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ADX:504: The David Williams Collection


Acc.1341



Ref: ADX/504

Reference: [GB 0212] ADX/504
Title: The David Williams Collection
Date(s): 1904-1913
Level: Fonds
Extent: 3 files

Administrative History:
David Williams was born at Aberaeron in 1851 and died on 23 January 1913 when a cotton bale fell on him when the ship he was aboard, the S.S. Southgate was at Havre Port [see ADX/504/3/1-3].  The items within this collection mainly relate to David William’s time at sea from 1904 until his death in 1913.

The letters have been sent from various destinations from across the world, including Buenos Aires, Las Palmas, Monte Video, Rotterdam, and Torre Annunziata. He wrote mostly to his wife, Mary and describes life onboard the ship, goings on at port, details about his children and reflections on his love for Mary and the ups and downs of married life. He also refers to the cause of the suffragette movement, especially in relation to his daughter, Ellen. He seems to agree with the right of women to the vote but not with the tactics that the suffragettes were employing.

Some of the letters include fine examples of horizontal and vertical writing on the same page.

Scope and Content:
A collection of letters, along with some examples of poetry by David Williams, mainly to his wife Mary who was living in Barry in this period, but was originally from the Llanarth area.


1. Letters

1/1. To his wife Mary

1/1/1. Wednesday 7 August 1904
S.S. City of York
Port of [Tagranog]
Matters relating to his bad health. All on board been out of sorts since leaving Port Said, Egypt. Will be in Malta sometime after 20th of this month. She won’t receive the 2nd half of his pay because the company will not pay while the ship is in the Black Sea. Will arrive in Rotterdam about the 4th or 5th of October.
Attached are two Welsh poems - ‘Molawd Mari’ and ‘Cofion dydd priodas’ with note saying he’s glad she received that money from Newcastle. Has received letters from Ellen, Het and Pow.  He is bound for Liverpool.
[English and Welsh]
[3 pages]

1/1/2. 9 April 1905
City of York
Antwerp
Observations regarding crew. Has not been on shore since leaving Barry and will not do so until he is in the Bristol Channel again.
[1 page]

1/1/3. June 1905
City of York
Buenos Aires
Arrived here last night. Describes weather during the voyage. Captain nearly got washed overboard. The Captain infected his leg, had been in bed and was still lame. Talks of Captain Jenkins who has been talking ill of him. Could bring him in for scandal but God will pay him. Talks about various other Captains. Will be 53 on the 16th of this month. Been in this ship nearly 5 years and has never had a cross word with anyone on board. Talks of his last visit home, complaining of his treatment by Mary. Includes a Welsh poem entitled ‘I Mary’. He kept his watch all the way from the Black Sea on crutches.
[English and Welsh]
[7 pages]

1/1/4. 14 August 1905
City of York
Hull
Family matters. Needs new clothes. Had four nice mats made for her, has knitted the centre from plaited rope yarns. Also has two sheepskins and a fine cask for her. Will send it home if they go to the Tyne. The Captain’s leg is a little better. Sorry to hear of poor Captain Davies and Captain Thomas.
[1 page]

1/1/5. 21 August 1905
City of York
Hull
Very homesick. If they don’t sail before the 31st of this month will ask the Captain for permission to come home. Glad to hear Powell likes his job.
[1 page]

1/1/6. 4 November 1906
Aviemoor
La Plater
Bound for Liverpool or London. Complains about the children’s lack of enthusiasm for writing. Will do all he can for Powell till he serves his apprenticeship out, then he will have to fish for himself. Talks about Het’s reasons for doing charitable work. Only about 8 weeks out and are nearly loaded for home. Half of the crew have run away.
[1 page]

1/1/7. 18 November 1906
S.S. Aviemoor
La Plater
Finish loading tomorrow and are going to Bremen. Dreads going to Bremen because it will be very cold there and his clothes are not very suitable. Gets up at 5.30am every morning, starts work at 6am till 5.30pm. Then wash and get their tea, talk for an hour or so and then get in their berth and go to sleep. Saw D. Jones Jenkins [n]ine vaults from Aberaeron. He was chief mate on one of the mercantile boats called the Lona. Has lately married a Miss Morgan of Llanon. Had lots of news from Aberaeron, knows everybody’s business. Said Maria Evan Griffiths wife had gone back to her aunt in Aberaeron to act as a servant. She is only paid £9 a year. Hasn’t had a letter from Mary since Monte Video. Will arrive back between Christmas and New Year.
[1 page]

