Searching for Rhandirmwyn ancestors.

The relevant ancestors are Charlotte Thomas and John Davies, both born in 1816. Charlotte died in 1868 and John in 1873.

My starting-point was an early 19th-century Welsh Bible inherited from my grandmother. The first flyleaf contains some handwritten details of Charlotte and John and their family, which included my great-great-grandmother Ann Rees née Davies. It states that John was the son of another John Davies and was born on 16 April 1816. Charlotte his wife was born in February 1816. Charlotte and John’s children were named Elizabeth, William, Hannah, Jane and Ann.

According to the Bible entries, Charlotte and John married in Tredegar in 1838, brought up their family there, died there and were buried in Cefn Golau cemetery, so it was only when I traced them in the censuses last year that I realised they were both originally from Carmarthenshire. The 1851-71 census entries for John all give simply “Carmarthenshire” as his birthplace, but the 1851 census shows Charlotte’s more specifically as “Nant-bai, Carmarthenshire”.

Their marriage certificate shows Charlotte’s father as William Thomas, Mason. In the digitised parish registers on, I found a baptism on 10 March 1816 at the parish church, Llanfair-ar-y-Bryn for Charlotte Thomas, daughter of Elizabeth and William Thomas, Mason, of Rhandir Abbot. Other children of William and Elizabeth were also baptised in the church. Thomas Thomas b.1817 and Jane Thomas b.1820 were baptised together on 2 February 1820. The parents’ home at that time is shown as Nantbai. John Thomas was baptised on 28 April 1821, when the family’s home was again Rhandir Abbot. William is described as a Mason on all the parish register entries. It seems possible that this is “my” Charlotte’s family, but I cannot be certain without more evidence.

I have not so far been able to trace any further details for John’s early life in Camarthenshire: as I can’t be sure of his parish, too many people with the same name come up! The marriage certificate shows his father was a miner, and John also worked variously an iron or coal miner according to the censuses.

I would be very grateful for any information which would enable me to make progress with this family. We have so far made two trips to Rhandirmwyn and have been glad of the chance to explore such a beautiful part of the world, previously unknown to us.

Susan Hughes

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Nantymwyn Lead Mine

I am researching the history of the Nantymwyn Lead Mine, Rhandirmwyn.  I am interested in the people, the characters who ran the mine and those who worked there, their stories and their legacies.  Many left for America and settled mainly in Pennsylvania.  I have recently had newspaper articles outlining the contribution made by Rhandirmwyn people in both business and political life in America. It was immense.  Many had worked in the Nantymwyn lead mine and left for the New World due to hardship and poverty.  

I am asking for copies of any photographs, stories, anecdotes, historical records and maps.  I am very grateful to the Cwmbran Caving Club for their co-operation.  They visited the mine in 1971 and they have very kindly allowed me copies of notes, maps and photographs taken inside the mine.  It can be seen from their research that there is considerable deterioration.  Some documents will be displayed on the website soon.  They are excellent records and make very good reading.  They will also be displayed on their website  

Alun Jones

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Video of the Upper Tywi Valley

Please click on the link and view a wonderful film made by Paul Harry of the Rhandirmwyn and Llyn Brianne area.

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Llandovery Sheep Festival

On 28th and 29th September 2013 we had a number of photographs at the Dyfed Family History Society display which was in the showroom of Castle Garage, Llandovery. It was a very successful weekend and gratitude to Beryl Morgan, Handel Jones, Davina Price, Nan Morse and Margaret Lloyd and many others who helped. There is a great deal of interest in local history and we had many visitors. Diolch i bawb.

Alun Jones

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We apologise for the galleries being taken off line but we have had problems with the transference to the latest version of SmugMug our hosting site.  At last the work is nearly complete.  The galleries will be back on line Thursday 12th September. 

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School Magazines

At last we have completed copies of the Rhandirmwyn school magazines for 1959, 1960 and 1961. To view please click on the link below

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New Photographs

We have recently obtained some excellent new photographs. They have been included in our gallery – Tom Lewis Collection.

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