Born 1800 in Merthyr Cynog Brecon
This image of Merthyr Cynog Parish Church was taken in 1998.
| Born in Merthyr
Cynog in 1800
He was in Aberystruth Parish, Monmouthshire when he married :
Rees Prosser (Aberystruth) to Ann Davies (Trevethin) in Trevethin 8/8/1827
They were in Nantyglo when Charles was born:
Charles Prosser born 2/10/1828 baptised 2/11/1828 in Aberystruth Monmouthshire.
The family were in Decazeville, France when Rees Joshua was born :
Rees Joshua Prosser born Decazeville 8/12/1834.
They were still there when a daughter Anne was born & died :
Anne Prosser born 14/4/1837 died 16/9/1838.
The French records were taken from information deposited at Merthyr Tydfil Library by a French researcher who was looking for descendents of the "Welsh Ironworkers".
In 1861 Rees Prosser & Ann are in Merthyr Tydfil at White Street and in April 1865 they were both witnesses at the wedding of their daughter Anne Elizabeth Prosser to George Crighton at St. John`s Church Skewen, Neath. Ann Prosser died and was buried in Pant Cemetery, Merthyr Tydfil on 15/12/1868.
In the Census of 1871 Rees Prosser is living with his widowed daughter Anne Crighton and two grandchildren at Hill Road Neath Abbey.
Rees died at Neath Abbey and was buried at Pant Cemetery Merthyr Tydfil 24/1/1879.
| Charles Prosser
and his wife Elizabeth (nee Owen).
They married in 1859 in Cadoxton Church. Charles was born in Nantyglo before his parents moved to France.He was a Mechanic with the Neath Abbey Ironworks. A fine violinist he also composed music and was a bandleader with the Glamorgan Volunteers. Family stories refer to him having written a famous a Welsh "air" -The Ash Grove. Elizabeth was the daughter of David Owen, a master mason with the Ironworks, who built the Dry Dock at Gwaith Bach and also the building further up "The Cwm" now used by an overall manufacturing company.
David gives his birthplace as Cwmfelin on Census entries.
| Rees Joshua Prosser.
He was born in 7/12/1834 in Decazeville,France. He married Eleanor Collins
9/12/1861 in Chippenham, Wiltshire.
Their first child Charles James was born in Merthyr 23/10/1862 and in December
of the same year the family emigrated to America. Rees Joshua was recorded
as a Machinist.
Three further children were born in Lawrenceville PA before the family settled at Altoona PA where a further five children were born. Some of the descendents of this family are still in Altoona but others have spread across the USA.
Much of the above information and the photograph have derived from one g.granddaughter Joane Janega who lives in Tucson Arizona.She shares her research with another cousin Marjorie Sonneman Solan.
| Anne Elizabeth Prosser
came to Neath Abbey probably in 1862.
We know that she was also born in France from the census information but
we do not know where. No photograph has yet been found to "re-unite" her
with her brothers.
In April 1865 she married George Crighton. Anne was the Mistress at Neath Abbey School and George the Master. Their school logbooks, in their own hand, give a good insight into Education at that time and also into their personal lives. Two children were born, Isabel and Clara before George sadly died 26/3/1868. The logbook entry in another hand says " News received of Mr Crighton`s decease, the departed expired at eleven o`clock yesterday". For 10/12/1868 Anne writes " left the school in charge of P Teachers- was obliged to absent myself owing to the death of my mother". Anne`s last entry is on 24th August 1906 - " Resigned post as Head Mistress of these schools after a period of nearly 44 years".
Isabel Crighton married another schoolmaster George Wigley Griffiths who later became Head Master of Skewen Lower Boy`s School.
|David Owen died
Dec.23 1804 aged 58 and his wife Ann died Feb.10, 1836.
This information is recorded on their grave in Cadoxton Churchyard. No marriage record has been found although there are possible baptisms and we know that the surname Owen is recorded several times in the Hearth Tax records of the 17th Century.
Their son William Owen born 25/6/1782 and married Margaret Thomas 20/9/1806. He was a Haulier and lived in Neath Abbey. In the early 1800`s William converted to Methodism and references to him have been found in Non-conformist literature: "Mr William Owen, a collier by calling who lived in the Abbey opposite the place where stands the Welsh Wesley. A man strong in knowledge and truth having priority in his life."
Referring to an early Sunday School it states " end of 1810 or early 1811, it was began in the house of William Owen, and was there until 1843. It was a house suitable for the purpose. It was judged to have been part of the original Abbot`s House. There was an immense room and a pulpit was placed therein. The house was soon named Salem."
Their son David Owen was baptised 2/9/1807 and married Margaret Jenkins.
His work as mason has been described above and references to him were also made in Non-conformist literature : " Around 1868 Messrs. Edward Davies, David Owen and John Howells were chosen as deacons ..... Mr. David Owen was a Stone Mason. A man of strong powers and one of the pleasures of Seion was to listen to him relating his experiences."
Many of David & Margaret`s children were apprenticed to the Neath Abbey Ironworks and together with their Prosser relatives were to have a strong influence on the area for several generations. As has been mentioned under the section on the Ironworks Richard Owen and his brother William ran the Dynevor Engineering works until their deaths when the business was passed on to Richard`s son. D.W.Prosser, an initial partner in the business left to set up his own design & consultancy business. He designed furnaces which were used both locally and abroad.
Churches : Neath
Briton Ferry Baglan
Histories : Neath Abbey Ironworks Gnoll Estate Neath Valley & Canal Parson`s Folly
& Images Valley Villages & Burial Grounds Pontrhydyfen Merthyr Cynog Trevethin Pant cemetery
Family : Wagstaffe Tree Prosser & Owens in Neath Abbey
Links : Neath/PortTalbot Tourism