1/1/8. 2 July 1907
At Sea
Just passing Barry. It is foggy.
[1 page]

1/1/9. 24 May 1907
S.S. Aviemoor
Rotterdam
Busy discharging cargo. Most likely to sail about a week tomorrow. Third engineer visits him every night, does not care much for his company as he is too frivolous. Told him that he did not see the point in giving young men and women a good education if they only talked about football or cricket in the case of men and hats or lace in the case of women. Says that a little learning is a dangerous thing. Has written to Newcastle but has not received an answer. Has asked the Captain for a reference but he said it would be better to refer them to him. Hopes Powell is studying for his final exam. He has only a little over twelve months to serve with Mr Allen.
[1 page]

1/1/10. 26 May 1907
S.S. Aviemoor
Rotterdam
Direct correspondence to ship, rather than to office. Talks about his desire to leave this world where he is left by himself. He often repeats this verse in these circumstances:
‘Solitude where are thy charms
Sieges have I seen in thy face
It is better to dwell in midst of alarm
Than to reign in this horrible place
Every thing looks to me like vanity
We are allowed to live but then as you say we have a lot to be thankful for
 we have good bodily health if the mind is sick’
He has her to cheer him or he would have committed suicide.
[1 page]

1/1/11. 29 May 1907
S.S. Aviemoor
Rotterdam
Received 7 newspapers from the office, 1 from the postman and one from Las Palmas from Het. The missionary bought the Western Mail on board and he saw an account of the wedding of Williams and Davies. Hoping that the ship will go from here to the Bristol Channel somewhere. The Countess of Warwick is discharging in dock and is bound for Barry. Glad to hear Pow is studying for his exam. Believes that a youth between 18 and 21 will acquire more knowledge than at any other period during his life. The intellect is brighter during that period than at any other time.
[1 page]

1/1/12. 28 June 1907
S.S. Edale
Barry
Says she look young enough to be his daughter. Going to Torre Annunziata in the Adriatic. It takes 15 days to get there.
[1 page]

1/1/13. 17 July 1907
S.S. Edale
Torre Annunziata
Will be sailing from here on Saturday 20th of this month. Will be in Nicolief about the 25th or 26th. His back is a little better. Going to load here for W. Hartlepool so won’t be more than five months on this voyage. Will be so near to the Tyne but these ships very seldom do load in the North. People on board are very nice. Captain is not the real man that Capt. Williamson was. He is an awful fibber. No one on board has any respect for him. He uses dirty language in his conversation and can’t be trusted. Doesn’t know if they will call in Malta on the way back. Hasn’t cleaned his room because his back is very sore.
[1 page]

1/1/14. 27 July 1907
S.S. Edale
Nicolief [Nicolaieff]
Has been better this week than he has been since his fall in the Aviemoor. Expects to be loading for a week or ten days. Sees that the King Idwal is there and wonders if Williams is on her. They are going alongside her in the morning so I will know by tomorrow night. Hasn’t seen him since the time when Powell was born, 18 years ago. She mentions coming to Hartlepool. She can’t stay on ship. Says the Captain is a dirty foul mouth man and a tremendous liar. Won’t be there long because everybody thinks he will get the sack. The mate is a nice man.
[1 page]

1/1/15. 26 August [1907]
S.S Edale
West Hartlepool
Won’t finish there before the end of the week and will be another week after that in the Tyne trading. Women not allowed on board unless they pay 2/6 a day for their food. So far away from the respectable part of the town that she would not be able to get suitable lodgings near the ship. Hopes of getting promotion before long or he will not stay there. He is sorry they did not come to the Bristol Channel but it can’t be helped.
[1 page]

1/1/16. 10 October 1907
S.S Edale
Trieste
Finish discharging tomorrow. Don’t know yet where they are going. Expects it to be the Black Sea somewhere. Hasn’t been off the ship but people have told him it is a pretty place. A hermit could not lead a much more lonely life than he does. Only likes Mr Blake and Mr Rees onboard and also the mess boy. The mess boy is determined to get on in the world. Wishes that Powell were as energetic. The mess boy works at his books with any spare time he has. Hasn’t got the ability of Powell but through sheer hard study he is coming on very well.
[1 page]

