Edern Manuscripts

Archive Collection

Scope and Content

A collection of 48 items which includes accounts and miscellaneous papers relating to Graig C.M. Chapel (near Bangor), 1843-1869; detailed notes of proceedings of, and sermons preached at, the Arfon Monthly Meeting, 1848-1875; notes of proceedings at C.M. Assemblies held in Caernarvonshire, 1853-1858 and the Associations of 1864 and 1870; letters addressed to Ellis James in his capacity as secretary of the Arfon Monthly Meeting; Vaynol farm accounts, 1840-1865, and rent receipts for Vaynol and Ty'n Llwyn, 1844-1873. Eleven of the items consist of the papers of Evan Roberts of Pen-y-bryn, Pwllheli, the second husband of Catherine Roberts, mother of Ellis James's wife. These include accounts relating to Edern C.M. Chapel, 1806-1827, and to Penmount C.M. Chapel, Pwllheli, 1822-1833; treasurer's accounts of the Arfon Monthly Meeting, 1828-1838; various household and miscellaneous accounts relating to Ellis James's wife's family, 1832-1878.

Administrative / Biographical History

This collection relates in the main to the donor's grandfather, Ellis James, who farmed the Vaynol home farm near Bangor, from 1840 to 1870 and Ty'n Llwyn, Pentir, from 1870 until his death in 1878. He was the son of Robert and Grace James of Tygwyn, Llanberis, born in Dyffryn Mymbyr, Capel Curig, on 21 January 1813, and was raised by his grandfather and grandmother. As a highly religious man who had attended chapel from a very young age he was called on to be a deacon for Rehoboth Chapel in 1840. In 1846, at a monthly meeting in Dinorwig, he was appointed secretary for the Arfon Monthly Meeting. In 1840 he moved from Tygwyn to the Vaynol near Bangor, which was one of the biggest farms in the area. His Uncle, Edward Roberts who had previously farmed the Vaynol, had died and therefore it fell on Ellis James to carry on the work there. In 1850 he married Jane Griffith of Pen-y-bryn, Edern. She was daughter to Catherine Roberts. His mother-in-law remarried a man called Evan Roberts, and after his death half of the land and all of his possessions at Pen-y-bryn went to her. After her death it was left to Ellis James's family. In 1869, on the death of Mrs Asheton Smith, owner of the Vaynol, Ellis James was requested to leave the farm and he and his family moved to Ty'n Llwyn, Pentir. It is believed that Ellis James had shares in Rhiwbach Quarry as early as 1848, and had for some years shares in Dorothea Quarry until he sold them in 1862. He died in 1878.


Chronologically mainly

Conditions Governing Access


Open to all users

Acquisition Information

Presented by Mrs James Robertson of Swansea and Pen-y-bryn, Edern.

Other Finding Aids

Catalogue at item level

Conditions Governing Use

Usual copyright conditions apply. Reprographics made at the discretion of the archivist.


None expected

Related Material

Bangor Manuscripts 313-344, 370, 5708 (9) Nantlle Manuscripts 18


John Jones, Hanes Bywyd y Diweddar Ellis James, Ty'n Llwyn, (Bangor, 1881). W. Hobley, Hanes Methodistiaeth Arfon, (Caernarfon: Cyhoeddedig gan Gyfarfod Misol Arfon, 1910-1924) (Dosbarth Bangor, tt. 196-202). Access Points