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. "Woman's Mission in Modern…

.,.--.,I New Great Western.…


Aberdare Operative Bakers.…




LATE DR. D. DAVIES, J.P., I ABERDARE. HIS SERVICES TO THE TOWN. As briefly reported in our last- iesue, Dr. David Davies, J.P., Bryngolwg, Abevdare, for many years the Medical Officer of Health to the Aberdare Local Board of Health, and sub- sequently, until three years ago, to the Aber- dare District Council, passed away on Thurs- day morning, at the advanced ago of 89 years. Deceased was the son of the late Mr. William Davies, farmer, Cwmsaebren, near Treherbert, in the Rhondda.. Valley, and was familiarly known to the generation of Aberdarians which is fast passing away as "Dr. Davies, Cwmsae- bren." He was born in May, 1821, and was apprenticed, after completing his school days, to the late Dr. Redwood, at that time medical officer to tho workmen employed at the exten- sive collieries and ironworks of the Rhymney Iron Company. He then completed his studies at Dublin University and at Guy's Hospital, London, and obtained the degrees of F.R.C.b. (England), L.R.C.P., L.S.A., and L.M. After having obtained his diplomas in medicine, he looked around for a suitable place to open prac- tice, and was induced by the lato Mr. David Davis, of Blaengwawr, the grandfather of Mr. Fred L. Davis (chairman of the Conciliation Board), and the late Mr. David Williams (Alaw Goch), of Abercynon (father of the late. Judge Gwilym Williams, Miskin), to sett, down at j Aberdare. Aberdare was then (1845) a small village of 7,000 inhabitants, and the only medi- cal man in the district was the late Dr. James Lewis Roberts. J.P., of Gadlys Uchaf, father of Capt. Roberts, of Caerleon (Monmouthshire), the owner of the Gadlys Estate—from whom Robertstown derives its name. Both Mr. Davi" and Mr. Williams were at the time sinking their respective- collieries at Riaengwawr and Cwmbach, and they secured for the young doc- tor the appointment of colliery doctor to their respective works. He very soon extended his practice, and became the leading medical prac- titioner in the valley. Aberdare was at that time without a supply of water, without any satisfactory arrangements for the disposal of the sewage in the town, and without a gas- works. Young Dr. Davies, being a keen man I THE LATE DR. D. DAVIES, J.P. of business, at once moved k; all these much -needed injp/vreroe-ns? i: tne Viiiage, which at thai tixao was the pop'.ilet-on having 'u;.cebfi-Xi& .tivd vmes between i;J¡1 uld 1S51. Th--j first venture he l-ecs-v;? connected with war-, that for supplying tb-^ uj j.ri with gas, and be was one of the shareboidau* nd directors of the original Aberdare G- any, which ,'iu.ny years later was secured oy the Aberdare and Aberaman Consumers' GM Company. His house (Bryngolwg), which was erected by him m 1847, on what was then Üõf; main road, was the first house in Aberdare nt with gas. He was also a shareholder and director of the Aberdare Waterworks Company, which built the Bwllfa Reservoir, and which was subse- quently bought by the Aberdare Local Board of Health, when the town grew to such an ex- tent that the original^ reservoir was insufficient for the needs of the district. In 1855, Dr. Davies married Jane, the yotmg- est daughter of the late Joseph Coffin, of Mer- thyr, another daughter haying married Mr. Wayne, of Cfiandare. Of this union, which was I a very happy one, and lasted for considerably over half a century, there was only one daugh- ter, with whom great sympathy 15 felt by all the people of Aberdare, the losing affection which bound father, mother, and daughter together while the two parents remained, and the loving devotion of father and daughter aitarwards being exemplary and marked by all. In 1854, the Aberdare Local Board of Health was established, and although the Board plod- ded along for some nine years without formally appointing a m-edical officer of health, the duties of such an officer fell £ rom the start- upon Dr Davies, and'he was formally appointed the first medical officer of health for Aberdare on Feb- ruary 5th, 1863. This appointment