Amgueddfa Cymru

Hafan

Cyn i ni ddechrau o ddifri ar y bennod nesaf ym mhrosiect @DyddiadurKate (oes, mae dilyniant!), yn y blog hwn mi fyddai’n ffarwelio â dyddiadur 1915 drwy gyflwyno stori Tomi’r Hendre.

Mae enw Tomi’r Hendre yn gyfarwydd iawn i’r rhai ohonoch sydd wedi dilyn @DyddiadurKate o’r cychwyn cyntaf. Ynghyd â’i chwaer Win, roedd Tomi yn ymwelydd cyson â Ty Hen – cartref Kate a’i rhieni – drwy gydol 1915. Fe’u magwyd yng Nghwm Main, ble roedd eu rhieni – John ac Ann Jones – yn rhedeg Siop yr Hendre. Mae llyfrau cyfrifon a thalebau’r busnes bellach yng nghasgliad yr Amgueddfa, ac os gofiwch chi, mewn blog blaenorol, fe fues i’n trafod ymgyrch John Jones i gael blwch post cyfleus i drigolion yr ardal.

Ond i droi nôl at Tomi’r mab, yn 1915 roedd yn fyfyriwr yn y Coleg Normal ym Mangor, ac eisoes wedi hyfforddi fel athro. Yn Rhagfyr y flwyddyn honno – tri mis cyn ei benblwydd yn 21 – ymunodd â’r fyddin. Nid oes cofnod o hyn yn nyddiadur Kate Rowlands.

Erbyn Ionawr 1916, roedd Tomi wedi ei leoli gydag 21ain Bataliwn y Ffiwsilwyr Brenhinol Cymreig yng ngwersyll hyfforddi Parc Cinmel. Wrth chwilota drwy archifau Siop yr Hendre, fe ddes i ar draws cerdyn post a anfonodd Tomi at ei rieni yn ystod y cyfnod hwn.

Derbyniais y parcel ond oherwyd[d] prysurdeb yr wyf wedi bod yn anabl i atteb [sic] o’r blaen. Yr wyf wedi symud i Hut 30 fel y gwelwch ac wedi cael fy ngwneyd [sic] yn ben arno ac felly yr wyf yn hollol gartrefol. Yr wyf yn hynod o hapus a digon o fwyd ac mewn iechyd rhagorol ac yn mynd yn dew ac yn gryf. Nid wyf yn med[d]wl y byd[d] yn rhaid imi byth fynd i’r front gan y byd[d]wn yn cael ein gwneyd [sic] yn officers… Gyrwch fy nghyllell boced a fy spectol mor fuan ag a alloch.

Er nad oedd yn rhagweld cyfnod yn y ffosydd, ym Mehefin 1916 roedd Tomi ar ei ffordd i Ffrainc. Llai na mis yn ddiweddarach, ar 20 Gorffennaf, fe’i hanafwyd yn ddifrifol yn ei frest ym mrwydr Coedwig Delville. Cludwyd Tomi i ysbyty yn Boulogne, ac yna i Ysbyty Ryfel Leith, ger Caeredin. Mae’r adroddiadau gan feddygon Leith yn anodd iawn i’w darllen. Dyma grynodeb o’i gyflwr pan gyrhaeddodd yr ysbyty ar 31 Gorffennaf.

Admitted from No 18. Gen. Hospt. Boulogne. There is a small wound size of 5/ on right side about the level of the 8th rib. Dulness all over this side absolute at base, breath sounds faint over upper lobes. Pat. states that he spat blood but only very little at first. X-ray shows piece of metal at level of 8th rib.

Bu farw Tomi’r Hendre o’i anafiadau ar 27 Awst 1916.

I hereby certify that No. 29606 Pte Thomas Jones… who died to-day of Empyeme and septicaemia… stated to me that he was wounded inaction [sic] at Delville Wood on July 20th 1916. There was a wound in right side of the chest, haemothorax and X. Ray showed a piece of metal in chest. Patient was operated upon and portion of rib resected to allow of free drainage on the 13th, but septic condition was very bad. L. Stewart Sandman M.D.

