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Hanes Eglwysi Annibynnol Cymru

(History of the Welsh Independent Churches)

By Thomas Rees and John Thomas; published in 1871+.

 

These 8 chapel histories were extracted by Gareth Morgan from the CD published by Archive CD Books (Feb 2008)

The main project page is on /big/wal/Indchapels.html#Glamorgan

Proof reading & translations by Deric John (Feb 2008)

 


Y TABERNACL, MUMBLES    (Oystermouth parish)

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(Vol 2, p 439)

Adeiladwyd capel bychan yn y Mumbles gan Mr. W. Hammerton yn y flwyddyn 1831. Am dri o'r gloch prydnawn y Sabboth y pregethai ef, a'i ganlyniedyddion yn Newton, ac nid amcenid i eglwys gael ei ffurfio yn y lle. Pan ymsefydlodd Mr. Davies, y gweinidog presenol, yn Newton, penderfynodd arfer ei holl ddylanwad i gyfodi achos yn y Mumbles, yr hwn le sydd yn bresenol wedi cynyddu nes y mae yn dref yn cynwys tua thair mil o drigolion, ac yn debyg o gynyddu yn ddirfawr etto. Yr oedd yr hen gapel mor fychan a gwael yr olwg arno fel nas gallesid disgwyl cynnulleidfa iddo. Yn 1870, cymerodd Mr. Davies ddarn o dir cyfleus ar les am 99 o flynyddau, gyda darbodaeth fod hawl gan ymddiriedolwyr y capel i'w brynu pryd y byddo yn gyfleus iddynt am bedwar cant o bunau. Adeiladwyd yma gapel ardderchog, yn werth deuddeg cant o bunau, ac ysgoldy cyfleus y tu cefn iddo. Agorwyd ef yn nechreu y flwyddyn 1871, pregethwyd ar yr achlysur gan Meistri Thomas Jones, W. Jones, J. Owen, a Dr. Rees, Abertawy, ac eraill. Mae Mr. Davies trwy ei ymdrechion diflino wedi talu o saith i wyth cant o bunau o'r ddyled. Mae yma eglwys wedi ei ffurfio, a thyrfa fawr yn gwrandaw yr efengyl bob Sabboth. Yn ol pob argoelion bydd yma.achos cryf a llewyrchus yn fuan.

Translation by Deric John (Feb 2008

In 1871, a small chapel was built in Mumbles by Mr. W. Hammerton. He would preach at three o'clock on the afternoon of the Sabbath, with his followers from Newton, yet there were no plans for a church to be established in the place. When Mr. Davies, the present minister settled in Newton, he decided to exert his whole efforts to establish a religious movement in Mumbles, a place which presently has grown into a town of almost three thousand people, and is likely to substantially increase yet again. The old chapel was so small and rundown that one could hardly expect it to hold a congregation. In 1870, Mr Davies obtained a suitable plot of land on a 99 year lease, with a provision that the trustees had a purchase option for four hundred pounds at their convenience. A splendid chapel was built here, valued at twelve hundred pounds, with a convenient schoolroom at its rear. It was opened at the beginning of 1871, with sermons at the opening ceremony by Messrs Thomas Jones, W. Jones, J. Owen, and Dr. Rees, Swansea, and others. Mr Davies through his tireless efforts, has repaid around seven to eight hundred pounds of the debt. A church has been established here, with a large congregation that listens to the gospels each Sabbath. Every indication suggests that soon, there will be a strong and prosperous religious movement here.

 


NEWTON   (Oystermouth parish)

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(Vol 2, p 437)

Pentref bychan yn mhlwyf Oystermouth yw y lle hwn. Pan ddaeth yr Arglwyddes Barham i Frowyr, a gweled amddifadrwydd y trigolion o'r efengyl, penderfynodd ddyfod i fyw i'w plith, a gwahodd cynifer ag a allasai gael o weinidogion yr Annibynwyr a'r Methodistiaid Calfinaidd i bregethu yma. Yr oedd Newton yn un o'r manau cyntaf y gosododd i fyny bregethu sefydlog ynddo. Yr oedd William Hammerton, un o weision ei Harglwyddiaeth, yn ddyn ieuangc duwiol ac awyddus am wneyd daioni. Pan na byddai neb arall a fernid yn gymwysach i bregethu o hyd cyrhaedd, pregethai ef goreu y medrai i'r trigolion o gylch anedd ei Harglwyddiaeth. Daeth yn raddol i fod yn bregethwr galluog, defnyddiol, a phoblogaidd. Pan welodd yr Arglwyddes fod ei wasanaeth mor dderbyniol, hi a adeiladodd gapel bychan tlws iddo yn mhentref Newton, yn y flwyddyn 1818; urddwyd ef yn weinidog yno, ac yno y bu yn rhyfeddol o ddefnyddiol a pharchus hyd ei farwolaeth yn 1834. Dilynwyd Mr. Hammerton yn y weinidogaeth yma gan Mr. Thomas Seaville, yr hwn a symudodd i Loegr Yn 1840. Mae yn bresenol yn Swanage, yn swydd Dorset, ond heb ofal gweinidogaethol. Y gweinidog nesaf yn Newton oedd Mr. John Stedman. Urddwyd ef yn 1840, a bu yma hyd 1848. Yn mlynyddau cyntaf ei weinidogaeth yr oedd yn rhyfeddol o boblogaidd, ond tua blwyddyn neu ychwaneg cyn ei ymadawiad, cyfododd rhyw gamddealldwriaeth rhyngddo a'r bobl, fel yr aeth pethau yn annymunol iawn rhyngddynt. Dilynwyd Mr. Stedman yma gan Mr. John Marks Evans, yr hwn fu yma yn heddychol a pharchus am ugain mlynedd. Yn 1868, bu raid iddo roddi y weinidogaeth i fyny. Mae oddiar hyny yn byw yn Abertawy, ond yn gwbl analluog at unrhyw wasanaeth cyhoeddus. Yn amser ymadawiad Mr. Evans, rhoddwyd galwad i Mr. John Carfan Davies, Capel Seion, Abertawy. Dechreuodd ef ei weinidogaeth yma yn Awst, 1868, ac yma y mae etto yn dra llwyddianus.

Mae yma gapel bychan cyfleus, ond digon mawr i drigolion y pentref, er mai efe yw yr unig addoldy yn y lle, a thy hardd i'r gweinidog yn ei ymyl. Mae y gynnulleidfa yn llenwi y capel, ac yn bobl wresog iawn. Saesoneg yw iaith y gwasanaeth, gan mai Saeson uniaith yw holl breswylwyr yr ardal.

COFNODIAD BYWGRAPHYDDOL

WILLIAM HAMMERTON. Ganwyd ef Awst 17eg, 1791, yn Aldersham, yn swydd Hertford. Amaethwr bychan oedd ei dad. Cafodd ef fanteision addysg ragorol yn ei febyd, a phan oedd yn ugain mlwydd oed aeth i wasanaeth yr Arglwyddes Barham, yr hon fu yn foddion i'w ddwyn i adnabyddiaeth o'r Arglwydd, a than ei nawdd hi, fel y gwelsom, y cyfodwyd ef i'r weinidogaeth. Urddwyd ef yn Newton yn 1818, ac yno y bu hyd derfyn ei oes. Bu farw, wedi naw diwrnod o gystudd, Ebrill 14eg, 1834, yn dair-a-deugain oed, a chladdwyd ef mewn daeargell dan y pulpud yn nghapel Newton. Yr oedd William Hammerton yn ddyn addfwyn, boneddigaidd, a chrefyddol iawn. Cerid a pherchid ef gan bawb o'i gydnabod. Yr oedd yn bregethwr efengylaidd a defnyddiol. Er nad oedd wedi derbyn addysg golegawl, yr oedd yn gymeradwy fel pregethwr pa le bynag yr elai. Byddai yn myned yn flynyddol am fis i Lundain i bregethu yn y Tabernacl a chapel Tottenham Court Road. Yr oedd hefyd yn myned yn aml i gymanfaoedd y Cymry, ac efe fynychaf fyddai y pregethwr Saesoneg yn y cyfryw gymanfaoedd. Yr oedd wedi dysgu yr emyn Cymreig,

" Mae'r iachawdwriaeth fel y mor," &e.,

ac yn wastad yn ei rhoddi allan cyn darllen ei destyn pan fuasai yn pregethu mewn cymanfa Gymreig. Yr oedd galar dwfn a didwyll yn Newton a'r gymydogaeth ar ei farwolaeth, a phawb yn teimlo fod yr ardal wedi cael colled drom.