he held as iong aa the Aberdare Locai Board of Health was in existence, and when the Board of Health gave way to the) District Council of Aberdare, Dr. Davies held the same position under tne latter body untu March 30th, 1907, when he re- signed to be eucx/oeded by Dr. Morgan John Rees, the present medical officer of health. In addition to this appointment and his very extensive private practice, he was also poor-law doctor and vaccination doctor for a large por- tion of the parish for very many years, these appointments being resigned by him when he practically withdrew from private practice; and these, in addition to his private practice, were retained by his partner, Dr. W. Llewelyn Rhys, Aberdare. Dr. Davies, who was a Churchman and strong Conservative, was placed on the Commission of the Peace for the County of Glamorgan in 1889, and he sat with exemplary regularity on the Bench until his recent accident, when he was thrown out of the trap. Since then he had not baen able to be much out or tike house. Ho was also an Income Tax Commis- sioner. He took a keen interest in the social and moral life of the town, and was beloved by all who knew him. When the Aberdaie Volunteers were formed in 1859, Dr. Davies was one of the first to join as an ensign, and he subsequently became lieutenant-surgeon of the "0" and "P" Companies of the 3rd Vol. Batt. the Welsh Regiment-a position he re- tained a3 hon. surgeon until the Volunteer Corps merged into the Territorials. Dr. Da- vies, however, never joined the Territorial Army on account of his age. Although lie suffered and mourned deep.y the death of his i wife, he still continued bale and hearty, but a I few months ago he was unfortunate enough to I be thrown out of his trap on the Hirwain-road, both he and Miss Davies sustaining somewhat severe injuries, from the results of which Dr. Davies himself never fully recovered. Dr. Davies was a wonderful raconteur, and his memory of Aberdare 55 years ago was mar- veilous. In the course of a conversation with our correspondent, when he resigned the office of Medical Officer of Health for the Aberdare District Council, he gave a graphic picture of Aberdarc as it was in 1845. There was not a single b-.)use below Victoria-square until one got to J fountain Ash, with the exception of a few farmhouses scattered here and there on the side of the mountain. The only traffic coming into the town was either along the road or by the Aberdare Canal from the junction with the Glamorgan Canal from the "Basin, as Aber- cynon was then known, and discharged at the docks at Cwmbach. Here it may not be un. interesting to state that at that time tnere was a regular triffic between AbordaTe and N" and Swansea. Stuff was sent by canal boat from Cardiff to Cwmbach, and then taken by the tramroad through Hirwain and Rhigos down to Abernant and Glynneath, and thenco by the Neath Canal from Glynneath to Neath and Swansea. The only pit eunk in Aberdare when Dr. Davies came here was the Upper or Old Duffryn Pit at Cwmbach; but, of course, there were numerous ironworks at Abernant, Gadlys, Llwydooed, and Hirwain, and other collieries were being sunk. At that time, Aberdare had onlv one church—St. John's Parish Church—which 'was served by the Rev. A. P. Thomas, perpetual curate under the Vicar of Llantrisant, Aberdare having no vicar in thoee days. Dr. Davies was present at the opening of' every dock at Cardiff, from the first Bute Deck opened in 1839. He was also pre- sent at the opening of every section of the Great Western Railway from Cardiff to New MIford, as well as the Taff Vale Railway, --le Rhymney Railway, the Brecon and Merthyr llAilway, tho Barry Railway, aod all the local railways opened in South Wales during the past half a century. When he first came to Aberda,re, there was only one carnage of any description in the valley-that was an Irish gig own-ed by the' late Lord Aberdare. In this the family used to drive to church on Sunday, as well as to do their marketing, visiting, etc. The next carriage brought into the town was a phaaton, owned by Mr. Thomas Wayne, of Glandare, one of the pioneers of the coal trade I in this valUey—one of the proprietors of the Gadlys Works and'Collieries, and a. brother-in. law of Mrs. Davies. THE FUNERAL. I The funeral of Dr. Davies took place on Monday at St. John's Churchyard, the Rev. 1 C. A. H. Green (Vicar) officiating. A short service was held in the church. The mourners were: Miss Davies, daughter; Dr. Davis, I Glog, and Mr. George Evans, Pontypridd, j nephews; Mr T. Llewelyn, Launoeston, nephew- in-law; Rev. J. O'Reilly, Mr. W. F. Parry de j Win ton, Dr. W. LI. Rliys, and the following employees of the deceased Messrs. 