Mae’n dorcalonnus meddwl am fawredd y golled i’w deulu a’i gymdogion yng Nghwm Main. Cynhaliwyd ei angladd yng Nghefnddwysarn ar 31 Awst, ac mae’n debyg fod tad Kate yn un o’r rhai fu’n talu teyrnged iddo mewn seiat gyda’r hwyr. Cyhoeddwyd adroddiad manwl, di-flewyn-ar-dafod, am yr angladd yn Y Cymro (Lerpwl a’r Wyddgrug).

Angladd Tom yr Hendre yw y condemiad mwyaf ynddo’i hun fu ar y rhyfel yng Nghefnddwysarn… Y mae ei ysbryd caredig yng nghartref Caredigrwydd ei hun. Nid oes yno orfodaeth, nid oes yno glwyfo, nid oes yno ladd a llofruddio, nid oes yno neb yn cael ei gablu a’i regi gan ei salach. Yno y mae cydwybod yn rhydd, yno ni chlwyfir cariad mam, yno rhoddir ei le i gariad tad, yno ni chwelir cartrefi, ac yno ni thorrir calonnau.

Fel y byddai’n gwneud i goffau Hedd Wyn maes o law, cyfansoddodd R. Williams Parry – cyn ysgolfeistr y Sarnau –  englynion er cof amdano.

Ger ei fron yr afon rêd – dan siarad

Yn siriol wrth fyned;

Ni wrendy ddim, ddim a ddwed

Dan y clai nid yw'n clywed.

 

Ond pridd Cefnddwysarn arno – a daenwyd

Yn dyner iawn drosto;

A daw'r adar i droedio

Oddeutu'i fedd ato fo.

 

This post is a synopsis of a Behind the Scenes event I presented on September 30th 2014. It consisted of looking at a “snapshot” of Amgueddfa Cymru – National Museum Wales’ activities during the WWI period. Information was obtained through scanning our scrap books, publication archives and photographic collections for the years 1914 to 1918 and extracting interesting items of news concerning  staff and exhibitions.

However, the first thing I did was to warn everyone that in 1914 this is what we looked like….

National Museum Wales building
National Museum Wales building 30th September 1914

We still existed of course, established by Royal Charter back in 1907 but, without a finished building to call our own.

Therefore, during this time while construction of the building was in progress, administration was carried out in offices close by at Park Place and the Kingsway area while exhibitions were held in temporary galleries next door in City Hall.

Temporary Museum in the City Hall
One of many exhibitions held at the "Temporary Museum in the City Hall"

I centred the staff news on three people...

Archibald H. Lee
Archibald H. Lee

Archibald H. Lee, the Museum Secretary, who saw active military service and was decorated with the Military Cross after fighting at Gaza. He returned to work after the war and remained Museum Secretary for 44 years, finally retiring in 1953. He appears in many photographs of special events and royal visits over the years. 

Cyril Mortimer Green
Cyril Mortimer Green

Cyril Mortimer Green, who had been appointed as Botanical Assistant in 1914, but never got to take up his post. He held a Commission in the 3rd Royal Sussex Regiment, went abroad to fight early on in the war and was eventually killed on active duty in November 1917. 
His death is all the more poignant because, not only did never take up his position at Museum, his brother Hugh Mortimer Green had also been killed on active duty in 1915.

Click the link below and scroll down for more information on Cyril and his brother.

http://www.wwwmp.co.uk/ceredigion/aberystwyth-st-david-s-church/

Eleanor Vachell
Eleanor Vachell

Eleanor Vachell, spirited and outstanding amateur botanist who stepped in to take charge of the botany collections, while Cyril Mortimer Green was absent on military duty. She did this, with the help of pupils from Cardiff High School for Girls, whilst also supporting the war effort as one of the ‘Committee Ladies of the Auxiliary Workers Territorial Forces Nursing Association’ at the hospital set up in Howard Gardens, working as both nurse and librarian.