1/1/17. 21 October 1907
S.S Edale
Sea of Marmara
Can’t tell the name of the place where they’re at. On Sunday took in 200 tonnes of cargo. Have 500 tonnes to load in there, then they will sail to Gallipoli and take on 20 tonnes of canary seed before sailing to Smyrna to finish. Have been to 5 ports already. Can’t leave Smyrna before the 30th of the month. Then will have 30 days to come back to Barry or they will loose their charter to the plate. Must be ready to take on coal by 4pm on the 30th of November. She can write to the Algiers because they are sure to call there as they are burning lots of coal travelling from one port to another. Things are very cheap in Turkey. Would have bought her a couple of geese but did not have a proper place to keep them and he thought they might go bad.
[1 page]

1/1/18. 25 January 1908
S.S Edale
Monte Video
Sailing from here about the 30th January for Rosario. Captain is a very nice young man. Will be home much sooner than expected. May expect them back by the end of March. Includes Welsh poem to his wife Mary. Dedicates the lines to his dear little wife in the hope that whatever remarks or comments made, will be received for what they are intended. Simply to amuse her and his little family from he who loves them more than that is possible for him to put in paper. I hope they will create a hearty laugh if I was near I would very much enjoy to hear.
[English and Welsh]
[2 pages]

1/1/19. 13 January 1908
S.S. Ras Issa
Port of Victoria
Infested by mosquitoes. Was very poorly last week. Had been soaked in the rain three or four times. Pow gives an elaborate description of his new place. Hopes he will be happy there. He believes he will be suitable for he has lots of common sense, more than the majority of boys of his age. They are going to New Orleans from here, then on to New York before going back to Rio. Has unloaded coal and they are loading coffee. Asks if she could send two more white cap covers to New York as he has washed the one he had with his red socks. Sailing on the 19th of this month and will be there about the 29th of February.
[1 page]

1/1/20. 18 January 1908
S.S. Ras Issa
Port of Victoria
Sailing on the 21st of the month and should have been in New Orleans about the 12th February. Have over 60,000 bags of coffee on board already and they are going to get 7,000 more. The Captain’s wife is coming to New York to meet them. She is going with them on the next voyage. How does Pow like his new place? He hopes he will be there until college. Wants to earn enough on this voyage to keep him in college.
[1 page]

1/1/21. June 19[08]
S.S. Edale
Monte Video
Have received 3 letters, one from Powell, one from her and one from Het. Not as well as he has been. Has become nervous and timid. He is 56 in about another 13 days. Tells her to tell Powell to stop with Mr Allen until he goes to Liverpool. Tells Powell that changing places too often is not the way to get on in the world. Het has told him she is getting married. He knows nothing of Glyn Davies. She will make him a good wife. He had been married for 35 years. Talks of Mary’s illness, she has problems with her bowels. Gives her advice on possible cures. Laments over marriage. ‘Love is a very nice condiment but a very poor stuff to live upon’. Expects to be there another fortnight and will not be back before the middle of August. Comments that Het has had her frock made and that it looks very nice.
[4 pages]

1/1/22. 28 December 1908
S.S. Ras Issa
Port of Santos
Arrived there on Christmas Day. Expects to sail the 1st of January for Victoria. Talks about the possibility of a bonus. Had asked for a wage increase but they offered him a bonus which if she gets with his wages would mean his wage would be 11-10, but more likely to only be 8-10 a month. Asked for his wage increase in Welsh and they were very ‘serchog’. Believes bonus will be nil. Sorry that he doesn’t leave her £6 a month at home. Pow has got a new situation, wants to buy him a bicycle so that he can come home in summer.
[1 page]

1/1/23. 25 April 1909
S.S [Japafoz]
Port of Santos
Write next letter to New York. Calling in all ports on way back to New York and also Para. Will be taking 1,000 cattle to there. Will have to walk through them 20 times a day for 10 days. They did not pay bonus. Would like to save £100 this voyage. Powell needed £60 to take his exams. Thinks he will have that by next April. Thinking about taking his exams in order to become a 2nd mate.
[1 page]

1/1/24. 20 May 1909
S.S. [Japafoz]
Port of Barbados
In moderate health, his pills are always with him. 4th engineer leaving, belongs to Barry. Will call on her when he comes home. He was two years older than Pow. Trying to persuade Captain to give him some money to send home from New York, only the £10 that is due. Must make enough money to send Pow to college. He cannot come home before then. Will be in New Orleans about the 29th of this month and will hopefully be in New York by the 7th of June. Due to sail from Rio by the 10th August.
[1 page]

