Aberpergwm Estate Papers

Scope and Content

Deeds, 1871-1915; estate papers, including accounts, 1848-1928, correspondence, 1867-1926, miscellaneous administrative papers, 1841-1920, architect's plans for Aberpergwm House, 1843, and papers relating to the restoration and maintenance work on Aberpergwm House and garden, 1876-1920; papers relating to collieries owned by the family in Glamorganshire (Dunraven Adare, Gwaunclawdd, Measteg Bettws Llantwit, Cilhepste and Aberpergwm), 1836, 1852-1935, including mineral leases, accounts of the payment of royalties, plans of workings, articles of association and correspondence between the colliery company and the land owner and his agents; and family and personal papers of the Williams family, 1804-1919, including a diary (xerox) containing descriptions of trips to the Continent by Morgan Stuart Williams, 1905-1909.

Administrative / Biographical History

The Williams family of Aberpergwm are an old family with a very long association with the upper Neath Valley. The family pedigree can be traced back to one Morgan ap Caradoc ap Iestyn, the 12th century lord of Nedd-Afan. The family made Aberpergwm their home in the 16th century, and continued there until the 1950s. The estate consisted in the main of a large area in the parish of Cadoxton-juxta-Neath, principally in the hamlets of Neath Higher and Neath Middle, in the manor of Neath Ultra and Cilybebyll, and adjacent areas in Brecknockshire. Several members of the family were instrumental in cultivating Welsh poetry and music in the Neath Valley, and the house once contained many important Welsh manuscripts. The Williams family were involved in a proactive way with the coal industry, encouraging the growth of the industry to such an extent that Morgan Stuart Williams is described in 1889 as `colliery owner' in preference to the usual `esquire'. According to the 1873 return of owners of land, Morgan Stuart Williams of Aberpergwm, Glamorgan owned an estimated 3,917 acres in Wales (all in Glamorgan and Brecknockshire), with an estimated rental of £3,690.


Arranged into the following: papers relating to the Williams family; restoration of Aberpergwm house; Aberpergwm garden, house and grounds; title deeds; estate management: financial papers; estate management: correspondence; estate management: miscellaneous; building of houses on the estate; water and sewage; fishery; travel diaries; collieries:Dunraven Adare; collieries: Gwaunclawdd; collieries: Maesteg Bettws Llantwit; collieries: minerals at Cilhepste; collieries: Aberpergwm colliery; collieries: miscellaneous; churches, chapels and schools; parish councils; miscellaneous; sale catalogues; and maps, plans and pictures.

Access Information

No restrictions

Acquisition Information

It is the policy of the West Glamorgan Archive Service to withhold the names of depositors.


Compiled by Mair James for the HMC/NLW Family and Estates project. The following sources were used in the compilation of this description: West Glamorgan Archive Service, Schedule of the Aberpergwm Estate Papers, James, Brian, 'The Great Landowners of Wales in 1873', National Library of Wales Journal, XIV (1965-6); Collis, Kim, The West Glamorgan Archive Service: A Guide to the Collections, (West Glamorgan Archive Service, 1998).

Other Finding Aids

A hard copy of the catalogue is available at West Glamorgan Archive Service.

Conditions Governing Use

Usual copyright regulations apply.

Appraisal Information

Information not available


Accruals are not expected

Related Material

Further papers are National Library of Wales, Aberpergwm Estate Records, West Glamorgan Archive Service, D/D Z 128, D/D Z 280, and D/D Z 253. Papers relating to the Williams family's other Glamorgan estates, Castellau and St Donat's, are in the Glamorgan Record Office.