The Brynmawr - Scranton Connection
Wales to America

Above: the Welsh flag facing the municipal flag of Scranton, Pennsylvania.

In the spring of 1848, John J. Thomas and family chose to leave their native Wales and seek out a new life in the coal-rich region of Scranton, Pennsylvania. John and his wife Elizabeth Davis were from Brynmawr in Breconshire Wales, and were among thousands of their fellow countrymen from the Ebbw Vale who chose to emigrate to Scranton and surrounds in the latter half of the 19th century. Because of this massive Welsh immigration, there was and is a strong connection between Brynmawr and Scranton. The history and growth of both communities is nearly identical, the primary difference being that industrialization took place in Brynmawr and the Ebbw Vale several decades prior to Scranton becoming an industrial giant. The steel and coal industries are what drove the industrialization of Brynmawr, and steel and coal is what caused thousands of Welshmen to immigrate to Scranton.

The community of Hyde Park was where the Welsh resided in Scranton, and by the 1880s Hyde Park had become the epicenter of Welsh culture in America. It can be argued that Hyde Park more closely approximated the culture of industrial Wales than any other Welsh-American community, and it has been said that strolling the streets of Hyde Park in the last quarter of the 19th century was very much like walking the streets of Brynmawr. English was a second language for most of the borough's residents, and most church services were conducted in Welsh.

In his book, "Wales in America: Scranton and the Welsh, 1860-1920," William D. Jones offers a revealing look at the lives and culture of the approximately 80,000 Welsh immigrants who settled in the coal-rich region of northeast Pennsylvania. A synopsis of Mr. Williams' book notes that:

"Since the center of this inflow was the city of Scranton, Jones examines its cultural life, its literary and musical societies, ethnic foods and religion. Also examined is the anthracite industry itself, since this is what drew these thousands of skilled Welsh miners and dominated their work and the cities in which they lived. Jones notes the way these Welsh were rapidly Americanized while at the same time preserving their culture and their ties to Wales."

The most visible connection between Brynmawr and Scranton is perhaps one Benjamin Hughes. Hughes was born near Brynmawr in 1824. His father Daniel was a miner and it seems that early on the young Benjamin showed great talent for mastering his father's trade. We see the Hughes family for the first time in the 1841 census of Brynmawr. In 1845 Benjamin married Mary Davies, also from Brynmawr, and their first child, Esther was born the following year. In 1848 Benjamin, Mary and Esther emigrated to America and eventually settled in Hyde Park. Within the next decade Hughes rose to prominent positions both with his employer and within the Hyde Park community. He was eventually put in charge of all underground mining operations for the Delaware, Lackawanna and Western Railroad Company, who owned several large mines in Scranton, and in this capacity Hughes was responsible for recruiting hundreds of his fellow countrymen to Scranton. We know that many of these individuals were recruited from Hughes' home town of Brynmawr and from other communities of the Ebbw Vale. Because of his recruitment of Welsh mining talent to Scranton (along with several other reasons not mentioned here), Benjamin Hughes is arguably one of the most important figures in the history of Hyde Park.

Like the Ebbw Vale and the Rhondda, by the late 19th century Scranton had become one of the world's most important industrial cities. Like Brynmawr, there were horrible and frequent mine accidents and deaths, (Hughes' own brother Evan was a victim of the infamous Avondale disaster in 1869). Like Brynmawr there were good times and bad times - good wages and violent labor strikes. And, like Brynmawr, there was the inevitable economic decline, depression and flight from the city, followed (eventually) by a period of economic recovery. Suffice it to say that if you were looking for a city as a historical, economic and social twin to Brynmawr, Scranton is arguably the best candidate. There is a very good reason one of Hyde Park's streets is named Bryn Mawr.

Jeffrey L. Thomas
jltbalt1@verizon.net

Bibliography

  • History of Luzerne, Lackawanna and Wyoming Counties, Pa., W.W. Munsell & Co., New York, 1880.
  • Portrait and Biographical Record of Lackawanna County, Pennsylvania, Chapman Publishing Co., New York, 1897.
  • Wales in America: Scranton and the Welsh, 1860-1920, William D. Jones, University of Scranton Press, 2000.