1/1/25. 12 June 1909
S.S. [Japafoz]
New York
Surprised that he did not receive letter from her. He is troubled by indigestion and saw the doctor yesterday who said it was because he had no teeth to grind the food. Given up hope of getting any bonus.  Will be satisfied if he gets his wages. Getting a bit homesick. Says he may be in the Brazil this year again if they happen to leave here about October.
[1 page]

1/1/26. 14 April 1911
On Board S.S. Southgate
Bahia Blanca
It is Good Friday. Mary is anxious about Pow’s examinations. Gives words of advice. Finish loading about this day week. Going to Rotterdam. Troubled by indigestion due to his big appetite and no teeth.
[1 page]

1/1/27. 20 May 19[11]
On Board S.S. Southgate
Lat 2.1-16 [es] 22 [w]
At sea. Received a letter from Mary as he was leaving St Vincent. She said nothing about Powell. Whether he was successful or not, only that he had a friend up from Penarth. Martin was asking if it was a lady friend and what sort of reception she received. Talks about a child named Gwen [Glyn and Het’s daughter] and that she is more interesting than the majority of children. If she ever comes to Barry Glyn will have trouble getting her back. Won’t be in Las Palmas until the 24th.

23rd May 1911
Still at sea. Will arrive tomorrow about 6am. Has nothing to read so has started a mat for their front door. Sometimes he feels very lonely. Doesn’t read novels, so spends time in his room thinking.

24th of May
Las Palmas
Has received two letters. Complains she talks about everybody except her own family. Wants to hear if Powell got through his exams. Going to sail at 4pm. Will be in Rotterdam about 9 or 10 days from now.
[2 pages]

1/1/28. 12 July 1911
On Board S.S. Southgate
Cape De Verd
He says that her lot is a very unhappy lot. It seems to have something to do with Ellen. Should take a holiday in Swansea and then go up to Llanarth where he can see Mrs Thomas. She can also revisit the scenes of her childhood. Includes Welsh poems regarding the scenes of her childhood. Can then go to Aberaeron to see his sister before going to Hoylake to see Het and the grandchildren. Has forgotten Powell’s address. Doesn’t eat potatoes, they are too strong. Captain Rams[o]dale is a treat to be with. He is a nice man and considerate.
[English and Welsh]
[2 pages]

1/1/29. 17 January 1912
S.S. Southgate
Port of Havre
Tells Ellen that the French suffragettes are more anxious than their English counterparts. The French lobby in order to get change. Will not be leaving here before the later part of next week and don’t know where they are carrying to. Hopes it will be Barry.
[1 page]

1/1/30. 5 May 1912
S.S. Southgate
Constantinople
The ship broke down in mid-ocean. Doesn’t know when they will be released. Some say next week and some say when the war is over, which could be years. Fifty ships lying in the Borphorus waiting to go through and they are all larger than his ship. From the bridge he can see no less than six large steamers of Radcliffe and Thomas in the Borphorus. Hopes to be under survey when they get back so that he can have a few days holiday.
[1 page]

1/1/31. 7 June 1912
S.S Southgate
Rotterdam
Stay here very short. Will be in the Bristol Channel somewhere about Tuesday night. He's very sorry to hear she is ill. Thinks that they will be coming to Cardiff from here as they have a lot of repairs to do. Says Captain Ramo[s]dale is a most considerable nice man. Should sail on Sunday or Monday.
[1 page]

1/1/32. 9 June 1912, Sunday night
S.S. Southgate
Rotterdam
His writing paper has got wet so must excuse this letter. His ink is also almost finished. This day week he will be 60 years old. On next voyage going to Las Palmas and very likely on to America. The suffragettes are quiet. In Cardiff next Thursday, so will be in Barry this day week. They are going under survey.
[1 page]

1/1/33. 7 July 1912
S.S. Southgate
Port of Tenerife
Says she has lost interest in his long letters. Will familiarise himself with the change in civilities. Any feeling of love or hatred will have to be kept saved. Sailed on Friday morning. Had taken tram from St Mary St to the top of Roath. Got wet walking the 1/4 of a mile to port. Talks of washing his new shirt, not fond of it, just like a blanket. Refers to Powell. Mary believes he is buying Powell’s affection with 5s and tobacco and cigars. She is preparing to go to North Wales to see Het and Glyn.
[1 page]

