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ABER DAR, in the Cwmwd of Meisgyn, Cantref of Penythen (now called the Hundred of Miskin), Co. of GLAMORGAN, South Wales: a Curacy, not in charge, to the Vicarage of Llan Trisaint: Patron, The Vicar of Llan Trisaint: Church dedicated to St. John the Baptist.  The Resident Population of this Parish, in 1801, was 1486. The Money raised by the Parish Rates, in 1803, was £436..12..7 1/2, at 13s. 11 1/4d. in the pound.  It is 4 m. S.W. from Merthyr Tudfyl.  The Fairs are holden on the 19th of April, Whitsun Monday, and 14th of November.  This Parish contains about 2000 acres of cultivated land, and about 2000 acres which are uncultivated.  Here are extensive Iron works, belonging to Messrs. Tappenton and Co., and Messrs. Scales and Co. According to the Diocesan Report, in 1809, the yearly value of this Benefice, arising from Stipend, and Augmentation, was £34..13.  The Rev. EDWARD EVAN, an eminent dissenting preacher, philosopher, and poet, was a native of this place; and was one of the few who, according to Mr. Owen, being initiated into the Bardic mysteries, have helped to preserve the institution to the present time.  He died on the 21st of June, 1798, being the day fixed for him to meet the other Bards of the Chair of Glamorgan.  JEUAN DDU AB DAFYDD AB OWAIN, an eminent poet, was also a native of Aber Dar; and flourished from about the year 1440 to 1480.  He was a gentleman of a large estate: and a great patron of the Bards, whose various acts of munificence are still traditionally told in the neighborhood where he resided.
From: A Topographical Dictionary of The Dominion of Wales by Nicholas Carlisle, London, 1811.


Archives and Libraries


Here is a substantial reading list of books which relate to Glamorgan, either county or parish.

References to the town of Aberdare at

Business and Commerce Records

  • Aberdare & Aberaman Consumers Gas Co, Aberdare, Glamorgan
    1845-1947: minute books, agendas, registers, managers' reports, ledgers, invoice and wages books, correspondents.
    [Glamorgan Record Office, Cardiff - Reference: D/D Ga/A]
  • Aberdare Canal Navigation, Aberdare, Glamorgan
    1793-1961: minute, share transfer and account books, shareholders registers, deeds, plans, papers relating to liquidation.
    [Glamorgan Record Office, Cardiff - Reference: D/DB Ca/1-94]
  • Aberdare & District Co-Operative Society Ltd, Aberdare, Glamorgan
    1871-1935: minute books and misc papers. [University of Swansea Library - Reference: SWCC]
    1901: Cwmaman branch ledger. [Glamorgan Record Office, Cardiff]
  • Aberdare Railway Co., Aberdare, Glamorgan
    1845-1902: minutes & reports, ledger, registers, list of shareholders, letter books
    [Public Record Office, Kew, London - Reference: RAIL 2]
  • Aberdare Trades and Labour Council, Aberdare, Glamorgan
    1907-68: minutes, correspondents and financial records
    [University of Swansea Library - Reference SWCC]
  • Aberdare Valley Railway Co., Cardiff, Glamorgan
    1855-64: minutes, ledger, cash book, expenditure and receipts books
    [Public Record Office, Kew, London - Reference: RAIL 3]
  • Aberdare Waterworks Co., Aberdare, Glamorgan
    1857-67: minute book
    [Glamorgan Record Office]
  • JT Jones, printer and publisher
    1827-1905: account books, lists of subscribers, registers of adverts, corresp, etc, Aberdare and Carnarvon [National Library of Wales, Department of Manuscripts and Records - Reference: NLW MSS 3321-63]

The Glamorgan Family History Society have produced a set of microfiche containing Monumental Inscriptions for the following burial grounds :-

  • St. John the Baptist


The Glamorgan Family History Society have produced a set of microfiche containing an enumerated transcription and a personal name index. These are available for the years :

  • 1841 - (included in with Merthyr Tydfil)
  • 1851 - HO107/2460


You can also perform a more selective search for churches in the Aberdare area that are recorded in the GENUKI church database. This will also help identify other churches in nearby townships and/or parishes. You also have the option to see the location of the churches marked on a map.