    The Brynmawr-Scranton Connection, Specific Families


    The book, History of Luzerne, Lackawanna and Wyoming Counties, Pa., W.W. Munsell & Co., New York, 1880, mentions some of the prominent Welshmen of Scranton. I have extracted below the entries that specifically mention those individuals born in the industrial counties of Wales, Breconshire, Glamorganshire and Monmouthshire, including Brynmawr. Where possible I have supplemented the information provided by the book with census data for some of the individuals or families mentioned, and provided extended biographies for others. It should also be noted that the place of birth for several individuals is listed simply as Breconshire or Monmouthshire, and it is likely that some of these individuals were from Brynmawr, Nantyglo or the surrounding communities. The above-mentioned Benjamin Hughes is a good example. Here he lists his place of birth as Breconshire, while other records clearly indicate that he was born in or near Brynmawr. It should also be mentioned that a good number of Welsh immigrants on the list were from Carmarthenshire (not included here).


    Some Prominent Welshmen of Scranton, Pennsylvania

    From the book,
    History of Luzerne, Lackawanna and Wyoming Counties, Pa.,
    W.W. Munsell & Co., New York, 1880.


    B. GRIFFITHS BEDDOE, druggist, Hyde Park, was born in Merthyr Tydvil, South Wales, May 19th, 1855.

    Note: Census returns from Scranton tell us that the individual above was Benjamin Griffiths Beddoe, who appears with his mother and father in the 1880 census of Scranton, Washington Street, 4th Ward, Hyde Park. At this point Benjamin had not yet married, and the family included the following: Benj. D. Beddoe (Father, age 66, born in Wales, works in coal mines), his wife Elizabeth (age 62, born in Wales), children Benj. G. (son, age 25, born in Wales, Druggist), Mary Jane (dau, age 17), John W. Griffith (nephew, age 21, born in Wales, works in coal mines), and Deborah Joseph (other, age 13, born in Wales, servant). The 1900 census indicates that in the early 1880s Benjamin married Jennie Eynon, daughter of Thomas and Jane Eynon, and began raising his own family in Hyde Park. The census shows that the family was living on Main Avenue in Scranton's 5th Ward, and included, Benjamin (age 45, physician), wife Jennie (age 40, born in Pa.), and children Ruth (age 18), Arthur (age 15), and Allen (age 11). The returns also indicate that Benjamin arrived in America in 1869 and that Jennie had given birth to three children, the three shown living with her in the returns. Benjamin D. Beddoe and his wife Elizabeth are buried in the Washburn Street cemetery in Hyde Park. Benjamin's inscription tells us that his name was Benjamin Daniel, was born 11 Aug 1813, died 3 Oct 1901, and was the husband of Elizabeth Beddoe. Elizabeth's inscription tells us that she was born 8 July 1817, died 4 July 1897 and was the wife of Benjamin Daniel Beddoe.

    MORGAN BOWEN, residence Chestnut Street, Hyde Park, inside foreman in the School Fund Association's mines, was born in Llangonyd, Glamorganshire, South Wales, April 27th, 1828, and married Margaret Williams of Bryn Mawr, Breconshire, South Wales. He was formerly a miner, and has served as common councilman.

    Note: The family of Morgan and Margaret Bowen is present in the 1880 census of Scranton, however the family is difficult to trace in subsequent returns. Sons Evan and (Abram) Lincoln Bowen appear in the 1910 census for Springbrook Township, Lackawanna Co., Pa. Information from the Lackawanna County, Pa. GenWeb site indicates that there was an estate filed at the courthouse in Scranton for a Morgan Bowen who died 7 Jan 1898 (Estate #4308), and this is possibly the Morgan Bowen mentioned above.

    THOMAS CARSON, inside foreman at the Hampton mine, was born in Breconshire, South Wales, June 11th, 1827, and married Catherine Eynon of Glamorganshire, South Wales. Residence Washburn Street, Hyde Park.

    Note: In the 1880 census Thomas Carson and family were living on Washburn Street in Hyde Park. The family included Thomas (age 53), his wife Catherine (age 49), children William (age 21), Edward (age 12), Albert (age 7), nephew R. J. Davis (age 14), niece Izidora Davis (age 10) and two other borders. Thomas' occupation is listed as "Foreman in Mines." Catherine must have died before 1900, because in the 1900 census we find Thomas Carson (age 72) living on Washburn Street with his 2nd wife Jane (age 62 born in PA), with children Edith (age 36), Margaret (age 29) and Albert (age 27). The 1900 census also lists Thomas' year of immigration to the U.S. as 1846 and his occupation as "Gentleman." Both Thomas and Catherine Carson are buried in the Washburn Street cemetery in Hyde Park. Catherine's inscription notes that she was born 9 Feb 1831, died 3 June 1888 and was the wife of Thomas Carson. Thomas' inscription notes that he was born 11 June 1827, Breconshire, South Wales, and died 15 Jan 1908.

