August 2009 Archives
In Blog No 29 I wrote about the census return completed in Welsh by my grandfather in Penmachno and this has now been included with the text. When I double left clicked on that image I got a huge image on the screen. I found that the only way to get the image to fill the screen was to play around with the "zoom level change" and I eventually got a page-sized image when I set it at 35%. This figure may be different for you depending on the size of your screen.
I had quite a difficult time finding this record. My grandfather was born Robert Williams but he had adopted the middle name Cadwaladr in respect for his maternal grandfather. I tried Robert Cadwaladr Williams born in Penmachno in 1878 and living in Penmachno, Caernarvonshire but no results came up. I tried Robert C Williams, and then Robert Williams and still no results. I then tried his father, William Williams who had adopted the middle name of Pritchard in respect to his grandfather. I then tried repeating the three versions of the search for William Pritchard Williams and again got nothing.
I then remembered the problems I'd had with the County CDs which I mentioned in Blog No 26 and I changed the current address to "Penmachno, Denbighshire" and tried again. I had no luck with Robert Cadwaladr or Robert C but I got a result for Robert Williams born in Penmachno in 1878. Without thinking, I immediately went to the full record and found that it was another Robert Williams living in Cwm Penmachno, which was £2.80 down the drain!
The parish of Penmachno was in Caernarvonshire but the electoral district was based on the nearby market town of Llanrwst which was in Denbighshire and the records were therefore classified under Denbighshire rather than Caernarvonshire. This type of problem will not affect the majority of searchers but it could crop up if the parish you're interested in is on the border of another county and the nearest major town is in that other county.
I knew that my grandparents lived in Gwiga, Penmachno, so I decided to do a "place" search rather than a "person" search. I put in "Gwiga, Penmachno, Denbighshire" and I found the record shown in the last blog. Whilst my grandfather had put his full name when signing the box in the bottom right corner, he had put "R C Williams" on the main part of the form so no wonder I couldn't find him with my searches. Similarly he had put his father down as "W P Williams". A lesson from this is that if your searches with full first names come to nothing, try using the initials. If I hadn't known the address, I would have been stuck unless I had thought of using the initials, "R C Williams".
He should, of course, have put the full names and not initials. I notice also that he has put "gweddw" (widower) in the column showing the relationship with the Head of Household instead of "Tad" (father). The word "gweddw" should have been in the marriage status column. Robert has put down as his occupation, "Gwneuthurwr Llechau" which translates to "Slates maker or worker" but he has put down the occupation of his father as "Letter Deliverer" in English. This suggests that he didn't know the Welsh words for what we now call a Postman. The supporting notes do state that some of the Welsh language forms did contain a mixture of Welsh and English words.
I see that the three adults are down as speaking "y ddwy" or both languages. My grandfather has put down that my mother, Kate aged 2, spoke only "Cymraeg" (Welsh) but this has been crossed out in red by the Enumerator as this information was not required for children under the age of 3.
Whilst my Penmachno grandparents had chosen to fill the Welsh Language form I found that my Llithfaen grandparents had completed the English language form (shown) even though they were completely Welsh speaking. This could be something to do with the attitude of Enumerator who was distributing the forms and still happens these days. My grandfather, Thomas Roberts of Rose Hill, Llithfaen (in the parish of Pistyll), had put down that he and his wife Ellen spoke both languages. My father, Emyr, is down aged 1.
It is seen that in both the Welsh and the English language forms that one column is blanked out and censored (or "redacted" as Gordon Brown would say!). This is the Infirmity information which is been kept secret until 2012 so that the 100 year privacy rule is preserved.
It is seen that there is a column for Personal Occupation and it can be seen that numbers have been put by the Enumerator against what has been written by the householder. The background information on the website gives occupation and industry categories codes which are of particular interest to me as a Chartered Statistician in comparing these to our present day industry classifications. The codes shown on the two forms are as follows:
R C Williams: 594 Slate Workers
W P Williams: 403 Postmen
Thomas Roberts 210 Carpenter, Joiner
It is also seen that there is a column for Industry sector. For R C and W P Williams no numbers have been inserted as the industry was obvious from their occupational descriptions. Against Thomas Roberts is written 591 which was described as "Stone - mines, quarries". He is therefore categorised as a carpenter (210) working in a Stone Quarry (591) which is correct as he was working at the time in the Nant Gwrtheyrn granite quarries. This appears the start of the State building up employment statistics but I'll have to make further enquiries as to whether they extracted such information from earlier censuses.
There are other interesting aspects to the 1911 Census to which I'll return in a later blog.
The Gwynedd Family History Society meetings are starting up again and the meetings for the next four weeks are:
Bangor, 1 September (first Tuesday of each month) 7.00pm at the Quakers Meeting Hall, Dean Street: H Llew Williams, "Willpower"
Caernarfon, 24 September (last Thursday of each month) 7.00pm at the The Library, Lôn Pafiliwn: Y Parch. Emlyn Richards, "Bywyd Lloft Stabal"
Dolgellau, 10 September (second Thursday of each month) 7.00pm at the Royal Ship Hotel Arthur Thomas, "Traddodiad y Bardd Gwlad"
Conwy, 14 September (second Monday of each month) 7.00pm at Capel Ebenezer, Abergele Road, Old Colwyn (please note new meeting place):
Meurig Owen, "Cefn Meiriadog History Galore".
Llangefni, 17 September (third Thursday of each month) 7.00pm at Capel Smyrna, Ffordd Glanhwfa: Rev. Neil Fairlamb "Viscount Bulkeley of Cashel and Baron Buckeley of Beaumaris"
Pwllheli, 18 September (third Friday of each month) 7.00pm at Capel Seion, Lon Dywod:
O J Cowell, "Lobscows"