Church History

Chapels Database  - a  list of all known non-conformist chapels or other non-Anglican religions in the parish

  • St Mairs Church, Seymour St, Aberdare - details on the RCT Heritage Trail site.   "St Mair's Church was built for the Welsh speaking Anglican congregation of Aberdare Parish. The foundation stone was laid on July 2nd 1863...................."   The Church was demolished in 1964, the site redeveloped and St Mair's Social Centre opened in 1969.

Church Records

For full and up-to-date details of their holdings see the sites of Glamorgan Record Office and/or West Glamorgan Archives

See Bap/Mar/Bur data on  FreeReg for St John's

The church is dedicated to St. John the Baptist, is in the Benefice of Aberdare, and Diocese of Llandaff. Details of the present incumbent of this benefice can be found at the Church in Wales website. The church can be found at grid reference SO000026.

A transcription of the registers is available from the Glamorgan Family History Society for the years: Baptisms, 1734-1900, Marriages, 1717-1837, Burials, 1734-1924. Visit their website for information on how to purchase these fiche.

Anglican Parish Registers Held at the Glamorgan Record Office, Cardiff
Baptisms Marriages Burials Banns Bishops Transcripts
1734-1917 1734-1753, 1769-1937 1734-1916 - 1717, 1724-1837

Modern Parishes & Chapels of Ease :-

Non Conformist Registers Deposited
Chapel Baptisms Marriages Burials OS Map Ref Deposited/
Carmel Baptist, Monk Street 1806-1837 - 1814-1837 SO 00160251 PRO
Bethania, Calvinistic Methodist - 1914-1958, 1960-1969, 1975-1983 - SO 00210248 NLW
Nazareth, Calvinistic Methodist 1940-1969 - 1952-1970 SO 00530273 NLW
Quaker - - 1862-1871 - GRO

Salem Congregational






Sion, Wesleyan 1857-1968 - - SO 00310240 NLW
Sion, Wesleyan*
*not on WGAS online list
1966-1968 - - SO 00310240 WGAS

GRO - Glamorgan Record Office, Cardiff
NLW - National Library of Wales, Aberystwyth
WGAS - West Glamorgan Archive Service
PRO - Public Record Office, London

Details of extant records on Archives Network Wales for the following;

  • Aberdare Ecclesiastical Parish records     "Aberdare Ecclesiastical Parish records including registers for churches of St John and St Elvan of baptisms, 1734-1910; marriages, 1769-1937; burials, 1734-1946; records relating to: churchwardens, 1900-1939; property, 1869-1939; endowments and finance, 1894-1915; correspondence, 1881-1940; St Elvans church, 1862-1936; miscellaneous, 1854-1935; St Johns church, 1864-1938; St John the Evangelist, Robertstown, 1886-1912; St Mary Magdalene, Cwmbach, 1906-1914; St Marys Welsh Church, Maesydref, 1894-1936; St Matthews Mission Church, Abernant, 1885-1900; church affairs, 1901-1940; church organisations, 1892-1935; charities, 1884-1928; education, 1895-1920"

A set of fiche have been produced by the Glamorgan Family History Society covering registers of some Aberdare Chapels, for the period 1788-1951 (baptisms) and 1809-1836 (burials).     "..... records including registers of baptisms, 1854-1975; marriages, 1854-1953; burials, 1855-1942"

The following Religious Institutions are covered in the Mormon International Genealogical Index (IGI) :-

  • Aberdare, Carmel Particular Baptist - Births 1806-1837
  • Aberdare, Salem and Ebenezer and Nebo Independent - Christenings, 1806-1837

Description and Travel

You can see pictures of Aberdare which are provided by:

Places, villages, farms etc within Aberdare parish as shown on the online parish map from the CD of  Historic Parishes of England and Wales: an Electronic Map of Boundaries before 1850 with a Gazetteer and Metadata [computer file]. (Kain, R.J.P., Oliver, R.R.). (Extracted by John Ball)