    JOHN B. DAVIES, miner, Providence, was born in Glamorganshire, South Wales, January 13th, 1846, and married Janet James of Providence.

    Note: In the 1880 census we find the family of John B. and Janet Davis living on Williams Street in Scranton's 1st Ward. The family included John B. (age 35, miner), wife Janet (age 29), and sons Alfred (age 5) and David J. (age 2). In the 1900 census we find the Davis family on Mountain Place in Dickson City near Scranton. Here the family includes John B. Davis (age 53, coal miner), wife Jannett (age 50 13/4), and sons Alfred (age 24, day laborer), David J. (age 21, coal mine laborer), and daughters Bernice? (age 14), and Alonzo (age 8). The census also indicates that John came to America in 1867, Janet in 1853. If the 13/4 for Janet is correct, that means she had given birth to 14 children, but only the four living with her in the 1900 census had survived. With nine of her children dying before reaching maturity, we can imagine that the Davis household suffered through more grief than most. Both John and Janet Davis are buried in the Washburn Street cemetery in Hyde Park. John's inscription tells us that he was born in 1846, died in 1928, and was the husband of Janet Davis, while Janet's inscription tells us that she was born in 1850, died in 1938, and was the wife of John B. Davis.

    JOHN F. DAVIES, formerly superintendent of iron furnaces, now resides on Monroe avenue, Scranton, was born in Breconshire, South Wales, January 12th 1809, and first came to Scranton in 1842. He married Ann Clinton of Glamorganshire, South Wales, born March 8th, 1812.

    Note: In the 1880 census we find the family of John F. Davis living on Monroe Avenue in Scranton's 17th ward. The family included John (age 72), his wife Ann (age 68), daughters Ruth A. Snover (age 31), Ruth's daughter Fannie (age 6) and grandson Joseph Davis (age 15). The census lists John as having no occupation. In the 1870 census we find John an Ann living in Hyde Park (8th ward) with daughters Elizabeth (28), Martha (23). John is still listed as having no occupation, however the value of property owned is placed at $25,000.00.

    JOHN R. DAVIES, fire boss, formerly a miner, residence Jackson Street, Hyde Park, was born April 5th 1824 in Monmouthshire, South Wales, and married Jane Williams.

    DANIEL D. EVANS was born in Merthyr Tydvil, South Wales, February 12th, 1822, and married Elizabeth Jones of his native place. He was formerly a miner and is now a merchant in Hyde Park. His son David D. Evans was born in Merthyr Tydvil, South Wales, August 31st, 1848, married Margaret Jones, a native of Carbondale, Pa., and is a member of the mercantile firm of Daniel D. Evans & Son.

    Note: In the 1880 census we find the family of both Daniel D. Evans and his son David D. Evans living in Scranton's 15th Ward. The family of Daniel D. Evans was living in North Hampton Street, and included the following individuals: Daniel (age 58, born in Wales, Retail Grocer), wife Ann (age 51, born in Wales), Roger (Son, age 26, born in Wales, miner), Elias E. (Son, age 19, born in Wales, Clerk in Store), and Mary Williams (Other, age 15, born in Wales, Servant.) Daniel D. Evans is buried in the Washburn Street cemetery in Hyde Park, with his first wife Elizabeth and his second wife Ann. His inscription notes that he was born 12 Feb 1822, died 19 Dec 1890, and was the husband of Elizabeth and Ann Evans. Elizabeth's inscription tells us that she was the wife of Daniel D. Evans, was born 10 Aug 1822, and died 8 Dec 1864, while Ann's inscription tells us that she was born 2 Mar 1829, died 10 June 1891, and was the wife of Daniel D. Evans.

    In 1880 the family of David D. Evans was living on South Eynon Street and included the following individuals: David (age 31, born in Wales, Retail Dry Goods and Groceries), Margaret (Wife, age 27, born in Wales), Elizabeth (Dau, age 6, born PA), and Edna (Dau, age 11 months, born PA). By the time of the 1900 census, David and family had moved to South Main Avenue (still in the 15th Ward of Scranton). In 1900 the household included David, (age 51, Retail Merchant), wife Margaret (age 47, 7/5) and children Edna D. (age 19, School Teacher), Estella (age 15), Mary V. (age 10) and Gertrude L. (age 8). The returns further indicate that David came to America in 1861 and of the seven children that Margaret had given birth to, five were still living at the time the census was taken. There is no sign of Daniel's mother and father in 1900.