Translation by Deric John (Feb 2008

This is a small village in the parish of Oystermouth. When Lady Barham came to Gower and saw the inhabitants' deprivation of the gospel, she decided to come and live amongst them, and invite as many Independent and Calvinistic Methodist ministers as she could to preach here. Newton was one of the first places where she established regular religious services. William Hammerton, one of her ladyship's servants, was a godly young man intent on rendering goodness. When no other deemed better able to preach was available, he would preach as best he could to the inhabitants around the dwellings of her ladyship's lands. He gradually became an able, useful and popular preacher. In 1818, when her ladyship realized that his service was so acceptable, she built a pretty little chapel for him in Newton village: he was ordained a preacher there, and he remained there, extremely effective and respected until his death in 1834. Mr Hammerton was followed in the ministry by Mr Thomas Seaville, who moved to England in 1840. He is presently in Swanage, Dorset shire, but without a ministerial charge. The next minister in Newton was Mr John Stedman. He was ordained in 1840 and remained until 1848. He was extremely popular during the first years of his ministry, but for a year or two prior to his departure, a misunderstanding occurred between him and the people, and matters became rather unpleasant between them. Mr Stedman was succeeded by Mr John Marks Evans, who remained here peaceably and respected for twenty years. In 1868, he had to give up the ministry. Since that time, he has lived in Swansea, but is completely incapable of any public service. At the time of Mr Evans's departure, Mr John Carfan Davies, Seion Chapel, Swansea was summoned. He commenced his ministry here in August, 1868, and here he remains, again so successful.

Here, there is a small convenient chapel, but large enough for the inhabitants of the village, although it is the only place of worship in the locality, with a grand house alongside it for the minister. The congregation fills the chapel, and they are very fervent people. The language of the service is English, as all the local inhabitants are monoglot English.

BIOGRAPHICAL NOTES

WILLIAM HAMMERTON. Born August 17th, 1791, in Alders ham, Herefordshire. His father was a small-time farmer. In his youth he received outstanding educational advantages, and when twenty years of age, he entered the service of Lady Barsham, who was instrumental in delivering him to the Lord's recognition, and under her patronage, as we have seen, he was elevated to the ministry. He was ordained in Newton in 1818, and there he remained until the end of his days. He passed away after nine days of illness, on April 14th, 1834, aged forty three, and he was buried in a vault beneath the pulpit in Newton Chapel. William Hammerton was a gentle man, gentlemanly and very religious. He was loved and respected by all who knew him. He was an evangelical and effective preacher. Although he had not received collegiate education, he was approved as a preacher wherever he went. He would annually go to London for a month the Tabernacle and Tottenham Court Road Chapel. He also went regularly to the Welsh Gymanfaoedd Canu (religious singing festivals), and he would invariably be the English preacher in the various gymanfaoedd. He had learnt the Welsh hymn,

"Mae'r iachawdwrieth fel y mor," &e., (salvation is like the sea)

and would always read it out before giving his text when preaching in a Welsh gymanfa. There was deep and sincere grief in Newton and the locality at his passing away, and everyone felt that the district had experienced a great loss.

 


PARK MILL  (Ilston parish)

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(Vol 2, p 439)

Mae y capel hwn, yr hwn hefyd a adeiladwyd gan yr Arglwyddes Barham, o fewn wyth milldir i Pilton Green, a'r un pellder o Abertawy. Dechreuwyd ei adeiladu yn y flwyddyn 1821, ac agorwyd ef Ebrill 25ain, 1822. Dechreuwyd y gwasanaeth yn y boreu gan Mr. Warlow, Milford, a phregethodd Dr. Jenkin Lewis, Casnewydd, a Mr. W. Thorp, Caerodor. Yn y prydnawn, dechreuwyd y gwasanaeth gan Mr. Daniel, King'swood, a phregethodd Mr. Peter, Caerfyrddin, a Mr. Davies, Bath.

Hwn oedd y chweched capel a adeiladwyd yn Mrowyr gan yr Arglwyddes Barham. Y mae y chwech yn cael eu defnyddio fel lleoedd addoliad i'r dydd hwn - pedwar gan yr Annibynwyr a dau gan y Methodistiaid Calfinaidd. Y wir anrhydeddus Diana, Arglwyddes Barham, o Lys Barham, yn swydd Kent, oedd unig ferch ac etifeddes Arglwydd Barham. Yr oedd er yn blentyn o dueddiadau crefyddol iawn. Priododd a Syr Gerard Noel, o'r. hwn y cafodd deulu lluosog o blant, yn mysg y rhai mae yr Iarll Gainsborough, yr anrhydeddus a'r Parchedig Baptist Noel, y diweddar anrhydeddus Mrs. Thompson, Poundsford Park, &c. Treuliodd yr Argwyddes Barham ei hoes i fyned oddiamgylch i wneuthur daioni. Arweiniwyd hi gan ragluniaeth i Frowyr, lle y gwnaeth ddaioni dirfawr trwy sefydlu yno achosion crefyddol sydd wedi bod yn fendith i filoedd, ac yn parhau felly. Bu farw yr "etholedig arglwyddes" hon mewn oedran teg yn Fairy Hill, Browyr, Ebrill 12fed, 1823. Awd a'i chorph i'w gladdu yn y beddrod teuluol yn Lloegr. Bydd coffadwriaeth y bendefiges ragorol hon yn fendigedig gan bobl Browyr tra y byddo ganddynt barch i'r efengyl.

Gan mai dan yr un weinidogaeth y mae y lle hwn a Pilton Green wedi bod o'r dechreuad, nid oes genym ddim i ychwanegu at yr hanes a roddasom am y lle hwnw.

Translation by Deric John (Feb 2008

This chapel, which was also brought into being by Lady Barham, is within eight miles of Pilton Green, and an equal distance from Swansea. Building commenced in 1821, and it was opened on April 25th, 1822. The morning service was opened by Mr Warlow, Milford, and Dr. Jenkin Lewis, Newport and Mr. W. Thorp, Bristol, preached. In the afternoon the service was started by Mr. Daniel, King's wood, and Mr. Peter, Carmarthen and Mr. Davies, Bath, preached.