1/1/34. 5 November 1912
S.S. Southgate
Port of Las Palmas
Talks of Powell's appointment to a shop in Cardiff. She seems to have problems when Powell is away. What will happen when he marries. Het's health is better. Completed some amusing verses in Welsh regarding tobacco and cabbage. Is reading the life of Richard Cobden.
[English and Welsh]
[2 pages]

1/1/35. 10 November 1912
S.S. Southgate
Port of Las Palmas
Talks of growing prospect of Pow. Report of Mrs Williams's death in London. Not seen her since she was a child in school. All his childhood associates are going one after another. Looking back 40 years - when they were married. Includes poem relating to age etc.:
‘All are scattered now and fled
Some are married some are dead
And when I ask with throbs of pain
When shall all these meet again
As in the days long since gone by
That ancient timepiece doth reply
Forever never never forever
We have not very long to wait till time and death shall disappear’
Going from here to Galveston and from there to Rotterdam or Bremen.
[1 page]

1/1/36. 17 November 1912
S.S. Southgate
Port of Las Palmas
Sorry to hear of Het. Says Mary should take a child for the winter in order to ease Het's anxiety. Describes his living accommodation - living in a box 8x6x7. Does all his laundry, sleeping, writing and toilet in that space. Says he wants to live with Mary in such a space. Says tea is not as nice when made by a man. Tells Ellen to read the life of Richard Cobden to qualify herself in relation to the suffragette movement.
[1 page]

1/1/37. 23 November 1912
S.S. Southgate
Port of Las Palmas
Has been there nearly three weeks. Most probably going from Galveston to load. Destined for either Bremen or Rotterdam, as the shipper is a German firm. Dreads coming back to cold weather. Tells Ellen to read the life of Richard Cobden - good moral lessons to the suffragettes. Fought for repeal of Corn Law without once advocating violence. Can answer this letter, won't be sailing from Galveston before Christmas.
[1 page]

1/1/38. 13 December 1912
S.S. Southgate
Port of Galveston
Sorry to hear of poor Het in her trouble. Says his mother was served in the same way. Has heard of the death of his first grandson. Includes a Welsh poem by Glan Alun. Can see it in 'Caniadau Cymry'. Mary has been with her on this occasion, and on both occasions of the kind before. Seems she may be bringing Mair [Het and Glyn's daughter] back to Barry. He wants Mair to stay until he comes home, if he is spared to come back alive. Will be there in 5 weeks. Sorry to hear of Powell's trouble but hard work doesn't kill but better work is more agreeable. Will have more time to write on Sunday to Ellen - she is in his debt. Almost sure to come to the Bristol Channel from Havre. Nicer than going up the North Sea in the winter.
[English and Welsh]
[1 page]

1/1/39. December 19[12?]
S.S. Southgate
Port of Newport News
Hope Het won't have any more additions to the family. His mother had 8, with only two living out of those. Hope Powell is doing better work with his assistant. Says Het asks too much of her servant. She only pays £18 a year. Works 14 hours a day, 365 days a year, which is only 3/4d an hour. Asks if she treats her servant as a machine. Talks about how his sister Eliza was treated when she was a servant. Mrs Phillips helped her in the kitchen and ate with them. She was therefore served well. Describes how he would run a house:
- not allow any member of my household to work before 7am
- not let anyone work after 6pm, only when absolutely necessary
- give advice and encouragement to save time, which they could take for recreation
- working 6 or 7 days at a time a bad thing (Captain Ramsdale says no man should work more than 8 or 9 hours a day)
Powell complains of assistants’ inexperience. Pow is working for Boots & Co.
[3 pages]

1/1/40. 15 January 1913
S.S. Southgate
Port of Havre
General health of the family is improving and Mair's conduct is getting no worse. Glad to hear that Powell is having more help. Says he is getting fatter, but doesn't know why because he can only eat potatoes as he can't chew. Rough passage across the Atlantic from Newport News. Half the load was cotton, therefore they were not deep loaded. Has received a circular from a navigation school run by Capt Tom Evans. Expects to be here 10 days.
[1 page]

1/1/41. 19 January 1913
S.S. Southgate
Port of Havre
Start discharging tomorrow. Don't expect to be in the Bristol Channel until the end of next week. Has a roommate since Las Palmas - a canary. Thought he was going to New York and had promised Mr Jenkins if ever he was in New York again that he would bring his grandchild a canary but will now pass it to one of his grandchildren. Has read about the death of Dr Evans of Swansea in the South Wales daily. Says that he did not know him but that she had told him that he was kind to Ellen when she was at college. Talks about the plans of the Board of Trade to give a very severe test to officers of merchant ships eyes in 1914. Worried about how he will do. They say that half the present mates will not pass, especially those over 40 years of age.