    REV. E.B. EVANS, MD, formerly pastor of the Welsh Congregational church, Hyde Park, was born in Glamorganshire, Wales, December 14th, 1810; came to America in 1832 and to Scranton in 1857, and married Jane Jones of Utica, N.Y.

    Note: In the 1880 census the family of E. B. Evans was living on Jackson Street in Hyde Park (Scranton's 4th Ward). The family included D. E. B. Evans (age 69, Physician), his wife Jane (age 63) and their daughter Ella (age 34). I have been unable to positively identify this family in earlier returns. There is an E. B. Evans buried in the Washburn Street Cemetery that is likely the individual above, his inscription reading E. B. Evans, born 11 Dec 1810 and died 3 Sept 1881.

    E.S. EVANS, miner, Hyde Park, was born in Breconshire, South Wales, November 28th 1846, and married Mary E. Evans of Monmouthshire, South Wales.

    Note: In the 1880 census we find the family of E. S. Evans living on Prospect Street in Hyde Park. The family included E. S. (age 32, occupation works in coal mines), his wife Mary (age 34) and children Rachel (age 10), and Hattie (age 7). The 1900 census reveals that the "E" in E. S. Evans stood for "Eleazer" and here we find the family living on North Bromley Avenue in Hyde Park. Present are Eleazer S. Evans (age 53), wife Mary (age 54), their son-in-law and daughter, Charles R. ??? (age 27) daughter Hattie (age 27).The census also tells us that E. S. Evans immigrated to the U.S. in 1855 and that his occupation was "mail carrier."

    JAMES W. EVANS, miner, Hyde Park, was born in Monmouthshire, South Wales, on June 5th 1845, and married Margaret Jones, of his native place.

    Note: The 1880 census shows that James and Margaret Evans were living in Hyde Park (5th Ward - Scranton) on Jackson Street. The family included James W. Evans (age 35, Laborer), wife Margaret (age 33), and children John (age 5) and Jane (age 2). In the 1900 census there was a widowed 54-year-old James W. Evans (possibly the same individual from the 1880 census) living with his son-in-law and daughter William B. and Janie Evans (born 1878) on North Hyde Park Avenue in Scranton's 4th Ward.

    RICHARD EVANS, county surveyor of Lackawanna county, formerly civil and mining engineer, Was born in Glamorganshire, South Wales, July 20th, 1839. Residence, Orchard street, Hyde Park.

    Note: Although the information above says nothing about Richard's wife, the 1880 census tells us quite a bit about Richard's family. In 1880 the family of Richard and Ruth Evans was living on Orchard Street in Hyde Park (5th Ward Scranton) and included, Richard (age 42, Surveyor), wife Ruth (45, born in Wales), Richard Prothers (step-son, age 26, born in Wales, Miner), Edwin Prothers (step-son, age 24, born in Wales, Music Teacher), William Prothers (step-son, age 18, born in Wales, Laborer), James Prothers (step-son, age 17, born in Wales, Tin Smith), William Evans (son, age 18, born in Wales, Surveyor), Richard Evans (son, age 17, born in Wales, Tin Smith), Evangeline Evans (dau, age 9, born PA), Mary Evans (dau, age 7, born PA), Margaret Macey (other, age 18, born in Wales, Servant).

    We can draw several conclusions from the above information. It is clear that Ruth was not Richard's first wife, nor Richard Ruth's first husband. Obviously Ruth was married to a man named Prothers before she married Richard Evans. Also, given the gap in ages between Richard's children William and Evangeline, it is likely that William and Richard Evans were by Richard's first wife, while Evangeline and Mary were by Ruth.

    A.B. EYNON, Hyde Park, formerly a merchant but for some time cashier of the Miners' and Mechanics' Loan Association, was born at Carbondale, September 4th, 1847, and married Annie B. Hughes of Hyde Park. (Annie was the daughter of the above-mentioned Benjamin Hughes.)

    Note: Albert B. Eynon was the son of Thomas J. Eynon, a Welsh immigrant who became one of Hyde Park's most influential and respected citizens. Follow this link to read a biography of Thomas Eynon.

    Below: photograph of Albert B. & Annie Hughes Eynon which appeared in a local newspaper article celebrating the couple's 50th wedding anniversary in 1924.

     

    REESE R. GRIFFITHS, of Hyde Park, inside foreman of Pine Brook colliery, was born in Dowlais, Glamorganshire, South Wales, December 14th, 1838 and married Elizabeth Jones of Hirwain, Glamorganshire.

