1921 the year of the census.

1921 the year of the census.

This week, I’ve been catching up on some outstanding (even if I say so myself!) work.

But it is always a good idea to keep the Blog ticking over. So I set a gratuitous picture of Mumbles 100 and a half years after the 1921 census, and researched and wrote.

In the world of Genealogy you would have had to have been on a desert island, or in a Downing Street party not to have seen at least some news about the 1921 census.

In my outstanding work I’ve been accessing it, (at a ‘Pro’ discount rate- get I touch if you’d like me to do some searching at: info@genealogy-and-you.com )
“In 1921, the country was adjusting to peacetime and the lasting impact of the First World War and influenza pandemic. The 1921 Census report that gives us an overview of the country at this time shows the devastating losses of those who died in the war and pandemic, but also the dramatic reduction in the birth rate – the number of two-, three- and four-year-olds recorded at this time is significantly lower than the number of five-, six-, seven- and eight-year-olds.
The personal information in the census returns shows the impact of the war on every family. Who were people living with? Where were they working? How were relationships affected? Were husbands and wives still together? Were mothers and children, brothers, sisters and friends living nearby or apart? Had children been orphaned?
In the aftermath of both a global conflict and the influenza pandemic, this was all key information for the government to record.”
I would recommend reading about it on the National Archive website. [1]

So 1921, the year of the census.

Here in Wales. In no specific order with a bit of Genealogy for each one, are some bits and pieces:

The mayor of Bangor, Caernarvonshire in 1921-22 was Cllr. William Thomas. [2]
Newspapers are great sources, I could start a family tree from this in the Liverpool Echo 1935:
The death took place at Bronant, Garth-road, Bangor, last night, of Mr. William Thomas, a former Mayor of Bangor. Mr. Thomas, a native of Holyhead, who was 68. was for many years a member of the Bangor City Council. He leaves a widow, a son, and two daughters. He carried on business at Bangor as a Boot and shoe dealer in High-street. A leading deacon of Tabernacle Calvinistic Methodist Church, Bangor, he was well known in the denomination. [3]

Wrexham’s mayor was a Mr. Thomas Sauvage. [4]
Unusual name, made for a census search:
There was one which was a match in 1911, [5] Thomas Sauvage, aged 54, born Ruabon, a Master Draper and Clothier an employer also, he was a Welsh and English speaker. He was married to Hannah aged 54 for 30 years, she was born Ashton under Lyne they had had 5 children but one had died. They lived at 14 King St., Wrexham with family and servants.
A visit to the archives will unearth the order of service for his funeral in 1922 [6] while he still mayor I suspect.

Major George R. Harrison had been elected mayor of Welshpool. [7]
Too early for the Fab 4.
But the Liverpool Daily Post gives enough biography to start a search if needs be:
“Major George D. Harrison (Conservative) Clerk of the Peace for Montgomeryshire who was elected mayor of Welshpool, is the third generation of his family to hold the offices of Clerk of the Peace and Mayoralty. [8]

Heading south, Cardiff 1921 mayor was Francis Harold Turnbull. [9]
He can be found in Cathays Cemetery in Cardiff, the friends [10] of that cemetery have logged him, and Find a Grave has a photograph of the memorial. He died aged 58, on 27th June 1940. [11]

Westwards, Swansea, 1921, Alderman Percy Molyneux [12] was mayor.
Varying the Genealogical sources, here is his probate record [13] , Sir Percy, of Gwerneinon Blackpill, died 23 November 1937, probate proved at Carmarthen, to his widow Lady Jane Molyneux, £24862 14/- 11d. Using these details I can get (a copy) of the will from Gov.uk. [14]

Heading back north. From November 1920 to November 1921 Rufus Williams was Aberystwyth’s mayor. [15]. The 1939 register for Mr. Rufus Williams, shows he was a retired Hotel keeper, born 11 December 1856, living with his wife Phoebe at Heulog, St. David’s Road, Aberystwyth on 29th September 1939. [16]

Enough politicians, some culture now:
Sir Harry Secombe’s mother was well into her pregnancy, he was born on 8th September of that year of 1921. [17]
His birth was registered at Swansea in the 4th quarter of 1921, his mother’s maiden name was Davies. [18]

Around about the time of the census of 1921, James Havard Thomas, sculptor, 66 died. [19]
The Oxford Dictionary of Biography give me a start for James Havard (1853–1921), the sculptor and draughtsman, was born at 16 St Michael’s Hill, Bristol, on 22 December 1853, the son of John Thomas, a carpenter of Welsh descent, and his wife, Mary, née Havard. [20]
You can access the dictionary from your local library.