  • Aberdare [68] - Aberaman, Aberaman House, Abercwmboi, Abercwmboi Colliery, Aberdare, Aber-nant, Bedwlwyn, Berw Ddu, Blaen-Aman-fawr, Blaencwmboi, Blaenaman Fach, Blaengwawr, Blaen-nant-y-groes, Brick Works, Bryn Du, Bwllfa Dare Colliery, Capcoch, Castell Nos, Castell y Mawn, Cefn-pennar, Cefn-pennar-uchaf, Cefn Rhos-Gwawr, Craig Bedwlwyn, Craig Rhiw-ddu, Cwm Ynys-mintan, Cwmaman, Cwmbach, Cwmdare, Cwmdare Colliery, Cwmdu, Cwm-pennar, Dyffryn House, Fedw-hir, Ffynnon-y-gog, Gadlys, Gamlyn, Garn Wen, Gelli-ddu-fach, Gelli-ddu-fawr, Golf Course, Grey's Place, Gwersyll, Hafod Wen, Llech Sychryd, Lluestai-llwydion, Lwydcoed Station, Neuadd-y-Wenallt, Pen-rhiw-llech, Penywaun Inn, Rifle Range, Roberts Town, Ropeway, Tir Howel-ap-Ifor, Trecynon, Tre-Gibbon, Troed-rhiw-llech Foel, Twyn Ddisgwylfa, Twyn Rhondda-fach, Twyn-y-Briddallt, Ty-gwyn, Viaduct, Water Works, Waun Row, Ysgubor-wen House

Description of parish from A Topographical Dictionary of Wales (1833) by Samuel Lewis.

Aberdare online  - the site for Cynon Valley and Rhondda Cynon Taff

Aberdare Canal -  6¾ miles of canal from Ty-draw near Aberdare to Abercynon where it joined the Glamorganshire Canal

Aberdare Canal - on wikipedia

Aberdare Walks

Aberdare - on the Rhondda Cynon Taf Libraries Heritage Trail site

Aberdare - on Wikipedia


Details of extant records on Archives Network Wales for the following;

  • Williams Family of Pantygerddinen, Aberdare, papers      "Records of the Williams family of Pantygerddinen, Aberdare, [c. 1826]-[c. 1920], consists of: Aberdare parish records, 1853-[c. 1865]; miscellaneous papers found loose in the volume, includes, papers concerning poetry [c. 1826]-1864, miscellanea, [c. 1860]-[c. 1920]; and deeds of property in Aberdare and Merthyr Tydfil, 1868-1911."

Historical Geography

You can see the administrative areas in which Aberdare has been placed at times in the past. Select one to see a link to a map of that particular area.

Some of the hamlets, towns and villages within this parish

Land and Property

Details of extant records on Archives Network Wales for the following;

  • Dyffryn Estate, Aberdare records  1615-1940     "In 1749 William Bruce (1705-68) of Llanblethian, Glamorgan, navy agent and banker, bought the Dyffryn estate in Aberdare from John Jones. His son, the Rev. Thomas Bruce (d 1790) of Llanblethian and Dyffryn, was succeeded by his sister Margaret (d 1809) the wife of John Knight (d 1799) of Llanblethian and Barnstaple in Devon. Their son John Knight (1784-1872) assumed the additional surname Bruce in 1805 on succeeding to his uncle's Aberdare estate, and the surname Pryce in 1837 on succeeding to his cousin Frances Ann Grey's Dyffryn estate in the parish of St Nicholas. ............................"


This diagram shows the position of this parish within the county of Glamorgan - click on this to see a full size diagram of the county

Glamorgan Parish Map
You can see maps centred on OS grid reference SO002026 (Lat/Lon: 51.713181, -3.445964), Aberdare which are provided by:

Medical Records

The People's Collection Wales site has material for Aberdare, use the onsite search box

Names, Geographical

Cynon Valley Place-Names  by Deric John 1998. An insight into the meanings and derivations of the place-names of the Cynon valley.The index from the book is reproduced here


  • Aberdare Times, newspaper, Aberdare, Glamorgan
    1876-1902: register of advertisements received, material sent for publication
    [National Library of Wales, Department of Manuscripts and Records]


The People's Collection Wales site has material for Aberdare, use the onsite search box

Local Collieries not shown anywhere else on this site;

Politics and Government

  • Aberdare Independent Labour Party, Aberdare, Glamorgan
    • 1895-1908: list of officers, subscriptions and committees
      [Glamorgan Record Office, Cardiff]
    • 1901-06: minutes
      [Aberdare Central Library]
  • Aberdare Ward Labour Party, Aberdare, Glamorgan
    1933-63: ward minute books, correspondents and papers
    [University of Swansea Library, Swansea - Reference SWCC]

Poor Houses, Poor Law etc.

