Ancestral Wales

Our Stories, Our History

Census

Poorhouse

When my Dad died, he left his family history research with me, but I haven’t really done much with it.  I think in part because the thought of researching Jones in Wales has always overwhelmed me and I have two of them (one on each side of the family)!!  With the release of the 1911 Census though, I’ve been updating family information.

Dad’s Mum was born in Llangefni, Anglesey and her birth certificate indicates the date she was born and says born in Poorhouse, Llangefni, which I immediately assumed meant workhouse.  However Mum remembered visiting Gran’s home in Anglesey just after she and Dad got married.

 I found the 1911 census listing this weekend and Gran’s parents are living in Llangefni, with 4 of their 10 children still at home.  It turns out that the home was a 5 room private house called Pwros (poorhouse).  I’ll probably never know why they called the house that, but interesting to imagine what it might have looked like - Mum told me a Welsh dresser was made to fit in the house by cutting a hole in the ceiling, so part of it stuck into the upstairs!

 I plan to spend a little more time researching this family now.  My gr gr Grandfather David Owen is listed as a horse jockey on Gran’s Mother’s marriage certificate and I believe that I found him on the 1911 census – occupation farmer and horse breaker.  I also noticed that someone else was researching the same line and I’m hoping to make contact with the family.

1911 UK Census

I’ve had a little look around the 1911 Welsh Census and viewed a couple of transcripts and found some interesting information about some of my ancestors. On Sunday my daughter and I were talking about a branch of her family and we decided to take a look for them on the 1911 England census.

The transcript has quite a bit of information on it – the head of the family, his wife, length of marriage, 4 sons, 1 daughter, a visitor, a son-in-law. Two of the sons were William and Wellie and we were discussing if indeed there might be two sons named William in the same family. I said I’d look at the original to see if a) the name was indeed Wellie (should have been Willie) and b) check out another potential transcription error. I was pleasantly surprised to see other information on the original page for the household. The number of children born to the marriage is listed – in this case 17!! It also lists the number still living (9) and the number that have died (8), which prompted my daughter to say “I’m missing some living children then!”

On my own research line, one of the children I found on the 1901 Welsh census, is still living with his step-grandparents and it indicates that he was born in Victoria, Melbourne, Australia. I knew he was born in Australia, but this narrows it down for me.

I don’t know why I didn’t pay attention to what was contained on the census. I’m usually far more aware of that kind of thing. I guess I was just too excited to see it!

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