Margaret was born on the last day of 1845 at Lluest near Pontrhdfendigaid, Gwnnws, Cardiganshire which is not far from the ruins of the famous abbey at Strata Florida (meadow of the flowers).
|Lluest Farmhouse and Original Barn.|
Her eldest brother Richard, born in 1826, was a male servant at 14 with a JONES family at Caemadog which is less than a mile north west of Strata Florida. He became a tailor living at Cambrian Street, Gwnnws and was still single in 1871 but by 1881 was a widower. If correct it was an unfourtunately short marriage.
The next brothers, David born in 1827 and John in 1830, both became miners. David married an Elizabeth and lived in Cwmcednu, Gwnnws which he also farmed. There is no record of them having any children though they employed a young boy, Jacob JONES, as a farm servant. David died in 1877 and John in 1859 at the age of just 29 years.
Margaret's sister Mary, whom she never saw, was born in 1834 but died one year later. Another girl was born to her parents in 1834 and they also called her Mary. Her brother Evan was born in 1836 and like David and John became a lead miner. Her sister Winifred was born in 1839 and as well as her brothers also became a lead miner. Margaret's younger brother William born 1848 was also to take up the same occupation. He married an Elizabeth and had at least one child.
By the age of fifteen, Margaret too had become a lead miner and probably, like the other children, had been a lead dresser before that. Lead dressing is the cleaning up of the ore, removing stones and chipping away rock. It is a crude form of refining. Considering that lead is toxic, it is surprising that several family members lived to an old age.
In 1871 Margaret, now a stocking knitter, was still at Gwnnws. In July 1877, whilst working as a domestic servant, had a son she called David at Nantycar, Llanwrthwl, Breconshire. This is to the west on the other side of the "Great Mountain". By December she gave her address as Rhwnant, Llanwrthwl when she married Lewis at Rhayader Register Office. She may have been a domestic servant at Rhwnant.
|The site and remains of Nantycar in 2006.|
|The farmhouse of Rhwnant in 2006.|
In January 1880 they had a daughter Pheobe born, as was David, at Nantycar in Llanwrthwl. The following year they moved south to 10 Foundry Place, Porth, Glamorgan. Porth is in the Rhondda which had developed as an important mining area. Lewis was now employed as a coal miner. Their son David was also to become a coal miner before joining the police force. He married Catherine Jones, always known as Kate, and they had one daughter Ceinwen born in 1903. In 1886 Lewis and Margaret had a second daughter Elizabeth, though she was always known as Betty.
By 1891 they moved a few miles to Pontypridd, famous for its single arch bridge over the river Taff, coal mining and the home of James James and Evan James who wrote the Welsh National Anthem. Lewis, Margaret and their children lived at 80 Rickard Street.
|The "Old Bridge" in Pontypridd. It was built in 1756.|
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