Eleanor was the daughter of Charles Tanfield Vachell [1848-1914], a member of the Cardiff Naturalists Society, serving as its secretary and president for many years, he was also behind the creation of the Cardiff Municipal Museum and was a member of the National Museum Wales council.
    

Eleanor compiled, with her father, the Vachell herbarium that contains 6,705 dried specimens and is one of the most complete herbaria ever collected by a private individual. This is now held here at the Museum along with a very large collection of their own personal library on British floras.

I also looked at the problems faced in the construction of the building due to a lack of basic materials that had been re-allocated for the war effort. The progress must have been excruciatingly slow and all material orders had to apply via license applications to The Ministry of Munitions and the Report for 1917/18 it is stated that work was suspended completely for a time…

Construction of the dome section
Construction of the dome section

Unfortunately it has become necessary to suspend work on the New Building, and an agreement terminating the contract has been entered into with the builders, Messrs J. Willcock & Son. The roof had already been completed and the windows have been filled with oiled canvas so that the structure is now weather proof… Some of the rooms in the New Building are already in use for storage of specimens. NMW Annual Report p. 9

One of the most enjoyable parts of researching this talk was looking at the exhibitions that were held through the war years and there were plenty of them! Because even though the country was at war, the Museum still had an obligation to the public to carry on programming exhibitions and events. Here are just a few of the many exhibitions held at City Hall and for which we hold the original catalogues...

Turner's Welsh Drawings

Open from Oct 26th 1914 to Jan 30th 1915 and visited by over 8,000 people

Exhibition of Modern Belgian Art

Held in 1915 from March 17th to April 15th….visited by over 6,000 people.

Original exhibition catalogues
Original exhibition catalogues

Exhibition of Topographical Prints and Engravings 

An exhibition of Prints and Engravings of places in Wales was opened on July 27th 1915 and closed on October 30th The number of visitors to the exhibition was in excess of 7,000.

 

Lovett Collection of Toys

A unique collection of children’s toys and playthings lent to the Museum by Mr. Edward Lovett, of the Folklore Society. The exhibition was originally intended to close on August 16th 1915 but in view of the interest it aroused, and to give school children an opportunity of visiting it during the whole of their holidays, the date of closing was postponed to September 2nd. The total attendance was 21, 889.

Original material on display
Original material on display

I also found mention of a number of war related exhibitions held at City Hall but for which we do not hold the catalogues…

Exhibitions of Women’s War Work 

A Ministry of Munitions exhibition of photographs illustrating women’s war work during February 1916

Exhibition of Allied War Photographs 

An Exhibition of Allied War Photographs held in 1917 from August 4th to 20thand visited by nearly 4,000 people.

British Battle Photographs [in colour]

An exhibition lent by the Ministry of Information. This was opened in November 1918 closed on the 11th December, and visited by about 3,500 people. 

I concluded the talk by showing two other WWI related items held here in the Library. The first was a volume of military portraits of soldiers from the Welsh Horse Yeomanry. This regiment did not exist before the Great War; it was formed in August 1914 under the administration of the Glamorgan Territorial Force Association and headquartered in Cardiff [Sophia Gardens]. The title page states that the album was presented to Alderman J. Robinson, who was Lord Mayor of Cardiff (1913–1914) and it was donated to the Library on the 27th April 1932 by Councillor R. G. Robinson.

More information on this regiment can be found here: http://www.1914-1918.net/welshhorse.htm

The second item I showed comprised of three albums, most likely put together for promotional purposes by the Italian air craft manufacturer, The Caproni Factory. The factory was founded in 1908 [in Taliedo, near Milan] and during WWI, they developed a series of successful heavy bombers, used by the Italian, French, British and US air forces.