1/1/42. 22 January 1913
S.S. Southgate
Heard that they are coming to the Bristol Channel to load. Doesn't know which port but they will be loading for Monte Video. Interesting week regarding suffragette question. Wants the South Wales newspaper sent daily so that he can follow the pros and cons of the debate. Is Ellen so taken up by the suffragette question that she is too busy to write. Numerous ships carrying cotton into Havre.
[1 page]


1/2. To other members of the family

1/2/1. 8 March 1904
S.S. City of York
Port of Birkenhead
My dear Het
Has received numerous letters from her this voyage but had always found an excuse not to answer in Rio or Rosario. Very sorry to here about Pow. The bone will soon set. Broke it playing football. Started this voyage very low-spirited as he was going to a Sicilian port and he knew the temptation that was there. Mary had told him that they had made £400 at Bethesda. Ellen and you inspired them last year. Asks her to look over a few verses he has included. If she thinks them fit she can send them to Mr Glyn Davies. Has got a bunch of bananas but they are not ripe so your mother will most probably send some from Barry. Thinking of writing the history of his travels. Will put Capt. Kellers work in the shade when he does.
[2 pages]

1/2/2. 9 June 1908
S.S. Edale
Monte Video
To Mr Glyn Davies
His 35th wedding anniversary. Thinks it strange that Glyn's letter should arrive on this date to tell him that he and Het are contemplating to embark on a similar voyage. Says they will both do well if they use tact and common sense. If Het uses the same tactics as her mother she will make him a good wife.
[1 page]

1/2/3. Monday, 11 February 1912
S.S. Southgate
Cudulore [Cuddalore]
My dear Ellen
Rather interested in the suffragettes and wanted to give his opinion on why so many of the male sex are against it. As long as women regard the bible as the charter of their rights they will remain slaves of men. Says that God does not believe in education for all his servants. The Catholic priest is in favour of enough to turn a savage into a catholic and the protestant enough to turn a catholic into a protestant. Can't find any argument against women having the vote. Believes that violence is not the answer. Thinks that they would be better using speech and pen rather than the sword. He is sure that they will get the vote in the very near future. Aberaeron is going to have water and sewerage. When he was a boy he could smell Aberaeron from Lampeter. Had to lose a lot of playtime fetching water from Cae Ffynon for his grandmother. She enjoyed herself in Haylake with her niece, Gwen. He is preparing a lecture on witchcraft.
[1 page]

1/2/4. 17 November 1912
S.S. Southgate
Port of Las Palmas
To all dear ones at Llanerch y mor
Dear Glyn & Het
Looking forward to seeing his two little granddaughters. Wishes he could smuggle some chocolate to Llanerch y mor. One of the granddaughters is going down to No.6 and he would like her to still be there when he gets home or there will be a row. Glad he liked the tobacco, sorry there was not more of it. Has Welsh verses relating to tobacco and cabbage! Sorry to hear that Het was in indifferent health. Going from there to Galveston. Won't be there before Christmas. He has heard that they have a nice place. It is rather far from Liverpool for Glyn to travel. Pow is talking about getting a motor to travel from Barry to the shop so that he can do the journey in 20 minutes.
[English and Welsh]
[3 pages]

1/2/5. 1[3] December 1912
S.S. Southgate
Port of Galveston
My dear Ellen
Het is determined not to let the family become extinct. Glad to hear she is getting well again. She has done her share towards the increase of population. Hopes they will be a blessing to both them. Suffragette question was very strong in this part of the country. Read in the morning paper that one lady had made a speech that advocated the boycotting of marriage so as to avoid the increase in the population. No country is poor till they are short of population. Says the female sex are making themselves too cheap. Sees examples when the ship is in a British port of girls running after the boys on ship. Says the boys treat them contemptuously. Consider themselves superior even to their sisters. Majority of mothers seem to think that matrimony is a girl’s only salvation. She would say that this is ignorance but 90% of the world are ignorant. He believes the remedy is education in political economy. To disfranchise any person worthy is political waste. Doesn’t even think D. H. Williams spoke a single sentence in favour of enfranchisement of women from the pulpit. Females are also too fond of flattery from the opposite sex. Recommends to her three books to read – the life of Richard Cobden, the life of John Bright and John S. Mill. They did more to change political opinions without breaking windows and obstructing political meetings than Mrs Pankhurst and co. with their militant methods. Has no sympathy with the suffragettes’ method.
[2 pages]

