Posted: Tue 31st May 2016

Bargoed Library Helps Resident Trace Antique History

news.wales / newyddion.cymru
This article is old - Published: Tuesday, May 31st, 2016

To mark Local and Community History Month, Caerphilly Council has visited resident Vinnette Mcdonough, to find out how she traced the history of a ring she inherited. ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

Originally belonging to a lady named, Alice Maude Jenkins, the ring had been passed on to Vinnette, by her father, who cared for Alice before she died. ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

Vinnette found a small inscribing around the band of the ring and took it to a local jeweller who could read the inscription. With great astonishment, the jeweller informed Vinnette the ring belonged to the Penry-Williams family. ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

The family owned a grand estate in Brecon, which is where Vinnette’s search begins. Her curiosity has led her to find out how Alice Maude Jenkins became the owner of this ring and the relationship between her family and the Penry-Williams family. ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

She said, “If it were men, it would be easy to search but because we are searching through the mother’s line, their names change due to marriages and even adoption. It’s very hard and I thought this wouldn’t work out but then something happens. ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

“It’s a piece of history that you can delve into and you don’t know what’s going to come out of it and I think that is the most exciting part.” ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

Within the area, both Bargoed Library and The Winding House, New Tredegar are the main centres for tracing family history. Both facilities include local census information as well as Civil Registration indexes for births, deaths and marriages. ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

Bargoed Library also has a fully equipped learning area on the ground floor with staff on hand to help you identify any requirements. ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

Steve Kings, Senior Library Assistant at Bargoed Library said, “We ask people to write down what they know already, whether that is a lot or very little, we would start by using Civil Registration, looking for births and marriages with the aim is to search on the 1911 census. From there we can find ages, names and most importantly where someone was born.” ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​



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