This was the sixth chapel founded in Gower by Lady Barham. The six are used as places of worship to this day, - four by the Independents and two by the Calvinistic Methodists. The most honourable Diana, Lady Barham, of Barham Court, Kent, was the only daughter and heiress of Lord Barham. She had, from early childhood, been of strong religious tendencies. She married Sir Gerard Noel, from whom she was endowed with a large family of children, among who are Earl Gainsborough, the honourable and reverend Baptist Noel, the late honourable Mrs. Thompson, Pounds ford Park, &c. Lady Barham devoted her life to good causes. Providence led her to Gower, where she performed exceptionally good deeds by establishing religious causes there, that have been a blessing to thousands, and continue to be so. This "chosen lady" died at a good age in Fairy Hill, Gower, on April 12th, 1823. Her body was taken for burial at the family grave in England. The memory of this exceptional noblewoman will be blessed to the people of Gower while they have respect for the gospel. As this place and Pilton Green have been under the same ministry from the beginning, we have nothing to add to the history that we gave to that place.

 


CAPEL RHAGLUNIAETH (Bishopston parish)

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(Vol 2, p 440)

Mae y capel hwn yn mhlwyf Bishopston, yn Mrowyr. Dan yr amgylchiadau canlynol y dechreuwyd yr achos yma:- Darfu i Rees Jenkins, aelod ffyddlon a selog yn yr Ysgetty, rentu fferm yn y gymydogaeth hon. Gan nad oedd unrhyw wasanaeth crefyddol yn cael ei gynal yn yr ardal, ond yn Eglwys y Plwyf, ac nad oedd yno ddim i daro archwaeth dyn oedd wedi eistedd blynyddau dan weinidogaeth efengylaidd Lewis Rees a David Davies, Abertawy, darfu i Mr. Jenkins gymell ei weinidog, Mr. Davies, Abertawy, i ddyfod i bregethu yn awr ac eilwaith i'w dy ef. Saeson uniaith oedd ac ydyw trigolion yr ardal hon, ond yr oedd doniau toddedig Davies, Abertawy, hyd yn oed pan lyffetheirid hwy gan yr iaith Saesoneg, yn eu tynu yn lluoedd i'w wrandaw. Wrth weled y bobl mor awyddus i wrandaw, barnodd Mr. Davies a Mr. Jenkins fod yr ardal yn galw am sefydlu achos crefyddol ynddi, ac felly ymgymerasant ag adeiladu capel yma yn y flwyddyn 1805. Yn fuan wedi hyny ffurfiwyd yma eglwys, a neillduwyd Rees Jenkins i'r swydd o ddiacon, yr hon a lanwodd yn effeithiol hyd derfyn ei oes. Wedi agor y capel bu Mr. Evan Harries, Llanymddyfri, yn pregethu yma am ychydig amser. Dilynwyd ef gan Mr. David Morgan, aelod o Gwmllynfell. Yma yr urddwyd ef, ond nis gwyddom pa flwyddyn. Symudodd oddiyma i rywle yn Lloegr. Nid ydym yn gwybod dim yn ychwaneg o'i hanes. Tua y flwyddyn 1814, rhoddwyd galwad i Mr. William Saunders Davids, o athrofa Caerfyrddin. Er ei fod ef yn wr ieuangc gobeithiol iawn, ac yn debyg o fod yn fendith i'r ardal, etto gwelodd y Llywydd mawr yn dda ei alw ato ei hun gyda ei fod yn dechreu ei waith. Bu farw yn niwedd y flwyddyn 1816. Wedi marwolaeth Mr. Davids bu yr eglwys fechan hon heb yr un gweinidog sefydlog am fwy nag ugain mlynedd. Gweinidogion Newton a Park Mill, a phregethwyr cynorthwyol o Abertawy a'r gymydogaeth, fu yn ei chynorthwyo yn y blynyddau hyny. Yn nechreu y flwyddyn 1842, urddwyd Mr. John Williams. Cymerwyd rhan yn ngwaith yr urddiad gan Meistri D. Rees, Llanelli; J. Evans, Crwys; T. Rees, Siloa; W. Morris, Glandwr; W. Jones, Abertawy, ac eraill. Bu Mr. Williams yn ffyddlon iawn i ddyfod yma agos bob Sabboth am fwy na dwy-flynedd-ar-hugain, er ei fod yn byw tua deng milldir o'r ardal. Pan deimlodd fod llesgedd a henaint yn ei analluogi i ddyfod yma mor reolaidd ag yr arferai, rhoddodd ofal y lle i fyny, a dewiswyd Mr. T. Gammon yn ganlyniedydd iddo. Urddwyd Mr. Gammon yma yn haf y flwyddyn 1865, pryd y gweinyddwyd gan Meistri W. Jones, E. Griffiths, a Dr. Rees, Abertawy; J. M. Evans, Newton, a W. J. Ford, Pilton Green. Lluosogodd y gynnulleidfa yn fawr wedi i Mr. Gammon ymsefydlu yma, ac adgyweiriwyd y capel.

Achos bychan a gwan yw hwn wedi bod o'r dechreuad, ac y mae wedi dyoddef yn fawr, ac etto yn parhau i ddyoddef, oddiwrth ragfarn yr Eglwyswyr. Ond er yn wan ac erlidiedig, y mae wedi byw o flwyddyn i flwyddyn, a chymaint o argoel byw arno yn awr ag erioed.

Yr unig bregethwr a godwyd yma er dechreuad yr achos, cyn belled ag y gwyddom ni, yw John Davies, yr hwn sydd yn awr yn fyfyriwr yn athrofa Caerfyrddin.

COFNODIAD BYWGRAPHYDDOL

WILLIAM SAUNDERS DAVIDS. Ganwyd ef yn ardal Ffaldybrenin, sir Gaerfyrddin, a derbyniwyd ef yn ieuangc iawn i'r eglwys yn Ffaldybrenin. Wedi gorphen ei amser yn athrofa Caerfyrddin, derbyniodd alwad oddiwrth yr eglwys yn Nghapel Rhagluniaeth, Browyr, lle yr urddwyd ef tua y flwyddyn 1814. Briawn fu ei yrfa. Bu farw Rhagfyr 6ed, 1816, yn dair-ar-hugain oed, a chladdwyd ef wrth gapel Ebenezer, Abertawy. Yn awr, wedi helaethu y capel, y mae ei fedd ef, fel amryw feddau eraill, y tu fewn i'r muriau. Yn ddiweddar gosodwyd careg ar y mur a'r geiriau canlynol yn gerfiedig arni:-

"Near this spot are burried the Rev. William Saunders Davids, of Providence Chapel, Gower, who died December 6th, 1816, aged 23 years. Also, Bridget, his wife, who died February 13th, 1831, aged 38 years. This stone was erected by their only child, the Rev. Thomas William Davids, of Colchester."

Dywedir fod W. S. Davids yn un o'r gwyr ieuangc prydferthaf o gorph a allesid weled. Yr oedd hefyd yn wr ieuangc rhyfeddol o alluog ei feddwl, ac yn ysgolhaig rhagorol. Bwriadai osod i fyny athrofa yn Abertawy at addysgu pregethwyr ieuaingc, a chyfeirir gyda chymeradwyaeth at y bwriad; hwnw yn llythyr cymanfa y Mynyddbach yn 1815. Ond darfu i'w farwolaeth annisgwyliadwy ddyrysu ei holl amcanion ef a siomi disgwyliadau ei gyfeillion.