A wedding, I think it sits nicely with the dignitaries above. Richard William Jones married miss Evelyn Hill on 20th June 1921 at Mount Carmel English Baptist Church, Caerphilly. [21]
The Caerphilly Journal June 1921, article described a ‘Pretty Wedding at Caerphilly’. The groom was Richard William Jones son of Mr and Mrs. Tomas Jones of Bryn Mair Caerphilly, bride was Evelyn Hill 4th daughter of the late Mr. George Hill of Castle St. Caerphilly. The article [22] gives the names of other members of the family, a good start in building a family tree. The marriage was registered in Pontypridd. [23]

The Archdruid of the National Eisteddfod of Wales was Evan Rees aka Dyfed born January 1850 at Puncheston in Pembrokeshire. [24]
This source, The Dictionary of Welsh Biography provides me with:
Evan Rees was born 1 January 1850 at Puncheston, Pembrokeshire; son of James and Eunice Rees, he died 19 March 1923. [25]

So Politics, birth, marriage, death, culture, now a film fact.

A young Roger Livesey makes his screen debut in ‘The Four Feathers’, a British silent film about the attitude to war and the army an officer resigns his commission on the eve of his regiment’s departure for service in the Sudan he is sent four white feathers of cowardice by his comrades and fiancée, and his attempt to prove himself. [26]
Back to the 1911 census in Barry, [27] shows he had the stage in his genes here is the household:
Mary Edwards 60 Head Widow born Bridgend, Glamorganshire, Shopkeeper-Restaurant.
Cassie Livesey 34, Daughter Married 6 years, born Gilfach, Glamorganshire Actress
Samuel Livesey 37, Son In Law Married 11 years, born Claycross, Actor
Joseph Livesey 31, Son In Law Married 6 years born Claycross, Actor
Jack E. Livesey 9, Grandson, born Barry, Glamorganshire
Barry Livesey 6, Grandson born Barry, Glamorganshire
Roger Livesey 5, Grandson, born Barry, Glamorganshire
Maggie Livesey, 1 Day, Grand Daughter born Barry, Glamorganshire
Minnie Bronton 16, Servant born Cardiff, Glamorganshire, General Servant.
They all lived at 138 Holton Road, Barry, in quite a large house of 8 rooms.

I started by mentioning the 1921 census, so I’ll finish with my great uncle Johnny.
Here’s a transcript of his entry, he and my grandmother’s sister Ellen are I’m sure, a large part of the reason I’m here too.

John Meaney, head of household, aged 32 years 11 months, married, born Waterford Ireland, Labourer at Baldwin’s Steel Works Landore, Swansea, has 3 children under 16.
Ellen Meaney, wife, aged 28 years 8 months, born Waterford Ireland (she was my grandmother’s sister) , she undertook ‘household duties’.
Michael Meaney, son, 7 years 6 months, born Swansea, at whole time school.
William Meaney, son, 6 years 9 months, born Swansea, at whole time school.
Kathleen Meaney, daughter, aged 1 year 8 months, born Swansea.
They lived at 6B Pontyglasdwr St., Swansea. [28]

Close to the place I went to school in the 1960’s.

Email me at info@genealogy-and-you.com or john.colclough@genealogy-and-you.com if you’d like some research.


1.[ Archives, The National. “The National Archives – What’s Interesting about the 1921 Census – The National Archives.” Text. Portals. The National Archives, n.d. Accessed February 5, 2022. https://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/20s-people/the-1921-census/whats-interesting-about-the-1921-census/.]

2.[ “Bangor Civic Society | Mayors of Bangor.” Accessed February 5, 2022. http://www.bangorcivicsociety.org.uk/pages/mayors.htm.]

3.[ “Former Bangor Mayor.” Liverpool Echo, October 14, 1935. Accessed February 6, 2022. https://www.britishnewspaperarchive.co.uk.]”

4. [ “Previous Mayors of Wrexham | Wrexham County Borough Council.” Accessed February 5, 2022. https://www.wrexham.gov.uk/service/mayoralty/previous-mayors-wrexham.]

5. [ “Census Records. Wales. Wrexham, Denbighshire. 2nd April 1911. SAUVAGE, Thomas (Head).,” n.d. RG14 PN:34057 RD:621 SD:3 ED:30 SN:180 Page:359. Census Transcript Search, 1841-1911 [database online]. Accessed February 6, 2022. https://www.thegenealogist.co.uk.]

6. [ “Order of Service – Miscellaneous – Wrexham Borough Council – OFFICIAL – Glyndwr Collection – Archives Hub.” Accessed February 6, 2022. https://archiveshub.jisc.ac.uk/data/gb209-dd/g/dd/g/2223.]

7.[ “Election of New Chief Magistrates.” Liverpool Daily Post., November 10, 1920. Accessed February 5, 2022. https://search.findmypast.co.uk.]

