Welcome to this blog about the coalmining community living in and around Saundersfoot in Pembrokeshire in the late 18th and 19th centuries.
One line of my ancestors came from this area, Begelly in particular. They were coalminers but while they no doubt left many marks below ground, they failed to leave too many in the records of the time. Having started my research into my family history around 1999 and finding little information to go on, I turned my interest instead to researching how they lived. I have been captivated by the local history of the area ever since.
I have two purposes in writing this blog. Firstly, I want to relay some of the research I have picked up over the last few years. Several of you “in the know” tell me it is new and interesting material covering both local and family history topics.
Secondly, I would like to encourage others to post both comments and articles. I know from our emails and/or speaking to you that many of you also have something to say about your family’s history in the area and I’d like this to be a platform for you to say some of it. The WordPress software I am using to host this blog allows anyone anywhere in the world to post a comment and, with the right access from me, a fuller post. My hope (fantasy?) is that new sources of original material such as letters, photos and diaries come to light. Fingers crossed.
Let me finish with 4 quick points:
- Having said what this blog is, I must add what it is not. This is not a history of mining techniques. My knowledge of these is non-existant. Anyone interested in this should peruse Martin Connop Price’s books.
- Posts will be around 500 words in length at most and should include relevant pictures. Underlying all the posts is the knowledge that, for most of our ancestors, life was tougher than we can imagine today.
- My research has covered the parishes of Begelly and East Williamston, Reynalton and St Issells although there will be references to other parishes in the coalfield such as Amroth and Jeffreyston.
- Feel free to link to these pages or copy written material from this blog if for non-commercial purposes. In return please do attribute my research if you do publish or pass on to other researchers – it’s a simple courtesy. Please note that most of the images on here are under copyright, details of which are embedded in the image and noted on the post.
So, please read on and tell me what you think by leaving any comments or questions you have. You can also to subscribe to receive notification of new posts and/or comments by RSS. If you know of others who might be interested, do let them know that this blog exists.
If you want to contact me “off blog” then email me at firstname.lastname@example.org