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The Hamlet of Caegurwen

1871 commentary

1891 changes ?


 

  The Hamlet of Caegurwen in 1871

 

These facts and observations are based on a reading/interpretation of the 1871 census transcription of that part of Llangiwg parish which covers the hamlet of Caegurwen.
The census transcriptions themselves are on Genuki.

Caegurwen was artificially divided into 3 sections for enumeration purposes.
The *approximate* position and extent of the 3 sections can be seen on this first diagram linked below where I have superimposed theoretical boundaries in line with the section descriptions in the census. (and corrected Llanddeusant to Llangadock).  The second diagram is the original, and is clearer as far as the hamlets are concerned.
Images3/Hamlets.gif     /   Images3/Hamlets.jpg

Statistics provided in the return itself include;

 

Total

Section 1

Section 2

Section 3

Households

341

107 (31%)

132 (38%)

102 (30%)

Male

795

238

285

272

Female

791

247

286

258

In very simplistic terms these figures produce an average of 4.65 persons per household - the latter term includes  family, boarders, servants, visitors, other relatives etc

These figures (and diagram) show that the 3 sections aren't dramatically different  in size or population although section 2 is the more heavily populated - it includes Waun Lesion  and Lower Brynamman with the densely populated Park Street.
Section 3 includes most of Gwauncaegurwen village - and also the yet to be named fledgling village of Cwmgors
Section 1 includes the part of the Cwmllynfell area which is within this parish,  and Hendreforgan

 

Where did people come from?

An analysis of just section 1 of Caegurwen hamlet (folio 61/73) containing just under 500 people comes up with this breakdown of the places shown under 'Where born';

Those born  GLA are mostly from within Llangiwg parish itself
Those born BRE are almost all from Ystradgynlais
Those born CMN are mainly from the nearby parishes of Llandagock, Llandilo &  Llandybie - and mostly from Llangadock.

It should be borne in mind that the hamlet adjoins the border with CMN, specifically Llangadock and Llandeilofawr - the village of Brynamman itself  straddles three parishes.

However, clearly many of those born in Llangiwg are children whose parents came from elsewhere -  further analysis shows that if one just counts the heads of families then the numbers are;

 

GLA

  • Llangiwg = 39  (36%)
  • Llangyfelach = 2
  • Other = 2

CMN

  • Llangadock = 19  (18%)
  • Llandilo = 8 (7%)
  • Llandybie = 4
  • Bettws = 1
  • Other = 11

BRE

  • Ystradgynlais = 10 (9%)
  • Other = 1

CGN = 1
PEM = 2
MON = 3

There are just over 100 households in this first Caegurwen section, co-incidentally, the above totals for GLA and CMN are exactly the same at 43 -  with Llangiwg, GLA and Llangadock, CMN being the largest and next largest.

I'd previously felt that there might be a strong incidence of both husband and wife coming from the same parish, not so it seems.
I haven't extracted any figures to support it but my impression is that, apart from Llangiwg, there were only half a dozen at most couples from the exact same parish, quite a few from the same county, i.e. CMN, but the majority came from different counties (usually CMN and GLA).
The overall majority of couples appeared to both come from Llangiwg, of course this is partly because the incoming element was a previous generation.
It's interesting that most of the 'cross county line incomers' therefore arrived independently in Llangiwg parish.

 

Naming patterns

An analysis of  only the section 1 of Caegurwen hamlet (folio 61/73) containing just under 500 people comes up with this breakdown of the incidence of given names;

 

Male

  • John = 46  (19%)
  • William = 45 (19%)
  • David = 34
  • Thomas = 29
  • Richard = 7
  • Griffith = 6
  • Morgan = 6
  • Samuel = 5
  • Owen = 3
  • Daniel = 3
  • Isaac = 3

Female

  • Mary (Anne/Jane) = 50 (20%)
  • Ann(e) = 33  (13%)
  • Hannah = 26
  • Margaret (Anne) = 21
  • Elizabeth = 19
  • Jane = 19
  • Catherine = 13
  • Gwenllian  = 13
  • Jennet = 12
  • Sarah = 7
  • Rachel = 6
  • Susannah = 3

No surprises there then - John & William;  and Mary & Ann(e) were clear favourites.

Statistically, that leaves about 60/70 other entries spread out over many other given names which appear in ones and twos.

Apart from  a few traditional  'double names' such as Mary Anne/Mary Jane & Margaret Anne, there were hardly any entries where the person had more than one given name.

 

Schooling

The normal age span for those children  referred to as Scholars appears to be between 4 and 12.
But several females up to 18, one boy aged 2, are also shown as Scholars, the latter probably in error.