1/2/6. 26 December 1912
S.S. Southgate
Port of Newport News
My dear boy [Pow]
Hope he has had a Happy Christmas and that he will have a prosperous New Year. Sorry to hear that he had been in poor health. Not getting very satisfactory results from his assistant. Talks of youth. Says that if he was working for Boots & Co. he would endeavour to become part and parcel of the firm and do his duty. Says that Pow is not doing his duty if he allows others under him not to do theirs. Says:
‘I am on this side of charity but charity should begin at home but it should not end there. It’s not charity to keep an incompetent man…’
Wants Pow to try and tell the assistant that his employers expect more from him. Expects to be in the Bristol Channel about the 20th of January. Another member of the family at No. 6 [?Het and Glyn’s child].
[1 page]


1/3. Relating to the death of David Williams

1/3/1. 24 January 1913
British & Foreign Sailors' Society, Havre Branch, "Seamen's Rest and Institute"
Mrs Williams, Barry
Death of Mary’s husband on board S.S. Southgate at the Port of Havre.
[1 page]

1/3/2. 25 January 1913
S.S Southgate
Havre
Confirming her husband’s death. The accident happened about 4:20pm on Thursday. The bale struck him after falling a little distance. He was never conscious. They will convey him home on the ship. Will be leaving Havre on 30th Jan. and be due off Barry about 40 hours afterwards. Signed: D. S. Ramsdale. [captain].
[1 page]

1/3/3. 29 January 1913
S.S. Southgate
Havre
Death the result of an inevitable accident. Expect to sail tomorrow afternoon and hope to arrive at Barry about Sat. afternoon depending on the weather. Should arrange a hearse or other suitable means of conveying the body home from the ship either in Cdff or Barry docks. Signed: D.S. Ramsdale.
[1 page]


1/4. Postcards

1/4/1. December [07]
Albert Dock, Hull
To: D Williams, 6 Parade, Barry, Glam.
Meeting mother at the train station at 7pm or the next train.

1/4/2. 13 July 12 (postmark)
Tenerife
To: D. Williams, 6 Parade, Barry, Glam.
Says that sending a postcard is a very convenient and cheap way of communicating and he will use this method in future to convey where he is. Will sail from here next week. Hopes that Issa Boats & co have given her a suitable place. Her mother wants her in Barry. He doesn’t know when she will think her capable of looking after herself. Stamped: S.S. “Southgate” 112,646 London 2378 Tons 281 H.P.


1/5. Envelopes

1/5/1. Envelopes addressed to Mrs D Williams, No. 6 Parade, Barry, Glam, South Wales, Great Britain:

1/5/1/1. Stamped: F.L. Deacon Co.  Ship Chandler Stores – Senguel 287 Eoca Buenos Aires. Postmark: Cardiff 4:30am JY 9 [19]05 [verso]
1/5/1/2. Postmark: Barry B.O. (Glam) 6:30pm De 8 [19]05. Includes two newspaper cuttings, one of a burning Asphalt Barque – the ‘Andes’ of Hull, and the other relating to ‘the master of S.S. Carlo’
1/5/1/3. Postmark: Rotterdam 30 [       ] [recto]. Postmark: Cardiff 3pm MY 31 [19]07 [verso]
1/5/1/4. Postmark: Barry B.O. (Glam) 6:15am MR 2 [19]12 [verso]
1/5/1/5. Postmark: [B]ath 8:[3]0 AP 10 [19]12
1/5/1/6. Postmark: Rotterdam 10.6.[19]12 5-6N [recto]. Postmark: Cardiff 3:30pm JU 11 [19]12 [verso]
1/5/1/7. Postmark: [    ] Tenerife [JUL 1912] [recto]. Stamped: S.S. “Southgate” 112,346 London. 2378 Tons. 281 H.P. Postmark: Cardiff [   ] JY 13 [19]12 [verso]
1/5/1/8. Sticker: Newcastle-O-T No. 818 [recto]. Stamped: Registered 6pm 8 OC [19]12 Newcastle On Tyne
1/5/1/9. Postmark: Galveston Texas Dec 14 1pm 1912
1/5/1/10. Postmark: Newport News Dec. 27 4pm 1912 VA
1/5/1/11. Postmark: Le Havre Port 17:50 17-1-[19]13 [recto]. Postmark: Cardiff 2:15pm JA 18 13 [verso]
1/5/1/12. Postmark: Le Havre [1 ] Jan 18:15 [19]13 Seine Infre
1/5/1/13. Postmark: Le Havre 28 Jan [1913]
1/5/1/14. Postmark: Le Havre 28-1-[19]13 Seine Infre. Includes note on verso: ‘fill in form at customs. Deposit of 10/. Extra services. Also communicate with Capt. Re Consulate Certificate.