  1. Officine Caproni contains photographs of large Caproni factory spaces [interiors and exteriors].
  2. Aeroplani Caproni contains photographs of many types of Caproni aeroplanes [many with machine guns attached]
  3. Smaller third album [blank cover] contains photographs of Caproni staff groups at work. This album also contains 5 typed sheets of paper listing the aeroplanes and listing technical information; entries are accompanied with phrases like:
    • Easily managed and very useful in attacking infantry
    • Well-armed with 2 - 4 machine guns
    • Purpose built for attacking enemy workshops / enemy ships 

These albums were donated to the Library on 15th February 1926 by “Lord Treowen” [Major-General Ivor Herbert, 1st Lord Treowen] National Museum Wales Treasurer 1907-12, Vice President 1912-17, and President 1917-22.

More information on the Caproni Factory can be found here:

The last item I showed was one of our scrapbooks covering the WWI period. These articles in particular, paint a vivid picture of an exceptional and turbulent period in the history of Amgueddfa Cymru – National Museum Wales.

This month the museum purchased four handbills for the Isle of Man Steam Packet Company. They date from the 1960s and 1970s. This company is still going and is the oldest continuously operating passenger shipping company in the world. It was founded in 1830 and is celebrating its 185th anniversary this year. Three are illustrated here.

The next three images are from a book of cartoons published by the Western Mail and Evening Express. The cartoons by J.M. Staniforth tell the story of the strike of 1898 and are “a Pictorial History of the longest and most disastrous dispute which ever afflicted the extensive coalfield of South Wales and Monmouthshire”. Joseph Morewood Staniforth was born in Gloucester in 1863. His family moved to Cardiff in 1870, and he started working for the Western Mail aged 15. His first cartoons were published by the Western Mail in 1889 and he went on to produce cartoons covering political and social unrest in Wales up until the First World War.

Amgueddfa Cymru holds a large and comprehensive collection of Welsh share certificates. This month we added one further share certificate to the collections. This was for Nobel Industries Ltd. This company, which operated from 1920 to 1926, owned two important explosives works in Wales. The Glynneath Gunpowder Works in the Vale of Neath (now open to the public by the Brecon Beacons National Park), and Pembrey Explosives Works, Carmarthenshire (also open to the public as a local authority owned country park). This certificate is unused and dates from the 1920s.

Finally this month we acquired three photographs showing the hot dip galvanizing of finished steel pressings at Cwmfelin works, Swansea in the early 1960s. The two images here show the galvanising of buckets and rubbish bins.

 

Mark Etheridge
Curator: Industry & Transport
Follow us on Twitter - @IndustryACNMW

Dyma obeithio y cewch chi wyliau gwych a’ch bod yn edrych ymlaen at weld eich bylbiau’n tyfu yn y flwyddyn newydd!  Byddwch yn ailgychwyn ar eich cofnodi o 4 Ionawr.

Mae rhai ohonoch chi wedi rhoi gwybod i ni’n barod am flagur yn ymddangos yn eich potiau! Fel arfer, dydyn ni ddim yn cadw golwg am flagur tan fis Ionawr neu Chwefror, felly mae’r rhai yma’n gynnar iawn! Rydyn ni’n credu eu bod nhw’n ymddangos yn gynnar am ei bod yn aeaf mor fwyn. Bydd yn ddiddorol gweld a fydd ein cennin Pedr a saffrwm yn blodeuo’n gynharach nag arfer. Yn 2007 a 2008 oedd dyddiad blodeuo cyfartalog cynharaf y project hwn. Dyddiad blodeuo cyfartalog saffrwm oedd 16 Chwefror yn y ddwy flwyddyn. Dyddiad blodeuo cyfartalog y cennin Pedr oedd 14 Chwefror yn 2007 a 6 Mawrth yn 2008.

Beth ydych chi’n ei feddwl gyfeillion? Beth am daro golwg ar adroddiad 2005-2016 ar wefan Bylbiau’r Gwanwyn i weld sut mae eich data chi yn cymharu â’r blynyddoedd a fu?

Mae Ysgol Gynradd Llanharan wedi anfon lluniau atom o’u blagur cyntaf nhw. Edrychwch yn fanwl ar y lluniau i gael syniad o beth sydd i ddod!

