from his first marriage, Edward Sholto Douglas-Pennant.

In 1952, Penrhyn Castle and a substantial portion of the Penrhyn Estate were accepted by the Treasury in lieu of death duties, and vested in the National Trust.

Scope and Content

A collection of 3040 items relating to the Penrhyn estate and its successive owners: the Griffith, Williams, Pennant and Douglas-Pennant families. It comprises, family papers of the Griffiths, 1340-1627, represented by Gruffydd ap Gwilym ap Griffith, William ap Griffith ap William, Sir William Griffith, first Chamberlain of North Wales; William Griffith, Sir Rees Griffith and Piers Griffith; the Williams family together with the Warburtons and Yonges, 1647-1675, represented by Archbishop John Williams, Sir Griffith Williams, Sir Robert Williams, Thomas Warburton and Anne (nee Williams), his wife and Sir Walter Yonge and Gwen (nee Williams), his wife; Pennant family and Douglas-Pennant family, 1785-1852, represented by Richard, first Baron Penrhyn, G. H. Dawkins Pennant and E. G. Douglas-Pennant; deeds relating to properties in Aber, Abercain, Bangor, Bodfaen, Bodfaeo, Bodidda, Bodfaon, Bryncelyn, Caernarfon, Caernechan, Cororion, Cwnllannerch, Dinorwig, Dwygyfylchi, Dyffryn Mymbyr, Elernion, Gogarth, Gweredros, Llandygai, Llanfair-is-gaer, Llanllechid, Llanrhychwyn, Llechan, Maenol Bangor, Maenol Padric, Mellteyrn, Nefyn, Peniarth Isa, Penmachno, Pennant Wernogion, Rhiwledin, Trebodrydd, Trecastell, Tre-faes, Tregwyr-rhyddion, Tremorfa, Trewarth and Uwch-heli, co. Caernarfon; Amlwch, Beaumaris, Bodfa, Bodylgadw, Buarth Brech, Castell Bwlch-gwyn, Cefnburwyn, Cerriggwyddyl, Clorach, Conysiog-Lys, Crymlyn Heilin, Dinsylwy Frenin, Gwredog, Heneglwys, Hirdre-faig, Llanddyfnan, Llangoed, Llansadwrn, Lledwigan-Llys, Llwydiarth Esgob, Mathafarn Eithaf, Mathafarn Wion, Newborough, Penhesgyn, Penmynydd, Pentraeth, Penhwnllys, Perthgyr, Porthaethwy, Porthaml, Tirgarw, Trefdraeth, Trefelyas, Treforion, Trysglwyn, Trysglwyn Ednyfed, Ynyslwyd and Ysgeifiog, co. Anglesey; and in Bala and Erethlyn, co. Merioneth and Gwylgre, co. Flint, 1288-1879; papers in a controversy over crown rights in the parish of Llandygai, 1811-1816 and over boundaries in the parishes of Llandygai, Llanddeiniolen and Bangor, 1819-1845; a group of 416 papers, including correspondence, reports and accounts relating to the extensive sugar plantations owned by the Pennant family in Jamaica, 1709-1880; rentals, surveys and valuations of the Penrhyn estate, 1413-1860; maps and plans, 1823-1868; letter-books, 1848-1900; accounts, estate and household, 1830-1877; and papers concerning the early stages and later development of the Penrhyn slate quarry, including agreements, leases, accounts and reports, 1738-1883. The additional group of manuscripts includes deeds relating to properties in Cerrigceinwen and Llangristiolus, co. Anglesey; Llaniestyn, Aber-erch, Conwy, Dolwyddelan, Eglwys-Rhos, Gyffin, Llanberis, Llangelynnin, Llangystennin, Llanllyfni, Llysfaen, Penmachno, co. Caernarfon; Cerrigydrudion, Corwen, Eglwysbach, Gwytherin, Llanefydd, Llanrwst, Llansanffraid, Ysbyty Ifan, co. Denbigh; Beddgelert, Dolgellau, Ffestiniog, Llandecwyn, Llanelltud, Llanfachreth, Llanfawr, Llanfihangel, Llanfrothen, Llangower, Llanuwchllyn, Mallwyd, Mawddwy, Talyllyn, Towyn, Trawsfynydd, co. Merioneth; Darowen, co. Montgomery; Ocle Pitchard, co. Hereford; the counties of Surrey and Worcester and the City of London; rentals, 1756-1890; accounts, 1735-1878; maps and plans, ca.1760-1932; and miscellaneous papers, which include papers regarding sporting rights. The further additional papers, include surveys and plans, 1768; rentals, 1791-1848; and letter books, 1900-1945.

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