    Note: Information from the 1900 census tells us that Reese Griffith came to America in 1862. He first appears in the 1870 census for Hyde Park, 4th Ward, Scranton Luzerne Co. The family included Reese (age 32, miner), his wife Elizabeth (age 31), Harriet (age 4), and William (age 11). Harriet was Reese and Elizabeth's daughter, however I do not know if William was their son or perhaps some other relation. The returns also show that Reese was in possession of property valued at $2,000 and personal property valued at $150. In the 1880 census we find the family living in Scranton's 21st Ward and including R. R. Griffith (age 40, Tonman), Elizabeth (age 38), and children Harriet (14), Reese (age 9), Mary Jane (age 6), John (age 5), and Anne (age 3). It appears that Elizabeth died in the early 1880s because in 1900 we find Reese Griffith living with his second wife Hannah in Winton Borough in Lackawanna County. The family includes Reese (age 61, Mine Foreman), Hannah (age 49, 2/2 born in Wales), Reese Jr. (age 29, Grocer's Clerk), and John (age 25, Coal Mine Laborer). We can assume that Reese' first wife Elizabeth died in the early 1880s because Reese and Hannah state that in 1900 they had been married for 15 years. The returns also show that Hannah was the mother of two children, both of which were still living in 1900. I have been unable to find Reese in the census of 1910.

    JOHN HALE, of Bellevue, Hyde Park, mine foreman, was born in Wilts county, England, June 3rd 1832, and married Miss Ann J. Griffiths of Merthyr, South Wales. He has served as school director and justice of the peace, and held other official positions.

    DANIEL HOWELL, president of the Merchants' Bank, Hyde Park, was born in Monmouthshire, South Wales, September 27th 1826. He came to Scranton in 1854, and was formerly a coal operator. He married Mary Richards of Carbondale. She died April 23rd, 1873. His present wife is Sophia Stevens of Macedonia, Pa.

    Note: In the 1870 census we find Daniel Howell living in Hyde Park in Scranton's 5th Ward. The family included Daniel (age 43, General Merchant/Dry Goods & Groceries?), his wife Mary (age 35, born in PA), and Frank (age 8), Jane (age 2), and Jeremiah (age 18). Relationships were not given in the 1870 census, so we can't be certain that all of these were Daniel's children. The returns also indicate that Daniel was in possession of real estate valued at a whopping $100,000 and personal property valued at $70,000! I have been unable to trace this family in later returns.

    B(enjamin) HUGHES, general foreman of the mines of the Delaware, Lackawanna and Western Railroad Company, with which he has been connected for twenty-five years, and president of the Cambrian Mutual Fire Insurance Company, Hyde Park, was born in Breconshire, Wales, October 25th, 1824, and married Mary Davis of Bryn Mawr, Breconshire. He was formerly a miner and has been school director and councilman.

    Read more about the life of Benjamin Hughes

    Below: photograph of Benjamin Hughes

     

    JAMES R. JAMES, for fifteen years foreman of Mount Pleasant colliery, residence Hyde Park, was born February 2nd, 1827 in Monmuothshire, Wales. He married Mary Abrahams of Wales who died May 5th 1878. His present wife was Margaret Thomas of Hyde Park.

    MRS. ROBERT J. JAMES, formerly Jane Rosser was born in Breconshire, South Wales, April 15th, 1848. Her late husband was born in Glamorganshire, South Wales, March 7th, 1825, and died October 6th, 1879 at Hyde Park, where he had lived since January 1866. He came to America in August, 1863, and located in Schuylkill county, Pa; was engaged in mining until 1872; general agent of the Cambrian Mutual Insurance Company of Hyde Park until 1876, when he was elected clerk of the Luzerne county courts. In 1866 he organized a musical society - The Cambro-American Choral Society-" of which he was leader until his death. Robert J. James was buried in the Washburn Streeet cemetery, Hyde Park.

    Read more about the life of Jane Rosser James

    EDWARD D. JONES, formerly a miner, now inside foreman, was born in Monmouthshire, South Wales, July 26th, 1843, and married Margaret Parry of Glamorganshire, South Wales. He served two years as councilman, and is at present school director of the 1st ward of Scranton. Residence at Providence.

    Note: We find the family of Edward and Margaret Jones in the 1880 census living in Scranton's 1st Ward. The family included Edward D. Jones (age 35, Inside Foreman), his wife Margaret (age 33), and children Paul (age 11), Margaret J. (age 10), and Mary (age 3).

    JOHN D. JONES, Hyde Park, miner, was born in Monmouthshire, Wales, May 12th, 1836. He married Lucretia Morris of Pittston, who died in 1865. His present wife was Janette Reese of Glamorganshire, Wales.