Translation by Deric John (Feb 2008)

This chapel is in the parish of Bishopston, Gower. The chapel was started here under the following circumstances: Rees Jenkins, a faithful and enthusiastic member in Sketty, rented a farm in this neighbourhood. As there were no religious services held in the district apart from the parish church, and as there was nothing there to satisfy a man's appetite who had sat for years under the evangelical ministry of Lewis Rees and David Davies, of Swansea, Mr. Jenkins persuaded his minister, Mr. Davies, of Swansea, to come and preach, now and again, at his house. The inhabitants of this district were and are monoglot English speakers, but the silky skills of Swansea's Davies, even when spoken in the English language brought them to listen in droves. Seeing that the people were so eager to listen, Mr. Davies and Mr. Jenkins decided that the district called for the establishing of a religious movement within, and so they undertook the building of a chapel here in 1805. Shortly after that, a church was formed here, and Rees Jenkins was distinguished with the office of deacon, which he filled with distinction to the end of his days. After opening the chapel, Mr Evan Harries of Llandovery preached here for a while. He was followed by Mr. David Morgan, a member from Cwmllynfell. He was ordained here, but we do not know the year. He moved from here to some place in England. We know nothing else of him. Around 1814, Mr. William Saunders Davids of Carmarthen College was summoned. Although he was a very optimistic young man, and likely to be beneficial to the area, yet the Great President decided to call him unto himself as he was about to start his work. He died at the end of 1816. Following the death of Mr. Davids, this small church was without a resident minister for nearly twenty years. Ministers from Newton and Park Mill as well as supportive ministers from Swansea and district assisted during those years. At the beginning of 1842, Mr. John Williams was ordained. Messrs D. Rees of Llanelli; J. Evans, Crwys; T. Rees, Siloa; w. Morris, Glandwr (Landore); W. Jones of Swansea and others took part in the ordination. Mr. Williams was extremely faithful in coming here nearly every Sabbath for more than twenty two years, although he lived nearly ten miles away. When he deemed that debility and old age prevented him from coming here as regularly as he used to, he relinquished his care for the place, and Mr. T. Gammon was chosen as his successor. Mr. Gammon was ordained in the summer of 1865, when Messrs W. Jones, E. Griffiths, and Dr. Rees of Swansea; J. M. Evans, Newton, and W. J. Ford, Pilton Green officiated. The congregation increased tremendously after Mr. Gammon settled here, and the chapel was renovated.

This has been a small and weak movement from the very beginning, and it has suffered greatly, and persists in suffering, from the prejudice of churchgoers. Although weak and persecuted, it has existed from year to year, and it now has as much desire to succeed as ever.

As far as we know, the only preacher raised here from the very beginning of the movement is John Davies, who is now a student at Carmarthen College.

BIOGRAPHICAL NOTES

WILLIAM SAUNDERS DAVIDS. He was born in the district of Ffaldybrenin, Carmarthenshire, and he was accepted while very young into the church at Ffaldybrenin. After finishing in Carmarthen College, he accepted a calling at Providence chapel, Gower, where he was ordained sometime around 1814. He had a very short career. He died on December 6th, 1816, at twenty three years of age, and he was buried alongside Ebenezer Chapel, Swansea. Now that the chapel has been extended, his grave, along with many other graves, are within the walls. Lately a stone has been placed on the wall with the following words carved on it :-

"Near this spot are buried the Rev. William Saunders Davids, of Providence Chapel, Gower, who died December 6th, 1816, aged 23 years. Also, Bridget, his wife, who died February 13th, 1831, aged 38 years. This stone was erected by their only child, the Rev. Thomas William Davids, of Colchester."

It is said that W. S. Davids was one of the physically handsomest of young men that one could see. He was also an extremely intelligent young man, and an exceptional academic. He intended to set up a college in Swansea for the teaching of young preachers, and that aim was commented favourably upon in the Mynyddbach Cymanfa letter of 1815. But his unexpected death put paid to all his intentions and disappointed his friends' expectations.

 


ONLLWYN  (Cadoxton juxta Neath parish)

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(Vol 2, p 441)

Mae y lle hwn ar ganol y mynydd yn agos i haner y ffordd rhwng Glyntawy a Glynnedd. Cyn cychwyn y gweithiau glo a haiarn yma nid oedd dros bump neu chwech o anedd-dai o fewn milldir i'r lle. Tua'r flwyddyn 1842, cymerodd Mr. John Williams, o'r Farteg, Mynwy, ls ar ddarn helaeth o'r mynydd, er mwyn gosod i fyny weithiau haiarn yma. Adeiladwyd amryw dai gweithwyr, a daeth llawer o bobl i fyw i'r lle. Gan fod Mr Williams, perehenog y gwaith, yn ddyn selog a rhagorol iawn fel crefyddwr, mynodd gychwyn achos crefyddol yma gyda chychwyniad y gwaith. Buwyd am ychydig amser yn addoli mewn ystafell eang uwchben marchdy Mr. Williams, ac yn 1846, adeiladwyd yma gapel helaeth, ac aeth pethau yn mlaen yn hyfryd nes y safodd y gwaith, ac y gwasgarwyd y bobl. Ailgychwynwyd y gwaith drachefn, a daeth ychydig o bobl yn ol i'r lle, ond ni fu dim llewyrch yma mwyach cyffelyb i'r hyn oedd tra yr oedd y gwaith yn meddiant Mr. Williams. Mr. Evan Davies, o Libanus, Llanfabon, oedd y gweinidog sefydlog cyntaf yma. Bu ef yma o 1848 hyd 1855, pryd yr ymfudodd i'r America, lle y mae etto. Dilynwyd ef gan Mr. R. Lewis, mewn cysylltiad a Thy'nycoed a Bethlehem. Mr. Lewis fu y gweinidog yma o 1855 hyd ei farwolaeth yn 1866. Yn 1869, urddwyd Mr. D. Davies yma, yr hwn fuasai am flynyddau yn ysgolfeistr a phregethwr cynorthwyol yn yr ardal, ond aflwyddianus iawn y bu ef yma. Cyfododd anghydfod rhyngddo a'r bobl, yr hyn a derfynodd yn ei ymadawiad. Yn Ebrill, 1872, urddwyd Mr. David Morgan, o Brynaman, yn Hermon, Ystradfellte, i fod yn weinidog i'r eglwys hono ac i'r eglwys yn Onllwyn. Yr ydym yn hyderu y bydd llafur Mr. Morgan yn llwyddianus yma. Anrhefn a dyryswch y gwaith sydd wedi bod yn anfantais i'r achos yn y lle hwn. Os y gwaith yn mlaen yn llewyrchus mae pob sail i obeithio y bydd yma achos crefyddol blodeuog.

Translation by Deric John (Feb 2008)

This place is in the middle of the mountain approximately halfway between the Swansea and Neath valleys. Before the coal and iron industries started here, there were no more than five or six dwellings within a mile of the place. Around 1842, Mr. John Williams of Farteg, Monmouthshire took out a lease on a large track of mountain, in order to set up an ironworks here. A number of workers' houses were built, and many people came to live here. As Mr. Williams, the work's owner, was a religious zealot, he insisted on commencing a spiritual movement here alongside the start of his business venture. Worship took place for a little while in a spacious room above Mr. Williams's stables, and in 1846, an extensive chapel was erected here, and things went along famously until the works stopped, and the people went away. In time, the works restarted, and a few people returned here, but the movement did not flourish now as it had done while the works had been with Mr. Williams. The first resident minister here was Mr. Evan Davies of Libanus, Llanfabon. He was here from 1848 to 1855, when he emigrated to America, where he remains. He was followed by Mr. R. Lewis who also held Tynycoed and Bethlehem. Mr. Lewis was minister here from 1855 until his death in 1866. In 1869, Mr. D. Davies was ordained here; he had for years been a schoolmaster and assistant preacher in the area, but he was most unsuccessful here. A disagreement arose between him and the people, which resulted in his departure. In April 1872, Mr. David Morgan from Brynaman was ordained in Hermon, Ystradfellte, to be minister of that church and to the church in Onllwyn. We are hopeful that Mr. Morgan's labour will be successful here. The movement here has been at a disadvantage through disorderly and untidy work. If the work continues to prosper, there is reason to hope that there will be a blossoming religious movement here.