 

Main Occupations etc

These figures below relate to the whole of Caegurwen hamlet

Male;

  • Coal Mining  (all jobs directly related)  285  
  • Labourers 35
  • Farmers 30
  • Iron works    17
  • Blacksmiths  11
  • Carpenters  9
  • Tailors/drapers 7
  • Shoemakers  3
  • Clockmaker  1
  • Woollen manufacturer 1 (employing 3)
  • Police  1
  • Gateman (tollgate)  1

Female;

  • Servants (domestic & farm)  49
  • Paupers  (usually widows)  26
  • Dressmakers  13
  • Laundress 3
  • Nurses 2
  • Patch miners (coal)  2

Both sexes;

  • Scholars  369 (over 100 in each section)
  • Pubs & Inns  9 (see below)
  • Shopkeepers 9 (see below)
  • On parish relief  8

 

Pubs/Inns  9

  • Section 1
  • Mountain Hare 66/29 - Catherine Samuel
  • Rock 71/83 - Jennet Jones
  •  
  • Section 2
  • Old Farmer's Arms 86/102 - Lewis Evans
  • New Farmer's Arms 86/103 - John Jones
  • 21 Park St   82/56 - Morgan Evans
  • 27 Park St  82/62 - David Jones
  •  
  • Section 3
  • Caegurwen Arms  98/59 - Magdalen Morgan
  • Star Inn  100/81 - David Thomas
  • Star Inn (New Star below Cwmnanthopkin) 102/99 - David Thomas

Shopkeepers 8  (all but 1 in section 2)

  • Butchers 4
  • Grocers 2
  • Shopkeeper 1
  • Stationer (?) 1

 

Toll gate

The Gate House is shown on the census between Pwllywrach and Blue Cottage, the elderly gateman and his wife both originated from Devon

 

Shop Keepers etc

Most of the 8 'shops' were in section 2
For example, the 4 butchers were in Mount Pleasant (Flat House), Noiadd Cottage (near Tyrbach), Gorsegoch (near Park St), Park St (Lower Brynamman)
Of the 2 Grocers, one was in Park St and the other at the Old Farmer's Arms
The Shop keeper was also in Park St

I'm a bit mystified that there were apparently no shops at all in section 3 which includes the main part of Gwauncaegurwen village.
I understand that local  farmers played a part, and people also grew  their own 'stuff' to an extent -  but nevertheless there *were* tradesmen in Lower Brynamman etc, just not the Waun/Cwmgors.

 

Farming

The whole hamlet of Caegurwen hamlet contains some 30 farmers; of this 9 are in section 1, 7 in section 2, and 14 in section 3.

Of the 9 in the section 1  there are two relatively large farms of 120 and 125 acres respectively, another of 59 acres, the rest range from 2 to 18 acres.
There is no indication of the type of farming carried out on these but the majority would be small holdings carrying a cow or two, a couple of pigs, and some chickens perhaps.

The 14 farms in section 3   are generally bigger although not as big as the largest two in section 1. The section 3 acreages are 40,-,36,45,50,60,63,60,41,60,60,30,112,80.
These farms in section 3 are located around the lower slopes of Penlle'rfedwen and Mynydd Uchaf.
To my knowledge (in the C20th) farmers on the latter grazed cattle and sheep on the poorer quality common land on the mountain's higher slopes/plateau, and I believe that in the C19th there would also have been horses and perhaps some geese.
I think most such farmers would be described as 'hill farmers' these days.

 

Coal mining

The breakdown of the 285 employed in some aspect of coal mining in the whole hamlet is fairly evenly spread with clusters of population with a coal mine or two nearby;

 In section 3, I counted a dozen or so boys age 12 to 15 who were described variously as coal miner, haulier, labourer or weigher in a coal works etc.

 

Iron works

 The 17 men involved in some aspect of iron workings are almost all in section 2, and mainly lived in the Waun Leision / Lower Brynamman area e.g Park St
The Amman Tin Works were not far away.

 

Further reading

In his extensive article detailed below, Hugh Thomas has covered all these aspects of Llangiwg parish in great detail and it is a 'must read' for anyone seriously interested in the parish's history

 

N.B   Most of the statistics quoted above were manually counted by me and should only be taken as an approximation

Gareth Hicks (Dec 2007)

 


How had the hamlet changed by 1891 ?

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Population

The obvious change in the 20 years is the increase in the hamlet's population which rose by c 60% from a total of 1586 to 2628, as shown in the table below.

1871

 

1891

 

Total

Section 1

Section 2

Section 3

 

Total

Section 1

Section 2

Section 3

Households

341

107

132

102

 

507

126

203

178

Male

795

238

285

272

 

1377

286

590

501

Female

791

247

286

258

 

1251

273

536

442

Total pop.

1586

 

 

 

 

2628

 

 

 

Within the above totals, the total population in Section 2 just about doubled, with Section 3 not far behind.

Section 1

Apart from Hendreforgan, Brynmorgan, Cwmllynfell, by far the largest centre was Tir Owen Gwyn - the residents mostly being coal miners.

Section 2

The large centres are now in Cannon Row, Park St, Glynbeudy, Waun Leyshon and Mountain Cottages/Row.
The main occupations in the first three areas (Lower Brynamman) are coal and tin plate; the latter two areas mainly coal - which fits in with proximity to local coal mines and / or tin plate works.

Section 3

There were significant centres at Llwyncelyn, Cae-newydd, Pwllywrach - with parts of Cwmgors village now having expanded significantly e.g Llwynrhidie.
Coal mining was by far the largest employer of men, in line with the expansion of local collieries.

 

Shopkeepers

In the 1871 notes above I commented on the near absence of any commercial activities in Section 3, I'm now able to report an explosion in this area !

 


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