Rural Carmarthenshire

The northern slopes of the Black Mountain around Llanddeusant in Carmarthenshire were farmed by the Evans family for more than 300 years. Their line goes back to Rees Evan (d 1722), “Yeoman of ye parish of Llanddoysant in ye county of Carmarthen” (read his will hereand to Phillip George who died in 1746. Gorsddu was farmed by the family until the retirement in the 1950s of John Evans (1897-1964) and his sister Myra (1903-1987).  The Tithe Maps of 1837-45 suggest that Evan Evans (1795-1862) was renting 18 parcels of land totalling 84 acres from the Gwyn family who owned Blaensawdde and the Dyffryn estate.

Ann Evans nee Davies outside Tybrych in Llanddeusant with her daughter Jane

Evan’s son Daniel Evans (1829-1911) married Anne Davies (1824-1923), a servant at Blaensawdde. It was there, according to the legend of Llyn-y-fan Fach, that a farmer fell in love with the fairy maiden in the lake. She gave birth to three sons, the Physicians of Myddfai, before returning to the water after her husband struck her three times.

Daniel and Anne’s daughter Catherine (1873-1962) married John Herbert Evans (1868-1933) whose family were tenant farmers on land around the New Lodge Inn in the Twyi Valley.  The Tithe Maps of 1837-45 suggest that William Evans (b1804) was living at Cwm-Difa and renting 20 parcels of land totalling 88 acres from local landowner John Lavalin Puxley of Lletherllestry.  Most of it was clover, hay and pasture.  His son Griffith Evans (1830-1914) was a toll collector during the Rebecca Riots which swept through South West Wales between 1839 and 1842.  The pub, now Y Polyn, was in the family for three generations, run first by William Evans (b 1804) then his daughters Elizabeth (b 1833)Sarah (b 1837) and Ester (b 1839).   It was taken over by his grandson John Herbert Evans (1868-1933) on his retirement from his welding business in Llanelli.  Family papers show it was sold in 1938 for £400 by his brother William Valentine Evans (1881-1967).

Y Polyn today

One comment

  • Dennis Block
    January 11, 2019 - 5:16 pm | Permalink

    My 2X Great Grandmother, Magdalen Evans married William Howells and emigrated to the USA in 1848 with her husband and two small children. Magdalen was the oldest daughter of Evan Evans (b: abt 1794) and Anne Morgan (b: abt 1801). Magdalen had 3 brothers (John, Daniel, and Phillip) and 4 sisters (Anne, Mary, Margaret, and Jinny). Her parents and siblings farmed property located in Gorsddu, Llanddausant, Carmarthenshire, Wales. In the 1851 Census of Wales the size of the farm was noted as about 118 acres. Evan’s will in 1862 speaks of his farm and his plan to pass his sheep to his son, Phillip. I have done a fair amount of family research and am wondering how Evan, Anne, Magdalen and her family relate to the farm described in this site and how I relate to the Evans discussed here.

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