 


PENYCLAWDD  (Llanrhidian parish)

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(Vol 2, p 435)

Mae y capel hwn yn un o'r amryw gapeli a adeiladwyd gan yr anrhydeddus Arglwyddes Barham yn Mrowyr. Adeiladwyd ef yn y flwyddyn 1818. Nid oedd ei Harglwyddiaeth ar y cyntaf yn gofalu pregethwyr o ba enwad a alwai i bregethu yn ei chapeli, ond iddi gael dynion pur eu hymarweddiad ac efengylaidd eu golygiadau, gan hyny derbyniai bregethwyr y Methodistiaid Calfinaidd a'r Annibynwyr yn ddiwahaniaeth i'w gwasanaeth. Mr. Rees Jones, genedigol o Fon, un o bregethwyr y Methodistiaid Calfinaidd, oedd y gweinidog cyntaf yma. Bu ef yn weinidog yma hyd ei farwolaeth yn Chwefror, 1829. Wedi ei farwolaeth ef, penodwyd gweinidog Annibynol yma gan ymddiriedolwyr yr Arglwyddes Barham. Yn amser Mr. Jones, yr oedd llawer, os nad y rhan fwyaf, o'r eglwys yn Fethodistiaid. Ar benodiad Annibynwr yn ganlyniedydd iddo ef, ymadawsant hwy a'r lle, ac adeiladasant gapel iddynt eu hunain yn ngwaelod y pentref. Y gweinidog a ddilynodd Mr. Jones yma oedd Mr. Peter Griffiths, Llanrwst. Gwan a lled ddilewyrch oedd yr achos yma yn ei amser ef, o herwydd dau beth - ymadawiad y Methodistiaid a'r capel, a'r ffaith fod y rhan fwyaf o Annibynwyr yr ardal yn aelodau a gwrandawyr yn y Crwys. Ychydig gyda blwyddyn y bu Mr. Griffiths yma. Dilynwyd ef gan Mr. W. Lewis, o athrofa Caerfyrddin, yr hwn fu yma am rai blynyddau yn pregethu i gynnulleidfa ddigalon o fechan. Wedi ei ymadawiad ef, yn mhen rhai blynyddau, cymerwyd gofal y lle gan Mr. John Evans, o'r Crwys. Gan fod llawer o aelodau y Crwys yn byw yn y pentref a'r ardal, darfu i'r rhan fwyaf o honynt uno a'r ddiadell fechan yn Mhenyclawdd, wedi i'w gweinidog eu hunain gymeryd at y lle, a daeth yma gynnulleidfa gymharol gref a lluosog yn dra buan. O herwydd lluosogiad y gynnulleidfa, bu raid gosod oriel ac eisteddleoedd newyddion yn y capel. Gwnaed hyn tua y flwyddyn 1848. Llafuriodd Mr. Evans yma, mewn cysylltiad a'r Crwys, gyda mesur helaeth o lwyddiant hyd derfyn ei oes yn 1856. Yn nechreu y flwyddyn 1858, dechreuodd Mr. John Lloyd Jones ei weinidogaeth yn y Crwys ac yma, fel canlyniedydd Mr. Evans, ac yma y mae hyd y dydd hwn yn barchus a llwyddianus iawn. Yn y flwyddyn 1870, cafodd y capel ei adgyweirio ac agos ei wneyd oll o newydd. Y mae yn awr yn un o'r capeli harddaf yn yr holl sir. Traul yr adgyweiriad oedd 500p. Mae yr eglwys yn bresenol yn 123 o aelodau, a'r gwrandawyr tua yr un nifer. Yn yr iaith Saesonig yn benaf y dygir y gwasanaeth crefyddol yn mlaen yma yn awr.

Nid ydym yn gwybod fod yma neb wedi cael ei gyfodi i bregethu o ddechreuad yr achos hyd yn bresenol.

COFNODIAD BYWGRAPHYDDOL.

PETER GRIFFITHS. Er i Mr. Griffiths gael byw tua deunaw mlynedd wedi iddo ymadael a Phenyclawdd, etto gan na fu un eglwys neillduol dan ei ofal wedi hyny, yma y mae yn briodol rhoddi ei fywgraphiad. Ganwyd ef yn Gwenddwr, sir Frycheiniog, yn y flwyddyn 1784. Derbyniwyd ef yn aelod eglwysig yn y Bailihalog, gan Mr. David Williams, Llanfairmuallt. Yn mhen tua thair blynedd wedi hyny, anogwyd ef gan ei weinidog a'r eglwys i ddechreu pregethu. Wedi iddo orphen ei amser yn athrofa Gwrecsam, ymsefydlodd fel gweinidog i'r eglwysi bychain yn Llanrwst, Trefriw, a Nantyrhiw. Urddwyd ef yn Tachwedd, 1814. Bu yn llafurus iawn yn y cylch hwn am wyth mlynedd. Casglodd yn y tymor hwnw bedwar cant o bunau at dalu dyledion y capeli. Teithiai lawer o fan i fan i bregethu, ac etto cadwai ysgol ddyddiol, ar yr hon yn benaf yr ymddibynai am ei gynaliaeth, gan nad oedd ei gyflog oddiwrth y weinidogaeth ond ychydig iawn. Yn 1816, priododd a Miss Roberts, o Felinycoed, gyda yr hon y cafodd ychydig gyfoeth. Yn 1822, rhoddodd ofal ei eglwysi i fyny, ond parhaodd i bregethu gyda diwydrwydd. Yn 1829, ymsefydlodd yn Mhenyclawdd, ond yn mhen ychydig gyda blwyddyn symudodd yn ol i Lanrwst am nad oedd ei wraig yn cael iechyd yn Mhenyclawdd. O hyny hyd derfyn ei oes ni bu un eglwys neillduol dan ei ofal. Ond bu yn dra gwasanaethgar fel pregethwr cynorthwyol cyhyd ag y parhaodd ei nerth. Bu farw Mai 16eg, 1858, yn 74 oed.

Yr oedd Peter Griffiths yn ddyn duwiol iawn, ac yn dra galluog fel duwinydd, ond dichon nad oedd bob amser yn ddigon pwyllog a doeth. Er fod ei olygiadau duwinyddol, i'n tyb ni, yn iachus ac ysgrythyrol, etto wrth wthio ei dybiau neillduol fel is-Galfiniad i sylw cynnulleidfaoedd uchel-Galfinaidd mewn dull mwy cyfaddas i ddigio nag i argyhoeddi dynion, achlysurodd gryn ddadleuon a theimladau anhyfryd mewn amryw gynnulleidfaoedd tua deugain mlynedd yn ol. Cyhoeddodd rai pregethau a thraethodau da.