Mae llawer o flodau’r gwanwyn wedi bod yn ymddangos yn gynnar eleni. Dyma luniau rhai ohonynt yn ardal Caerdydd. Os welwch chi unrhyw flodau cynnar, rhowch wybod i mi yn yr adran sylwadau wrth nodi eich data ar ôl y gwyliau. Gwell fyth, tynnwch luniau a gofynnwch i’ch athro eu hanfon ataf ar Twitter neu mewn e-bost!

Nadolig llawen iawn i chi, a blwyddyn newydd dda,

Athro’r Ardd a Babi Bwlb

 

Eich cwestiynau, fy atebion:

Ysgol Deganwy: Do we round up or down with rainfall totals greater than 20?

Professor Plant: That’s a great question Ysgol Deganwy. You round the rainfall reading up or down depending on which reading it is closest to. If the reading is less than halfway between two marks (say 2mm and 3mm) then you round down, if the readings are halfway or higher (so in this example 1.5mm or over) you round up! Here’s a fun clip on BBC Bitesize to help illustrate estimating and rounding numbers: http://www.bbc.co.uk/education/clips/zgnyr82 Keep up the good work Bulb Buddies!

 

Dasfen Primary School: Where doesn't seem to be an option to input 0.1mm etc, please advise as to how I am supposed to input this data. Thank you.

Professor Plant: Hi Dasfen Primary, in this instance you would round down to 0mm. Ysgol Deganwy asked a similar question above!

 

Law Primary School: It snowed a little today at lunchtime.

Professor Plant: Fantastic Law Primary School. I hope you enjoyed the snow. Elsewhere the weather has been warmer than usual and spring flowers have started growing!

 

Ysgol Rhys Prichard: It was very windy over the weekend and on Thursday night. Some of the plant labels blew off so we had to staple them on to the pots.

Professor Plant: Good thinking Ysgol Rhys Pritchard, stapling your labels to your pots is a great idea. I hope the weather has calmed down for you now!

 

Abbey Primary School: Friday 13th November is a local holiday. I have used figure from BBC weather website as I couldn't send no record.

Professor Plant: Great work Abbey Primary School. Apologies that the ‘no record’ button wasn’t working, it should be working again now.


Carnbroe Primary School: Look at how much rain we had on Thursday evening. We had our parents evening on Thursday night and had climb a fence as part of the main entrance was flooded!

Professor Plant: Wow Carnbroe Primary, there must have been a lot of rain! Castlepark Primary also commented that they were surprised by how much rain they had.

 

Saint Anthony's Primary School: M and me found it interesting seeing how the rain gauge after storm Abigail.

Professor Plant: Hi Saint Anthony’s, I was interested to see your rain readings after the storm. Other schools reported heavy rain fall for this week, including Silverdale St. John's CE School: ‘Another wet week - we certainly don't need to water our bulbs!’ and Drumpark Primary ASN School: ‘We had lots of rain and wind at the end of the week from Storm Abigail.’ And Shakespeare Primary School: ‘Dear Professor Plant, We got absolutely soaked on Friday. It rained nonstop! We are loving the project though.’


Bent Primary School: Sorry we were at a residential trip for 3 days and although we asked the weather to be recorded , we do not think their results are accurate enough to add to the data.

Professor Plant: Not to worry Bent Primary School, thank you for trying to arrange for the data to be collected but you did the right thing by entering ‘no record’ if the readings weren’t accurate. Keep up the good work!

Teacher: On Thursday we needed to keep our plants in because of the strong winds and rain also because the storm [Abigail] was going to blow them away or make them fall over.

Professor Plant: Hi there, well done for looking out for your bulbs. We do ask that the pots are kept outside to ensure a fair experiment, but you did the right thing by taking them inside until the storm passed. It’s always best to keep them in a cool area as a warm room could affect the results. Keep up the good work Bulb Buddies.