8.[ “Election of New Chief Magistrates.” Liverpool Daily Post., November 10, 1920. Accessed February 5, 2022. https://search.findmypast.co.uk.]”

9. [ “List of Mayors of Cardiff.” Wikipedia, February 5, 2022. Accessed February 5, 2022. https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=List_of_mayors_of_Cardiff&oldid=1069964625.]

10. [ “The Friends of Cathays Cemetery.” Accessed February 6, 2022. https://cathayscemetery.coffeecup.com/mayors.html.]

11.[ “Francis Harold Turnbull (1881-1940) – Find a…” Accessed February 6, 2022. https://www.findagrave.com/memorial/231606622/francis-harold-turnbull.]

12. [ “Mayor of Swansea Takes Action.” We, July 6, 1921. Accessed February 5, 2022. https://findmypast.co.uk.]

13. [ “Testamentary Records. England and Wales. Carmarthen. 11 Feb 1938. MOYNEUX, Percy (Knight).,” n.d. Page 251. England & Wales, National Probate Calendar (Index of Wills and Administrations), 1858-1995. Accessed February 6, 2022. www.findmypast.co.uk.]

14. [ “Search Probate Records for Documents and Wills (England and Wales).” GOV.UK. Accessed February 6, 2022. https://www.gov.uk/search-will-probate.]

15. [ “Mayors of Aberystwyth – Aberystwyth Council.” Accessed February 5, 2022. https://www.aberystwyth.gov.uk/en/council/history-of-the-borough/mayors-of-aberystwyth.]

16. [ “1939 Register. Aberystwyth. WILLIAMS, Rufus. 29 Sept 1939.,” n.d. Reference: RG 101/7555E. The National Archives of the UK (TNA); Kew, Surrey, England; 1939 Register. Accessed February 6, 2022. https://www.ancestry.co.uk.]

17. [ “1921 in Wales.” Wikipedia, January 15, 2022. Accessed February 5, 2022. https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=1921_in_Wales&oldid=1065836104.]

18. [ “Births Index (CR) Wales. RD Swansea, Glamorgan. 4th Q., 1921. SECOMBE, Harry Donald.,” n.d. Volume 11A Page 2299. The General Register Office, Government Offices, Convent Road, Roscommon. Accessed February 6, 2022. www.gro.gov.uk.].

19. [ “1921 in Wales.” Wikipedia, January 15, 2022. Accessed February 5, 2022. https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=1921_in_Wales&oldid=1065836104.]

20. [ “Search Results for James Havard Thomas.” Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, n.d. Accessed February 6, 2022. https://www.oxforddnb.com]

21. [ “Caerphilly Wedding.” Caerphilly Journal, June 25, 1921. Accessed February 5, 2022. https://findmypast.co.uk.]

22. [ “Caerphilly Wedding.” Caerphilly Journal, June 25, 1921. Accessed February 5, 2022. https://findmypast.co.uk.]

23. [ “Marriages Index. Wales. RD Pontypridd Glamorganshire. 2nd. Q., 1921. JONES, Richard W. and HILL, Evelyn.,” n.d. Vol. 11a page 1048. England & Wales, Civil Registration Marriage Index, 1837-1915. Accessed February 6, 2022. https://www.findmypast.co.uk.]

24. [ “REES, EVAN (Dyfed; 1850 – 1923), Calvinistic Methodist Minister, Poet, and Archdruid of Wales | Dictionary of Welsh Biography.” Accessed February 5, 2022. https://biography.wales/article/s-REES-EVA-

25. [ “REES, EVAN (Dyfed; 1850 – 1923), Calvinistic Methodist Minister, Poet, and Archdruid of Wales | Dictionary of Welsh Biography.” Accessed February 5, 2022. https://biography.wales/article/s-REES-EVA-1850.]1850.]

26. [ “The Four Feathers (1921 Film).” Wikipedia, August 22, 2020. Accessed February 5, 2022. https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=The_Four_Feathers_(1921_film)&oldid=974409488.]

27. [ “Census Records. Wales. Barry, Glamorganshire. 2nd April 1911. LIVESEY, Roger.,” n.d. RG14 PN:32189 RD:588 SD:6 ED:12 SN:44 Page:93. Census Transcript Search, 1841-1911 [database online]. Accessed February 6, 2022. https://www.thegenealogist.co.uk.]

28. [Census Records. Wales. Brynmelin, Swansea. 6th June 1921. MEANEY, John (Head).,” n.d. Schedule 285. The National Archives of the UK (TNA); Kew, Surrey, England; 1921 census.. Accessed February 6, 2022. www.findmypast.co.uk.]

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