Translation by Deric John (Feb 2008)

This chapel is one of the many chapels erected by Lady Barham in Gower. It was built in 1818. Initially, her Ladyship did not mind about the denominations of preachers that she called to preach in her chapels, as long as she had men of impeccable behaviour and evangelistic views, therefore she accepted Calvinistic Methodist and Independent preachers impartially to her service. The first minister here was Mr. Rees Jones, a Calvinistic Methodist minister, born in Anglesey. He was minister here until his death in February, 1829. After his death, Lady Barham's trustees appointed an Independent minister here. During Mr. Jones's time, many, if not the majority of the church were Methodists. On the appointment of an Independent as a successor to him, they left the place, and built their own chapel at the bottom of the village. The minister that followed Mr. Jones here was Mr. Peter Griffiths, of Llanrwst. The movement was weak and poor here during his time, due to two factors - the Methodists leaving the chapel, plus the fact that the majority of the district's Independents were members and listeners in the Crwys (Three Crosses). Mr. Griffiths was here for about a year. He was followed by Mr. W. Lewis, of Carmarthen College, who preached to small and dismal congregations here for some years. Within a few years of his departure, Mr. John Evans of the Crwys (Three Crosses) took care of the place. As many of the Crwys's members lived in the village and surrounding area, many of them joined the small flock in Penyclawdd, after their own minister had had moved there, and quite soon there was a strong and populous congregation here. Due to the increased congregation a new gallery and new seats had to be installed in the chapel. This was done circa 1848. Mr. Evans laboured here, in conjunction with the Crwys, with a great deal of success until his death in 1856. At the beginning of 1858, Mr. John Lloyd Jones began his ministry of the Crwys and here, as Mr. Evans's successor, and is here to this day, very successful and well respected. In 1870, the chapel was renovated and more or less rebuilt. It is now, one of the grandest of chapels in the whole county. The cost of repair was 500p (500). The church presently has 123 members with around the same number of listeners (non-members). The services here are mostly held in English now. We do not know of anyone, from the movement's beginning to the present time, who was raised here to preach.

BIOGRAPHICAL NOTE

PETER GRIFFITHS. Although Mr. Griffiths lived on for another eighteen years after leaving Penyclawdd, and as there were no other churches in his care thereafter, it is appropriate to place his biography here. He was born in Gwenddwr, Brecknockshire, in 1784. He was received as a church member in the Bailihalog (Beili heulog), by Mr. David Williams, of Llanfairmuallt (Builth). Around three years later, his minister and the church urged him to start preaching. Having completed his time in Wrexham College, he settled as a minister to the little churches of Llanrwst, Trefriw and Nantyrhiw. He was ordained in November 1814. He laboured diligently in this district for eight years. In that time, he collected eight hundred pounds to pay the chapels' debts. He travelled widely to preach from place to place, and yet he maintained a day school, to which he chiefly relied upon for his upkeep, as his wages from the ministry were very small. In 1816, he married Miss Roberts of Felinycoed, from whom he received a little wealth. In 1822, he relinquished the care for his churches, but continued to preach with diligence. In 1829, he settled in Penyclawdd, but within a year he moved back to Llanrwst as his wife suffered ill-health at Penyclawdd. From that day, until the end of his life no particular church came under his care. But he was most beneficial as an assistant preacher as long as his strength allowed him to do so. He died on May 16th, 1858, aged 74.

Peter Griffiths was a very godly man, and a very able theologian, but perhaps he was not always restrained or wise. Although his theological views were, in our opinion, wholesome and scriptural, yet through forcing his low-Calvinistic views to the attention of high-Calvinistic congregations in a style more likely to offend rather than convince people, he occasioned many arguments and unpleasant feelings in many congregations around forty years ago. He published some good sermons and essays.

 


PILTON GREEN  (Penmaen parish)

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(Vol 2, p 438)

Mae y capel hwn yn ngwaelod Browyr, un-filldir-ar-bymtheg islaw Abertawy. Adeiladwyd ef gan yr Arglwyddes Barham yn y flwyddyn 1821. Y gweinidog sefydlog cyntaf yma oedd Mr. Evan Griffiths, yn awr o Abertawy. Yr oedd ef yn ddyn ieuangc yn yr ysgol gyda Dr. Jenkin Lewis, Casnewydd. Aeth y Doctor, ar wahoddiad yr Arglwyddes Barham, am daith trwy Frowyr i bregethu yn ei chapeli hi yno, a'r pryd hwnw, cymeradwyodd ei ysgolhaig, Mr. Griffiths, i sylw ei Harglwyddiaeth,. fel gwr ieuangc duwiol a gobeithiol iawn, ac un tebygol o wneyd daioni yn Pilton Green a Park Mill. Ar y gymeradwyaeth hono anfonwyd am Mr. Griffiths, ac wedi iddo fod yn pregethu yma am rai misoedd gyda chymeradwyaeth neillduol, rhoddwyd galwad iddo, ac urddwyd ef yn Pilton Green a Park Mill, Gorphenaf 21ain, 1824. Dechreuwyd y gwasanaeth trwy ddarllen gan Mr. W. Hammerton, a thrwy weddi gan Mr. Daniel Davies, Burry Green; traddodwyd y gynaraeth gan Mr. T. Edwards, Castellnedd; derbyniwyd y gyffes ffydd gan Mr. J. Evans, Crwys; gweddiwyd yr urddweddi a thraddodwyd y siars i'r gweinidog gan Mr. D. Peter, Caerfyrddin; traddodwyd y siars i'r eglwysi gan Mr. Allen, Abertawy, a diweddwyd trwy weddi gan Mr. Rees Jones, Penyclawdd. Bu Mr. Griffiths yn llafurus a llwyddianus iawn yn Pilton Green, Park Mill, a Providence am rai blynyddau. Pan yr ymgymerodd a chyfieithu Esboniad Mathew Henry, symudodd o Frowyr i Abertawy, a rhoddodd ofal yr eglwysi i fyny. Yn 1829, dilynwyd Mr. Griffiths yma gan Mr. T. C. Dymock, yr hwn fu yn llafurio yma am ddeng mlynedd. Y mae yn awr yn Evington, yn swydd Leicester. Y gweinidog nesaf yma oedd Mr. W. J. Ford. Urddwyd ef yn 1839, a pharhaodd i weinidogaethu yma mewn parch cyffredinol gan fyd ac eglwys, hyd nes iddo golli ei olygon. Gan fod wyth milldir rhwng y nail gapel a'r llall, yr oedd yn anmhosibl i ddyn dall wneyd ei waith fel gweinidog yn y fath le. Gan hyny bu raid i Mr. Ford, yn 1869, roddi ei weinidogaeth i fyny. Dilynwyd ef yn mhen ychydig fisoedd gan Mr. David Edwards, Coed-duon, Mynwy, y gweinidog presenol. Mae Mr. Edwards wedi bod yn nodedig o lwyddianus yma. Y mae yn ystod y tair blynedd y mae wedi bod yn y lle, wedi derbyn rhai ugeiniau o aelodau newyddion, a'r gwrandawyr wedi treblu yn eu rhif. Bwriedir yn ddioed adgyweirio y ddau gapel, y rhai ydynt wedi myned yn lled adfeiliedig. Os parha pethau i fyned yn mlaen mor lwyddianus ag y maent yn bresenol, bydd dau achos cryf iawn yn Pilton Green a Park Mill.