    Note: In the 1880 census we find the family of John D. Jones and his second wife Janet, mentioned above, living on Hyde Park Ave in Scranton's 4th Ward. The family included, John (age 45, works in coal mines), Janet (age 32), and their children Elvira (age 19), David (age 17), Ada (age 10), Lena (age 8), Annie (age 6), Sidney (age 4), Hattie (age1) and Nettie (age 1). If the above information is correct and John's first wife Lucretia died in 1865, that means that Elvira and David would have been by John's first wife, and the remainder by his second wife Janet.

    STEPHEN JONES, formerly a machinist, dealer in sewing machines, No. 322 Lackawanna avenue, residence Main street, Hyde park, was born in Breconshire, South Wales, May 20th 1843, and married Agnes M. Barrowman of Hyde Park.

    Note: In the 1880 census we find the family of Stephen Jones living in the 14th ward of Scranton. The family includes Stephen (age 37, Sewing Machine Agt.), his wife Agnes (age 35, born in Scotland), and their children Eddie (age 11), Mamie (age 7), and Walter (age 9 months). In the 1900 census we find Stephen and Agnes Jones living on Adams Avenue in Dunmore with their children Mamie (age 27) and Walter (age 20). The portion of the return listing Stephen's occupation and date of arrival in the U.S. is unreadable, although the latter may be 1853 or 1857.

    W.W. JONES, engineer, Hyde Park, was born in Bryn Mawr, Wales, December 26th, 1845, and married Elizabeth James, of Neath, South Wales.

    J.D. LLOYD, formerly a miner, now inside boss at Jermyn mines, residence, Hyde Park, was born in Glamorganshire, Wales, February 22nd, 1844, and married Hannah Jones of his native shire.

    Note: In the 1880 census we see the family of Joseph Dal Lloyd living on North Eynon Street in Scranton's the 15th Ward. The family included Joseph (age 36, Inside Foreman of Mines), his wife Hannah (age 30), and their children Josephine (age 10), Frank (age 8), John (age 5), Alfred (age 3), and Gertie (age 2). All children are listed as being born in Pennsylvania, parents born in Wales. In the 1900 census we find the family living on North Main Avenue in the 14th Ward. The family includes Joseph D. Lloyd (56), Hannah (50, 5/5), and children Frank (28), John (25), Frederick (23) and Gertrude (22). Joseph is listed as a foreman in the mines, and states that he arrived in America in 1863. The returns indicate that Hannah arrived in 1858 and was the mother of five children, all five still living. Son Frank was working as a machinist.

    THOMAS LYSHON, miner, was born in Monmouthshire, South Wales, November 25th 183? And married Ann Jones of his native place, born 1830. Residence, Hyde Park.

    B.G. MORGAN, druggist and notary public, Hyde Park, formerly engaged in mining, teaching and clerking, was born in Merthyr Tydvil, Glamorganshire, South Wales, November 25th, 1839, and married Emily C. Wade of Hyde Park.

    Note: In the1880 census we find the family of B(enjamin) G. Morgan living on Main Street in Hyde Park (4th Ward, Scranton). The family included B. G. Morgan (age 41, Druggist), his wife Elizabeth (age 40, born in Illinois), and their children Annie E. (age 6), Raymond W. (age 5), Edith I. (age 3), and Benjamin's father James Morgan (age 79). In the 1900 census the Morgan family was living on Main Ave, Hyde Park, in Scranton's 5th ward. Here the family included Benjamin G. Morgan (60, Notary Public), wife Emily C. (59, 5/2, born in Illinois), Ann (age 26), and Raymond (age 24, Steamship Agent). Benjamin gives his date of arrival in the U.S. as 1850, and Emily is listed as the mother of 5 children, only two of which were living (Ann & Raymond). It seems odd that Benjamin's wife is listed as Elizabeth by the 1880 census, because it would certainly appear that Benjamin's wife is the same individual in both returns; same place of birth (Illinois) and same place of birth for her father and mother (Massachusetts and Pennsylvania).

    THOMAS T. MORGAN, miner and alderman of the 15th ward, residence Hyde Park, was born in Tonyrevail, Glamorganshire, South Wales, in 1833, and married Caroline Gore of Radnorshire, South Wales.

