Tuesday, April 11, 2017

The Gravestones of Price and Annie Davies

My first cousin once removed recently made a trip to Wales and upon request he stopped by the graveyard of Price and Annie Davies to take a picture for me. These are one set of my great grandparents. I had previously tried to find them through find a grave but had no luck. He said next time he made the trip he would happily accomodate my request.

Since he knows Welsh he also kindly translated the inscriptions. The original inscription reads:

"Er Serchus Cof Am
Annie Davies
Annwyl Briod
Price Davies, Cynt o Dowlais Top
Bu Farw 6 Chwefror 1961
Yn 78 Mlwydd Oed
Hefyd Am y Dywededig
Price Davies
Bu Farw 15 Mai 1966
Yn 84 Mlwydd Oed
"Byth Ar Swn Y Delyn Aur."
He informed me that the literal translation is:

"In Loving Memory Of
Annie Davies
Beloved Spouse of
Price Davies, Formerly of Dowlais Top
Died 6 February 1961
At 78 Years Old
Also of the Aforesaid
Price Davies
Died 15 May 1966
At 84 Years Old.

"Ever to the Sound of the Golden Harp."

This relative, Roy, always sends me helpful links to explain references as well. He let me know that "the last line is from a Welsh hymn "Y Delyn Aur" (the Golden Harp) by Ann Griffiths. Her name was almost the same as Annie's before her marriage - Annie Griffiths."
I will share the hymn and some history behind it in another post. I can now add these to the gravestones I have for one set of my great grandparents on my mothers side. I blogged about them here.

Saturday, April 1, 2017

The Marriage Of Harold And Annie

I promised my great aunt Ruth that I would transcribe Harold and Annie's marriage certificate. So here it is. I originally sent off for this record 5 or 6 years ago so I'm happy to finally put it in blog format.

Date: 1911
Marriage Solemnized at: St. Paul's Church, Cwmtillery in the Parish of Abertillery, in the county of Monmouth.
Number: 136
When Married: July 31st 1911

Name and Surname: Harold Griffiths.
Age: 19
Condition: Bachelor
Rank Or Profession: Collier
Residence At Time Of Marriage: 55 Powell Street, Abertillery
Father's Name And Surname: Thomas Griffiths
Rank Or Profession Of Father: Collier

Name And Surname: Annie Simpkins
Age: 19
Condition: Spinster
Rank Or Profession: Blank
Residence At Time Of Marriage: 11 Earl Street, Abertillery
Father's Name And Surname: John Simpkins
Rank Or Profession Of Father: Collier

Married in the Church Of St. Paul according to the rites and ceremonies of the established church
on after Banns by me.

This marriage was solemnized between us, Harold Griffiths, Annie Simpkins, in the presence of James John Simpkins, Emma James.

D.O Loyd Williams Officiating Priest.


There's a couple of things to note about the information in this marriage certificate.

1. Cwmtillery had the church of St Paul built in 1890 and it was not opened for worship until 1891, so it was relatively new at the time of the wedding.

2. Cwmtillery was considered a very beautiful place before the coal mining industry became the prominent player in the local economy. According to Wikipedia and local sources there were 4 explosions within the mine its self. The mines closed in the late 1900's and the town is quickly reverting back to a place of beauty.

3. At present I am not sure if the two witnesses James John Simpkins and Emma James are both family members. James John could be Annie's father also listed as John Simpkins in this certificate. He could also be a brother, I need to do a little research. The 1901 census shows a Jas John Simpkins as Annie's brother. It's possible Jas is James. Annie's mother was named Elizabeth, so Emma could be a wife of a sibling, or she could just be a friend.

4. The ages on this marriage certificate are 19 for both. However, I currently have Harold born in 94 and Annie born in 96. The 1901 census has Harold's age as about 6 so I am fairly confident he was born around 94. Annie Simpkins is also listed as 16 in the 1911 census. This would make them 17 and 15/16 respectively. Until the Age of Marriage Act in 1929 the age of marriage for males was 14 and for females was 12. Either I have their birth dates wrong, or they lied about their age on the marriage certificate.