Translation by Deric John (Feb 2008)

This chapel is at the bottom end of Gower, sixteen miles below Swansea. It was built by Lady Barham in 1821. The first resident minister here was Mr. Evan Griffiths, presently of Swansea. As a young man, he was in school with Dr. Jenkin Lewis, Newport. The Doctor went, on the invitation of Lady Barham, on a journey through Gower preaching in her chapels there, and at the time, her academic envoy recommended Mr. Griffiths to her Ladyship, as a godly and very promising young man, and one likely to benefit Pilton Green and Park Mill. On that recommendation, Mr. Griffiths was summoned, and after he had been preaching here for some months with enthusiastic approval, he was given a calling, and he was ordained in Pilton Green and Park Mill on July 21st, 1824. The service was begun with a reading by Mr. W. Hammerton, and followed through prayer by Mr. Daniel Davies, of Burry Green; the introductory address was delivered by Mr. T. Edwards of Neath; the confession of faith was accepted by Mr. J. Evans of Crwys (Three Crosses); the ordination prayer was recited, and the pastoral charge was delivered to the minister by Mr. D. Peter, Carmarthen; the ecclesiastic charge was directed to the churches by Mr. Allen of Swansea, and the service was ended with a prayer from Mr. Rees Jones, Penyclawdd. Mr. Griffiths was diligent and very successful at Pilton Green, Park Mill and Providence (chapel) for many years. When he took up translating 'Esboniad Mathew Henry', he moved from Gower to Swansea, and he relinquished his care of the churches. In 1829, Mr. Griffiths was succeeded by Mr. T. C. Dymock, who worked here for ten years. He is now in Evington, Leicestershire. The next minister here was Mr. W. J. Ford. He was ordained in 1839, and continued to minister here with a general reverence from everyone, until he lost his eyesight. As there were eight miles between one chapel and the other, it was impossible for a blind man to continue his work as a minister in such an environment. Therefore, in 1869, Mr. Ford had to give up his ministry. He was followed in a few months by Mr. David Edwards of Blackwood, Monmouthshire, the present minister. Mr. Edwards has been remarkably successful here. He has, for the three years that he has been here, received dozens of new members, and the listeners have trebled in number. The intention is to renovate the two chapels without delay, as they have become so dilapidated. If things continue to progress as smoothly as they are at present, there will be two very strong movements in Pilton Green and Park Mill.

 


CAPEL Y BURROWS, ABERTAWY  (Swansea parish)

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(Vol 2, p 434)

Yn y flwyddyn 1780, neu rai blynyddau cyn hyny, gan nid oedd ond un capel Ymneillduol yn y dref (heblaw capel y Bedyddwyr Cymreig), a bod sain anhynod gan udgorn y weinidogaeth yn y capel hwnw, darfu i'r ychydig broffeswyr nad oeddynt yn deall y Gymraeg, ac nad ystyrient weinidogaeth Mr. Solomon Harries yn ddigon efengylaidd, rentu ystafell yn Heolycastell at gynal moddion crefyddol. Yr oedd yr addolwyr yn yr ystafell hon yn gynwysedig o Annibynwyr, a Methodistiaid Calfinaidd, a Wesleyaid, ond ymddengys mai Wesleyaid oedd y mwyafrif. Wedi iddynt hwy adeiladu capel iddynt eu hunain, teimlai yr ychydig Annibynwyr a Methodistiaid Calfinaidd a adewsid yn yr ystafell, fod talu traul gweinidogaeth grefyddol, a thair punt y flwyddyn o rent ar yr ystafell, yn faich rhy drwm iddynt allu sefyll dano, gan nad oeddynt oll ond ychydig weithwyr tlodion. Ac i wneyd y trallod yn fwy, cawsant rybudd oddiwrth y wraig a berchenogai yr ystafell fod cymaint o'r rhent ag oedd yn ddyledus i gael ei dalu yn mhen wythnos, neu fod yn rhaid rhoddi y lle i fyny iddi hi. Y gwr mwyaf ei deimlad dros yr achos gwan yn yr ystafell yn awr oedd weithiwr tlawd o'r enw Benjamin Tucker, yr hwn oedd yn ddyn selog a duwiol iawn. Wedi cael rhyhudd am y rhent, gan nad oedd yr arian ganddo i'w talu, nac un dyn ganddo i droi ato am danynt, aeth allan un prydnawn i'r traeth a'i feddwl yn gythryblus iawn. Wedi dwys fyfyrio am ryw gymaint o amser, syrthiodd ar ei ddeulin ar y tywod gan osod ei ofid mewn gweddi daer ger bron yr Arglwydd. Wrth weddio daeth enw yr Arglwyddes Huntingdon i'w feddwl yn ddisymwth iawn, fel un a arferai gynorthwyo achos yr Arglwydd. Barnodd mai mewn atebiad i'w weddi yr arweiniwyd ei feddwl ati. Yr oedd yr Arglwyddes y pryd hwn yn treulio ychyclig ddyddiau yn Briton Ferry. Penderfynodd B. Tucker anfon adroddiad o'r achos ati mewn llythyr, yr hwn a ysgrifenwyd drosto, ac yn ei enw, gan amaethwr adnabyddus iddo. Wedi aros am ychydig ddyddiau am atebiad, ac heb ei gael, penderfynodd fyned ei hun at ei Harglwyddiaeth i osod yr achos ger ei bron. Derbyniwyd ef yn garedig, a chafodd y cymorth gofynol. Addawodd ei Harglwyddiaeth hefyd anfon un o'i myfyrwyr bob Sabboth o Drefecca i bregethu yn yr ystafell. Wedi i'r myfyrwyr fod yn pregethu yno am flwyddyn, ymhyfhaodd Tucker i ofyn i'w Harglwyddiaeth am ei chynorthwy i adeiladu capel. Ar ol gwneyd ymchwiliad i'r achos, penderfynodd ymgymeryd a'r gorchwyl o adeiladu capel. Llwyddodd i gael darn o dir gan awdurdodau y Fwrdeisdref, am dair punt a phedwarswlltarddeg yn y flwyddyn ar les o ddeugain mlynedd. Estynwyd y les hono drachefn, fel y mae dros ddeugam mlynedd etto o honi heb redeg allan. Gosodwyd carreg sylfaen y capel i lawr yn y flwyddyn 1787, ac ar y 5ed o Ebrill, 1789, agorwyd ef, pryd y pregethodd Mr. Rowlands, (Mr. Nathaniel Rowlands, feddyliwn), a Mr. D. Jones, Llangan. O'r pryd yr agorwyd y capel hyd y flwyddyn 1796, bu amryw o weinidogion, yn benaf offeiriaid, a Methodistiaid Calfinaidd, yn pregethu ynddo, ond yn y flwyddyn hono, rhoddwyd galwad i Mr. William Kemp, a bu ef yma yn gweinidogaethu gyda pharch a llwyddiant mawr, hyd nes iddo gael ei alw yn 1821 i fyned yn athraw i athrofa ei Harglwyddiaeth yn Cheshunt. Dilynwyd ef gan un David Jones, yr hwn a fu farw yn niwedd y flwyddyn 1825. Y gweinidog nesaf yma oedd. Mr. Richard Norman, M.A. Bu ef yma o 1825 hyd 1828. Dilynwyd ef gan Mr. James Dunent, yr hwn a fu yma o 1828 hyd 1833. Y nesaf oedd Mr. William Woodhouse, bu yntau yma o 1833 hyd 1838. Yn yr un flwyddyn dilynwyd ef gan Mr. Thomas Dodd, yr hwn fu yn llafurus a Ilwyddianus iawn yma hyd nes iddo symud yn 1853 i Worcester, lle y mae yn bresenol. Yn yr un flwyddyn ag yr ymadawodd Mr. Dodd, rhoddwyd galwad i Mr. John Whitby, Ipswich, yr hwn a ddechreuodd ei weinidogaeth yn Awst y flwyddyn hono, ac a fu yn llafurus yma hyd ddechreu y flwyddyn 1871, pryd y rhoddodd y weinidogaeth sefydlog i fyny o herwydd gwendid a methiant. Yn fuan wedi ymadawiad Mr. Whitby, rhoddwyd galwad i Mr. Richard Thomas Howells, o athrofa Aberhonddu, ac urddwyd ef yma Awst 31ain, 1871. Dechreuwyd y gwasanaeth yn y boreu am unarddeg o'r gloch gan Mr. E. Griffiths, Abertawy; pregethwyd ar natur eglwys gan Mr. T. Rees, D.D., Abertawy; derbyniwyd y gyffes ffydd gan Mr. D. Jones, B.A., Merthyr; gweddiwyd yr urddweddi gan Mr. W. Jones, Heolycastell, Abertawy; pregethwyd ar ddyledswydd y gweinidog gan ei athraw, y Proffeswr Morris, o athrofa Aberhonddu. Yn yr hwyr, dechreuwyd y gwasanaeth gan Mr. B. Williams, Canaan, a thraddodwyd siars i'r eglwys gan Mr. Thomas Jones, Abertawy. Cymerwyd hefyd ran yn y gwasanaeth gan Mr. Griffith John, y Cenhadwr o China, ac eraill.

