|Rebecca (Bowen) Morgan cont.|
By the census of 1871 the family have recently moved to the neighbouring parish of Llangwig in Glamorgan and are living in the Caegurwen parcel (or hamlet) at Llwynrhidie, Cwmgors. John was now possibly working at one of the collieries in Gwauncaegurwen or Cwmgors. At the end of the year, Rebecca's younger sister Hannah and her husband (John's brother), Daniel also decided to emigrate to America - where they arrived in New York on 13th November, before moving on initially to Pennsylvania where Sarah was living and later settling in Kansas. With Hannah's departure, Rebecca now had only her youngest sister, Ann (enumerated at Brynhynydd in 1871) living relatively close to her.
The following year Rebecca gave birth to her 5th son, Henry (named after her father), followed 2 years later by Isaac. Isaac was to be her last child, as on 29th March 1875, John died, aged only 45 of broncho pneumonia which he had been suffering for 7 days. His death was certified by Howell Rees L.R.C.P.. Did he develop this condition as a result of his occupation? Was Rebecca in receipt of any financial aid as a result of it? Somehow she kept her family together and raised her 6 sons, whose ages in 1875 ranged from 1-14 years. By this time, its possible that her 2 eldest sons were already working. Perhaps she was assisted by her inlaws at Brynhynydd who apparently always remained close to this branch of their large family.
In the 1881 census Rebecca and her boys are apparently still at the same address in Llwynrhidie. She is described as a "coal miner's widow" - suggesting that John's death had been connected to this dangerous industry. Even so, her eldest 4 sons (the youngest of whom is 12) are now all working as miners. Henry and Isaac are both in school. It's interesting to note that John's father, David who remained a farmer all his life, died of natural causes at the age of 92.
In 1884 Rebecca's 2 eldest sons David and Daniel were both married: David to Ann Howells and Daniel to Ann Morris (my great-grandparents). They set up their own households locally: David close by at Llwynrhidie, Cwmgors and Daniel at Curwen Cottage, Gwauncaegurwen.
3rd son, Thomas married Elizabeth Bridget Lloyd of Llangadog in August 1890 and remained living with Rebecca. The census of 1891 records Rebecca living at Pwllywrach, Gwauncaegurwen. This part of Gwauncaegurwen was originally a farm of the same name - which lay between what is now the Square and the new Carmel chapel. Enumerated with Rebecca are her 4 youngest sons, her daughter-in-law, Elizabeth and new, 3 week old grandson, John. Elizabeth's sister, Gertrude is recorded as a visitor to the household. Rebecca now has 9 grandchildren, who include 2 other grandsons called John.
|Tommy Vaughan's impressions of 1870s Gwauncaegurwen|
|Rebecca died 6 months before the dawn of the new century on 7th June 1899. According to her death certificate she died in the chemist shop of a Mr. Hibbert of New Street, Neath - where she had gone to get relief from the discomfort of a long-standing heart condition. The informant on the certificate was the Neath coroner. She was buried with John at Hen Fethel cemetery (above Garnant and Glanamman, Carmarthenshire) in the grave next to John's parents, David and Mary Morgan, who had died in 1887 and 1890 respectively. By the census of 1901 all her sons had married: Jenkin to Dinah Williams (1900), Henry to Angharad Davies (1892) and Isaac to Maria Moses (1897).
Maria Moses was a grand-daughter of the Lampeter-born, bard, David Lewis Moses, (D.L. Moses) who lived latterly in Brynamman.
John & Rebecca's grave
Er Cof Am
John Morgan diweddar
Brynhynydd, Plwyf y Bettws
Yr hwn a fu farw Mawrth 29
1875 yn 45 mlwydd oed
Hefyd Rebecca Morgan ei wraig
Yr hon a fu farw Mehefin 7 1899
Yn 62 mlwydd oed
In Memory Of
The late John Morgan
Brynhynydd, Bettws Parish
Who died March 29
1875 aged 45 years
Also Rebecca Morgan his wife
Who died June 7 1899
Aged 62 years