    Note: Although the Thomas T. Morgans I found in the 1880 census living on Main Avenue in Scranton's 15th Ward, gives his date of birth as 1840, it is no doubt the individual referred to above. The family includes Thomas (age 40, Miner) his wife Caroline (32, born England) and their daughters Mary Lewis (age 6, born in Wales) and Morvie Morgans (age 2, born in PA). As such, it would appear that perhaps Caroline was married previously to a man named Lewis. Despite the inconsistencies with the short biography above, we can be certain that this is indeed the above-mentioned family, because living right next door is the family of Thomas and Mary Gore (Caroline's maiden name), who were of the correct age (58 & 60) to have been Caroline's father and mother. A likely scenario is that Thomas and Mary Gore, who were born in England, moved their family to Wales, where their daughter Caroline married a man named Lewis and had a child named Mary, and the family eventually moved to Scranton. In fact, the England-to-Wales-to-Pennsylvania scenario was quite common in the 19th century.

    JAMES OLIVER, tax collector, formerly a miner, residence Northampton street, Hyde Park, was born in Monmouthshire, South Wales, March 10th, 1835, and married Margaret Price of Breconshire, South Wales.

    Note: In the 1880 census we find the family of James and Margaret Oliver living on North Hampton Street in Scranton's 15th Ward. The family included James (age 45, tax collector), Margaret (age 49), and children Thomas (age 18), James (age 16), Mary (age 11), James' father Joseph (age 80, born in England), and a James Oliver (age 24), possibly a brother or cousin.

    JOHN D. PHILLIPS, iron moulder, was born in Breconshire, South Wales, September 2nd, 1845, and married Ann Reese of Glamorganshire, South Wales. Residence, Hyde Park.

    Note: In the 1880 census we find the family of John D. (age 35, moulder) & Ann Phillips (age 40) living on Orchard Street in Scranton. In addition to John & Ann, the family included children Daniel (age 14), Maggie (age 10), Sidney (age 7) and Tallieson (age 4). In the 1900 census we find John and Ann Phillips living on Academy Street in Scranton's 5th ward, along with their children Tallie (age 25) and Sanford (age 18). The census also tells us that John was still working as a moulder, and that he came to the U.S. in 1865. John D. and Ann Phillips are buried in the Washburn Street Cemetery in Hyde Park. John's inscription tells us that he was born 2 Sept 1845, died 14 May 1932, and was the husband of Ann Phillips. Ann's inscription tells us that she was born 17 Aug 1840, died 19 Sept 1919, and was the wife of John D. Phillips.

    JOSEPH P. PHILLIPS, Hyde Park, who served three years as a member of the city select council and one year as its president, was born in Monmouthshire, South Wales, December 30th, 1845, and is a mining engineer. He married Esther H. Hughes, of Wilkes-Barre, Luzerne Co., Pa.

    Note: In the 1880 census we find the family of Joseph and Esther Phillips living on Adams Avenue in Scranton's 4th Ward, Hyde Park. The family included Joseph (age 34, Mining Engineer), Esther (age 27), and their children William T. (age 8), Franklin (age 5), Frances J. (age 4), and Mary (age 10 months). In the 1900 census we again find Joseph, Esther and family living in Hyde Park (4th ward - street not mentioned). In 1900 the family included Joseph (53, Civil Engineer), Esther (47), and children Fannie (24), Frank (25), Nellie (18), Geraldine (12), Orissia? (10), Joseph (11), and Harrie (8). The 1900 census also indicates that Esther had given birth to 13 children, 9 of which were still living, and that Joseph had arrived in America in the year 1867.

    DAN POWELL, merchant, Dunmore, was born in Blaina, Monmouthshire, South Wales, January 10th 1853, and married Sarah E. Space of Hampton, N.J.

    Read more about the life of Dan Powell

    JOSEPH POWELL, miner, Providence, was born in Light Street, Columbia county, Pa., May 8th, 1852, and married Elizabeth Williams, a native of Glamorganshire, South Wales.

    P.C. POWELL, Bellevue, Hyde Park, served as first sergeant of Company I, 46th Pa. volunteers, three years and two months during the late war. He was born in Monmouthshire, South Wales. He is engineer at the Bellevue mines.

    ISAAC RICHARDS, Hyde Park, was formerly a miner, but is now a farmer. He was born in Glamorganshire, South Wales, on March 10th 1831; married Catherine Jones of Cardiganshire, and came to America in 1850. He has served as a member of the city council.

    JOHN D. RICHARDSON, driver boss, was born in Monmouthshire South Wales, April 10th 1852 and married Nellie Louisa Norton of Durham, England.

