Dewsberry Guest Jones

Births, Deaths and Bibles

Old newspaper cuttings or names and numbers in leather bound volumes are often all that is left of many long forgotten lives.

Before the age of photography, names and dates would be recorded on the flyleaves of family bibles which would be on display in a prominent position in the Victorian home.

One family bible which remains intact in Pwllheli includes a biography in Welsh of Rev John Jones (1831-1909) (read it here).

Only a few yellowing pages remain of the bible in which the Wells and Roberts families recorded births and deaths in Llanelli (see them here).

Records of births, marriages and deaths tell you when and where, but rarely why and how. Sometimes a clue remains in an inscription on a gravestone or in a letter that wasn’t thrown away.

Elizabeth Guest (1803 -1832) was only 29 when she died of Cholera leaving a husband and four children. She was “an exemplary woman, a faithful and industrious wife”, according to a report of her death in the Cumberland Packet.

•When Kate Jones (1879-1911) died at 32 “after a short illness” leaving two young children, the widower, Captain Owen Jones (1871-1915) “was unable to be be present, being far away in China”

Letty Griffith (1905-1918) “a bright child, full of fun and life” was 13 when she drowned at Morfa Bychan.  Her sister Nevina (1894-1902) was eight when she died of diptheria.

Tom Dewsberry (1871-1953) and his wife Lena (1874-1918) are buried with three of their children: Arthur, 23, Margery, 19, and Wilfred “a promising lad” who was 14 when he drowned on holiday at Llanstephan “despite the efforts of rescuers”.   The headstone in Box Cemetery, Llanelli says “Thy will be done”.

William Lowe was shot in the head and his body buried in a shallow grave under a tree near in Tasmania (read about it here). William Cole, the man charged with his murder had been co-habiting with Lowe’s wife Hannah (1819-1886), described as ‘a most depraved character’. Lowe’s clothes and possessions were found near Cole’s home. She was arrested for the killing but denied any involvement and was later released. She testified at Cole’s trial that Cole had been worried that she would return to her husband. Cole was found guilty and sentenced to death in July 1835.

 

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