Bu yr achos hwn yn gryf a llewyrchus iawn o'r amser yr agorwyd y capel yn 1789, hyd o fewn ugain mlynedd yn ol. Yr oedd amryw o brif deuluoedd y dref o ran dylanwad cymdeithasol a chyfoeth yn perthyn iddo. 0 herwydd amrywiol amgylchiadau anffafriol, y mae yn yr ugain mlynedd diweddaf wedi myned wanach wanach o flwyddyn i flwyddyn. Nid oedd yma ond pump a deugain o aelodau pan ddechreuodd Mr. Howells ei weinidogaeth yn Gorphenaf, 1871, ond y mae pethau yn gwella. Erbyn hyn, (Mehefin, 1872), y mae yr aelodau yn 70 o rifedi, ac arwyddion gobeithiol am lwyddiant ychwanegol. Yr anfantais fawr yn awr yw lleoliad y capel. Flynyddau yn ol yr oedd yn cael ei gylchynu gan yr anedddai goreu yn y dref, ond yn awr y mae y tai prydferth hyny wedi cael eu troi gan mwyaf oll yn ystordai at gyfleusdra y Docks a wnaed ychydig flynyddau yn ol yn agos i'r lle. Bydd. y rhan hon o'r dref yn fuan wedi ei chymeryd fyny Yn gwbl at ddybenion y fasnach gyflymgynyddol, a chyn y gellir cael yma gynnulleidfa o'r fath ag a welwyd gynt, bydd yn rhaid symud y capel tua haner milldir yn uwch i fyny i'r dref.

Gan fod y rhan fwyaf o'r gweinidogion cyntaf a fu yma naill a'i yn Eglwyswyr, Methodistiaid Calfinaidd, neu aelodau o gyfundeb Arglwyddes Huntingdon, ac heb gyfrif eu hunain yn Annibynwyr, nid yw yn angen rheidiol i ni roddi eu bywgraphiadau yn HANES EGLWYSI ANNIBYNOL CYMRU. Mr. Whitby a Mr. Howells, y gweinidog presenol, yw yr unig Annibynwyr proffesedig sydd wedi bod yn weinidogion yma.

Translation by Deric John (Feb 2008)

In 1780, or a few years earlier, as there was but one nonconformist chapel in the town (apart from the Welsh language Baptist chapel), and as there were notes of discord coming from the horn of the ministry in that chapel, the few believers who could not understand Welsh, and who did not accept that Mr. Solomon Harries's ministry was sufficiently evangelistic, rented a room in Castle Street to hold religious preparations. The worshipers in this room consisted of Independents, Calvinistic Methodists and Wesleyans, but it appeared that the majority were Wesleyans. After they (the Wesleyans) had built a chapel for themselves, the few remaining Calvinistic Methodists and Independents left in the room, felt that paying the expense of a religious ministry, and three pounds per annum rent for the room, was too heavy a burden for them to bear, as they were all, apart from a few, poorly paid workers. And to make matters worse, they received a warning from the lady who owned the room that they were to pay the outstanding rent within a week or forfeit the place to her. The man who felt most strongly about the weak cause in the room was a poorly paid worker named Benjamin Tucker, a zealous and godly man. Having received the warning over the rent, and as he did not have the money to pay her, nor did he have anyone to turn to for the money, he went out one afternoon to the beach in a troubled state of mind. Having spent some time in deep contemplation, he fell to his knees in the sand and set his deep troubles in a prayer before the Lord. As he prayed, Lady Huntingdon's name suddenly came to mind, as one who always championed the Lord's cause. He maintained that she entered his mind as the result of his prayer. At that time, Her Ladyship was spending a few days at Britton Ferry. B. Tucker decided to send her a letter explaining the situation, which was written on his behalf and in his name by a farmer whom he knew. Having waited a few days for a reply, without success, he decided to go personally to her Ladyship and set the case before her. He was cordially received, and he was given the help that had been requested. Her Ladyship also promised to send one of her students, each Sabbath from Trefecca to preach in the room. After the student had been preaching there for a year, Tucker boldly asked her Ladyship for her assistance to build a chapel. After investigating the cause, she decided to go ahead with the task of building the chapel. She succeeded in acquiring a piece of land from the borough, for three pounds and fourteen shillings per annum on a forty year lease. That lease was later extended, and there is another forty years before completion. The chapel's foundation stone was laid in 1787, and on the 5th of April, 1789, it was opened, when Mr. Rowlands (Mr. Nathaniel Rowlands, we believe) and Mr. D. Jones of Llangain preached. From the time the chapel opened until 1796, there were many ministers, chiefly clergymen and Calvinistic Methodists, preaching there, but in that year, Mr. William Kemp was summoned, and he was ministering here with reverence and great success, until he was called in 1821, to become a teacher at her Ladyship's college in Cheshunt. He was succeeded by one David Jones, who died at the end of 1825. The next minister here was Mr. Richard Norman M.A. He was here from 1825 to 1828. He was followed by Mr. James Dunent, who was here from 1828 to 1833. The next was Mr. William Woodhouse, and he was here from 1833 until 1838. In that same year he was followed by Mr. Thomas Dodd, who was diligent and very successful here until he moved to Worcester in 1853, where he presently resides. In the same year that Mr. Dodd departed, Mr. John Whitby of Ipswich was called, and he started his ministry in August of that year, and who worked hard here until the beginning of 1871, when he relinquished his residential ministry due to weakness and failiure. Shortly after Mr. Whitby's departure, a call was made to Mr. Richard Thomas Howells of Swansea; Mr. T. Rees D.D. of Swansea, preached on church nature; the confession of faith was accepted by Mr. D. Jones, B.A. of Merthyr; the ordination prayer was delivered by Mr. W. Jones of Castle Street, Swansea; his teacher, Professor Morris of Brecon College preached on the duties of a minister. In the evening, Mr. B. Williams, of Canaan, commenced the service, and the ecclesiastic charge was read by Mr. Thomas Jones of Swansea. Mr. Griffith John, the missionary from China, and others took part in the service.

This movement has been strong and very successful, from the time the church opened in 1789, until around twenty years ago. Many of the town's chief influential and rich families belonged here. Due to various unfavourable circumstances, it has in the last twenty years become weaker and weaker from year to year. There were only forty five members here when Mr. Howells started his ministry in July 1871, but things are improving. Now, (June 1872) the members number seventy, and there are optimistic signs of further success. The great disadvantage now, is the chapel's location. Years ago, it was surrounded by the finest dwellings in the town, but now, those beautiful houses have been mostly developed into storehouses for the convenience of the docks, that was built a few years ago close to this place. Soon, this part of the town will be completely taken over by the needs of ever increasing commerce, and before there are congregations here similar to the ones of yesteryear, the chapel will have to be moved a half mile higher into the town.

As the majority of the first ministers that were here, were Churchmen, Calvinistic Methodists or members of Lady Huntingdon's Association, and did not regard themselves as Independents, it is not essential that we place their biographies in HANES EGLWYSI ANNIBYNOL CYMRU [The History of the Independent Churches of Wales]. Mr. Whitby and Mr. Howells are the only professed Independents who have been ministers here.


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