    Note: In the 1880 census we find the family of John and Nellie Richardson living on Main Street in Scranton's 1st district. The family included John (age 28, Works on Tracks), wife Nellie (age 21), and children Robert J. (age 5), and Margaret (age 1). John's wife Nellie died sometime before 1900 because in the census taken that year we find the 48-year-old and widowed John Richardson living on Von Storch Avenue as a border with his children Robert J. (born 1875) and John Jr. (born 1880). John and his sons are working as day laborers, and the census indicates that John arrived in America in the year 1860.

    MORGAN W. THOMAS, formerly miner, now a machinist, Providence, was born in Glamorganshire, South Wales, March 27th 1828, and was there married to Sophia Myles.

    Note: I have located an individual in the 1880 census who I believe to be the Morgan Thomas mentioned above. The family was living in Scranton's 1st Ward, which agrees with the short bio above that mentions that Morgan Thomas lived in Providence. In 1880 this Morgan Thomas (age 53, Machinist) was already widowed, and living with his children David M. (age 23, Engineer), Mary J. (age 21), William (age 17, Coal Laborer), John (age 14, Picking Coal), and Arthur (age 11, Picking Coal). All members of the household are listed as being born in Wales.

    THOMAS E. WATKINS, inside mining foreman, Hyde Park, was born in Breconshire, South Wales, February 12th, 1829, and married Rachel Lewis of Glamorganshire, South Wales. He has served as councilman from the 5th ward of Scranton.

    Note: In the 1880 census we find the family of Thomas E. Watkins living on Washburn Street, Hyde Park, in Scranton's 5th Ward. The family included Thomas (age 52, Forman), his wife Rachel (age 52), and their children Daniel (age 23, Bookkeeping), George (age 19, Bookkeeping), and Jennie (age 10).

    W.J. WATKINS, book and job printer, over Decker's store, Main street, Hyde Park, was born in Glamorganshire, South Wales, November 29th 1857, and married Hattie Scrine of Scranton.

    Note: In the 1880 census we find William and Hattie Watkins living in Hyde Park (4th Ward, Scranton). William is listed as a 23-year-old printer, while Hattie is 20, both born in Wales. I have been unable to find William and Hattie in the 1900 census.

    ISAAC WATRES, miner, has been coal weigher, boss, &c., and resides at Hyde Park. He was born October 19th, 1814 in Monmouthshire, South Wales, where he married Miss Ann Jones.

    JOHN H. WILLIAMS, chief engineer, formerly a machinist, was born in Dowlais, Wales, March 12th, 1848. He married Mary E. Smith of Scranton. Mr. Williams served nine months on the 50th N.Y. engineers.

    T.R. WILLIAMS, clerk, was born in Breconshire, South Wales, February 7th, 1827, and married Ann Jones of his native shire. Residence at Providence.

    This individual was likely the Thomas R. Williams identified by the 1880 census as living on Orchard Street in Scranton's 1st Ward. The family included Thomas (53, Clerk in Store), his wife Ann (age 52) and a 54-year-old Welsh miner named Davis Andrews.

    W.W. WILLIAMS, builder and county auditor for Lackawanna county, residence at Providence, was born in Glamorganshire, Wales, December 31st, 1836, and married Elizabeth Jenkins, of Bangor, Wis.

    WILLIAM B. WILLIAMS, served as common councilman and member of the select council of the city of Scranton. He was born in Breconshire, Wales, November 16th 1825, and resides in Hyde Park. He married Elizabeth Morris of his native shire.

    Note: The 1880 census shows that William B. Williams (age 54) and his wife Elizabeth (age 56) were living on Prospect Street in Scranton's 1st district. William Sr.'s occupation is listed as Tax Collector. Next door was a William B. Williams Jr. and family, who was likely William and Elizabeth's son. William B. and Elizabeth Williams are buried in the Washburn Street cemetery in Hyde Park. Williams's inscription reads, William B. Williams, born 17 Nov 1825, died 16 Jan 1892, Husband of Elizabeth Williams. Elizabeth's inscription reads, Elizabeth Williams, born 10 Feb 1821, died 12 Nov 1908, Wife of William B. Williams.

    W.O. WILLIAMS, miner, formerly a merchant, residence Bellevue, Hyde Park, was born in Breconshire, South Wales, August 20th, 1840, and married Margaret James of Carmarthenshire, South Wales.

    Note: In the 1880 census William O. Williams (age 39) was living in Lackawanna Township, Lackawanna Co., Pa., with his wife Margaret (age 42) and their children Gwen J. (age 9) and William J. Williams (age 4). William's occupation is listed as coal miner.


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