The People's Collection Wales site has material for Aberdare, use the onsite search box


The Population of Aberdare was as follows, and a more detailed breakdown is available.

1841 - 6,471 1851 - 14,999 1861 - 32,299 1871 - 37,774 1881 - 35,533 1891 - 40,917

Public Records

Details of extant records on Archives Network Wales for the following;

  • Aberdare Burial Board records 1857-1903  
  • Aberdare Civil Parish records  1819-1904    "Records of Aberdare Civil Parish including tithe plan and apportionment, 1847; vestry minutes books, 1819-1904; assistant overseers' rate books, 1844-1849; church rate book, 1840-1842; surveyors' account (Cefnpennar), 1832-1844"  
  • Aberdare Coroner's records   "Post mortem reports and inquests, 1973-1983"  
  • Aberdare Local Board of Health       "Records of the Aberdare Local Board of Health, 1854-1901, consisting of: minutes, 1854-1894; committee minutes, 1866-1900 (including committee minutes for Aberdare Urban District Council, 1895-1900); ledgers, 1875-1878; letter books, 1866-1894; waterworks company balance sheets, 1858-1872; and the journal used by the Inspector of Canal Boats, 1890-1901"     
  • Aberdare Urban District Council records  1894-1974  
  • Cynon Valley Borough Council records   1974-1996    "Cynon Valley Borough Council was formed in 1974 as a result of the Local Government Act 1972. It comprised Aberdare and Mountain Ash Urban Districts and parts of Neath Rural District, in Glamorgan, and Penderyn in Vaynor and Penderyn Rural District, formerly in Breconshire. ................. In 1996, the council was replaced by Rhondda Cynon Taf County Borough Council as unitary authority."  
  • Miskin Higher Petty Sessional Division records  1853-1962     "Petty Sessions divisions were established based on the groups of parishes known as hundreds.................. In Glamorgan, the hundred of Miskin was covered by two divisions, Miskin Higher and Lower. Miskin Higher covered Aberdare, Abercynon, and Mountain Ash"   
  • Wales Gas Board records      Include ".......... Aberdare Gas Undertaking, 1845-1949.........."

Religion and Religious Life

  • Aberdare District Baptist Choral Union, Aberdare, Glamorgan
    1889-1934: records [National Library of Wales, Department of Manuscripts and Records]


Aberdare Boys' Grammar School - a history,  1896-1978

Aberdare Girls' Grammar School  

Details of extant records on Archives Network Wales for the following;

  • Aberdare (and Mountain Ash) Division Primary/Elementary school records      19th century-20th century        "Aberdare (and Mountain Ash) Division Primary/Elementary school records including log books and admission records relating to Aberaman schools, 1866-1939; Caradog Town school, 1921-1964; Aberdare Higher Standard school, 1890-1932; Aberdare Juvenile Unemployment Centre, 1927-1941; Open Air school for Physically and Mentally Disabled Children, 1914-1950; St. Fagans National school Trecynon, 1863-1963; Aberdare Town schools, 1875-1963; Duke street and Cwmdare Infants schools, 1869-1883; Abernant schools, 1892-1967; Aman schools, 1894-1960; Blaengwawr school, 1880-1969; Capcoch schools, 1872-1938; Cwmaman and Hirwaun War Nursery, 1943-1944; Cwmaman and Glynhafod schools, 1869-1987; Cwm-bach schools, 1868-1950; Cwmdare schools, 1864-1949; Hirwaun school, 1876-1949; Llwydcoed school, 1878-1934; Parc schools, 1865-1951; Pen-y-waun schools, 1897-1983; Robertstown school, 1972-1929; Ynyslwyd school, 1904-1953"
  • Aberdare School Board records      "Aberdare School Board records comprising of minute books, 1872-1886; school returns, 1879-1923; report and letter books, 1878-1903; ledgers and accounts, 1872-1903; cash books, 1881-1901; ...................................."  
  • Aberdare Mardy House (Church in Wales) Senior/Secondary Modern School records       "......... comprising of logbooks, 1930-1969"
  • Pantglas Senior/Secondary school, Aberdare records     "Pantglas school was a senior mixed school until 1952 when it became Pantglas Secondary school............."      "   .... records comprising of log book, 1940-1966"