1/5/2. Envelope addressed to Miss Hettie Williams, 10 Heol Parade, Pwllhelli, North Wales

1/5/2/1. Postmark: Liverpool 5pm MR 8 [19]04 [recto]. Postmark: Pwllhelli 4 MR [ ] 04 [verso]


2. Poetry

2/1. Welsh poems

2/1/1. ‘Bedd fy Mam’
Relating to his mother’s grave.
[Welsh]
[1 page]

2/1/2. Observations on coming home.
[Welsh]
[1 page]

2/1/3. ‘Myfyrdod Pechadur’
Talking about God, Jesus Christ etc. and the fact that they have kept him secure during his time at sea. In subsequent verses goes on to talk of his sins and his hopes of being allowed to live.
[Welsh]
[1 page]

2/1/4. [Ar lan y mor]
Relating to being at the seaside.
[Welsh]
[1 page]

2/1/5. ‘Myfyrdod mewn storm’
Observations about storms at sea and the great storm which will face him.
[Welsh]
[1 page]

2/1/6, ‘Y Gwanwyn’
Poem about the spring written by ‘Pwll Cam’, Barry. Includes pencil note – ‘Tadcu’.
[Welsh]
[newspaper cutting]


2/2. English poems

2/2/1. ‘Matrimonial experiences’
Observations on his marriage on 7th June 1873. With note saying there are some 14 more verses which he will keep until he sees her, then he will recite them to her. Includes transcript of a page.
[11 pages]

2/2/2. ‘Thou knowes what sayeth my heart’
Poem relating to leaving his mother as they went to the station. The second copy includes a note at the bottom of page saying that the verses need to be polished – ‘revise and revise again’. Has three more verses but they need to be revised.
[3 pages]

2/2/3. ‘Seaman Laments’
Poem relating to experiences of seaman at sea. Includes note telling them not to lose it as he will try to revise it some day. He has no copy.
[2 pages]

2/2/4. An attempt to translate Caledfryn verses from Welsh into English.
[4 pages]

2/2/5. ‘All’s Well’
Ironic observations on life. Says that they will need revising before they can be published. Says that some nautical knowledge is needed to understand them properly. The Captain liked them. Includes short Welsh poem – verses for his family. Says the Welsh one is only to raise a laugh. He composed the English poem while he was on the bridge one night last week. Has revised ‘Bedd fy Mam’ and will send it to Het to see what Mr Glyn Davies thinks of it. Has added another verse.
[English and Welsh]
[1 page]


3. Newspaper cuttings

3/1. Relating to the Lady Cairns picking up 13 pigeons on her journey from Baery [Barry] to Algoa Bay. Includes pencil note – Lady Cairns was grandfather’s ship as master mate.
[1 page]

3/2. Llanarth – piece relating to the death of Muriel, daughter of Mr and Mrs Jones, Post Office on Wednesday, 16th, aged 4, and her burial on Tuesday afternoon.
[Welsh]
[1 page]

3/3. Cutting from ‘Y Tyst’, February 19, 1913
News from Bethesda Chapel, Barry. Note relating to the death and burial of Captain David Williams, 6, The Parade, Barry with a brief account of his life. His son, Mr Powell Williams was a supervisor in a pharmaceutical office. The eldest daughter, Miss Ellen Williams was a headmistress in one of the largest schools in Barry and the youngest daughter, Mrs Glyn Davies was married to Glyn Davies, M.A., Liverpool University.
[Welsh]
[1 page]
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