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Lewis / James family from Mardy 1913

PostPosted: Wed Oct 16, 2013 1:23 pm
by HelenMc
I am trying to find information on my Gran's family and any help / pointers would be very gratefully received.
She was born Eiryls May Lewis in 1913 to William and Hannah Lewis at Under 19, Mardy Road, Mardy (Is that an old spelling?). She was adopted by the James family in infancy, possibly as her father died. I believe the James family were farmers, but do not know this for sure.
I think Mrs James died in approx 1922, and Mr James in 1927/28.
Hence with both an adoption and then the adoptive family dying , we have so little information to go on, I don't know where to start!
Our family are now in the Llanelli area, so are not too far away to visit, but again, don't know where to start!
Does anyone have any thoughts to get me heading in the right direction?
Thank you!

Re: Lewis / James family from Mardy 1913

PostPosted: Wed Oct 16, 2013 6:28 pm
by mochyn
What sort of information are you looking for, ancestry type information looking further back, or details of what happened after the death of Mr and Mrs James? It seems adoption wasn't given legal status until 1926 (see ... yadoption/) but I suppose you might be lucky enough to find some records if your gran was adopted again after the Jameses died?

Looking back the other way though, I found a birth record for Eirlys, showing that her mother's maiden name was Davies if that's any help. The GRO entry for her birth is as follows, which will give you enough information to order a copy of the certificate if you don't have one already:

Name: LEWIS, Eirlys M
Registration district: Pontypridd
Year of registration: 1913
Quarter of registration: Oct-Nov-Dec
Mother's maiden name: Davies
Volume no: 11A
Page no: 1521

I'm never sure which is the formally accepted name of Mardy/Maerdy but both are/were used, now and in the past.

Re: Lewis / James family from Mardy 1913

PostPosted: Thu Oct 17, 2013 9:37 am
by HelenMc
Thanks Mochyn.

Yes I found the birth certificate in 2007, and have used that information to try to find information on her birth family and the adopted family.
My Mum remembers some sort of certificate detailing both the birth parents and adopted parents, but that has been lost.
I had discovered that adoption legislation didn't come in 'til after this, but my mum's recollection implies that it was more than an agreement between families. Gran went into service after her adoptive father died, so there was no further adoption.
Any information on either family would be great - we know nothing at present. And I have found it especially difficult because all the family names are very common and we have no other corroborating evidence.
We are particularly interested in whether there were any birth siblings or adopted siblings, and why she may have been adopted in the first place. We did wonder if there was any link to the Senghenydd tragedy as her father was listed on the birth certificate as a Coal Hewer.
I think a visit to the Cemetry and Records offices may have to be my next move.
Thanks again.

Re: Lewis / James family from Mardy 1913

PostPosted: Thu Oct 17, 2013 1:16 pm
by mochyn
Here's the list of names of the men and boys who gave their lives at Senghenydd: ... ad1913.htm

but no William Lewis I'm afraid.

I've read that prior to the 1926 act, adoptions were just done by mutual family agreement, I think one of the things that drove the arrival of the act was that these informal arrangements gave the kids and the new parents no legal protection. Sometimes natural parents would pop up after a period of time and demand to have their children back!