 

Calderwood Primary School: We have had such stormy weather this week with really high winds. It is also to be very cold over the weekend. We hope that our bulbs outside will be ok. We have been taking good care of our bulbs in the class.

Professor Plant: Thank you for taking such good care of your bulbs Calderwood Primary. Remember that all your bulbs in pots should be kept outside in a sheltered area. If some are inside and some are outside you can compare the flowering dates to see if those inside or outside flower first. If this is the case then please only enter flowering dates to the Museum website for the plants being kept outside. Keep up the good work bulb buddies!

 

Betws Primary School: A stormy week, we are hoping our plants are not too soggy! St. Paul's Primary School: Another very wet start to the week! We wonder if the extra rain will affect how the bulbs grow later! Are they drowning?

Professor Plant: Not to worry Betws and St Paul’s Primary, the bulbs like the rain and will be fine. The holes at the bottom of the pot allow excess water to drain away. If it is raining a lot and the soil is moist then there is no need to water the plants. The amount of rain does affect the development of the plants, they develop later in years with less rain and less sunlight hours. Why not have a look at the report 2005-2015 on the Spring Bulbs website and compare your readings so far this year to the average readings for last year? Do you think your flowers will appear earlier or later this year?
 

East Fulton Primary School: Thank you for the super seeds and certificate - it is now up on our Science wall!

Professor Plant: Hi East Fulton Primary. The seeds and certificate were provided by the Edina Trust – I’m glad you liked them! I’m sure the Edina Trust would love a photo of your science wall! Keep up the good work Bulb Buddies!


Ladywell Primary School: We have still yet to experience the flowering of our plants and hope we get to see them soon.

Professor Plant: Hi Ladywell Primary you have a little while to wait yet! Your plants should flower between February and March. Well done for looking after them so well. Keep up the good work!

Following on from Sioned’s blog about our work with Mat Fraser in 2014 and the anonymous ‘invalid chair’ she found in the collection, in this blog I’ll be discussing another object which featured in Mat’s performance – an 18th century woollen suit from the Llantrisant area.  

Unlike most of the disability-related collections in the Museum, the suit in question comes with a personal story and a file bulging with snippets from local history books. Worn by Hopkin Hopkins – better known as ‘Hopcyn Bach’ [Little Hopcyn] – the frock coat and matching breeches are among the oldest items of clothing in the collection. They were acquired by the Museum in 1920, before it was common practice for curators to document their reasons for accepting artefacts into the collection.

Hopkin Hopkins (1737 - 54) was born with a growth restricting condition. His physical appearance became a source of income for his family. It may seem repugnant to us today, but at the age of 14 he was taken to London by his parents and shown publically for money. Billed as “the wonderful and surprising Little Welchman”, his perceived ‘freakishness’ was a source of entertainment in polite society. In 1751, Hopkin was presented to the Royal Family who gave him a gold watch, an annual pension and ten guineas for each appearance he made at Court.

In the same year, he was also ‘on display’ in Bristol. This vivid account of the visit is taken from a letter sent by John Browning in September 1751:

I am just returned from Bristol where I have seen an extraordinary young man, whose case is very surprising; he is shewn publicly for money, and therefore I send you the printed bill, which is given about to bring company… I went myself to view and examine this extraordinary, and surprising but melancholy subject; a lad entering the 15th year of his age, whose stature is no more than 2 feet and 7 inches, and weight 13 pound, labouring under all the miserable and calamities of old age, being weak and emaciated, his eyes dim, his hearing very bad, his countenance fallen, his voice very low and hollow; his head hanging down before, so that his chin touches his breast, consequently his shoulders are raised and his back rounded not unlike a hump-back, he is weak that he cannot stand without support. [Letter from John Browning to Henry Baker, 12 September 1751. Quoted in Sem Phillips, The History of the Borough of Llantrisant, 1866.]

How did Hopkin feel about being an object of curiosity? We simply don’t know. Although we have numerous descriptions of his body, his voice is missing from the narrative.