0. Maloney, I M. Foley, Newcombe and Kohlbecker. I The bearers were: Messrs. T. Jones, A. Ryan, Jones, R. Hill, F. Hill, E. Hill, Canter, and T. Lewis, being tenants oi the deceased. STRAIGHTFORWARD, GENIAL, AND GENUINE. At the Aberdaro Police-eoari on, Wednesday, j th^ Stipendiary (Sir T. Marenant Williams), -upon tiding his seat, said:—"Before cczus?i<isic- ;.i;x ;h& basin ess, I wish to say a few wo.nis n, 5 to i-o loss which ihe Bc/ich .:s 'A <:• c by the cb&'h oi our«, D:. j Three w^ekj ago it was :jjv n C. j to ttt the d;atb ol Mr. U<i £ iU> Ccv^s. j Yesterday, during the sitting at Merthyr, an- other colleague—one to whom I was very much attached—passed away in the person of Mr. Matthew Truran. To-day I have to lament the death of the oldest of my colleagues and friends —Dr. Davies. I remember him ever since I was a child. My first recollection of him was to see him riding his white horse and wearing a white hat. That was a good many years ago. I remember him telling ine tha.t lie first came to Aberdare aj a child with his father in 1829, on the occasion of th'3 opening of Carmel C.M. Chapel. He came over from Cwmcae- bren, and the great John Elias was preaching there on that occasion. He often spoke with I I ineffable charm of those days long ago. He had much to say of the great Welsh preachers of the last century, who received th9 hospitality of Cwmcaebren. He could also tell us so much about the beginning of Aberdare, and of the great men who established its industries, all of whom are now gone. In his private life you all knew him. He was a straightforward, gen- ial, and genuine man. Finesse he utterly dis- regardad; pretence he repudiated. He was most straightforward and most truthful in all he did. He knew his duty, and went straight and did it. I know no one on the Bench who could read character better than he couid. Ho could, as it were, instinctively realise whether a witness was telling the truth or not. He was the best type of the best Welsh type— an old Glamorgan yeoman. We shall miss him very much, and my colleagues and myself wish to express our condolence with his only daugh- ter, who so assiduously and lovingly ministered to him.. Col. T. Phillips. on behalf of the professional men present, said he wished to thoroughly identify themselves with the remarks which had fallen from the Stipendiary. He (,ol. Philips) had been associated with the deceased for over forty years, from the first day he came to Aberdare, and oven before then. Being an ardent Volunteer, he found Dr. Da- vies an ardent supporter of what was con- sidered to be an excellent institution. He joined at Aberdare when the Volunteers were first formed, and remained on the Army list until the formation of the Territorial Army. As an offioer of the old Local Boarod of Health, which was established in 1854, he (the speaker), for nearly twenty years as clerk to that body, became closa.y associated With him. He, in common with other members of the Council, had learnt to respect and esteem him. He was a prominent figure in the town, wnich he had watched growing from a small village to g a town of 50,000 population. He and other gentlemen present desired to express their deep- est sympathy with Miss Davies. Mr. William Thcmas said that as High Con stable he would like to add a few words xo what had already been said. Dr. Davies was always ready to render assistance in any dc- serving case to which his attention was called. He wished to exp.-ess his sympathy with Miss Davies.

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